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06-17-2006 Post mapped to one branch of Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 2546
Reply to: 2546
Audio critique – open your mind!

This is the subject that keeps bothering me over the years and I have no idea why I never have written about it within my site. The subject of this article will be a completely irrational, located at the boundary of idiocy, behavioral pattern of the absolutely dominating majority of audio people: their incapacity to deal with critiques of audio that they own or they care about.

Really, try to meet any manufacturer and engage with him/her (let talk about him from now and on) in a conversation about the specific performance weaknesses of their audio. Try to visit a dealer or a distributor and point out the sonic absurdness of some decisions that he took in organization of his demonstration or to question performance of specific configuration. Try to visit a listening room of a private audio person and point out to him the very specific and very tangible unconstructive moments of sound reproduction of his system… In all those and many other cases you will face with open hostilely and with a situation when people feel severely personably insulted and behave as you hurt them. What the bunch of Morons!

That always puzzled me and frankly speaking turned me off a lot in my desire to socialize with audio community. How more idiotic a person should be that he accepts purely audio critiques as evidence of ANYTHING ELSE BESIDES JUTS AUDIO CRITIQUES! How fool people should be that they avoid using somebody else’s interpretations of audio efforts for MUTUAL EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES? Isn’t it the reasons why we demonstrate our playbacks to each other: to learn?

I’m seen it all. I have seen manufactures who scrammed to me that I’m idiot because I was no impressed with the sound that they did. I have seen privet parties who proudly invited me to audition their playback and who literally tossed me out of their homes, as soon I did not express enthusiasm about the Sound that I heard. I do not remember that I EVER expressed dissatisfaction with Sound without referring to the very specific and very EXPLICIT FACTS of my auditable experiences. I’m also always very open to negotiate and to discusses those facts or to correlate our observations about the moments that we liked or disliked. The reason for my willingness is because I use any my trips to listen somebody else’s systems, as well as visits of any person in my listening room for nothing else beside SELF EDUCATIONS.  However, the average audio people are not equipped to do use audio critiques for education. They use audio for ego boosting of what whatever else reasons… but only not for advancing of ourselves in audio understanding. That makes them very very boring…

Year after year I receive those idiotic phone calls form friends of mine: “Romy, I was in “X-city” and went to listening room of “Mr. Y”. The system performed very badly, with the following problems: A, B, C, D, E, F… Of course I did not tell him about it and said that it sounded Great” I always question this behavior: why do a person if he has a rational judgment should not share this judgment with another person who in fact DO EXPECT someone’s opinion? You do not say that somebody kids look ugly you juts point out the very specific, objective, mutually notable facts of sound reprodaction. It is it!!! Why you, the audio people, have built for yourself this completely idiotic communication protocol according to which you participate in mutual flattering of own stupid egos?  You, the audio people, for whatever damn reasons, project your personal attachment to whatever doing on in your listening rooms, isn’t it stupid? It would be fine if you demonstrate personal attachments to Results but unfortunately you demonstrate those attachments to Methods and to the empty Marketing Inflictions.

It is not secret that in some cases a playback system builder, designer or the owner has more evolved comprehending of the REASONS of cons or pros of his installation/components and can interpret them more deeply. But this is exactly what it is: get a different perspective on the subject (if criticizing person is wiling and capable (happen hardly ever) to demonstrate HIS REASONS) and expose the subject to the diversity of exposures. When I have audio people in my home I ALWAYS ask them what it wrong with Sound in my listening room. I might agree or disagree with the opinions. I might or might not know what made my visitor to feel good or bad and what made them disagree with my assessments. However, I find it always, ALWAYS (!!!)educational to hear people if they express their NATIVE PERCEPTION to what they feel. (Instead just hearing how they quote for me in my room the paragraphs from an audio reviews that they have read. Although I try to do bring Audio Morons ™ in my listening room but sometimes I let them to break through).

What the point of this article? The point is to suggest you, the audio freaks, to loose the fear of yourself and start to accept Sound in your listening rooms like nothing else then JUTS SOUND IN YOUR LISTENING ROOMS. I have great interest to audio people who NOT JUST DO AUDIO but have an INTEREST OF DOING AUDIO. I have great respect to manufactures (regardless the results they produces) who now juts support their status quo but wiling to see themselves in the EVERLASTING CONTINUATION OF AUDIO EDUCATION, who stays behind what they do USING THEIR ACCOMPLISHMENTS AND THE RESULTS AS A REFERENCES POINTS INSTEAD OF THEIR EGOS.

I always say that Audio is not a purpose but juts a tool. Unfortunately many audio Morons ™ use audio as a tool FOR WRONG PURPOSE. I was very far from suggesting that audio is a tool for improving sense of self, or patting own ego. I juts wish more Audio people able to discover that OTHER MEANING OF AUDIO PURPOSE… Perhaps then, criticizing other’s Audio efforts we would be able to find nobler objectives and might allow themselves to become more attentive listeners of each other… Just little bit more honesty and little bit less fear…

Amen!
Romy 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
06-20-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
behhl
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Posts 5
Joined on 03-30-2006

Post #: 2
Post ID: 2559
Reply to: 2546
The Reality of Ego Hobby
In my observation, Audio Hobbyist are in the majority, like other hobbyist - they have a strong identity with their gadgets, Whether this gadget is large or small like camera, car, boat, trading cards or amplifiers and speakers. It is not a matter of Morons ™ only in Audio, but most every hobby has it. The criticism of their Gadgets are taken as criticism of their self, ability etc etc.  They are not about Education but about Display.

Most have difficulty to keep themselves apart from their things: it is a very Zen concept to be able to, no?

In this, it is perhaps able to ask whether
what term as Audio Morons ™ listen to Music or to Sound. It is an interesting idea which in my preliminary thinking can be said to be such; that appreciation of 'Music'  (in this context) per se does not need sound (ala Beethoven), whereas Sound has a special primeval property of itself affecting the body/mind.

Perhaps the answer why Audio Morons
™ cannot take criticism of Gadgets is like a Gordian Knot?

regards
bhl

06-21-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Gregm
Greece
Posts 91
Joined on 02-16-2005

Post #: 3
Post ID: 2562
Reply to: 2546
Diplomacy in order to avoid an emotional dead-end
In fact, a battle of ego which leads nowhere rather than an educational exchange of views which leads somewhaere.
Very often a comment engenders an emotional reaction -- rather than a (rational) discussion.
The latter (discussion) could result in a useful exchange of views and benefit the owner of the system under discussion.

There is a second reason -- one I often experience. Many people of the moronic persuasion asking for opinion do NOT expect a real opinion; their equally moronic attendance also jsut gives a comment like "no musicality" or "throw it away -- not worth the money". While in some cases it may "not be worth the money" -- the system is already purchased & there may be room for some improvement.

A constructive approach would be, "I notice a, b, c, ... that can be improved. I suggest you try x,y,z.

BTW, has anyone else noticed how many nicely presented systems sound anaemic, lacking energy and/or have their presentation mixed up (I mean, like the cymbals being in front of the orchestra, in front of the soprano, etc)?
Or is it just me?
06-22-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
jweiss
Posts 5
Joined on 01-10-2006

Post #: 4
Post ID: 2569
Reply to: 2546
How mind opening works.
Hi Romy,

As you sent me a link to this thread, I imagine you would like a response.

It seems to me that creating a useful thread on this subject on this website would require you talking about sound systems you have heard and liked, as opposed to the long list of things you despise which comprise a good deal of the territory here. It is true that audio is a disaster area, and you are a chronicler of its destitution. Personally, I enjoy your Don Quixote antics. But it would stretch the imagination that in all your travels and experiences, you have not heard good sound anywhere but your own home system, which is often the received impression. Perhaps you can share with us some of the high points of systems you have heard and liked in your peregrinations, both in small rooms and in large ones? Maybe you can even be specific in describing what you liked? As a newcomer here, perhaps I just missed your happy reviews, and only have read the sad ones. I would appreciate being pointed in the right direction as to how to locate your positive comments about anything in audio, minus of course what you yourself have built, bought or otherwise claimed as your own.

Having an idea of what you indeed liked, in contrast to what you hate, might give a better picture of what you are up to, no?

Jonathan
06-23-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 5
Post ID: 2573
Reply to: 2569
Sancho Panza of Las Vegas

 jweiss wrote:
As you sent me a link to this thread, I imagine you would like a response.

It seems to me that creating a useful thread on this subject on this website would require you talking about sound systems you have heard and liked, as opposed to the long list of things you despise which comprise a good deal of the territory here. It is true that audio is a disaster area, and you are a chronicler of its destitution. Personally, I enjoy your Don Quixote antics. But it would stretch the imagination that in all your travels and experiences, you have not heard good sound anywhere but your own home system, which is often the received impression. Perhaps you can share with us some of the high points of systems you have heard and liked in your peregrinations, both in small rooms and in large ones? Maybe you can even be specific in describing what you liked? As a newcomer here, perhaps I just missed your happy reviews, and only have read the sad ones. I would appreciate being pointed in the right direction as to how to locate your positive comments about anything in audio, minus of course what you yourself have built, bought or otherwise claimed as your own.

Having an idea of what you indeed liked, in contrast to what you hate, might give a better picture of what you are up to, no?
Jonathan,

I do not think you “got” the subject of this thread. It is not about what I have heard and what I might like. It is not about the sound in my room (that I admire much less then you might believe), your room or anybody else's rooms. What my proposed by you description of reportedly good sound would add to the fact of audio people’s disability to talk honesty and without egos about audio and about the actual results that they accomplish or experience? Once again it is not about “happy reviews” and not about me. It is more about us and, we everybody should look at ourselves and learn how our fears and ego effect our better judgments.

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
06-24-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
guy sergeant
United Kingdom
Posts 258
Joined on 08-03-2004

Post #: 6
Post ID: 2577
Reply to: 2573
Re: you need to lose some weight
I think I get what you are saying. There have been many occasions where I've bitten my tongue when presented with someone's precious and expensive cacophony of noise. I often take a small pleasure in telling them that it's either incredible or unbelievable and let them take from that the meaning they want to. I haven't been dishonest and they are happy. People do invest a part of themselves in the choices they make about their clothes, their homes, their cars & their audio sytems. They shouldn't maybe but often they feel it's what defines them as a person.

Perhaps I should have been more honest with my views. However, we only live for 70-80 years. Some of us find that time more bearable if we don't antagonise everyone we meet. We use a carefully evolved technique. It's called politeness. I wouldn't tell my mother if I thought she was a little overweight. I wouldn't say 'you're fat, go on a diet' I'd tell her how well she was looking.

Perhaps audio hasn't evolved as far as it could have if everyone had been ruthlessly honest to everyone else, and I think it's healthy if there are a few very direct people around. But if everyone was like that (and perhaps less tolerant than they could be) we might all have killed each other by now and there would be little left in the way of civilisation to give birth to music and art etc.
06-24-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 7
Post ID: 2578
Reply to: 2577
Different question – different answers.

Guy,

I absolutely disagree and I think there is a huge difference between lettings your wife to know that skin in her neck remind you sesame chicken and letting a play director know that his new production stinks. Of course we moderate our behavior in order do not hurt (for instance I do not make public comment about private visits) but what kind damage might be involved if one person present his efforts and another person pass his observations on the RESULT of those efforts. Pretend that collect stamps (bear with me I know nothing about stamps) related to US constitution and after someone looked through your collection tell you that you have missed entire period from 1920 and your stamps from 19 century are Brooklyn made fake. Does it mean that it put you is a suicidal mode or it means that you god educated and your stamp-collecting skills go evolved? If you written a book and somebody, after reading it, inform you about the self-contradicting facts in this book, or about hideous language or about kitschy plot or about shallow developed characters then does it mean anything else beside that fact that a person invested his time into results of your labor and share with you’re his observations. What is the difference in audio? You spend day of you live in your listening rooms trying to make that cable elevator between your phonostage and cartridge to “sound better” and someone after listening your setup inform you that your cartridge loaded insultingly sharp or your loudspeakers have midrange driver that does not fire up. Does it mean that your ego hurt so hard hat you should put in your will a vendetta obliging you children to kill all me children? Doesn’t it mean that you should take advantage of learning something and do not waste your time in the unfruitful actions?

Do we toss the baby with water when we “take a small pleasure in telling them that it's either incredible or unbelievable and let them take from that the meaning they want to”. Does it deliver anything else besides diminishing expectations and create an opportunely for ignorant and devious idiots (means audio-dealers) to flourish their operations? In the end, dose it mean that after the visit you, despite that your phonocorrector that has no LF section of RIAA curve, should return back to playing with your cable elevator to “get more bass”? (Bear with me as well:  all audio examples are not fictional)

It is not about the “audio hasn't evolved as far as it could have if everyone had been ruthlessly honest to everyone else”. Audio has no own evolvement and evolvement of audio critique is a subject of individual consciousness. Are we looking forward to be “right” or “happy” in our marriage? Are we looking forward to be “right” or “happy” in our calculations of ballast for our yachts? I’m sure those two question would have very different answers.

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
06-24-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 294
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 8
Post ID: 2579
Reply to: 2577
Re: you need to lose some weight
"There have been many occasions where I've bitten my tongue when presented with someone's precious and expensive cacophony of noise." Very funny!

I have made it a policy never, ever to critique anyone's system unless I have been presented with sufficient knowledge that I won't be hurting the guy's feelings. But he has to initiate that procedure.

The worst stuff I hear always involves digital edge. When such is present I find it difficult to continue, as nothing one can do equipment-wise will fix it -- unless one is carrying along new gear to insert. Nothing, except tweaking, anyway, and many 'philes are unable to accept that treating the disc may solve that edginess.

But when the source is clean, I can uncritically accept and enjoy the many variations in presentation that I encounter.

clark
06-24-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
yoshi
Jefferson (MA), United States
Posts 69
Joined on 05-04-2005

Post #: 9
Post ID: 2580
Reply to: 2578
Re: Different question – different answers.
 Romy the Cat wrote:

What is the difference in audio? You spend day of you live in your listening rooms trying to make that cable elevator between your phonostage and cartridge to “sound better” and someone after listening your setup inform you that your cartridge loaded insultingly sharp or your loudspeakers have midrange driver that does not fire up. Does it mean that your ego hurt so hard hat you should put in your will a vendetta obliging you children to kill all me children? Doesn’t it mean that you should take advantage of learning something and do not waste your time in the unfruitful actions?



In case of fake stamps or self-contradiction in a story, it is rather easy to point out how it is so by introducing an evidence.  In case of audio, usually there's only his system/result that is present.  When one points out what's wrong with the system/result, most likely the owner doesn't get what that criticism means until he actually listens to another system/result that doesn't have that particular problem.

Same thing with your website or your opinion.  If the reader has some experience and understanding of audio, he may realise it's not a bogus but a serious attempt to achieve a serious result, but unless he is already deep into a similar pass, it is almost impossible for him to realise what can be achieved without actually listening to your system/result. 

So unless you can actually show him a better result, your criticism is pretty much wasted.  I agree there are cases that their mind is so fixated on their own system/result, they won't accept any criticism even after being presented with a better system/result, but that's their own problem.

Yoshi
06-24-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
guy sergeant
United Kingdom
Posts 258
Joined on 08-03-2004

Post #: 10
Post ID: 2581
Reply to: 2580
Re: friendly criticism.
I would, of course, be more forthright when discussing what I felt were the plus or minus points of a friends system. They would be familiar with the system I have, the sound I like etc. I would know that my comments would have no effect on our relationship. It's a different thing with strangers. They don't know what you like, what you consider to be correct or wrong and unless you can take them home and show them a different way of doing things there isn't much you can do (unless it is obvious that the speakers are wrongly positioned or the cartridge is misbehaving)
06-24-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 11
Post ID: 2584
Reply to: 2580
Different answers... by the asking different question

 yoshi wrote:

In case of fake stamps or self-contradiction in a story, it is rather easy to point out how it is so by introducing an evidence.  In case of audio, usually there's only his system/result that is present.  When one points out what's wrong with the system/result, most likely the owner doesn't get what that criticism means until he actually listens to another system/result that doesn't have that particular problem.

Same thing with your website or your opinion.  If the reader has some experience and understanding of audio, he may realise it's not a bogus but a serious attempt to achieve a serious result, but unless he is already deep into a similar pass, it is almost impossible for him to realise what can be achieved without actually listening to your system/result. 

So unless you can actually show him a better result, your criticism is pretty much wasted.  I agree there are cases that their mind is so fixated on their own system/result, they won't accept any criticism even after being presented with a better system/result, but that's their own problem.
Yoshi,

the criticism NEVER wasted as criticism is a tool for self-edification. Criticizing somebody’s playback, or trying to determine what was wrong with a playback or trying to provide any contractive advise upon somebody Sound is a HUGE source for self-education. I learned a LOT looking other playback and trying to realize what was wrong. Interesting that it is it is kind of irrelevant to me if I expressed my judgment to the system owner or not. I do prefer to express and then to collaborate together on the reasons of the problems and possible solution. Unfortunately it seldom happens as mostly the audio freaks after they heard the “expressed opinion” go fanatical and any constructivism go down to toilet. Ironically I cat testify that when the audio freaks did not behave like idiots but when we though together about sound then ALWAYS when I left the room the playback sounds better then before my visit. I would like do NOT bring this fact as my desire for self-admiration but rather as my evidence that the psychoticly-Moronick reaction of the Audio Morons to audio critique does herd them…

Also, I do not fell that “show him a better result” is only way to go. Unquestionably it is useful but Audio people have no place where they can learn about the boundaries of possible in sound reproduction. Dealer, show, demo rooms and the rest avenues do deliver very poor result, the local friend are frequently are not qualified and the internet people or reviewers are juts running their mouths with now ability to demonstrate any worthy results. So, I would not advocate the “seeing somewhere better result” but rather developing own objective evaluation methods, with referencing anybody’s achieved results.

Rgs,
Romy 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
06-25-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
jweiss
Posts 5
Joined on 01-10-2006

Post #: 12
Post ID: 2588
Reply to: 2584
Ways of approaching....
Hi Romy,

Here is a hypothetical question. If someone sent you an email telling you, in quite a clear way, how you had made an enormous mistake in one of your audio projects, for example an exercise in modifying a speaker, detailing all the mistakes you had made in not correctly understanding the design of such a type of driver, how your misunderstanding led to wrong paths in modification, and so forth, I would imagine you would want to post that information in the relevant thread on that subject, so that everyone could learn from the process, and progress could be made? Is that the kind of thing you are talking about here?

Jonathan
06-25-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
yoshi
Jefferson (MA), United States
Posts 69
Joined on 05-04-2005

Post #: 13
Post ID: 2593
Reply to: 2588
Re: Ways of approaching....
 jweiss wrote:
Hi Romy,

Here is a hypothetical question. If someone sent you an email telling you, in quite a clear way, how you had made an enormous mistake in one of your audio projects, for example an exercise in modifying a speaker, detailing all the mistakes you had made in not correctly understanding the design of such a type of driver, how your misunderstanding led to wrong paths in modification, and so forth, I would imagine you would want to post that information in the relevant thread on that subject, so that everyone could learn from the process, and progress could be made? Is that the kind of thing you are talking about here?

Jonathan


In a way, I suppose yes, and if that hypothetical criticism is a valid one, I believe Romy will happilly share the discussion in here.  He's asking why audio people tend to take criticism so personally. 

I do hate cheap sarcasm, regardless of whatever the subject.  If that's the only thing you have, get lost.

Yoshi
06-26-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 14
Post ID: 2594
Reply to: 2593
Why do you think I use the “Presumption of Moroniy” in audio?

Yoshi,

I am not sure what you mean and I am not quite getting what Jonathan was wiling to express. To affirm my observation on the subject I would like to add my view that was shaped by my observations of numerous and numerous subjects in Audio.

It was unavoidable in my experience that any individual who took audio criticism personally were the people who did not take audio seriously. I NEVER have seen any person who had a natural interest in audio who was not wiling to collaborate on the criticism, look deeper into the reasoning or criticism or to express his outlook on the criticism’s subject.

Certainly I’m not saying that people obliged have in interest in audio but I am generally under impression that if people do thighs (as expansive and as time-consuming as audio) then they should have some sense of action instead of exercising own infatuation to moving audio components in space.

Rgs,
Romy 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
06-28-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
yoshi
Jefferson (MA), United States
Posts 69
Joined on 05-04-2005

Post #: 15
Post ID: 2600
Reply to: 2546
Burn the church
This is how I took Jonathan's post.  He (Janathan) is mocking you (Romy) by presenting a hypothetical situation assuming your ego would be hurt in that situation and get pissed the same way some audio people react hysterically to your criticism of their system.  It is a cheap shot and I don't like it.  I'm ready to appologize if I'm mistaken though.

 Romy the Cat wrote:

I always say that Audio is not a purpose but juts a tool. Unfortunately many audio Morons ™ use audio as a tool FOR WRONG PURPOSE. I was very far from suggesting that audio is a tool for improving sense of self, or patting own ego. I juts wish more Audio people able to discover that OTHER MEANING OF AUDIO PURPOSE… Perhaps then, criticizing other’s Audio efforts we would be able to find nobler objectives and might allow themselves to become more attentive listeners of each other… Just little bit more honesty and little bit less fear…

Amen!
Romy the Cat



It seems to happen so easilly that the recorded music and its presentation becomes just a tool to evaluate a system.  Audio critics talk about particular recordings to show case the pros and cons of a system (a component) in review, audiophiles put on a disc only to evaluate or admire what his system can or cannot do.  When someone's in this mode, the system itself becomes the purpose.  It is like the church itself becomes the purpose instead of it being a tool to serve your faith.  So when the church is criticized, they take it as if their faith is critisized.

I wonder if what we (I) need is a different perspective and wordings to talk about audio, instead of the typical separate sonic parameters like high/mid/low, soundstage, imaging, etc., etc.  Something in higher order that can put those separate parameters in perspective (can be multiple perspectives) and that can penetrate and disarm the church, but that'll be a separate topic.

Yoshi
06-28-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 16
Post ID: 2601
Reply to: 2600
Show me the Sound!

 yoshi wrote:
This is how I took Jonathan's post.  He (Janathan) is mocking you (Romy) by presenting a hypothetical situation assuming your ego would be hurt in that situation and get pissed the same way some audio people react hysterically to your criticism of their system.

Why show I get pissed in that hypothetical situation? Quite opposite: I would feel very much gratified. It would be completely up to me if I accept a criticism worth attention but would I discard the opportunity to explore the subject deeper. It is very similar with Melquiades. It would be essay to make a pair of them for myself to listen it and to show to the people out there a big middle fingers proposing that that their SETs are most likely are crap. The fan part is not juts make the Melq but to make the Melq’s performance level available publicly and make it available for a prospective collaboration and prospective future improvement. I do monitor what is going on with Melq around the world and do examine the criticism that it get. But here is where the Melquiades critics are falling short (very much similar to the Jonathan’s hypothetical situation). Whatever I have seen people try to criticize the Melq was always groundless and based upon some prejudices that people managed to build upon their former failed projects. I mean the criticism was always based upon the subject of own ego but not the subject of the Melquiades design (I do not mention that Melquiades performance because none of the critics heard it). Now, what it has to do with the Jonathan’s hypothetical situation? Well, I feel that the Jonathan’s hypothetical situation is Jonathan’s hypothetically faulty as he more mock his relation to the subject then recognizes an importance of the subject.
  jweiss wrote:
If someone sent you an email telling you, in quite a clear way, how you had made an enormous mistake in one of your audio projects, for example an exercise in modifying a speaker, detailing all the mistakes you had made in not correctly understanding the design of such a type of driver, how your misunderstanding led to wrong paths in modification, and so forth…

Yoshi, pay attention that in proposing this hypothetical situation Jonathan makes assumption that exist any abstract ultimate implementation upon which the “enormous mistake” might be evaluated. However, in this hypothetical situation Jonathan associate the “ultimate implementation” with some sort of “unrelated awareness” that has no connectivity to the actual evaluateable results. I would accept the Jonathan example much more seriously if Jonathan said: “If someone sent you an email telling you, in quite a clear way describing the sonic imperfections I have in my room based upon the proposed enormous mistake I made with not correctly understanding the design of a type of driver, how your misunderstanding led to wrong paths in modification, and so forth…” Without taking under consideration sonic results there is not needs to talk about anything in audio at all. But would the sonic considerations be my primary motivation for doing those “misunderstandings that let me to wrong paths in modification”, would they be?
The point is that the very much as audio people are Moronic in accepting criticism of own playbacks they also foolish to expressing criticism. What Jonathan is proposing is unfortunately is very common. If you go to any product centric Internet community you will see an army of what I call “droolers’. Thos people bind themselves with a church or Altec, RCA, WE, Pre-war Telefunken, Vitavox, Klipsh, JBL, balanced circuits, MOSFET amplifiers, silver cable and so forth… and they alleviant to the actual sonic results as long their conceptual playbacks complies with their vision of not making “the enormous mistakes”. The bad part that the criterion of mistakes for those people is not Sound but the irrelevant “concept”, the concept that subordinated brain’s logic but not ears… Those people are boring like hell in audio and they are so far off that they mostly do not get when they are being mocked.
 yoshi wrote:
It seems to happen so easilly that the recorded music and its presentation becomes just a tool to evaluate a system.  Audio critics talk about particular recordings to show case the pros and cons of a system (a component) in review, audiophiles put on a disc only to evaluate or admire what his system can or cannot do.  When someone's in this mode, the system itself becomes the purpose.  It is like the church itself becomes the purpose instead of it being a tool to serve your faith.  So when the church is criticized, they take it as if their faith is critisized.

Yes, I like you association between audio and church, I use it myself quite frequently. But in the end here is a hint for you: unquestionably music is a tool to evaluate a system but from a certain perspective (or at certain level) music and audio are absolutely not related entities and audio is a purely self-contained and encapsulated field.

 yoshi wrote:
I wonder if what we (I) need is a different perspective and wordings to talk about audio, instead of the typical separate sonic parameters like high/mid/low, soundstage, imaging, etc., etc.  Something in higher order that can put those separate parameters in perspective (can be multiple perspectives) and that can penetrate and disarm the church, but that'll be a separate topic.

Well, I do not have a universal recipe. I personally use associations with people who could understand them. Unfortunately it is difficult with audio people. I mean how many bible-thumping freaks could understand hyperbolas, allegories, parables or metaphors. They take everything direct and primitive like a manual for VCR. I ma not even mention that most of the audio installations out there are not at the level where “interesting” associations might be applied and they are juts in domain of badly implemented high/mid/low, soundstage, imaging, etc., etc….

Rgs,
Romy 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
06-29-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
clarkjohnsen
Boston, MA, US
Posts 294
Joined on 06-02-2004

Post #: 17
Post ID: 2604
Reply to: 2600
Re: Burn the church
Yoshi wrote: It is like the church itself becomes the purpose instead of it being a tool to serve your faith.  So when the church is criticized, they take it as if their faith is criticized.

That's a very good point.

One must at the same time realize, however, that often enough it is the faith that's being criticized.

Myself I see no difficulty in admitting the dual nature of our hobby; it's about sound and it's about music. The fellow who has a handful of discs he forever listens to, should be just as welcome here as the fellow who achieves whatever level he's happy with for his music.  We who practice both, though, are the real winners.

clark
06-30-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
livemusic
Posts 2
Joined on 11-26-2005

Post #: 18
Post ID: 2609
Reply to: 2601
Re: Show me the Sound!
Romy,
 You are absolutely right, saying "audiophile" which is not capable to hear any criticizm about his system, is very far from inderstanding what the music is. As an amator painter, a joined (long ago) to a group of amators like me, gathering every week around master (thruly professional), presenting our own opuses to the group and trying to understand what's wrong/good during free discussion. I still remember me presenting my painting first time: you are staying naked against the crowd, I tell you! Lot of people come and go, uncapable to tolerate another person attacking his very intimate and precious work. And only those which could bear and analyze painful critical feedbacks, made any progress. 
 But, there is a point I cannot fully agree with you, saying "music and audio are absolutely not related entities and audio is a purely self-contained and encapsulated field". Not for me. Yesterday I put a record of I.Moravec playing Beethoven on my TT. At this very minute my dauther decided to vacuum her carpet in adjacent room, so I started to hear "Pathetique" with a pronounced backgroud noise. In the middle of the first part I thought to myself:"What he is doing? It is Beethoven and not Dvorzak, it is an oil on canvas and not aquarell on paper! Too soft, delicate and melancholic..." Here my dauther finished with her carpet, and suddenly all subtle sonic nuances took their place in whole picture. I was absolutely convinced; beauty and inner logical structure of the performance were revealed. Perhaps, some advanced professional musiciants prefer to simply read scores, and not to play records. But plain music lovers like me consume music by means of somebody elses performance. And I have different perception hearing music from the first five rows of concert hall than standing far away in the corner behind the column.
Rgs,
06-30-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 19
Post ID: 2610
Reply to: 2609
Another side of the “glorified audio” harm

 livemusic wrote:
You are absolutely right, saying "audiophile" which is not capable to hear any criticizm about his system….

Well, there is another side of the medal in it. The fact that they are not capable to bear criticism is bad but not harmful. The harm comes from the fact that they use faulty positive criticism in the situation where it should not be use. Each time when those Morons positive a positive feedback about an entire system or about a performance of a components they use that positive self-cheerleading that has no relation to the actual state of Sound from that component. Everything that they do sounds “fabulous” and the problem her is that that dilutes worth of any analysis. I have seen again and again how the Morons herring different installation at showrooms, at show or in private home provided growling feedback with spectacular adjectives but in private conversation they admitted that it was absolutely crappy sound. In those situations I can recognize the double harm: firth there is not educational value in throe experiences and second the stupid glorification of poor results crates an unavoidable feedback to own consciousness that dilutes the senses.


 livemusic wrote:
But, there is a point I cannot fully agree with you, saying "music and audio are absolutely not related entities and audio is a purely self-contained and encapsulated field".

I know what you are saying and I knew that it would be folks who might object. Still, knowing and feeling the objection you made and that other might do I insist that music and audio at certain level stop to be not related. It might be longer conversation and it properly should be abstracted into another thread if it goes further.

Rgs,
Romy 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
07-08-2006 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,495
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 20
Post ID: 2646
Reply to: 2579
Perception of critique as an indicator of Moronity.
 clarkjohnsen wrote:
I have made it a policy never, ever to critique anyone's system unless I have been presented with sufficient knowledge that I won't be hurting the guy's feelings. But he has to initiate that procedure.
Well, I know what you are saying but I feel differently. The more I learn the audio freaks the more I’m realizing that it is very useful to criticize playback (if the playback called for it) right form the beginning without any hesitation or concerns and THEN to observe the system owner reaction. If the person expresses interest about REASONS and MOTIVATIONS of the criticism than the person deserves attention and his, even negative sonic results, should be taken considering. If the person put himself in the position of unwarranted hostility and begin to harass you with his ownership pride than the person should be declared as an idiot and any further conversation with him better be terminated.

Rgs,
Romy 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
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