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PuritéAudio

Science and Subjectivism by Douglas Self

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Super Dealer

This piece was written by Douglas Self in 1988.

http://www.douglas-self.com/ampins/pseudo/subjectv.htm

Keith

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Depressingly familiar stuff albeit old now, so forgivable. Whilst I agree with much of what he says there is neither a passing acknowledgement that there might be limits to the applicability of linear measurement technique when it comes to psycho-acoustics, nor acceptance of the errors and omissions of many of the previous generation of engineers who produced products that met the required tests of the time but never the less sounded rough, and who can be pointed to as those whose unenquiring lack of subjective assessment allowed the rise of the rampant subjectivist press.

At the end of the day there's little point in arguing the toss since studio electronics exist to deliver a designed and consistent product, consumer electronics exist to deliver pleasure howsoever it might be achieved.

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I almost fell asleep half way through, so decided to listen to some music instead.

Was a much better use of life hours than reading that waffle.

Edited by The Chronicals
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got a third of the way through that and had to check the authors name, was it Doug Self, or Self Harm

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24 minutes ago, dudywoxer said:

got a third of the way through that and had to check the authors name, was it Doug Self, or Self Harm

Codename "Brexit"?

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20 minutes ago, tuga said:

Codename "Brexit"?

Codename - "Cockwomble"

Edited by The Chronicals
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7 hours ago, PuritéAudio said:

This piece was written by Douglas Self in 1988.

http://www.douglas-self.com/ampins/pseudo/subjectv.htm

Keith

I tend to believe that anything with a background of graph paper is scientific and must be true.

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I don’t want to meet the chef (or have to give a toss who he/she is) after a great meal. They should stay in the kitchen and away from television cameras and book signings.

Once they get famous they treble the price of your meal and treble the size of their egos and start cooking for Michelin inspectors and trendy critics rather than trying to tempt you back again and again. 

Same with the people who design loudspeakers, amplifiers, cars, washing machines, vacuum cleaners, televisions etc. Do your job well and people will buy the product. I don’t want to know your name, or your ‘philosophy’ on anything.

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Pushing the old Williamson article from Wireless World from the late 40s. All amplifiers met these criteria 50 years ago so they have sounded the same for 50 years. Yea really.

Put on some more music.

30 years old Self article and zzzzzzzttttttt .

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IMHO, FWIW, I square this circle by being totally committed to the scientific method and measurement, whilst accepting that where we actually experience music is not at the sound wave interface point (our ears!) but somewhere in our brain.

Once the signal is in our brain it then interacts with all of our personal experiences, prejudices, memories, moods and emotions, in some kind of electro-chemical way. As such, having the recorded signal reproduced as accurately as possible as a sound wave may or may not lead to the most enjoyment of the underlying music. The whole thing is a subjective experience and the whole of one's mind is involved in that experience and will contribute to, or detract from, it in many and varied ways.

Personally, knowing that the sound wave has been reproduced as accurately as I can afford to do it is part of the enjoyment for me, so looking for products with flat frequency response and low THD and the like gives me a kick, although when it comes to speakers and rooms, who knows! Plus for me, using cheap as chips interconnects and speaker cable doesn't bother me, just as for someone else, using very specific and particular cables and interconnects will be an important part of their overall experience.

Not meaning to be contentious, it's just the way I look at it all. :)

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6 minutes ago, v1nn1e said:

Personally, knowing that the sound wave has been reproduced as accurately as I can afford to do it is part of the enjoyment for me, so looking for products with flat frequency response and low THD and the like gives me a kick, although when it comes to speakers and rooms, who knows!

You might want to rethink that.  http://www.audiopax.com/e/pdfs/artigos/Whysingle-endedtubeamplifiers.pdf

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Ha, no, really, I'm Nigel under the name v1nn1e! :)

If I understood the article correctly, IMHO, it seems to illustrate the point I was (perhaps not very clearly) trying to make regarding musical enjoyment being in our brains.

It seems that these kinds of valve amps introduce a certain amount of distortion, so my understanding would be that the sound wave at the ear would not bear as close a resemblance to the recorded signal as it might from another kind of amplifier (apologies if I misunderstood something here). However, when that signal gets in to the brain and mixes with someone's previous experience of valve amps, the visual aspect of the valve amp, the knowledge of who had designed it and why, and so on and so on, someone might find the musical experience more enjoyable than a sound wave that had come via a  different amplifier that bore a closer resemblance to the original recorded signal, but didn't use valves, or used different valves, or looked different, or had been designed with a different ethos, etc.

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