Like I mentioned earlier, in the 'premium' hifi world a bad review can make or break the product. Whereas people buying tellies read Which and shop in Comet, people buying decent hifi will read this mag and others (ie separates).
A bad review will make it all the harder for that product to make shortlists (esp Internet sales), only a company that has been consistently good can carry off a product with bad reviews successfully IMO.
What I like most is that different sounds can all 'work', a Naim has a completely different sound to an Arcam but they both have a following, a house sound if you like and on the whole the reviews are fair, and equipment suits different tastes. The world would be a poorer place if we all bought Beko tellies from Tesco and ate chicken at 2 for a fiver. I want better and hence why I read the mag and take an interest in other (experienced) people's opinions. I'd also like to think that I have a reasonable level of knowledge about equipment, and I know what I want from kit and that comes from listening, reading, talking etc etc - I don't like the Cambridge sound, I look for something more musical and relaxing than B&W, everyone has a preference.
Unison Research CDE, Leema Tucana 2, Kudos C2 and some cables.
On a slight tangent. I have had experience of supposed "expert" dealers "spinning me a line"
One of the dealers in the "best in the world" section of WHSAV was not a very pleasant trip for me recently. I like the look of and the reviews for Monitor Audio speakers. I visited this dealer, whom I shall not name. I asked the sales person for advice, told him my budget and mentioned MA. He "informed" me that I shouldnt bother with them, they were not great. I explained that I read WHSAV and they were regular receivers of awards. I was then informed that he did not put much stock in their awards since they started getting students to review their products and that if i put stock in them myself, I would be better off visiting Richer Sounds!
Needless to say I was not impressed and shopped with my feet (ie left) but this is indicitive of my experiences with "high end" dealers. People with more modest budgets like myself get short shrift (I was basically told investing less than 5 grand in my AV speakers wasnt really worthwhile!!!!!)
What else can we do, other than go for 4/5 star product and hope for the best. (Especially when the same dealer was supposedly one of the best).
That was why I emailed in for a reader rescue, cos i've got a couple of grand to upgrade my (monstrous) cinema room, and have no clue as to what to get......... help..........
Some dealers really don't get it, they live in the dark ages and should realise that in this competitive marketplace they need to offer service, not least that a happy customer in this market will come back again in all probability. Tw&ts.
Get the Dali Ikon system from Audiologica, they will do you a deal and probably be able to source an ex dem setup for a grand less, in perfect nick.
Sounds good, but i wasnt specific lol, that couple of grant needs to buy me a 5.1 system and an amp!
I could tell you where i WONT be getting it!!!
Wheres Audiologica btw? I'm in Belfast.
since they started getting students to review their products
And those policemen, they get younger every day!
Doing some rough maths, i'd put the average age of our reviewing team at almost exactly the same as average age of our readers - 34.
Group PR Manager - Computers Unlimited;
Former Group Editor of What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision and Whathifi.com
I find it odd when the same reviewer is testing exclusively for certain manufacturers ... KK ... (Musical Fidelity/Sonus Faber/Audio Research/Nagra amongst others). You kinda know what the outcome is even if the result is justified.
Pretty ... and pretty proud of it
You dont look a day over 21 ...
I believe many reputable opticians are open on Saturdays - still time to book an appointment!
That is because the Avatar picture was took about 10 years ago... (back handed compliment!...btw)
TW Raven AC - Soundsmith SG-410 - MSB 202 - Gershman Acoustics Black Swan - Audioquest K9
It Has to be said clair must be the best looking hi-fi expert i have ever seen come to that regardless she is hot..............lol
keep up the good work
Consulting Editor, What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision/whathifi.com Audio Editor, Gramophone
Hence the reason I laughed at him and walked! But seriously, it is very difficult to get impartial opinions from anywhere here (Belfast) and I must rely on the judgement of your reviewing panel. Therefore 4/5 stars are a must for me. The dearth of good dealers with listening rooms here (that i can find anyway) is terrible and I am in a quandry as to what to do with my hard earned
It's best to visit as many dealers as possible and hear different set ups to get a better idea of what kind of sound your looking for. Now many people like Monitor Audio, personally like that salesman it's not the sound for me, I just don't like it, but that's me. Yesterday I heard a top line Cyrus system, again it is highly rated, 5 star product, I didn't like it at all, I didn't image, it was speaker bound, flat, unrefined, this was through a pair of Totem Forests which are classy speakers, but the sound left me totally unmoved, I just didn't feel in no way connected to the music,I heard sound, but I wasn't there, I wasn't involved, can you see the danger on just going on 5 star products?
Get to some good dealers that have products that are less well know, they have been around for along time, and don't change the model every year, have a listen, see what you think, you have a good sized budget and I believe you can buy something pretty decent for that money.
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