Is High-End Audio Obsolete? - Page 33 - AVS Forum
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post #961 of 1835 Old 04-27-2014, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Naughtilus View Post

@Aarghon


Expected from such a "Hi-Fi aristocrat". 

He says Fidelity is irrelevant to music in a bitter patronizing skepticism. I actually think that Music is irrelevant to fidelity

Musicians listen to music on very lo-fi gear and yet they have no problem communicating and relating to it. My best emotional connection with music was through my Sony Discman and pair of cheap headphones. I didn't need spatiality and PRaT to enjoy music. I didn't need viagra Gordon, I was young!

Anyways.

Yeah. He is a sourpuss.

Yes, and he didn't understand what is precisely the most beautiful thing about music: Since it is built upon eveeeeeerything at the same time ( emotions, sounds made by instruments/ not so instruments, outcome influenced by the particular character of a venue , culture from which it has been influenced and the list goes on forever ) it can be loved by EVERYONE. And under everyone's each own parameters.
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post #962 of 1835 Old 04-27-2014, 06:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Goalline View Post

What about an audio publication that specializes in double blind tests as a vital part of its reviews. Would anyone buy it?

 

There is a general problem of selling a publication at all these days. It has to rely on advertising and those that advertise may not want to be measured. (:

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post #963 of 1835 Old 04-27-2014, 08:19 PM
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Howdy folks.

Can someone briefly sum up the past 30 pages so I can catch up?

Cheers
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Originally Posted by nx211 View Post

Everybody here enjoys listening to music and/or watching movies on their 2 channel audio or home theater systems. Some people are happy with less expensive gear, other people prefer more expensive audio equipment.

Well, most everybody enjoys listening to music on their stereo systems or home theater systems except for maybe this guy:
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Originally Posted by Naughtilus View Post

...a long quote, an interview with Stereophile's founder Gordon Holt on the topic of Hi-End audio.

...Do you still feel the high-end audio industry has lost its way in the manner you described 15 years ago?
Not in the same manner; there's no hope now. Audio actually used to have a goal: perfect reproduction of the sound of real music performed in a real space. That was found difficult to achieve, and it was abandoned when most music lovers, who almost never heard anything except amplified music anyway, forgot what "the real thing" had sounded like.


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post #964 of 1835 Old 04-27-2014, 08:23 PM
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" Audio as a hobby is dying, largely by its own hand. As far as the real world is concerned, high-end audio lost its credibility during the 1980s, when it flatly refused to submit to the kind of basic honesty controls (double-blind testing, for example) that had legitimized every other serious scientific endeavor since Pascal. [This refusal] is a source of endless derisive amusement among rational people and of perpetual embarrassment for me, because I am associated by so many people with the mess my disciples made of spreading my gospel. For the record: I never, ever claimed that measurements don't matter. What I said (and very often, at that) was, they don't always tell the whole story. Not quite the same thing.
Remember those loudspeaker shoot-outs we used to have during our annual writer gatherings in Santa Fe? The frequent occasions when various reviewers would repeatedly choose the same loudspeaker as their favorite (or least-favorite) model? That was all the proof needed that [blind] testing does work, aside from the fact that it's (still) the only honest kind. It also suggested that simple ear training, with DBT confirmation, could have built the kind of listening confidence among talented reviewers that might have made a world of difference in the outcome of high-end audio."

This from the founder of Stereophile, what an ironic statement this is in contrast to the current state of affairs. Most "high end" publications, and those considering themselves to be audiophiles are exactly the opposite, and it would appear by this opinion that those whom support objective measurement/comparison, and scientific methodology are the true audiophiles. Somehow, I'm not surprised.

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post #965 of 1835 Old 04-27-2014, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Pet Motel View Post

This from the founder of Audiophile, what an ironic statement this is in contrast to the current state of affairs. Most "high end" publications, and those considering themselves to be audiophiles are exactly the opposite, and it would appear by this opinion that those whom support objective measurement/comparison, and scientific methodology are the true audiophiles. Somehow, I'm not surprised.

True. And it was when I came across an article for a 30 or $50k equipment rack with some well known reviewer from Stereophile gushing lyrical about how he was skeptical at first on how an a equipment rack could make any difference but was surprised by how the soundstage opened up etc. etc. etc and that he had never heard such a good equipment rack before... that alarm bells started ringing on the whole audiophile thing for me.
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post #966 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 05:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve Crowley View Post

I remember back in the early 70's hearing Klipschorns and Mac gear at my friends house and was enthralled at the full range sound coming from those big old boxes. It was great going to the old stereo stores to listen to the latest and greatest. But one thing I found was that the recordings had a lot to do with the sound. Started buying MFSL and could not believe how quiet albums could sound. Still have em. I have a modest system and enjoy it very much. One thing that has added to systems is the advent of a good sub, whether it is a DIY or store bought. Having a couple of octaves lower sure has made listening a lot more enjoyable. Hopefully the high end will manage to stay afloat, it gives me something to do when I travel.

Thing is that through the early 1970s there was often an audible or at least a potentially audible difference between MacIntosh gear and run-of-the-mill mainstream receivers and integrated amps. As long as tubes were all we had or were at least still part of the mainstream audio market building good power amps cost a lot of money.

Macintosh's output transformers and unique circuitry gave them higher performance that cheaper gear from the likes of Dynakit, Heathkit, Fisher, Scott etc. could barely approach when new, but a year or two later when the tubes aged, not so much.

When power amps are rated at and barely achieve 1% THD when new. any loss of performance has a good chance of being noticed at the speaker terminals.

A decade later the actual performance of good SS amps was at least 10 times better, stable for years and years, and up to order of magnitude less costly to provide. Things have only improved since then.

If I could step into a time machine and pop out at my local high end store in 1965 when they were running MacIntosh and Shure technical clinics, my $39 Sansa Clip would barely make the meters on these leading manufacturer's test equipment move on their most sensitive ranges, and deliver the excellent sound quality to match the numbers.

Traditions tend to outlast the legendary equipment that fostered them.
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post #967 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 05:44 AM
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Originally Posted by OmarF View Post

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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

All true, but beyond that up to half of them started out on low resolution media, either analog tape or 44 or 48 KHz digital files. While the actual utiltity of that is controversial to say the least, there you are - up to half of the original SACD discs were in some sense fraudulent on the grounds of high resolution, because resolution once lost cannot be restored. It's like finding the text on missing segments of the Dead Sea scrolls.

In digital terms, what would the actual resolution of tape translate into?

Being really generous, something like 12-13 bits.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audio_bit_depth

Signal-to-noise ratio and resolution of bit depths

# bits SNR
4 24.08 dB
8 48.16 dB
11 66.22 dB
16 96.33 dB
20 120.41 dB
24 144.49 dB
32 192.66 dB
48 288.99 dB

An important caveat. The above numbers treat SNR and nonlinear distortion as if they are the same, which they in some sense are. However we commonly have media and equipment with SNR that is far lower (better) than the spurious products created by their nonlinear distortion.

This is particularly true because companding can be used to increase SNR greatly. Companding adds errors of a more complex nature that can escape some common test equipment and sometimes even human ears. The audible artifacts due to well-designed companding are generally far less audible than the noise that they can address.

In analog tape the the nonlinear distortion generally runs between -40 dB and -70 dB depending on the circumstances, but some companding schemes push can the apparent SNR > 100 dB. Companding cannot violate the laws of information theory. Every benefit has a cost, it seems. For example, companding generally increases signal levels on the media which naturally increases nonlinear distortion. The boosted signal level on the media is corrected during playback through an appropriate decoder, but the nonlinear distortion not so much.

Nonlinear distortion on magnetic tape is a far, far stronger function of signal levels and frequency within the audible range than we see in good analog electronics. But it is far better and more predictable than vinyl. Digital is inherently distortion free as long as the signal is kept in the digital domain.
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I recall hearing when DVDA and SACD were first making a splash, that they sounded so good because the old master tapes of groups like Pink Floyd, Fleetwood Mac, The Allman Brothers, etc., were recorded on high quality master tapes and those were what they used for the DVDA and SACD masters.

In many cases the music was remastered when released on the new media. Remastering may correct some substandard production techniques when the music was originally released, or it may make the recording more appealing to modern tastes and preference which are constantly changing an evolving.

I find it highly relevant that upwards of 50% of all SACD and DVD-A releases came from lower resolution sources, and for years no high end reviewer ever noticed. There is no known or probably even knowable way to add back in lost resolution - to do so would violate Information Theory and that theory is about 80 years old and seems to be made out of iron.
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post #968 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by OmarF View Post

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Originally Posted by Steve Crowley View Post

Thx, I look there weekly. Have not heard of Audio Research, will check them out. With high efficiency speakers, I don't need but 60 wpc.

I don't use tubes, but my understanding is that Audio Research is the go-to reference for tube amps, or at least one of them. Have you used tubes before?

Many of us were audiophiles for decades when tubes were all we had. Ironically Audio Research tube equipment is generally well engineered which naturally removes or reduces the audible artifacts that some call "Tube sound".

I still have a Conrad Johnson tubed preamp and it IMO sounds and performs well as compared to more modern SS equpiment. I often use it for digitizing LPs because it has good RIAA equalization and a quality volume control that has good tracking and is free of noise.

I also have a number of competitive SS preamps from the same general era and while their active circuitry may be just fine, the switches and/or volume controls have not fared so well.
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post #969 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 06:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Goalline View Post

What about an audio publication that specializes in double blind tests as a vital part of its reviews. Would anyone buy it?

Doubtful. The purpose of an audio publication is to entertain by writing about entertainment. They would end up just writing about speakers. The prose surrounding all that shiny electronic gear would disappear.
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post #970 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 06:02 AM - Thread Starter
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OP:
I'm really glad you like your system. If it makes you and your friends and family happy, that's what it's about.

But you're setting up a straw man argument, invoking crazy-priced--and just crazy--gear like those arc-welder Krells and room divider
Apogees, and Mercedes-priced Wilsons, as representative of the high end.

As one of the guys who wrote (about music) for Stereophile when you were reading it, let me tell my own story.

A guy I worked with introduced me to high end a few years earlier. He lent me TAS and Stereophile, and invited me to listen to his system.

I walked into the room but didn't see speakers. His Magneplanars, it seems, blocked both windows in his apartment, so had to be moved back into position every time he listened.

The Audio Research tubes needed to be warmed up, but not for too long lest we wear out the tubes. And his Linn Turntable sat on a Sound Organization table behind the speakers, so that every time you dropped the needle, you'd risk stepping on a springy floorboard and having the expensive cartridge bounce across...Jazz at the Pawnshop or the Sheffield Drum Record or some other music-free audiophile chestnut.

He taught me a lot. Including what not to do. So my initial system consisted of Spicas and solid state, but more to the point, I played it constantly. I've since graduated to tubes, but I don't fret about warm up or wear out. I listened to what I like, and discovered hundreds of records that combined great music and great sound. (Try Muddy Waters "Folk Singer") I use my system as a tool for playing music.

I think it's a question of definitions. You seem to be defining "high end" as anything that's expensive and fussy. My definition: the high end is the pursuit of realistic musical reproduction using the most sensitive measuring devices: the human ears. This isn't anything radical; after all a restaurant reviewer doesn't pull out a mass spectrometer to decide if an appetizer is good. She just tastes it.

IMHO, money, and even medium, are beside the point. I'm overjoyed that companies ---American companies BTW---like Schiit and Grado, VPI and Woo and Zu are producing amazing high-end gear (especially in the headphone realm) at very reasonable price points.

No, you're not going to get pant flapping bass from these systems, but if you keep an open mind, and open ears, you'll find a lot of music there.

Obsolete? Hardly.
Evolved? It's only natural.

 

I enjoyed your post, and I think high-end has a flexible definition. When the price/performance ratio becomes favorable, I prefer to use the term high-performance gear. You got me thinking about restaurant reviews; my wife Danya is the Zagat editor for Philadelphia, so I have a fair bit of experience with appetizers.

 

Here's the thing... you don't use a mass spectrometer when eating food any more than you'd use a decibel meter while enjoying a great album. On the flip-side, there is a lot to be gained if you measure your system when setting it up, and a diligent chef will use weights and measures (thermometer, scale) when preparing food. In both cases, measurements are key to the final presentation. In my case, my friends like the results of my calibrated system, as do other audio enthusiasts who visit. I'm not just cooking for myself, my system has to hang with the big boys or else I'm not doing my job!

I'm curious why you think the human ear can beat a microphone for measurement. For one thing, testing shows there is a limit to the differences in pitch, volume, and frequency that humans can perceive. You might need a couple of specialized mics to beat a well-trained ear in most categories, but it's more than possible.

 

Hanging out with Keith Yates has me convinced that a human using only their ears is just guessing, like a chef who doesn't own a measuring cup, scale, or an oven with an adjustable temperature setting. That might be OK for the world of BBQ, where you cook on a fire and your taste buds are the last word, but it would never fly in a fancy (i.e. high-end) restaurant, or at a McDonalds.

Anyhow, there are many companies out there producing great gear that represents a good value. And, I see that reflected in the pages of Stereophile. Just a couple days ago James Victor Serinus said nice things about Sony's STR-AV1050! Hook one up to a pair of Andrew Jones bookshelf speakers that Stereophile loved so much, and you see that even "cheap" gear from Best Buy from major mainstream manufacturers can do the trick.
 

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post #971 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 06:25 AM
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"the most sensitive measuring devices: the human ears" Of course the usual audiophile myth pops up

Spending $$$$$ on high end equipment and skimp on a good measuring microphone and use "the most cheap measuring devices available: the human ears".

Measurement mircophones do not get tired. Alhough some do have a directional bias.



There is also the option to improve the operation of the "the most sensitive measuring devices: the human ears" with these:



Higher end models are also available smile.gif
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post #972 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 06:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMW View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Goalline View Post

What about an audio publication that specializes in double blind tests as a vital part of its reviews. Would anyone buy it?

Doubtful. The purpose of an audio publication is to entertain by writing about entertainment. They would end up just writing about speakers. The prose surrounding all that shiny electronic gear would disappear.

Stereo Review ran feature articles based on ABX tests in the 1990s.

Audio Magazine also mixed equipment reviews including ABX tests in among their other fare in later years.

My own view is that the big issue that existed in those days was whether or not there were immeasurable audible artifacts, and the answer was settled: NO!

Test equipment based on FFT analysis became readily available or thinkable prices starting about 10 years earler. It was obtainable at a far greater cost starting in the 1970s.
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post #973 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Frank Derks View Post

"the most sensitive measuring devices: the human ears" Of course the usual audiophile myth pops up

Spending $$$$$ on high end equipment and skimp on a good measuring microphone and use "the most cheap measuring devices available: the human ears".

Measurement mircophones do not get tired. Alhough some do have a directional bias.



There is also the option to improve the operation of the "the most sensitive measuring devices: the human ears" with these:



Higher end models are also available smile.gif

Interestingly enough these devices, which are closely related to the transducers shown above, appear to have gone mainstream:

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post #974 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 06:48 AM
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Pills for "high end" performance enhancement?


http://hearinglosspill.com/

The advertising seems familiar....
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post #975 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 07:05 AM
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"the most sensitive measuring device: the male ego"

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post #976 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 07:33 AM
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Originally Posted by Naughtilus View Post

"the most sensitive measuring device: the male ego"

LOL.

Somehow you need to work Narcissism into it, because often the measuring device and the quantity measured is the same thing! ;-)
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post #977 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 07:39 AM
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Charlie Laub of PCD and ACD fame just tested both via measurements and by ear a $25 DAC based on the Cirrus CS 4398 and when he looped it back into his M-Audio Profire 610 he couldn't tell the difference.

The responses from the 'Audiophile" crowd are interesting. Everything from questioning the tracks he used (so you can only hear the differences on certain tracks:rolleyes:) to the equipment that is being used.

It's Charlie 'freekin' Laub for pete's sake! Wow.

Link to the thread.

An audiophile likes to talk about how much they spent and how good it sounds.

A DIY'er likes to talk about how little they spent and how good it sounds.

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post #978 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 10:10 AM
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The Search;

It took me years to find recordings that made a difference.
WTF??? And of course he "needed" high end cables as well....
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post #979 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Naughtilus View Post

There is a general problem of selling a publication at all these days. It has to rely on advertising and those that advertise may not want to be measured. (:

My thoughts are pretty much along those lines. They might sell a lot of magazines but advertising revenue would dry up.

How many companies would keep advertising if the mag says their amp sounds no better than one at a fraction the price?
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post #980 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 10:57 AM
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The big corps will keep advertising no matter what, names like Yamaha, Pioneer, Denon, Marantz, Harman, B&W etc. The players that will leave the scene will be boutique names like Naim, Linn etc. not to mention even more niche cottage industry businesses (hint: coat hanger). If it was up to the big boys no Hi-Fi magazine would still exist since they have global coverage, online, physical in B&M stores and they advertize in EVERY magazine, not just Hi-Fi. Companies with one or two dealers per country are the ones that need "specialized" Hi-Fi magazines with subjective and only positive reviews to blow the trumpet and sell their goods.

 

Just my 2 centavos.

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post #981 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:04 AM
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I miss the old days -- take a nice preamp, put in high quality resistors and Wondercaps, gold plated outputs, if it had tubes buy better tubes -- and shazzam -- listening nirvana.
At the time the first CD players came out I was wondering what the tweakers would do to improve the sound. The first response was to add oversampling ad nauseum. All I can
say is that the specs and hype are confounding -- the only way I can make sense of things is to hook it up on a familiar system and listen to known material several times.

If a device consistently sounds better and I like the way it sounds, good enough. I've been disappointed many times auditioning some breathtakingly expensive gear. Once I was ready to pull the trigger on a Levinson preamp and amp with Revel speakers. Took my CD and SACD collection in for an afternoon audition and stopped it after 20 minutes. I was as disappointed as the salesman. Finally had the budget and the listening room for some regal gear and despite the reputation of the gear and dealer (poor setup can kill an audition) I just couldn't embrace what I was hearing. My rule is to listen at least three times over several days or weeks, but I never went back. In fairness I may have been expecting more than any rig could deliver. Years before I had marveled for hours at the ML-1 and ML-2 monoblocks fed by a Koestu MC cartridge -- hopelessly beyond my $17K per year budget. But I've listened to other Levison rigs since and frankly a nice Denon does just fine for about the sales tax on the Levinson.

I've said this before, compared to 25 years ago the gulf between average gear and great gear as narrowed, with average rising ever closer great. Great has failed to rise enough to keep the advantage. But I keep the hope that someday I'll stumble across that rare something that will make great great again.
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post #982 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:08 AM
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There's really quite a difference between "hearing" and "listening" -- involves the brain. And the combo of ear to brain is a learning system. It does really involve a bit of training, focus, and extended use. And, depending on what we're trained to listen for, it varies quite a bit. I've many a musician friend who don't "hear" what I do, since they focus on other attributes of musical play than me.

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post #983 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Stereo Review ran feature articles based on ABX tests in the 1990s.

Audio Magazine also mixed equipment reviews including ABX tests in among their other fare in later years.

I was referring to extant audiozines, not former ones.
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My own view is that the big issue that existed in those days was whether or not there were immeasurable audible artifacts, and the answer was settled: NO!

Apparently that still hasn't been accepted by the high end community.
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post #984 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:40 AM
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There's really quite a difference between "hearing" and "listening" -- involves the brain. And the combo of ear to brain is a learning system. It does really involve a bit of training, focus, and extended use. And, depending on what we're trained to listen for, it varies quite a bit. I've many a musician friend who don't "hear" what I do, since they focus on other attributes of musical play than me.

What is it you do?
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post #985 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sjschaff View Post

There's really quite a difference between "hearing" and "listening" -- involves the brain. And the combo of ear to brain is a learning system. It does really involve a bit of training, focus, and extended use. And, depending on what we're trained to listen for, it varies quite a bit. I've many a musician friend who don't "hear" what I do, since they focus on other attributes of musical play than me.

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post #986 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Jinjuku View Post

Charlie Laub of PCD and ACD fame just tested both via measurements and by ear a $25 DAC based on the Cirrus CS 4398 and when he looped it back into his M-Audio Profire 610 he couldn't tell the difference.

The responses from the 'Audiophile" crowd are interesting. Everything from questioning the tracks he used (so you can only hear the differences on certain tracks:rolleyes:) to the equipment that is being used.

It's Charlie 'freekin' Laub for pete's sake! Wow.

Link to the thread.

The DAC chip in question CS 4398 is really a pretty hot chip - 120 dB dynamic range. For example this chip is the "Recommended for new design" upgrade to the CS 4396 itself used in many pieces of high end and professional audio gear. According to Mouser the chip is currently about $11 one up and about $6 in thousands.

More info here: http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/digital-line-level/254583-ebay-spdif-dac-cs8416-cs4398-only-25-worth-try.html#post3906449

and here: http://www.ebay.com/itm/181278604256

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post #987 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 11:56 AM
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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Stereo Review ran feature articles based on ABX tests in the 1990s.

Audio Magazine also mixed equipment reviews including ABX tests in among their other fare in later years.

I was referring to extant audiozines, not former ones.
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My own view is that the big issue that existed in those days was whether or not there were immeasurable audible artifacts, and the answer was settled: NO!

Apparently that still hasn't been accepted by the high end community.

IMO high end audio is about a topic that they learned me about when I worked for IBM - called "Customer Control". Step one is: Suspend Disbelief.
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post #988 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 12:19 PM
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Great post imagic. I for one confess that I had the "high end" bug for some time in the 80s and 90s...

I am sorry to say that, for many years, a good chunk of my disposable income went toward buying expensive gear. Many happy (?) hours were spent auditioning gear, squeezing my brain, trying to "hear" some minute improvement that would justify replacing component x or y (which, according to reviewer z, was a complete no-brainer). smile.gif

Ignorance is bliss and all that, but I'd like to point out just one extenuating circumstance: there was no bleeping Internet!

Back in the days, I'd have to get my "facts" either from the hi-fi store sales person (usually the local self-appointed guru), or reviews / tests on hi-fi magazines. In retrospect, both these sources left something (ok, a lot) to be desired.

Nowadays you go online and "do your homework". No need to rely on gurus. There are good, unbiased sources of information - such as AVS - at your fingertips that were simply not available a few decades ago, when I started my life as a consumer. rolleyes.gif
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post #989 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 12:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarracudaDelGato View Post

there was no bleeping Internet!

Back in the days, I'd have to get my "facts" either from the hi-fi store sales person (usually the local self-appointed guru), or reviews / tests on hi-fi magazines. In retrospect, both these sources left something (ok, a lot) to be desired.

Nowadays you go online and "do your homework". No need to rely on gurus. There are good, unbiased sources of information - such as AVS - at your fingertips that were simply not available a few decades ago, when I started my life as a consumer. rolleyes.gif
The first time I ever heard of DBTs was the Stereo Review listening test of speaker wire, followed by the amplifier test and the CD player test. The Internet makes it far, far easier to discuss such things with fellow audiophiles.
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post #990 of 1835 Old 04-28-2014, 12:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post

.

Hanging out with Keith Yates has me convinced that a human using only their ears is just guessing, like a chef who doesn't own a measuring cup, scale, or an oven with an adjustable temperature setting. That might be OK for the world of BBQ, where you cook on a fire and your taste buds are the last word, but it would never fly in a fancy (i.e. high-end) restaurant, or at a McDonalds.

This picture of Kieth Yates at work says quite a bit:

http://www.bksv.com/doc/ba0695.pdf




Letssee that is a measurement mic over there, a RTA running on the laptop and isn't that KY at the keyboard? ;-)

And the speakers look like they might have fallen off of a pro audio truck.

BTW I suspect that they measure ingredients pretty carefully even at Ronny McDees. If not in the store, at least back at the factory.

My motto is "Measure by eye, see the deficiencies by eye; measure by ear, hear the deficiencies by ear".

I do a little carpentry, too.
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