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Measurable aspects of sound perception

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sorry. I'm not sure I get what you're saying...
OK, let's go back to the paper I posted where differences in pinna can affect your acuity for localisation and thus soundstage perception. If your pinna make something seem to have great soundstage and mine do not, then your experience may lead you somewhere different to mine and we end up with different subjective likings. That's all I'm intimating.
 

Sgt. Ear Ache

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yes but again, all of us operate every day of our lives within the confines of our bodies in this world. If my pinna is different from yours such that it affects my acuity for localisation, I've adapted to it. I've had my pinna my entire life and ftmp we all are able to localize just fine.
 
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Which assertions have I made that require blind testing? I haven't come here and made claims that I can hear the difference between cables or DACs or lossy/lossless files. The people making extraordinary claims of having super-powered hearing are the ones who need to prove something (even if only to themselves). I have done some tests (for instance several of the online tests comparing lossy/lossless as well as some "mostly for fun" tests with my system at home) and I have also read the results of quite a few varied blind tests that have been conducted by other groups (Harmon for instance). The results of tests conducted by publications and audio groups have pretty much all backed up the objectivist reasoning I've come to appreciate...
This seems more like an answer to the questions but not quite in a way an auditor would appreciate it. There's to much smalltalk about DAC lossy /lossless files files that were never mentioned before by me. I would call it an answer of a biased and/or prejudiced individual (aren/t we all subjective ?) Thx for trying anyway.
 

pozz

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OK, let's go back to the paper I posted where differences in pinna can affect your acuity for localisation and thus soundstage perception. If your pinna make something seem to have great soundstage and mine do not, then your experience may lead you somewhere different to mine and we end up with different subjective likings. That's all I'm intimating.
That's absolutely true, but that difference of experience is within tolerances (as in the histogram in Fig. 1), just like differences in electrical design, which, though sold as having strong characteristic effects, end up showing very similar results in the output signal when measured.

I''m not sure of the extent to which psychovisual experiments have modelled subjective visual perception of colour, but what I am sure about is that the differences would, again, fall into tolerances with outliers given damage or conditions like colour blindness. The paper you posted says anecdotally, for example, that another researcher found that just bending a pinna is enough to cause difference in localization for a single person.

I don't think that you can suggest, using this evidence, that preference for components is based on anatomical differences. Listening tests to the extent they've been discussed here previously do not confirm this. In fact, they show the opposite in Harman testing.
 

solderdude

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I'm wondering but from my perspective stating that we can measure everything we could possibly hear is quite arrogant...............
Maybe your perspective is quite different than mine... what is it that cannot be measured but can be heard ?
 
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yes but again, all of us operate every day of our lives within the confines of our bodies in this world. If my pinna is different from yours such that it affects my acuity for localisation, I've adapted to it. I've had my pinna my entire life and ftmp we all are able to localize just fine.
"FTMP" indeed - because it's a generalisation that groups everybody together and doesn't account for how/where/why individuals may be quite different in some respects. Generalisations have some usefulness, but perhaps not useful enough.

Some like 2HM distortion, others do not. Some are more sensitive to some types of distortion compared to others. How we each perceive sound will impact how we prioritize perceived sonic characteristics which leads people in different directions, such as when choosing equipment. I think that's why objective numbers mean little for some, while others treat them as sacred. I personally fit neither camp. I prefer to better understand how objective measures of various distortions etc are personally perceived by me so I can deduce things like whether I like a modicum of 2HM and how sensitive I am to different types of distortion. Imagine if I like a dollop of 2HM, then a more transparent product by SINAD isn't necessarily for me. Knowing such things helps one shortlist equipment by numbers better so long as one can find the appropriate data and understands its correlations to them as an individual. Two items could have the same overall SINAD, but the make up of their distortion could be of different types, with one unit producing more of something one is sensitive to, assuming it crosses some audibility threshold. In such a situation one should take the unit where its distortion types are those they are least sensitive to.

So to bring this back to topic....
You can measure harmonic distortions and you can correlate this to yourself as an individual and figure out if you like 2HM, how much and so on, or if you prefer greater transparency.
You can measure different types of distortion and see how sensitive you are to them, such that you know which types of distortion you will perceive more easily than others and avoid them it if more prevalent in units being considered for purchase. Given 2 units with equal SINAD, you're best off knowing what types of distortion they have and avoiding the one with the distortion type you are more sensitive to.
 

solderdude

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2HM distortion also comes with IM.
2 units with the same SINAD can sound quite different.
It is just a number relative to a certain level, as a number alone it says nothing about how something sounds. For this you need to look at an entire suite of measurements.
One could also rank on S/N ratio but would need a reference level.
One could also rank on freq. extension or phase shifts within a certain band or could make certain differences visible in certain types of graphs.
It is merely a way of presenting data.
It has nothing to do with perception of individuals and their preferences.
 

pozz

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"FTMP" indeed - because it's a generalisation that groups everybody together and doesn't account for how/where/why individuals may be quite different in some respects. Generalisations have some usefulness, but perhaps not useful enough.

Some like 2HM distortion, others do not. Some are more sensitive to some types of distortion compared to others.
This is not proven in listening tests. It is, as far as I can see, just something people say uncritically. Our member @pkane created distortion simulation software that you can try if you like. In so much hardware that emphasizes second/third harmonic the level is so low relative to the fundamental that it's hard to hear as anything. Actually applying second harmonic distortion to an entire piece works only part of the time, as well. It doesn't work with all music.
 
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This is not proven in listening tests. It is, as far as I can see, just something people say uncritically. Our member @pkane created distortion simulation software that you can try if you like. In so much hardware that emphasizes second/third harmonic the level is so low relative to the fundamental that it's hard to hear as anything. Actually applying second harmonic distortion to an entire piece works only part of the time, as well. It doesn't work with all music.
I mostly agree. Not everybody measures the same, or identical. As somebody else said, there are outliers and I would argue the listening tests do show this. For example, Sean Olive's cimparison of trained and untrained listeners often having diverging views and scores on subjective preference of speakers.

The 2HM comment is valid, but many a tube amp adds copious harmonics with whatever goes through them. If listening tests always showed a preference for cleaner solid state amps I'd edge my view. Again, I think there's a general trend in that direction, but doesn't fit everybody and may be somewhat dependent on music type so as you said, desn't work well with all music. What do you make of this? https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/6b...FjAMegQIARAB&usg=AOvVaw0DUtgx4jrcilGkQhhcJUlw
 

pozz

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I mostly agree. Not everybody measures the same, or identical. As somebody else said, there are outliers and I would argue the listening tests do show this. For example, Sean Olive's comparison of trained and untrained listeners often having diverging views and scores on subjective preference of speakers.

The 2HM comment is valid, but many a tube amp adds copious harmonics with whatever goes through them. If listening tests always showed a preference for cleaner solid state amps I'd edge my view. Again, I think there's a general trend in that direction, but doesn't fit everybody and may be somewhat dependent on music type so as you said, desn't work well with all music. What do you make of this? https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/6b...FjAMegQIARAB&usg=AOvVaw0DUtgx4jrcilGkQhhcJUlw
The conclusions are hard to accept since the listening test simultaneously went after multiple signal characteristics at the same time, and the main subjective evidence was listener descriptions. So not completely controlled, but still interesting.

The thing is, the equipment tested was microphone preamplifiers. They are the first thing in the chain after microphones in the recording stage, and they determine, particularly in envelope, how the signal is brought up to a usable level. This is very different from DACs, preamps (volume controls/input selectors), power amps and so on, whose action is from the outset more defined, less drastic.

I'm also not sure what you mean about Olive's tests. They showed differences in preference, sure, but a positive correlation in preference for speakers with flat anechoic response, smooth off-axis, downwards-sloped power response, and a close match between the room response and FR of early reflections. The main differences, when looking at histograms, were that trained listeners were more consistent in their choices and that untrained were not (in some cases the error bars were so large that the conclusion was that they were just guessing or picking randomly, being unable identify or rate consistently even when the same speaker was presented; i.e., no correlation with preference).
 
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Dear ViperScythe, In case we had the techniques and knowledge to make a measuring device that could tell us the sound of an audio set-up, we could better make an audio set-up with the same techniques and knowledge so it would be perfect shouldn't it ?
We know it doesn't work it this easy way. A measuring device can only measure where it is designed for (with limitations) and we might doubt whether it's measurement skills tells anything about our hearing perception.
I don't spent $1000 very easily and certainly not via a website that told me I have to buy one cable. Let's not call each other fools; I have a very dedicated audio dealer in the neighborhood who gives me the opportunity to try something at home for a week or so and the other way around I will give him something of me to try he doesn't know. I will pick in case it sounds OK.
About reviews; I value all (individual) reviews. As soon they are commercially supported, doubt is rising (We all want to earn money, isn't it ?)
From my point of view I've done the most major upgrades in my home stereo setup based on individual reviews of equipment on the internet. And to be honest didn't find anything new to explore on this site....:(
Cheer up, don't leave it all to the wonder measurement machines of amirm; trust some inspirational reviews on the internet, go for it, judge and trust your own ears and brain as the most important measurement system, there is no better :)
Sure, i agree with you that we must "TRUST" our ears the most, all the measurements in the world are useless if we can't subjectively enjoy the experience, sure sound reproduction is one thing, but UI/UX is important too, durability and etc.

But the problem is as i experience first hand, my ears are easily fooled, i'm grateful that i have a good friend that share the same mindset as i am, that is in audiophile world, head to head blinded abx test is everything, and i do this to every equipment i try and buy, and we are not ashamed to sit for hours in an audioshop doing instant head to head blinded in front of other people, some even approach us and those became a conversation starter.

So my point is, Measurement(that is done by amirm, wolfx700, and other) is a standardized test, it is repeatable and consistent, so i feel i can trust it as my reference point, especially reviews about a piece of hardware that i can't test, hardware that have to be imported and aren't available in brick and mortar shop.

While what you call a "Inspirational Reviews on the Internet" are a lot of bullshit spewed (Sorry for my languange, but that's how i fell) the way they explain things is that, the more expensive, the better.

"This $200 equipment is good, but it can't defeat $2000 equipment, not even close"

Well that's not the case at all if we see the measurement here. Price =/= Quality.

But my question is, do you think amirm is commercially supported? Because some guys in subjectivist forum thinks that because amirm doesn't sell that particular piece of hardware, he gives those particular hardware a bad review. (Someone linked it in amirm profile dashboard)

Afaik amirm doesn't have any audioshop, nor supported financially by any company, just patreon and donation.
 
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Hi Amir,

I just thought I would give you a heads up that you (and by extension your website) were being unfairly trashed in a thread at AVS. Since I decided a couple of yrs back to reduce my participation in forums, I could not bring myself to engage in the discussion. However, you should be informed. https://www.avsforum.com/forum/173-2-channel-audio/3083436-understanding-dac.html .
Regards,
This is the post i talked about, see for yourself, some people thinks amirm own an audioshop and were "financially" biased.
 
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Maybe your perspective is quite different than mine... what is it that cannot be measured but can be heard ?
Honestly, from my perspective this is a silly question as you have the lab report of your wine but have no clue of the taste.
I suggest you start tasting and/or listening.
To be more to the point; How do you want to measure the effect of non linear systems/effects on our hearing capabilities ? If anyone here could come with a well thought out suggestion howto I would be interested.
Refer to my earlier reply as I think we far overestimate our measuring capabilities.

Lesson 1 (and I think most of us forgot) with electronic design and the all used mathematics about Laplace and Fourier transformations: WE CONSIDER LINEAR SYSTEMS.................All electronic designs are based on these assumptions that it's a linear system.
Let's face the truth of nature; perfect linear systems don't exist so the mathematical assumptions/starting points are not valid but are just an estimation !!. This whole site is full with believers this estimation is the truth.

Wasn't TIM distortion discovered by Matti Otala by listening before we ever thought about it and realized it is there ?
Wasn't jitter distortion becoming an issue after listening to digital devices and became an issue ?
From my perspective non-linear distortion might be the next but how to measure the effect...................... ?

One way or the other; a next important measuring aspect of sound quality will be discovered and this is just a matter of time.
Till that time, but probably even thereafter, my own hearing system will be my guide for an audio-set-up;
My taste will be for a fine wine selection and I don't care for the lab report.

My personal conclusion is that human senses are (far) ahead of our scientific knowledge and that this is easy to understand as we realize what brought us here.
For many members on this site this (subjective) truth might be difficult to accept;
On the other way: Science still has a lot of big challenges; let's start with the 95% of the universe we do not have a clue..............
 
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