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Issue 104    October 2013
Audio Evolution....
Editorial By Alan Sircom


Issue 104 October 2013  We have been saying for some time that the world of hi-fi is changing. The safe, cosy world of source, preamplifier, power amp and loudspeakers, pulled in from different companies is robustly challenged today, as seen in this issue. So challenged, in fact, that we had to postpone a feature on classical music metadata to fit everything in.

While ever-escalating prices continue to drive the super-deluxe end of the market, the good news is there are products that deliver that high-end performance with a price tag that isnít close to the national debt. We are also beginning to see a wider acceptance of wireless systems, including Bluetooth, as viable audio transmission systems. This is strong medicine for the old school audiophile, who might consider this a step too far.

There are those who feel no need to move with the times. Indeed, the audiophile community has many who have decided that they can stop the world, and get off sometime in the early 1960s, with a collection of vintage equipment and an ability to reject almost anything made after that time in their music replay chain Ė including anything digital. Whether such systems sound good or just sound nostalgic is unclear Ė certainly many can sound excellent Ė but itís a concern if too many people prefer to look backwards instead of forwards, there is no future for good audio. And the latest crop of audio products suggests that is far from reality.

Truth is, we all need to embrace change from time to time. Bluetooth neednít just be about keyboards and phones, itís a high performance way of getting sound from your computer or tablet to an audio system without wires, and thatís the way people play their music today. Audio has broad shoulders and those after super-modern audio systems can coexist with those who want the world set to 1966 or 1986 time. But this only works if people in all parts of the audio business are prepared to accept that coexistence. Grumpy old audiophiles, dealers who refuse to accept we are living in the 21st Century and techno-savvy zeitgeisters who think anything with wires is just so 2007 all need to get past the dogma and start discovering what life is like on the other side. Who knows, you might like it!

Hi-Fi Plus was saddened to learn of the passing of Ray Dolby, engineer and founder of Dolby Laboratories. A pioneer of noise reduction and surround sound processing, Dolby is survived by his wife Dagmar and sons Tom and David. He was 80.


Alan Sircom, Editor Hi-Fi+


















































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