Debate Thread: Scott's Hi-res Audio Test - Page 89 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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Old 07-30-2014, 01:29 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk
Good amplifiers have very low distortion up to their maximum output. When they reach their maximum output its like their output hits a brick wall, they can increase their output no further.

Some will brag that their amplifier has soft clipping, and this sounds intuitively nice until you realize what that involves.

Going back to our 50 watt amplifier above, to make it clip softly, you have to give up linearity above a certain point like say 15 volts. Your soft clipping amplifier is clean up to 15 volts, it is pretty dirty from 15 volts up to 20 volts and then linearity goes all cattywumpus above that.

What soft clipping did is turn a clean 50 watt amp into an amp that is only clean up to 28 watts. Such a deal! ;-)
Cool post thanks a lot very usefull information for me teach ! Not sure if my Crown XTi 2 has soft clipping but I'll check it out in any event it's got more power than I will ever use any way and is big overkill (now that I learned that from you also earlier ) for job here but it works good and I got a swinging deal on it ☺☺
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Old 07-30-2014, 01:30 PM
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Without Amir, we wouldn't learn so much from Arnold (Arny).

Without Amir, we might learn much more useful things from Arny.
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If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 07-30-2014, 01:52 PM
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I was an NAD dealer for a long time and when they [1980s/90s] advertised an amp or receiver as "50 watts" that meant with the optional soft clipping switch set to the "OFF" position it truly could put out 50 clean watts per channel, following the six FTC stipulations, NOT that it was really more like 28 watts, cleanly, as has been suggested.

I can't speak to other brands, however.
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In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". We don't "pick" the level of bass, etc., any more than we pick the ending of a play. High fidelity means an unmodified, neutral, exact copy (or "reproduction") of the original artist's tonal balance, timing, dynamics, etc..

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Old 07-30-2014, 02:14 PM
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I was an NAD dealer for a long time and when they [1980s/90s] advertised an amp or receiver as "50 watts/ch" that meant with the optional soft clipping switch set to the "OFF" position it truly could put out 50 clean watts per channel, following the six FTC stipulations, NOT that it was really more like 28 watts, cleanly, as has been suggested.

Yes, but the problem came when you turned soft clipping ON. NAD claimed (correctly) that you would get somewhat cleaner power somewhat above 50 watts. But they downplayed the fact that the output would be somewhat less clean somewhat below 50 watts.

Now, that's hardly the biggest deal in the world, and NAD was producing a legitimate 50-watt amp. Till it broke.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 07-30-2014, 02:47 PM
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I could be wrong but...

If this thread had taken the approach of disclosing what the audible differences were with the time stamps, it might've moved to a discussion of the imperfections or limitations in the sample rate converters. Maybe there'd be a brief segue into the claims of hi-res and whether the listening tests supported it. We could have looked at whether different approaches led to harder or impossible to detect or even if the differences wer now found in different places.

Instead, it rapidly became a thread with put downs, clever insults, and name calling by the principals, Amir and Arny, which advanced nothing.

We might have found out whether some versions of the software were better. Or maybe it was a matter of some computer settings. But no. Arny, who seems to have provided the bulk of the samples is told by Atkinson that he's got junk. Maybe not that exact word but that's the impression. Atkinson, who presumably does not have junk, and may well have access to stuff that Arny and others don't, could well have taken one of the files and converted it. Or, since he has nice microphones, could have recorded jangling keys or whatever himself in hi-res and down sampled.

We could have learned something and maybe eliminated a thousand or more posts. But I did learn that there appears to be only one person in Brooklyn that uses the word pedantic.
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Old 07-30-2014, 02:48 PM
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"Downplayed"? Not as I see it. NAD never claimed "50 watts" yet this was only obtainable with the circuit engaged--it really could do 50 clean watts. They made it a point to make the circuit an optional, switchable choice, with an explanation to the owner as to why, and as far as I'm concerned they were perfectly upfront about what it did both in advertising and in owners manuals:


"SOFT CLIPPING™: Enables NAD’s proprietary Soft Clipping circuitry


on all channels. At [ON] position, Soft Clipping gently limits the output


of the C 326BEE to minimize audible distortion should the amplifier be


over-driven. Soft Clipping may simply be left ON at all times to reduce


the likelihood of audible distortion from excessive volume settings.


However, for critical listening and to preserve optimum dynamics, you


may wish to defeat it by setting this switch to “OFF” position.


The SOFT CLIPPING indicator on the front panel will illuminate when the


C 326BEE is in Soft Clipping mode."


Source: http://www.superfi.co.uk/images/manu...BEE_manual.pdf





In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". We don't "pick" the level of bass, etc., any more than we pick the ending of a play. High fidelity means an unmodified, neutral, exact copy (or "reproduction") of the original artist's tonal balance, timing, dynamics, etc..

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Old 07-30-2014, 03:02 PM
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Yeah, that's the marketing fluff. What did the spec sheet say?

I'll bet it gave a power/distortion spec with soft clipping off, but not with soft clipping on. So it's honest, but slightly incomplete. (As spec sheets usually are.)

Look, I'm not trying to beat up on NAD here. I'm just agreeing with Arny that soft clipping comes at a price, and noting that NAD's marketing was somewhat coy about that price. Hardly the worse offense in the audio world.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 07-30-2014, 03:08 PM
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Too many two-bit posts for a 16 vs 24 bit exploration.

I'll be back later...


System links::: 1.5RQ > digits from all sources > 1177a > OpenDRC-DI > DEQ2496 > DAC2 > KCT > FPB 350mcx > reQuest + Cheezewoofer Wattless Deluxe > Sweetspot
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Old 07-30-2014, 03:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post
Instead, it rapidly became a thread with put downs, clever insults, and name calling by the principals, Amir and Arny, which advanced nothing.
Ironic since this thread was created as a "courtesy" for Scott to deflect.
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Old 07-30-2014, 03:40 PM
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Marketing "fluff"? Everything they have said there is factually correct. If you disagree you need to be specific about which point is in error.


"I'll bet it gave a power/distortion spec with soft clipping off, but not with soft clipping on. So it's honest, but slightly incomplete. (As spec sheets usually are.)"


The whole point of soft clipping is that it still distorts but that it distorts in a more graceful manner which is less offensive to the ear, at least for a short while. It is impossible to describe this with numbers so it's no wonder spec sheets will be vague on this point. There is a perceptual component at play and the only way to test that is through listeners. Perhaps:


"Our tests show that our 50 watt amp when overdriven sounds just as bad as anyone else's 50 watt amp, however with the optional soft clipping feature engaged most casual listeners report no problems at all even when the amp is distorting on musical peaks of 20mS or less which occur for less than 10% of the time, at 1kHz, at a level which matches that of a 75 watt amp into the same 8 ohm load that isn't distorting at all."


You can't easily condense that concept into a single spec. and a different team of listeners or different music material may yield different results. It's a perceptual thing not a numbers thing.

"Look, I'm not trying to beat up on NAD here. I'm just agreeing with Arny that soft clipping comes at a price, and noting that NAD's marketing was somewhat coy about that price. Hardly the worse offense in the audio world."

Find me one of these ads you object to and we'll discuss it further.

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Old 07-30-2014, 03:41 PM
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@amirm
@stereoeditor

I have a question for you guys.

I already said that I think that amir's test results are significant in terms of ABX testing. However, I am still pondering their importance, and I become curious about what kind of importance you attribute to them.

Amir, you deal in high end installations. John Atkinson is Stereophile's editor. What will you tell your clients/readers? Will you tell them that hires audio is demonstrably different/better than standard res, but that, in order to appreciate such difference, they must train they ears, then find a significant segment of a song, than play it back and forth? Or will you tell them the usual stuff (sound stage, air, clarity and so on)?
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Old 07-30-2014, 03:43 PM
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Hey , has anyone heard HDMI jitter yet?
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Old 07-30-2014, 03:49 PM
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Me, personally, I learned much more from the mature and technical exchanges between Amir and Arny. ...That's what a good debate is about.
I see two guys who are much more advanced than all the rest (most of us).

I wish I can contribute technically by listening to their hi-res audio files (Scott, Arny, Amir, Ethan), and develop, observe, improve, share my results. I am simply too lazy.

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Old 07-30-2014, 03:49 PM
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Marketing "fluff"? Everything they have said there is factually correct.

Yes. The tell is what they don't say.

The whole point of soft clipping is that it still distorts but that it distorts in a more graceful manner which is less offensive to the ear, at least for a short while. It is impossible to describe this with numbers so it's no wonder spec sheets will be vague on this point.

Poppycock. You flip the switch on and plot a FR vs. distortion curve, just like you do with the switch off. If a single point on that curve is good enough for the spec sheet when the switch is off, then a single point on that curve is good enough for the spec sheet when the switch is on.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 07-30-2014, 04:10 PM
 
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Originally Posted by krabapple View Post
Hey , has anyone heard HDMI jitter yet?
No haven't seen it either ,but both Samsung and Sony assured me I would never see or hear that on my TV's and there was no need for expensive HDMI cables and I could just go ahead and buy inexpensive Monoprice or Amazon or whatever basic cables and as long as they were HDMI 1.4-2.0 high speed certified they would be guaranteed to be jitter free just like the TV's ! (ofc we bever discussed mpeg artifacts or mosquito noise or CATV/SAT HDLite re transmission either.

I want some of that sound stage, air, clarity and so on + maybe some shimmering highs, articulate bass and fluid micro dynamics for my headphones and speakers where can I buy some?

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Old 07-30-2014, 05:00 PM
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Originally Posted by antoniobiz1 View Post
@amirm
@stereoeditor

Amir, you deal in high end installations. John Atkinson is Stereophile's editor. What will you tell your clients/readers? Will you tell them that hires audio is demonstrably different/better than standard res, but that, in order to appreciate such difference, they must train they ears, then find a significant segment of a song, than play it back and forth?
Not at all. Human perception is not a linear process. As I said in my AES Richard Heyser Memorial lecture - see http://www.stereophile.com/content/2...ring-sound-qua - I discussed the standard model of how human beings don't perceive reality directly but instead construct internal models based on their experience and expectations. Those models are updated when new stimuli are recognized, However, until that recognition takes place, new properties of the stimulus are ignored. They are simply not perceived.

In my lecture I mentioned the well-known example of Edison's 1915 live vs recorded demonstration between the live voice of soprano Anna Case and his Diamond Disc Phonograph, where, given the audience's unfamiliarity with the flaws of the phonograph, they could not perceive any difference between Ms. Cases' voice and the reproduction of it. But once the flaws become familiar, what was once non-existent first becomes subtly noticeable, then significant. Witness the postings in this thread where people who thought there was no difference learned to recognize it. Perception involves learning - the ear is not a microphone.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

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Old 07-30-2014, 05:27 PM
 
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Posting Edited by original poster see posts 2748 and 2749 for comment

isa ,
Daily driver PC playback chain with 192kHz amplified sound card and Sennsheiser head phones capable of resolving 27kHz has no trouble passing the IM test and the pro gear in the studio can do that to a much higher degree and I should be able to see it in a DAW also .


As far as Thomas Edison is concerned he was just as big of a thief as Steve jobs and promoted DC (direct current ) as the better solution to to use for ordinary household current for his monetary gain eg,Edison electric AKA Conn Edison it was not until a few years later and many house fires and electrocutions that Westinghouse's much safer AC (alternating current ) as we know it today was deemed to be a safer better solution.and DC current for the home was removed .

I also do not believe someone who has been an audio enthusiast and has owned decent systems for well over 30 yrs and has a working digital recording studio or any consumer should have to 'train their ears 'to hear what should be a very obvious significant value added benefit from hires music vs Rebook CD 16/44.1 that perhaps may or may not exist ,that to me is not reasonable in my opinion. Maybe train to hear very small faint as yet unidentified anomalies as some have alleged here that they can do possibly hardly proof of anything at all beyond that as some allege .



Don't worry Arimn can't cut you off here at AVS only a moderator can do that he is a forum member just like us nothing more nothing less they can not ban you from a particular thread but they can lock a thread and silence the whole ofc I would certainly heed any moderators warnings however.



I routinely work with 24/48 mostly ,occasional 24/96 in studio projects both only for manipulative /editing overhead or for 24/48 uploading to iTunes or Amazon etc. not better sound quality s I have what I believe is good reason for my opinions none of this is new for me in practice .

Good post BTW . I don't put up with anyone trying to bully me in my personal life much less an internet forum ain't happening some people haven't figured it out yet too bad for them ! I also believe arny is credible and without ulterior motives just check out his likes !

regards .
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Old 07-30-2014, 05:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stereoeditor View Post
the well-known example of Edison's 1915 live vs recorded demonstration between the live voice of soprano Anna Case and his Diamond Disc Phonograph, where, given the audience's unfamiliarity with the flaws of the photograph, they could not perceive any difference between Ms. Cases' voice and the reproduction of it.

EVERY single person in attendance could perceive a difference. They were just being polite, and/or speaking in generalities ["Yes, it sounds the same, Mr Edison, just like you said it would!"], so as to not offend Mr Edison, et al, or disparage his ground breaking new toy he was so proudly showing off to them. [It was also a sighted comparison, not blind, not level matched, and I suspect the "test" had other flaws as well.]

In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". We don't "pick" the level of bass, etc., any more than we pick the ending of a play. High fidelity means an unmodified, neutral, exact copy (or "reproduction") of the original artist's tonal balance, timing, dynamics, etc..

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Old 07-30-2014, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stereoeditor View Post
Witness the postings in this thread where people who thought there was no difference learned to recognize it.

With backing ABX results? I must have missed those posts. Please provide links, thanks.

In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". We don't "pick" the level of bass, etc., any more than we pick the ending of a play. High fidelity means an unmodified, neutral, exact copy (or "reproduction") of the original artist's tonal balance, timing, dynamics, etc..
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:04 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubetwister View Post

Back to the non linear distortion thing I think I get this for the most part ,

"For larger values of u, the higher order coefficients such as a_2 and a_3 come into play." -wikipedia -

not to sure about this stuff so much though ,
I'm going to try to keep this discussion math-less. ;-)

So far we've been talking about nonlinear distortion of the most obvious and clear cut kind, which is to say: clipping. In clipping the input signal tries to drive the output to places it was never designed to go and it completely balks.

the Wikipedia example of clipping was:

"For many devices, a linear model is accurate only for small signal levels. For example, at 2 volts input, a typical audio amplifier might put out 20 V, meaning the linear gain is 10 V/V. For 3 V input, it might then output 30 V. However, the model implies that at 50 V input it would produce 500 V, which is not possible with most amplifiers."

The other form of nonlinear distortion is not nearly as obvious nor as clear cut.

My paraphrased change to the above describing the other more gradual form of nonlinear distortion than clipping would be:

For all real world devices, a linear model is accurate only for small signal levels. For example, at 2 volts input, a typical audio amplifier might put out 20 V, meaning that the linear gain is 10 V/V. For 3 V input, the amplifier might output 29 V, meaning that the gain has dropped from 10 V/V for the first 2 volts of input to 9 V/V for the last volt of input.

Basically, the figurative little engine in the amplifier that accurately pulled the output from 0 to 2 volts lost a little steam, and when presented with a command to put out 10 more volts, it only managed to put out 9 volts. The dynamic range of this kind of device also eventually runs into a brick wall (clipping), but first there are these smaller errors.

Here is what happened graphically:



The blue line represents an ideal linear amplifier, while the pink line represents this particular form of nonlinearity.

This graph shows why this is called third order harmonic distortion:




The upper wave is at the fundamental frequency. Note that in the given time interval there is just one positive peak. This represents the pure signal.

The lower wave is at 3X the fundamental frequency. Note that in the given time interval there are three positive peaks. This wave represents the distortion.

If you add the two waves together, note what happens at the time marked with the red line. The first negative peak of the third harmonic cancels the positive peak of the fundamental (makes the peak value of the positive sum of the two waves less positive, which is what happened in the other plot).

Also note what happens at the time marked with the blue line.
The last positive peak of the third harmonic cancels the negative peak of the fundamental (makes the peak value of the negative sum of the two waves less negative, which also is what happened in the other plot).

So we can say that the addition of the third harmonic distortion accomplished the same graphically as we saw happen in the first plot of the output of the amp plotted against the input to the amp.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m. zillch View Post
With backing ABX results?
Yes

Quote:
I must have missed those posts. Please provide links, thanks.
Look through the thread and you will find examples. One was from iMagic, IIRC.

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Old 07-30-2014, 06:19 PM
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I am reading, I am listening, I am taking it all in with very reasoned attention. ...isa & tubetwister, and all the other posters.

* Arny, I did not know much @ all about you before. And everything I've read from you so far is from a true pro gentleman not shy to be a real man, and an accomplished technical contributor on everything audio, science, people, truth, human psychology ...related.
You have my highest regards mister.

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In my mind & heart I know where my comfort zone is.
In my music & movies I know when my emotions and soul are @ peace.

<<>> Can I ask an off topic question...Ethan Winer, is he a member here @ AVS Forum?
Because Ethan can contribute greatly here technically in this thread, and everywhere else.

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Old 07-30-2014, 06:21 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tubetwister View Post
Don't suppose anyone anyone's seen any third or maybe sixth order and beyond non linear distortion in the keys files here ............... or would that be a stretch ?
If people overdrive their amplifiers then the usual result is symmetrical clipping which is the same as odd-order distortion. Odd order distortion is composed of third, fifth, seventh, nineth and so on harmonics.

This is what a cleanly clipped wave looks like:



This is what its spectral contents look like:



You can see the fundamental at 1 KHz and all of the odd harmonics a 3 KHz, 5 KHz, 7 KHz, etc.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:23 PM
 
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<<>> Can I ask an off topic question...Ethan Winer, is he a member here @ AVS Forum?
Because Ethan can contribute greatly here technically in this thread, and everywhere else.

Yes, Ethan has an account here, and posts here. His postings are somewhat throttled by the fact that he has several day jobs.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:30 PM
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... I also believe arny is credible and without ulterior motives just check out his likes !

regards .
Don't look @ the "likes" of someone, look @ that someone.

P.S. Thx Arny regarding Ethan.

~ Bob
"And it stoned me to my soul"
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:47 PM
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Amir plays a game of appearing to be all about science, but that couldn't be further from the truth. No later than July 13, Amir created a thread in his WTF forum entitled "Conclusive "Proof" that higher resolution audio sounds different". From that date on if not sooner, any true commitment to thoughtful discussion and the scientific method was over with Amir, even if he didn't have the guts to admit his position here. For those of us now wise to his tricks, he likely put the term "proof" in quotes to appeal to his sycophants while reserving the right to deny in a superficial manner he meant that in jest to those aligned with the scientific method. His blizzard of posts across two websites now allows him to cherrypick his own text for quotes to support whatever misleading message he decides to emphasize next.

Gee, why am I not surprised. He gives audio salesmen a bad name, and that really is saying something.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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Old 07-30-2014, 06:53 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m. zillch
With backing ABX results?
Quote:
Originally Posted by stereoeditor
Yes
Quote:
Originally Posted by m. zillch
I must have missed those posts. Please provide links, thanks.


Quote:
Originally Posted by stereoeditor
Look through the thread and you will find examples. One was from iMagic, IIRC.
John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

John See below


Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic

I want to make sure nobody mistakenly thinks that I'm claiming the hi-res version sounds better. All I did was find a way to hone in on a tiny difference in the transient details that acted as a "tell." I don't know if IM distortion is the reason for it, or if it has to do with resampling 24/96 to 16/44.1—a process that I've never been convinced is truly transparent. I'd feel more comfortable comparing 24/88 to 16/44, or 24/96 to 16/48. Perhaps it is something else altogether.
It seems perhaps imagic's post was not quite like you stated above perhaps you should check your references here ..........journalism 101 ...so where is the proof hires is better ?............... Now you know why I don't buy the magazine . good thing you are your own editor huh ?

Last edited by tubetwister; 07-30-2014 at 07:17 PM.
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Old 07-30-2014, 06:54 PM
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[edit to add: Note post time compared to above. That is, I never saw this post, above, before posting mine.]
Quote:
Originally Posted by stereoeditor View Post
Yes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by stereoeditor View Post
Look through the thread and you will find examples. One was from iMagic, IIRC.
I guess you are counting this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagic View Post
I want to make sure nobody mistakenly thinks that I'm claiming the hi-res version sounds better. All I did was find a way to hone in on a tiny difference in the transient details that acted as a "tell." I don't know if IM distortion is the reason for it, or if it has to do with resampling 24/96 to 16/44.1—a process that I've never been convinced is truly transparent.
Besides him, the only other two people to pass Arny's ABX test are me an amirm. I keyed off a subtle flaw I believe Arny has now fixed, and amirm didn't describe his beliefs as "thought there was no difference [but subsequently] learned to recognize it".


BTW, were you able to get ABX working on your Mac platform [which Arny provided possible links for about a week ago after you asked for them] so that we might see your double blind test results? I'm sure lots of people here besides just me would be most curious to see your results!

In A/V reproduction accuracy, there is no concept of "accounting for taste". We don't "pick" the level of bass, etc., any more than we pick the ending of a play. High fidelity means an unmodified, neutral, exact copy (or "reproduction") of the original artist's tonal balance, timing, dynamics, etc..

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Old 07-30-2014, 07:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post

Gee, why am I not surprised. He gives audio salesmen a bad name, and that really is saying something.
+1 Most of us here with a minimum amount of common sense are not surprised just one more reason to
advocate regulatory intervention in the industry

Posting edited by original poster see postings 2748 and 2749 for more comments

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Old 07-30-2014, 07:20 PM
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this is almost tooooo easy

Amir = fish

AVS = barrel
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If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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