radiant red

Measurements, Compatibility and Ears 👂

Recommended Posts

Super Wammer
Posted (edited)

The word Measurement is beginning to annoy me.. 

whilst I appreciate that we must check compatibility of products when choosing kit, surely, that’s what it is.... compatibility... the only measurement I do is measure how big it is.. will it fit.. 

I was reading a very nice review someone did of the Harbeth C7-ES3 on the Harbeth forum and how excited he was about his purchase and as the thread went on, it turned into a slagging match about ‘Measurements’ including Alan Shaw.. the thread was totally lost and the point overlooked which was how they sounded!!! 

I HATE the word MEASUREMENT!! it interferes with how it sounds.... to the ears!!! Yes, the final part of the jigsaw.... EARS!

Edited by radiant red
  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Super Wammer
5 minutes ago, radiant red said:

The word Measurement is beginning to annoy me.. 

whilst I appreciate that we must check compatibility of products when choosing kit, surely, that’s what it is.... compatibility... the only measurement I do is measure how big it is.. will it fit.. 

I was reading a very nice review someone did of the Harbeth C7-ES3 on the Harbeth forum and how excited he was about his purchase and as the thread went on, it turned into a slagging match about ‘Measurements’ including Alan Shaw.. the thread was totally lost and the point overlooked which was how they sounded!!! 

I HATE the word MEASUREMENT!! it interferes with how it sounds.... to the ears!!! Yes, the final part of the jigsaw.... EARS!

Have you had your ears tested/measured? :D

  • Haha 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Super Wammer
1 minute ago, Old Git said:

Have you had your ears tested/measured? :D

Tested yes... 😜

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Super Wammer
1 minute ago, radiant red said:

Tested yes... 😜

How did they test them? Someone shouting...or? :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I'm an old bugger and get lost with all the graphs troughs hi lows etc etc I've seen some real bad comments on Bowers and wilkins speakers again on measurements saying how crap they measure still doesn't affect the amount of people buying and loving the sound of them I agree if the sound you hear makes you happy that's all that matters not some other mad hatter obsessed with measuring everything lol.

Edited by Andywilliams
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, radiant red said:

The word Measurement is beginning to annoy me.. 

whilst I appreciate that we must check compatibility of products when choosing kit, surely, that’s what it is.... compatibility... the only measurement I do is measure how big it is.. will it fit.. 

I was reading a very nice review someone did of the Harbeth C7-ES3 on the Harbeth forum and how excited he was about his purchase and as the thread went on, it turned into a slagging match about ‘Measurements’ including Alan Shaw.. the thread was totally lost and the point overlooked which was how they sounded!!! 

I HATE the word MEASUREMENT!! it interferes with how it sounds.... to the ears!!! Yes, the final part of the jigsaw.... EARS!

the sound of reason 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Super Wammer
3 minutes ago, Andywilliams said:

I'm an old bugger and get lost with all the graphs troughs hi lows etc etc I've seen some real bad comments on Bowers and wilkins speakers again on measurements saying how crap they measure still doesn't affect the amount of people buying and loving the sound of them I agree if the sound you hear makes you happy that's all that matters not some other mad chatter obsessed with measuring everything lol.

Oh, I’m pretty much the same, if it sounds good, it is good. I think the problem arises when folks claim that ‘x’ cable sounds better that ‘y’ cable, for instance. Or, when one amp sounds better than another. That’s when the more technically minded get involved. Myself, I find the logic of the measurists hard to argue with. I mean, if it can be heard, surely it can be measured? Are our senses really better than measurements? If that was the case, why can’t we sense earthquakes half way round the world like instruments can? (Yes, I know I’m being extreme, just pointing out that our senses aren’t necessary all we think they are). I should say that I’m not technically minded, so much/most goes over my head, but oh, that logic...

  • Like 1
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oz Clarke springs to mind - when asked how do you tell a good wine from a bad one his answer was "if you like it it is a good wine and if you don't then it is a bad wine".   If it sounds great to your ears then for me why bother with measurements?  However, when looking to choose a new piece of equipment I will have a look at the specs and graphs to ensure it is not going to add or take anything away and as for loudspeakers over many years I have found that I rarely, if ever, look at the measurements unless when I listen there is something I do not like and the graphs may point out why.

Perhaps I am just lucky - my amp measures great, the preamp measures great, the speakers measure great, and the turntable specs are great, the arm specs are great and the cartridge well it is a Decca so it does not measure great compared to some due to its compliance,  but my god it sounds totally out of this world 99.9% of the time.  I guess for the guys who push measurement as the B all and End All this would appear to be confirmation that measurements matter (i.e. if it did not measure well it wouldn't sound great), however, I have heard some systems and kit that measure terrible and still manage to sound great (whether they sound accurate or not god knows but they had my feet tapping).  

At the end of the day if your ears tell you it sounds great who gives a flying fig about measurement :) 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, radiant red said:

The word Measurement is beginning to annoy me.. 

whilst I appreciate that we must check compatibility of products when choosing kit, surely, that’s what it is.... compatibility... the only measurement I do is measure how big it is.. will it fit.. 

I was reading a very nice review someone did of the Harbeth C7-ES3 on the Harbeth forum and how excited he was about his purchase and as the thread went on, it turned into a slagging match about ‘Measurements’ including Alan Shaw.. the thread was totally lost and the point overlooked which was how they sounded!!! 

I HATE the word MEASUREMENT!! it interferes with how it sounds.... to the ears!!! Yes, the final part of the jigsaw.... EARS!

What about reviews, do they interfere with how it sounds... to the ears?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Oh no, not the same debate again, again, again and again.  Surely it's all about balance and choice. Some put ears first, some measurements, or put another way, whatever personally suits yourself best. Is there a right or wrong? Whilst on the subject of subjective, questionable and possibly poinless debate, who was the best, the  Beatles or the Stones?

Edited by wHIZZY
  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I'm happy for people to go by ear. They can report what they thought they heard**. It's when somebody commands other people do what they do with non-scientific anecdotes that I feel it crosses the line. Generally, if people try a bit of kit and say what they perceived from it (which is subjective), then as more people experience the same it either would seem to indicate hype/hysteria or possibly something concrete that should be worth a try. But I do believe that objective measurements can explain differences if they are definitively present. However, since we fool ourselves with cognitive biases so frequently, I feel we can only then go to more controlled testing to see if we still experience the same.

Unlike some objectivists, I do not feel that all measurements tell the story of how something will sound. There are a lot of non-correlations of non-linear distortion to subjective perception of quality. As such, it's not always so simple as choosing the better measuring unit - especially if ones type of music to listen to is preferred to be listened to with a modicum of some type of distortion. What I try to do is simply get a balance of well measuring source component and personally perceived quality, and then try to ensure that things like SNR and THD are kept as high/low respectively throughout the rest of the audio chain.

** Collectively, when we're not able to measure everything in this hobby (or don't care about measurements at all), it is interesting to see if people gravitate towards particular brands, a particular product or something else. I guess we all use this to some extent to find something we too might like. For starters, nobody is going to go listen to something that seems universally disliked. Equally, I believe we are more prone to purchase items that are quite universally praised because we want to know there'll be a market if we sell such an item later. There are of course exceptions.

Edited by Metatron
  • Upvote 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Moderator

The mass hype is most certainly true, and I can remember more than a few instances over the years.

Does anyone else remember the T-amp fun? People posting all over the place telling everyone how those £50 matchbox-size amps sounded better than any £5000 equivalent, followed by loads more people agreeing. Well, one or two of us didn't buy into the hype, but did buy one for the hell of it and said straight away that they were exactly what you'd expect (crap). There wasn't any point in measuring one.

Measurements have their place. I don't overly worry, except for things like matching a cartridge/phono/SUT, where precise measurements are absolutely essential. However, if something sounds 'wrong' when in all probability it ought to sound right, then I'm happy to get out some testing gear to find out why.

As for the old 'night and day', 'veils lifted', 'even the wife heard it' malarkey, I'm afraid I am all too well aware of how easily the human mind can be fooled into believing something is different when it isn't. People from magicians to con artists have been making a living out of this for centuries and in this 'industry', many still are...

  • Like 2
  • Upvote 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Super Wammer

Still, it’s how it sounds is the most important. All the measurements in the world won’t make me buy on that basis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Super Dealer

Equipment sounds good because it measures well.

Keith

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.