Now hear this!

The Shed - - Editorial - Greg Vin­cent Pub­lish­ing Ed­i­tor ed­i­[email protected]­mag.co.nz

Some things just make you feel good don’t they? A deep, deep blue sum­mer’s day sky with­out a cloud to be seen along with a hot, blaz­ing sun beat­ing down. The smell of fish and chips or freshly ground cof­fee beans. I’ll bet you have your favourite sights and smells too, but great sounds are just as an im­por­tant feel-good sen­sa­tion for me as my other senses.

It is heart-warm­ing to see the cur­rent re­birth of vinyl and a real thrill to see the young en­joy­ing the warm sounds that LPs bring to their au­dio ex­pe­ri­ence. I am still dis­heart­ened that the ma­jor­ity of the younger gen­er­a­tion just don’t get what good-qual­ity sound can add to their mu­si­cal lis­ten­ing plea­sure. They blithely lis­ten to their favourite artists and songs on rub­bish speak­ers or tiny ear­phones. Kids you are miss­ing out! Argh, they won’t hear me rave on.

To lis­ten to mu­sic on a good hi-fi adds more to the ex­pe­ri­ence than can be imag­ined. You feel the air move, al­most feel the breath of the vo­cal­ist, and can en­joy the sounds of fin­gers dragged over strings, again and again. But hey, we Shed­dies know this, don’t we? We were brought up with great mu­sic; great change; and, as the dol­lars would al­low it, we bought hi-fi af­ter hi-fi to move that lis­ten­ing ex­pe­ri­ence up a notch with each pur­chase.

This is­sue of The Shed just hap­pens to have turned into a bit of a homage to qual­ity sound. Not be­cause of any great plan — it just hap­pened that way. I have a valve ra­dio in my shed and it brings a smile to my dial ev­ery time I turn it on to lis­ten to RNZ or, even bet­ter, a full five-day test. Heaven!

The warm sound that the valve ra­dio throws out makes me feels at peace with the world and brings on a con­tented smile — mem­o­ries of Merv Smith, prob­a­bly.

If ever I visit an­other shed or a bach with a valve ra­dio, I can’t wait to turn it on to get that same feel­ing and en­joy its own dis­tinc­tive AM hum.

This is­sue of The Shed has a few au­dio sto­ries for you to en­joy and I hope they make you feel good too. We have a cou­ple of clever shed­dies restor­ing, pre­serv­ing, and up­grad­ing some glo­ri­ous old ra­dios, we have a Kiwi in Lon­don who had a crack at repli­cat­ing some $150K speak­ers and was very happy with the out­come (es­pe­cially the price), and we have the very ta­lented Paul Downie build­ing harp­si­chords that will cre­ate amaz­ing mu­sic for many to en­joy for decades to come.

We hope you like the sound of all that and hope­fully it will en­cour­age you to re­pair — or plug in — that old valve ra­dio in the back of your shed.

What was that spi­der’s name on

Merv’s show?

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