If you've ever read this column and asked yourself, "why is this guy writing about electronic stuff I'm not interested in?," well, you wouldn't be alone.

I wonder the same thing sometimes.

So here's why. In this age of the Internet, where a small business with a cool niche can capture literally anyone's attention online at any moment, I like to look at the world around us as one that is chock-full of choices.

Analogies are in order. I used to drink Rolling Rock by the 30-pack with my friends back in the day. Now, I still have an occasional craving for cheap Mexican beer, but in general I've moved on. This past year was an IPA kick, and my lack of man-boobs or a beer gut belies the sheer volume of dank drafts that have passed these lips in the preceding 12 months.


And I couldn't be happier. We have serious riches of craftiness all around us. And dagnabbit, why not check it all out? That's a choice that lands you a potentially richer experience than can be had with the more corporate of brands.

The Colorado Daily calls on tech trends/video game columnist Sam Nixon to sift the good from the bad. Why? Well, because he's got good taste, and because gamers care about quality!

Why listen to the spiel of a sommelier when visiting a restaurant? Better is better. Tailored to your tastes is better than one-size-fits-all.


So it's not too unusual in this age of high-quality portable music experiences to take a look at all the options out there, and winnow out the best among the rest. Why I'm writing this column gets to the heart of music enjoyment as well — anything "better" in the realm of audio devices should only serve to make the music hit you and your emotions even harder.

If it doesn't, it's probably not worth your time or your dime.

Last week I talked a bit about headphone amplifiers. I can insert my own opinions about the quality of one over the other, but a good question remains: what makes a "better" amplifier actually better?

To my ears, each headphone amplifier I try emphasizes slightly different things when you turn the volume up.

Some bring up the bass and the top end. The DIY headphone amplifier I built, which is currently my favorite (and not because I built it) makes everything clearer and wider when I turn the knob.

Dialing that volume and hearing elements come out that should have been there to begin with is a satisfying experience for me. Yes I am a gear junkie, but way more than that and long before I became such, I've always been a huge fan of musicians doing their thing.

The Cayin C5 headphone amp is love at first listen.
The Cayin C5 headphone amp is love at first listen. (Courtesy / Amazon)

Get me closest to the experience the musicians had hearing their hot track played back over the mastering engineer's monitors, and you've won me over.

I've got another high-quality budget-priced amp for you to check out. It's the C5 headphone amp by Chinese company Cayin, available on Amazon. I just picked one up and it's love at first listen.

Read more Taylor: coloradodaily.com/columnists.