After several decades as a hobby, and then a business for more than 17 years, I have found that audio is more about the concessions you make rather than finding that perfect system or the “absolute sound.”
The fact is that synergy is the most important aspect of building an excellent audio system. This is an objective that must be followed by hobbyists if they expect to achieve what they seek.
You can’t just buy a pair of speakers like Harbeth or Vandersteen and throw them into a system built around a different set of speakers, and expect to get great results. If it does happen, then call yourself an “accidental” genius. But more likely, you’ll find yourself on an audio merry-go-round, constantly changing equipment.
We all have a specific sound in our minds when putting together a system, and it is different for everyone. Whether it’s tonality, detail, resolution, dynamics, definition, sound-staging, imaging, timbre, etc., we all have an internal ranking among these various attributes. The bottom line is you can’t have it all. No one system will produce these attributes equally well.
As you travel down your own personal path in home music reproduction, you will have a better idea of which attributes are most important to you. Working with a qualified dealer can help bring about a system that you can enjoy with the musical attributes you care most about.
You see, the dealer, like East End Hi-Fi in Suffolk County, N.Y. has spent countless hours analyzing different products from different manufacturers. If he is good at what he does, he can perceive the differences in sound between these products. He can also save you a lot of time, aggravation, and money in trying to put a system together by yourself. It is worth your while choosing a qualified dealer because you will be much more pleased with the sound you’re getting, then you would be staying on that audio equipment merry-go-round.
It is always best to narrow down the specific musical characteristics that matter most to you in your search for the very best sounding home musical reproduction. Your qualified dealer’s job as a consultant is to work with you to find those most important attributes. If you can get a good portion of them, you can achieve great results!