For the past few months, I’ve been contemplating the various ways that I’ll be able to fully digitize my music in my living room. My wife, in particular, wants to be able to have all our music available at the touch of a button from our main entertainment system there; she’s tired of messing with CDs, and so am I. And now that the world has been in the grip of a digital revolution for some time, and competing music software solutions abound (from popular vendor-focused solutions from Apple to open-source tools from any number of smaller players), we’re way past due to make seamless digital music a reality in our home.
But for various reasons, we’ve been sluggish with the transition. I’ve talked about those reasons in past columns—see “The End of Everything” and “Kicking and Screaming into a Tiny Future”—but the gist of it is that I still love the tactile feel of things like CDs and LPs, and DVDs and Blu-rays, and books and magazines. In the case of music, I’m the guy who still buys CDs, then rips those CDs to the computer for my digital collection. I know my way of thinking can be hopelessly antiquated, but I have never purchased a digital album from an online music store. It still seems too ephemeral and low-fi and even untrustworthy—all for the simple reason that I can’t hold it in my hand. If nothing else, I love having that physical backup copy that I can always turn to for a reliable, relatively hi-fi experience.
My digital-music experience so far has been haphazard. I’ve ripped many CDs to my computer—solely for the purpose of playing them on my iPod when I need music on the run. I still listen to music far more often at home than on my iPod, and I haven’t yet found the solution that makes most sense for me in my home.
And so, as I’ve gradually prepared for this comprehensive digital revolution in my home, I’ve found that I’m doing something that you might deem rather peculiar. That’s right, I’m assembling a small stereo-only system in my office downstairs that will serve as a listening area for LPs and CDs.
(Read the rest at Residential AV Presents: Connected Home.)