When I grew up, my Dad would spend time testing and researching new speakers or a receiver for his stereo. For him it was important to have nice sound in the living room. Back then we used a turntable and my Dad had some great albums. He had classical, jazz and then some pop favorites of the day including the Fleetwod Mac Rumors album. On occasion, I would sit with my Mom and Dad and just listen to the music. And during family gatherings or parties, the music was always going and sounded great.

Fast forward (no pun intended) 40 years and we have an age of streaming, MP3, headphones and portable desktop “radio’s” that cradle your iPhone to play music.

On the plus side, we have amazing and convenient access to music.

A sacrifice in my opinion is that these new methods of music delivery have dumbed down our appreciation for good sound. To be blunt, in today’s world of streaming and MP3 music, the concept of HiFi has been lost.

As an electronics professional you might be thinking at this point that I am trying to “sell” you into buying a nice system from us. This is not the case. What I am doing is asking you to consider the value of having some better sound in at least one area of your home.

What I find interesting is that EVERY time I meet with someone to explore putting music into their home, one of the first things they will say is “I’m not an audiophile”. The real meaning of this statement is “don’t sell me expensive speakers”. I find this somewhat interesting because you do not hear people saying something similar about other home purchases. For example, would you ever hear: “I’m not a chef so don’t give me nice countertops” or “I’m not an interior designer so just get some cheap furniture”.

What I am left to conclude is that people do not value nice sound. They see it as an unnecessary expense. Is it because streaming and MP3’s and headphones have diminished the importance? Is it the sheer convenience that has made it less romantic than having to spin up an LP? I would argue that it has.

That said, here are two facts to consider: (1) good sound will move you and elevate your mood (2) good sound does not need to be expensive. There are many studies which show how good sound and music will improve you thinking, attitude and general sense of content. And sprucing up one room of your house with a better set of speakers will not put you in the poor house. Trust me, you do not need to be audiophile to hear the difference between something average and something a little better than average.

Who knows, you may even find yourself on the couch with your spouse and son or daughter listening to great music and building some fond memories.

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