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What we measure is what we hear
Yahzi
post Dec 24 2012, 17:34
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I've heard audiophiles claim time and time again that what we measure does not reflect what we hear in a listening evaluation. I think Floyd Tool is the pioneer in conducting the studies for this, but who else as in a position of authority has led research into this field? It can't be mere opinion. I feel measurements largely do correlate with subjective sound quality but I don't think *all* measurements do. Some are more relevant than others.

What is your position?
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Martel
post Jan 2 2013, 13:19
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It's nearly impossible to measure subjective feelings of an individual (even sticking electrodes into one's brain doesn't help much). They need to describe/tell you what they hear/feel (until we finally invent the telepathy). Unfortunately, words do not carry nearly as much information as is contained within the feelings they're trying to describe. Hence all those audiophile metaphors (which translate very poorly between individuals and carry almost no useful information as a result).

When I was younger (teen-age) I used to bask in the placebo effect coming from comparing MP3 encoders through a spectrogram. Cut-off at 18kHz was "not good enough for me and sounded like crap", even though the headphone I was using at that time (HD 490 live) had a significant treble roll-off (roughly comparable to Porta Pro) - I just put them on again recently and the treble was virtually non-existent. smile.gif I ended up using some weird SW called SCMPX, which went all the way to 22kHz on 192kbit MP3 (and likely made worse MP3s overall).
Yet, the associated feeling of superiority (due to extended frequency range that I saw) was really there, it made me enjoy my MP3s much more. While I try to spend as little money as possible to get my equipment, I understand the audiophiles spending fortune on their equipment - for them, just spending big money on equipment is enough to boost their satisfaction level. Due to the physical limits of the human auditory apparatus, this seems to be one of the few ways to improve the perceived sound beyond some objective supremum.

I know I enjoy some fast black/death metal much more when I'm drunk. Some of my friends told me they enjoy techno more when high on weed. Now measure that. laugh.gif
(I'm sorry if this is not appropriate - moderation remove this last sentence in case you find it too offensive)

This post has been edited by Martel: Jan 2 2013, 13:26


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Arnold B. Kruege...
post Jan 2 2013, 17:47
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QUOTE (Martel @ Jan 2 2013, 07:19) *
It's nearly impossible to measure subjective feelings of an individual (even sticking electrodes into one's brain doesn't help much). They need to describe/tell you what they hear/feel (until we finally invent the telepathy).

I know I enjoy some fast black/death metal much more when I'm drunk. Some of my friends told me they enjoy techno more when high on weed. Now measure that. laugh.gif


I'm told that modern brain imaging can be an effective means for measuring the subjective feelings of an individual, especially pleasure.

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Posts in this topic
- Yahzi   What we measure is what we hear   Dec 24 2012, 17:34
- - slks   It depends on which measurements we're talking...   Dec 24 2012, 17:56
- - Yahzi   So you are saying that measurements can explain wh...   Dec 24 2012, 18:22
|- - Ethan Winer   ^^^ Yes, you understand correctly. I've done a...   Dec 24 2012, 19:23
- - AndyH-ha   To sum of one aspect of "what we measure is N...   Dec 24 2012, 21:59
- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (Yahzi @ Dec 24 2012, 11:34) I...   Dec 24 2012, 23:40
- - Porcus   Two totally different points: (1) Those annoying ...   Dec 24 2012, 23:56
- - Woodinville   Many people have worked on measuring what you hear...   Dec 25 2012, 03:52
|- - jkauff   QUOTE (Woodinville @ Dec 24 2012, 21:52) ...   Dec 29 2012, 15:18
|- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (jkauff @ Dec 29 2012, 09:18) QUOTE...   Dec 31 2012, 18:14
- - dhromed   Your daughter is not an unmeasured outlier; she...   Dec 29 2012, 15:27
|- - garym   QUOTE (dhromed @ Dec 29 2012, 09:27) Your...   Dec 29 2012, 16:14
|- - sld   QUOTE (garym @ Dec 29 2012, 23:14) QUOTE ...   Dec 29 2012, 19:27
- - greynol   I doubt she is as well. What frequency is the cat ...   Dec 29 2012, 15:30
|- - jkauff   QUOTE (greynol @ Dec 29 2012, 09:30) I do...   Dec 30 2012, 23:05
|- - Soap   QUOTE (jkauff @ Dec 30 2012, 17:05) Cat h...   Dec 30 2012, 23:49
- - greynol   We hear about people in their early 20s and younge...   Dec 29 2012, 19:21
- - Mach-X   Ouch.   Dec 29 2012, 20:55
- - Yahzi   Correct me if I'm wrong but we hear using our ...   Dec 30 2012, 14:07
|- - Soap   QUOTE (Yahzi @ Dec 30 2012, 08:07) Correc...   Dec 30 2012, 15:05
- - Yahzi   I just thought I'd ask the question and I thou...   Dec 30 2012, 16:39
- - Speedskater   If you restrict the use of the words "hear...   Dec 30 2012, 17:52
- - pisymbol   QUOTE (Yahzi @ Dec 24 2012, 11:34) I...   Dec 31 2012, 02:05
|- - AndyH-ha   QUOTE (pisymbol @ Dec 30 2012, 18:05) But...   Dec 31 2012, 02:52
|- - pisymbol   QUOTE (AndyH-ha @ Dec 30 2012, 20:52...   Dec 31 2012, 03:12
|- - db1989   QUOTE (pisymbol @ Dec 31 2012, 02:12) Sub...   Dec 31 2012, 05:25
|- - Ethan Winer   QUOTE (pisymbol @ Dec 30 2012, 21:12) Sub...   Dec 31 2012, 18:14
||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (Ethan Winer @ Dec 31 2012, 18:14) ...   Dec 31 2012, 18:41
||- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 31 2012, 09:41) This...   Jan 1 2013, 03:10
||- - Ethan Winer   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 31 2012, 12:41) but ...   Jan 1 2013, 19:09
|||- - Martel   QUOTE (Ethan Winer @ Jan 1 2013, 20:09) ....   Jan 1 2013, 19:54
|||- - Nessuno   Let alone those quite obvious issues which actuall...   Jan 1 2013, 23:08
||- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 31 2012, 12:41) ...i...   Jan 2 2013, 17:43
||- - pdq   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 31 2012, 12:41) if p...   Jan 2 2013, 17:50
||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (pdq @ Jan 2 2013, 17:50) QUOTE (Ne...   Jan 2 2013, 19:16
|||- - pdq   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Jan 2 2013, 13:16) QUOTE...   Jan 2 2013, 20:28
|||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (pdq @ Jan 2 2013, 20:28) However, ...   Jan 2 2013, 21:12
|||- - Kohlrabi   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Jan 2 2013, 21:12) QUOTE...   Jan 3 2013, 01:13
||||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (Kohlrabi @ Jan 3 2013, 01:13) QUOT...   Jan 3 2013, 02:11
||||- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Jan 2 2013, 17:11) QUOTE...   Jan 3 2013, 11:15
|||- - pdq   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Jan 2 2013, 15:12) QUOTE...   Jan 3 2013, 02:07
||- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (pdq @ Jan 2 2013, 11:50) QUOTE (Ne...   Jan 3 2013, 01:20
|||- - Kohlrabi   QUOTE (Arnold B. Krueger @ Jan 3 2013, 01...   Jan 3 2013, 01:23
||- - krabapple   QUOTE (pdq @ Jan 2 2013, 11:50) QUOTE (Ne...   Jan 3 2013, 18:12
|- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (pisymbol @ Dec 30 2012, 21:12) Sub...   Dec 31 2012, 18:25
- - AndyH-ha   Subjective impressions are, after all, impressions...   Dec 31 2012, 07:38
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (AndyH-ha @ Dec 30 2012, 22:38...   Dec 31 2012, 09:43
|- - Kees de Visser   QUOTE (Woodinville @ Dec 31 2012, 09:43) ...   Dec 31 2012, 17:08
|- - greynol   I don't think this forum is scared of subjecti...   Dec 31 2012, 17:43
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (greynol @ Dec 31 2012, 08:43) I do...   Jan 1 2013, 03:06
- - greynol   TL;DR: MUSHRA and other ABC-style tests are subjec...   Dec 31 2012, 11:59
|- - Satellite_6   So far the best measuring headphones I have tried ...   Dec 31 2012, 15:32
|- - Nessuno   QUOTE (Satellite_6 @ Dec 31 2012, 15:32) ...   Dec 31 2012, 16:18
- - Martel   What's the "best measuring" frequenc...   Dec 31 2012, 16:15
|- - Soap   QUOTE (Martel @ Dec 31 2012, 10:15) What...   Dec 31 2012, 16:42
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Martel @ Dec 31 2012, 07:15) What...   Jan 1 2013, 03:08
- - greynol   Maybe we should take a close look at the meaning o...   Dec 31 2012, 20:29
- - jkauff   Next, on to wine tasting....   Dec 31 2012, 21:28
- - greynol   Feel free to start a new topic, replacing the word...   Dec 31 2012, 22:13
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (greynol @ Dec 31 2012, 13:13) Feel...   Jan 1 2013, 03:12
|- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (Woodinville @ Dec 31 2012, 21:12) ...   Jan 1 2013, 15:47
- - greynol   You're right, I just don't know that we sh...   Jan 1 2013, 03:25
|- - Nessuno   Maybe a little OT, but I recall a "rule of th...   Jan 1 2013, 12:47
- - Yahzi   It seems this discussion ain't over yet. Thank...   Jan 1 2013, 20:49
- - greynol   The point I was making is that the ears (outer or ...   Jan 2 2013, 00:23
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 1 2013, 15:23) The p...   Jan 2 2013, 00:41
||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (Woodinville @ Jan 2 2013, 00:41) I...   Jan 2 2013, 01:12
||- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Jan 1 2013, 16:12) QUOTE...   Jan 2 2013, 01:40
|- - Nessuno   QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 2 2013, 00:23) The p...   Jan 2 2013, 01:01
|- - Woodinville   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Jan 1 2013, 16:01) QUOTE...   Jan 2 2013, 01:44
|- - Nessuno   QUOTE (Woodinville @ Jan 2 2013, 01:44) Y...   Jan 2 2013, 12:10
- - Martel   It's nearly impossible to measure subjective f...   Jan 2 2013, 13:19
|- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (Martel @ Jan 2 2013, 07:19) It...   Jan 2 2013, 17:47
- - heatfire   Can only measure that we hear it not how or what w...   Jan 2 2013, 15:53
- - heatfire   There is one measurement some "audiophiles...   Jan 2 2013, 19:49
- - knutinh   Good work carried out by Toole and others aside: A...   Jan 3 2013, 13:02
- - Arnold B. Krueger   QUOTE (knutinh @ Jan 3 2013, 07:02) Good ...   Jan 3 2013, 13:34


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