Thursday, September 22, 2011

Why I love tech

People think I was born loving tech. But just because I've been writing about tech in one place or the other for the past eight years doesn't mean that's true. My reasons for loving tech are simple:

I love my iPad because I love books and comics. I love my PS3 because I love games. I love my TV and media streamer because I love movies.  I love my iPhone because I love music. And of all those things, I love tech most because of music.

Unlike my love for tech, I was born into music. My grandfather, who I was named after, was a music professor and a conductor. My dad meanwhile chose a career in IT, but he always loved music. We grew up with Beethoven blaring from his Luxman tube amplifier and KEF speakers.

I still have my dad's old vinyl records.

Years later, I would discover what those names on the boxes in my dad's music cabinet meant, and what an aural treat my ears were exposed to at such a young age. I vowed that until I could reproduce that grand yet sublime sound erupting from those two 100-watt speakers, I would not rest.

My Walkman. Also my constant companion in my teen years, along with The Smiths, The Cure and New Order. Sony's Mega-Bass was my generation's equivalent of Monster's Beats headphones. Not very subtle, but it added oomph.

My first iPod. Quantity over quality. 2,000 songs in my pocket. All of them in low quality MP3s. And those white headphones sucked! I actually think I got a job once because of this iPod. They needed a tech writer; I was the first person my publishers had met with an iPod. 

My first AV Receiver. This is dying for an upgrade now. But at the time, I saved up to pay for it in painful monthly installments because I didn't want to buy one of those cheap home-theater-in-a-box solutions.

My "music studio" made from old guitars, and RockBand 3 instruments (they are surprisingly decent MIDI instruments), an old MacBook running Garage Band and Native Instruments' Guitar Rig. It all works, after a fashion, except my classical guitar broke a string the other day.

Years later, with a son of my own now, I'm still not there. Still hunting for the best tech to deliver the music I love, the movies I love, and all the other things I love. Still haven't found those speakers that will send my ears to aural nirvana, and maybe convert the little boy into a music lover, which he already seems to be. 

At this point in my life, wrapping myself up in my own space with headphones for a few hours is top of my list. Headphones with balanced output, oodles of detail, and a distinct soundstage would be perfect. I've been reading up on headphones. If ever there was tech that was made for the love of music, it seems like the Audio-Technica M50 is it. Music, tech, back to music. It's gone full circle.

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