What is high-end?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Oelewapper, Dec 28, 2020.

  1. Pkcpga

    Pkcpga Well-Known Member

    Don’t really like the term “High End”, maybe “HiFi or Audiophile” better describes nicer sounding systems. High End is a moving target, what’s high end for me could be completely different for someone else. My listen room has B&W Nautilus system that is high end to me but I know people with Wilson systems that cost double and people with exotic horns set ups that cost 4 times the amount. I personally feel “high end” should be what sounds great to you and fits in your budget. I feel my less expensive set up in the family room with Forte’s is still “hifi or high end”. I prefer “HiFi”. People who claim 10k systems sound better then 100k systems, all I can say is it’s personal preference or whom ever set up the 100k system did a terrible job. My Klipsch Forte system sounds great and a fun live sound but in no way competes with my B&W Nautilus for accuracy, but my 9 year daughter likes the Forte’s better, she says they are dancing speakers. So I feel there’s too much personal preference and personal budget for a generalized term to have a concrete meanings.
     
    Helom likes this.
  2. My idea of a perfect system is probably very far away from most here. Given the proper space my choice would be a professional club/concert venue system. That’s what would be my ideal and to me it’s all that really counts. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
     
  3. Doctor Fine

    Doctor Fine Meat and Potatoes all day long

    If they spent more time fussing over the power cord than they did over the sound quality---it's high end.
     
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  4. Bill Hart

    Bill Hart Forum Resident

    Location:
    Austin
    There used to be something we called "Beer Budget" high end. Good products, not crazy expensive, that delivered the goods- I remember a few: Quicksilver amps, Moscode (Harvey was a madman); those Spica speakers with the sloped front baffle (TC-40?), along with what @Ralph Karsten mentioned-- older Dynaco amps rebuilt, etc.
    I think whatever its meaning when I came up (during that late 60s to early '70s era I described above when I was reading the audio press and assembling my first "serious" systems), it is now often, not always, used to denote high ticket, luxe goods.
    I'm not sure about intentions but if one can cobble together a system using vintage/high performance for money gear, it could certainly be acknowledged as a good system whether or not it was "high end." In some ways, all these different perspectives tells us that the term really doesn't have much meaning.
     
    Ham Sandwich likes this.
  5. :laugh::laugh: High-end? Off the deep end!
    [​IMG]
     
    SeeDeeFirth and Bill Hart like this.
  6. Ted Torres Jr

    Ted Torres Jr Stereo Synergy for All

    Location:
    SE LA
    My main musical reference is reproduced music that Sounds Live, as in a recorded venue with all of the placements of the musicians and performers in their 3D space, along with natural reverb, echo, attacks and decays! Besides attending many acoustical non-amplified concerts these past 50 years, during my formal 15 years of music study (from 8 to 23 years of age) I've performed on all of the keyboard, string, wind instruments, melodic percussion and choral disciplines. I intimately know how these live musical sounds should be reproduced through a synergistic balanced audio system!

    Thus, my goal in audio components these past 46 years has been many a year of small steps towards accurate and realistic musical reproduction in my home. The road blocks (all Budget due to Ed. Career and raising 4-Responsibled Children) have been a deterrent in achieving that goal, but feel the long journey is now near. Along the way, I've discovered the "cost-effective" steps to reach sonic nirvana and for me, what you see in my profile has allowed me audio bliss in my years of retirement! I Certainly Do Not Have "High End" audio components...maybe lower mid-fi Hi-Fi, but it's the REALISTIC LIVE MUSIC (not the cost) that emanates from my dedicated music room that "I" claim as a -High End Sound-!!! :righton:

    Of course as usually, YMMV!

    Ted
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2021 at 5:56 PM
  7. Living the dream!
     
    Ted Torres Jr likes this.
  8. rbbert

    rbbert Forum Resident

    Location:
    Reno, NV, USA
    You manufacture great equipment and I bow to your experience and expertise, but... (sorry)

    "Sounds great" is not what I mean by "high-end", although I think that is what is meant by most posters here. I think every one of my various systems over the past 50 years "sound great" or else I wouldn't have assembled, enjoyed or kept them. I'm not sure I have ever made to "high-end", though, unless it is very recently.
     
  9. Dillydipper

    Dillydipper Sultan Of Snark

    Location:
    Central PA
    "Hi-end" is where you finally have to go when all your previous turntable tweaks didn't work, but you're not ready to face that, maybe your CD rig really did offer a more satisfying ergonomic performance.
     
    Richard Austen likes this.
  10. F1nut

    F1nut Forum Resident

    Location:
    The Mars Hotel
    If you hear it, you know it.
     
  11. Richard Austen

    Richard Austen Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hong Kong
    LOL - then the CD player starts to bother you so you decide to get a second job to get a better turntable and then that doesn't work so you buy a more expensive CD player and then eventually you sell your Kidney, make your wife become a prostitute sell one of your kids and you buy this turntable at $750k.

    [​IMG]

    And damnit you still aren't happy so you decide to look for new speakers. Audiophiles might be better served to pay for a shrink to learn to become less anal-retentive.
     
    mds likes this.
  12. Looks like a combination pancake maker washing machine that can follow you home.
     
  13. allied333

    allied333 Audiophile

    Location:
    MI
    Anything used over $1K and anything new over $2K.
     
  14. Dillydipper

    Dillydipper Sultan Of Snark

    Location:
    Central PA
    "Maybe I just need a thicker interconnect...what do they use up at the electric company...?"
     
  15. Oddiofyl

    Oddiofyl Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Boston
    To me, high end was always stuff I could never afford. Wilson , D'Agostino, dcs..... But, if you are patient and choose wisely you can be a blue collar guy like me and come close...... it took a few years to compile what I have, but the amount of enjoyment I get out of is immeasurable. Music is my oasis so any money spent is well worth it .... Again, not saying my system is high end by any stretch of the imagination but it sounds damn good !
     
  16. rbbert

    rbbert Forum Resident

    Location:
    Reno, NV, USA
    I often find myself agreeing with this. Now, when I can afford to spend much more than I have spent, I don't feel any incremental improvements are worth chasing. Like most things in life that may change.
     
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  17. Ted Torres Jr

    Ted Torres Jr Stereo Synergy for All

    Location:
    SE LA
    Rbbert,

    Much truth in your above statement! You have a stereo system that I'm sure presents a superb well balanced, synergistic and LIVE soundstage in your listening environment! Would there be room for improvement...of course, but the law of diminishing returns dictates you'd have to spend several times your original investment to achieve those incremental audio gains!

    For me (at almost 68), I'm to the point in my audio reproduction journey quest (finally) that I'll settled in to appreciate, enjoy and soak in All of the wonderful music library I've built! But as you state, things might change?!!!! :rolleyes: :uhhuh:

    Ted
     
  18. I think the question that more directly should apply here is what is the minimum we would need to invest in a truly competent and musically satisfying sound system.

    I think there are more who need that kind of educated advice. Most people who are audiophiles and are willing to spend tens or even hundreds of thousands on their systems surely don’t need our help and if they do need advice they consult with professionals.
     
    Pkcpga likes this.
  19. jupiterboy

    jupiterboy Forum Residue

    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    Hideous industrial design, bad silk-screened logos, boutique caps, and sometimes, very good sound quality.
     
    csgreene and timind like this.
  20. TEA FOR ONE

    TEA FOR ONE Listening to the world one note at a time

    Location:
    Rochester,NY
    This is strictly my opinion. When I think of "high end", I think of items that are in the upper price range of their perspective products. This goes for anything. Cars,wine,watches, anything. Now if you break it down to just audio, I still think high end is upper price bracket. Now if you mention HiFi, well that's a horse of a different color. Remember,it's only my opinion,and I am not implying that my opinion is fact.
     
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  21. Ted Torres Jr

    Ted Torres Jr Stereo Synergy for All

    Location:
    SE LA
    TFO,

    Opinion is Your Perspective...we All have them...Nothing Wrong with that! :righton:

    Ted
     
    TEA FOR ONE likes this.
  22. hifisoup

    hifisoup @hearmoremusic

    Location:
    Illinois
    Last week my CD copy of Lyle Mays' 'Eberhard' arrived. Wonderful music and I've fully enjoyed this thirteen minute salute bassist Eberhard. Anyway...

    This morning I sat down to enjoy the recording again and after the music ended I thought what it might sound like if I toed in my speakers ever so slightly more. So I did, adjusting both speakers toe-in by half of an inch each.

    Boom! There was more depth to the music. The various instruments were more noticeable while the played over each other. Sounds came from further outside my speakers. It was an amazing experience.

    THIS is high-end. The musical experience.
     
    Ted Torres Jr likes this.
  23. TEA FOR ONE

    TEA FOR ONE Listening to the world one note at a time

    Location:
    Rochester,NY
    The reason I stress that,is so many times I see in all forums,that many people state their opinion as FACT. That is a major pet peave, and I am very cognizant of that. So many things in the world are subjective. Sight,sound,taste........
     
    Ted Torres Jr likes this.
  24. Classic Car Guy

    Classic Car Guy "The greatest love of all is unconditional"

    Location:
    Northwest, USA
    They could have easily vacuum that floor...:doh:
     
  25. Simoon

    Simoon Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles
    The term started in the 70's to differentiate the type of audio one would buy at chain stereo store, where lots of buttons and lights in order to look good on the shelf and in adds in the pages of stereo mags, as opposed to what went into the inside, to make the gear actually sound good.

    It costs more for good stuff that goes on the inside of an amp, than adding LEDs and more features.
     

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