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Everything posted by Jud

  1. Yep, negative. Seven years apart, I noticed.
  2. Then you'll be able to provide me a very negative review of an expensive component?
  3. HP started Absolute Sound as a rebellion against the audio mags of the day that essentially acted as sales brochures for the equipment they reviewed. It took no advertising and specialized in acid comments that were tremendously entertaining (at least to me, certainly not the manufacturers). Now pretty much every print and online mag is back to what HP rebelled against. I don't consider them helpful in deciding what to audition or buy. @hopkins, I'm not sure you could have a clearer demonstration that rankings of components are virtually never objective. It's going to be up to the
  4. And yet I've read stuff here where people say we've got it as audibly perfect as can be for all practical purposes. I'm guessing you might not agree. Do you think we're even close enough for there to be an objective "best"?
  5. As a recently retired attorney, I can tell you there were times I wished there were a supporting precedent, but no luck. 🙂
  6. Sorry I didn't make clear I wasn't referring to your system in particular. I was just talking about the possibility there might be other explanations than lack of noise for any given system where one notices the ability to understand lyrics. Live acoustic music is indeed a different experience. But should it be? Many people say it's the goal to reproduce that experience, and if so we're falling short (audio-wise).
  7. Thank you for the very nice music. I didn't really nail it, though. Yes, I got the kora - I listen to African music, the track had just enough of an African flavor to make me start thinking that way, and the kora has a pretty unique sound (kind of a cross between a harp and a lute, for European folks). But as far as I know, Touré would have been playing a regular acoustic guitar rather than the acoustic bass guitar that I guessed.
  8. I hate to be That Guy in response to your very good point, but consider this: What if you're hearing the vocals better because the speakers have a presence hump in the vocal range? @PeterSt said something once that has stayed with me, which is that if you hear an audio system performing impressively, something is wrong. Think about it: Someone sits in front of you in a small room playing an acoustic guitar and singing - do you throw up your hands and say "My god, how resolving! What detail!"? Then why should a system which faithfully reproduces a good recording of that scene caus
  9. If the difference compared to the same track would be immediately obvious, then what mattered would be whatever was closer to your notion of what a violin ought to sound like. With period instruments, there is no assurance this would be the reproduction that was more faithful to the recording.
  10. I'm a big Jordi Savall fan, and he tends to use traditional instruments in his ensembles. These very often sound "thinner," less full and rich, than modern instruments. If you heard some of Savall's Bach recordings with a speaker that did not have an especially well controlled bass driver, or an amp that either didn't control the bass so well or a tube amp that added pleasing harmonics, the sound would be more rich and full but less accurate and resolving.
  11. Noise floor and dynamics, absolutely. Resolution is a more difficult matter. Let me use the God Only Knows example. I thought it was an empty soda can (which is actually part of the percussion elsewhere on the album), before I read differently. So imagine if I was looking for a system that was more "resolving" in the sense that it made the percussion on God Only Knows sound more like an empty aluminum can than an empty plastic bottle. I'd be on the wrong track. To me, "resolving" depends too much on what you think the sound should be, which we cannot really know in most cases.
  12. Listened once through my main system. The higher frequency instrument sounds like a kora (acoustic African stringed instrument) to me. It sounds like it has nylon rather than metal wound strings. The lower frequency instrument sounds like an acoustic bass guitar - could be nylon or metal wound. Nice find. 🙂 Now I'll see if Shazam can identify this. (I won't tell, though.)
  13. I agree with everything you've said except the last, because your first couple of quotes got exactly what I was aiming at. We've discussed here both how varied even acoustic instruments can be, and also how the recording process itself can alter sounds. The Gillian Welch track was an example of the first; this is an example of the second. My assumption is that if we were standing in the studio with our eyes closed, the majority of us would be able to say definitively whether Ringo was slapping his hands on his knees or the side of a packing crate. (Try it if you like, the sounds ar
  14. I agree you don't need system resolving power for "echoey-mechanical." 🙂
  15. OK, anyone who has what they consider a decent system who either owns these tracks or can stream them - and doesn't already know the answers - have at it! Give me your best guesses after listening!
  16. Have a streaming service? Heck, you can probably get it as a free trial from Apple, Amazon, Qobuz, Tidal.... And one more: On the Beach Boys' "God Only Knows," what's the other percussion instrument playing with the sleigh bells beginning 18-20 seconds in?
  17. Here are a couple of mysteries for you then, and no fair peeking if you don't already know. They're both Beatles tracks. - On the old US stereo version of "I'm Looking Through You," with the voices hard-panned to the right channel, what is the background percussion instrument in that right channel? - What is the percussion instrument on "I'll Follow The Sun"?
  18. Good, then you can tell us all what equipment and specs we each need in order to hear this.
  19. I'm saying a system that lets you hear how energetically someone is playing a centuries-old acoustic bass is more revealing than one that doesn't.
  20. You'll want to speak to the cloth-eared idjits who either couldn't tell or insisted it was an electric then.
  21. More listening fun in search of accuracy: Artist: Brian Bromberg Album: Wood Track 1, "The Saga of Harrison Crabfeathers" (thanks to @Superdad for first turning me on) There are photos below of the 300 year old acoustic bass Bromberg is playing. Knowing that, if you don't fear at least a little for the physical integrity of the instrument when you hear the track, I suggest your system isn't presenting the music with full fidelity. (Without the photos, I wonder how many people would think it was a 300 year old acoustic bass that was being played so energetica
  22. I can't speak for @bluesman, but my thinking was a little less around discrimination and more about familiarity - the folks who say "Of course I know what a guitar sounds like (doesn't everyone?)!" I think this sort of memory becomes less useful to evaluate accuracy once we begin to realize just how many sorts of guitars (or any other instrument) there are. People will say we should use unamplified acoustic instruments. So I did, in order to illustrate with an actual demonstration how divergent the sounds of "just" acoustic instruments can be. How reliable then is this unamplified
  23. I also have the ER4SR headphones, which I think are one of the great bargains in high end audio, especially when they go on sale. I don't doubt the possibility that they might have presented a clearer picture of some aspects of the sound than your speakers. But of course if you wanted to hear what sort of soundstage the recording presented, the headphones wouldn't be as helpful as your speakers. (This may remind you of my comment earlier that my speakers were designed to be very effective at presenting a convincing soundstage, at the cost of not being totally flat across the frequency spectrum
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