About HiFi & Vinyl Now

Welcome. I am Carl W., the editor and publisher of HiFi & Vinyl Now. Thank you for checking out the site, which aims to provide information about analog audio and great music.

HiFi & Vinyl Now covers two topics that are deeply related. On one hand, we look at equipment and accessories. This includes turntables, record players, preamps, amps, speakers, cartridges, record cleaning equipment, furniture, album displays, the physical elements of the vinyl and so forth. It’s an interesting and rapidly changing landscape that looks backwards to its past (with vintage equipment) while integrating into the digital present. There are three subgroups in music these days: Pure digital audio, pure analog audio and the increasingly fuzzy and predominant overlap between the two.

On the other, we cover the fabulous musicians and the music they recorded. We cross eras and genres. The site has a very simple tag line concerning our approach: It’s all good. Of course, tastes vary. But it’s all art.

It might seem that these two topics should fit together comfortably. After all, anybody who buys a record player or component system does so to listen to music.

What I have found, however, is that despite this obviously close connection, combining analog audio and music makes for an awkward website. (I’m hoping endearingly awkward. It may end up being annoyingly awkward.) It just feels odd to jump between preamps and Dr. John, speakers and Art Blakey, turntables and B.B. King, cartridges and Les Paul, analog to digital converters and The Supremes and on and on. (That was a fun sentence to write, by the way.)

I am giving it a shot, though. The two indeed do fit together. For instance, Les Paul is an important musician and an important technical pioneer. Rudy Van Gelder is a legendary sound engineer because what he did was a creative act that made the recorded music better. More broadly, of course the world of music and the world of technology are deeply linked. There is no reason that a site can’t elegantly cover both. Whether it is this one or not remains to be seen, however.

The music posts here are updated versions of content I initially wrote for The Daily Music Break, a site I ran for years. I am using those posts like parts from an old Chevy.. The rest are rusting out in the back yard, so to speak I’m putting together the technology-related content as I go along.

Why We Need Great Gear: Courtney Barnett

The equipment posts at HiFi & Vinyl Now are accompanied by links to great musicians. The fact that this is a new product and I am a bit insecure about the whole undertaking, Courtney Barnett is the best first choice. Click here to check out more.  My personal favorite is “Avant Gardener,” which is embedded in the linked page.

There is one thing that tightly binds the two topics, at least at HiFi & Vinyl Now: Everything is written by an individual who is more inquisitive than knowledgeable. The list of things I am not is long: I am not a musicologist, music critic or musician. I am also not an audiophile, an engineer or a product expert. That lack of credentials – plus my personality and day job – makes me a generalist and makes this a generalist’s site.

I was advised to post an image of myself.

That is an advantage. There are many great sites that cover audio technology, many in very deep detail. Music as well. Getting something out of their content requires a fairly high level understanding of the subject at hand. A site that covers preamps on a regular basis won’t explain what they do each time. A site about jam bands won’t explain the primacy of The Grateful Dead. In both cases, the rationale is the same: If you didn’t know the basics, why are you there?

The role this site can play, in my mind, is to look at both the equipment and the music as a curious outsider and offer comments to those who are more or less in the same boat. There are a lot of people with a fuzzy knowledge of preamps and The Grateful Dead–and are curious about both.

I am taking a great course about websites called Authority Hacker, which I recommend to anyone who wants to start a site, get it noticed and at least have a shot making a little money. (I am not sure they would say mentioning my pecuniary motivation is a best practice.) AH suggests including a picture of yourself and injecting a bit of personality. That’s the only reason my picture is here.

Again, thanks for visiting. Please contact me here with any comments, suggestions and corrections. And, above all else, keep listening to great music–preferably on vinyl.

(Photos: Homepage: Box: Paul Hudson–Flickr. Home page: Fred von Lohmann–Flickr)

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