Tag Archives: audio

Is there any good audio equipment still made in the USA?

Audio is actually still one of the sole remaining industries of which a significant portion is still made and/or assembled in America, especially the high end brands. The List – American Made Audio

In addition to alot of the good answers here about home and portable audio, I would also like to add that as a guitarist, a significant chunk of high end guitars and amps are still made in the USA as well. Fender’s American made guitars, Gibson’s guitars, Gretsch, Guild, G&L and boutique brands like PRS, Suhr are all made in USA. Fender, Mesa Boogie and some boutique brands like Two-Rock, Swart, Milkman (What I personally have), Tone King, Greer, Matchless etc are all made in the USA.

Guitar pickups especially the handmade guitar pickup industry (giants like Seymour Duncan, Dimarzio and smaller ones like Lindy Fralin, Lollar etc) are all made in the USA sometimes by just one guy in his home, somewhere.

Boutique guitar pedals are all made in the USA as well. Wampler, Keeley, JHS, Earthquaker, Xotic, etc

So I’d say if you really want to buy made in USA products, the high end or boutique audio/guitar industry is a good bet.

What’s missing from buying a vinyl single compared to streaming the song whenever you feel like it?

-vinyl as an analog format, is lossless. It is literally the sound waves of the recorded music etched onto grooves. MP3s or Spotify streams are low resolution samples that are usually low bitrate and lower quality than CD quality which itself is sampled from the original master recording

-vinyl has album artwork, which can be beautifully displayed on your shelf. In addition, it may make an interesting conversation piece

-the act of playing an album means you have to listen to the album in its entirety. This gives artists like Pink Floyd and The Who and The Beatles the ability to create concept albums which have tracks that all flow together and wouldn’t sound as great if played standalone.

-Finally, you don’t need internet access to play vinyl. It’s always going to be there for you whether alone in the woods in a cabin or in the highest mountain – as low as you have mains power for the record player that is.

Audio Brands ranking

Here’s my ranking of audio brands

Entry level ($50-$300)

Audio-Technica

Beats Audio/SMS Audio/SOUL by Ludacris/House of Marley/etc other artist sponsored brands (please avoid these)

Skullcandy (please avoid)

Apple/Google/Dell/Microsoft/Lenovo/Amazon/etc tech brands getting into audio

Logitech/Razer/Corsair/Roccat/Steelseries/etc gaming brands (Logitech is ok, the others are usually way overpriced)

Creative Labs

Bose (entry level is better value than their high end)

Cambridge Audio

Monster Cables (their non-cable stuff is actually decent value)

JBL

Etymotic

Samsung

LG

Altec Lansing

Vizio

Pioneer

JVC

Ultimate Ears

Boston Acoustics

JAMO

Yamaha

Libratone

Edifier

Fluance

Fender

Marshall

Philips

Audioengine

Peachtree Audio

Koss

V-Moda

Cowon

Oppo/FiiO/Xiaomi/iBasso/Shanling/Cayin/good quality Chinese brands

Midrange ($300-$1000)

Klipsch

Polk Audio

Harman Kardon

Beyerdynamic

Definitive Technology

Shure

Westone

Sony

Sonos

Acoustic Research

Grado

AKG

Lexicon

Master&Dynamic

Bowers and Wilkins

B&O Play

Infinity

Denon

Onkyo

Marantz

Sennheiser (actually they are good at every range but I like their midrange the best)

High end ($1000+)

Linn Audio

Hifiman

Woo Audio

KEF

Audeze

Bang and Olufsen

Astell&Kern

Jerry Harvey Audio (i.e the ‘new’ Ultimate Ears since UE got acquired by Logitech)

Ultimate Ears Pro (custom monitors)

Noble Audio

Revel

Wharfdale

Focal

Fostex

Stax

Naim Audio

Devialet

Meridian Audio

Audioquest

Burmeister

Dynaudio

Mark Levinson

MartinLogan

Magnepan

Wilson Audio

Quad Electroacoustics

Eminent Technology