You are here

Log in or register to post comments
RGibran
RGibran's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: Oct 11 2005 - 5:50pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

At the risk of coming off as if I am siding with someone, I will point out that on page 5 of this thread, post #37746 dated 3/31/08, Ethan states:

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Oh my, no, that doesn't sound as if you are taking sides!

Yes, after all this time you've finally stumbled over the simplest fact I have been trying to make here for the last ten pages. These devices do not rely on absorption to do their job. However, Ethan, in particular, seems to believe that is the only way to "affect" a pressure wave once it is in the room.

I've seen no one address the issue of measurable differences before and after the installation of these products. They are what they are and I would say the manufacturer is presenting a product to use not measure. If you believe only measurable differences can define a product's success, if you feel a perfect waterfall plot and flat frequency response represent the best effort high end audio can achieve or that 0.0001 T.H.D. makes a product perfect, you probably have the wrong forum. However, as an example of how measurements in room treatments might lead you astray, installing a diffusion panel would not necessarily invoke a "difference" if you weren't looking in the right spot. The amount of energy in the room is not lessened as it is with absorption techniques. It is merely "re-arranged". How then do we know we would be looking in the right spot if we did attempt to measure the "effect" of these devices? How does that fit in with your idea that ...


Quote:
If dime and quarter size dots qualify as room treatments, in my view, magic pebbles, clocks, lotions, foils, safety pins, cable ties, ECT. have to come in as well.

Though Ethan has proclaimed all of the products manufactured by the companies being discussed to be bogus products which can only rely upon placebo to do their work, I've provided a link to prove that is not the case. The Shakti "Stone" changed - and improved - the performance of two automobile engines as tested by independent technicians. The motors could not have been afflicted with placebo effect and the technicians had no reason to lie despite the charts and graphs taken to prove the change occurred. They tested the Shakti product while Ethan hasn't even taken the time to read the web pages of his competitors. Who do you suppose I'm going to believe? If Ethan is incorrect in this bit of "logic", what else might he have wrong? If Ethan cannot even get beyond the point where he believes all any room treatment device can do is absorb the energy present in a pressure wave, then I have no reason to believe he is correct about any of this.

By trying to once again bring tweaks other than room treatment devices into the thread you are once again throwing an AL GORE!!! into the discussion. This thread is not about pins, clocks or cables. Bringing them into this discussion is meant to be a distraction that closes conversation. I believe we have dealt with this issue already and they are not what this thread needs to discuss. We are discussing unconventional room treatment devices as described at the front of this thread. If you wish to discuss safety pins, you'll have to start a new thread.

If you insist upon bringing the others into this discussion, you'll have to provide proof you understand how both those devices and the room devices discussed here operate. Placebo effect is not enough of an "understanding" unless we also lump Ethan's room treatments into the same category - as he has suggested we should by explicitly stating all tweaks work by way of short term memory and other deficiencies of the human belief systems. I suggest he is partially correct because there is good reason to believe most clients do not have the ability to turn what they see on a chart into the empirical concept of "tighter bass" or "cleaner highs". So, either all these devices work by way of placebo effect and authoritarian suggestion or none do.

This does though bring us back to one of the issues Ethan has repeatedly avoided - even after he brought the issue to the table - that now deserves a reply from Ethan.


Quote:

After seeing DUPs latest tirade against teh Mapleshade product line, is there any tweak you will agree cannot possibly make any difference? If someone says in earnest that they tried some tweak or other and they're sure they heard a difference, is there any point at which you'll consider them mistaken?

-------

Anyone else? This is a serious question that I think can quickly get to the bottom of whether we should trust all anecdotal reports and consider them all equally valid.

Ethan? Care to explain this now?

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Time for me to add a possible conflict of interest disclosure:

I'm starting to market "Buddha's Magic Dust Motes," so I may be biased in speaking about just how small an item can be and still have a major, night, day, earthshaking, clearcut, beneficial impact on the sound of our systems and our rooms.

So, my "Dust Motes:"

Buy a bag of this stuff and release it into your room and the tiny little motes will "entropize" in their distribution to help break up standing waves and refract wayward sound particles that would normally have headed straight to your ears from your speakers.

Disadvantageous sound particles will be diffreacted/refracted by the motes, but they leave the good sound particles alone, so what reaches your ear is only the good sound particles.

As you can see, I am freely willing to talk about how my product works, and understand it fully.

No voodoo audio stuff here, just pure, good, entropized particles.

I can't talk about their proprietary range of sizes, but I will let it be known that there is a boolean distribution involved, as well as a Bayesian likelihood of these babies working in your room.

For best results, one packet of motes should be appplied to your room about one hour before a given listening session in order to give them enough time to optimize their distribution.

We also offer cat free, tobacco free, dog free motes at a slightly higher charge.

If bad sound particles have got you down, we have your answer.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Is that your best contribution at this point, Buddha?

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
I believe this gives us a general idea of Ethan's size limits. A long way from some dime or quarter size dots, including a dozen or so of same.


Quote:
After 11 pages of posts it would seem coming to an agreement of what
Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Is that your best contribution at this point, Buddha?

Yep.

It's a real product.

I've heard it work, which is the ultimate test.

Why would you think it wouldn't work without listening first?

Do you have some sort of expectation bias?

I've even included dust motes that accumulated on some Harmonix Discs I had lying around improving the sound of the room. Part of the tweak is "transference of betterment."

Really, Jan, how could you, of all people, not take a tweak product seriously?

Does this mean you do actually draw the line somewhere?

If so, tell us where tweaks end for you. If you wanna bang on Ethan for not going to your level, why would you bang on someone for going on from Harmonix Discs?

I hope I didn't interrupt your paux de deux with Ethan.

Tell you what, I'll sell you some at wholesale.

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Tell you what, I'll sell you some at wholesale.


I hope you'll extend the same offer to me. I can't wait to try them!

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
How many more times do I have to ask on what principle teensy "tuning dots" might work

The point has been ceded they do not work by way of absorption. Therefore, the question remains, is absorption the only technique that you can see solving any room issues? Answer please. I have asked before whether you would stuff a violin full of absorbant material in order to tune an instrument suffering from lack of clarity. Or would there be the possibility a small bit of material intended to effect another fix might be the solution? Answer please. You never answered the question, once again preferring to ignore anything that might force you off your tuffet. Do you undersatnd the principle DynaFlex works on? Do you feel it is impossible to apply a small amount of DynaFlex to a panel and get better sound quality as a result? Answer please.

Ethan, please don't cry about the "anti-science faction" when you refuse to acknowledge the evidence of results provided for the Shakti devices. You are ignoring charts and graphs, Ethan! Your only defense throughout this thread has been "magic", "delusion", "gullibility", "silliness" and "short term memory". From that I don't see you discussing science. From that I see you damning your own clients. While, on the other hand, I have provided empirical and statistical evidence from multiple sources supporting the benefits of the various devices. You cannot claim JA was "mistaken" since there is no evidence to support your claim. However, JA does claim to have experienced the benefits of the discs. It is not up to me to provice any more of a possible explanation than I already have when I have support of a single qualified listener or multiple qualified listeners. Claiming "magic" to be responsible when you won't even read the product literature does not negate the fact the device's benefits have been described by multiple listeners, some of whom are willing to put their recommendation on the products. Denying the results is ridiculous and insisting they do not fit your concept of "science" is nothing more than putting your head in a dark place.

You insist these devices are "too small" but refuse to say what function they are too small to perform. What exactly do you feel they are too small to do, Ethan? Answer please.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Really, Jan, how could you, of all people, not take a tweak product seriously?

That deserves nothing less than a full fledged HILLARY AND BILL CONSPIRING WITH AL GORE!!!!!!!

Good going, Buddha.

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Ethan, how small can a room treatment be before you will not consider it to be able to have an affect?


Here's a direct answer - they have to be large enough to make a change of at least 1/4 dB or more in the volume level, or in-band frequency response, or ringing decay time. Again, this can be either calculated based on surface areas or measured with microphones etc. I prefer measuring because calculations might overlook some factor or other. Empirical evidence trumps theory every time.

I chose 1/4 dB because that's about the smallest change I've ever been able to notice. But to err on the side of caution, let's make it 1/10th dB. I'm sure nobody can hear a change smaller than that.

--Ethan

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
the question remains, is absorption the only technique that you can see solving any room issues? Answer please.


Absorption is not the only way to change the sound in a room. Diffusion or deflection (angled surfaces) can have an audible effect if they're large enough. You could also affect the sound negatively via sympathetic vibration from a resonating device in the room. For example, if you have a grand piano with the lid open and a brick placed on the sustain pedal, the strings will vibrate in sympathy when excited. Every pro studio I know of avoids that, and keeps the lid closed and a heavy moving blanket over the piano when it's not being used. But such resonance will definitely change the sound in the room given the size of a typical piano.

In the interest of completeness I'll mention that I intentionally avoided listing obvious things, like turn your speakers 180 degrees away from you, turn off the power amp, etc.


Quote:
I have asked before whether you would stuff a violin full of absorbant material in order to tune an instrument suffering from lack of clarity. Or would there be the possibility a small bit of material intended to effect another fix might be the solution? Answer please.


Stuffing fiberglass inside a violin or cello is a terrible idea because it kills all the desirable resonances. A musical instrument relies on resonances for its tone color and character. So the goal with violin tuning is to enhance those resonances, not suppress them. However the goal of a playback system is to be neutral, to avoid masking the tone of whatever is being reproduced. So you'd never want to add resonances to a preamp or room.


Quote:
Do you undersatnd the principle DynaFlex works on? Do you feel it is impossible to apply a small amount of DynaFlex to a panel and get better sound quality as a result? Answer please.


Are you talking about those squeeze balls athletes use? I have no idea how that relates to acoustic panels. If this is not what you're talking about, please post a link.


Quote:
You insist these devices are "too small" but refuse to say what function they are too small to perform. What exactly do you feel they are too small to do, Ethan? Answer please.


I already answered this several times. They are too small to change the sound in any way by enough (1/10 dB) to be perceived by any human.

Okay Jan, I have now answered every one of your questions. Please do the same for all of mine. There are a lot of outstanding questions for you to address!

--Ethan

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

From the pen of J. Atkinson;

Quote:
The Shun Mook Mpingo discs divide me straight down the middle: I can't see why they have any effect; yet I have heard them make an improvement.

" ... yet I have heard them make an improvement."

He has heard them make an improvement; aka, empirical evidence.

From the post by Ethan Winer;

Quote:
Empirical evidence trumps theory every time.

Every time, Ethan?

Once again from JA;

Quote:
In the late Richard Heyser's words, "I no longer regard as fruitcakes people who say they can hear something and I can't measure it
Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Absorption is not the only way to change the sound in a room. Diffusion or deflection (angled surfaces) can have an audible effect if they're large enough.

Those are the only methods which might affect the sound of a space, Ethan? Are you certain of that?


Quote:
You could also affect the sound negatively via sympathetic vibration from a resonating device in the room. For example, if you have a grand piano with the lid open and a brick placed on the sustain pedal, the strings will vibrate in sympathy when excited.

Terrific example, Ethan! I'll go pull my brick off the sustain pedal right now. Good grief, Ethan, you do make a reach when you want to sound important, don't you? And you call me illogical. Sheeeesh!!!!!


Quote:
In the interest of completeness I'll mention that I intentionally avoided listing obvious things, like turn your speakers 180 degrees away from you, turn off the power amp, etc.

Thank you, Ethan, I was wondering how I was going to listen to my system. But you bring up a good point about things that vibrate when you don't want them to.


Quote:
Stuffing fiberglass inside a violin or cello is a terrible idea because it kills all the desirable resonances. A musical instrument relies on resonances for its tone color and character. So the goal with violin tuning is to enhance those resonances, not suppress them. However the goal of a playback system is to be neutral, to avoid masking the tone of whatever is being reproduced. So you'd never want to add resonances to a preamp or room.

If you wish to have a truly "neutral" listening room, wouldn't you have to listen in an anechoic chamber? Would that sound good? Won't all rooms have a sonic signature of some sort unless you make them totally devoid of resonances, peaks and troughs and standing waves? Is your attempt to give a client an anechoic chamber, Ethan? Do you remove all such reverberant signals or do you simply reduce some amount of the signal in a non-linear fashion, absorbing more from the shorter wavelength mids/highs than you do the longer wavelength lows when using the same materials for both?

If the surfaces of the room suffer from flexure, what is your solution? Would you stuff the room with fiberglass or make an attempt to first damp the resonance of the wall/window/floor surfaces? Is it better to have a stiff surface that pushes the resonant frequency upward where it is less offensive or to have a sloppy structure that lowers the resonant frequency and holds onto the sound? Is it easier to get "tight" bass and deep extension with concrete walls or plasterboard? Pier and beam foundation or slab? Does absorption mitigate the effects of all these problems? Do you keep stuffing a speaker enclosure full of absorbant materials to stop panel resonance or would you try to brace and damp the panel first, making it stiffer and less prone to resonance in the first place?


Quote:
I already answered this several times. They are too small to change the sound in any way by enough (1/10 dB) to be perceived by any human.

No, Ethan, I don't believe you have answered this at all. By what method of treatment are these devices too small to alter the sound by 1/10th of a dB? Absorption? Diffusion? Deflection? Or possibly some other method that could alter the sound quality? Saying they are "too small" is not an answer, it is an avoidance. Too small to do what? A change in frequency response is the only thing you're after with your treatments, Ethan? How does a 1/4dB work out to be "tighter bass"?


Quote:
Are you talking about those squeeze balls athletes use? I have no idea how that relates to acoustic panels. If this is not what you're talking about, please post a link.

"DynaFlex" may no longer exist as a specific product. It was the tradename for a damping compound applied in sheets. It was somewhat similar to a bituminous sheet but it was impregnated with various materials to make the product more effective. It's main usage was in car stereo installations but it found its way into other applications. Here's a similar product description; http://www.crutchfieldadvisor.com/S-43Fc6heqQJj/learningcenter/car/vibration.html

You could also consider this a lower cost substitute for Sorbothane sheets used to damp vibration when applied to the inside of a CD player's chassis or on the basket of a driver. I placed strips of this material on the front baffles of my Spicas under the felt which was being used to absorb mid/high frequencies. A little bit goes along way. Or, we could discuss the benefits of Sorbothane itself. It is a damping compound of sorts and operates on the same basic principle as Dynaflex/Dynamat though at higher cost and typically higher effectiveness.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
From the pen of J. Atkinson;

Quote:
The Shun Mook Mpingo discs divide me straight down the middle: I can't see why they have any effect; yet I have heard them make an improvement.

" ... yet I have heard them make an improvement."

He has heard them make an improvement; aka, empirical evidence.

From the post by Ethan Winer;

Quote:
Empirical evidence trumps theory every time.

Every time, Ethan?

Once again from JA;

Quote:
In the late Richard Heyser's words, "I no longer regard as fruitcakes people who say they can hear something and I can't measure it
Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
If they worked, I wonder why he doesn't use them?

I gave several possibilities when you first assumed he had discarded something he never had. Buddha, you're tossing out assumptions like a first year law student. Maybe he already owned the Tube Traps and couldn't afford anything better!

Now that we are approaching the point where some of you might understand the discs and tuning devices do not work by way of absorption is it possible you might now consider different circumstances require different solutions? Is it possible a partiuclar room might not need the effects of the discs while another room might not require bass traps? More than one problem to address in each situation and each situation will be different from the preceding situation or the next situation. More than one way to solve a problem, you know? If my room had severe "boom" caused by terrible dimensions, from what I've read, the Harmonix discs might not be my first choice. If my room only needed a bit of a touch up, I probably would not choose heavy absorption devices since they could kill the top end response and the ambience of the room sound. I don't know about you but I don't want my listening room to be turned into an anechoic chamber.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
After seeing DUPs latest tirade against teh Mapleshade product line, is there any tweak you will agree cannot possibly make any difference? If someone says in earnest that they tried some tweak or other and they're sure they heard a difference, is there any point at which you'll consider them mistaken?

-------

Anyone else? This is a serious question that I think can quickly get to the bottom of whether we should trust all anecdotal reports and consider them all equally valid.

Ethan? Care to explain this now?

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

http://dynamat.com/download/vss/2657_2000_Chevy_Corvette.pdf

A 7.6db increse in "bass"! 23% more music! Without a bit of absorption by way of fiberglass.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:

Quote:
If they worked, I wonder why he doesn't use them?

I gave several possibilities when you first assumed he had discarded something he never had. Buddha, you're tossing out assumptions like a first year law student. Maybe he already owned the Tube Traps and couldn't afford anything better!

Yeah, JA didn't add them to his system because he couldn't afford them.

Who's tossing the assumptions around?

I can imagine, a simple tweak the he heard the benefit of, yet commented upon never again, and lacked enough enthusiasm for to obtain.

That's your example of how this tweak is "proven?"

I'm trying to figure out who's world is scarier, yours, where everything that is sold works, or Ethan's where nothing that can't currently be measured cannot work.

So, why are you opposed to my dust mote tweak?

I say they make my room sound great. Are they too small for you?

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
I gave several possibilities when you first assumed he had discarded something he never had. Buddha, you're tossing out assumptions like a first year law student. Maybe he already owned the Tube Traps and couldn't afford anything better!

-------

Yeah, JA didn't add them to his system because he couldn't afford them.

Who's tossing the assumptions around?

Uh, it was a joke?! Do I have to put smiley faces on everything? Ethan's using them up at a ferocious rate.


Quote:
I can imagine, a simple tweak the he heard the benefit of, yet commented upon never again, and lacked enough enthusiasm for to obtain.

You can imagine that? If you assume he heard "the benefit", then we're half way home on this thread. Is that where you're at here, Buddha? The tweak works but not enough that you think John would use it? But it does work?

If you assume every piece of equipment JA has heard but doesn't use is worthless, that would be a very, very long list. And very wrong! I don't think that takes a genius to figure out. Is this your proof?! Boy, talk about guilt by association! In this case non-association and the product is worthless, is that it? How about discussing something that has to do with the thread and not wandering off into left field without a glove?


Quote:
That's your example of how this tweak is "proven?"

Seems more logical than your proof they don't. What more do you want for empirical evidence (which trumps theory every time) than "yet I have heard them make an improvement"? Just how many dots have you tried today, Buddha?

I've listed a number of reviewers who have heard benefits from the various devices. As you like to ask, just how large does the number of positive reviews have to be before it affects your belief it might work? Buddha, have you done any reading on these devices or are you like Ethan and just dismissing then for no reason other than you can't figure out how they work?


Quote:
I'm trying to figure out who's world is scarier, yours, where everything that is sold works

Give me strength! AL GORE!!! GLOBAL WARMING!!! I WAS FOR IT BEFORE I WAS AGAINST IT!!!!!

What's scary is someone who thinks everyone else is constantly wrong and they are the only one who has this all figured out. You don't have your facts straight and yet you make these assertions that are only meant to disrail the thread. Tell me, do you think JA was "delusional" or "mistaken" when he heard improvements accomplished by an item he couldn't explain? How often do you think JA is delusional or mistaken since he doesn't write about or use most of the products he has heard?

KBK
KBK's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 30 2007 - 12:30pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

I NEVER think ANYONE is mistaken if they say they hear 'something'.

I always investigate the situation and dig for the tiniest details, possibly ones spread across multiple stories.

Eyes, ears, and brain open.

I learn one hell of a lot more that way.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
I learn one hell of a lot more that way.

Rather than closing your mind to everything you don't wish to acknowledge, don't understand or won't try I can't see how you couldn't help but learn something. That is why I encourage anyone to "Think, try, listen" when they are contemplating a component or tweak. I have explained I do not assume every tweak works, but even when they do not, if you have done the three step process, you might learn something useful. If you don't even think about what might happen or why it might happen, you won't learn anything and neither will anyone to whom you say, "It's too small."

In this thread we seem to be stuck in conventional thinking that won't step away from what is comfortable. We can only affect sound by absorbing sound. We won't even consider how the space itself might change to improve the sound.

Almost everything you know, you learned from someone else. You will stop learning when you stop considering new ideas. As JA said in his comments regarding the Mpingo discs, "... I want to live in a world where I can still be surprised ... " I would rather travel with John than the majority of those stuck in one place on this thread.

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

[quoteSo, why are you opposed to my dust mote tweak?

I say they make my room sound great. Are they too small for you?


Does your tweak work on cat whiskers? A hirsute feline's wiggiling whiskers always negatively impacts soundstaging.

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
A hirsute feline's wiggiling whiskers always negatively impacts soundstaging.


And my hirsute baby's whiskers are indeed big enough to have that effect!

--Ethan

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Ethan, I'm glad you saw my little comment as I figured you would enjoy it.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Am I to assume this thread has reached it's end?

If so, that would leave several reliable accounts of successful results with these unconventional room treatments. And the only reason given as a rationalization for why they should not work being, "I can't figure it out."

Good going, gang!

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
From the pen of J. Atkinson;

Quote:
The Shun Mook Mpingo discs divide me straight down the middle: I can't see why they have any effect; yet I have heard them make an improvement.

Maybe he can help out and let us know his thoughts, especially since they are conspicuously absent from his associated equipment list.

If they worked, I wonder why he doesn't use them?

I have still have them glued to the centers of the panels of my B&W Silver Signature speakers, where they made an audible improvement. Assuming they affect the speakers and not the listener's state of mind, I believe they shift (very slightly) the frequency and change the Q (very slightly) of panel resonances. Because, to be maximally excited, a resonance has to be stimulated with the number of cycles of a tone at its center frequency equal to the Q number, small changes like this can have a disproportional effect on sound quality.

This is also why damping can sometimes make the effect of a resonance worse: by reducing its Q, it increases the chance that it will be excited and affecting sound quality.

Just some lunchtime musings.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Thank you, John. Do you have any experience with the Harmonix products or the Shakti Hallographic Soundfield Optimizers? I see here; http://blog.stereophile.com/ces2008/010808shakti/ that you may be skeptical about the Shakti product.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Thank you, JA!

Your reply makes sense.

I was trying to picture you kneeling along the floor molding of your room, 'rolling' your Mpingo Discs into the exact proper location.

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
I have still have them glued to the centers of the panels of my B&W Silver Signature speakers, where they made an audible improvement. Assuming they affect the speakers and not the listener's state of mind, I believe they shift (very slightly) the frequency and change the Q (very slightly) of panel resonances.


Thanks for chiming in John! Just a couple of points / questions:

Looking again at the Shun Mook site I see no recommendation to glue them to loudspeakers. Unless I missed that. Rather, the instructions are to place them around the room, and near the speakers, and place one (only) on top of the speaker with no mention of glue.

As for "I believe they shift (very slightly) the frequency and change the Q (very slightly) of panel resonances" this can be easily measured. I know you're the master of measuring loudspeaker cabinet resonances, so I wonder if you'd be willing to do a test with and without the disks glued to the cabinet? Considering the small size and weight of the disks versus a typical loudspeaker cabinet's mass, it's difficult for me to imagine a change large enough (1/4 dB or 1/10 dB) to be noticed. But I'm glad to learn otherwise.


Quote:
Assuming they affect the speakers and not the listener's state of mind


Are you acknowledging this might be only your perception and not actuality?

--Ethan

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:

Quote:
Assuming they affect the speakers and not the listener's state of mind

-------

Are you acknowledging this might be only your perception and not actuality?

Hopehopehopehopehopehopehope

Now, Ethan, why are you so concerned with these silly things? They're too small to do anything.

KBK
KBK's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 30 2007 - 12:30pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Bear with me Ethan, as my lack of responses or involvement in this thread makes this seem a bit out of left field. However, it is heartfelt:

My personal take on it is that he's giving hardcore objectivists a way out so they won't waste other peoples lives railing against subjective (but real) observations...due to said objecivist's 'reality issues'.

Elk
Elk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: Dec 26 2006 - 6:32am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Now, Ethan, why are you so concerned with these silly things? They're too small to do anything.


Because, if I understand Ethan at all as a person, he is insatiably curious and loves to learn.

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:

Quote:
Assuming they affect the speakers and not the listener's state of mind


Are you acknowledging this might be only your perception and not actuality?

You're making a false distinction, Ethan. _Everything_ is perception. The question is: is the perception formed from "real" external stimuli, from internal stimuli, or from a combination of both? (See Barry Blesser's and Peter Craven's comments on perception, as reported in my October 2007 "As We See It": www.stereophile.com/asweseeit/1007awsi .)

I always honestly report what I perceive, even if that perception runs counter to my beliefs and preconceptions -- see my comment on the sound in the KEF Muon room at last week's Montreal Show, for example. Otherwise, there seem little point in trying anything out.

Regarding measurements, the I didn't measure the speaker's panel behavior before trying the discs out. Unfortunately, they can't be removed without damaging the finish, and as I purchased the B&Ws, I don't want to sacrifice them to satisfy my curiosity But my conjecture regarding small changes in panel resonant behavior sometimes having a surprisingly large effect on perceived sound quality was found using different devices.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Do you have any experience with the Harmonix products or the Shakti Hallographic Soundfield Optimizers? I see here; http://blog.stereophile.com/ces2008/010808shakti/ that you may be skeptical about the Shakti product.

Michael Fremer has some Hallographs. I think it likely they affect the listener more than they do the soundfield in the room. But if they do so consistently, that is something to be desired, no?

A correction: it was the Harmonix discs that I attached to my B&Ws, not the Shun Mooks. But this doesn't affect my conjecture.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Michael Fremer has some Hallographs. I think it likely they affect the listener more than they do the soundfield in the room. But if they do so consistently, that is something to be desired, no?

As long as the benefit is consistent over time and not just a fleeting desire for something different - or something your audiophile friends don't have, I agree. I think we have all had the experience of demonstrating our system to a friend or helping someone set up their system only to have them tell us they are hearing something we are not and didn't expect them to hear. Everyone listens differently and for different qualities so I don't find "perception" to be a subsititue for "placebo".

Thank you, John.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
I have still have them glued to the centers of the panels of my B&W Silver Signature speakers, where they made an audible improvement. Assuming they affect the speakers and not the listener's state of mind, I believe they shift (very slightly) the frequency and change the Q (very slightly) of panel resonances. Because, to be maximally excited, a resonance has to be stimulated with the number of cycles of a tone at its center frequency equal to the Q number, small changes like this can have a disproportional effect on sound quality.


Quote:
Thank you, JA!

Your reply makes sense.

Hey, Buddha, can I ask why this response makes sense when JA puts it out there but it didn't make sense when I suggested it?

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
_Everything_ is perception.


Agreed fully. But some perception is real and some is in the listener's mind! That's what I'm trying to separate. Is there really a change to the sound or is it just in the listener's imagination? This is why measuring is so important. Measuring separates fact from placebo. I have never seen a legitimate measurement showing any change after adding "tiny acoustic" devices. The only devices I measured (Cathedral Panels) showed no difference, and those are much larger than the typical magic dots and buttons and plastic sacks filled with tiny pebbles.

I can see how gluing a small disk to a panel that resonates due to inadequate design might really change the sound. But I've seen how B&W speakers are manufactured (like a tank) and I'm skeptical that a small wooden disk really changed anything. What sort of affect could you get from gluing a disk that weighs less than an ounce to a panel that weighs 12 pounds or whatever? Or maybe the disk you glued is too close to the radiation path of the tweeter? Hence my question asking if you measured.

How about this: Maybe you could add a second disk to the first, tacked on with silly putty or the like. If one is massive enough to actually change the sound, it's likely that two will make a further change. Then you could measure one versus two and show the result here.

In the larger picture, it seems you are not disagreeing with the notion that a real change can indeed be measured. Versus Jan's belief that traditional measurements don't necessarily show a change that really has occurred. This is Jan's main point. Well, that, and also that conventional physics is somehow wrong.

--Ethan

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
why this response makes sense when JA puts it out there but it didn't make sense when I suggested it?


Very simple! John acknowledges that something physical will have changed (a shift in a speaker cabinet's resonant frequency), where you believe a real change can occur that somehow flies under the radar of acoustic measurements.

--Ethan

Editor
Editor's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 8:56am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:

Quote:
_Everything_ is perception.


Agreed fully. But some perception is real and some is in the listener's mind! That's what I'm trying to separate.

We are still talking at cross purposes, Ethan. Perception is all in the mind, which was the point made in the essay I gave the link to. The mind uses incomplete data to construct models of the external world. Those models are internally equivalent. In terms of perception, therefore, a hallucination is every bit as "real" as anything else, at least until tested. You can't differentiate between what you appear to be calling the "real" world and what you refer to as being in the listener's imagination. It all contributes to perception.

I am not playing word games here, merely pointing out that your approach to the question is incomplete.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

ethanwiner
ethanwiner's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 2:26pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Perception is all in the mind, which was the point made in the essay I gave the link to.


Yes, but some perception is real and some is placebo. I don't see what's "cross purpose" about that. The core issue is whether small devices that cannot be shown to change the sound are worth buying. Or in other words, this is a consumer issue.

Jan keeps trying to dismiss the very real and provable improvement from legitimate acoustic treatment, and claim it's no more effective than pretend treatment like magic dots and teensy wood disks. Which of course is preposterous. One is real, provable, and explainable by established science. The other is woo woo fantasy with no basis in anything other than the power of suggestion. Mind you, I'm not here to talk up my company's products. I'm here as Ethan Winer, an individual with a keen interest in the science of audio. However, putting on my RealTraps cap, if there really were a way to improve a room's acoustics with tiny WAF-acceptable devices, you can be sure I want to know about it so I can get in on the action too!


Quote:
a hallucination is every bit as "real" as anything else, at least until tested.


How can this be? I tested the cathedral panels and proved they are ineffective. Yet some continue to hallucinate anyway.

In another forum I recently posted graphs showing the response and ringing in a room with and without those panels, and there was no difference. That didn't stop a satisfied customer of those panels from replying that they made a real improvement in his listening room!


Quote:
I am not playing word games here, merely pointing out that your approach to the question is incomplete.


If you're not playing word games, please enlighten me John and show me the complete approach!

--Ethan

KBK
KBK's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 30 2007 - 12:30pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

And to really throw a hard steel wrench down the intake of that 'reality engine' that underlies group consciousness..we have, after over 12,000 years of the highest levels of esoteric lore, which people are to understand exist by their sign and then individually investigate..that..reality as the masses and in this case as 'science' sees it...that such a state IS the fabrication and the true realities and the path to them, lie within the mind. Essentially, what lies within the individual mind for the individual to finally investigate, lies well outside what any science today investigates and is the essence of true reality. The rest? Simply window dressing for the unwashed masses.

Hhhmmmm.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
In the larger picture, it seems you are not disagreeing with the notion that a real change can indeed be measured. Versus Jan's belief that traditional measurements don't necessarily show a change that really has occurred. This is Jan's main point. Well, that, and also that conventional physics is somehow wrong


Quote:

Quote:
------

why this response makes sense when JA puts it out there but it didn't make sense when I suggested it?

------

Very simple! John acknowledges that something physical will have changed (a shift in a speaker cabinet's resonant frequency), where you believe a real change can occur that somehow flies under the radar of acoustic measurements.

Geez, Ethan, you get downright dupian when you are mistaken about John being mistaken! Someone with empirical experience with these products suggests there might be more to them than you are willing to admit and you start attacking me personally. And like dup it turns out you haven't even read what I've posted or else you'd know what your saying about me is not true.

This is how perception works, isn't it, Ethan?

Almost everything you know, you learned from someone else. If you are not willing to listen to someone else's ideas, then you'll never even get close to actually hearing what they have said.

Please show me, Ethan, where I said " ... that conventional physics is somehow wrong ."

Please justify this comment about what I have said or believe, " ... where you believe a real change can occur that somehow flies under the radar of acoustic measurements."

I'll help you out there on that one Ethan. I have several times used Heyser's words, "I no longer regard as fruitcakes people who say they can hear something and I can't measure it

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

This thread is going along nicely!

Jan, I put more credence in the notion of altering the difraction of a speaker's baffle with a small object than I do someone blindly saying that plastering a quarter sized object any old place in a room is likely to have a sulutatory effect on the sonics.

Just like I think using a capacitor in an amp is more likely to affect the sound of that piece of gear than if it is put under a couch cushion, instead.

JA was quite sepcific in his use of the procut, not indiscrimant about praising the sonic characteristics of the device and verbally flopping around like a fish out of water if someone was dubious of the device's effectiveness in the room at large.

Methinks that Jan doth protest too much, and Ethan not enough. Or vice versa.

On the plus side, I had a really good listening session last night. So good, in fact, that I sterilized and cleaned my Shop Vac and sucked up all the best sounding dust motes onto a piece of filter paper.

I then went over to my neighbor's house and ran the Shop Vac backwards to bring the motey goodness to his listening room, and, wouldn't ya knoew it, it worked in his room, too!

Now I have myself and an impartial noncommercial witness to the wonders of my dust motes. I have empiric evidence of the benefit of my tweak.

100 bucks, and I'll send you your own filter paper full of BS (Buddha's Specks) and you can enjoy the wonder of my BM (Buddha's Motes) in person.

No doubt about it, my BM (Buddha's Motes) is no BS (bullshit.)

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
Jan, I put more credence in the notion of altering the difraction of a speaker's baffle with a small object than I do someone blindly saying that plastering a quarter sized object any old place in a room is likely to have a sulutatory effect on the sonics.

Possibly if someone had spent sometime disussing the topic rather than inventing BS to be placed on a BM, this thread wouldn't have appeared so fishy to you, Buddha. As is, your contribution just smells like three day old dead cod.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

If I had some people post that they spent 200 bucks a pop for the motes, you'd be first in line to defend it from doubters.

That's what smells so bad around here.

You attack Ethan over his dubiosity with regard to the sonic benefit of a drilled out quarter glued to the wall of a room, but you won't go for dust motes.

What gives?

Maybe my motes need a soild endangered wood case to give them credibility.

Bullshit exists at both extremes, Jan. You are blind to one, but scream about the other.

I don't get it.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
I don't get it.

You've proven that.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

Yup, I don't think there is any way to discuss your "religion" at this point.

The others have been right, it just took me too long to let go of hope.

Jan Vigne
Jan Vigne's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Mar 18 2006 - 12:57pm
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...

We discussed it. You ignored it and then decided it would be more fun to take a few knocks at me. Like the one above. Seems like a childish level to sink to just because you've found out you might have to reconsider how "little drilled out quarters" work. But I do want to thank you for keeping this thread off track for 15 pages, we couldn't have done it without you.

If you wish to discuss the topic of this thread - unconventional room treatments - you're welcome to stick around. If you prefer to act like you're the one who's been insulted, toodles! I doubt John entered this thread to get in the middle of a catfight. For my part, I would like to hear more about his opinions on this topic.

bobedaone
bobedaone's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 6 days ago
Joined: Feb 1 2007 - 12:27am
Re: Charts and graphs were prepared for the sceptics ...


Quote:
we couldn't have done it without you.

I'm not so sure.

People take themselves far too seriously sometimes. Honestly, this thread has been 15 pages of pontification and squabbling. (I'm not directing this reply solely at you, Jan, so be cool.)

I think the more important question is: If the thread did in fact stay on topic, who cares?

There is no way to prove scientifically that the things work, and no grounds to suggest to someone who has heard a difference, that there is not one.

I don't know if you folks have better things to do, but I've been too busy spinning vinyl all weekend to give half a shit about this nonsense.

@Buddha: Abandon ship, mate; She's taking on water and listing hard.

Guys, c'mon. Enough. Come to Ann Arbor and I'll buy you a round.

Pages

  • X
    Enter your Stereophile.com username.
    Enter the password that accompanies your username.
    Loading