James Randi’s attack on high performance audio - Page 13 - AVS Forum
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post #361 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 02:41 PM
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THat is not a cable plot. cables (no boxes) will ALWAYS measure as a straight slope. slight steeper portion at the beginning for the cnnector, but the line is a STRAIGHT SLOPE! IF you manage to find cables (straight ccables) that have boost like these... BUY LOTS!!!!!!!!

they are (apparently) showing voltage response out of the amp? I think? their description is rather convoluted. they may be averaging the voltage receved at all speakers, it is not clear. Not sure if they are testing with white or pink noise.

Also lets be honest, for anybody in the least familiar with test gear... that graph and what it represents is about as phony as it gets. I would not mind getting one of their wires and sweeping it, and then compare it to a hunk of 12 gauge speaker wire.

While i am sure it measures well, what they are depicting is just not real.

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post #362 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 02:44 PM
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Dizz---they claim they are measuring voltage at the speaker terminals of a complete system---nothing open loop.

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post #363 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 03:00 PM
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but which speaker? they also claim that they are using a surround sound system...

Measuring voltage getting into the speaker is not a whole picture.

Give me a mic, sitting near field with white noise. then swap cables... if we are going to show something that does not truly represent music but shows something about system performance, do that.

THe test as they describe it sounds impressive, but when you get right down to it, it seems meaningless.

I did like however that they called it a
Quote:


digital storage oscilloscope

sounds far more impressive than "the same as any scope made in the last 10 years..."

when i used to teach my cable classes at Extron, i made a particular point to emphasize that you should NEVER trust any demo or test that involves test gear! measuring equipment can be made to show just about anything you like. I then would take 15 minutes to explain what we were going to measure so that they could clearly understand what it was that we were going to look at. THEN i would take the time to setup and calibrate the gear to show them what they were going to see.

Only then did they get a clear picture.

SO that little photoshop version of somemthing that a scope may or may not be showing does not hold much water. Especially since plenty of folks use snapshots of the right stuff all the time. And FYI... virtually all scopes have a snapshot feature where you can store a JPEG of the trace. whhy are they not showing that?

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post #364 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 03:04 PM
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I am not saying that you cannot trust the instrumentation that we appear to be crying out for... far from it. i am just saying present a real, clear image of that test.

And also just to further clarify, all we are asking for in this great big debate is one... just one blind test with verifiable bascis controls in place to show that somebody, somewhere, sometime was able to detect the difference in cables purely with their ears.

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post #365 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 03:11 PM
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Give me a mic, sitting near field with white noise. then swap cables... if we are going to show something that does not truly represent music but shows something about system performance, do that.

I don't agree, actually. We're talking about a comparative measurement of speaker cables. I think it's quite reasonable to measure voltages for the purpose of the comparison they're making, as long as they do it right. (Which you and I both are questioning here.)

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post #366 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 03:36 PM
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Dizz I have ordered a speaker cable and interconnect from them. I will do the SMAART test and film it.

By the way we would use pink noise not white noise for the speaker test.
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post #367 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 04:02 PM
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On behalf of all the subjectivists (which I do not count myself as) I have one thing to say - "science schmiensh".
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post #368 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 04:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speco2003 View Post

Dizz I have ordered a speaker cable and interconnect from them. I will do the SMAART test and film it.

Now THIS is a test along with the results that I'll be waiting for!

www.curtpalme.com - CRT tech info

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post #369 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 05:24 PM
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well, for frequency response of the wire, white is more appropriate. Equal energy per frequency. for hearing, then pink of course.

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post #370 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dizzman View Post

well, for frequency response of the wire, white is more appropriate. Equal energy per frequency. for hearing, then pink of course.


Correct Dizz. I just would hate to see folks harm speakers by using white noise. There is so much high freq in white that if not used properly it can harm speakers.

Regardless we can use alot of sources for noise with the SMAART. I will do white noise just in the cable, Pink for speaker response and we can use some music as well.
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post #371 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrunet View Post

http://www.pearcable.com/sub_product...cyresponse.htm
Did anyone look at this PEAR Anjou Cable FR plot

From the linked page:
Quote:
By allowing a virtually flat frequency response all the way to 20 kHz, the Comice Cables used in this test preserve the harmonic information of the original recording. When this system is compared side by side in listening tests, the difference is obvious. The "Other Cables" sound much harsher and tinny. Pear Cables on the other hand will sound far more natural, with an infinitely improved soundstage, because they are more accurate.


Harsher and tinny? Really? With identical bass and rolled-off highs? Doesn't "tinny" usually mean lack of bass and "harsh" refer to overemphasized, perhaps distorted, highs, or am I just confused? Not what I'd expect given the plot above (and attached below in case the link breaks). "Infinitely improved" sounds like a lot, even if the measurements for the "Other Cables" really were as bad as illustrated.

OK, given that it's marketingspeak, florid exaggeration should be expected - and discounted - but how about some descriptive terms that actually mean something? Maybe the competitor's cables do somehow eat the bass (making the sound tinny) and boost the treble (harsh) even though the voltage vs. frequency plot shows the exact opposite, which is why it's so important to actually listen instead of measure.

Or, maybe it's all complete malarky.
LL
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post #372 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 07:43 PM
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Praise Jah!

"It is worse still to be ignorant of your ignorance."
-- Saint Jerome (374 AD - 419 AD)

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post #373 of 1770 Old 10-08-2007, 09:45 PM
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OMGz. There are so many things on that Pear Cable site that don't make any sense. For example, why does the speaker's inability to produce bass below 150 Hz affect a measurement at the speaker terminals?

--Andre
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post #374 of 1770 Old 10-09-2007, 02:37 AM
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Quote:


MusicAngle.com Editor Michael Fremer agrees to accept the JREF challenge and test the PEAR Anjou Cables.

Let me guess, after taking the challenge Fremer loves the Pear cables so much he decides to keep them!

 

It ain't ignorance causes so much trouble; it's folks knowing so much that ain't so

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post #375 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 04:25 AM
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I think I'll come up with a line of cables named after porn stars seeing as how the fruits are being gobbled up. They'll be bangin'!

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
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post #376 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 05:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post

I think I'll come up with a line of cables named after porn stars seeing as how the fruits are being gobbled up. They'll be bangin'!

Just make sure you use male to female connectors...

Or, you'll seriously limit your market.

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post #377 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 09:32 AM
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Did anyone here follow The Audio Critic in the 80s?

The randi website talks about it and gave a link to the website for it. Its not running anymore (too bad!) but the back issues are a great read just spent last night reading them, too funny!

http://www.theaudiocritic.com/

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post #378 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 09:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dlarsen View Post

His challenge and demand for proof and test of a claim is hardly an assault on “high performance audio” IMO. To misquote the late Dr. Sagan- “Extraordinary claims DEMAND extraordinary evidence."

I say get em James. Make em your bitch like you did with Uri and Sylvia. I’d think he could spend the rest of his days debunking in high-end audio/video what with all the pseudo-science, technobabble laden crap and potential $ associated with it.

Dave


Great Carl Sagan quote, man that said it all
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post #379 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 11:05 AM
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Sheesh, I can't take it anymore.

It is interesting how these threads always degrade until only the same players are left discussing how all objectivists are deluded, yet those left are those with the least experience with very high end equipment.

So now you've found someone to "prove your point". Randi, who started as a magician and now runs this "Educational Foundation" is clearly interested in publicity based on the fact that only credentialed people can take his test.

But you people haven't even bothered to read the fine print.

"James Randi, through the JREF, will pay US$1,000,000 [One Million Dollars/US] to any person who can demonstrate any psychic, supernatural or paranormal ability under satisfactory observing conditions. Such demonstration must take place under the following rules and limitations:"

This clearly isn't about audio at all.

"In all cases, applicant will be required to perform a preliminary test either before an appointed representative, if distance and time dictate that need, or in a location where a member or representative of the JREF staff can attend. This preliminary test is to determine if the applicant is likely to perform as promised during a formal test, using the agreed-upon protocol. To date, no applicant has passed the preliminary test, and this has eliminated the need for formal testing in those cases. There is no limit on the number of times an applicant may re-apply, but re-application can take place only after 12 months have elapsed since the completion of the preliminary test."

So to paraphrase, you have to pass his preliminary test to prove you are a psychic before you can take the test about the cables... and noone has ever passed his preliminary test to move on to test their claim. Now thats an objective scientific test if I ever heard one.

"Any applicant who refuses to agree to meet the rules as outlined here, will not be considered to have ever been an applicant. Only complete agreement with these rules will allow the "applicant" to become a "claimant.""

Now personally, I think most of the people who make claims to Randi are as big a joke as Randi himself. But the fact that those left here discussing this have A. chosen to use this to prove their subjectivist point and B. obviously not even read the fine print makes you guys a joke as well.

If you spent as much time critically listening to different equipment as you do with this dumb subject, this site would be infinitely more interesting and useful.
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post #380 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 11:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harrypt View Post

Sheesh, I can't take it anymore.

It is interesting how these threads always degrade until only the same players are left discussing how all objectivists are deluded, yet those left are those with the least experience with very high end equipment.

So now you've found someone to "prove your point". Randi, who started as a magician and now runs this "Educational Foundation" is clearly interested in publicity based on the fact that only credentialed people can take his test.

But you people haven't even bothered to read the fine print.

"James Randi, through the JREF, will pay US$1,000,000 [One Million Dollars/US] to any person who can demonstrate any psychic, supernatural or paranormal ability under satisfactory observing conditions. Such demonstration must take place under the following rules and limitations:"

This clearly isn't about audio at all.

"In all cases, applicant will be required to perform a preliminary test either before an appointed representative, if distance and time dictate that need, or in a location where a member or representative of the JREF staff can attend. This preliminary test is to determine if the applicant is likely to perform as promised during a formal test, using the agreed-upon protocol. To date, no applicant has passed the preliminary test, and this has eliminated the need for formal testing in those cases. There is no limit on the number of times an applicant may re-apply, but re-application can take place only after 12 months have elapsed since the completion of the preliminary test."

So to paraphrase, you have to pass his preliminary test to prove you are a psychic before you can take the test about the cables... and noone has ever passed his preliminary test to move on to test their claim. Now thats an objective scientific test if I ever heard one.

"Any applicant who refuses to agree to meet the rules as outlined here, will not be considered to have ever been an applicant. Only complete agreement with these rules will allow the "applicant" to become a "claimant.""

Now personally, I think most of the people who make claims to Randi are as big a joke as Randi himself. But the fact that those left here discussing this have A. chosen to use this to prove their subjectivist point and B. obviously not even read the fine print makes you guys a joke as well.

If you spent as much time critically listening to different equipment as you do with this dumb subject, this site would be infinitely more interesting and useful.


Maybe it's just me. But I'm totally confused by what your point is. You seem to be all over the map.

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post #381 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 11:53 AM
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Harrypt, your interpretation of the test isn't a reasonable one.

First of all, even though it's true that audio cables and tweaks don't fall under the same category as traditional psychics, paranormals, etc., audio quackery is a personal bugaboo of James Randi's. He is extending the challenge to cover this test.

Second, what the preliminary test means is that basically you have to demonstrate your "abilities" without all of the controls imposed by the test. So if you claim to be able to bend spoons, you actually have to bend one in their presence---whether you do so by trickery or not doesn't matter yet---before they'll go through with the more formal, controlled test. If you can't pass the test with fewer controls, why should they bother testing you with more of them?

We have a good indication of what the primary test would look like in this case, because he's conducted at least one other audio-based challenge before. This other test involved the so-called "Intelligent Chip" which supposedly uses some sort of "quantum dot" effect to permanently treat and improve the sound of a CD. In that preliminary test, the listener was simply required to pass a non-blinded test---one without the controls in place.

So I figure he'll have Michael Fremer come in and do a non-blinded listening test between Pear Cables and Monster Cables. If Michael can't tell the difference non-blinded, it's in his benefit not to go through the test. He can safely say that the cables' performance was identical, to him at least, and walk away.

Michael
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post #382 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Grant View Post

So I figure he'll have Michael Fremer come in and do a non-blinded listening test between Pear Cables and Monster Cables. If Michael can't tell the difference non-blinded, it's in his benefit not to go through the test. He can safely say that the cables' performance was identical, to him at least, and walk away.

Hi Michael,

Could you elaborate for me what a non blinded test would equate to in terms of picking out one cable from another?

Regards,

Sean
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post #383 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 12:13 PM
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I know it may sound silly but I think they will just have Michael go through the motions of switching out the cables, listening, and taking notes of his impressions.

The Intelligent Chip challenge was a bit different because the original claimant didn't achieve a mutually agreed protocol. So someone who was a skeptic, but who was happy to have a chance to win the million dollars, proposed that she be given a chance. They agreed on a blind testing protocol, but she first had to pass a non-blind test. She volunteered that she could not reliably tell the difference between the treated and non-treated discs, so the challenge ended there.

Michael
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post #384 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 12:21 PM
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The mocking of the "first test and second test" by Harry is a pretty good example of how some subjectivists just don't get what's involved in a real test. The "first test" is basically a way of saying "look, we're not going spend a ton of time and a fortune setting up serious scientific tests for every quack". Imagine it this way. Someone claims to be able to jump 6' high. While the claim is simple enough, if someone could really do it you'd want to have video cameras recording it, sensors in place to prove it, multiple witnesses and so forth. Now are you really going to go through the time and expense of all that so that some guy can walk in and jump 2'? Of course not.
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post #385 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 12:46 PM
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By making someone pass his initial test, which is unrelated to the challenge itself, he is breaking his own scientific protocol. This is a promotional stunt by someone who knows nothing and has nothing to do with the audio industry, yet you guys have fallen for it.

It makes the assumption that if someone can tell the difference between cables then they must be psychic. These are unrelated topics so you cannot base a scientific conclusion of one based on the other. If you believe they are related, then you negate the validity of the test at the outset as you've rigged the test to show only what you believe the outcome should be.

Much of science is based on human observation followed by devising a way to measure those observations. I still don't understand how you people have enough interest in audio to post thousands of posts but not enough interest to spend real time exploring your hobby.

This is a bore and I've got to work so I can take Friday off to attend the Denver audio show.
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post #386 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 12:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harrypt View Post

It makes the assumption that if someone can tell the difference between cables then they must be psychic.

I still don't understand how you people have enough interest in audio to post thousands of posts but not enough interest to spend real time exploring your hobby.

How do you know how much time anyone spends exploring their hobby? Are you psychic?
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post #387 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 12:56 PM
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Quote:


By making someone pass his initial test, which is unrelated to the challenge itself, he is breaking his own scientific protocol.

Of course not. He can't be breaking the protocol because initial test is part of the protocol. And it requires that the challenger demonstrate the very talent he is going to use to claim the $1M prize. How in the world is that "unrelated"? I honestly think you don't understand how it works.
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It makes the assumption that if someone can tell the difference between cables then they must be psychic.

First of all, the list is "psychic, supernatural, or paranormal", not just "psychic". I'd say if pressed to dispense with his provoking rhetoric, he would say that the ability to hear differences between speaker cables falls under the "supernatural". That is, electrical differences do exist, but their impact on sound is well below natural human thresholds.

Secondly, it doesn't assume anything, it claims it. The $1M prize is for someone who can prove that claim wrong. But actually it's an even lower threshold than that---the $1M prize goes to anyone who can pass the agreed-upon protocol. If you use some sort of trickery to pass the test, but you followed the test rules, you still win the $1M dollars. So obviously it is in their interest to make sure the test is designed to insure that trickery can be prevented.
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Much of science is based on human observation followed by devising a way to measure those observations.

Yes. And in what way is his approach inconsistent with that?
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I still don't understand how you people have enough interest in audio to post thousands of posts but not enough interest to spend real time exploring your hobby.

I don't blow off my hobby to post here, I blow off work. But hey, to each his own.
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This is a bore

It might be more interesting if you understood it better!

Michael
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post #388 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 01:04 PM
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Well, Fremer has accepted, right? So, we'll all see how it goes.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
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post #389 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QQQ View Post

How do you know how much time anyone spends exploring their hobby? Are you psychic?

I knew you were going to ask that!

"It is worse still to be ignorant of your ignorance."
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post #390 of 1770 Old 10-10-2007, 01:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael Grant View Post

It might be more interesting if you understood it better!

Come on now, do you really think it would be more interesting?

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