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CA database


Steelman
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Hi Chris,

 

I have spent an outrageous amount of time looking for computer audio related products and given the industry's nascent status thought that it might make sense to create a database with the different types of gear that exists.

 

I think this would add tremendous value to the board, the industry and the manufacturers. It would really help those interested in computer audio but just too confused by all the products.

 

Perhaps you could have a tab on the left titled "Product Database" and in that have sub tabs for things like sound cards, DACs, software, cables, etc. Under each tab you could have a table listing companies, products, basic characteristics, list prices, and external links. Setting up the database on first thought seems like a nightmare, but I think the task would be quite painless:

 

1. You could build a credible table with information in your head; it does not have to be perfect

 

2. Outsource a lot of the work:

 

2a. Missing products and errors would likely be corrected quickly via emails by manufacturers and board members

 

2b. Allow comments under each product by the forum

 

You can still do selective reviews as you have time, but this allows people to have lots of views on each piece of equipment and hopefully very rapid review turnaround.

 

Good luck,

 

steelman

 

 

 

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Hi Steelman - I really like the idea. I have a few thoughts in my head as to how this should look and operate. Do you have anything in mind? Like a forum topic with threads to products and comments?

 

 

DACs >> USB DACs >> Manufacturer >> Product >> Comments?

 

At first this seems daunting, but the benefit would far outweigh the pain of assembling the db.

 

Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing The Audiophile Style Podcast

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I think the key is to get the database running ASAP, which I envision could take two weeks, max. Approach and publicize database as a work in progress. You would provide a limited amount of information for each product (no CA evaluations or comments in the database section, for now anyways).

 

At this early stage, to make the database perfect would be a daunting and fruitless task, as everything changes so rapidly. Virtually all the value would be in a database that is directionally correct and somewhat complete. And getting that extra 20% towards perfection adds little value today and would take 100s of hours of work Delaying the database to 2011 or never doing it leaves a lot of value on the table. Over time you could populate the database with more and updated info. Lever your board members and manufacturers to provide corrections, updates and additions.

 

Organizationally, I would approach the database in a more streamlined fashion with just a few categories (DACs, software, ...) and no subcategories:

 

DACs

==>1 page database table of "all" DACs with a few columns labeled manufacturer, model, suggested retail price, manufacturer's web site, input types, a few other specs/pictures you can add over time

 

If you want subcategories in the database eventually you could put a dropdown selection bar for criteria (usb input, firewire input, balanced output, price...). For now just get the database up and running

 

With respect to comments, if you put comments under the DACs section, optically you will have a lot of comment activity but it will be a bit jumbled up. Alternatively you might add a final column in the database which links to a comments page (I like this best)

 

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perhaps one option would be to set it up as a wiki so that (registered) CA members can add / edit / correct info.

 

manufacturers, consultants and others with vested/finanical interest are welcome (and encouraged) to be part of the community contributing product info. to keep things honest, on-point and avoid CoI improprieties, lay down ground rules that main entry (whatever "form" or "format" is decided upon) is only for factual product info (features / tech / capabilities), not reviews, opinion or marketing.

 

this main product entry can include links to separate venue (separate CA fora for product reviews, members of the trade comments, etc) which can be set up for such content.

 

my .02

 

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I also think the "database" idea is a great one. Something that can contain the (claimed and verified) capabilities of a device. It would (IMO) need to be totally factual, not trying to review the device, though there could be links to reviews. So if people are looking for a DAC to support 24/96 they can view a list.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Beacue the information on the internet is often not clear.

 

Okay - so someone wants a FireWire interface to connect their computer to their Bryston DAC - yes you can find the information, but it's not clear anywhere ... I personally think a "summary" information database would be very useful. It would save a lot of "basic" questions that newcommers to the forum often ask.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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I know of a data base for computer hardware/software and I looked at it as a sample case. I have to tell you it’s huge and would take some time to reproduce here in its simplest form. That data base is the name of the companies, web links and contact numbers. I think some will find such a thing useful and other will be overwhelmed. Adding any kind of data would make it an Apollo moon shot type project.

 

Chris, how about a WIKI type of deal where the members fill in the data and help keep up to date. The top headphones can then police it and keep it clean.

 

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