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If it's measurable, is it audible?


mayhem13

If you can measure it, is it audible?  

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Recent developments in threads bring forth an interesting topic for discussion. If you can measure a difference, would you conclude that it's possible to hear the difference? The key word is 'conclude' .....where every measurable difference must be accompanied by an audible change.

 

As an example, I have measured speaker response differences of 2db or less in the range of 800hz-3khz but can't detect it during listening. Would you conclude that I should have been able to?....or someone highly trained with the most resolving system can?

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So are you saying all or nothing? It sounds like the deck is stacked. It is pretty hard to stand against infinity.

AMR 777 DAC, Purist Ultimate USB, PC server 4gig SOTM USB, server 2012, Audiophil Optimizer,Joule Preamp LAP150 Platinum Vcaps Bybee, Spectron Monoblocks Bybee Vcaps, Eggleston Savoy speakers, 2 REL Stentor III subwoofers, Pranawire Cosmos speaker wire, Purist Dominus Praesto cabling, Purist Anniversary (Canorus)power cables and Elrod Statement Gold power cable, VPI Aries I SDS w/Grado The Statement LP, 11kVA power isolation, 16 sound panels and bass traps TAD,RPG,GIK and Realtraps

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I can easily measure things above 16 kHz. I can hear up to 17 kHz only if it is a mosquito nearing my ear canal.

 

Are you sure you didn't mean to ask whether all audible differences are measurable? (I've started my own poll asking this question.)

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My position is that IF you can record / measure a difference (ideally at the output of a device) then it is proof that there is something different so theoretically you can hear it.

 

That doesn't mean every difference measured will result in a difference at the output of a device.

 

For example - two fuses may have a measurable difference in resistance; that doesn't necessarily mean that it will affect the output of (for eg) an amplifier. For the amplifier to be affected the difference in the fuse would have to cause a difference in the output of the power supply.

 

Eloise

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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As an example, I have measured speaker response differences of 2db or less in the range of 800hz-3khz but can't detect it during listening. Would you conclude that I should have been able to?....or someone highly trained with the most resolving system can?

 

Wasn't it Julf or someone who put out some audio files where one file was 1db louder than the rest? I think that particular file was picked out easily by a lot of people, though perhaps, they did not recognize it as being "louder" - just sounding a little different or better.

 

You probably need to qualify that a bit more. Audible to at least one person? Audible to everyone with training?

 

Yes, No, and Maybe would have been better choices. :)

Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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So are you saying all or nothing? It sounds like the deck is stacked. It is pretty hard to stand against infinity

I agree. Here we have a well qualified .E.E. not even setting limits to how small the differences are, what the differences are, and where the differences are measured, like those Eloise pointed out about measurable differences in fuse resistance values. He may as well be asking if a power supply for an amplifier with nominal voltage rails of + and - 50V will sound different if one rail is +50.1V and the other is -49.9V.

As to the speaker differences, if one speaker had a 2dB difference in the 800hZ to 3kHz range compared with the other, the difference may not be audible to most people, as even a small shift in the listening position can cause small changes. On the other hand, if a well trained listener was asked with eyes closed to report on differences when the difference was corrected by some switching mechanism, then returned to the original error over several cycles of switching in and out, I would expect that a well trained listener would most likely report hearing differences provided that the balance of the rest of the system was exemplary.

 

......" If it measures different, it's audible" which simply isn't a true statement by any stretch of the imagination....

Judge for yourself the intent behind the starting of this thread.

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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Hi Anthony,

 

I voted "no" because there are measurements (THD for example) that show differences, but are far beyond my ability to hear.

 

Peter

“We are the Audiodrones. Lower your skepticism and surrender your wallets. We will add your cash and savings to our own. Your mindset will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.” - (Quote from Star Trek: The Audiophile Generation)

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Hi Anthony,

 

I voted "no" because there are measurements (THD for example) that show differences, but are far beyond my ability to hear.

 

Peter

 

Peter

I would be most surprised if you were unable to hear the difference between amplifiers of similar topology with .01% THD and .0005% THD with well designed, revealing speakers. More to the point, I would suggest that a typical valve amplifier with .01% THD would sound very different to a solid state amplifier with .0005% THD.

I would also suggest that you would also hear a difference between a valve amplifier with less than .01% THD and a Class D or other switched technology type amplifier with say .01% THD ,with just listening with eyes closed so that you couldn't see switching performed, provided that the levels were set to within say .1dB of each other. I would also suggest that you may not be able to decide which amplifier sounds more accurate, but that they will sound different.

Alex

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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Hi Anthony,

 

I voted "no" because there are measurements (THD for example) that show differences, but are far beyond my ability to hear.

 

Peter

 

And the point of the thread Peter, so thank you for the response.

 

I purposely left out a 'maybe' or 'possibly' because I was looking more for predisposition for acceptance of an unknown empirically.......and that's ok, nothing wrong with a yes response here or a general yes to 'anything is possible' position. If one were to reply yes, the understanding would be simply be if there's a change in electrical value, signal, intensity, whatever......someone, somewhere under ideal conditions should be able to hear it.

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I of course voted NO.

 

Same reason as Peter.

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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So are you saying all or nothing? It sounds like the deck is stacked. It is pretty hard to stand against infinity.

 

+1

 

I am missing a possibility to reply "not necessarily".

 

+1

"Relax, it's only hi-fi. There's never been a hi-fi emergency." - Roy Hall

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - William Bruce Cameron

 

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Pretty easy answer. All you have to do is do an audiology test and keep turning it down until the subject can no longer hear it. Then see what the loudness level reading is. Voila!

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> ISO Regen -> Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 DAC -> Spectral DMC-12 & DMA-150 -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

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Just because you can measure it does not mean you can hear it. It's well been established that most people cannot hear below the 10% THD threshold if the frequencies played are below 20Hz, for instance.

 

It's also pretty obvious nobody can hear ultrasonic DSP noise in DSD/SACDs at 40KHz.

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It's also pretty obvious nobody can hear ultrasonic DSP noise in DSD/SACDs at 40KHz.

 

But can they hear the effects of this wideband HF noise ? It may cause intermodulation effects with lesser well designed equipment.

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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Part of this is about the ByBee devices. People clearly say they can hear a difference with the things, and I believe them. Of course, this is a case where there is a measurable difference and people sY they can hear a difference too. What is not so clear is that it is suggested the difference measured is too small to be audible.

Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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Part of this is about the ByBee devices. People clearly say they can hear a difference with the things, and I believe them. Of course, this is a case where there is a measurable difference and people sY they can hear a difference too. What is not so clear is that it is suggested the difference measured is too small to be audible.

 

No, actually it is quite clear. The measured difference is not audible in level.

 

People say lots of things. Grasp at straws much?

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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No, actually it is quite clear. The measured difference is not audible in level.

 

Where have I read that dogmatic statement before ? (smile)

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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Where have I read that dogmatic statement before ? (smile)

 

Well I recall you complaining I took many paragraphs to say something simple and straightforward. Now you complain about a simple straightforward statement calling it dogmatic. One thinks you simply aren't going to agree with me on your private principle. No surprise to either of us I think. :)

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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Now you complain about a simple straightforward statement

 

It's not a simple straightforward statement, it is an assumption on your part.

When they finally find a way to measure the things that myself and many others are reporting in various threads, including USB cable threads, and those started by Alex C, as well as those about perceived differences between different versions of Audirvana, the differences are almost certainly likely to be well below presently accepted levels of audibility.

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

PROFILE UPDATED 13-11-2020

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No. Chances are you are simply wrong and whatever the difference is is audible. Perhaps it is amplified in the chain- I do not know and don't really care to guess.

 

People hear a difference.

 

There is a measurable physical difference.

 

Those two peices of evidence together make it much more likely people are hearing that actual difference than making it up.

 

I do not grasp at straws. Do you practice asinine insulting comments when you think you know something you don't?

 

 

 

 

No, actually it is quite clear. The measured difference is not audible in level.

 

People say lots of things. Grasp at straws much?

Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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Why is it that we always think that at this moment in time all knowledge is known. We can measure and detect EVERYTHING. We know of how everything interacts. HA!! At one time only birds could fly, (that was not that long ago by the standards of history) we could only dream of reaching the moon (the science said NO on that one also), oh wait, there is something smaller then an electron? quarks? What even smaller, gluons? But at one time very long ago, NOT, we could NOT MEASURE OR DETECT them AND many other things. So what will we be able to measure and detect tomorrow, next year, five years,...

 

Gentlemen, if you have not read the following links yet check them out with an open mind.

 

Mayham13, yes you "should" have with a 2db difference but then everyones ability is not the same. But I also say no as to "where every measurable difference must be accompanied by an audible change" You have to be more specific of the "difference", what is being measured, the playback system and does the listener have the ability to hear the difference if there is any to hear.

 

 

The World Beyond 20kHz Article By Earthworks Audio Founder David E. Blackmer

 

Playback Designs » Resolving for Resolution by Andreas Koch

Ambassador for Sound Galleries Monaco and Taiko Audio The Netherlands 

Sound Test USA

[email protected]

 

Sound Galleries SGM 2015 Music Server>ROON-all rates up-sampled to DSD512 by HQ Player>Sablon Reserva 2017 USB>T+A DAC 8 DSD>Merrill Audio Veritas Ncore NC1200 Mono Amps>B&W 802D>High Fidelity Cables Interconnect, Speaker & Power Cords for Amps & SGM & T+A>Power Conditioning High Fidelity MC-6 Hemisphere>T+A & Hemisphere supported by Stillpoints Ultra Mini - B&W 802D & Veritas supported by Stillpoints Ultra SS>All sitting on IKEA Aptitlig bamboo butcher blocks - Taiko Audio Setchi active grounding on SGM & T+A

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Why is it that we always think that at this moment in time all knowledge is known?

 

I nominate those infamous twins, Hubris and Arrogance.

"Relax, it's only hi-fi. There's never been a hi-fi emergency." - Roy Hall

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - William Bruce Cameron

 

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Why is it that we always think that at this moment in time all knowledge is known.

 

It is because epistomologists have not yet acknowledged that progress in physics is the result of people listening to USB cables and cable elevators in their sofas.

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