Why aren't there more women in high-end audio?

Lisa T.  Marv's picture
Reader Lisa T. Marv notices that there are very few women audiophiles among her friends or the companies she buys from. She wants to know: Why aren't there more women in high-end audio?
Why aren't there more women in high-end audio?
I think it is because
65% (36 votes)
I have no idea
31% (17 votes)
But there are plenty of women
4% (2 votes)
Total votes: 55
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Comments
Eric Shook - Pittsboro, NC's picture

I think it is because stereos don't sound good in the kitchen.

Al Earz's picture

I think women would take more interest in audio gear if they could take it and show it off when they go out. Maybe if Calvin Klein, Jordache, or Gucci made gear.

Fred's picture

Woman have way better hearing than we men do. They are well able to construct music in their heads, even if it's just a low-resolution boom-box. Some, however, do complain of headaches listening to such music. They need us to educate them on the benefits of high-resolution music to help them with their pains.

Chris's picture

Women aren't influenced by the "gear" and the "hype," therefore they are more tuned-in to whether a system can play music properly, not just the sound. To them, and most people for that matter, this is what a music system should do and since most don't, they'd rather buy a frying pan that can fry properly. They rarely buy, because most of the high-end that they hear does not do what they expect! Play the musical message!

Seth G.'s picture

Women love music just as much as men, if not more so. Maybe they are put-off by how male-centric the hobby is. I know I certainly see as many women as men at concerts. And now that I think about it, the orchestra I last went to hear was a very even mix of men and women. So I have no idea why we don't see more in the hobby.

David L.  Wyatt jr.'s picture

More guys are into technology as an interest, and well, that's an important step towards audiophiledom. Now why women aren't so interested in tech, I'll never get. Barbies versus amplifiers, no contest!

Al in Michigan's picture

Prior to arriving at the Audio Karma show in Detroit this year my buddy made mention of the fact there would be a lack of females in attendance. We encountered five throughout the course of the day, including the two working the welcome table.

Glenn Bennett's picture

I think hardware, equipment, cables, etc, is a "guy thing." Flipping switches, levers, making adjustments&#$151;girls are just happy to listen to a pleasing sound from almost anything of decent quality without a lot of hassle. Sounds like the success story behind the Bose radio, eh?

John V's picture

There are women in this hobby?

sal's picture

It is too expensive for women's practical nature.

Allan's picture

Women are very driven by appearance, the ability to impress. There may be exceptions, but the boxes, speakers, wires, and complexity of use are all negatives. Stainless steel appliances and a big diamond are more important. Sound is, by American culture, not fashionable, waste of money, and an eyesore. After all, with Bose, what more could you want? Thirty years of commercials take their toll. I am sure someone will take exception, but go into a big retail store and compare sound systems to ultra-slim televisions, or even the appliance section. Things like the non-standard HDMI "standard" and coffee table of remotes does nothing to help.

kbchristian's picture

I guess the men are sitting on the chest with the Krugerrands.

Johnny B Good's picture

They have better things to do than listen to the same music over and over. My wife prefers to watch the same TV soaps over and over. Difference is that she doesn't care too much about the TV itself.

Larry's picture

Simple, they can't wear it. They can't wear an amplifier, turntable, or speakers and impress their girlfriends at lunch after golf or tennis. Same reason they don't care about cars, home theater, watches, or any of the other techno-mechanical things that fascinate us guys. If you can't spread it on your face with a brush or wear it on your body—in other words, if it doesn't make you look younger and more attractive to the opposite sex, they couldn't care less. Same reason they're aren't many straight guys in the fashion industry, it just doesn't compute for us. Sexist? Yes. True? Yes.

Hal's picture

I think women tend to change their obsessions over the years. Most guys don't.

Cihangir Güzey's picture

High-end gear don't appear in fashion boutiques and one cannot show the highly (if not insanely) priced high-end product in a social place.

Tian's picture

Men love cars, boats, and high-end A/V; women love shoes, fashion, and cosmetics.

Amir Hossein Akbari's picture

Because their brains work far better than our brains.

Larry Evans's picture

This apppeals mainly to the male brain. How many men are into couture?

KRB's picture

Because high-end audio is a form of geekdom.

phil's picture

The techno-geek babble that populates this mag/board/audio world is why.

Chris's picture

Obvious/stereotypical reasons: hi-fi is seen as technical and sometimes geeky. Sadly, I do notice a lot fewer women than men in record stores.

Kerem Icelli's picture

I think it is a natural phenomenon about general interests/characteristics of men and women. In my opinion, it is more a masculine tendency, to be attracted by things that represent higher value, quality, or prestige. Besides, I would rank men as the better sensualists! There must be a reason and an etymological sense for ending up with a phrase like "man of pleasure." Hi-fi is not only about music or reproduction of sound. It has many other aspects to it, that are more likely to be perceived by men. Hi-fi represents technological progress in the service of different philosophies, aiming to achieve the highest possible quality in sound-reproduction. Hi-fi causes huge amounts of aural joy. It costs a lot of money. And, not only because of the last, but because of all these reasons, it represents prestige. Moreover, I also have the feeling that there are more men than women, capable of delving into music, feeling, and enjoying it, becoming one with it. Hope I am wrong, but so far I have not heard of many women shedding tears or getting goosebumps while listening to music and only because of the music playing. Hi-fi eliminates barriers and brings one closer to music. Hi-Fi makes it much easier to delve into music. For those who desire to delve into it. And if it is a fact that there is more men interested in hi-fi than woman, it either means that I am somehow right with my above mentioned feeling, or that women have not yet discovered what hi-fi can affect in increasing the levels of joy and emotion when listening to music.

tzed's picture

Even though it's the 21st century, there are lots of men who haven't gotten the memo. Women are people too, but I see otherwise intelligent men treat them condescendingly every day.

Not Impressed's picture

Women have better hearing and aren't fooled by "tweaks" that do nothing to alter the sound but do alter your bank account.

Keith Dinsmore's picture

It's the same reason there aren't women in Formula One.

Paul Basinski's picture

Are there many folks in general in high-end audio? It's already a small part of the population. I suspect there are fewer women still because most have little interest in the quality of the sound they listen to, and a lack of interest in the technology behind it as well.

Sammy's picture

Women worry about more important things.

Dimitris Gogas's picture

I only know one woman who takes high-end seriously (her system is better than mine) and she's a wonderful person. I know many men in audio and most of them are nerds—myself excluded, of course.

garbled's picture

Have you seen most of the men in high-end audio?

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