What are the benchmarks for Objectivists? - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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post #91 of 438 Old 05-09-2006, 09:26 PM
 
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Icaillo, your point that only the people who claim to hear the difference are worthy of study is quite important. In the past, people have tried to argue that my system is "not transparent enough" or that I have poor hearing, but it is not my lack of ability/budget that is on trial. If one person can't hear the difference, it proves nothing, but if one person CAN hear the difference in an ABX test then it proves me wrong.

This is why people who disagree with me can not further their cause by poopooing my ability to hear... I do not claim to have any unusual abilities (well, besides at playing Tetris, I'd whip all your arses in that.)
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post #92 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 12:21 AM
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So if a single person out of any number of ABX test subjects, lets say 100, consistently prefers device A over device B, while the other 99 split their preferences 50/50 for A/B, that throws your whole test out the window? I think not. It just means that one person out of 100 can hear a difference. As far as the other 99 are concerned, it doesnt exist. Even if you could prove by some quantifiable evidence that there is in fact some difference, if 99/100 cant hear it, it is irrelevant to them.

Not that these kinds of results are often or many, but what conclusion would such results warrant? That there is definitely an audible difference between device A and B? Or that there is a 99% chance that you wont hear the difference that the other 1% can? Or that simply 1 person out of the 100 test subjects of this particular test preferred device A consistently?

Any of our 5 senses are all individual to each human being. Smells, tastes, sights, tactile feelings, and sounds are all things that each individual "computes" differently. Not everyone like the taste of broccoli. Not everyone likes the smell of gasoline. Not everyone likes to touch microfiber cloths (that really weird rough feeling and how it sticks to your hands? ewww). Not everyone likes the same amount of bass in their audio systems. etc. etc.

Objective data is within the input to the 5 senses. Broccoli has the same chemical makeup no matter who eats it. Therefore by looking ONLY at that data, it should taste the same. But some people love it. Some dont. Same with smelling, seeing, feeling, and hearing. How the brain puts together the incoming data and give us a sensory experience is slightly, and sometimes, drastically different from person to person. It is one of the most studied subjects. And one of the most fascinating.

The brain can actually "fabricate" or maybe more accurately "interpolate" information where there may be "none". And this is partly the objectivists' concern with peoples' perceptions of what they hear getting in the way of what is actually there. It seems that our whole life experience is based on perception. The foods we like, the smells, the sights, the sounds, etc. are all based on how our brain functions with the data fed into it.

Enter the world of smart marketing and marketing research. :) (think fast food, cologne/perfume makers, interior designers, audio equipment manufacturers, etc.) They try and force perceptions on the public to make a profit (nothing wrong with that....this is America). And it works a lot of the time on a lot of people. But not all of them and not all the time.
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post #93 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 04:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiophiliac
So if a single person out of any number of ABX test subjects, lets say 100, consistently prefers device A over device B, while the other 99 split their preferences 50/50 for A/B, that throws your whole test out the window? I think not. It just means that one person out of 100 can hear a difference. As far as the other 99 are concerned, it doesnt exist. Even if you could prove by some quantifiable evidence that there is in fact some difference, if 99/100 cant hear it, it is irrelevant to them.

Not that these kinds of results are often or many, but what conclusion would such results warrant? That there is definitely an audible difference between device A and B? Or that there is a 99% chance that you wont hear the difference that the other 1% can? Or that simply 1 person out of the 100 test subjects of this particular test preferred device A consistently?

Any of our 5 senses are all individual to each human being. Smells, tastes, sights, tactile feelings, and sounds are all things that each individual "computes" differently. Not everyone like the taste of broccoli. Not everyone likes the smell of gasoline. Not everyone likes to touch microfiber cloths (that really weird rough feeling and how it sticks to your hands? ewww). Not everyone likes the same amount of bass in their audio systems. etc. etc.

Objective data is within the input to the 5 senses. Broccoli has the same chemical makeup no matter who eats it. Therefore by looking ONLY at that data, it should taste the same. But some people love it. Some dont. Same with smelling, seeing, feeling, and hearing. How the brain puts together the incoming data and give us a sensory experience is slightly, and sometimes, drastically different from person to person. It is one of the most studied subjects. And one of the most fascinating.

The brain can actually "fabricate" or maybe more accurately "interpolate" information where there may be "none". And this is partly the objectivists' concern with peoples' perceptions of what they hear getting in the way of what is actually there. It seems that our whole life experience is based on perception. The foods we like, the smells, the sights, the sounds, etc. are all based on how our brain functions with the data fed into it.

Enter the world of smart marketing and marketing research. :) (think fast food, cologne/perfume makers, interior designers, audio equipment manufacturers, etc.) They try and force perceptions on the public to make a profit (nothing wrong with that....this is America). And it works a lot of the time on a lot of people. But not all of them and not all the time.
If one person can hear the difference in a manner that is statistically well beyond chance, does this not suggest that there might be something worth looking into? If there is a product that 1% of the population might value, don't you think that someone might want to sell that product? Don't you think that it merits trying to understand the source of that difference?

I did not say that the other 99 people are wrong or inferior, nor did I say that they even care or should buy the product that makes the difference. I simply said that the outlier is more interesting. It indicates something that the rest of us might be missing, in design or in experience.

Yes, calibration is important...every user should be calibrated.

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post #94 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiophiliac
So if a single person out of any number of ABX test subjects, lets say 100, consistently prefers device A over device B, while the other 99 split their preferences 50/50 for A/B, that throws your whole test out the window? I think not. It just means that one person out of 100 can hear a difference. As far as the other 99 are concerned, it doesnt exist. Even if you could prove by some quantifiable evidence that there is in fact some difference, if 99/100 cant hear it, it is irrelevant to them.
Perhaps it's just mincing words, but...

IMO, ABX/DBT really has nothing to do with preference for A or B; only that the unknown X (which is either A or B at random) can be consistently identified as X=A or X=B.

Just because there is a knob doesn't mean you should turn it.
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post #95 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 06:31 AM
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You've created a hypothetical situation Audiophiliac with that one person out of a 100 who can reliably differentiate between two pieces of whatever. My gut reaction if only one person could differentiate would be one of suspicion. Kind of like why is one person able to predict heads and tails while the others can't. But I'd give him the benefit of the doubt and retest him. Now why don't you go and find that one person?
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Any of our 5 senses are all individual to each human being. Smells, tastes, sights, tactile feelings, and sounds are all things that each individual "computes" differently. Not everyone like the taste of broccoli. Not everyone likes the smell of gasoline. Not everyone likes to touch microfiber cloths (that really weird rough feeling and how it sticks to your hands? ewww). Not everyone likes the same amount of bass in their audio systems. etc. etc.
So what? The question at hand is not whether people have different preferences, it's whether they can discriminate between two pieces of whatever using just their ears under level matched conditions. In the context of CD players, there's been more than enough measurements made by places like StereoPhile that indicate CD players have differing outputs. That in itself makes for a non-level playing field.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
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post #96 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 09:36 AM
 
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To take the same question and change it from sound to sight... imagine somebody has two light sources whereby one produces "red" and another produces a shade of red thats only BARELY measurably different in wavelength. Say the first shade of red is 660nm and the second shade of red is 661 nm.

You are shown one color at a time and you have to decide whether it is the 660nm red or the 661nm red. You are not asked what color is your favorite, you are simply asked to IDENTIFY the color. Your favorite color may be green or blue and nobody can deny you your preference. What CAN be denied is your ability to identify a color of light or a cd player when all you can use is your eyes for the color or your ears for the sound.

This debate exists because one side sees it as "You are trying to tell me my preferences are wrong" where as the other side is actually SAYING "You don't have the ability to identify what your preference is when the potential equipment differs in quality by less than your ears are physically capable of discerning."

While I could just as easily use the phrase "all that matters is what you hear" I intend to use that with completely different emphasis.

You may believe that all that matters is what YOU hear, in that what anybody else hears is irrelevant.

I believe that all that matters is what you HEAR. I use "you" collectively but the implication is that if you use any senses OTHER THAN HEARING than you shouldn't be reporting what you "heard." If you can't "hear" the difference, don't tell us yoiu can. You are welcome to say you believe your CD player has great esthetics and reliable, heavy build quality and if you use those parameters to decide your purchase, I say excellent. However, do not tell me something "sounds" better when you aren't using your sense of hearing to make that determination.
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post #97 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 10:08 AM
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What I find absurd is that you are told not to trust your ears by the objectivist crowd.

Equally absurd is the reliance on DBTs, especially when DBTs are not scientifically sound anyway.

Besides, consider the time and effort (not to mention money) in setting up a DBT:

1. You need to gather a statistically significant number of people (say minimum 10) too agree to assemple at a scheduled time
2. You need to spend time setting up the DBT environments
3. You need to spend money on extras - like food and beer. (I guess beer would mess up the results), unless you can find people who are willing to participate hungry and thirsty.

Isn't it a lot easier to trust your ears?

IMHO, anyone who calls himself an audiophile should have a very good understanding of the "sonic signature", particularly if the system is of the high-resolution, revealing kind. He should generally be able to tell the difference when switching components. Note the use of the word "generally" in the preceding sentance. He should also have honed his listening skills and have a good understanding of his sonic preferences and will thus prefer certain components (including CDPs) over others.

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post #98 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 10:30 AM
 
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"What I find absurd is that you are told not to trust your ears by the objectivist crowd.

Equally absurd is the reliance on DBTs, especially when DBTs are not scientifically sound anyway. "

If ignorance is bliss, you must be the most blissful person on the face of the earth.

I just told you to ONLY trust your ears. Not your eyes, not the subsequent weight reduction of your wallet, not the esthetics of the unit, not the brand name, not ANYTHING but your ears.

"Double blind tests are unscientific" is the sort of ignorance that should be relagated to the discussion of a school board in Alabama, not Avsforum. Blind testing explicitly serves the purpose of minimizing the variables in your test. To call this unscientific tells me that you have NEVER IN YOUR LIFE studied any experimental science whatsoever.
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post #99 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Cowclops
I just told you to ONLY trust your ears. Not your eyes, not the subsequent weight reduction of your wallet, not the esthetics of the unit, not the brand name, not ANYTHING but your ears.
When we trust only our ears and find audible differences, you attribute it to "placebo effect" or "psycho acoustics". :D

Most serious audio enthusiasts will spend time listening to particular components before deciding on purchasing a component. By suggesting they are gullible fools falling for visual appeal and marketing gimmicks is rather insulting to thier intelligence, especially when you support your opinions from chapters of a Psychology 101 textbook.

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Originally Posted by Cowclops
"Double blind tests are unscientific" is the sort of ignorance that should be relagated to the discussion of a school board in Alabama, not Avsforum. Blind testing explicitly serves the purpose of minimizing the variables in your test. To call this unscientific tells me that you have NEVER IN YOUR LIFE studied any experimental science whatsoever.
DBTs may have some semblence of a scientific methodology for comparing components, but they are by no means scientifically sound nor the best way of doing a comparative study. Basic common sense will tell you that the use of individuals with unhoned listening skills will not get you anywhere when you look for, for example, such sonic attributes as glare, bloom and accuracy of timbre.

FWIW, I am an engineer with masters degree and experimental science is part of my way of life :) "Science" is not science if it overrides common sense!

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post #100 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by machani
Yeah right! When we trust our ears and find audible differences, you attribute it to "placebo" or "psycho acoustics". :D



DBTs may have some semblence of a scientific methodology for comparing components, but they are by no means scientifically sound nor the best way of doing a comparative study. Basic common sense will tell you that the use of individuals with unhoned listening skills will not get you anywhere when you look for, for example, such sonic attributes as glare, bloom and accuracy of timbre.
Perhaps, but for this "discussion" it's not about the subjective qualities of what sounds good, only that X=A or X=B can be identified on a consistent basis.

If it takes specialized training and a "golden ear" to identify these alleged differences, one would think individuals so endowed would be clamouring to prove their prowess. Unfortunately, it seems quite the opposite is usually the case.

Just because there is a knob doesn't mean you should turn it.
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post #101 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:01 PM
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Originally Posted by lcaillo
If there are differences, they are to be found in the case of a person who claims to hear and value them, not in the case of someone who does not care nor hear the difference. .

Oh, ok, now I understand. We only need to test the 'golden ears' as they are interested in the truth. Good news and bad news.

Some refuse to be tested as then they would be embarrassed to tell others they could not hear differences. I have such friends.

But, the ones who did test, well the track record is not very good indeed. Yes, they have been tested many times. :D
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post #102 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Cowclops
(well, besides at playing Tetris, I'd whip all your arses in that.)

I am curious, what game is this? :D
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post #103 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by whoaru99
IMO, ABX/DBT really has nothing to do with preference for A or B; only that the unknown X (which is either A or B at random) can be consistently identified as X=A or X=B.

I agree, but in order to select one sound over another as a preference, consistently, under DBT/ABX, one has to hear differences in my estimation. So his premise is rather thin and unlikely at best to happen.
He could certainly prefer one over the other in a sighted comparison as there are any number of areas he could prefer. What is your take on this?
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post #104 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lcaillo
If one person can hear the difference in a manner that is statistically well beyond chance, does this not suggest that there might be something worth looking into? If there is a product that 1% of the population might value, don't you think that someone might want to sell that product? Don't you think that it merits trying to understand the source of that difference?

I did not say that the other 99 people are wrong or inferior, nor did I say that they even care or should buy the product that makes the difference. I simply said that the outlier is more interesting. It indicates something that the rest of us might be missing, in design or in experience.

If this one person in a 100 could do this consistently, over and over, he would be an interesting subject to test further.
In the Greenhill cable DBT, when there were positive outcomes under some conditions, there were more than one person on the panel of 16-18 persons. So, I would place this 1/100 in highly unlikely; good academic discussion though.

To me, it would mean that very few could hear differences and it was not much interest to the audio population.
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post #105 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cowclops
To take the same question and change it from sound to sight... imagine somebody has two light sources whereby one produces "red" and another produces a shade of red thats only BARELY measurably different in wavelength. Say the first shade of red is 660nm and the second shade of red is 661 nm.

.

An easier test would be to identify and differentiate a stack of $1 bills in two bundles, one with 50, the other with 51. :D
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post #106 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 05:29 PM
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Of course I only use my ears when hearing. :P

I think my point has been taken on a long walk in the desert. :)

Basically, I bring home 2 CD players, with the intention of buying one of them. No other factors would sway me towards one or the other, other than the sound. I hook them up in my system and listen to them extensively, and I decide that CD player A sounds better to my ears, and buy it, and have no regrets and enjoy it from that day forward.

Down the road, I read an article citing a huge ABXDBT XYZ123 test in which 100% of the test subjects consistently identified CD player B as the "better" sounding player. What do I do? Would you like me to return CD player A and get CD player B because a bunch of people I dont know chose it over A in some test not in my house in my system with my ears? Do you tell me I was suckered into my purchase by some snake oily salesman and marketing scam?

I probably skip ahead to the next article and put on my favorite CD and enjoy my musical bliss. :)
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post #107 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 07:26 PM
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I really don't want to sound like a broken record, but ABX testing is not about which one sounds better.....

Just because there is a knob doesn't mean you should turn it.
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post #108 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 08:30 PM
 
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The reason blind tests are not just scientific but a requirement is because sighted tests allow the participants to use senses other than their hearing. The brain is too complicated to consciously shut out preexisting knowledge of the system under test, so anything you know about the equipment you're listening to ALWAYS influences the outcomes. The solution is to eliminate what you already know by making it logically impossible for you to use anything but your sense of hearing to make your conclusion. Thus, a blind test.
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post #109 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 09:49 PM
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Well the only type of test that would help me decide between 2 CD players would be one of preference. Sure I would be willing to take a blind test between player A and player B. Since I have no preconceived idea of which player I want to buy, I would gladly choose based on the results of the following test (rough draft but you get the gist):

Player A, track one. (the player identification is random and unknown to me)
Player B, track one.

I choose which one sounds better to me, or "no preference"

Player A, track two.
Player B, track two.

I choose which one sounds better to me or choose "no preference"

etc...etc..etc....maybe run 10 tracks through 3 times, always mixing up the order played. Maybe even playing the same player twice on one track a few times for kicks. The results would either show a clear preference of one player over the other, or no preference at all. If the percentage I preferred one player over the other was 60% or more, I would think a clear "winner" had been chosen.

I could care less if a panel of 50 people could consistently not pick the correct player in an ABX. (showing that those 50 people cannot hear an audible difference between A and B). The results of such a test would not outweigh the results of my above mentioned test, regardless of what they were.
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post #110 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by mikeyc
CPU that's a great question! if objectivists don't do a DBT before buying doesn't that invalidate their own argument?

I would argue that randomized DBTs are the best way to determine if a potential drug does what it claims to do. Yet I never do my own randomized DBTs of prescription drugs. Does that make my argument invalid?

Of *course* not. DBTs are the scientific gold standard for demonstrating the reality of certain effects. That remains true whether I *personally* use them or not, as a consumer.

Furthermore, the underlying 'argument' that objectivists make is that *claims* about audible difference shoudl be matched to the evidence. So if you 'hear' some difference between gear in a sighted comparison, and there's no independent evidence to argue for that difference (like, say, from measurements or the laws of physics), then you shouldn't claim the difference was due to an intrinsic difference in the gear. And an objectivist wouldn't.
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post #111 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 09:56 PM
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Originally Posted by schticker
Conditions? I plugged in one player and heard one things, plugged in another and heard something better.

All you need to know, really, right? Not to a pure objectivist. :rolleyes:

Nor to anyone who has an inkling of the scientific method, or a passing familiarity with human psychology.

It's simply not the case that whatever you believe, must be real. On the contrary, it's amusingly easy to 'fool' the human mind into believing all sorts of things that aren't real. That's *why* scientists employ controls.
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post #112 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by schticker
No, it's what I need to know outside of a lab, where I do not live. ;) I will completely agree that in terms of a science experiement, it does not pass muster. That is really quite irrelevant, though.

My only concerns are how that unit meshes sonically with what I own already, what I like (sonically and aesthetically), and is equal in "appropriateness" with what I already have.

However, because your 'method' takes no account of human fallibility, your beliefs about the actual *sonic* characteristics of the gear -- the things it actually does to sound waves that make it different from another piece of gear -- may be wrong. It's even possible that the 'difference' you hear is *entirely imaginary*. Do you agree? If you do then you are an *objectivist*. If you don't -- if you refuse to believe some rather elementary facts of human psychology -- then you're a...well, I suppose *subjectivist* will do. :rolleyes:
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post #113 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audiophiliac
Hey if someone cannot hear a difference between a $1000 system and a $100000 system (exaggerated hypothetical), I envy them because they just saved themselves $99,000! :)

But no one has the place to criticize or question the choice of the person who bought the $200,000 system because it sounded a tad better than the $100,000 system.
Poppycock. In a public forum, if someone makes a claim that's grounded in questionable logic, then it's OK to question it!

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My biggest point is that no one can tell you what you can and cant hear. Period.
Well, you're wrong. Period. Audiologists tell people what frequencies they can and can't hear *every day*.

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And even moreso, no one can tell you what you think sounds good or bad or better or worse. Period.
Yes, that's purely a preference. But one can ask whether you are aware of all the things that influenced your preference. People can delude themselves as to why they preferred one thing over another. Advertisers just love that about people.


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Thanks for the warm welcome. :) So the amp is an amp and cable is cable people are the ones I see at Walmart buying electronics? I always wondered what on earth those people were thinking. bwahaha
They likely *aren't* thinking 'if I level-matched this mass market receiver to one costing twenty times as much, and didn't drive either one to clipping, there's a good chance I couldn't tell them apart in a blind comparison'. Lucky for them, that happens to be true.

'Audiophiles' who shop at the high-end salon aren't likley thinking that either....but funnily enough it's *still* true :p
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post #114 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 10:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Audiophiliac
Of course I only use my ears when hearing. :P

I think my point has been taken on a long walk in the desert. :)

Basically, I bring home 2 CD players, with the intention of buying one of them. No other factors would sway me towards one or the other, other than the sound. I hook them up in my system and listen to them extensively, and I decide that CD player A sounds better to my ears, and buy it, and have no regrets and enjoy it from that day forward.

The idea that we can be consciously aware of all the 'extraneous' things that might influence our decisions, and thereby 'block them out', is quaint. But unsupported by science, alas.


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Down the road, I read an article citing a huge ABXDBT XYZ123 test in which 100% of the test subjects consistently identified CD player B as the "better" sounding player.
Unlikely, since ABX tests aren't particularly well suited to measuring *preference*. A different blind test might be used.

An ABX would be well-suited to demonstrating that the two sound *different*, though.


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What do I do? Would you like me to return CD player A and get CD player B because a bunch of people I dont know chose it over A in some test not in my house in my system with my ears?
That could be a reasonable course of action, if the test was done well. At the very least, it should lead you to wonder what YOUR performance on such a test, using your gear, might be.

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Do you tell me I was suckered into my purchase by some snake oily salesman and marketing scam?
That might be why you made your purchase. Or you might have 'suckered' yourself to a large degree.


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I probably skip ahead to the next article and put on my favorite CD and enjoy my musical bliss. :)
Yes, along with convincing themselves that pleasurable beliefs are true, another tendency people have is to shun unpleasant truths. :p
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post #115 of 438 Old 05-10-2006, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by machani
When we trust only our ears and find audible differences, you attribute it to "placebo effect" or "psycho acoustics". :D

Most serious audio enthusiasts will spend time listening to particular components before deciding on purchasing a component. By suggesting they are gullible fools falling for visual appeal and marketing gimmicks is rather insulting to thier intelligence, especially when you support your opinions from chapters of a Psychology 101 textbook.

Well, that's just tough tacos, because it's entirely reasonable to support claims about human psychology with data from research into human psychology.

'Psychoacoustics' is the study of the perception of sound. And the placebo effect is real, and active in ALL modes of perception, not just hearing. People aren't 'fools' for being subject to it, any more than they are 'fools' for being subject to optical illusions. It's part of our wiring. By they ARE fools if they simply ignore psychoacoustic and psychological phenomena, and claim that whatever they hear must be real.




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DBTs may have some semblence of a scientific methodology for comparing components, but they are by no means scientifically sound nor the best way of doing a comparative study.
Actually, DBTs are the gold standard for doing auditory comparison in science. Unfortunately for audio hobbyists, few scientists are interested in (or have the fundong for) comparing consumer audio products.


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Basic common sense will tell you that the use of individuals with unhoned listening skills will not get you anywhere when you look for, for example, such sonic attributes as glare, bloom and accuracy of timbre.
Assuming 'glare'; and 'bloom' have any real, and consistent definition -- common scientific practice would insist that even those with 'honed' listening skills do the comparison double-blind, if a meaningful result about the comparative *sound* is to be obtained.


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FWIW, I am an engineer with masters degree and experimental science is part of my way of life :) "Science" is not science if it overrides common sense!

Actually, science is rife with models that defy 'common sense'. From a scientific POV, 'common sense' is rather overrated.
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post #116 of 438 Old 05-11-2006, 03:54 AM
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Originally Posted by CharlesJ
Oh, ok, now I understand. We only need to test the 'golden ears' as they are interested in the truth. Good news and bad news.

Some refuse to be tested as then they would be embarrassed to tell others they could not hear differences. I have such friends.

But, the ones who did test, well the track record is not very good indeed. Yes, they have been tested many times. :D
Where are these tests? The informal blind testing that we did on speaker wires in the 1980s indicated that we could repeatedly identify several different cables. I would love to see some really well done tests...

Yes, calibration is important...every user should be calibrated.

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post #117 of 438 Old 05-11-2006, 04:02 AM
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Originally Posted by CharlesJ
If this one person in a 100 could do this consistently, over and over, he would be an interesting subject to test further.
In the Greenhill cable DBT, when there were positive outcomes under some conditions, there were more than one person on the panel of 16-18 persons. So, I would place this 1/100 in highly unlikely; good academic discussion though.

To me, it would mean that very few could hear differences and it was not much interest to the audio population.
The interest would be that there might be something that engineers can learn about differences that are audible, even if only a few people are interested or able to hear them. 1% of the audio market that is willing to pay ridiculous amounts for small differences could still be a lucrative market. There is at least that much market for audio snake oil already.

I was not talking about within chance levels of probable outcomes. I was talking about repeatable within subject results. Anyone who does not find that kind of thing interesting for further research, and moreso than an academic discussion is arguing a point and not looking for real understanding.

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post #118 of 438 Old 05-11-2006, 04:06 AM
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How do you propose I change my hearing so I actually hear what is "real" and not what I perceive to be "real".

Basically, make it so I hear what I dont hear. ;)

I think this whole argument has failed to include the scenario that a comparison, even a DBT, between 2 CD players that have obvious differences in measurements and can be objectively proven to have possible audible differences may still not have consistent results as far as what test subjects prefer as the "better" sounding player.

And isnt this what we all strive for? I imagine people who lurk around and participate on audio forums, are somewhat interested in listening to music on an enjoyable system. And when we find something that makes that system more enjoyable (perceived, or "real"), I would think we would at least consider it. Of course the objectivists will spend effort and time trying to talk themselves into it, and subjectivists may just do it because it sounds good. No foul to either method. We all want "better" sound, yes?

Maybe someone in the middle, will take his initial preference and research it. Read other users' reviews, articles, tests, to see if what they hear is common, and if finding some oddly opposite comments or results, may go back and listen again.....which in this case, their research will no doubt make an impact on their preference, no? So basically it works the other way too. If you have information that says that you wont hear a difference between 2 CD players, that may effect the results of your listening, since it is a pre-conceived idea before actually listening. Just the same as a non-blind test where you can trick yourself into thinking a Krell CD player sounds better than a Sansui CD player (which just might be the case ;) )
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post #119 of 438 Old 05-11-2006, 05:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Audiophiliac
How do you propose I change my hearing so I actually hear what is "real" and not what I perceive to be "real".
I don't think anyone (reasonable) is proposing that you do anything of the sort.

If you are unhappy with what you hear, then you need to figure that out for yourself. Whether what you hear is real or not, or acceptable to you or not is not for someone else to decide. Those of us who are interested in quantifying differences between products and correlating those differences to audible or visible differences do not necessarily do so to prove you right or wrong, nor to teach you how to modify your perception. I for one am just curious and thirst for understanding.

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post #120 of 438 Old 05-11-2006, 05:19 AM
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Originally Posted by Audiophiliac
I think this whole argument has failed to include the scenario that a comparison, even a DBT, between 2 CD players that have obvious differences in measurements and can be objectively proven to have possible audible differences may still not have consistent results as far as what test subjects prefer as the "better" sounding player.
This is a completely different matter than whether audible differences exist. While a skeptic about most of the claims, I do believe, based on some blind testing that I have done, that differences in speaker wire are audible. In those same tests, some of the most expensive wire, and some of the most popular wire was determined to be worse sounding than far cheaper products. It may be possble to quantify differences, even define parameters to measure them. Personal preference is a very different manner.

No one would debate that there are visible differences in color temperature between monitors. Yet, we can calibrate two HD monitors to D65 and some other color temperature and find that many people will prefer either one and judge it as "better." This occurs, even though there is a somewhat agreed upon standard for HD. Same with speakers. Who is to say that my Thiels are better or worse than something from Klipsch. My decision, as is that of the Klipschowner. Some parameters may be agreed upon as better or worse by most, but most products' resulting performance is the combination of many parameters. The priorities vary among users, so it may not be reasonable to pick a conclusive "better" or "best."

I'd be happy with more objectively reported detail and measurements so that I can make up my own mind.

Listen, decide what satisfies you, and enjoy it. Hopefully you are not one of the insatiable audiophiles who question every decision that he makes. Hopefully you do get some satisfaction from the products that you buy and use. If you are, make sure that you vacuum your carpet in the right direction...

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