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USB cable supposedly improving DAC sound quality? How can I take other posts seriously after that?

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by mus1cjunk1e, Mar 26, 2011.
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  1. SeeHear

    Uh, no. I said what I meant. Either you're trolling or simply poor at English comprehension - regardless, not my problem.
    Your naive assertion that the noise floor is all that matters is proof you're don't know (or care?) what the music sounds like through your system.

    A very Merry Christmas to you!!!
  2. SeeHear
    Not to beat a dead horse, but digital data transmission isn't that simple.
    I think a blind test is a great idea (what's a soluble blind test?). Why don't you do it and test the seemingly absurd claims? Honestly, I think it's absurd that someone would suggest that people who spend a lot of time and effort actually listening and experimenting with equipment and system configuration would "enjoy the placebo effect". Should I expect that you've conducted a "soluble blind" test to reach this conclusion?
    Or, you could consider that perhaps you don't know all there is to know about digital data transmission and gain some relevant experience. Then, you can regale us all with your well constructed and carefully documented test regimen that reveals your findings. If that's your thing. Or, if enjoying music is your thing, figure out what sounds best and then explain how to measure it. Or not. Just enjoy the music and leave the supposition to those that can't.
  3. SeeHear
    Oh, the irony!
    GChief likes this.
  4. SeeHear
    How is it interpreted? What algorithms ensure accuracy? How? Can you be specific; maybe cite some authoritative sources explaining the process?

    Is your intransigence date sensitive? I mean, if we lived in the time where the prevailing ignorance said the earth was flat, what would you demand of the person who told you it wasn't? Would the fact that you didn't know how to measure it change the fact that the earth is round? Just because you (and I) don't know how to measure a physical property, does not invalidate an observation of a phenomenon.

    I'm going to go out on a limb here and posit, hypothetically, that you don't know how to design and engineer a dual clutch transmission. Me proving that you can't explain how it works doesn't prove that they don't exist or shift faster that a conventional manual transmission. It only proves that you can't explain how or why it works. See where I'm going with this?
    GChief likes this.
  5. gregorio
    How could you get this so completely backwards? What your video shows is "real world" armchair hypothesising against ACTUAL MEASUREMENTS!!! Did you even watch the video? The presenter actually made the point that the instructions for his DAC states not to use a USB cable longer than 3m but that the USB specs allow a cable of up to 5m. If we assume his observation of his DAC hardly working at all with a 5m cable are correct, then clearly this DAC does not comply with USB specs, it is exceptionally poorly designed/faulty. Assuming his observations are correct, the audiophile accessories (cables, purifier, etc.) he's using provides more shielding/isolation from noise/interference and makes a audible difference. HOWEVER, that isolation should have been designed into the DAC itself! Is noise isolation a problem as the presenter states? Yes always, BUT it's a problem which has been dealt with by the $129 DAC measured by amirm, it's also been dealt with by this $79 Behringer unit which is an ADC + DAC. But the presenter's $500 DAC can't?!

    So, he's bought a unit advertised as a HiFi USB DAC which he's noticed is neither HiFi nor USB compliant and what does he do about it? Does he complain and/or demand his money back like a normal person would with any mis-advertised/faulty product? No, he goes and spends another $500 or so on audiophile accessories to try and fix it.

    1. Oh dear, it is your problem because the poor English comprehension going on here is ENTIRELY YOURS! You've obviously failed to "comprehend" this post #302, which is obviously NOT just a noise floor measurement! It's a measurement of the output of the DAC in response to a signal. What you are seeing is the signal plus the accumulation of ALL the digital and analogue artefacts/distortions; all the USB noise, power supply noise, jitter, noise passing through the generic USB cable output by the computer, RF and EM interference, etc. You have ALREADY agreed that ALL those distortions/artefacts are inaudible, so, what's left that is audible?

    2. Well done, you've convinced yourself of some proof of nonsense, way to go!

    Last edited: Dec 22, 2017
    bfreedma likes this.
  6. Mediahound

    You’ve just proven the point nicely to yourself – Not all DACs (and USB transceivers within them) are created equal so someone can simply not make a blanket statement that the USB cable does not make any difference for all DACs.

    You say he should change the whole DAC instead of the cable but acknowledge that changing the cable helped his sound. If USB cables made no difference, changing it would have done nothing.
  7. GChief
    LOL :beerchug:
  8. gregorio
    OK, this is clearly complete nonsense!

    1. I would demand some reliable evidence.
    2. No but if no one else could provide any reliable evidence that the earth is round then yes, it would change that fact because it wouldn't be a "fact" it would just be an idea, assumption or superstition! In other words, it's a fact that the earth is round because there is overwhelming reliable evidence for it, not because someone came up with the idea that it's round and everyone just took his word for it!
    3. Audio recording and reproduction is not a "phenomenon" it's a man made technology! Audio recording/reproduction equipment does not fall from the sky, is not mined or harvested, it is a human invention developed from mathematical principles and ENTIRELY based on measuring/converting physical properties; amplitude and frequency (which includes time), that's it. If there is some other phenomenon we can't measure then we can't record or reproduce it. In this and the previous points you seem to lack comprehension of a fundamental principle of science; if you are claiming the existence of a phenomena then it's up to you to provide some reliable evidence to support that claim, otherwise, at best, it's no more than an idea, assumption or superstition!

    What you shockingly don't seem to realise is that mere "observation of a phenomenon" is what caused people to think the earth was flat in the first place! Look out of your bedroom window, what do you observe? Do you observe a flat earth or do you see a round one? Based only on the "observations of the phenomenon" (of the time), how could you conclude anything other than that the earth is flat? It's BECAUSE we have measurements (and mathematics) that we know the earth is round and it's BECAUSE you don't have measurements (or other reliable evidence) to support idea of a flat earth that we can safely assume your "observation of the phenomenon" must be an invalid superstition!

    Strange that you seem to think I've proven a point to myself, while being completely oblivious to the point you've proven to yourself! I have CLEARLY stated that an audiophile grade USB cable cannot make any audible difference at all, except in the case of a faulty DAC and if a particular cable addresses that fault! The point you've proven is that you either cannot comprehend what has been clearly stated (and restated) or are deliberately misrepresenting what has been stated, which is it?

    Last edited: Dec 22, 2017
    KLK2A1 likes this.
  9. old tech
    Slightly off topic... the claim that the earth was once thought to be flat is another myth. As far as can be ascertained from the earliest historical records, even way before Plato, the earth was always known to be round. It kinda makes sense when you look out towards an unobstructed horizon as it generally was before cities evolved.
  10. Whazzzup
    holiday wishes to sound science

    GChief likes this.
  11. castleofargh Contributor
    oops. missing a S landed me in a bad location ^_^.
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2017
    GChief likes this.
  12. Mediahound
    Hmm. And what 'fault' might that be where a DAC sound quality improves when swapping the USB cable?

    It's telling that you just assume that guy's DAC was faulty, it wasn't but giving you the benefit of the doubt, let's say it was.

    If USB cables make no difference in audio quality and can't improve the sound, switching to a better cable should not have changed the sound for him. By your logic, all the thousands of DACs that people own where they have reported an improvement in sound when using a different USB cable, may be faulty or out of spec. That's not plausible or likely.

    But even if that is the case, then using a different nicer audio USB cable is indeed actually improving the sound, I thought it couldn't do that. Hmm.

    Or do you suggest for anyone who swaps USB cables and notices a difference to send back their DACs to the manufacturer for warranty repair, because they're all defective?
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2017
    GChief likes this.
  13. bfreedma
    Some days, I wish the Sound Science subforum had the inverse of the rules instituted in the other forums on this site.

    Posters making specific performance claims in Sound Science should be required to provide evidence of substance when making the claim, not just posting personal opinion as fact or stating that sighted listening tests are all that's needed to "prove" a claim. Measurements showing audibility (to humans), DBT results, even a rational theory seem to be a reasonable bar to hurdle....
    sonitus mirus and amirm like this.
  14. bigshot
    I don't mind as long as they acknowledge that their observations would be subject to bias and perhaps have nothing to do with actual sound. Observations are a great starting point if they lead to theories and testing of theories. The problem comes when people jump straight from observation to conclusion and refuse to consider the stuff that is supposed to come between.
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2017
    bfreedma and GChief like this.
  15. bfreedma
    That would be great in theory. Unfortunately, as evidenced by recent posts in this thread, it doesn’t seem to be working in practice. I don’t think anyone here has issues with observations and personal preferences. Or issues with discussing theories around those observations.

    Unfortunately correlation is instantly becoming causation.
    sonitus mirus likes this.
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