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Everything Matters


mac_and_dac
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I was flipping through an old hifi magazine yesterday and noticed a review for an accessory which surely offers the most marginal of 'marginal gains'.

 

It was a review for speaker cable 'stands', which in essence appeared to be raised square coasters for isolating one's speaker cables from floor vibrations. The reviewer concluded that these devices did indeed improve the listening experience, giving greater mid-range clarity to his test music.

 

I think this is pushing to the limit the concept of 'everything matters'!

 

Can anyone come up with a hifi 'solution' that is even more marginal than this one ostensibly is?

Front End: Neet Airstream

Digital Processing: Chord Hugo M-Scaler

DAC: Chord Dave

Amplification: Cyrus Mono x300 Signatures

Speakers: Kudos Titan T88

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Cable Risers Snake Oil or they do Improve sq

 

My personal favorite:

 

Passive Multivocal Resonator

 

I was flipping through an old hifi magazine yesterday and noticed a review for an accessory which surely offers the most marginal of 'marginal gains'.

 

It was a review for speaker cable 'stands', which in essence appeared to be raised square coasters for isolating one's speaker cables from floor vibrations. The reviewer concluded that these devices did indeed improve the listening experience, giving greater mid-range clarity to his test music.

 

I think this is pushing to the limit the concept of 'everything matters'!

 

Can anyone come up with a hifi 'solution' that is even more marginal than this one ostensibly is?

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Any of the multitude of contraptions that don't even touch the audio equipment. Mpingo discs and the like.

 

No so fast. There are legitimate acoustic room treatments based on good science which in fact do change the sound in the room in a very positive way, measurably so, though they do not touch the audio equipment. There are, of course, many pretenders and much snake oil, such as Mpingo.

 

To my way of thinking, the room is part of the sound delivery system in a very significant way. It is actually a "component" with large effects on the resulting sound, though it is seldom given that much credit out of blissful ignorance. Some items to treat that are legitimate and acoustic science-based, though it is a complex and tricky thing to get into. If there is no science backing up the claims, walk the other way as rapidly as you can. Bye, bye, Mpingo, Shakti Hallographs, Synergistic, and many more etc., etc.

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No so fast. There are legitimate acoustic room treatments based on good science which in fact do change the sound in the room in a very positive way, measurably so, though they do not touch the audio equipment. There are, of course, many pretenders and much snake oil, such as Mpingo.

 

To my way of thinking, the room is part of the sound delivery system in a very significant way. It is actually a "component" with large effects on the resulting sound, though it is seldom given that much credit out of blissful ignorance. Some items to treat that are legitimate and acoustic science-based, though it is a complex and tricky thing to get into. If there is no science backing up the claims, walk the other way as rapidly as you can. Bye, bye, Mpingo, Shakti Hallographs, Synergistic, and many more etc., etc.

 

Oh, bass traps, diffusers, and other room treatments are absolutely useful. It's the quantum dots and other nonsense I take issue with. I think we're pretty much in agreement.

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That's actually a legit product. If you look at a lot of CD's the edges can be rough,and not always true. But $1500 seems like a lot of money. I know Cable Co sold one that did the same thing for a lot less.

I doubt either of them makes any actual difference to the sound. Certainly not if the CD is ripped, and who doesn't do that?

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Can anyone come up with a hifi 'solution' that is even more marginal than [cable stands] ostensibly is?

 

YouTube, e.g. :

 

But, then again, are audiophiles more marginalised ? E.g. someone like him :

 

«

an accurate picture

Sono pessimista con l'intelligenza,

 

ma ottimista per la volontà.

severe loudspeaker alignment »

 

 

 

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Every time you rip a CD you remove a bit of the music's spiritual well-being.

 

 

For $2500 I can tell you how to renew the musical spirit.

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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Oh boy! the cables are touching each other in that picture...

remove all the greatness recorded in that music...

 

so much money wasted for an error like that :-)

 

review_131018_marantz_25.jpg

If You Got Ears, You Gotta ListenCaptain Beefheart

 

MacMini, 4xi3 3.6GHz, SSD, 20Gb, macOS 12.0 > Audirvana Studio 1.6 >

Wyred DAC2 DSD Special Edition > Proceed AMP2 > Focal Cobalt 826 Signature Series >

Audirvana Remote > iPhone 11

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Just to under cut you, I would tell someone for $2499 ;)

 

 

Yours is just a toy. You need my spirit of the music restoring wizmo for $10,990.

 

P.S. I'm going to buy everyone in the thread (up to this point) a UpTone Regen soon as Alex commits to performing the blinded SBT he agreed to at Whats Best Forum (and then just up and disappeared immediately after).

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No No... That's only if their wasn't a LPS connected to the CD ROM Drive, the local SSD and the NAS at the other end :)

 

O.K. Smart arse, Off the top of your head, name at least ONE member who does this.

 

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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"I doubt either of them makes any actual difference to the sound."

 

I know Cable Co will lend you one to try. Maybe you can use one first hand, and tell us what you think?

 

"Certainly not if the CD is ripped, and who doesn't do that?"

 

People who listen to CD's.

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I was flipping through an old hifi magazine yesterday and noticed a review for an accessory which surely offers the most marginal of 'marginal gains'.

 

It was a review for speaker cable 'stands', which in essence appeared to be raised square coasters for isolating one's speaker cables from floor vibrations. The reviewer concluded that these devices did indeed improve the listening experience, giving greater mid-range clarity to his test music.

 

I think this is pushing to the limit the concept of 'everything matters'!

 

Can anyone come up with a hifi 'solution' that is even more marginal than this one ostensibly is?

 

Yeah. Funny looking "music stands" that look a collection of turned table legs on top of a pedestal and costs an arm and a leg. They're supposed to "break-up" standing waves in the listening room. All they do is break up your bank account. They were sent to me to review. There was no difference in the sound with them either in the room or in a closet, and it didn't matter where in the room they were placed. A total waste of good money, better spent buying music. Btw, I agree about the speaker cable stand-offs. That ridiculous notion was first proffered by Enid Lumley, probably the biggest "tweak" crackpot that ever came down the pike.

George

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...Certainly not if the CD is ripped, and who doesn't do that?

 

I don't rip any of my laser-read physical discs (SACDs, CDs, Blu-rays, etc.). Since laser-read physical formats don't suffer wear with play and don't get scratched if handled correctly and put back into the case after play I cannot see a reason to add them to my computer. Also, since I have to legally retain the discs, I just play the discs themselves.

 

I use my computer for high resolution PCM and DSD downloads of music that is not available in high-resolution formats such as SACD, or ones in which I don't want the entire album.

 

I went into more detail in this post.

 

Back to the subject matter, if a tweak is too expensive or makes no sense to me I don't try it. If a tweak promises to solve a sonic problem I have, is cheap enough and has a satisfaction money-back guarantee I might try it.

 

In the past five decades I have been able to get sound I like from LPs, cassettes, reel to reel tapes, SACDs, DVD-Audios and Blu-ray discs without the use of any tweaks, not counting cleaners and tape demagnetizers. Thus most of my tweaks were to get CDs to sound listenable, many of them helped a little but I was never able to enjoy music from CD or 16/44.1kHz PCM downloads until about two years ago. And no tweak was responsible, I believe it was because my hearing got worse. From a post from last year

 

"After I ran out of possible reasons, I finally did one of those hearing tests online using headphones and it seems my hearing is much worse. I took an online hearing test back in 2001 and I could easily hear the tones up to 20kHz, but I had to turn the volume up to max to hear the 21kHz tone. Now, I can't hear above 12kHz. I think the problem with CD for me was between 13kHz and 20kHz and since I can't hear those frequencies anymore and problem appears to be gone, but I could be wrong."

 

So, in short, since I am happy with the sound quality of all my current formats I'm not in the market for any tweaks.

 

Update: Better audiophile CDs are enjoyable now but audiophile SACDs, 24-bit PCM and DSD music files still sound the best. And I seem to enjoy music as much as I always have despite losing audio frequencies above 12kHz.

I have dementia. I save all my posts in a text file I call Forums.  I do a search in that file to find out what I said or did in the past.

 

I still love music.

 

Teresa

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I don't rip any of my laser-read physical discs (SACDs, CDs, Blu-rays, etc.). Since laser-read physical formats don't suffer wear with play and don't get scratched if handled correctly and put back into the case after play I cannot see a reason to add them to my computer.

Teresa

Fortunately, because CD annoyed you originally, you probably don't have too many CDs made before the Loudness Wars ?

In the last week or so I have found a couple of CDs that I wish I had backed up to computer. These aren't the only ones in my collection that were no longer playable due to the printing inks used at the time eating into the thin reflective layer.

The 2 most recent ones that I wasn't even able to fully back up by ripping, were "Elton John-Too Low for Zero" and "Fleetwood Mac-Tusk".

Both were manufactured in West Germany.

Kind Regards

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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Teresa

Fortunately, because CD annoyed you originally, you probably don't have too many CDs made before the Loudness Wars ?

In the last week or so I have found a couple of CDs that I wish I had backed up to computer. These aren't the only ones in my collection that were no longer playable due to the printing inks used at the time eating into the thin reflective layer.

The 2 most recent ones that I wasn't even able to fully back up by ripping, were "Elton John-Too Low for Zero" and "Fleetwood Mac-Tusk".

Both were manufactured in West Germany.

Kind Regards

Alex

 

Sorry to hear about that Alex.

 

I believe that the problematic mid-1980's pressed CDs that were subject to CD-rot were from the Nimbus CD pressing plant in the UK (they pressed for many UK labels) these are subject to bronzing, and the Polygram Germany CDs you mentioned which are subject to pinholes. I haven't heard of any problems with CDs pressed in the USA or Japan. Although SACDs pressed at the pressing plant in California (I can't remember the name) had a problem with spindle cracks, that plant shut down or quit pressing SACDs.

 

Most of the 62 CDs I have were purchased used and most of my CDs are from audiophile labels such as Telarc and Reference Recordings. As you know in any format I don't care for major label recordings and the loudness wars is only part of the reason, the unnatural sound is another. The few major label recordings I have are manufactured in the USA and most were pressed before the loudness wars, it is music I like that is not available in high resolution, I just have to accept them from what they are.

 

Here is a screen shot of my recordings by format.

Screen Shot 2016-09-03 at 4.29.17 AM.png

 

Here is a screen shot of my recordings by recording company. (Note only companies I have 7 or more of are shown)

Screen Shot 2016-09-03 at 4.35.01 AM.png

 

In short, I don't have any CDs from that problem time (mid-1980s) manufactured in Germany or the UK.

 

Update: I seem to remember reading that many CD-R's and CD-RW's are subject to CD-rot. And the life expectancy of pressed CDs is 50 - 100 years, and up 200 years for Gold CDs.

I have dementia. I save all my posts in a text file I call Forums.  I do a search in that file to find out what I said or did in the past.

 

I still love music.

 

Teresa

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I don't think the cable stands are for vibration control as much as they are to reduce capacitance between the cable and the floor.

The cable is buried in a thick insulation hose which, if made of PVC, will provide all the capacitance you'll ever need (unless you want to chop off 10dB out of the top end). :)

"Science draws the wave, poetry fills it with water" Teixeira de Pascoaes

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