Audiogon resolutions for 2022 - #1 less exaggeration when it comes to system changes

I enjoy the information presented on Audiogon, especially when posters talk about minor changes (or tweaks, which is a word I don't really like) to their system. (I also like the comedy). The problem is when everything is SUPER IMPORTANT and impactful, nothing is, relatively speaking.

I propose we institute a new scale for system changes (or even specific individual component upgrades) similar to how used records are graded. Here goes the grading system:

A - heard a strikingly positive, noticeable change as soon as the stylus hit the record

B - heard a positive change as soon as the stylus hit the record

C - hear an audible, minor change as soon as the stylus hit the record

D - was able to hear an easily noticeable improvement when comparing back and forth to previous state

E - was able top hear an improvement over previous state comparing back & forth

F - when listening intensely and comparing, was able to hear a slight improvement versus previous state

G - when comparing was barely able to hear an improvement 

#2 - keep all political opinions off Audiogon, we can hear enough of the garbage all over the place

Whaddya think?


I applaud your thinking, but human nature wins out regardless of this kind of logic. 

Good work !


Heard jacked up volume, gain, bass or treble and my simultaneous lack of level matching and  self awareness led me to hyperbolic fits of posting…

Add that one at the top.

Also, need a negative impact mirror of the scale….not all changes are good..


Certainly an improvement over some of the silly statements you see. I think the important thing to keep in mind is that everyone has a different outlook on life. A small improvement to one person is life altering to another. Peoples statements need to be evaluated almost as methodically as the gear itself. It can be costly to take the word of someone with unchecked passion about something.

With respect to your thoughts on exaggeration, that has been a topic of debate for some time now. How one relates cannot be divorced from their perceptions unless someone is micro monitoring them, and this is not a court of law where one can object to someone's findings and how they relate them to others.

Not everything is hyperbole because someone else lacks the ability to describe it as well or as poetically as another. Their system can be more resolving, allowing a more significant improvement compared to a lesser resolving one despite trying the same thing. It doesn't negate or lessen one's findings. It's just different. 

All the best,

I agree with Noise as not all of us are wordsmiths.

I will agree with the mishmash of political digs that are intertwined in these posts.

Have a safe and happy new year all!

If you do drink do not drive.


nice thought, worthy of consideration for all, but i suspect this new year resolution will go where countless others before it have...

... by the way, did i tell you i put my $900 fuse into my amp, and the sound was sooooooooooooo good, soooooooooooo improved, it was like my cleaning lady powerwashed my patio windows, and someone removed all my ear wax (which filled up a 2 gallon trash bag), and i have thus cancelled my season tix to the symphony and sfjazz and tf green center live performances this coming year, just so i can be home listening to my stereo every night - frank sinatra, wes montgomery, john coltrane, claudio arrau and aretha franklin are now all back from the dead and performing in my home in front of me!!!!


happy new year to all 🤪

Thats the point of the rating system….no wordsmithing required, just the ability to listen (maybe before and after, but even that may not be necessary) and read the rating definitions. Happy 2022 to all!

I completely agree with point #2. We all need to leave our political / religious views at the door and just discuss music and equipment. 

I also think everyone should participate in the music discussions more. Lots of good conversations there. 

where is the hyperbole before the  gear arrives section ? Ya, the political crap is exhausting….. @bjesien makes a good point, i filter out the low sample size inexperienced who claim to walk on water…playing the same ten discs.. kinda like reading about wine from somebody who has a bottle a year…. Audio Spectator….


@tomic601 The Wine Spectator reference made me laugh. I've a friend just like that and his taste is abysmal (on my taste preference scale) Every bottle is "phenomenal!"

@femoore12 - Indeed! I've got PLENTY to say about politics.... just not on audio forums. 

Too bad there's not a Costco audio evaluator like they have with wine so we can all have a baseline we can agree upon. 

Just had a horrible thought...what if they come out with Kirkland Audio gear?

All the best,

Despite all good intentions, I bet that next years contributions will be:

G - when comparing was barely able to hear an improvement 🤣🤣🤣

Happy New Year one and all.  

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Agree on the political bloviating. Not the place for it. Just because people may think you're a jackass, there's no reason to remove all doubt. 

otherwise, I appreciate the discussion and learn a lot about the topics from people who know more than me. Thanks to you all for that and Happy New Year. 

H: I did hear a difference and I will get back to you in a few weeks about whether it was an improvement or not.

My favorite is, "the difference was not subtle." Neither is the placebo effect.

I really like this idea. I’ve made some changes on here based on information gleaned from this site. Some good,some, meh. Cables, I’ve borrowed some very expensive cables from friends, $10,000+ per channel and I’ve sent them back unimpressed. My $300 cables sounded the same to me and that’s all that counts. My system isn’t top dollar, but I’ve learned it doesn’t need to be. Hegel H390, Focal Aria 936 and Audiolab 6000cdt. My room treatments are GIK. I’m happy, and really when it comes down to it, nothing else matters.


When you propose a solution, be sure to take a close look at 

why a given situation exists.  4k put it quite succinctly. 

If you read Agon to learn new info, that is great but you

will need a pretty amazing mind to decipher the noise from

the grail. If you read it for a pastime  join the party.

I guess the placebo effect, as often berated, does however contribute to the enjoyment. If it makes you feel better why not keep taking the placebo, in the case of listening to audio it has no negative effect. I think it's like vinyl any measurement or analyses show conclusively it is a technically inferior medium, however if you like it it sounds just great.

@noromance , any bottle of wine unshared when emptied will may one feel ’phenomenal’; whether it’s good or bad will depend on how many of them.... ;}

A PSA Moment:

If you’re currently driving after drinking and reading this:

You’re a bigger fool than I am.

(Courtesy of the Random Road Hazard Removal Division)

@nonoise ...Doubtful, Costco does big trade w/screens and ’puters, so ’good typical’ is about the best you’ll get. If we see a Kirkland KC-7.1 anything, it’d be a lark for the founder or such...Kyocera, back when, comes to mind...

I suggest a couple less categories to make them easier to remember:

++ Everyone clearly hears an improvement

+ Only the one who paid for it hears a difference

o No one hears a difference

- The sound deteriorated

Then to describe the sound at least 5 terms from the audiophile reviewers glossary have to be used.

OP, bravo for coming up with this scale. I like it and will try it out. 
You're working out ways to express gradations of improvement.
That keeps us organized in terms of expressing degree of change. Helpul!
Also need to stay organized about:
(a) what specifically we are listening *for* (treble, bass, overall sound, how voices sound, pace, etc.) Here the vocabulary list from Stereophile is very helpful.
(b) What other biases might be at work in our process — mood, time of day, money spent, recording, etc.

Cross referencing the scale of gradations you've listed plus (a) and (b) creates a good way of keeping ourselves organized to make judgments. I'd love to see a scoresheet with all these factors in it.

Because this kind of task is complex — and room and ear and taste dependent, to boot — there's virtually no way to compare what we hear with what others hear, with any fine-grained accuracy. 

Still, if they're in our room with us, and a number of factors above are controlled for, we can find common ground. Lots of people stand in front of paintings in museums agreeing about shared observations. No reason it cannot happen with sound.

@rudyb ​++ Everyone clearly hears an improvement

​​​​​​Audiogon is probably better than Reddit but I’ve kind of lost hope for this to ever happen. Some people still seems to think that a $150 dac or a $400 amp is as good as it gets and that noone can here a difference after this.

NO I'll do what I want. Toss me to the DOGS, I like them better anyways. I don't care who I offend. I don't try too often to offend people, but there comes a time. It's as simple as that.

If I voice an opinion and anyone, THAT'S YOU, who every you are, doesn't like, too bad.  Skip it, read over it, give it back to me, I DON'T really CARE.

The measure of me is ME and my maker, not my piers. I stand as ONE amongst many, I'm proud to say. I admire many, I follow NO ONE but "I AM"

Respect is a result of ones actions, it's not automatic. Caution on the other hand can be be misunderstood as RESPECT.. I wouldn't mix up the two..


@hilde45 - thanks. The point of my scale is to make it easy without arbitrary terminology. Its subjective as to how much (or not) better something sounds with some change to somebody’s system.

if they want to add comments or explanations to the rating, that’s fine, but at least we have a base rating/reaction.

@oldhvymec -you’re not typically prone to exaggeration, don’t sweat it.


Good point. I'm not against learning *specialized* terminology, and indeed, that can often be very important. Commonsense terms often do not part easily — or stay parted — from their connotations.

I would not use the word "subjective" to describe problem of assessing the quality of sound in  someone else's system; the problem lies with any number of other variables which cannot be controlled for. It's merely an "objective" problem with multiple factors. And one of those factors can be another person's preference. But that's objective, too.

BTW the record rating system is fine. :-) 

My two rating are play, or frisbee, there is no in between. 


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