Stephen Mejias
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The Hi-Fi System As Self, WTF?
Jan Vigne
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Winer uses the emoticon on virtually all of his posts. Are we to assume he is just a joker in every case? How do you know what that symbol is meant to represent, Stephen?

If this had been the first time Winer took a swipe at my system I wouldn't be concerned. Actually, I wasn't concerned the first four or five times he took a swipe at my system. But now after about ten or more swipes at my system this is just too much. As I mentioned to you, Stephen, I haven't even been addressing Winer the last few times he has decided my components and by extension I am fair game for an insult. I had not had anything to do with Winer the day he dug up and posted the bogus information about me. Why do you suppose he took the time to do that? Why does't he insult other member's systems? Why is it always mine? Really, Stephen, you don't see the connection? Or that he does this out of the blue? What planet are you living on?

I had had nothing to do with Winer for days when he posted that he had taken the time to use GoogleEarth to look into my property and lamented that he could not use the software to look inside my house - to see my lousy system of course. The man wants to be a peeping tom! For what reason when it comes to another forum member? Do you know, Stephen? I wish you would ask.

Insulting someone's property or anything they care about is a cheap shot that speaks of a small mind that cannot let go of grudges. It is a high school taunt that is being used by a 60 year old man. That doesn't strike you as out of bounds and just a bit over the top? You see no problem with this?

If Winer wants to take a shot at me, that's one thing. He can do it when I'm involved in a discussion with him and he can take me off ignore so he can see my response. Otherwise, he is a coward and no other way to put it - a POS. To post the false information when there was absolutely no call for anything of the sort to be on this forum speaks to a demented mind that will stoop as low as he sees fit to embarrass someone he does not like.

Someone he does not like who is on an audio forum! For godsake!

Is that the sort of forum member you encourage? Is that your idea of being a moderator to this forum?

To search out personal information about another forum member, whether real or not, post it and then literally spy on that person with modern technology is sick. There is no other way to put this, Winer has an emotional problem and the moderators of the Stereopphile forum are enablers in this since you have done nothing over the last two years to stop his activity.

At one time you banned dup for his direct insults to my system. At least dup actually knew what amplifiers I own. Winer doesn't have a clue. But he continues to place these insults whenever he feels like it without any justification other than he can get away with it.

And the Stereophile moderators do nothing and he knows you will do nothing so he continues.

Even Buddha called him out on this several times. Why won't the Stereophile moderators do the same? Why won't you take similar action against Winer as you did with dup? Why is there no consistency in your moderation of this forum, Stephen? This forum seems to run and a whim and a fart caught crosswise.

Quite honestly here, Stephen, if you cannot figure out why insulting someone's property a dozen times is not off limits, then you shouldn't be doing the job you have been assigned. I do hold you and John just as responsiible for this as I do Winer. Either do your job and be consistent about it or say you are in over your head.

Winer is a jerk, he's proven that hundred's of times. I expected better from both of you, you are both adults according to what I understand. I expected better when this first happened and not when it happened for the tenth time.

I think this is a very stupid thread to start, Stephen. I think this is a thread you would delete had someone else started it.

Do you want me to tell you how this is going to turn out? Can you guess?

Stephen, you confound me.

Buddha
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In this post to the Furutech deMag thread, Ethan Winer wrote:


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Nobody needs a DBT to tell that DUP's system beats Jan's system every day of the week. And I don't even have to hear both systems to know that! Just knowing the power available and frequency response specs - and a dose of common sense - tells me all I need to know.

My common sense tells me that this is a very rude, foolish, small-minded thing to say. (But perhaps Ethan was joking, as is suggested by the grin emoticon used to complete his sentence.)

It leads me to wonder, however: Would it be possible to continue the Furutech deMag discussion without insulting anyone's hi-fi system? Do you think it'd be possible? (This is a serious question.) Or are we bound to insult one another's hi-fis simply by discussing them?

Related: Why is it that we become so upset when others do not value our hi-fi systems? Is it because our systems resemble our selves, and by insulting one's system, we are insulting one's self? Are we, through our systems, trying to communicate something dear about ourselves?

LOL, "My system, myself!"

My take:

Our systems represent how we take the chaos of life and all the choices avaiable to us and organize our universe in a way that we find most pleasing (given whatever limitations we face.)

So, yes, my system does represent something about me; or at least my take on how I like to listen, etc...

Add that to the music 'collecting' we do, and it gets more personal still.

To me, finding and assembling a system, collecting music to play, even choosing furniture and art for my listening areas is something 'creative.' It's quite personal, actually.

(I feel the same way about people who collect things. They are creating a representation of what they think is important to them, and creating their collection as an act of personal expression; which makes the whole subject endlessly interesting!)

I think we all know this, and that's why teasing/mocking/insulting someone's system is an act of button pushing.

System insults crack me up.

Do you remember the Far Side? There was one that showed two little birdcages in a room, and a little canary in each cage. The two birds were looking sternly at one another, from inside their latched cages, and one bird says to the other, "Oh, yeah? Well, how about I come over there and rattle your cage?"

That's all that system insults add up to. Canaries chirping at each other.

Actually, I think the whole damn internet seems to work that way, except for the Craigslist erotic services, over-paying for LP's, and ordering pizza, it's mostly full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

rvance
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Hey Stephen! I'm glad you asked me for my expert advice. I think there's a lot of ego and, ironically, face-saving going on in these contentious battle zones. Some people's systems are extensions of these egos, as are their views and need to rail hysterically against perceived foes. Points are made and scores are kept. It's childish.

The forum format also allows people to get rude and nasty without consequence- which is really a measure of maturity, intelligence and the lack thereof. Kind of like the road rager who hides in the anonymity of their vehicle. It's the other face of cowardice.

I appreciate those who maintain a civil demeanor or just ignore the combatants or push back with wit, proportion and perspective (like me ) more than those who must scorch their way through every thread and leave no perceived slight unanswered. Hostility is so unnecessary. And boring.

What really cracks me up is the ease with which some people fall into brutishly insulting behavior. Do they treat the general public who annoy them in this fashion? Hell No! Because you never know what that other person is capable of doing to you and your family, despite appearances. It's a social contract that gets broken every day here- and for very trivial reasons, IMO. These forums attract a personality type that is woefully incapable of self reflection and insight. Don't they read before they post? And if they do, do they really think they don't sound mad as hatters? Maybe this is their therapy and you provide an outlet for their affliction. Thank you for this public service.

bifcake
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Never mind the system, you should hear what "Winer" says about his mother! Ooofah!

ncdrawl
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Stephen, Winer's insulting of Jan's system is of minor consequence when compared against what will happen now that Jan has an advocate.

His posts will triple in length and become twice as insulting.

(taking the piss eh jan, )

How's about a time out for them both? I mean, we all have our moments, ja... but certain names always pop up when there is conflict...

dbowker
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My system is NOT my self. I love it, enjoy it, like sharing it with friends and family, and feel relatively proud of what's been assembled in that it took time, experience and money to do so. But to say it's me? Well, that's a rather limited and two dimensional way of viewing my self. Gear is still, in the end, something you buy.

If "you" amount to anything at all in this lifetime, it will be by virtue of what you did, how you did it,and what you learned along the way. All of that is not only real, it's untouchable by virtue of insult, disagreement, opinion or personal preference. Someone can steal your system, or it can burn up in a fire- so what happens after? You cease to exist? As much as I'd be horrified to have my 20 year collection of vinyl lost, I'd get over it. I'd buy more, replace it over time, whatever. Few of my close friends have anything like a serious audio system- even the real music lovers. Should I stop being friends because they don't have the same priority in gear? It's ridiculous.

In the end- if you can share it and have a good time together, it's worth doing. But to me, anything that seems to be more a source of conflict and something "needing" defending isn't worthy of being committed to. Or to put it this way: is it something that promotes Joining or Separating?Stephen's blog is a great example of a Joiner. You feel good reading it. Even the non-analogue guys like AlexO like it, and enjoy the vibe. Ideally that's what loving music is EVER about. It's you attitude.

The problem often is that online the approach is all about attack and defend- not listen and learn. If a few guys around here could just leave some of their "self" they think they need to project and defend so much at the door, it'd be a better time all around.

ethanwiner
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My common sense tells me that this is a very rude, foolish, small-minded thing to say.


I fail to see what's rude about pointing out an obvious truth. If Jan drove a Yugo and DUP had a Mercedes S-Class, would I be rude to say that DUP's car beats Jan's car every day of the week? If something is true - and universally understood to be true - why is it an insult to point out that truth?

In this case, Jan has a low-powered tube amp driving a single 5-inch speaker through 30 gauge magnet wire. Can anyone argue that this is even remotely related to high fidelity reproduction with a straight face? I ask this not to insult Jan, but to point out what I see as a truism. (And besides, Stephen, you brought it up by starting this thread.)

--Ethan

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Quote:

Quote:
My common sense tells me that this is a very rude, foolish, small-minded thing to say.


I fail to see what's rude about pointing out an obvious truth.

But what if it is not an obvious truth, Ethan? What if it is completely wrong? Or more: What if it is completely unknowable, impossible to verify? Would you agree then that it is rude, foolish, and small-minded?

smejias
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My system is NOT my self. I love it, enjoy it, like sharing it with friends and family, and feel relatively proud of what's been assembled in that it took time, experience and money to do so. But to say it's me? Well, that's a rather limited and two dimensional way of viewing my self. Gear is still, in the end, something you buy.

I love this answer, Doug. Which is pretty much the same as saying: I agree.

Yet we do choose the components we buy, and those choices must say something about who we are. But those choices are not all that we are. I hope. Maybe some of us define ourselves by our hi-fis more than others.

Just thinking out loud (on the screen).

ethanwiner
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Quote:
But what if it is not an obvious truth, Ethan? What if it is completely wrong?


Okay, let's discuss that. Here's how Wikipedia defines High Fidelity:


Quote:
High fidelity or hi-fi reproduction is a term used by home stereo listeners and home audio enthusiasts (audiophiles) to refer to high-quality reproduction of sound or images that are very faithful to the original performance. Ideally, high-fidelity equipment has minimal amounts of noise and distortion and an accurate frequency response


Stephen, please tell me how Jan's system fits even remotely with this definition. After you explain that, please tell me if you yourself would be satisfied owning Jan's setup as your primary system, and if not, why not.

--Ethan

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Quote:

Quote:
My system is NOT my self. I love it, enjoy it, like sharing it with friends and family, and feel relatively proud of what's been assembled in that it took time, experience and money to do so. But to say it's me? Well, that's a rather limited and two dimensional way of viewing my self. Gear is still, in the end, something you buy.

I love this answer, Doug. Which is pretty much the same as saying: I agree.

Yet we do choose the components we buy, and those choices must say something about who we are. But those choices are not all that we are. I hope. Maybe some of us define ourselves by our hi-fis more than others.

Just thinking out loud (on the screen).

I will disagree, a little.

You are the sum of the things you do.

Audio is one of the things you do.

It isn't all of you, but it is part of you.

smejias
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Quote:

Quote:
But what if it is not an obvious truth, Ethan? What if it is completely wrong?


Okay, let's discuss that. Here's how Wikipedia defines High Fidelity:


Quote:
High fidelity or hi-fi reproduction is a term used by home stereo listeners and home audio enthusiasts (audiophiles) to refer to high-quality reproduction of sound or images that are very faithful to the original performance. Ideally, high-fidelity equipment has minimal amounts of noise and distortion and an accurate frequency response


Stephen, please tell me how Jan's system fits even remotely with this definition. After you explain that, please tell me if you yourself would be satisfied owning Jan's setup as your primary system, and if not, why not.

--Ethan

First of all, I really don't care about Wikipedia's definition of hi-fi. Did you write that? What if Wikipedia's definition of hi-fi is not Jan's or my definition of hi-fi? (That's basically the same question I asked you the first time: What if your truth is not my truth? Can you live in that world? Can you even fathom it?)

I don't know Jan's system. I've never heard it, I don't know what components are in it. However, knowing (through his posts here on the forum) a bit about Jan's experience with hi-fi and knowing that his preferences tend to lean toward truth of timbre and tone over transient attack and massive volume, I would guess (and I stress this is just a guess!) that I would very much enjoy Jan's system.

But if we continue down this path, we'll wind up discussing the same shit we discuss everyday. This thread wasn't meant to be that same thread. I want to know about how we relate to our hi-fis. Why do they matter so much to us?

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"You are the sum of the things you do.

Audio is one of the things you do.

It isn't all of you, but it is part of you."

Granted- it IS something you do, and for most of us here, and important thing to. But then I'd add my second assumption: It's not just what you do, but how you do it that matters as much or more. All I'm saying is that if you really enjoy something you don't need to evangelize it or go on the attack about it.

And as to Ethan's point of some sort of "truth telling", I think maybe Stephen might be saying that getting personal about it is not really going to do much for friendly discussion (not that Jan is very friendly in a lot of discussions either). Something about the same re-tread arguments getting fought out over hundreds of ranting posts just seems some kind of sub-group sado masochism!

smejias
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Quote:

Quote:

Quote:
My system is NOT my self. I love it, enjoy it, like sharing it with friends and family, and feel relatively proud of what's been assembled in that it took time, experience and money to do so. But to say it's me? Well, that's a rather limited and two dimensional way of viewing my self. Gear is still, in the end, something you buy.

I love this answer, Doug. Which is pretty much the same as saying: I agree.

Yet we do choose the components we buy, and those choices must say something about who we are. But those choices are not all that we are. I hope. Maybe some of us define ourselves by our hi-fis more than others.

Just thinking out loud (on the screen).

I will disagree, a little.

You are the sum of the things you do.

Audio is one of the things you do.

It isn't all of you, but it is part of you.

Neat! This discussion is reminding me of High Fidelity! In the beginning of the book, Rob thinks that what matters most is what you like (books, records, movies) as opposed to what you are like. By the end, however, he decides that maybe what you are like (how you behave and treat others) is more important than the things you own.

The two are undeniably connected, though, of course.

rvance
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Quote:
This thread wasn't meant to be that same thread. I want to know about how we relate to our hi-fis. Why do they matter so much to us?

My system matters only because it gets me closer to my love of music and the hopefully superior sonics that communicate the beauty of the experience.

Anyone self-important enough to rag on its deficiencies in a denigrating/personal, rather than supporting/technical way, doesn't offend or affect me. They have another agenda that speaks more about their character than my hi-fi choices.

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I want to know about how we relate to our hi-fis. Why do they matter so much to us?

Our hi-fis connect us to our music.

The mistake some people seem to make is to try to impose their values into our simple equation.

rmeyer52
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Post deleted by Rich M

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It is also people who overpaid for components trying to justify their purchases.

And who gets to determine who has overpaid? Can we look "overpaid" up on Wikipedia and see a list of gear? "Overpaid" is the word some people like to use when they think they've underpaid. Or so it seems to me.

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Quote:
Neat! This discussion is reminding me of High Fidelity! In the beginning of the book, Rob thinks that what matters most is what you like (books, records, movies) as opposed to what you are like. By the end, however, he decides that maybe what you are like (how you behave and treat others) is more important than the things you own.

The two are undeniably connected, though, of course.

Killer book.

In the realm of the personal, I tend to think of audio and listening as 'verbs' in terms of describing what I am/do rather than pure adjectives.

I think of "audio" and "listening" as actions over being related purely to the objects through which I get my thrills, if that makes sense.

Hi Fi is the action, and electronics and records are only the vessels used to deliver it, I guess.

Kind of like saying I like running rather than saying I like running shoes.

Even if I had none of the objects, I'd like Hi Fi. Maybe the objects are an epiphenomenon through which we manifest our audiophilia.

rmeyer52
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And who gets to determine who has overpaid? Can we look "overpaid" up on Wikipedia and see a list of gear? "Overpaid" is the word some people like to use when they think they've underpaid. Or so it seems to me.

Good point and that is really for each person to decide. What is luxury to one person is standard to the other but in the end it really is a matter of "am I happy" whether the component was rated high/low costs a lot/little. Let the music come through to make us happy

JoeE SP9
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It's just as rude and foolish to tell people that they spent too much for their gear. Can't you nosy parkers give it a rest. Let people buy what they want. Frankly, it's none of your business what others do with their money. We don't need audio police telling people what to buy or not.
I personally think a lot of gear is ridiculously overpriced. However, it's not my place nor is it any of my business to tell someone they shouldn't have bought it. They don't want to hear it and it's extremely RUDE.
Unfortunately in today's world a lot of people have grown to adult size without learning that certain behavior is rude. As mentioned earlier the internet and forums like this enable people to say things that would get a broken nose in person. Before anyone posts about what someone else should or should not do remember, if you weren't asked for advice it is probably not wanted. Keeping your mouth shut is called gracious and mannered. There is not enough of that here or in most forums.

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Quote:
It's just as rude and foolish to tell people that they spent too much for their gear. Can't you nosy parkers give it a rest. Let people buy what they want. Frankly, it's none of your business what others do with their money. We don't need audio police telling people what to buy or not.
I personally think a lot of gear is ridiculously overpriced. However, it's not my place nor is it any of my business to tell someone they shouldn't have bought it. They don't want to hear it and it's extremely RUDE.
Unfortunately in today's world a lot of people have grown to adult size without learning that certain behavior is rude. As mentioned earlier the internet and forums like this enable people to say things that would get a broken nose in person. Before anyone posts about what someone else should or should not do remember, if you weren't asked for advice it is probably not wanted. Keeping your mouth shut is called gracious and mannered. There is not enough of that here or in most forums.

When Stereophile named the Meridian CD player as the player to get and possibly the best out there people in this forum went online and tried to tear down the review because they had spent money on what they thought was Stereophiles reference the Ayre. Does the review of the Meridian mean the Ayre is suddenly not worthy? No, it just means that the review found what he believes is a new standard in excellence. There are some people within this forum who are audio snobs and as thus like to tout their gear to justify their purchases over and over. Like I said it really doesn't matter but please don't try us what to say or think and if you feel it is rude than you really don't need to read or reply

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Does the review of the Meridian mean the Ayre is suddenly not worthy?

To some, yes.

Some people seem to need to know their piece of whatever is regarded in a certain way. If the Ayre has been surpassed in reviews, then some people will feel like the Ayre is no longer worthy.

One of the manifestations of audiophilia nervosa.

Just looking at how people shop tells ya this is true. There are those who will only buy based on letter grade rating in the Recommended Components file!

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Is it because our systems resemble our selves, and by insulting one's system, we are insulting one's self? Are we, through our systems, trying to communicate something dear about ourselves?

Stephen, Mr. Winer bases everything on measurements/science..

if we use scientific criteria to judge the two systems(Jan vs DUP) , there is little doubt in my mind that DUP's system would come out on top...that is Ethan's premise, you see.

of course most of us do not care for measurements, but you have to consider that Mr. Winer lives in the realm of the scientific, not the mystical world of the audiophile..

consider the post in context. Obviously Jan's system gives him pleasure, and that is all that really matters. I am a big fan of SET amps and high effeciency speakers. I am sure my system measures like shit. probably much worse than Ethan's. ... but I don't want Ethan's system.

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...but I don't want Ethan's system.

What do you call a scientific methodology whose practical application only applies to the person who developed it? Subjective science? Mystical measurements?

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Quote:
In this post to the Furutech deMag thread, Ethan Winer wrote:


Quote:
Nobody needs a DBT to tell that DUP's system beats Jan's system every day of the week. And I don't even have to hear both systems to know that! Just knowing the power available and frequency response specs - and a dose of common sense - tells me all I need to know.

My common sense tells me that this is a very rude, foolish, small-minded thing to say. (But perhaps Ethan was joking, as is suggested by the grin emoticon used to complete his sentence.)

It leads me to wonder, however: Would it be possible to continue the Furutech deMag discussion without insulting anyone's hi-fi system? Do you think it'd be possible? (This is a serious question.) Or are we bound to insult one another's hi-fis simply by discussing them?

Related: Why is it that we become so upset when others do not value our hi-fi systems? Is it because our systems resemble our selves, and by insulting one's system, we are insulting one's self? Are we, through our systems, trying to communicate something dear about ourselves?

You pass over so many truly insulting comments made by those inclining toward subjectivism. One notable area is attacks on the professional qualifications of some who really do qualify as experts in their fields, notably j-j, Sean Olive, and Ethan Winer.

Do you complain about statements which say or imply the following:

-You don't hear well enough to hear what we do.

-Your system isn't resolving enough.

-You don't want to hear differences.

-You think everything sounds the same.

Now, some of those comments not only say something about someone's system but about the person, and without any factual basis. I don't know how the system Ethan Winer mentioned performs but he seems to, and so prima facie his remarks have an objective basis. Some people think the facts are insulting, I suppose, but that's too bad. It is quite possible to prefer a notably inaccurate system.

You other sets of questions are rather more involved and I really don't have time to write about them right now. I should point out that objective performance is one thing and personal preference is another. If someone prefers the sound of a single driver speaker and tube amps this does not invalidate objective remarks about their performance nor objective comparisons with standards.

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Quote:

Quote:
Is it because our systems resemble our selves, and by insulting one's system, we are insulting one's self? Are we, through our systems, trying to communicate something dear about ourselves?

Stephen, Mr. Winer bases everything on measurements/science..

if we use scientific criteria to judge the two systems(Jan vs DUP) , there is little doubt in my mind that DUP's system would come out on top...that is Ethan's premise, you see.

of course most of us do not care for measurements, but you have to consider that Mr. Winer lives in the realm of the scientific, not the mystical world of the audiophile..

consider the post in context. Obviously Jan's system gives him pleasure, and that is all that really matters. I am a big fan of SET amps and high effeciency speakers. I am sure my system measures like shit. probably much worse than Ethan's. ... but I don't want Ethan's system.

Yes, objective performance and personal preference are different issues. Judgments concerning them use different criteria, although the research done by Drs. Floyd Toole and Sean Olive at the National Research Council and at Harman International indicate measured performance of speakers and listener preferences under blind conditions are related.

But who are you to decide which really matters? Maybe objective measurements do matter to others, certainly in some contexts.

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But who are you to decide which really matters? Maybe objective measurements do matter to others, certainly in some contexts.

I guess we should address what the final arbiter is regarding audio quality. I would venture that it is how the listener responds to the system.

Do you know any audiophiles who sit and listen to something and tell themselves, "No matter how bad this sounds, I take comfort from knowing its objective specifications?"

As you sit and play music on a system, can you imagine where 'objective measures' would take precedence over how the system sounded, to you?

At the end of the chain, audio is pretty much entirely subjective.

Regarding Mr. Winer, he has said himself that he does not "base everything on measurements/science."

He says he picks speakers via sighted listening......just like Jan!

Ethan goes the extra mile to lay some BS on us that he is somehow immune to sighted listening bias, etc...but he picks the speakers he buys just like the rest of us.

Ethan is fond of telling us about DBT's for determining speaker preference, but he most certainly does not follow his own edicts in this regard.

JJ won't even answer about how he chooses speakers. (Maybe he did and I missed it, though. Things can get lost in between someone's proclamations of lack of sighted bias, etc...)

In fact, did JJ even mention the system he listens to? I'll go look.

ncdrawl
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But who are you to decide which really matters? Maybe objective measurements do matter to others, certainly in some contexts.

In my domain, I am everything.Outside of that, I am nothing. Same with everyone.. I was simply saying that if Jan enjoys his system, the measured performance does not matter. Ethan was basing his "DUP supremacy" on technical measurements, only one side of the coin.

michiganjfrog
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I fail to see what's rude about pointing out an obvious truth. If Jan drove a Yugo and DUP had a Mercedes S-Class, would I be rude to say that DUP's car beats Jan's car every day of the week? If something is true - and universally understood to be true - why is it an insult to point out that truth?

I wondered about that myself, when I saw Jan pointed out that your Pioneer amp costs $150, which is apparently what you said it was worth, and he was considered rude for doing so (I don't recall if it was you who considered his remark rude, or someone else).

In this case, Jan has a low-powered tube amp driving a single 5-inch speaker through 30 gauge magnet wire. Can anyone argue that this is even remotely related to high fidelity reproduction with a straight face?

Yes, I will argue very much so, with a straight face. Without even knowing what Jan's system consists of, I would argue that what you described is very much an audiophile system, which is more than "remotely related to high fidelity reproduction". In fact, it's more of an audiophile system than one where someone goes out and buys an off the rack system, the dealer or manufacturer put together. Because first off, -any- system containing a tube amp not from 1950 is an audiophile system. Only a true fanatic about hifi sound would own this, given the expense and fuss it requires. A single 5" driver speaker alone is not a sign of a hifi system, but coupled with a modern tube amp, very much so. And anyone using 30g magnet wire to connect these components is a certifiable audiophile, who's interest in doing so is to obtain a quality sound. This practice is very much related to high fidelity reproduction. But it may not be what -you- regard as "high fidelity reproduction", in your limited understanding of what that is.

If all you do when shopping for hifi is to look at things like the frequency response and slew rate on the manufacturer's brochure, that's what I call a "limited understanding" of what hi-fidelity is. Pitch, timing, rhythm, timbre, and most importantly, conveyance of the emotional qualities inherent in music are all things that a system like Jan's could deliver much better than one chosen on the back of the manufacturer's brochure. But if you can't identify what any of those things are when you hear them, or you deny their existence, then your idea of "hifi" may not be the same as Jan's, or someone else who has a greater understanding of what music reproduction is really about. Which is fine, as we don't all have to agree with Wikipedia's definition of hi-fi. I don't think people turn to Wikipedia when they need to learn what hi-fidelity is all about. At least, I would hope not....

ethanwiner
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Ethan was basing his "DUP supremacy" on technical measurements, only one side of the coin.


Yes, the side that defines high fidelity. Otherwise, we all might as well buy a graphic EQ and dial in a smiley face to make everything sound "better." In the words of a wise hi-fi aficionado friend:

"Hi-fi is not what you think sounds good, it's reproducing what is there, whether it sounds good or not. If the recording sucks then it should suck. Adding coloration at playback is not hi-fi."

--Ethan

ethanwiner
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"No matter how bad this sounds, I take comfort from knowing its objective specifications?"


You seem not to understand that good specs do indeed correlate to good sound. If the specs are good - all of them, not just what a vendor chooses to publish - then good sound must follow. I challenge you to identify a single piece of gear of any type that measures good but sounds bad.

--Ethan

ethanwiner
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I personally think a lot of gear is ridiculously overpriced. However, it's not my place nor is it any of my business to tell someone they shouldn't have bought it.


I agree with both points 100 percent. I have little interest in telling someone they paid too much for something they enjoy and would buy again given the chance. My only interest with this stuff is helping people who have a limited budget and want to know the truth. Every day I see posts asking things such as "Do expensive speaker cables really sound better?" and these are the folks I write to.

--Ethan

michiganjfrog
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My common sense tells me that this is a very rude, foolish, small-minded thing to say. (But perhaps Ethan was joking, as is suggested by the grin emoticon used to complete his sentence.)

My own common sense tells me Ethan wasn't joking, as that statement about the superiority of the two different systems is perfectly in line with all of his previously stated beliefs.


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Related: Why is it that we become so upset when others do not value our hi-fi systems? Is it because our systems resemble our selves, and by insulting one's system, we are insulting one's self?

I don't become upset, so not everyone shares that silly mindset. In fact, I did not know that so many people can and do. I remember one chap here threatening to "physically throw people out of his house" if they insult his system (but not his music?), and that he's done so before. I found that attitude very odd and somewhat disturbing. What do I care if someone, particularly someone I don't even know, doesn't like my system? What matters is whether I like it, as I'm the one who has to live with it. Besides which, I'm sure no one can criticize my system any greater or better than I can.


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Are we, through our systems, trying to communicate something dear about ourselves?

Sometimes maybe, sometimes not. Depends on whether you chose the components, and why you did (e.g. your selections might be limited by your budget, where you would have chosen completely different things otherwise). Assuming the components are chosen by us, what we choose in hifi is generally a reflection of our beliefs about audio, or things in general. What someone with a consumer audio rack system might say to me is that they lacked attention as children, and now require a lot buttons and lights and equalizer knobs to keep them occupied and distracted, as they "listen" to music.

What my simple, straight-path, two-channel, no balance knob, no Dolby logos, no sound processor, no freakin' iPod or "music server" system might say to them is that I'm an audio novice who can't handle anything more complicated than just a volume knob and selector switch. If I had to guess what it says about me, it's simplicity (ie. no spikes, no cones, none of that squashball hockey puck shite) would seem to say "zen minimalist". Or that the beauty of an entire wilderness can be destroyed by the presence of a single empty beer can.

ethanwiner
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I really don't care about Wikipedia's definition of hi-fi.


I'm sure you don't care. As in, "My mind's made up, don't confuse me with the facts." Okay, fine, be that way.

Here's what Princeton University says:
"The reproduction of sound with little or no distortion"

From the Free Dictionary:
"An electronic system for reproducing high-fidelity sound from radio or recordings"

Answers.com:
"The electronic reproduction of sound, especially from broadcast or recorded sources, with minimal distortion"

Electronics Dictionary:
"Sound reproduction equipment that reproduces sound as near to the original sound as possible"

Word.net:
"characterized by minimal distortion in sound reproduction"

How Stuff Works:
"A good hi-fi system would reproduce sounds that were identical to the original sound."

AudioEnglish.net:
"the reproduction of sound with little or no distortion"

Babylon:
"High fidelity or hi-fi reproduction is a term used by home stereo listeners and home audio enthusiasts (audiophiles) to refer to high-quality reproduction of sound or images that is very faithful to the original master recording."

More from Babylon:
"sound system that produces sounds that are very close to the original (broadcasts all wavelengths with almost no distortion)"

==============================

Stephen, no matter how much you'd like to try, it's futile to redefine words that already have a fixed meaning.


Quote:
What if Wikipedia's definition of hi-fi is not Jan's or my definition of hi-fi?


Then you'll both have to accept that you are wrong. It really is that simple. If I wanted to redefine green as the color of the sky, is that my right or would I be seen as a nut-job?


Quote:
if we continue down this path, we'll wind up discussing the same shit we discuss everyday.


Yes, and hopefully one day you will learn what defines high fidelity reproduction, and understand why.


Quote:
I want to know about how we relate to our hi-fis. Why do they matter so much to us?


Oh.

My hi-fi is an appliance. Nothing more, nothing less. I turn it on when I want to use it, and I turn it off when I'm done. I do enjoy it a lot! But it's just an appliance. Same for my car BTW. I could never understand the macho attachment some people have for their cars. I guess cars and hi-fi rigs are the same that way. You even see snake oil BS sold for car fans too, such as magnets you put around the gas feed line that claim to improve mileage. Yep, magnets. Sound familiar?

--Ethan

Jan Vigne
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If the specs are good - all of them, not just what a vendor chooses to publish - then good sound must follow.

Then tell me what the specs are for my system. You have failed to produce anything of the sort. Tell me exactly what components I use and how they have been modified so I know you have the technical specs correct.

Tell me, that's all I ask of you, whiner. Just tell us all those bits of information. Be specific.

Someone ask whiner this, he has me on ignore so it is easier to insult me and never see a response.

Buddha
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Hey, Ethan, didn't Michigan point out that you listen with a Yugo level amplifier?

How can your Yugo keep up with a Mercedes amplifier?

That was quite a good one, Michigan!

Maybe Ethan will say that anything above Yugo is not really relevant.

Hung by his own analogy.

Jan Vigne
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I don't become upset, so not everyone shares that silly mindset. In fact, I did not know that so many people can and do. I remember one chap here threatening to "physically throw people out of his house" if they insult his system (but not his music?), and that he's done so before. I found that attitude very odd and somewhat disturbing. What do I care if someone, particularly someone I don't even know, doesn't like my system? What matters is whether I like it, as I'm the one who has to live with it. Besides which, I'm sure no one can criticize my system any greater or better than I can.

I agree. I don't give a rat's butt what Ethan thinks of my system. I have received reports from several forum members who have heard his system that it too lacks many qualities that would say "high end" to many if not most of us. Stephen has confused my reaction to this latest out of the blue jab from whiner with a bruised ego on my part. That is hardly what I am complaining about.

smejias
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Stephen, no matter how much you'd like to try, it's futile to redefine words that already have a fixed meaning.

I have no interest in redefining words, Ethan.

smejias
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Stephen has confused my reaction to this latest out of the blue jab from whiner with a bruised ego on my part.

Sorry, Jan, that's not true.

Jan Vigne
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I challenge you to identify a single piece of gear of any type that measures good but sounds bad.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Vintage-PIONEER-SX-1...6QQcmdZViewItem

How about measures bad but sounds good?

http://stereophile.com/tubepoweramps/306yamamoto/

http://stereophile.com/tubepoweramps/805quad/

http://stereophile.com/tubepoweramps/304antique/index4.html

http://stereophile.com/integratedamps/308shan/

http://stereophile.com/integratedamps/207cayin/

http://stereophile.com/standloudspeakers/506an/index4.html

http://stereophile.com/floorloudspeakers/805wilson/index4.html

etc.

Jan Vigne
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So now you're not only a forum moderator but a mind reader?

You do them both with equal talent.

Jan Vigne
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Stephen, if you are so good at knowing what is intended by what you see on a written page, you should be able to tell us exactly what Ethan meant ...


Quote:
(But perhaps Ethan was joking, as is suggested by the grin emoticon used to complete his sentence.)


Quote:
So Mr. Frog is saying this has no relation to what will be heard or perceived? And he's the one who said I don't know much about audio?

--Ethan


Quote:
The only acrimony and resentment I've seen in this entire thread comes from you Jan! And later in this thread from the frog too. Me, I'm just explaining the science of audio as best I can. I have no attitude about this stuff, only some sadness that people who do not understand the scientific method can be so quick to dismiss it. And dismiss it so vehemently at that. It's like Sean Hannity. The man not only has uninformed opinions, he has very strong uninformed opinions. Jan is the new Sean Hannity.

--Ethan

http://forum.stereophile.com/forum/showf...=8&fpart=36

All of those are just jokes, eh?

Those were easy to find. Shall I dig up some more "jokes"?

I suppose he was just joking when he spied on my property? I suspect he was just joking when he posted the fruadulent information about me?

This is not about my ego or my system, Stephen.

ethanwiner
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Not jokes Jan. I meant every word of it!

Strong uninformed opinions are quite a problem IMO. And that's dead serious.

Jan Vigne
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Quote:
Strong uninformed opinions are quite a problem IMO.

I agree with you on that whiner.

If I'm no longer on ignore, answer my questions about my system you say you know so well.
What amplifier (amplifiers?) do I use? How many watts? SET? Not SET? What class? What components in front of them? What speakers? Sub? or not? Their sensitivity? What's the frequency response? What's the distortion? How big is my room you so wanted to look into?

Be specific.

smejias
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So now you're not only a forum moderator but a mind reader?

Hmm, that's interesting. When you wrote, "Stephen has confused my reaction...," I thought you were attempting to mind-read. Funny.


Quote:
You do them both with equal talent.

Thanks!

smejias
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Ethan, Jan: If you want to go back and forth, hashing out your relationship here on the forum, I suggest you start a new thread.

There are some interesting thoughts here on how we relate to our hi-fis, and I'd like to keep the discussion going in that direction. If we've said all that there is to be said, I'll close the thread.

bifcake
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Stephen navigates the choppy waters of clairvoyance by the skillful use of both of his crystal balls.

Jan Vigne
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If Ethan accurately describes my system as I've asked, model numbers, frequency response, room size, etc, then you can do as you please with this thread, Stephen. Since Ethan claims to know my system and its specs and how it sounds based on that knowledge alone and you based this thread upon that statement, I think it would be interesting to know just how close he comes to "knowing" my system since he's so far not described it very well and has never heard it - only wished he could have seen it the day he spied on me.

Don't you think that would be interesting?

I'm going to assume no one will feed him information that he doesn't need.

Jan Vigne
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Y'all can carry on with whatever it was you were discussin' while we wait for Ethan.

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