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Placebo, how much does it affect audio enthusiasts? - Page 2  

post #16 of 80

Placebo need not be a bad thing in all applications.  Healthcare practitioners regularly utilize placebo to aid in strengthening the therapeutic alliance with their patients, which then in turn reinforces compliance.

post #17 of 80

calling something a placebo ,  a certain LCD, amp, dac or cable....

just becos i dun have the dough$$$ or the ears or the knowledge to make it sound phenomenal,

helps to pacify my inner rage. hehehe....

deadhorse.gif

 

anyway my latest purchase has always been the best, 

until i sold it.

tongue_smile.gif

 

gazebo is ...when u gaze at it long enough it sounds better.

tongue.gif

post #18 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorspeaker View Post

gazebo is ...when u gaze at it long enough it sounds better.

tongue.gif


 

haha, that is funny... biggrin.gif

post #19 of 80

I'd say that cognitive biases in general, not just the placebo effect (which, if memory serves, cannot actually be argued to apply here), are rampant in CE in general. And that advertisers and marketers have figured out exactly how to tap into them. And of course, once you've done that, your converts customers will violently defend your reputation and status to anyone who is foolish or gutsy enough to question whatever wild and fantastic claims you've made. In recent years, as a result of changing economic paradigms, this has trickled down from the domain of purely "high end" to more or less every day shopping experiences - you've got Wal-Mart and Best Buy hawking hundred or thousand dollar cables with cheap TVs or speakers, simply because it means they can actually turn a profit if they make the sale. It's a scam. 

 

While in the domain of "high end" I think it's somewhere between well-meaning mistake, and malevolent overpricing. In other words, I have to question if some of the "high end" types actually believe in what they're selling, and aren't just trying to turn a huge profit. I'm not saying all of them are one way or another, but I'm sure at least some of them legitimately believe in what they're doing (usually these are the ones who do measurements and who talk about those measurements, but then take some fantastic leap to why whatever thing they've invented is also still good). I don't know, I'd at least like to believe this is the case (an example would be Woo Audio - I've never owned any of their products, but I think they legitimately believe the more expensive tubes, caps, parts, etc make their products better, I don't think it's a gouge so they can actually turn a profit (as opposed to the guy at Best Buy selling you a $400 TV, $30 DVD player, and $350 cable to hook them together)). 

 

And I put "high end" in quotes because I don't think it's really a quantified thing. It's not meant as a dig. 

post #20 of 80


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post

I'd say that cognitive biases in general, not just the placebo effect (which, if memory serves, cannot actually be argued to apply here), are rampant in CE in general. And that advertisers and marketers have figured out exactly how to tap into them. And of course, once you've done that, your converts customers will violently defend your reputation and status to anyone who is foolish or gutsy enough to question whatever wild and fantastic claims you've made. In recent years, as a result of changing economic paradigms, this has trickled down from the domain of purely "high end" to more or less every day shopping experiences - you've got Wal-Mart and Best Buy hawking hundred or thousand dollar cables with cheap TVs or speakers, simply because it means they can actually turn a profit if they make the sale. It's a scam. 

 

While in the domain of "high end" I think it's somewhere between well-meaning mistake, and malevolent overpricing. In other words, I have to question if some of the "high end" types actually believe in what they're selling, and aren't just trying to turn a huge profit. I'm not saying all of them are one way or another, but I'm sure at least some of them legitimately believe in what they're doing (usually these are the ones who do measurements and who talk about those measurements, but then take some fantastic leap to why whatever thing they've invented is also still good). I don't know, I'd at least like to believe this is the case (an example would be Woo Audio - I've never owned any of their products, but I think they legitimately believe the more expensive tubes, caps, parts, etc make their products better, I don't think it's a gouge so they can actually turn a profit (as opposed to the guy at Best Buy selling you a $400 TV, $30 DVD player, and $350 cable to hook them together)). 

 

And I put "high end" in quotes because I don't think it's really a quantified thing. It's not meant as a dig. 



I think there are two aspects to it, one, whether the manufacturer genuinely put in some high quality stuff, and two, whether it makes any difference or not. I mean someone might want to use gold plating on the copper PCB routes, etc etc. Atleast when you buy that, maybe you can get the satisfaction of buying a product that pushes the boundaries in some respect.

post #21 of 80


Oh I'm not getting into "does it make an audible difference" - I'm just saying that in a lot of cases, I think that the "high end" guys really believe what they're selling. The obvious scams are usually weeded out pretty quickly, and the big-box dealer scams are a separate world. Sure, putting in "high quality stuff" will run the price up, but usually it's an exercise in overkill. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by proton007 View Post


 



I think there are two aspects to it, one, whether the manufacturer genuinely put in some high quality stuff, and two, whether it makes any difference or not. I mean someone might want to use gold plating on the copper PCB routes, etc etc. Atleast when you buy that, maybe you can get the satisfaction of buying a product that pushes the boundaries in some respect.



 

post #22 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post


Oh I'm not getting into "does it make an audible difference" - I'm just saying that in a lot of cases, I think that the "high end" guys really believe what they're selling. The obvious scams are usually weeded out pretty quickly, and the big-box dealer scams are a separate world. Sure, putting in "high quality stuff" will run the price up, but usually it's an exercise in overkill. 



 



I guess its hard to tell which is which unless the product is so bad the scam is obvious.

Anyways, I think the seller has to believe in his product if he wants to convince others to buy it.

post #23 of 80

Even if you are not being affected by placebo, is a purchase justified if you have to concentrate with all your might just to hear a difference? I think many people here focus too much on whether they can hear a difference, and not whether this difference actually adds to the enjoyment of the music. So you hear an extra harmonic on a cymbal crash- that'll get the toes tappin'! Music isn't a science experiment, it's ART.

post #24 of 80

Music is art.  The electronic recording and reproduction thereof is a fundamentally a technological effort based on the science and the scientific method.

post #25 of 80

do you guys think there are any significant (or even audible) differences between dacs or amps, aside from whether they're powerful enough to get desired spl?  i have a small collection of amps now and got some switch boxes so i can a/b them but i haven't had the time to really get into it yet.  nothing jumped out at me in my initial sessions though.  

 

i did measure channel balancing with my dmm and there are certainly differences between the amps in that regard, but the maximum imbalance i found on any of them at normal volumes was around .8 dB which may or may not be audible.

post #26 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by scud80 View Post

do you guys think there are any significant (or even audible) differences between dacs or amps, aside from whether they're powerful enough to get desired spl?  i have a small collection of amps now and got some switch boxes so i can a/b them but i haven't had the time to really get into it yet.  nothing jumped out at me in my initial sessions though.  

 

i did measure channel balancing with my dmm and there are certainly differences between the amps in that regard, but the maximum imbalance i found on any of them at normal volumes was around .8 dB which may or may not be audible.

 

depends on the amps in question. u can quite easily make an amp that sounds hugely different from all the others if u so choose. the less competent you are at electronic design the more different it will sound.

post #27 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by sridhar3 View Post

Placebo need not be a bad thing in all applications.  Healthcare practitioners regularly utilize placebo to aid in strengthening the therapeutic alliance with their patients, which then in turn reinforces compliance.

 

 

I'm not sure if administering placebo goes against the hippocratic oath.  But I'm pretty sure that pharmaceuticals are not allowed to market it, and you can't do placebo surgery even though there have been experiments done in the past to prove such a point.  I think there is a very good reason for these precautionary measures.  At least with audio, we're not dealing with life or death- just your wallet.  ;-)

post #28 of 80

There's a lot of placebo, I've noticed, in measurements. Because someone, whether they be a manufacturer or some random person on the internet writes or posts something that seems to be "science" doesn't make it either useful or a valid claim as to a component's performance. 

 

 

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool. --- Richard P. Feynman

post #29 of 80
^ Are you saying that performance can't be measured?
post #30 of 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by skamp View Post

^ Are you saying that performance can't be measured?

 

I think he's just pointing out that not all measurements are relevant. 7N copper might have a measured purity that's higher than that of 5N copper, but that doesn't mean anything in terms of real world performance.  The difference between 0.01% and 0.001% THD probably isn't an audible one.  Et cetera.

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