Home Entertainment 2002 Hi-Fi and Home Theater Event
It was suggested in an e-mail
sent to me recently that a few final feelings concerning the show should be
written. A "Show Roundup" as it were. It seems that the industry as
a whole is once again flourishing. With the bad economic times and the
September 11th situation behind us, the road ahead looks promising.
The whole DVD-Audio/SACD debate has settled down with neither format producing
enough software at this time to really show strength in the marketplace. Of
course over the next twelve months this may change as a single chip solution
may enable more DVD players to decode both formats and, of course, slowly
enter in to consumer homes as they upgrade from the present DVD player (or
finally purchase their first DVD unit).
While one editor years ago felt that single-ended tube
amplifiers were a fad, they are obviously here in strength today. The main
problem those many years ago was in finding appropriate high-sensitivity
loudspeakers. Today it appears that tubes and high-sensitivity loudspeakers, in general, are very strong within
the high-end audio industry. Add to that the resurgence of vinyl playback and
many new analog software titles reaching the consumer today. As some say
"What's old is new again".
Many people who read my show reports also note that very few,
if any, comments about the sound are reported. While our other writers
freely express their feelings on rooms, the below e-mail from one of Enjoy
the Music.com™'s loyal readership and my reply
states it succinctly.
I have followed with interest your coverage of the NY Show and various other events appreciating both the pictures and narrative. Two thoughts, would it be possible in the narrative to comment at greater length on the sound, or at least on those rooms which offered good sound in the context of the Show. It would also be nice to see an additional end of show conclusions article that might focus on good sounds and maybe any emerging trends. I suspect that given the pace of the shows that this would happen at some later time after the event.
In general, I find the choice of items reviewed interesting and the actual reviews worthwhile and helpful. I particularly like your efforts as well as those of Wayne Donnelly.
Thanks for your e-mail and suggestions. While i have little time to listen, over the many years i have decided to
not report on the sound as it, frankly, is futile. Bad rooms, makeshift room acoustic treatments, the equipment is quickly setup and, worse still, barely broken in and
settled... in most cases. In the end, as a professional reviewer, i feel it is
highly irresponsible to review a component or sound at a show. Of course waxing lyrically about a room makes
for great quotes and tag lines in manufacture's advertisements. This, in turn,
also helps promote
Enjoy the Music.com™ because they mention our magazine in the quote. Alas, maybe i am not the best at marketing or the smartest at leveraging the popularity of
Enjoy the Music.com™ in a commercial sense. In
the end here is a saying to live by: To Thy Own Self Be True.
Of course we will have reports by other writers on our staff and they are free to report on whatever products they so choose and make sound judgments as they see fit. Maybe it is simply my own personal beliefs that keep me from reporting on the sound at a
show, though at nights i sleep well (if a bit tired from being overworked). Thanks again for your e-mail and your idea of a show wrap-up is excellent. Will try to implement this in
all future shows. Of course in the end what
really matters is that you...
Enjoy the Music,
Steven R. Rochlin