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Thread: Audiophiles beware, the other senses are more connected than you think.

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    Audiophiles beware, the other senses are more connected than you think.


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    I wonder what happens if you are blind

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    If it sounds good, they must be using High End Cables

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    I wonder what happens if you are blind
    Not to be rude, but why don't they seek out visually impaired people for auditory challenges? (very PC)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    If it sounds good, they must be using High End Cables
    Now you are getting it!

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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    Not to be rude, but why don't they seek out visually impaired people for auditory challenges? (very PC)
    Reading the article goes a long way!

    There, the researchers suggested preventing sight for as little as a week may be enough to help the brain process sound more effectively.

    This was in the article.

    They didn't mention the blind because they already did a study on that as well.

    Short stays in darkness can boost hearing, study shows - Medical News Today


    Reading the entire article helps.......
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    This article presents a solid reason why I think blind listening tests are more accurate than sited listening tests with respect to electronics.

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    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3db View Post
    This article presents a solid reason why I think blind listening tests are more accurate than sited listening tests with respect to electronics.
    Just not the overwhelmingly common bogus type which use switchboxes that combine signal grounds, use extra cabling and other uncontrolled devices and assumptions that are not normally present.

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    People who are blind from birth have extraordinary hearing most times. That is why Double Blind Testing would be better done with Blind people. Nobody can be accurate by being blindfolded for a short time as opposed to normal hearing for life of a blind person because they are not used to it and each time blindfolded the hearing sense change can be a little different.

    If they did cable swapping tests with blind for life testers, and they did not hear any changes ever, I may change my mind.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    People who are blind from birth have extraordinary hearing most times. That is why Double Blind Testing would be better done with Blind people. Nobody can be accurate by being blindfolded for a short time as opposed to normal hearing for life of a blind person because they are not used to it and each time blindfolded the hearing sense change can be a little different.

    If they did cable swapping tests with blind for life testers, and they did not hear any changes ever, I may change my mind.
    Blind in this case simply means not being able to see the equipment used prior to and during the test. It doesn't mean blindfolded.

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    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3db View Post
    Blind in this case simply means not being able to see the equipment used prior to and during the test. It doesn't mean blindfolded.
    When the term is "double blind", you are mistaken. That means that both the person taking test AND the tester do not know which is which. As for me, I don't have a problem with single blind studies. The "Clever Hans" cueing effect can be eliminated.

    Randomizing digital content using the same player works fine. Running gear through extraneous boxes or Y-adapters merely blends electrical characteristics of the devices under test.

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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat View Post
    When the term is "double blind", you are mistaken. That means that both the person taking test AND the tester do not know which is which. As for me, I don't have a problem with single blind studies. The "Clever Hans" cueing effect can be eliminated.

    Randomizing digital content using the same player works fine. Running gear through extraneous boxes or Y-adapters merely blends electrical characteristics of the devices under test.
    I never mentioned DBT in this thread.

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    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3db View Post
    I never mentioned DBT in this thread.
    Yet you directly referenced the quoted term with your response in post # 10.

    "Blind in this case..."

    Perhaps your comments had nothing to do with the quoted term.

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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat View Post
    When the term is "double blind", you are mistaken. That means that both the person taking test AND the tester do not know which is which. As for me, I don't have a problem with single blind studies. The "Clever Hans" cueing effect can be eliminated.

    Randomizing digital content using the same player works fine. Running gear through extraneous boxes or Y-adapters merely blends electrical characteristics of the devices under test.
    Now they(and I) use computers to do the switching. At AES they use computer controlled ABX testing. Since nobody but the computer is switching, the Clever Hans effect is eliminated.

    If you are DBT wires and IC, those are directly interfaced with the multiplexer - and the computer can choose between which input to listen to, single blindly or DB.

    I am not sure they make those old standalone ABX comparator boxes anymore. Too many people like me could hear the thing switching, and therefore cheat the system.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible View Post
    If you are DBT wires and IC, those are directly interfaced with the multiplexer - and the computer can choose between which input to listen to, single blindly or DB.
    How do you eliminate switching transients without sharing grounds? And, if you are comparing interconnects, how do you eliminate the need for a third pigtail?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible View Post
    Now they(and I) use computers to do the switching. At AES they use computer controlled ABX testing. Since nobody but the computer is switching, the Clever Hans effect is eliminated.

    If you are DBT wires and IC, those are directly interfaced with the multiplexer - and the computer can choose between which input to listen to, single blindly or DB.

    I am not sure they make those old standalone ABX comparator boxes anymore. Too many people like me could hear the thing switching, and therefore cheat the system.
    The whole topic of blind testing, (single or double), is pretty stale.

    On the one hand, even the most rigorous DBT cannot prove that there are no differences, ONLY that they can't be heard by a statistically significant portion of people under the conditions of the test -- the latter is a significant caveat (as E-Stat implies).

    Recently I listened to a number of (relatively) low cost interconnects and I thought I heard differences which I described in another post. My testing certainly wasn't blind. I wouldn't bet a dime that I could tell the cables apart in bind tests, and what's more, I wouldn't blame the condition for the fact. Unlike some audiophiles I'm willing to admit that some (at least) of the differences I hear are my imagination.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 3db View Post
    Blind in this case simply means not being able to see the equipment used prior to and during the test. It doesn't mean blindfolded.
    I know, all I was implying is that Blind people have way better hearing than you and I whether we can't see the cable, are blindfolded or in a dark room.

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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat View Post
    How do you eliminate switching transients without sharing grounds?
    Use a UPS or power conditioner that has isolated grounding. The ones I have provide isolated quality noise suppression,, surge protection, harmonic noise cancellation, and power(voltage) regulation on each plug.

    And, if you are comparing interconnects, how do you eliminate the need for a third pigtail?
    The custom computer multiplex interface that I have is connected directly to the computer much like a internal sound card. It accommodates all kinds of audio connections, so you don't need a pigtail connection. You plug the IC directly into the multiplexing interface, and program the computer to switch between the interface connections.

    I copied this from one pretty darn effective ABX software based test from AES.
    

     
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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi View Post
    I know, all I was implying is that Blind people have way better hearing than you and I whether we can't see the cable, are blindfolded or in a dark room.
    Sorry, but not all blind people have way better hearing than sighted people. Some maybe, but not all.
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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    The whole topic of blind testing, (single or double), is pretty stale.
    It is stale because it is too rigorous for the majority to do well, and stand under scrutiny. Sorry, but there is too much evidence that sighted testing introduces too many biases to be reliable.

    On the one hand, even the most rigorous DBT cannot prove that there are no differences, ONLY that they can't be heard by a statistically significant portion of people under the conditions of the test -- the latter is a significant caveat (as E-Stat implies).
    If it cannot be heard, then there is no differences PERIOD. DBT is about what we actually hear without the biases of a sighted test. If we take the equipment or cable out of sight, then we are listening much like a blind person would....with our ears only.

    Recently I listened to a number of (relatively) low cost interconnects and I thought I heard differences which I described in another post. My testing certainly wasn't blind. I wouldn't bet a dime that I could tell the cables apart in bind tests, and what's more, I wouldn't blame the condition for the fact. Unlike some audiophiles I'm willing to admit that some (at least) of the differences I hear are my imagination.
    Not only your imagination, but different seat placement which affect what you acoustically hear, the colorations of the speaker you listen too, and the source material itself. As Dr. Floyd Toole and Dr. Peter D'Antonio has proven - move your head a inch or more from the central measured seating position, and what your hear perceptively changes. This is even if you sit your butt in exactly the same place. If you head is not in a measure vice, then you will hear subtle changes in the frequency response, and time arrival of the signals from the speakers(two channel mostly).

    There reason IC and speaker wire testing is so hard to do objectively is because

    1. The rooms resonances must be completely eliminated at the seating areas. In other words, you have to neutralize the room's effect on the sound.

    2. The room has to be quiet enough so that low level details in the mix are easily heard.

    3. The speakers MUST have the necessary resolution to make subtleties audible, because the differences in IC are subtle at best.

    4. You must level match the sources to within .5db's because any differences above that are judged as perceptively better to the ear.

    5. You have to analyze your sources(software) for any inherent characteristics that would affect what you hear.(i.e recording based colorations or errors within the source itself).

    Outside of this, subjective comparisons could be made, but not objective ones.
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    I asked the question about the blind sort of tongue in cheek, sorry I brought it up. It's difficult for me to believe some one like Sir T can't hear difference in cables when listening and engineering is his business. Those who are convinced there's no difference aren't going to change opinions and those of us who know there is certainly aren't going to change ours. The cables I'm now using took my system up to an entirely better performance level. The DBT thing is ridiculous, average people can't tell the difference between entry to high end with seeing, let alone blind. The persons being tested have to have some experience listening to better gear to hear the benefits. For instance, take your average young adult with four 12 inch woofers in their car, they will certainly like something different from me, the same with a portable mp3 listener. How many go to live Jazz or Classical venues to get a real reference for what the instrument should actually sound like.

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    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody View Post
    I asked the question about the blind sort of tongue in cheek, sorry I brought it up. It's difficult for me to believe some one like Sir T can't hear difference in cables when listening and engineering is his business. Those who are convinced there's no difference aren't going to change opinions and those of us who know there is certainly aren't going to change ours. The cables I'm now using took my system up to an entirely better performance level. The DBT thing is ridiculous, average people can't tell the difference between entry to high end with seeing, let alone blind. The persons being tested have to have some experience listening to better gear to hear the benefits. For instance, take your average young adult with four 12 inch woofers in their car, they will certainly like something different from me, the same with a portable mp3 listener. How many go to live Jazz or Classical venues to get a real reference for what the instrument should actually sound like.
    Mr. Peabody, I don't like majoring in minors. I chose a well built cable that sounded neutral to my ears, degraded the signal the least among those I measured, and was reasonably priced. With all of the cables I heard, none had a bright sound or dark sound, just varying degrees of resolution and that is it. The point I am making is it took a NC-20 room, speaker/room interactions corrected to -+1 from 40-20khz, a extremely quiet amp and pre-amp to hear these very subtle difference. I highly doubt that anyone can hear these subtle differences on a less than $5000 dollar two channel system setup in their living room. Most here do not tackle room acoustics(too complicated), don't have the signal chain to reveal these differences, nor do they have a room quiet enough. If a piece of cable is taking your system to a new level, the old cables were probably not up to snuff. The differences between cables are not night and day, but profoundly subtle if they are well made.

    The persons being tested have to have some experience listening to better gear to hear the benefits.
    Dr. Floyd Toole's listening test done at the Canadian Radio research lab disputes this.

    It's difficult for me to believe some one like Sir T can't hear difference in cables when listening and engineering is his business.
    Well Mr. P., I am listening to the audio, not the cables. And that is the way I like it.

    The DBT thing is ridiculous, average people can't tell the difference between entry to high end with seeing, let alone blind.
    And that is exactly the point of DBT, to remove known pre-judgements and biases that come with sighted testing. Read up a little on sighted pre-judgement, and sighted biases. If I tell you a piece of equipment you are going to listen to is entry level, and audiophile will immediately pre-judge that equipment as insufficient.

    When I first started at Disney, we did a sighted shootout between a well regarded a Radio Shack portable CD player, and one of Sony top of the line CD players. We first did a sighted listening test, and of course the engineers who are audiophile types panned the sound of the CD player, even though Stereophile mentioned how well the portable sounded when put up against another high end CD player. Once the curtain was thrown up, those same audiophiles preferred the sound of the portable over the high end CD player over and over again. Bias erased, different outcome.

    I don't have a problem with the idea that there are subtle differences(and I mean subtle) between cables. My problem is how you guys who THINK you hear differences are carrying out your tests.

    1. You guys don't level match your sources. Perceptive tests have proven that if one source is higher in level by just 1db, it will sound BETTER to the listener.

    2. None of you have neutralize the sonic signature of your rooms.

    3. None of you have mentioned anything about the ambient levels of your room.

    4. All testing is sighted which introduces biases.

    5. No instantaneous switching. Any idea that you can compare cables on two separate days, two separate hours, or two separate minutes does not understand the deficit of our auditory memory.

    6. Since you guys don't really measure or treat your rooms, room resonances are a lot louder than the subtle differences between cables. If you don't put your head in a vice, then any head movements can move your head in and out of a mode or node - which changes the perception of what you hear.

    You guys do not address ANY of the variables that can dog a listening test. Testing is done willy nilly, and I am sorry, but if want to HEAR differences objectively, those variables have to be addressed. This is why testing wires and IC's is done so infrequently - it is too difficult to pull off objectively.

    AVSforum and AIX records are doing a double blind shootout between three audio files. A redbook 16/44.1khz file, versus a 24/96khz file, versus a upsampled upconverted 16/44.1khz file to 24/96khz. The criteria to participate in this test is so high, I highly doubt anyone here would be able to meet it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible View Post
    Mr. Peabody, I don't like majoring in minors. I chose a well built cable that sounded neutral to my ears, degraded the signal the least among those I measured, and was reasonably priced. With all of the cables I heard, none had a bright sound or dark sound, just varying degrees of resolution and that is it. The point I am making is it took a NC-20 room, speaker/room interactions corrected to -+1 from 40-20khz, a extremely quiet amp and pre-amp to hear these very subtle difference. I highly doubt that anyone can hear these subtle differences on a less than $5000 dollar two channel system setup in their living room. Most here do not tackle room acoustics(too complicated), don't have the signal chain to reveal these differences, nor do they have a room quiet enough. If a piece of cable is taking your system to a new level, the old cables were probably not up to snuff. The differences between cables are not night and day, but profoundly subtle if they are well made.

    You make a lot of assumptions, "you guys", you have no idea what any one has or has not done. And, in this case most of what you said is just wrong. Don't impress your short comings on the general population. I do agree that my preference in cables would be one not to color but add resolution.

    If you look at Analysis Plus website they are one who publishes there measured differences. In is also fact there is audible differences between materials used, the metal or dielectric or lack there of, the configuration of the materials and even quality of the terminals and method of connecting them.

    Dr. Floyd Toole's listening test done at the Canadian Radio research lab disputes this.



    Well Mr. P., I am listening to the audio, not the cables. And that is the way I like it.



    And that is exactly the point of DBT, to remove known pre-judgements and biases that come with sighted testing. Read up a little on sighted pre-judgement, and sighted biases. If I tell you a piece of equipment you are going to listen to is entry level, and audiophile will immediately pre-judge that equipment as insufficient.

    When I first started at Disney, we did a sighted shootout between a well regarded a Radio Shack portable CD player, and one of Sony top of the line CD players. We first did a sighted listening test, and of course the engineers who are audiophile types panned the sound of the CD player, even though Stereophile mentioned how well the portable sounded when put up against another high end CD player. Once the curtain was thrown up, those same audiophiles preferred the sound of the portable over the high end CD player over and over again. Bias erased, different outcome.

    I don't have a problem with the idea that there are subtle differences(and I mean subtle) between cables. My problem is how you guys who THINK you hear differences are carrying out your tests.

    1. You guys don't level match your sources. Perceptive tests have proven that if one source is higher in level by just 1db, it will sound BETTER to the listener.

    2. None of you have neutralize the sonic signature of your rooms.

    3. None of you have mentioned anything about the ambient levels of your room.

    4. All testing is sighted which introduces biases.

    5. No instantaneous switching. Any idea that you can compare cables on two separate days, two separate hours, or two separate minutes does not understand the deficit of our auditory memory.

    6. Since you guys don't really measure or treat your rooms, room resonances are a lot louder than the subtle differences between cables. If you don't put your head in a vice, then any head movements can move your head in and out of a mode or node - which changes the perception of what you hear.

    You guys do not address ANY of the variables that can dog a listening test. Testing is done willy nilly, and I am sorry, but if want to HEAR differences objectively, those variables have to be addressed. This is why testing wires and IC's is done so infrequently - it is too difficult to pull off objectively.

    AVSforum and AIX records are doing a double blind shootout between three audio files. A redbook 16/44.1khz file, versus a 24/96khz file, versus a upsampled upconverted 16/44.1khz file to 24/96khz. The criteria to participate in this test is so high, I highly doubt anyone here would be able to meet it.
    I listen to music as well but I want the best presentation from my system I can get.

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    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sir Terrence the Terrible View Post
    Mr. Peabody, I don't like majoring in minors. I chose a well built cable that sounded neutral to my ears, degraded the signal the least among those I measured, and was reasonably priced. With all of the cables I heard, none had a bright sound or dark sound, just varying degrees of resolution and that is it. The point I am making is it took a NC-20 room, speaker/room interactions corrected to -+1 from 40-20khz, a extremely quiet amp and pre-amp to hear these very subtle difference. I highly doubt that anyone can hear these subtle differences on a less than $5000 dollar two channel system setup in their living room. Most here do not tackle room acoustics(too complicated), don't have the signal chain to reveal these differences, nor do they have a room quiet enough. If a piece of cable is taking your system to a new level, the old cables were probably not up to snuff. The differences between cables are not night and day, but profoundly subtle if they are well made.
    ...
    So you admit you hear differences on the subjective level, albeit you hear these differences under rigorously controlled conditions. Also you admit that these subjective sound differences are a factor, (along with measurement), in you choice of cable. Can you personally usually correctly identify your chosen vs. rejected cables in blind testing?

    I think you do audiophiles here too little credit implying that they are deceiving themselves about sound differences. Carefully controlling listening conditions might ensure more accurate results but certainly various people here have equipment that has the resolution to make differences audible. Furthermore from personal, granted, subjective experience I can hear sound difference anywhere in the audio chain regardless of whether the changes being auditioned at strong or a weak point in the chain.

    For my part, I have consistently advised that cable differences are very small and that most people, i.e. those with entry to mid-range equipment, ought to buy reliable, cheap cables, (e.g. Blue Jeans Cable), and spend the difference on improving other components. This is rational advice, but though cables can be overpriced, (they have the highest markups of all components), they are usually cheaper than the components and there is a temptation to look there for improvements.

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    Super Moderator Site Moderator JohnMichael's Avatar
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    I am very used to my system in my room and that familiarity helps me determine what cable works best. My system is purist in that there is no signal processing and I listen more near field.
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