Why do USB cables make such a difference?
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GrussGott

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Um, you do realise that digital audio data is just data, right?
Ummm you do realize how science works, right? Like how science facts are easily provable?

(oh and you do realize portable hard drives use the USB bulk spec (08h) which has error correction - CRC vs. USB audio transfers which use the USB audio spec (o1h) which is live with no error correction right? i mean I'm assuming you do as it's the most basic principle here - and if you didn't understand even the most basic principle of USB audio, but were cocking off about your knowledge and certainty of 'digital audio' you'd look pretty dumb. So I'm assuming you did your homework to learn the basics before speaking about something you clearly didn't know the first thing about.)

So, hey, if you have decades of evidence, put it all together for for us into scientific fact. (don't forget to explain that XMOS code).

Go!
 
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bfreedma

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Ummm you do realize how science works, right? Like how science facts are easily provable?

(oh and you do realize portable hard drives use the USB bulk spec (08h) which has error correction - CRC vs. USB audio transfers which use the USB audio spec (o1h) which is live with no error correction right? i mean I'm assuming you do as it's the most basic principle here - and if you didn't understand even the most basic principle of USB audio, but were cocking off about your knowledge and certainty of 'digital audio' you'd look pretty dumb. So I'm assuming you did your homework to learn the basics before speaking about something you clearly don't know the first thing about.)

So, hey, if you have decades of evidence, put it all together for for us into scientific fact. (don't forget to explain that XMOS code).

Go!

You edited the post you quoted to change it’s context and make it appear as if the OP wasn’t aware of data correction and CRC as applied to audio vs bulk data transmission?

That’s very unethical of you. No reason to waste any more time here.
 
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Killcomic

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Wow, the snake oil is strong with this one.
Ummm you do realize how science works, right? Like how science facts are easily provable?

(oh and you do realize portable hard drives use the USB bulk spec (08h) which has error correction - CRC vs. USB audio transfers which use the USB audio spec (o1h) which is live with no error correction right? i mean I'm assuming you do as it's the most basic principle here - and if you didn't understand even the most basic principle of USB audio, but were cocking off about your knowledge and certainty of 'digital audio' you'd look pretty dumb. So I'm assuming you did your homework to learn the basics before speaking about something you clearly didn't know the first thing about.)

So, hey, if you have decades of evidence, put it all together for for us into scientific fact. (don't forget to explain that XMOS code).

Go!
May I remind you that it's you who is trying to convince others of what it basically snake oil?
 
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GrussGott

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Wow, the snake oil is strong with this one.

May I remind you that it's you who is trying to convince others of what it basically snake oil?
Well, no, because that wouldn't be true. Here's why:

If you were saying, "hey, in my experience usb cables don't do jack, and nothing I've ever seen shows me they could" that's totally cool, because that's your experience and your amateur's opinion of why.

But if you're making a claim of a scientific fact like: "it's a fact USB cables cannot affect audio quality", then you should be able to easily prove that. But you can't prove that easily or otherwise, all you can do is share anecdotal data and amateur opinions which is not proof.

For me, I'm saying USB cables worked for me, I have thoughts on why, but those are guesses; thus my advice is try them for free, or don't try them, because my experience is only 1 anecdote not proof of anything.

See how it's you making an unsubstantiated claim that you can't prove?

I sure hope so, because for the science thread there's very little understanding of how science actually works: Science facts are provable, everything else is guesswork.
 
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Killcomic

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Well, no, because that wouldn't be true. Here's why:

If you were saying, "hey, in my experience usb cables don't do jack, and nothing I've ever seen shows me they could" that's totally cool, because that's your experience and your amateur's opinion of why.

But if you're making a claim of a scientific fact like: "it's a fact USB cables cannot affect audio quality", then you should be able to easily prove that. But you can't prove that easily or otherwise, all you can do is share anecdotal data and amateur opinions which is not proof.

For me, I'm saying USB cables worked for me, I have thoughts on why, but those are guesses; thus my advice is try them for free, or don't try them, because my experience is only 1 anecdote not proof of anything.

See how it's you making an unsubstantiated claim that you can't prove?

I sure hope so, because for the science thread there's very little understand of how it actually works: Science facts are provable, everything else is guesswork.
You are making the claim that digital signals transfer better over more expensive cables.
You are the one going againt established knowledge of digital transfers. It is you making the extraordinary claim, hence it is your responsibility to provide the evidence.
 
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GrussGott

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You edited the post you quoted to change it’s context and make it appear as if the OP wasn’t aware of data correction and CRC as applied to audio vs bulk data transmission?

That’s very unethical of you. No reason to waste any more time here.
How could I edit his post? Go look, that dude said:

"There are decades of evidence supporting the point that a cheap USB cable works as well as an expensive cable. Otherwise we would be getting CRC errors all over the place when transferring data over USB. Portable hard drives would be unusable without an expensive USB cable."

It would appear he doesn't understand we're talking about the USB audio spec, not USB bulk-mode, otherwise why mention CRC or hard drives?
 
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GrussGott

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You are making the claim that digital signals transfer better over more expensive cables.
You are the one going againt established knowledge of digital transfers. It is you making the extraordinary claim, hence it is your responsibility to provide the evidence.
Dude, I am making no such claim, nor have I ever posted such a claim, quite the opposite.

as for "the established knowledge of digital transfers", yeah, I'm "going against" "digital transfers" since we talking UAC not USB mass storage aka bulk-mode transfer. They are two totally different things governed by different specs.

USB audio is class 01h which is an isochronous transfer, and USB mass storage is class 08h, which is a bulk transfer. they're different:

There are four sorts of IN and OUT-transfers in USB: Bulk, Isochronous, Interrupt, and Control transfers.

A bulk transfer is used to reliably transfer data between host and device. All USB transfers carry a CRC (checksum) that indicates whether an error has occurred. On a bulk transfer, the receiver of the data has to verify the CRC. If the CRC is correct the transfer is acknowledged, and the data is assumed to have been transferred error-free. If the CRC is not correct, the transfer is not acknowledged and will be retried.

Isochronous transfers are used to transfer data in real-time between host and device. When an isochronous endpoint is set up by the host, the host allocates a specific amount of bandwidth to the isochronous endpoint, and it regularly performs an IN- or OUT-transfer on that endpoint. For example, the host may OUT 1 KByte of data every 125 us to the device. Since a fixed and limited amount of bandwidth has been allocated, there is no time to resend data if anything goes wrong. The data has a CRC as normal, but if the receiving side detects an error there is no resend mechanism.
 
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Killcomic

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Dude, I am making no such claim, nor have I ever posted such a claim, quite the opposite.

as for "the established knowledge of digital transfers", yeah, I'm "going against" "digital transfers" since we talking UAC not USB mass storage aka bulk-mode transfer. They are two totally different things governed by different specs.

USB audio is class 01h which is an isochronous transfer, and USB mass storage is class 08h, which is a bulk transfer. they're different:

There are four sorts of IN and OUT-transfers in USB: Bulk, Isochronous, Interrupt, and Control transfers.

A bulk transfer is used to reliably transfer data between host and device. All USB transfers carry a CRC (checksum) that indicates whether an error has occurred. On a bulk transfer, the receiver of the data has to verify the CRC. If the CRC is correct the transfer is acknowledged, and the data is assumed to have been transferred error-free. If the CRC is not correct, the transfer is not acknowledged and will be retried.

Isochronous transfers are used to transfer data in real-time between host and device. When an isochronous endpoint is set up by the host, the host allocates a specific amount of bandwidth to the isochronous endpoint, and it regularly performs an IN- or OUT-transfer on that endpoint. For example, the host may OUT 1 KByte of data every 125 us to the device. Since a fixed and limited amount of bandwidth has been allocated, there is no time to resend data if anything goes wrong. The data has a CRC as normal, but if the receiving side detects an error there is no resend mechanism.
Yes, I understand that, but how many errors do you encounter with a nirnal cable vs an expensive one.
Does the error rate drop dramatically? Are there errors to begin with?
 
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GrussGott

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Yes, I understand that, but how many errors do you encounter with a nirnal cable vs an expensive one.
Does the error rate drop dramatically? Are there errors to begin with?
I don't know, you don't know, nobody here knows - that's the science. And even if we did know, it would be only for our equipment, in our environments at that time.

Thus until someone can do a source-to-DAC-in/out data analysis of a representative set of sources and DACs, who knows? Not to mention nobody, saving a few, understand the chip firmware which is why Schiit created their own USB special interest group, so they could create their own USB implementation and remove the handcuffs of standard chipsets.

Thus all we can do is try stuff and see if it works for our environment, equipment, and ears - and since reputable cable companies allow you to try them for months for free why wouldn't you? I did and they worked for me, but I live high up in a major downtown with absolute shiit-tons of EMI. Right now I'm picking up 46 wi-fi networks and 5 cell networks and who knows how many towers and other crap and that's just from a 1 second glance. In no way am I claiming my anecdote proves anything (other than open-minded people have better audio experiences)

Look, i'm sorry you thought you had it all figured out, but you just don't cause if you did you could prove your claim.
 
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I don't know, you don't know - that's the science. And even if we did know, it would be only for our equipment.

Thus until someone can do a source-to-DAC-in/out data analysis of a representative set of sources and DACs, who knows? Not to mention nobody, saving a few, understand the chip firmware which is why Schiit created their own USB special interest group, so they could create their own USB implementation and remove the handcuffs of standard chipsets.

Thus all we can do is try stuff and see if it works for our environment, equipment, and ears - and since reputable cable companies allow you to try them for months for free why wouldn't you? I did and they worked for me, but I live high up in a major downtown with absolute shiit-tons of EMI. Right now I'm picking up 46 wi-fi networks and 5 cell networks and who knows how many towers and other **** and that's just from a 1 second glance.

Look, i'm sorry you thought you had it all figured out, but you just don't cause if you did you could prove your claim.
You'd be surprised at how little it bothers me if I'm wrong, specially about this.
I still maintain that the cable makes no difference unless out of spec, but if I'm wrong, which is always a possibility, I'd be glad to have learnt something new.
 
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You'd be surprised at how little it bothers me if I'm wrong, specially about this.
I still maintain that the cable makes no difference unless out of spec, but if I'm wrong, which is always a possibility, I'd be glad to have learnt something new.
That's pretty awesome, you're probably the first person here with the humility and courage to say that.

Until we know, here's to learning new stuff! :: clink, clink ::
 
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That's pretty awesome, you're probably the first person here with the humility and courage to say that.

Until we know, here's to learning new stuff! :: clink, clink ::
Well it's just a hobby, isn't it? :beerchug:
 
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bigshot

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There’s no reason to believe USB cables make an audible difference. But I suppose the moon could actually be made of green cheese and science has been lying to us since Apollo 11
 
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Being this is the science thread, I feel honor-bound to point out everything in your post adds up to "we're guessing and speculating based on the anecdotes of amateurs".

In my scientificalogical experience, "hey that one time that dude did some stuff with some machines and such" doesn't cross the conclusive and definitive bar.

Further, pretending (or deluding yourself) that random amateur messing about has established anything is misleading at best. (although if he was wearing a white coat and safety glasses it would make it more fun)

In short, we have zero conclusive data of anything when it comes to cables; just guesses, speculations, amateur experiments, and bunch of either misunderstanding, fear and/or discomfort with that uncertainty. That should be the one place we can all fully agree ...

Because it is, scientifically, the state of affairs, and the only thing actually validated.
I don't know why I'm bothering because you'll dismiss it again - but I'll try anyway:

  1. Objective real evidence:
    http://archimago.blogspot.com/2013/04/measurements-usb-cables-for-dacs.html

  2. More objective real evidence:
    https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...s/do-usb-audio-cables-make-a-difference.1887/
    Note that they also talk about audibility here, and the measurements confirm that any differences would be beyond the threshold of audibility unless packets were being dropped.

  3. Further discussion about the tests in (1) above
    http://archimago.blogspot.com/2013/06/musings-about-those-usb-cable-tests.html

  4. Commentary - well worth reading - from an engineer - he talks cables in the section on Audiophile Digital Cables
    https://medium.com/@skikirkwood/truth-lies-and-fraud-in-the-audiophile-world-a365e56c97c4

  5. Commentary from Mark Waldrep - Studio owner, does this for a living, and in audio world his set-up is "mission critical"
    http://www.realhd-audio.com/?p=5561
    Most of the comments I’ve read around the web devolve into the same age-old argument about whether cables make a difference in the fidelity of your system or not. Intelligent people on both sides of the debate make their cases without any convincing anyone to change their mind. Believers will continue to believe while those that tend to the “show me data” end of the spectrum remain steadfast in their rejection of $1000 HDMI or USB cables. You all know where I stand on this issue. Don’t buy cables thinking they are going to improve the fidelity of your system. If you like the wonderful windings, the cool colors, the heavy connectors, or the status of a branded cable, then by all means spend the money…but don’t expect the sound to improve. There are plenty of other things you can do…at far less cost…that will affect your sound.

    A functioning digital audio interface cable (AES-EBU, S/P DIF, SDIF, USB, or HDMI) cannot and should not alter the bit stream connecting a digital source component to a digital destination. All those “believers” who challenge this important fact are living in a dream world. Simply stating that hearing is believing doesn’t cut it. I know there are many individuals, reviewers, companies, consumers, and publications that profess otherwise but they all have a vested interest in perpetuating this myth…and others. Professional audio studios don’t use expensive cables or power cords so why should you?

    I can’t say that I’ve tested every permutation, format, cable, connector, or material but I did compare the data delivered by a $300 USB cable and a $5 USB and found that each successfully delivered exactly the same data. The audio from the different cables when the polarity of one was reversed completely and exactly nulled the other. The both accomplished their tasks with equal “fidelity”…as expected.
Right - I've shown from multiple sources that in every instance, the USB cables in question make zero audible effect.

So please - just deliver ONE - repeatable measurable difference using two cables which both meet the audio standard and that produce audible differences. Just one.

And to reference your above (pitiable) answer:
  • The measurements aren't anecdotes of amateurs - at least 3 of them are professionals in the industry
  • Its not conclusive, but in the absence of any contradictory measurable data in this thread, and the fact that no one has produced any (my internet search definitely didn't turn up any), it does point to a repeatable pattern
  • While this is not my field - it is for the people I've quoted - and please lay off the smarmy "deluding" comments. The only one doing it appears to be you. It's obvious, and it denigrates from the purpose of the thread. Please have some respect for the people actually looking for enlightenment
  • I have shown documented real evidence in the links. They are not guesses. They are not speculations. And if you want to call people like Mark Waldrep amateur or deluded - then I don't need to go any further.
 
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There’s no reason to believe USB cables make an audible difference. But I suppose the moon could actually be made of green cheese and science has been lying to us since Apollo 11
Well, they would say that the Apollo ll and the moon landing was a lie.
 
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