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WHF terminology

Leif

New member
May 11, 2014
26
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0
Can someone explain what they mean when they apply these terms to the sound from a product such as a speaker: fun, dynamic, agile, exuberant, authoritative, insightful, outgoing and friendly, punchy, having attack.

I can understand what terms such as clear, articulate (detailed I assume), detailed, bright, bass heavy, muddy and cluttered mean. I can understand that a system might have issues when there are many instruments, or when the sound is changing rapidly.
 

Gray

Well-known member
Nov 27, 2015
902
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5,770
I think they use such words in an attempt to make the reviews more interesting.

I don't think the people here take that much notice of them. Most sort of speak for themselves, some say the same as each other. e.g. agile, punchy, attack, exuberant - surely those 4 mean the same thing?
 

nopiano

Well-known member
Feb 15, 2009
174
53
18,670
Leif said:
Can someone explain what they mean when they apply these terms to the sound from a product such as a speaker: fun, dynamic, agile, exuberant, authoritative, insightful, outgoing and friendly, punchy, having attack.

I can understand what terms such as clear, articulate (detailed I assume), detailed, bright, bass heavy, muddy and cluttered mean. I can understand that a system might have issues when there are many instruments, or when the sound is changing rapidly.
Outgoing and friendly seem to be a refugee from a lonely hearts advert, but otherwise I think they are pretty much what they say. For example, for me, a fun speaker might be enjoyable but not exactly accurate. And an exuberant one would probably tend to exaggerate a bit, but be entertaining.

I'd suggest it's best not to over analyse these things, but rather to take a review 'in the round' and compare to other reviews. You will get an impression of the differences, which can be a guide when listening for yourself. But that is what matters, just as you wouldn't choose paint colour over the phone, Hi-Fi needs to be heard first hand!
 

steve_1979

Well-known member
Jul 14, 2010
231
7
18,795
"The sound has marvellous velvety darkness in it, the darkness being primarily musical, and only minimally tonal in nature. The sound of the D20R also possesses wonderful meditational slowness and reflection, tranquility. A genuine Baroque speaker!"

https://www.inner-magazines.com/audiophilia/an-ideal-baroque-loudspeaker/

WTF?

*unknw*
 

Al ears

Moderator
steve_1979 said:
"The sound has marvellous velvety darkness in it, the darkness being primarily musical, and only minimally tonal in nature. The sound of the D20R also possesses wonderful meditational slowness and reflection, tranquility. A genuine Baroque speaker!"

https://www.inner-magazines.com/audiophilia/an-ideal-baroque-loudspeaker/

WTF?

*unknw*
I'll have some of whatever that reviewer was on please..... make mine a double! ;-)

(Speakers - 5 stars, review - NIL)
 

nick8858

New member
Aug 8, 2011
29
0
0
Its subjective claptrap. It adds nothing objective to the review and the reviewers probably have a Thesaurus handy to vary the comments/ adjectives they use so they look clever. Its a pointless way to try and communicate to the reader what the reviewer is hearing/experiencing.
 

Benedict_Arnold

New member
Jan 16, 2013
661
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0
I remember Oz Clarke or Gilley Goolden (sp) - I forget which - recently confessing all that guff they used to spout on BBC2's "Food and Drink" about whatever plonk they were pouring down their throats (at the licence payers' expense no doubt) was absolute ball-cocks they made up on the spot.

Mind you, WHF hasn't yet stooped to "sounds like velvet with subtle undertones of raspberry (pi?) and a subtle whiff of granny's knickers" ..

Oh. "needs careful partnering" = sounds crap.
 

Gray

Well-known member
Nov 27, 2015
902
524
5,770
plastic penguin said:
plastic penguin said:
This should help:

https://www.stereophile.com/content/sounds-audio-glossary-glossary
Those 'ah' and 'aw' names themselves may seem a bit stupid, but to describe colourations by a specific frequency is surely more meaningful. When they say there's a peak at 450Hz for example, you can easily 'hear' that in your mind.
 

stereoman

Well-known member
Mar 22, 2016
143
13
4,595
80% of all this terminology really brings nothing to the reader who has never listened to the reviewed stuff. I mean simply this. When I want to describe a speaker that has a fluency of sound and articulation - I can use more mundane words to represent this - The speaker has creamy, fluent sound with its treble response not harsh but indeed smooth. The bass is fast and upbeat what makes a speaker very lively throughout...sth like this is much more useful for a buyer than reading about velvety darkness and similar unuseful phrases I guess....WHF uses good terminology so that many can get the point of it more or less but many Hi Fi magazines post their articles in such a way that a reader is really thinking what the reviewer means...
 

Leif

New member
May 11, 2014
26
1
0
I did think the WHF terminology was largely nonsense, but thought it best to see what the rest of you thought. I must admit it is not easy to describe how a system sounds. When I read a review, I want to know if the sound is neutral or increased in a given frequency range, if it sounds full or thin, bright or warm, if the speaker needs to be away from walls and if so, what distance, and so on.

plastic penguin said:
This should help:

https://www.stereophile.com/content/sounds-audio-glossary-glossary
Thanks. I had seen that before. It is useful although sometimes has circular references.
 

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