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The discovery thread!

  1. nraymond
    I think one thing that is getting lost is that both sides are right here - visual stimuli affect what we hear, which is why audio engineers who are doing primary R&D on a product need to have setups and rooms where they can do blind testing where what is being tested is visually obscured. Otherwise, someone experiencing the product being developed will have their hearing perception affected by what they see when doing comparison tests, which would make R&D work hard to impossible. AFAIK, the degree to which people are affected by visual stimuli is variable from individual to individual, but largely consistent per individual (which is where the product dress and packaging R&D comes into play, where I assume large companies do lots of sighted testing of products to figure out the best look and feel for the final good that maximizes the listening experience for the most customers).

    I feel for both sides in this debate - those looking for objective information about a product that doesn't include the personal experiences that an individual has (which won't apply to everyone) and the need for those who enjoy their music and gear to have a place to share their experiences and have their time and effort spent doing it appreciated.

    I do my best to do my listening tests with my eyes closed to eliminate visual stimuli, and try to write for a more general audience (which maybe makes my writing less exciting/personal as a result). I hope it helps, but since I don't do any true blind testing, and I'm personally invested in every product I own, I know there are some intrinsic biases I can never completely compensate for, and there are some things about my hearing and experience which are going to be unique to me. I do think everyone here means well, and I hope we can come to a greater understanding about what we all experience and share through our communication.
  2. Spiralman
    It is true that same driver sound different in different shells, cause it's measurable, its true that different eartips, their insertion depth, sound sorces, filters etc etc sound different cause it's measurable and can be verified by everyone. Thats why people discuss these differences in forums and other media platforms. They are subjective but at least they are proven that exist. People hear similarly thats teh base on which all discussions are built.
    Presenting your feelings as a confirmed fact on subject that is highly speculative (especially for people with electronics background) misleads forum readers whether is true or not (especially those that don't understand much in acoustics or electronics).
    I can hear high freqs better in the morning as my ears are well rested during the night, but the moment i go out of my apartment i am bombarded with urban noise and in the evening i hear my iems are duller. I KNOW they sound the SAME.
    Imagine me stating as a fact that iems sound differently during the day. Like KZs are better for listening in the evening while Blons are perfect for starting a day!
    tiamor988, citral23 and PhonoPhi like this.
  3. battosai
    tiamor988, HungryPanda and Spiralman like this.
  4. kukkurovaca
    Has anyone ever built an a/b switcher for iem or headphone cables? Wouldn’t be that complicated, right?

    Also, have folks in the “cables sound different” camp tested different lengths of the same cables? IIRC that should be expected to have as much or more impact as different materials, in terms of resistance.
    Cevisi and Spiralman like this.
  5. Ziggomatic
    I trust my eyes: clearly a flat disk.
    CoFire, Coyro, superuser1 and 3 others like this.
  6. jon parker
    Interesting points. I find I have a certain state where I am a bit tired but still awake, late at night, where I have the most enjoyable listening sessions :)
    If you say Kz's sound better in the evening Im perfectly happy with that. I dont need that measuring - Its interesting if anything it makes me wantt o put in a similar sounding IEM
    and try what you did . . . and then do the same with the Blons at night
    Its interesting that the statement and similar statements 'confirmed fact' are often tagged onto people expressing what they experience.
    When people say 'I experience this or that' they are usually simply saying that alone - They are not trying to say - 'This is the truth' AT ALL
    Maybe the language isn't skilfully used sometimes but I don't recall ever reading here people sharing what they have experienced as an indisputable fact
    Im sure we all appreciate how many different factors are involved to end up with some music appearing in your ears...DAP, IEM, Cable, Tips, Time of day..the list goes on
    I hear what you are saying though and its a good point
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
    Viajero likes this.
  7. illumidata
    You'll like this.
    "Circadian Clock In The Ear"

    Apparently we should all be avoiding treble after dark.
    Coyro and Spiralman like this.
  8. HungryPanda
    I avoid volume after dark. It is a mystery but I do turn it up when I wake
    PhonoPhi, Cevisi and DBaldock9 like this.
  9. SciOC
    There are some professional amp splitters I've seen with 4 or more pairs you can hook up, but usually the quality is not audiophile approved.

    Gotta switch pairs of IEMs though anyway.

    My big problem is that through EQ, I generally get most pairs to sound like the musical profile I like. So in the end, I make most of my pairs sounds the similar....
  10. Cevisi
    HungryPanda likes this.
  11. kukkurovaca
    Someone who was good with soldering could rig up a switch (well, you'd need two) that sits between the cable and the IEM. It might end up being too heavy, but you could for sure do it with headphones. There's nothing like this commercially available of course, but for the DIY crowd I can't imagine it would be super difficult. Would be fun to send something like that on a review tour.

    Even easier (I assume) would be to use a more conventional switch between the amp and the cables, then make just a splitter between the IEM/headphone cup and the two cables plugged in simultaneously. But I don't know enough about electronics (or audiophile cable theory) to know whether having both cables plugged into the transducer (even with only one live at a time) would be expected to change the sound vs. using either cable on its own.
  12. PhonoPhi
    No any problems implementing it technically.
    The results of all reported double blinded tests show no difference between expensive cables and just the wires from the coat hangers:


    For that reason, there will be only appeals to feelings, emotions and lengthy verbose explanations from the "believers" :)
  13. kukkurovaca
    Yeah, I'm aware of the track record with blind tests of speaker cables -- and I guess I would generally consider myself a cable skeptic, although not a particularly hardcore one. But it's not wildly implausible to think that IEMs might be more sensitive to subtle changes than loudspeakers, especially multi-driver hybrids that are known to respond to differences in source output impedance. Mostly, I just like the popcorn-eating-ness of the idea, I'd have to admit : )
    baskingshark, Spiralman and PhonoPhi like this.
  14. PhonoPhi
    With all the demonstrated evidence that is out there, it is fare to say that the onus of the proof is on the "believers", yet nothing more than "fuller more luscious sound" is expected to come out :)
    Spiralman likes this.
  15. SoundChoice
    I think I'm lost. I was looking for earphone discussion and seem to have mistakenly wandered into the science lab.
    Q Mass, peter123, yorosello and 2 others like this.

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