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. 


^^ content free replies, as usual.

A picture IS worth a thousand words and can be amusingly appropriate. 
Kinda like satire in an image. Some of the best political commentary comes from cartoons.

All the best,

Amir keeps quoting that there is extensive research showing reflection and no treatment other than regular furniture is not only good enough, but that it is superior for home listening. 

We have hardly discussed room acoustics so the claim that I "keep quoting" research is obviously wrong on the face of it.  The other bit is what you are manufacturing on my behalf and then complaining about.  Really, the plot is lost.


Whether I paraphrase what you said or waste time quoting you absolutely have referenced research or existence of (without quoting), and used that to promote a particular view that is very much due to variability subjective.




We got here because someone claimed I must not have good enough equipment to hear the difference between cables. 

Since you are responded to me, at least initially, we did not get here that way. You made claims about rooms and acoustics that were inaccurate.


And that the focus must be to deal with the modal response first and foremost as that is a constant in every room. 

Why do you have your speakers far out from the front wall (front from an audiophile perspective, not 2034). Was that modal, or to minimize boundary issues?   Are those boundary issues gone completely, the ones that DSP cannot correct?


Importantly, I made no statement about superiority of furnishings relative to acoustic products. 

Paraphrasing because I don't feel like going back and cutting and pasting, but pretty much yes, you did state that furnishing and natural reflection was superior, though your responses had an air of arrogance as you later made the assumption the acoustic implementation would be haphazard at best. I will state at this point, that unlike some other audiophile additions which likely are inaudible, a couple acoustic panels will make a readily audible and measurable change. While controlled listening would be preferred, it would be near impossible in this case, hence accepting preference ratings is valid. That is furthered by the reports of many who would less susceptible to expectation bias. The result is not always positive.


I quoted from the very research you put forward that it had nothing to do with listening for enjoyment but that it was a test of recording/mix engineer productivity.  And even there, a reflective sidewall as preferred by majority so quoting that was totally inappropriate and wrong.

Therein was a bit of an intentional trap. For one, the majority did not prefer the reflective sidewall. Go read it again. The sum of the diffuse and absorption preferences exceeded the reflective wall. As I previous noted, the conditions in this test were not at all like what would be experienced in your room or probably any typical listening room. The trap is that research like this is used to make conclusions that cannot be made due to vastly different usage conditions. The only part of that test that was like sidewall reflections in your setup was the baseline.  Trap are effective at illustrating bias formed through incorrect usage of information.


3. The path of treating all reflections with absorption will inevitably lead to people slapping absorbers over every surface they can find.  After all, if a little bit is good, a lot is better. Soon the room is deader than the steak on your plate, sounds lifeless and the room ugly as heck.

This is very rare in practice and would go against most recommendations from acoustic professionals and most of the audiophile community who recommend absorption and diffusion, being careful not to over deaden a room, that preference plays a large part in what is done, and hence accept you may or may not like the results and will have to adjust.


Bottom like, get speakers that are well designed, do some EQ for low frequencies where acoustic products have little prayer of fixing issues there

You should probably qualify low frequencies. However, as noted by Mahgister, Helmholz resonators work at low frequencies and while narrow band, that can be good. So can diaphragmatic absorbers. So can multiple subwoofers. EQ is absolutely beneficial, but effectiveness is localized and EQ will work even better if acoustic methods are used first.


And certainly don't let them shame you into throwing blankets on the wall or else your system sounds like "crap." 

Would this be akin to someone shaming someone buying, owning, and using an amplifier that has poor distortion measurements, highly likely to be audible, even though they prefer the outcome?


Mainly what I see is audiophiles, from their own experience, and that of acoustic professionals, is that they have added a limited number of panels to fix a perceived problem, usually caused by limited space, and that the majority have been happy with the results. That is not to say there is over use of panels in some particular ways, but those are likely not doing harm, they are just not doing anything.


There is more to audio life than proving 1+1 = 2. You have that part down pat. Think harder problems.

WRT to the question.  Yes.  Changed my mind about reading ASR.  I stopped.

Mainly what I see is audiophiles, from their own experience, and that of acoustic professionals, is that they have added a limited number of panels to fix a perceived problem, usually caused by limited space, and that the majority have been happy with the results. 

Oh, you are going to convince yourself that you are happy after spending all that time online reading incorrect information, buying and slapping those things on your walls.  And as long as upstanding citizens like you encourage them to think that way, they will be starving their ears for good sound.  

The wrong information about room acoustics is so entrenched online that it takes incredible amount of effort to finally shake someone to rethink their assumptions/knowledge.  To wit, it took more than 1,600 post in the acoustic thread on ASR to get that to happen:

Hmmm...not sure how to start this post. I wish I had better writing skills and knowledge of English. Please bare with me and let me try.
I feel like a Neo in Matrix where @amirm is Morpheus and he's offering a blue pill in one hand (absorption on the side walls) and a red pill in the other (no side wall treatments). After all Amir's efforts in this thread, I decided to say fuc*@ and take a red pill. LOL.

Well after I got unplugged from Matrix and first puke, I was sitting in my listening chair in disbelief at what I just heard. I was not sure what to expect but I prepared myself for the precise imaging to be gone or at least affected to some degree and to be bothered with extra brightness. To my surprise, imaging was still there, the sound stage was bigger and (for lack of a better word) the overall presentation was more natural. Oops, Gulp, what now?

Look, I don't care if you go and spend $2,000 on a USB cable.  That is not going to degrade your sound.  But listening to people online about acoustic science will absolutely lead to screwing up the sound in your room.  Don't do it.  Don't listen to these people. 

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