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iosiP
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About tweaks and snake oil

There are three kinds of tweaks:

1. Those that have a sound (excuse the pun) electrical/physical explanation of how they work.

2. Those that do not benefit from such an explanation, but are still susceptible to work because they interfere - even if in ways unknown or not disclosed - with one of the three elements of musical reproduction (electrical, mechanical and acoustical).

3. Those that simply don't work, because there is no possible way they do! And this has nothing to do with debunking myths or any other flat-earth beliefs: they cannot work simply because they have no way to affect any of the three stages of sound reproduction outlined above.

Please don't get yourselves into a fit - I do love music as much as you do - but just face it: music is nothing more than sound, and sound is just "a pressure disturbance that moves through a medium in the form of mechanical waves. Yes I know this might hurt your feelings, but your favorite Beethoven, Patricia Barber or Led Zeppelin recording is nothing more than "pressure waves made up of compressions and rarefactions."

So no, you won't change these pressure waves by putting your photos in the freezer, washing your hands before listening (although washing your ears might help) or writing "'x 26 'x on your mirror. Why it won't work? Well, simply because it can't! But by all means, if you are sensitive to suggestions just use them - no, your system won't sound any better but you will think it does... and at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your own satisfaction!

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Piled higher and deeper
iosiP wrote:

There are three kinds of tweaks:

1. Those that have a sound (excuse the pun) electrical/physical explanation of how they work.

2. Those that do not benefit from such an explanation, but are still susceptible to work because they interfere - even if in ways unknown or not disclosed - with one of the three elements of musical reproduction (electrical, mechanical and acoustical).

3. Those that simply don't work, because there is no possible way they do! And this has nothing to do with debunking myths or any other flat-earth beliefs: they cannot work simply because they have no way to affect any of the three stages of sound reproduction outlined above.

Please don't get yourselves into a fit - I do love music as much as you do - but just face it: music is nothing more than sound, and sound is just "a pressure disturbance that moves through a medium in the form of mechanical waves. Yes I know this might hurt your feelings, but your favorite Beethoven, Patricia Barber or Led Zeppelin recording is nothing more than "pressure waves made up of compressions and rarefactions."

So no, you won't change these pressure waves by putting your photos in the freezer, washing your hands before listening (although washing your ears might help) or writing "'x 26 'x on your mirror. Why it won't work? Well, simply because it can't! But by all means, if you are sensitive to suggestions just use them - no, your system won't sound any better but you will think it does... and at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your own satisfaction!

Glad you got that out of your system! I hate to judge before all the facts are in but it appears somewhat that this stuff is starting to get to you.

"Education is what's left after you forgot all the things you learned in school." A. Einstein

Have a nice day,

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

May Belt
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About Tweaks.

iosiP. Sorry sir, but you have already started by expressing a limiting form of thinking. Quite typical of many people, I accept, but nevertheless limiting.

You have already said :-

>>> “ 2. Those that do not benefit from such an explanation, but are still susceptible to work because they interfere - even if in ways unknown or not disclosed - with one of the three elements of musical reproduction (electrical, mechanical and acoustical).”<<<

Showing that your thinking is stuck at the ear drum (the acoustical information reaching the ear drum). Is that it ? Is that the extent of your thinking ? Haven’t you REALLY heard things which have altered your sound but which could NOT be explained within those three categories you have listed ? If you HAD heard such things happen, then you would have HAD to extend your thinking.

>>> “3. Those that simply don't work, because there is no possible way they do! And this has nothing to do with debunking myths or any other flat-earth beliefs: they cannot work simply because they have no way to affect any of the three stages of sound reproduction outlined above.” <<<

If you HAD heard things affect your sound which in no way could have affected any of those three stages of sound reproduction, then you would not still be saying those sentences. You would, instead, be asking “What on earth is going on ?” It is because you can still use those previous sentences that I know which stage you are at.

>>> “Please don’t get yourself into a fit - I do love music as much as you do - but just face it: music is nothing more than sound, and sound is just "a pressure disturbance that moves through a medium in the form of mechanical waves. Yes I know this might hurt your feelings, but your favorite Beethoven, Patricia Barber or Led Zeppelin recording is nothing more than "pressure waves made up of compressions and rarefactions." <<<

Sorry sir. My favourite Beethoven or Dvorak’s New World is COMPLEX MUSICAL INFORMATION which, after that complex information has reached the ear drum STILL has a FURTHER arduous journey to make. The ‘sound’ (acoustic information) which reaches the ear drum is NOT the final sound. The REAL (final) sound is the information which eventually reaches the working memory – to be identified by the working memory which will then present a final ‘sound picture’ to the brain. THAT is the “sound”.

So, there are MORE THAN the three stages you refer to.

Whichever of (your) three areas within which people have heard ‘changes in their sound’, they have been met with exactly the same reaction as you are still exhibiting now.

Electrical :-

Over 30 years ago, when people began to describe hearing changes in the sound from changing cables/wires, they were met with “It is not possible.” , from electronic engineers. Those electronic engineers were saying “If you describe hearing changes the sound from changing cables/wires ONE MILE long, then we will accept that there could be changes in the sound – but from changing cables/wires of just half a metre – and at audio frequencies – NO WAY. You must have imagined it, what you say you heard must have been because of autosuggestion”.
THAT attitude is still continuing today. You still have electronic engineers rolling around on the floor laughing at the suggestion that changing half (or even one) metre length of cable/wire can give the substantial changes in the sound which people describe.!!!

And whatever you do, don’t bring into the conversation with them that you can also change the sound by changing the AC power cord, or you will be similarly ridiculed !!!!

Then you have the engineers who make the actual CDs. Who encode the musical information onto the CD in 0s and 1s. Try telling them that you can improve the sound of their CDs by cryogenically freezing them, by applying a demagnetiser to them, by applying a chemical to the label side, by applying a colour to the extreme edge and they will mock you out of the door. They will say “There is no possible way you can affect the 0s and 1s we have encoded on the disc by doing the things you suggest, so there is no way you can change the sound.”

Mechanical :-

The mechanical engineers will not accept reports that such as the Shun Mook discs, the Harmonix Dots can give an improvement in the sound. Then we have what Michael Green’s refers to as his ‘treated’ wood. To mechanical engineers wood is wood and ‘treated’ wood should be no different to identical but untreated wood – regarding it’s effect on ‘sound’.

Acoustical :-

You then have the technicians, experts in room acoustics. Dealing with reflective or absorbent surfaces. Try telling them that you can gain improvements in the sound by introducing certain crystals and strategically placing them around the room. And by introducing the tiny ART devices into the room. And by introducing such as a Schuman Resonance device into the room. And, even more absurd to them, is if they have created a Room acoustic treatment panel, which gives as near a perfect acoustic measurement to satisfy them, that if the COLOUR of the actual material being used is changed, then the SOUND will change – whilst still giving exactly the same acoustic measurement !!!!!!!!!!!!!

You still have audio industry Professionals stating – in print – or in public - that the changes which people hear are just those people having their head in different positions when listening. Or that audio journalists are prepared to prostitute themselves for the latest preposterous product !!!

These are obviously people who have NOT heard, for themselves, changes in the sound – and substantial changes in the sound at that – which makes them reel back on their heels saying “What on earth is going on ?”

You, sir, seem to be hiding behind the sentence :-

>>> “but are still susceptible to work because they interfere - even if in ways unknown or not disclosed” <<<

I have not seen any evidence that electronic, mechanical or acoustic engineers would be prepared to accept ‘tweaks’ working in ‘unknown ways’ !!!

Now, let us have a look at things (people’s experiences) differently. Away from the limited ‘electronic, mechanical or acoustic’ viewpoint which is the one you are using.

Let us look at people’s experiences gaining improvements in the sound by ‘treating’ such as CDs and let us consider another outlook. That there could be ‘something else going on’ not considered by those conventional (and dismissive) viewpoints.

Let us bring the human being into the discussion. The human person being actively involved in the listening process – in resolving the complexity of the music.

I will now bring in Michael Green’s constant theme – which is correct - that if one can carry out a specific technique and GAIN an improvement in the sound, then PRIOR to doing that technique, there must have been something adverse happening. Michael uses the terminology “unblocking” and therefore something must have been previously “blocking”.

The new (hypothetical for the moment) concept to consider is that human beings are programmed, by evolution, to be reading/sensing/monitoring their environment every second, of every minute, of every hour, of every day of their lives. That (for example) in their listening environment, whilst playing a CD, there is a plastic/aluminium/plastic layered disc, spinning horrendously in an electro-magnetic field. Could this be one of those “adverse happenings” which no one is aware of UNTIL certain ‘tweaks’ are applied – which could then reduce those ‘adverse’ effects? Such techniques as cryogenically freezing the CD, such as applying a demagnetiser to the CD, such as applying a chemical to the label side of the CD, or such as colouring the extreme edge of the CD. Then gaining an improvement in “the sound” – which is WHAT people have reported, over and over again !!!!!!!!!!!

To understand what I mean by something adverse happening and then that adverse effect being reduced – and an improvement being heard, let me use the concept of temperature. Say (hypothetically) that the temperature of the room, with the CD spinning, is raised to (say) 40 degrees. Too warm for comfort. Carry out a technique on the CD which could reduce the temperature to (say) 35 degrees and one would immediately register that the temperature had gone down – to something more comfortable – and one would describe the effect as “Oh, that’s better”. Better than before – not necessarily back to a comfortable normal – but better than it had been before the treatment !! In other words BETTER. It is a relative term – better than it was before. It is the difference in the two (readings/sensings) which we (human beings) are programmed to take notice of.

You say :-

>>> “they (certain tweaks) cannot work simply because they have no way to affect any of the three stages of sound reproduction outlined above.” <<<

ut they COULD affect the better resolving of the complexities of the music in a way outside those ”three stages”. They COULD provide a reduction of tension – tension caused by what is going on in the modern environment. Which can then begin to explain the effect of such as crystals, of the effect of the Stein Music device, of the effect of tiny ART devices and of the Less Loss Black Body device. Read again part of the review in PFO of the Stein Music Device :-

>>> “Dynamics, clarity, palpable presence, excitement, definition, air, decay, extension, articulation, less distortion, louder, quieter, 3D soundstage, natural, rich, texture, warm, fast, transmission, timbre, immersion, space, tactile, engagement, propulsion, ease, etc… everything is there in abundance… everything is here.” <<<

Is this device working within the conventional knowledge area of your “three stages of sound reproduction” ?
Or, could it be acting by reducing stress (tension) created by trying to resolve complex music within the modern environment ? Certainly the description points to a reduction of tension and therefore a better resolving of the complex musical information.

Which then leads to the very question which the reviewer actually asked :-

>>> “Which leads to… has Science explained everything? And is everything explainable by Science? I would say no, perhaps not… or at very least not yet. Science is an evolving discipline of knowledge… new discoveries… new ways of looking at or defining what we know and experience around us.” <<<

I repeat it, yet again, because it is important.

Science is an evolving discipline of knowledge…..new discoveries….new ways of looking at or defining what we know and experience around us.

Quite a difference, don’t you think from your rather rigid outlook of:-

>>> “ simply don't work, because there is no possible way they do!” <<<

Regards,
May Belt,
PWB Electronics.

iosiP
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Strawman methods won't work

And BTW, could you explain how you got to the 'x 26 'x mantra? Was it a revelation or did you try all combinations (a few billion of them) to get to the result?

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Strawman methods won't work

So please leave the engineers out of the subject!
Let me explain:
1. The tiny bowls resonate on frequencies situated in the treble part of the audio spectrum, so one may hear more "air" around the instruments.
2. Pure crystals have a very regular internal structure, so a well-thought out mixture of them might resonate (or rather absorb, I have not studied the phenomenon yet) some well-defined frequencies.
3. The Schumann generator uses frequencies within our own brain's alpha waves, so it may cause relaxation and thus a better perception of music. BTW, one reviewer stated he felt "butterflies" in his stomach while testing the generator: no wonder, the military are developing non-lethal weapons based in infrasound.
4. Freezing your CDs may release inter-layer tensions and make them more legible to the laser beam, so yes, this may work.
5. I did not study the other examples, but I am sure they too have reasons to work.

OTH, putting your pictures in the freezer does not work, tying your cables with white spirals does not work (at least, not any better than tying them with spirals of any other color) and putting blue papers under your houseplants does not work. As for writing the famous mantra on your mirrors and shining a flashlight at them... no comment!

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You are correct about the

You are correct about the straw men, Costin.

I might add that the discussion of physical tweaks versus meta physical/fringe ( for lack of a better word) tweaks must be separated. It is not an all or nothing proposition as some proponents would like to have it especially in light of the often used tactic of if you are not for one tweak your are against all of them.

Physical tweaks have the potential to be discussed using current known science and as science evolves perhaps some meta physical tweaks can be recategorized as physical tweaks.

Meta physical/fringe tweaks are more faith based and with the lack of science to discuss them become more a pseudo religious discussion with believers and non believers. We all know where that leads.

May and Geoff are there any manufacturers that endorse your products as much as you endorse others?
One might misconstrue this as name dropping. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Name-dropping

Also, I find it strange that you hardly ever directly discuss your meta physical/fringe products.

We have passed the rubicon where manufacturers discuss their products so this is not holding you back.

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the tuning side

I'm just glad I'm on the tuning side of things and the understanding of them through experience. Bringing out more of a recording is one of the greatest thrills a listener can get and being able to do this at will for me has opened up a world that has kept me from having to fall back into a hobby that seemed more like a spin cycle instead of shaping the sound to the place of origin. I don't have the need to be tangled because the lines have been made clear through being a part of, instead of looking at.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

iosiP
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And there are other sneaky procedures

1. Blame it on the opponent: infer that he can't hear, is rigid (and therefore cannot think) or even has the smallpox. Just don't discuss his points as this may place you in an less comfortable position, i.e. one where you actually have to explain how your "thingies" work. Now contrast this with what I wrote before:
But by all means, if you are sensitive to suggestions just use them - no, your system won't sound any better but you will think it does... and at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your own satisfaction!
So I'm not accusing other people of being duped, "believers" or anything else: after all, it's their money and if using those tweaks makes them happy... well who am I to tell them not to buy?

2. Re-hatching old situations when engineers were proved to be wrong, without any inquiry into what your opponent thinks about these subjects. To make things clear, I do believe that cables make a difference, including power chords. Or better yet, especially power chords, so no need to remind me about it!

3. And finally, avoiding to explain how your own "thingies" work. And by explaining I mean starting with a proved premise and working your way up to conclusions, using a logical chain of inferences.
You learn in Logic 101 that false premises can lead to any conclusion (true or false) while using perfectly logical inferences, so please do't start by telling me that "white is better" and use this as a premise: you have to prove this first, and only after you can go anyway further.

4. It sickens me when a snake oil peddler implies he/she got extraterrestrial technology to somehow modify matter in his/hers own garage. Of course, this precludes any analysis of the "thingies" since whatever changes were brought to them are not detectable even using advanced scientific analysis. Nevertheless, the same non-detectable changes are enough to (somehow) alter our perception of soundwaves. No kidding?

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Metaphysical tweaks
toledo wrote:

You are correct about the straw men, Costin.

I might add that the discussion of physical tweaks versus meta physical/fringe ( for lack of a better word) tweaks must be separated. It is not an all or nothing proposition as some proponents would like to have it especially in light of the often used tactic of if you are not for one tweak your are against all of them.

Physical tweaks have the potential to be discussed using current known science and as science evolves perhaps some meta physical tweaks can be recategorized as physical tweaks.

Meta physical/fringe tweaks are more faith based and with the lack of science to discuss them become more a pseudo religious discussion with believers and non believers. We all know where that leads.

May and Geoff are there any manufacturers that endorse your products as much as you endorse others?
One might misconstrue this as name dropping. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Name-dropping

Also, I find it strange that you hardly ever directly discuss your meta physical/fringe products.

We have passed the rubicon where manufacturers discuss their products so this is not holding you back.

I can certainly understand your frustration with some of tweaks that you are probably hearing about for the first time. Let me ask you, though, which tweaks are you referring to? I am afraid you might be lumping all the tweaks you are suspicious of together and calling them faith based. it might be helpful to try to identify the ones that really bother you, the most suspicious ones, and divide them into groups, say the tweaks that Are actually physical but appear to be metaphysical, e.g., the water bowls,the ones that are based on nanotechnology, e.g. Dark Matter and the intelligent chip, the quantum mechanical ones like the intelligent chip, the ones that are based on mind matter interaction or Morphic Resonance like the clever little clock. You can put all the ones you're not exactly sure what they are in a separate box to figure out later. In a world of wire directionality, slow moving electrons, colors that change the sound and telephone books that change the sound, it's no wonder there 's been such an uproar by skeptics and pseudo skeptics. I'm pretty sure the Newtonian physics guys felt exactly the same way when Einstein published his papers on relativity - very upset.

Intro from Zen and the Art of Debunkery (again)

"Seeing with humility, curiosity and fresh eyes was once the main point of science. But today it is often a different story. As the scientific enterprise has been bent toward exploitation, institutionalization, hyperspecialization and new orthodoxy, it has increasingly preoccupied itself with disconnected facts in a psychological, social and ecological vacuum. So disconnected has official science become from the greater scheme of things, that it tends to deny or disregard entire domains of reality and to satisfy itself with reducing all of life and consciousness to a dead physics.

As the millennium turns, science seems in many ways to be treading the weary path of the religions it presumed to replace. Where free, dispassionate inquiry once reigned, emotions now run high in the defense of a fundamentalized "scientific truth." As anomalies mount up beneath a sea of denial, defenders of the Faith and the Kingdom cling with increasing self-righteousness to the hull of a sinking paradigm. Faced with provocative evidence of things undreamt of in their philosophy, many otherwise mature scientists revert to a kind of skeptical infantilism characterized by blind faith in the absoluteness of the familiar. Small wonder, then, that so many promising fields of inquiry remain shrouded in superstition, ignorance, denial, disinformation, taboo . . . and debunkery."

Sincerely,

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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Coordinate system 'x
iosiP wrote:

And BTW, could you explain how you got to the 'x 26 'x mantra? Was it a revelation or did you try all combinations (a few billion of them) to get to the result?

'X26'x represents a coordinate system for which the number 26 is the number of spacetime dimensions in bosonic string theory and (if I'm not mistaken) the number of dimensions in the universe during the initial expansion period.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

May Belt
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Tweaks

>>> “So please leave the engineers out of the subject” <<<

IosiP, You just can’t leave the engineers out of the subject. So many of them are the most vocal and antagonistic !!!!! AND are prepared to deny or dismiss other people’s experiences and observations. So, they ARE a constant part of the audio scene and what affects ‘sound’.

>>> “Let me explain:” <<<

Explain what ? All you are doing is confirming that there is STILL controversy. If there WERE acceptable explanations, then engineers (and many ‘professionals in audio’) would not react as aggressively as they do !! They would just nod in agreement.

>>> “1. The tiny bowls resonate on frequencies situated in the treble part of the audio spectrum, so one may hear more "air" around the instruments.” <<<

If the tiny bowls are SOOOOOOO acceptable and MIGHT be doing something to treble frequencies, then why is there such a reaction – why is there such controversy surrounding any mention of them ? A few years ago the responses (controversy) to references to them covered some 39 pages in the Stereophile forum !!! And, the latest reference to them in Stereophile (I think earlier this year – 2014 !!!) created such a vitriolic reaction that John Atkinson had to delete some of the responses.

>>> “2. Pure crystals have a very regular internal structure, so a well-thought out mixture of them might resonate (or rather absorb, I have not studied the phenomenon yet) some well-defined frequencies.” <<<

If the ‘crystals’ are SOOOOOO acceptable and MIGHT be doing something, then why is there such a reaction – why is there such controversy surrounding the use of them ? Are you making the suggestion that if the crystals are absorbing ‘some well’defined frequencies’, that the absorbing of these frequencies is taking place with the frequencies already in the room ? In which case you will come up against the acoustic engineers. Or, what about the concept put forward by a regular poster on Audio Asylum site that certain crystals are absorbing RF frequencies and preventing these RF frequencies getting into and interfering with the actual audio signal going through the equipment ? In which case you would then come up against the electronic engineers.
Just WHO is going to be left doing (working out) the – to use your expression – “a well-thought out mixture” of crystals ? The electronic engineers or the acoustic engineers ? Then, if you bring in the concept of ‘resonance’ – you bring in the mechanical engineers. No wonder there is such a hornets nest – which does not fit your simplistic “might” or “may” be doing something acceptable !!

>>> “3. The Schumann generator uses frequencies within our own brain's alpha waves, so it may cause relaxation and thus a better perception of music. BTW, one reviewer stated he felt "butterflies" in his stomach while testing the generator: no wonder, the military are developing non-lethal weapons based in infrasound.” <<<

Oh, it might cause relaxation ? Surely this is exactly what I am suggesting ? Surely this is the concept I have been putting forward ?

Let me expand this out for you because I still don’t think you are thinking it through.

You are suggesting that this ‘relaxation’ might give a better perception of the music. So, the full musical information of the orchestra playing the musical score of Dvorak’s New World MUST HAVE already reached the ear drum – past the electronic areas, past the mechanical areas and past the acoustic areas to reach the ear drum. So, BEFORE the introduction of the Schuman Resonance why had we (human beings) not been ‘hearing’ all the information that was available – in the room - but AFTER the introduction of the Schuman Resonance device into the room, we (human beings) are able to hear (perceive) more of the complex musical information. The descriptions people give of their experiences are not merely of “better sound” but are more in the area of :-

“Heard a more dimensional soundstage. Improved low end that sounded tighter and richer. Improved smoothness, detail and bass definition, not to mention greater soundstage and three-dimentionality. Greater sense of air and bloom seemed to surround the instruments. More life and vibrancy. More Natural texture. The decay structure of individual notes was cleaner and clearer. Stereo focus and image uniformity were improved. The music’s dynamics, rhythm and timing were significantly improved. Improvements in the sound as an audible decrease in glare and an increase in apparent soundstage size, both width and depth. Improvements noted are better air, sparkle, transparency, openness, imaging, soundstaging, naturalness and musicality.
Wow, that was amazing. The soundstage has just opened up.”

As I keep saying. You cannot add more musical score to what is already encoded on the disc. You cannot add another half of an orchestra to give you yet more musical instruments to what is already encoded on the disc, so if you can hear all that further information after introducing the Schumann Resonance device into the room, then that further information must have been there, in the room, all the time !!

If the Schumann Resonance device could be providing something good (beneficial), then what was being adverse, in the room, before introducing the Schumann Resonance device ? To not be allowing us to be ‘relaxed’ ?

If you can accept the concept that the Schumann Resonance device could be allowing a more ‘relaxed listening environment’ so that we (human beings) can perceive the music better, then why can’t the same concept be applied to many of the other controversial devices ? I.e That they could be ‘countering’ adverse conditions – adverse conditions which we are reacting to ?

And so it goes on – controversy after controversy. There is NOT a general acceptance within the audio industry that things MIGHT work – which is what you are suggesting. If there was such an acceptance, then there would be NO controversy.

>>> “2. Re-hatching old situations when engineers were proved to be wrong, without any inquiry into what your opponent thinks about these subjects. To make things clear, I do believe that cables make a difference, including power chords. Or better yet, especially power chords, so no need to remind me about it!” <<<
Sorry, sir. These are NOT OLD situations !! The engineers are still insisting that they are right – ESPECIALLY on power cords. They are still saying “How can changing the last few metres of AC power cable, in the room, make any difference to the sound, when the AC power has already come miles in existing standard cabling ?” Whereas you are suggesting that they have now accepted that they were wrong !!! Just because you, yourself, have heard the effect of different power cords does not alter the fact that there is STILL considerable controversy. And, if you have the definite answer as to why changing the AC power cord could improve the sound, would you please tell the researchers so that they can pack their bags and go home and have a rest !!

>>> “5. I did not study the other examples, but I am sure they too have reasons to work.” ,<<

So, if such as applying a demagnetiser to LPs and CDs etc “could have reasons to work”, then why is it not accepted that they “could have reasons to work” and why do we have ‘professionals in audio” actually writing to the American Consumer Electronics Association regarding such as the Furutech CD "demagnetizer" and implying fraud because the CEA had ‘determined this is an award-winning product’ ?

And this same “professional in audio” had further commented (on Stereophile Forum) :-

>>> “Likewise for demagnetizing CDs and LP records, the subject of this thread. Unless the heads of Furutech are idiots, which I doubt, all that's left is dishonesty. So all they can do is reject standard testing and claim there's more to it than "science" knows.” <<<

Why, iosiP, IF such things “could have reasons to work”, is it not as accepted in the general and ‘professional’ world of audio as you are accepting that they MIGHT ?

>>> “3. And, finally, avoiding to explain how your own "thingies" work. And by explaining I mean starting with a proved premise and working your way up to conclusions, using a logical chain of inferences.
You learn in Logic 101 that false premises can lead to any conclusion (true or false) while using perfectly logical inferences, so please do't start by telling me that "white is better" and use this as a premise: you have to prove this first, and only after you can go anyway further.” <<<

I will reply to both you and Toledo here. In posting on the Stereophile Forum I use the “rules for manufacturers” as set down by the Audio Asylum site – because I find those rules fair and reasonable for both manufacturers and retailers.

1) That manufacturers must not use Audio Asylum Forums to advertise their products.
2) Having respect to that rule, manufacturers can still take part in general discussions.

Now regarding the conclusions we have come to. These conclusions have been arrived at using a logical chain of inferences (and considerable experiences). This chain has been fully described OVER and OVER again – for the past 30 years - until I have run out of breath doing so !! But, those past 30 years working in a particular area, just followed on from a previous 30 years designing and manufacturing audio products and working completely within conventional audio and acoustic theories. So, I am ALSO fully conversant with how conventional electronic, mechanical and acoustic engineers think and work.

>>> “so please do't start by telling me that "white is better" <<<

I can’t PROVE ‘white is better’. The only way to prove it to yourself is to try it in SPECIFIC areas, on SPECIFIC objects in comparison to other colours and LISTEN each time. SURELY exactly as Michael Green cannot PROVE that loosening particular screws or bolts, in equipment, WILL give you an improvement in the sound. You have to try it and listen for yourself !!

I can’t PROVE the colour purple/violet is a better colour for the edge of CDs than the colour green. You would have to try it and listen for yourself. I can only give you the results of our listening experiments. Just exactly as Michael Green is giving you the results of HIS listening experiments.

With all the devices I have listed – and more besides – AND all the techniques which Michael has suggested people should try to gain improvements in the sound, they are all showing that there is a wealth of additional information – available – which people are just not ‘hearing’ (resolving).

Regards,
May Belt,
PWB Electronics.

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Pass the calculator Miranda
iosiP wrote:

So please leave the engineers out of the subject!
Let me explain:
1. The tiny bowls resonate on frequencies situated in the treble part of the audio spectrum, so one may hear more "air" around the instruments.
2. Pure crystals have a very regular internal structure, so a well-thought out mixture of them might resonate (or rather absorb, I have not studied the phenomenon yet) some well-defined frequencies.
3. The Schumann generator uses frequencies within our own brain's alpha waves, so it may cause relaxation and thus a better perception of music. BTW, one reviewer stated he felt "butterflies" in his stomach while testing the generator: no wonder, the military are developing non-lethal weapons based in infrasound.
4. Freezing your CDs may release inter-layer tensions and make them more legible to the laser beam, so yes, this may work.
5. I did not study the other examples, but I am sure they too have reasons to work.

OTH, putting your pictures in the freezer does not work, tying your cables with white spirals does not work (at least, not any better than tying them with spirals of any other color) and putting blue papers under your houseplants does not work. As for writing the famous mantra on your mirrors and shining a flashlight at them... no comment!

Better pull out the slide rule again on the tiny little bowls for both acoustic waves and electromagnetic waves.

Crystals do have a symmetrical structure, that's true. How that equates to better sound isn't exactly obvious,as ten years of debate on the subject demonstrates.

The Schumann frequency resonates with internal body organs so that's not surprising.

Freezing CDs might relieve stress, that's true, but have you no faith in Reed Solomon Error Correction Codes?

One assumes you also believe cameras steal your soul. Audiophiles can be very superstitious about some things.

You wrote,

"5. I did not study the other examples, but I am sure they too have reasons to work."

One assumes that's just woman's intuition.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

toledo
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Quote:
Quote:

I can certainly understand your frustration with some of tweaks that you are probably hearing about for the first time. Let me ask you, though, which tweaks are you referring to? I am afraid you might be lumping all the tweaks you are suspicious of together and calling them faith based. it might be helpful to try to identify the ones that really bother you, the most suspicious ones, and divide them into groups, say the tweaks that Are actually physical but appear to be metaphysical, e.g., the water bowls,the ones that are based on nanotechnology, e.g. Dark Matter and the intelligent chip, the quantum mechanical ones like the intelligent chip, the ones that are based on mind matter interaction or Morphic Resonance like the clever little clock. You can put all the ones you're not exactly sure what they are in a separate box to figure out later. In a world of wire directionality, slow moving electrons, colors that change the sound and telephone books that change the sound, it's no wonder there 's been such an uproar by skeptics and pseudo skeptics. I'm pretty sure the Newtonian physics guys felt exactly the same way when Einstein published his papers on relativity - very upset.

The only frustrating part is the lack of discussion of tweak products in terms other than feel good or new ageisms or the theoretical.

Dark matter? A bit of a stretch there.

Morphic resonance? "Memory is inherent in nature" and telepathy.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rupert_Sheldrake
I agree there is much to be learned about telepathy but it's applicability to audio and listening.. I need a little more info.

You have discussed some of the 'technical' aspects of your products and there is ample opportunity to go further. Let's take intelligent chips, for example. The premise of the product is to permanently enhance the transparency of the polycarbonate CD surface. This is an easily tested situation of before and after, yet no tests verify this sem to be available.

I think it is up to you as the proponent to classify tweak products to ease the discussion. I see this as number 1 on Costins list of tactics of shifting the debate to the opponent.

As for the rest of your post, I will leave it up readers to figure out which tactics your are employing.

The name dropping has decreased somewhat, but, still employed to add authority and credibility to your statements.

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What do we know and when did we know it?

Dark Matter is the name of one of my newer products, the one that absorbs infrared (invisible) light. See the connection? Dark Matter is actually the only audio product to address this issue. Yeah, I know what you're thinking, "I didn't even know it WAS an issue." As for intelligent chips, here's a quick rundown.

1. The original intelligent chip introduced in US in 2004, I gave one to Clark Johnsen at CES 2005, who demo'd it for a number of folks. The intelligent chip was the product of the show, or so someone said.

2. The Chinese company that introduced the intelligent chip said he discovered the effect accidentally. He worked in some sort of medical research office where he had access to quantum dots that were being studied for use in human tissue illumination (next MRI type technology).

3. The intelligent chip was the single biggest subject of discussion on Audio Asylum for the entire year 2005 and probably ever.

4. I published The Definitive Explanation of How the Intelligent Chip Works in the summer 2005. The essence of the rather long paper is that the chip works quantum mechanically, emits coherent light in presence of laser light and the end result of all the quantum stuff going on is a more transparent polycarbonate layer. Thus the treated CD sounds like a remastered CD.

5. The intelligent chip worked when it was placed on top of the cd Player, while the CD to be treated was allowed to play for 2 seconds. The intelligent chip ran out of steam after 10 treatments for reasons that I explain in my paper.

6. The Intelligent Box, also from JSMR, was released around 2007 or so, and reviewed by the two PhDs Marge and Henk at 6 Moons a couple years later. I introduced a new version of the original chip about this time that operated somewhat like the intelligent Box in that the new chip was placed directly into the inside of the player.

7. Since I kind of have a pretty good idea how quantum dots work I was able to develop a more powerful intelligent chip around three years ago, the Super Intelligent Chip, which incorporates new technology quantum dot wise. The active ingredient as it were in the Super Chip is produced in the lab of one of the pioneering companies in nanotechnology according to my specification.

8. Pretty sure WA quantum chips from Germany also utilize quantum dots.

Any questions, fire at will.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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I have a question

What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

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Quote:
Quote:

4. I published the Definitive Explanation of How the Intelligent Chip Works in the summer 2005. The essence of the rather long paper is that the chip works quantum mechanically, emits coherent light in presence of laser light and the end result of all the quantum stuff going on is a more transparent polycarbonate layer. Thus the treated CD sounds like a remastered CD.

From your white paper you state
"The clear polycarbonate layer in commercial off-the-shelf CDs has a transparency of only around 92%."

How was this transparency figure arrived at? If the original transparency can be calculated, what is the transparency after treatment? Can you provide the test results?

This seems like a rather simple before/after test to confirm that the permanence of the quantum superposition effect is actually permanent. It is rare to find such an easily testable and verifiable scenario in quantum mechanics.

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Bass performance
michael green wrote:

What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

The Beauty of headphones is you can ignore all the room anomalies and concentrate on the electronics and especially improving dynamic range and signal to noise ratio, which are almost always compromised by any number of things like vibration, RFI/EMI, magnetic fields, among other things. With the concept in mind that improving bass performance is like an archealogical dig, you're not really sure what you've got there untill you can remove all the dirt that covers it. My primary concerns these days are reducing seismic vibration, reducing vibration of the CD transport mechanism, reducing magnetic fields inside the player and amp, and reducing RFI/EMI emissions inside the player, especially by semiconductor chips.

Cheers,

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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Wait, I think I know this one
michael green wrote:

What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

Put two photos of drums in my freezer?

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Transparency
toledo wrote:
Quote:

4. I published the Definitive Explanation of How the Intelligent Chip Works in the summer 2005. The essence of the rather long paper is that the chip works quantum mechanically, emits coherent light in presence of laser light and the end result of all the quantum stuff going on is a more transparent polycarbonate layer. Thus the treated CD sounds like a remastered CD.

From your white paper you state
"The clear polycarbonate layer in commercial off-the-shelf CDs has a transparency of only around 92%."

How was this transparency figure arrived at? If the original transparency can be calculated, what is the transparency after treatment? Can you provide the test results?

This seems like a rather simple before/after test to confirm that the permanence of the quantum superposition effect is actually permanent. It is rare to find such an easily testable and verifiable scenario in quantum mechanics.

There are a number of on line sources for polycarbonate transparency. The number I stated 92% is probably a high (conservative) number. Polycarbonate is OK but not perfect. And probably chosen because it has a very good refractive index for the purpose and because it's cheap.

We do not do testing of transparency here at Chez Machina Dynamica. Are you volunteering? Think of the transparency theory as what it is, a theory. Please don't report me to AES. You might well be correct, that's it's an easy test to perform. I should also point out that testing of products and testing of theories is probably best performed by independent third parties.

The link below is a chart of polycarbonate properties that actually shows a transparency to light figure of 89%. Interesting, huh?

http://optochemicals.com/polycarbonate_properties.htm

Cheers, Geoff Kait, Machina Dynamica

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Quote:

There are a number of on line sources for polycarbonate transparency. The number I stated 92% is probably a high (conservative) number. Polycarbonate is OK but not perfect. And probably chosen because it has a very good refractive index for the purpose and because it's cheap.

We do not do testing of transparency here at Chez Machina Dynamica. Are you volunteering? Think of the transparency theory as what it is, a theory. Please don't report me to AES. You might well be correct, that's it's an easy test to perform. I should also point out that testing of products and testing of theories is probably best performed by independent third parties.

The link below is a chart of polycarbonate properties that actually shows a transparency to light figure of 89%. Interesting, huh?

http://optochemicals.com/polycarbonate_properties.htm

Cheers, Geoff Kait, Machina Dynamica

Thanks for your candid comments.

But this begs the question of why wouldn't you have the intelligent chips tested by a third party to verify its efficacy?

You could unequivocally state the benefits without cloaking it in the mysteries of quantum mechanics or wouldn't that have the "cool factor"?

Are we running into the Stovepiping issue that plagues the audio industry that only new and cool sells?

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Testing, etc.

Toledo wrote,

"Thanks for your candid comments.

But this begs the question of why wouldn't you have the intelligent chips tested by a third party to verify its efficacy?"

That would be silly. Who would believe a third party I contracted with? That would be like an Army contractor contracting with a third party? That's not INDEPENDENT. HEL-loo! The government, not the contractor, contracts the third party

"You could unequivocally state the benefits without cloaking it in the mysteries of quantum mechanics or wouldn't that have the "cool factor"?"

I actually like quantum mechanics and am not afraid of it. Why hide the method of operation? It is what it is. Besides, quantum mechanics is what, 90 years old. Not exactly new and cool anymore, I'd opine.

"Are we running into the Stovepiping issue that plagues the audio industry that only new and cool sells?"

I suggest Stovepiping plagues individuals who are blind to developments in the industry.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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Shucks.....

no wonder it did not work.....

I put the drums in freezer......

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this wasn't my question

Hi Geoff

I think you misunderstood my question. It had nothing to do with room or non-room.

lets try again

What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

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Quote:

I suggest Stovepiping plagues individuals who are blind to developments in the industry.

What recent developments might those be? You mean an industry that is in a death spiral due to short sighted goals of "new and improved" and supporting industries based on untested, unverified and theoretical products.

Some of us are not as blind as you might wish us to be.

If the industry produces such great products why the need for aftermarket component tweaks. Let's dispense with the cd tweaks, cd treatments, etc ... I think we heard about those.

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michael green wrote:
michael green wrote:

Hi Geoff

I think you misunderstood my question. It had nothing to do with room or non-room.
Just kidding, Michael.
Just kidding, Michael

lets try again

What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

Adjust the tone control, assuming you have one?

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Just kidding, Michael...

; }

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Just kidding, Michael...

; }

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it's true though

It's funny, but it's also truly distrubing. People shouldn't have to be listening to stuck systems. It amazes me that the early designers got it, but it goes right over the head of the audiophile designer and user.

The early designers knew and accepted that every recording was different. As soon as they realized this they made "tone controls". The audiophile designer comes along and says "that makes the sound untrue to it's orginal state". The most stupid move in the history of this hoppy! Instead of figuring out how to make the sound variable in a more pure approach, we'll just start to make thousands of systems stuck playing one sound, and that's exactly what happened. One sound systems when we know they will never play a wide range of differing recordings. Then we came up with the second most stupid statement. My system is so revealing it's showing the flaws in this music. BS, it can't play the music. When are guys going to get it, we made a wrong move. We went from a solution, to completely being stuck and we've been doing it so long we can't even remember why we had tone controls to begin with. We were just so proud of ourselves being purist that we didn't realize that this was going to stop us from being able to play most of the music. We went right into the 80's with this Absolute Sound idea, but no audiophile on the planet can ever get it now because we removed an important tool without replacing it. If you have a tone control lets put you in the corner but if you can't play the music now, or tune it in we'll just blame the music.

I truly hope I'm not here much longer before people start to see what has happened to our hobby. The numbers of music lovers are going up and the numbers of audiophiles are dropping like flies. Do we not see it yet? Bill, you make fun and I'm with you, I'm easy to make fun of and make fun of myself often. But what you also did was say the truth loud and clear. If we have a drum sound that we wish to change, how do we change it? The audiophile right now is dead in the water with this question. He can either falsely say it's the recordings fault, or switch out a system every time he puts on a recording, or go back to using tone controlling, or keep the purity and be able to tune to the recording both.

How can a person call himself and audiophile when we can't even understand that every recording is different as we all knew 50 years ago, and we still have no system that can do anything about it? People look at me on here and say "I'm not going to tune to every recording". Well ok, but even the guys who started this thing knew they were going to have to tune.

so again I setup my test

I took a group of guys and had them play recordings they thought were recorded terrible. They never knew what components I was using, but before I put on the "bad" recording we played something to show that the system was sounding good to them. Put on the first bad recording and the listener said see. He left the room and 5 minutes later I had him come back in. He sat down and listened and was "wow, what in the "h" did you do". I showed him. After laughing a while at the industry I tuned up the system to play the recording with it's glory. I did this with everyone and the results were the same. Their bad recording sounded much better EQed than with the bypass on. Everyone liked the real tuning the best but the interesting part to me was that these trained audiophiles took the EQed over the bypass on recordings they liked but couldn't get to sound good.

Why are we fix listening? Why have we taken a step backward? and How can we ignore the facts about recordings?

I am absolutely dumb found that this part of the industry has moved away from something we knew 50 years ago to be a fact. If you are in the studio you have an EQ. If you are in your car you do there as well. You have a way to make the needed changes everywhere but in your high end home listening. Are you guys telling me you would rather listen to an extremely limited few pieces of music the rest of your life over having a system that can play it all?

I hope I'm shaking up things in your minds and I also hope that you take the time to think about these things. It seems pretty remarable that a hobby could have gone off track this far but you don't have to spend the rest of your lives thinking something is when it isn't. There is music to be heard, and after that even more music. If you think you are going to after all these years put together a system that is automatically going to play recordings that are all different sounding your going to be lying to yourself and others for a long time.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

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Tweaks and Tuning

Michael, you said :-

>>> “I don’t have the need to be tangled because the lines have been made clear through being part of, instead of looking at.” <<<

You can’t possibly be referring to me with that remark and to my considerable experiences, as I have been involved in “being PART of” – far more than just “looking at”.

>>> “There is music to be heard, and after that even more music.” <<<

You could not have said a truer sentence, Michael.

Similarly someone elsewhere also used a sentence which put it in a nutshell. They said “People are not hearing what they have paid for.”

Regards,
May Belt,
PWB Electronics.

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A misunderstanding
michael green wrote:

Hi Geoff

I think you misunderstood my question. It had nothing to do with room or non-room.

lets try again

What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

Michael, I did not misunderstand your question. However, I'm pretty sure you misunderstood my answer. One of the benefits of my approach, which I might possibly describe as holistic or eclectic, is absolutely positively the most incredible bass performance you have ever heard - deep, powerful, taut, elastic, dynamic, propulsive, above all consistent with reality. A recipe for reality - Find the problem, fix the problem, move to next problem. It's an archaeological dig so bring it back alive!

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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Recent developments
toledo wrote:
Quote:

I suggest Stovepiping plagues individuals who are blind to developments in the industry.

What recent developments might those be? You mean an industry that is in a death spiral due to short sighted goals of "new and improved" and supporting industries based on untested, unverified and theoretical products.

Some of us are not as blind as you might wish us to be.

If the industry produces such great products why the need for aftermarket component tweaks. Let's dispense with the cd tweaks, cd treatments, etc ... I think we heard about those.

Manufacturers seem blissfully unaware of Recent developments by advanced audiophiles such as addressing scattered background laser light in the CD or Blu Ray player, addressing RFI/EMI in a comprehensive way, addressing vibration in a comprehensive way, addressing magnetic fields in the player and amplifier in a comprehensive way. Beyond that, it is the audiophiles who are blissfully unaware of these developments by other audiophiles in many cases, no? That's really what I'm referring to when I use the word Stovepiping. I won't even get into the areas that are INDEPENDENT of the audio system, independent of the electronics, the speakers, the acoustic waves, all the cables and wiring, everything. You know what I'm talking about. That's what I mean by "recent developments." You could say it has a lot to do with a better understanding of the relation between physics and sound, not to mention a better understanding of the physics involved,

"It's what I choose to believe." Dr. Elizabeth Shaw in Prometheus

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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geoffkait wrote:
geoffkait wrote:

'X26'x represents a coordinate system for which the number 26 is the number of spacetime dimensions in bosonic string theory and (if I'm not mistaken) the number of dimensions in the universe during the initial expansion period.

Great! And how does writing it on my mirror improve my listening experience?

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One question after another
iosiP wrote:
geoffkait wrote:

'X26'x represents a coordinate system for which the number 26 is the number of spacetime dimensions in bosonic string theory and (if I'm not mistaken) the number of dimensions in the universe during the initial expansion period.

Great! And how does writing it on my mirror improve my listening experience?

Geez, it's just one question after another with you. You're the phD. Shouldn't YOU be explaining why it improves the listening experience to US? Oh, wait a minute, I almost forgot. Your job is explaining why something can't possibly work.

How written words influence how water crystals are formed.

http://youtu.be/iu9P167HLsw

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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Michael,

Michael,

It's funny you bring up EQ. I was a purist for years. How could you not be since someone decided that tone control are out ;)

My most recent highend system was a manley stingray amp, cec tl1x transport, audionote dac and merlin tsm. My previous system was 25watt SET mono blocks using KR tubes, transformer volume control using custom C-core transformers and copper top/bottom chassis plates encased in wood and the same transport, dac and merlin vsm towers. I won't even get into my Levinson/Rowland/watt puppy days.

These systems were absolute champs at certain types of music mainly small ensemble acoustic jazz, simple classical soloists and other audiophile approved recordings.

But what about my other stuff I cut my teeth on as a teenager and early adult life. Not so good.

So what does a purist do ... He goes out and finds an old school Soundcraftsmen EQ! I used that for awhile and it was like the old days. I could EQ each recording and finally gain some control over each recording.

I could engage the EQ when needed and bypass it for the purist in me.

But, it was a bandaid and one more box and more cabling and more rack space and on and on.

Thats when I said I have had enough. I realized I can't build my out way out of this problem with ever more patches, etc.

Where am I today system wise? A tuned simple $100 receiver and a $29 DVD player, shoe string cabling, no power conditioning and same speakers.
Where am I in enjoying my music? I have all that I had with previous systems and much more. More importantly I have gained back my tone controls so to speak.

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Strange theories

isoiP wrote,

"3. And finally, avoiding to explain how your own "thingies" work. And by explaining I mean starting with a proved premise and working your way up to conclusions, using a logical chain of inferences.
You learn in Logic 101 that false premises can lead to any conclusion (true or false) while using perfectly logical inferences, so please do't start by telling me that "white is better" and use this as a premise: you have to prove this first, and only after you can go anyway further."

I'm afraid logic and reason only get you so far as explanations go. Folks are not really prepared to discuss all the ins and outs of quantum mechanics or even plain old electricity, magnetic fields, electromagnetic waves, for that matter, you know, subjects I suspect many audiophiles, perhaps yourself included, believe they have a reasonably good grasp of. When you exclaimed in a recent post, Are you serious?! When I mentioned that electromagnetic waves are composed of photons, it made me realize, wow, here's a PhD in information theory and a MS in signal processing, I'm hope I'm not butchering the subjects of your degrees too much, who is thrown by that statement. One has to ask oneself, if this is the case for someone with advanced degrees what chance do manufacturers of exotic tweaks have of explaining things when the going really gets rough, when we get into quantum mechanics, quantum teleportation or say mind matter interaction or Morphic Resonance? Then I guess we'll really see the fur fly. What's the word when someone has a phobia about learning new things?

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

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This brings back memories

When I was a kid, the first thing I did when I bought a car was put in an EQ/amp and new 6x9 Jensen Coax speakers. I've probably had a dozen car stereo systems and always had an EQ/amp. Every tape had its own need for shaping with the equalizer. Eventually, I had all the settings for each tape memorized and simply adjusted the EQ before swapping out tapes. There was absolutely nothing left on the recording that I wasn't hearing and hearing it quite loudly, as kids are want to do.

Sound pressure levels can do wonderful things for extracting detail from a recording, but at modest to low spls, it's a different story. At this level, the engineering of the recording is much more in play as to what you are going to be able to hear and what the engineer's own references and preferences are going to allow you to hear. My point being, I'm not trying to recreate a live event, hell, most live events sound like shit. No, I'm trying to hear what the recording engineer was trying to create when he pieced together the music.

And then there's live recordings with real space and real reverb and envirnmental accoustics. That's such a different situation than engineered recordings that I don't expect a single system to play both with equal truth anymore than I would expect a car to perform equally well in traffic as it does on the track.

Recordings sound different because they are created by people with differing goals and opinions on what they want them to sound like. They don't start with the notion of making them sound just like they were performed, in many cases because they would sound like shit if they did.

Music is an emotional experience and will interplay with the listeners state of mind at any given moment. We may agree generally on what aspects of sound are desirable, but we will never agree on what aspects of reproduction strike that emotional involvement in each one of us to the point of becoming predictable enough to tell each other what they should or shouldn't seek in any given set of variables like gear and tweaks. For some it will be a big, wide stage. For others, tonal balance or absolute spls. I suspect it certainly changes constantly with our mood and state of mind.

If equalizers and tone controls do it for people, more power to them. If that huge stage makes that connection, then that's the right choice for that listener. There's what is real and what is truthful to the original and then there's personal choices. Two very different things. The High End will only remain High End so long as the ultimate goal and the advancement of the ball is based on truth to the original. Once it leaves that starting point, it ceases to be High End and becomes something else. I submit that too many manufacturers have strayed from that starting point and really are just trying to sell stuff based on marketing campaigns that don't really fill a High End objective.

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Hey Catch,

Hey Catch,

Good memories indeed. I remember right out of college finally with a little cash in my pocket, I bought a Blaupunkt car system with eq/amp and coax. Good tunes and good times to be had.

Back then, you did not obsess over a system. You bought one and enjoyed it.

My mid fi system days were the same, you got a decent setup and played tunes.

Then I got into high-end and my enjoyment of music began a gradual descent. First you get the new system and then starts the obsession to make it better. Before you know it, you are listening to your system and not the music in pursuit of the holy grail.

Factor in different recordings and limited means to deal with them on high-end systems and I am surprised many of us stayed in the hobby.

But we love music and find a way, right. For some, ironically, the path leads back to well designed, tuneable and what might be considered mid-fi components.

I may sound a bit over zealous, but I am finally enjoying the hobby again. I actually packed up my high-end system for a couple of years deciding whether I wanted to stay in the hobby and also to reset my focus to music versus system listening.

I listened on the car system and family room mid-fi system before I decided to give it a go once again. I am glad I did.

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As with anything, there's a learning curve and discovery

It's easy to jump out into the weeds with tweaks and tuning, but one very constant fact about sound reproduction and achieving truly good sound starts at one place. The one place that makes ALL THE DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD (Catch types with his GOD voice) is proper speaker placement in the room. 90% of all the magic in audio begins with this one step and many gear chasers and sound tweakers never fully appreciate its importance.

There's a lot of really great stuff being made and advances in playback within the digital domain and most especially, affordable speakers that are incredible value. However, no matter how good your gear is, if you aren't starting with good speaker placement in any given room, you really are starting down a path of never being satisfied with components that aren't even given a fighting chance of showing you what they can do.

I tweak and tune with my system out of enjoyment of tweaking and tuning and learning. But, you can bet your ass my speakers are placed where they disappear from the listening environment. And that's how you will know if your speakers are placed properly in the room or at least reasonably well placed.

If your speakers aren't disappearing, go back to step one until they do. If you can't use the Cardas Golden Ratio method, then use one of the variants in loading your corners with the Cardas method.

Tweaks are fun after your system already sounds amazing, not before.

michael green
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still not getting it

Hi Geoff

Sorry but you are still not getting it. What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

you answered

"Michael, I did not misunderstand your question. However, I'm pretty sure you misunderstood my answer. One of the benefits of my approach, which I might possibly describe as holistic or eclectic, is absolutely positively the most incredible bass performance you have ever heard - deep, powerful, taut, elastic, dynamic, propulsive, above all consistent with reality. A recipe for reality - Find the problem, fix the problem, move to next problem. It's an archaeological dig so bring it back alive! "

mg again

The listener, and the studio and myself would get no where with this answer Geoff. We've already heard the deep, powerful, taut...all the above. What we are asking is how do you, you Geoff, go from one sound to the next making a change. The drum sounds like this specifically and we want it to sound like that instead specifically. This is what we do in the music biz. How do you do this. This has nothing to do with you or anyone proclaiming they have a better anything, this has to do with a change that listeners are doing every day.

An example: last week I was listening to Selling England by the Pound. I hear the drums are recessed because I had the system tuned to Abbey Road. I made the necessary adjustment to move the drums forward and make them fill in and dropped the tone a little and bring more focus to the middle and lower part of his set. What I'm asking you is how do you do this? I'm giving you a chance to show people how you are able to bring the best out of every recording and or take the recording to different places within the stage or tonally or whatever change a person may want.

In tuning we have moved past who's got the best. We have found ways to get to the signal core and make whatever sound we want. We're no longer playing the game of I got you beat. We are able to bring any part of the audio recording and take it pretty much anywhere, all from what is on the recording. Where the industry is taking snap shots of a particular sound we are suggesting they can go much further than this.

So lets back up and ask the question this way. If you have the drums set at the back of the stage and you wanted to move them forward and change the pitch, fill out the middle of the drum and the lower part focusing more on this than the head, how would you do this?

thanks
michael green
MGA/RoomTune

michael green
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to May

hi May, hope your doing well!

Michael, you said :-

>>> “I don’t have the need to be tangled because the lines have been made clear through being part of, instead of looking at.” <<<

You can’t possibly be referring to me with that remark and to my considerable experiences, as I have been involved in “being PART of” – far more than just “looking at”."

Nope I wouldn't make this statement about you. I would make this about people who are not actively listening and injecting opinions based on theory instead of doing. And also the ones who don't follow through on their testing. A/B testing for example can be extremely wishy washy amoung audiophiles. Those of us who have learned how to do real testing get a little chuckle out of the quick fix world and how easy it is to lead the empty of thought to the water, and get them to drink. Sad but the industry has fallen a few times by not listening with enough conviction.

As far as the whole snake oil thing, me having my background in the music world as much as the audiophile thing I find it funny what makes people in this hobby so afraid. I've been a little shy in talking about my music side ever since I got into the audiophile biz because of the reputation the audiophiles have made for themselves as being off the wall and very Very stuck in their thinking. Audiophiles have a way of making theories (so do audio engineers) that are only useful in debates. When put to the test (like this guy saying you have to have a room 37' long to hear 30hz) to an audiophile this can really mess up their listening hobby. But I think the doing thing if shown more is what will help others understand what they can "do" in and with their systems. I don't think saying all the adjectives and audiophile descriptive words get through to the audiophile any more though. They need to have a particular piece of sound or music described to them and then the guidence to make a real time change. And I do think this would be helpful from you. So that the listener who is listening to something specific like the sound of a guitar in a particular recording can get from point A to point B.

as far as me and other tweaks or any audio components

I pretty much just do my thing and when I see something that I think I haven't done bring it in and test it for myself, and either incorporate or move on.

be well

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

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To Michael

>>> “as far as me and other tweaks or any audio components
I pretty much just do my thing and when I see something that I think I haven't done bring it in and test it for myself, and either incorporate or move on.” <<<

Michael. I do not dispute your experiences with changing the sound by doing the ‘tweaks’ (tuning) you describe. The reason why I refer to so many of the other ‘tweaks’ is that all of YOURS, OURS and the OTHER ‘tweaks’ are providing CLUES !!!!!!!!!! CLUES that all the (musical) information available is not being ‘heard’ !!

We have been down the same path you have been along. Some 25 years ago we ‘treated’ 99 (UK pound) CD players, ‘treated’ 99 (UK pound) amplifiers, ‘treated’ 150 (UK pound) speaker systems and blown away the competition – and have had it reported so in the UK Hi Fi magazines. WE have also ‘treated’ demonstration rooms at both retailers and Hi Fi Shows – including ‘treating’ the demonstration rooms at Hi Fi Shows run by the actual Hi FI Magazines !!! So I know that the ‘techniques’ you describe CAN have an effect on the sound. I do not challenge that !!

>>> “So that the listener who is listening to something specific like the sound of a guitar in a particular recording can get from point A to point B.” <<<

Yes, of course you can ‘tune’ a system to a specific sound of a guitar – if that is what you wish to do. But there is also something else going on. There is also the fact that there is the subject of creating a ‘better’ sound overall. That you can create a better sound by doing something specific and then if you undo what you have just done and go back to listening to the same thing again, this time you just don’t like the sound. Full stop. You don’t LIKE the sound any more and you have to go back to doing whatever it was you had done to give you that improvement. In other words – it is no longer merely a ‘tuning’ thing, it is a ‘better or worse’ situation. In other words, cut and dried – not a question of ‘tuning’ for this sound or for that sound.

Let me explain from our own experiences. You describe such as untightening screws and listening and ‘tuning’ the sound by doing so. There is also a ‘better and worse’ situation. Our experience shows that if you look at all screws which are vertical to the earth’s surface – in other words screws holding the light switch to the vertical wall, screws holding the AC socket to the vertical wall, screws holding a vertical facia plate to equipment etc and you align the SLOT of those screws so that it is parallel to the earth’s surface, and then listen to some music, you will get an improvement in the sound !! After getting used to that sound, if you then change the position of the SLOT away from being parallel to the earth’s surface, then the sound will be described as worse – i.e the improvement in the sound will have gone !! More of a Black and White situation rather than a ‘tuning’ situation for specific and individual instruments.

And so it goes on – and on !!

I do NOT challenge what you hear when you do the things you describe. If you hear extended soundstage (such as extended height, width, depth etc) after you have unravelled wires, after you have untightened screws, after you have rested transformers on ‘treated’ wood blocks, then that is what you have heard – I do NOT challenge your listening experiences. What I have difficulty with are the words used.

It may (as I think) be merely a terminology aspect. You use the words “unblocked” to describe what happened after you applied those certain (what you call tuning) techniques. I fully appreciate that that is how it appeared, that ‘something’ (information) had been ‘unblocked’ after carrying out certain techniques, and this means that prior to doing those techniques, ‘something’ must have been ‘blocking’ that information. But ‘blocking’ what ? The audio signal ? or the ‘sound’ ? If you say ‘the audio signal’, then I know where you are coming from. If you say ‘the sound’, then my question would be “How had ‘the sound’ been blocked in the first place – to then be ‘unblocked’ by carrying out the techniques you have described ?”

MY description for the effect you experienced would have been a “freeing up” of the sound. Which is exactly what people have experienced and described after introducing certain ‘room’ devices into the listening environment. But these devices cannot have been “unblocking” any audio signal – the further information being ‘freed up’ must have ALREADY been there, in the room, having been presented into the room by the loudspeakers earlier !!!!!!!!!!!!

Those numerous and various ‘tweaks’ (devices) I have previously described does not, in any way, affect the realisation that doing even more things, carrying out yet more techniques, many which you have described, can give one EVEN MORE ‘freeing up’ of the musical information !!!!!!!!!!!

Regards,
May Belt,
PWB Electronics.

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EQ and equipment

Hi Toledo

I was thinking about your post.

You owned some of the same equipment as me, well what didn't I own lol. I think some people may take it wrong when some start changing their systems over to the low mass tunable ones. Something goes haywire in their $$$ dollar $$$ signs mental conditioning. I really believe that. Some people can't see or hear the sound unless it has a dollar amount up grade attached to it. Looking at something beneath them type of thing. They're the same parts rearranged but they can't deal with it.

In the last 15 years I've seen (if price is a meter) more people buying down than buying up with a lot better results. They (most of them) have spent small fortunes, some big fortunes and at the end of it all realized this isn't suppose to be so hard. They get a simple system and learn how to listen and tune and are back in the saddle. It's easier to do now then ever.

on the EQ

I wonder who pulled the trigger on getting rid of EQ's before finding a replacement first? That had to be a real brainiac. "Hey if you get rid of your eq all your differently recorded music is going to play just fine." Really, who sold that one? Designers originally got rid of the EQ's in preamps so they could make more separates. They didn't know people were going to cut them out of the picture. The EQ, when pres were made without them, were designed so we had yet another step. It was designed to go source, pre, EQ, amp, speakers. People started passing the EQ but then this weird thing happen. Audiophiles started doing all their systems totally EQ-less. I'm guilty, I did the same. There was lots of reporting on how you couldn't play as much music but on recordings that didn't need to be EQed for that system is sounded better than running it through the extra parts. I liked this approach but I also did a lot of per recording tuning so it wasn't that big of a deal. But audiophiles jumped the gun and outlawed their use without learning another way. It was obvious you could no longer play a wide range of music, so the audiophiles said we'll just stick to classical and jazz, but that didn't fix it cause in time they started hearing problems with a lot of even that music. So lets limit it to direct to disc. Lets say direct to disc is the music sounding it's best, then classical and jazz on some labels, then....and they worked their way down never looking at the system as needing help and trying to fix this problem. Instead they ignored that there was a problem at all.

I can't even conceive of the concept of less music over more. Never have I ever heard a system even remotely come close to playing a lot of recordings without it needing to be tuned somehow. I wonder why people don't just admit that and move on. Some here have and that gains them a lot of respect with me. "My system plays one sound and I shove all the recordings through that one sound." That to me is honest. I can deal with that, but I can't deal with all this other stuff and these great raves about something that has always been impossible. Is it me, am I being mean? Is wanting to hear more music being mean? Or is it that we're using something that cost so little to get there the mean part?

Toledo, I bet there are thousands that if they saw your story and saw you writing about what your hearing now as opposed to then, they would have to in time take notice. Here's what I honestly think listeners should consider. Next time they hit the listening wall instead of taking yet another big jump, buy a simple system and try it. They might say they have, but no no no, try it now and take it seriously. I bet a ton of them would never go back. They may not come up here and admit it but they wouldn't go back.

Times have changed

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

geoffkait
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Different Drums

Michael wrote,

"still not getting it

Hi Geoff

Sorry but you are still not getting it. What if you are playing a drum on your system and you want the body of the drum to come out more, you put on the next recording and want the body of the drum to be less, what would you do?

you answered

"Michael, I did not misunderstand your question. However, I'm pretty sure you misunderstood my answer. One of the benefits of my approach, which I might possibly describe as holistic or eclectic, is absolutely positively the most incredible bass performance you have ever heard - deep, powerful, taut, elastic, dynamic, propulsive, above all consistent with reality. A recipe for reality - Find the problem, fix the problem, move to next problem. It's an archaeological dig so bring it back alive! ""

You then wrote,

"So lets back up and ask the question this way. If you have the drums set at the back of the stage and you wanted to move them forward and change the pitch, fill out the middle of the drum and the lower part focusing more on this than the head, how would you do this?"

Pretty sure I answered your question the first and second time. Maybe we should just write this one off as marching to the sound of different drummers. To summarize my position: There is no short cut for getting the diamond out of the dirt.

"Genius is one percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration." Old audiophile expression

"A rich man has as much chance of getting into audio Nirvana as a camel has of passing through the eye of a needle." Old audiophile expression

"It's fairly straightforward to demonstrate that you can't achieve a nuclear reaction by striking an atom with a hammer." Old audiophile expression

The Law of Maximization: No matter how much you have in the end you would have had even more if you had started out with more.

Cheers,

Geoff Kait
Marching Dramatica

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Another topic bites the dust!

Thanks Geoff and Michael for transforming any topic you touch into a tune vs. quote story!

michael green
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Hi May

I use a lot of different ways to describe things. Honestly I don't really care what words are used. I'm not being flippant, I really don't care. I figure people talk in their own languages anyway. In the end if people are in-harmony they end up communicating beyonds words. Freeing up is cool with me. I get into depth with this on TuneLand.

As far as one person disputing another, I really only ever disbute if I do something and it doesn't work the same for me as it does for someone else. And even with that I don't try to say they are wrong but more they are different, and here was my experience. Like the products you have mentioned, I have tried them. With as many clients as I have it's hard not to demo everything out there and explore every other thing.

Now I may not have tried every thing you have, and don't want to sound like a know it all or that I know the deeper stuff you guys are doing so please take this as me trying these things and doing my own studies of them.

I did not have the same opinion on cryogenics as you have expressed. To me, and this was the same after many listens from many sources, it was a choice but not a statement of better in all situations. Neither were the colors, each one had a sound, but I would have liked the option of it being variable and removable. The same was with the crystals, a choice but not a cure. The resonators I personally did not like at all. I like the science of it but think maybe it needs a different mechanisum or something. And the bowls again another flavor. These flavors I don't view as bad, but did see/hear them as a flavor and not taking the systems to a more pure state, like when we variably tune a tunable room. Now there's a shocker to me everytime I experience the power of this. When you tune a physical wall to match the signature of a recording it is remarkable. Then you can go to parts of the room in correspondence to the stage and make any flavor you want happen. For me that's more along my line of tweaking. Like not just a light weight speaker but one that is variable, through tuning the transfer in the side walls, same with equipment platforms and top canopies and acoustical products, and tunable circuit boxes. That stuff to me is my world because it really is one big music instrument. The fixed stuff is cool and shouldn't be marginalized but I'm more into the variable aspect.

When you hear me talk about untightening screws that's just to get peoples foot in the tuning door. If you look at TuneLand we take it a lot deeper then that, it's just that people need a starting place to get them in the right frame of mind. If I came here and talked the way I do with folks really into tuning people would be scared to death I would think. So I only go as deep as the environment suggest. There's a lot of things I do I don't even share with clients. May, most audiophiles are engineers, or engineers in their thinking. Trying to make an engineer bend is like the Matrix scene with the spoon. I don't try. They will either get it or not. My job is to do it, and share what is needed to get them there. I try to not go any further than they are able to comprehend. I have learned to be careful when talking to people about things that involve the senses.

Knowledge is a two way street and wisdom is learning how to use knowledge. I look at people like this, they know stuff that I don't and I know stuff that they don't, together we learn, if we come to a place of fair exchange. If not than either they or I am pushing instead of exchanging. Points never really get made by pushing. They are only words until one gives and one receives. Proving a point is only done by doing. That's my strong point, I do and because I do I don't have a problem with someone elses point of view. I see it as their point of view until I "do" an accept it into my little storage tray of knowledge.

Obviously I like the vertical tuning too, but as you know there are other ways around it when you have to. Mechanical transfer is an area that I think I have played in more than most other areas. It's fascinating, but again if I'm not in the right place to talk about it I don't. I'm more of a set the scene type of person then slowly lead as I see if someone is getting it or not. Back and forth debates are not really my thing. I'll do it if I have to but I'd rather show someone or have them try something and get back to me. Or of course them show me something. I've been with some tunees that have knocks my socks off with their abilities, and I love to be in the student seat, but not so much with talking. And it's not that I doubt a person I just like to experience it.

I'm sorry that my experiences with some of the things you have talked about was different from yours, and again they all made a difference and in some cases good but not all the time with all the different music. However things like the screws I'm hip on that. It's a good tweak and variable. I'm sure we have far more incommon than not, and I look forward to learning.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

michael green
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a little disappointed

Hi Costin

I'm a little disappointed you just got on me. Sorry that I made you upset!

I thought I was talking about tweaks, and my tweaking is tuning so I don't think I was off topic.

so again sorry but I'm not sure what you wanted

michael green
MGA/RoomTune

geoffkait
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Topic: Tweaks and Snake Oil
iosiP wrote:

Thanks Geoff and Michael for transforming any topic you touch into a tune vs. quote story!

Yeah, right. The topic being tweak bashing. Which you started, if I can be so bold, with your opus OP "Tweaks and Snake Oil." If you aspire to be a troll you'll have to learn how to deal with a certain amount of blow-back.

Your original rant, which is actually nothing more than the usual, puffed up anti tweak pseudo-skeptical jibber jabber we see so often on audio forums, was,

"About tweaks and snake oil
There are three kinds of tweaks:

1. Those that have a sound (excuse the pun) electrical/physical explanation of how they work.

2. Those that do not benefit from such an explanation, but are still susceptible to work because they interfere - even if in ways unknown or not disclosed - with one of the three elements of musical reproduction (electrical, mechanical and acoustical).

3. Those that simply don't work, because there is no possible way they do! And this has nothing to do with debunking myths or any other flat-earth beliefs: they cannot work simply because they have no way to affect any of the three stages of sound reproduction outlined above.

Please don't get yourselves into a fit - I do love music as much as you do - but just face it: music is nothing more than sound, and sound is just "a pressure disturbance that moves through a medium in the form of mechanical waves. Yes I know this might hurt your feelings, but your favorite Beethoven, Patricia Barber or Led Zeppelin recording is nothing more than "pressure waves made up of compressions and rarefactions."

So no, you won't change these pressure waves by putting your photos in the freezer, washing your hands before listening (although washing your ears might help) or writing "'x 26 'x on your mirror. Why it won't work? Well, simply because it can't! But by all means, if you are sensitive to suggestions just use them - no, your system won't sound any better but you will think it does... and at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your own satisfaction!"

Tootles,

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

geoffkait
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Metaphysical tweaks, preposterous tweaks, what have you
iosiP wrote:

Thanks Geoff and Michael for transforming any topic you touch into a tune vs. quote story!

Ok, I am going to reach out a little bit, here, on the subject you started, which unless I miss my guess was a rant against tweaks that make no sense, what we refer to as preposterous tweaks, unconventional tweaks, or maybe metaphysical tweaks. The problem with attacking these tweaks willy nilly is that just going by the name or the description doesn't necessarily tell you much about the tweak or how it works. So, here is an olive branch, I will list a bunch of unconventional tweaks, preposterous tweaks, what have you, then you can select the ones that really get your goat, that really set your hair on fire and we can discuss the pros and cons of them. My short list of metaphysical tweaks, the ones that I'm either familiar with, have read a lot about or have invented myself include the Teleportation Tweak, the Schumann Frequency Generator, the Red X Pen (PWB Electronics), The Intelligent Chip, Silver Rainbow Foil (also PWB), Mpingo disc from Shun Mook, Photos in the Freezer Tweak (of course, Duh!), black cable tie on drainpipe tweak, clever little clock (battery powered), small copper foil Flying Saucers for Windows (from yours truly), the colors orange, purple and green for coloring CDs, WA Quantum Chips (for fuses, capacitors, cables, etc.), SteinMusic Harmonizer (Gives air molecules an initial acceleration, so he says), Reef Knot device for all cables including ones not in use, Walker Audio Black Diamond Crystal for stereo cartridge and Tchang's tiny little bowl resonators.

Cheers,
Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

toledo
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Geoff,

Geoff,

Can we add photos in the freezer and x 26 x tweaks and other similar tweaks to the list. These clearly delineate the physical tweaks from the metaphysical/fringe tweaks that I was attempting to differentiate.

You have to admit that is some pretty fringe stuff and you may lose people right from the get go. The other physical tweaks can get lost in the mix and can suffer from guilty by association.

iosiP
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OK Geoff, this sounds better

And actually this was the purpose of my OP.

Now let me clarify my thought process. In order to be effective, a tweak must meet two conditions:
1. Just work, as in doing what it's supposed to do... well, just be functional, if you prefer.
2. Influence our perception of the music, either by modifying the soundwaves or our perception of them.

Obviously there is no point in asking the first question for simple tweaks: there is nothing susceptible to work or not work in writing a string on your mirror and using a flashlight on it, so only the second condition must be met (how doing this can modify our perception of music). However, some science-based tweaks must pass both tests: I'll take on your example of the Stein Music Harmonizer - first of all, it must be proven that it accelerates the air molecules, and then to prove such an acceleration bring any benefit to the listening experience.
I will give you a list of the tweaks you mentioned and how I think these pass (or not) the "composite test".

Cheers,
Costin

P.S. I would appreciate if you would just answer to questions, i.e. without "smart quotes" and irrelevant analogies. Just think this will avoid any frustration on both sides.

geoffkait
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'x26'x
toledo wrote:

Geoff,

Can we add photos in the freezer and x 26 x tweaks and other similar tweaks to the list. These clearly delineate the physical tweaks from the metaphysical/fringe tweaks that I was attempting to differentiate.

You have to admit that is some pretty fringe stuff and you may lose people right from the get go. The other physical tweaks can get lost in the mix and can suffer from guilty by association.

The coordinate 'x26'x is actually incorporated in the Photos in the Freezer Tweak and the Red X Pen ( a real doozie), which are both my list above. You don't think I'd leave The FITFT off the list, do you? You might be surprised to know there 'a very fine line between what you would probably consider fringe and physical tweaks. Just like line between classical physics and quantum physics. The lines are getting blurred. Better strap yourself in.

Pop quiz - Would you accept a placebo if it improved the sound?

Geoff Kait @ Machinadynamica.com

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