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Thread: Mythbusters does Hi-Fi.

  1. #31
    Join Date: Jul 2017

    Location: Crook, County Durham, UK

    Posts: 48
    I'm Christopher.

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    I am a mere 'consumer', so I won't be attempting to 'follow'. I will never have the breadth or depth of knowledge, or practical experience required to comment authoritatively about the technical merits of a component, so I will leave that to 'the experts'. True, some designers / manufacturers may impress me more than others when communicating their philosophy, but that's as deep as I go. Going by some of the stuff I have read online, applying just a little knowledge to some people is akin to 'activating an idiot'. I don't want to fall into that trap myself and I would rather we didn't create any more of them.

    My 'skill' in this area is knowing whether something sounds 'right' to me, and only, of course, compared to what I have heard before. Hearing as many different bits of gear as possible is therefore my aim. In addition to perceived sound quality, the other issue I care passionately about is value for money. Does component quality and sound quality justify the price being charged? 'Mythbusting', for me, is about debunking the marketing BS and rip-off pricing that afflicts so much of the hifi market. I welcome anyone who can help with that...

  2. #32
    Join Date: Jan 2009

    Location: Essex

    Posts: 16,048
    I'm openingabottleofwine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PalsHuffMor View Post
    I am a mere 'consumer', so I won't be attempting to 'follow'. I will never have the breadth or depth of knowledge, or practical experience required to comment authoritatively about the technical merits of a component, so I will leave that to 'the experts'. True, some designers / manufacturers may impress me more than others when communicating their philosophy, but that's as deep as I go. Going by some of the stuff I have read online, applying just a little knowledge to some people is akin to 'activating an idiot'. I don't want to fall into that trap myself and I would rather we didn't create any more of them.

    My 'skill' in this area is knowing whether something sounds 'right' to me, and only, of course, compared to what I have heard before. Hearing as many different bits of gear as possible is therefore my aim. In addition to perceived sound quality, the other issue I care passionately about is value for money. Does component quality and sound quality justify the price being charged? 'Mythbusting', for me, is about debunking the marketing BS and rip-off pricing that afflicts so much of the hifi market. I welcome anyone who can help with that...
    Oh I'm sure there will be plenty to say about that!
    Have you listened to this month's choice in the Album Club?

    Barry

  3. #33
    Join Date: Feb 2010

    Location: Berkshire, UK

    Posts: 1,985
    I'm Tom.

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    Good stuff Jez. Will there be a test at the end?
    Speakers - 'RFC' Tannoy Canterburys with custom crossovers; Amp - Radford STA100; Preamp - EAR 912; Vinyl: Thorens TD124 MkII with Ikeda IT345-CR1 and Ortofon 309 Limited tonearms; Cartridges: Miyajima Madake, Zero Mono 0.7 and Premium 1.0 retipped by Ana Mighty Sound with bamboo cantilever, Ortofon SPU Royal N and Shure M3D with Jico stylus; phono stage and SUT from EAR 912; Esoteric Sound Re-Equalizer for equalisation of early mono and 78; Digital: Audio Note CDT2/II transport.

    'Wer nicht liebt Wein, Weib und Gesang der ist ein Narr sein Leben lang.'

  4. #34
    Join Date: Jul 2011

    Location: Northamptonish

    Posts: 1,571
    I'm Peter.

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    And an NVQ in Foo-bashing?
    “Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.” - William Bruce Cameron

  5. #35
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 17,789
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PalsHuffMor View Post
    I am a mere 'consumer', so I won't be attempting to 'follow'. I will never have the breadth or depth of knowledge, or practical experience required to comment authoritatively about the technical merits of a component, so I will leave that to 'the experts'....
    Neither will I but it doesn't mean I don't want to learn. The saying 'A little knowledge is a dangerous thing' is only applicable if you are going to jump in feet first and do something practical. Having a basic grasp of how something works is desirable, not something to be avoided.. I have never understood why people want to walk around with blinkers on. If you want to understand what is bullshit in hi-fi - and yes there is a lot of it - how can you do that if you don't have a scooby how it really works?

    To paraphrase something I read on another forum, 'People either assume hi-fi electronics is much more complex than it really is, or assume it is much simpler than it really is, and that is the problem.'
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  6. #36
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,165
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    If you want to understand what is bullshit in hi-fi - and yes there is a lot of it - how can you do that if you don't have a scooby how it really works?
    By using your ears and experimenting with all manner of different equipment and ancillaries over the years, in different contexts, trying different things often dismissed as "foo", to ascertain whether they work or not, and learning from your mistakes, thus amassing sufficient experience, enabling you to 'sort out the wheat from the chaff', or rather determine what's "bullshit" or not...

    That seems to have worked rather well for me!

    Seriously though, I totally *get* where you're coming from and agree, but the problem is you can't MAKE yourself become interested in something that bores you to tears... I've tried getting into the technical side of hi-fi, and whilst some of the basic stuff has stuck, most of it is too much hard work to fathom. Quite simply, my brain doesn't really work that way.

    That's why I leave most of the 'techy stuff' to the experts whom I trust to make my equipment, and simply concentrate on enjoying the fruits of their labours, and most importantly, the effect it has on my appreciation of recorded music. However, that doesn't mean I can't sometimes question their decisions or have some input in what they do.

    At the end of the day though, we're all different people, with different talents and skill sets, and none of us in this hobby are required to be technically knowledgeable in order to have a valid opinion or be considered as 'worth listening to', especially when discussion topics are of a subjective nature. Most importantly, no-one should feel 'inadequate' simply because they don't know one end of an oscilloscope from another.

    The reality is that ALL of us here has something to offer, based on what we've learned from the practical experience we've gained over the many years we've been into this hobby - and in the process may have learned things that some experts haven't!

    In short, we can ALL learn from each other, by sharing our experiences, whether we're technically minded or not.

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  7. #37
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 17,789
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    By using your ears and experimenting with all manner of different equipment and ancillaries over the years, in different contexts, trying different things often dismissed as "foo", to ascertain whether they work or not, and learning from your mistakes, thus amassing sufficient experience, enabling you to 'sort out the wheat from the chaff', or rather determine what's "bullshit" or not...

    .
    Aye, but that can also become just wandering round in a maze, covering the same ground over and over again, and spending a lot of money in the process, without actually getting where you want to be. Agree that as a layman the best thing to do is listen to a lot of different approaches/kit, you can't replicate that sort of experience with book-learning.

    For me, at least, it helps with that process if you have at least some grasp as to why amplifier A sounds rubbish in your system and amplifier B doesn't, whereas in a different set-up it is the exact reverse. How many times have you read 'Don't buy that amp, I had one and it is rubbish' only for the next post to be ' I have that amp and it is fantastic, buy one now.'?
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Sony X505ES CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me." - Hunter S Thompson

  8. #38
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 72,165
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    Aye, but that can also become just wandering round in a maze, covering the same ground over and over again, and spending a lot of money in the process, without actually getting where you want to be. Agree that as a layman the best thing to do is listen to a lot of different approaches/kit, you can't replicate that sort of experience with book-learning.
    Precisely. Book learning isn't the be-all-and-end-all, especially when you don't build equipment, and therefore require no formal training. That, however, doesn't preclude you from having a valid opinion on hi-fi.

    You have to remember that not all of us learn from self-directed study. It simply depends on how your brain works, therefore you choose a learning methodology based on how new information 'sinks in' most effectively for YOU!

    After all, we're not all 'geeks'...

    In terms of the first bit you've written above, you're absolutely right, and unfortunately hi-fi forums are littered with folk who come into that category, but it's also possible to adopt the learning method I've suggested, and if you have good ears and judgement, succeed more than you fail

    Marco.
    http://www.thestainedglasscompany.com

    "A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do" -- Milan Kundera.

  9. #39
    Join Date: Mar 2017

    Location: Seaford UK

    Posts: 320
    I'm Dennis.

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    Surely the whole point of formal study is to gain the knowledge and insights that have been established over years of human endeavour, and to benefit from that gained knowledge and experience.

    This we hope, is 'objective knowledge'.

    Our own everyday experiences are valid, but interpreting what is going on, and causes of phenomena are really quite difficult, and I cannot embrace a subjective stance in isolation, rather I superimpose it on my 'objective knowledge' and try to evaluate my experiences.

    We may think of food as a purely subjective choice, but actually our preferences are often formed by our early experiences and formation, which are 'culturally' subject to a narrow range of exposure. I was seduced by my Great Aunts into sucking American gums in my early years, my being taught that they were a luxury. In fact they gave me cavities, and later acquisition of objective knowledge showed that sucrose directly causes cavities because of one particular high energy bond which it contains. I have not eaten 'popuist' sweets since '75.

    I accept that gaining objective knowledge is, or can be hard, but it is worth the effort both for practical purposes, and because it enhances the mental facilities; most such challenges do.

    If you want evidence of just how far from real understanding a purely subjective anecdotal life can be, and how it can lead us into a fantasy world, look at TV advertisements, and the inferred, if not stated 'realities' that they portray.

  10. #40
    Join Date: Jul 2017

    Location: Crook, County Durham, UK

    Posts: 48
    I'm Christopher.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    The saying 'A little knowledge is a dangerous thing' is only applicable if you are going to jump in feet first and do something practical. '
    ...or if you are going to jump in keyboard first and tell people what kit is 'right' and what is 'wrong'.

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