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post #991 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 12:01 PM
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thezacs,

Thanks for keeping open mind and being reasonable.

I agree on PM only on personal details relating to dates/time/travel arrangements.

Otherwise I'd prefer to keep this open since others and myself first came to this thread to see what all the hoopla was about. You as well.

I'm sure you too would want to know the test results. Who wouldn't?

The reason I asked for Gizmolgist is because I saw his id from Southern California and his technical articulate respones and expertise and figured he was enough close by and had valid responses to the claims.

I would pay for him or anyone reasonably close who is respected within this community to validate once and for all utilizing scientific and calibrated test equip the results to be posted on this thread.

As far as opening the lid, I thought the warranty expired after 7 days.
I may be incorrect, but even though, I would be surprised that not even you would want to take a peek.

Nevertheless, lets take some real measurements.

Anyone with technical/respectable background on this thread and at least close by willing to spend day or two testing this theory of impact of modification?

Let me know right here. We can vote on person who goes, on me. I mean it.

Mike

P.S. we'll of course setup detailed test parameters with scientific reasoning the nature of this test all here with input from all interested.
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post #992 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 12:30 PM
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What do you know? There has not been a single part number posted from TUC/DS for me to check the stats on. Wonder why.
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post #993 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 12:35 PM
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I would have to decline the testing challenge as I would not want to get into a performance alteration challenge with anyone who bought into the TUC hype.

No doubt they would claim I adjusted the soundstage by 3 degrees left of center and the lows are not as punchy after traveling to SoCal and back.

The fact that TUC refuses technical details of any kind speaks volumes.

Ever wonder how DS discovered the shortcomings in every manufacturer's equipment design and yet still works out of his house and is not selling uber expensive gear himself INCLUDING the mega buck power cables?

Maybe he got a good deal of Reynolds wrap on sale at Target and tried to find a use for all that foil. Not everyone wears tin foil hats.
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post #994 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 01:19 PM
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Gizmologist,

Thanks for your response and I hope you do not mind me suggesting you as a reference without prior consult. It is only out of respect of reading your articulate and technical responses to this quackery.

My offer still stands looking for measurable, reliable, verifiable, testing methods, and the results to be posted here to prove/disaprove degree of effectiveness of modification.

Thezacs said he is willing to open his home to allow methods described above.

This is chance to find true tech specs of mod unit to stock unit which I'll also provide.

Mike
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post #995 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 01:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keilwerth View Post


As far as opening the lid, I thought the warranty expired after 7 days.
I may be incorrect, but even though, I would be surprised that not even you would want to take a peek.

Hi keilwerth,

The 7 days is the return policy, but the warranty is for 1 year. For me personally, I don't care to take a peek, as I don't open up any of my components. For me, subjective performance is what I care about. I really don't care about measurements, DBT, etc. My offer is only to help provide additional data for those in this thread who do care about measurements, DBT, etc.

I think different folks have different preferences. For me, I don't care if a specific part or a specific component measures better, I only care about subjective performance. As opposed to Gizmologist, I do hear differences in power cords. I also believe that many components and cables need to be broken in, in order to sound their best. In light of this, I'm guessing that anything I have to say will be considered invalid to those who prefer measurements and/or do not believe in differences between power cords and/or break in. I definitely understand and respect that.

In the same manner, for me, measurements aren't important, as I'd prefer to listen for myself. And, I'm sure there are some folks that may adhere to some mixture of subjective listening, DBT, and measurements.

So, I'm willing to help, but I would like for my Pioneer to stay in Phoenix, so that I can participate in any testing/comparison.

Thanks, Dave

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post #996 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 02:02 PM
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IMHO, any event absolutely should include an acceptable form of unsighted A/B test. Furthermore and also IMHO, such a test must include Dave and/or other participants who believe that sonic differences exist.
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post #997 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 02:19 PM
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Perhaps if we built an automatic A/B switching system that used random number generator to control the AB switch. That way there is no human action taken aside from pushing a select button. The RNG would then flip back and forth for a internally variable period of time before stopping and connecting the cables. Just like rolling the dice. That way no one would have any idea if the cabling was switched or is the same one.

As for the "breaking in" of cables, can you explain WHY you believe such a thing exists and what actually happens during the "break in" period?

BTW I do agree that speakers will sound different after a few hours of operation as they are electromechanical devices that flex and as such they will be somewhat stiffer right after manufacture. Electonics and cables? No.
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post #998 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 02:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmologist View Post

Perhaps if we built an automatic A/B switching system that used random number generator to control the AB switch. That way there is no human action taken aside from pushing a select button. The RNG would then flip back and forth for a internally variable period of time before stopping and connecting the cables. Just like rolling the dice. That way no one would have any idea if the cabling was switched or is the same one.

The proctor better know. Please design and build one of these for my next Yahtzee game. Do make sure proper vibration damping is incorporated. Cost/schedule no object.
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post #999 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 02:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmologist View Post

As for the "breaking in" of cables, can you explain WHY you believe such a thing exists and what actually happens during the "break in" period?


Hi Gizmologist,

During break in, there are periods where the sound is bright, other periods where it opens up, and periods where it sounds blah (not sure how to describe it). Some days it sounds better and some days worse, and it can go back and forth until it settles in. This is all subjective.

Perhaps the most convincing thing is to take a broken in cable or component and compare with a new one. I've done this many times, as my dealer would allow me to borrow a cable and/or component. Many times, he'd let me have it in my system, until the new one arrived. So, I'd have both the new one and the used one for a short period of time. Again, subjective comparisons showed the differences. I bought several of the same power cords, for example, from my dealer. With each new one, I'd notice that it did not perform as well as the ones that had been in my system for a period of time. Then, after a period of time (several weeks), it would improve to the performance of the old one.

Dave

FOR SALE: Chang Lightspeed Cinema 6.0 w/Hyperdrive power conditioner - was $2,000, now $790. Please PM me, if interested.
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post #1000 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 03:15 PM
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I was hoping you would tell me the electrons transit speed is somehow altered or they line up better.

Seriously you must consider that you have planted the seed of expectation in your own mind. The physics of electron propagation known and finite. They do not alter from wire to wire.

How did you learn of the concept of break-in?

Please remember that your own biological limitations are the only variable. Your hearing /frequency/ amplitude sensitivity will change hourly and daily due to humidity, temperature, your own BMI, cranial bone density. The amount of oxygen in your bloodstream also affects all aspects of the chemistry of your body. You biological markers will even vary if you stand up from a sitting opposition walk around a bit and sit again. These can be easily mapped. This is why you are told not to talk and to sit still during a blood pressure reading.

At least you accept that your perceptions are purely subjective.
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post #1001 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by thezaks View Post

Hi Gizmologist,

During break in, there are periods where the sound is bright, other periods where it opens up, and periods where it sounds blah (not sure how to describe it). Some days it sounds better and some days worse, and it can go back and forth until it settles in. This is all subjective.

Perhaps the most convincing thing is to take a broken in cable or component and compare with a new one. I've done this many times, as my dealer would allow me to borrow a cable and/or component. Many times, he'd let me have it in my system, until the new one arrived. So, I'd have both the new one and the used one for a short period of time. Again, subjective comparisons showed the differences. I bought several of the same power cords, for example, from my dealer. With each new one, I'd notice that it did not perform as well as the ones that had been in my system for a period of time. Then, after a period of time (several weeks), it would improve to the performance of the old one.

Dave

Do you think what you experienced could simply be due to the fact that you started out already convinced that "break in" is an actual phenomenon for cables? (Technically, "burn in" is the correct term for non-mechanical components.)

What you've described sounds like nothing more than confirmational bias at work, especially your first paragraph which provides no consistent observations whatsoever. You expected it to not sound "right", so it didn't; it sounded bright or blah, or whatever until the requisite break in period had passed. Then it sounded better ("it settles in") because your expected time table for how long "break in" should take had expired.

Also, nothing in your explanation addressed Gizmo's question: what do you think actually happens during the "break in" period? I'm not asking for a physics dissertation, but I've never seen a single plausible explanation for what physical changes a cable goes through during an alleged break in period, much less how that translates into audible differences. I've read numerous accounts, often on manufacturer's web sites, and none of them sound at all convincing (and many sound like outright BS.) If nobody can explain it in lay terms, there's probably a reason why.

It's also curious to me how everything audio-related has about the same "break in" time (100 hours, plus or minus), regardless of whether it's an audio cable, a power cord, an amplifier (tube or solid state), or a pair of speakers or headphones (which actually do break in). That's a big red flag that "break in" is something people apply to anything and everything, even in cases where it is totally irrelevant. Of course, audio manufacturers have huge incentives to perpetuate myths about break in, because it makes their products more alluring and mysterious (and hence, they can charge more money for them.) Audiophiles also have incentives to believe the myths, because it extends the buying experience out over several weeks. It's kinda fun, I suppose, to have to wait for your new component (or cable) to blossom like a sunflower in July.
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post #1002 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmologist View Post

I was hoping you would tell me the electrons transit speed is somehow altered or they line up better.

Seriously you must consider that you have planted the seed of expectation in your own mind. The physics of electron propagation known and finite. They do not alter from wire to wire.

How did you learn of the concept of break-in?

Please remember that your own biological limitations are the only variable. Your hearing /frequency/ amplitude sensitivity will change hourly and daily due to humidity, temperature, your own BMI, cranial bone density. The amount of oxygen in your bloodstream also affects all aspects of the chemistry of your body. You biological markers will even vary if you stand up from a sitting opposition walk around a bit and sit again. These can be easily mapped. This is why you are told not to talk and to sit still during a blood pressure reading.

At least you accept that your perceptions are purely subjective.

Hi Gizmologist,

I do get a kick out of the way you write your posts I understand what you are saying, and yes, my perceptions are purely subjective. However, when doing an A/B of a new vs. used cable or component, there is a difference that I can hear, and it is repeatable.

I learned about break in by personal experience. I received a power cord, and it did not sound as good as the one loaned to me by my dealer. I thought something was wrong with the power cord. I went back/forth between the two many times, and I was convinced that the new power cord had an issue. As it turned out, after a period of time (several weeks), the power cords sounded the same.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pdferguson View Post

Do you think what you experienced could simply be due to the fact that you started out already convinced that "break in" is an actual phenomenon for cables? (Technically, "burn in" is the correct term for non-mechanical components.)

What you've described sounds like nothing more than confirmational bias at work, especially your first paragraph which provides no consistent observations whatsoever. You expected it to not sound "right", so it didn't; it sounded bright or blah, or whatever until the requisite break in period had passed. Then it sounded better ("it settles in") because your expected time table for how long "break in" should take had expired.

Also, nothing in your explanation addressed Gizmo's question: what do you think actually happens during the "break in" period? I'm not asking for a physics dissertation, but I've never seen a single plausible explanation for what physical changes a cable goes through during an alleged break in period, much less how that translates into audible differences. I've read numerous accounts, often on manufacturer's web sites, and none of them sound at all convincing (and many sound like outright BS.) If nobody can explain it in lay terms, there's probably a reason why.

It's also curious to me how everything audio-related has about the same "break in" time (100 hours, plus or minus), regardless of whether it's an audio cable, a power cord, an amplifier (tube or solid state), or a pair of speakers or headphones (which actually do break in). That's a big red flag that "break in" is something people apply to anything and everything, even in cases where it is totally irrelevant. Of course, audio manufacturers have huge incentives to perpetuate myths about break in, because it makes their products more alluring and mysterious (and hence, they can charge more money for them.) Audiophiles also have incentives to believe the myths, because it extends the buying experience out over several weeks. It's kinda fun, I suppose, to have to wait for your new component (or cable) to blossom like a sunflower in July.

Hi pdferguson,

I never have a preconceived notion about break in. I answered Gizmo's question, but, I spoke from the other side of the coin. There are two sides here - those who experience break in/burn in, and those who do not believe in it. I answered it from my perspective, by describing what happened during the break in, with regards to subjective listening. Regarding the side that you and Gizmo sit on, I have no explanation, no claim, and no answer. And, I don't care to know.

I disagree with your point about the same break in time. I've seen many different numbers, for many different items. For example, on the Classe SSP800 forum, posters have shared that the Classe manual mentions 300 hours for break in. There's been 1-2 posters who claimed that they do not believe in break in, yet, they were not satisfied the sound of the SSP800 when they got it. After a period of time, they liked the change in the sound. This was difficult for them to explain, especially considering their beliefs.

I think it's true that some folks become accustomed to the sound after a period of time. No argument there - however, I don't think it's always the case. The best test for this is to take a component or cable, the SSP800 for example, which claims a break in period is necessary to sound its best, and A/B it with a unit that has 300 hours or more on it. Again, this would be subjective. You could even do DBT and then see if it is repeatable. Have you done anything like this? If so, I'd be interested to hear the specifics.

Dave

FOR SALE: Chang Lightspeed Cinema 6.0 w/Hyperdrive power conditioner - was $2,000, now $790. Please PM me, if interested.
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post #1003 of 2187 Old 01-26-2010, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gizmologist View Post

Perhaps if we built an automatic A/B switching system that used random number generator to control the AB switch.

That's a form of ABX controller. You can select A or B, or X which can be either and then you have to ID it as A or B.

A PIC ucontroller and some relay and lamp drivers, selector switches and logging of the responses.
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post #1004 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 05:13 AM
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Whenever I hear any user-review of TUC gear, the subject of burn-in is raised more often than not. Its as if the kit isn't really worth listening to for the first few hundred hours. When I got my Onkyo SE, I dutifully burnt it in for a couple of weeks, and only then did I listen to it. And sure enough it sounded great, but thats not the point.

By the time I got my Pioneer BDP-09 SE, I thought *** this, and started listening to it straight away. And guess what? It sounded great, too, even alongside my 3800 SE.

Maybe they do burn-in and sound better with time, I don't know. I'm sure that I'd be able to tell, and I'm certainly not going to have two side-by-side to compare as one breaks in and the other is used as a control. I don't think anyone except DS would ever do that; then again probably not.

Without going to such extremes I certainly can't put my name to any claim that my gear improves over the first few hundred hours. My memory's not that good, but if other people think therer are changes, then maybe there are; but I couldn't tell them they were wrong. Electronics do burn-in. I hear manufacturers engineers talk about it all the time. There are measureable changes to capacitor characteristics as the dielectric matures with operating voltage. I guess that would happen to interconnect cables as well, but I've never heard it myself. Burn-in of power cables? Weiling to be proved wrong, but I doubt it somehow.

I wish I could come over to see some of these tests!

Nick
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post #1005 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 02:50 PM
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Ever wonder why people claim to see flying saucers and swear up and down that you gotta believe them because they can use crayons effectively to relate their sighting and experience on construction paper?

You gotta believe me! Just look at what I've drawn! It's true dammit!

I don't need to be a lawyer much less a 10th grade physics teacher, and I might add, a Psychologist, to discredit these claims.

I just need to be an objective unbiased listener willing to keep an open mind and perhaps some humility in realizing that perhaps I bought (literally) into these claims of water turned into wine (figuretively speaking) by mistake.

Some latest quotes from thezacs expressing open mind:

"I don't care to take a peek"

"Subjective performance is what I care about"

"I really don't care about measurements, DBT, etc."

"I don't care if a specific part or a specific componet measures better."

"I only care about subjective performance."

"measurements aren't important, as I prefer to listen for myself."

I'm getting sense that even though we put his modded gear through proper measurable objective/subjective DBT, he/them (the DS modders) may still remain in denial.

I feel that if we provided expensive pwr cables and interconnects and such, even the best crayons money can buy, no one is going to believe it. Except for those who have seen the flying saucers.

Still, my offer holds, and I agree with RUR some abt switch aparatus of course with equal ratio believers/realists present to nip this in the bud.

I've been sarcastic in a sense but you get my point. I'm serious because I want to see/hear proof of this extreme transformation in sound quality.
I'd also like to see DS from TUC present during the testing and get his input.

Mike
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post #1006 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 03:20 PM
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I'd also like to see DS from TUC present during the testing and get his input.

I'd like to see Steve Jobs at my front door today delivering my new iPad.
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post #1007 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 04:04 PM
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Hey K Shep,

Noticed you're from SF. I lived in Sonoma county (Santa Rosa) for 30yrs before moving here in '06. I worked for PG&E for 24yrs.

Anyway, like thezacs said, this would be fun so why not, what's holding all this excitement back?

Show the AVS world you mods the transformation of your beliefs (equip) with verifiable unbiased recognized testing practices.

I wonder if that priest would like to participate and provide his heavenly input. He is welcome too.

I'm still serious.

Mike
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post #1008 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 04:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keilwerth View Post

Ever wonder why people claim to see flying saucers and swear up and down that you gotta believe them because they can use crayons effectively to relate their sighting and experience on construction paper?

You gotta believe me! Just look at what I've drawn! It's true dammit!

I don't need to be a lawyer much less a 10th grade physics teacher, and I might add, a Psychologist, to discredit these claims.

I just need to be an objective unbiased listener willing to keep an open mind and perhaps some humility in realizing that perhaps I bought (literally) into these claims of water turned into wine (figuretively speaking) by mistake.

Some latest quotes from thezacs expressing open mind:

"I don't care to take a peek"

"Subjective performance is what I care about"

"I really don't care about measurements, DBT, etc."

"I don't care if a specific part or a specific componet measures better."

"I only care about subjective performance."

"measurements aren't important, as I prefer to listen for myself."

I'm getting sense that even though we put his modded gear through proper measurable objective/subjective DBT, he/them (the DS modders) may still remain in denial.

I feel that if we provided expensive pwr cables and interconnects and such, even the best crayons money can buy, no one is going to believe it. Except for those who have seen the flying saucers.

Still, my offer holds, and I agree with RUR some abt switch aparatus of course with equal ratio believers/realists present to nip this in the bud.

I've been sarcastic in a sense but you get my point. I'm serious because I want to see/hear proof of this extreme transformation in sound quality.
I'd also like to see DS from TUC present during the testing and get his input.

Mike

Hi Mike,

You are correct - my preference is for subjective listening; hence, measurements don't mean anything to me. In the same way, my subjective listening comments are meaningless to those who prefer measurements and/or DBT. Again, two sides of the coin. If you want to speak about open mind and/or inflexibility, then we need to address it on both sides. Instead, I prefer to think that we have two different mindsets, which I understand. I'll probably never convince folks about break in, subjective listening, etc, and likewise, I won't be convinced about measurements.

I'm happy to answer questions about subjective listening and/or break in, but it's not my goal to convince those that prefer measurements and DBT. As I've consistently mentioned, it's not for my benefit that I am offering the upgraded player for DBT and/or measurements, it's for the benefit of those on this thread that prefer those things.

Dave

FOR SALE: Chang Lightspeed Cinema 6.0 w/Hyperdrive power conditioner - was $2,000, now $790. Please PM me, if interested.
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post #1009 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 07:00 PM
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Just so we are all clear, those of us from the objective testing and measurement camp have no problem accepting that a system MAY sound different after some form of modification but we are of the opinion that what is basically noticeable would more than likely be a FR change as a result of altering EQ adjustments or components. These would be things like changing the tolerance of caps and resistors, adjusting bias voltages on older units, etc.

These would, in effect, be bandpass filters to highlight the uber highs or the deep bass. A passive tone control circuit available anywhere on the web can do that. That is not a new or proprietary solution at all.

What was ostensibly shown and then otherwise visually obliterated were the supposed "upgrades" made by TUC. Changing components is something that many have done over the years and the "science" is not much of a science at all.

We all agree that the tin foil and blue AVM paint is the height of silliness and a complete lack of EE knowledge or justification.

There are numerous electrical and mechanical reason why that is pure nonsense.

We would hope that if it were proved to you that electrically the unit sounds the same as a stock unit w/o "mods" that you may accept that your subjective hopes and expectations have altered your otherwise accurate perceptions.

Could you accept that possibility? No one is denigrating you as a consumer, we are just trying to help you realize that subjectivity is more prevalent than you may think.

It's the same as having someone tell you "Whatever you do , DON'T think about pink elephants" So what happens? that is all you DO think about.
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post #1010 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 09:33 PM
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Show the AVS world you mods the transformation of your beliefs (equip) with verifiable unbiased recognized testing practices.

Mike,

Please explain this sentence, I have no idea what this means? Anyone...Buehler.
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post #1011 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

Mike,

Please explain this sentence, I have no idea what this means? Anyone...Buehler.

Basically telling those who make wild claims to substantiate them with empirical evidence.
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post #1012 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by keilwerth View Post

Show the AVS world you mods=(people who've had their gear modified) the transformation of your beliefs (equip)=(claims) with verifiable unbiased recognized testing practices.

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Originally Posted by Fanaticalism View Post

Basically telling those who make wild claims to substantiate them with empirical evidence.

Thanks Fanatic...it must be getting late.
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post #1013 of 2187 Old 01-27-2010, 11:22 PM
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Originally Posted by thezaks View Post

There's been 1-2 posters who claimed that they do not believe in break in, yet, they were not satisfied the sound of the SSP800 when they got it. After a period of time, they liked the change in the sound. This was difficult for them to explain, especially considering their beliefs.

Easy. They got used to it.
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post #1014 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by thezaks View Post

I understand what you are saying, and yes, my perceptions are purely subjective. However, when doing an A/B of a new vs. used cable or component, there is a difference that I can hear, and it is repeatable.

If it's repeatable, then it's not subjective, it's objective. Which means it is measurable and (more importantly) falsifiable through simple experimentation and testing.


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I learned about break in by personal experience. I received a power cord, and it did not sound as good as the one loaned to me by my dealer. I thought something was wrong with the power cord. I went back/forth between the two many times, and I was convinced that the new power cord had an issue. As it turned out, after a period of time (several weeks), the power cords sounded the same.

I'm willing to bet at some point your dealer suggested "break in" as the cause of your initial unhappiness.


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I never have a preconceived notion about break in.

Of course you do. You're expressing it very strongly right in this thread. And frankly, you don't get to the point of buying expensive power cords without having been exposed to the claims of break in along the way.


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I answered Gizmo's question, but, I spoke from the other side of the coin.

No, you didn't answer Gizmo's question, because you can't. The question was about what physically changes during break in. The "other side" is nothing but a euphemism for just recounting your own subjective (unqualifiable, unverifiable) impressions. That has nothing to do with physics, and everything to do with psychology.


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There are two sides here - those who experience break in/burn in, and those who do not believe in it.

No, there are not two sides here any more than there are two sides to the evolution vs. creationism debate. There's one side, which is supported by evidence and experimentation, and then there's "belief". Beliefs that contradict all empirical data do not constitute a "side". Sorry if I sound harsh, but as a lifelong skeptic I have little tolerance for the "two sides" argument because it's simply an attempt to elevate unsupported beliefs to the same stature as factual reality.


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I answered it from my perspective, by describing what happened during the break in, with regards to subjective listening. Regarding the side that you and Gizmo sit on, I have no explanation, no claim, and no answer. And, I don't care to know.

Don't care to know? Hmmm.


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I disagree with your point about the same break in time. I've seen many different numbers, for many different items. For example, on the Classe SSP800 forum, posters have shared that the Classe manual mentions 300 hours for break in.

They can say whatever they want in their manual, can't they? Why not 1000 hours? Why not 5000 or 10000? How come you never see a company say their product requires 15 minutes (or 15 seconds) of break in?

The answer is because it's the CUSTOMER'S BRAIN that is getting "broken in", so the length of break in reflects that. That's where the 100 hours plus or minus comes from. I guess when you spend $8000 on a pre-amp, though, it can take a little longer...

I know full well that some products do change during a break in period. Car engines. Blue jeans. Bicycle seats (a Brooks leather saddle takes a hell of a lot more than 100 hours...) From personal experience buying way more of them than anyone in their right mind should, headphones (especially IEMs) do change their sonic characteristics pretty dramatically in their first dozen or so hours of play. But that doesn't mean any new gadget in an audio system produces even the slightest audible changes over their first hours of use, least of all things like power cords.


Quote:


There's been 1-2 posters who claimed that they do not believe in break in, yet, they were not satisfied the sound of the SSP800 when they got it. After a period of time, they liked the change in the sound. This was difficult for them to explain, especially considering their beliefs.

And they no doubt saw the nonsense in the Classe manual, or heard about it from other owners. But really, it isn't difficult to explain; as AX9 put it, "They got used to it." Their brains became accustomed to their new equipment, and they got past the inherent tension of having just spent a large sum of money on a new toy.


Quote:


I think it's true that some folks become accustomed to the sound after a period of time. No argument there - however, I don't think it's always the case. The best test for this is to take a component or cable, the SSP800 for example, which claims a break in period is necessary to sound its best, and A/B it with a unit that has 300 hours or more on it. Again, this would be subjective.

To quote Inigo Montoya from The Princess Bride: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." An A/B test (or in the case of simply validating differences, an A/B/A test), properly run, is objective, not subjective.


Quote:


You could even do DBT and then see if it is repeatable. Have you done anything like this? If so, I'd be interested to hear the specifics.

There's lots of information available about DBTs that have been conducted in this area, this thread has gone over and over it. If you really want to know more (which you've already said you don't) it is readily available.
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post #1015 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Gizmologist View Post

Just so we are all clear, those of us from the objective testing and measurement camp have no problem accepting that a system MAY sound different after some form of modification but we are of the opinion that what is basically noticeable would more than likely be a FR change as a result of altering EQ adjustments or components. These would be things like changing the tolerance of caps and resistors, adjusting bias voltages on older units, etc.

These would, in effect, be bandpass filters to highlight the uber highs or the deep bass. A passive tone control circuit available anywhere on the web can do that. That is not a new or proprietary solution at all.

What was ostensibly shown and then otherwise visually obliterated were the supposed "upgrades" made by TUC. Changing components is something that many have done over the years and the "science" is not much of a science at all.

We all agree that the tin foil and blue AVM paint is the height of silliness and a complete lack of EE knowledge or justification.

There are numerous electrical and mechanical reason why that is pure nonsense.

We would hope that if it were proved to you that electrically the unit sounds the same as a stock unit w/o "mods" that you may accept that your subjective hopes and expectations have altered your otherwise accurate perceptions.

Could you accept that possibility? No one is denigrating you as a consumer, we are just trying to help you realize that subjectivity is more prevalent than you may think.

It's the same as having someone tell you "Whatever you do , DON'T think about pink elephants" So what happens? that is all you DO think about.

Gizmologist,

Great post! Good info and explained really well. This gives me the opportunity to (hopefully) better explain my subjective side of things. I'm going to "guess" on some of your side of things, and if I completely mess it up, please straighten me out on it.

I get the idea that, by utilizing measurements for both the stock and the upgraded device, the goal is to determine which measures better; perhaps, which is more accurate or which has a more linear frequency response, etc. I'll actually leave that up to you to describe it better.

I do understand that side of thinking. I'm a software engineer working in the Design group of a semiconductor company. Our little group (in this large company) designs clock/timing chips (analog). I understand datasheets, specs, etc., and I work with Design Engineers, Test Engineers, and Product Engineers. We have a lab with lots of scopes, computers, thermostreams, etc. We're even designing chips to enhance performance in Pioneer's SC-09 receiver.

But, I'm not the typical engineer when it comes to audio, because I like what is most pleasing to my ear as opposed to measurements. I don't buy into something just because I'm told it is better - I like to listen for myself. Sometimes I agree and sometimes I disagree that one thing is better than another. For those like me, we each have certain things that we listen for in audio. Words like detail, bright, texture, smooth, liquid, resolution, soundstage, image, transparency, three dimensional, real, neutral, etc are words that folks like me use to describe what we like to hear. Some want just one of those words, some want to hear a combination of them. I know and will readily admit that, in order to accomplish some (or even all) of these words, it might mean that the device will not measure as well as others. Measurements might show a dip here or a bump here, but for my listening, it may translate into something that I want to hear.

You are correct in that it's like having tone controls. I'm not concerned as to whether or not this is science or done/approved by a EE. I'm concerned about how it sounds to my ears. So, the bottom line is that it's possible that I may prefer something that does not measure better than something else. That is why measurements don't matter to me. I'm not trying to convert anyone, I'm just explaining what I prefer.

Dave

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post #1016 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by pdferguson View Post

If it's repeatable, then it's not subjective, it's objective. Which means it is measurable and (more importantly) falsifiable through simple experimentation and testing.

It's subjective in that I confirm it by ear, rather than by measurements.

Quote:


I'm willing to bet at some point your dealer suggested "break in" as the cause of your initial unhappiness.

You are correct. My dealer mentioned break in "after" I thought something was wrong with the cable. The key word here is in quotes.

Quote:


Of course you do. You're expressing it very strongly right in this thread. And frankly, you don't get to the point of buying expensive power cords without having been exposed to the claims of break in along the way.

I should clarify, because I should not have used the word "never", or, I should have explained what I meant. I believe in break in, only through experience. I believe in it, once I've found it to occur. If someone says that something needs to be broken in, I don't believe it unless I experience it. In this sense, I never have a preconceived notion about break in. There is an exception though. With the power cord example I gave, once I knew that this model of cord needed to be broken in (through my experience with it), then with my subsequent purchases of the same power cord, I did expect to incur the break in. This is only logical, but it negates my use of the word "never". So, to qualify it better, I never have a preconceived notion about break in, when dealing with something for the first time.

Quote:


No, you didn't answer Gizmo's question, because you can't. The question was about what physically changes during break in. The "other side" is nothing but a euphemism for just recounting your own subjective (unqualifiable, unverifiable) impressions. That has nothing to do with physics, and everything to do with psychology.

Actually, you are conveniently adding to the question. The question was '...what actually happens during the "break in" period.' Nothing was mentioned about physical changes. Had Gizmologist asked the question the way you thought it was asked, I would have replied that I honestly have no idea.

Quote:


No, there are not two sides here any more than there are two sides to the evolution vs. creationism debate. There's one side, which is supported by evidence and experimentation, and then there's "belief". Beliefs that contradict all empirical data do not constitute a "side". Sorry if I sound harsh, but as a lifelong skeptic I have little tolerance for the "two sides" argument because it's simply an attempt to elevate unsupported beliefs to the same stature as factual reality.

When I listen and prefer one thing over another, that is not a belief, it is simply a preference. Two sides - one side is your evidence, experimentation, and empirical data, and the other side is someone's preference, which may have nothing to do with the other side.

Quote:


They can say whatever they want in their manual, can't they? Why not 1000 hours? Why not 5000 or 10000? How come you never see a company say their product requires 15 minutes (or 15 seconds) of break in?

The answer is because it's the CUSTOMER'S BRAIN that is getting "broken in", so the length of break in reflects that. That's where the 100 hours plus or minus comes from. I guess when you spend $8000 on a pre-amp, though, it can take a little longer...

I know full well that some products do change during a break in period. Car engines. Blue jeans. Bicycle seats (a Brooks leather saddle takes a hell of a lot more than 100 hours...) From personal experience buying way more of them than anyone in their right mind should, headphones (especially IEMs) do change their sonic characteristics pretty dramatically in their first dozen or so hours of play. But that doesn't mean any new gadget in an audio system produces even the slightest audible changes over their first hours of use, least of all things like power cords.

In the context of the post, the point was that it was not 100 hours. Different items may take different amounts of time for break in.

Quote:


To quote Inigo Montoya from The Princess Bride: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." An A/B test (or in the case of simply validating differences, an A/B/A test), properly run, is objective, not subjective.

My A/B tests are "not" properly run, according to many of the folks here. That is why my A/B tests are not objective. I only did SBT and not DBT, and many times, I just change back and forth without doing SBT. This is why I say that it is subjective.

Quote:


There's lots of information available about DBTs that have been conducted in this area, this thread has gone over and over it. If you really want to know more (which you've already said you don't) it is readily available.

Sorry, I don't understand what your point is here. I agree with you that there's lots of information about DBTs and that this thread has gone over it a bunch. My suggestion, for those who don't believe in break in, is for them to conduct a DBT. If a product claims it needs to be broken in, like the 300 hours for the SSP800, then it might be interesting to do a DBT on a new one vs. one with the recommended number of hours to see if there's any differences. I was asking if the poster had done this and to post the details.

Dave

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post #1017 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by thezaks View Post

Actually, you are conveniently adding to the question. The question was '...what actually happens during the "break in" period.' Nothing was mentioned about physical changes. Had Gizmologist asked the question they way you thought it was asked, I would have replied that I honestly have no idea.

What other interpretation would there be? You claim sonic differences (repeatable, no less) during the break in period. Those can only occur because of either (a) physical changes in the equipment producing the sound, or (b) your brain. There are no other choices (yes, I know, changing room conditions, etc. could be a factor but let's ignore that for now.) As far as I can tell, you are claiming option (a) is correct, or at least you're unwilling to acknowledge that break in is all in your head. I say (b) is correct, break in is nothing more than a phenomenon of human psychology--including a host of factors such as your expectations and preconceptions--and are not due to any perceivable or measurable changes in the gear in question. There is considerable experimental evidence to support my position. Is there any evidence to support yours?


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When I listen and prefer one thing over another, that is not a belief, it is simply a preference. Two sides - one side is your evidence, experimentation, and empirical data, and the other side is someone's preference, which may have nothing to do with the other side.

You are making claims about the sound of your audio equipment, which is a claim about the physical world we all share. As such, it is either true or not. You seem to not want to know the answer to that. That's belief, or more specifically, willful ignorance.


Quote:
In the context of the post, the point was that it was not 100 hours. Different items may take different amounts of time for break in.

And my point is that the myth of the 100 hours is so pervasive, it has become essentially a (fool's) gold standard. Regardless of whether it's 100 or 300, the basis on which those numbers are claimed is equally bogus. It just serves as a self-fulfilling prophecy to those who accept the claims uncritically.


Quote:
Sorry, I don't understand what your point is here. I agree with you that there's lots of information about DBTs and that this thread has gone over it a bunch. My suggestion, for those who don't believe in break in, is for them to conduct a DBT. If a product claims it needs to be broken in, like the 300 hours for the SSP800, then it might be interesting to do a DBT on a new one vs. one with the recommended number of hours to see if there's any differences. I was asking if the poster had done this and to post the details.

Why doesn't the manufacturer conduct these tests? Where did they come up with the "magic" number of 300 hours? It's their claim, not mine. You should be asking them for the evidence to back up what they print in their documentation. If you spend $8000 on a piece of gear, wouldn't you expect the manufacturer to give you trustworthy information, and not simply pull a number out of their... chassis?
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post #1018 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 11:54 AM
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For me it's come down to this:

You have contributed nothing in establishing the basis for this remarkable enhancement in audio sound quality after modification, except your own ears, and the money to substantiate your claims in your investment. As you've previously indicated, money is no object, and along with your don't care to know attitude about your investment, speaks volumes.

For all I know, (and I can relate) a glass of wine, good kush, lights low, lady friend or wife, different frame of mind, candles, music, etc., you get the picture, all could alter your perception of auditory and sensory reality.

I also see from many of your post's that start out apologizing, retracting, agreeing/disagreeing, rephrasing, passive aggressiveness, re-explaining, defending. Especially defending. I am in psychology field as well.

Sure it sounds good to you. My system sounds good to me and I still tweak it every so often. Recalibrate sound levels from all speakers and sub, simply dust from behind the equip rack and speakers, check for loose connections, ty-raps, etc. Turn it on brand new!

I't would be fun, like you said, to find out what other people thought about my system, and the resulting, and the degree, if any, the differences, and to tabulate results in prepared scientific environment to be shown to all here in the scientific community.

Mike
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post #1019 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by pdferguson View Post

What other interpretation would there be? You claim sonic differences (repeatable, no less) during the break in period. Those can only occur because of either (a) physical changes in the equipment producing the sound, or (b) your brain. There are no other choices (yes, I know, changing room conditions, etc. could be a factor but let's ignore that for now.) As far as I can tell, you are claiming option (a) is correct, or at least you're unwilling to acknowledge that break in is all in your head. I say (b) is correct, break in is nothing more than a phenomenon of human psychology--including a host of factors such as your expectations and preconceptions--and are not due to any perceivable or measurable changes in the gear in question. There is considerable experimental evidence to support my position. Is there any evidence to support yours?

For me, the evidence was simple. I had a new power cord and I had another power cord that had lots of time on it. The sound was not the same with the two cords. No, I did not use test equipment, and no, I cannot explain why. It's just what I heard. The first time this happened, I had never heard about break in. I understand this evidence is not convincing enough for you, and I'm not trying to convince you. I'm only sharing my impressions.

Quote:
You are making claims about the sound of your audio equipment, which is a claim about the physical world we all share. As such, it is either true or not. You seem to not want to know the answer to that. That's belief, or more specifically, willful ignorance.

Hearing is one of our senses. So is taste , smell, etc. I could say that I prefer the taste of chocolate over cauliflower. Someone else may prefer cauliflower over chocolate. There's probably evidence that cauliflower is better for you than chocolate. Some will choose cauliflower for that reason and wonder why anyone would substitute with chocolate. Some will take the chocolate, because it's what they prefer. For my sense of hearing, I prefer what sounds good to me. If it's bad measurement wise, well, it's what I prefer because it's appeasing to my sense of hearing.

Quote:
And my point is that the myth of the 100 hours is so pervasive, it has become essentially a (fool's) gold standard. Regardless of whether it's 100 or 300, the basis on which those numbers are claimed is equally bogus. It just serves as a self-fulfilling prophecy to those who accept the claims uncritically.

When you think about it, there's really no benefit to experiencing break in. It means you have to wait a period of time for the equipment to perform at its best, which is no fun. And, if you happen to mention that you've experienced break in, then you get treated like a fool, which is also not much fun. I really wish you were right, but my experiences have shown me otherwise - not with scientific data, but with my listening experiences.

Quote:
Why doesn't the manufacturer conduct these tests? Where did they come up with the "magic" number of 300 hours? It's their claim, not mine. You should be asking them for the evidence to back up what they print in their documentation. If you spend $8000 on a piece of gear, wouldn't you expect the manufacturer to give you trustworthy information, and not simply pull a number out of their... chassis?

The manufacturer has obviously conducted these tests. They've evaluated the equipment and made a recommendation for the number of hours it takes to get to a certain level of performance. Have you ever taken a piece of equipment and/or cable and conducted the test that I suggested?

Dave

FOR SALE: Chang Lightspeed Cinema 6.0 w/Hyperdrive power conditioner - was $2,000, now $790. Please PM me, if interested.
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post #1020 of 2187 Old 01-28-2010, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by keilwerth View Post

For me it's come down to this:

You have contributed nothing in establishing the basis for this remarkable enhancement in audio sound quality after modification, except your own ears, and the money to substantiate your claims in your investment. As you've previously indicated, money is no object, and along with your don't care to know attitude about your investment, speaks volumes.

For all I know, (and I can relate) a glass of wine, good kush, lights low, lady friend or wife, different frame of mind, candles, music, etc., you get the picture, all could alter your perception of auditory and sensory reality.

I also see from many of your post's that start out apologizing, retracting, agreeing/disagreeing, rephrasing, passive aggressiveness, re-explaining, defending. Especially defending. I am in psychology field as well.

Sure it sounds good to you. My system sounds good to me and I still tweak it every so often. Recalibrate sound levels from all speakers and sub, simply dust from behind the equip rack and speakers, check for loose connections, ty-raps, etc. Turn it on brand new!

I't would be fun, like you said, to find out what other people thought about my system, and the resulting, and the degree, if any, the differences, and to tabulate results in prepared scientific environment to be shown to all here in the scientific community.

Mike

Hi Mike,

You are correct that I've only contributed my experiences and listening impressions, based upon my ears. I have done SBT, but not DBT, and I don't have any evidence with regards to measurements.

However, I'm not sure where you are coming from, with reference to the money. I don't have a lot of money. Money is no object? That's not me. Were you possibly thinking of someone else?

I'm also not sure what you mean about my don't care attitude about my investment. I do care, and I utilize my listening experiences to approve/disapprove what I want to have in my system. Just because I don't care about measurements, doesn't mean that I don't care about my investment.

Regarding my posts in this thread, I'm just trying to convey my impressions - not to convince folks, but just to share. I try to be kind, I stay away from name calling, I'm willing to apologize if I make a mistake, and I hopefully don't beat down folks for their opinion, even if I don't agree with it. However, if someone tries to speak for me, and they are incorrect, then I do defend my position. In your post, you spoke of me with regards to money and not caring about my investment. Those are things that I will defend.

Dave

FOR SALE: Chang Lightspeed Cinema 6.0 w/Hyperdrive power conditioner - was $2,000, now $790. Please PM me, if interested.
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