Did Amir Change Your Mind About Anything?

It’s easy to make snide remarks like “yes- I do the opposite of what he says.”  And in some respects I agree, but if you do that, this is just going to be taken down. So I’m asking a serious question. Has ASR actually changed your opinion on anything?  For me, I would say 2 things. I am a conservatory-trained musician and I do trust my ears. But ASR has reminded me to double check my opinions on a piece of gear to make sure I’m not imagining improvements. Not to get into double blind testing, but just to keep in mind that the brain can be fooled and make doubly sure that I’m hearing what I think I’m hearing. The second is power conditioning. I went from an expensive box back to my wiremold and I really don’t think I can hear a difference. I think that now that I understand the engineering behind AC use in an audio component, I am not convinced that power conditioning affects the component output. I think. 
So please resist the urge to pile on. I think this could be a worthwhile discussion if that’s possible anymore. I hope it is. 



... He is a thoughtful and interesting person who just provides objective, comparative test results of equipment ...

Yes, I think Amir is thoughtful (as in deliberate) and whether he’s interesting or not is a personal choice. But objective? What makes you think he’s objective? He’s one of the most biased people who posts here.

Assigning numbers to something is itself no proof of objectivity. I think Amir is a self-promoting measurementalist, and his outbursts here are at odds with his claim to logic and reason.

"Paul Barton, of PSB, worked with Toole, Harmon and others back in the day of speaker testing. Check out Darko's interview with him. Worth a listen.

Lots of people like to name drop the audio greats and then go on to reengineer their methods of testing while hoping no one catches on or knows better on just how to do it, fancying themselves as being oh, so, scientific.

Paul pointed out that when doing the first round of speaker testing (1/2 hours worth), the tests were thrown out the window due to the fact that the people were listening to the room and not the speakers. Evaluations were all over the place. It's why one has a better chance on getting their ears around a speaker in the confines of their own listening room."

That is NOT at all what he said.  He is talking about adaptation or how we can "hear through a room."  This adaptation takes a few minutes so people in controlled tests needs to be allowed to acclimate a bit.  He said nothing whatsoever about "confines of their own listening room."  You made that up.  Here are some bits I transcribed:


"Before you were introduced to dr. toole were you designing by ear..

Yes, I was designing based on early days ..... pink noise listening to it and music... when I took the first speaker to Ottawa [at NRC], there were clearly things that could be improved based on theory that speaker is a window.... flat frequency response and dispersion are all a factor."

"[measurements at NRC] put a microscope on what I was doing... correlating measurements with listener preference."

1. Most of the people most of the time agree on relative quality of a group of loudspeaker. There is no personal taste when it comes to asking what sounds the most natural.  That is the goal to make the recording exactly the musician intended.

2. Properly interpreted set of objective measurements correlate strongly with listener preferences. You can see the measurements and predict how listeners will prefer. 

[3] Musical tastes and experience is not material. 

When listeners go into the room, it will take a few  minutes for listeners to adjust to the acoustics of the room.  After that, they are able to sort out the speakers from room.

We did both stereo and mono listening.... did the same experiment in mono and stereo (double blind)...when testing in stereo the anchor [bad speaker] got better in stereo because stereo masks tonal aspects of a speaker.  You get better differentiation between sonic differences of speakers in mono than stereo.  Most of stereo imaging we hear is in the recording, not the room.

The final tuning is done by ear, i.e. ratio of highs to lows.  Darko summarizing: "95% is done with measurements last bit is done by ear."  Tuning is still done using measurements.  Subjecting himself to double blind as he tweaks.

"We can measure everything... but the scale of it you judge by ear."


So yes, people need to listen to that podcast.  It is wonderful and fascinating to see how Darko's mind is shifting toward objective side of things.  

When someone critiques an audio product based on measurements  -   and then never listens to the product, it greatly minimizes credibility and the overall review.  

Yep. I was going to go thru all the GR Research "upgrades" on my set of Klipsch RP-600Ms. He pointed out that a little equalizer nudging would make them just fine. Saved me a couple hundred bucks.

There is no controversy...

Measuring gear performance is a good thing, and interesting, especially if someone can falsify audio conmpanies claim...But thats all...Thanks Amir...

But once this is said, we learn how to listen only in OUR ROOM, with acoustic experiments...( not by upgrades according to our "tastes" by the way, )

Tuning a room is a long process, incremental one, and has nothing to do with the comparison of two cables or amplifiers according to our " taste" or according to their specs verified ...

Give me any relatively good system i will make a room able to serve it well... Then gear choice is a secondary matter compared to acoustic and psycho-acoustic...

As Amir said it himself , objectivist and subjectivist focus on gear choice and design, but he did not say  in his zeal to convert subjectivists to gear measures falsification  that  they forget doing so  the hugely more powerful acoustic embeddings in the room... And the best amplifier in the world will not cancel mechanical control of vibrations nor electrical high noise floor of the house nor the acoustical bad content of the room ...

Also in our room listening music we are not in a laboratory...We create an acoustic to serve our neurological hearing biases...we learn basic acoustic in the process...Blind test is accessory as gear choice is acessory ...

There is controversy ONLY if an objectivist want to convert a subjectivist, and only if a subjectivist dont understand that the gear components of his "tasteful choice" so important they are , anyway are secondary to the acoustic embeddings for a full satisfying experience...If not, he will NEVER experience the full potential S.Q. of his gear... Its my experience...

Instead of trying to convert people or instead of refusing to read information measures chart, forget the gear for a month  ; people must think about acoustic to LEARN HOW TO LISTEN and then to learn how to be able to embed their system properly in the electrical, acoustical and mechanical dimension...

Subjectivist and objectivist act sometimes fanatically... No acoustician on earth is a subjectivist or an objectivist...They dont mind about specific gear piece, they tought about their optimal acoustic embeddings...


«Crocodiles had tastes and act accordingly , acoustician had not» -- Anonymus acoustician 😎

«Biases are like savage animals , they must be tamed and controlled, but not erased or negated» -- Anonymus acoustician 😎