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CECE
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The SOUND of amplifiers....
59mga
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....

Interesting reading, DUP. Numbers do tell a person quite a bit, about an amp, but the message I get is to let your ears do the deciding.

Buddha
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....

From the article:

"Could it be the influence of speaker cables, or even loudspeakers themselves? This is quite possible, since when amps are reviewed it is generally with the reviewer's favourite speaker and lead combination. This might suit one amplifier perfectly, while the capacitance and inductance of the cable might cause minute instabilities in other otherwise perfectly good amplifiers. Although it a fine theory to suggest that a speaker lead should not affect the performance of a well designed amplifier, there are likely to be some combinations of cable characteristics that simply freak out some amps. Likewise, some amps just might not like the impedance presented by some loudspeakers - this is an area that has been the subject of many studies, and entire amplifiers have been designed specifically to combat these very problems [1]."

"We come back to the same problem I described earlier, which is that the standard tests are not necessarily appropriate. A frequency response graph showing that an amp is ruler flat from DC to daylight is of absolutely no use if everyone says that the highs are "veiled", or that imaging is poor. Compare this with another amp that is also ruler flat, and (nearly) everyone agrees that the highs are detailed, transparent, and that imaging is superb."

"We need to employ different testing methodologies to see if there is a way to determine from bench (i.e. objective) testing, what a listening (i.e. subjective) test might reveal. This is a daunting task, but is one that must be sought vigourously if we are to learn the secrets of amplifier sound. It is there - we just don't know where to look, or what to look for ... yet. Until we have correlation between the two testing methods, we are at the mercy of the purveyors of amplifier snake oil and other magic potions."

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All in all, not too crazy a hypothesis in the article. As we learn more, we can find better and better tests. That seems reasonable.

ohfourohnine
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....

In fact, some better tests were, I think, found way back in the time when Stereophile came out of the southwest instead of NYC. Bob Carver played a little game with the best ears on the staff and was able, as I recall, to produce the characteristic sound of a particular amplifier of the staff's choice - close enough to fool them. His preparation was, I think, about an hour's work on an ad hoc test bench. I suspect someone on the current staff could shed more light on this than I can from memory.

59mga
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....


Quote:
In fact, some better tests were, I think, found way back in the time when Stereophile came out of the southwest instead of NYC. Bob Carver played a little game with the best ears on the staff and was able, as I recall, to produce the characteristic sound of a particular amplifier of the staff's choice - close enough to fool them. His preparation was, I think, about an hour's work on an ad hoc test bench. I suspect someone on the current staff could shed more light on this than I can from memory.

As technology advances new and better tests are needed if for no other reason than to prove that the latest technology is worth the effort.

Budha mentioned "crazy"...I think it's the "crazy" ideas that eventually prove logical and become building blocks for future improvements.

Buddha
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....

I guess "crazy" means different things to different folks.

To me, "crazy" means having one set notion or idea about the world or a part of it, and then insisting that that notion or idea is paramount to all other ides...then expecting everyone else think the same way, despite all evidence to the contrary.

Honest to gosh "crazy" is rarely shown to be revolutionary or insightful.

Mostly, "crazy" in Hi Fi is the equivalent of saving one's excrement in a special container and then calling it a "specially treated" item that should command some monetary value in the Hi Fi marketplace.

"Crazy" is not a novel way of looking at circuitry or design. "Crazy" is substituting bullshit for innovation and demanding respect, kudos, or economic rewards at the expense of the hobby rather than bettering the hobby.

That's the kind of "crazy" I meant.

No flames intended to Mike53.

Jeff Wong
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....


Quote:
"... saving one's excrement in a special container and then calling it a "specially treated" item... "

I thought you promised not to give away my tweaking secrets.

59mga
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Re: The SOUND of amplifiers....


Quote:

To me, "crazy" means having one set notion or idea about the world or a part of it, and then insisting that that notion or idea is paramount to all other ides...then expecting everyone else think the same way, despite all evidence to the contrary.

I was thinking of "crazy" as meaning unconventional.


Quote:
Mostly, "crazy" in Hi Fi is the equivalent of saving one's excrement in a special container and then calling it a "specially treated" item that should command some monetary value in the Hi Fi marketplace...
"Crazy" is substituting bullshit for innovation and demanding respect, kudos, or economic rewards at the expense of the hobby rather than bettering the hobby.

This sounds as though it would apply to those makers of speaker cable...that sells for $$$$ an inch.


Quote:
No flames intended to Mike53.


No offense take, Buddha...I always keep a fire extinguisher by my PC.

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