By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyse site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Cookie Policy for more information.

Ed Selley

Ed Selley has been reviewing hi-fi kit for 14 years as well as doing just about everything else in the consumer electronics industry

What’s your experience to push you up to expert status?

In the 20 years since I graduated from university, aside from a brief and wholly peculiar stint with the Institute of Chartered Accountants, I’ve exclusively worked with hi-fi. I’ve sold it, taught others how to sell it, built it, marketed it, installed it, trained other people how to install it, consulted on designing it, written extensively about it and penned a fair few instruction manuals too. And 14 very enjoyable years reviewing.


I do my very best not to have one. I work to keep up with any and all technical developments to keep myself up to date and I’m as happy with turntables and phono stages as I am the latest and greatest digital audio formats. 

Do you enjoy doing this reviewing stuff?

Well, it beats working for a living doesn’t it? This is one of a tiny number of industries on Earth that allows for perfectionism. It centres on the sort of engineering you generally only see in very serious sectors of human achievement and it does so solely to make your life a bit more enjoyable. What’s not to like? 

What’s the ultimate for you?

The suspension of disbelief. The moment you are listening to the music and not the equipment itself. It doesn’t need to cost a fortune, it simply needs to convey the musical message. Some equipment can, some can’t; it’s as simple as that. 

Describe yourself nerd-geek-sceptic-enthusiast

Perennial enthusiast. The day I don’t feel a surge of excitement wiring up the latest thing to come through the door is the day I need to consider my career options. 

Describe the scene when you are listening

Me, at least one of the household cats, iPad for note taking and a vast swathe of music. I absolutely believe that reviewing is more than saying something is good or bad. Everything excels at something and it’s about working that out.

Do you listen to the music or the kit?

When reviewing ends, it’s only about the music. If my only means of listening to music going forward was a Fisher Price tape recorder, I’d go with it.  

Why do you listen to music?

Music is the single most powerful mood altering substance there is. It lifts you, calms you and consoles you depending on your needs. I don’t like silence and never have.  

Vinyl, streaming or CD - whats your pref?

Modern digital is a truly magnificent thing but the ceremony of vinyl is and will always be special.

Go to album for testing

The one that I’ve used and listened to more than any other is Every Day by the Cinematic Orchestra but I can honestly say that anything goes; there’s an indisputable joy to taking a masterpiece of engineering and material science; the summation of everything a company knows in the field of audio… and playing The Shamen on it. 


Blog posts