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Dilemma: Should I not believe any reviewers who talk about cables or just ignore that section of... - Page 99

post #1471 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by liamstrain View Post

 

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 - and have both solid theory built on observation and inference, and objective test results to back up that position. 

 

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

 

 

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. Decide which side of the argument you wish to put your trust and your money towards. 

 

I agree with this - *my theory* is that people do hear differences - but the are hearing differences caused by resistance, capacitance, inductance etc (possibly cognitive bias) and not metallurgy.  Ideally though this should not be happening as no cable should have a "sound" to it.

 

Currently I have two 24 AWG HE-6 cables which I *think* sound different and in theory should have pretty similar resistance (not considering any other forms of loss to do with cable/wire construction) - if one was willing to overlook objective level matching I *think* I would be able to discern them in a blind test.  But as you say sighted differences have a habit of disappearing in blind tests.

post #1472 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by liamstrain View Post

 

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. 

Nowhere I've seen does the term "controversy" mean arguments are on equal footing. 

 

post #1473 of 1790
Throwing up smoke to prevent a self evident conclusion from being inevitably reached doesn't qualify as a controversy. I would call that a self serving fallacy.
post #1474 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by JadeEast View Post

Nowhere I've seen does the term "controversy" mean arguments are on equal footing. 

 

 

No, but that is what Piper is stating with his "there is no consensus or facts, both sides just have opinion" statement.

 

Going by rigorous definitions any public dispute could be named a controversy - regardless of merit. One loud guy shouting "The earth is flat! That's how it looks!" Technically is creating a controversy. But from a usage standpoint, the word takes on other baggage - typically that both sides can be argued in good faith as legitimate positions without clear consensus. And that is not really the case here. At least not when you are asking about consensus from those who know the subject versus those who do not. In that case, as with the man shouting about the flat earth, it is what I would consider a false controversy. One generated without legitimate reason.


Edited by liamstrain - 7/9/12 at 10:12pm
post #1475 of 1790

Put it this way I have no personal interest in throwing up smoke - If someone wants to believe that they can predict what they can and cannot hear based on extrapolation from prior research I don't mind.  I also don't mind insistance on objectively veritable testing as evidence in the sound science forum.  Personally I find insistence on the exclusive validity of one's own point of view (without acknowledging limitations in scope or accuracy) to be self serving if anything is...

post #1476 of 1790

That's not unreasonable, Drez. Always recognizing that new evidence and uncertainty are a factor. But we also shouldn't say that because we cannot say with 100% certainty about an issue (and indeed, in science, we cannot really on ANY issue), that we should ignore the 99% certainty we do have, and recognize that the 1% of possibility is a reasonable position to take, barring supporting evidence. 

post #1477 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by liamstrain View Post

 

No, but that is what Piper is stating with his "there is no consensus or facts, both sides just have opinion" statement.

 

Going by rigorous definitions any public dispute could be named a controversy - regardless of merit. One loud guy shouting "The earth is flat! That's how it looks!" Technically is creating a controversy.

 

 

Going by what you just said, you need to read a dictionary, or at least google the word. But telling by the lack of recognition from my blatant copying of the dictionary definition of the word, it looks as if I may have to post it a second time.

 

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

 

Operative word being "prolonged" like this argument you started. Another key word is "opinion".

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by liamstrain View Post

 

But from a usage standpoint, the word takes on other baggage - typically that both sides can be argued in good faith as legitimate positions without clear consensus. And that is not really the case here. At least not when you are asking about consensus from those who know the subject versus those who do not. In that case, as with the man shouting about the flat earth, it is what I would consider a false controversy. One generated without legitimate reason.

 

Are you saying Drez'z point of view in believing to tell differences between his stock and rectangular Up-OCC cable is not legitimate? I may not support his point of view, but I am not going to force it down his throat whether or not he is wrong. I will simply put my opinion on the matter on the table and let those pick and choose if they accept my opinion or not. Perhaps offer constructive criticism.

 

I came here to share ideas and understand what the arguments for and against cable were. Just like I would read the bible to gain a bit of knowledge as to why so many devote their life to a religion, even though I'm not religious.

 

I did not come here to argue semantics.

post #1478 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pingupenguins View Post


Going by what you just said, you need to read a dictionary, or at least google the word. But telling by the lack of recognition from my blatant copying of the dictionary definition of the word, it looks as if I may have to post it a second time.

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

Operative word being "prolonged" like this argument you started. Another key word is "opinion".

Some opinions have more merit than others, no matter how prolonged a debate has raged on. My uncle is an Evangelical pastor who believes that the Earth is a little over 6,000 years old and that God literally created the universe in 6 days. He's family, and I love the guy, but... umm...

Anyway, I don't put him down, but I will always have semi-heated discussions with him during the holidays. It's just so much fun.
Edited by Magick Man - 7/10/12 at 12:38am
post #1479 of 1790
*double post*
Edited by Magick Man - 7/10/12 at 12:39am
post #1480 of 1790
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pingupenguins View Post

Another key word is "opinion".

 

 

 

And I have conceded you are offering opinion for your side... my side is offering tests, measurements, and good scientific theory. Not opinion. Which is why I do not think this is a true controversy. But as you say, this is semantics. I believe the issue on whether a metal has a sonic signature and affects the sound is a reasonably (consensus) settled matter. The preponderance of evidence and theory strongly suggests it does not. Barring good evidence to the contrary, this is not opinion, but a factual conclusion drawn from scientific inquiry.

 

 

 

 

 

Quote:

Are you saying Drez'z point of view in believing to tell differences between his stock and rectangular Up-OCC cable is not legitimate?

 

I came here to share ideas and understand what the arguments for and against cable were. Just like I would read the bible to gain a bit of knowledge as to why so many devote their life to a religion, even though I'm not religious.

 

 

No. There may well be differences in his cable, but it seems clear that the metal used, is not responsible for them - but rather differences in RLC, if indeed there are any. And without blind testing, or some other objective measure, it is hard to say that Drez did actually hear differences caused by the cable, rather than psycho-acoustic functions. I am not comfortable saying one way or the other whether his belief is supported by fact, since we have none. What we do have, however, makes me skeptical of the claim.  

 

Understanding is good. But in the sound science sub-forum, you need evidence, or at least solid theoretical footing and logic to defend statements. Not opinions. Sharing and understanding is great, but don't expect us to abandon science. The truth matters. This is not a theology discussion where things cannot be falsified or tested meaningfully so all opinions must be evaluated fairly - audible claims are by their nature testable and can be evaluated using objective means. Not just feel good conversations about biased and uncontrolled "hearing impressions."

post #1481 of 1790

I will deal with the annoying and internet clogging story of  ' the quality cables vs the coat hangers' test. On the internet "the audio professionals" and "the audio engineers" are mentioned with the reference to the test. First, how reliable are the views of the sound studio professionals if, as some say, they did the test or repeated it later. 

The quality of the sense of hearing is not the same for everybody. There are various degrees of the ability and of the talent not only to make musical sound or music but also to hear it. The ability to properly hear belongs also to the realm of talent. Being a "sound engineer" and working in a recording studio does not guarantee the ability to hear properly, to distinguish and to evaluate the sound. Quite the opposite. Witness the sonic trash, that is the low audio quality of the many, some would say the majority, of the compact discs that audio professionals has been making up to now. Many of the sound engineers in the studios rely on the visual cues and information instead of the aural ones. In other words, for their recording decisions they rely on the visual information from the screens and from the display panels of the sound studio technical equipment and not on their hearing ability. Indeed many of them are not capable of that. Many years in the studio is many years of the loud noise through the headphones and the resulting inner ear damage. This damage shows itself in the reduced ability to hear the higher frequencies properly, in the reduced ability to properly separate the frequencies and to hear the pitch and the tonal differences. My view is that an average audio professional is on the same level in his 'audio' ability and judgement as an average well self taught 'audiophile' amateur of some years of experience and dedication to his/her[a bit less so] hobby. There is therefore no need to emphasize, in order to push an argument, the fact that 'a professional' says this or that on this or that subject.

Take the " the coat hanger test" with a spoon of salt. The "audio professionals" in the "high quality speaker cables" vs. the coat hangers audio test were [to quote his words] : "First of all, I’m a new (61 year old) kid on this block who has been involved in hi-fi for over 45 years” and his 'in the autumn of their lives' pensioner 'baby boomer' buddies. "...has been involved in hi-fi for over 45 years" in this case can simply mean that for all these years he has been listening to his loud home stereo system. Some 5 decades of 'rock' music blasting their ears must have done the work of damage to their sense of hearing. Aside from them, there are many that are in their 20s of their lives and whose hearing is so damaged by the 'over-cranked' volume through headphones that their damaged hearing is on the level of hearing of 80 or 90 years old people. This is the 1st variable in the test in question and most importantly it was not tested and treated as a parameter of the test itself. Myself, I would have first properly tested the ability to simply hear of all of this merry group of 'experts'. The 2nd variable in the test is the age of the 'audio experts'. With the advancing age the ability to hear declines. 60 + years old baby boomers plus the decades of numbing noise prefered, generally, by the loud generation of the 1960's and the 1970's with the resulting inner ear damage equals the sense of hearing on the level of those that are 80 to 90 years old. The age related hearing ability and 'the track record' of their aural health were the second variable in the test. Again, untested and not regarded as a parameter in the test. The 3d variable is the source of the signal / the current. Was it some 'el cheapo' hi-fi component or was it some decent machine capable of generating and processing a signal of good quality ? There does not seem to be any information on this component of the test. The 4th variable are the speakers. Not a word on them either, at least I did not find any. The 5th variable are 'the wires' themselves. "The top quality" audio cables that were used were the "Monster cable/s". I am not familiar with this product but somebody described them as coat hanger wires with shielding. This judgement might seem to be a bit harsh but maybe not so because nothing is known about the 6th variable in the test, the infamous coat hangers themselves. Were they made from steel ? Were they the ones with the annealed steel core wrapped in an annealed copper or were they made from the solid annealed copper ? If the 'Monster cables' are made simply from the annealed copper, as many cables are, then the notion that these cables are simply glorified coat hanger wires is not far from the truth. In this case the buddies doing the test shot themselves in their drunken feet because they tested coat hangers against coat hangers. Here we come to the interesting variable in this test. The author of the report on the experiment first cites "5 buddies" doing the experiment. As the test progresses the number then grows to "12 buddies". Was there a drinking party and "buddies" were arriving, one by one, and imbibing ? Were there alcoholic drinks fuelling the testing activity and how many of them ? How reliable are the human senses, in this case the audiophile standard of hearing, when they are not in the 'sharp' mode but are 'relaxed' instead ? Who supervised the test to ensure the proper testing procedure and standards ? Who gave them alcohol breathalyser test ?

This test was a joke, yet now it lives a life of fame on the internet. It has acquired the status of an urban legend - "The Audio Professionals test the High End Audiophile Cables against the Humble Coat Hangers". This hi-fi urban legend is on the level of the tale of an alligator that lives in the sewers of New York and devours, for the nourishment, some unfortunate city of New York sanitation employees that wander into its hunting grounds underneath the paved roads and streets of the city.

The veracity of the now famous test lies on the bottom of a bottle. 

Anybody for repeating, with proper and technical supervision, the test ?

post #1482 of 1790
You might want to look into how various audio cables work and do a few controlled tests of your own instead of getting hung up on hangers. What you'll find out will surprise you and perhaps even make the coat hanger story more believable to you.

It's more important to know the truth of the matter than it is to simply try to discredit. Whether or not someone is 60, the specific qualifications of people described as "professionals", what someone told you about Monster Cables, the "low quality" of many CDs and many of your other points don't do anything to address the core issue... They only throw up smoke regarding one particular test.

The fact is, a properly constructed cable of any price sounds just like any other. If you're interested in the truth, do your own tests and keep focused on determining that. I've already done considerable research and testing into this subject. I know the answer. But feel free to find out for yourself.
post #1483 of 1790

I thought the coat hanger test was suspicious when I read it the first time based the length of wire supposedly produced. 

 

Quote:
We also rigged up 14 gauge, oxygen free Belden stranded copper wire with a simple PVC jacket. Both were 2 meters long. They were connected to an ABX switch box allowing blind fold testing. Volume levels were set at 75 Db at 1000K Hz. A high quality recording of smooth, trio, easy listening jazz was played (Piano, drums, bass). None of us had heard this group or CD before, therefore eliminating biases. The music was played. Of the 5 blind folded, only 2 guessed correctly which was the monster cable. (I was not one of them). This was done 7 times in a row! Keeping us blind folded, my brother switched out the Belden wire (are you ready for this) with simple coat hanger wire! Unknown to me and our 12 audiophile buddies, prior to the ABX blind test, he took apart four coat hangers, reconnectd them and twisted them into a pair of speaker cables.

Original test cables were 2 meters, but were replaced by 4 coat hangers. There isn't more than 100cm in a coat hanger and for a "pair of speaker cables" would mean that the length would be limited to 1 meter aside. It could be an interpretation error on my part, but it stood out to me when I read the report.

post #1484 of 1790

I just bought a silver cable for my Magnums, at the very least it will help the resale value of my headphones.
 

post #1485 of 1790
Strapping ingots of 24kt gold to the headband is a better investment.
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