Podcast 76: Michael Fremer

In his second appearance on the podcast, our own Michael Fremer, audiophile extraordinaire and redoubtable raconteur, waxes rhapsodic about the dichotomy of the quality of physical media versus the convenience of streaming, then takes us on a tour of his listening room and his incredible collection of vinyl records. He also opines on the audible effect of different cables and demagnetizing black vinyl records (really!), objective versus subjective (what he calls "observational") listening, and comments and questions from the chat room.

Run Time: 51:14

Click here to listen to this podcast.

Michael Fremer is a senior contributing editor at Stereophile magazine, a contributing editor at Home Theater magazine, and editor/owner of the online music review website musicangle.com. He's also contributed to The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle, Consumer Digest, and The Bergen Record (New Jersey) among other publications and periodicals.

Fremer appeared on the oft-run "History of Audio" documentary on The History Channel. He's also been on MTV, The Today Show, CNN, and hundreds of other radio and television shows throughout the United States, talking about the high-end audio listening experience, home theater, and the ongoing, unlikely resurgence of LP vinyl records.

His other credits include supervising the Academy Award-nominated soundtrack to the 1982 Disney science-fiction feature film Tron starring Jeff Bridges, and co-writing the animated feature film "Animalympics," on which he also provided voices along with Gilda Radner, Billy Crystal, and Harry Shearer.

Fremer was an on-air personality at WBCN-FM in Boston during the 1970s and has produced and voiced thousands of radio commercials that have run across America.

In 2006, he wrote, produced, and hosted the DVD 21st Century Vinyl: Michael Fremer's Practical Guide to Turntable Set-up, which has received unanimous worldwide media acclaim. An Italian/German version followed. A second DVD, It's a Vinyl World, After All: Michael Fremer's Guide to Record Cleaning, Storage, Handling, Collecting & Manufacturing in the 21st Century, was released December 2008.

Here's the YouTube video of this podcast:

nola.gent504's picture

Didn't know you guys were comedians too...This is my first time listening to the podcast, and it will not be my last- I enjoyed you both. I know we could learn a tip or two from Michael Fremer b/c he really enjoys this hobby of ours; only difference is he REALLY gets to play with all the goodies, and purchase some. I, on the other hand, have to read about'em, over and over, til' the Best Buy bonus check comes around.:) The thing with the 'Great Cable Debate', is the way it has been perceived. Monster Cable, has beared the gift and the curse syndrome, and has been the subject of so much controversey, among others, for being too advertiser driven. Or for some being too exotic. With Monster, you get what you pay for-colorful pkg. and all. Same with some others.(Although, the very hyper expensive-that's my gray area) I know there is a difference, but everyone believes what they believe. Is it b/c of Price? Build quality? Comparsion? Oh, I know... Monoprice!!! And the fact that many folks that are newbies, A/V enthusaists, or so-called experts that wanna blah-blah-blah that a cable is a cable, need to get educated...reeducated. And I wish these brands could make it a bit more believable, also. Then our A/V systems would really show there best potential. So, Michael[Fremer], you got any Transparent Cable you could loaner me, haha.

utopianemo's picture

I was surprised to hear Mr. Fremer so passionately decry the modern trend of choosing convenience over quality, and in the next breath geek out over mp3, Netflix, and so forth because of the convenience they offer. The other part to that is that convenience and cost coexist much more often than cost and quality. It may be a convenience for mr. Fremer to have Netflix around for distracting him while cooking, but most people use it as a legitimate, and even primary, media source. If Parasound amps, Wilson speakers, Continuum turntables and Sooloos servers were even approachable to the average Netflix, iPod, or HTIB user, perhaps Fremer could have made a more arguable point.