Not so many years ago, when I had something remotely like a future, I was seriously into films. I’d always been a huge movie watcher, but it got a bit problematic with the appearance of DVDs. The ability to own high quality versions of my favourite films was a temptation too far. I subscribed to US film magazines (Premiere was my favourite, though I now see if folded in 2010), which gave me advanced notice of the newest movies, which I’d often import straight from America or Canada. For a few years, I’d often have blockbuster movies before they hit the cinema in the UK; even more smaller movies that never even made it over here. It was also stupidly cheap given the strength of the pound. Every week I’d have new film arrive from Dvdboxoffice, which I’m saddened to see also no longer exists…

Anyway, part of my addiction was with the hardware. I wanted to watch films on as big a screen as possible and my sickness reached its peak when I bought a projector. I was seriously into home cinema before home cinema really became the business it is today. The results weren’t even half as good as modern big screen TVs but, given the time, I was really proud of my setup.

I guess something happened which ended this hobby. I left education, struggled to find work, and money became scarce. I coped with the pain of not being able to watch the newest movies by not watching movies at all. I turned my room around, putting a drawing desk where my screen was. Then I moved it all around again, so my current desk sits beneath the old projector screen which I haven’t pulled down in years.

It does mean, however, that I have a pair of enormous Tannoy speakers that sit above my PC. I haven’t connected them in years.

Until today.

My PC speakers have been cracking for a while but today they broke so I’ve spent an hour jerry rigging the old sound system to work with my PC. Miraculously the old PC had an optical output and the result is a PC with stupidly overpowered sound. I have the amp set to 0.5 (out of 10) and it’s loud. 1 is edging towards complaints from the neighbours. 2 and I can’t hear myself think. I have no idea what 10 would sound like and I have no intention of trying.

All of which brings me to my point, which, in the end, isn’t much of a point or, if it is, it’s an immensely obvious one…

I’ve never been much of an audiophile but listening to music though decent speakers is such a revelation that I’m now angry with myself for settling for my old PC speakers. I’m sure I must have known this whenever set this PC up but, ten years ago, I wasn’t using it to stream media. There are whole layers of voices, instruments, and atmosphere that I’ve been missing…

Abbey Road sounds so different.

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