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The problem with subjective impressions

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15 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

That's what it seems to me, but I want to ask so I can fully understand before I conclude anything. 

 

I agree with STC ( @Samuel T Cogley ) that it is pretty much rampant consumerism that is killing everything in the world, planet included, if that is the basis of his comments. It's often a fine line between cynicism and harsh, but unpopular, reality.

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32 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

You may have more "systems" than me, based on your previous quote about how often and where you listen. 

 

I'm really not sure what you're getting at with this consumer / consumerism discussion. I'd love to be educated a bit about what you're getting at. 

 

I don't know if you count DAPs as "systems", but I think that's pedantic minutia.

 

I was simply pointing out that there is a belief or at least a desire with some to elevate audiophilia to something more virtuous than consumerism.  And I think that desire/belief is at the heart of some of the animus around the subjective/objective schism.

 

As you have rather famously said in the past, "no one's changing anyone's minds here" and I agree with that to some extent.  But I see what the forum calls "subjectivism" through the lens of that belief that audiophilia is more virtuous than consumerism.

 

Put another way, I have the same emotional attachment to my toaster than I have to my best DAC;  i.e., none.  But that lack of emotional attachment to gear doesn't make me enjoy the music any less than anyone else.

 

I hope that puts it in perspective for you.

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I've wasted too much money in this hobby, partly thanks to subjective magazine reviews, hype and shilling.

And I'm not a flavour-of-the-month kind of guy who swaps gear because he has an itch, nor have an interest for cables.

I genuinely try to identify the problems and the causes, and to upgrade.

I was happy with my homeland system but a move abroad forced me to sell my speakers and rip my CDs. I am a wanderer now, 3 different homes in 5 years. I've since bought three pairs of used speakers, two used DACs and two new Pi DACs. I've had to downsize the speakers but have been struggling to live with that.

 

Now the time as come to stop buying stuff...


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

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4 minutes ago, semente said:

I've wasted too much money in this hobby, partly thanks to subjective magazine reviews, hype and shilling.

And I'm not a flavour-of-the-month kind of guy who swaps gear because he has an itch, nor have an interest for cables.

I genuinely try to identify the problems and the causes, and to upgrade.

I was happy with my homeland system but a move abroad forced me to sell my speakers and rip my CDs. I am a wanderer now, 3 different homes in 5 years. I've since bought three pairs of used speakers, two used DACs and two new Pi DACs. I've had to downsize the speakers but have been struggling to live with that.

 

Now the time as come to stop buying stuff...

I hate to sound like a pusher of products and more buying, but a headphone based system could be perfect for your lifestyle. 


Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing Polestar | Quick Community Reviews and Ratings

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1 minute ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I hate to sound like a pusher of products and more buying, but a headphone based system could be perfect for your lifestyle. 

 

Not at all, thanks for the suggestion.

I have actually bought a pair of NADs before Christmas, but I never enjoyed listening with headphones and these aren't going to change that.

May end up buying a pair of all-in-ones like the D&Ds or something similar.


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

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3 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I hate to sound like a pusher of products and more buying, but a headphone based system could be perfect for your lifestyle. 

 

I'm primary a headphone/IEM user.  Gives me much more flexibility to set up the living room in my 900 square foot house in L.A.

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6 hours ago, mansr said:

When someone asks for advice, how are we to know which kinds of advice are allowed before Alex or one of his goons shows up to tell us?

 

It's only needed when it's wanted (see above).  Because it is posted on the public internet, you will have to divine not only the internal mental condition of the OP but of everyone who might read the thread.

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I was just thinking about this a bit more. Perhaps the reason so many of us like to upgrade or make changes is because of the power of music. We want something more and are willing to try things, sometimes non-sensical things, to get there. And, the journey can be fun. 

 

I know it sounds a bit like chasing the dragon, but this is completely voluntary and enjoyable for so may of us. 


Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing Polestar | Quick Community Reviews and Ratings

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16 hours ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Interesting rant and one that I don’t necessarily disagree with but obviously don’t agree with all points. 
 

When I write I am always cognizant of which words I use. If I say something is the best, it must be the best or I’ve just mislead people. I frequently use the terms good and great to describe two different levels of quality. There are gradations within these as well unfortunately. 
 

I think subjective writers must understand they can’t please everyone with their style and choice of words. I write to please the mythical reader that is myself. In other words, would I like the review and get something out of it if I was in the reader’s shoes. For the most part this goes a long way as opposed to writing for other people or trying to please others by writing what I think they want to read. 
 

 

 

Thank you for responding on the topic of this thread. I don’t know how reviews should be written, only how I like them. I agree that not everyone can be pleased. To me the problem is not the choice of words for describing SQ, the problem is to interpret the scale of those sound performance and the value of the product. By quantify in numbers in the summery, like in the end of those two linked reviews I believe it is easier as a reader to know the reviewer’s verdict than if the same is only written in text. It is also easier to directly compare two gear that has been reviewed by the same auteur if the verdict of some of the parameters are quantified somehow. The points is of course always subjective, but with them we would at least know how the reviewer quantify different SQ aspects and don't need to interpret how someone use the words like better, good, great and so on. I think that the value aspect of audio gear is very important and something I would like all reviews to reflect about more.

 

DekoniBlue-UGH_SUM18_HR1-750x1024.jpg

 

https://www.stereolifemagazine.com/reviews/item/1333-klipsch-heresy-iii-70th-anniversary-edition

 

https://dekoniaudio.com/dekoni-blue-featured-in-the-hifi-ultimate-headphone-guide-2018/

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1 minute ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I was just thinking about this a bit more. Perhaps the reason so many of us like to upgrade or make changes is because of the power of music. We want something more and are willing to try things, sometimes non-sensical things, to get there. And, the journey can be fun. 

 

I know it sounds a bit like chasing the dragon, but this is completely voluntary and enjoyable for so may of us. 

 

I think that there's a bit of both: the quest for better sound and the crave for purchasing or replacing stuff. Shopping is addictive. Many people with depression become compulsive shoppers.


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

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8 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

I was just thinking about this a bit more. Perhaps the reason so many of us like to upgrade or make changes is because of the power of music. We want something more and are willing to try things, sometimes non-sensical things, to get there. And, the journey can be fun. 

 

I know it sounds a bit like chasing the dragon, but this is completely voluntary and enjoyable for so may of us. 

 

Well, I upgrade every 20 years so you got me with that quote.

 

 

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16 hours ago, Allan F said:

 

I don't know that there is an answer to this question. Part of the problem is that we all don't necessarily hear the same way and what I may experience as a subtle difference, you may experience as a major one. A possible answer is to simply describe the difference as audible, and limit the detailed description to the nature or characteristics of the difference as opposed to its magnitude. But that makes it more difficult for someone to decide, based on the description, if the difference is significant enough to justify the expenditure of changing the device.

 

Ultimately, I suppose one can only use these experiences as guides to whether a device is of sufficient interest to investigate further. :)

 

Thank you for responding on the topic of this thread. I only use the reviews as guides to whether a device is of sufficient interest to investigate further. The problem is that we have so many audio gear nowadays and I feel that many reviews are too vague for me to get a good grip of the actual SQ performance. I like a review to describe the sonic characteristics of the gear as well as the scale of some of the performance aspects.

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5 hours ago, Samuel T Cogley said:

 

As long as we're getting all philosophical, the universe doesn't have a particular need for humanity.  Or to paraphrase George Carlin:

 

"Save the planet? You mean save the people!  The earth will just shake us off like a bad case of fleas.  The earth is fine."

 

I always look at this hobby through the lens of consumerism.  Audiophilia can't be more virtuous than consumerism, because it is consumerism.

 

By "saving the planet" we do not only mean humans, as there are many other organisms on earth that is much less adoptable to environmental changes.

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3 minutes ago, Summit said:

 

By "saving the planet" we do not only mean humans, as there are many other organisms on earth that is much less adoptable to environmental changes.

 

Sure, but typically, "save the planet" for most people means "save the humans" was my point.

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11 minutes ago, Samuel T Cogley said:

 

Sure, but typically, "save the planet" for most people means "save the humans" was my point.

 

If we lose a lot of organisms and if many ecosystem would decline or collapse the humans and our society will be affected negatively as a result.

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39 minutes ago, Summit said:

 

Thank you for responding on the topic of this thread. I don’t know how reviews should be written, only how I like them. I agree that not everyone can be pleased. To me the problem is not the choice of words for describing SQ, the problem is to interpret the scale of those sound performance and the value of the product. By quantify in numbers in the summery, like in the end of those two linked reviews I believe it is easier as a reader to know the reviewer’s verdict than if the same is only written in text. It is also easier to directly compare two gear that has been reviewed by the same auteur if the verdict of some of the parameters are quantified somehow. The points is of course always subjective, but with them we would at least know how the reviewer quantify different SQ aspects and don't need to interpret how someone use the words like better, good, great and so on. I think that the value aspect of audio gear is very important and something I would like all reviews to reflect about more.

 

DekoniBlue-UGH_SUM18_HR1-750x1024.jpg

 

https://www.stereolifemagazine.com/reviews/item/1333-klipsch-heresy-iii-70th-anniversary-edition

 

https://dekoniaudio.com/dekoni-blue-featured-in-the-hifi-ultimate-headphone-guide-2018/

 

Thanks for the links and graphic. 

 

I'm glad you found some information that you like and that suits your needs. 

 

For the most part I dislike these score based assessments. They often lead consumers to a score race like a specs race. If one headphone gets a 7/10 for Resolution and another gets an 8/10, consumers with nothing else to go on will select the 8/10 thinking it's better. With so many variables involved there needs to be a plus/minus 3 for every score.

 

Anyway, thanks again for the graphic. 


Founder of Audiophile Style

Announcing Polestar | Quick Community Reviews and Ratings

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6 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

 

Thanks for the links and graphic. 

 

I'm glad you found some information that you like and that suits your needs. 

 

For the most part I dislike these score based assessments. They often lead consumers to a score race like a specs race. If one headphone gets a 7/10 for Resolution and another gets an 8/10, consumers with nothing else to go on will select the 8/10 thinking it's better. With so many variables involved there needs to be a plus/minus 3 for every score.

 

Anyway, thanks again for the graphic. 

 

I agree that numbers can result a "score race" and have seen it may times. Hifi choice is good example on that. Still the same is true for reviews there the scale is only described with words IMO.

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39 minutes ago, Summit said:

 

Thank you for responding on the topic of this thread. I only use the reviews as guides to whether a device is of sufficient interest to investigate further. The problem is that we have so many audio gear nowadays and I feel that many reviews are too vague for me to get a good grip of the actual SQ performance. I like a review to describe the sonic characteristics of the gear as well as the scale of some of the performance aspects.

 

IMO, ratings or scale of performance aspects are most helpful in the context of particular reviewers or publications that you are familiar with, as they provide at least one standard for comparison.


"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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10 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Put another way, if all the bugs die, all the people die. If all the people die, all the bugs will be just fine :~)

 

More or less, but I do not which for all humans to die and think we can coexist :).

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11 minutes ago, The Computer Audiophile said:

Put another way, if all the bugs die, all the people die. If all the people die, all the bugs will be just fine :~)

If the bugs die, the people die, and then new bugs will emerge. Eventually, possibly, also new people.

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12 minutes ago, mansr said:

If the bugs die, the people die, and then new bugs will emerge. Eventually, possibly, also new people.

I would prefer new and better octopi.


System (i): (iUSB3.0 Nano/RPi 2/Moode > 2Qute+MCRU psu; Gyrodek/SME V/Ortofon 2M Black/EAT E-Glo Petit/Magnum Dynalab FT101A) > Glow Amp One > Klipsch RP-600M

System (ii): iUSB3.0 Nano/RPi 2/Moode > Bel Canto uLink+AQVOX psu > Chord Hugo > (Tandy LX5; JBL LSR305 ; Audeze LCD-3)

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