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MQA is Vaporware

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49 minutes ago, Shadders said:

Hi,

I find it very funny that given the amount of noise on the output of a class-D amplifier, which is an approximation of analogue signal, that they get fantastic reviews, yet the bona fide audio reviewer somehow, cannot hear it, or the impact of it.

 

Yet, they will review a cable having an affect on the sound, when electrically, the changes caused by the cable are of the order of 0.02dB worst case at high frequencies.

 

When you challenge people who can hear changes with cables, you get the usual, your system is not resolving enough, you did it wrong, you are purposefully not hearing the change, or you system is not costly, or the system has been set up wrong, the cable is not expensive enough etc., etc., etc.

 

Maybe the audio magazine reviewers have some sort of God complex. Maybe this is why they have lauded MQA, as they believe themselves to be "better" than everyone else, and they are there to tell the plebeians what they should hear and the best equipment to hear it on. Going back to the beginning - they laud class-D amplifiers with all that noise and approximation, which they cannot hear.

 

We as consumers should not listen to the views and reviews of the self proclaimed bona fide reviewers, as they clearly are not the golden ears that they proclaim to be. If they cannot hear the rubbish output from a class-D amplifier, they certainly cannot hear the high frequency, high resolution information - and given MQA poor audio engineering, they certainly cannot hear that it is the "new world order". Far from it.

 

Regards,

Shadders.

 

[p.s. I do feel a lot better now, i got that off my chest].

 

Are you under the impression that hearing differences in cables is limited to audio magazine reviewers?

 

 

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1 hour ago, Shadders said:

Hi,

I find it very funny that given the amount of noise on the output of a class-D amplifier, which is an approximation of analogue signal, that they get fantastic reviews, yet the bona fide audio reviewer somehow, cannot hear it, or the impact of it.

 

Yet, they will review a cable having an affect on the sound, when electrically, the changes caused by the cable are of the order of 0.02dB worst case at high frequencies.

 

When you challenge people who can hear changes with cables, you get the usual, your system is not resolving enough, you did it wrong, you are purposefully not hearing the change, or you system is not costly, or the system has been set up wrong, the cable is not expensive enough etc., etc., etc.

 

Maybe the audio magazine reviewers have some sort of God complex. Maybe this is why they have lauded MQA, as they believe themselves to be "better" than everyone else, and they are there to tell the plebeians what they should hear and the best equipment to hear it on. Going back to the beginning - they laud class-D amplifiers with all that noise and approximation, which they cannot hear.

 

We as consumers should not listen to the views and reviews of the self proclaimed bona fide reviewers, as they clearly are not the golden ears that they proclaim to be. If they cannot hear the rubbish output from a class-D amplifier, they certainly cannot hear the high frequency, high resolution information - and given MQA poor audio engineering, they certainly cannot hear that it is the "new world order". Far from it.

 

Regards,

Shadders.

 

[p.s. I do feel a lot better now, i got that off my chest].

 

Class D noise?  I own Class D amps and I don't hear any noise.  What are you talking about? 

 

Actually, you're quite right.  :) 

 

I've posted several variations about this very real Class D noise elsewhere in this forum.  I wouldn't dare speak for reviewers as I doubt many can even spell line conditioners, much less superior line conditioners.   Here's a comment I just posted the other day.

 

"As for the Jeff Rowland or any Class D integrated amp for that matter, I'd suggest steering clear of any Class D integrated amps or for that matter any Class D stereo amps.  

 

Don't get me wrong as I love some Class D amps but even then only the mono-block versions.  The reason being that Class D, though not digital, will induce a bi-directional digital-like noise (just like all digital gear) due presumably to their high-speed switching modules.  Hence, Class D stereo amps (1 board per channel sharing the same chassis and same IEC inlet) will share each channel's bi-directional digital-like noise with the other channel at the IEC inlet. 

 

With regard to Class D integrated amps, it gets much worse since the 2-channels are already sharing their bi-directional digital-like noise with each other inducing distortions into the other's channel, since the pre-amp section must borrow AC power from 1 of the 2 channels, the pre-amp section is now getting a double dose of this digital-like noise.  Moreover, that double-dose digital-like noise is then being amplified via the pre-amp's gain stage. 

 

There's only one way I'm aware of to get around any of this digital-like bi-directional noise with Class D amps and that's mono-blocks only with superior dedicated bi-directional filtering line conditioners.  That's the only way to get the very most out of Class D and if that can be done, in some cases the results are quite musical.

 

As for the OP, if Class D is on their list of contenders and they should, then Class D mono-blocks plus superior passive and bi-directional filtering line conditioners is the only work around.  And if the Class D mono-blocks amps are high-powered, then a passive volume attenuator at the source is all that's necessary to produce a potentially very musical and still quite dynamic playback presentation."

 

IMO, Class D manufacturers are shooting themselves in the foot designing integrated and stereo Class D amps unless they are providing separate AC inlets for each channel and the pre-amp section.  Which few if any do.

 


The more I dabble with extreme forms of electrical mgmt. and extreme forms of vibration mgmt., the more I’m convinced it’s all just variations of managing mechanical energy. Or was it all just variations of managing electrical energy? No, it’s all just variations of mechanical energy.

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1 hour ago, John Dyson said:

I was wrong -- I was told something and believed it (after thinking that I heard something different -- I fooled myself there, and do it all of the time, must be very careful.)   I ran a complete check of the file, and both versions were 150% identical.

Mark one up for my own lack of being careful.

 

John

 

I'm confused. Alex appears to be saying that you heard differences between two identical files.


“All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone listening to music.”

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1 hour ago, kumakuma said:

 

I'm confused. Alex appears to be saying that you heard differences between two identical files.

Don't be confused -- that is correct.  It was the mindgame problem that I have written about before.  Even though I can hear real differences, there is something that makes me hear a difference when there isn't one.  Probably because the way that I focus on individual aspects of the sound -- and when it isn't ignored, then I hear the difference.

This is one of the reasons why a statistical way of comparing is much better (but much more tedious.)  I only did a casual comparison, and because of perception issues -- I DID HEAR A DIFFERENCE THAT WASN"T THERE.

 

John

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25 minutes ago, Dr Tone said:

If you continually promote MQA and ignore facts this is what you get:

 

https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2019/04/01/lee-scoggins-international-editor/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

Hi,

 

"Scoggins and his wife, as well as their dogs, will relocate to London by the end of April. When asked in which part of London he wanted to settle, Lee said “does Van Morrison live in London? Anywhere on the block where he lives would be fine.”"

 

My assessment is that she is the brains of the marriage.

Vote "UPVOTE" if you agree.

Vote "D" of you disagree.

 

Regards,

Shadders.

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"Scoggins will assume the new position as International Editor effective immediately, and will promptly begin his relocation to PTA International Offices in London, England, which are coincidentally — and conveniently for Scoggins — located between MQA Ltd’s London headquarters and Duke’s Hotel and its iconic martini bar."

 

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37 minutes ago, Dr Tone said:

If you continually promote MQA and ignore facts this is what you get:

 

https://parttimeaudiophile.com/2019/04/01/lee-scoggins-international-editor/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

April 1.

If Lee could still post here he'd have every right to make fun of several of you. 


Main listening (small home office):

Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>CAPS IV Pipeline Server + Sonore 12V PS >SOtM Lan Isolator>Bricasti M5 Network Player >Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.
 

Secondary Listening: CAPS Pipeline>IFi iOne DAC>Schiit Freya>Kii Three . Also an SBT and a RB Pi 3B+ running piCorePlayer as an SBT emulator. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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27 minutes ago, MikeyFresh said:

 

That's an April Fool's joke if I ever saw one.

Of course it is. Why would a <cough, splutter> high flying Artificial Intelligence professional, modelling businesses, leave their job for part time audio.......

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2 hours ago, fung0 said:

 

Pardon me as I try to catch up with almost 200 posts... This I agree with very much.

 

Political parties are a parallel that had not occurred to me in this context. Parties are seemingly inevitable in a democracy, yet they are an overtly anti-democratic force. They act to polarize opinions around just a few narrow (and often internally inconsistent) points of view. Ultimately, they limit voter options. Worse, after a while they tend to align on certain broad ideas, which can then never be questioned at all.

 

Once the process has run to an extreme, the result looks outrageous to the outside observer. (As beautifully satirized in the Pete Townshend song The Man in a Purple Dress.) Audiophile journalists may look like 'shills,' but that word doesn't properly describe the mechanism that's at work. These are men (very few women, oddly enough!), who have donned the purple dress, and long ago forgotten they're wearing it. They are literally incapable of questioning the tenets of their faith.

 

It's not a conspiracy; it's a law of nature, like Evolution or Gravity. Birds of a feather clearly do tend to flock together. Call it alignment of interests, or status quo - our human herd instinct runs very deep, and it manifests itself in many ways. Philosopher Daniel Dennett does a great job of analyzing this phenomenon in his indispensable book Breaking the Spell.

 

You had me all the way.  That is, until you stated that evolution and gravity are laws of nature when indeed they still remain unproven theories.  Also, contrary to popular belief, the US is still a republic and not a democracy.  But i digress.  :)

 

It's still a cospiracy that was initiated by one or more perverted minds to acheive a goal at the expense of others or even an entire industry.  And it's still no excuse that for subsequent generations of reviewers who may consider it as simply a way of life, a lifestyle, or just a means of conducting business.  Whether or not these subsequent reviewers can grasp the understanding or not, they too become part of the problem as their minds become corrupted even if their only excuse is, "I'm just doing my job."  Call it brainwashing, call it moral bankrupcty, ... well there's any number of labels we can associate with it but it is the result of corrupted minds.

 

IOW, it's still a conspiracy and its goals to one extent or another are still being pursued and achieved.  Even if many of those who partake know not what they do.  If for no other reason that the damages incurred are still very real.


The more I dabble with extreme forms of electrical mgmt. and extreme forms of vibration mgmt., the more I’m convinced it’s all just variations of managing mechanical energy. Or was it all just variations of managing electrical energy? No, it’s all just variations of mechanical energy.

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8 hours ago, John Dyson said:

Training is SOOO important.  Just as an example -- 3yrs ago, I could barely detect many kinds of distortion, barely detect the sound of compressiion (the AGC style) & expansion, and probably needed much more than 1dB frequency response variation to detect a difference in frequency balance.  I wasn't deaf, but close to it :-).

Because of raw motivation, I had to learn to listen -- even 1yr ago, I was too insensitive to cr*p in the audio.  Does this ability take away some joy in listening?  YES.

IMO, it is best to be blissfully ignorant, and enjoy the music.  Being very picky and knowing the 'bad sound' does'nt create happiness.  Think about the garden of Eden...

My guess it that even though training is important to actually detect defects, there is an element of natural talent (I used to have REALLY perfect pitch, could name notes from just the sound, but I was never into playing instruments or singing really.  The ability to detect pitch was a natural gift.)  I lost that after high school -- apparently I had the 'equipment', but fell into disuse

Some people MIGHT not have the abliity, but maybe it IS all training.  All I know is that training made a huge difference for me.

John

 

Excellent post, John.  And the fact that you considered yourself having perfect pitch at one period of your life and then lost it would seem to substantial your suspicion that it may indeed be the result of training one's self to discern / interpret what they hear.

 

And you bring up another excellent point about the frustrations associated with developing listening skills.  But remember that it's this frustration that hopefully leads some to move mountains.
 

It's frustrating to become aware of a deficiency (whatever the industry) and chose to do nothing about it or believe there is nothing to do about it.  But at the same time, there are those who channel that frustration toward finding cuases and answers and solutions to many of these frustrations and if pursued and accomplished will lead to far greater levels of musical enjoyment.

 

But one remaining problem is that with so few focused on actually improving their listening skills or thinking because they passed a hearing test 2 years ago, there is no problem and then mock the few who claim there is a problem and sometimes even a potential solution.  It is this lack of training and this naive mindset that keeps high-end audio far closer to its infancy from a performance perspective than anything else I can think of.  At the very least it keeps the forums at the lowest common demoninator.  I suspect that's why the same controversies keep rearing their ugly heads in new threads, to be beaten to death all over again, without a single controvery ever being put to rest.  

 

The subject of MQA and does its performance come anywhere near its early performance claims is perhaps as good as any example.  Technically it seems to have been proven inferior to perhaps all formats but MP3.  But its controverial sonic performance claims will never ever be conclusively decided.  At least not until high-end audio participants as a whole start taking their listening skills far more seriously.  In this audio-only industry.  Go figure.


The more I dabble with extreme forms of electrical mgmt. and extreme forms of vibration mgmt., the more I’m convinced it’s all just variations of managing mechanical energy. Or was it all just variations of managing electrical energy? No, it’s all just variations of mechanical energy.

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53 minutes ago, John Dyson said:

Don't be confused -- that is correct.  It was the mindgame problem that I have written about before.  Even though I can hear real differences, there is something that makes me hear a difference when there isn't one.  Probably because the way that I focus on individual aspects of the sound -- and when it isn't ignored, then I hear the difference.

This is one of the reasons why a statistical way of comparing is much better (but much more tedious.)  I only did a casual comparison, and because of perception issues -- I DID HEAR A DIFFERENCE THAT WASN"T THERE.

 

John

 

Thanks.

 

This is what I thought. It appeared from Alex's post that you had joined his never ending campaign to overturn the laws of physics.


“All of humanity's problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone listening to music.”

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5 minutes ago, kumakuma said:

This is what I thought. It appeared from Alex's post that you had joined his never ending campaign to overturn the laws of physics.

Alex likes to spin things that way.

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58 minutes ago, John Dyson said:

........ I DID HEAR A DIFFERENCE THAT WASN"T THERE.

 

John

 

But how can you be certain this time the difference wasn't there?  What about the times there was a difference and you didn't hear it?

 

Just askin'   :)


The more I dabble with extreme forms of electrical mgmt. and extreme forms of vibration mgmt., the more I’m convinced it’s all just variations of managing mechanical energy. Or was it all just variations of managing electrical energy? No, it’s all just variations of mechanical energy.

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2 hours ago, shtf said:

 

But how can you be certain this time the difference wasn't there?  What about the times there was a difference and you didn't hear it?

 

Just askin'   :)

I tend to focus on individual aspects of the sound.  Since I have been working on the DA decoder, I have to listen for each kind of distortion or 'problem' every time that I listen.  I cannot hear all of the problems at once -- often I will play a bad section of a recording at least 3 - 5 times listening to various aspects.  For example -- on a percussion test, there are some bongos.  I have to make sure that the sound of the slap is correct (including tone and impulse) along with the ambiance after the slap.  There are a few time periods of ambiance -- immediate and longer term.  The decay must also be correct.

I do not have the luxury of listening for enjoyment, but listen for analysis.  Sometimes I do make mistakes, for example I find that evening my results are almost random.  Also when doing serious evaluations, I check several times -- sometimes over a few days.

As I implied before -- DO NOT RUIN YOUR HOBBY.  Don't worry about every last bit of frequency response error, distortion from DolbyA (which will cause unpleasant loss of detail),  or damage from any other kind of processing.  A compressor can REALLY screw up the sound, not just the dynamic range, but also creates dynamic distortions that are simply ugly.

I NEVER implied my hearing is perfect, and in fact -- I know that it is very imperfect, very variable, and very dependent on my mood.  In the case of the test that I did an 'amazing' thing finding something that isn't there -- par for the course. :-).

 

PS:  my listening has eventually been succesfull -- take a listen to the decoded versions of three songs over in the test recordings discussion.  (I limited the examples to be short enough not to be a bad citizen -- wish that they could be longer.)  If you listen to the original versions of So Long (for example) both on vinyl and the CD versions that I have heard -- there is a serious loss of HF transients and the vocal 's' sibilance is weak on the originals.  The DHNRDS decoded versions are much cleaner (but also show more defects in the recordings.)  There are heroic efforts in the DHNRDS to avoid IMD -- the big bugaboo in things like DolbyA.

 

 

 

John

 

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5 minutes ago, John Dyson said:

I tend to focus on individual aspects of the sound.  Since I have been working on the DA decoder, I have to listen for each kind of distortion or 'problem' every time that I listen.  I cannot hear all of the problems at once -- often I will play a bad section of a recording at least 3 - 5 times listening to various aspects.  For example -- on a percussion test, there are some bongos.  I have to make sure that the sound of the slap is correct (including tone and impulse) along with the ambiance after the slap.  There are a few time periods of ambiance -- immediate and longer term.  The decay must also be correct.

I do not have the luxury of listening for enjoyment, but listen for analysis.  Sometimes I do make mistakes, for example I find that evening my results are almost random.  Also when doing serious evaluations, I check several times -- sometimes over a few days.

As I implied before -- DO NOT RUIN YOUR HOBBY.  Don't worry about every last bit of frequency response error, distortion from DolbyA (which will cause unpleasant loss of detail),  or damage from any other kind of processing.  A compressor can REALLY screw up the sound, not just the dynamic range, but also creates dynamic distortions that are simply ugly.

I NEVER implied my hearing is perfect, and in fact -- I know that it is very imperfect, very variable, and very dependent on my mood.  In the case of the test that I did an 'amazing' thing finding something that isn't there -- par for the course. :-).

 

John

 

 

Excellent points.  :)


The more I dabble with extreme forms of electrical mgmt. and extreme forms of vibration mgmt., the more I’m convinced it’s all just variations of managing mechanical energy. Or was it all just variations of managing electrical energy? No, it’s all just variations of mechanical energy.

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7 minutes ago, sandyk said:

 

J


One thing I'd like to have some day -- is a 96k master of it.  With the master, and the apparent clipping of the high end on her voice, I am wondering if the brickwall needed for the 44.1k sample rate might be exciting some of the evil Gibbs effect.  This effect might make the hardness of the vocal even worse like what we might be hearing.  This harshness in Carly's vocal is potentially one reason for using a softer rolloff than the typical brickwall when doing downconversion (these is all conjecture.)

 

I might check HDtracks and see if they have a Carly Simon recording...  The only risk (for me) is if it isn't DolbyA encoded...  I only want to purchase leaked material because of limited funds.


Oh well -- yes,  your ESR version does sound better to me.


Sorry again for taking so long to respond.  In the midst of mental decompression right now.

 

John

 

On Friday, March 22, 2019, 7:50:09 PM EDT, John Dyson

 

I removed a large section of a conversation that was intended to be personal.  But it does show how hearing can be fooled, doesn't it?  Please listen to the demos on the 'test recordings' subforum -- AFTER A LOT OF INTENSIVE WORK, even after getting all of the easy to measure details correct -- things like attack/decay are incredibly difficult to make correct.

 

 

I know about depression -- it is a really terrible problem.  It is silly to say please feel better -- because depression is something that is often impossible to control.  No matter what, my intention is that I hope you do feel better.

 

 Anyway -- when I did the comparison check, on the non-B and the B versions, of Carly's recordings -- earlier today,  I did a bit for bit comparison of the entire file.  They were identical.   I was fooled!!  No biggie, I never claim to be perfect!!!

 

It is SOO easy for hearing to be confused.

 

John

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