While bankers get asked for financial advice, landscapers for ‘mates rates’ gardening jobs, and event organisers for access to Taylor Swift tickets, hi-fi reviewers are typically asked for music system recommendations (alongside, of course, “Do you really just watch movies and listen to music all day?” and “Can you get me an Apple discount?”). Well, I am anyway.

I’m finding that my friends, now typically in their mid-30s to early 40s, are increasingly asking for buying advice for a ‘proper’ (by which I mean stereo speaker-fronted) audio system, as opposed to asking which headphones to get, whereas until now those sorts of requests have come to me predominantly from What Hi-Fi? readers and my mum’s friends. In all likelihood, that’s because they realise they’ve outgrown their wireless speaker, or are – like many, young and old – becoming interested in playing and collecting vinyl. They’ve reached the age of buying houses (and so having more space) and generally having more disposable income.

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