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Thread: Do mains cables make a difference??

  1. #131
    Join Date: Jan 2009

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    I'm openingabottleofwine.

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    I'm afraid his first sentence spoils it for me:

    Every audiophile who has experimented with better power cables has heard the performance advantage they offer.

    It is just another manufacturer's attempt to convince you to buy their wares with some 'techno-babble' explanations. Some of what he writes is correct, some of it is vague, some contradictory and some of it is incorrect.
    Last edited by Barry; 16-05-2018 at 12:34. Reason: Addition
    Have you listened to this month's choice in the Album Club?

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  2. #132
    Join Date: Jan 2008

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    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

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    Macca, when you get a chance, could you please have a go at posts #116 and #117? Ta

    Dominic, I'll get to your (quite excellent), rather lengthy post, after lunch. There is so much there you and I agree on!

    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.

  3. #133
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    if the people making the fancy power cables really have made amazing new discoveries in electrical theory how come they are not stepping forward for their Nobel prizes?
    Maybe because the genuine improvements often experienced cannot be explained by basic electrical theory, and occur in other areas of audio not so far properly tested?

    Or perhaps sufficiently rigorous testing for the phenomenon [and the enormous amount of money required for that to happen] has not so far been carried out by the relevant authorities, in order for those claiming such improvements to be put forward for a Nobel prize?

    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.

  4. #134
    Join Date: Apr 2018

    Location: Cornwall

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    I'm Dominic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    from that link

    Every audiophile who has experimented with better power cables has heard the performance advantage they offer. Indeed, the amount of improvement can be astounding, often transforming a system from good to amazing. As audiophiles, we trust our ears but itís hard to understand how replacing just one short link in a long chain of the power delivery system can have such a dramatic impact. The following article is intended to answer those questions

    Note the bits in bold.

    Now here is an ABX test where they had to try to distinguish between Nordost power cables and some standard leads supplied with some Parasound amps.

    https://hometheaterhifi.com/volume_1...s-12-2004.html

    No-one scored better than random chance.

    It is clear from the above analysis that no matter what background or experience a participant brought to the test, it did not help him or her score better than anyone else. 49% accuracy is 49% accuracy.

    But the amount of improvement can be astounding!

    Unless you don't know if the fancy power cord is in use or not. Then it doesn't sound any different.

    Now it is an ABX test so it is not a 'normal' listening environment. But even so you'd expect an 'astonishing improvement' to be fairly easy to spot in pretty much any circumstances.

    But no-one seems to be capable of doing it.

    There was also a home test done on Hi-fi Wigwam back in about 2004 where the cables were sent to peoples' homes so they could swap about at their leisure. The cables were disguised so that it was not possible to tell the fancy leads from the standard ones.

    Unsurprisingly people claimed to hear clear differences even between identical power leads. Sadly the pages documenting this have been deleted from the site. I don't know why this would be, except perhaps because the site hosts many adverts for fancy power cables.

    if the people making the fancy power cables really have made amazing new discoveries in electrical theory how come they are not stepping forward for their Nobel prizes?

    There is an enormous credibility gap here people, and I for one am not going to attempt to jump it.
    You should expect no lesser grade of bullshit from someone who manufactures cables, so by rights you shouldn't blend that person's quotes with the rest of your post lol

    As for ABX tests, they are a total waste of time and only prove how ineffective they really are because they have been imported from a different set of test criteria. For a start, a true ABX test has no active involvement from human participants in a live situation, so that is one myth busted. Secondly, because there are human participants they are under stress due to "test" conditions so it stuffed from the very outset. Thirdly, because most of these audio ABX tests involve the poor sods being subjected to a selection of tracks repeated over and over again in a matrix amounting to the number of cables (a minimum of three) times the variables, that amounts to hearing them many times over during the considerable length of time it takes to carry out the test. By the time all that is completed they are ready to open a vein, not provide value judgements.

    As for the Hifiwigwam home test, it was insisted upon that FOUR cables would be sent out and even the three bog standard "kettle leads" were all different, there was still the stress element present (however small) with the listeners too, so little surprise it produced inconsistent results.

    Given the fact that all of these ABX tests have failed, why is it always assumed the item under test has failed and not the test regime itself that has failed?
    CD player = Vincent
    Pre amp = Rotel RA03
    Power amp = Lyngdorf SDA 2175
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  5. #135
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

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    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Maybe because the genuine improvements often experienced cannot be explained by basic electrical theory, and occur in other areas of audio not so far properly tested?

    Or perhaps not sufficiently rigorous testing for the phenomenon [and the enormous amount of money required for that to happen] has so far been carried out by the relevant authorities, in order for those claiming such improvements to be put forward for a Nobel prize?

    Marco.
    Or no-one knows how they work for the simple reason that they don't work, except in the psychological realm. And since such psychological effects are well documented and have been for over a century, there's no prize money on offer for demonstrating them again?
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Technics SL1200P CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    'The best I advice I ever received was to always remember that no-one else has any idea what they are doing either.'

  6. #136
    Join Date: Oct 2016

    Location: Bolton, England

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    I'm Andrew.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nonuffin View Post
    ...I may be placebo'ed a couple times at most, have some sort of expectation bias a few times perhaps, but after hundreds of times over several decades certainly not and I always challenge these people to show me evidence of prolonged, sustained and repeatable facts that these conditions can be maintained for hundreds of times and spanning decades.
    I think the point of placebos is that you don't know if it's a placebo or not. Same with expectation bias - you're unaware of it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Maybe because the genuine improvements often experienced cannot be explained by basic electrical theory, and occur in other areas of audio not so far properly tested?
    Yes, it's quite possible that basic electrical theory doesn't explain everything. However, you have to know basic electrical theory before concluding that it is inadequate. If you have no grasp of basic electrical theory, how do you know it can't explain how a mains cable works?

  7. #137
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 20,175
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by nonuffin View Post
    You should expect no lesser grade of bullshit from someone who manufactures cables, so by rights you shouldn't blend that person's quotes with the rest of your post lol

    As for ABX tests, they are a total waste of time and only prove how ineffective they really are because they have been imported from a different set of test criteria. For a start, a true ABX test has no active involvement from human participants in a live situation, so that is one myth busted. Secondly, because there are human participants they are under stress due to "test" conditions so it stuffed from the very outset. Thirdly, because most of these audio ABX tests involve the poor sods being subjected to a selection of tracks repeated over and over again in a matrix amounting to the number of cables (a minimum of three) times the variables, that amounts to hearing them many times over during the considerable length of time it takes to carry out the test. By the time all that is completed they are ready to open a vein, not provide value judgements.

    As for the Hifiwigwam home test, it was insisted upon that FOUR cables would be sent out and even the three bog standard "kettle leads" were all different, there was still the stress element present (however small) with the listeners too, so little surprise it produced inconsistent results.

    Given the fact that all of these ABX tests have failed, why is it always assumed the item under test has failed and not the test regime itself that has failed?
    So you are saying that the contribution that a fancy power cable makes is so subtle that in any situation other than relaxing at home with zero stress and no concerns with expectations from anyone else then it cannot be heard at all?

    Because that sounds like it is the imagination at work to me.

    And it doesn't tally with the various reports I have read where the improvement is described in 'Wife immediately heard the difference from the kitchen ' terms.

    So which is it?
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Technics SL1200P CD Player * NVA P90SA passive pre / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *



    'The best I advice I ever received was to always remember that no-one else has any idea what they are doing either.'

  8. #138
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

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    Quote Originally Posted by RothwellAudio View Post
    Yes, it's quite possible that basic electrical theory doesn't explain everything. However, you have to know basic electrical theory before concluding that it is inadequate. If you have no grasp of basic electrical theory, how do you know it can't explain how a mains cable works?
    You just say 'fuck it' and trust your ears!

    More seriously, as I've already said, for me it's all about adopting the use of your OWN judgement criteria, and once they've been satisfied and you believe that what you're hearing is real, then that's an end to the matter, until such times as YOU consider the subject worthy of further investigation.

    That's what I do

    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. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macca View Post
    Or no-one knows how they work for the simple reason that they don't work, except in the psychological realm. And since such psychological effects are well documented and have been for over a century, there's no prize money on offer for demonstrating them again?
    Lol.... I'm not saying that's not possible (of course it is), but then neither is what I suggested either. You have to be open-minded to ALL genuine possibilities, not simply those that fit best with your belief system.

    I'll wait now until you tackle the questions I asked you earlier, otherwise we'll just end up going round in circles

    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.

  10. #140
    Join Date: Apr 2018

    Location: Cornwall

    Posts: 56
    I'm Dominic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RothwellAudio View Post
    I think the point of placebos is that you don't know if it's a placebo or not. Same with expectation bias - you're unaware of it.

    Yes, it's quite possible that basic electrical theory doesn't explain everything. However, you have to know basic electrical theory before concluding that it is inadequate. If you have no grasp of basic electrical theory, how do you know it can't explain how a mains cable works?
    Well if you are a sane right minded individual you should know that you could be subject to placebo and expectation bias and change your perceptions accordingly. Placebo ONLY has an effect upon you if you are totally unaware it is occurring and so the game is over if you do know.

    You can also do as I do sometimes and deliberately put your mind into a negative expectation mode instead of a positive one. You get more pleasant surprises that way
    CD player = Vincent
    Pre amp = Rotel RA03
    Power amp = Lyngdorf SDA 2175
    Speaks = Quadral Chromium Style 6

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