Is “Dedicated Listening” becoming a lost art?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Khorn, Aug 3, 2022.

  1. Gi54

    Gi54 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Scotland
    I do a lot of 'dedicated' listening, especially to favourite albums and new tunes - with no TV or screens in room (other than ipad for Qobuz and blueos) and mostly when no-one else is in the house or is likely to disturb me. I'm lucky to have a large window to the garden and woodland beyond and that is the only visual stimuli. Listening to well known albums, such as Kind of Blue, can become a kind of meditation.

    I have a few musical and music collecting friends who also like dedicated listening and we swap new music finds over a few beers and wine of an evening every month or so. The kinda people who don't feel the need to fill a communication void.

    Music is also often on to cook to and maybe more quietly when people are around for visits or dinner - but I sometimes get irked by the music playing then as I've not heard it properly or missed parts of albums or songs.

    So, for me and like many here, single focus listening gives great pleasure and insight.
     
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  2. dividebytube

    dividebytube Forum Resident

    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI
    When I was a teenager, a few of us would gather around to listen to albums. A friend back then had a nice setup with Quad ESL-63 speakers, later UREI 813s. It was that stereo that made me an audiophile.

    But there was always the one guy - friend of mine - who would talk and talk over the music, much to the annoyance of the rest of us ;)

    I still have serious listening sessions but maybe only once a month or if I'm reviewing a new piece of gear. Otherwise it is background music while doing other things around the house.
     
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  3. Naka9

    Naka9 music first audiophile

    Location:
    Portugal
    I do it almost everyday, for at least a couple of hours, and it is part of my life for decades :)
    On the other hand, I never listen to music in the car, or in the street, when exercising, etc. only a bit of background listening in the office.
    I also notice that reading books (that me and my wife also do very much) is starting to fade out on the new generations... which is a real real shame.
     
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  4. Rmbottojr

    Rmbottojr Forum Resident

    Location:
    New England
    I’ve also cut down on listening in the car, gym, etc and replaced it with podcasts. Most of my music listening I do daily is dedicated
     
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  5. monovinyl

    monovinyl Senior Member

    There's only one other activity that I enjoy more than dedicated listening.
     
  6. Khorn

    Khorn Dynagrunt Obversarian Thread Starter

    I find driving and listening a staple for me and almost inseparable.
    Lately I’ve been overplaying Gov’t Mule’s “Heavy Load Blues” album while driving cause I really love it.
     
  7. CrimsonFan

    CrimsonFan Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    Stamp collecting? :D :D
     
  8. NYC-Blotto

    NYC-Blotto Forum Resident

    Location:
    east coast
    re: "critical listening" for me, being in recording studios daily doing "critical listening" I am happy to NOT do "critical listening" at home. I enjoy listening time at home where I am doing nothing else . . . and the cool thing for me is when I'm listening at home I am not anally critiquing the recordings or my gear / cables / record cleaning solution / butcher blocks etc. I have a 'decent' stereo that I'm perfectly content with and enjoy the time to simply kick back and enjoy music without the baggage of thinking about buying more sht or constantly chasing silly upgrades. As a matter of fact the last thing I want to do is think about the gear or 'stuff' when listening. Less intrusion with 'things' the better for me. I enjoy music and performances . . the possessions not as much. I can pretty much enjoy a great performance on damn near anything. Sometimes I hear a beater system in a record store or at someone's house and I actually prefer it because I am only listening to the music not the stereo. Many times I will even listen through my silly bluetooth box for that very reason. Being a musician listening to great performances / songwriting is something I have enjoyed since the day I first picked up a guitar as a kid. I never listen to something just for the so called 'high end quality of the recording' so I can listen to my 'things' . . . nor do I ever feel the need to play something for others so they will be impressed with my 'stereo'. As a matter of fact I hardly ever play stuff for others. To each his own.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2022
  9. Khorn

    Khorn Dynagrunt Obversarian Thread Starter

    That’s easy for me:

    Stepping through the door of a great Delicatessen and taking a deep breath. There’s nothing like the smell of a great Pastrami Sandwich in the morning or any other time.
     
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  10. Doug Sclar

    Doug Sclar Forum Legend

    Location:
    The OC
    Last month I had a 6 hour listening session. I did nothing but listen to music and kept saying, 'just one more'. My bottom end sure was sore from sitting so long, but my ears were absolutely delighted.
     
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  11. Khorn

    Khorn Dynagrunt Obversarian Thread Starter

    That “just one more” has proven to be a killer for me.
     
  12. monovinyl

    monovinyl Senior Member

    That is saying a lot. To me...there's little better than a critical listening session. Typically - it's Friday nights for me. I just received a primo - beautiful original Monarch white label Desperado from forum member "Peter" (Thanks Peter...it's stunning). That's up first tomorrow night.
     
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  13. ssmith3046

    ssmith3046 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Arizona desert
    I'm primarily a headphone listener now days. I enjoy listening on different headphones and mixing up different headphone amps and DACs using my Audiolab transport.
     
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  14. CrimsonFan

    CrimsonFan Forum Resident

    Location:
    UK
    Did anyone say “critical listening”? The phrase used was “dedicated listening”.
    The whole point is to honour music and the performers with attention, not bad-mouth the vehicle of conveyance. :rolleyes:
     
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  15. NYC-Blotto

    NYC-Blotto Forum Resident

    Location:
    east coast
    yea . . read the posts. "critical listening" is brought up.
     
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  16. Khorn

    Khorn Dynagrunt Obversarian Thread Starter

    I can see that becoming a primary option under curtain circumstances. I think I might have a bit of trouble sussing out really suitable circumaural headsets that could serve me for long term listening isolation and comfort. If I had to go that route I’d go “all in” though.
     
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  17. monovinyl

    monovinyl Senior Member

    Dedicated & critical happens at the same time during my sessions.
    I'm all vinyl. Almost always amazed at the sound reproduction.
    Very rarely have to criticize. If so - seek out a better pressing.
     
  18. AudioAddict

    AudioAddict Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Or, even better, see if you can find a reel to reel...
     
  19. Texado

    Texado Aspiring Audiophile

    Location:
    Toronto
    "starting to fade out ?" I thought it was more like extinct !!, if it's not on a smartphone it no longer exists in most cases .
     
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  20. VU Master

    VU Master Senior Member

    I have photos of myself as a young kid, sitting in my high chair with my eyes half closed, listening intently to music. At 68 that's still my preferred listening mode, minus the high chair. I have one good friend who listens in the same way, and we're music buddies. We might make a few little remarks while listening, but we usually save any discussion for the time between songs. One of my big pet peeves in people talking in the middle of a live performance, and I feel the same way about chit chat during a listening session. But no one else that I know listens that way. Yes, it's probably a lost art.
     
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  21. JackG

    JackG Forum Resident

    Location:
    NJ
    Hardly fair. Love me some Katz's.
     
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  22. Khorn

    Khorn Dynagrunt Obversarian Thread Starter

    Wish I would have tried them when I was there.
     
  23. Doug Sclar

    Doug Sclar Forum Legend

    Location:
    The OC
    I have a photo from when I was just 1 climbing on a chair trying to get to the rekkids. I was fascinated by music and it's reproduction since my earliest days.

    I even noticed degradation when our metal needles were worn out and I'd have to loosen the thumb screw and put a new one in. This was when I was 4. When I was 5 we got our first hi-fi record player, a Webcor suitcase style, which became mine when I was 13.
     
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  24. ThinWhiteDuke

    ThinWhiteDuke Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Zealand
    Yep those are the same type of people who talk incessantly in the middle of movies as well. I like to concentrate to enjoy the entirety of the Art and enjoying getting lost in the fantasy that is being presented (whether just audibly or visually or combined) but for many people the Art is an opportunity to socialise and they don't share my obsession with controlling the environment to extract every last ounce of Art from the event as the media plays. I call these people my family. There is nothing sweeter than an empty house to enjoy my Art at full presentation volume. And then when I've had my fill I love having them all come back. They don't see the world the same way I do. I'm the odd one out.
     
  25. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    My oldest (18) and I listen all the time, we sit on the couch and just groove.

    I realize he is probably the odd duck in the world today who would do that..
     
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