Forums and Magazines

Hawk

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Jul 25, 2005
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There have been a few comments in the 'power of the press' and the do transports make a difference' thread about the influence of both magazines and forums/fora, and how the latter in particular are perceived by the industry. Therefore I think the issue is worthy of its own thread!

I think there is plenty of room for magazines and forums to co-exist but what often suprises me is the contempt that they hold for each other. I find it ironic that in many cases both are read by the same customers/members. Its as if both are in direct competition with each other. Its a shame in some senses because I think that forums play a useful role in providing a place for people to discuss this sometimes obsessive hobby in a real time interactive way that the printed media could never achieve. On that basis forums shouldn't be a threat, but I believe the competition is really about whose opinion carries most credibility.

It does sometimes worry me when you consider the effective anonymity that members have on the forums. I can see how magazines consider forums to be potentially dangerous places as credetials are unknown and nobody can be held accountable for their comments. Context is often also unclear, and in some places kit gets slated on the back of a two min experience, or worse still on the back of no experience but a hidden agenda or ego. On the positive side however a forum of this smaller size has social benefits. I think the number of bakeoffs we collectively hold is a testament to the number of genuine people in the tent. Through regular meetings trust can be built and comments and opinions develope context and deeper worth. The reviewers in magazines can't hide behind their keyboards in the same way, but im sure they do suffer an element of commercial pressure. Pressure to shift magazines foremost. But where does that leave us? We are all customers at the end of the day...

Discuss...

 
M

Mr Coherent

Guest
Reviewers tend to fall into 2 camps, jaded and those that won't leave their little glass houses, shame if they did they get a serious wake up call imo

 
G

Guest

Guest
Well i think reviewing is actually a pointless exercise really. An example would be Mr Coherent phones me up to tell me of the pleasure of some new toy he had thechance to listen to for the last couple of days. So i trudge up to his abode plonk myself in his chair and listen.If ithink its pants does that make Tony's assesment wrong. To me the answer is no. Its just preference. The idea that any reviewer has a neutral pair of ears just won't hold true. I'd much rather hear about its build quality and how easily it will integrate with other systems. Only you decide if somethings good at the end of the day.

 

Hawk

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Jul 25, 2005
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For me a review is about bringing my attention to whats out there, and motivating me to want to listen to it... I'll form my own opinions when I do, but I do sometimes enjoy reading a sexy review. That in turn at least creates a talking point for the forums! Would I trust a review in isolation to make a buying decision though? Nope
glum.gif.19305e5ca189352e84c85f8ec971e437.gif
....but I wouldn't totally trust some forum opinion either..

 
E

earl of sodbury

Guest
I picture hifi fora and hifi mags as like Tweedledum and Tweedledee on a seesaw, squabbling over who goes next, who goes fastest, who goes best...

Both forget that if it wasn't for the pivot of Opinion, they'd both just be two bumps on a log...

Meanwhile, as they squabble over hard-format stereo, the Queen of Hearts (in the form of multichannel AV, iPods, wireless multiroom servers, sound bridges etc.) is calling forBoth of their heads...

Cloth ears is of course the Cheshire Cat.

churz, M. Hatter

 

rockmeister

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Jul 24, 2005
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HiFi Trade?
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a small boy asked his father how to get experience in the world. Learn by your own judgement, the old man said, and without another word, handed him his rucksac and pushed him out of the door. At the first fork in the path, he turned left. He had only gone a little way, when he met a wolf. "Hello, said the boy, I'm looking for experience, can you help me?" "Do you trust me?" asked the wolf. "I don't know", said the boy, "I've never been this far from home before, but father said I had to experience things in order to learn, so yes, I'll trust you".

If he had turned right, he would have met a cat.

Which path should he have taken?

 
G

Guest

Guest
Hawk wrote:

For me a review is about bringing my attention to whats out there, and motivating me to want to listen to it... I'll form my own opinions when I do, but I do sometimes enjoy reading a sexy review. That in turn at least creates a talking point for the forums! Would I trust a review in isolation to make a buying decision though? Nope
glum.gif.19305e5ca189352e84c85f8ec971e437.gif
....but I wouldn't totally trust some forum opinion either..
Well some forums classifieds are full of the emperors new clothes;)

 
E

Effem

Guest
I think that reviewing kit is harder now than it has ever beenbecause there is just so much good kit out there, plus the thresholds between thebetween the bottomlayer of performence in relation to the top layer is moving ever closer, so delineating what is good, very good and theexceptional is becoming a massive grey area.

When was the last time anyone got really blown over by a new bit of kit? Be honest now. Different presentations, a bit more of this and a bit more of that so you perceive an upgrade has been achieved when you install it maybe, but the huge gulf that I knew 20 or 30 years ago between budget and esoteric has long since gone in my opinion.

Nowadays it takes great concentration and a keen ear to detect these subtle tiny differences, hence when we read about a reviewer waxing lyrical about some component then hear it for ourselves and find otherwise, it's little wonder that the poor hi-fi journo gets a bad name for trying to sort the roses from the thorns in syrupy prose that often exceeds the reality

 

Boxer

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Nov 2, 2005
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Seems to me there are some axes being ground in some of the mags: certain reviewers NEVER do a critical write-up of certain brands (I don't need to name names, we all know...). Now, are we seriously to believe that EVERY piece of kit from Brand A is faultless, & that reviewer B is merely reporting that based on his personal preferences?

Cue: sound of credulity being strained.

In this respect mags & fora differ little, only in the axes & their grinding being slightly more obvious in print.

The most important thing for me is sussing someone's tastes in kit & music, getting some handle on their consistency/credibility, then I have an idea who I can believe.This is made easier by meeting people, be they forum members or reviewers.

Ultimately, as ever, one uses one's own ears...

Boxer

 

GJO

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Sep 1, 2006
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Graham
Hawk wrote:

For me a review is about bringing my attention to whats out there, and motivating me to want to listen to it... I'll form my own opinions when I do, but I do sometimes enjoy reading a sexy review. That in turn at least creates a talking point for the forums! Would I trust a review in isolation to make a buying decision though? Nope
glum.gif.19305e5ca189352e84c85f8ec971e437.gif
....but I wouldn't totally trust some forum opinion either..
:^Spot on.

 

PAG

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Aug 1, 2005
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si
you only have to read the different conclusions about the same kit that different reviewers come too. IMO, that means you need to decide for yourself. Theres only one mag i read and thats hifi world, only because they seem to give out impartial advice, but even then i take their reviews with a pinch of salt.

 

mrwippy

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Nov 6, 2006
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Paul
HiFi Trade?
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A few quick thoughts

Both forums and magazines contribute to a healthy ongoing debate, in whatever field of interest they support. However, in both cases it is equally dangerous to take the word of the official reviewer or forum member as gospel. Both sets of opinions have there own positive and negative aspects. The negative elements of magazine reviewer in many cases is that;

  1. They seem a little detached from reality on aspects of cost (initial and ongoing) and domestic considerations or room size and volume.
  2. Undue weight is given to their opinions by manufacturers, retailers and the less informed(?) members of the public.
  3. They don't have to live long-term with products, although I have seen many reviews where the author has pro-ported to have used the reviewitem for many months recently.
  4. Always the thought of the hidden agenda - good review = advertising income.
  5. feel free to add to the list, i did say these were some quick thoughts......

On a positive note

  1. They do bring to our attention product that we perhaps would not necessarily get to know about through any other means
  2. There can be an element of consistency in the reviews which is not applicable elsewhere, i.e. if you find you like(or dislike)the same thing the reviewer likes and values you tend to 'bond' with his views (or steer well clear of their favourable reviews)
  3. A supposedelement of technical knowledge, or at least a review backed by technical analysis.
  4. They have to stand by their opinions and are open to ridicule (even many years later).
  5. Add........

Forum member negatives & positives ;

  1. Who are they (who am I) to offer guidance, few if any are open about their identities (as if my real name is Mr Wippy)
  2. There is no real control over their views, in a turntable post I state that some SME products are "..spoilt by some areas cheap cost cutting design features.." I would even go so far as to say they have some areas of inherent poor design. Can I be challenged on this opinion, in reality no because unless the moderator(s) remove oredit the post it will be there for all tosee for years. But again in reality, will it make a jot of difference to SME sales? However, if a well established reviewer had said this.....
  3. Word of mouth (well Internet) can actually provide a vast trigger for the sale of cult products both a good and bad thing 13D5's virtually unheard of a few years back, bit of Internet talk and the price quadrupled in month (now settling back to normal, thankfully)

If I have a quick look at my Hi-Fi line up I have two highly regarded well reviewed products, one of which was bought before there was a single UK review or distributor. My amp I've only ever seen one review, speakers a few reviews. Indeed if we take those Revolver R33's which get a few mentions here, a couple of reviews, no real levels of dealer sales, but a really good speaker nevertheless.

that's enough for a start.

 

Davewhityetagain

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Jul 24, 2005
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, ,
mags are ok for looking at pictures, forums are ok for taking the piss out of naim users mf buyers and linn users also taking the piss out of reviewers and trying to explain to stupid people how cables make a differance and that transports are more important than dacs

also on forums you can flog on all the stuff you no longer want
smile.png


its also the place where many dealers now hang out dropping hints as to why there cable is best or this bit of kit just in is just what you need

in fact at anyone time there at least three dealers per forum pushing kit ( dealers change)

forums are also from time to time (not often here) a place where people come after buying kit to get comfort that the cash they have sent has been well spent

oh and missed out also where we can laugh at marco and his expensive dexion
wink.png


missed anyone ?
cool.gif.9d6c72c555b38e519336a6d9b55ca875.gif


oh and now and then someone says how good the music was
shock.gif.7732780fe7e208b945ce79ca96402fca.gif


 

The Hifi Gallery

Wammer
Wammer
Sep 1, 2005
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37
93
Kinross
AKA
Paul
HiFi Trade?
  1. Yes
Manufacturers Make Kit

Dealers Sell Kit

In all honesty both magazines AND fora are IMHO entertainment, but with the added interst that you MIGHT learn something, as with all htings in life, it's often reading between the lines that nets the greatest wisdom, each have their place in the grande scheme of things, and each can be resourceful, but anyone who, blindly, follows the opinions of either and makes an wrong (for them) choice, only has their selves to blame, I also believe (and have been guilty of it) that both magazines and Fora CAN take themselves and their opinions TOO serioulsy, as has been mentioned here recently (and I'd like to add that this forum is one of the better ones in this respect, as is HFW in the mag world) these are only biased (not allways as bad thing) opinions from other mortals, and as we all know, opinions are like arseholes, everyone has one, and they often stink!!!

(I'd like to add you don't have to take me seriously, this is afterall only my opnion
biggrin.png
)

 

Borats Baby

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May 2, 2006
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Forums: A bit of friendly banter with decent blokes (mostly) who share the same interests as me.

Magazines: Well I need something to read whilst having a crap.. and I'm buggered if its going to be Woman or Real or OK or Heat... ygtm...

 
A

adam

Guest
I've come to think that forums are in very tiny dot of very little relevence in the audio scene,everyone that has come to my shop has came with ideas from magazines,not from a forum,if you mention forums they look at you as if you are mad,a forum is for a very limited number,I would think more people listen to what hifi,than they do and bunch of unknowns on a forums.

As other has said,the end user needs to make the final choice,that's why we need good dealers to help people,give them suggestions,let them decide.

Yes there are a few dealers on here,but all I can say i'm proud of the brands I have,I am confident in them,I've just got Revolver,never heard them before,and have been bowled over by there affordable exellent,in sound and build.

But getting back to the main point,the magazines will always be around,in that people give them more credit than the forums acknowledge.

 

Davewhityetagain

Wammer
Wammer
Jul 24, 2005
11,690
4
0
, ,
Paul wrote:

Manufacturers Make KitDealers Sell Kit

In all honesty both magazines AND fora are IMHO entertainment, but with the added interst that you MIGHT learn something, as with all htings in life, it's often reading between the lines that nets the greatest wisdom, each have their place in the grande scheme of things, and each can be resourceful, but anyone who, blindly, follows the opinions of either and makes an wrong (for them) choice, only has their selves to blame, I also believe (and have been guilty of it) that both magazines and Fora CAN take themselves and their opinions TOO serioulsy, as has been mentioned here recently (and I'd like to add that this forum is one of the better ones in this respect, as is HFW in the mag world) these are only biased (not allways as bad thing) opinions from other mortals, and as we all know, opinions are like arseholes, everyone has one, and they often stink!!!

(I'd like to add you don't have to take me seriously, this is afterall only my opnion
biggrin.png
)
You still using the DK ? I am :shock:think it could be here for some time
shock.gif.7732780fe7e208b945ce79ca96402fca.gif
:shock:

mind you the pre amplifier is getting some new valves.......... try these

detail_cryo_jan6922.jpg


CRYOGENICALLY FROZEN - Jan-Phillips (aka E88CC-01). Military Specification 6922. Highly sought after by audiophiles. Upgrade for ECC88, 6DJ8 etc.

Socket Type: S1 Series

But for you seeing your a dealer ;)get these

6922curveD.jpg


500000033.gif.92511e2005a900cfb9bb836a01712b3a.gif
:love:
500000033.gif.92511e2005a900cfb9bb836a01712b3a.gif
:love:
500000033.gif.92511e2005a900cfb9bb836a01712b3a.gif


 
G

Guest

Guest
Borats Baby wrote:

Magazines: Well I need something to read whilst having a crap.. and I'm buggered if its going to be Woman or Real or OK or Heat... ygtm...
goodpost.gif.00822561e807cf35c79b3503f2e609d0.gif


Yep absolutely spot on.

 

The Hifi Gallery

Wammer
Wammer
Sep 1, 2005
1,235
37
93
Kinross
AKA
Paul
HiFi Trade?
  1. Yes
Davewhityetagain wrote:

Paul wrote:
Manufacturers Make KitDealers Sell Kit

In all honesty both magazines AND fora are IMHO entertainment, but with the added interst that you MIGHT learn something, as with all htings in life, it's often reading between the lines that nets the greatest wisdom, each have their place in the grande scheme of things, and each can be resourceful, but anyone who, blindly, follows the opinions of either and makes an wrong (for them) choice, only has their selves to blame, I also believe (and have been guilty of it) that both magazines and Fora CAN take themselves and their opinions TOO serioulsy, as has been mentioned here recently (and I'd like to add that this forum is one of the better ones in this respect, as is HFW in the mag world) these are only biased (not allways as bad thing) opinions from other mortals, and as we all know, opinions are like arseholes, everyone has one, and they often stink!!!

(I'd like to add you don't have to take me seriously, this is afterall only my opnion
biggrin.png
)
You still using the DK ? I am :shock:think it could be here for some time
shock.gif.7732780fe7e208b945ce79ca96402fca.gif
:shock:

mind you the pre amplifier is getting some new valves.......... try these

detail_cryo_jan6922.jpg


CRYOGENICALLY FROZEN - Jan-Phillips (aka E88CC-01). Military Specification 6922. Highly sought after by audiophiles. Upgrade for ECC88, 6DJ8 etc.

Socket Type: S1 Series

But for you seeing your a dealer ;)get these

6922curveD.jpg


500000033.gif.92511e2005a900cfb9bb836a01712b3a.gif
:love:
500000033.gif.92511e2005a900cfb9bb836a01712b3a.gif
:love:
500000033.gif.92511e2005a900cfb9bb836a01712b3a.gif
yes, yes and yes, and I haven't heard anything so far (that I can afford) that would make me change it, and I've been experimenting, so I know for sure.

One of my customers is sending me a pair of these to try, at least I think it's these, what do you feel they offer over stock Dave? (can answer in PM in case anyone thinks I'm deliberatly selling)

 

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