I designed recording studios for Jimi Hendrix, Bruce Springsteen and Aerosmith. These are the speakers, headphones and soundbars you use for “great” quality music at home.

We asked this renowned music industry veteran to talk about his home audio setup and other gear and accessories used for casual listening.

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John Storyk began designing a music studio with his first memorable client, Jimi Hendrix. The famous rocker hired a young and ambitious architect to help build a recording facility from scratch. The result is the Electric Lady Studios, which opened in 1970 in Greenwich Village, New York City. Artists from Stevie Wonder to Taylor Swift made records with Electric Lady.

To date, Storyk has worked with his wife and business partner Beth Walters to create studios, podcast bays and performance spaces for clients as famous as their first clients, including Bruce Springsteen, Aerosmith and ESPN. , Designing a rehearsal room. And when it comes to listening to music, he has an idea. We asked this renowned music industry veteran to talk about his home audio setup and other gear and accessories used for casual listening. Here are some of his recommendations.

Best Portable Wireless Bluetooth Speaker: “Great Sound.”

Storyk loves these compact, ubiquitous Bluetooth models (capsule-shaped BoseSoundLink waterproof speakers and semi-tubular SonosRoam) for “great sound.” Both are rechargeable and respond to voice commands (Siri for Bose, Alexa for Sonos, Google Assistant for both). Sonos adds a Wi-Fi connection. Manufacturers claim that Bose advertises speakers as “waterproof,” while Sonos advertises them as “water resistant,” both of which can handle splashes.

& Lsquo; Great sound. & Rsquo;

BoseSoundLinkFlex Wireless Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker

$ 149.00

  • Waterproof wirelessly (additional bonus: float)
  • Bose’s unique technology designed for optimal sound quality in a variety of environments
  • Siri and Google Assistant enabled
  • Rechargeable wireless speaker battery
  • Built-in microphone for making calls from Bluetooth speakers
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars with over 5,600 reviews on Amazon

SonosRoam smart portable Wi-Fi and Bluetooth speakers

$ 179

  • Battery life of up to 10 hours on a single charge
  • Use it with your home WiFi and listen on the go with Bluetooth
  • Alexa and Google Assistant enabled
  • Waterproof with end cap to protect against falling (1-30 minutes)

Best Wireless Headphones: “I always use them.”

Storyk still likes the experience of listening to music on a self-contained speaker, but it can also switch between calls and songs on a Bluetooth-connected iPhone and Apple AirPods Pro. The price of Pro pairs is significantly higher than Apple’s baseline AirPods ($ 99 on Amazon), but Storyk says, “I always use them.”

Apple AirPods Pro

$ 249 $ 199

  • According to the independent review site SoundGuys, it offers improved audio, enhanced noise canceling, longer charging times, better protection against water damage, and a snug-fitting silicone eartip.
  • Noise cancellation
  • Resistant to sweat and water
  • 3 sizes of soft silicone chips for a customizable fit

Best wireless, noise canceling headphones
: ‘very good. ‘

To work, Strick needs to spend a lot of time on the plane. When it comes to in-flight listening, he says, “I have really good Bose and Sennheiser headphones.” Legacy companies in the analog era, Bose and Sennheiser, are also competing for the love of digital streaming audio enthusiasts. The Bose QuietComfort 45 and Sennheiser Momentum 3 around-ear headsets come with a Bluetooth connection and a 3.5mm stereo mini jack cable (depending on the seat design, you may or may not need a funky 2-pin airplane adapter. I have). “I usually use wires,” says Storyk. “Call me old-fashioned.” Both models include a USB-C cable for charging and listening. Sennheiser adds Alexa-compatible voice control and a USB-C to USB-A adapter.

SennheiserMomentum3 Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones

$ 297 on Amazon

Bluetooth 5.0; SBC, aptX LL, aptX, and AACE Effective noise cancellation Sound quality Excellent build quality Multi-connect, fast auto-connect

  • Sound Guys emphasize high sound quality (8.8 out of 10 for the sound of these headphones) and “excellent build quality”.
  • Wireless and Bluetooth compatible
  • Active noise canceling
  • Soft ear pads and genuine leather headband
  • Automatic pairing mode makes it easy to set up with the first activation

Bose QuietComfort45 Bluetooth Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones

$ 279 on Amazon

  • Sound Guys emphasizes “excellent noise canceling” and “long term comfort”.
  • Wired and wireless playback
  • In-app EQ
  • Battery life up to 24 hours
  • Wireless and Bluetooth compatible

number one Soundbar

Storyk’s home audio and home theaters are partially powered by industry-grade professional audio hardware. Feel free to read about these hardware and feel a little intimidating. But he also has a Sony 5.1-channel surround sound setup, and he says “nothing is flashy.” Newer versions, such as Sony’s HT-A5000 soundbar, debuted in September, feature immersive spatial sounds from Dolby Atmos, DTS: X, and Sony’s proprietary 360 Reality Audio technology, which may be a bit elaborate. Maybe. It also supports voice commands using Alexa and the Google Assistant. To buy Dolby Atmos and DTS: X Home Theater Sound on a budget, Sony’s 3.1-channel model is half the price of Amazon’s $ 398.

Sony HT-500 05.1.2ch Dolby Atmos Soundbar Surround Sound Home Theater Soundbar

$ 798 on Amazon

  • Dolby Atmos and DTS: X, Surround Sound and 360 Spatial Sound Mapping
  • Gameplay with 8K and 4K / 120 passthroughs
  • Wireless TV connection
  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Chromecast built-in, Spotify Connect, and Apple AirPlay
  • Integrate with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa

Best Desktop Speakers: “Sweet Pair”

To listen to music at work, whether at work or music, Storyk says he has a “sweet pair of small desktops” connected to his office computer. Focal is a French manufacturer and has many currencies among audiophiles and music industry professionals. These winding bookshelf-sized speakers are one of Focal’s cheaper units, but speakers equipped with Dolby Atmos double the asking price.

Focal SIB Evo 2.0 2-way bass reflex satellite speaker

$ 499 on Amazon

  • Sound Guys emphasize that these speakers have high sound quality (9.5 out of 10), are easy to set up, and are powerful.

Best in-wall speaker

Whether it’s Puccini or the Chicago Blues, Storyk’s home music is played in his living room and bedroom through an in-wall speaker that blends in with the decoration. After years of spending years with a particular brand of flash-mounted speakers, he aims to move to the Bowers & Wilkins Reference Series. This is called “a line of excellent speakers of various dimensions”. By any standard, this top-of-the-line model is expensive. Matched pairs run for about $ 10,000. Bowers & Wilkins also sells a much cheaper in-wall pair, which you can buy with the Best Buy pair for $ 700.98.

Bowers & Wilkins 3 Way In Wall Speaker

Best buy $ 5,000.99 (each)

  • CWM652 wall speaker
  • 5 inch woven aramid fiber mid base driver and aluminum dome tweeter
  • Cast aluminum speaker chassis
  • The grill and speaker can be painted to fit the surrounding surface

Whatever the budget, Storyk says, “People should pay as much attention to the room as gear.” In other words, you should consider adjusting your listening room. In other words, it also means installing a sound absorbing panel. “I made a room for people who spent $ 150,000 on speakers. If you could put a $ 1,500 speaker here, spend $ 5,000 to improve the room and you could hear the difference. lose.”


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