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Cables the neverending story?

Page 3 - Seeking answers? Join the What HiFi community: the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products.

Leif

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May 11, 2014
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CnoEvil said:
Leif said:
 

The link does not make any claims other than those you would expect of any respectable cable maker. Thus "They know that our materials and construction are the finest obtainable," does not actually say anything about the sound, just that the cables are well made. Isn't it odd that there are no specific claims?
There were subjective descriptions of the sound of the cables, from people who should be good at assessing what they hear (if you take their comments at face value):

"Low level detail, dynamics, and effortless reproduction are just fabulous. I hate to say it but my other cables almost sounded a little compressed by comparison, the sound just seems to open up more. . . . I could swear I hear more extension in the top as well as the bottom.”  (Roy Halee)

“The difference the cables made was amazing. Obviously cables can’t make the source signal better, but they almost always make it worse! Cables are a source of noise and other very audible distortions. They can limit resolution, dynamic range and distort the tonal balance. Transparent Audio makes fantastic cables because they understand how to eliminate the noise problems and create a neutral cable.”  (Bob Ludwig)

 

 

 
Exactly. They are allowed by law to quote subjective claims, but they make no objective claims of their own about the audio quality. That is the point I was making, albeit perhaps not well.
 

ellisdj

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Dec 11, 2008
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If as a hifi enthusiast all you do is place speakers down in your room and listen to them and make a judgement on the sound quality you are doing the exact same thing as someone who changes cables and makes a judgement on them.

Its all affected by the same bias and its all the same.
Yet some people seem to have a problem with only 1 of these actions when they are both identical yet that is what most people do most of the time. There should be no issue with anyone doing either its what makes the hobby fun
 

ifor

Well-known member
Dec 3, 2002
71
1
18,545
ellisdj said:
CnoEvil said:
QuestForThe13thNote said:
The original question on this thread has long since been answered. Davedotco put it best in his comment.
There are certain rules that govern when a cable thread is over:

1. It has to go round in circles for a minimum of 100 posts.

2. Someone has to use the phrase, "Night and day difference".

3. The wife (or somebody's wife) has to have heard the difference from the kitchen.

3. The sceptics have to have used the words Gullible, Audiophool, Professional Audio, Snake Oil, Placebo and ABX test.

4. There has to be a tired cliche used about Printers, Kettles or Toasters.

5. Normally, I'd say a cable thread wouldn't become official until TrevC made a contribution, but even he has given up.

6. Somebody has to be called deaf and somebody else has to wave their technical qualifications about and use the words "Science" and "Impossible".

7. The OP has to have stopped taking an interest after the 4th page, while everyone else continues to argue....and nobody can change their position.

So, on these grounds, this thread has only just become a teenager....it still has to grow a beard, loose its hair, get arthritis and die.
CNo you can happily tick number 5 off your list now
Well spotted.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
These are the things I'd say in narrowing down the debate against the doubters and for the believers ;

1) are you someone who has taken a view without experimentation yourself on cables. Answer yes, result - not qualified to comment as no practical experience

2) is your hi fi actually going to reveal different cables. If it does great, you've been on a journey. If worth it, you buy, if not you don't. If it doesn't reveal different cables might it be your hi fi not doing so where another might.

3) Can you be honest yourself, taking out ego, as to whether your hi fi is in a catergory where it is revealing enough to show differences in cables. Might you accept if your system doesn't reveal different cables, it might be due to limitations in your system. How do you reach perspective over this

4) have you actually sat In on a listening test to kit you know after a period of time, that is revealing kit, and changed cables to see what difference they make.

5) have you sat in on a test at a show where hi fi cables have been demonstrated.

6) do you accept that your value judgements about differences in cables, if any you may hear in a given system, may not be to you value, but are to others in the same or different systems.

7) have you ever thought that bell wire is the same as proprietary speaker wire, but never tried bell wire.

8) do you base all your judgements on debates on forums and have no inquisitiveness to try cables, if only borrowed ones

9) do you believe it's a debate about expense but can you accept some people find better cables at a cheaper price to other expensive ones, that it's not about expense.

10) do you accept others position that they often get good benefits and that you have no reason to dis believe them per see, but are stuck in a rut over thinking that you must say cables don't make a difference just to support a view

11) do you bang on about abx or ab testing but could you refer someone to such a test which holds water or is subject to criticism.

12) would you be prepared to accept that in a different set of circumstances with different system and different cables, that cables could make a difference, that hi fi is fickle and all inter dependent upon the sum total of parts.

you usually find when you go into detail on these things you find the people who disbelieve cables make a difference to hi fi, that they have these mis conceptions.
 

Leif

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May 11, 2014
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Blacksabbath25 said:
CnoEvil said:
QuestForThe13thNote said:
The original question on this thread has long since been answered. Davedotco put it best in his comment.
There are certain rules that govern when a cable thread is over:

1. It has to go round in circles for a minimum of 100 posts.

2. Someone has to use the phrase, "Night and day difference".

3. The wife (or somebody's wife) has to have heard the difference from the kitchen.

3. The sceptics have to have used the words Gullible, Audiophool, Professional Audio, Snake Oil, Placebo and ABX test.

4. There has to be a tired cliche used about Printers, Kettles or Toasters.

5. Normally, I'd say a cable thread wouldn't become official until TrevC made a contribution, but even he has given up.

6. Somebody has to be called deaf and somebody else has to wave their technical qualifications about and use the words "Science" and "Impossible".

7. The OP has to have stopped taking an interest after the 4th page, while everyone else continues to argue....and nobody can change their position.

So, on these grounds, this thread has only just become a teenager....it still has to grow a beard, loose its hair, get arthritis and die.
8 . changing the national grid power cables to get the very best out of you hifi do not forget that *mail1* your post has put a big smile on my face
9. A believer will say that your system is not revealing (expensive) enough to show the difference between cables. *biggrin*
 

cheeseboy

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Jul 17, 2012
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seems an apt time to repost this:

Audio Woo Checklist(attributed to Sean Adams, founder of SlimDevices)

You claim that an

( ) audible
( ) measurable
( ) hypothetical

improvement in sound quality can be attained by:

( ) upsampling
( ) increasing word size
( ) vibration dampening
( ) bi-wiring
( ) replacing the external power supply
( ) using a different lossless format
( ) decompressing on the server
( ) removing bits of metal from skull
( ) using ethernet instead of wireless
( ) inverting phase
( ) installing bigger connectors
( ) installing Black Gate caps
( ) installing ByBee filters
( ) installing hospital-grade AC jacks
( ) defragmenting the hard disk
( ) running older firmware

Your idea will not work. Specifically, it fails to account for:

( ) the placebo effect
( ) your ears honestly aren't that good
( ) your idea has already been thoroughly disproved
( ) modern DACs upsample anyway
( ) those products are pure snake oil
( ) lossless formats, by definition, are lossless
( ) those measurements are bogus
( ) sound travels much slower than you think
( ) electric signals travel much faster than you think
( ) that's not how binary arithmetic works
( ) that's not how TCP/IP works
( ) the Nyquist theorem
( ) the can't polish a turd theorem
( ) bits are bits

Your subsequent arguments will probably appeal in desperation to such esoterica as:

( ) jitter
( ) EMI
( ) thermal noise
( ) existentialism
( ) cosmic rays

And you will then change the subject to:

( ) theories are not the same as facts
( ) measurements don't tell everything
( ) not everyone is subject to the placebo effect
( ) blind testing is dumb
( ) you can't prove what I can't hear
( ) science isn't everything

Rather than engage in this tired discussion, I suggest exploring the following factors which are more likely to improve sound quality in your situation:

( ) room acoustics
( ) source material
( ) type of speakers
( ) speaker placement
( ) crossover points
( ) equalization
( ) Q-tips
 

CnoEvil

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Aug 21, 2009
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Leif said:
9. A believer will say that your system is not revealing (expensive) enough to show the difference between cables. *biggrin*
That too.....does that make you deaf, with a shyte system? *wink*
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
That's where the ego thing comes in I think, and in the inability to seperate concepts.

Some people perceive if a selection of different cables don't change the sound and they have a good system (to them and probably everyone), it can't be the system but the cables. But it's not a 'Shyte' system, it's just not revealing enough. But you can still have a good system that doesn't reveal cable differences. The point is, ones understanding on the subject has to be relative to those systems that do reveal the differences.

I always laugh when people tell me cables cant make good differences to sound quality, as I've had systems where changing wouldn't make much difference or be marginal, and others that would. Revealing speakers and amps are often necessarily expensive but not always.
 

abacus

Well-known member
Sep 24, 2008
399
155
19,070
QuestForThe13thNote said:
That's where the ego thing comes in I think, and in the inability to seperate concepts.

Some people perceive if a selection of different cables don't change the sound and they have a good system (to them and probably everyone), it can't be the system but the cables. But it's not a 'Shyte' system, it's just not revealing enough. But you can still have a good system that doesn't reveal cable differences. The point is, ones understanding on the subject has to be relative to those systems that do reveal the differences.

I always laugh when people tell me cables cant make good differences to sound quality, as I've had systems where changing wouldn't make much difference or be marginal, and others that would. Revealing speakers and amps are often necessarily expensive but not always.
Yet you still cannot provide any verifiable information on your claims, and refuse to view all the verified information that has been provided in multiple cable threads that prove that correctly rated cables do not make a difference, which makes your claims dubious at best, and pure fabrication at worst.

For those that are still following this thread, please do double blind tests before splashing out on these fancy cables, as the cash could be used for much better things, such as more music or better equipment, above all, always try before you buy?

Bill
 

Pedro

New member
May 31, 2016
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cheeseboy said:
seems an apt time to repost this:

Audio Woo Checklist (attributed to Sean Adams, founder of SlimDevices)
You claim that an( ) audible( ) measurable( ) hypotheticalimprovement in sound quality can be attained by:( ) upsampling( ) increasing word size( ) vibration dampening( ) bi-wiring( ) replacing the external power supply( ) using a different lossless format( ) decompressing on the server( ) removing bits of metal from skull( ) using ethernet instead of wireless( ) inverting phase( ) installing bigger connectors( ) installing Black Gate caps( ) installing ByBee filters( ) installing hospital-grade AC jacks( ) defragmenting the hard disk( ) running older firmwareYour idea will not work. Specifically, it fails to account for:( ) the placebo effect( ) your ears honestly aren't that good( ) your idea has already been thoroughly disproved( ) modern DACs upsample anyway( ) those products are pure snake oil( ) lossless formats, by definition, are lossless( ) those measurements are bogus( ) sound travels much slower than you think( ) electric signals travel much faster than you think( ) that's not how binary arithmetic works( ) that's not how TCP/IP works( ) the Nyquist theorem( ) the can't polish a turd theorem( ) bits are bitsYour subsequent arguments will probably appeal in desperation to such esoterica as:( ) jitter( ) EMI( ) thermal noise( ) existentialism( ) cosmic raysAnd you will then change the subject to:( ) theories are not the same as facts( ) measurements don't tell everything( ) not everyone is subject to the placebo effect( ) blind testing is dumb( ) you can't prove what I can't hear( ) science isn't everythingRather than engage in this tired discussion, I suggest exploring the following factors which are more likely to improve sound quality in your situation:( ) room acoustics( ) source material( ) type of speakers( ) speaker placement( ) crossover points( ) equalization( ) Q-tips
+1

Oh yeah! :)
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
Can you tell me any verifiable evidence that shows that x speaker is not regarded as good as y speaker. No.

Do you ever do abx blind testing to discern between other hi fi components. No. In fact do you 'blind test' any product. No

bill fits into the classification of stating we are talking about fancy (or expensive cables) - see my list where I covered this misconception. We are talking about say £30 or £40 on cables sometimes. This isn't expensive in this scheme of things.

nothing is proven in hi fi as bill says given its subjective nature, but that always makes the reasons people come to their judgements against cables, as bill does, so very obvious.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
I'd like another debate on this. What do you reckon.
 

cheeseboy

New member
Jul 17, 2012
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QuestForThe13thNote said:
That's where the ego thing comes in I think, and in the inability to seperate concepts.
people in glass houses n'all that

QuestForThe13thNote said:
Some people perceive if a selection of different cables don't change the sound and they have a good system (to them and probably everyone), it can't be the system but the cables. But it's not a 'Shyte' system, it's just not revealing enough. But you can still have a good system that doesn't reveal cable differences. The point is, ones understanding on the subject has to be relative to those systems that do reveal the differences.

I always laugh when people tell me cables cant make good differences to sound quality, as I've had systems where changing wouldn't make much difference or be marginal, and others that would. Revealing speakers and amps are often necessarily expensive but not always.
popycock. Enough with the I'm considerably richer than you rubbish, you allude to it all the time that those that can't afford such mega expensive systems surely can't appreacite such intricacies that only dogs can hear. I always laugh when people talk about this kind of stuff and have never done a proper blind test, or tried to remove biases. Come back when you've done that and we can have a chat about what you did in order to remove those well documented, scientifcially proven things that can affect the sound and then we can start to get somewhere *good*
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
There isn't any science studies on abx studies, it's just Jim and Dave with their mates. Lots of forums. And when people take from that it's unintelligent imho.

Oh and this is another one that falls under one of the rules I mentioned. That it's not always about expense in cables.

But so long as someone incorrectly implies that it is, or that they can't get their head around the fact that more expensive systems are generally more revealing, because of human reasons like jealousy or envy etc, it becomes perceived to be a debate about someone's hi fi being better than another, or affordability, and the British aren't very good at ever accepting these things.

its all very blindingly obvious for me.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
cheeseboy said:
QuestForThe13thNote said:
That's where the ego thing comes in I think, and in the inability to seperate concepts.
people in glass houses n'all that

QuestForThe13thNote said:
Some people perceive if a selection of different cables don't change the sound and they have a good system (to them and probably everyone), it can't be the system but the cables. But it's not a 'Shyte' system, it's just not revealing enough. But you can still have a good system that doesn't reveal cable differences. The point is, ones understanding on the subject has to be relative to those systems that do reveal the differences.

I always laugh when people tell me cables cant make good differences to sound quality, as I've had systems where changing wouldn't make much difference or be marginal, and others that would. Revealing speakers and amps are often necessarily expensive but not always.
popycock. Enough with the I'm considerably richer than you rubbish, you allude to it all the time that those that can't afford such mega expensive systems surely can't appreacite such intricacies that only dogs can hear. I always laugh when people talk about this kind of stuff and have never done a proper blind test, or tried to remove biases. Come back when you've done that and we can have a chat about what you did in order to remove those well documented, scientifcially proven things that can affect the sound and then we can start to get somewhere *good*
it does stand to reason not to be able to doubt brakes on a Porsche being good, if you've never driven a Porsche. This is all fairly obvious.

What claim do you have, what hi fi have you owned.
 

Leif

New member
May 11, 2014
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QuestForThe13thNote said:
There isn't any science studies on abx studies, it's just Jim and Dave with their mates. Lots of forums. And when people take from that it's unintelligent imho.

Oh and this is another one that falls under one of the rules I mentioned. That it's not always about expense in cables.

But so long as someone incorrectly implies that it is, or that they can't get their head around the fact that more expensive systems are generally more revealing, because of human reasons like jealousy or envy etc, it becomes perceived to be a debate about someone's hi fi being better than another, or affordability, and the British aren't very good at ever accepting these things.

its all very blindingly obvious for me.
Given that I worked in scientific research for many years, and had articles published in world class journals such as Physical Review Letters, I - unlike you - am qualified to comment on whether or not something is scientific. From what I have seen the blind tests are valid tests. They are not beyond criticism of course, but they do tell us something. There are some people who will find any fault with them and then scream "It's not scientific" because they want to believe that cables make a signficant difference.

"its all very blindingly obvious for me. "

Yup. And yet you ignore the effect of visual cues. You also say that people who have no listened to given cables cannot make any comments on them, and yet that does not stop you making sweeping statements about systems you have not listened to. The truth is that you could refer to reviews of these systems, just as we refer to tests of cables. That would be quite valid.

It could be that cables make a difference, but we need the evidence. Otherwise it is just a religion.
 

cheeseboy

New member
Jul 17, 2012
246
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QuestForThe13thNote said:
There isn't any science studies on abx studies,
firstly abx is just one form of blind testing. If you can't even discuss this properly we have no hope of moving forward. And yes, there are sceintific studies on abx. Here's a couple to get your started http://asa.scitation.org/doi/abs/10.1121/1.1917190 and http://www.aes.org/e-lib/browse.cfm?elib=15022

QuestForThe13thNote said:
it's just Jim and Dave with their mates. Lots of forums. And when people take from that it's unintelligent imho.
just proven wrong, see above.

QuestForThe13thNote said:
Oh and this is another one that falls under one of the rules I mentioned. That it's not always about expense in cables.
I agree, it's about how well the cable is constructed. Once it reaches a certain standard, physics would tell us that you aren't going to get any extra out of it.

QuestForThe13thNote said:
But so long as someone incorrectly implies that it is, or that they can't get their head around the fact that more expensive systems are generally more revealing, because of human reasons like jealousy or envy etc, it becomes perceived to be a debate about someone's hi fi being better than another, or affordability, and the British aren't very good at ever accepting these things.
but isn't that what you do and have done - you infer that people are jealous because they can't afford stuff, and that must be the reason why the have an opposite view point. What should be blindingly obvious to you, but does seem to escape you is that some people have a different viewpoint for a myriad of reasons that are nothing to do with jealousy or envy. Maybe you're just projecting, who knows. But either way, you are wrong if you want to use it as a blanket rule. Sure, there's always going to be the odd person that gets envious and takes an opposite view point, i wouldn't disagree with that, but it's more of an exception than a rule.
 

Leif

New member
May 11, 2014
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QuestForThe13thNote said:
What claim do you have, what hi fi have you owned.
Ah, here we go, you have not owned equipment as expensive as mine, therefore you cannot comment. *blum3*
 

Leif

New member
May 11, 2014
26
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QuestForThe13thNote said:
Can you tell me any verifiable evidence that shows that x speaker is not regarded as good as y speaker. No.
There are plenty of measurements of speakers. I was astonished at the frequency response of all speakers and headphones, only the active speakers come anywhere near a flat response, though some expensive passive ones are flatter than the norm.
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
Leif said:
QuestForThe13thNote said:
There isn't any science studies on abx studies, it's just Jim and Dave with their mates. Lots of forums. And when people take from that it's unintelligent imho.

Oh and this is another one that falls under one of the rules I mentioned. That it's not always about expense in cables.

But so long as someone incorrectly implies that it is, or that they can't get their head around the fact that more expensive systems are generally more revealing, because of human reasons like jealousy or envy etc, it becomes perceived to be a debate about someone's hi fi being better than another, or affordability, and the British aren't very good at ever accepting these things.

its all very blindingly obvious for me.
Given that I worked in scientific research for many years, and had articles published in world class journals such as Physical Review Letters, I - unlike you - am qualified to comment on whether or not something is scientific. From what I have seen the blind tests are valid tests. They are not beyond criticism of course, but they do tell us something. There are some people who will find any fault with them and then scream "It's not scientific" because they want to believe that cables make a signficant difference.

"its all very blindingly obvious for me. "

Yup. And yet you ignore the effect of visual cues. You also say that people who have no listened to given cables cannot make any comments on them, and yet that does not stop you making sweeping statements about systems you have not listened to. The truth is that you could refer to reviews of these systems, just as we refer to tests of cables. That would be quite valid.

It could be that cables make a difference, but we need the evidence. Otherwise it is just a religion.
i studied biology at degree level. Studies are for finding fault with and postulating problems, that's how we got to theories of evolution and genetics etc. You've got to test the maths behind these 'studies' (Jim and Dave) and significance and reliability by others, to have any standing. It's not that I take from it they don't show anything for my view, but it's equally the case they don't show anything for your view too. I see no significance testing with any of them, and if you know what science is you'll do that.

No visual cues. I understand from my experience that there are both sides to the coin. That there are systems it makes a difference and others where it does not. I understand that a system which is £200 probably won't get a benefit from anything other than bell wire speaker cable. That seems obvious doesn't it, to the degrees we can apply it to hi fi.

Your lack of evidence is through not trying, so you fit into the non trier. But your pmc's and arcam solo are more than good enough to reveal different cables. If you think it's not worth it that's another matter, value judgements are different. But please actually go out and try before casting judgement. Your evidence in cables making a difference, is in trying. I'd expect you to say they do sound different if you try, and Youd change, or if you do hear a difference but don't change, that they aren't value to you. Either way speaker cables best to try as make most difference,
 
Q

QuestForThe13thNote

Guest
Leif said:
QuestForThe13thNote said:
Can you tell me any verifiable evidence that shows that x speaker is not regarded as good as y speaker. No.
There are plenty of measurements of speakers. I was astonished at the frequency response of all speakers and headphones, only the active speakers come anywhere near a flat response, though some expensive passive ones are flatter than the norm.
its almost impossible to predict how a speaker will sound in its entirety from measurements, as there are way to many factors and they are too complex.
 

cheeseboy

New member
Jul 17, 2012
246
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QuestForThe13thNote said:
i studied biology at degree level. Studies are for finding fault with and postulating problems, that's how we got to theories of evolution and genetics etc. You've got to test the maths behind these 'studies' (Jim and Dave) and significance and reliability by others, to have any standing. It's not that I take from it they don't show anything for my view, but it's equally the case they don't show anything for your view too. I see no significance testing with any of them, and if you know what science is you'll do that.
none of that makes any sense.

QuestForThe13thNote said:
No visual cues. I understand from my experience that there are both sides to the coin. That there are systems it makes a difference and others where it does not. I understand that a system which is £200 probably won't get a benefit from anything other than bell wire speaker cable. That seems obvious doesn't it, to the degrees we can apply it to hi fi.
again, makes no sense. If you are talking about no visual clues how do you how much the item cost?

QuestForThe13thNote said:
Your lack of evidence is through not trying, so you fit into the non trier.
eh? Is this opposed to the mountains of evidence you have actually supplied? Oh wait, all you've given is opinion, and some of it wrong at that.

QuestForThe13thNote said:
But please actually go out and try before casting judgement.
so what's stopping you trying some proper blind tests then? Or does this only work one way?
 

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