What covid research can teach us about audio measurements.

Recent studies in Canada for patients with so-called long covid show us on how science and measurements and research actually works.

Patients with long covid suffering from limited ability to exercise passed most "normal" tests but it took a new type of test to positively identify a mechanism that explained why the patients suffered.


Honestly there is a lot of snake oil and charlatanism in our hobby, and I don't claim to discount that fact.  What I do want to say is that science doesn't rest with 50 year old measurements.  It evolves to measure and explain constantly. 

The reason I am personally dissatisfied with audio measurements in the common literature is exactly because of this stagnation, and when these fail us we trust our ears and gut for lack of better tools. 

Anyone who runs the same 20 measurements on an amplifier or DAC and claims it is science and that these measurements are all that can be known is fooling themselves into believing that they are scientists or that we have reached the limits of understanding.

And above all, caveat emptor!


@larryi  Thanks for bringing up those measurement metric. I had not heard about them. 

(Clearly, a thread does not need to go "poof" just because someone gets triggered and someone else wags their finger.  Posters who get back on topic can pull the boat back over and get the keel straight again.)

Why do those who dismiss measurements in audio not realize that even gear designed without measurements is made up of parts that must be measured and must meet spec? Your hand-built loudspeakers are made of carefully designed and measured parts as are your amps and all things audio. You may not think that measurements matter but they sure as hell do when anything is constructed. Even the plywood and fasteners must meet well-measured specs. 

I do not think people are dismissing measurements wholesale. There are other influences or factors in audio. The ranges are more dynamic.

You can have carefully designed parts and measured parts that can sound awful together in execution. This is the case in any design and in general in engineering, this is why we validate, validate, validate. Design and build is objective, consumption is subjective, meaning there is more bias from the consumer or end user. 

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