Why I wont be renewing my subscription

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Clare Newsome

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No, not Superplay. Yes, I contribute to Sony mag - but never contradicting what WHF has already said (I choose what I write about, not them), and more generally writing about movies and providing overviews on technology, as a way to bring the WHF Brand to a wider audience.

Does this stop us from slating poor Sony products? No. Look at the three-star review of the Gigajuke system (something Sony spent a fortune advertising on this very website); or the way none of its receivers won Awards this year (and in fact we got the SKy HD fix sorted when consumers were getting nowhere); or the way the latest Sony Walkman just got four stars; or the latest Sony Bluetooth headphones got two stars...The examples, both ancient and modern, are endless.

Your constant attacks on the WHF brand, Eiren, are clearly showing you to be someone with an agenda, not merely a disgruntled subscriber - it seems the many clear facts, like the ones myself, Andy and Ketan have provided, are not going to satisfy you or your motives.
 
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Anonymous

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chebby:Eiren: Isn't Clare Newsome also an associate editor on the official Sony Magazine?

Yes...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sony_Magazine

It is a Haymarket publication so where is the conflict of interest?

Well it puts a spell of doubt on the Sony reviews, as the Editor-in-Chief is also employed by Sony, and Sony obviously pays money to Haymarket to produce the magazine for them.

It's like asking Richard Branson to review Virgin Trains (okay, not that bad!).
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Clare Newsome:
No, not Superplay. Yes, I contribute to Sony mag - but never contradicting what WHF has already said (I choose what I write about, not them), and more generally writing about movies and providing overviews on technology, as a way to bring the WHF Brand to a wider audience.

Does this stop us from slating poor Sony products? No. Look at the three-star review of the Gigajuke system (something Sony spent a fortune advertising on this very website); or the way none of its receivers won Awards this year (and in fact we got the SKy HD fix sorted when consumers were getting nowhere); or the way the latest Sony Walkman just got four stars; or the latest Sony Bluetooth headphones got two stars...The examples, both ancient and modern, are endless.

Your constant attacks on the WHF brand, Eiren, are clearly showing you to be someone with an agenda, not merely a disgruntled subscriber - it seems the many clear facts, like the ones myself, Andy and Ketan have provided, are not going to satisfy you or your motives.

I haven't seen anything that is an attack, just things that upset me about what used to be my favourite AV magazine. I'm sorry that you perceive it that way.

I just wanted some answers to things that have ruined my enjoyment of the What Hi-Fi as it stands today.

I have no other agenda than wanting to get the magazine back to he high standards I was used to in the 90s.
 

Clare Newsome

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Eiren:chebby:Eiren: Isn't Clare Newsome also an associate editor on the official Sony Magazine? Yes... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sony_Magazine It is a Haymarket publication so where is the conflict of interest? Well it puts a spell of doubt on the Sony reviews, as the Editor-in-Chief is also employed by Sony, and Sony obviously pays money to Haymarket to produce the magazine for them. It's like asking Richard Branson to review Virgin Trains (okay, not that bad!). Yet again, you've chosen to ignore my factual reply, citing the obvious editorial independence when it comes to Sony - ie all the bad reviews they get, even when they're advertising products; and the absence of the TV/AV part of Sony from our Show - because it doesn't suit your agenda.
 

Andy Clough

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1) Yes, things are tested and set-up correctly. If you'd like to know a bit more about how we test, see this page. And yes, we do calibrate each set individually, we most certainly do not rely on the 'out-of-the-box' settings: if you read our recent Philips 42PFL9703 review you'll see one of the criticisms we make is that setting up and fine-tuning the TV's picture is unnecessarily complicated. Which we wouldn't know if we hadn't done it.

3) "It seems this is the exception rather than the rule." No it isn't. I know, because I work here. You don't. You're making assumptions. And as we point out on the website, the reviews are the verdict of the test team, not any one individual.
 

Clare Newsome

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Oh, and as an aside, IAG - owner of Audiolab - is one of the biggest advertisers in WHF, occupying the premium back-cover position every issue. In fact, there was an advert for the very Audiolab product you mention in the very same issue as that critical review.

I can give examples all day of our editorial integrity and independence - just tell me when you've had enough!
emotion-2.gif
 

pete321

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Aug 20, 2008
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the_lhc:JohnNewman:

DTS HD Master audio is 24MBPS. That is 24 million pieces of information passed down a cable every second. That is ALOT. Just as in analogue cables where detail is lost through loss of information, it will take an exceptional cable to get that much information sent through without any errors at all. My understanding is that the players have error correction to try and cope with this loss of data.

Pretty exceptional cable? Cat6e Gigabit (that's Gigabit, ie 1000Mbps, DTS HD Master is 24Mbps, megaBITS, not megabytes, that would be MBps) ethernet cable is about 50p/metre. That's 50 pence, not 60 quid, like some HDMI cables are...

It's only ALOT because 24 million per second sounds like a big number, but in terms of relative data-rates it's not actually that much, ethernet surpassed 24Mbps more than a decade ago.

I used to be sceptical about cables, but they make a big difference! I would compare having cheapy cables with your top notch hifi/home cinema setup to putting remolds on a Ferrari, all that technology, but it's the tyres holding it on the road!

With a cheap HDMI lead your likely to get signal loss through the inferior terminations, I can notice a difference, having said that I wouldn't shell out for the Chord Silver Plus HDMI when you can get the Monster M1000 HDMI from the USA for less (eBay), it's rated with a bandwidth of 14.9Gbps, that's pretty futureproof. If you don't fancy getting it from the USA, get the Monster 1000EX rated at around 10Gbps, you can get bargains on this cable on eBay.co.uk.

On the original point, of all the blu-rays I've watched, I've generally found the DTS-HD Master tracks to be the best followed by PCM and TrueHD coming in a poor last.

With regard to the magazine, I've been reading it for years and it's given me a good insight in what's out there and helped my buying choice, having said that my local Audio-T shop think it's pants! I don't agree, perhaps they don't like me being more informed about prices! However, I don't like the amount of monthly repetition that appears in the magazine nowdays to fill up space.
 

Gerrardasnails

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Sep 6, 2007
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Clare Newsome:
Oh, and as an aside, IAG - owner of Audiolab - is one of the biggest advertisers in WHF, occupying the premium back-cover position every issue. In fact, there was an advert for the very Audiolab product you mention in the very same issue as that critical review.

I can give examples all day of our editorial integrity and independence - just tell me when you've had enough!
emotion-2.gif


I seem to remember some Mission floorstanders had the back cover last year and were reviewed in the same edition with one or two star rating.

This guy, as I mentioned straight after his OP is obviously trying it on. Does he think that by moaning and groaning WHF are going to do a special second review of the Audiolab combo!! Dream on.

As for the Sony LCD's being average, well that is ridiculous. I have a two year old W series and the picture is sublime. I've seen plasmas, albeit 4 year old ones that can't touch it. The newer Sony models are supposed to be another jump up in class. There are a lot of posts about issues with these models. Has anyone thought that it might be that there are so many sold, a larger proportion than other models are going to be faulty? Clouding and such is not supposed to be part of the package.

My last point is that the magazine is a reference guide and educational read. I've learnt so much in the last two years it's amazing. I couldn't cable up some speakers before! One thing that is always harped on; don't JUST go by what the mag says, test and make your own mind up. Valuable advice. If the OP doesn't rate different hdmi cables, don't buy them - and don't moan about them. I don't like cheese. I don't go on forums moaning that it tastes vile!!
 

mjs

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Aug 18, 2007
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Totally agree.Colour is my business.I posess a colour Spyder,and in my opinion its useless.I far prefer to trust the colour perception of my own eyes.It Physiological don`t you know,we are all different,and perception changes according to mood and well being.It will also change with age,something pure electronics can never do.As you age your eyes tend to drift in their frequency repsonse due to yellowing of the macular pigment,so we see things greener than any box of electronics.So it may be numerically correct ,but awful to look at.Men are also more likely to be `colour blind`-thats actually very rare,most of us are colour deficient(confusing reds with greens) than women.So now we need two sexes to set up the picture!

At the end of the day electronics are QA systems,the ultimate observer is you or I,far more complicated.
 
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Anonymous

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Here you go Gerrard, I've done the hard work for you now you just need to voice your concern?
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Guys don't turn the OP into the devil for posting his own opinion. We don't all share it but that doesn't give you the right to turn on him. His intentions were not evil, even if he got some of your backs up. Anyone making a "criticism" has an agenda. That's obvious. That doesn't mean he is out to bury you.

Next time one of us has a complaint, or maybe something constructive to say that represents a change from the norm as we know it, maybe we'll think twice before posting for fear of being jumped on. So please calm it down. I don't like looking at bullies. Especially when I thought you were all so nice.
 

Sliced Bread

Well-known member
Jul 28, 2010
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the_lhc:JohnNewman:
DTS HD Master audio is 24MBPS. That is 24 million pieces of information passed down a cable every second. That is ALOT. Just as in analogue cables where detail is lost through loss of information, it will take an exceptional cable to get that much information sent through without any errors at all. My understanding is that the players have error correction to try and cope with this loss of data.

Pretty exceptional cable? Cat6e Gigabit (that's Gigabit, ie 1000Mbps, DTS HD Master is 24Mbps, megaBITS, not megabytes, that would be MBps) ethernet cable is about 50p/metre. That's 50 pence, not 60 quid, like some HDMI cables are...

It's only ALOT because 24 million per second sounds like a big number, but in terms of relative data-rates it's not actually that much, ethernet surpassed 24Mbps more than a decade ago.

Accepted, but If all HDMI cables are passing identical information then why can I see a difference on my screen.
I have a 50inch screen so the differences may stand out more than on other screens. I admit that the difference is not as big as the difference between a cheap scart and and expensive scart, but it is still note worthy. But I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree :O)
 

Clare Newsome

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Jun 4, 2007
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Will Harris:Guys don't turn the OP into the devil for posting his own opinion. We don't all share it but that doesn't give you the right to turn on him. His intentions were not evil, even if he got some of your backs up. Anyone making a "criticism" has an agenda. That's obvious. That doesn't mean he is out to bury you.

Next time one of us has a complaint, or maybe something constructive to say that represents a change from the norm as we know it, maybe we'll think twice before posting for fear of being jumped on. So please calm it down. I don't like looking at bullies. Especially when I thought you were all so nice.

Constructive criticism is fine, Will - but someone continuing to make groundless insinuations and make factually incorrect statements cannot be allowed to lie without swift redress: especially when they continue to pile on ill-informed posts while ignoring our replies.

Apologies if anyone from WHF came across as heavy-handed - i haven't been in the office today, so our responses were in no way co-ordinated: merely the heart-felt replies of a team who are busy working almost 24/7 to produce the very best. consumer-focussed mag(s) and website. To be wrongly accused, on our own Forums, of various nefarious activities, is bound to get our backs up!
 

Gerrardasnails

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Sep 6, 2007
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Will Harris:Guys don't turn the OP into the devil for posting his own opinion. We don't all share it but that doesn't give you the right to turn on him. His intentions were not evil, even if he got some of your backs up. Anyone making a "criticism" has an agenda. That's obvious. That doesn't mean he is out to bury you.

Next time one of us has a complaint, or maybe something constructive to say that represents a change from the norm as we know it, maybe we'll think twice before posting for fear of being jumped on. So please calm it down. I don't like looking at bullies. Especially when I thought you were all so nice.

Fair comment Will, to a point but the OP is not reasoning, even when he has been proved incorrect. Like having an argument face to face with someone who will not change their mind, no matter what. Very annoying.
 

Alec

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Oct 8, 2007
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Gerrardasnails:
As for the Sony LCD's being average, well that is ridiculous. I have a two year old W series and the picture is sublime. I've seen plasmas, albeit 4 year old ones that can't touch it.

Might i venture to suggest, most delicately, that this is perhaps not the fairest comparison in the world, ever...?

And well said, Will.

Now, we have all seen your refutations, Clare, of accusation of bias, and they're always comprehensive and convincing.

In terms of contradictions in reviews, and questions about testing methods, i think there's still plenty of room for debate in some ways (point taken tho that ratings are, quite rightly, dynamic), and readers should feel able to raise these isssues.
 
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Anonymous

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al7478: In terms of contradictions in reviews, and questions about testing methods, i think there's still plenty of room for debate in some ways (point taken tho that ratings are, quite rightly, dynamic), and readers should feel able to raise these isssues.

The same points get recognized at the end of all of these outspoken threads. The crux of the matter is though, as already pointed out, is that they are not debates in the first place.
 

Torres09

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Ive been buying the magazine for near 15 years and i bought my HiFi gear (most which i still have) and most recently my Home Cinema set-up on the recommenditions/reviews in the mag.................and i hav'nt been disappointed yet
emotion-1.gif


Gerrard, as for arguing with someone face to face who will not change their mind............the name Rob Styles springs to mind......

Oh and the only bias ive ever seen in the mag is towards a certain Mr. Craig...... yep Clare were looking at you
emotion-4.gif
The Golden Compass in the Top 50 Blurays!!

Keep up the good work WHF S&W
 

Alec

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Oct 8, 2007
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Octopo:
al7478: In terms of contradictions in reviews, and questions about testing methods, i think there's still plenty of room for debate in some ways (point taken tho that ratings are, quite rightly, dynamic), and readers should feel able to raise these isssues.

The same points get recognized at the end of all of these outspoken threads. The crux of the matter is though, as already pointed out, is that they are not debates in the first place.

ok, im just rising to it and being facetious, but they certainly are debates.

seriously tho, bit of a sweeping generalisation i think. you refer, afterall, to "they", rather than just this thread. They are not all like this thread.
 
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Anonymous

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A debate is when a matter is undecided and further discussion is required, which is not what happens when bedfellows such as the current one post this kind of thread. Sorry.
 

PJPro

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Octopo:A debate is when a matter is undecided and further discussion is required, which is not what happens when befellows such as the current one post this kind of thread. Sorry.
Pedant ;-)
 
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Anonymous

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I always love being pedantic about the difference between logic and farce.

(Thanks for making me look like the bad guy right at the end by the way) ÿ;-(
 
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Anonymous

Guest
Clare Newsome:
Will Harris:Guys don't turn the OP into the devil for posting his own opinion. We don't all share it but that doesn't give you the right to turn on him. His intentions were not evil, even if he got some of your backs up. Anyone making a "criticism" has an agenda. That's obvious. That doesn't mean he is out to bury you.

Next time one of us has a complaint, or maybe something constructive to say that represents a change from the norm as we know it, maybe we'll think twice before posting for fear of being jumped on. So please calm it down. I don't like looking at bullies. Especially when I thought you were all so nice.

Constructive criticism is fine, Will - but someone continuing to make groundless insinuations and make factually incorrect statements cannot be allowed to lie without swift redress: especially when they continue to pile on ill-informed posts while ignoring our replies.

Apologies if anyone from WHF came across as heavy-handed - i haven't been in the office today, so our responses were in no way co-ordinated: merely the heart-felt replies of a team who are busy working almost 24/7 to produce the very best. consumer-focussed mag(s) and website. To be wrongly accused, on our own Forums, of various nefarious activities, is bound to get our backs up!

Clare I appreciate the work you do and that you've taken time to post on this thread. Forums do not always attract compliments and no offence, but you and your team have, with the support of some loyal forum followers, attempted to bat the OP out of court. This is not the way to behave. He's then gone and risen to the bait which has given everyone all the ammunition they need.

The first post the OP made contained some valid suggestions / observations along with a few incendiary remarks guaranteed to annoy all those who work at What Hi-Fi. That doesn't give you the right to take a Gatling gun to him.

Lets look at what he said where, perhaps, I think he's posing a question that could be answered without feeling as though we're at war:

1. If you calibrate all the screens you test using a scientifically proven system (and you clearly do have the people to do it), then you can get some comparative readings on contrast, saturation etc etc. Now, to my way of thinking, starting from a level playing field would be obvious. Get everything set up and then test. Your eyes will do most of the work, but a few readings always provide for a good supporting argument. From your responses it's clear you do this already. So what's the big deal with simply pointing this out to him? Mention of the odd reading wouldn't be the end of the world and I thought sounded like a good suggestion. A bit of objective data for the data hounds.

2. Again, with cables / interconnects there is a long running fight in these forums as to whether they make any difference. With the points made about Cat6 and even Cat5 cable being gigabit capable, it strikes me as unlikely that an HDMI lead will lose any data. But how can we know? Best way is to get a rig together and test them. If the data goes in one end and out of the other with no loses then that really is it. It's digital. If it comes out without any interference, degradation, lost data, then you can prove it and there we are. A cable carrying digital information should be scientifically testable. If it does nothing more than give you some objective data in support of what your eyes and ears tell you then it will be an improvement and I'd certainly like to see my favourite mag take up the challenge. There are few other magazines I'd trust to do it fairly. You're the benchmark, so lead the way!

The rest of his remarks I don't personally think have much merit. They're editorial disagreements. He has every right to air them and you have every right to tell him he's wrong. You usually do this in a very light hearted way and I've never before read posts from What Hi-Fi staffers who've "lost their rag". I'll be honest. At times I didn't know where you found the strength to hold back from saying what must have been on your lips. This is the first time that I've seen any of you really go to town on someone.

Thousands of people read the mag and love it. Just because they don't write in doesn't mean they don't exist. Don't let one person who's unhappy spoil your cool and lead you to behave in a way that doesn't do you justice. You're too damn nice a bunch of people to fall for that.
 

PJPro

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Jan 21, 2008
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Octopo:
I always love being pedantic about the difference between logic and farce.

(Thanks for making me look like the bad guy right at the end by the way) ;-(

Sorry. That wasn't my intention. Apologies.
 

Andy Clough

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Apr 27, 2004
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Fair enough Will, but I think we're perfectly entitled to defend the reputation of the mag vigorously!
emotion-2.gif
And I don't think anyone "lost their rag". We just re-iterated certain facts, firmly, including a very straightforward response from our Tech Ed. No offence intended.
 

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