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Serious Question: How can DAC's have a SOUND SIGNATURE if they measure as transparent? Are that many confused?

krabapple

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It is sufficient proof for me personally, to base engineering decisions on the test results.

"good enough", eh?

Not in the presence of a positive result giving evidence of 'effect'.

You seem under the impression that a reported positive result is unassailable. Science laughs at you.

It is however a common fallacy in pseudo science, confidence tricks and cargo cult science to assume that because most results are negative and that is what we expect positive results if fewer must be in error.
You do blather on so.

Please post the references.

Oh dear, you aren't familiar with the Japanese group who tested another Japenese group's results?


I believe nothing. And they are not news to me either.

I struggle to believe you.


Correct. FOr example, the lack of positive evidence from a test that by design makes the negative outcome highly likely and the positive outcome highly unlikely is utterly unconvincing as evidence of anything, except the degrees of human bigotry.

Your 'method' here is to assume what you are required to prove. A clown show.

Indeed. And Meta Analysis to see if the failure to get a positive output is actually with the test, not the stimula being tested.

Thor

A meta-analysis interrogates both reported positive and negative outcomes. The meta analytic outcome can indicate that the positive was false/insignificant, or that the negative was. Its results depend crucially on which results are 'admitted' to the analysis and which are excluded.
 

fpitas

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Sheesh, at this rate we'll have to ban him all over again.

Ban Him.jpg
 

IAtaman

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Right, looking for HF artifacts as diagnostics for issues happening at lower frequencies showing up in FFT? And FFT is clean all the way to MHz range, no more tests required?
 

SIY

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I think one thing that I notice is that people who say they can hear a difference between different good measuring DACs tend to describe the differences quite similarly. I don't think that would happen randomly.
It's not random. It is social reinforcement.
 

oleg87

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I think one thing that I notice is that people who say they can hear a difference between different good measuring DACs tend to describe the differences quite similarly. I don't think that would happen randomly.
Do you think they are buying DACs at random and reaching their conclusions independently?
 

antcollinet

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Do you think they are buying DACs at random and reaching their conclusions independently?
They are buying DACs based on expectations set by the mainstream audio media, reinforced by price in many cases.

Then describing the differences they hear the way all audiophiles describe "superb" equipment. Coincindentally, probably the same way Chat GPT will describe it if asked.

Hang on....tappety tappety....

Do we think Chat GPT describes the music from a "high end DAC" like this because it has heard it?


Describe the sound from a high end DAC



A high-end DAC (Digital-to-Analog Converter) is designed to accurately convert digital audio signals into analog audio signals with very high precision, resulting in a highly detailed and nuanced sound. The sound from a high-end DAC is characterized by several qualities, including:
  1. Clarity: A high-end DAC is capable of producing a very clear and transparent sound with minimal distortion or noise, allowing you to hear every detail of the music.
  2. Detail: The high precision of a high-end DAC allows it to capture even the subtlest nuances and details of the music, such as the decay of a note or the texture of an instrument.
  3. Depth: The sound from a high-end DAC has a sense of depth and dimensionality, making it feel like the music is being played in a three-dimensional space.
  4. Dynamics: A high-end DAC is able to accurately reproduce the dynamic range of the music, meaning that it can handle both quiet and loud passages with equal accuracy and precision.
  5. Warmth: While a high-end DAC is highly accurate, it is not cold or clinical in its sound. Instead, many high-end DACs are designed to add a touch of warmth or musicality to the sound, giving it a more natural and organic feel.
Overall, the sound from a high-end DAC is highly detailed, transparent, and nuanced, with a sense of depth and dimensionality that can make the music feel more immersive and engaging.
 
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Angsty

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They are buying DACs based on expectations set by the mainstream audio media, reinforced by price in many cases.

Then describing the differences they hear the way all audiophiles describe "superb" equipment. Coincindentally, probably the same way Chat GPT will describe it if asked.

Hang on....tappety tappety....

Do we think Chat GPT describes the music from a "high end DAC" like this because it has heard it?
I'd add that each DAC I've owned plays at a different "default" volume level, which does make them sound different at first. But, once the volume levels were equalized, they became indistinguishable.
 

krabapple

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I think one thing that I notice is that people who say they can hear a difference between different good measuring DACs tend to describe the differences quite similarly. I don't think that would happen randomly.

But that really needs defining what 'similar' means , and consideration of how limited the vocabulary is for describing audio changes. Not to mention the chance of contamiation from reading audiophile reviews.

That in mind, I wouldn't consider it as evidence for much at all.
 

Angsty

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But that really needs defining what 'similar' means , and consideration of how limited the vocabulary is for describing audio changes. Not to mention the chance of contamiation from reading audiophile reviews.
I'd agree - the descriptions are not random, but they also may not be independent. I believe audiophiles in particular, and people in general, are quite susceptible to bias by suggestion. It's one of the reasons why marketing works.
 

sejarzo

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"Warmth: While a high-end DAC is highly accurate, it is not cold or clinical in its sound. Instead, many high-end DACs are designed to add a touch of warmth or musicality to the sound, giving it a more natural and organic feel."

Uhhhh, say effing what?!?!?

"Warmth: While a high-end DAC may claim to be 'highly accurate' the reality is that it is not accurate. Instead, many high-end DACs deliberately add a touch of distortion to the sound, giving it a 'voicing' preferred by some users who don't value accuracy."

#fixedit
 

HarmonicTHD

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I'd just love to create three different scenarios.

1) Take 3 of exactly the same DAC and install them in 3 different boxes. Mark them as #1, #2 and #3. Find a bunch of subjectivists who say they can hear differences in DACs, and tell them that one Dac is slightly warm, another DAC is cold and clinical, and the third is neutral. Tell them they can take as long as they want and use whichever recording that they want, but to give their opinions of which DAC is which. Because you already lied to them when you told them that the 3 are different, you've set up a huge confirmation bias.
At the end of the "test", reveal the truth; that the same DAC was in each box. If they tell you that you lied to them and that invalidates the test, ask them, "So ... can your Golden Ears be fooled by confirmation bias or not?"

2) Similar to #1 above. Take the same situation, with the same DAC in 3 different boxes. Tell the Golden Ears that there is a difference between one of the DACs and the other two, and ask them whether they can identify the one that is "different". I'd warrant that you'd get the same results.

3) Simplest and most unbisased test. Take the same 3 Dacs as before and simply ask the Golden Ears whether there is any difference between the three or not.

I'd love to see the results.

Jim
Great test.

They probably say the manufacturing differences made the difference or some other cheap excuse ;-)
 

Angsty

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I'd just love to create three different scenarios.

1) Take 3 of exactly the same DAC and install them in 3 different boxes. Mark them as #1, #2 and #3. Find a bunch of subjectivists who say they can hear differences in DACs, and tell them that one Dac is slightly warm, another DAC is cold and clinical, and the third is neutral. Tell them they can take as long as they want and use whichever recording that they want, but to give their opinions of which DAC is which. Because you already lied to them when you told them that the 3 are different, you've set up a huge confirmation bias.
At the end of the "test", reveal the truth; that the same DAC was in each box. If they tell you that you lied to them and that invalidates the test, ask them, "So ... can your Golden Ears be fooled by confirmation bias or not?"

2) Similar to #1 above. Take the same situation, with the same DAC in 3 different boxes. Tell the Golden Ears that there is a difference between one of the DACs and the other two, and ask them whether they can identify the one that is "different". I'd warrant that you'd get the same results.

3) Simplest and most unbisased test. Take the same 3 Dacs as before and simply ask the Golden Ears whether there is any difference between the three or not.

I'd love to see the results.

Jim
#4 - Take the same 3 DACs as before and reduce the output by 3 db and 6 db in two of them; no other circuit change. Ask the Golden Ears which one is best.
 

Blumlein 88

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I'd just love to create three different scenarios.

1) Take 3 of exactly the same DAC and install them in 3 different boxes. Mark them as #1, #2 and #3. Find a bunch of subjectivists who say they can hear differences in DACs, and tell them that one Dac is slightly warm, another DAC is cold and clinical, and the third is neutral. Tell them they can take as long as they want and use whichever recording that they want, but to give their opinions of which DAC is which. Because you already lied to them when you told them that the 3 are different, you've set up a huge confirmation bias.
At the end of the "test", reveal the truth; that the same DAC was in each box. If they tell you that you lied to them and that invalidates the test, ask them, "So ... can your Golden Ears be fooled by confirmation bias or not?"

2) Similar to #1 above. Take the same situation, with the same DAC in 3 different boxes. Tell the Golden Ears that there is a difference between one of the DACs and the other two, and ask them whether they can identify the one that is "different". I'd warrant that you'd get the same results.

3) Simplest and most unbisased test. Take the same 3 Dacs as before and simply ask the Golden Ears whether there is any difference between the three or not.

I'd love to see the results.

Jim
J_J did something like that I think when he was a college student. Setup a solid state amp, and I think a McIntosh tube amp. The tube amp was broken however. The filaments lit up the tubes and while J_J "switched" between amps, in fact the switch was connected to nothing and it was the SS amp all the time. Most people described a sound difference. I seem to recall he had a professor take the test and he realized what was going on, and found him out.
 

Blumlein 88

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#4 - Take the same 3 DACs as before and reduce the output by 3 db and 6 db in two of them; no other circuit change. Ask the Golden Ears which one is best.
One db will do the trick, 3 or 6 is too obvious. I think mansr posted some digital files on another forum. They were from different DACs (probably all transparent or very close), but one was same DAC with a 1 db level increase. Most people picked it as sounding better than the other DACs. No one said it was louder.
 

Spkrdctr

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I think one thing that I notice is that people who say they can hear a difference between different good measuring DACs tend to describe the differences quite similarly. I don't think that would happen randomly.
Yup, like flat, icy, sterile and cold? That explains a lot.
 

jsz

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Great test.

They probably say the manufacturing differences made the difference or some other cheap excuse ;-)

Tolerances between hardware/EE design is quite real, but that's another can of worms. (I get your point of subjective bias).

I work in a different industry outside of audio that has tested these kind of things.
 

GXAlan

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249 pages into this thread, I finally acquired the Sony TA-ZH1ES to measure which has a pretty common sound signature description of *not* being neutral.

Transparent via null comparison to a digital music source using PK Metric, but enough distortion to measure similarly to a Western Electric 300B tube product too...

 
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