Using a file based system the oath goes like this. (For other media insert as appropriate.)

"I swear to reproduce the file, the whole file and nothing but the file so help me listener."

Some recent comments regarding full range drivers and many of the posts I’ve read over the time I’ve been at AoS have finally prompted me to ask the above question. I can’t help get the impression that High Fidelity in its strictest sense is no longer the goal for many audiophiles.

There are literally thousands of examples of why I think audiophiles may be straying away from seeking the truth and becoming more interested in what makes for a comfortable listening experience.

I read occasionally a description of the ideal amplifier for example as a straight wire with gain. The ideal Dac should be completely neutral. The ideal speaker give a completely flat response over the audible frequency band etc etc.

Any deviation from the above criteria cannot be the truth and therefore not High Fidelity by definition.

Yet, we have posts praising equipment tuned by ear, or descriptions of equipment that sound radically different from each other, speakers that can’t reproduce what’s on the media, cables change the sound of the system for better or worse; I won’t go on, I’m sure you’ve got the idea.

Obviously if an audible change is detectable then one or the other, or maybe both, can’t be the truth.  So, are today’s audiophiles still interested in High Fidelity or have they come to accept that this is unobtainable and settle for what pleases them most?

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