If you enjoy your hobby write a blog.

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Photo by Camille Kimberly on Unsplash

When I wrote my first opinions on this blog I did it mostly to vent some criticisms related to the audiophile hobby. I was truly tired of not having a voice in the community.
After being quiet for decades I had the need to stand my ground on controversial subjects, even if I had to criticize and offend other enthusiasts along the way.
These days I must admit that I don’t feel the urge to complain so much. Writing on my blog actually released me from the frustration of not having a voice, so now I don’t need to be so blunt when I see companies trying to sell snake oil to audiophiles or other related bullshit.

I believe having a voice and a space also made me a better person online, I don’t feel so inclined to be a asshole when participating on audiophile communities. Looking at the current state of some forums I also believe many commentators should actually write a blog to release all of their hate speech, saving some newbies along the way.

In fact it’s my opinion that if you truly enjoy your hobby, you should write about it if your time allows it and your inspiration gives you a hand from time to time.
It’s fun to have our own uncensored online notepad. Communities like Reddit and forums belong to people or companies with their own agendas, so in those usually highly moderated places it’s hard to give an honest opinion without being down-voted to oblivion or harassed by other users. I more often than not watch really good opinions being down-voted by the community just because they don’t follow the sheepish opinion those users have about a brand or topic.

Lets not forget that in those communities discussions can be toxic for newbies, making them frustrated for not having the “golden ears” some audiophiles claim they have, like it’s some God given gift that only they can achieve.
These days when I visit some communities, users often discuss topics like they are in a competition. Everyone wants to win but in the end nobody actually wins anything besides some kind of status which can be removed as soon as the administrators feel you are attacking their sponsors and source of income.  Looking at the fast pace things change the best way to actually have a voice is to write on a blog.
Discussions can still happen and people can refute your opinions on their own blogs.

My wife often laughs at me when I’m ardently fighting discussing something on a social network, deep down I also laugh because I know it’s a total waste of precious time.
I could be using all that time to actually write about things I enjoy on my own blog.
Social networks are an amazing way to find people and chat about daily news but they are too volatile to be of any use in the long run. That’s why all the best articles I often read are on websites or blogs, in those places time has a different meaning and the readers actually read, unlike the users of social networks which are expected to interact with the platform.

In the end if you enjoy your hobby and want to learn more about yourself and the world, I highly advise you to write a blog one day.

Raspberry pi + Wolfson Audio Card project.

 

So I finally finished my Raspberry pi + Wolfson Audio Card project.

Yea, I was lazy….anyway I now can play 24-bit, 192KHz lossless audio on my rig and there’s no need for a power hungry computer.

The Pi box is behind the TFT, its a simple black box similar with the one with a wood front in the photo. HDD is next to the decks and yea I’m gonna disconnect the blue LED ou cover up that light.
I did a little overclock to the CPU but nothing too serious, heat dissipation is enough and the box has an open back.
I also have a little hub to connect the keyboard and mouse.

Software wise the Wolfson cards suck…most distros out there aren’t compatible with it.
It runs the OS image provided by the amazing Ragnar Jensen.

As for playing music, it does sound nice and there aren’t dropouts or noticeable hum.
Anyway I’ll put a decent keyboard on the thing when I can.

On a final notice, stay away from this board as it doesn’t have decent support.
There are better things out there these days.

Don’t make stuff to sell it cheap.

I enjoy crafts, they are fun, you can make great gifts and if you need a second income they might at least pay some bills related with your hobby.

One thing I don’t enjoy is browsing ebay or etsy just to find really good home made gear for cheap. Most of you must think I’m crazy or something but I have a serious reason to rant about DIY gear sold for peanuts.

If you sell cheap you are hurting people who actually build gear to make a living.

People who build gear must sell it to make some profit, besides paying taxes, utility bills, tool repair and replacement, hourly wage and insurances.

Everyone has a different pricing system but it often takes in account all of the above things plus many others related to country lawys, etc.

Now if you just do it for fun selling cheap might be a fast way to get rid of old projects and at least have the price of the components back and that’s fine if you are only selling to your pals, but if you actually build stuff to sell online for a cheap price that only includes your wage and the components price that’s really unfair to all the other makers who try to make a living.

Most people I know who sell cheap gear have a first job and the second income is just to pay for other ongoing projects.

Selling cheap DIY clones is also a great way to hurt companies that actually make R&D for their products.

Remember my rant about someone asking me to sell Grado headphone amplifiers, yea thats pretty much illegal and I really like the Grado family so it would be wrong to do it.

Sadly I see many makers selling Grado clones like its a normal thing to do. Bullshit in my modest opinion.

Also to my attention came the fact that some audiophile DIY gear stores closed their doors, I find it curious that some actually remained open for so long, specially if you know how much money it takes to build a piece of gear and what those stores where asking for the said gear. Selling for cheap in the long run will kill a store if the owner forgets that taxes and other legal obligations must be paid.

Makers should sell gear but always understanding that such gear should be priced in a correct and fair way.

That way some people should at least understand that handmade takes dedication and work.

Stencil on denim jacket.

 

This one I did today and it’s my second attempt at painting denim.
Again stencil on denim with 2 shades of red paint and white posca pen.
I wanted a vintage look and I think it doesn’t look bad.

I don’t enjoy painting letters, not sure why but it’s hard.
Anyway I love the old Indian Motorcycles so I went for that on this jacket.
Took me also less than 3 hours from start to end.
I wont add any Indian logo because I want a discrete jacket.

My workbench these days.


My electronics and little project desk on my rainy living room.
Not shown are the 4 boxes with drawers I got on the other side of the room, those are where I keep most of my DIY stuff.
I can use my attic for storage space but only for power tools and heavy tools I don’t use often. Sadly the attic is a blazing hell reaching temps of at least 50º Celsius during the Summer so I’m limited to the stuff I can stash here, on the other hand my attic is an amazing place to dry clothes!

Today my dad gave me 8 wood boards that I needed to work on the side of my house. He just saved me 100€. I can finally work to solve some problems my 40 year old house has on the outside walls and roof.