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Modern Reviewing Practices In Audio Rags Have Become Useless



 
 
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  #111  
Old October 1st 13, 12:01 AM posted to rec.audio.high-end
Audio_Empire[_2_]
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Posts: 235
Default Modern Reviewing Practices In Audio Rags Have Become Useless

On Monday, September 30, 2013 10:17:32 AM UTC-7, ScottW wrote:
> On Friday, September 27, 2013 4:01:48 PM UTC-7, Audio_Empire wrote:
>
>
>
> >

>
> > Be my guest. Just realize that the results reflect your taste and not > accuracy. believe me, that's fine, but then you're NOT reviewing equipment for a general

>
> > audience. The problem arises when people with your attitude start using your

>
> > personal tastes to tell others how something sounds. Like you say, for yourself, >the sky's the limit!

>
>
>
> That's why I like the concept of a buffer...with the click of a switch it's gone. And the price is tolerable for a little curiosity.
>
>
>
> I do agree that reviewers should commit to a higher standard. I've long suggested that it makes great sense for reviewers to include DBT results in their reviews for items that it would be relatively easy to do (amps, preamps cables, DACs come to mind. Speakers and sources (due to sync difficulties) would not be easy).
>
> With a PC controlled DBT switch box....it would be fairly easy to setup a DBT test system that could be self executed with reviewer never having access to the results until published. Only simple honesty required by the reviewer in setup.
>
> Few seem willing and even fewer publishers.
>
> The claim has been their readers aren't interested. I think it's more their advertisers "lack of interest".


It would be interesting. I wonder if such a computer program actually exists?

I agree with you that the magazines' advertisers would certainly not like DBTs. If, indeed,
DBTs don't work and always give a null result for everything, then the inclusion of a DBT
would tend to show that a $40,000 MSB DAC sounds exactly like <$50 Chinese DAC. That
wouldn't do, would it? If, on the other hand, the DBT did show varying degrees of difference
between components, makers of amps. preamps and digital appliances costing tens of thousands
of dollars might find that their products are bested by similar components costing an order
of magnitude less than their products. That wouldn't be too good either.
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  #112  
Old October 3rd 13, 12:52 PM posted to rec.audio.high-end
Gary Eickmeier
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Posts: 1,449
Default Modern Reviewing Practices In Audio Rags Have Become Useless

Audio_Empire wrote:

> I agree with you that the magazines' advertisers would certainly not
> like DBTs. If, indeed,
> DBTs don't work and always give a null result for everything, then
> the inclusion of a DBT
> would tend to show that a $40,000 MSB DAC sounds exactly like <$50
> Chinese DAC. That
> wouldn't do, would it? If, on the other hand, the DBT did show
> varying degrees of difference
> between components, makers of amps. preamps and digital appliances
> costing tens of thousands
> of dollars might find that their products are bested by similar
> components costing an order
> of magnitude less than their products. That wouldn't be too good
> either.


In a world in which the reviewers stopped the delusional nonsense and
learned how to do a valid listening test, people would be reading them
mainly for descriptions of new products coming out, the author's opinion on
what features are groundbreaking and worth buying. We all know that we
cannot rely on someone else's ears or taste, but if we just knew what was
going on in the land of the high end, we could go audition the stuff or
ourselves.

Like political ads, I have never believed a word of the flowery descriptions
that I read in those magazines, so why do they do it? Pandering to the
manufacturers to suck a few rich people into them. I just wish I had a
nickel for every veil that has been lifted since it all began.

Gary Eickmeier
  #113  
Old October 3rd 13, 11:46 PM posted to rec.audio.high-end
Audio_Empire
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 179
Default Modern Reviewing Practices In Audio Rags Have Become Useless

In article >,
ScottW > wrote:

> On Monday, September 30, 2013 4:01:53 PM UTC-7, Audio_Empire wrote:
> > On Monday, September 30, 2013 10:17:32 AM UTC-7, ScottW wrote:
> >

>
> > > I do agree that reviewers should commit to a higher standard. I've long
> > > suggested that it makes great sense for reviewers to include DBT results
> > > in their reviews for items that it would be relatively easy to do (amps,
> > > preamps cables, DACs come to mind. Speakers and sources (due to sync
> > > difficulties) would not be easy).

> >
> > > With a PC controlled DBT switch box....it would be fairly easy to setup a
> > > DBT test system that could be self executed with reviewer never having
> > > access to the results until published. Only simple honesty required by
> > > the reviewer in setup.

> >
> > > Few seem willing and even fewer publishers.

> >
> > > The claim has been their readers aren't interested. I think it's more
> > > their advertisers "lack of interest".

> >
> >
> >
> > It would be interesting. I wonder if such a computer program actually
> > exists?

>
> Not that I'm aware of. I bounced it off an audiophile test engineer where I
> used to work many years ago. He said if all you want is a zipped raw data
> file e-mailed, he could write that code in an hour. The DBT box with
> digital interface might take a few days to design...a few weeks to proto,
> another day to debug.
> >
> >
> >
> > I agree with you that the magazines' advertisers would certainly not like
> > DBTs. If, indeed,
> >
> > DBTs don't work and always give a null result for everything, then the
> > >inclusion of a DBT would tend to show that a $40,000 MSB DAC sounds

> > exactly >like <$50 Chinese DAC. That wouldn't do, would it? If, on the
> > other hand, the DBT did show varying degrees of difference
> > between components, makers of amps. preamps and digital appliances costing
> > >tens of thousands of dollars might find that their products are bested by

> > similar components costing an order
> >
> > of magnitude less than their products. That wouldn't be too good either.

>
> I'm not sure how that would happen. I'm assuming the reviewer would DBT
> against their personal references (whatever they are...megabuck and
> economy)...so the DBT would only show if the item under review was same or
> audibly different to the reference. Once that's established, which is
> preferred, I suppose could be done blind. I wouldn't be surprised if many
> reviewers can identify a difference in an A B test...but can't identify which
> one in ABX test. Makes it hard to establish a reliable preference.
> Reliable preference requires a significant enough difference to be
> established in memory. Subtle differences that can be detected in quick
> switch tests might not establish a reliable preference which than begs the
> question....do they matter?
>
> ScottW


"do they matter?" Well, that's a different can of worms altogether.
Once it can be established that audible differences between amps,
preamps, DACs, CD players, etc., do, actually, scientifically, exist,
the questions then become, do those differences actually matter, and
which sounds better (as opposed to just "different") and then who
arbitrates the concept of what constitutes "better"? Do we go for
"accurate" being better (which would be my criterion, but as we've seen
in other debates here, 'accurate' may have no meaning to many listeners,
since the kinds of music to which they almost exclusively listen,
doesn't really exist in real space. Not only is accuracy not possible in
these circumstances, it's also not important. The only thing that is
important, it seems, is that the equipment sounds good to the individual
listener. Also, most of the differences I've heard between components
(speakers and record playing equipment excepted) are extremely small,
and frankly, in the absence of a direct comparison, tend to fade into
obscurity as soon as the comparison is removed. IOW, these differences
are picayune at worst and only the most neurotic and
obsessive-compulsive of audiophiles would really care. No modern
equipment that I have come in contact with actually sounds bad. Even the
cheapest amps and DACs and CD players sound fine. All have wide
frequency response, vanishingly low audible distortion, and decent
dynamic range. So, I'd say that for the most part, the answer is no, for
the great majority of listeners, they don't really matter.

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  #114  
Old October 3rd 13, 11:46 PM posted to rec.audio.high-end
Audio_Empire
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 179
Default Modern Reviewing Practices In Audio Rags Have Become Useless

In article >,
"Gary Eickmeier" > wrote:

> Audio_Empire wrote:
>
> > I agree with you that the magazines' advertisers would certainly not
> > like DBTs. If, indeed,
> > DBTs don't work and always give a null result for everything, then
> > the inclusion of a DBT
> > would tend to show that a $40,000 MSB DAC sounds exactly like <$50
> > Chinese DAC. That
> > wouldn't do, would it? If, on the other hand, the DBT did show
> > varying degrees of difference
> > between components, makers of amps. preamps and digital appliances
> > costing tens of thousands
> > of dollars might find that their products are bested by similar
> > components costing an order
> > of magnitude less than their products. That wouldn't be too good
> > either.

>
> In a world in which the reviewers stopped the delusional nonsense and
> learned how to do a valid listening test, people would be reading them
> mainly for descriptions of new products coming out, the author's opinion on
> what features are groundbreaking and worth buying. We all know that we
> cannot rely on someone else's ears or taste, but if we just knew what was
> going on in the land of the high end, we could go audition the stuff or
> ourselves.


Basically, Gary, that's all these publications are good for NOW.
Listening impressions are all well and good, and might be entertaining
reading, but other than as a way to generate a short-list, based on such
parameters as price, feature set, and aesthetic appeal, somebody else's
impressions of a piece of gear can only serve to whet one's appetite,
not provide the meal.

> Like political ads, I have never believed a word of the flowery descriptions
> that I read in those magazines, so why do they do it? Pandering to the
> manufacturers to suck a few rich people into them. I just wish I had a
> nickel for every veil that has been lifted since it all began.


The audiophile who takes any reviewers word for sound and suitability of
any component and buys based on that word is one foolish audiophile.

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