Are audio companies all involved in a huge conspiracy? - Page 79 - AVS Forum
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post #2341 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

That kind of test has no relevance for real life. If you are limiting the test to what's possible to compare in that way, you ignore how things are in real life. And then you end up with a statement that "all amps sound the same" which only is correct within that small subset. While the truth is that almost every amplifier made can be detected when compared to the signal it was told to amplify and it's quite hard to make different designs color exactly the same.

A lot of people seem to think that these tests are for consumers. In some sense they are, but I think they're best for designers, who can use them as input data on what sorts of changes customers can actually hear. Design updates can be expensive and it's best to concentrate on those that will actually be perceived.

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post #2342 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 07:47 AM
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Originally Posted by JD in NJ View Post

If that undulating curve in the diagram you posted is the FR of the Jadis, there's no reason to expect a device with such a horrifyingly bad response curve to sound like anything else.

It's Stereophile's measurement of it.

It's a amplifier. Sold as an amplifier. And reviewed by the same major magazine like this:
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The Short Form: Glamorous, sexy, seductive, emotive, emotional and dynamic, so gorgeous you just want to bed it now! Sorry, I lost my head. But...that's the point. You want to know what the sound of the Jadis SE300Bs was? It was the sound of music (with apologies to Julie Andrews.)

And then you design the test with such narrow parameters that you aren't allowing this one to be tested... which would lead to it being detected... and the question "why?" would be raised.

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post #2343 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

It's Stereophile's measurement of it.

It's a amplifier. Sold as an amplifier. And reviewed by the same major magazine like this:
And then you design the test with such narrow parameters that you aren't allowing this one to be tested... which would lead to it being detected... and the question "why?" would be raised.

"Why?" Because no matter what some silly reviewer has to say, that amplifier does not come close to doing what I would expect of such a device. It's distinctly coloring the sound, so it's acting as an amplifier integrated with a non-adjustable equalizer.

That reviewer seems very smitten with the looks of the amp, which leads me to recall a rather sexist but not completely inaccurate remark I've seen numerous times: No matter what she looks like, someone, somewhere, is tired of putting up with her [expletive deleted]. I suspect I'd grow rather tired of an amplifier that I could not count on to amplify in a correct manner, no matter what it looked like, and no matter how much I told myself it was OK that I'd paid so much for it. I'm assuming that this is a very expensive piece of equipment, given the orgasmic response it received at Stereophile.
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post #2344 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by GregLee View Post

I think you should be skeptical of claims that such phase cancellation is audible. You don't hear it because you're a human, and our ears are not very sensitive to phase differences. This is like the people who are absolutely convinced that center speakers with several side-by-side drivers have got to sound bad because of those cancellation nulls. They're sure they hear them because instruments and physics say they're there. How could anyone not hear them?

It may not be terribly noticeable, but if I could move fast enough, I ought to be able to get a (bandwidth limited) phasing or chorus effect. I think the general consensus is we are relatively immune ti dips, at least that are narrow in frequency and that may contribute to it. But while I could identify the rough FR and depth of the upper midrange dip in my Sonus Fabers by ear (it was over an octave wide) I genuinely believe that a person could train themselves to identify much narrower FR aberrations.

Moreover, the fact that we might not be actively disturbed by the frequency anomalies that are undoubteldy created by some center designs does not mean we would not be able to discern a difference if presented with sound lacking those anomalies.

It all depends . . .
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post #2345 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by JD in NJ View Post

"Why?" Because no matter what some silly reviewer has to say, that amplifier does not come close to doing what I would expect of such a device. It's distinctly coloring the sound, so it's acting as an amplifier integrated with a non-adjustable equalizer.

But still you would not allow it into an ABX vs something that is technically sound and be detected? How could we ever get to have a balanced discussion if a lot of the stuff that people out there buy and perhaps incorrectly believe to be superior* will not get properly debated? If you allow everything to be tested, and if detected then you go into why and also describe the natur of the deviations that made detection possible... then you both achieve the result of making people who don't want such deviations stay away... and you make it much easier for those who DO want them due to setting up a system for personal taste.


* A lot of people tend to believe that price is a way to judge quality, for reference these Jadis:es costed $13,000/pair in 1996.

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post #2346 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

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Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post

And what would the point of that be?

In this thread - just to show you that your logic wasn't bulletproof. You only know what was voted - not why. You can phrase yourself in another way that doesn't open up for such issues. That's all.
 

 

And you think that in all the ABX tests so far conducted, a significant number of the testees have set out to deliberately screw up the test by falsifying their results?  Come on....



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post #2347 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

But still you would not allow it into an ABX vs something that is technically sound and be detected? How could we ever get to have a balanced discussion if a lot of the stuff that people out there buy and perhaps incorrectly believe to be superior* will not get properly debated? If you allow everything to be tested, and if detected then you go into why and also describe the natur of the deviations that made detection possible... then you both achieve the result of making people who don't want such deviations stay away... and you make it much easier for those who DO want them due to setting up a system for personal taste.


* A lot of people tend to believe that price is a way to judge quality, for reference these Jadis:es costed $13,000/pair in 1996.

If I was paying for the test, it would only be a test candidate if other amplifiers with smaller deviations in FR had already been shown to be indistinguishable from 'flatter' designs. Basically it's a matter of not wasting my energy or money on something that's really very likely to be perceived as sounding different from other designs. Now, if there was a history of tests that showed us people could not reliably discern differences between rather flat amplifiers and ones with bad response but less bad than the one in the illustration, one might go ahead and test to see how far one can push it.

*Based on the outrageous curve of the amp I had already suspected it was very expensive 'audiophile' grade stuff.

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post #2348 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

But still you would not allow it into an ABX vs something that is technically sound and be detected? How could we ever get to have a balanced discussion if a lot of the stuff that people out there buy and perhaps incorrectly believe to be superior will not get properly debated? If you allow everything to be tested, and if detected then you go into why and also describe the natur of the deviations that made detection possible... then you both achieve the result of making people who don't want such deviations stay away... and you make it much easier for those who DO want them due to setting up a system for personal taste.

AFAIK, nobody has ever remotely suggested that amps that measure far differently in frequency response are indistinguishable. In fact, I'd expect everybody, both objectivist and subjectivist, to agree that the kinds of departures from flat the Jadis presents should be audible to almost anybody, with source material that has significant content in the un-flat areas. Kind of a no brainer,

the argument, really, has focused on whether amps tha measure the same (or very close) are audibly different.

Now as far as whether a person LIKES the Jadis, that's another thing entirely. It reminds me of my love affair with speakers that have a depressed frequency response in the presence region (high mids). I LOVE that sound. My sonus fabers had it in spades and I loved those speakers. They made string instruments sound burnished, voices sound smooth, etc. but left the highs intact so cymbals etc came through gloriously. SOunded good to me on small band jazz, too. What they could not do, though, is make a hard-blowing medium to largehorn section sound like it was awake. There is apparently (at least for me) critical sonic 'information" in the presence region that captures the truth of a horn section blowing hard, and it was gone with the SFs. But it took me a good decade or so to even notice. If finances allowed, I'd still have the SFs somewhere because they are so beautiful with so much of what I listen to. But I'd know (as I always knew) they were departing from accuracy ("truth" if you prefer, at least with minimally miced uncompressed recordings) in a way that happened to apeal to me.
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post #2349 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:19 AM
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Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post

And you think that in all the ABX tests so far conducted, a significant number of the testees have set out to deliberately screw up the test by falsifying their results?  Come on....

Never said or believed anything like that. I just proved the possibility of such a case, which is enough to fault your statement. I only want you to phrase your statement differently so that you take the case I brought forwards out of the picture. It's only about logic and semantics.

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post #2350 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:20 AM
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AFAIK, nobody has ever remotely suggested that amps that measure far differently in frequency response are indistinguishable. In fact, I'd expect everybody, both objectivist and subjectivist, to agree that the kinds of departures from flat the Jadis presents should be audible to almost anybody, with source material that has significant content in the un-flat areas. Kind of a no brainer,

the argument, really, has focused on whether amps tha measure the same (or very close) are audibly different.

Now as far as whether a person LIKES the Jadis, that's another thing entirely. It reminds me of my love affair with speakers that have a depressed frequency response in the presence region (high mids). I LOVE that sound. My sonus fabers had it in spades and I loved those speakers. They made string instruments sound burnished, voices sound smooth, etc. but left the highs intact so cymbals etc came through gloriously. SOunded good to me on small band jazz, too. What they could not do, though, is make a hard-blowing medium to largehorn section sound like it was awake. There is apparently (at least for me) critical sonic 'information" in the presence region that captures the truth of a horn section blowing hard, and it was gone with the SFs. But it took me a good decade or so to even notice. If finances allowed, I'd still have the SFs somewhere because they are so beautiful with so much of what I listen to. But I'd know (as I always knew) they were departing from accuracy ("truth" if you prefer, at least with minimally miced uncompressed recordings) in a way that happened to apeal to me.

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post #2351 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by JD in NJ View Post

Now, if there was a history of tests that showed us people could not reliably discern differences between rather flat amplifiers and ones with bad response but less bad than the one in the illustration, one might go ahead and test to see how far one can push it.

Yes, that's what I want.

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post #2352 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:24 AM
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AFAIK, nobody has ever remotely suggested that amps that measure far differently in frequency response are indistinguishable. In fact, I'd expect everybody, both objectivist and subjectivist, to agree that the kinds of departures from flat the Jadis presents should be audible to almost anybody, with source material that has significant content in the un-flat areas. Kind of a no brainer,

For you and me, sure. But don't expect the average buyer of audio/home theater equipment to know and understand that. It's those I want to enlighten/save.

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post #2353 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 08:25 AM
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Yes, that's what I want.

Go for it! I eagerly await your findings as to how far from flat a response curve must be before most people notice it.

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Go for it! I eagerly await your findings as to how far from flat a response curve must be before most people notice it.

It's not just frequency response. There are other colorations too.

I'm just waiting on the couple of billion dollars donation and I'll get right on it. You'll get a hifi themepark/museum at the same time.

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post #2355 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 09:34 AM
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I can take an ABX test where I clearly hear a difference but choose to score in such an average fashion that it seems like random guesses. Then the test does not tell whether I heard or not, it only tells what I voted.
So you'd cheat then. Well at least you'd have something in common with Lance Armstrong - you'd both have zero Tour de France victories!

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post #2356 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 09:56 AM
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So you'd cheat then. Well at least you'd have something in common with Lance Armstrong - you'd both have zero Tour de France victories!

And you totally missed the point of the example, who does that make you? The guy who mixed up metric and imperial on NASAs Mars probe? wink.gif

The point was, there's nothing in the result specifying how it came about. That's just up for more or less statistically founded speculation.


Besides, if they keep disqualifying people, who knows? biggrin.gif

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post #2357 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 10:53 AM
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For some reason tube amps are still popular regardless of all the cheap "perfect" modern amps available. These folks enjoy the sound, so that is what matters most. There are some folks who own and enjoy antique Western Electric systems even though they could probably afford top quality modern gear prefer that antique quality sound.

If your goal is flat frequency response and lowest distortion that's great but it isn't the only "right" way. Some people should get off their high horse and face the facts that measurements and specs are not the end all be all to music listening enjoyment!
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For some reason tube amps are still popular regardless of all the cheap "perfect" modern amps available.
What kind of tube amps?
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Some people should get off their high horse and face the facts that measurements and specs are not the end all be all to music listening enjoyment!
Can you quote some of them?
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post #2359 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 11:32 AM
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For you and me, sure. But don't expect the average buyer of audio/home theater equipment to know and understand that. It's those I want to enlighten/save.

Hopefully you are trying to save them from spending 13k on amps that have a frequency response that looks like the skyline of a mountain range when they could buy a well designed amp for a few hundred dollars that has a frequency response the looks like the horizon on a calm ocean!
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post #2360 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 11:36 AM
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What kind of tube amps?
Can you quote some of them?

Push pull and SET.

Quote what? If a tube amp doesn't measure flat you guys think it is no good, right?

P.S. I am not looking to argue. If you don't like what I wrote so be it.
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Push pull and SET.
Why do you include push pull when the sound can be replicated with transistor amp and equalizer?
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Quote what?
You said, "Some people should get off their high horse and face the facts that measurements and specs are not the end all be all to music listening enjoyment!". Who are they?
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If a tube amp doesn't measure flat you guys think it is no good, right?
Define "good" in this context.
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post #2362 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 11:51 AM
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Why do you include push pull when the sound can be replicated with transistor amp and equalizer?
You said, "Some people should get off their high horse and face the facts that measurements and specs are not the end all be all to music listening enjoyment!". Who are they?
Define "good" in this context.

You win, you so smart!
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If a tube amp doesn't measure flat you guys think it is no good, right?
Yes, but that's an opinion, not a fact. And most of us guys do get the distinction.

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The whole point of an amplifier is to amplify the power of the input signal as accurately as possible without degrading the original signal.

As far as I am concerned an amplifier should measure flat at least in the audible frequency range. If its not doing that then its adding its own sonic signature to the signal. If I don't have any EQ settings turned on or DSP modes active, the output signal should have the same signature waveform of the original only with larger power.
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post #2365 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 12:22 PM
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For some reason tube amps are still popular regardless of all the cheap "perfect" modern amps available. These folks enjoy the sound, so that is what matters most. There are some folks who own and enjoy antique Western Electric systems even though they could probably afford top quality modern gear prefer that antique quality sound.

Usually, this is about sentimentality whether its called that or not.
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If your goal is flat frequency response and lowest distortion that's great but it isn't the only "right" way. Some people should get off their high horse and face the facts that measurements and specs are not the end all be all to music listening enjoyment!

Which high horse are you talking about? The high horse I'm familiar with includes tube promoters that call SS amps things like "sand state, grit and all".
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You win, you so smart!
You seem to have a grudge against some imaginary characters. rolleyes.gif
Put some music through your favorite amp and relax.
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Usually, this is about sentimentality whether its called that or not.
Which high horse are you talking about? The high horse I'm familiar with includes tube promoters that call SS amps things like "sand state, grit and all".

I guess I am just reminding people this hobby is subjective that's all, two guys walk into a room at a show the one thinks wow what great speakers, the other well too much detail and lean bottom end!
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If a tube amp doesn't measure flat you guys think it is no good, right?

Most tubed amps measure pretty flat into resistive loads, but do not measure nearly as flat into real world speaker loads.

http://www.stereophile.com/content/air-tight-atm-211-tube-monoblock-power-amplifier-measurements



The curvy, humped line is this amp's frequency response into Stereophile's standard speaker simulator.

Pick a different speaker load, and you get a different frequency response curve.

The amp operates something like an equalizer whose settings can't be controlled by the user, and are pretty close to being chosen at random.

Let's call this "The Las Vegas school of power amp design".
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post #2369 of 3048 Old 03-15-2013, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Nightlord View Post

That kind of test has no relevance for real life. If you are limiting the test to what's possible to compare in that way, you ignore how things are in real life.

The problem is that a test involving an amplifier with audible frequency response variations is too easy, and sheds very little light.

Of course you are going to hear a difference in any ABX test comparing the say, the Jadis to a normal amp with flat response!

You are going to hear a difference due to the frequency response variations. If this surprises you, grab a pointed cap and pick a chair in the corner! ;-)

These forums of full of posts by audiophiles who claim to hear differences among power amps with low distortion and good frequency response. Note such statements as: 'Yamaha AVRs sound bright".

A Google search on Yamaha AVRs sound bright gets 712,000 hits!
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Originally Posted by Nightlord 

But still you would not allow it into an ABX vs something that is technically sound and be detected? How could we ever get to have a balanced discussion if a lot of the stuff that people out there buy and perhaps incorrectly believe to be superior* will not get properly debated? If you allow everything to be tested, and if detected then you go into why and also describe the natur of the deviations that made detection possible... then you both achieve the result of making people who don't want such deviations stay away... and you make it much easier for those who DO want them due to setting up a system for personal taste.


* A lot of people tend to believe that price is a way to judge quality, for reference these Jadis:es costed $13,000/pair in 1996.

You missed an important bit along the way. In many dbt's such as the ones Clark has performed, and in any future tests you might propose, "obviously flawed" amps like the jadis were allowed. In those cases, you simply add an appropriate filter to the "cheaper" amp - ie the one presumed inferior, and typically the better performing one, in this case the bryston I suppose - such that its frequency response matched the presumed superior amp's gorgeous sexy seductive sound. Often can be accomplished with a few dollars worth of passive components. These cases also have sailed through many such dbt's.

Would you still want the Jadis if a behringer amp and a handful of radioshack parts was audibly identical?

Now if there is excessive harmonic distortion, that may require more effort to match and ultimately maybe too much effort. Not sure if the jadis falls into that category. Though I suppose a behringer and distortion pedal would be worth a shot! smile.gif

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