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electrical engineers: Why do cables improve sound? - Page 2

post #16 of 602
Check the Analysis Plus website.......they test/analyze audio cables for many big names in the industry, top engineers with sophisticated testing equipment and techniques that "attempt" to understand the most important scientific reasons cables sound different, they have extensive cable research/data to read:

Analysis Plus

Even though they can show you scientific proof thier cables transmit the music signal with less distortion than any other cable design, I still find other cables sound better to me.
post #17 of 602
*** EDIT: Dammit, ignore comments. Inability to read means I completely misunderstood point of Audioholics article. (cable resonance vs cable/load resonance) ***
post #18 of 602
Thread Starter 
NealPeart, DarkAngel, and marvin have all given some terrific insights thus far. Thank you for a useful scientific explaination (and links to useful scientific explainations), I'm just trying to gather information.

(if you or anyone else have further contributions, I am in your debt!)
post #19 of 602
Quote:
Originally Posted by marvin
The problem is that by treating a speaker cable as a classic transmission line, Audioholics skips over the fact that a speaker is a very nasty reactive load and amplifiers aren't perfect either. This invalidates the use of the classic transmission line formulas when it comes to speaker wires, which invalidates their conclusions. It may work as an approximation, but could also be a few orders of magnitude off.
There is no requirement for transmission lines to be terminated by real loads, the theory is perfectly applicable to reactive terminations (Lord knows we'd be having a hell of a time with microwave antenna design if it wasn't.). Still, it is a gross simplification but has the advantage of being a wonderful tool for 1 dimensional wave behavior. It fails to reveal many of the effects of the actual three dimensional waveguide. It would be more interesting for people to model an actual cable via a finite element method software. Most people have a hard enough time understanding transmission lines so it's easy to throw out terms and formulas. Showing an actual propagation of current through the cable visually is far more effective. There was a website that had crossections of cables of a few geometries (twisted pair and coax) and would provide the current distribution from an inputted frequency. Was a neat way to show the skin effect to people.
post #20 of 602
*** EDIT: Dammit, ignore comments. Inability to read means I completely misunderstood point of Audioholics article. (cable resonance vs cable/load resonance) ***
post #21 of 602
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilPeart
Capacitance is the most important concern for interconnects.

Inductance and resistance are the most important concerns for speaker cables.

Read the FAQs on BlueJeanCable's website:
http://bluejeanscable.com/articles/index.htm

These guys are actual engineers and technicians, and my company has actually sought engineering advice and cabling tips from them.

I decide based on a magical hybrid technical specifications and listening tests.
Thanks for the link, NeilPeart.
The guys at Blue Jean seem to really know what they are saying don't don't promote snake oil.
Analysis Plus and Cardas--their websites may have less snake oil than some other companies, but still....(the less said the better)
post #22 of 602
i wish i was in the cable business.
post #23 of 602
Just a general comment: someone said the real world is the domain of the concrete. Maybe, but it's also the domain of placebo, marketing, and headology...
post #24 of 602
just to throw a wrench in the works take a look at this thread for people's opinions i do value:
http://www.diyaudio.com/forums/showt...600&highlight=
post #25 of 602
Thread Starter 
As I explore this further, with an open mind, a few significant questions spring to mind:

It strikes me as odd that we have the technology to build long-range handheld radios conforming to complex timeslice protocols in the GHz spectrum, at a price point where cellular companies are willing to give them away for free, but we somehow can't figure out a way to build a 10' copper wire that is flat out to a few dozen KHz?

We have analog equipment operating at extremely high frequencies & precisions too. But the $75k Tektronix scopes used to calibrate the world's hottest new technologies (for enormous sums of money, try $10,000 per test) use a 10GHz cable that costs around a hundred bucks.

One can obtain a cable certified for signal analysis up to 5GHz for less than $20.

So why is a simple, low-bandwidth signal like analog audio so perplexing (and expensive)?
post #26 of 602
Quote:
Originally Posted by AdamWill
Just a general comment: someone said the real world is the domain of the concrete. Maybe, but it's also the domain of placebo, marketing, and headology...
Sorry to be anal but, Yeh I didn't agree with that either in fact I would have said things are the other way around if anything:

All scientific theories that are used to describe physical systems in nature are simple approximations of the way nature is in reality.

usually things happen like this:

1 - scientist has hypothesis (eg Ohm found V=IR) either by experiment or mathematically.

2- scientist will publish his/her findings.

3- if over time the hypothesis is found to hold true in tests by other scientists also...eventually the hypothesis will be accepted by the scientific community in general and the hypothesis will become a theory.

This is not to say when a hypothesis becomes a theory that it describes nature perfectly after all a theory may test accurate a billion times then on the billion+1 time it fails.

Science approximates nature. They may be highly accurate approximations...but they are approximations none the less.

Newton's laws of gravity are a great example....Einstein has given a far more accurate description of how gravity is linked with space and time but Newtons are not considered wrong as they still describe how gravitational systems behave very accurately.

Often as our scientific knowledge improves theories are ammended and improved also.

So I would say science is more concrete than the natural systems it is used to describe.

This applies to cables also. We know how a conductor works and behaves in general, but that's not to say that new ways of getting a complex signal signal down a cable without being attenuated or distorted aren't being developed all the time.
post #27 of 602
People have heard clear differences between lossless formats and between lossless formats and WAV, as well. Are you going to say that obviously lossless is BS and that the codec developer's equations don't match up with the real world performance of lossless formats?
post #28 of 602
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by K2Grey
People have heard clear differences between lossless formats and between lossless formats and WAV, as well. Are you going to say that obviously lossless is BS and that the codec developer's equations don't match up with the real world performance of lossless formats?
What the heck does digital compression have to do with analog waveforms
post #29 of 602
A scientific theory may appear to be valid as it gives the right result.

3+2=5

but we find many theories overtime are proven to be wrong.

new theories will explain the same phenomonon but do it differently and more accurately.

4+1=5

Lots of science as little as 20 years old is very outdated. Lots of science that is much older is not.

As others have said theories are an approximation. Until our understanding is complete, which it will likely never be, theories will be subject to revision.

Theory is just an explanation of what is happening. The real world IS what is happening. Theory is imposed on the real world to help explain the phenomonon. It is incredibly useful, but it is a means and not an end.

In the case of audio gear there maybe many phenomonon we are not aware of acting upon it. Perhaps we have not yet developed tools to measure them. Science is never a closed book.
post #30 of 602
Quote:
Originally Posted by EricP
What the heck does digital compression have to do with analog waveforms
Nothing in particular. He just pointed out the placebo factor when comparing things and of course it applies to sighted listening tests with cables too
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