Originally Posted by spkr
I asked for evidence, not opinion. If you can't distinguish the two, you've got a problem.
One problem is that 40 years of experience listening to hi fi gear is that 40 years experience naturally pushes ones age to the 60s.
From the viewpoint of being 67, my experience is that my ears are not what they were a decade or two ago, and I've got the failed DBTs (that I used to ace) to show for it.
My more general experience is that a lot of people lose interest in audio once they reach the 60s, and it is the rare person who is doing significant upgrades after their mid-60s. I still love listening to music and spend hours some days doing it, but the SPLs for maximum enjoyment are going up.
Another problem is of course that we are not seeing any reliable evidence other than vociferous baseless assertions.
The idea that you have to pay the big bucks for quality sound flies in the face of the fact that the price performance of mainstream audio electronics continues to improve pretty rapidly. For example, a $40 Sansa Clip is the technical test equivalent of a circa 1980s audio system costing orders of magnitude more other than power amps, and the prices for quality power amps has been dropping like a rock, as well. And the $40 Clip isn't just a music player, it also contains the music library.