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Why does the last end of the power cable matter so much? - Page 3

post #31 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by fewtch
Did I say something untrue? If so, I'm open to correction. To lose <-- (sp) your temper would be downright ridiculous, and certainly wouldn't fix any incorrect ideas I may have. If you can't help but get overly emotional on this topic, why not just go do something else for awhile?

Or is it that you can't handle disagreement on a topic you feel strongly about? That would be a little sad, but nothing new... been on the Net since 1994 and have met quite a few such folks.
Let me explain. I am getting emotional because you use an example which I personally find offending. I had somebody very close who died of cancer. That person had to undergo a lot of very painful chemotherapy during several years. And you are saying these patients should try suggar pills and should have had a good chance of getting rid of the illness.

I will stop reading this thread now, it just brings up too many painful memories. I hope you and I will be able to discuss another topic at another time.
post #32 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glod
Let me explain. I am getting emotional because you use an example which I personally find offending. I had somebody very close who died of cancer. That person had to undergo a lot of very painful chemotherapy during several years. And you are saying these patients should try suggar pills and should have had a good chance of getting rid of the illness.
That wasn't what I was saying at all. I was using it as an example of the placebo effect, in context of this thread. Sorry if I hit a personal nerve.

How about a different example. If you know anything about pharmacology, you know they judge medications by how effective they are compared to placebo. Oftentimes, medications are just a little more effective than placebo. Sometimes they get approved, but it's found out later they aren't any more effective than placebo. I'm talking about meds in widespread use to treat all sorts of conditions. In other words, many medications are only a little bit more effective than the placebo effect, which says nothing about the medications and everything about how powerful the placebo effect is. Maybe that's a better example.
post #33 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon L
Before insisting it's all placebo effect for us suckers who can't wait to part with our money, will any non-believers actually step up to the plate and actually LISTEN to the different cords without prejudice? It cuts both ways.
Firstly: I did not call you "sucker", ok?

Secondly: true, I have not compared different power cords, nor do I intend to.

But let us suppose I did and perceived a difference! Then what? There are practically thousands of "contributions" like this flooding the audio forums. You know the formula: "I pretty much used to be a skeptic regarding cables, but one day I listened to my audiophile frends Deep Magic MkIV interconnects and I have to say... yadda,yadda"

Even in my case the original question would still remain unanswered: is the perceived sonic difference real (i.e. resulting from different acoustical outputs of the two configurations) or just in my imagination?

Sorry, but if you want someone else to believe your claims, the burden of proof is on you. If you find blind tests unsatisfactory so far , then it is your turn to suggest something better. BTW check out rec.audio.high-end archives via Google. There is a very nice pool of money waiting for someone who passes a cable blind test. No takers, yet.


Regards,

L.
post #34 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by fewtch
That wasn't what I was saying at all. I was using it as an example of the placebo effect, in context of this thread. Sorry if I hit a personal nerve.

How about a different example. If you know anything about pharmacology, you know they judge medications by how effective they are compared to placebo. Oftentimes, medications are just a little more effective than placebo. Sometimes they get approved, but it's found out later they aren't any more effective than placebo. I'm talking about meds in widespread use to treat all sorts of conditions. In other words, many medications are only a little bit more effective than the placebo effect, which says nothing about the medications and everything about how powerful the placebo effect is. Maybe that's a better example.
Much better example.

Let me just explain shortly what I find to be the best testing set-up. It is better than the DBT IMHO.

Situation: You have changed you favourite IC in your main rig to use it temporarily in another application.

Some days later, you sit down to listen to the main rig - and then you notice that something is not as it use to be, and maybe you can even tell what it is (soundstage, mid-range or whatever). Obviously you are interested why there is a difference, and begin to look if the phones are allright and so on. Then you happen to look behind the source: Oh - right, I changed the IC a couple of days ago

What this test is good at it’s to take away the expectation factor. You are not sitting and expecting a change. Compare with the Placebo effect. However, you could always argue that you were subconsciously aware of that the cable was changed and that induced the feeling of change. But I do not think that is likely.

If a power cord would pass that kind of test. I would certainly consider it. Once again: I have no experience in power cords, only interconnects. But I am certainly open to that they too can have a significant role to play.
post #35 of 66
Some thoughts on why the last meters of the power line could be of importance:

It's been said that one important thing is shielding against electromagnetic fields. As I understand it, all wires coming from or going to an electronic audio device can act as antennas, so they pick up electromagnetic interferences which in turn could harm the signal processing. This also applies to power cords. But how could shielding the last few meters be of use while at the same time kilometers of wire remain unshielded? I'm not sure that the subterranian laying makes it immune or is even the general norm (it isn't everywhere in my country). But considering the length of the line, there has to be an enormous inductance -- so a lot of the EMF interferences, which predominantly consist of HF, are suppressed on their way to our audio setup. That's not the case anymore on the last few meters, so shielding them may very well have a positive effect.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Leporello
Sorry, but if you want someone else to believe your claims, the burden of proof is on you.
On Head-Fi, we don't prove anything, we just report our findings based on our listening impressions -- believe them or not. I wonder why you still resort to the Head-Fi forum, because I can't remember of any proof that's been offered here.

post #36 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaZZ
On Head-Fi, we don't prove anything, we just report our findings based on our listening impressions -- believe them or not. I wonder why you still resort to the Head-Fi forum, because I can't remember of any proof that's been offered here.
Good point... that's why I was playing 'devil's advocate' on this thread. Really I feel this way: If one power cord sounds better to you than another, and you don't mind spending on a pricey power cord, more power to you -- enjoy the music. For those who don't believe or don't hear any power cord differences, more power to you as well... enjoy the fatter wallet .
post #37 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by JaZZ
On Head-Fi, we don't prove anything, we just report our findings based on our listening impressions -- believe them or not. I wonder why you still resort to the Head-Fi forum, because I can't remember of any proof that's been offered here.


Indeed, "proof" is a powerful word. But as you undoubtedly know, "burden of proof" is a saying. The principle behind it is quite sound and generally accepted. Call it "positive evidence", if "proof" sounds too ponderous to you.

As for audiophiles "just reporting their findings based on their listening impressions" (to quote you freely), that is simply not true. You only have to read this thread from the beginning (or just about any other thread on just about any other audiophile forum) to realize that posters are not just reporting their findings. Instead they are making specific claims about the sonic differences of various pieces of equipment - differences that are supposed to exist independently of the observer. Of course, if this was not the case, there would be no common ground at all. All our discussions would be rather pointless solipsistic hallucination!


Regards,


L.
post #38 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leporello
As for audiophiles "just reporting their findings based on their listening impressions" (to quote you freely), that is simply not true. You only have to read this thread from the beginning (or just about any other thread on just about any other audiophile forum) to realize that posters are not just reporting their findings. Instead they are making specific claims about the sonic differences of various pieces of equipment - differences that are supposed to exist independently of the observer. Of course, if this was not the case, there would be no common ground at all. All our discussions would be rather pointless solipsistic hallucination!
That last point is the deal-breaker... people really have to talk about sonic attributes as if they exist independently of the observer, even if they don't. There has to be common ground for discussion, even if it's a Matrix-like invented social construct. Much of audiophilia may be just that, but even if so... so what?

BTW, not to get all philosophical on your a**, but I get the impression quantum physics is leaning toward the side of the subjectivists -- I.E. that nothing exists independently of observation. Personally, I've thought for a long time that astronomy and neurobiology are basically the same science... the space-time continuum is the brain's way of organizing perception and cognition, so any study involving space or time is an indirect study of the brain. There's nothing 'external' to consciousness (and thus nothing internal to it either, as external/internal are two sides of the same coin and rely on each other for definition).

I don't mean to imply solipsism in the above, which IMO is obviously false, shallow nonsense.

P.S. I found a website for those interested in some related philosophy:

http://www.vexen.co.uk/3/subjectivism.html

... and sorry about the philosophical diversion (better than heated/flaming debate, I guess ).
post #39 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glod
Much better example.

... snip
I see one potential flaw in that. I have noticed that my perception of music can change drastically depending on my mood, daytime etc. Sometimes music just sounds so friggin' good on my inexpensive speaker & headphone rigs, but occasionally the magic is gone and I think there is something wrong with the rig when there really isn't. When one changes an IC and upon noticing a change after few days and remembers the IC change again, it might be easy to think it was the IC that made the difference (to the best or worse, depending on case).
post #40 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by breez
I see one potential flaw in that. I have noticed that my perception of music can change drastically depending on my mood, daytime etc. Sometimes music just sounds so friggin' good on my inexpensive speaker & headphone rigs, but occasionally the magic is gone and I think there is something wrong with the rig when there really isn't. When one changes an IC and upon noticing a change after few days and remembers the IC change again, it might be easy to think it was the IC that made the difference (to the best or worse, depending on case).

Mood or any other human factor such as a cold, stress or simply fatigue can certainly change the perception of recorded sound. I think so too. Sometimes when my system does not sound as good as I think it usually does, I blame a poluted powergrid, and postpone the listening session untill after midnight . Whether that is a reasonable scape goat or not is another discussion. Lots of threads have been written about that and hundreds will be.

But in the cases of my IC's, it has always been a clear cut matter. The differences have been so salient, that it has never been a question of , is there something wrong or isn't it?
post #41 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by fewtch
How about a different example. If you know anything about pharmacology, you know they judge medications by how effective they are compared to placebo. Oftentimes, medications are just a little more effective than placebo. Sometimes they get approved, but it's found out later they aren't any more effective than placebo. I'm talking about meds in widespread use to treat all sorts of conditions. In other words, many medications are only a little bit more effective than the placebo effect, which says nothing about the medications and everything about how powerful the placebo effect is. Maybe that's a better example.
I'd love to have a citation to the medical journals where someone was cured of cancer by taking a sugar pill.

In any event, it is my understanding that when placebos are used in pharmacology, the patient is not told that he is receiving a placebo, but the actual drug and that the drug is being tested as a possible cure to the condition. That is why it is a placebo effect. He THINKS he is going to be cured or that there is that potential. If the person was told they were receiving a sugar pill instead of actual medicine and that it would NOT cure their problem, do you think it still would? Show me an experiment where that has happened in pharmacology.

Similarly, in the present context, non-believers who have tried cables KNOW what they are trying and the THINK that there is no difference because they think aftermarket cables are all bunk. Yet after they try them, they hear a difference. Frankly, if a number of people were told they were being given sugar pills to cure a certain disease and that there was no evidence it would cure it, but then it did anyway in a significant number of cases, I would definitely try that type and brand of sugar pill if I ever got that disease!!!!
post #42 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leporello
Secondly: true, I have not compared different power cords, nor do I intend to.
Of course not. None of the skeptics ever do, which is why their position is not persuasive. Someone who says they listened and heard no difference -- that's an argument worthy of serious consideration.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Leporello
But let us suppose I did and perceived a difference! Then what? There are practically thousands of "contributions" like this flooding the audio forums. You know the formula: "I pretty much used to be a skeptic regarding cables, but one day I listened to my audiophile frends Deep Magic MkIV interconnects and I have to say... yadda,yadda"

Even in my case the original question would still remain unanswered: is the perceived sonic difference real (i.e. resulting from different acoustical outputs of the two configurations) or just in my imagination?
Again, explain to me this phenomenon, where the result is CONTRARY to expectations, and not just for one or two isolated cases, but for many. To just answer "placebo" every time some skeptic tries a cable and becomes a believer -- where the result is contrary to expectations -- is no more persuasive than saying he must have been drunk.
post #43 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leporello

Secondly: true, I have not compared different power cords, nor do I intend to.

Sorry, but if you want someone else to believe your claims, the burden of proof is on you. If you find blind tests unsatisfactory so far , then it is your turn to suggest something better. BTW check out rec.audio.high-end archives via Google. There is a very nice pool of money waiting for someone who passes a cable blind test. No takers, yet.


Regards,

L.
Nah... I think some of the posts have gotten too serious already as these things ALWAYS do. It's inevitable and somewhat reminds me of argument between a religous believer and non-believer.

Still, I feel compelled to point out that the "burden of proof" is NOT on me or any of the cable believers here. Why should it be? I'm not trying to make profit by selling you power cords. In fact, I'd be more than happy to offer up a couple of DIY cord recipes that's cheap and great-sounding. But why bother when you've already said you will not try it?

I guess I just can't stop myself from responding b/c I KNOW more musical joy can be available to more people if they would just try something like better cords, cables, etc. But if they decide not to, it won't affect my life in any way shape or form. Either way, the globe will keep spinning, and it's ALL good
post #44 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leporello
Secondly: true, I have not compared different power cords, nor do I intend to.
This has been qouted twice already, but I am quoting it again. It's just classic.

"I don't believe powercords make a difference, and I will not ever try them to see if i'm wrong."

1) If you are already 100% convicted they don't make a difference, then you will rationalize away any difference that is indeed there once you hear them.

2) To quote the age-old phrase... Can't knock it til you've tried it

3) You are essentially basing your un-belief in powercords on nothing at all. nice.
post #45 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sduibek
This has been qouted twice already, but I am quoting it again. It's just classic.
Thanks for the compliment (I am tempted to use my creation in my sig, but I still prefer the Rumsfeld quote). But please, read the rest of my post you quoted to realize why my personal experience with power cords would not matter. That really is the point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sduibek
1) If you are already 100% convicted they don't make a difference, then you will rationalize away any difference that is indeed there once you hear them.
Perhaps. That is one of the reasons why I would like to have positive evidence from those who claim to hear the difference. Reports of "personal experience" based on sighted listening tests (even by myself) are not that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sduibek

3) You are essentially basing your un-belief in powercords on nothing at all. nice.
My un-belief (I woul call it skepticism) is based on lack of proper evidence. Most rational people do not believe in the Loch Ness monster or Jeti the Great Snowman because of the lack of evidence. No personal experience needed.


Regards,

L.
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