A father of a friend of mine asked me once why music was so much better in the 70s and the 80s? I keep asking the same question inside my head from time to time. The answer changes but in the same direction. Hear what I’m about to say: music quality has decreased because the technology has increased. Everything is so accessible that people care more about the quantity rather than quality. You must think I’m telling nonsense here but just bear with me a little.
50 years ago it was unthinkable that with the money you spend on lunch you could buy a portable speaker that would give you access to your music on the go. Nowadays everybody has a smartphone in their pocket. That means that we could just pair the phone with the speaker and play any song from YouTube or Spotify for free (if you can stand the ads obviously). And we all know that there are many places out there that offer free unlimited wifi. How much simple and accessible was that? Pretty much right? I think so too.
Mass-produced speakers of that amount of money are able to reproduce a very crappy sounding audio. Back in the 70s, the most portable speakers were audiophile gadgets compared to those.
Does that have any impact whatsoever in the audio quality recording studios are delivering nowadays? Sure it does! Let me explain why. If 80 percent of the people that are consuming music, which is the customers, are listening to it on a crappy sounding system, which is the case. Recording engineers will release crappy audio mixes because they will sound better in that low-quality sounding system. This is why, or at least one of the reasons, we had the loudness war in the first place. Those under 20 bucks speakers can’t reproduce big audio dynamic ranges. What we are getting nowadays is crappy mixes because people are listening to music in crappy systems. We are getting what we deserve.
I have friends that come over to my place and listen to music in my system, and they say that they hear their favorite song from a whole different perspective. They can clearly hear the separation of the instruments. Some of them witnessed a smile effect. That is one of the reasons I started this channel, I wanted to people appreciate music in the way it’s supposed to. It takes a lot of effort to produce high-quality audio. And if you do it wisely, you can achieve a good audio experience at home without breaking the bank. Trust me.