While Enjoy the Music.com's Editor Tom Lyle takes a break from his monthly editorials, it seems it is up to me to write this month's lead-in. It is no secret that a vast amount of data concerning the consumer electronics sector passes through my desk on a weekly basis. While others might read consumer magazines, both my e-mail and snail mail is filled with many industry insider publications from a wide variety of sectors. We're seeing great progress within the headphone and portable audio sector, with show attendance reaching all-time highs, yet high-end home audio has not seen anywhere near the same amount of growth.
Ok, this article might sound a bit harsh as you read on yet it is challenging to 'candy-coat' the truth. Within other sectors of consumer-based entertainment I work in, which is one of the reasons for my stepping down as Editor of this publication, it is amazingly modern and we're two to three years ahead of 'the curve'. Of course this is not necessarily a good thing as releasing technology too soon, as Microsoft did when I was working with their Auto PC platform, was a bit too far ahead of its time and the backing technology and screen resolution was not quite optimum. Yet having the ability to develop and fine-tune technology so it is ready when the technology and mainstream consumer is ready has many benefits.
If we step back to June 2013 with My Memo To The Industry article we can see that in 2016 we're all going to benefit from the incredible work done by The DEG, major recording labels and brands of electronics to promote Hi-Res Audio to music enthusiasts worldwide. Sure HDtracks, Naxos, Onkyo, and others have been selling Hi-Res Audio files, yet soon we're all going to enjoy Hi-Res Audio streaming including 24-bit/192kHz and double DSD. Have heard rumors that Apple is following Sony's lead in proprietary file types and thus might be offering far higher quality music than their current MP3 and the like. Going proprietary has benefits including enhancing company exposure and profits due to 'locking in' the patented technology, plus selling items to consumers that use it, in addition to the tried-and-true licensing deals. Whatever the business model that comes about with Hi-Res Audio as equipment manufacturers and music labels seek to regain an amicable deal were everyone benefits, audiophile and music enthusiasts will be grateful to finally enjoy their music on higher resolution than MP3 and of course excellent LP pressings. For those who might not have read My Memo To The Industry, or have not re-read it in years, I invite you to do so and then see what is happening within the industry during 2016.
My idea presented many years ago about having equalization per album/song based on meta data / audio detection? Anyone remember that? Well, Gracenote is going to be implementing it within vehicles so expect it to be available for model year 2018. Hopefully home audio takes note here, yet the largest benefit truly is within the car audio sector imho. The sheer variety and variables of in-car audio in mind-boggling! In many ways I truly do miss being a sound quality judge, which began nearly two decades ago at IASCA with the late great Bill Burton (I miss Bill too, who passed away years ago). Bottom line is that between Hi-Res Audio thanks to The DEG and Gracenote's Dynamic EQ were making strides towards higher musical pleasures for both audiophiles and music enthusiasts worldwide. Enjoy the music <vvbg>.
High-End Audio Official Press Center
So like My Memo To The Industry I am here challenging the high-end audio event promoters to put Enjoy the Music.com out of the Press Center business. Yes you read that right. My desire is for events to publish press releases and equipment sheets of exhibitor's rooms on their website. Your show is your business, not mine, and as such it really is not Enjoy the Music.com's job to be publishing a Press Center featuring your exhibitors. This idea is not new, quite frankly, as all major high-technology events have been doing this for years. Since I'm 'going for broke' here, in addition where are the manufacturer's bio sheets and a nice Apple / Android app that wraps it all up for ease of use for members of the press, attendees, and the world to benefit from? Have discussed these matters with many people within the high-end audio industry over the past few months and every single one of them feels it is a great idea. Frankly, it is not Enjoy the Music.com's job to fill in this gaping hole of a much-desired, and today's norm, of what a proper show exhibitor offers. Sure it increases to the show promoter's costs, yet if you added a little bit to room fees for these benefits am sure the industry would gladly welcome the additional exposure. Check out what HIGH END does with their website, their major Munich event and all the advertisement they do within the city. You can see HIGH END posters within the subway, of the side of buses, on the radio, TV commercial, etc. Enjoy the Music.com's Press Center will remain active until each and every major North American high-end audio event takes the reins with their own in-depth press release section supporting their exhibitors.
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As always, in the end what really matters is that you...