The rise and decline of Swedish hifi culture

Research project
Active research
Project period
2014 - 2020
Project owner
Department of Cultural Sciences

Short description

The concept of high fidelity appears in Sweden for the first time in the 1930s. Its use is increasingly spreading from the mid-1950s, when also the abbreviation hifi is introduced. Right up to the first decades of the 21st century, high-fidelity/hifi has been used to designate a quality standard for sound reproduction, but it has also come to imply a set of practices, ideas and values associated with the use of sound-reproduction technology.
The aim of the project is to study the emergence and content of these practices, ideas and values, which in summary may be characterized as the ”high-fidelity culture”. The project will also analyze the changes in this hifi culture which have taken place over the past three decades, as a result of the introduction of various kinds of digital audio-reproduction technology.