How do I convince people that audio cables DO NOT make a difference
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Nov 2, 2020 at 8:31 PM Post #2,011 of 3,657
Lol, hmm you realize that's like saying you can shoot a better jump ball than Lebron James when you rarely shoot professionally, right? Or knowing how different various golf clubs at various price affects your game if you don't play golf, either? Or how much better a $500 bottle of wine tastes vs a $5 bottle, etc.

As for Paul McGowan, he's only a co-founder of PS Audio, a full-time engineer himself with decades of experience and who has listened to countless systems and cables day in and day out. In other words, the sheer amount of experience he has easily eclipses your so-called superior (doubt it) 21-year old hearing. Same with Gordon Rankin who literally revolutionized digital audio by introducing asynchronous USB standard to the audio world and he himself had said USB cables make difference after listening to 1000s of USB cables as part of his job.

In other words, why wouldn't I trust their words and their experience over yours?
Paul McGowan is an embarrassing hack. As is the Chord engineer, something Watts, who claims people can hear "oscillating noise floors" down to -300dB, which I'm reasonably sure is the sound pressure you might measure at subatomic particle interactions.
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Nov 2, 2020 at 8:34 PM Post #2,012 of 3,657
Depends on the cables and what you test on. We tested on the Chord Dave + Audeze Lcd-4Z and we were able to tell the difference.

On my home system (Hugo TT2 + Cayin Ha-300 tube amp + Audeze LCD-3) I was able to tell the difference between the Kimber AG and Sablon 2020 Panatela Reserva Elite USB cable.

I definitely have much more visceral sound with more dynamic impact and clarity VS the Kimber, which I felt was warmer but more veiled.

Have you tested cables yourself and on what system?
Why do you have to type out the entire name of the cable each time to mention it?
Nov 2, 2020 at 8:39 PM Post #2,013 of 3,657
And you really don't think that Gordon, who professionally been an engineer at this for decades haven't done your test and any other tests for error packets? And this error, by the way, is jitter. Is that what you were measuring?

You really don't think he hasn't listened to hundreds if not thousands of USB cables in his career (He also developed the USB audio certification for Apple)? And yet, he and other engineers like him (Paul McGowan) had said there are differences in USB cables and they're audible.

I'm sorry, for all of you guys who summarily dismiss his experience, go ahead. I'd trust his words and experience, as well as the differences I've personally heard on the Chord Dave +LCD-4Z and my Hugo TT2 + Cayin HA-300 + LCD-3.

If you haven't heard a difference, it may just be the cables you've tried (or not tried) or how resolving your system is. On the two I've heard, as well as my friend's Innuos Zen to Innuos Phoenix to M-Scaler to TT2 to LCD-4, I've heard the differences.

This is going round and round to nowhere, so I'm done, we're clearly in an impasse.
Do you think recording studios use $700 digital cables to connect their digital interfaces to their computers? If not, how is it possible that they manage not to get any errors in the recording of the music you listen to?
Nov 2, 2020 at 9:48 PM Post #2,015 of 3,657
There is not such thing as high fidelity.

If you think that either your equipment sucks or you're deaf.

(sorry, couldn't resist!)
Nov 2, 2020 at 9:54 PM Post #2,016 of 3,657
And this is why A/B testings (blind or otherwise) can lead to false results.

Nope. You give the subject a switch. One side labelled A and the other labelled B. He doesn't know which is which. He switches back and forth as fast or as slow as he wants and chooses the one he prefers. Then you scramble the A and B and he does it again. A few dozen times and then you tally it up to see if you have a pattern. Controlled listening tests aren't difficult at all. I'm no expert in conducting tight tests, but I'm sure with the assembled experience we have in Sound Science we will find out pretty clearly one way or the other.
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Nov 3, 2020 at 9:59 AM Post #2,018 of 3,657
We're not millennials. We communicate in full words to eliminate any doubt as to meaning or description

I think you’re misinterpreting that post. I may be wrong, but I believe the question is why someone would be so attached to a specific cable that they feel the need to write that particular long/full name so many times in close proximity in the same thread. Kind of raising the issue of purchase justification.

@colonelkernel8 , please correct this if I’m wrong
Nov 3, 2020 at 10:27 AM Post #2,019 of 3,657
You say that, but some critics of A/B testing is that it's too quick, so if anything, they want an extended period of time to test.

I dont mean listen for just 3 seconds, I mean the swap from the A signal to the B signal should occur in under 3 seconds..

Listen to A for a minute or two
Quickly swap to B
Listen to be for a minute or two


And there should be no critics of A/B testing! (what is there to criticise?)
If you like, rename it "critical comparative evaluation" - does that seem better?

But listening for a whole day with one - then a whole day with another - I dont buy that at all. Personal bias will be at play.

Anyhow. The A/B testing is used by professional audio engineers (who I would like to point out - create the recordings we listen to) They do it to pick the best microphone to use on a vocalist for example. They try them on a few to find the best. They would swap between test run recordings, perhaps with the vocalist sitting next to them at the mixing console - and switching (instantly) between them, soon are able to determine the microphone that makes the vocalist sound best. They then proceed with that microphone. They may do the same to select a main stereo pair to record an orchestra.. A/B several pairs - then proceed with the best sounding..
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Nov 3, 2020 at 10:51 AM Post #2,021 of 3,657
........And there should be no critics of A/B testing! (what is there to criticise?)
Or the boogeyman will get you? is it sacrilge ?

......But listening for a whole day with one - then a whole day with another - I dont buy that at all. Personal bias will be at play.
And I don't believe the average JOE is capable of not being impressed with a few seconds or minutes of quick changing sound. Add a little bass thump, high treble lift and most can get fooled into a false sense of lively more revealing sound.
Any how, even if personal bias comes to play, at least the poor JOE didn't make a decision in haste.

Anyhow. The A/B testing is used by professional audio engineers (who I would like to point out - create the recordings we listen to) They do it to pick the best microphone to use on a vocalist for example.
Yep they are professionals - trained ears which can spot obvious potential problems because of years of experience.
Nov 3, 2020 at 11:32 AM Post #2,023 of 3,657
Isn’t the first goal to simply establish that the two items under test can reliably be identified as different? Given the claims of night/day level differences in various cables and components, it should be fairly easy to confirm (or not) with some simple a/b/x testing.

Including preference can be done but if differences between two cables, dacs, amps, etc.. aren’t able to be identified in a statistically viable model, there would be no need to continue into preference testing.

Focus on simplifying the test as much as possible by constraining the elements being evaluated and maximizing the number of test runs. More data will somewhat mitigate the risk of small sample size not giving representative results.
Nov 3, 2020 at 3:43 PM Post #2,024 of 3,657
You're right. That's the sort of strategies on the best way to test that we should be making. All we need is a cable to test. We'll see if that turns up. I suggested that jambajoe contact the shop that conducted the test he saw and see if they will loan him one. He hasn't gotten back to me yet. But it's election day and cover and things are upended in this area right now, so we need to be patient.
Nov 3, 2020 at 4:01 PM Post #2,025 of 3,657
Anyhow. I am a professional audio engineer and IMHO a/b ing headphone cables is difficult to evaluate for the time it takes to swap them out.
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