Thanks for the warm welcome, party people. I look forward to stirring the pot regarding pure music vs gear acquisition (and everything in between) debates. Obviously I'll be playing devil's advocate for both/all sides and 'listening' to the results of the 'orchestration'... with my eyes. Ooh, that threw a spanner in the works already didn't it? Definitions of music, trees falling when nobody's around and single hands clapping.. I'm ready to bluff away!
I did actually have to google 'G.A.S' tho' and from what I gather, it started life as 'guitar acquisition syndrome'.
I haven't had a chance to browse through the threads here yet but I assume that there's going to be the occasional use of an acronym such as 'P.A.F' (iirc) or a phrase representing the same?
Anyway, a decade or so ago, I rocked up to a semi-mainstream audio equipment store, like Klapp Audio or its predecessor, to purchase an entry level Cambridge Audio CD player and these sneaky sales people played Nora Jones' 'Don't Know Why' through some Dynaudio speakers (which I'd never heard of before). It just grabbed me by the... cockles of my heart. No, that's too warm and fuzzy. It did something else and I just haven't been able to forget the experience.
It became a reference point in my musical memory that keeps me from being a person who (understandably) thinks 'audiophiles are full of it'. I experienced 'separation of sounds', and a whole lot more that I probably couldn't put into words but the terms 'sound stage' and 'imaging' come to mind.
By the same token, there's the whole 'Bose' phenomenon, which, as I see it, can give an unwitting, unprepared or unlearned listener an unforgettable aural experience through tweaking and matching on a more micro level. Maybe even on a software level.
I haven't had the chance to set up a nice sound system of my own yet (apart from always making do with the best that I've got), or a listening room, so I don't really have a strong opinion about the matter but loving gadgets and having a curiosity geared towards 'bang for buck', it's not hard to stumble across common differences of opinion.
One of the most glaring ones relates to, simply put, 'staying true to the original recording' versus 'coloration'. That said, it has been quite a while since I've read anything about that and it could be old news.
Interestingly, the best sound I have at home comes from a mini 5.1 system that I was given a very long time ago. There's only 2.1 of it left and only two of the channels coming from the compact desktop sub work. Maybe the center channel and front left. Brand: weconic.
I recently put together a competitor that I thought would kick its butt, comprising a Topping VX-1 and some 30w Redback speakers and the exact opposite happened, so now the Topping has just been slotted in between the PC and the speakers as a DAC only.
Anyway, plenty more interesting discoveries to be made to be sure.