The passing of the touch screens and all the neat features they support

I watched one of Paul’s Youtube videos in which he brought up the fact that they may be abandoning the touch screens on new products. They have already done so on the PST to my dismay! They got me to love the features provided by them and now they are taking them away. A transport that cost $6500 should have the same features as the one that came before it that sold for $6000. the sad truth too is that the programing for that unit was never really completed. I suggest that they come up with an app that can be downloaded to an android or apple device that will provide all the very same features. If they did so I would most definitely be interested in the PST. I cannot imagine a power plant without some way to visually monitor what it is doing and the ability to adjust it according to my needs. I feel the same type of loss when it comes to the Stellar phono preamp. I have a NPC which I love and it not only provides the necessary eq and gain that I need to play it as analog into my BHK preamp but it also allows me to record my precious records to my computer to archive them. With the Stellar preamp you loose the A to D. Once I obtain something that satisfies me I am not one to want to take steps backwards from that progress I have made. I wish we could move forward without loss.


Having never liked the touch screens, my reaction is good riddance. But I appreciate objecting to their departure if you like the screens.

Features and capabilities come and go as the market changes, become cost prohibitive, technology evolves, etc.

As an audio related example, many cars no longer come with CD drives. The assumption is everyone rips files to USB drives, players, and phones.

On a car related note, I wish manufacturers would all drop the cigarette lighter style power outlet. They are huge and awkward. And most no longer light anything.

I use the cigarette lighter outlet to connect power to my GPS and to charge my phone so that would be a no go for me too!

Yes, all the myriad of gadgets would also need to change to a superior power connector.

There is a good number of options the industry could choose from.

I’ve been pricing up a new car in which a “smokers’ package” is optional; no thank you.
But if there is a cigarette lighter, the smoke has to be rising…

I have seen such options also.

I’m not a fan of touch screens. Not in the audio equipment and especially not in cars - the touch screen I have is a total pain in the a** and must be a total safety hazard as well.

When it comes to Audio, I would be curious about the expected life-time of the gear. Can you assume your touch screen will still function, be technologically relevant and be maintained, say, twenty years down the road? Can you reasonably expect the gear can be resurrected if it stops functioning and the original modules are no longer available to replace it?

I’m old school. I like parts that can be replaced. Already the display in the Aesthetic Janus us giving me trouble and it’s just a bit over fifteen years of age. My favourite piece of gear was Manley Steelhead because of all those huge knobs and nothing digital. A pity it did not live up the sonic expectations.


But the new cars now come with ginormous touch screens that control everything . . .

Also watched the SpaceEx launch this evening. The instrumentation available to the astronauts were three ginormous touch screens.

Just sayin’ :man_shrugging:

Yes, which does not make touch screens the best choice for other things - nor even the best choice for cars.

Hate 'em in the automotive environment. To adjust anything your eyes are off the road whereas with physical knobs you could run the dash by feel.


Another example is the substitution of biometric readers for Ctrl + Alt + Del when logging in to a computer. I like it as it is quick. I know others who dislike it (but are not objecting on privacy grounds).

Anyone really think buttons are going to outlast a capacitive touch screen? Switches have a definite number of cycles that the will function. Lets see how all the features are going to be made to work without them. Unless of course all but the most minimal features will be available. It amazes me how many are willing to spend the kind of money this equipment costs and than never bother to make use of all the features.

What features do you contend others are not using?

And how do you know this?

In the analogue domain the number of features is quite small and one can reasonably expect a long life-time of the equipment before becoming obsolete. Therefore, any design should be such that it can still be maintained decades down the road.

With digital streaming it may be a different ball game altogether.

Just a minor off topic nitpick:
Hall-effect switches have no contacts, they do have a spring but that can be very reliable. There are also other sensors that are contactless and basically just need a spring.


Less is more
I have read some comments here and there demanding more features, more controls, and more information from audiophile devices. Some have made it a deal breaker and went as far as comparing products from a different segment to high end segment based on features! I agree having more info on what is being played is quite important, but I found that it is best viewed on a tablet not on the device. Many people say they dim device displays while listening so that they can enhance the listening experience. Call it psychological, I used to have a phono preamp with a screen and lots of functions and settings. It was an attractive piece and was well reviewed in Stereophile. I restlessly played around with settings hoping to improve the sounds of my LPs which were not and will never be created equal. I realized that I did not buy my system to spend my time near the rack. I wanted to go back to my seat and listen longer, and enjoy longer. This was one of the three top reasons I chose Stellar phono preamp. I knew engineering time and money were put into sound quality not bells and whistles. Now, I listen more from my seat not kneeling by the rack :smile:

Did anybody at some point buy an equalizer component? Today, many of us are avoiding stuff with gain controls, as well as functions for loudness, treble and bass. We want an engaging sound the simplest way possible! I would be happy with an on/off LED and an app that shows me things on my tablet. My 5 cents :grinning:

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I think blue-tooth connected apps are the way of the future for device control, and the SVS one is a particularly fine example. Bluetooth because it’s the quickest and most stable connection type for this use-case, better then wifi. And an app because it gives you much better usability and richer features, including graphs, then a remote.

I find a big disadvantage of the touch screen is that you, well, have to go touch it, on my knees in front of my audio rack in my case. So I mostly use the remote I still look at the meters and wave forms once in a while, but being able to see, hear and adjust that from my chair using a phone app would be so much better.

I find this conversation insightful.
I’m curious to know the opinions of the audio professionals on this board regarding today’s extensive use of touch screen controls? Yeah, or nay; and why?
I worked a few years in live sound reinforcement and studio mixing when much younger. Looking back on it now; dials, faders and pan pots allowed me to assess settings and make changes faster to whatever I was mixing. Also, as mentioned in an earlier post, I didn’t have to focus my attention entirely on the control itself.
…Personally, I say bring back the massive plastic control boxes from the early days of cable TV. Remember those? The ones with the 20 foot long wires connected to the cable boxes? Now we’re talking “tactile”! :rofl:

My view of touchscreen interfaces can be summed up by my reaction to the first Windows 8 PC I played with at Best Buy. Microsoft’s attempt to foist a GUI cloned from portable devices on to a desktop platform had me laughing out loud. I must have looked like a fool. Bottom line: fine, in fact not an option, for small portable gadgets. For everything else, neither necessary nor preferred. At least for me.


I have an all-in-one PC with 24” touch screen. I only touch it for cleaning with a microfiber cloth :grin:

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