Not all of us are fortunate enough to have turned our passions into a lifestyle—but a few have—and it seems quite prevalent in the high-end audio field. If you have a chance to visit this week’s Rocky Mountain Audio Fest in Denver, keep an eye out for the passion and excitement you find in nearly every room. It’s not only infectious, but I believe it to be rare within an industry.
Enthusiasm. Excitement. Call it whatever you wish, high-end audio business owners seem to have it in spades. Unfortunately, the one inescapable reality check faced by every entrepreneur trying to turn passion into a lifestyle is the cold reality of having to make a financial go of it. It’s called running a business. How many audiophile-turned-business owners know how to be successful? Not many, myself included. Which is why, in 1990, I sold PS Audio and started making loudspeakers with Infinity founder, Arnie Nudell. It’s a story I rarely share, but since I was asked I filmed a video of it which you can watch here.
After a seven-year hiatus, I restarted PS Audio with fresh ideas and a lot more experience. One of the best parts of getting older is the wisdom gained through life’s challenges—leading me to shed the notion I have a clue about business, hire people that do, and granted me permission to be ok with focusing my efforts on what I truly love: dreaming up cutting-edge audio products, sharing knowledge, and working directly with our staff, engineers, and customers.
There’s something else. Immersing myself with the up and coming generations of music lovers and audiophiles (many are on our staff). I know some of you think high-end audio is dying out, but in my experience, nothing could be further from the truth. It’s changing—yes—but dying? Hardly. Watch a young person’s eyes light up at the big system, smile at Sprout’s touch, lust holding vinyl, giddy with anticipation of the next musical release of a favorite group.
Different? Hell yes. But, that’s great.
The world’s better off with a change of pace.