Does your system sound “better” after being away?

I just had to travel for work for a week and really didn’t listen to any music at all.  Returning home and listening to my system, it sounded glorious to me and I lost any burning desire for upgrades.  Same with my more modest office system, maybe even more so.  Is this a psychological phenomenon of losing my audio frame of reference, or did my ears rest and I’m hearing more?  In any case, it has provided new perspective and appreciation for all the tweaking I have done over the years.

Have you had a similar experience?

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I did!

I lost my desire for recreational drugs somewhat similar way as I've aged. I can say I've not been addicted to any, but used to find them entertaining for certain occasions, parties or holidays. 

I still have HUGE desire to buy more music as new artists appear on the bandcamp or other independent medias.

I've stopped upgrading my components since early 2000's, but keep adding music of various formats including packing my digital drives as well with downloads.


I read somewhere recently that people that don’t like their systems are listening to music they don’t enjoy. I think it’s very easy to try music just to see what the system can do, but that can be music we don’t normally gravitate to. For example I might try classical music to hear the scale, and if I don’t hear what I want to hear I’m not happy and think upgrades will fix that. Well recently I went back to just playing what I like, and finding new music that I like. I’ve not heard my system sound so good so consistently. Perhaps when you returned, you weren’t focused on what the system could do, just listening to the music you like. I’m now of the mindset that while I will eventually upgrade, it won’t be a never ending journey, but instead one to inch out the last drops of what is already a wonderful sounding simple system. 

Yes, I also have had similar experience.  I think because I am healthier for not listening my system for several weeks.

If I get away from my system for a couple of days, it takes an hour or two to hear what I like about it. I think it's just the nature of the ear/brain connection. I'm not a hearing specialist but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night!!!!

@pabs85 good and often overlooked point, the hobby should have some connection to musicality to the listener’s ear, and not just about hifi pyrotechnics.  But.  While I have liked well recorded classical music on my analogue front end for some time, I never really got much enjoyment out of it from my digital front end until I got a Chord dac.  YMMV.


Yes. As much as I love my music collection, system and room, I find that listening day after day becomes less charming after 5 or 6 days. Too much of a good thing. Taking a break for a day or two seems to re-set my ears and musical appetite.