Originally Posted by sferic
Sorry, once you join the cult you can never leave. Your family will never love you as much as the latest, hottest DAC will. Perhaps you're not sufficiently devoted to cable swapping. Maybe you're weak in the face of ground loop hum. We're all human and all the graphs show we are born with Original Sound Coloration. Keep trying and buying. We know where you live. ;-)
My initial feeling is that listening to your favourite music at sufficient volume for long enough will lead to enough deterioration in hearing that much of the differences discussed in this thread may become moot. Just during my recent forays I have learned a few things...
1. I love the SE535s
2. Triple.Fi 10s hurt like hell after about 1.5 hrs, but sound just about as good if squeezed in tight
3. iPhone 3GS sounds worse than iPhone 4
3. latest generation iPod sounds the same as iPhone4
4. wikipedia has an entry on audiophiles
5. with the ambiguity around "missing fundamentals" and the principal capability of the body to physically sense sounds at <20 & >22 kHz arguing about nuances eventually turns into an exercise akin to debating gods existence/nonexistence
6. a lot about entropic encoding, the Shannon-Nyquist theorem, Shannon lower limit and the psychoacoustic model, PCM, sampling and bitrates, aliasing and sampling artifacts - which is all very intellectually intriguing, albeit inaudible to me
7. high end anything means stringing along a value-to-cost function that is clearly exponential... I am a die hard mountainbike fan and find nothing wrong spending on spokes what some buy a "bike" for
8. IEMs while riding a bike is a pretty bad idea
9. Judging by my colleagues faces, I look like Checkov in Wrath of the Khan as the critter leaves his ear when I pull the triple flange Shures out of my ear at work.