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HD800 being "picky" with amps myth - Page 11

post #151 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post


What are you comparing it to based on your own experience and what were the results?

I don't need experience with an amp to know how it will perform, given the appropriate set of measurements. I don't have those measurements for some amps (anything made by Schiit, for example), but I have seen sufficient data on both the Benchmark amps/dacs and the O2/ODAC to say with certainty that they are audibly transparent.

 

You're in the sound science forum. We believe in science here.

 

(If you have evidence showing that measurements are insufficient to quantify the sonic performance of an amplifier, I'd love to hear about it. However, note that evidence is not the plural of anecdote).


Edited by cjl - 7/8/14 at 10:44am
post #152 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjl View Post

I don't need experience with an amp to know how it will perform, given the appropriate set of measurements. I don't have those measurements for some amps (anything made by Schiit, for example), but I have seen sufficient data on both the Benchmark amps/dacs and the O2/ODAC to say with certainty that they are audibly transparent.

You're in the sound science forum. We believe in science here.

(If you have evidence showing that measurements are insufficient to quantify the sonic performance of an amplifier, I'd love to hear about it. However, note that evidence is not the plural of anecdote).

We certainly look to science to explain our listening experiences. We don't use science to cover up our inexperience.
post #153 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post

We certainly look to science to explain our listening experiences. We don't use science to cover up our inexperience.


those certainly are some pretty sentences, but there is no need to pretend we're inventing the wheel when we're just reading obvious specs.

I'm not sure that a HD800 would need more than an O2 on low gain.

 

and if we need to go with caricatured(seems like caricatural isn't and english word ^_^) expressions, experience with bias isn't experience.


Edited by castleofargh - 7/8/14 at 1:09pm
post #154 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post


We certainly look to science to explain our listening experiences. We don't use science to cover up our inexperience.


I don't need to hear every amp to declare when one is sufficient to drive headphones to an audibly perfect level, any more than I need great experiences with the many fine fabrics of the world to know that, in fact, the emperor has no clothes.


Edited by cjl - 7/8/14 at 1:24pm
post #155 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by castleofargh View Post

I'm not sure that a HD800 would need more than an O2 on low gain.

and if we need to go with caricatured(seems like caricatural isn't and english word ^_^) expressions, experience with bias isn't experience.

How about experience without bias? I have an O2 and I've tried HD800 with it. It sounds OK, but there are better-sounding choices.
post #156 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post


How about experience without bias? I have an O2 and I've tried HD800 with it. It sounds OK, but there are better-sounding choices.


Have you tried a double blinded, level matched comparison, and are you sure your "better-sounding" choices don't actually have audible (but euphonic) flaws?

post #157 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post


How about experience without bias? I have an O2 and I've tried HD800 with it. It sounds OK, but there are better-sounding choices.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjl View Post
 


Have you tried a double blinded, level matched comparison, and are you sure your "better-sounding" choices don't actually have audible (but euphonic) flaws?

 

Just listening to a device with "Objective" in the name does not make it an unbiased test. You can start by demonstrating that there is an actual audible difference between the amplifier and a competitor (usually via a properly conducted double blind experiment). If you cannot establish that there is an audible difference between two amplifiers, then you cannot claim that one is audibly better or worse than the other.

 

Once you establish that there is an audible difference, you can go about determining which sound you prefer (via a properly conducted double blind experiment). Note, this does not indicate whether one amp is technically superior/inferior than the other, it only determines that you prefer one sound over the other.

 

The technical merits of the amplifier are trivially quantified via measurements. Name a quantity that you would like to know and measuring it is straight forward.

 

Cheers

post #158 of 239
I was joking when I called it "unbiased." I've ABXed a number of amps over the years with friends, and the differences are usually obvious to everyone.

A general word: anyone who hasn't tried a number of different amps with HD800 shouldn't be posting on this topic. It just spreads ignorance.
post #159 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post

I was joking when I called it "unbiased." I've ABXed a number of amps over the years with friends, and the differences are usually obvious to everyone.

A general word: anyone who hasn't tried a number of different amps with HD800 shouldn't be posting on this topic. It just spreads ignorance.

 

The same argument could be turned around as such: " A general word: anyone who doesn't grasp the underlying physics involved with amps with HD800 shouldn't be posting on this topic. It just spreads ignorance."

 

I don't think it is a valid point, because nuggets of wisdom regarding the issue and methods of testing the claims can come from those without first hand experience listening to the headphones. In other words, anyone with a fundamental grasp on the scientific method can propose valid tests, and they can discriminate between evidence with merit and anecdotal non-evidence. Conversely, useful listening (i.e., non technical) observations can add valuable data points to the discussion if they are properly controlled and quantified.

 

For example "I've ABXed a number of amps over the years with friends, and the differences are usually obvious to everyone." is anecdotal and therefore, does nothing to further the discussion regarding how "picky the HD800 is with amps".

 

I am genuinely interested in learning from this discussion on this highly-regarded headphone and amp-pairings. However, I do not have 20k of disposable income to rigorously test this headphone with various amps in a meaningful manner. Hence, here I am, trying to parse through fact and fiction as I'm sure many others are here to do as well. Valid data and arguments are most welcome.

 

 

Cheers


Edited by ab initio - 7/8/14 at 2:53pm
post #160 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post

A general word: anyone who hasn't tried a number of different amps with HD800 shouldn't be posting on this topic. It just spreads ignorance.

To continue with my earlier analogy, anyone who hasn't had experience tailoring fine silks, or knitting top quality cashmere sweaters should not be remarking on the Emperor's nudity. It just spreads ignorance.

post #161 of 239
not to spread ignorance even more, but was it really ABx or did you just listen to different amps and "obviously" heard the differences in plain sight with no volume control? because in the event that it was actually real ABx, then I'm all for a little feedback.

I tend to believe that this topic was opened in the sound science section to get past the subective posts in the appreciation thread.
post #162 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by castleofargh View Post

not to spread ignorance even more, but was it really ABx or did you just listen to different amps and "obviously" heard the differences in plain sight with no volume control? because in the event that it was actually real ABx, then I'm all for a little feedback.

A friend in Phily hosted a mini-meet and his wife, a tenured professor in psychology, monitored us. We could all easily tell the differences between O2, GS-X, and Crack. We heard more or less the same differences, but had different preferences. It's too easy in a sighted test to be impressed by GS-X.
post #163 of 239

I wouldn't conclude much from the results unless the cans were explicitly level-matched within 0.2dB (e.g. at 1KHz).

post #164 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3X0 View Post
 

I wouldn't conclude much from the results unless the cans were explicitly level-matched within 0.2dB (e.g. at 1KHz).

The easiest way to do this of course is with an AC multimeter measuring the electrical output, rather than fiddling around with a microphone...

post #165 of 239
Quote:
Originally Posted by Claritas View Post


A friend in Phily hosted a mini-meet and his wife, a tenured professor in psychology, monitored us. We could all easily tell the differences between O2, GS-X, and Crack. We heard more or less the same differences, but had different preferences. It's too easy in a sighted test to be impressed by GS-X.

 

I've got a few questions regarding your experiment:

How did you control for level matching outputs? The variation in fletcher munson curves with volume can lead to different tonal balance interpretations with various absolute SPL levels. Furthermore, detecting differences can easily be tipped off by slight differences in volume.

 

How did you perform switching? Auditory memory is fleeting when trying to differentiate between slight auditory differences.

 

What was your proceedure for ABX-ing? It might be useful for others to know when they want to do their own testing of headphone+amp pairings with their friends.

 

Cheers

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