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post #1456 of 1790

Funny, today I served a customer of mine again who is an electrical engineer with many years of experience. Currently his company is designing electrostatic speakers here in Ottawa that he feels will be industry leaders so this man knows what he is talking about. We talked about cables and his thought was up to a sensible point cable upgrades made sense, in terms of proper gauge of wire, capacitance and basic build quality. He said with absolute certainty there can be no possible sonic difference that can actually be measured for all these wild claims, and there should be no difference based on copper versus silver. He attends all of the audio trade shows and is an audiophile so his knowledge in this area is quite high. I can see spending a few hundred dollars, but beyond that, can't imagine there is a difference. I guess for some they have so much money that even the most remote chance at any sonic improvement is worth it. Each to their own as they say. 

post #1457 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by liamstrain View Post

 

No. There are "controversies" around creationism versus evolution and that same argument is used by the creationists to justify it. That people do not understand science and perpetuate mythology is not a justification to say we don't know. It just means some people don't accept or understand what is known. 

 

 

"Controversy is a state of prolonged public dispute or debate, usually concerning a matter of opinion"

 

I believe this is a controversy as you stated there is no evidence for or against, only testimonials or "opinion[s]"

post #1458 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonic Defender View Post

I can see spending a few hundred dollars, but beyond that, can't imagine there is a difference. I guess for some they have so much money that even the most remote chance at any sonic improvement is worth it. Each to their own as they say. 

You didn't ask the right question. When he was talking about gauge, capacitance and build quality, he was probably talking about a ten dollar cable, not a two hundred dollar one.
post #1459 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

You didn't ask the right question. When he was talking about gauge, capacitance and build quality, he was probably talking about a ten dollar cable, not a two hundred dollar one.

 

I guess whatever it takes to purchase a cable with RCL ideal specs and length.  I guess for an analog interconnect if metallurgy is not important a Belden coaxial cable of suitable length should be hard to fault, but then another cable might have better dielectric material, an unshielded design etc which may have different electrical properties - lower inductance, capacitance, shorter length etc. which may or may not matter depending on the equipment being used.  Could also be more durable, ergonomic or aesthetically pleasing as well.  Silver wire in clear dielectric may not be worth the price in performance alone, but it can look pretty sweet in a headphone cable if you like a little bling.  Personally I would rather direct money toward furniture but for the flaneur among us headphones/earphones are a credibly fashion accessory.

post #1460 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pingupenguins View Post

there is no evidence for or against, only testimonials or "opinion[s]"

 

On the question of if the metal makes a difference - there is plenty of evidence (blind testing and measurement data) and scientific theory against (both electrical theory, and psychoacoustics) - the only opinions and testimonials without evidence to the positive, are coming from you (broadly, the subjectivists).

 

If there is a controversy, it is because you do not understand or accept the evidence that does exist, not because there is no evidence. That is to say, there is no true controversy. Just as there is no true controversy about climate change or evolution - regardless of the opinion of creationists, etc.

post #1461 of 1790

The analogy with creationist evolution and Darwinian model is only valid in that one model complies with current research and the other does not, in my opinion though the fields of modern biology and sound science are not directly comparable specifically in the scope and depth of research.  Resistance (against frequency) Capacitance and inductance along with other properties are important factors in the design of an electrical circuit and can have demonstrable influences over sound quality - the main scientifically based theses against the audibility of cables is that these values are not high enough in most standard cable designs and applications to warrant further consideration.  

 

In other words in theory cables can have influence over the sound reproduction, but the magnitude of the differences are too small to be verified by scientific testing.  This is a valid proposition given current body of research, which incidently is far from what I would consider worthy of the value of exhaustion or completion which it appears is being attributed to it in your argument.  Let's face it sound science is not curing cancer - there simply isn't much public interest or money to be made in putting a handful of audiophile snake oil outfits out of business.  The scientific body of knowledge behind Darwinian evolution is hardly comparable to that of sound science.

 

The controversy comes in because so many people hear unmistakable differences between cables which are beyond that which they consider to be the a margin of doubt.  If 80% of the population started seeing ghosts, yes that would be a controversy.

post #1462 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by drez View Post

 

In other words in theory cables can have influence over the sound reproduction, but the magnitude of the differences are too small to be verified by scientific testing.  

 

I do not disagree (and indeed in some circumstance, there measurements can verify the differences, especially regarding high inductance) - I've been corrected, and seen new research to corroborate. What we are specifically discussing is whether the METAL chosen (silver versus copper, for instance) makes one whit of difference if the other mechanical and electrical properties (RLC) remain equal. 

 

This, there is no theory or measurement, or other evidence to support - and plenty in support of the negative.

 

 

 

Quote:
The controversy comes in because so many people hear unmistakable differences between cables which are beyond that which they consider to be the a margin of doubt. 

 

 

Except that they only hear them when they make no attempt to correct for bias. When they do, most of those differences vanish without a trace - which makes me think most people don't understand what the "margin of doubt" needs to include in order to be a valid tool.


Edited by liamstrain - 7/9/12 at 11:18am
post #1463 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by drez View Post

The controversy comes in because so many people hear unmistakable differences between cables which are beyond that which they consider to be the a margin of doubt.  If 80% of the population started seeing ghosts, yes that would be a controversy.

 

If you went to say, an NAACP convention, where probably better than 90% of those in attendance would be black, would you assume that 90% of the population was black?

 

Of course not.

 

So now why would you attempt to equate a number of people who hang out on audio forums purporting to hear unmistakable differences between cables with 80% of the general population purporting seeing ghosts?

 

se

post #1464 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by drez View Post

The controversy comes in because so many people hear unmistakable differences between cables which are beyond that which they consider to be the a margin of doubt. 

The controversy persists because we appear to experience a shared world through the phenomenon of perception, and that perception is a primary experience. Anyone will tell you that the straws in the photo only look broken but isn't really broken. Yet, despite the knowledge light refraction and an understanding of the fallibility of our perception, we can't get around the primary experience of seeing it as broken.  

Glassnstraw.jpg

post #1465 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by JadeEast View Post

The controversy persists because we appear to experience a shared world through the phenomenon of perception, and that perception is a primary experience. Anyone will tell you that the straws in the photo only look broken but isn't really broken. Yet, despite the knowledge light refraction and an understanding of the fallibility of our perception, we can't get around the primary experience of seeing it as broken.  

Glassnstraw.jpg

 

Nice. Anyway, the bottom line is, to the person who asked what the consensus was, is it's a controversy yet to be settled. I'm not exactly sure what liamstrain is so fervently believing this doesn't rate on the controversy scale even though its been argued for decades.

post #1466 of 1790
It would rise to the level of controversy if there was a shred of actual evidence to indicate that cables have a sound. Sales pitch and subjective impressions don't count. Someone has to prove they can consistently hear a difference. No one has been able to do that yet. They've all tried and failed.

It's to the salesmen's interests to keep people guessing. Expensive cables are the biggest profit center in most audio businesses. They have a vesed interest to keep the waters murky.

By the way, what does BTG Audio specialize in?
Edited by bigshot - 7/9/12 at 5:28pm
post #1467 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

Sales pitch and objective impressions don't count.

 

Don't you mean subjective impressions?

 

se

post #1468 of 1790
Brainphart! Thanks
post #1469 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

It would rise to the level of controversy if there was a shred of actual evidence to indicate that cables have a sound. Sales pitch and subjective impressions don't count. Someone has to prove they can consistently hear a difference. No one has been able to do that yet. They've all tried and failed.
It's to the salesmen's interests to keep people guessing. Expensive cables are the biggest profit center in most audio businesses. They have a vesed interest to keep the waters murky.
By the way, what does BTG Audio specialize in?

 

 

TBH, I don't see that in the dictionary definition at all. It's any dispute protracted over a long period of time.

 

Also, I'm not sure why so many people call gay marriage a controversial issue then if there's no scientific "facts" as to why gays should have equal rights. Sure the constitution protects religion and freedom, but it works for both sides and is therefore null and void. It's a matter of popular opinion, no "evidence" as you put it.

 

Was that a hit at me? Or are you genuinely interested in what I do. Either way, I'm not allowed to comment on my business, and this isn't a thread for personal arguments. If you wish to discuss this further, then send me and email and I'll gladly show you the road...

post #1470 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pingupenguins View Post

 

Nice. Anyway, the bottom line is, to the person who asked what the consensus was, is it's a controversy yet to be settled. I'm not exactly sure what liamstrain is so fervently believing this doesn't rate on the controversy scale even though its been argued for decades.

 

Simple.

 

Those who take measurements, use testable and falsifiable methods, understand metallurgy, understand electronics and electrical engineering, and science in general, do not think which metal is used in the cable makes a difference provided that the RLC remains equivalent - and have both solid theory built on observation and inference, and objective test results to back up that position. 

 

Those who sell cables, read forums and magazine reviews (and sales materials), and do 'tests' where they do not control for bias or use any objective methods whatsoever, think they do. 

 

 

 

 

Quote:
I'm not exactly sure what liamstrain is so fervently believing this doesn't rate on the controversy scale even though its been argued for decades.

 

 

That the "controversy" has persisted for a long time, doesn't make it a real controversy. Again. See creationism - not really a controversy, despite its millennia long history. You can believe what you want to believe, but you cannot pretend the two viewpoints are on anything resembling equal footing, or "just opinions no facts." That may accurately represent your side of the issue... but not mine. 


Edited by liamstrain - 7/9/12 at 8:54pm
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