Home | Audio Reviews | Audio Shows | Partner Mags | News  

 

Enjoy the Music.com

HIFICRITIC

Volume 16 Number 3
July / August / September 2021

 

HIFICRITIC Volume 15 Number 3 July / August / September 2021

 

SoundStage
Are we all too busy being serious about our systems to kick back and have fun with the music? A game of 'pass the Bluetooth' at a party has Andrew Everard wondering....
Article By Andrew Everard

 

  Yes, our hi-fi systems are there to be refined, optimised and listened to with rapt attention paid to every nuance but are we losing some of the fun of just enjoying the music? Andrew Everard's been wondering...

As a hi-fi reviewer, I get used to the incredulous reaction when I tell people what I do for a living: 'What?' they almost invariably exclaim, 'You get paid to listen to music?' That one's a bit akin to the way some bristle a bit when I says I'm a journalist, then relax considerably when I explain what I write about: 'Oh, not a real journalist, then,' was the best response to that one. But for all that, doing what I do has treated me pretty well over the years; yes, I get to listen to great music played on usually fairly excellent equipment, and there's always something to pique the interest and lead to further explanations.

However, a recent unpaid 'job' rearranged my way of thinking a bit: amidst a particularly intense period of reviewing against deadlines, I was invited to a 50th birthday party and, deciding that it would be good to spend some time with some young 'uns, I gladly accepted. However, it seems that the plan was that I'd have to sing for my supper, in a manner of speaking: 'We've decided that all the music will be from the 70s, and we thought you could do the music.' Pausing only momentarily to wonder whether doctors go to such events on the understanding they'll be called upon to do the odd diagnosis, or whether hairdressers attend with an on-call kit of brushes and a dryer, I accepted the challenge, and started trying to work out what I'd need.

OK, so the music was relatively easy: I was a teenager in the 70s, so have quite an extensive music of the era in the Guilty Pleasures corner of my library server, while a bit of topping-up in the form of a couple of compilations of the music of the time was swiftly ticked off the list. There were some specific requests, given that the birthday girl was born in 1971, but a small tranche of Junior Choice favourites got all that sorted, too, and with a bit of editing to weed out some of the stuff I listened to at the time I didn't think loads of prog would go down too well with a group ranging in age from teens to those well into their ninth decade I was just about set with enough music to keep playing for a good few hours without too much repetition.

 

HIFICRITIC Volume 15 Number 3 July / August / September 2021

 

How to play it all? Well, the method I chose, which was really a matter of keeping things simple, turned out to be one of those unconscious inspirations: looking for an easily transportable system, and one quick and easy to set up, I lighted on a second-generation Naim Mu-so, with the music ripped down to 320kps MP3 and loaded onto a superannuated iPhone, connected to it via Bluetooth. I also plugged a spare USB cable into the Naim's port, mainly as a means of keeping the iPhone charged up if required one of the reasons I'd upgraded from the phone was to get better battery life.

On arrival, all was set up, and music started playing: I'd put all the tracks in a playlist, so I just to hit the shuffle button and it was off and running. And most impressive was the way the Mu-so managed to fill the house with music without seeming to drown everything out with my reviewing hat I'd say the sound was big and forceful, while remaining excellent intelligibility, and I was enjoying the way I could crank up the Naim system when required, and then just adjust the level on the fly using the volume buttons on the side of the phone. Relax, kick back, and enjoy the party and the music. Yes, really enjoy the music, from hearing a roomful of adults singing along to Abba's Dancing Queen to watching a retro-punk teen pink hair, all in black and bedecked with chains semi-pogoing to The Stranglers' No More Heroes.

However, I realised I was getting something from this modest system I struggled to achieve with so much review equipment when the party moved outside to eat; the Mu-so, sitting inside the windows into the garden, got wound up a little more but was still running entirely cool. And then the 'pass the musical parcel' began, with everyone being given the phone to pick the next track to play, and the conversation began to spin around memories of each track and 'oh, you'll like this one'.

Yes, now I can go back to my reference system and enjoy everything it does, but will I ever be having as much fun as that? Maybe not perhaps we all need to do a bit more kicking back, relaxing, and letting the music take us.

 

-- Andrew Everard

 

 

 

 

Subscribe To HIFICRITIC!


Click here to subscribe to HIFICRITIC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

     
 

Quick Links


Audiophile Review Magazine
High-End Audio Equipment Reviews

 

Equipment Review Archives
Turntables, Cartridges, Etc
Digital Source
Do It Yourself (DIY)
Preamplifiers
Amplifiers
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc
Ultra High-End Audio Reviews

 

Videos
Enjoy the Music.TV

 

Columns
Editorials By Tom Lyle
Viewpoint By Roger Skoff
Viewpoint By Steven R. Rochlin
Various Think Pieces
Manufacturer Articles


Show Reports
Capital Audiofest 2021 Show
The HiFi Summit Q2 2021
T.H.E. Show 2021 Report
The HiFi Summit Q4 2020
The HiFi Summit Q2 2020
Bristol Hi-Fi Show Report 2020
Florida Audio Expo 2020 Show Report
New York Audio Show 2019 Report
Capital Audiofest 2019 Show Report
Rocky Mountain Audio Fest (RMAF) 2019
High End Munich 2019 Show Report
Click here for previous shows.

 

Other
Audiophile Contests
Cool Free Stuff For You
Tweaks For Your System
Vinyl Logos For LP Lovers
Lust Pages Visual Beauty

 

Resources & Information
Music Definitions
Hi-Fi Definitions

 


Daily Industry News

High-End Audio News & Information

 

Partner Print Magazines
audioXpress
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
hi-fi+ Magazine
HIFICRITIC
HiFi Media
Hi-Fi World
Sound Practices
VALVE Magazine

 

For The Press & Industry
About Us
Press Releases
Official Site Graphics

 

Contests & Our Mailing List

Our free newsletter for monthly updates & enter our contests!

 

 

    

Home   |   Industry News   |   Equipment Reviews   |   Press Releases   |   About Us   |   Contact Us

 

All contents copyright  1995 - 2021  HighEndAudio.com and Enjoy the Music.com
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.