One of the things we hear most often when being asked about audio products is "What sounds good on them?"
It's an obvious question, but the answer tends to be another question - "Well what do you like listening to?"
Over the years, plenty of brands have come into the market trying to appeal to a certain set of listeners - bassheads, power hungry rock fans, detail driven classical enthusiasts - but to our mind, the best audio products should work across the board. We've never been fans of artificially beefing up performance in any one area to cover deficiencies in others.
Case in point is our WP2 Audiobuds. When we launched that product, we took real care to test it with a wide variety of styles and genres. But when you've narrowed down your focus to "all music", then how on earth do you try and bring some consistency to testing?
Consistency is key. If you're wondering if what you're hearing is an effect of the product you're testing, or whether it's part of the recording, it's not a valid test. So, when developing the Audiobuds, we built a set of reference tracks, from various genres, to introduce that consistency and keep everyone on the same page.
We've already published a subset of these as our "Listening Guide" - which you can check out in this post. However, as part of the launch bundle for the Audiobuds, we also included links to our genre playlists. These are a set of some of the most popular music genres and our testing tracks within those genres. You'll find links to PDFs, containing Spotify Playlist links, below.
Before you download, make sure your Spotify app is playing in its best quality (in settings) as the standard quality setting Spotify defaults to can really crunch audio and hides a lot of detail. We've used Spotify as it's pretty universal and anyone can access, but if you have access to one of the lossless (HD Audio) services such at Tidal, always worth seeing which of the tracks are also available there.
The playlists aren't designed to be listened to in sequence - the tracks are picked for various reasons (some will expose different areas of audio) and because they are pretty universally well mastered and reliable as a test source.
Go check them out - let us know what you think. Is there a go-to piece/album that you love? We're always keen to hear more!