The Truth Should Out Page 4
All cavils aside though, I feel that this is the first really significant contribution to the audio field in years—not because it is a "breakthrough" in sound reproduction, but because it makes possible listening comparisons that the most hardheaded skeptics of subjective testing are going to have to take seriously.
In 1981 (Stereophile, Vol.4 No.9), I observed that "subjective observations have no scientific respectability unless backed up by numbers." With the ABX comparator, we now have a way of gleaning those numbers.
I do not, however, feel that the present ABX Comparator is a "finished product." It leaves too many loose ends. The Logic and Display Module (the "heart" of the unit) plus the remote-control switcher are available without the $100 RM-1 relay box for $395, which allows one to put together any kind of relay switchers one wants—with input/output switching and heavy-duty relays for loudspeaker switching. But I fell that ABX is only doing half their job by not making such proper switchers available themselves, at least as extra-cost options.
For now, though, I can only hope ABX sells a lot of these, for the more people (and audio groups) who own them, the more overwhelming will be the evidence that trained listeners CAN hear things that Julian Hirsch can't measure. But God, how I'd like to put some "underground" reporters' claims to the test with this.