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Thread: Analysis Paralysis

  1. #1
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: Lancaster(-ish), UK

    Posts: 16,963
    I'm ChrisB.

    Default Analysis Paralysis

    Now that The Art of Sound has been running for well over a year, & I've been here for a good part of that time, I'm wondering about a few things. Perhaps the culprits can enlighten me?

    Of course, I'd be interested to hear the thoughts of the 'non-culprits'

    In hindsight is there anything you'd change about the way you did things?

    Has it grown as you'd have hoped?

    Do you have the members you'd hoped for - I don't mean numbers (hopefully you'll answer the above question in that respect). What I mean is, does the demographic (in the sense of people's interests/predilections/varied viewpoints etc) match what you'd hoped for? If not, what type of person would you like to see more of?

    On the whole, its very UK-centric - Is this what you expected? Is this good or not? Do you expect or hope this to change?

    Is there too much emphasis on certain topics?

    Is there not enough emphasis (or not as much as you'd expected) on certain topics - if not, then what would you like to see more of?

    The highest number of users at one time was 201 - a figure, that to my eyes, seems to be almost never even approached since. What do you attribute this to? What caused it?

    Is the balance between pure hi-fi talk and other topics (especially music) about right?

    ...............finally, (and this is something I've never been able to quite work out) what turntable/arm/cartridge combination does Marco use?

  2. #2
    Join Date: May 2008

    Posts: 191

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Grand Wazoo View Post
    Now that The Art of Sound has been running for well over a year, & I've been here for a good part of that time, I'm wondering about a few things. Perhaps the culprits can enlighten me?

    Of course, I'd be interested to hear the thoughts of the 'non-culprits'

    In hindsight is there anything you'd change about the way you did things?

    Has it grown as you'd have hoped?
    The aim was always to have more rooms than contributors.

    To quote from Peter Cook & Dudley Moore:

    'Have you learned anything from your mistakes?'

    'Yes, I'm sure I could repeat them exactly'
    Roksan Xerxes X/Morch tonearm/VdH Frog Gold
    TEAD Groove phono amp
    MF passive preamp
    Border Patrol SE300B power amp with Western Electrics valves
    Merdian 500 transport
    Chord DAC64
    Audiovector Mi3 Signature speakers
    Various Chord cables
    Target equipment stand

  3. #3
    Join Date: Feb 2008

    Location: North East UK

    Posts: 6,365
    I'm InSpace.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Grand Wazoo View Post
    ...............finally, (and this is something I've never been able to quite work out) what turntable/arm/cartridge combination does Marco use?
    Lemme think... I'm sure I've seen that info around here somewhere!
    Shian7
    --------------------------------------------------------

    Kudakutemo
    kudakutemo

    ari mizu-no tsuki

    Though it be be broken -
    broken again - still it's there:
    the moon on the water.

    - Choshu.

  4. #4
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 88,067
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    The aim was always to have more rooms than contributors.

    To quote from Peter Cook & Dudley Moore:

    'Have you learned anything from your mistakes?'

    'Yes, I'm sure I could repeat them exactly'
    Hi Iain,

    Not quite sure what you're trying to say - why not just spit it out?

    The forum has been very successful in the 15 months it's been going. Plenty of members, plenty of contributors, some great threads, and yes, enough rooms!

    Chris,

    I'll come back to you sometime tomorrow as I'm just in now and hitting the sack

    Laters,
    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

    BE HAPPY EVERYDAY!

  5. #5
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 88,067
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    Hi Chris (as promised):

    In hindsight is there anything you'd change about the way you did things?
    Probably, but nothing immediately comes to mind - one is always learning, so nothing one ever does is perfect.

    Has it grown as you'd have hoped?
    Pretty much, although I thought we'd have arrived at 1000 members about two months before we did. It's quite difficult establishing and developing an audio forum and community with all the 'competition' that exists now. It was very different, say, six or seven years ago, and some of the forums which started out back then have benefited accordingly.

    We've got plans to grow the forum even more, which will hopefully come to fruition in due course. AOS is quite different from other audio forums - we have a very strongly defined 'signature', which some will relate to and enjoy and others won't. There is only a finite audience for this type of thing so we must continue and try to ignite people's interest in hi-fi and music by providing something more varied, in-depth, and challenging than other forums, making sure that it's fun in the process.

    Do you have the members you'd hoped for - I don't mean numbers (hopefully you'll answer the above question in that respect). What I mean is, does the demographic (in the sense of people's interests/predilections/varied viewpoints etc) match what you'd hoped for?
    Yes, pretty much, considering the short time we've been going. I think we have a great mix of people here with all manner of experience, which crucially, they're willing to share. We've created an atmosphere of giving, in terms of knowledge, instead of merely being populated by parasites feeding on the experience of others whilst offering nothing in return. AOS is both a very friendly and informative place as a result.

    If not, what type of person would you like to see more of?
    I'd like to see more 'objectivist science-types' here with whom to engage in robust debate - people who can't trust their ears but need scientific 'evidence' before believing in something relating to hi-fi, so that I can knock some bloody sense into them!

    On the whole, its very UK-centric - Is this what you expected?
    Yes, as the forum is being pitched to primarily a UK-based audience. However, more and more people out with of the UK are joining on a daily basis as the hits we get on Google, Yahoo, etc, continues to grow, particularly as 'hot' topics now such as the Beresford DAC, Technics 1210 (and modifications thereof, etc) are widely featured.

    Is this good or not? Do you expect or hope this to change?
    I wouldn't say it's "good" or "bad", but given our location it is quite natural. We would like to attract more members from overseas, as quite often people there have a different slant on hi-fi and music which provides some interesting diversity. Hopefully, we can also offer them something different to 'get their teeth into' which they might not get on forums in their neck of the woods.

    Is there too much emphasis on certain topics?
    Perhaps - but some of that is intended in order to generate and stimulate interest in the forum by discussing key products which will attract a suitably large audience. Although there are many discussions on certain popular products, we feel that there is sufficient diversity in the topics discussed overall to accommodate a wide range of experience and opinions. The balance isn't perfect yet but we're hopeful we'll get there.

    Is there not enough emphasis (or not as much as you'd expected) on certain topics - if not, then what would you like to see more of?
    I think there's enough emphasis on certain topics, but personally I'd like to see more people think 'outside of the box', forget mainstream hi-fi and some dyed-in-the-wool preconceptions, ignore 'badges' and choose bespoke kit from smaller, more specialist, manufacturers, or go the (quality) 'classic hi-fi' or D.I.Y route. I think this is where the 'real deal' lies and where things start to get interesting.

    The highest number of users at one time was 201 - a figure, that to my eyes, seems to be almost never even approached since. What do you attribute this to? What caused it?
    It was from during the time we were featured in an article in HFW - people were reading the article and checking us out. We gained quite a few new members from that, some of them remaining as regulars, not least of which is Neil, Dalek DL

    Is the balance between pure hi-fi talk and other topics (especially music) about right?
    We would always like to see more discussion about music, but that area of the forum is pretty healthy due to the invalable input of people like your good self and others. 'Abstract Chat' could be more in-depth and diverse in its topic content, and used a little more often than it is.

    However given that AOS is predominantly (and unashamedly) a hi-fi forum, activity in the off-topic sections is more than satisfactory. In terms of the quality and diversity of hi-fi content we believe that AOS is second to none amongst audio forums in the UK; a bold statement perhaps, but it's what we genuinely feel. AOS may not be the biggest in terms of membership, being a relatively new forum, but what we lack in numbers we make up for in the quality of contributions, which have genuine substance and are often of high technical merit.

    ...............finally, (and this is something I've never been able to quite work out) what turntable/arm/cartridge combination does Marco use?
    LOL! I thought it was obvious - read my signature; it's all in there. I just switch cartridges from time to time depending on my mood and/or the type of music I'm listening to

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

    BE HAPPY EVERYDAY!

  6. #6
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: Lancaster(-ish), UK

    Posts: 16,963
    I'm ChrisB.

    Default

    LOL! I thought it was obvious - read my signature; it's all in there. I just switch cartridges from time to time depending on my mood and/or the type of music I'm listening to
    erm..........Yes, it is rather evident - I was having a friendly poke at the omni-present deity!!

    Thanks for your reply - are those the universal thoughts of 'da management' or yours alone?

    I'll respond with my thought where applicable, in a short while.

  7. #7
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 88,067
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    Thanks for your reply - are those the universal thoughts of 'da management' or yours alone?
    It's a mixture of both. I'm sure that Steve (and Rob) would concur with what I've written, and I suspect the rest of the management team, too.

    I look forward to your further input later

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

    BE HAPPY EVERYDAY!

  8. #8
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: A Strangely Isolated Place in Suffolk with far away trains passing by...

    Posts: 14,559
    I'm David.

    Default

    Am I ok with my posts on here?

    I don't totally share the view that vinyl rools absolutely, yet I'm having great fun with very tight budget exploring once again what can be achieved with this medium (I though the brain decodes our hearing organs digitally anyway). I have a CD player that still communicates the fun and emotion in the music and audio-books it plays and that's fine for me. I suppose having low expectations and then being pleasantly surprised is the key.

    Regarding the forum. I thought it had been going longer than one year, such is the banter going on here. I find the number of rooms a bit daunting and tend to use the "new posts" tab to get around. PFM seems easier to navigate, although I'm not trying to compare.
    Tear down these walls; Cut the ties that held me
    Crying out at the top of my voice; Tell me now if you can hear me

  9. #9
    Join Date: Nov 2008

    Location: North Down /Northern Ireland/ UK

    Posts: 18,547
    I'm Neil.

    Default

    Being the new boy in the management team I must say that my vision of AOS is very much based on where we are at now and would like to go in the future. Not being here from the start I can't really comment on the trials and tribulations of getting to where AOS is now, but from my point of view I would say it has been worth it, as the current results speak for them selves. So thank you to all that have been involved from the beginning.

    I am obviously biased in what I say next but I feel that there is a warmth here that is sadly lacking elsewhere. When you join AOS people welcome you and do so with genuine warmth. Both regular members and members of the admin team. Within a very short time of joining I was engaging in conversation with many people and I liked the ethos of the forum. Its rare I feel and I am a member of other forums for those behind the forum to be so actively involved in it and in their members. Not just as the forum police but as those you can learn from, share with and have gentlemanly exchanges with, that don't spiral into nastiness. It was this spirit that I responded to here and less so the actual forum content subject matter. There are parts of the forum I don't contribute to much because I lack the experience to do so...but I am interested in others journeys to their audio oasis....so I do visit all sections.

    I love the genuine encouragement given and the sharing of knowledge among those that make up the forum.

    I have been regularly moved by the genuine interest and help shown towards me by members and admin on this forum. This may well exist elsewhere but I have seen little of it. This is truly a very special place on the internet and in audio circles. Its warm friendly and a great place to share learn and be gently challenged.

    I would like to see more wanting to share reviews of new, old and vintage kit in the Strokes of Genius section (my main responsibility on AOS) but I am pleased with those who have so far...keep it up guys....there can never be to much material so don't be shy.

    I agree with Marco with everything he says but if I am honest I do see things a little bit differently in this area.

    I think there's enough emphasis on certain topics, but personally I'd like to see more people think 'outside of the box', forget mainstream hi-fi and some dyed-in-the-wool preconceptions, ignore 'badges' and choose bespoke kit from smaller, more specialist, manufacturers, or go the (quality) 'classic hi-fi' or D.I.Y route. I think this is where the 'real deal' lies and where things start to get interesting.
    I think there is mainstream hi-fi worth looking at(but I agree with Marco that not all of it is worth looking at)and I will champion what is, as I am sure Marco will, but we do and have disagreed about *what qualifies as this* in the past and may well again. I do also think however that Marco is right a lot of the time in what he says about the other equally valid routes to enjoying music. I would ask for the slightly broader road in that mainstream and the areas that Marco outlines can go exist and the mainstream path can also *be the real deal too*. While I have not heard many of these alternative paths (and concede this does weaken my opinion/position slightly) I do trust and respect his listening abilities...it will be very interesting some time in the future to hear his system. He is slowly working on me to broaden my horizons and AOS has indeed done so since I joined back in Nov. My mind is certainly more open than in the past and while I always felt I had a pretty open mind I was surprised when I found that it has opened up even further....after joining this forum and trying some of the kit mentioned here..particularly the 7510 Dac from Beresford.

    One of the most special aspects of this forum is the fact that we can listen to each others respective views and experiences and respect the person making them and not attack them as happens elsewhere. There is a bit of friendly banter but no vile....

    I am biased in my loving this forum and the people who make it so special, the members and those who put it together and maintain it, and without those people this place would not be what it is. Keep on being AOS folks....



    Regards D S D L
    Last edited by Spectral Morn; 12-05-2009 at 17:08.
    Regards Neil

  10. #10
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: Lancaster(-ish), UK

    Posts: 16,963
    I'm ChrisB.

    Default

    Perhaps this is the time to make my feelings known.........

    In hindsight is there anything you'd change about the way you did things?
    Obviously, I can't comment on this, but I'm sure that if I was setting up a forum from scratch, it wouldn't be a patch on this......well for a while anyway!

    Has it grown as you'd have hoped?
    It's grown a little slower than I expected - but my yardstick may be different to yours. My measure is not membership numbers, but rather presence. There are a lot of folks who're registered as members, but have no presence in reality. I wouldn't expect everyone to be a regular, but something's going on here. I hate receiving unsolicited communications by any means, but I bet you'd like to know how to keep them coming once they've joined - maybe an email or questionairre would provide some useful market knowledge? Limited membership is a double edged sword though, isn't it. Get too big & you lose some of the atmosphere of a community and the higher the membership, the greater likelihood of that community having more than it's share of village idiots.

    Do you have the members you'd hoped for - I don't mean numbers (hopefully you'll answer the above question in that respect). What I mean is, does the demographic (in the sense of people's interests/predilections/varied viewpoints etc) match what you'd hoped for? If not, what type of person would you like to see more of?
    I think the spread is pretty good and makes AoS a varied and interesting place to be. I'm surprised at the relative paucity of certain flavours of the audio community - but maybe that's because they can only ever sucessfully preach to the converted, so they have their own gathering places. (I think most people would know who I mean). But surely there's someone of that persuasion who is level headed enough not to be constantly belligerently evangelistic about their choice of equipment?

    On the whole, its very UK-centric - Is this what you expected? Is this good or not? Do you expect or hope this to change?
    Again, I think this could be a double edged sword.

    Is there too much emphasis on certain topics?
    I did find this a problem at first, but now I think the way the forum is set up allows you to avoid what you don't want to. Like DJSR (& others, I suspect), I find the 'New Posts' button to be the one I hit most often.

    Is there not enough emphasis (or not as much as you'd expected) on certain topics - if not, then what would you like to see more of?
    I agree with Neil - and am also surprised at the scarceness of members with American kit and at the modest level of so much stuff that people have. This is by no means a slight on lower cost gear, nor is it a veiled comment/boast about mine (actually, I think anyone who's read more that say 3 of my posts will probably know me better than that - I hope so, anyway) but I do think high end hi-fi can attract a certain amount of 'peeing up the wall'. It's great that so many people get so much satisfaction from kit that some folk would sneer at.

    The highest number of users at one time was 201 - a figure, that to my eyes, seems to be almost never even approached since. What do you attribute this to? What caused it?
    Can't comment.

    Is the balance between pure hi-fi talk and other topics (especially music) about right?
    The forum is set up just right in that respect, I'd say. But I'd welcome more activity in the music section


    Three more questions, if I may:
    1. What's the best thing about Art of Sound?

    2. What's the worst thing about Art of Sound?

    3. Do you think the Ethos ('Honour Among Thieves'?) is adhered to in the right degree?

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