• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). Come here to have fun, be ready to be teased and not take online life too seriously. We now measure and review equipment for free! Click here for details.

John Atkinson's of Stereophile Talks About Measurements

Tks

Major Contributor
Joined
Apr 1, 2019
Messages
1,265
Likes
1,473
Location
NYC
I’ve not asked anyone to believe anything. I never proclaimed to be an expert in audio science. It’s being inferred by those who chose to do so. I don’t need or seek validation as to whether I’m special (or not). I cannot be personally measured by you or anyone here nor do I seek to measure your personal character. It appears to be the other way around. I didn’t realize this wasn’t a place for a balanced discussion...but rather a closed door that’s anchored in audio science (like minded members only). That is...if you indicate measurements (though informative) aren’t the sole factor around the (albeit) subjective perception of sound quality...a balance between the two ideals (being given equal measure)...all hell breaks loose...in the form of verbal assault, mischaracterizations, & conclusions being inferred around what was stated. I simply stated...for those who may have a remote interest in the BP DAC...to give consideration...not only to the measurements...but also to how the unit may actually perform & sound in their own living space in the chain of their own equipment (given the measurements). I don’t know why that’s counterproductive to what I would think would be a fair pause & open discussion around measurements & sound quality (on any device). I happen to think there’s a bridge/link between the (2)...for those willing to give equal consideration to both measurements & how a device actually sounds in their own living space in their chain of equipment...through listening...even if it’s thought to be anecdotal.

As you wish...I bid you farewell...
Welp, if you decide to return, I would be glad to explain the biggest issue you face. To briefly put it, is simply vacuous descriptors. You'll find me very patient if you truly care for any honest discourse on the matter.

When you say "something "good or bad" is subjective". This is totally uninformative. You first need to spell out precisely what good and bad mean here contextually in some fashion (I and perhaps others would be more than willing to hash it out with you so we can come to an understanding on how you hold such words definitionally). If you refuse such first step, you only are perceived as either lazy, or bad-faith actor.

After we define those terms, we then move on to subjective/objective. And then come to an agreement on whether good or bad things mutually are exclusive in one realm or another (of subjectivity, or objectivity). Again this can get hairy, but as long as it's contextually based, it need not be pedantic as it sounds currently. After that is established, we'd like to know the thresholds for where something like measurements fall into your calculus in terms of their value in determining good/bad "things" in relation to objective and subjective spheres.

Unlike some others (you have to understand you can catch people in a bad mood, or somewhat of the sort), I take it the effort you made to even come here is good enough for me to hold to the assumption you're not trolling or anything of the sort. Me being relatively new to the hobby, I have been less jaded as some of the folks have here. You have to understand when someone says "this is a place that values scientific inquiry and doesn't like to waste too much time about people speaking about science as if they've got a firmer grasp of the system and it's usefulness". That is a far cry from people wanting to see you leave if indeed there was something you were curious about, or wanted to contend. But what folks won't stand for, is if the terms of the discussion are known (meaning if someone says, "our discussion will be based upon evidence of what you can prove" you going out and positing empty assertions is seen as an affront to sensibilities and dignity, thus grounds for discontinuation of discourse as it's simply a violation of agreed upon terms).

There is one instance your approach makes sense, and that is in the exploratory phases of experiencing, before science has revealed. For example, if we're talking about power metrics. There's no need to lick your finger and electrocute yourself to have an idea of how much power your headphones would be receiving. In the real world we can use what we understand about SPL, voltages, current, resistance etc... and extrapolate a numerical representation. And then the person goes out, and listens to what 50dB sounds like, what 70dB sounds like or what 100dB sounds like. And then you have an abstract understanding of the precise mathematical/measurement understanding of what has been discovered without once again needing to listen to the device yourself after electrocuting yourself like some madman prior.

With enough experience, and enough experimentation, exceptions begin to accrue as well and become a part of the calculus, until the frequency of exceptions usually manifest themselves sparsely enough, they become mostly due to preparation errors or human faults of that sort. The phase in experimentation between when new phenomena, or exceptions are discovered and need accounting for, is the only time your sort of mentality holds sway (the mentality of "just try it, you never know, you might find it to be the best sound ever", I exaggerate). But slowly those exceptions become rare as I said, and the only reason of "having to try it" at all become ritualistic preference and inquisitive nature of perhaps discovery of tangential aspects (like the build quality of the device or something not covered in the scientific review or presentation of performance).

So it's twofold on why people don't want to stick to this methodology that you advise for.

1. Primarily, because they're already at a phase where surprises are as rare as mythical creatures.

2. Because it's simply inefficient. And with the pace of how people live today, going out and trying every single device under the Sun is borderline lunacy, and assuredly an annoyance (unless of course you're into that whole ritualistic practice and the choreography of setting up a new test device, in the same way people enjoy vinyl for example.. sure as shit ain't convenience anymore that much I'd wager anything).

In closing, I hope you see there are folks here willing to talk. But like any other person you meet, some (and at times many) don't want to talk nebulously with no pre-defined borders. If you're willing to define a border or definitional meanings of a few things just so I have clarity and I understand you better. I am more than willing to present the best foot forward I can.

EDIT: Minor proof reading (I don't do this enough)
 
Last edited:

murraycamp

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 10, 2019
Messages
222
Likes
212
Without those basic controls, you're playing make-believe, and your preferences may have zero to do with the actual sound.
Preach
 

murraycamp

Active Member
Forum Donor
Joined
Jul 10, 2019
Messages
222
Likes
212
That’s your opinion...not the rule of law regarding a broader audiences audio & listening preferences.
Actually, it's science.
 

direstraitsfan98

Addicted to Fun and Learning
Forum Donor
Joined
Oct 1, 2018
Messages
541
Likes
559
I don't get why you're attacking people all the time Amir. It's so tiresome. Do you thrive on negativity? Even your most positive reviews have this underlying tone of sarcasm that smacks of having a chip on your shoulder.
 

DonH56

Technical Expert
Technical Expert
Forum Donor
Joined
Mar 15, 2016
Messages
3,921
Likes
5,808
Location
Monument, CO
I think the reviews reflect Amir's somewhat dry sense of humor.

Dealing with people who are basically "pigeon posters" (*) gets tiresome so I am not surprised at the sometimes snarky replies. I have done that myself on more occasions than I care to admit, and not just on some Internet forum where I can walk away, or at least edit the post later. We have been getting spurts of subjective posters who come in and essentially say "I just want to provide some balance, it's your ears and what you hear that matters, listen and you'll hear the difference". They generally do not really provide balance, more an attack on the science and those who believe in it, often with an attitude of "I know what I hear, I don't care what you think, science does not know it all, and you can't tell me any differently". The problem for us science (well, lowly engineering in my case) types is that most of us started out doing the whole (or should that be "hole" ;) ) subjective thing, learned how wrong we were about most everything we thought we heard and knew, and now seek to correct our mistakes and help prevent others from making them. Others usually do not want to be prevented from making their own mistakes; how many of us did things as kids (or when older, maybe much, much older) that our parents said we should not, and realized later they were right? And have seen the cycle repeat in our children? Friends, Internet posters...

"Humans are not rational animals; they are rationalizing animals." - Heinlein

Years of seeing the subjectivists pop in, tell us how misguided we all are, spew a bunch of posts about how we don't really know everything (or anything), then leave without ever really (or at all) acknowledging we may have a point takes its toll. Then we (including myself) see it again and are that much quicker with the snarky response. It does not reflect well on us, but after a while patience runs thin, and it becomes an automated response.

Not saying it is right, or fair, or anything else, but that's my personal take (opinion) on the situation.

FWIWFM - Don


(*) Fly in, poop all over, then fly out.
 
Last edited:

Thomas savage

Power hungry desperado
Moderator
The Watchman
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 24, 2016
Messages
8,219
Likes
8,746
Location
uk, taunton
I think the reviews reflect Amir's somewhat dry sense of humor.

Dealing with people who are basically "pigeon posters" (*) gets tiresome so I am not surprised at the sometimes snarky replies. I have done that myself on more occasions than I care to admit, and not just on some Internet forum where I can walk away, or at least edit the post later. We have been getting spurts of subjective posters who come in and essentially say "I just want to provide some balance, it's your ears and what you hear that matters, listen and you'll hear the difference". They generally do not really provide balance, more an attack on the science and those who believe in it, often with an attitude of "I know what I hear, I don't care what you think, science does not know it all, and you can't tell me any differently". The problem for us science (well, lowly engineering in my case) types is that most of us started out doing the whole (or should that be "hole" ;) ) subjective thing, learned how wrong we were about most everything we thought we heard and knew, and now seek to correct our mistakes and help prevent others from making them. Others usually do not want to be prevented from making their own mistakes; how many of us did things as kids (or when older, maybe much, much older) that our parents said we should not, and realized later they were right? And have seen the cycle repeat in our children? Friends, Internet posters...

"Humans are not rational animals; they are rationalizing animals." - Heinlein

Years of seeing the subjectivists pop in, tell us how misguided we all are, spew a bunch of posts about how we don't really know everything (or anything), then leave without ever really (or at all) acknowledging we may have a point takes its toll. Then we (including myself) see it again and are that much quicker with the snarky response. It does not reflect well on us, but after a while patience runs thins, and it becomes an automated response.

Not saying it is right, or fair, or anything else, but that's my personal take (opinion) on the situation.

FWIWFM - Don


(*) Fly in, poop all over, then fly out.
We all need a poop poncho at times here, I think generally everyone reacts quite well and their respective ponchos are not too distressing.

Can't really expect folks to just smile and enjoy it..
 

SIY

Technical Expert
Technical Expert
Joined
Apr 6, 2018
Messages
3,911
Likes
7,394
Location
Phoenix, AZ
We all need a poop poncho at times here, I think generally everyone reacts quite well and their respective ponchos are not too distressing.

Can't really expect folks to just smile and enjoy it..
Is that a Mexican poncho or a Sears poncho?
 

Thomas savage

Power hungry desperado
Moderator
The Watchman
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 24, 2016
Messages
8,219
Likes
8,746
Location
uk, taunton
I don't get why you're attacking people all the time Amir. It's so tiresome. Do you thrive on negativity? Even your most positive reviews have this underlying tone of sarcasm that smacks of having a chip on your shoulder.
A chip on amirm's shoulder would not last long , he'd eat it .

One of the culturally fascinating quirks of our host is he likes fish and chips.
 

Blumlein 88

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 23, 2016
Messages
8,184
Likes
10,155
I think the reviews reflect Amir's somewhat dry sense of humor.

Dealing with people who are basically "pigeon posters" (*) gets tiresome so I am not surprised at the sometimes snarky replies. I have done that myself on more occasions than I care to admit, and not just on some Internet forum where I can walk away, or at least edit the post later. We have been getting spurts of subjective posters who come in and essentially say "I just want to provide some balance, it's your ears and what you hear that matters, listen and you'll hear the difference". They generally do not really provide balance, more an attack on the science and those who believe in it, often with an attitude of "I know what I hear, I don't care what you think, science does not know it all, and you can't tell me any differently". The problem for us science (well, lowly engineering in my case) types is that most of us started out doing the whole (or should that be "hole" ;) ) subjective thing, learned how wrong we were about most everything we thought we heard and knew, and now seek to correct our mistakes and help prevent others from making them. Others usually do not want to be prevented from making their own mistakes; how many of us did things as kids (or when older, maybe much, much older) that our parents said we should not, and realized later they were right? And have seen the cycle repeat in our children? Friends, Internet posters...

"Humans are not rational animals; they are rationalizing animals." - Heinlein

Years of seeing the subjectivists pop in, tell us how misguided we all are, spew a bunch of posts about how we don't really know everything (or anything), then leave without ever really (or at all) acknowledging we may have a point takes its toll. Then we (including myself) see it again and are that much quicker with the snarky response. It does not reflect well on us, but after a while patience runs thin, and it becomes an automated response.

Not saying it is right, or fair, or anything else, but that's my personal take (opinion) on the situation.

FWIWFM - Don


(*) Fly in, poop all over, then fly out.
Was going to create almost the same post in essence. You said it better, and I'm glad you even worked in a Heinlein quote. :)
 
OP
amirm

amirm

Founder/Admin
Staff Member
CFO (Chief Fun Officer)
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
25,176
Likes
52,752
Location
Seattle Area
Thread Starter #252
One of the culturally fascinating quirks of our host is he likes fish and chips.
That's because a part of me is British. Small part that is. :) Still remember as a youngster enjoying fish and chips in newspaper in Brighton Beach. Amazing what memories stay with you. I can almost feel the soggy newspaper with malt vinegar and ketchup.

Found a great Fish and Chips here by the beach recently:



Yummm!!!
 

Blumlein 88

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 23, 2016
Messages
8,184
Likes
10,155
That's because a part of me is British. Small part that is. :) Still remember as a youngster enjoying fish and chips in newspaper in Brighton Beach. Amazing what memories stay with you. I can almost feel the soggy newspaper with malt vinegar and ketchup.

Found a great Fish and Chips here by the beach recently:



Yummm!!!
I can almost feel the soggy newspaper with malt vinegar and ketchup.

Yep, that is what I loved about it as a kid too. Short lived franchise chain of H. Salt Fish and Chips had a few stores where I grew up. Otherwise, I'd likely never have heard of fish and chips. They had their own newspapers to put it in with various humor and satire laced articles.
 

Thomas savage

Power hungry desperado
Moderator
The Watchman
Forum Donor
Joined
Feb 24, 2016
Messages
8,219
Likes
8,746
Location
uk, taunton
That's because a part of me is British. Small part that is. :) Still remember as a youngster enjoying fish and chips in newspaper in Brighton Beach. Amazing what memories stay with you. I can almost feel the soggy newspaper with malt vinegar and ketchup.

Found a great Fish and Chips here by the beach recently:



Yummm!!!
You will have to go back there when it's over cast and drizzling with rain for the full ( making the best of the weather) British experience.

Nice pint glass! After recent Klippel expenditure I'd be drinking quite hard too!
 
OP
amirm

amirm

Founder/Admin
Staff Member
CFO (Chief Fun Officer)
Joined
Feb 13, 2016
Messages
25,176
Likes
52,752
Location
Seattle Area
Thread Starter #255
You will have to go back there when it's over cast and drizzling with rain for the full ( making the best of the weather) British experience.
We can supply the rain. The wind on the brighton beach, now, that is something you need to bring with you next time you are here. :)
 

Darkweb

Active Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2019
Messages
107
Likes
81
And yet I have never heard a good measuring bit of kit sound bad ;)

I have asked many times over the years for people to point out products that measure good and sound bad. I have never received one single response.
NAD M22 Class D stereo amp. Sounded drier than the Sahara to me, in a sighted listening test. I was biased to like it since I bought it blind due to its measurements and had to lose money on the re-sale. Ended up preferring class AB amps in similar price range better.
 

March Audio

Major Contributor
Manufacturer
Joined
Mar 1, 2016
Messages
4,970
Likes
5,702
Location
Albany Western Australia
NAD M22 Class D stereo amp. Sounded drier than the Sahara to me, in a sighted listening test. I was biased to like it since I bought it blind due to its measurements and had to lose money on the re-sale. Ended up preferring class AB amps in similar price range better.
Now do the listening test blind and level matched.

Secondly, what is "dry" and why is that "bad"?

Need to be careful with conflating "bad" with "different" or indeed a personal preference.
 
Last edited:

Darkweb

Active Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2019
Messages
107
Likes
81
Now do the listening test blind and level matched.

Secondly, what is "dry" and why is that "bad"?

Need to be careful with conflating "bad" with "different" or indeed a personal preference.
You’ve received your single response now so my work here is done.

Also never used the word bad. Need to be careful putting words in people’s mouths.
 
Last edited:

Dialectic

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Sep 26, 2017
Messages
1,207
Likes
1,193
Location
Westchester County, NY, USA
You’ve received your single response now so my work here is done.
I guess we should be thankful to be graced by the presence of a sanctimonious, belligerent troll on this forum.
 

Similar threads

Top Bottom