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Audio reproduction is a matter of taste?


hopkins
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8 minutes ago, hopkins said:

I don't know about drum sets, but I've been to a good number of classical music concerts in my lifetime (and also played piano for a number of years) to know what violins, for example, sound like in a good concert hall.

 

Rhetorical question: You know what all violins sound like in all concert halls?

 

I think you're reading far too much into what people are saying about taste and you also believe there is a way to judge accuracy when listening to music through a component. 

 

You're fooling yourself if you think that your memory of a concert, or several concerts, will allow you to discern if a violin on a recording sounds accurate through an audio system. If all violins sound the same, all concert halls are the same, there are zero production decisions to be made when recording, mixing, and mastering the music, all concert goers sat in the same seat the same distance from the violin, and all musicians pull the exact same sounds from all violins, then you'd be on the right path. 

 

However, people have been fooled for decades into believing it's possible to judge absolute accuracy through a HiFi system. 

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1 minute ago, hopkins said:

 

I am talking about sound "characteristics" not the actual sound of a given violin on a given day, on a given concert hall. There are obviously differences, but there are also similarities. Take a good recording, and compare it in several systems and you'll start to understand what I am talking about :) 

 

What do you mean by characteristics? 

 

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4 minutes ago, Foggie said:

There's no way a general listener knows what/how a 1920's black beauty sounds

 

Totally.

 

Plus, not even a person who owns and black beauty knows how it was processed at the recording session and in post production. 

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6 minutes ago, mfsoa said:

I love it! Perfectly captures what we want out of our systems.

 

To those who are trying to accurately replay the sound on the disc -The disc has no sound. You are trying to replay what you think is the sound on the disc. Very different...

 

Since no two people think that a disc should sound the same way, it then comes down to personal preference and boom - it's all subjective ultimately.

Yes!

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Just now, hopkins said:

 

 

In this review, I wonder if gmgraves was actually in the recording studio to substantiate this claim 😂

 

"One of the most natural, and realistic recordings that I have is our own Mario Martinez’ recording on his PlayClassics label “Angel Cabrera Plays Debussy”. This album is a perfectly recorded solo grand piano. I’ve always thought that this recording sounded more like an actual grand piano playing in my living room than any other that I have ever heard. But the new Yggy breaks through that wall of recording artificiality and actually, uncannily, brings already great sounding piano right into the room. All sense of listening to a recording is gone. It’s quite incredible!"


I think there is a language barrier here and a cultural barrier. None of your examples make any sense to me. 

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7 minutes ago, firedog said:

Wow, no one appointed you forum Nanny.

Read carefully, I insulted his argument, not him. 

Perfectly okay to do that within the rules of the forum. And it's been done many times. Read what's written about MQA, for example.

I respectfully request you examine your own behavior  instead of mine. 

Absolutely perfect. Insult arguments not people and it’s all good. 

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22 minutes ago, Rexp said:

Your point of view sucks! 

I’m totally cool with that. I also enjoy many people’s company, with whom I disagree very much. I love learning and often learn when people explain why they think what they do, rather than just what they think. 

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12 minutes ago, Iving said:

 

We do well to realise that insulting an argument is no argument at all.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appeal_to_the_stone.

 

Besides which - condoning this kind of alpha behaviour will hardly promote the culture of the site.


That link didn’t seem to address what I and @firedogwere saying. 

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17 minutes ago, Iving said:

 

We do well to realise that insulting an argument is no argument at all.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appeal_to_the_stone.

 

Besides which - condoning this kind of alpha behaviour will hardly promote the culture of the site.


 

from that link, “Appeal to the stone, also known as argumentum ad lapidem, is a logical fallacy that dismisses an argument as untrue or absurd. The dismissal is made by stating or reiterating that the argument is absurd, without providing further argumentation.”

 

Insulting an argument versus the person is very different from that stated above. @firedog and I aren’t suggesting that arguments are absurd just because. It’s more of an approach saying it’s cool to address someone’s arguments but not them personally. 

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16 minutes ago, hopkins said:

At least we have moved from the silly arguments that "we are not in the recording booth so we cannot judge equipment accuracy" to more technical debates about what accuracy is and whether or is posdible in audio. I'm going to take a little time to research some of the statements made here. 

I think we have moved from those arguments, not because they are silly but because both sides think the other side’s logic is silly. 

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Just now, Iving said:

 

Happy to explain.

 

Declaring "Nonsense!" or "Junk!" is not addressing the substantial points of what someone is saying.

 

It is a social deflection. An attempt to depict a person's pov as inferior without saying why.

 

It doesn't travel in courtrooms or universities or anywhere that people do actually "win" arguments.

 

In those places it would be seen "lose it and you lose". Also disruptive as it obfuscates the superordinate function.

 

You set the rules not I. My pov is that the more people insult arguments instead of "explain why they think what they think" (= ultra good) the more the site will look socially anarchic and less inclusive.

 

The link is good. Very good. Absolutely relevant.

We aren’t saying that. We are saying address the argument not the person. 
 

Tough to get through in this manner of forum communication :~)

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1 minute ago, Iving said:

 

You edited to change what you said completely.

 

Your unedited post demonstrated you didn't understand what I was saying.

 

Now my response looks mis-directed. It wasn't.

I didn’t edit anything. I mistyped the word “are” and changed it to “aren’t” in one post, is that what you’re talking about?

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50 minutes ago, bluesman said:

And that's the bottom line.  Truth be told, we have no idea what we're hearing by the time most recorded material hits our speakers unless the liner notes tell us.  For pure listening pleasure, most of us want to hear what we like to hear.  That may be specific instruments (e.g. a Fazioli, a Guarneri, or a DeAngelico New Yorker), genres played on "correct" instruments, etc.  It may be a specific sonic palette or a combination of other personal preferences.  But if it sounds good, it is good whether or not the reproduction is true to the recorded performance or the concept sought by the production staff.

 

Despite the early assertion in this thread that "...everyone knows what a guitar sounds like, kick drum etc", few have any idea how many different kinds of guitars, kick drums etc there are and how different they sound from each other.   Freddie Green played an 18" archtop acoustic guitar behind Count Basie.  Wes Montgomery played a 16" Gibson 175 archtop electric with a laminated maple top (aka plywood) for the first part of his career and a 17" Gibson L-5 with a carved solid spruce top for the rest of it.  And Ed Bickert played the same kind of music made by Green and Montgomery on a solid body Fender Telecaster, a guitar created and most often used for country music and blues.  These guitars are as different as night and day from each other - but most listeners probably have no idea which is which.  They probably don't care, and there's no reason they should unless they're concerned about "accuracy".  

 

Here's the current kick drum size chart for DW (one of the top professional drum makers):

 

image.png.f3734df4b045b2d3ef183b67d19df0b1.png

 

My son has a 16x18 kick in his set.  It sounds like a floor tom next to a 24" kick.  No one with serviceable hearing could fail to hear the difference when played in isolation side by side.  But that difference is a lot harder for the uninitiated to discern clearly among the other instruments when a band is playing.  So everyone knows what a conceptual kick drum sounds like, but few know what the kick drum in a particular performance sounds like.

 

Perfection is an elusive goal, and few efforts of any kind come close to achieving it.  Those who convince themselves that their systems are highly accurate with no knowledge at all of the performances to which they're listening or the procesess through which they were captured and turned into recordings are often deluding themselves.  It doesn't really matter, as long as the listener is happy with what he or she hears.  It enhances my listening enjoyment to be a bit more knowledgeable and realistic about the issue of accuracy - but, just like everyone else, I enjoy a lot of recorded music that's far removed from the original performance.  After all, we do this for fun.

+1000

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Just now, hopkins said:

 

I think I have demonstrated at length that you and a number of other people here reviewing audio equipment do care about the realism of the reproduction they offer. 

 

The topic of this thread concerns whether the quality of audio reproduction can be assessed "objectively" and not whether there is a "purpose" to seeking higher quality audio reproduction. 

 

The fact that you, of all people, don't grasp this is a little mind boggling. 

 

 

 

The logic courses I took in college taught nothing even remotely similar to the logic you use in this thread. I have no clue what you're saying, so I can't respond. 

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If people think they can judge accuracy of a playback system, then they should be clearly able to identify every instrument on the album, and I mean specific instrument not just guitar, but the model, the drum set and its make up (size of kick drum), the material on the walls of the studio (absorptive, reflective, etc...) the EQ used in mixing and mastering, and everything else involved. 

 

If you can't identify those aspects perfectly, then you can't judge accuracy because you need to know these in order to judge it. 

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11 minutes ago, hopkins said:

you can use a vocal track of a singer you have heard live if you are more comfortable with that

 

We all know that vocals never change, all venues sound the same, and live performances all sound just as good as studio performances right? With that in mind, please play any vocal recording you wish and identify the post processing EQ used, the size of the venue, and the microphone used to record the vocals. You should be able to do this with your most familiar recordings. If you can't, then perhaps you can't judge accuracy. 

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Just now, hopkins said:

 

And why would I want to do that given what I have just explained? Who cares about the model of microphone when you compare the same recording on two systems? 

 

Your insistance is really baffling. You spend your time comparing systems, equipment, looking for "realistic sound" and all of a sudden you claim it's all BS? Really? 

 

In order to judge accuracy you MUST be able to identify which microphone was used for the recording. If you can't do this, then you have no idea if playback is accurate. 

 

Question: If you listen to DAC A and it sounds like XYZ, then listen to DAC B and it sounds like ZYX, how do you know which one is more accurate if you don't know which microphone was used for the recording? 

 

 

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5 minutes ago, hopkins said:

If I listen to a violin on two different DACs and one sounds closer to "all violins" I have heard, then I don't think I need to know that much about which violin was played and which microphone was used. 

 

If that's what you believe, I'm totally cool with it. But, suggesting that has anything to do with judging accuracy is preposterous. You're essentially using echoic memory to combine all violins you've heard into one violin sound, and using that as a baseline for accuracy of something that perhaps isn't supposed to sound at all like that amalgam of violins in your head. 

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