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4 Gifts That Will Make Audiophiles Roll Their Eyes

September 7, 2020|Vinyl Community Discussion


There are gifts for the hobbyist that are really appreciated and useful. However, there are some gifts that may seem like a shoe-in from the one looking into the world of the audiophiliac. To the audiophile though, these aren't things that you would normally buy, and would even be silly to own. This is a guide for gift givers that don't know what to buy for the audiophile that already has everything. After reading this article, you will know what gifts will make an audiophile roll their eyes, and which ones they will see as a prize! Let's go!


  1. Cheap Vinyl Record Reissues

Unless they have specifically said they would like that album, don't buy cheap reissues of music on vinyl records that you think they may like. There may be an exception, for example, perhaps its original counterpart is extremely expensive or simply cannot be found because it is so rare. In that case, it may be desirable to the audiophile because it's the only cost-effective way to have it on vinyl. Another reason they may want to own a cheap reissue is that they would like to compare it to an original and/or audiophile pressing. Yes, we're weird like that... In most cases though, cheap reissues sound bad, and are generally not appreciated by audiophiles. Again, unless your audiophile friend specifically says they want that specific cheap reissue, don't get it for them!


There are some alternatives though that they would love you for! There are some stores that specialize in procuring audiophile pressings of vinyl records and making them available. One of those places is 'The In Groove' based out of Phoenix AZ. Mike is the owner there and he knows which records sound great and which ones are junk. He also carries ample supplies of Mobile Fidelity, Analog Productions, and other audiophile labels that reissue awesome records that in some cases aren't too much more than cheap reissues available at your local box house or Amazon. There are others that also specialize in audiophile records including Acoustic Sounds, Music Direct, and Toad hall Records just to name a few. They're out there, you just need to take a look and see what works best for you.


  1. Vinyl Record Picture Frames

Audiophiles like to listen to their music. Displaying it is secondary. Unless we have a specific room decoration goal that includes displaying some album covers, we like to keep our records stored safely on the shelf with proper inner and outer sleeves and set vertically to reduce damage. Also, light fades artwork on the record so the shelf is the safest of places for our records.


As an alternative, posters or artwork of our favorite bands are a great way to decorate our listening space. Even better, original concert posters or even reissues of concert posters of our favorite bands are out there and available and would not only be super cool to look at, they would in essence add to our music collection. Also, those record wall displays that you can set the records on that you're currently listening to or recently purchased on to look at. A great alternative indeed!


  1. Pretty Much Anything From The Company BOSE

There is a joke that is common in the audiophile community that goes a little something like this: When Paul Klipsch saw Amar Bose in heaven and said "How are you Amar?", Amar said "***too muffled to hear what he said***".

While Bose gear is respected by many, in the audiophile world, they're considered boomy, and, well, muffled. They lack the articulate clarity and realistic, punchy bass that you would expect from other speakers and headphones. There are some exceptions, for example, if your audiophile friend is looking for good sound cancelling headphones because they travel often and they just want something that will hold up and sound decent. Then maybe Bose will be ok, but, there are other options that may be more interesting to audiophiles.


At the time of writing this article, noise-canceling headphones that can be checked out are the AKG N90Q, Montblanc MB 01, and Shure AONIC 50 headphones. All of which would likely be received a bit better from an Audiophile as compared to their BOSE counterparts.


  1. Crosley Mini Turntable... Or Anything Crosley For That Matter

For Record Store Day 2019, Crosley released a mini turntable that because a popular gift. Only certain titles have been released on the proprietary 3" discs and could be valuable to collectors. So some audiophiles may want it for collection purposes however will never be anything more than a novelty. So there is a chance that the hifi music lover in your life would enjoy this or similar products as a conversation piece or as a collectable but generally, us audiophiles won't be impressed.


In countries during the soviet era, where music from the USA was under ban, recordings would be smuggled into the country. Such recordings featured popular groups including The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, and Elvis Presley. However, since they had no official means of pressing them, bootlegs were made using discarded x-rays from local hospitals. Some of these are still available for purchase online. So check out eBay and other sites for these cool x-ray records. If an audiophile is looking for something fun that they don't have in their collection already that is a novelty to own, these would be really cool!



This article is purely opinion and is mostly a guide for my wife when she goes gift shopping. Hopefully you can share this guide with your loved ones and it will be helpful to them as well. If you have already received any of the items we discussed, I'm sure that you cherish those items as much as the many gifts that I have received in the past, because it's the thought that counts. If you actually like these things and bought them for yourself, then that is awesome too! Again, this is just personal opinion.

If you're still looking for ideas on something that your audiophile friend may be interested, AAGS offers gift certificates for services including ultrasonic vinyl record cleaning subscriptions, Vinyl Record Grading, Autograph Authentication, and much more.

Us audiophiles are weird folk, and that includes being picky. Hopefully this list is helpful to some, and not offensive to anyone!

If you are interested in vinyl record encapsulation or any of our other services, please visit us at to learn more about how you can bring your collection to the next level!