pl | en

No. 192 May 2020


y entering the keyword 'coronavirus' in Google, I received about 193,000,000 results (as of March 29, 2020). This number will increase with each subsequent day of the pandemic. Which means, that at present there is nothing more common in the world, nothing people would fear more. Which is completely pointless, because the problems we faced earlier have not disappeared or disappear. This is how FEAR manifests.

From the sphere related to the disease as such, it moved to other areas of our lives, first of all to the sphere related to securing our well-being, that is, with money. There is problem that is postponed and which will come later which is the economic slowdown, and therefore the problems with employment for many of us. Some industries have suffered so much that it will take a lot of time, work and help from the state for them to being able, at least in part, to return to normalcy.

But you already know that - Google search engine entries mean that you follow the situation on a regular basis, probably more often than needed. The last thing I would like to do is to add more worries for you. However, I wanted us to look at this problem through the eyes of audio manufacturers and listen to what they think about coronavirus limitations it imposes, what challenges they face and what they will soon have to face.

I sent questions regarding health, mood and "what’s next" to a dozen or so friends - my personal ones and those of our magazine - from around the world. Everyone wrote back, but not everyone elaborated in long emails. So what did I find out? - Well it turned out that the catastrophic picture of the world brought to us by mass media, which comes from fake news, is not real and that the real life looks differently. Hans-Ole Vitus Nielsen, the owner of the Vitus Audio company, wrote to me directly that he is very sorry, but he can literally write only a few words, because to manage the flow of work, he gets up every day at three in the morning and has no time for anything else. And he’s not the only one.

This does not mean that all is good and that it will be great, but only that when one door closes, others open, you just need to notice it and be a little lucky. And I shall leave you with this optimistic message, Dear Readers of the "High Fidelity", while giving voice to people directly involved in the production and sale of high-end audio. Please take into account that these are e-mails that I received in the last two weeks and the situation is dynamic, so much could have changed since then. We will try to post subsequent entries in the NEWS.


Owner, designer

The Coronavirus so far has not effected our sales of audiophile equipment! However we are direct sell from our factory here in Australia. All the retail outlets within 1000klms of us have had a significant downturn!

Why? The reason we think is that true audiophiles can be slightly isolationist in nature in the first place. Most consider themselves to be in 'The inner Circle'. This means they trust only dedicated and trusted reviewers and their online forum friends who they have built a relationships with. This dedicated somewhat elite mentality spends time researching everything including Coronavirus. I think this type of person equates this to something like the Flu or a bad cold.

Retail outlets though get all types of customers! mainly I think people who just want a decent audio system for their new house or perhaps react well to High end audio manufacturers marketing. These same people also react quickly to general Media excesses re Coronavirus.



鈴木雅臣 Mark Masaomi Suzuki
Chief engineer

The situation in Japan under COVID-19: many companies and stores operate normally. The children started going to school. But admiring the cherry blossoms "OHANAMI" is limited. Accuphase, however, works normally. Greetings to all!


Tomoyoshi Sugimori | I-ODATA | FIDATA

Our company decided on Feb. 28th not to take any business trips (Overseas and Domestic) and, to not come to the office to work (if possible). And, the schools were requested by the government to take time off. Also, I was ordered to work from home for a week because I returned from overseas. But since today schools in Japan have been re-opened despite the fact that tomorrow kids start their spring break...



Elia HONTANI (Mr.)
MuSon Project, Inc.

Though some people are panicked a little (toilet paper buying etc), most Japanese are calm. I guess we must not be afraid of the new virus too much. The virus research will advance, and further data will become clear, then the circumstances will change. A foundation of the problem may be the it is "unknown".

It is a pity that a lot of events (Munich etc) were canceled, but on the other hand, some customers say "orders increased because people have to stay at home and they listen to music a lot". Anyway, we have to watch future economic situation. Now, JPY is very strong!

| | | | |


René Laflamme | NAGRA | 2xHD
Sound engineer, Sales director

I have mix feelings about it. In Quebec they did shots downs the school very quickly so for now it is well under control. In Switzerland they are close to ITALY they seem to have more problems but the Nagra factory is still open. It is to early to have a clear view of the negative impact. For now the economic part of it is a big issue. Will let you know more later.

The musics still sales well for now.

| |


Kerry St. James | YG ACOUSTICS
(Senior Account Executive)

We are all healthy in the YG family. I hope that the same is true for you and your loved ones.

Regarding the effect of the Coronavirus on our industry, I think that there will be multiple levels of impact on the industry. Clearly, the most immediate and the most dramatic impact thus far has been the cancellation of a number of upcoming audio shows. As you know, I have just returned from the Prague high end show . I did not see any Coronavirus impact at this show. The hallways and exhibitors rooms were crowded throughout the show days. However, this may have been the last such show for a while.

I was scheduled to present YG Acoustics at a Napoli dealer next week followed by a YG presentation at the spring Milano show. Each of these events have been canceled. Just yesterday, one of the largest North American audio shows  (Axpona Chicago 17-19) was canceled and rescheduled for 7-9 August. There is a show in southern California in early June. The status of that show is uncertain.

The largest high end audio show in the world, High End 2020 (Munich), has been canceled entirely and will not be held this year. This show is both a consumer show and a business to business show. YG Acoustics relies on this show each year to not only present our products to interested consumers but to meet with our partners from around the globe. The Munich show is a unique opportunity for manufacturers like YG Acoustics to do significant business with our international partners.

We will lose this opportunity this year. We will have to substitute telephone and email meetings.instead. So, all is not lost from a business perspective. We will miss the face to face meetings, however.   

Since I wrote the words above yesterday, the United States has issued a travel ban prohibiting foreign nationals from Schengen countries from entering the United States for the next thirty days. This measure should not have an immediate impact on YG Acoustics since we are represented by long standing distributors in most of these countries. Our day to day business is typically conducted by email or telephone.  

Of more concern is the "lock down" of movement and the closure of all shops, except supermarkets and pharmacies in Italy. This does have a direct impact on YG Acoustics ability to do business in Italy for the moment. There is the possibility that other European nations will institute these measures, as well. In this case, there would likely be a short term impact on YG sales in countries that restrict movement or mandate closed shops. 

Overall, I believe that long standing, healthy companies like YG Acoustics will weather this very unique global issue. I am encouraged by this month's (March) YG sales in Asia. Not only are the sales numbers good but they are dramatically good. Is this a response to what appears to be a containment and decrease in Coronavirus cases in these countries? Is it because they are ahead of the rest of the world on the virus's progression curve?  Is the panic generated by the unknown of this virus subsiding as these countries gain control over it?

I think that, months from now, we will be able to analyze the statistics and numbers and formulate some conclusions as to this surge in sales. The evidence might be clearer if other nations and regions follow suit with Asia's pattern. 

The Coronavirus phenomenon appears fluid and at the same time unique. If there is a global recession caused by the virus all businesses will be impacted. Strong, healthy businesses will survive and perhaps even thrive as the world economy rights itself. For now there is too much uncertainty and no truly analogous circumstance to serve as a guide. The one thing that appears obvious, however, is that panic does not help resolve what is, at its core, a medical/science issue.   



Mads Klifoth | AUDIOVECTOR
Managing Director/CEO

Our production and administration is still up and running until the government advises otherwise.

As of right now we have made precautions for our employees. They choose if they wish to work or not – it is up to them totally, they are standing minimum 5 meters apart, maximum 2 people for lunch at the same time, if they have the slightest symptoms of a cold or any other sickness they have to stay at home. Hand sanitizer is extremely important too.

Our staff member over 50 years of age have been told to work from home as they are the ones that are most likely to suffer badly from this virus. Our workers (except 1 person) have chosen to work – I am proud that they wish to keep the company healthy for us all.

My opinion and main target by all these restrictions is to help our health care to not have too many people in the hospitals. The only way we can do this is too minimize the risk of infection - our system is not prepared for it. Look at Italy for example. They have elderly infected people at the hospitals indoor park houses because of no space. We need to stand together to avoid things like this.

In my opinion it is the right thing to postpone all shows and bigger events until we have cleared this situation. At Audiovector we have prioritized the personal contact to our distributors and dealers vis Skype, Messenger, WhatsApp, WeChat etc. Our digital marketing have been boosted in activities, videos, pictures, posts etc. When we cannot come to our partner, they cannot come to us, we will come to them via their digital devices.



Sales Director

Personally I am very well, but the whole Corona thing is really making a big mess on my annual schedule... All my travel plans, etc. seems to be canceled and it is effecting my way of working. 

On the personal note: When I am traveling the globe it is not so much the fact that I am out there taking orders and presenting new products or doing proper product training. It is much more about showing some respect to my collaborating partners. Most of the people that I am working with I have a very strong relationship to. It is a bother-hood and I am doing my very best to be around them as a true and trustworthy friend. Having a great time and just being their associate and bonding partner. Standing shoulder against shoulder. When having this strong relationship we are always ready to walk the extra mile for each good times and in bad times. It is a collaboration and not just a company trying to force product down the throat of the distributor.

How it will effect our industry?... It is quite difficult to predict how this will effect our industry in the near future but also long-term. I really think it depends on your business model and not at least how you structure your business and where you are manufacturing your products. But that's not all. We will have to take heritage and brand awareness into consideration as well. A company like Gryphon has been around for 35 years... and there is a reason or several reasons why we have managed to stay healthy and alive for sch a long time in the audio industry.

The fact that we have always sticked to the long-term plan...keeping our noses in the track and always followed the "thin red line of conduct". Never deviated form the company philosophy and the product philosophy. Building true Class-A, true dual-mono, being true to our design philosophy all the way through. People know what they get when they are buying a Gryphon. They know what they can expect from our side and it is all about pure performance, bold designs and a long history of building extreme luxury audio components with high build quality and with a very very long lifespan. It is a matter of heritage.

However, I fear that some of the smaller brands, working on limited budgets or balancing on a knives edge, which are depending on showing new products at shows and fairs will face some major problems in the future to come. How are they able to get their message out to the audiophile communities and spreading the good news? That might become an issue, but it is difficult to say. It is pure speculations and nothing that I can say for fact. 

But the Corona Virus might actually become beneficial to the industry in another way. And please don't get me wrong I am most certainly not saying that I think it is a great thing. Absolutely not. I really feel with people who have lost their loved ones to this horrible virus and I fear that we have only seen the tip of the iceberg. 

However, people are not going out and they don't socialize in a normal way. People don't spend money on vacations and they are more or less banned from traveling the world. It might give the industry a second chance to show the world that staying at home with your favourite music and enjoying it on a high quality audio system isn't a bad thing. It will give people a lot of time in their homes and why not enjoy music when being "locked up".

But to be honest I don't know what will happen, but it will definitely show us if Hi-Fi and music is still a big thing in the minds of our current and potential new costumers. We might actually get a second chance to rebrand our industry and become more creative in our way of reaching out to our present clients but also future clients. It is the time where we have to show what we are made of and find a different approach. 



Massimiliano Magri | GRANDINOTE
Owner, designer

Personally, I have problems with the suppliers: a lot of their workers don't come to work and deliveries of some parts will be delayed. The good thing is that, for now, the couriers work! Yesterday arrived here the SDA courier. I always offer him coffee, because he is a very nice guy, he told me that in this time, the shippings are increased! This happens maybe because the people avoid picking up deliveries personally and they use the courier more or also because they fear that also the courier deliveries will be stopped and so they accelerate the deliveries, before this service is stopped.

As for the business, it's a tragedy: Munich show is canceled! The show in Rome is suspended, same as the show in Milan. I'm waiting for the new dates for these shows. Also Axpona show has been postponed: the new dates are August 7-9th. For me, the cancellation of the Munich show is a tragedy. I was to present the new Wood Mach line! Surely, this will cause less orders to come...

In any case, all world is suffering. Here in Italy we have more cases of Coronavirus, because here we do the testing. In the other countries they have much, much, much more infected people than what they show in their statistics! We have to wait for the summer in a hope and that it will kill this virus!

For me the solution is not to close some zones as all zones have the virus. We need the masks and the gloves! 2 months ago the countries could have prepared for that, now it's too late... The problem of this virus is that in strong form, he stop our possibility to breathe without support. In Italy we have 3.000 ventilators for the forced breathing. The mission is to avoid to have in the same time, more than 3.000 persons that need these machines!

In every case, the hysteria will cause 100 or even 1000 more problems than the virus itself!


On behalf of all the „High Fidelity” staff I would like to wish you good health, strength and patience – after all we can’t do much with what’s happening around us. Let’s think positively, because when it all finally ends, we will need a lot of strength and enthusiasm, perseverance and commitment. And let’s listen to a lot of music – it’s the best form of therapy!

About Us

We cooperate


Our reviewers regularly contribute to  “Enjoy the”, “”“”  and “Hi-Fi Choice & Home Cinema. Edycja Polska” .

"High Fidelity" is a monthly magazine dedicated to high quality sound. It has been published since May 1st, 2004. Up until October 2008, the magazine was called "High Fidelity OnLine", but since November 2008 it has been registered under the new title.

"High Fidelity" is an online magazine, i.e. it is only published on the web. For the last few years it has been published both in Polish and in English. Thanks to our English section, the magazine has now a worldwide reach - statistics show that we have readers from almost every country in the world.

Once a year, we prepare a printed edition of one of reviews published online. This unique, limited collector's edition is given to the visitors of the Audio Show in Warsaw, Poland, held in November of each year.

For years, "High Fidelity" has been cooperating with other audio magazines, including “Enjoy the” and “” in the U.S. and “”  in Germany. Our reviews have also been published by “”.

You can contact any of our contributors by clicking his email address on our CONTACT  page.

positive-feedback linia hifistatement linia Net Audio

Audio Video show

Vinyl Club AC Records
Audio Video show