What the heck do these terms mean?

I read a lot about audio equipment and some descriptions come up occasionally about the components sound qualities that to me are confusing. Most of the time I regard these descriptions as by someone with little knowledge about audio equipment that are trying to sound impressive.

Most of these terms are used in describing speakers but I have also seen them used on cables, amps , electronics of all sorts etc..
So, can someone help define these common descriptive terms?

1. Treble/ bass is dry- Huh? What does this mean?
2. Treble/bass is wet.- Huh? Again, what does this mean?
3. Organic sounding- Huh, huh?
4. Musical sounding.- What? Compared to non musical sounding?

The last one can be used with just about any description of any component or speaker performance.

There may be more...


God, I hope there is ice, partially melted in a nice slick in the Scotch, a Talisker would be fine....

of course, there are no words available to describe Talisker....
@edcyn come over anytime, well not actually... but you get the drift ( most drifts are organic, until they’re not )
My understanding of these terms:

1. Treble is "dry" - Analogous to being etched - the treble lacks dimensionality and warmth.  Imagine a mallet striking a cymbal - it should have richness, warmth, and a (not unpleasant) sense of reverberation.  If, by contrast, it sounds like you are hitting a steel plate with a nail, that is a dry treble.  However, I am not familiar with bass being "dry"  - maybe something like a paper cone woofer that lacks depth?  I am not sure the analogy quite fits.

2. Bass is "wet" - rich, but also somewhat slow / plodding.  However, the idea of a "wet" treble is for me the inverse of a dry bass - not sure what it means or how the analogy fits.

3. Organic - integrated and of a whole.  Nothing stands out unnaturally.   You don't notice one particular quality over others, they all just fit together.  I.e., in accord with the definition: "denoting a relation between elements of something such that they fit together harmoniously as necessary parts of a whole."

4. "Musical" - a BS term.  It means nothing.  Basically lazy writers use this to characterize equipment they like (or want readers to believe they like).

ozzy the problem is hearing is really not a relatable sense the way other senses are. Taste most people can taste sweet/bitter/sour/ etc different flavors of food are broadly recognizable. Touch same thing. Sight short of being color blind people see colors the same blue is blue etc. But hearing is both more elusive and more subjective. And there’s some standard terminology but plenty of folks, reviewers mostly, coming up with their own adjectives. In terms of the ones you mention:

Wet/dry- I usually see this in terms of overall sound not treble/bass think of it this way to use a very broad generalization wet is tubes dry is SS. Does that make sense?

Organic sounding- To me this means sounding less like a recording and more like people making music in your room.

Musical- To me this is a synonym for warmth in a system though not always. I think it can be kind of a je ne said quoi thing or like porn you know it when you "hear" it.

Hopefully that makes a bit of sense.
1. Treble/ bass is dry- Huh? What does this mean?

Lacking in a natural ambience/reverb

2. Treble/bass is wet.- Huh? Again, what does this mean?

Too much ambience/reverb

3. Organic sounding- Huh, huh?

No unnaturalness such as peaks and dips in the frequency response and not grainy

4. Musical sounding.- What? Compared to non musical sounding?

See organic