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


Enjoy the Music.com
Volume 5 No. 1
By Paul Messenger


HIFICRITIC Volume 5 No. 1  This issue marks the beginning of our fifth year, which seems an appropriate time to say a big 'thank you' to all our subscribers for making this possible, especially following the unwelcome financial meltdown that arrived at the end of our second year.

While I regret the magazine has to carry such a hefty pricetag, I hope we've managed to create a unique mixture of features, columns and reviews. Product reviews are an important and integral part of all hi-fi magazines. They serve a number of useful purposes, notably in keeping both the reviewer and the reader up to date with what's going on, and of course the trade – brands and dealers alike – love them. But I also think that they've become rather too dominant.

When I first became a journalist on Hi-Fi News in the mid-1970s, the ‘Equipment Reviews' were relegated to a modest section at the back of the magazine. Now they seem to have almost completely taken over the contents of most hi-fi magazines, which seems rather a shame.

I do appreciate the importance, the appeal and indeed sometimes even the educational value of equipment reviews. But as a magazine reader myself, I also find myself cherry-picking the reviews that might interest me, and skipping over many that don't.

While it's more or less true that the performance of hi-fi equipment has steadily improved over the years (something of a contentious statement, I admit), it's equally true that equipment reviews in general seem to have become rather less critical and more predictable, which certainly makes them less interesting to read.

Which is maybe where HIFICRITIC comes in. Much of the equipment we review is very good of course, but hopefully our appraisals don't involve the complete suspension of our critical faculties. And we are endeavouring to leaven the equipment reviews with interesting columns and features, which seems increasingly important as our system configurations today have never been more fluid and confusing, not to mention downright schizophrenic.

Historically, all was analogue easy. Source components of various kinds fed an amplifier and a pair of loudspeakers. With very few exceptions, the power amplification and speakers are unchanged, but the proliferation of digital sources raises all sorts of questions about the pre-amp side of things. Choosing the right system configuration will depend very much on one's personal lifestyle. As Martin Colloms points out, the very best sound quality is found by eliminating the pre-amp entirely, but in my view (and lifestyle) that is impractical to the point of irrelevance. (I find less than six inputs a real inconvenience!)

Neither do I have the time nor the patience to transfer large chunks of my CD and vinyl collections onto hard drives. I'm sure the ergonomics would be delightful, but I'd never cope with all that computer stuff.

For the time being I shall therefore stick to my nice analogue pre-amp, through which I shall play vinyl, FM radio and a CD player. And I'll feed it the less critical digital sources like the TV and computer (today's cassette deck!) via inexpensive DACs. 


Paul Messenger



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)
Cables, Wires, Etc
Loudspeakers/ Monitors
Headphones, IEMs, Tweaks, Etc
Ultra High-End Audio Reviews


Enjoy the Music.TV


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

Show Reports
AXPONA 2023 Show Report
Salon Audio Montréal Audiofest 2023
CanJam Singapore 2023 Report
Florida Intl. Audio Expo 2023
Capital Audiofest Show 2022
KL International AV Show 2022
Toronto Audiofest Show 2022
CanJam SoCal 2022 Show Report
Pacific Audio Fest 2022 Report
T.H.E. Show 2022 Report
HIGH END Munich 2022
...More Show Reports


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
Australian Hi-Fi Magazine
hi-fi+ Magazine
HiFi Media
Sound Practices
The Absolute Sound
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 - 2023  HighEndAudio.com and Enjoy the Music.com®
May not be copied or reproduced without permission.  All rights reserved.