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What is Audionist About?

The AudionistThe Audionist

Hi, I’m Irving. Welcome to Audionist.

First of all, I’d like to dedicate this site to audiophiles, headphone enthusiasts and earphone hobbyists. There is much to learn about audio, tone and gear. It may seem daunting to someone starting out, but I promise that the more you learn, and the more you use your ears and a little common sense, the more you will enjoy your journey of audio bliss.

Or as I like to call it—aural nirvana.

"A state of aural bliss that exists independent of gear and equipment, instead relying only on good tone. Because at the end of the day, tone is subjective."
— Aural nirvana

Welcome to Audionist. Your journal to aural nirvana begins here.

What then, is Audionist about?

Perhaps it might be easier to define what Audionist is not.

Audionist is not audio woo.

Wait, what is Audio Woo?

"Audio woo consists of unsupportable claims for devices or methods for getting better sound quality from systems that reproduce recorded music. Such claims are made by manufacturers, hobbyists, and writers in the field."
— RationalWiki

In the past couple of years, I’ve noticed a trend—writers making nonsensical claims of audiophile hi-fi gear capable of producing the best magical tone.

Let us get one thing straight. Tone is subjective.

The holy grail tone is a myth. While it keeps our passion alive in search for the tone, it doesn’t actually exist.

You get the idea.

Musical frequencies are a combination of mathematical algorithms, but tone is appreciated differently.

As a guitarist, I’ve been chasing the tone for years. I’ve spent hundreds of hours tuning the EQ knobs on my effects pedals like a god-damn radio receiver, instead of actually playing my guitar. I’ve realised that tone is subjective and I should be content with actually making and appreciating music. It’s still fun every now and then to find new gear to try and replicate a specific tone, but I am no longer bound by dogma that I need certain gear and/or effects to produce a certain tone.

Likewise, audiophiles have made music extremely complicated for the average hobbyist. There are some who are keen on upgrading their gear to have better sound quality. But they usually get derailed by audiophiles convincing them that they need a certain combination of amps and cables before they should even begin considering upgrading their headphones.

What makes me an authority? Absolutely nothing. I’m just an average musician who started playing the guitar when I was 15, and amassed a ton of analog equipment during the 90s, learning through trial and error what good tone is. At the turn of Y2K and the evolution of the iPad, I started learning about digital equipment. I may not have a degree in audio engineering, but what I do have is a set of ears that’s been trained through experience to identify what good tone is (don’t confuse this with ‘best’ tone).

Let me show you what works. Stop believing in audio woo.

I write about tech, high fidelity audio and minimalism. I’m also a musician and a guitarist.