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Testing audiophile claims and myths - Page 2

post #16 of 3125
Thread Starter 
There is no doubt sighted tests reveal more differences than blind and that there are issues with ABX/blind testing. But those who say there are differences, I can hear them, need to work harder to be convincing.

I say that more about cables than amps and certainly sources, of which I have found no blind tests with one exception, bit rates.
post #17 of 3125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man View Post
There is no doubt sighted tests reveal more differences than blind and that there are issues with ABX/blind testing.
Sighted tests reveal more differences?

You've lost me now.
post #18 of 3125
Quote:
There is no doubt sighted tests reveal more differences than blind and that there are issues with ABX/blind testing. But those who say there are differences, I can hear them, need to work harder to be convincing.

I say that more about cables than amps and certainly sources, of which I have found no blind tests with one exception, bit rates.
^Agreed. Also while the differences in one piece of equipment being swapped could be able to be to small to reliably pick out, the combination of a lot of different pieces of equipment, as in someone elses system, the results of all those small differences could add up to a large audiable change.
post #19 of 3125
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DayoftheGreek View Post
Sighted tests reveal more differences?

You've lost me now.
Meaning whilst reading to find the blind test links it is clear that when tests are sighted people find it easier to claim they heard a difference. Make the same test blind and then it becomes random chance as people get it wrong, such as identifying the same kettle lead as two different cables. If the same people were to do a sighted test with a kettle lead, OK mains lead and an expensive audiophile mains lead, there would not be the same mistake!
post #20 of 3125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man View Post
Make the same test blind and then it becomes random chance as people get it wrong, such as identifying the same kettle lead as two different cables. If the same people were to do a sighted test with a kettle lead, OK mains lead and an expensive audiophile mains lead, there would not be the same mistake!
Prog Rock Man, you are confusing me with your terminology here. When you say 'mistake' are you being ironic?

I mean if you have a correctly conducted blind test and it showed that statistically there was no difference detected between the two cables, then there is no difference audible between the two cables. There is no mistake except the person who thought they heard a difference was imagining it.

Conversly if the test is sighted people know there is a change and a host of other factors come into play to effect the result. This is why blind testing is done.

Right?
post #21 of 3125
There is problems with blind testing also. Just because the people tested didnt hear it doesnt mean that they are the majority of the population or trained listeners. Most of these test are done with a very small slice of people compared to the overall population or even compared to just the population of audiophiles. There could be biases of the people setting up the test that will give one group or another a better chance. The test just shows that those people under those conditions could or could not hear whatever. It might give a base line but it isnt definitive as there will be exceptions that can pass the test probably if the test was continually done. It is more for food for thought as to warn a individual that it might not make a difference.
post #22 of 3125
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingStyles View Post
Just because the people tested didnt hear it doesnt mean that they are the majority of the population or trained listeners.
What makes you think that subjective unscientific claims are more representative of the majority of the population? I'd say it's vice versa.
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingStyles View Post
Most of these test are done with a very small slice of people compared to the overall population or even compared to just the population of audiophiles.
So you are suggesting, that every audiophile has same opinons regarding same gear and every audiophile has the same level of "training"? That is definitely not the case. Of course I'm no statistical scientist, but it is widely aknowledged, that the size of the selection can be minuscule compared to the population and the results can still be statistically valid.
This is Sound Science forum. Sucjective unproven claims are not scientific.
post #23 of 3125
To bad my hearing is limited. If I was a cat or dog my hearing would be so much better. Then again, I would not like to hear everything all the time, oh well...
post #24 of 3125
post #25 of 3125
A couple of points about the amps: 1. Amp differences are measurable. You can find scientific results and graphs in every issue of Stereophile. These tests are repeatable using a variety of test equipment. They meet scientific scrutiny. However, I will grant that it may be difficult to tell amps apart in listening tests. Also worth considering is that the "all amps sound the same" tests intentionally exclude various topologies and/or tubes. My reading of that is that all amps sound the same except for the ones that don't. If you were to stack up solid state against DHT, push-pull, SET, etc., the differences would be both measurable and heard. 2. There are wide differences in amplifier build quality. A lot of the cheap ones are, well, cheap. If you're cool with a third world el discounto power transformer smoking off after a few years (and assuming you have proper insurance coverage and, hopefully, a sprinkler system and fresh batteries in your smoke alarm), then you can save plenty of money. If you want an amp built correctly with reliable parts, you will have to spend some money. Further, the cheap tube amps are on PCBs, which can be difficult or impossible to repair if something goes wrong.
post #26 of 3125
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post

A couple of points about the amps: 1. Amp differences are measurable. You can find scientific results and graphs in every issue of Stereophile. These tests are repeatable using a variety of test equipment. They meet scientific scrutiny. However, I will grant that it may be difficult to tell amps apart in listening tests. Also worth considering is that the "all amps sound the same" tests intentionally exclude various topologies and/or tubes. My reading of that is that all amps sound the same except for the ones that don't. If you were to stack up solid state against DHT, push-pull, SET, etc., the differences would be both measurable and heard. 2. There are wide differences in amplifier build quality. A lot of the cheap ones are, well, cheap. If you're cool with a third world el discounto power transformer smoking off after a few years (and assuming you have proper insurance coverage and, hopefully, a sprinkler system and fresh batteries in your smoke alarm), then you can save plenty of money. If you want an amp built correctly with reliable parts, you will have to spend some money. Further, the cheap tube amps are on PCBs, which can be difficult or impossible to repair if something goes wrong.



I never realized that Singlepower was manufactured in a third world country,and was cheap to.

post #27 of 3125

Interestingly, the Chinese Darkvoice and La Figaro amps are point to point.

post #28 of 3125

This is a very informative thread. Thanks Prog Rock Man you have put together a fantastic post.  Personally I prefer a more passive approach, I am about to buy a new rig as my current one is very low-fo.  If I purchase this new gear and cannot hear a difference bewteen old and new rigs it is then time to focus on buying headphones and forget about amp/DAC upgrades.  I do get the feeling that some people around here forget that their opinions are not facts and they need to stop these little crusades to force their beliefs upon the rest of the audio community. 

 

Strange as it may seem I am in this hobby to enjoy the music, not the gear.  I do enjoy the act of researching and waiting for my purchase to arrive, but at the end of the day I find more enjoyment in listening to my favorite album than buying a new amp.

post #29 of 3125
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark_Jump View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man View Post
Make the same test blind and then it becomes random chance as people get it wrong, such as identifying the same kettle lead as two different cables. If the same people were to do a sighted test with a kettle lead, OK mains lead and an expensive audiophile mains lead, there would not be the same mistake!
Prog Rock Man, you are confusing me with your terminology here. When you say 'mistake' are you being ironic?

I mean if you have a correctly conducted blind test and it showed that statistically there was no difference detected between the two cables, then there is no difference audible between the two cables. There is no mistake except the person who thought they heard a difference was imagining it.

Conversly if the test is sighted people know there is a change and a host of other factors come into play to effect the result. This is why blind testing is done.

Right?


When you say "there is no mistake except" I read that as there has been a mistake. If you were to blind test one group and the result was a statistical average and then get a different group and the same kit or cables and do a sighted test, if they then get it right and say the audiophile cable sounds better than the kettle lead, I would now be very suspicious of their result.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by KingStyles View Post

There is problems with blind testing also. Just because the people tested didnt hear it doesnt mean that they are the majority of the population or trained listeners. Most of these test are done with a very small slice of people compared to the overall population or even compared to just the population of audiophiles. There could be biases of the people setting up the test that will give one group or another a better chance. The test just shows that those people under those conditions could or could not hear whatever. It might give a base line but it isnt definitive as there will be exceptions that can pass the test probably if the test was continually done. It is more for food for thought as to warn a individual that it might not make a difference.


Very true King Style, the aim of this thread was to bring together the smaller tests to try and show a bigger picture. I say the bigger picture is that ABX/blind tests show audiophile claims cannot be truly verified.

post #30 of 3125
Quote:
Originally Posted by terriblepaulz View Post

Thanks Prog for putting all this stuff in one place. Sticky please!


Exactly that.

Was about time! 

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