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Old 22nd March 2003, 05:05 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally posted by Peter Daniel
When listening to recorded music I don't try to remember sonic signature of a given equipment or setup, because when differences are small it may become mind boggling indeed. I'd rather prefer to relax and identify my own reaction to the sound I hear. When something is not right, it's usually very obvious, because I can't concentrate on music and sounds exist beside me, without any emotional content on my side. When everything is right, or when the change I just did was significant the music grabs me and gets me involved (at least for awhile) and I'm eager to try another recording to see how it's different this time.
That's pretty much how I approach things. I've never been able to get into that analytical, flyspeck mode of listening and as a consequence have never developed any sort of communications skills to relate "how it sounds."

I simply listen intuitively and go with whatever I end up getting the most subjective pleasure from.

It's like seeing a beautiful woman. You just know it. And when seeing two women, you don't need to examine and compare every pore, mole, nose hair, etc. to know which you find more attractive.
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Old 22nd March 2003, 05:06 AM   #32
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What about powering amps from batteries. Any advantage to that, or it's rather also a psychological experience only?
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Old 22nd March 2003, 05:13 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally posted by Peter Daniel
What about powering amps from batteries. Any advantage to that, or it's rather also a psychological experience only?
Heheh. Certainly there are technical advantages. Whether they amount to actual audible differences, I've really no idea, nor do I much care. I only know what I like and I never pass off what I like as being anything more than my own personal, subjective preference. That and $5 might get you a cup of coffee these days.

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Old 22nd March 2003, 05:17 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by Steve Eddy


I only know what I like and I never pass off what I like as being anything more than my own personal, subjective preference.

That's what I'm slowly learning on this forum. It seems that not everybody grabbed the concept yet.
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Old 22nd March 2003, 06:02 AM   #35
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Quote:
Originally posted by Peter Daniel
That's what I'm slowly learning on this forum. It seems that not everybody grabbed the concept yet.
Hehehe. Alas. In the meantime, here's $5 (that's like $250 CDN, no? ) have a cup of coffee on me.

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Old 22nd March 2003, 08:09 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally posted by moe29
The right brain/left brain theory applies here. You use one side
of your brain for objective logical kinds of processing, and the
other for subjective and emotional. When you are enjoying music,
the subjective half is in play, and its process does not relate to
the specs very well.
Not to disrespect Nelson Pass at all, but the left/right brain staple of pop psychology has been very much dissproven, see here for a basic article on the subject.

My scientific mind tells me that DB testing is a vital tool in interpreting data with a combined physical and psychological components. Yet I clearly heard differences when building amps with the different GC ICs, with no preconceptions at all, ( I started with LMs weeks before the fashion started). Yet it seems my results were the complete opposite of what Peter Daniels heard. Hmmm

p.s. As a past student of psychology, ( most of which is rubbish), I find it fascinating to observe the group dynamics of this discussion
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Old 22nd March 2003, 09:04 AM   #37
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Default More on the process itself .....

There are several posts arguing that a DBRCT (that is Double Blind Randomized Conrolled Trial for the few who didn't know) is invalid because you can't use a room full of 'non-golden-ears' and make a valid assessment. "Of course these poor uneducated mugs can't hear a difference ...... they’re Neanderthals!"

This is entirely correct ...... however, does not invalidate the process.

The point is your DBRCT must be constructed properly to answer the question asked. If the measure lacks sensitivity for the factor in question the results become meaningless.

If the question asked is, "can the average man in the street tell the difference between A and B", then the room full of randomly selected people is absolutely correct.

If the question is, "can the average 'golden ear' tell the difference between A and B", then the room should be full of randomly selected 'golden ears'.

If we wish to test forum member X's claim that he/she can easily tell the difference, then the trial is done slightly differently. We use the 1 subject and repeated measures in random order. This might mean conducting the trial over a number of days to remove the "fatigue" element. (plus a lot of other boring bits!)

DBRCT is not a single design entity but a process of approach to answering a question which provides the least bias in the result.

Designing good trials which answer questions accurately with a high degree of certainty is actually a very difficult thing and a science in it's own right.

I return again to the original question, which was (in effect), "is this process a valid way to look at/compare audio" ..... and the answer is that it is the gold standard. We may not like this, however it is a simple truth (within our current paradigm).

cheers
mark

PS: Enjoy the process of design, enjoy the process of making it, take pride in doing it well and most of all enjoy the music at the end.

PPS: For those on a budget, you can save a lot of money avoiding "snake oil" components which will actually make very little (if any) audible difference ....... I think this was one of the main points of the original author and one with which I agree.
 
Old 22nd March 2003, 10:04 AM   #38
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Default Pissed and Deaf

Quote:
"Yes, Eric, that must be it. I've got crappy speakers."
Sy, I'm not meaning to be be dissing you there.
It is meant as a comment that if you are not hearing subtle differences then it is likely that there is some kind of masking going on.

This masking can be caused by a whole range of causes, ranging from suspect speakers, suspect interconnects, noisey mains power, etc, etc, etc...... .
Your visual system plugged into the same mains source can cause masking too, even if turned off I find.

I note that according to your website, you are into wines in a seemingly big way, and as has been shown to me many times, alcohol is fine for the soul, but typically deleterious to ones hearing.

I get to repair plenty of audio systems that are victims of an owners drunken binge.
Also, it is common knowledge that when doing live sound mixing that ones ears go 'off' if imbibing whilst on the job, and in high end sound reinforcement circles, alcohol is best left alone until after the show is over, and it is not considered 'kosher' to be seen to be under the influence whilst in command of seriously high power systems.

Previous long term exposure to harsh sounding home or PA systems changes hearing response too.
Nowadays there are plenty of 50's something audio operators who have cooked their ears during the late seventies/early eighties on harsh systems, and their hallmark is a live sound with hard and biting mids and high mids.
Educated and youger ears thankfully usually avoid this error, but not always.

I also find plenty of older masterful musicians whose hearing discrimination is quite lost in the midrange.

Eric.
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Old 22nd March 2003, 10:21 AM   #39
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Default TAKING YOUR MUSIC SERIOUSLY.

Hi,

Quote:
Your visual system plugged into the same mains source can cause masking too, even if turned off I find.
Absolutely.

A dedicated mains spur is a must, anything else hooked up to that should be disconnected from the mains for serious listening.
As Eric says, even when not switched on it will degrade sonics.

Not that I have a quickfix explanation for it though.

Another often overlooked detail is correct mains polarity of each individual apparatus.
Always check for least leakage current, mark the correct polarity and enjoy the difference.

Cheers,
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Old 22nd March 2003, 03:09 PM   #40
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OK, Eric that must be it. I've got crappy speakers AND I'm an alcoholic.
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