Where would you like to see audio go in the next 20-30 years?

Where would you like to see audio go in the next 20-30 years?
Here's what I'd like to see
89% (88 votes)
No idea
11% (11 votes)
Total votes: 99

Forget about what you think will <I>probably</I> happen, if you could set the agenda, where would you like to see audio go in the next 20-30 years?

Moebius's picture

Adopting a visionary approach, I imagine a new technique for creating holographic recording of sound, using coherent light as signal carrier to be elaborated by optical computer. Holographic recording of sound should provide a lot more of information. Playback might then also need a very different kind of loudspeakers. The aim would be to reproduce natural sound in almost any type of room.

Thux's picture

More active speakers—not just two-way monitors, but three- and four-way systems, with DSP filters and alignment and digital & computer inputs. Follow the studio monitor approach, but with consumer-oriented interfacing.

jason's picture

High-resolution (192/24) Blu-Rray remastering of old analog recordings. It will never happen though, the industry is moving to low-resolution downloads. But not to worry, I have a wall of LPs.

Lila's picture

Single-driver full-range speakers that are flat from 1Hz to, at least, 30kHz. Higher bit/sample rates that are actually used, unlike on SACD. Amplifiers incapable of clipping.

CharlyD's picture

Subscription or pay-to-play services that would allow playback of content streamed from the Internet on any device you own. This content would include resolutions up to studio master quality (whatever that will be in 20-30 years). Physical media would be an antique.

Chris's picture

Higher and higher bit-rates so that the resolution of digital audio exceeds even the highest-fidelity analog recordings.

Doug Bowker's picture

It'd be nice to see the prices come down a bit and high-quality room correction that didn't kill the sound would be nice, too. I would also like to see physical media hold its value and grow in scope—I can dream right?

Yeah's picture

Better quality music.

Al Marcy's picture

It would be nice to see the end of high-end audio. Getting the finest sound would only require a few hundred percent premium.

F.  Chasinovsky, Van Nuys, CA's picture

Continue to create digiphobes by manufacturing exemplary analog playback (tube or solid-state) and software (vinyl).

Vade Forrester's picture

Near-term: High-resolution digital files streamed directly from a website over really high-speed Internet to the local DAC and hi-fi. Long-term: Direct stimulation of the to auditory center of the brain so we don't need speakers, amps, cables, etc. Of course, that's curtains for the hi-fi industry as we know it. By then, we may not notice.

Bob's picture

Uncompressed music and stem-cell research to make everyone's ears as good as when they were children, so we can all enjoy the music.

Gregory's picture

High-end is at least partially defining audio. So, holographic virtual sound.

Jim M's picture

Please, vinyl goes away, but I hope in less than 20 years.

Toussaint's picture

Audio reproduction needs to evolve so that audio systems' outputs can be adjusted to room acoustics. There needs to be continued healthy existence of physical media for audio reproduction. Also, the continued healthy existence of brick-and-mortar stores to purchase music and audio gear. And finally, the increased interest of younger members of major industrialized nations in quality audio gear.

sal's picture

Let's see: 78s, LPs, 45s,reel-to-reel, 8-tracks, cassettes, Elcasets, VHS, CDs, Mini-Disks, SACDs, DVD-As, MP3s, etc. I vote for no formats, ie, computer-based (user choice resolution) files and all format players.

Paul J.  Stiles, Mtn.  View, CA's picture

Direct Drive. Audio streaming into our brains. No speakers, just the source-to-brain neural interface. High-end, low-end, all price ranges and quailities. I wonder what sort of tweaks and snake oil will be devised.

Soren's picture

I would like everyone to go digital, leaving all the vinyl to me.

Kjetil Haaland's picture

A greater choice in loudspeakers—not 90% monkey coffins.

Percy Erasmus's picture

All solid-state "drives."

Jeff in Oregon's picture

Improved mastering, better fidelity, wireless . . . .

ch2's picture

Non-DRM or similar crap with 24/96 as a minimum standard.

ted betley's picture

Sound cards with options to use outboard power supplies, easy access to I2S. PCs designed/built for audio-only use.

Mike Eschman's picture

More musical accuracy, lower prices.

Ted Clamstruck's picture

I'd like to see the industry adopt a mode of operation wherein they focus on getting the customer the best possible sound quality for what they're spending. This would be a welcome change from the current state of affairs, where a good many of the manufacturers are trying to fleece the customer to the maximum extent possible. Nowhere is this more prevalent than for cables and "tweaks."

Mark L's picture

I would like to see the remastering of many old recordings. (The Rolling Stones SACDs are sensational.) I would like to see hi-rez music releases of remasters. I'd like to see labels invest more back into music and music development. The music is far more important than the equipment.

C.  Healthgut, M.D., FACS's picture

Live sound in my listening room.

HobokenAudiophile's picture

Unless full-range single-driver designs catch on, I could see the expansion of music channels by frequency. Left high, Left mid, Left low, Right high, Right mid, Right low. No more need for crossovers in speakers. I figure speakers will be wireless in the future, so no worries about all the wiring.

Simen Ringstad's picture

I would like to see a sound system you plug directly into your brain like you do on a cochlear implant. No need for speakers, etc, and a WAF through the roof!

- Y - K - I -'s picture

Networking. WLAN. Excellent plug'n play playback devices with super GU-Interfaces. Hi-rez digital material for everyone and all the music of the world, with all kinds of information attached to it—about the music itself and the people, who make it, with shortcuts to related subjects. Yes, this would be my dream—but only the half of it. Because I'd also wish for vinyl to survive and even thrive. Vinyl forever!