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Archive through April 09, 2005

 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 14
Registered: Mar-05
Don't know if this has already been posted on this forum but I found this today and loved it --- though some parts of it I found a little hard to swallow like him saying CDs are always better sounding than LPs.

The guy's writing style is awesome, a true pleasure to read through, which is rare in audio writing. I love his no-nonsense, let's-cut-through-all-the-horsesh*t and call-a-spade-a-spade approach...especially the emphasis on AXB testing.

http://www.theaudiocritic.com/cwo/Sample_Articles/
 

Silver Member
Username: Rick_b

New York USA

Post Number: 985
Registered: Dec-03
The man has no ear at all...................
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 34
Registered: Feb-05
Makes perfect sense to me. You do need some surge protection however. E. Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

Silver Member
Username: Gavincumm

Post Number: 145
Registered: Feb-05
glad to see you registered finally edster... lol


yeah... I liked that as well. I have on more than one event told a salesman that I am not interested in power conditioners because I have been told by a few local 'philes that they are not really necessary.

I do agree with an excellent surge protector though.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 135
Registered: Feb-05
Hey Edster, that does make for good reading. I must however agree with Rick that the man has no ear at all. Certainly some of the audiophile mumbo jumbo is exactly that, but other canons in the belief system are well founded. I can easily hear the difference in some cables, not all. I am in total agreement that the investment in cables bears absolutely no relationship to the outcome. You just have to read the recent "to-do" in a prominent audio mag about home depot extension cord to understand that. So to sum up; I believe that there is a difference in the sound of cables, but that difference does not correlate to price/performance ratio. I hope someday I get to hear those Ascends.
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1622
Registered: Aug-04
Just another guy with his own opinions. On each of the topics he opines, about 50% would agree and the other 50% won't. So who's gonna be the sheriff?

My own experience tells me speaker cable and bi-wiring can make subtle differences (the bi-wiring improvement could account for the removal of poor quality bridging straps). I haven't been game to spend big on exotic interconnects - escpecially considering one could by a decent speaker for the same price - in some cases: a complete high end system!

The point is: if a tweak works for you, then it works for you. Others don't have a chair in your listening room. If you are satisfied you get the return in audio improvement over money spent then that's all that matters.

Tubes vs transistors, cd's vs lp's - it's all very subjective depending on personal preferences, equipment and equipment matching. The one person who could possible give an opinion worth listening to is the one who has heard them all and has absolutely nothing to gain, except experience, for doing so.


 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 137
Registered: Feb-05
Well said! All we have is our ears and our perception of what ours hear. No one is right or wrong. We're just expressing what we believe based on our own experiences.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 15
Registered: Mar-05
Gavin,

yeah, seeing some imposter post as "mauimusicman" did it for me. Wonder how long till I get "silver" and then "gold" status, hehe!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 16
Registered: Mar-05
Arthur,

Check out the Ascend forum on the ascendacoustics.com site, you should be able to find an Ascend owner in your area or at worst within an hour or two's drive. Would love to hear your thoughts comparing it to your Paradigms.

Also if you have a link to that article about home depot extension cord, please post it...sounds familiar but not sure if I've read it or not.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Edster922

Abubala, Ababala The Occupation

Post Number: 17
Registered: Mar-05
My Rantz,

all the same, I'd be VERY curious to see the result of blind testing of self-described audiophiles for a wide price range of speakers, receivers, and CD players...AND of people who describe themselves as non-audio types.

Now THAT is something I'd gladly actually pay admission to see!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 36
Registered: Feb-05
It doesn't matter if the man can hear 20Hz to 20KHz or is tone deaf. There is no sonic diffrence between cables and speaker wire. The only diffrence between cables and speaker wire are micro level parameters such as impedence,inductance,and resistance. The only way there could be a diffrence between wires and cable is if one out a group being compared were poorly designed and did not adhere to fundamental engineering principles. These diffrences you think you can hear are a preconditioning in your mind to expect a diffrent outcome when comparing wire and interconnects. The audio industry uses highly sophisticated and very accurate listening devices such as the sound analyzer which is capable of a thousand times the sensitivity of good human hearing. Many well respected audio engineering professionals have used this device to test speaker wire and cable time and time again to conclude that there is no audible diffrence amoung wire and cables with no particular brand offering a "sonic signature" unless it is poorly designed as I mentioned earlier. Remember, there is nothing that can be heard by the human ear that cannot be measured. So If you really think you can hear a diffrence you should volunteer for an ABX test. I'm quite sure you would be really suprised at the outcome. E. Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

Anonymous
 
Id be very interested to see how many people like maui know the integral of e^x or better yet e^x^2.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 138
Registered: Feb-05
Edster, the home depot article was in an "Absolute Sound" about a year or so ago. I have it somewhere in the house I just can't find it now. I did find the aftermath in their recommended products october/november 2004 issue. Check this out for a laugh, I quote "This 14-gauge outdoor extension cable from Home Depot-the model designation (HD-14G) is Paul Seydor's own invention-renders music in a bold, forthright manner, lacking a bit of finesse and ultimate transparency, but with notably excellent imaging, realistic depth, and an overall lifelike presentation of considerable coherence". In the original article and subsequent letters to the editor all order of different configurations for this cable have been reported. Thought you might enjoy that.
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1623
Registered: Aug-04
Eric

This argument has been rehashed over and over in this forum and others. Experts, such as yourself, in the electronics fields have entered into these dicussions putting foward their opinions, with detailed explanations, both for and against the topics mentioned in the article. If you can sway anyone's opinion then good luck to you. Whether some tweak or device works or whether it's benefit is just plain psychological then so be it - it all comes back to consumer satisfaction.

I paid about $150AU for some Kimber speaker cable (12mts) and I heard subtle improvement over the old heavy Monster I was using. It wasn't worth the extra money because the Monster cable had been a gift. Had I paid for it, then yes, the extra money would have been worth it IMO. Was the difference psychological - I don't believe so, but then I have never been evaluated either!

 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
cables can sound different if they have different RLC values. those manufacturers that keep the RLC to a minimum (as they should be) should 'sound' the same.
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1624
Registered: Aug-04
Edster922,

"Now THAT is something I'd gladly actually pay admission to see! "

Maybe an idea for another reality TV show [grin].
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 37
Registered: Feb-05
Your right MY Rantz as I have participated in rather "heated" arguments in this forum on this subject as well as cable "burn in". I will say that your right it is TOTALLY psychological! I'm not really here to sway the opinions of some people on this forum as some people just simply do not understand physics and how electronics really work, nor will they ever. What I am looking to deconstruct are the terribly misguided viewpoints of that 1-2 percent out there you know the type "golden eared audiophiles" and salesmen who insist that they are better than you because the can afford speaker wire "x" at $50 per foot and resort to insulting you because you cannot afford it because their argument has no scientific credibility or basis. E.Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 140
Registered: Feb-05
Some things you just can't measure. At least by any means currently available. Someday perhaps we won't think that we know all there is to know presently.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 38
Registered: Feb-05
Yes Arthur some things cannot be measured but human hearing is not one of them. E.Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
if you're after musicality, then trust your ears. but when high fidelity is concerned, we should rely on measurements as much as possible.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 141
Registered: Feb-05
But our perception of our hearing is one of them. And I hope that you don't believe that we have learned all that we will about human hearing.
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
arthur, the brain interprets everything we hear. that's what makes things complicated.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 142
Registered: Feb-05
Precisely!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 39
Registered: Feb-05
No we probably haven't learned all that we can about human hearing but perception of hearing is an altogether diffrent matter as this deals with the brain not the ear canals. This moves into the study of the psychological. Maybe dogs can hear a diffrence between wire and cables. Just kidding! E. Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 132
Registered: Jan-05
Arthur, I wouldnt say it is so much a question of how we perceive sound; it is a matter of whether or not the sound was reproduced to a high degree of precision as compared with the original. That is what hi-fi is all about, no?
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 143
Registered: Feb-05
I would agree with that Stealth. But as I see it, it is our perception of both that matters. Ever notice how much different things taste when your sick as opposed to well. The food didn't change flavors but your perception of it's flavor did. In the real world we can't seperate the two.
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
arthur,

precisely. so, if we perceive to hear something different doesn't mean that there is something different :-) and vice versa. so we can't just rely on our hearing when hifi is concerned.
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
arthur,

w/ regards to your analogy, it is the cables that are held variable. when measuring something, everything else should be constant except the object in question, in this case, the cables. our perceptions vary every time, all the time and therefore should not be used unless in a bias controlled DBT.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 145
Registered: Feb-05
Ah that's when memory gets involved. We could go on about this forever. Suffice it to say that we will all never agree but it always makes for great conversation. Thanks for participating in a civilized way.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 41
Registered: Feb-05
Once again this is all psychological. The food tastes different because there are chemical disturbances in our sensory organs when we are sick which means that there are real physical factors at work. Anyway we are straying from the subject at hand "top Ten Audio Lies". This is one of the best articles ever published about the truth in audio. If anyone wants to ignore the scientific "truths" about audio conveyed by this author then that is your perrogative. The fact is this that many well repected veteran audio engineers using sophisticated ultra precise instruments that are far beyond the capabilities of good human hearing have measured no audible diffrence amoung many diffrent brands of speaker wire and interconnect audio cables and concluded that no difference exists,or at least none that can be heard with human hearing. Audio is not magic people it is hard science, and given this fact scientific testing and measurment is the bottom line. E.Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1625
Registered: Aug-04
Eric

So your choice to use Monster and Acoustic Research brands over generic wire and interconnects was why?

 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
my rantz,

im not eric but if monster or ar or any other branded cable keep their cable's RLCs at minimum and dress them nicely and i have the money, i'd get them.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 149
Registered: Feb-05
Intstruments don't hear, they measure sound. There is a difference. My Rantz has a point.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 42
Registered: Feb-05
For decent shielding as most generics are simply a crappy rg59 cable with cheap rca's at each end. Also I chose Monster navaho 12AWG because I got a super deal on it at CircuitCity because it was mismarked. I got it for 60 cents a foot when it normally sells for $1.60 per foot. I am running 12AWG generic zipcord for my surround speakers. Just for fun I switched the monster to the surrounds and the zipcord to the front,just as I expected no diffrence. I buy my cables from www.accessories4less.com so I pay only a dollar or more for AR cables about $6-7 as opposed to cheapo Radio shack cables which are about $4-5 At the time I could have bought a nice Tributaries cable for $100 but I am smart enough to know that there would not be a difference and I chose a wiser path to put this extra dough into a sub E.Ramsey AAs industrial electronics
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1626
Registered: Aug-04
Thanks bumblebee and I'm inclined to agree but I am interested, given his position on cables, why Eric chooses the more expensive speaker wire and intereconnects over the generic stuff which he claims is just as good - as does the author of Top Ten Audio Lies.

I'm not trying to be funny - just interested in his reason, because it's obviously not because they offer any improvement to his system.
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1627
Registered: Aug-04
Sorry Eric. our posts crossed. I accept your reason for your cable choices and I respect your opinions. Thanks.

As I said previously, experts in the field have educated opinions for and against these arguments. I'm not an expert but I do know what I hear - or what I think I hear - so that'll have do me.

 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 43
Registered: Feb-05
I believe I just told you why My Rantz! If I didn't get the Monster for such a good deal I would have used the same generic zipcord for my front speakers as well,besides the Monsters are heavily shielded, this is a plus. Bumblebee go to www.audioholics.com for a good comparison and test of speaker wire. E.Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
arthur,

the fact that those instruments doesn't have a brain like ours to interpret what is fed to them makes them very reliable :-) give them 0 and they'll output 0. every time, all the time. unless they're broke :-)
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 150
Registered: Feb-05
Instruments are reliable to measure sound. I don't buy speakers to measure sound, I buy them to listen to using my ears which just happen to be hooked up to my brain. A.Kyle Social Worker (what's with that).
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
arthur,

the brain tells us what we hear not the ears. loud for me may not be so for you. bright for me may not hold true for you.

eric,

been to audioholics. nice site :-) and about the AAS thing, quite intimidating :-)

 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 151
Registered: Feb-05
Sounds like we are saying the same thing but for different reasons. Yes the brain tells us what we hear not our ears or an instrument. Yeah, audioholics is a nice site. Audioasylum would be too if it weren't so difficult to navigate. Very interesting discussions though.
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 133
Registered: Jan-05
I believe that most would hold that a bit of both listening (preferably in ABX fashion) and looking at (unaltered) measurements would probably yield the best results in the end.
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1628
Registered: Aug-04
Eric,
I got you loud and clear! Just in case you missed it - I repeat: our posts crossed. Your explanation was accepted okay?

BTW - Who made Audioholics the audio gods - they have their opinions like many others. Who's next, Rodger Russell?

 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
audioholics back their claims w/ a lot of numbers and equations. audioasymlum is good for reviews. just don't try to contradict their views. you'll have your posts deleted, worse be banned.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 44
Registered: Feb-05
The AAS stands for my associates degree in industrial electronics technology bumblebee. My Rantz, sorry I put in the posting before yours was available to read, after all you are in Australia and I'm here in the US there is a time lag differential. The audioholics site is very good and informative and hopefully with it's considerable amount of actual testing rather than just an audiophile type opinion my clear up some common misconceptions about speaker wire and cables which is rampant amoung this forum. Yes they do have their opinions but they have done extensive testing as well. The fact is that most of the audio engineering community stands behind what Mr. Gene Della Salla has stated and concluded in his website. E.Ramsey AAS industrial electronics
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 134
Registered: Jan-05
My Rantz, I would bet money that Roger Russell has a superior understanding of how speakers operate and how they interface with speaker wire than anyone who has posted on this thread thus far.
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
eric,

thanks for the info. but is it ok if you just pull it out? others may not feel comfortable w/ it. :-)
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 45
Registered: Feb-05
Ok bumblebee I will not use it for this particular thread. But why the discomfort? I am not an audio engineer, I'm an industrial electrician-robotic technician E.Ramsey
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
eric,

no problem at all. it's just that others may not feel as i do. especially w/ topics like this :-)

peace :-)
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1629
Registered: Aug-04
Stealth C

I wouldn't bet, but I do respect people like Russell and the opinion of many others. I don't say I'm right nor do I say the others are. I am not qualified to dictate, but not too many know absolutely everything there is about the science of sound. All I know is what I have heard from my own experience and, as I have stated before, differences weren't earth shattering but they were noticable, subtle - yes and better - yes. If it works or you think it works and you think the cost ratio is worth it, then there's really no argument - except from those who simply must.

Eric,

I don't think your qualifications should cause anyone discomfort, it's just showing them could be seen by some as thinking you know everything because of your qualifactions. I been to doctors that have gotten it wrong, I know of lawyers who have gotten it wrong and I know of mechnaical engineers who have gotten it wrong. Doesn't mean you're wrong though - I just wouldn't know.

Cheers


 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 136
Registered: Jan-05
My Rantz, Im not questioning your experiences, but from your statement above it sounded like you thought Russell was some guy off the street who decided to make a website about speaker wire. I just wished to clarify that.
 

Silver Member
Username: Touche6784

Post Number: 239
Registered: Nov-04
that was an interesting reading.
point#1- i totally agree. give me something scientific that can make a good arguement.
point#2- no idea what he is talking about.
point#3- digital may be bullet proof, but you still have to convert it to a signal for an amp to send to speakers. conversion can be good or it can be bad just like i would assume for lps, or other sources. the reasoning may be that the coversion is less prone to distortion or error of conversion. i dont know how DACs specifically work or most of the A/V electronics work in a detailed level so dont attack me for unintelligible ramblings.
point#4- i couldnt figure out if he was for it or against it. i think there is a bit of room for arguement outside of the ones he gave in his article. i know some people here are adamant that they are invalid and they do make good points. but in the end i think that there should be something distinguishable between good speakers. if there arent then i dont understand why speakers are made is such different ways with quite a range of materials.
point#5- never heard of it.
point#6- i agree totally. again, nothing scientific has been given to prove othewise.
point#7- i tried it out but am not quite sure of the results. if there was an improvement i may have just been missing it. if the logic that bi-wiring somehow manages to deliver the signal to the tweeter and bass driver separately provides "cleaner" signal to both than i might be more convinced, but that gets into whether or not there really is a mixing.
point#8- dont really have experience with this aspect of audio but i would never dare connect any of my electronic equipment regardless of sensitivity without some surge protection. if something breaks i can always use that insurance or whatever is provided by the power strip manufacturer.
point#9- ive heard of this being done but never really got into the debate of it.
point#10- this to me is the most offensive part of audio. i know people on both sides of the cable issue are upset when people tell them what they are and are not supposed to be hearing so someone claiming they have hearing that is superhuman is just as offensive. if you can hear differences between different say reeds of a clarinet than that is great. but i have issue with people shoving on about phase issues, i am sure some of you know who i am talking about though i do at times admire his knowledge, or other things and try to act as if their knowlegde base is so high that there is no challanging them. i think the article addresses it well that those with the knowledge and awareness can address things that others may not be able to perceive and i think that goes for all the senses.
the author of the article mentions about tubes being deliberate coloration so i wonder what he would think about differences in speakers and A/V equipement in regards to "warm, bright, neutral".
 

Gold Member
Username: Myrantz

Qld Australia

Post Number: 1630
Registered: Aug-04
FYI - interesting points from B&W speakers.

Look in the FAQS for "What speaker cables should I use" and "Bi-wiring and bi-amping"

http://www.bwspeakers.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/local.faq

 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
http://www.bryston.ca/cablememo.html
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 152
Registered: Feb-05
Tubes are coloration and so is every other characteristic of audio equipment. The question is which color do you prefer? Most great speaker manufacturers make a flagship speaker costing between $5000 and $125,000. Each of those speakers are claimed to sound more like the real thing than any ever made, and most of them sound very good. However they all sound different, and often very different. Conclusion, at the very least all but one of the manufacturers is wrong and even more likely they are all wrong. Again the question is, what color do you prefer?
 

Silver Member
Username: Rick_b

New York USA

Post Number: 987
Registered: Dec-03
Gentlemen,

Let me share a quote posted by a friend on another thread.

"if it measures good and sounds bad -- it is bad. If it sounds good and measures bad -- you've measured the wrong thing."

Daniel von Recklinghausen
Chief Engineer H. H. Scott
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 154
Registered: Feb-05
Well done Rick!
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3286
Registered: May-04


"Conclusion, at the very least all but one of the manufacturers is wrong and even more likely they are all wrong. Again the question is, what color do you prefer?"

Mr. Kyle, you are only half right. Of course every speaker that every manufacturer considers their reference product sounds, to some extent, unlike a competitor's reference speaker. Firstly, if you think someone else's product has perfectly filled the bill, why would you go to the effort of building your own reference speaker. Secondly, Mr. Kyle, it would appear you have never heard the difference between a Steinway and a Yamaha piano. Every instrument maker has their "sound". Every instrument played in every performance hall sounds different. The same instrument played in a different performance space will sound unlike the performance space immediately preceding or following. Everyone who attends a performance and prefers a different seating location in the hall will hear a different sound. Can you say only one is right and all the others are wrong?

It is not a question of which is right but rather, as you have suggested in your own statement, a matter of which "color" do you prefer. If you take three different reference products from any portion of audio; speakers, amplifiers, cartridges, etc., you will find the presentational style changes between the three. Some product designers prefer a very macro-dynamic presentation while others offer micro-dynamics. (Klipsch vs. Wilson.) Some suggest a middle of the hall seating while others place you up front. (Krell vs. Audio Research.) Some go for detail (Koetsu) while others go for spatial cohesion (Grado). Some for bass extension (McIntosh) and others for high frequency smoothness (Quad).

The ability of a designer to design and a reviewer to hear the different characteristics they prefer can hardly be considered wrong. To assume there is only one correct sound is ludicrous in the extreme. What the designer, the reviewer and the buyer should be looking for is the sound of music itself and that is nothing more than a purely personal preference. If a product sounds musical to the ear, there is no one who can claim superiority in judging the decision. That is not to say there can be no disagreement about the values of the decision. There are indeed products many people can agree fall far short of the goal of accuracy; but Bose keeps on selling despite that fact. It all comes down to the final arbitter being there are no absolutes when music is concerned.

By the way, the "10 Lies" article is pure horse hockey and is more insulting than informative.


 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3287
Registered: May-04


Can anyone explain to me why the respondents on this forum that claim no difference exists between amplifiers, or cables, or what have you, will always have a "better" product they got because they received such a tremendous "deal" on its purchase. If they truly believed in their convictions, wouldn't they reject anything but the most basic products despite the cost? Wouldn't they all own JVC's and no name speakers?

Or is this a matter of not being willing to sell your integrity for the difference in retail price between a piece of crap and a good product, but if the good product can be had for less (or the retailer screwed out of the difference) then the matter of integrity is moot. Don't sell your pride for $100 but go ahead if it will only cost you $10.

Or are we back to picking components based on their remote controls?


 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 137
Registered: Jan-05
Jan, there are other factors beyond pure performance to the typical consumer. Availability, physical looks, and brand recognition all do play a part. If a "better" product is only marginally more expensive than the generic, more attractive (Monster certainly looks better than a lot of the cheap wiring around), more easily obtained than the generic (potentially requiring less time costs), and a major brand name (as opposed to a no-name with no reputation in terms of reliability, quality of build, etc), most would probably say that it would be worthwhile to go with the "better" product.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3291
Registered: May-04


Stealth - As a salesperson I have dealt with all of the above exceptions and I never told anyone they couldn't buy a product because I didn't approve of it. Everyone is free to spend their money the way they see fit. There are things that a salesperson just cannot overcome when it becomes a decision based on appearance or how the remote feels in someone's hand. (But is that how you want to pick your hifi? If so, those people must read Consumer Reports at the library to save the cost of the subscription.)

And no amount of persuasion can convince a young male his friends will be impressed by that little 2.5 watt tube amp when they all have 2,000 watt home theater systems. Or a young lady who trusts her Bose owning friends more than a helpful salesperson and her own ears.

So what is the "typical consumer"? They probably don't exist on this forum to any great extent. The average consumer doesn't have a clue about separate components and would think someone insane to spend what the average cost of components amounts to for an ecoustics member. The average consumer doesn't concern themself with what subwoofer cable sounds best. So if you are reading this thread, I doubt you qualify as a "typical consumer".

If we just look at the statement there is no difference between 12AWG zip cord and an esoteric speaker cable, I don't think your argument would hold up. If you don't think there is a difference in cables, then you don't think there is a difference in cables. That's the end of the argument. Why spend ANY extra money if there is NO difference?

It's hard to argue that zip cord is not available in more locations than Monster Cable (and it's so ubiquitous it will probably soon be sold at 7-11). As to brand recognition; who hasn't heard of lamp cord? My grandmother knew what that is.

As to no name, no reputation products, someone had to be the first to buy a Monster Cable. Or a Honda Civic. Or a California wine. That's part of what audiophiles do; they search out the little guy who has a terrific product at a great price. Some times they end up with the first Conrad Johnson per amp and sometimes they end up with the first Superphon pre amp.

More attractive? My granmother would have questioned why you want that big honking wire strung across the floor.

Now if you want to tell me cables make a difference because of the ego boost it gives the buyer, I'll easily buy that argument. But then cables make a difference.

It seems they either do or they don't. More attractive? Makes a difference. Ego boost? Makes a difference. Sounds better? Makes a difference.

No, my argument is with the people who don't want to believe what those b@stard salespeople and deluded audiophiles suggest and want to go on a crusade to "save" all you poor slobs who can't see the hypocrisy of the cable lies. But yet they buy the better product because they got a deal. What kind of deal is it if you still pay more for something that makes no improvement? To me, that still sounds like the salesperson won.

It also sounds like the atheist who keeps a crucifix in their pocket just to hedge their bets.

Hypocrisy, thy slogan is, "I can get it for less".









 

Bronze Member
Username: Jim_mcbob

Post Number: 60
Registered: Nov-04
Sorry, Jan, all noise and no signal. Someone had to sell Monster Cable before that first customer bought it. Presumably, this means that some inflated claims played a role in this transaction. The beefed-up appearance of Monster and other "boutique" cable is akin to the adding of colorant to patent medicines: It looks different because it's better; it's better because it looks different. That's salesmanship. People buy that stuff expecting better sound. That's EXCELLENT salesmanship, or to paraphrase Homer Simpson, "it takes two to lie: One to lie and one to listen."

You should try another line of work. You seem to have a persecution complex that makes Tom DeLay look like Francis of Assisi. I've no doubt that you're honest, forthright, and passionate about audio. But there are many in the field who can only see what a transaction does for them, rather than for the customer or product. Being tarred by a brush intended for others is something that plagues every line of work.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 46
Registered: Feb-05
I totally agree with you last post Stealth C. These are some of the factors that motivated me to purchase the Monster over the Zipcord. The fact that CircuitC had mismarked the price of the wire motivated me to take advantage of this "special" pricing. I don't give a crap about their mistake with the pricing, as this was their fault not mine. Considering how much money I have spent in there before and the fact that they mark up everthing as much as much as 50% more than the same items are available on the internet I could care less if they were "screwed" out of the extra money that they normally would have charged so don't expect a tear of sympathy from me. So many things it appears have been misread/misinterpreted from my post so I thought I would set the record straight one FINAL time. To My Rantz Listen carefully: I did not nor have I suggested that I am an authority/expert on consumer audio because I have an electronics background. Secondly, I don't know where the notion that I suggested that amps/recievers and speakers sound the same, never would I suggest such a silly statement. I merely suggested that speaker wire and interconnects do not have a "sound" and there is no advantage of using expensive speaker wire over zipcord other than perhaps more shielding. My purchase reflects simply the taking advantage of a good deal, not some psychological BS about my pride or integrity as this never was thought about or came into play. E.Ramsey
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 138
Registered: Jan-05
Jan, my point was only that reasons do exist as to why people might buy more expensive wiring over zip line.

As far as how many "average" consumers roam these forums, it isnt particularly important in the grand scheme of things, but there are a few.

I also never stated there was absolutely no difference whatsoever between wiring. Some hold there is no tangible performance difference, but that is different from what you seem to be stating. Nonetheless, I havnt made any claims on this thread as to whether there is a performance difference or not.

18 and 16 AWG lamp cord is readily available, I do agree. As for availability of 14 or 12AWG however, it largely depends on where you live. But say you have a Best Buy half a mile away from you and a Home Depot for good 12 gauge zip cord ten miles away; then there are gas and time costs to account for.

One final thought. What percentage of people actually critically listen to music such that they would benefit from "superior" wiring? In that sense, for the majority of people, it probably is a waste.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3292
Registered: May-04


Shielded speaker wire, Mr. Ramsey? Tell me where to obtain some of that stuff. If it's better shielded (which isn't needed in a speaker cable), wouldn't that make it perform better?

By the way, RG-59 is an antenna cable which is meant for a 75 Ohm termination. It is not used for interconnects as the circuit loading will be incorrect.


 

Kid-A
Unregistered guest
Hi ya. Ok I agree that the cost of most speaker wire does not have a direct correlation with how they make your speakers sound. However I recently switched to Monster cables from my 10 yr old cheapo Radio Shack cables. they had been used and abused tangled and detangled. And there definitely WAS a difference in sound. I could hear it. My friends could hear it. much crisper sounds, detail in sounds that had only been hinted at before. Is there a difference beween $100 speaker wire to $1000 to (and yes I found a manufacture who sells this) $24,000 for two 8' cords? Sure there is. It's the difference between buying a new car, putting your kid through college, remodeling your houses, and speaker wire that does nothing to enhance your music listening experience.
Later
 

Kid-A
Unregistered guest
Hi ya. Ok I agree that the cost of most speaker wire does not have a direct correlation with how they make your speakers sound. However I recently switched to Monster cables from my 10 yr old cheapo Radio Shack cables. they had been used and abused tangled and detangled. And there definitely WAS a difference in sound. I could hear it. My friends could hear it. much crisper sounds, detail in sounds that had only been hinted at before. Is there a difference beween $100 speaker wire to $1000 to (and yes I found a manufacture who sells this) $24,000 for two 8' cords? Sure there is. It's the difference between buying a new car, putting your kid through college, remodeling your houses, and speaker wire that does nothing to enhance your music listening experience.
Later
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 139
Registered: Jan-05
Jan: Kimber speaker wire is specifically designed to reject noise and RF interference.

I quote "It was the 4PR that got it all started in 1979. In the mid '70s while working as a sound and lighting engineer, Ray Kimber, became increasingly disturbed by the buzzing, snaps, pops, and crackles in the sound system which resulted from the high powered lighting used in conjunction with the audio. He set out to solve the problem by constructing speaker cables that would reject noise. The finalized version of his braided wire concept not only rejected the RF noise but allowed the system to sound different, better, musical."
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 47
Registered: Feb-05
No Jan when I said shielding in the Monster I didnot mean braided shielding but the insulation is much thicker with some mylar foil over foam over the conductor. True this is not a necessity in speaker wire but it is a good extra. Apparently you haven't been in Radioshack lately as the DO in fact use RG59 coaxial as wire in their cheapo interconnects. The whole idea is to maintain a 75 ohm impedence or at least as close as possible what was your point? E.Ramsey
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 158
Registered: Feb-05
Mr Vigne..how are you today? Your apparent statement of debate with me is actually a restatement of my point. I hope that you understand that. Just a bit more long winded. By stating that there is a right and wrong sound I meant as it related to the manufacturers stated goal.

Kid-A, good point! By stating that their is no correlation between price and sound quality when it comes to cables, I may have overstated it. I should have said there is OFTEN no correlation between the two.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3293
Registered: May-04


Stealth, I'll have grudgingly give you the benefit of the point on Kimber. One of its benefits is to lower the amount of RFI in the speaker cable. But shielded it is not. It is the specific braiding action of the Kimber design which rejects (Kimber's own words), not shields, the cable. Traditionally speaker cables are considered above the level of noise to signal that requires the 90-100% shielding similar to an interconnect or antenna cable. Some manufacturers are considering shielding as being significant in other areas than traditional theory suggests (power cords boast shielding now). It is not a bad idea in the RFI rich environment of most modern cities. Monster Navaho, however, is not a shielded cable.

I think with your Home Depot situation you are splitting hairs to make your point. There are more H.D.'s than there are B.B.'s. The likelyhood of one being further away is minimal.

I don't understand your reasoning in your last statement about critical listening. I agree most people use music as wallpaper. Those aren't the people we are talking about. I would hope most people who post on this forum asking for suggestions about what brand of this or that is superior would listen critically enough to benefit from better speaker, amplifiers, CD players and cables. I thought those were the people we need to consider on this forum, not the "typical consumer".

Jim Bob - I do believe everything had a salesperson before a customer. So what's your point?

I can guess fire needed some promotion over raw meat. And probably the world's oldest profession had a salesperson before a customer came along, though it could be debated as to who the salesperson in that transaction really was. To paraphrase Homer again, "It takes two people to make a salesperson. One who wants to sell something and another who wants to buy something." Nobody forces you to buy something you don't want. Not even Tom "The Bug Killer" DeLay. Especially not Sweetwater's own Tom DeLay.

Anyone who has been a slaesperson for any length of time has no persecution complexes. If they did they wouldn't be in sales because there are too many people who paint with a broad brush. There are too many people who feel screwing the store is justifiable theft just because the store makes a profit to stay in business. No one forces you to buy something at Circuit City, Mr. Ramsey. If you want even less service and convenience than Circuit City provides, don't go to a brick and mortar store. It still comes down to the dollar with some people to justify their actions. I understand that in Mr. Ramsey's purchase "integrity ... never was thought about or came into play".



 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 141
Registered: Jan-05
Jan: Just driving home the point with the Best Buy thing that there are cases where buying Monster can be justified by those who believe it has no performance benefits.

As for the last point, for probably 95%+ of people, speaker wire probably does not matter so much because they do not critically listen to music. As a result, the statement that 'speaker wire doesnt matter much' does still apply to them. As far as the typical consumer thing, a lot of them do come here for advice, etc.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 48
Registered: Feb-05
Of course Jan I am not forced to buy at C.C. I was actually shopping for another item- non audio related when I walked over to the home audio section out of curiosity and happened upon the speaker wire. Of course C.C. is in business to make a profit otherwise they would not be in business. I don't go to them for service but i hardly see how I can be blamed as a consumer for taking advantage of their mistake. Over the years I have spent thousands of dollars in their store so one oppurtunity in my favor comes along and I am compared to a thief? What gives! E.Ramsey
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3294
Registered: May-04


Mr. Ramsey - It's been many years since I dealt with Monster Navaho cables. I've gone to their web site and clicked on the image of the Navaho cable. I'm not seeing the mylar foil over foam over the conductor. Are you sure it's there?

http://www.monstercable.com/home_av/audio_cables/stereo_speakers_core.asp

Your guess is correct; I have not shopped at a Radio Shack in quite awhile.


 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 49
Registered: Feb-05
Correction Jan it is a nylon braid over a plastic covering over the conductor. E.Ramsey
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 142
Registered: Jan-05
Jan: One other thing, while Home depot outnumbers Best Buy 2-1, Radio Shack, who also now sells Monster, outnumbers Home Depot 3-1.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3295
Registered: May-04


Mr. Ramsey - I apologize if you took my words to imply I thought of you as a thief. My statement was too strong for the situation. But I have never understood the idea that because you have spent money at a store, and by your own will paid the price they asked, the idea you have given them enough profit justifies getting away with anything. You and the store entered into the bargain willingly and you have every right to expect superior customer service with the best price the store can afford to allow on their products. It was the store's mistake and you were justified, in this instance, to insist on the cable at the price marked. But please don't think what profit you have given the store previously is a cause for not giving a crap.

My question remains; why spend any amount extra for a cable that makes no improvement in your system? And now on top of it all, you find out the thicker insulation and nylon wrap provide nothing in the way of shielding over and above good old zip cord which costs pennies per foot.


 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3296
Registered: May-04


Stealth - Well that gets Monster pretty close to selling in 7-11; doesn't it?


 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 143
Registered: Jan-05
Indeed. And at least I have the integrity and conviction to have 16AWG GE garbage.
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
"My question remains; why spend any amount extra for a cable that makes no improvement in your system?"

for cosmetic purposes. better build.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 50
Registered: Feb-05
Like I said Jan this was a purely happenstance situation that will never repeat itself. By my calculations I only paid about 15 to 20 cents more than the zipcord I would have bought otherwise. Speaking purely from the view of the conductor itself it is the same stranded copper that is in the zipcord, stranded 12AWG copper wire is 12AWG copper wire! Had I not discovered the "deal" on the wire you can rest assured I would have bought zipcord. I really don't have to justify my interactions with C.C. and it's not anybody's business to evaluate such. As I told My Rantz these were the reasons for my purchase. No I don't believe that the Monsterhas benifited my system nor would it benefit any other system unless the buyer went from 18 or 20AWG down to this 12AWG,I never suggested such. I'm sure the article which is the subject of this thread mayhave stepped on a few toes and hurt a few egos out there but I'm pretty sure much of the sensible community both electronics background people and non would agree with much of it. Money is better spent on equiptment and speakers-things that really matter and sound diffrent than speaker wire and interconnects, some will undoubtly dissagree but then again as I said before not everyone understands how electronics really work. Besides Monster wire is hardly an "esoteric" brand of speaker wire. E.Ramsey
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 51
Registered: Feb-05
Also this thread is leaning once again towards a character assesment as this forum often does. This really has no place here as it is certainly not useful or applicable. I definately don't give a damn about the viewpoints of others on my integrity or conviction so please leave this out of any further disscussion as we are here to talk about audio not behavioral psychology. E.Ramsey
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 144
Registered: Jan-05
I was just joking if you are referring to my statement Eric.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 160
Registered: Feb-05
I agree with you Eric. This is a place to discuss audio and all too often it gets personal.
 

Silver Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 161
Registered: Feb-05
I do believe that this thread has remained relatively free of character assault which is unusual on this site. I would like to thank all who have participated. It has been fun and interesting. Edster, I hope you read my post on the Home Depot extension cord.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Eramsey

South carolina United States

Post Number: 52
Registered: Feb-05
Thanks for the support Arthur. BTW I was in Lowes the other day and being an electrician naturally I had to wander over to the electrical dept. I saw some really heavy duty power tool extension cords many of which had 2 conductors at 12AWG and some even had 10AWG! These can be used as speaker wire and I have also heard of this being done. I will say however that these cords are fairly expensive the 12AWG was $50 and the 10AWG was $98. I quickly ruled this out though when I discovered 250' spools of 12Awg speaker wire for $50! E.Ramsey
 

mauimusicman
Unregistered guest
Jan, makes it harder to talk sense to people when you have some fool like "the audio critic" out there huh? The only points he made I cannot dissagree on are the power conditioners and negative feedback. Power conditioners I have no experience with. Negative feedback is a usefull tool....if used sparingly. Unfortunately, as you and I know, many amplifier manufacturers used it to make their product measure better but sound worse. For those of you that don't know, negative feedback in a nut shell is a sample of the output signal, prior to the speaker outs, fed back into the input signal. It can and does stabalize amplifiers and can greatly reduce THD specs and increase bandwith specs. The more you use....the better those two specs look on paper, at least. Unfortunately, it drastically INCREASES any transient related distortions (like T.I.M.) which are much more audable than THD. Manufacturers can design really horrific sounding gear and apply tons of global feedback.....presto....great specs. And, because so many only read specs, it sells product. Don't ever believe there is no difference in audio gear, cables or wires. Listen with your ears.....not your eyes.
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3301
Registered: May-04


Certainly you are correct, Maui. Feedback has become the political football of the audio world. The low priced manufacturers used enormous amounts of "global" feedback to reduce THD on paper and ended up with amps that fell on their face when connected to an actual loudspeaker load. Part of the reason manufacturers now have those warnings about impedance load of the speakers is due to the effects of global negative feedback (http://harada-sound.com/sound/handbook/defe-j.html#f).

In the high end components, feedback became the liberal at Karl Rove's birthday party. It was the last thing anyone wanted due to the disasters of the Japanese manufacturers and, for a while, some manufacturers touted amps that were promoted as "No Negative Feedback" systems. Some feedback is helpful. SET's usually run little or no NFB and this is, in part, the reason for their instability (at least in terms of frequency response) when hooked to a speaker with a drastically varying impedance swing. The high end has settled on the best approach being a few dB's of "Local NFB" to stabilize the amp and lower THD specs slightly. The real idea is to design an amp that doesn't start out having lots of THD in the first place. NFB is then used to make the amp stable into the wide variety of speaker loads it might see.

For the most part, line conditioners are worthwhile investments. The world has become polluted with noise that is everywhere in the form of RFI and EMI. A well designed conditioner is a good tool to have. Its effect will be to lower the noise floor significantly in a high end system and allow a lowering of the impedance of the line voltage. Many line conditioners utilize storage capacitors that can add dynamic range to the system over and above the lower noise floor. Lower level products, such as most AV receivers, will need not much more than a good surge supressor with decent RFI and EMI filtration.


 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 147
Registered: Jan-05
So maui, you cant agree on the ABX testing? You have stated before that your GMA Europas would win a double blind test against any speaker under 1k; what gives?

Also, do you also believe your "audiophile" hearing is more acute than an average person your age? Do you have superhuman hearing? I would be truly curious to test that one out.
 

mauimusicman
Unregistered guest
Stealth, The Europa is a time/phase aligned speaker system using an excellent driver compliment deigned by one of maybe two people on the planet with the knowledge to do so. The crossover alone took 30 years to perfect. You don't need to be a "golden ear" to hear how great these speakers are. I had my hearing tested last year in may. The doctor as well as the equipment operator were amazed at how good it was. To quote the doctor "I have never seen human hearing as good as this.....or heard of anyone with hearing this good....in fact, this is better than textbook" My hearing is fine, thank you. I asked to see the chart the machine printed out. Both ears were ruler flat to witin 1/2db of each other. Heck, even I was startled. Do me a favor. Go over to http://www.audiogon.com
click "discussion forums" on the right side of the page. Then type in "Europa" in the search box. You'll quickly see i'm far from the only person enamored with these speakers. Look at some of the speakers it's compared to. Check out their prices. Some are over $3K/pair. Again, there will be a review of the next model up, the Callisto soon on 6moons.com I can provide you a link to a review of the previous model of the Europa if you want. Or search yourself. It was called the continuum .5
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3312
Registered: May-04


Stealth - ABX testing for audio equipment is valid only if, when you're listening to music for pleasure, you get up and change out amplifiers every thirty seconds. Test the same way you use the product. I wouldn't think much of a comparison of cars that was accomplished 100' at a time before the driver switched vehicles. (Please don't take this argument to the ridiculous in debate.) ABX testing is fine for some items, but most anything that invloves a subjective, or emotional, component is best judged by a different process. Audio systems are not Coke vs. Pepsi nor am I interested in which pre amp can run the 1/4 mile the quickest.

Of course, if you are among those that do not listen "critically", ABX testing is a waste of time because you chose your components primarily on the discount you received. That, unfortunately, is not a joke. All too often I have seen the better product passed up for a few dollars off the list price. Consider Detroit's rebates and 0% financing as a prime example of this fact.



 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 149
Registered: Jan-05
Jan: Its mostly that maui has in fact stated that the Europa's would win a double blind test that I brought up the point.

Maui: Im not questioning the speakers, Im questioning the statement that you made. As far as your hearing, perhaps you and the worlds strongest man can form a superhero team?
 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3315
Registered: May-04


If we did some ABX testing maybe we could determine which component could be "Transparent Girl".


 

Gold Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 3316
Registered: May-04


Or not.


 

mauimusicman
Unregistered guest
Stealth, what speaker would you like to comapre the Europa to double blind? Most have been covered in Audiogon already.
 

bumblebee
Unregistered guest
guys,

this thread is about the "top 10 audio lies". not a speaker shootout :-)



 

Bronze Member
Username: Diablo

Fylde Coast, England

Post Number: 75
Registered: Dec-04
Speaker shootout? No, just another advert for GMA Europas!
 

Silver Member
Username: Stealth_c

Dublin, CA USA

Post Number: 151
Registered: Jan-05
Maui, I am not questioning the quality of the GMA's. What I am questioning is this: the article states that ABX testing is a valid way of comparing speakers, and a useful tool. You state that the only points in the article you cannot disagree with are the power conditioner lie and the negative feedback lie. Then you go out and state the superiority of GMA's in ABX testing, which would appear to contradict your prior statement to a degree. Make up your mind.
 

Anonymous
 
Maui:

Every minute you spend here is depriving your village of an idiot.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 2974
Registered: Dec-03
I do not understand what provoked that remark, Mauimm, and I doubt if anyone else does.

Thanks for the link, Edster. I have read it, now.

On another thread, we take the list up to twelve. Two Cents proposes:

11. Some folks can discern universal truths and lies regarding hi-fi equipment.

And I propose:-

12. People like different things. There is no point in discussing quality of sound reproduction, because, in the end, everything is a matter of opinion.
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