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Ig Nobel Prize for Placebo Effect

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Duke University behavioral economist Dan Ariely won an Ig Nobel for his study that found more expensive fake medicines work better than cheaper fake medicines.

"When you expect something to happen, your brain makes it happen," Ariely said.

But we know this is complete bunk! We know more expensive cables sound better than cheap cables and more expensive amps sound better than cheap amps! Richard Clark and David Clark know this, why don't you?

The full Monty here

USG
post #2 of 19
There was a great interview on the Podcast "all in the mind" earlier this year with Dan Ariely I recommend this episode and the podcast in general.

All In The Mind - 29 March 2008 - Your irrational mind
post #3 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by JadeEast View Post
There was a great interview on the Podcast "all in the mind" earlier this year with Dan Ariely I recommend this episode and the podcast in general.

All In The Mind - 29 March 2008 - Your irrational mind
Cool. Thanks for that link.

Thanks for the original post too.

Exciting times!

--Chris
post #4 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by upstateguy View Post
Duke University behavioral economist Dan Ariely won an Ig Nobel for his study that found more expensive fake medicines work better than cheaper fake medicines.

"When you expect something to happen, your brain makes it happen," Ariely said.

But we know this is complete bunk! We know more expensive cables sound better than cheap cables and more expensive amps sound better than cheap amps! Richard Clark and David Clark know this, why don't you?

The full Monty here
USG
This is a catch 22 in a way. More expensive cables sound "better" then cheaper cables. But since sound is only how we perceive it and since it sounds "better" with a more expensive cable the sound IS better to that person. So it could be argued that while the cable does nothing scientifically to make the sound better the sound is better because of the human element.
post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by flashnolan View Post
So it could be argued that while the cable does nothing scientifically to make the sound better the sound is better because of the human element.
The community violently rejects this argument though. It's not exactly new.
post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by flashnolan View Post
This is a catch 22 in a way. More expensive cables sound "better" then cheaper cables. But since sound is only how we perceive it and since it sounds "better" with a more expensive cable the sound IS better to that person. So it could be argued that while the cable does nothing scientifically to make the sound better the sound is better because of the human element.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu View Post
The community violently rejects this argument though. It's not exactly new.
I think flash is absolutely correct. The more expensive fake medicines were found to work better than the cheaper fake medicines and so it should be with cables. The more expensive "fake" cables will sound better than the cheaper "fake" cables... until you ABX them.... same with amps, as per the two Clarks.

The force is strong with Placebo effect.

USG
post #7 of 19
If it works, it's all godd i guess. I know people who's just can't relax with cheap cables(or anything) in their system. They say - even i can't know for sure is there any difference or not, i'm feeling much better about my system when all the components are top-notch.
post #8 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by QQQ View Post
If it works, it's all godd i guess. I know people who's just can't relax with cheap cables(or anything) in their system. They say - even i can't know for sure is there any difference or not, i'm feeling much better about my system when all the components are top-notch.
Damn straight- for the small amount of time I was forced to use a thin, piddly USB cable with my DAC, I kept fretting till I got a nice, thick one. No logic or reasoning involved. And I sure couldn't tell a difference, either, but at least I could rest.
post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by upstateguy View Post
Duke University behavioral economist Dan Ariely won an Ig Nobel for his study that found more expensive fake medicines work better than cheaper fake medicines.

"When you expect something to happen, your brain makes it happen," Ariely said.

But we know this is complete bunk! We know more expensive cables sound better than cheap cables and more expensive amps sound better than cheap amps! Richard Clark and David Clark know this, why don't you?

The full Monty here

USG
This is exactly why I don't believe double blinds. If you pay extra for a cord or an amp and your brain expects it to sound better and makes you perceive it as sounding better, it is just as if the upgrade actually sounds better. It is all about perception, and I have no problem with that whatsoever. Now, it is clear at the lower end of things that the sound gets much better. (going from ibuds to phones, unamped to amped...) If you enjoy it more, why wouldn't you pay for it? Even if the enjoyment is the function of the payment and not the other way around like we're used to in society.
post #10 of 19
Huh? A Double Blind Test removes that change in perception by removing the visual stimulus. In a DBT, the listener can't tell which cable cost $2,000 and which cost $2; they have to judge based on what they hear. It could save some people a lot of money.
post #11 of 19
The best way to prove Placebo Effect is blind fold a person and make him listen to iBuds and tell he is listening to Yuin Pk1.

lol
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by tintin47 View Post
This is exactly why I don't believe double blinds. If you pay extra for a cord or an amp and your brain expects it to sound better and makes you perceive it as sounding better, it is just as if the upgrade actually sounds better. It is all about perception, and I have no problem with that whatsoever. Now, it is clear at the lower end of things that the sound gets much better. (going from ibuds to phones, unamped to amped...) If you enjoy it more, why wouldn't you pay for it? Even if the enjoyment is the function of the payment and not the other way around like we're used to in society.
Because once you have exposed Mr Placebo for the lying biatch that he is you can then enjoy the cheaper stuff without having to spend the extra dough.
Reality can have it's perks too.
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nocturnal310 View Post
The best way to prove Placebo Effect is blind fold a person and make him listen to iBuds and tell he is listening to Yuin Pk1.

lol
Tell me you have never done this...
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Real Man of Genius View Post
Because once you have exposed Mr Placebo for the lying biatch that he is you can then enjoy the cheaper stuff without having to spend the extra dough.
Reality can have it's perks too.
I'm very sympathetic to this...if we can show that cables (or whatever) make no perceivable difference in SQ in DBTs, and if we spread the word enough, hopefully we can save a lot of people from spending money pointlessly and (more importantly, perhaps...) begin enjoying their cheap(er) gear.

However, I'm reminded by Hume that the reason is the slave of the passions, and I'm sceptical that we can ever rid people of their potentially false beliefs. People will doubt the science, no doubt.
post #15 of 19
If you cease to be a slave to your passions then you have no reason to listen to music any more, as it will not evoke the feelings in you that it once did.
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