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11-25-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,249
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 22262
Reply to: 22262
A random neutralness
fiogf49gjkf0d
I had an interesting observation a few days back.  An audio guy I know personally wary well, was involved in a debate at one of the audio forums about “natural” sounding playback. They were trying to argue what make a playback more or less “natural”. Well, a reasonable conversation.  What was however interesting is that the debate was among the people who use audio expressive tools in a very limited way: they buy expensive audio, bring it home, hear the result and then draw concussions upon of what they experience. I think the way in wish they practice audio does not allow them grasp the control of the subject. 

You might buy and bring home different versions of salmon, grill it and then make conclusion of which salmon is tastier. That would be legitimate. However, the audio neutrality derives from many factors with 2 keystone factors: a very delicate level of upper bass and lower HF. The delicacy of that balance is very important but “bought audio” very frequently does not allow to tune this balance.  So, those guys have random equipment in random rooms deliver more or less random results and then we have the audiences of that random result argue what is neutral.

Rgs, The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
11-26-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
anthony
Posts 112
Joined on 08-18-2014

Post #: 2
Post ID: 22264
Reply to: 22262
A merry-go-round
fiogf49gjkf0d
Yes, I cannot help but regularly make those kinds of observations on audio forums, and if I am honest with myself I used to be one of those taste testing different bits of audio gear and forming an opinion based on my objectives and audio knowledge at the time.  Realising the futility of staying on that merry-go-round was the trigger that drove me to take up your Macondo/Melquiades project.  Being able to sculpt not only the sound, but the nature of that sound was the logical next step and trying to do that with commercial equipment is like trying to paint a portrait of your lovely wife with a brush you would use to paint your house...broad, relatively meaningless strokes.
Anthony
12-01-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
dkarmeli
Posts 27
Joined on 01-25-2013

Post #: 3
Post ID: 22275
Reply to: 22262
I agree.
fiogf49gjkf0d
As usual, that conversation along with many like it on a forum with strangers was an absolute waste of time as you pointed out. I guess part of the problem starts with the term "Natural" itself and what it means to different people; even if an explanation is offered. The other person's experience and knowledge will have a bearing too. Like there's a major difference for me between "Natural" & "Neutral" and that they could be mutually exclusive. Vocabulary and intention are a bitch to tackle in any conversation when the participants don't have the same level of experience and/or speak the same language, nothing you can do about it.
david 



12-01-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,249
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 4
Post ID: 22276
Reply to: 22275
Yes and No
fiogf49gjkf0d
 dkarmeli wrote:
Like there's a major difference for me between "Natural" & "Neutral" and that they could be mutually exclusive.
That is a good example BUT the point is about defining what Natural and what is Neutral for this or that person but rather about ability of this or that person to pursuit his own definition of Natural or Neutral. With “bought” audio we are in ultimate slavery of manufacturer randomness. It would be for sure nice if we were absolutely sure that a given cartridge, or an amplifier, or a loudspeaker are metaphysically Natural or Neutral and all deviation of Neutrality or Neutrality is juts our implementations. However, we all know that it is very much not the case and manufacturers very seldom make an individually Natural or Neutral components. I NOT advocate DIY audio as alternative but at the same time I need to point out that with pre-manufactured audio there is only accidental Naturalness. I have rote many times before that the true High-End audio should not be around expensive and arrogant but accidentally successful elements but rather around High-End manufactures build custom tailored audio for a given consumer and his/her reference point.


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
12-01-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
dkarmeli
Posts 27
Joined on 01-25-2013

Post #: 5
Post ID: 22277
Reply to: 22276
No argument from me.
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:

That is a good example BUT the point is about defining what Natural and what is Neutral for this or that person but rather about ability of this or that person to pursuit his own definition of Natural or Neutral.

There's no real solution here Romy, but there's no point in using any kind of language when its up to each individual to come up with their own definitions. 
david
12-02-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,249
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 6
Post ID: 22279
Reply to: 22277
A solution is usually.
fiogf49gjkf0d
Of cause there is always a solution and I had wrote about it a lot in past. The solution is eliminating the industry as a supplier of High–End Audio and return the High–End Audio to personal endeavor. USSR was a great example of how proper High–End Audio shall function. There was no High–End Audio industry and whatever they trying to do was crap. So, if a person had a High–End Audio objectives then he was finding a “Jew in basement” who possessed trade secrets and who able to do delivery a personal satisfaction by his labor. That custom on-to-one interaction with a proper master was essential if a consumer needed to get a High–End result distinct from the mass results. Today High–End Audio industry is in fact a consumer mass audio industry with higher price tags that DO NOT deliver results different then regular mass audio and proverbial table radios. BYW, in most of the extreme fields of interests there is a threshold in demands where your objectives could not be served by established industry and you need to go custom. High–End Audio is by nature is a personal field and the solutions in High–End Audio shall come from high-end makers do personal manufacturing. 


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
12-02-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
dkarmeli
Posts 27
Joined on 01-25-2013

Post #: 7
Post ID: 22280
Reply to: 22279
Jew in the basement!
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:
Of cause there is always a solution and I had wrote about it a lot in past. The solution is eliminating the industry as a supplier of High–End Audio and return the High–End Audio to personal endeavor. USSR was a great example of how proper High–End Audio shall function. There was no High–End Audio industry and whatever they trying to do was crap. So, if a person had a High–End Audio objectives then he was finding a “Jew in basement” who possessed trade secrets and who able to do delivery a personal satisfaction by his labor. That custom on-to-one interaction with a proper master was essential if a consumer needed to get a High–End result distinct from the mass results. Today High–End Audio industry is in fact a consumer mass audio industry with higher price tags that DO NOT deliver results different then regular mass audio and proverbial table radios. BYW, in most of the extreme fields of interests there is a threshold in demands where your objectives could not be served by established industry and you need to go custom. High–End Audio is by nature is a personal field and the solutions in High–End Audio shall come from high-end makers do personal manufacturing. 

I was talking about terminology and vocabulary, this is an entirely separate subject. 
I don't disagree about the ridiculous pricing and shitty sound of so called high end, this is what happens when the consumer is ignorant. Years ago I found my Jew in the basement and have stuck with him since, though he's not doing my bidding!
david
12-03-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,249
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 8
Post ID: 22281
Reply to: 22280
Actually, I disagree
fiogf49gjkf0d
 dkarmeli wrote:
I was talking about terminology and vocabulary, this is an entirely separate subject. 
Actually, I disagree. I initially stated that people who use accidently bought indiscriminately made audio do not have a control over “neutrality” as they are subordinates of random factors. You converted it to differences of terminology, wish is valid but does not annul what I initially stated.


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
12-03-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,035
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 9
Post ID: 22282
Reply to: 22281
Navigation Under Cloudy Skies
fiogf49gjkf0d
Of course, even if a "designer-driven" audio "product" is made with certain sonic goals in mind does not mean it will be of any use to a given hi-fi listener in his/her system. On the other hand, it is POSSIBLE to find and adapt +/- "random" products, and I suspect this is what most of us do. Yes, this is pretty much the opposite of how "High End" audio should work, and this pretty much brings us back to the starting point, that "High End Audio" as it is means nothing more than "expensive audio products". Here is yet another chance to rail at price fixing and the a-holes who bolster the naïve assumption that price runs with sound quality, or even with operational ease, repeatability, or reliability. Feh!

Paul S
12-03-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
rowuk


Germany
Posts 209
Joined on 07-05-2012

Post #: 10
Post ID: 22283
Reply to: 22282
Who needs real high end?
fiogf49gjkf0d
I often wonder who REALLY needs real high end? Maybe this is the wrong description. If we look at custom made trumpets, violins, guitars for musicians, there are parameters that can be played with to reach a desired goal. The artisans results become the working capital of the musician. More instrument does not always mean more money!

What are we doing in audio? What purpose does a custom builder serve? What is the meaning of a custom midbass horn? What does a higher end DAC do for us. IS MP3 or AAC even a problem?

The problem is that we do not have a language for audio requirements. It is not possible to predict what a bass driver with 15BL will sound like. Specifications have been raped by the industry so we cannot know what we are getting. The word "High End has been confiscated, we will never get it back. We need new words. I do find quite a few here at the Good Sound Club.

Does random equipment really mean that we lose neutrality? Can it be that absolute, or is the only issue "no control" over neutrality? Is neutrality a desirable goal? Not from my viewpoint. I like "row 15 sound" where the hall adds its signature to the performance without me losing immediacy. It is also a preference away from pinpoint localization of sonic events. Is the sound of an instrument colored by the hall effects still neutral?

I think that neutrality is a bullshit argument for the brainless. Music worth listening to is not "neutral". The performers have intentions, the recording engineers and producers have sonic goals. At home we also have expectations based on our relationship to music and audio. Just like I have specific goals when I choose an instrument for a specific playing job, my audio at home also advertises my prejudices, laziness, audio awareness.


Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.
12-03-2015 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,249
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 11
Post ID: 22284
Reply to: 22283
....from other perspectives...
fiogf49gjkf0d
 rowuk wrote:
I often wonder who REALLY needs real high end? Maybe this is the wrong description.

That is a reasonable question. However, it is not question that aligned with the thread. I do not think that people need high-end audio. However, if a person does form any high-end audio objectives then it should be done with respect of the goals and not in respect of the "literature" that was invented by audio pimps aroid high-end audio consumption.
 rowuk wrote:
If we look at custom made trumpets, violins, guitars for musicians, there are parameters that can be played with to reach a desired goal. The artisans results become the working capital of the musician. More instrument does not always mean more money!
That is a separate subject: the difference and similarity between  high-end audio and high-end musical instruments.
 rowuk wrote:
What is the meaning of a custom midbass horn?
That is a very good question: what is a deference between industry build generic midbass horn and custom midbass horn. As soon a person answers it for himself many thing get cleared. A few weeks back there was a Russian guy with  a lot of cash came to this site and begin to ask questions about horns. The questions he asked clearly identified him as an idiot who shall not be doing anything in audio. Why I bring this example?  Well, I do feel that the answering yourself the question about difference between a generic midbass horn and custom midbass horn instantly put a person to a proper stratification of audio subtypes. We do need both the generic midbass horns and custom midbass horns we also need people who can understand the difference and map the requirements - they push the High-End objectives farther. The rest of the people, including my new Russian friend, juts reused the same alien vocabulary that they would never understand anyhow.
 rowuk wrote:
Does random equipment really mean that we lose neutrality? Can it be that absolute, or is the only issue "no control" over neutrality? Is neutrality a desirable goal? Not from my viewpoint. I like "row 15 sound" where the hall adds its signature to the performance without me losing immediacy. It is also a preference away from pinpoint localization of sonic events. Is the sound of an instrument colored by the hall effects still neutral?
rowuk, no one talks, at least in context of this thread, about neutrality as it is some kind absolute factor. The conversation is not about the neutrality itself but about the interface to communicate with neutrality reached by audio means. All the I was saying that random equipment and random utilization of audio expressive methods  dive pretty random chance to get neutrality. BTW, that fact the most of table radio are way more neutral then expensive so-called high end audio installations is a goof illustration of what I was saying.
 rowuk wrote:
I think that neutrality is a bullshit argument for the brainless. Music worth listening to is not "neutral". The performers have intentions, the recording engineers and producers have sonic goals. At home we also have expectations based on our relationship to music and audio. Just like I have specific goals when I choose an instrument for a specific playing job, my audio at home also advertises my prejudices, laziness, audio awareness.
Yes, and no. Audio neutrality in the way how you use it in thins thread I feel very much is what you call bullshit. Neutrality might imply many different things and might be understood from other perspectives as well.


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
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