How to Choose a Loudspeaker -- What the Science Shows - Page 42 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1231 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by jjackkrash View Post
I'd just note that I have come around to an extent to not trying to fight my own biases too much when it comes to gear. These biases are powerful and real. When you stick the gear in your room, you can see see it and you know what you paid for it and you have all the other information you have that makes subjective tests invalid. That's not going to change just because you picked the gear out of a blind. The chances of liking the gear when you stick it in your room is slim if you are predisposed to hate it even if it is objectively better than some of the alternatives. So I don't stress too much when I choose gear that I want just because I want it.

All that said, my biases run more and more towards picking accurate gear that makes measurable differences. So at least I got that going for me.
That is a very open minded and realistic perspective.
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post #1232 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 08:53 AM
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Just to speculate: panel speakers (and other line source-ish technologies) have a less intense roll-off per distance than point-ish sourced cone/CD/dome speakers as well as having less lateral reflections. For a given seating distance, it might be possible that the listener experiences far more direct ASW HF energy in the recording itself vs. the reflected energy from the point source speakers off the side walls. This could create the subjective impression of having more of this "scale" term being used to describe the phenomena.

From my own experience with panels, I find the audio imaging size to be analogous to a substantially overscanned projected video image. It's a "wow this looks so big" impression but after awhile I notice some things seem out of proportion and missing in the frame.
That's the struggle. That's what unsold me on the 3.7i.

To have the huge sound stage when appropriate, but yet have objects within that soundstage scale appropriately, especially voice and large wood bodied instruments is what I seek and one of those disgusting subjectivist audiophiles. I can adjust by a degree or less and screw it up (which I just did last night, btw) and later adjust and nudge and have it back, hopefully, in the next hour or so. I have monopole, cones and domes in a box in the other systems for a reason.

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post #1233 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 09:02 AM
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The big issue here is this. The objectivists are saying that if you remove the underlying reasons for many of the subjective impressions we get, many of which are caused by sighted bias, failure to level match, differences in frequency response, etc, and not ACTUAL differences, that you will get to the TRUTH of whether we can hear a difference or not. Now comes the problem. The subjectivists ignore all this, and say things like...huh-uh...I did a sighted(biased), non level matched, non frequency matched comparisons, and the speakers I thought would sound better sounded better. It's a pointless discussion when the subjectivists aren't willing or capable of understanding what is being said along with the conditions that are responsible for subjective, biased, inaccurate impressions.

Since it is a known fact that bias is not avoidable, that the ears/brain are easily fooled into hearing things that are or are not there, and that removing this bias is the only way to accurately determine what can ACTUALLY be heard, those of us with reasonable cognitive abilities can understand that removing bias is necessary in order to separate what we BELIEVE we hear(and therefore actually do hear), and what we actually hear based on an actual, measurable difference.

On the other side of the coin, closed minded subjectivists will just keep saying nuh-uh, I changed cables and heard a difference etc etc. Or I brought the amp home and LISTENED to it, and I heard a difference. Objectivists can agree that they did indeed hear a difference(bias, failure to level match, different response, etc), but the closed minded subjectivist group is not willing to concede WHY they heard a difference, even when in fact their may not have been one.

There is no way to have an intelligent discussion with someone who believes cables and cable lifts affect sound quality, so save your breath. Just saying.



While I agree with much of your diatribe regarding true subjectivist audiophiles, I wonder why you are going on about cables and lifts. I don't recall anyone here staking out a claim in regards to cables.


And FTR, I'm not a "subjectivist" audiophile myself. I spend (too) much of my time actually battling in audiophile forums against the dubious side of high end audio - cables, tweaks etc - and constantly defend blind testing (which I've used myself with cables, DACs etc).



Given the context of the question I was pursuing, the claim "Scale cannot be designed into a loudspeaker" was either patently false, or at best a misunderstanding. A recording contains sonic information about the stereo location, frequency response etc of the piano captured in the recording.


But we all know that choices in designing a speaker can and do affect the sonic presentation, and the choices will determine limits on to what degree a speaker system can reproduce that piano with a sense of realism which would included the impression of the size of the instrument.


No one, objectivist or otherwise, would deny that a grand piano recording played through a flagship JBL Everest DD66000 speaker will sound bigger and more realistic in size than if played through an iphone speaker. Or that this difference wouldn't be obvious in blind testing. That's obviously a real phenomenon, and not remotely in the realm of of differences between AC cables.


Given this is a real phenomenon, it's understandable to ask "What aspects, specifically, are responsible for producing the impression of scale/size fron a loudspeaker?"


Of course it's going to involve frequency response, dispersion etc. That's a given. But all sorts of different choices in speaker design - box size, baffle shape design, crossovers, use of particular drivers (re dispersion etc), driver motors, choices for narrow vs wide dispersion design, dipole, bipole and on and on.....we have a myriad of choices that affect the presentation of speaker. So I was wondering if there was some solid objective science on what precisely can be responsible for one speaker producing the sensation of "size, presence, weight, palpability" such that it would more convincingly reproduce the sensation of life-sized instruments vs speakers that could not do so. Yes, we are using subjective, descriptive words, but as I said we OFTEN start with those to describe a phenomenon we experience and want to investigate. And we already have good reasons - both in the fact we know an iphone's presentation would be distinguishably "smaller sounding" than a JBL Everest speaker even in blind tests, AND the fact all sorts of speaker design choices produce objectively verifiable and subjectively verifiable (blind tests) changes in presentation. This is not the stuff of "cable delusion."


I have gathered from Floyd Tool's response that, while plenty of bind testing has been done on identifying listener *preference* with speakers, the phenomenon I'm asking about has not been specifically studied (or not with much conclusiveness). Though there are plausible directions in which to inquire.

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post #1234 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 09:14 AM
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post #1235 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post
While I agree with much of your diatribe regarding true subjectivist audiophiles, I wonder why you are going on about cables and lifts. I don't recall anyone here staking out a claim in regards to cables.


And FTR, I'm not a "subjectivist" audiophile myself. I spend (too) much of my time actually battling in audiophile forums against the dubious side of high end audio - cables, tweaks etc - and constantly defend blind testing (which I've used myself with cables, DACs etc).



Given the context of the question I was perusing, the claim "Scale cannot be designed into a loudspeaker" was either patently false, or at best a misunderstanding. We all know that if you play the same recording, say of a grand piano, then any speaker has the same source to reproduce and that the recording contains certain sonic information about the stereo location, frequency response etc of the piano captured in the recording.


But we also all know that choices in designing a speaker can and do affect the sonic presentation, and the choices will determine limits on to what degree a can reproduce that piano with a sense of realism.


No one, objectivist or otherwise, would deny that a grand piano recording played through a flagship JBL Everest DD66000 speaker will sound bigger and more realistic in size than if played through an iphone speaker. Or that this difference wouldn't be obvious in blind testing. That's obviously a real phenomenon, and not remotely in the realm of of differences between AC cables.


Given this is a real phenomenon, it's understandable to ask "What aspects, specifically, are responsible for producing the impression of scale/size fron a loudspeaker?"


Of course it's going to involve frequency response, dispersion etc. That's a given. But all sorts of different choices in speaker design - box size, baffle shape design, crossovers, use of particular drivers (re dispersion etc), choices for narrow vs wide dispersion design, dipole, bipole and on and on.....we have a myriad of choices that affect the presentation of speaker. So I was wondering if there was some solid objective science on what precisely can be responsible for one speaker producing the sensation of "size, presence, weight, palpability" such that it would more convincingly reproduce the sensation of life-sized instruments vs speakers that could not do so. Yes, we are using subjective, descriptive words, but as I said we OFTEN start with those to describe a phenomenon we experience and want to investigate. And we already have good reasons - both in the fact we know an iphone's presentation would be distinguishably "smaller sounding" than a JBL Everest speaker even in blind tests, AND the fact all sorts of speaker design choices produce objectively verifiable and subjectively verifiable (blind tests) changes in presentation. This is not the stuff of "cable delusion."


I have gathered from Floyd Tool's response that, while plenty of bind testing has been done on identifying listener *preference* with speakers, the phenomenon I'm asking about has not been specifically studied (or not with much conclusiveness). Though there are plausible directions in which to inquire.

I think it's more of a misunderstanding than anything. Of course an iPhone would sound 'smaller' because it's very crippled in terms of frequency response compared to the Everest (among other things). Would the Everest still sound bigger if one were to neuter it to resemble an iPhone's frequency response? It would have a different directivity index and much lower distortion numbers. But would it sound bigger in a blind test? Your opinion is that it would, yes?
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post #1236 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by R Harkness View Post
While I agree with much of your diatribe regarding true subjectivist audiophiles, I wonder why you are going on about cables and lifts. I don't recall anyone here staking out a claim in regards to cables.


And FTR, I'm not a "subjectivist" audiophile myself. I spend (too) much of my time actually battling in audiophile forums against the dubious side of high end audio - cables, tweaks etc - and constantly defend blind testing (which I've used myself with cables, DACs etc).



Given the context of the question I was pursuing, the claim "Scale cannot be designed into a loudspeaker" was either patently false, or at best a misunderstanding. A recording contains sonic information about the stereo location, frequency response etc of the piano captured in the recording.


But we all know that choices in designing a speaker can and do affect the sonic presentation, and the choices will determine limits on to what degree a speaker system can reproduce that piano with a sense of realism which would included the impression of the size of the instrument.


No one, objectivist or otherwise, would deny that a grand piano recording played through a flagship JBL Everest DD66000 speaker will sound bigger and more realistic in size than if played through an iphone speaker. Or that this difference wouldn't be obvious in blind testing. That's obviously a real phenomenon, and not remotely in the realm of of differences between AC cables.


Given this is a real phenomenon, it's understandable to ask "What aspects, specifically, are responsible for producing the impression of scale/size fron a loudspeaker?"


Of course it's going to involve frequency response, dispersion etc. That's a given. But all sorts of different choices in speaker design - box size, baffle shape design, crossovers, use of particular drivers (re dispersion etc), driver motors, choices for narrow vs wide dispersion design, dipole, bipole and on and on.....we have a myriad of choices that affect the presentation of speaker. So I was wondering if there was some solid objective science on what precisely can be responsible for one speaker producing the sensation of "size, presence, weight, palpability" such that it would more convincingly reproduce the sensation of life-sized instruments vs speakers that could not do so. Yes, we are using subjective, descriptive words, but as I said we OFTEN start with those to describe a phenomenon we experience and want to investigate. And we already have good reasons - both in the fact we know an iphone's presentation would be distinguishably "smaller sounding" than a JBL Everest speaker even in blind tests, AND the fact all sorts of speaker design choices produce objectively verifiable and subjectively verifiable (blind tests) changes in presentation. This is not the stuff of "cable delusion."


I have gathered from Floyd Tool's response that, while plenty of bind testing has been done on identifying listener *preference* with speakers, the phenomenon I'm asking about has not been specifically studied (or not with much conclusiveness). Though there are plausible directions in which to inquire.
My post was in no way directed towards you...mainly the general back and forth that has been happening in general. The cable example was also a general statement to help illustrate my point.

I found the topic of larger speakers having a grand scale interesting and don't hold a strong opinion about the matter either way.

Personally, I'm reasonably happy with how my speakers sound given their cost/quality and the severe limitations of how I have them placed. I have no doubt better speakers combined with better placement would likely result in much better sound quality. But I'm willing to sacrifice some sound quality for the way that I have them placed in my current room.

If I were willing to spend the money on them, I'd love to hear a set of Sierra 1 or 2 speakers, or the BMR. Since I am probably 50/50 music/home theater, I'd be interested in PSA's MT110 as well. As it stands, I'm pretty happy with what I have, but certainly believe better speakers would likely be an improvement. Now subs on the other hand...don't think I can get much better than what I have for my purposes. Amp/AVR.....also don't think anything would be an improvement for my needs. I have enough power, features, and due to horrible placement, I find my room correction to be of great benefit as well. Display.....lots of room to upgrade but the benefit wouldn't be worth the cost for me. I'll spring for a projector before I upgrade my TV. Surrounds....yep, just need to get around to building them. I don't have any. I wish I had just bought a pair, but now that I have a set waiting to be assembled, I haven't gotten around to surround speakers for, oh, over two years now.
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post #1237 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 11:03 AM
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@Floyd Toole , I'm curious about the Spinorama family of curves? Was it designed specifically to see resonances or was it more iterative and discovered "accidentally" that resonances could be seen?

I personally love the process of discovery and the various ways it occurs from the light bulb "aha" moment where it just pops into the head to the discovery that happens when you're looking for something else entirely.

Thanks
The dataset that underlies the spinorama is a collection of 70 (seventy) frequency response measurements at 10 deg increments on horizontal and vertical orbits. It contains vastly more information than band-filtered "polars" - which have a tradition in pro audio because of their understandable interest in delivering sound to large audiences distributed over wide angles. The principal advantage of high resolution frequency domain data is that one can anticipate sound quality with greater precision. The design engineers have all of this raw information available to them, in addition to the processed version called the spinorama which is aimed at understanding the sound delivered to listeners in conventional rooms with horizontal and vertical reflecting surfaces.

All of this has been developed from findings in my early publications which relied on a digitally controlled measurement system I developed in 1983, which measured at 15 deg increments in the front hemisphere and 30 deg increments in the rear hemisphere, on vertical and horizontal orbits. From these raw and processed data, and the spinorama, it is easy to see resonances, and much more. Resonance peaks appear in all of the curves.

Toole, F. E. (1985). “Subjective measurements of loudspeaker sound quality and listener preferences”, J. Audio Eng. Soc., 33. pp. 2-31.
Toole, F. E. (1986). “Loudspeaker measurements and their relationship to listener preferences”, J. Audio Eng. Soc., 34, pt.1, pp. 227-235, pt. 2, pp. 323-348.
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post #1238 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 11:11 AM
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Originally Posted by TimVG View Post
I think it's more of a misunderstanding than anything. Of course an iPhone would sound 'smaller' because it's very crippled in terms of frequency response compared to the Everest (among other things). Would the Everest still sound bigger if one were to neuter it to resemble an iPhone's frequency response? It would have a different directivity index and much lower distortion numbers. But would it sound bigger in a blind test? Your opinion is that it would, yes?
Having conducted double-blind listening tests for many decades it is abundantly clear that the perceived "size" of a loudspeaker has nothing much to do with its physical dimensions. Many times, when the screen is lifted one finds that the "smallest" sounding loudspeaker is the one with audible resonances and/or distortions that draw attention to the speaker because they are not part of the music. It may or may not be small. The highest rated loudspeakers tend to disappear behind the screen, revealing spatial information that is in the recording.
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post #1239 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 11:23 AM
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Having conducted double-blind listening tests for many decades it is abundantly clear that the perceived "size" of a loudspeaker has nothing much to do with its physical dimensions. Many times, when the screen is lifted one finds that the "smallest" sounding loudspeaker is the one with audible resonances and/or distortions that draw attention to the speaker because they are not part of the music. It may or may not be small. The highest rated loudspeakers tend to disappear behind the screen, revealing spatial information that is in the recording.
That is what I have been arguing extensively over the last few pages. I understand at least one member has me on his 'ignore' list for my persistence.
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post #1240 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 11:50 AM
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...the perceived "size" of a loudspeaker has nothing much to do with its physical dimensions. Many times, when the screen is lifted one finds that the "smallest" sounding loudspeaker is the one with audible resonances and/or distortions that draw attention to the speaker because they are not part of the music.
So the answer is that if one were to equalize the JBL to the frequency response of the iphone, and to introduce the same resonances and distortions, then it too should sound just as "small"?

I do think it would make the science more convincing to be able to explain axes of perception such as "size" and "imaging". When a consumer goes to the audio store and listens to a speaker, he doesn't only think in terms of an overall numeric score.

Even if a consumer is aware that speaker A wins over B overall in a blind test of other listeners, if B somehow sounds like it "images" better, that may cause the listener to think that his preferences differ from the norm because of his particular preference for imaging. The argument so far seems to be that imaging is largely due to room and speaker positioning, but I have not seen a quantified statement on this topic, such as if we can say that the attributes of size and imaging are also predicted by the spinorama or overall score. Explaining these dimensions of perception would make the applicability of the average preference to the individual listener more convincing.

Audio magazines wax poetic about terms such as these because consumers think in terms of these axes. To dismiss them as subjective nonsense requires more evidence than what is presented, imo. I think these axes can be quantified and tested, and doing so may help advance the last 15% of preference predictability and convert more subjectivists.
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post #1241 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 12:38 PM
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On the subject of subjectivism, (hearing), vs objectivism, (measuring), I will only point out that Dr. Toole has said probably a thousand times in his life that a microphone is no replacement for two ears and a brain.

Personally, I fall squarely in the camp of objectivism. I take measurements, I trust measurements, and I have found a set of measurements that, if achieved, will virtually always sound good... to me AND to the people who hear the systems I've designed, setup and/or calibrated.

Having said that, I think its appropriate to understand that science hasn't captured every nuance of psychoacoustics, and there may still be things we can't measure. The spinorama is the perfect example of this. It can tell us an enormous amount about sound quality and the inherent basic response of a speaker. In that respect, it is very valuable. However, because it is monophonic, it can't tell us anything about imaging of a pair of speakers or a multi-channel system. This recently discussed concept of "scale" is, in my intuition, very similar to the concept of "soundstage", which again can really only be evaluated when using more than one speaker. (I believe Harman now has a speaker shuffler that can shuffle multiple speakers, so maybe some of these questions may eventually be answered.) However, at this point, they are not completely answered, and so its inappropriate to say that we can currently measure everything we need to measure to tell us about how well we'll like a certain SET OF speakers, especially without ever having actually HEARD them.

Another point in this discussion is that "preference testing" is, by definition, subjective analysis, so Harman performs subjective as well as objective testing. Preference testing uses the two ears and the brain of the testers to subjectively evaluate sound quality, (albeit without the two eyes involved.) However, in any kind of subjective testing, it is essential to remove, or at least statistically negate, a any sort of bias. I have mentioned several times on this thread that I think there is the "potential" for bias to be introduced in a number of ways in Harman's preference testing. (Note that I didn't say they "were biased" I said there is the potential for bias. BIG difference!) Until the potential for bias is removed, (i.e., by larger, more statistically powerful testing, preferably performed by independent testers), I will continue to view the Harman preference testing as subjective and inconclusive. That doesn't mean its wrong. It just means I don't have full confidence that it is complete and correct science.

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post #1242 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 01:15 PM
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So the answer is that if one were to equalize the JBL to the frequency response of the iphone, and to introduce the same resonances and distortions, then it too should sound just as "small"?

I do think it would make the science more convincing to be able to explain axes of perception such as "size" and "imaging". When a consumer goes to the audio store and listens to a speaker, he doesn't only think in terms of an overall numeric score.

Even if a consumer is aware that speaker A wins over B overall in a blind test of other listeners, if B somehow sounds like it "images" better, that may cause the listener to think that his preferences differ from the norm because of his particular preference for imaging. The argument so far seems to be that imaging is largely due to room and speaker positioning, but I have not seen a quantified statement on this topic, such as if we can say that the attributes of size and imaging are also predicted by the spinorama or overall score. Explaining these dimensions of perception would make the applicability of the average preference to the individual listener more convincing.

Audio magazines wax poetic about terms such as these because consumers think in terms of these axes. To dismiss them as subjective nonsense requires more evidence than what is presented, imo. I think these axes can be quantified and tested, and doing so may help advance the last 15% of preference predictability and convert more subjectivists.
If you have read my book or followed my publications you would appreciate that any ability we have acquired to interpret measurements came from carefully conducted blind listening tests. Subjective evaluations have been the "key" to unlocking whatever technical science exists. Included in those tests at a very early stage, included in the two JAES papers (1985-1986) I just cited in a post, and considerably elaborated on in Chapter 7 in my book, is imaging, soundstage and space. To this day I have not seen a more elaborate subjective/objective correlation with sound quality, imaging and soundstage than my old original tests. One of the dominant factors was found to be the recording itself.

More recent tests have indicated that spatial aspects of perception may be comparable with sound quality. It is a factor not to be ignored, and it hasn't been.

So, I have great respect for subjective evaluations - they reveal the "truths", but only if the evaluations are done in a way that minimizes the influences of non-auditory factors. It is, of course, the sound we are interested in. Done in that manner it is found that opinions are not as variable as is experienced in "real life" listening, and the ratings and comments make sense, in that the highest rated loudspeakers for sound quality, imaging and space are those that are the most timbrally neutral - fewest resonances, lowest distortions, flattest, smoothest frequency responses, etc. as I have discussed ad nauseum in this forum. This is a problem for some/many/most/all audio publications who prefer to, as you say, "wax poetic" based on fully sighted, take it home and listen to it, tests. For consumers in stores and shows, the non-auditory factors are on full display and often the placebo effect is dominant. Evidence of the variability in such evaluations is abundant in these forums - it is inevitable. Naturally, those who have not participated in properly conducted subjective evaluations may be skeptical. That also is inevitable.
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post #1243 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 01:31 PM
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@craig john The subject of soundstage/imaging/scale is confusing because as I've mentioned many times over, there is no metric for it. A system that 'images well' may not mean the same to me as it does to you. It's subjective.

Saying that science doesn't have all the answers (yet) is correct, but plenty is known in no uncertain terms. 'Imaging' in a basic sense cannot be predicted since one of the variables is the room makeup and the position of listener and the loudspeaker(s) itself. Which means there's an infinite number of possibilities, not one exactly like the other. For a given combination, and for two equally good, neutral, loudspeakers .. Directivity may very well tip the scale for one or the other. An extreme example would be that even the Salon2 would likely lose out in a commercial theater room compared to a well designed cinema loudspeaker.

It's a fun thread for sure. I'm planning on doing some blind testing around the ~$1000 per loudspeaker point in the near future for my new living room. Current contenders: Buchardt S400, KEF R3 and possibly Genelec 4040A, and looking at other candidates if there are any suggestions. They must be readily available in Europe, in either a warm/dark wood finish or in a matte RAL color of choice - high gloss need not apply (spouse) so Revel is out, although I'll be using my M105 pair from my other room in the test as well as a base reference.
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post #1244 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 01:34 PM
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I would love to take a college level class on this enthusiast hobby of mine. ofc I hated most low end classes in higher education due to results based off financial aid laws in usa and ...well thats another topic...I truly would enjoy a brief professional study in hifi/listening. maybe doc floyd and his friends could do a video online class?

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To the JBL vs iPhone example I think maybe what could be said is that if Apple developed speakers with very flat response there would still be two things lacking. One, that response would not extend down to meaningful bass so it wouldn't be flat for the full frequency range. And two, the volume would never be able to reach any sort of reference level. Not sure what loudness spinoramas are measured at exactly. But perhaps your concept of "scale" is simply full frequency range at high volume. If your iPhone speaker used some magical new technology that allowed it to play at reference levels with full frequency extension and still have a good looking spinorama, then yes it would sound like it had the same "scale" as the JBL.
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post #1246 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 02:59 PM
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@craig john the subject of soundstage/imaging/scale is confusing because as i've mentioned many times over, there is no metric for it. A system that 'images well' may not mean the same to me as it does to you. It's subjective.

Saying that science doesn't have all the answers (yet) is correct, but plenty is known in no uncertain terms. 'imaging' in a basic sense cannot be predicted since one of the variables is the room makeup and the position of listener and the loudspeaker(s) itself. Which means there's an infinite number of possibilities, not one exactly like the other. For a given combination, and for two equally good, neutral, loudspeakers .. Directivity may very well tip the scale for one or the other. An extreme example would be that even the salon2 would likely lose out in a commercial theater room compared to a well designed cinema loudspeaker.

It's a fun thread for sure. I'm planning on doing some blind testing around the ~$1000 per loudspeaker point in the near future for my new living room. Current contenders: Buchardt s400, kef r3 and possibly genelec 4040a, and looking at other candidates if there are any suggestions. They must be readily available in europe, in either a warm/dark wood finish or in a matte ral color of choice - high gloss need not apply (spouse) so revel is out, although i'll be using my m105 pair from my other room in the test as well as a base reference.

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post #1247 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 03:12 PM
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Back on topic, wouldn't these measurements be useful?

Attachment 2519722
Horizontal Polar Measurement

Attachment 2519720
Vertical Polar Measurement
Are they for RSL speakers? Those measurements appear suspect to me: 1/3 smoothing + weird rarely used format + measurements made by unknown Chinese company.

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Are they for RSL speakers? Those measurements appear suspect to me: 1/3 smoothing + weird rarely used format + measurements made by unknown Chinese company.
Yes - the C34E in-ceiling speaker.

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post #1249 of 5313 Old 02-03-2019, 05:08 PM
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On the subject of subjectivism, (hearing), vs objectivism, (measuring), I will only point out that Dr. Toole has said probably a thousand times in his life that a microphone is no replacement for two ears and a brain.

Personally, I fall squarely in the camp of objectivism. I take measurements, I trust measurements, and I have found a set of measurements that, if achieved, will virtually always sound good... to me AND to the people who hear the systems I've designed, setup and/or calibrated.

Having said that, I think its appropriate to understand that science hasn't captured every nuance of psychoacoustics, and there may still be things we can't measure. The spinorama is the perfect example of this. It can tell us an enormous amount about sound quality and the inherent basic response of a speaker. In that respect, it is very valuable. However, because it is monophonic, it can't tell us anything about imaging of a pair of speakers or a multi-channel system. This recently discussed concept of "scale" is, in my intuition, very similar to the concept of "soundstage", which again can really only be evaluated when using more than one speaker. (I believe Harman now has a speaker shuffler that can shuffle multiple speakers, so maybe some of these questions may eventually be answered.) However, at this point, they are not completely answered, and so its inappropriate to say that we can currently measure everything we need to measure to tell us about how well we'll like a certain SET OF speakers, especially without ever having actually HEARD them.

Another point in this discussion is that "preference testing" is, by definition, subjective analysis, so Harman performs subjective as well as objective testing. Preference testing uses the two ears and the brain of the testers to subjectively evaluate sound quality, (albeit without the two eyes involved.) However, in any kind of subjective testing, it is essential to remove, or at least statistically negate, a any sort of bias. I have mentioned several times on this thread that I think there is the "potential" for bias to be introduced in a number of ways in Harman's preference testing. (Note that I didn't say they "were biased" I said there is the potential for bias. BIG difference!) Until the potential for bias is removed, (i.e., by larger, more statistically powerful testing, preferably performed by independent testers), I will continue to view the Harman preference testing as subjective and inconclusive. That doesn't mean its wrong. It just means I don't have full confidence that it is complete and correct science.

Craig

Thank you Craig. You're certainly more diplomatic and polite than I would be.

"I believe Harman now has a speaker shuffler that can shuffle multiple speakers"

If true, that's a start, a big start

"recently discussed concept of "scale" is, in my intuition, very similar to the concept of "soundstage"

One wee little comment. I use the term 'scale' in reference to the relative size of objects within the soundstage / soundfield.
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Even though I'm on his ignore list:

The speakers shuffler was always capable of using stereo pairs. The reason it's not being employed that way is that the speaker that wins the mono test, wins the stereo test without exception and it adds time and complexity.

"I use scale in reference to this" .. which makes it a problem because for something to be designed into something, it needs to have a universal meaning, be measureable, quantifiable and repeatable. I think it's been covered enough in the last few pages what result in differences in 'scale'/'soundstage' etc

It's one thing to ask questions, but when the answers are given it would make sense to take note of them. The problem with people like Scott is that if the answer doesn't fit their own perception, then suddenly the 'science doesn't have all the answers' argument is easily thrown into the mix. Which is in my humble opinion an insult to the work of Floyd Toole who spent decades researching everything related to sound reproduction and has meticulously covered the grounds mentioned here.

So once again: 'Imaging' / 'scale' / 'soundstaging' in a basic sense cannot be predicted since one of the variables is the room makeup and the position of listener and the loudspeaker(s) itself. The other great variable being the recording and more related to that: the number of channels used. This means there is an infinite number of possibilities, not one exactly like the other.
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jbl lsr705p?
Sadly no RAL color options
I've owned the 705i - it's a very potent little speaker.
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Cincinnati? Feel free if you're ever up this way to the neighborhood, to give me a shout and stop on by. I'd be happy to show you what I meant by 'scale'. It's a bit of a different paradigm than the size of the soundfield as I meant the relative sizes of objects within that soundfield.
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By the way, I'm about to down a brew from a brewery in Columbus, Brewdog Elvis juice, one my favorites!
Go Bucks! I live in Westerville.
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Go Bucks! I live in Westerville.
I was born (hatched actually) and raised in Westerville and first year through what is now Westerville South High School.

Now, when asked where I grew up, I tell folks that I haven't picked a place yet.
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post #1255 of 5313 Old 02-04-2019, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by craig john View Post
On the subject of subjectivism, (hearing), vs objectivism, (measuring), I will only point out that Dr. Toole has said probably a thousand times in his life that a microphone is no replacement for two ears and a brain.

Personally, I fall squarely in the camp of objectivism. I take measurements, I trust measurements, and I have found a set of measurements that, if achieved, will virtually always sound good... to me AND to the people who hear the systems I've designed, setup and/or calibrated.

Having said that, I think its appropriate to understand that science hasn't captured every nuance of psychoacoustics, and there may still be things we can't measure. The spinorama is the perfect example of this. It can tell us an enormous amount about sound quality and the inherent basic response of a speaker. In that respect, it is very valuable. However, because it is monophonic, it can't tell us anything about imaging of a pair of speakers or a multi-channel system. This recently discussed concept of "scale" is, in my intuition, very similar to the concept of "soundstage", which again can really only be evaluated when using more than one speaker. (I believe Harman now has a speaker shuffler that can shuffle multiple speakers, so maybe some of these questions may eventually be answered.) However, at this point, they are not completely answered, and so its inappropriate to say that we can currently measure everything we need to measure to tell us about how well we'll like a certain SET OF speakers, especially without ever having actually HEARD them.

Another point in this discussion is that "preference testing" is, by definition, subjective analysis, so Harman performs subjective as well as objective testing. Preference testing uses the two ears and the brain of the testers to subjectively evaluate sound quality, (albeit without the two eyes involved.) However, in any kind of subjective testing, it is essential to remove, or at least statistically negate, a any sort of bias. I have mentioned several times on this thread that I think there is the "potential" for bias to be introduced in a number of ways in Harman's preference testing. (Note that I didn't say they "were biased" I said there is the potential for bias. BIG difference!) Until the potential for bias is removed, (i.e., by larger, more statistically powerful testing, preferably performed by independent testers), I will continue to view the Harman preference testing as subjective and inconclusive. That doesn't mean its wrong. It just means I don't have full confidence that it is complete and correct science.

Craig
re: "preferably performed by independent testers" what entity do you see filling such a role?

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post #1256 of 5313 Old 02-04-2019, 07:31 AM
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re: "preferably performed by independent testers" what entity do you see filling such a role?
There are already numerous independent researchers that have studied these topics. Dr. Toole has presented their findings in scientific reviews and in his book. There are several posters in this thread that choose to ignore Dr. Toole's posts pointing this out. Why that is is anybody's guess.
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That is what I have been arguing extensively over the last few pages. I understand at least one member has me on his 'ignore' list for my persistence.
At least your persistance paid off .
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There are already numerous independent researchers that have studied these topics. Dr. Toole has presented their findings in scientific reviews and in his book. There are several posters in this thread that choose to ignore Dr. Toole's posts pointing this out. Why that is is anybody's guess.
Now, who might that be?

And btw, doc, in order to 'ignore', which I don't think is quite true, we must first disagree, which means we are not ignoring.

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At least your persistance paid off .

After 30 or 40 rounds over the exact same disagreement, it becomes fan-boyism run amok or hero-worship unhinged.

Either way, it's time to agree to disagree.
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post #1260 of 5313 Old 02-04-2019, 07:56 AM
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There are already numerous independent researchers that have studied these topics. Dr. Toole has presented their findings in scientific reviews and in his book. There are several posters in this thread that choose to ignore Dr. Toole's posts pointing this out. Why that is is anybody's guess.
I got the sense from the post that this wasn't about qualified independent researchers or questioning of Dr. Toole's work, but perhaps more about a US equivalent of the NRC, some government body, or some independent body funded by the industry?
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