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lovejoy
28-08-2009, 20:53
...At least for Intel Mac owners anyway.

Having completely sold my soul to Steve Jobs in the last couple of years, I decided to shell out the 25 for an upgrade from Mac OSX Leopard to the new Snow Leopard today - for all the right reasons of course - improvements to the UI, increase in speed etc. and fair play, for 25 it was worth it just for that. It all runs a LOT quicker and just feels a lot more solid.

Reading into the changes however, I discovered something I hadn't realised.. Core Audio has been completely re-written. It seems that although pretty much everything looks the same, all of the changes have been made under the bonnet. So I thought.. As you do... I wonder if that's going to affect sound quality.

My conclusion after 4 hours of enjoying every note played out of my Macbook's optical port is "Yes it has done". With exactly the same setup as on my previous Leopard install - iTunes, Audio MIDI setup on 44.1/16-bit, optical into my Caiman these are my impressions of the changes:

Bass has become more taught, vocals have even more projection into the room. Instrument decay has improved: I loved the way that Joanna Newsom's used harp strings just seemed to hang in the air in front of you, quite breathtaking. When the music gets complicated and there's layers and layers of instruments, it's just more composed and never becomes mushy. It's more solid all round.

Something else I picked up on which was a surprise was the improvement in pace, phrasing and pitch. I became more aware of even the slightest deviations in pitch on a sustained note. There's also more absolute minute detail. You could probably hear a pin drop in an auditorium now.

I'd be really interested to know if anyone else has tried Snow Leopard and experienced improvements, or is it all just down to the fact that it's a clean install? I don't THINK it is as the old Leopard install wasn't that old and wasn't exactly clogged up with apps, but it would be good to get a second opinion.

Also, if you're pondering over Snow Leopard - just get it. For 25 it's a steal, and probably one of the cheapest hi-fi upgrades you'll get.

Beechwoods
28-08-2009, 21:50
Damn Apple for leaving the PowerPC in the weeds. My 64bit Dual 2Gb G5 is officially history. I have an Intel chipped titanium MacBook but I don't use it for music... :( I'd definitely be interested in whether your findings are universally held, Rich.

Spur07
28-08-2009, 22:07
Yeah, I'm also peeved with Apple for casting aside us G5 PowerPC users. I'll be extremely p*ssed if Core Audio has really improved in Snow Leopard. And all for 25. I experienced a massive upgrade when I went from Tiger to Leopard and USB II on my G5.

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 07:08
@lovejoy

When you think about this, if your OS is messing with the signal, then everything you say could easily be true. Maybe that is the case in your setup.

But equally - when you think about it - if the OS is merely streaming out bit-perfect audio, it is impossible for any of your perceived improvements to actually exist, isn't it. The bits are the same, and there is nothing in the new software that can improve the inherent jitter in the crystal in your Mac, nor the layout of the internal wiring - which also is the source of jitter.

There is no other way an sp-dif output can convey "information". It's either in the bits, or the timing of the bits. There isn't anything else!

I really do try to have an open mind about these things. But really, some claims are beyond plausible. Please understand - I don't doubt for one moment what you *heard*, I merely doubt whether such difference *exists*. i.e. I am not questioning your integrity at all, I want to be clear about that. And, as I said at the top, it may be that your software is/was not optimally configured.

EDIT: You might fing the following interesting reading. It desribes how to make sure you have your mac configured correctly and what can happen if it is not.

http://www.benchmarkmedia.com/wiki/index.php/ITunes-QuickTime_for_Mac_-_Setup_Guide#Bypass_all_audio_DSP_and_plug-ins_.28EQ_and_any_other_audio_.27enhancer.27.29

lovejoy
30-08-2009, 08:36
Hi Chippy_boy
Yes, I am well aware of the benchmark guides. I've pored through them many many times in the hope to get my Leopard based Mac sounding as good as my old XP/Foobar/ASIO setup, but never to any avail, so I'm well versed in how to set up a Mac properly for optimum sound.

You've proven my point quite nicely here as it happens, as Snow Leopard, with exactly the same setup DOES sound as good as the PC ever did.

The thing is, 'bit-perfect' is such a flawed phrase. There are so many things that claim 'bit-perfection' - for example, try comparing ASIO, WASAPI and Kernel Streaming on a Windows Vista system - all billed as bit-perfect, yet they all sound quite different. Bit perfect means absolutely nothing other than your original value between 0 and 65535 (on a 16-bit system) is still that value. There's no specification for how that value is dealt with by the OS - 16-bit values don't merely get passed, in-tact from your music player to the device driver for the sound card - they could be padded, reversed, encrypted, decimated, recalculated - any number of things, and that's before they've even got to the audio layer, which may perform another level of conversion so that it understands what's going on, because computers these days don't work in 16-bits so that data is not 'bit-perfect' between the output of iTunes and the audio IC - We now know that Core Audio has had a re-write, but even if the same code has been ported to Cocoa then timing is going to be affected, but it is not merely a port - I'm sure the details will emerge in time, but for now we're left guessing as to what they have done to it.

So the bit-perfect argument is flawed. It's exacly the same as saying all CD transports sound the same, and we know they don't.

But if that's not enough to convince you, seeing as you have an open mind about these things, have a listen for yourself. I could demonstrate to you an identical Mac audio setup, one using Leopard and one using Snow Leopard. I can guarantee you would not take long to notice the difference, as it is not small. I have not made this claim lightly without testing because I'll be the first to admit to being a victim of the placebo effect on more than one occasion, but this is marked.

Then, when you're convinced, maybe we can find out what is actually going on, rather than using the old 'bit-perfect' chestnut as a bludgeon, as the perpetrators of this argument are starting to look like zealots.

twelvebears
30-08-2009, 10:02
Hi Rich.

Very interested in anything which could make my Mac-based setup sound better and had been considering going for Snow Leopard anyway. For 25, why not!

Just not sure it would make any difference to me as I actually stream my audio via iTunes over a CAT6 network cable to an Apple TV, which is connected to my Beresford via optical cable.

In this situation, am I right in thinking that in my set up, the OS on the ATV is the 'weakest link' and therefore the potential improvements wouldn't apply?

lovejoy
30-08-2009, 10:16
Hi Steve,
Just to clarify, when you say you're streaming via iTunes over CAT6 - you're sharing the iTunes library on one machine with your ATV and then the ATV is doing the actual playback, is this correct?

That being the case, then yes, I would imagine it would make no difference as the underlying OS doing the actual music handling is still your ATV.

Even so, Snow Leopard is still worth the asking price as the Mac just feels so much nicer to use now. I'm beginning to sound like a fanboi... Oh dear.

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 10:40
Sorry Lovejoy - I don't mean to have touched a nerve, although it would seem I did.

Perhaps I am a zealot. On the other hand, perhaps I stand for reason and common sense.

All of your points about bits being padded and recalculated etc all sounds very plausible, but it's not actually correct. I am not saying that it never happens, merely that it doesn't always happen. Your description seems to imply that there are varying degrees of "bit-perfectness". Well this is not so. Perfect is a superlative. Something is either perfect or it is not. Whether or not a digital data stream is bit perfect, or not, is a boolean.

You can test it, very simply. Consider a DTS encoded track. You can imagine it as a sort of zip-file. The audio is mathematically compressed (lossily) and then decompressed at playback time. Like a zip-file, if the file is corrupted in some way, it can't be decompressed, in the same way you can't open a corrupted zip file.

You can try ripping dts-encoded cd tracks (they are hard to find but they do exist) into a lossless format such as itunes lossless. And then play them back through itunes into your HT decoder. If you get music, you know for sure every single bit is coming out as intended - they decoder could not decode it if the singnal was messed with in any destructive way.

I don't know if you can try this, but I have done so. In windows, kmixer.sys messes up the data. The only soluton in XP, as you may know is to use kernel streaming or ASIO, which is tricky (although not impossible) if you want to use Media Centre for example.

However, using a Mac - or in my case an Apple TV - you can and do get bit perfect output and the DTS encoded tracks come through untouched. As soon as you touch the Apple TV's volume control all is lost and you just get white noise.

So when I play tracks in bit-perfect mode, I do *know* they are indeed bit perfect. The data is absolutely identical to that which came off the CD, down to the very last bit.

Regards "timing", you mean jitter. There isn't any other sort of timing other than timing errors so gross that they would completely prevent playback altogether. As I said in my original post there is *nothing* software can do to change the nature of the hardware to reduce or to increase the jitter.

So, much though you might imagine how two pieces of software can sound different, so long as they are both streaming bit perfect, I still fail to see how it is technically - or indeed non-technically - possible for them to so do.

If you haven't got any lossless DTS tracks to test, I will happily upload one for you.

Cheers

lovejoy
30-08-2009, 11:09
Sorry if I came across as having a rant. You hadn't touched a nerve. I just know what I am hearing and unless you've heard the difference for yourself between Snow Leopard and Leopard then you're not really in a position to judge.

Yes, I know about the DTS test. Thing is, that does nothing more than prove the DTS signal is intact, so maybe that, to you and to all intents and purposes is bit perfect, but that doesn't have any bearing on the jitter/timing, however you want to call it.


All of your points about bits being padded and recalculated etc all sounds very plausible, but it's not actually correct

How do you know this? How long have you been working in software engineering for audio systems? Do you know how a signal is processed by your audio playback software, how the OS deals with the audio player, priorites, arbitration between tasks vying for processor time slots, data ordering and packeting, I could go on, and on and on, and then you begin to see just how many things can affect jitter on the way to a DAC. Of course software will make a difference.


So, much though you might imagine how two pieces of software can sound different, so long as they are both streaming bit perfect, I still fail to see how it is technically - or indeed non-technically - possible for them to so do.

..and this is the point that everyone who uses the phrase 'bit-perfect' seems to have such a hard time understanding. Now I am happy to accept that 'it just sounds better' because not being an Apple software engineer, the chances of me being able to analyse the code for myself to see what's going on are negligable. But the proof in the matter, as I have explained before is in two identical systems apart from OS, playing the same tracks, and sounding different. You can be as technical as you like about it, but your DTS test proves nothing more than the DTS flag is passing through the system unaltered.

Just because you don't understand how there can be a difference does not mean that there cannot be one. I would imagine that 99% of us don't understand how it works, but this is an audio forum, and I've started this thread because I'm finding Snow Leopard more musically enjoyable than Leopard or Tiger before it and I wanted to share my findings and see if anyone else shares those findings. So lets get back on thread and get a consensus.

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 11:24
I'm not off the thread. You are suggesting there is only one valid opinion, i.e. yours and I am suggesting an alternative possibility

i.e. that in fact the two OS's sound completely identical and that either something else is at play - different settings somewhere in the two OS's perhaps - or maybe your judgement may be flawed.

The "listen with your own ears" argument cuts no ice with me. Our ears - remarkable transducers though they are - are anything but reliable, given that are attached to, and interpreted by, the emotional lump that is our brain.

It's funny how that bottle of red wine tastes better on the balcony overlooking lake Como. But it's the same wine.

EDIT: In all seriousness I don't know the detail of what's going on inside the OS, but I did chuckle at your questions, given that I have worked in IT for 27 years and I used to write device drivers and have messed with OS kernels. But that was a long time ago, and I have forgotten more than I can remember!

lovejoy
30-08-2009, 11:43
I'm not off the thread. You are suggesting there is only one valid opinion, i.e. yours and I am suggesting an alternative possibility

Nope, you're merely spouting the same hypothesis that Ashley James and his cronies spout regularly. You're not actually Ashley James are you? You are off thread, because I started it to ask other Snow Leopard users what they thought, not what the universally accepted theory is, which I've discussed ad nauseum already over the last 5 or so years. If it comes about that a number of people try it and hear no differences then I am more than satisfied that my assumptions are wrong, but as evidence is emerging that other people are hearing a difference, then I don't think I am wrong.


The "listen with your own ears" argument cuts no ice with me.

Then what are you even doing on a hi-fi forum? Or owning decent hi-fi kit? Can you actually appreciate the differences between a good and a bad rendition of a musical performance or are you happy so long as you can recognise a tune? We're all completely different in the way that we perceive sound and we all have our preferences for a certain type of sound, but I think our attitudes towards music and audio are so at opposite ends of the spectrum (and I'm not going to be so gauche as to say you are wrong and I am right) that we don't really have anything more to discuss.


It's funny how that bottle of red wine tastes better on the balcony overlooking lake Como. But it's the same wine.

Yes, but that is because your surroundings have improved, thus affecting your mood, as has the quality of the air mixing with the wine, thus affecting the taste of the wine.

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 12:29
Yes, but that is because your surroundings have improved, thus affecting your mood, as has the quality of the air mixing with the wine, thus affecting the taste of the wine.

EXACTLY my point. You don't start claiming the wine is different, do you.

It seems EVERYTHING is up for grabs for discussion in these forums, apart from the single phrase "I don't believe it".

To some, it's more like a religion - and it certainly feels like it to one like me who dares question peoples' perceptions. It's like I am spouting some kind of blasphemy.

I am sure we have much in common; we clearly both have an interest in hifi and it's ability to create a sound that comes close enough to the original to recreate the emotions you might feel when listening to the "real" thing... whatever that is.

I am very keen to hear of tips that can make things sound better. But I don't accept prima facie quite extraordinary claims without quite extraordinary evidence. And that includes *my* experiences. If I think something sounds better, then unless there's an obvious reason for it, I am very skeptical of my own ears, let alone anyone elses. Maybe you should try thinking like that just as an experiment? Just consider for one moment that perhaps your ears might be deceiving you. Or is that blasphemy? "Bloody cheek, perhaps you are thinking... I know what I hear". But do you. Really? Can you test it to see if you can reliably tell one from the other? Maybe you can. But maybe, just maybe, not.

Beechwoods
30-08-2009, 13:04
There are plenty of objectivist forums where measurements, analysis and 'facts' are the single source of evidence about what works best and what doesn't. Art of Sound is a subjectivist forum, and members are encouraged to trust their ears over anything else.

Chippy_boy, you would do well to read the posts over the 'Our Ethos (http://theartofsound.net/forum/showthread.php?t=17)' forum, in particular this one: http://theartofsound.net/forum/showpost.php?p=28224&postcount=5

I appreciate you feel strongly about your science based approach, but telling people they're fooling themselves isn't the best way to make your point :)

Dave Cawley
30-08-2009, 13:10
Art of Sound is a subjectivist forum, and members are encouraged to trust their ears over anything else.


Is that so, in which case I too misunderstood the concept of this forum. A great shame, I whish Marco had made this point much earlier!

Regards

Dave

Beechwoods
30-08-2009, 13:11
Check the links Dave :)

Dave Cawley
30-08-2009, 13:30
I did, and it wasn't nearly as clear cut in my mind. This will change quite a few contributors I suspect.

Dave

Spectral Morn
30-08-2009, 13:51
Just to allow quick reading I will quote Marco here...


I'm adding this to our Ethos as I feel that it sums up how we on AOS view the judgement of hi-fi equipment and its associated ancillaries in reference to the oft raised measurements v. 'using one's ears' debate...

We would gladly use science automatically as the benchmark to judge all things hi-fi if we felt that it provided all the answers necessary. It would certainly be much easier having an 'undisputable reference' as one's basis for judgement. But it's the grey areas that bother us.

Quite clearly, science currently can't provide all the answers in audio, certainly as far as measuring how equipment and its associated ancillaries treats music signals and ascertaining how humans process recorded musical information via our ears and brain. Therefore grey areas exist because we are not robots; when listening to music our brains aren't programmed to respond in a specific way to known audio measurement parameters - the fact is, we do not listen to music in the way scientific apparatus measures sound.

If such apparatus could measure how we as humans listen to and appreciate music then measurements would be truly meaningful and embraced wholeheartedly by music enthusiasts and audiophiles alike. That is why audio/music enthusiasts like those on AOS will always trust their ears more than any scientific measurements, because what can currently be measured just doesn't tell the whole story.

Until the day comes when measurements unequivocally provide all the answers, we will happily continue using our discerning ears which for us are infinitely more accurate and reliable in ascertaining what really matters in hi-fi (and subsequently in our enjoyment of music), especially in those all-important grey areas... It's often the small details or 'grey areas' that make the most significant difference and thus are ultimately of most significance!

Marco.


Dave why should this have the effect you suggest/hint at. Marco does not say here that measurements don't have a place in audio or AOS, but just that so far (Note the words So Far)they don't and can't explain all the things that many (not all) hear. It would be very interesting and valuable if audible effects could have a corresponding measurement and in many cases that is the position we are at but not with everything. The problem here on AOS is when those come on and post black and white comments which don't allow for what people (including me) hear. I feel pity for the black and white brigade, the world, the universe is far from a black and white place, there is much to discover and learn and an arrogant closed mind means to much is missed. If objectivism alone floats peoples boats they can post on ZG and other places to there hearts content and learn nothing. I have an open mind and yearn for the day when audible effects can be explained, however until that day comes I will trust my ears first.


Regards D S D L

Joe
30-08-2009, 13:52
I don't recall signing any bits of paper before joining AoS. i doubt those conditions are legally binding anyway.

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 13:55
I appreciate you feel strongly about your science based approach, but telling people they're fooling themselves isn't the best way to make your point :)

In all seriousness, if my point is "you're fooling yourself", how would you suggest I make that point?

I did say to the OP that the sound differences could be down to settings etc. But genuinely if both OS's are working properly and streaming an unmodified stream of bits, then a "you're fooling yourself" option surely has to be considered?

Surely we should *ALL* have open minds. This means ALSO being open to the idea that some effects maybe are just not there at all.

If that's off the agenda even for discussion, I don't know where it is to end.

Can someone come on here and say that if they call their Hampster "Norman" then their hifi sounds better, but if he's called "Gerald" then it doesn't. And we have to believe them? Come on, there has to be limit as to what's credible and you have to have the right to question things.

I read your ethos pages before I started posting and again after Marcos pointed me at them. If my posts contravene anything (and I do not believe they do) then I suggest the terms of reference for the forum should be looked at.

Surely, it's about healthy debate, where points of view can be questioned? If not, what's the point?

leo
30-08-2009, 14:05
Measurements are important, mainly to make sure things are ok , behaving and not suffering stability issues, noise, performing to spec etc.
The ears are the deciding thing though, no matter how great something measures doesn't guarantee your ideal sound

Some things do measure the same but don't sound it, at the end of the day its all good fun;)

lovejoy
30-08-2009, 14:14
Can someone come on here and say that if they call their Hampster "Norman" then their hifi sounds better, but if he's called "Gerald" then it doesn't. And we have to believe them? Come on, there has to be limit as to what's credible and you have to have the right to question things.


So my saying that I *BELIEVE* that a re-write of the core system of dealing with audio in MacOS has made a difference to audio quality has as much technical plausibility as changing the name of my hamster?

It's the wrong time of year but I'm sure I just heard a cuckoo! :lolsign:

Dave Cawley
30-08-2009, 15:00
Art of Sound is a subjectivist forum, and members are encouraged to trust their ears over anything else.

I stand by what I said. But I have learnt never ever to argue or discuss anything with the many moderators of this group. So please don't encourage me to engage. I have read the above and although I think it is wrong, I will work with it. Great shame though!

Dave

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 15:23
So my saying that I *BELIEVE* that a re-write of the core system of dealing with audio in MacOS has made a difference to audio quality has as much technical plausibility as changing the name of my hamster?

It's the wrong time of year but I'm sure I just heard a cuckoo! :lolsign:

I never said that mate, and you know it.

I merely said that we must have the ability to question things, because if we do not then totally ridiculous claims can go unchallenged.

Had you made any claims relating to your hampster, I would have flat out called you barking mad, and you will have noticed I have not. :lolsign:

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 15:36
Dave why should this have the effect you suggest/hint at. Marco does not say here that measurements don't have a place in audio or AOS, but just that so far (Note the words So Far)they don't and can't explain all the things that many (not all) hear. It would be very interesting and valuable if audible effects could have a corresponding measurement and in many cases that is the position we are at but not with everything. The problem here on AOS is when those come on and post black and white comments which don't allow for what people (including me) hear. I feel pity for the black and white brigade, the world, the universe is far from a black and white place, there is much to discover and learn and an arrogant closed mind means to much is missed. If objectivism alone floats peoples boats they can post on ZG and other places to there hearts content and learn nothing. I have an open mind and yearn for the day when audible effects can be explained, however until that day comes I will trust my ears first.
Regards D S D L

Neil, with the greatest respect, I think you COMPLETELY misunderstand.

I am all for things that sound better. Of course, why wouldn't I be???? It's ridiculous to think otherwise.

But if we are to agree that something sounds better, then surely the most basic fundamental test is that we should be reliably able to say that it does actually sound better! Not with instruments, but with our own ears? We should be able to listen to "A" and compare it to "B" and be able to

(i) reliably tell the difference! and
(ii) reliably prefer one to the other

Is that too daft an aspiration? Surely no-one can think that it is?

No-one can claim that mp3's sound better than cd's because they just don't. And we can test it. You can play a whole bunch of mp3s to a whole bunch of people and *reliably* people can tell that the cd sounds better. It's a testable, verifiable fact. With peoples' own ears.

That's really what this is all about. Not scientific measurement.

Alex Nikitin
30-08-2009, 15:38
I personally cannot see any problems with a preference for a subjective evaluation. It is most certainly my preference too. At the end of the day it is our subjective perception that matters - it is the essence of a high quality audio reproduction. As much as I love measuring things I learned hard way to trust my ears more than my measuring equipment when it comes to the sound quality. Measuring is a great fun and can be very informative in many cases however it does not (and can not in a modern state of science, IMHO) offer a final judgement on the sound quality, for a number of reasons.

Now about the subject of this thread. Without actually looking at the hardware of the Mac in question I would not be so easily fooled by a "bit-perfection". The jitter on the SPDIF output may easily be dependant on the way the software works with the hardware. It is tempting to assume that the hardware is perfect in this respect but it is most likely a wrong assumption. That is why I find it much easier to believe lovejoy with his subjective evaluation, than Chippy_Boy with his pseudo-scientific speculation.

Alex

lovejoy
30-08-2009, 15:41
But if we are to agree that something sounds better, then surely the most basic fundamental test is that we should be reliably able to say that it does actually sound better! Not with instruments, but with our own ears? We should be able to listen to "A" and compare it to "B" and be able to

(i) reliably tell the difference! and
(ii) reliably prefer one to the other


Now we're on the same wavelength.

Amen to that.

Mike
30-08-2009, 15:42
I am all for things that sound better. Of course, why wouldn't I be???? It's ridiculous to think otherwise.

But if we are to agree that something sounds better, then surely the most basic fundamental test is that we should be reliably able to say that it does actually sound better! Not with instruments, but with our own ears? We should be able to listen to "A" and compare it to "B" and be able to

(i) reliably tell the difference! and
(ii) reliably prefer one to the other

Is that too daft an aspiration? Surely no-one can think that it is?

No-one can claim that mp3's sound better than cd's because they just don't. And we can test it. You can play a whole bunch of mp3s to a whole bunch of people and *reliably* people can tell that the cd sounds better. It's a testable, verifiable fact. With peoples' own ears.

That's really what this is all about. Not scientific measurement.

I'd have to agree with that. :confused:

But... sometimes things sound great even when they measure poorly. It's a funny old game! :)

Alex Nikitin
30-08-2009, 15:44
Now we're on the same wavelength.

Amen to that.

Agreed.

Alex

Marco
30-08-2009, 15:54
Hi Dave,


Art of Sound is a subjectivist forum, and members are encouraged to trust their ears over anything else.


Unfortunately the above statement, although well-meant, is somewhat misleading and doesn't tell the whole story; ironically rather like some measurements in relation to hi-fi! ;)

I see no reason, mate, to add anything further to the text Neil quoted from Our Ethos. Having read that, my position on this matter, and in this instance that of AOS, should be crystal clear to everyone.

Hi Chippy,


In all seriousness, if my point is "you're fooling yourself", how would you suggest I make that point?
I did say to the OP that the sound differences could be down to settings etc. But genuinely if both OS's are working properly and streaming an unmodified stream of bits, then a "you're fooling yourself" option surely has to be considered?

Surely we should *ALL* have open minds. This means ALSO being open to the idea that some effects maybe are just not there at all.

If that's off the agenda even for discussion, I don't know where it is to end.

Can someone come on here and say that if they call their Hampster "Norman" then their hifi sounds better, but if he's called "Gerald" then it doesn't. And we have to believe them? Come on, there has to be limit as to what's credible and you have to have the right to question things.

I read your ethos pages before I started posting and again after Marcos pointed me at them. If my posts contravene anything (and I do not believe they do) then I suggest the terms of reference for the forum should be looked at.

Surely, it's about healthy debate, where points of view can be questioned? If not, what's the point?


Please read the bit that I've highlighted in bold.

The *point* is that, however well-intended or how much you think you're right, telling someone "you're fooling yourself" is unbelievably arrogant - and 99% of the time it is liable to get someone's back up. Even if you don't mean this to happen, trust me, as sure as eggs is eggs, that's exactly what will happen... It's human nature.

With the best respect in the world, who do you think you are to judge people in that way??

People hear what they hear, whether it's genuine or not - and providing that what is heard is backed up by some credible listening experience, they should simply be left to believe what they feel is justified and genuine.

This arguably illogical and 'simplistic' approach may not appeal to your mentality and healthy scepticism of what cannot be scientifically proven, but the fact is (and evidence on numerous audio forums backs this up) that trying to 'prove' that what someone hears is 'wrong' only leads to tears and a whole load of bad feeling. This is not something we welcome or tolerate on AOS, hence our primarily subjective stance on matters pertaining to audio.

We enjoy debating many assorted issues very robustly indeed, and there's plenty of evidence of this throughout the forum, but after a certain number of exchanges when it becomes obvious that your 'opponent' is convinced that he or she is as 'right' as you are, that's the time to bow out gracefully from the debate and respect the other person's opinion, no matter how much you may disagree with it. It's not always easy to do, and I myself sometimes struggle with this, but I'm afraid it's the only way if fights and ill-feeling are to be avoided.

I therefore suggest that you digest the above and think hard about whether your style fits in with what is required here. Your contributions have been fine so far, but if you continue insisting on 'poking' people who think differently to you, then perhaps AOS isn't quite suited to you.

I trust that you don't mind me being frank. However, if you wish to be a part of this community, it's better that this is tackled out in the open now, so that you know the score and accept it or not (the latter would probably involve you leaving), rather than this sort of situation raising its head again in future :)

Marco.

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 16:10
Hi Dave,



Unfortunately the above statement, although well-meant, is somewhat misleading and doesn't tell the whole story; ironically rather like some measurements in relation to hi-fi! ;)

I see no reason, mate, to add anything further to the text Neil quoted from Our Ethos. Having read that, my position on this matter, and in this instance that of AOS, should be crystal clear to everyone.

Hi Chippy,



Please read the bit that I've highlighted in bold.

The *point* is that, however well-intended or how much you think you're right, telling someone "you're fooling yourself" is unbelievably arrogant - and 99% of the time is liable to get someone's back up. Even if you don't mean this to happen, trust me, as sure as eggs is eggs, that's exactly what will happen... It's human nature.

With the best respect in the world, who on earth do you think you are to judge people in that way??


Marco, I think perhaps you should read these posts and comment on what's actually said, rather than what you think might have been said. It's you who brough this whole "you're fooling yourself" statement into the thread, not me.

DaveK
30-08-2009, 16:12
Hi Guys,
Just my two penn'orth so don't let it start the aggro going again, but isn't it a case of the interface between the organic and the inorganic, or between the live and the dead.
Put another way, if everyone's ears were physically and organically identical in every way, we would all hear the same sounds in the same way and report the same findings but, given that no two pairs of ears are ever identical in any way (let alone the fact that any two ears on any one person can be reliably said to be identical), we are all going to hear things differently. The sounds may measure identically on the outside of the ear but once they enter the ear canal things begin to change. So it must all be subjective and nothing else matters - the only thing that all of us are really interested in is how it sounds (or measures if you prefer) between the ears.
Pretty obvious really - why did I find the need to post it? :)
Cheers,

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 16:17
Hi Guys,
Just my two penn'orth so don't let it start the aggro going again, but isn't it a case of the interface between the organic and the inorganic, or between the live and the dead.
Put another way, if everyone's ears were physically and organically identical in every way, we would all hear the same sounds in the same way and report the same findings but, given that no two pairs of ears are ever identical in any way (let alone the fact that any two ears on any one person can be reliably said to be identical), we are all going to hear things differently. The sounds may measure identically on the outside of the ear but once they enter the ear canal things begin to change. So it must all be subjective and nothing else matters - the only thing that all of us are really interested in is how it sounds (or measures if you prefer) between the ears.
Pretty obvious really - why did I find the need to post it? :)
Cheers,

Fully agree with all of that Dave

Spectral Morn
30-08-2009, 16:23
Neil, with the greatest respect, I think you COMPLETELY misunderstand.

I am all for things that sound better. Of course, why wouldn't I be???? It's ridiculous to think otherwise.

But if we are to agree that something sounds better, then surely the most basic fundamental test is that we should be reliably able to say that it does actually sound better! Not with instruments, but with our own ears? We should be able to listen to "A" and compare it to "B" and be able to

(i) reliably tell the difference! and
(ii) reliably prefer one to the other

Is that too daft an aspiration? Surely no-one can think that it is?

No-one can claim that mp3's sound better than cd's because they just don't. And we can test it. You can play a whole bunch of mp3s to a whole bunch of people and *reliably* people can tell that the cd sounds better. It's a testable, verifiable fact. With peoples' own ears.

That's really what this is all about. Not scientific measurement.

In my own case, I have no difficulty doing this and to assume that others don't share my abilities is limiting, both of the discussion and ones understanding of others approach to audio. Frankly I am sick of the double blind listing test etc(which I believe you are hinting at here) and that myself or anyone else should have to prove ones abilities just to satisfy someone else's prejudices in listening. This is a tired circular argument/discussion that without practical application is pointless.

If you had been present during the events that are the topic of this thread and could not hear the effect then what are we to take from that ? That one persons hearing skills are better than another's no more no less, IMHO. However there are those who even when they hear the thing prefer to cling to their closed dogma and refuse to admit it (I am not talking about you Chip as such here as i don't know you, but others I have encountered on forums who are very selective if not blinkered)....I struggle with that, why should anyone be so closed ?

Bottom line though, is you could have worded your comment better...thus avoiding some of the tone of the last number of posts.


Regards D S D L

Marco
30-08-2009, 16:24
Marco, I think perhaps you should read these posts and comment on what's actually said, rather than what you think might have been said. It's you who brough this whole "you're fooling yourself" statement into the thread, not me.


Eh?? :scratch:

The whole of my previous post was based on what you wrote earlier:


In all seriousness, if my point is "you're fooling yourself", how would you suggest I make that point?


You brought up the 'fooling yourself' thing, not me. The point is you don't say that sort of thing to people in the first place; it's rude and more than a little disrespectful, not to mention condescending. You are not 'superior' and therefore in a position to judge others. Perhaps you don't mean to come across like this?

Anyway, regardless of who said what, 'poking' people who don't share your way of thinking with hi-fi, no matter how seemingly well-intended, is not something we welcome here, unless it's done in a tongue-in-cheek way where both parties know each other and share the same sense of humour. Your earlier remarks clearly do not come into that category.

Therefore it's up to you whether or not you can tailor your future responses to allow for the above and put your point across constructively without getting people's backs up.

Marco.

P.S Hear, hear Neil! I agree completely with everything you've just written above. Only those who truly 'get' this will genuinely fit into our community.

Spectral Morn
30-08-2009, 16:27
Fully agree with all of that Dave

But that is not what you said Chip. It may however be what you meant to say though. The problem with forums and the written word is that it does not always appear on the screen as you meant or wanted it.


Regards D S D L

Spectral Morn
30-08-2009, 16:30
Can I suggest we return the thread back to the topic Lovejoy wanted to discuss.


Regards D S D L

Ammonite Acoustics
30-08-2009, 16:47
Can I suggest we return the thread back to the topic Lovejoy wanted to discuss.


Regards D S D L

Yes please!

If streamed audio sounds better because of Snow Leopard, then fine!

I do have the Snow Leopard upgrade coming from Apple, and I'm hoping that it might allow any audio to be streamed over an Airport Express, not just from iTunes, via the speaker select drop down thing at the bottom of the screen. It seems bizarre that my iTunes library played through Front Row cannot be streamed over the wireless network, when iTunes itself will do just that.

Can any Apple Geeks out there tell me if you can choose the audio output device in the System Preferences of Snow Leopard?

SteveW
30-08-2009, 16:48
Can I suggest we return the thread back to the topic Lovejoy wanted to discuss.


Regards D S D L

Please.
Its really quite important to me. Having dipped my toe in the waters of 'computer audio' I really want to hear other views about the merits of Apples latest OS.
A dealer I trust and who has helped Linn to evolve their DS systems discovered that Windows machines ripping FLACS was able to demonstrate that it produced better sonics than an Apple machine ripping FLACs and Apple Lossless.
And he, like me is a huge Mac fan.
It lead me to belive that there was something inherently 'wrong' with Core Audio.
At some point next year I will be investing in a Linn DS system ,and up to date thought I was also going to have to also invest in a small PC to rip and stream signals.
I would far rather do this from a MAC, although sadly (or maybe not:eyebrows:) it will mean upgrading my G5 iMac, to run Snow Leopard..
Steve
(thanks for getting back on track)

Spectral Morn
30-08-2009, 17:06
You are welcome Steve :)


Regards D S D L

Chippy_boy
30-08-2009, 17:53
P.S Hear, hear Neil! I agree completely with everything you've just written above. Only those who truly 'get' this will genuinely fit into our community.

You seem to be hell bent on a community of like minded individuals, Marco.

I am sorry if I have caused any offense to anyone, and I really sincerely doubt if I have.

I have questioned whether what people think they hear is real, and never whether what they say is genuine.

I have my own views of whether what they do hear is real - and I have expressed it here.

I think the moderators here should seriously consider whether this sort of constructive criticism - and it IS genuinely constructive - is what they want. Or do they want every post to be a "yes I agree" post. If the latter, the forums will be all the worse for it, imho.

@Dalek - I see no inconsistency in my posts.

At no time do I question peoples' proberty nor what they think they hear. The red wine example I gave earlier I think is a reasonable one. There can be a general consensus about whether something is true, without it actually being true. It doesn't mean anyone is being stupid nor lying and I would never suggest either.

Mike
30-08-2009, 18:05
do they want every post to be a "yes I agree" post

I certainly don't! :no:

Alex Nikitin
30-08-2009, 18:15
Chippy_boy,

in your first post in this thread you've stated


But equally - when you think about it - if the OS is merely streaming out bit-perfect audio, it is impossible for any of your perceived improvements to actually exist, isn't it. The bits are the same, and there is nothing in the new software that can improve the inherent jitter in the crystal in your Mac, nor the layout of the internal wiring - which also is the source of jitter.

I would have no problem if you would say - I've listened to two setups with different OS and couldn't hear the difference - that is a perfectly valid subjective opinion. Or if you've stated that you've measured the jitter of two setups and the validity of the bitstream and didn't see any significant (from your point of view) difference - I may agree that it is a valid measurement and that there is no measurable by your equipment significant difference between two OS SPDIF output streams.

However you've used the word "impossible" which is not a good word to use when your argument is merely speculative, based on neither an experiment nor a subjective perception. It is that word in your statement that I found objectionable and not in the spirit of this forum.

Alex

SteveW
30-08-2009, 18:51
Chippy...will you sodding well start another thread..

leo
30-08-2009, 19:13
Best thing to do is just try this sort of stuff out and make your own minds up, we don't all have the same hearing anyway

The best we can do is try something and post details on here if its something which we think added improvements to our own set up

Marco
30-08-2009, 19:36
Hi Chippy,


You seem to be hell bent on a community of like minded individuals, Marco.


Well that's essentially what AOS or any successful forum is. We've created an environment where people can share their experiences and learn from each other without fear of being ridiculed. This is a core part of our ethos, and something that is largely absent on other audio forums. However, although we're like-minded, we don't always agree with each other - far from it.

*But* what's very important is that in the latter instance we respect the opinions of other members, even when we don't agree with them - AND that we don't feel the need to point out where we think people are 'wrong' or "fooling themselves" at every opportunity.

It is this (very important) last bit that you've so far failed to grasp.


I am sorry if I have caused any offense to anyone, and I really sincerely doubt if I have.


Apology accepted, however none was needed. Trust me, if I thought that you were a troll, you'd be long gone by now ;)

As long as you can disagree with people and challenge them without 'rubbishing' or demeaning their valid experiences (scientifically provable or not), you'll be fine.

It's a matter of knowing how far to 'push' your contrary opinion on people before it reaches the point of pissing them off, and dropping the subject and moving on when it becomes obvious you've reached that point.


I have questioned whether what people think they hear is real, and never whether what they say is genuine.

I have my own views of whether what they do hear is real - and I have expressed it here.


Nothing wrong with that - it's simply a matter of expressing it in the right way and choosing your language carefully. However, implying that people are "fooling themselves", even if that is the case, is not liable to win you many friends.

Remember that even though some things in hi-fi are imagined (I'm certain that this is often the case. We are all fallible humans, after all, and influenced by a number of factors), I'm equally certain that not everything genuinely heard can currently be measured or 'proven'. Therefore, that being the case, one can never know for sure when something heard is actually imagined or not. Unless someone is blatantly talking nonsense, I prefer to give them the benefit of the doubt.


I think the moderators here should seriously consider whether this sort of constructive criticism - and it IS genuinely constructive - is what they want. Or do they want every post to be a "yes I agree" post. If the latter, the forums will be all the worse for it, imho.


You're absolutely right. The last thing we want is a forum full of mindless sheep and 'yes men', and AOS most certainly isn't that. However, we also don't want a forum full of 'know-it-alls' who think that they're always right, and the ill-feeling and bad blood this creates. There has to be the right balance :)

In the words of Albert Einstein: "The mind is like a parachute - it only works if it's open". A lack of this mindset is what separates pseudo-scientists from 'the real McCoy'.

Marco.

P.S Let's drop this now and let the OP return to his original topic. I'm sure you'll take the points I've raised on board in your future posts :smoking:

Chippy_boy
31-08-2009, 16:26
P.S Let's drop this now and let the OP return to his original topic. I'm sure you'll take the points I've raised on board in your future posts :smoking:


Fair enough!

DSJR
31-08-2009, 17:20
Can I ask something?

I understand this new system is substantially simpler (?) than the old one and consumes less CPU time and saves HDD room (?). Might it be that the power-supply is worked less with the new system and makes the whole computer system more efficient?

Apologies if the above is a silly question, but I have an old XP based system here and when the USB bus was being over-worked, the thing seemed to almost seize up and we lost the wireless internet until the loading stopped, the CPU running 100% for ages until the loading calmed down. Replacing the hub for a powered one helped no end on this small and over-worked system.. Perhaps, if the OP's computer is having an easier time of it (the power-supply possibly), then the transmission of digits may just be made a smoother process with superior "timing."

Apologies again if I've completely lost the plot..

webby
31-08-2009, 21:54
Yes please!

If streamed audio sounds better because of Snow Leopard, then fine!

I do have the Snow Leopard upgrade coming from Apple, and I'm hoping that it might allow any audio to be streamed over an Airport Express, not just from iTunes, via the speaker select drop down thing at the bottom of the screen. It seems bizarre that my iTunes library played through Front Row cannot be streamed over the wireless network, when iTunes itself will do just that.

Can any Apple Geeks out there tell me if you can choose the audio output device in the System Preferences of Snow Leopard?


Shuggie, I'm sure there's something that can do this for you. I believe it's called Airfoil by Rogue Amoeba Software. Enjoy.

lovejoy
01-09-2009, 10:27
Can I ask something?

I understand this new system is substantially simpler (?) than the old one and consumes less CPU time and saves HDD room (?). Might it be that the power-supply is worked less with the new system and makes the whole computer system more efficient?

Apologies if the above is a silly question, but I have an old XP based system here and when the USB bus was being over-worked, the thing seemed to almost seize up and we lost the wireless internet until the loading stopped, the CPU running 100% for ages until the loading calmed down. Replacing the hub for a powered one helped no end on this small and over-worked system.. Perhaps, if the OP's computer is having an easier time of it (the power-supply possibly), then the transmission of digits may just be made a smoother process with superior "timing."

Apologies again if I've completely lost the plot..

No, I'd say it was a sound theory. There's probably a load of other things we haven't thought of that could be affecting it. My Mac is connected to my DAC via optical so it won't be down to an underpowered USB port.

You just reminded me of something I noticed whilst I was comparing the Mac with the PC for digital out a good while back..

I have the ability to tweak the voltage on my Beresford as I am using my own power supply with it. Whilst the PC sounded wonderful with the DAC at the standard 12V, it was only when I tweaked the voltage up to around 12.5 to 13V that the Mac could come anywhere near competing with it - again, both systems used optical connections.

ultraviolet
01-09-2009, 20:57
I got a mac mini a few weeks ago and I would say that the sound is not as crisp as my old pc with foobar. However another way of looking at it is the Mac has a more fluid quality to the sound. They both sound fairly good anyway so I won't complain. I'm getting Snow Leopard tomorrow so I'll report back on my findings.

The PC used coax whereas the mac uses optical so maybe it's not exactly a direct comparison. The SPDIF output from both systems is bit perfect - I've tested this by recording the SPDIF on my macbook and comparing the files with the output from my CD player (see Audiophile output on Mac OSX thread).

DSJR
01-09-2009, 21:56
I have the ability to tweak the voltage on my Beresford as I am using my own power supply with it. Whilst the PC sounded wonderful with the DAC at the standard 12V, it was only when I tweaked the voltage up to around 12.5 to 13V that the Mac could come anywhere near competing with it - again, both systems used optical connections.

I wonder what Stan would find if he was to measure the input sensitivity or rise-time of the digital inputs when the circuit is running at these two voltages??????

I doubt we'd have these troubles if what came out of the digital outs was a perfect squarewave shape.. I remember seeing the wave-form of some early players and they were awful - sloppy rise and tons of edgy ringing. No wonder early players had timing/jitter errors.....

ultraviolet
01-09-2009, 22:30
I think Stans dac double buffers the input so jitter on individual bits would be effectively removed. I suspect the sound may be affected by a longer period drift (technically still jitter I think) of the clock on the sending device.

My PC had a high accuracy crystal controlling the SPDIF output which only worked at one frequency of 44.1 kHz. The mac on the other hand doesn't have this and can work at several different frequencies, derived from some master system clock presumably?

I would hypothesize that the higher voltage wasn't affecting the jitter on individual bits in the digital domain but was allowing for a higher slew rate on the analogue output op-amp, thus compensating for the sloppy SPDIF clock with a bit more oomph on the output. Or something like that:)

lupo_yellow
02-09-2009, 14:43
Hi all,
I know I am new here, but I do have to agree with lovejoy. My music is being streamed to a Squeezebox Classic and I listen With Sennheiser 650's through Stans 7520 dac and I do think it sounds better than it did with the old Leopard.

Beechwoods
02-09-2009, 15:19
Hi Lupo - being new doesn't mean you have duff ears! It's good to hear that Lovejoy's early reports are finding corroboration from other members :)

Ammonite Acoustics
02-09-2009, 20:19
Shuggie, I'm sure there's something that can do this for you. I believe it's called Airfoil by Rogue Amoeba Software. Enjoy.

I upgraded to Snow Leopard today, without so much as a hiccup, let alone a snag. Also downloaded Airfoil to evaluate - it seems to work without any dramas, so thanks for the tip.

SteveW
03-09-2009, 07:12
I upgraded to Snow Leopard today, without so much as a hiccup, let alone a snag. Also downloaded Airfoil to evaluate - it seems to work without any dramas, so thanks for the tip.

The nice thing about Airfoil is that if you switch to 'system audio', it will stream anything thats on your computer, such as the BBC iplayer. Great for catching up on radio plays, specific programs etc. Of course it will stream Cog (to play FLAC), Spotify, etc etc.

Oh...and you can download Airfoil onto an ipod touch and pick up all the above.

Marco
03-09-2009, 08:17
Well it seems that lovejoy/Rich is not the only one 'fooling himself' with Snow Leopard, eh Chippy?

http://www.pinkfishmedia.net/forum/showthread.php?t=67905

That's not including all the good folks here too, of course, who've discovered the very same thing!

Remember what Einstein said - keep that mind open... ;)

Marco.

Spur07
03-09-2009, 09:02
Well it seems that lovejoy/Rich is not the only one 'fooling himself' with Snow Leopard, eh Chippy?

http://www.pinkfishmedia.net/forum/showthread.php?t=67905

That's not including all the good folks here too, of course, who've discovered the very same thing!

Remember what Einstein said - keep that mind open... ;)

Marco.

Yeah, I've been keeping track of the PFM thread - I think there's a similar one on the Naim forum also.

Marco
03-09-2009, 09:11
So many 'fools', so little time, eh? ;)

Marco.

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 13:26
Well it seems that lovejoy/Rich is not the only one 'fooling himself' with Snow Leopard, eh Chippy?

Don't want to get drawn into an argument here Marco - it's not my thread.

But as you mention it, 2 people (or 3 or 4 or 504) doesn't convince me that any perceived improvement actually exists... which is really what my previous posts are all about.

I just don't buy the "learn to trust your ears" argument at all, given that our ears are pretty lousy sensors in any absolute sense.

If people start saying they tried A and then B and then A again in some blind tests and they could reliably tell the difference and A is clearly superior, then I completely accept that. But the "I think it sounded a bit better" comments I find interesting, but not definitive and conclusive proof.

It's not that I am a natural skeptic about everything. I fully accept that all speakers sound different, and amplifiers and pre-amps and turntables and cd players and cassette decks. Even cables. But when people start saying that a stream of bits sounds different to another stream of bits (with the same jitter) it's such an extraordinary claim imho, that before I am to be convinced of it, I need extraordinary proof.

As you indicated in a previous post, maybe these are the wrong forums for me. As a matter of interest, you keep banging on about having an open mind. Is your mind open to the possibility that perhaps people are fooling themselves? Seriously, is that even a possibility for you?

Marco
04-09-2009, 13:35
Chippy,

Nope, not at all. My remarks were tongue-in-cheek.

Your opinion is as valid as anyone else's, and you're most welcome here. As long as you always express yourself as considerately as you just did, you'll be fine :)

Marco.

twelvebears
04-09-2009, 13:40
We've go two essentially identical Intel iMacs (one 20" one 24", otherwise identical age and spec down to HD size and make/amount of RAM), both accessing the same network drive via similar lengths of the same network cable, router etc.

I could probably get around to undertaking some direct A/B testing by simply swapping the optical cable into the Beresford, once my copy of Snow Leopard turns up and assuming I can be arsed to hump the machines around a bit.

Would that be useful?

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 14:11
Interesting perhaps twelvebears, but a load of hassle for you and to be honest it's probably not worth it.

The fact that people claim to hear differences between OS versions causes me to lose no sleep at all. Heck they may even be right. Personally, I find it very difficult to believe, but that doesn't really matter: it's not me sitting down enjoying their hifis. So long as everyone is happy, I seen no problem continuing as we are.

In my reply to Marco, I said that I don't care whether 504 people claim to hear something. This in fact was a lie. Of course I am swayed by what people say, and although 1 swallow does not make a summer, if you see 500 of them, you would have to start to think about brushing down the barbeque!

Steve Toy
04-09-2009, 15:06
Subjectivity + consensus = credibility. I agree that not every pair of ears can be trusted but this is a forum for trusted ears.

Ammonite Acoustics
04-09-2009, 15:23
................ given that our ears are pretty lousy sensors in any absolute sense.............

Pardon? As someone who happens to be formally qualified in the field of acoustics, I do know that the ears, combined with the brain, are the most excellent sensors in any sense, but we are all different from each other in the way the two work together. Musicians can have quite poor hearing by conventional audiometric criteria, but still perceive and resolve musical details to an extraordinary degree, but by objective criteria many are rather deaf.

Do not underestimate how much psychoacoustics contribute to what we (as individuals) hear. It's not just a question of decibels and two-dimensional waves.

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 15:37
Pardon? As someone who happens to be formally qualified in the field of acoustics, I do know that the ears, combined with the brain, are the most excellent sensors in any sense, but we are all different from each other in the way the two work together. Musicians can have quite poor hearing by conventional audiometric criteria, but still perceive and resolve musical details to an extraordinary degree, but by objective criteria many are rather deaf.

Do not underestimate how much psychoacoustics contribute to what we (as individuals) hear. It's not just a question of decibels and two-dimensional waves.

I think your last sentence *beautifully* argued in favour of what I just said.

SteveW
04-09-2009, 16:19
Oh Chippy, you silly billy. Come on...your tea is getting cold.

Ammonite Acoustics
04-09-2009, 16:32
You can read it that way if you wish; however the true meaning is that there is much to be understood about how we hear things, and in the context of this thread (and God knows how many others splattered over the Internet), there is no Right, nor Wrong - we are all correct in our own minds and happy with our own perceptions. Is this a Subjectivist v Objectivist argument? Not really - who knows what objective means in the context of home audio? That's a subject for an entirely different thread!

But, who am I to tell anyone else that they are wrong, on the basis of how I hear things? Who are you to tell others that "trusting their own ears" is wrong? A good sprinkling of understanding and humility goes a long way, and AoS is mostly an understanding, open-minded and good natured place. Having crossed a line or two in the AoS sand, I am keenly aware of the need to keep it that way.

Back to the subject of this thread, if someone states that Snow Leopard results in better sound quality because of the new core audio programming, then I'm happy to listen for myself and make up my own mind, secure in the knowledge that no amount of measuring is ever going to explain any difference. If it makes me want to listen to streamed music from my Mac, then I'll know that it's better than the old Leopard OSX.

Marco
04-09-2009, 16:47
But, who am I to tell anyone else that they are wrong, on the basis of how I hear things? Who are you to tell others that "trusting their own ears" is wrong? A good sprinkling of understanding and humility goes a long way, and AoS is mostly an understanding, open-minded and good natured place.


Excellent post, Shuggs. I could easily highlight all of it. However, the bit in bold is spot-on and shows that you really understand what AOS is all about; which to be fair, Chippy appears to be picking up fast! ;)

It's interesting to note that some of our regulars have recently 'dipped their toes' into the waters of other forums, whilst in search of certain information, and sensed the aggression and 'niggle' amongst members which is part and parcel of the accepted 'vibe' - and then on returning here, appreciating the complete absence of such... This pleases me greatly as it's exactly what we set out to achieve.

Whatever this forum becomes in future, it will always remain a place where people (and their opinions) are treated with due respect and courtesy, and where the accent is on friendliness and people having fun during their journeys in audio.

Marco.

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 16:54
Shuggie, I accept none of your criticisms.

My opinion - and it is only that - is what it is and I have merely stated it. Nothing more, nothing less. For some reason there are those that seem to think this is some sort of personal assault.

I didn't tell anyone that "trusting there own ears is wrong". I merely stated that it's not a very reliable test in my opinion. Or am I not allowed an opinion?

I will say no more on this matter. I made a light hearted posting above to lighten the mood but some seem hell bent on dragging it down into a row again. I'm not going being drawn into it.

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 16:57
Excellent post, Shuggs. I could easily highlight all of it. However, the bit in bold is spot-on and shows that you really do understand what AOS is all about; which to be fair, Chippy appears to be picking up fast! ;)

Marco.

I don't read his post like that Marco. He is basically telling me to show some humility, and I resent that. I have posted nothing to warrant any rebuke or to be told about showing humility. I think he has a bit of a cheek if I am honest.

Marco
04-09-2009, 17:10
Chippy,

Well maybe that's because I know Shuggs quite well - and you don't. It's easier to interpret the intent behind someone's posts when you understand their way of thinking :)

I suspect that Shuggs was referring to your earlier quip about people "fooling themselves", and drew a similar inference with your mentioning of trusting ones ears. However, I think that particular aspect of the discussion has been dealt with quite sufficiently, so I suggest we now all get back to the original thread topic.

Marco.

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 17:20
So I suggest we now all get back to the original thread topic.

Marco.

Happily so.

Ammonite Acoustics
04-09-2009, 18:12
Chippy

I'm sorry if I have niggled or offended you - that was not my intention, rather to present a balanced viewpoint.

Regarding the original topic of this thread, I'm actually quite excited about giving streamed digital audio another try. I used a Squeezebox 3 for some time, and while it was not the ultimate in HiFi, it was very convenient, as long as the host PC was turned on. I particularly liked having Alien BBC on hand, for Listen Again etc. When I changed to a Mac, I found that Squeezecenter worked OK, but I could not get Alien BBC to work (actually I could not understand the installation instructions for the Mac), so I stopped using it. The iMac is virtually silent, though, and I tried streaming optical digital from that to my amp. It worked, but there was nothing about the sound that gripped me, and I went back to little silver and big black discs. So now, maybe, with Snow Leopard things will be different. I hope so!

Chippy_boy
04-09-2009, 20:13
Chippy

I'm sorry if I have niggled or offended you - that was not my intention, rather to present a balanced viewpoint.

Big of you to apologize, and I am sorry for perhaps over reacting.

Glad we're all mates here really :-)

I hope you start getting the sound from your Mac that you desire.

ultraviolet
04-09-2009, 22:22
I've just installed snow leopard and on first listen I don't think I can hear much difference in the sound quality. What hardware are you guys using?

sburrell
12-09-2009, 23:29
Hi there,

Just thought I'd add my two cents. I haven't noticed any improvement in sound quality since I upgraded (fresh install, not an archive and install).

By the way, call me crazy, but I could've sworn Audio Midi Setup offered 32-bit output now, but it seems to have disappeared since I noticed it just after installing. It showed up on a MacBook Pro I was playing with in an Apple Store as well, and I drew a staff member's attention to it. Funny I can't find it now. Am I crazy or did someone else notice this?