The 10 Biggest Lies In Audio - Page 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #61 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Audio View Post

The Vacuum Tube Lie. This one is hard to really prove since you just can't go out and buy a tube receiver anymore for the normal price of a solid state. However what I can go on his how people who swear by tube always describe the sound the exact same way. Soft, smooth and warm. While I haven't heard a tube amp next to a transistor amp, I can't say for sure, but I'm inclined to agree with the author because tubes are not as quick as on the switch as transistors are therefore I can see them yielding a softer, warmer and less accurate sound. I don't believe that you need two systems to accurately reproduce HT and music. The tube sound would naturally not be good for HT. So why would it be good for music? It sounds to me that tubes cover up harsh highs and midrange with their inability to react as fast as solid state. In the end the harsh music sounds better, but good recordings sound muffled.

This is what I found, particularly with low bit-rate MP3s that are very difficult to listen to. They need a little tube warmth or "fullness" to make them palatable for me. Here is an old (1972) Journal of The Audio Engineering Society article on tube vs SS. Much has changed since 72 in the SS area but some of the conclusions still have validity, particularly with less well designed equipment.

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Vacuum-tube amplifiers differ from transistor and operational amplifiers because they can be operated in the overload region without adding objectionable distortion. The combination of the slow rising edge and the open harmonic structure of the overload characteristics form an almost ideal sound-recording compressor. Within the 15-20-dB "safe" overload range, the electrical output of the tube amplifier increases by only 2-4 dB, acting like a limiter. However, since the edge is increasing within this range, the subjective loudness remains uncompressed to the ear. This effect causes tube-amplified signals to have a high apparent level which is not indicated on a volume indicator (VU meter). Tubes sound louder and have a better signal-to-noise ratio because of this extra subjective head room that transistor amplifiers do not have. Tubes get punch from their naturally brassy overload characteristics. Since the loud signals can be recorded at higher levels, the softer signals are also louder, so they are not lost in tape hiss and they effectively give the tube sound greater clarity. The feeling of more bass response is directly related to the strong second and third harmonic components which reinforce the "natural"' bass with "synthetic" bass [5]. In the context of a limited dynamic range system like the phonograph, recordings made with vacuum tube preamplifiers will have more apparent level and a greater signal to system noise ratio than recordings made with transistors or operational amplifiers.

Early CDs and CD players suffered from the same problem. I owned a Sony Discman D-50 back in 1985 that was definitely a sonic step down from decent LP and I had to play it through a Dynaco tube amp to make it enjoyable. My next CD player, a Sony CDP-991 purchased in 1991 was a step up above vinyl and sounded perfectly fine with a decent SS amp. For me that was the inflection point and digital and SS have improved ever since (low bit-rate MP3s notwithstanding).

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post #62 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 09:13 AM
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the fact that a digital recording can't capture the entire soundwave, and sounds that transition too quickly for the sample rate, will be distorted. A vinyl record's groove's match the waveform exactly.

Not a chance. First the grooves in vinyl cannot match the waveform exactly if only due to limitations in the process of cutting the grooves. Secondly, waveforms can easily change faster than the needle can track what is in the groove. We had them bouncing off the grooves all the time and had to COMPRESS what was cut. Even at that, we had to warn (on the jacket) that tone arms could be bounced out of the goove on certain passages.


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a brand new vinyl record can output sound that a CD cannot. In that sense, a vinyl record will give a more accurate representation of the original waveform.

Again, no way with respect to "more accurate representation of the original waveform". CD's can easily replicate the output of vinyl; but, we had to add all kinds of distortion to make it happen.

...and, having said all of that, I am NOT wanting to take anything away from anyone with a personal preference for one format over another.

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post #63 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 10:13 AM
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You misread me -- I said the recordings back then tended to make better use of the available dynamic range, not that the available dynamic range was greater. These days a lot of recordings are mastered with heavy dynamic compression, so the overall volume is more consistent (and tends to be as loud as possible). This kills dynamics.

I didn't actually misread, I simply did not understand that is why I have questions.

While I agree digital mastered recordings will have compression, I will not agree with the extremely subjective adjective of "Heavy". I have $$$ if you can hear the difference in proper tests!!!

I terms of science it just makes zero sense for anyone to argue that vinyl is better, there is no data behind that logic and there is no science behind it.

This does not mean someone can not like vinyl but those people should not be arguing in a science forum about Vinyl's scientific merits
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post #64 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Audio View Post

Is that so? Why?

Mr. Audio, Just search Rutgar's posts and you will find out he believes Speaker wire can improve the sound, buying expensive Cable makes his system better and he thinks ABX testing is completely bogus. He will avoid all questions pertaining to Placebo effects because answering them would acknowledge that flaws to exist in normal audio perception.

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post #65 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by penngray View Post

I didn't actually misread, I simply did not understand that is why I have questions.

No prob. I misunderstood your misunderstanding.

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While I agree digital mastered recordings will have compression, I will not agree with the extremely subjective adjective of "Heavy". I have $$$ if you can hear the difference in proper tests!!!

Google for "loudness wars" and you'll find some examples of the difference in dynamics. Here's the basic idea:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Gmex_4hreQ

It's not got to do with digital mastering, it's just a trend which began at around the same time.

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I terms of science it just makes zero sense for anyone to argue that vinyl is better, there is no data behind that logic and there is no science behind it.

Sure, I hope I don't come off as if I'm doing that. I'm not touching the vinyl/CD thing with a ten foot pole. The trend towards more dynamic compression coincided, more-or-less, with the rise of digital formats. I think it sometimes gets mistaken for a difference in the formats themselves.
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post #66 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 10:57 AM
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Thanks for the link Spectra.

I have no stake in the Vinyl/CD war because both are dead to me anyways

We live in a digital world and people should move on from dead technologies

It is not "open-minded" to reject knowledge - Bob Lee
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post #67 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by penngray View Post

Mr. Audio, Just search Rutgar's posts and you will find out he believes Speaker wire can improve the sound, buying expensive Cable makes his system better and he thinks ABX testing is completely bogus. He will avoid all questions pertaining to Placebo effects because answering them would acknowledge that flaws to exist in normal audio perception.

Oh ok. Thanks for the heads up.

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post #68 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 01:23 PM
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Oh my God. I just looked at Rutgar's HT pictures. He's got cable lifters. Wow. Hey Ruty, I have a suggestion for your HT/Audiophool setup that will actually make a difference. It's called a UNIVERSAL REMOTE! I'm sure all those remotes sitting that close together are generating a devastating magnetic field that is just loaded with noise. Better wrap those remotes in some aluminum foil before they cause some harsh highs and undefined bass notes. Seriously though a good universal remote might make that mess easier to operate.

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post #69 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Audio View Post

It's better and cheaper to spend money on room treatments and speakers. Those two alone will drastically improve sound for much less than all the little expensive audiophool tweaks that have no logic to them whatsoever.

Better? Absolutely. Cheaper? Not necessarily!

Green Magic Markers are fairly economical...

We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology.
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post #70 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 04:01 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post

It might be more accurate to call them "vinyl partisans" and "digital partisans," recognizing that many folks are neither, and the labels don't do a lot of us justice. I'd be considered a "digital partisan" in this debate, for example, because I consider digital to be technically superior. But I also collect old jazz LPs, and love their sound.

Indeed. CDs unquestionably have superior SNR, better noise floor, flawless playback over time, superior channel separation, lower distortion, better dynamic range, better HF detail etc etc etc.

However despite all that, the best audio I have ever heard, bar none, was from vinyl. Superior to the same track on SACD. Blows CD out of the water. Yes, many things were technically inferior(and audibly so), but somehow it just sounded way better. It was incredible. Granted, I cannot achieve this on my system, but I've never heard anything sound as amazing as this particular experience with vinyl.
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post #71 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 04:55 PM
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Originally Posted by penngray View Post

I have no stake in the Vinyl/CD war because both are dead to me anyways

We live in a digital world and people should move on from dead technologies

oy vey. you still don't get it.

It doesn't matter in the least if you're still spinning physical discs or not.. the poor mastering treatment is there to be heard no matter what. It doesn't magically disappear once you rip it to the hard drive, etc.


Here's an ugly, but all too common (song) waveform example of "modern" CD mastering practices over the last 10-15 years...


... No ebb 'n flow, no room for the listener to take an aural breath, everything squished together, a quieter instrument such as the organ gets represented as loudly in the mix as cymbal crashes, the louder you raise the volume the more congested and fatiguing the music gets, etc.

Again, it's not the fault of the CD format, it's the abuse of the CD format (with it's inherent flexibility/malleability to accommodate such abuse, apparently). Much of it borne from the misguided industry practice sometimes verbalized as "my artist needs to have their new release stand out and have more impact in order for it to be heard over the competitions new release, so make it louder!"

Just today, I was listening to Broken Social Scene in the car and I went to crank a good song but shortly after I had to turn it back down again. And I thought to myself at the time, like I so often do, "*sigh*, here's another cd/digital release that could & should have been treated to sound so much better". I bet the waveform would look very much like the one above.

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post #72 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 05:59 PM
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[quote=penngray;15786549]

While I agree digital mastered recordings will have compression, I will not agree with the extremely subjective adjective of "Heavy". I have $$$ if you can hear the difference in proper tests!!!

QUOTE]

between what and what--if you mean cd/sacd and vinyl i would be happy to take your money!
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post #73 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 06:01 PM
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wow i cant believe people are so anti vinyl. sheesh. of course cd has superior specs. everyone who has come to listen here to cd/sacd vs vinyl has hands-down prefered vinyl, regardless of technical infeiority...sometimes it is not just about numbers.
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post #74 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 06:23 PM
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bah, humbug.

reel to reel tape trumps all!






























i love good music on all formats, analog and/or digital.
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post #75 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 07:16 PM
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wow i cant believe people are so anti vinyl. sheesh. of course cd has superior specs. everyone who has come to listen here to cd/sacd vs vinyl has hands-down prefered vinyl, regardless of technical infeiority...sometimes it is not just about numbers.

Not anti vinyl, it just a dead product. What age are the people that care about Vinyl? Heck, Im 40 and I do not know anyone that cares....must be an old folks thing....let the damn stuff die already, burn it please


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oy vey. you still don't get it.

lol, I don't get it? You are arguing about a dead product and Im the guy that does not getting....oy vey.... get out and realize its 2009, move with the times

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post #76 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 07:19 PM
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[quote=Denophile;15790655]
Quote:
Originally Posted by penngray View Post


While I agree digital mastered recordings will have compression, I will not agree with the extremely subjective adjective of "Heavy". I have $$$ if you can hear the difference in proper tests!!!

QUOTE]

between what and what--if you mean cd/sacd and vinyl i would be happy to take your money!

That is really easy to say since being able to setup such a test is much harder than comparing a wav to an mp3. The recording on the CD would have to be absolutely confirmed that it was identical to the LP. Plus CD sound quality is heavily subjective to how good the DAC is. It would only be fair to compare a CD with a proven to be accurate DAC to a record player with a high quality cartridge and well built turntable. Since the manufactures like to keep us all guessing which DAC is the best by not having solid proof that their DACs are accurate, I don't think that will ever happen so you can feel pretty safe in saying that vinyl is superior since it cannot be so easily proven with a absolutely fair comparison between the two formats. It really doesn't matter which on is better because vinyl is dead.

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post #77 of 581 Old 02-10-2009, 07:41 PM
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between what and what--if you mean cd/sacd and vinyl i would be happy to take your money!

I was talking about being able to tell the different compression levels. Compressed vs non-compressed, its not a new topic so I doubt we need to bring it up all again here.

and once again I have to post....Vinyl is STILL dead!!

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post #78 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 04:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Denophile View Post

wow i cant believe people are so anti vinyl. sheesh. of course cd has superior specs. everyone who has come to listen here to cd/sacd vs vinyl has hands-down prefered vinyl, regardless of technical infeiority...sometimes it is not just about numbers.

It is rarely about just numbers. It is also about how an experience makes people feel. If you feel better listening to vinyl then you should do so. The numbers explain a lot, however, when used to understand, rather than when used to support a point of view. Numbers also show that expectation bias is a very real effect. I can sell s#!^ in a barnyard if I set up the demo properly and prepare the subject for what he/she is about to smell and step in properly.

Yes, calibration is important...every user should be calibrated.

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post #79 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 06:23 AM
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Originally Posted by penngray View Post

Vinyl is STILL dead!!

http://wax.fm/vinyl_is_back_articles/

http://blogs.laweekly.com/play/news/...-2008-sales-f/



If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough – Albert Einstein
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post #80 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 06:33 AM
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Well, I'd say it's on sustained life support but I'm glad it's not eliminated.

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
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post #81 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr. Audio View Post

Oh my God. I just looked at Rutgar's HT pictures. He's got cable lifters. Wow. Hey Ruty, I have a suggestion for your HT/Audiophool setup that will actually make a difference. It's called a UNIVERSAL REMOTE! I'm sure all those remotes sitting that close together are generating a devastating magnetic field that is just loaded with noise. Better wrap those remotes in some aluminum foil before they cause some harsh highs and undefined bass notes. Seriously though a good universal remote might make that mess easier to operate.

Well, if you had actually bothered to read some of my past posts, as Penn suggested, then you would know that I make no claims about cables lifters making any kind of audio difference. I use them as 'cable organizers' and 'strain relief’s'. Also, I notice you have no pictures available of your gear. But then I guess no one really wants to look at your Sears Silvertone system. The bottom line is that we all know you're just jealous because you still live at home and mommy and daddy won't buy you anything but an IPOD.

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post #82 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 06:57 AM
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Ratman, Nice links.

Vinyl is NOT DEAD

IF there is one thing I have learned about Rutgar, its the fact that he LOVES audio and at the end of the day, his passion for it surpasses any difference in the science behind it.

He also takes a lot of crap from many (and from me) and keeps on enjoying all things audio so I give him kudos on that.

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post #83 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:02 AM
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With the right wires and isolation devices, that Sears Silvertone is lifted to a new level

"I've found that when you want to know the truth about someone that someone is probably the last person you should ask." - Gregory House
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post #84 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post

With the right wires and isolation devices, that Sears Silvertone is lifted to a new level

Yeah! About 3 inches!

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post #85 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:13 AM
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i use clumps of dust for cable lifters.
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post #86 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by westgate View Post

i use clumps of dust for cable lifters.

If you look closely at the A-21 amps, you will see nothing more than 10 awg standard speaker wire. And yes, there are clumps of dust that are holding them up! Oh, and a few carpet strands.

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post #87 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:35 AM
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Although I don't subscribe to cable lifters for their sonic qualities, I must say that Rutgar's HT looks a lot better than my cable nightmare (don't hold your breath for pictures, none are coming).

The sleeper must awaken.
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post #88 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rutgar View Post

Well, if you had actually bothered to read some of my past posts, as Penn suggested, then you would know that I make no claims about cables lifters making any kind of audio difference. I use them as 'cable organizers' and 'strain relief's'. Also, I notice you have no pictures available of your gear. But then I guess no one really wants to look at your Sears Silvertone system. The bottom line is that we all know you're just jealous because you still live at home and mommy and daddy won't buy you anything but an IPOD.

Cable organizers. Ok. Because cable lifters are what I think of when I need to organize my cables. I could have built something better looking and way more effective with a 20 dollar trip to Home Depot to get that job done. That's a great excuse to cover up the real reason why you bought them. Oh well, it's your money.

I'm not ashamed of the stuff I have. It's easy to take shots at someone with no pictures with their gear and assuming that they have nothing more than a GPX boombox in their parent's basement. I'll let you have your fun if it makes you feel better.

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post #89 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rutgar View Post

If you look closely at the A-21 amps, you will see nothing more than 10 awg standard speaker wire. And yes, there are clumps of dust that are holding them up! Oh, and a few carpet strands.

with the raised cables it looks like it's easier to vacumn under them, also.
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post #90 of 581 Old 02-11-2009, 07:51 AM
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Quote:


I must say that Rutgar's HT looks a lot better than my cable nightmare (don't hold your breath for pictures, none are coming).


I would think HIDING cables is what everyone should aspire too but you guys don't know how much Rutgar paid for those speaker wires ....he has to show them off

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