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Catman's Analog Musings

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Perhaps it's not dissimilar to that classic old British sports car that technically has flaws, or is inferior in some ways, but on the road and in practice just "works", and is a ton of fun!?

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Guest Muon N'

The OP made be think of The Edge :)

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Sometimes the more you add to fix problems actually takes away from the quality.  It's always a fine balancing act.

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Good sounding is ALWAYS preferable. (Unless of course you can have BEST sounding.)

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16 hours ago, Jebediah said:

Perhaps it's not dissimilar to that classic old British sports car that technically has flaws, or is inferior in some ways, but on the road and in practice just "works", and is a ton of fun!?

old Brittish sports car & just works are terms rarely seen in the same sentence...:thumb:

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G'day all, I have to admit that my mind has been in a lot of doubt for various reasons since my recent purchase of the Schiit Mani.  Its performance has forced me to re-evaluate the performance of many of my other phono stages for various reasons.  Tonight I trotted out my kit built Akitika phono Z preamp and had a listen. 

 

For some unfathomable reason I've always tended to regard that phono stage as a bit 'industrial', but listening to it tonight, it's actually pretty good all the way from it's very low noise input (perhaps the quietest that I have), good dynamics and fine sonics generally. Maybe it's my best!  Regards, Felix.     

Edited by catman
Punctuation.

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Still have mine hooked up, I rate it higher than the Musical Fidelity X-LPS v3.

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Guest gmdb
6 hours ago, blybo said:

old Brittish sports car & just works are terms rarely seen in the same sentence...:thumb:

Are we talking about Morgan Roadsters?

 

https://www.morgan-motor.co.uk/roadster/

 

Hand built cars for over 100 years and people love them.

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Guest gmdb
23 hours ago, catman said:

G'day all, yes it is quite a conundrum but in my heart as a trained technician I know what the technical truth really is!  Regards, Felix. 

But, Felix, we need to know that what we can measure is the truth - and perhaps there are things we cannot measure yet which are more the technical truth when we get there (that is, are able to measure the stuff we don't understand).  That said, the human ear is pretty amazing and seems to make its own judgements on what sounds good.

 

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But, Felix, we need to know that what we can measure is the truth - and perhaps there are things we cannot measure yet which are more the technical truth when we get there (that is, are able to measure the stuff we don't understand).  That said, the human ear is pretty amazing and seems to make its own judgements on what sounds good.
 
I always try to remember that the role of science is to explain what we observe/perceive; if perception and science are at odds with each other, it's generally the science which is flawed, not the perception.
And temperature change existed before there were thermometers to measure it, just like radiation existed before Geiger counters, and wind speed varied before anomometers. Just because we can't (yet) measure something doesn't mean that it doesn't exist! :-)

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If you put together a hifi that is "technically" more accurate but you don't want to listen to it, what's the point? For decades speakers that were made as "monitors" for studios were used for their ability to pick up errors in recording and mixing because they were so revealing - but that also made them fatiguing and less enjoyable to listen to in home environments so while they had wow factor, you were actually less likely to listen to them very much. Nowadays that monitor tag no longer really applies so clearly to speakers. Nonetheless, there really is no way to define what is "accurate" that is also important to the human ear, which is why specifications still today continually fail to correlate well with the listening experience from hifi components. If you create a hifi that you actually want to listen to more, why care about what looks better on some specification that you don't know if it's relevant to human hearing or not? As a man of science this contradiction killed me for a long time, but I eventually got over it.

Edited by Ittaku

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12 hours ago, gmdb said:

Are we talking about Morgan Roadsters?

 

https://www.morgan-motor.co.uk/roadster/

 

Hand built cars for over 100 years and people love them.

MG, TVR, Jag & Morgan. Take your pick. The old saying was you needed to buy 2, so you could drive 1 while the others was at the mechanics...

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14 hours ago, Wiffle said:

I always try to remember that the role of science is to explain what we observe/perceive; if perception and science are at odds with each other, it's generally the science which is flawed, not the perception.
And temperature change existed before there were thermometers to measure it, just like radiation existed before Geiger counters, and wind speed varied before anomometers. Just because we can't (yet) measure something doesn't mean that it doesn't exist! :-)

In audio perception is all that matters as the whole point of it is to appeal to our sense of hearing and hopefully trigger some emotional response. But let’s not go too far with glorifying reliability of our senses, as there’s plenty of evidence that they can be easily fooled:

  • You may be aware that movies are actually a series of static images projected in some intervals and what we perceive is not discrete states but fluid movement.
  • There’s the McGurk effect which demonstrates that what we see can override what we hear.
  • There are some static images, which when we look at we can see movement.

Science goes much further than just explaining our perceptions: we wouldn’t have the relativity theory if we relied only on our senses.

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I have to say, your switching back and forth with various preamps and not being sure which is best, should be proof positive of the fallibility  of the human brain when it comes to this sort of thing.  Small wonder we have trouble really knowing if our latest change/tweak has really improved our sound or not.

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It is a mixture of “feeling & perception” and “measurements” that define the whole. 

I understand there is ongoing work that shows brain activity varying in humans when listening to different versions of audio software/hardware that measure the same. Martin Mallison of ESS Technology was discussing this a few years back along with other research. 

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I dont want anything in my system thats scientifically accurate and sounds like schitt!

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I would not know how technically good or accurate any of my components are.

I just pick the ones which sound the best to me.

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The Akitika can be improved upon, I swapped out the dual op amps for Burson V5i and the improvement was subtle but there was just a bit more of everything, If you like Felix, I could send you up a pair to play with for a month or so.

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They look like this.

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IMG_0002.thumb.JPG.2756b8ed7a6057194d93a3949287f295.JPG

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Hi Felix, looks good.

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6 hours ago, rocky500 said:

I would not know how technically good or accurate any of my components are.

I just pick the ones which sound the best to me.

The problem is getting to hear them in the home situation is nearly impossible for a lot of components I might consider.  Hearing them in the store is a little easier, but still hard to do in many modern stores, and never with the same system you have at home, let alone the room situation.

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On ‎29‎/‎11‎/‎2017 at 9:16 PM, catman said:

as a trained technician I know what the technical truth really is!

Stick with that mate... why question truth? ;)

 

JSmith :ninja:

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51 minutes ago, aussievintage said:

The problem is getting to hear them in the home situation is nearly impossible for a lot of components I might consider.  Hearing them in the store is a little easier, but still hard to do in many modern stores, and never with the same system you have at home, let alone the room situation.

I just had a look over at my stereo and at all the different components.

I just realized that not one of them did I listen or ever heard before I bought them. Whoops! ;)

 

ADDED: Actually there is one!. The 2CH amp was built locally and he lent me his prototype before I decided on it.

Edited by rocky500

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On 29/11/2017 at 8:43 PM, catman said:

G'day all, yes another one of those types of threads, I'm afraid!  Regarding phono stage design I've been doing some heavy technical reading tonight, and it is apparent that some really good sounding phono stages may not be technically 'that good', yet are highly regarded because there are indeed 'good sounding'.  Yes, my head hurts!  The question is, which would I rather have?  Regards, Felix.     

I'm not using an external phono but the question is relevant to each component.

The brain is wildly complex thing and maybe we need to focus on the destination equality as much as the source. 

The other month Felix you spoke about music in the dark sounding better, a lot of people agreed, but how did you measure it? Same has been said about the seasons, the moon phase, wall colour, the time of day, and my favourite alcohol etc. Shys there was someone on here saying his music sounded "better" drinking some fizzy water flown in from overseas, but who are we to judge you can't measure feelings.

 

A change is as good as a holiday, I can listen to records all evening, lush, warm, and inviting, I'll switch to digital and the music is fresh, dynamic and exciting "better" ?(steady - this is the phono section) but after an hour, to me and on my system, the music becomes in your face and overpowering, switch back to vinyl and brain relaxes back to music as a whole and not individual sounds, "better"?. Definitely each source has it merits but that's a different page.

 

I sold some ATC's as I found them too correct for my records not my system.

 

All old cars need work to keep going down the road, but that's price of looking cool, even without A/C 

 

 

 

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