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05-09-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,534
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 976
Reply to: 976
About moronity of DIY Audio movement.

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If it is possible to generalize which group of individuals in audio possess maximum amplitude of idiocy and at the same time archived the minimum audio result then unquestionably the leading position would be belong the audio industry marketing boys and the representatives of DIY Audio. Let leave the industry people along for now and look at the DIY Audio.

The DIY in audio has a very faulty semantic meaning. The fault derives from the actual phrase “Do It Yourself”. The term does not imply a level of RESULT but only the way of obtaining the result. Most of the audio people get frustrated with the absurd prices and low availability of so called high-end audio and the decided to make audio themselves. Thier frustrations are perfectly rational but let drop the entire concept of cost and price form this entire article, and here is why…. Certainly home made audio helps to avoid dealing with some thrift-manufactures who produce their junk-product and who in any other industry would end up probably in jail or certainly out of business. However, DIY will only save only money but it will NOT enable an audio user to get or to understand better Sound. If you give to each of the DIY enthusiast $1.000.000 and ask them to buy audio with no limitation or restriction then those DIYers will ended up with the system that would produce the IDENTICAL POOR RESULT as they have now. So, the cost benefit is not the subject under which the DIY should be viewed. Unquestionably DIY does save a tone of money but it does not have any single audio benefit; quite contrarily: DIY, as it understood by majority of audio people helps to breed the metastases of audio-idiocy.

DIY audio is very simple, however high-end audio at the level “how it might/should be” is very complex. It is very simple to assemble an amplifier or loudspeaker but it very difficult to understand, to make and to evolve into realization how that amplifier or loudspeaker should operate, how to USE them and what to do with all those built things after the fused do not blow anymore. A DIY movement, in the way in which it currently understood and publicized (and many wily audio industry scams take quite good advantage of this publicity) does not deal with a person but only with the process. As the result, an average DIYer learns how to solder, to buy, to assemble, or do a rudimentary design but his personal audio, musical or cultural progress is completely irrelevant to his actions. Consequentially 90% of DIYer have the general barbaric taste, cultural level of an average Taxes armadillo digger and the musical reference points so primitive that it frightens.

Do you think I unreasonably assault the nice DIY people out there? Well, visit their listening room; look at this collection of music, talk with them about something else then the “double bass on the left, piano on the right and the girl in the middle”, visit the countless DIY-centric communities-breeding Websites and explore the level of musical discussions they have in there. Those people are completely dead audio-vise. They created for themselves a club of co-thinker where anyone knows what Ohm, bias of Fs means and they lovely coexist in the hobby, without have a clue what/why they do and where they going. They move from projects to project making new audio happens but thier audio does not benefit them as the listeners. Certainly a DIY audio hobby is way more socially acceptable then drinks vodka or sniff cocaine. However, audio-wise, from the point of AUDIO RESULT, not from a point of self-entertainment, that DIY-hobby is worthless.

Here we are approaching another important reasons why the DIY Audio is actually is an idiotic movement. Without having the civilized cultural reference points, or without internal imaginative integrity whatever a DIYer dose is condemned to be sounds-producing junk. DIY audio is like a programming in 4GL development platform (PowerBuilder, Delphi, Visual Basic)  - whatever you do, and no mater how you do  - will works.  Certainly it is possible to design very complex and very serious system via those programming languages but to do so require a consciousness of the architects and developers but not just a bunch of the kids who pile lines of code and encouraged that “something does not blow”. The seriousness of those Information Technology Systems is in the seriousness of the demands and requirements. The very similar is in audio. A average Morons-DIYer, has no serious requirements or no serious objectives to sound reproduction or in music. DIYers primary interests are to make something for less money of juts to make “something working” because they have a free workspace in basement and free time. They do not make a specific sound of thier mind but they build a “soundable sound” or in worst case they develop thier own ides how sound should be. Why “worst case”? Stop in their listening room and see the actual result the get. Then you would stop asking why “worst case”?

I use to meet many DIYers and walked in their listening rooms and after listing this installations I always was trying to grasp what they want to accomplish or to say by mean of those installations. I was hardly possible and then I usually asked them about their objectives, intentions and motivations. I always (100%) after hearing thier explanation (or a luck of them) was able to find a parallel between the poor performance of thier playbacks and the primitivism of thier objectives. Later, I begin to play more radical games: I begin to listen people (DIYers for instance) and to visualize what they might achieve by means of tubes, drivers, cable, capacitors and resistors. Amazingly, I was absolutely correct in each and single of my “bold prediction” after I eventually had a chance to listen their systems and to confirm my visualizations. Now, I do not ever go there and instead of queasily to most of the DIYer I expires an arrogance and superiority. It is easy to extrapolate Sound of DIYer playback form what he says and mostly I have no interest to waste my time with DIYer’s so-called “audio thinking”. Their thinking is not about audio but about process of making the dB-producing machinery. That they do is as far form the Real Audio as barricading bricks from designing a skyscraper.

Unquestionably, among the people who make own audio there are very- very small group of interesting and talented people however they hardly would call themselves DIYers and for them making/exploring audio is not a hobby or leisure. The differents between this small group and the rest of DIY-waste is not in their depth of DIY involvement but only in their more advanced audio and musical objectives and self- consciousness about own actions. Those people use DIY method (or entire audio) only as the tools for SOMETHING ELSE and they have no preoccupations or excessive obsession with the audio-making methods.

DIYer would not understand it. DIYer’s primitive mind is wired differently. He (it is always him) is disabled to evaluate results. He can only create own rules, build concepts, try different method and push out of own experience the patters that bring him to a highest level of his pseudo-satisfaction. Thanks God, audio has unlimited possibilities and ways for the DIY-psychos to satisfy his hands-moving-soldering-frustrations. DIYer can do countless things in audio and always receive a new irrelevant result. They would write the PhD destination studying the sonic directivity of 1” copper conductor and they give you 4534 reasons why whatever they do not have in their room is not suitable to sound reproduction. I could give a hundreds hilarious illustrations of my sweeping generalization about DIYers. However, I think you get the message that I would like to pass.

Really, I personally do not see any values in DIY oriented community. Nothing wrong to bult own audio but the reasons for “building” should be slight nobler and more serious then “it is possible to do it”. I always say that Audio starts from library or form a certain intellectualism of listening sensations. DIYers do not have it and they DON NOT care to have it. A few years ago when the Audio Asylum’s archives were not purged, “brushed” and edited (at the time when the AA moderating dirt ultimatum me that they will delete my posts in their Musical Forum if I post the negative comments about the products that they sponsored at that time) it was possible to go to the AA’s multiple DIY forums and correlate the idiocy of a given poster expressed on the subjects of audio with the same poster’s posts (if you find any) in the Musical forum. That train BEVER was late and that relation always was perfect: the idiot listener = idiot audio DIYer.

So, DIY Audio movement is not intrinsically bad concept but the intrinsically poor quality of the individuals who infested the DIY audio make DIYers form Audio quite unattractive group to expect form them an interesting Sound or an interesting result. The time spent to learn how to bult audio for most of the DIYer is completely self-consumed into dead education instead of involvement. As the result, the gratuitous objectives lead to the superfluous and needless methods. There are actions but there are no results. A lot of smoke and fire-like sparkles but there is not heart. In other words: the 90% of DIY audio is mostly about the compulsive nothingness and creative soldering then about own creation of audio solutions.

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
05-09-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
skushino
Seattle, WA
Posts 93
Joined on 07-07-2004

Post #: 2
Post ID: 977
Reply to: 976
Re: It depends

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I think I get your message Romy, but offer an alternative perspective to DIY.

The results depend on the motivation and expectations of the DIYer.  For example, saving $$$ is one reason to start learning to solder and build simple circuits.  If this is one's objective, and they successfully build a circuit that they enjoy listening to, then "mission accomplished".  They may have no higher ambition than this.

With respect to audio, all of us hobbyists, DIYers or not, probably started with a love of music, and also have at least a passing interest in gear.  This is easy to see, otherwise we would all be happy listening to boom boxes like 98% of normal people.  So music is the root of all this madness, even if musical taste differs for many.

As a way of spending my time and money, audio is kind of funny.  I tend to be drawn to interactive stuff, rather than passive.  For example, TV is almost never used, rather I prefer computer.  I like to play piano and go to the symphony more than listen to my audio.  Outside, I like to climb mountains and ski down, rather than ride the chair lift at a friendly ski area.  The wilder and more challenging / risky the mountain, the better.  So what does this have to do with audio?

DIY can also serve as a platform for being more interactive on the equipment side of audio.  Music is another story.  Maybe I am moving into a different phase of the hobby, but going to the show / dealer / or friend's house and buying a new shiny box just doesn't float my boat like it used to.  In fact, believe it or not, I might prefer to build something myself, even it means a small compromise in playback, for the sheer pleasure of doing it myself!!  I created this thing!

In other words, I am learning to value the sense of creation in audio, more than perfection.  Because my friend, seeking perfect playback is just around the corner, just beyond reach, just a little further, just over the next hill.  I think you get what I mean - you can never arrive.


No good work whatever can be perfect, and the demand for perfection is always a sign of a misunderstanding of the ends of art.
      - John Ruskin


At the end of the day, I want to interact with the music performance, whether on my audio system, on the car radio or kitchen radio.  To feel something - sadness, despair, love, joy, bursting heart, or just party down.

Scott

PS.  Your musical critiques have been a valuable resource for me.  Thank you, and keep it up!
05-09-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,534
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 3
Post ID: 978
Reply to: 977
DIY as a cheap trivialization of audio.

Scott, I do not believe that people come to audio because the love of music. In fact the “love of music” itself is some kind of vaselino-chewee term that I would like do not use. An interest in Music has nothing to do with audio. I’ve been saying this for years: Music has nothing to do with audio. From a certain perspective Audio has “almost” nothing to do with Music but this relation is slightly more complicated, I would not dive in it now. 

Anyhow, let use the phrase “love for music” for the sake of illustration. It is a mistake to join a DIYer with his “love for music”. People who value thier “love for music” AER happy listening to boom boxes and they have no problems to do so. In fact, this is what the most advanced high-end listeners do. I can’t do not blow my own horn but… it is what I do 2/3 of my “critical” listening. The demands for better audio, if they are natural and original demands, have very narrow and very specific basis. As many DIY people I’ve met I would say that 99% of them had NO those basis’s and this motivation were ONLY to punch envelope of “the doable”.

My problem not with the DIYers skills but with this completely blind or the omni-directional application. Because the DIYers have no objective in Sound reproduction but only their primitive objectives to the Sounds reproduction then the DIYer solutions do not server any serious purpose beside to entertain the hobby. We accomplish ONLY what we wish, nothing else. If we get an accidental superior result that we do not wish or pursuit then we do not acknowledge the result. The DIYers do not identify the problems and they do not evaluate the results. The just do the “doable” and listen the “listenable”, nothing else.

If you feel that I am wrong then next time when you visit a next DIYer interview him about the sense of his actions and ask his to explain his objectives to you without using phrases “volt”, “impedance”, “ebay” or “fun hobby”

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
05-09-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
skushino
Seattle, WA
Posts 93
Joined on 07-07-2004

Post #: 4
Post ID: 979
Reply to: 978
Re: Music lovers
YES!  We all know music lovers who have never heard great audio playback, and could probably care less about audio.  They do know alot about music though.  They are musicians, engineers, artists, regular people, those that have season tickets to the symphony, play in a band, piano, guitar, violin, whatever.  I understand your distinction between music lovers and audio and I agree with this.

BUT, we chose a different path.  We chose to painfully acquire the experience and knowledge of playback to enhance our music experience.  My problem with audio (only one problem....) is that the commercial route is becomming less interesting, even boring.  It is the endless tail chasing of searching and buying better audio.  Well, this is such a destructive cycle.  There is no end game, no satisfaction, no exit strategy, leading to disappointment.  I decided to change direction, and get off the train.  My point is that DIY, as a platform for interacting with audio and creating something new, has potential to provide another type of satisfaction and peace, simply because it involves the act of creating something good, and a sense of ownership of concept and execution, that is personal and selfish (in a good way), that buying a new box is not.

Please understand me - I'm no DIY genius.  The fact is I am a beginner, learning the basics.  But I look forward to appreciating music on my system, after I have a hand in shaping it, simply because I created part of it, I learned something new in the process, and it is unique.  No amount of money spent at the dealer can buy that.

Of course there are DIY people who care more about circuits than music.  I see them as a resource to help me learn circuits.  In exchange, I might share some interesting music with them.  Whether they appreciate it or not is of no concern.

bty, for anyone else interested or bored enough to read this, this is only my path and opinion, and I have no problems with anybody who plugs into the music with commercial gear.  Mine is not the only path, only one person's.

Best,
Scott
05-09-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul Scearce
Posts 12
Joined on 07-26-2004

Post #: 5
Post ID: 980
Reply to: 976
Re: where to start
"...she discovered that every member of the family, without realizing it, repeated the same path every day, the same actions, and almost repeated the same words at the same hour. ... Fernanda on the other hand, looked for it in vain along the paths of her everyday itenerary without knowing that the search for lost things is hindered by routine habits and that is why it is so difficult to find them."

You have mentioned the library before, would you mind elaborating a bit? Is it just a matter of listening to everything you can get your hands on, or is there some more systematic approach that would work better?

Paul
05-09-2005 Post mapped to one branch of Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,534
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 6
Post ID: 981
Reply to: 980
The important thing about listening practice

 Paul Scearce wrote:
Is it just a matter of listening to everything you can get your hands on, or is there some more systematic approach that would work better?
Paul,

do you remember how Mr. Herbert discovered the taste of Macondo’s bananas in the same book? I think it is a wonderful illustration about DIY movement.

Regarding the “systematic approach”… I would not suggest that there is any. Actually there is one but the methodical in this approach not the actions (listening to everything you can get your hands on) but the underling introvertial events among within those actions. Unquestionably listening to everything is very-very beneficial and very educational. However, it is imperative to learn what to do while we listen.

I biggest fault that the most of audiophiles (including 99.99% of DIYers) that they listen the audio that they build/buy/assemble. Instead of listening the performance of audio a listener should listen how that “performing sound” reflects within the listener inner-world. Those abilities to sense, to recognize, to acknowledge and to interpret the affect and influence of reproduce Sound (let call it music) are the principal-characteristic of an evolved listener. That ability is s single and the most important quality that converts a zombie-audiophile into a person with whom is possible to being to talk about audio. If a person “gets” this feeling then he can allow himself to listen and to do whatever he wants – he already is immune against “bad audio”. It is very similar to a pregnant woman during certain month of pregnancy: her taste, despite her preferences, is changing and she begins subconsciously reject the food that might hurt her fetes. The very same happen with an audio listener after he “get it”  - if he has a civilized inner-him then his natural reactions would reject wrongly reproduced Sound of the poor Music…

Interesting that form this moment the “audio potency” of a person does not described by what audio this person is accustomed to but it described explicitly by “what the person is”.

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
05-10-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul Scearce
Posts 12
Joined on 07-26-2004

Post #: 7
Post ID: 982
Reply to: 981
Re: DIY experience

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I think I would relate my own DIY experience more with Colonel Aureliano Buendia making his golden fish.

I have been tempted to ask you about listening methodology before this, but decided not to, think there probably isn't a formula. Paying attention to how my inner-self reacts to the music should be easier than what I have been trying to do, which is trying to decipher what was on the composer's mind. Thank you very much for that direction. Not listening to what the amp and speakers are doing should be a lot easier with something else to listen for.

Paul
05-10-2005 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,534
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 8
Post ID: 983
Reply to: 982
More on DIY experience.

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 Paul Scearce wrote:
I think I would relate my own DIY experience more with Colonel Aureliano Buendia making his golden fish.
Certainly I understand this perception and the quote in my Manifesto Section is very much not accidental. Still, “Building Audio” might have a secondary purpose.... if the process of the discovering is properly mentally structured and if the results are used as a tool for something more important. Unfortunately it does not take place in the DIY movement. For DIYersthe building audio is a self-contained process, encapsulated chain, where the ceremony consumes itself.

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
07-22-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,534
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 9
Post ID: 11152
Reply to: 976
... the equally empty version #152424
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Glenn Gould one said that a pianist shell not record new recording is they not willing to express by their interpretation something that was not expressed before. Surrey, who needs 253252recording of the same Beethoven concerto if 95% of them are just repetition of what already was expressed?

Now apply this to DIY audio people. 99% of them have no audio-expressive objectives and the do it just because if you connect any speaker to any AC source then it will “work” and produce sound. (I would give an exception to the people who do DIY audio because they feel that they can do it less expensive then commercial audio). So, the meaningless objectives get converted into meaningless results and a birth a new DIY audio item that is not a creation but rather a replication of meaninglessness. It is where Glenn Gould’s rule kicks in: a next pianist with no personal understanding of that Beethoven concerto record a version of 253252 that is just a replica of the equally empty version #152424

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
Page 1 of 1 (9 items) Select Pages: 
   Target    Threads for related reading   Most recent post in related threads   Forum  Replies   Views   Started 
  »  New  The most appalling audio types...  The most appalling audio types: personally over-vested...  Audio Discussions  Forum     10  85127  06-15-2007
  »  New  The Truly High-End Amplification. Does is really exist?..  The Elusive Point of Reference...  Melquiades Amplifier  Forum     1  18175  12-16-2009
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