I'm stuck pretty much in the middle of these extremes. For perspective, you could ask Westone or Phonak etc. how they finalize a product. They get their prototypes by math and test but they finalize them by listening and making choices beyond their measurements. If you could determine the absolute goodness by measurements this final step would not be necessary. Every good manufacturer 'voices' as a final step and that process is done by ear and not scope. It takes both but folks tend to take sides on issues and polarize discussions. The best engineer is one that understands what he doesn't know.
Edited by goodvibes - 7/11/12 at 8:32pm