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Pro amps vs. consumer amps

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Anonymous
January 25, 2005 3:31:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

How do they compare? This question arises because a customer of mine
asked me about one of his amps, made by Crown. All he could tell me is
that it cost about $500 and has a rated output of 450 watts per channel.
I have been told that the finest components made are for professional
use, but the prices for examples I have been given were very high. I am
concerned about the many pro amps like this one that are so much cheaper
than their consumer counterparts. Even though I have been in the audio
business since 1978 I have no experience with the power amplifiers sold
for professional use, as they are usually made and sold by different
companies, and when a company makes both they have separate sales forces
and dealer networks. Different stores - different customers.
If this is a good $500 450 wpc amp what are high end consumers doing
paying much higher prices for their amps?


Wylie Williams
The Speaker and Stereo Store
Saint Louis, Missouri

More about : pro amps consumer amps

January 26, 2005 3:29:54 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Wylie Williams wrote:
> How do they compare? This question arises because a customer of mine
> asked me about one of his amps, made by Crown. All he could tell me is
> that it cost about $500 and has a rated output of 450 watts per
> channel. I have been told that the finest components made are for
> professional use, but the prices for examples I have been given were
> very high. I am concerned about the many pro amps like this one that
> are so much cheaper than their consumer counterparts. Even though I
> have been in the audio business since 1978 I have no experience with
> the power amplifiers sold for professional use, as they are usually
> made and sold by different companies, and when a company makes both
> they have separate sales forces and dealer networks. Different stores
> - different customers. If this is a good $500 450 wpc amp what are high
> end consumers doing
> paying much higher prices for their amps?
>
>
> Wylie Williams
> The Speaker and Stereo Store
> Saint Louis, Missouri

I also use a pro amp, the Yamaha 6150 6-channel. The quality is fine, very
solidly built 19" rack-mountable, able to deliver 100% of the rating on all
channels indefinitly. Big 1.8kVA transformer. 27kg weight. XLR inputs, no
RCAs. I have it under the bed because the fans are quite loud when playing
at listening levels. Around 1000$.
I could not find a consumer amp, but now I am building a 6x400W from
components without forced air cooling. I will use the digital modules UcD400
by Hypex, Netherlands. http://www.hypex.nl/

--
ciao Ban
Bordighera, Italy
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 3:31:20 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Wylie Williams" <wyliewil@charter.net> wrote in message
news:ct441s01m8f@news1.newsguy.com...
> How do they compare?

Very well. The biggest differences being in the build quality of the pro
amps being superior, sincethey are meant for traveling, and that most of
them seem to have cooling fans.

This question arises because a customer of mine
> asked me about one of his amps, made by Crown. All he could tell me is
> that it cost about $500 and has a rated output of 450 watts per channel. I
> have been told that the finest components made are for professional use,
> but the prices for examples I have been given were very high. I am
> concerned about the many pro amps like this one that are so much cheaper
> than their consumer counterparts. Even though I have been in the audio
> business since 1978 I have no experience with the power amplifiers sold
> for professional use, as they are usually made and sold by different
> companies, and when a company makes both they have separate sales forces
> and dealer networks. Different stores - different customers.
> If this is a good $500 450 wpc amp what are high end consumers doing
> paying much higher prices for their amps?
>
>
They seem to be paying for style and hype IMO. The science of amplification
is a done deal. It has been possible for decades to build amplifiers that
do not alter the signal being sent to them in any audible way. Check out
the web sites of people like QSC, Crown, Alesis, and if you really want bang
for your buck, this one, http://www.behringer.com/EP2500/index.cfm?lang=ENG.

There is one other difference, you'll have to use things like XLR connectors
instead of RCA's.

If you think about it becomes very clear, pro audio has to do the same job
as consumer audio, but they don't have to appeal to people that feel the
need to "upgrade" ever couple of years. They don't spend the enormous
amounts of money in advertising that consumer audio or high end audio does.
All they have to do is be clean and reliable, which as I said has been done
for decades.
Related resources
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 3:33:01 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Wylie Williams wrote:
> How do they compare?

Pro amps are designed to take much more abuse than consumer
amps. That abuse may come in the form a physical abuse
from being hauled around from job to job. And then there's
signal abuse from feedback, live microphones being disconnected
or dropped.

A good pro amp will have protection circuitry to enable it to
withstand signal abuse.

Pro amps are engineered for durability first, sound quality
second. A lot of pro amps have cooling fans in them which
would produce an unacceptable level of noise for a home user,
but in a nightclub or rock concert setting, would not be a
problem.

That being said, I run Hafler pro-grade amps in my system
and am pleased with the way they sound. They're MOSFET amps
and have the sound characteristic of MOSFET amps, which I
rather like.

It's all about listening though. Get your hands on some
pro grade amps and listen. The high powered ones mostly
have fans, and so would not be suitable candidates. But the
medium and lower powered amps would probably not have fans.

Russ Button
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 3:35:36 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Professional" power amps are practically a commodity. There is very
little to differentiate these products, so price becomes a driving
force. On forums dedicated to musicians, for instance, people talk
about dollars per watt. Some companies are still trying to market the
perception of quality, but this proves difficult when it is widely
believed that everybody is plugged into the same network of material
and production vendors in the Far East. There is also a perception that
audio quality is mainly a function of speakers (and the skill of the
musicians).

In consumer electronics, there are simply more differentiating factors,
thus price becomes less of a driving force. The big difference is the
perception that quality is related to price, creating a "reverse
elasticity." Other factors include aesthetics, craftsmanship,
ergonomics, and so forth.

Wylie Williams wrote:
> How do they compare? This question arises because a customer of mine

> asked me about one of his amps, made by Crown. All he could tell me
is
> that it cost about $500 and has a rated output of 450 watts per
channel.
> I have been told that the finest components made are for professional

> use, but the prices for examples I have been given were very high. I
am
> concerned about the many pro amps like this one that are so much
cheaper
> than their consumer counterparts. Even though I have been in the
audio
> business since 1978 I have no experience with the power amplifiers
sold
> for professional use, as they are usually made and sold by different
> companies, and when a company makes both they have separate sales
forces
> and dealer networks. Different stores - different customers.
> If this is a good $500 450 wpc amp what are high end consumers doing
> paying much higher prices for their amps?
>
>
> Wylie Williams
> The Speaker and Stereo Store
> Saint Louis, Missouri
Anonymous
January 26, 2005 6:13:51 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Ban" <bansuri@web.de> wrote in message
news:ct6oa2028ks@news4.newsguy.com...
> I also use a pro amp, the Yamaha 6150 6-channel. The quality is fine, very
> solidly built 19" rack-mountable, able to deliver 100% of the rating on
> all
> channels indefinitly. Big 1.8kVA transformer. 27kg weight. XLR inputs, no
> RCAs. I have it under the bed because the fans are quite loud when playing
> at listening levels. Around 1000$.
> I could not find a consumer amp, but now I am building a 6x400W from
> components without forced air cooling. I will use the digital modules
> UcD400
> by Hypex, Netherlands. http://www.hypex.nl/
>
Hypex is also carried by Adire Audio here in the states and provide them
with most of their subwoofer amps. I have one that has been in place for 2
years now without a problem. Good stuff.
Anonymous
January 30, 2005 7:40:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

I swapped out my McIntosh 2105 for a QSC PLX 2402 just to see what it
would be like. The Mac sounds way way better.


Edwin
Anonymous
January 31, 2005 2:06:12 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Edwin Hurwitz wrote:
> I swapped out my McIntosh 2105 for a QSC PLX 2402 just to see what it
> would be like. The Mac sounds way way better.

Like I said before, pro amps are built to be abused, physically
and electrically. Sonic qualities are waaaaay down the list of
engineeing criteria.

Don't forget that most products are built to a price point.
QSC amps are relatively cheap. That QSC amp is under $800
at Overstock.com, while the Mac 2105 probably cost $2000 or
more when it was new, which hasn't been for some time now.

It's like comparing a Chevy pickup truck to a Cadillac.
You can carry a lot in each of 'em, but which one do
you want to haul lumber in?

What might be a more appropriate comparison would be for you
to compare your QSC to a comparable Hafler pro amp, or even
one of those B&K MOSFET amps. QSC is what you use for DJ
setups and nobody cares what it sounds like at a DJ gig
just so that it ***THUMPS*** enough.

The McIntosh line has a reputation for durability beyond
what the standard home audio manufacturer puts out. I used
to run an electrostatic speaker which, under circumstances of
signal abuse, would readily fry a home hi-fi amp. Your QSC
would probably hold up. Not sure about the Mac.

Russ
Anonymous
February 1, 2005 3:30:17 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Russ Button" <russ@button.com> wrote in message
news:ctjp9401qrs@news1.newsguy.com...
> Edwin Hurwitz wrote:
>> I swapped out my McIntosh 2105 for a QSC PLX 2402 just to see what it
>> would be like. The Mac sounds way way better.
>
> Like I said before, pro amps are built to be abused, physically
> and electrically. Sonic qualities are waaaaay down the list of
> engineeing criteria.
>
A friend had a couple of Crown DC300As put into a 8 panneled Tympani system
(by Mel Schilling) when those speakers first appeared on the market. There
was also a huge powered vertical standing sub in his system. He loaned one
of the Crowns to me while my Ampzilla went in for one of its many repairs. I
believe the Crown DC300A has seen many satisfactory applications in both
home and pro systems. An exception to the urban legend?
http://www.jands.com.au/jandsweb/audio_crown.html
Anonymous
February 1, 2005 3:33:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

<elephantcelebes@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:ct6oko02970@news4.newsguy.com...
> "Professional" power amps are practically a commodity. There is very
> little to differentiate these products,

Just like consumer audio amps.

so price becomes a driving
> force. On forums dedicated to musicians, for instance, people talk
> about dollars per watt. Some companies are still trying to market the
> perception of quality, but this proves difficult when it is widely
> believed that everybody is plugged into the same network of material
> and production vendors in the Far East. There is also a perception that
> audio quality is mainly a function of speakers (and the skill of the
> musicians).

When you refer to SS amps that is largely true. The primary reason for the
difference in price is that pro amps are not advertised in the very
expensive pages of the consumer audio magiazines. Secondary resaons would
include the lack of heatsinking and use of cooling fans on pro amps, which
reduce weight and expense. If the performance factors such as THD, noise,
current capability, IM distortion, channel separation, etc., there is no
reason they should not perform exactly the same as any consumer amp.
>
> In consumer electronics, there are simply more differentiating factors,
> thus price becomes less of a driving force.

The differentatig factors have more to do with cosmetics and hype than with
performance.

The big difference is the
> perception that quality is related to price, creating a "reverse
> elasticity." Other factors include aesthetics, craftsmanship,
> ergonomics, and so forth.
>
Anonymous
February 2, 2005 7:24:08 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Michael McKelvy wrote:

> When you refer to SS amps that is largely true. The primary reason for the
> difference in price is that pro amps are not advertised in the very
> expensive pages of the consumer audio magiazines. Secondary resaons would
> include the lack of heatsinking and use of cooling fans on pro amps, which
> reduce weight and expense. If the performance factors such as THD, noise,
> current capability, IM distortion, channel separation, etc., there is no
> reason they should not perform exactly the same as any consumer amp.

Fan noise on a pro amp is *gigantic*! Any pro amp that has a fan is
completely unacceptable in a home environment. What's the point of
having a 100 db signal to noise ratio when the fan puts out 75 db
of noise? I had a QSC amp once that was at least that loud. That's
perfectly OK for a DJ who schleps his rack of gear around and runs
a music mix for 200+ people in a rental hall or gymnasium. It's not
OK for an audiophile home user. Does QSC even make an amp without
a fan?

For a while last year, I had an Hafler Pro 2400 power amp, at 120 wpc.
It had no fan and sounded pretty good. It has a nasty turn-off
transient and ran quite hot, but it sounded OK. The Hafler P1000
amps I'm using now have no turn-on or turn-off transients and
sound terrific. They're also 50 wpc so they don't run anywhere
near as hot either and I like the way they sound.

>>In consumer electronics, there are simply more differentiating factors,
>>thus price becomes less of a driving force.
>
> The differentatig factors have more to do with cosmetics and hype than with
> performance.

If you take the time to listen to different amps, you do find real
sonic differences. I'm not about to suggest that most pro amps
sound as good as a good audiophile/consumer grade amp. But I do
think it makes good sense to take an honest listen.

Even though we all have champagne tastes, the truth is that the
vast majority of us have budget constraints. My Orion setup requires
8 channels of amplification at approximately 60 watts per channel.
If I were to go with some big name hi-end 2-channel amps at $2000
each, that would be $8000, which is a whole *LOT* more than I could
possibly spend on amplification. And $2000 for a 2-channel amp is
pretty pedestrian compared to the likes of Rowland Research, Krell,
Audio Research, Conrad-Johnson, etc. Imagine what it would cost me
to run 4 McIntosh MC275 amps, not to mention the cost to re-tube
every couple of years. It would provide great home heating in the
winter, but would kill me in the summer!

The differences between amplifiers is nowhere near as great as the
differences between loudspeakers. So there may well be a pro amp
that would be a great value for the home user. It would certainly
be interesting to spend a couple of days doing comparitive auditions
with the greats such as McIntosh tube amps, Rowland Research,
Audio Research, more budget minded gear such as Parasound or B&K,
compared to pro line gear (without fans) such as Hafler, Crown (do
they have anything without fans?) and even older Altec pro grade
tube amps.

There are always tradeoffs and constraints to be considered in every
buying decision, price being only one of them. There are also considerations
as to physical space needs vs. availability, as well as cosmetic
appearances. Not every domestic partner would stand for a stack
of Altec pro (green panels, remember) tube amps driving a pair
of Altec A-7's...

> The big difference is the
>
>>perception that quality is related to price, creating a "reverse
>>elasticity." Other factors include aesthetics, craftsmanship,
>>ergonomics, and so forth.

There is truth to this in that the very expensive hi-end stuff
sells. I doubt very much that people in the market for a $10,000
Rowland Research amp will even consider listening to a $1000
Parasound amp. I'd be willing to wager that the sonic differences,
while real, wouldn't be $9000 worth. Frankly, I'd be willing
to set my Orions, driven by my $600 stack of Haflers (OK, I bought
'em on EBay), up against *ANY* commercial loudspeaker driven by
any Rowland Research power amp.

A Lexus is just a gussied up Toyota Camry. They share the same
frame and drive train. But the Lexus has a lot of luxury details
the Camry lacks. The Camry is a very comfortable and reliable
car, but they sure sell a lot at the Lexus dealership!

Russ
Anonymous
February 2, 2005 7:47:56 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Norman M. Schwartz wrote:


> A friend had a couple of Crown DC300As put into a 8 panneled Tympani system
> (by Mel Schilling) when those speakers first appeared on the market. There
> was also a huge powered vertical standing sub in his system. He loaned one
> of the Crowns to me while my Ampzilla went in for one of its many repairs. I
> believe the Crown DC300A has seen many satisfactory applications in both
> home and pro systems. An exception to the urban legend?
> http://www.jands.com.au/jandsweb/audio_crown.html

The Crown DC300 series was an AUDIOPHILE legend, too. I believe it
received raves from Stereophile...the J. Gordon Holt Stereophile.

-Gene Poon
Anonymous
February 4, 2005 7:17:51 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Nousaine wrote about power amps:

> I'd go further and wager that no human could distiguish one from the other
> sonically.


I'm going to disagree with you here. I've spent time listening to
power amps and I hear clear differences. Sometimes they're subtle
and something the differences are glaring. I do know that I'm
comfortable with the sound of a good MOSFET amp. I got hooked
on 'em years ago when I first bought a B&K amp.

I remember one evening comparing a Hafler 500, a B&K ST-140 and
an Adcom 545 MKII. The Hafler had more than twice the power of
the other two, and had a nice smoothness to the sound, but
somehow it lacked detail. The Adcom was just plain edgy. The
B&K was clearly the best sounding of the lot.

A couple months ago a friend came by with an interesting selection
of phono preamps. We were listening to a Shure M-65 tube phono
preamp, as well as the phono sections of several good preamps -
Conrad-Johnson, Yamaha, GAS Thoebe and a McIntosh C22. It was
a very interesting evening. Each had a distinctive quality
and the worst of the bunch was the C22!

I'm still using the Shure M-65 and it sounds pretty damn
good.

Russ
Anonymous
February 4, 2005 9:07:54 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Russ Button" <russ@button.com> wrote in message
news:ctqur802f1u@news1.newsguy.com...
> Michael McKelvy wrote:
>
>> When you refer to SS amps that is largely true. The primary reason for
>> the difference in price is that pro amps are not advertised in the very
>> expensive pages of the consumer audio magiazines. Secondary resaons
>> would include the lack of heatsinking and use of cooling fans on pro
>> amps, which reduce weight and expense. If the performance factors such
>> as THD, noise, current capability, IM distortion, channel separation,
>> etc., there is no reason they should not perform exactly the same as any
>> consumer amp.
>
> Fan noise on a pro amp is *gigantic*! Any pro amp that has a fan is
> completely unacceptable in a home environment.

NOt having used one in my home I can't say how loud the noise might be. I
have however been in homes of audiophiles who keep some of their gear in
closets, where any noise from a fan is unlikely to be heard.

What's the point of
> having a 100 db signal to noise ratio when the fan puts out 75 db
> of noise? I had a QSC amp once that was at least that loud.

As measured by what? At the volyume levels I like, such noise would be
completely masked, since the spl at my listening position is over 90 dB for
much of what I listen to. Might be a problem for some classical or jazz,
but not likely for Matchbox 20 or Santana.

That's
> perfectly OK for a DJ who schleps his rack of gear around and runs
> a music mix for 200+ people in a rental hall or gymnasium. It's not
> OK for an audiophile home user. Does QSC even make an amp without
> a fan?
>

Not any more, as far as I can see from their website. They did in the past.

> For a while last year, I had an Hafler Pro 2400 power amp, at 120 wpc.
> It had no fan and sounded pretty good. It has a nasty turn-off
> transient and ran quite hot, but it sounded OK. The Hafler P1000
> amps I'm using now have no turn-on or turn-off transients and
> sound terrific. They're also 50 wpc so they don't run anywhere
> near as hot either and I like the way they sound.
>
>>>In consumer electronics, there are simply more differentiating factors,
>>>thus price becomes less of a driving force.
>>
>> The differentatig factors have more to do with cosmetics and hype than
>> with performance.
>
> If you take the time to listen to different amps, you do find real
> sonic differences.

I have listened to different amps, and I find that sonic differences tend to
be few and far between. When they exist at all, they are usually because
they were designed to deviate from flat response, were driving speaker loads
that are difficult, or clipping. Flat response is flat response and doesn't
sound different from one amp to the next.

I'm not about to suggest that most pro amps
> sound as good as a good audiophile/consumer grade amp.

I would suggest exactly that.

But I do
> think it makes good sense to take an honest listen.
>
It always makes sense to listen but there are some methods of doing so that
are better than others.

> Even though we all have champagne tastes, the truth is that the
> vast majority of us have budget constraints.

I resemble that remark.

My Orion setup requires
> 8 channels of amplification at approximately 60 watts per channel.
> If I were to go with some big name hi-end 2-channel amps at $2000
> each, that would be $8000, which is a whole *LOT* more than I could
> possibly spend on amplification. And $2000 for a 2-channel amp is
> pretty pedestrian compared to the likes of Rowland Research, Krell,
> Audio Research, Conrad-Johnson, etc. Imagine what it would cost me
> to run 4 McIntosh MC275 amps, not to mention the cost to re-tube
> every couple of years. It would provide great home heating in the
> winter, but would kill me in the summer!
>
Other than as a novelty, I have no interest in tubed equipment. I still
remember going to the tube tester at the local Safeway when I was a kid.
I see no reason to move backwards in technology.

> The differences between amplifiers is nowhere near as great as the
> differences between loudspeakers.

Absolutely. I maintain that speaker technology is one of the final
frontiers is audio, the other being how many will eventually be determined
to be optimum for whatever ambience/surround mode that becomes the eventual
standard.

So there may well be a pro amp
> that would be a great value for the home user.

I think there are many, particularly if you can put one where you won't hear
the fan.

It would certainly
> be interesting to spend a couple of days doing comparitive auditions
> with the greats such as McIntosh tube amps, Rowland Research,
> Audio Research, more budget minded gear such as Parasound or B&K,
> compared to pro line gear (without fans) such as Hafler, Crown (do
> they have anything without fans?) and even older Altec pro grade
> tube amps.

As to the SS gear it would be interesting to see the faces of some of the
people who would likely be surprised that they can't hear the difference
between them and say a Rowland or Krell. Properly desinged tubed amps not
driven to clipping should sound pretty much the same as well.

>
> There are always tradeoffs and constraints to be considered in every
> buying decision, price being only one of them. There are also
> considerations
> as to physical space needs vs. availability, as well as cosmetic
> appearances. Not every domestic partner would stand for a stack
> of Altec pro (green panels, remember) tube amps driving a pair
> of Altec A-7's...
>

Why would someone choose such a partner? :-)

>> The big difference is the
>>
I doubt very much that people in the market for a $10,000
> Rowland Research amp will even consider listening to a $1000
> Parasound amp.

If they wish to over spend, that's up to them. I see no reason for it.

I'd be willing to wager that the sonic differences,
> while real, wouldn't be $9000 worth.

I be willing to wager they'd be mostly non-detectable.

Frankly, I'd be willing
> to set my Orions, driven by my $600 stack of Haflers (OK, I bought
> 'em on EBay), up against *ANY* commercial loudspeaker driven by
> any Rowland Research power amp.
>
If you can find someone to take that bet, soak them for all you can get. :-)
Anonymous
February 5, 2005 4:29:06 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

I find Pro amps to be excellent performers and excellent value.
Most have fans, but there are exceptions. The Crown K1 and K2 offer
tons of power, are rated into loads as low as 2 ohms and have NO fans.
I use a K2 and am very happy with it. The issue of RCA vs XLR can be
solved by a simple cable with RCA on one end and XLR on the other
(although that loses the "balance", so no long cable runs here). Many
audiophile preamps offer balanced XLR output, so that may not be an
issue.
Anonymous
February 5, 2005 7:28:56 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Michael McKelvy wrote:

> > In consumer electronics, there are simply more differentiating
factors,
> > thus price becomes less of a driving force.
>
> The differentating factors have more to do with cosmetics and hype
than with
> performance.

Agreed. But they are differentiating factors all the same. The belief
in a "price is quality" relationship is fabulous for the industry.
Anonymous
February 6, 2005 1:31:52 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

<elephantcelebes@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:cu2s8801pst@news1.newsguy.com...
> Michael McKelvy wrote:
>
>> > In consumer electronics, there are simply more differentiating
> factors,
>> > thus price becomes less of a driving force.
>>
>> The differentating factors have more to do with cosmetics and hype
> than with
>> performance.
>
> Agreed. But they are differentiating factors all the same. The belief
> in a "price is quality" relationship is fabulous for the industry.

But not for the consumer. Someday, hopefully the consumer will wise up
enough to know that for the most part ams are amps and perhaps go on to
learn that stones aren't tweaks.

Hey, I can dream can't I?
Anonymous
February 15, 2005 3:31:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <ctqur802f1u@news1.newsguy.com>, Russ Button
<russ@button.com> wrote:

> Fan noise on a pro amp is *gigantic*! Any pro amp that has a fan is
> completely unacceptable in a home environment. What's the point of
> having a 100 db signal to noise ratio when the fan puts out 75 db
> of noise?

Then Just disconnect the fan!

That is what I did about 17 years ago on my Perreaux 6000B. I am still
using it. Puts out 300wpch, but in a domestic setting it is rare for
the heatsinks to get beyond slightly warm.

Many recording studios use pro amps to drive their monitors so I do not
give any credit to the statement that audio quality is way down the
list of engineering criteria.

Giles
Anonymous
February 16, 2005 3:35:08 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Giles Stewart wrote:
> In article <ctqur802f1u@news1.newsguy.com>, Russ Button
> <russ@button.com> wrote:
>
>
>>Fan noise on a pro amp is *gigantic*! >
> Then Just disconnect the fan!
>
> That is what I did about 17 years ago on my Perreaux 6000B. I am still
> using it. Puts out 300wpch, but in a domestic setting it is rare for
> the heatsinks to get beyond slightly warm.

Are you saying that you have 300 wpc and you're not actually
driving the amp hard enough to use 300 wpc? Why get an amp
with that much power then?

I once had a Hafler Pro2400 power amp at 120 wpc and it ran
very hot. There was no fan, and it sounded pretty good, but
it ran very hot. You wouldn't want to stack several of them
together in a multi-amp setup.

> Many recording studios use pro amps to drive their monitors so I do not
> give any credit to the statement that audio quality is way down the
> list of engineering criteria.

Recording studio requirements are entirely different from home audio
requirements. In a studio, the big thing is saving space. You get all
rack mount gear because it takes up less space. You're never going to
see a professional studio with the likes of Krell, Rowland Research, or
any of the fine tube amps that people like for home use.

The point I've been trying to make all along is that equipment is
engineered for specific reasons and to a price point. Compromises
are always made. That's what engineering is. In the case of pro audio,
the design criteria are durability in the face of physical and signal
abuse, and taking up the minimal amount of rack mount space. Sonic
quality is down the list.

Hi-end home audio equipment is engineered for sonics first. The
second criterial in design of home audio gear is appearances. If
you're going to ask the outrageous sums that these manufacturers
do, then you have to appeal to design esthetic which screams "ego".
How else do you see rack handles on amps that don't rack mount?
Why else do you see 1/2" thick brass plate on the front of an amp.
Certain manufacturers have a signiture look - Rowland Research and
McIntosh come to mind.

You are suggesting that pro amps sound just as good as the very expensive
hi-end amps, and that it's a waste of money to spend more than the $800
or $1000 you spend on a high powered pro amp. This is where we disagree.

If you were to take a pair of Avalon Eidolon loudspeakers ($35k/pair)
and carefully listen to them being driven by your Perreaux amp, and
then by any number of other home audiophile grade amps, you'd hear
some significant differences. Even with other less expensive audiophile
grade loudspeakers, there would be significant differences. The Avalon
line in particular, has extraordinary imaging. They really do "disappear"
in a room, which is why people spend enormous sums for them.

You'd find that your Perreaux amp would perform differently in terms
of timbre, tonal balance and imaging. You may or may not prefer it,
but it will be different.

I run a tri-amped loudspeaker, which actually requires four stereo power
amps, not three. So my costs are four times what it would be for someone
else. I only need 60 wpc for my amps, but that's still a lot of money
potentially. They also have to be identical amps, which is part of the
loudspeaker designer's criteria. Four amps take up a lot of space.
So what I use are pro-grade, Hafler P1000 amps. 1U pancakes which I
rack mount, with 1U spacers between them for cooling. They're a
MOSFET amp and have that characteristic MOSFET sound, which I happen
to like.

Would my system sound different/better if I were to run four Rowland Research
amps, or four Audio Research D150 tube amps, or four Cary Audio tube amps?
That would be fun to try. But until my hi-tech startup gets funded, grows
to $50 million in annual sales, I become worth $millions and move into a
home with a living room twice as big, then I won't be trying out all those
cool amps anytime soon.

Can you imagine how much space four Audio Research D150 amps would take up?
Can you imagine how hard it would be to find four Audio Research 150 amps to buy?
Can you imagine how much heat four Audio Research D150 amps would make?
Can you imagine how much it would cost to re-tube four D150 amps?

I picked up the Haflers on EBay for about $125 each. That's a total amp
stack for $600. Not bad, and I do have to say it sounds pretty damn good.
In fact, I feel my system sounds as good as anything I've ever heard, at
any price. But would it sound different/better with something more
hi-end? That would be fun to find out.

I believe that amps do sound different, though not to the degree that
loudspeakers do. I also believe that there are situations where a pro amp
is actually superior for home use, even over high end amps like the ones
I've mentioned above. Specifically home amps can be subjected to severe
signal abuse when run into difficult loads, such as those presented by
electrostatic loudspeakers. A pro amp has protection circuitry built-in
that would sustain it during those rare circumstances where something
went badly wrong.

I used to run X-Static loudspeakers, which were wonderful, but deadly
to an amp under the wrong circumstances. I had a home-brew tube preamp
I was running that had the power supply go bad. I took it to a fine
engineer here in the SF Bay Area and among other things, he re-engineered
the power supply. When I picked it up, he was running it and it sounded
great. But when I plugged it in at home, my B&K MOSFET power amp got fried.
He'd made a mistake in his power supply design and inadvertantly created
a megahertz oscillation in the preamp. That wasn't a problem at his place
because he was running it into a tube power amp, which was driving a simple
dynamic speaker on his bench.

At home, it was a very different story. An electrostatic loudspeaker presents
a load to an amp that looks like a big capacitor. The impedence rises
dramatically with frequency, so it takes a good solid state amp with a
lot of current capability to properly drive it. But with a megahertz
oscillation going through the amp, it just bounces back from the loudspeaker
and fries the outputs of a consumer grade amp immediately. I've seen
this make of loudspeaker fry any number of consumer grade amps, including
two I owned. That was part of the risk of getting the great sound these
things had.

Today I would only drive those speakers with a pro grade amp because of its
ability to withstand signal abuse, and I'd get a big one with plenty of
current capability. But it would run hot, so the amp would need large cooling
fins and plenty of space around it. Your Perreaux probably wouldn't fit
the bill as it came with a fan to begin with, and probably doesn't have
sufficient passive cooling. I sold the X-Statics with that Hafler Pro2400
amp and it sounded pretty good.

You'd think I'm making your point here, but I'm not. I'm saying that a
pro-grade amp at home is appropriate when the situation calls for it.
I do believe that there are sonic differences between amps, but circumstances
sometimes dictate that sonic qualities can be of lesser importance than
equipment safety or constraints of space and/or budget.

Russ Button
Anonymous
February 17, 2005 3:20:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

On 16 Feb 2005 00:35:08 GMT, Russ Button <russ@button.com> wrote:

>Hi-end home audio equipment is engineered for sonics first. The
>second criterial in design of home audio gear is appearances.

You'll find that in the real commercial world, these priorities are in
fact reversed - whatever the adverts and the sycophantic ragazine
'reviewers' may say.

> If
>you're going to ask the outrageous sums that these manufacturers
>do, then you have to appeal to design esthetic which screams "ego".
>How else do you see rack handles on amps that don't rack mount?
>Why else do you see 1/2" thick brass plate on the front of an amp.
>Certain manufacturers have a signiture look - Rowland Research and
>McIntosh come to mind.

Quite so. All sizzle, and the same steak as everyone else. USDA prime,
certainly, but there's lots of that on the market, and it doesn't have
to be wrapped in gold foil to taste good.................

>You are suggesting that pro amps sound just as good as the very expensive
>hi-end amps, and that it's a waste of money to spend more than the $800
>or $1000 you spend on a high powered pro amp. This is where we disagree.

Do you have any *proof* to back up your assertion? This game has been
played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.

>If you were to take a pair of Avalon Eidolon loudspeakers ($35k/pair)
>and carefully listen to them being driven by your Perreaux amp, and
>then by any number of other home audiophile grade amps, you'd hear
>some significant differences.

No, you would not, given that all the amps can produce adequate power.

> Even with other less expensive audiophile
>grade loudspeakers, there would be significant differences. The Avalon
>line in particular, has extraordinary imaging. They really do "disappear"
>in a room, which is why people spend enormous sums for them.

Indeed so - and they can be driven by any competent amplifier. It's
the *speaker* that makes the difference.
--

Stewart Pinkerton | Music is Art - Audio is Engineering
Anonymous
February 17, 2005 4:04:06 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:

> This game has been
> played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
> any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
> room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.

Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
'inoperative'?

Stephen
Anonymous
February 17, 2005 6:28:39 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 wrote:
> In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
> Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
>
> > This game has been
> > played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to
tell
> > any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> > monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his
own
> > room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
>
> Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
> completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
> 'inoperative'?

Sure--just as soon as you come up with an anecdote about someone who
was sober, using a working switchbox (or no switchbox!), would COULD
hear such a difference.

Otherwise, all you're doing is making excuses.

bob
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 3:27:00 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cv131701oiv@news3.newsguy.com>, nabob33@hotmail.com wrote:

> MINe 109 wrote:
> > In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
> > Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
> >
> > > This game has been
> > > played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to
> tell
> > > any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> > > monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his
> own
> > > room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
> >
> > Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
> > completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
> > 'inoperative'?
>
> Sure--just as soon as you come up with an anecdote about someone who
> was sober, using a working switchbox (or no switchbox!), would COULD
> hear such a difference.

No, I don't think that's necessary. Why defend such a questionable test?

> Otherwise, all you're doing is making excuses.

If Stewart is going to trot out the tired and discredited "experienced
high-end dealer" wheeze, he should be truthful and say, "hungover
experienced high-end dealer with a broken comparator and a last-minute
substitution of DUT." Those aren't excuses, those are facts.

Stephen
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 3:28:46 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Stewart Pinkerton wrote:
> On 16 Feb 2005 00:35:08 GMT, Russ Button <russ@button.com> wrote:
>>You are suggesting that pro amps sound just as good as the very expensive
>>hi-end amps, and that it's a waste of money to spend more than the $800
>>or $1000 you spend on a high powered pro amp. This is where we disagree.
>
>
> Do you have any *proof* to back up your assertion?

Only my own experience. But I do believe that not everyone
hears things the same way, and it may well be that others
would not hear the same things I do.

> This game has been
> played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
> any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
> room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.

I wish I could have been there for that. Where I typically
hear differences is in things like clarity and tonal balance.
Mind you, the differences are not always very striking, but
they are there.

>>If you were to take a pair of Avalon Eidolon loudspeakers ($35k/pair)
>>and carefully listen to them being driven by your Perreaux amp, and
>>then by any number of other home audiophile grade amps, you'd hear
>>some significant differences.
>
> No, you would not, given that all the amps can produce adequate power.

I went to Las Vegas CES last month and went into a couple of different
suites that had Avalon Eidolon loudspeakers. While there was a lot
of similarity, there were also audible differences between the two
presentations. At least to my ear. Of course being in two different
rooms may well have had something to do with it too. I listened to the
same recordings all day long and came away with a pretty clear idea of
what sounded like what.

>> Even with other less expensive audiophile
>>grade loudspeakers, there would be significant differences. The Avalon
>>line in particular, has extraordinary imaging. They really do "disappear"
>>in a room, which is why people spend enormous sums for them.
>
>
> Indeed so - and they can be driven by any competent amplifier. It's
> the *speaker* that makes the difference.

I'm sure they can be driven by "any competent amplifier", but I do
contend that many people will hear differences between amplifiers.
I also believe that the differences will not necessarily be huge.
Whether an individual is willing to spend more to have one amplifier
versus another is a personal decision.

I've never owned a real hi-ticket amp. I've never had the megabucks
to do it. I've always purchased used gear or other "good value"
products. I ran a B&K ST-140 for 17 years and enjoyed it until it
finally died and was too expensive to repair. I've always put the
bulk of my money into my speakers, which is what I think is where
the value is in audio.

I agree with you that the majority of audio quality is in the speakers,
but I disagree that there aren't differences in amplifiers. That being
said, I think that if you carefully choose amongst the lower priced
amplifiers you'd find something highly satisfying. I think that the
big megabuck amps are for those people who have enough wealth to where
the price tag is irrelevant, and what's wrong with that?

I don't think there's anything you do with a car that can't be
satisfied with a less expensive car like a Saturn. Go to your
local Saturn dealer and they have little cars, mid-sized cars
and SUVs. A car gets you from here to there, keeps you dry in
the rain, keeps you warm while you drive in the winter, keeps
you cool when you drive in the summer, and has enough room
for groceries. There's very, very little anyone really needs
from a car that they couldn't get from a Saturn product. But
somehow people seem to buy a lot of cars that are more expensive
than Saturns.

Both Behringer and Gemini make pro grade power amps with at least
200 wpc at 8 ohms, for less than $300 new. They both use fans, so
for home use you'd have to disconnect the fans, hoping they would
run sufficiently cool under normal home usage. A similar Peavy
amp can be had for about $650.

I'm partial to Hafler amps, but their comparable 200 wpc, fanless
amp is about $1000. They have sufficient heat sinks that you could
run these at home without worry. The Parasound HCA-1500 is a 200wpc
amp that retails for about $800. A Hafler DH-500 can readily be
found on the used market for about $450 or so. A Dynaco 400 can
probably be had for $250.

The question I'd put to you is which of these amps you'd run. Do
you believe that there are any sonic differences between them? Is
a Dyna 400 all the amp anyone could want?

Russ Button
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 3:32:25 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

On 17 Feb 2005 01:04:06 GMT, MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu>
wrote:

>In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
> Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
>
>> This game has been
>> played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
>> any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
>> monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
>> room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
>
>Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
>completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
>'inoperative'?

Zip certainly *claimed* to be hungover - at a test of his professional
reputation which had been arranged for weeks.............

The first set of trials did not use the box, the second set took place
on the following day, so all parties were definitely rested and sober,
the only 'fault' was an occasional failure to switch when commanded,
and all three of Zip, Gigi and an audiophile friend of Zip totally
failed to tell any difference. I have also performed many such
comparisons, with similar results in most cases. Isn't it time to put
the myth of 'amplifier sound' to rest?
--

Stewart Pinkerton | Music is Art - Audio is Engineering
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 3:34:14 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"MINe 109" <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote in message
news:cv0qi602kbp@news4.newsguy.com...
> In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
> Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
>
>> This game has been
>> played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
>> any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
>> monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
>> room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
>
> Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
> completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
> 'inoperative'?

Hungover? Why would someone drink himself sick when he knows he's going to
take a test the next day? Maybe he wasn't hungover. Maybe it was just an
excuse.

Norm Strong
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 3:34:36 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Stewart Pinkerton wrote:
. . . .
> Do you have any *proof* to back up your assertion? This game has been
> played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
> any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
> room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
> . . .
But then, that's a consumer amp verses a consumer amp:) 

CD
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 3:34:55 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Stewart Pinkerton" <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote in message
news:cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com...

> Quite so. All sizzle, and the same steak as everyone else. USDA prime,
> certainly, but there's lots of that on the market, and it doesn't have
> to be wrapped in gold foil to taste good.................
>
IWC does put their Portuguese in in Rose Gold case. If I had the bucks, I'd
go for it; I'm only going to live once!
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 4:08:32 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> In article <cv131701oiv@news3.newsguy.com>, nabob33@hotmail.com wrote:

> > MINe 109 wrote:
> > > In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
> > > Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
> > >
> > > > This game has been
> > > > played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to
> > tell
> > > > any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> > > > monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his
> > own
> > > > room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
> > >
> > > Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
> > > completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
> > > 'inoperative'?
> >
> > Sure--just as soon as you come up with an anecdote about someone who
> > was sober, using a working switchbox (or no switchbox!), would COULD
> > hear such a difference.

> No, I don't think that's necessary. Why defend such a questionable test?


Why misrepresent the test the way you've done? That's rather questionable
behavior itself.

> If Stewart is going to trot out the tired and discredited "experienced
> high-end dealer" wheeze,

The only things dsicredited those trials -- which AIUI tested not only
Steve Zipser, but two other listeners as well -- was the claim that
the cables and amps could be reliably told apart by the parties involved,
based on sound alone, under conditions that were blind but
otherwise of the listener's choosing. This claim was Steve Zipser's.

But surely Tom Nousaine himself could give you a better account, either
here,, or in the dozens of posts that have appeared about this tests
on Usenet since they were held.
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 7:30:53 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
> On 17 Feb 2005 01:04:06 GMT, MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu>
> wrote:

> >In article <cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com>,
> > Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:
> >
> >> This game has been
> >> played before, and a very experienced high-end dealer failed to tell
> >> any difference between a $12,000 pair of Pass Labs Aleph 1.2
> >> monoblocs, and an old Yamaha integrated amplifier. This was in his own
> >> room, with his own 'reference' system and his own choice of music.
> >
> >Hungover, and with a defective comparator box that broke before
> >completing the test. Isn't it time to declare this anecdote
> >'inoperative'?

> Zip certainly *claimed* to be hungover - at a test of his professional
> reputation which had been arranged for weeks.............

Reading over Tom's reports of the trial, it also appears Zip tried to
weasel out of the trials...not answering the phone, closing up shop
at the time the first meeting was to take place, balking at level-matching...
not exactly encouraging behaviour.

> The first set of trials did not use the box, the second set took place
> on the following day, so all parties were definitely rested and sober,
> the only 'fault' was an occasional failure to switch when commanded,
> and all three of Zip, Gigi and an audiophile friend of Zip totally
> failed to tell any difference. I have also performed many such
> comparisons, with similar results in most cases. Isn't it time to put
> the myth of 'amplifier sound' to rest?

It should also be kept ever in mind that Zip claimed he could easily
tell 'his' favorites from other components, due to his familiarity with
them as a dealer. He failed to do so, using both cable-switching and an
ABX switchbox, in *his* listening room using *his* 'familiar' gear
in the tests.

Even if the test was flawed -- and a manual cable-switching
protocol is certainly not ideal -- what happened to the
'easily' heard difference? A manual cable switch isn't
*more* flawed than a typical sighted comparison, the sort
where Zip claimed to excel at 'picking' his amps from others.




--

-S
If you're a nut and knock on enough doors, eventually someone will open one,
look at you and say, Messiah, we have waited for your arrival.
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 10:43:41 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

On 18 Feb 2005 00:27:00 GMT, MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu>
wrote:

>If Stewart is going to trot out the tired and discredited "experienced
>high-end dealer" wheeze, he should be truthful and say, "hungover
>experienced high-end dealer with a broken comparator and a last-minute
>substitution of DUT." Those aren't excuses, those are facts.

How about *claimed* he was hungover (in preparation for a comparison
where he *knew* his perception was to be tested? Yeah, riiight...)
experienced high-end dealer who couldn't tell the difference without
the comparator box, which he then requested for the next day? The box
worked fine, apart from sometimes not switching immediately on
command. And none of the three experienced audiophiles in the test
could tell the difference. *Those* are the facts, so why are *you* so
desperate to discredit this test, while showing *no* evidence of any
such test with a *positive* result? Is it because you already *know*
that 'amplifier sound' is a myth?

--

Stewart Pinkerton | Music is Art - Audio is Engineering
Anonymous
February 18, 2005 10:44:20 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

On 18 Feb 2005 00:34:55 GMT, "Norman M. Schwartz" <nmsz@optonline.net>
wrote:

>"Stewart Pinkerton" <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote in message
>news:cv0o0p02i5s@news4.newsguy.com...
>
>> Quite so. All sizzle, and the same steak as everyone else. USDA prime,
>> certainly, but there's lots of that on the market, and it doesn't have
>> to be wrapped in gold foil to taste good.................
>>
>IWC does put their Portuguese in in Rose Gold case. If I had the bucks, I'd
>go for it; I'm only going to live once!

But they also put the 5001 movement in a steel case, giving identical
performance at half the price.

I'm pretty sure that no one ever claimed that the rose gold version
kept better time. Now, regarding the beautifully turned faceplates on
Jeff Rowland amps, do you think they improve the sound? Why can't you
buy a JR, or Mark Levinson, amp in a pressed steel case at half the
price? You can of course by a Pass Labs amp at half the price - it's
called an Adcom............. :-)
--

Stewart Pinkerton | Music is Art - Audio is Engineering
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 3:51:48 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cv5ghd01f1h@news3.newsguy.com>,
Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:

> On 18 Feb 2005 00:27:00 GMT, MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu>
> wrote:
>
> >If Stewart is going to trot out the tired and discredited "experienced
> >high-end dealer" wheeze, he should be truthful and say, "hungover
> >experienced high-end dealer with a broken comparator and a last-minute
> >substitution of DUT." Those aren't excuses, those are facts.
>
> How about *claimed* he was hungover (in preparation for a comparison
> where he *knew* his perception was to be tested? Yeah, riiight...)

Okay, and, yes, not too smart prep-wise.

> experienced high-end dealer who couldn't tell the difference without
> the comparator box, which he then requested for the next day? The box
> worked fine, apart from sometimes not switching immediately on
> command. And none of the three experienced audiophiles in the test
> could tell the difference. *Those* are the facts, so why are *you* so
> desperate to discredit this test, while showing *no* evidence of any
> such test with a *positive* result? Is it because you already *know*
> that 'amplifier sound' is a myth?

Slow down! He claimed the box broke so that he couldn't finish the last
set choices. This test barely qualifies as an anecdote.

FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
I'll worry about the lack of positives.

In the meantime, I'll enjoy some tunes on the Quads powered by my $250
integrated amp and commodity wire.

Stephen
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 6:45:45 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 wrote:
>
> FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> someone shows that the test can show real differences with music,
then
> I'll worry about the lack of positives.
>
What, you think no psychoacoustics researcher has ever used musical
passages in a DBT? How do you think they test perceptual codecs?
Wouldn't do much good to test a codec with pink noise and sine waves,
would it?

bob
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 6:46:29 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Stewart Pinkerton" <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote in message
news:cv5gik01f2j@news3.newsguy.com...

> I'm pretty sure that no one ever claimed that the rose gold version
> kept better time. Now, regarding the beautifully turned faceplates on
> Jeff Rowland amps, do you think they improve the sound? Why can't you
> buy a JR, or Mark Levinson, amp in a pressed steel case at half the
> price? You can of course by a Pass Labs amp at half the price - it's
> called an Adcom............. :-)
> --
Right, no one does claim better accuracy from rose gold or better sound from
beautifully turned faceplates,
however think about "matters of the heart", (sound is for many audiophiles)
isn't it more valuable to be in the company of good looking bodies?
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 6:46:59 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> In article <cv5ghd01f1h@news3.newsguy.com>,
> Stewart Pinkerton <patent3@dircon.co.uk> wrote:

> > On 18 Feb 2005 00:27:00 GMT, MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu>
> > wrote:
> >
> > >If Stewart is going to trot out the tired and discredited "experienced
> > >high-end dealer" wheeze, he should be truthful and say, "hungover
> > >experienced high-end dealer with a broken comparator and a last-minute
> > >substitution of DUT." Those aren't excuses, those are facts.
> >
> > How about *claimed* he was hungover (in preparation for a comparison
> > where he *knew* his perception was to be tested? Yeah, riiight...)

> Okay, and, yes, not too smart prep-wise.

> > experienced high-end dealer who couldn't tell the difference without
> > the comparator box, which he then requested for the next day? The box
> > worked fine, apart from sometimes not switching immediately on
> > command. And none of the three experienced audiophiles in the test
> > could tell the difference. *Those* are the facts, so why are *you* so
> > desperate to discredit this test, while showing *no* evidence of any
> > such test with a *positive* result? Is it because you already *know*
> > that 'amplifier sound' is a myth?

> Slow down! He claimed the box broke so that he couldn't finish the last
> set choices. This test barely qualifies as an anecdote.

> FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
> I'll worry about the lack of positives.


That's been shown dozens, perhaps hundreds, of times.
Even with cables, if they're different enough folr it to
matter audibly. Hell, Floyd Toole uses it to test speakers
at Harman Kardon/JBL. So start worrying.



--

-S
It's not my business to do intelligent work. -- D. Rumsfeld, testifying
before the House Armed Services Committee
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 6:50:17 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

On 19 Feb 2005 00:51:48 GMT, MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu>
wrote:

(about the 'Sunshine Trials'):

>He claimed the box broke so that he couldn't finish the last
>set choices. This test barely qualifies as an anecdote.

The test worked fine when you look at what actually occurred, as
opposed to what Zip claimed much later. You should note that
immediately after the test, he acknowledged that he had been beaten
fair and square. It was only a couple of weeks later (sales dropping
off, perhaps?) that he changed his story.

>FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
>someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
>I'll worry about the lack of positives.

If you pick a genuinely poor amp, it does. Indeed, I have posted
positive results of amplifier comparisons. Try it with an SET.....

>In the meantime, I'll enjoy some tunes on the Quads powered by my $250
>integrated amp and commodity wire.

And why not? It's all about the music!
--

Stewart Pinkerton | Music is Art - Audio is Engineering
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 1:09:21 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cv7n1j0rq9@news3.newsguy.com>,
Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:

Me:
> > FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> > someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
> > I'll worry about the lack of positives.
>
> That's been shown dozens, perhaps hundreds, of times.
> Even with cables, if they're different enough folr it to
> matter audibly.

Even then? :-)

> Hell, Floyd Toole uses it to test speakers
> at Harman Kardon/JBL. So start worrying.

Is that the same facility Sean Olive uses? I recall someone posting that
he published a paper that included describing the process of screening
listers for the ability to detect differences.

I read a more interesting point in the new Stereophile about blind tests
of colas in which neural images showed that when tasters were told the
names of the drinks different parts of their brains were engaged,
perhaps because of the associations, memories, etc brought about. There
were no real differences, but the differences were real! Listening to
music could very well be similar. I would be open to this type of
bridging the gap: assuming identical sound (everybody happy?) could
yield differing perceptions that are measurably real.

No worries,

Stephen
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 1:09:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cv7mv90rod@news3.newsguy.com>, nabob33@hotmail.com wrote:

> MINe 109 wrote:
> >
> > FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> > someone shows that the test can show real differences with music,
> > then I'll worry about the lack of positives.
> >
> What, you think no psychoacoustics researcher has ever used musical
> passages in a DBT? How do you think they test perceptual codecs?
> Wouldn't do much good to test a codec with pink noise and sine waves,
> would it?

Good point. What was that anecdote about the Swedish team whose codec
passed all the blind tests until someone heard an anomaly at home during
casual listening?

Stephen
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 3:57:18 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> In article <cv7n1j0rq9@news3.newsguy.com>,
> Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:

> Me:
> > > FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> > > someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
> > > I'll worry about the lack of positives.
> >
> > That's been shown dozens, perhaps hundreds, of times.
> > Even with cables, if they're different enough folr it to
> > matter audibly.

> Even then? :-)

> > Hell, Floyd Toole uses it to test speakers
> > at Harman Kardon/JBL. So start worrying.

> Is that the same facility Sean Olive uses? I recall someone posting that
> he published a paper that included describing the process of screening
> listers for the ability to detect differences.

AIUI, they *train* listeners to detect differences, using ABX
methods...which again, is accepted scientific practice.
It reduces the incidence of false negative...something the audiophile
community has been known to latch onto as a 'flaw' of blind tests.

So how could this possibly be objectionable?


> I read a more interesting point in the new Stereophile about blind tests
> of colas in which neural images showed that when tasters were told the >
names of the drinks different parts of their brains were engaged, >
perhaps because of the associations, memories, etc brought about. There >
were no real differences, but the differences were real! Listening to >
music could very well be similar. I would be open to this type of >
bridging the gap: assuming identical sound (everybody happy?) could >
yield differing perceptions that are measurably real > No worries,


Well, yes, and how is that different from placebo effec? The perceptions
are always 'real' in the sense that something is happening in the brain.
To take a trivial example , if you closed your eyes while listening ,
*obviously* the brain activation pattern would be different from if your
eyes were open. But this isn't making the *sound* objectively different,
is it?

All the above anecdote shows is that the brain processes both *signal* and
*noise* -- in other words, that placebo effects map to neurological
events.


Unwarranted pseudoscientific inference from such data is what makes
Stereophile, and audiophilia, ludicrous.
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 7:16:18 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cv8n9e0284l@news3.newsguy.com>,
Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:

> MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> > In article <cv7n1j0rq9@news3.newsguy.com>,
> > Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:
>
> > Me:
> > > > FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> > > > someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
> > > > I'll worry about the lack of positives.
> > >
> > > That's been shown dozens, perhaps hundreds, of times.
> > > Even with cables, if they're different enough folr it to
> > > matter audibly.
>
> > Even then? :-)
>
> > > Hell, Floyd Toole uses it to test speakers
> > > at Harman Kardon/JBL. So start worrying.
>
> > Is that the same facility Sean Olive uses? I recall someone posting that
> > he published a paper that included describing the process of screening
> > listers for the ability to detect differences.
>
> AIUI, they *train* listeners to detect differences, using ABX
> methods...which again, is accepted scientific practice.
> It reduces the incidence of false negative...something the audiophile
> community has been known to latch onto as a 'flaw' of blind tests.
>
> So how could this possibly be objectionable?

It isn't, especially for design and research.

> > I read a more interesting point in the new Stereophile about blind tests
> > of colas in which neural images showed that when tasters were told the >
> names of the drinks different parts of their brains were engaged, >
> perhaps because of the associations, memories, etc brought about. There >
> were no real differences, but the differences were real! Listening to >
> music could very well be similar. I would be open to this type of >
> bridging the gap: assuming identical sound (everybody happy?) could >
> yield differing perceptions that are measurably real > No worries,
>
>
> Well, yes, and how is that different from placebo effec?

A placebo causes a real, measurable effect, yes?

> The perceptions
> are always 'real' in the sense that something is happening in the brain.
> To take a trivial example , if you closed your eyes while listening ,
> *obviously* the brain activation pattern would be different from if your
> eyes were open. But this isn't making the *sound* objectively different,
> is it?

There is no sound, only perception. And you've just rephrased my premise.

> All the above anecdote shows is that the brain processes both *signal* and
> *noise* -- in other words, that placebo effects map to neurological
> events.

You don't find an actual scientific inquiry into this phenomenon
interesting?

> Unwarranted pseudoscientific inference from such data is what makes
> Stereophile, and audiophilia, ludicrous.

There's a gap unbridged.

Stephen
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 9:04:33 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> In article <cv8n9e0284l@news3.newsguy.com>,
> Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:

> > MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> > > In article <cv7n1j0rq9@news3.newsguy.com>,
> > > Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:
> >
> > > Me:
> > > > > FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> > > > > someone shows that the test can show real differences with music, then
> > > > > I'll worry about the lack of positives.
> > > >
> > > > That's been shown dozens, perhaps hundreds, of times.
> > > > Even with cables, if they're different enough folr it to
> > > > matter audibly.
> >
> > > Even then? :-)
> >
> > > > Hell, Floyd Toole uses it to test speakers
> > > > at Harman Kardon/JBL. So start worrying.
> >
> > > Is that the same facility Sean Olive uses? I recall someone posting that
> > > he published a paper that included describing the process of screening
> > > listers for the ability to detect differences.
> >
> > AIUI, they *train* listeners to detect differences, using ABX
> > methods...which again, is accepted scientific practice.
> > It reduces the incidence of false negative...something the audiophile
> > community has been known to latch onto as a 'flaw' of blind tests.
> >
> > So how could this possibly be objectionable?

> It isn't, especially for design and research.


> > > I read a more interesting point in the new Stereophile about blind tests
> > > of colas in which neural images showed that when tasters were told the >
> > names of the drinks different parts of their brains were engaged, >
> > perhaps because of the associations, memories, etc brought about. There >
> > were no real differences, but the differences were real! Listening to >
> > music could very well be similar. I would be open to this type of >
> > bridging the gap: assuming identical sound (everybody happy?) could >
> > yield differing perceptions that are measurably real > No worries,
> >
> >
> > Well, yes, and how is that different from placebo effec?

> A placebo causes a real, measurable effect, yes?

Yes, it can, *in the patient*. However, it is patently not due to the
characteristics of the 'medicine'. In other words, the effect doesn't
occur for the reason the patient believes it does. The same medicine
could be given twice, and one could be presented as 'real' and one
as 'placebo', with different results. The analogy
to audio should be clear.

> > The perceptions
> > are always 'real' in the sense that something is happening in the brain.
> > To take a trivial example , if you closed your eyes while listening ,
> > *obviously* the brain activation pattern would be different from if your
> > eyes were open. But this isn't making the *sound* objectively different,
> > is it?

> There is no sound, only perception. And you've just rephrased my premise.

Rubbish. There is sound -- atmospheric pressure waves within the 20-20kHz range
impinging on the ear -- and there is mental interpretation of that stimulus.


> > All the above anecdote shows is that the brain processes both *signal* and
> > *noise* -- in other words, that placebo effects map to neurological
> > events.

> You don't find an actual scientific inquiry into this phenomenon
> interesting?

Yes, but I don't find obfuscatory philosophical musings particularly
useful for this. That neurons actually fire in the brain during
thinking and perceiving is not, in itself, astonishing at this late date.


> > Unwarranted pseudoscientific inference from such data is what makes
> > Stereophile, and audiophilia, ludicrous.

> There's a gap unbridged.

It's not as if it couldn't be bridged. There's good *economic*
reasons not to, from a magazine publishere's POV.



--

-S
It's not my business to do intelligent work. -- D. Rumsfeld, testifying
before the House Armed Services Committee
Anonymous
February 21, 2005 12:08:30 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cuu4fs01omp@news3.newsguy.com>, Russ Button
<russ@button.com> wrote:

> Giles Stewart wrote:
> > In article <ctqur802f1u@news1.newsguy.com>, Russ Button
> > <russ@button.com> wrote:
<snip>
>
> Are you saying that you have 300 wpc and you're not actually
> driving the amp hard enough to use 300 wpc? Why get an amp
> with that much power then?
>
Essentialy, yes. My car can theoretically do over 120mph but I dont
drive it at that speed. The performance aspect I do tend to use
frequently to it's full potential is acceleration, when overtaking.

It is the same with the amp. I have only once or twice used it's full
potential for high 'sustained' output (for a PA at a wedding) but I
suspect I frequently use a good part of it's capability for handling
transients.

I got it because it came to my notice when I needed an amp and was very
good value.

<snip>
>
> Recording studio requirements are entirely different from home audio
> requirements. In a studio, the big thing is saving space.

Saving space - you are kidding? I have seen photos of recording
studios you could get most of my house into.

> You get all
> rack mount gear because it takes up less space. You're never going to
> see a professional studio with the likes of Krell, Rowland Research, or
> any of the fine tube amps that people like for home use.

Space is not the reason you are unlikely to find such in a recording
studio. A complete lack of value for money would be a more likely
reason.

I have several times seen people make the incredible claim that
professional organisations involved in recording music and then selling
their product for many billions of dollars/euros - have little or no
interest in sound quality! The evidence for this ludicrous claim is
that they do not employ most of the panoply of esoteric high end gear
that floats around in the market on beds of hot air.

The belief system required is truly bizarre!

Somehow - a recording process that uses inferior wires, speakers,
amplifiers and ears - produces a product that magically ends up with
content from which a high definition signal can be later extracted by
using higher quality components than were used to record and produce
the signal in the first place!

Only words like 'magic' and 'miracle' are sufficient to explain how
such a mysterious process could occur.

> In the case of pro audio,
> the design criteria are durability in the face of physical and signal
> abuse, and taking up the minimal amount of rack mount space. Sonic
> quality is down the list.
>
> You are suggesting that pro amps sound just as good as the very expensive
> hi-end amps, and that it's a waste of money to spend more than the $800
> or $1000 you spend on a high powered pro amp.

That is exactly what I think.

>This is where we disagree.

Yes we do.

> If you were to take a pair of Avalon Eidolon loudspeakers ($35k/pair)
> and carefully listen to them being driven by your Perreaux amp, and
> then by any number of other home audiophile grade amps, you'd hear
> some significant differences. Even with other less expensive audiophile
> grade loudspeakers, there would be significant differences. The Avalon
> line in particular, has extraordinary imaging. They really do "disappear"
> in a room, which is why people spend enormous sums for them.

The only thing 'disappearing' is a large surplus of disposable income.
Being the tone deaf pauper that I am, I will just have to muddle along
with my sonically challenged B&W 802 nautili and pro power amp, and
other bits, all wired together with Canare microphone cable
interconnects of my own manufacture. I couldn't even tell you then
'name' on my speaker cable without going to have a look. It just
looked like the conductors were thick enough to handle a few amps and
was a couple of ¤ per metre.

> You'd find that your Perreaux amp would perform differently in terms
> of timbre, tonal balance and imaging. You may or may not prefer it,
> but it will be different.

Would I?

> I run a tri-amped loudspeaker, which actually requires four stereo power
> amps, not three. So my costs are four times what it would be for someone
> else. I only need 60 wpc for my amps, but that's still a lot of money
> potentially. They also have to be identical amps, which is part of the
> loudspeaker designer's criteria. Four amps take up a lot of space.
> So what I use are pro-grade, Hafler P1000 amps. 1U pancakes which I
> rack mount, with 1U spacers between them for cooling. They're a
> MOSFET amp and have that characteristic MOSFET sound, which I happen
> to like.

How strange! I belive my Perreaux has MOSFETs too.

> Can you imagine how hard it would be to find four Audio Research 150 amps to
> buy?

For Sony Music, Deutsche Grammaphon, Decca, EMI etc. - a piece of cake
I would imagine

> Can you imagine how much heat four Audio Research D150 amps would make?
> Can you imagine how much it would cost to re-tube four D150 amps?

A mere trifle to large corporations with billions in cash flow.

> I believe that amps do sound different, though not to the degree that
> loudspeakers do. I also believe that there are situations where a pro amp
> is actually superior for home use, even over high end amps like the ones
> I've mentioned above. Specifically home amps can be subjected to severe
> signal abuse when run into difficult loads, such as those presented by
> electrostatic loudspeakers. A pro amp has protection circuitry built-in
> that would sustain it during those rare circumstances where something
> went badly wrong.

You are probably correct, There are five mysterious black plastic bumps
on the back of my Perraux. They are labled 'fuse'. I think they must
be part of the protection circuit you speak of.

> I used to run X-Static loudspeakers, which were wonderful, but deadly
> to an amp under the wrong circumstances.
<snip>
> Today I would only drive those speakers with a pro grade amp because of its
> ability to withstand signal abuse

You mean you would actually sacrifice sonic excellence for practical
considerations?

> and I'd get a big one with plenty of
> current capability. But it would run hot, so the amp would need large cooling
> fins and plenty of space around it. Your Perreaux probably wouldn't fit
> the bill as it came with a fan to begin with, and probably doesn't have
> sufficient passive cooling.

You are possibly correct, but for my purposes, the passive cooling is
certainly sufficient. You can download a product spec sheet with
picture here: http://www.perreaux.com/backcat.php

> You'd think I'm making your point here, but I'm not. I'm saying that a
> pro-grade amp at home is appropriate when the situation calls for it.
> I do believe that there are sonic differences between amps, but circumstances
> sometimes dictate that sonic qualities can be of lesser importance than
> equipment safety or constraints of space and/or budget.

About the only thing we seem to disagree on at this point is whether
consumer amps have superior sonic capabilities over Pro grade amps. I
happen to think that they don't.

Giles Stewart
Anonymous
February 21, 2005 1:36:27 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cvajfh02utm@news1.newsguy.com>,
Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:

> MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> > In article <cv8n9e0284l@news3.newsguy.com>,
> > Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:
>
> > > MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> > > > In article <cv7n1j0rq9@news3.newsguy.com>,
> > > > Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:
> > >
> > > > Me:
> > > > > > FWIW, I don't care whether he could hear differences or not. When
> > > > > > someone shows that the test can show real differences with music,
> > > > > > then
> > > > > > I'll worry about the lack of positives.
> > > > >
> > > > > That's been shown dozens, perhaps hundreds, of times.
> > > > > Even with cables, if they're different enough folr it to
> > > > > matter audibly.
> > >
> > > > Even then? :-)
> > >
> > > > > Hell, Floyd Toole uses it to test speakers
> > > > > at Harman Kardon/JBL. So start worrying.
> > >
> > > > Is that the same facility Sean Olive uses? I recall someone posting
> > > > that
> > > > he published a paper that included describing the process of screening
> > > > listers for the ability to detect differences.
> > >
> > > AIUI, they *train* listeners to detect differences, using ABX
> > > methods...which again, is accepted scientific practice.
> > > It reduces the incidence of false negative...something the audiophile
> > > community has been known to latch onto as a 'flaw' of blind tests.
> > >
> > > So how could this possibly be objectionable?
>
> > It isn't, especially for design and research.
>
>
> > > > I read a more interesting point in the new Stereophile about blind
> > > > tests
> > > > of colas in which neural images showed that when tasters were told the
> > > > >
> > > names of the drinks different parts of their brains were engaged, >
> > > perhaps because of the associations, memories, etc brought about. There >
> > > were no real differences, but the differences were real! Listening to >
> > > music could very well be similar. I would be open to this type of >
> > > bridging the gap: assuming identical sound (everybody happy?) could >
> > > yield differing perceptions that are measurably real > No worries,
> > >
> > >
> > > Well, yes, and how is that different from placebo effec?
>
> > A placebo causes a real, measurable effect, yes?
>
> Yes, it can, *in the patient*. However, it is patently not due to the
> characteristics of the 'medicine'. In other words, the effect doesn't
> occur for the reason the patient believes it does. The same medicine
> could be given twice, and one could be presented as 'real' and one
> as 'placebo', with different results. The analogy
> to audio should be clear.

Of course, hence my anecdote. Your second sentence is arguable, as the
"characteristics" of the 'medicine' include its appearance and how it is
administered, etc.

> > > The perceptions
> > > are always 'real' in the sense that something is happening in the brain.
> > > To take a trivial example , if you closed your eyes while listening ,
> > > *obviously* the brain activation pattern would be different from if your
> > > eyes were open. But this isn't making the *sound* objectively different,
> > > is it?
>
> > There is no sound, only perception. And you've just rephrased my premise.
>
> Rubbish. There is sound -- atmospheric pressure waves within the 20-20kHz
> range
> impinging on the ear -- and there is mental interpretation of that stimulus.

Again, we're saying the same thing.

> > > All the above anecdote shows is that the brain processes both *signal*
> > > and
> > > *noise* -- in other words, that placebo effects map to neurological
> > > events.
>
> > You don't find an actual scientific inquiry into this phenomenon
> > interesting?
>
> Yes, but I don't find obfuscatory philosophical musings particularly
> useful for this. That neurons actually fire in the brain during
> thinking and perceiving is not, in itself, astonishing at this late date.

That would be old news indeed.

http://www.brandchannel.com/start1.asp?fa_id=201

I didn't find the original report. I expect audio skeptics will now take
up brand differentiation, perhaps to advocate the marketing of generic
sodium lauryl sulphate products and spreading anecdotes of substituting
inexpensive shampoo for a boutique brand to humiliate someone who
bragged about his clean hair.

> > > Unwarranted pseudoscientific inference from such data is what makes
> > > Stereophile, and audiophilia, ludicrous.
>
> > There's a gap unbridged.
>
> It's not as if it couldn't be bridged. There's good *economic*
> reasons not to, from a magazine publishere's POV.

Use and listening tests are still useful to consumers, even in magazines
that don't claim sonic differences.

Stephen
Anonymous
February 21, 2005 5:50:20 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> > > > *obviously* the brain activation pattern would be different from if your
> > > > eyes were open. But this isn't making the *sound* objectively different,
> > > > is it?
> >
> > > There is no sound, only perception. And you've just rephrased my premise.
> >
> > Rubbish. There is sound -- atmospheric pressure waves within the 20-20kHz
> > range
> > impinging on the ear -- and there is mental interpretation of that stimulus.

> Again, we're saying the same thing.

No, we're weren't, as is obvious from reading the exchange.


> > > > All the above anecdote shows is that the brain processes both
*signal* > > > > and > > > > *noise* -- in other words, that placebo
effects map to neurological > > > > events. > > > > > You don't find an
actual scientific inquiry into this phenomenon > > > interesting? > > > >
Yes, but I don't find obfuscatory philosophical musings particularly > >
useful for this. That neurons actually fire in the brain during > >
thinking and perceiving is not, in itself, astonishing at this late date.

> That would be old news indeed.

> http://www.brandchannel.com/start1.asp?fa_id=201

> I didn't find the original report. I expect audio skeptics will now take
> up brand differentiation, perhaps to advocate the marketing of generic
> sodium lauryl sulphate products and spreading anecdotes of substituting
> inexpensive shampoo for a boutique brand to humiliate someone who
> bragged about his clean hair.

Now, why in the world would you expect that *audio* skeptics would take
up that banner particularly, given that shampoo has
nothing to do with audio? (or is there a new shampoo-based tweak
is TAS this month?)





> > > > Unwarranted pseudoscientific inference from such data is what
makes > > > > Stereophile, and audiophilia, ludicrous. > > > > > There's a
gap unbridged. > > > > It's not as if it couldn't be bridged. There's
good *economic* > > reasons not to, from a magazine publishere's POV.


> Use and listening tests are still useful to consumers, even in magazines
> that don't claim sonic differences.


In the sense that lists of lucky numbers are useful to lottery players,
absolutely.
Anonymous
February 21, 2005 8:49:58 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

In article <cvbi9c01quf@news2.newsguy.com>,
Steven Sullivan <ssully@panix.com> wrote:

> MINe 109 <smcatut@mail.utexas.edu> wrote:
> > > > > *obviously* the brain activation pattern would be different from if
> > > > > your
> > > > > eyes were open. But this isn't making the *sound* objectively
> > > > > different,
> > > > > is it?
> > >
> > > > There is no sound, only perception. And you've just rephrased my
> > > > premise.
> > >
> > > Rubbish. There is sound -- atmospheric pressure waves within the 20-20kHz
> > > range
> > > impinging on the ear -- and there is mental interpretation of that
> > > stimulus.
>
> > Again, we're saying the same thing.
>
> No, we're weren't, as is obvious from reading the exchange.

You snipped the bit where I assumed identical sound for the purpose of
this exchange. What is obvious is you seeking contradiction while I
propose agreements. For one thing, the anecdote implies that the
listener creates differences from identical stimuli. Is that not your
position?

However, to call it "interpretation" is suspect, as it implies a
conscious process. One point of the anecdote is that the measurements
show differentiation to be unconscious.

> > > > > All the above anecdote shows is that the brain processes both
> *signal* > > > > and > > > > *noise* -- in other words, that placebo
> effects map to neurological > > > > events. > > > > > You don't find an
> actual scientific inquiry into this phenomenon > > > interesting? > > > >
> Yes, but I don't find obfuscatory philosophical musings particularly > >
> useful for this. That neurons actually fire in the brain during > >
> thinking and perceiving is not, in itself, astonishing at this late date.
>
> > That would be old news indeed.
>
> > http://www.brandchannel.com/start1.asp?fa_id=201
>
> > I didn't find the original report. I expect audio skeptics will now take
> > up brand differentiation, perhaps to advocate the marketing of generic
> > sodium lauryl sulphate products and spreading anecdotes of substituting
> > inexpensive shampoo for a boutique brand to humiliate someone who
> > bragged about his clean hair.
>
> Now, why in the world would you expect that *audio* skeptics would take
> up that banner particularly, given that shampoo has
> nothing to do with audio? (or is there a new shampoo-based tweak
> is TAS this month?)

Your objection to high end gear seems to be that you consider it
identically performing, set apart only by appearance, hype, etc, that
is, branding. If so, you might find that other consumer goods with far
more economic impact than high end audio rely purely on branding and
superficial characteristics to differentiate themselves.

If that is your objection, why wouldn't you look for bigger fish to fry?

> > > > > Unwarranted pseudoscientific inference from such data is what
> makes > > > > Stereophile, and audiophilia, ludicrous. > > > > > There's a
> gap unbridged. > > > > It's not as if it couldn't be bridged. There's
> good *economic* > > reasons not to, from a magazine publishere's POV.
>
>
> > Use and listening tests are still useful to consumers, even in magazines
> > that don't claim sonic differences.

> In the sense that lists of lucky numbers are useful to lottery players,
> absolutely.

Nonsense. If a reviewer had trouble using a product in some way,
wouldn't that be useful information to have?

Stephen
Anonymous
February 21, 2005 11:10:40 PM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

"Steven Sullivan" <ssully@panix.com> wrote in message
news:cvbi9c01quf@news2.newsguy.com...
>> http://www.brandchannel.com/start1.asp?fa_id=201
>
>> I didn't find the original report. I expect audio skeptics will now take
>> up brand differentiation, perhaps to advocate the marketing of generic
>> sodium lauryl sulphate products and spreading anecdotes of substituting
>> inexpensive shampoo for a boutique brand to humiliate someone who
>> bragged about his clean hair.
>
> Now, why in the world would you expect that *audio* skeptics would take
> up that banner particularly, given that shampoo has
> nothing to do with audio? (or is there a new shampoo-based tweak
> is TAS this month?)
>
Sure it's the formulation of the SLS that matters, similar to the case of
solder.
October 30, 2012 6:51:11 PM

Quote:
Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Fan noise on a pro amp is *gigantic*! Any pro amp that has a fan is
completely unacceptable in a home environment. What's the point of
having a 100 db signal to noise ratio when the fan puts out 75 db
of noise? I had a QSC amp once that was at least that loud. That's
perfectly OK for a DJ who schleps his rack of gear around and runs
a music mix for 200+ people in a rental hall or gymnasium. It's not
OK for an audiophile home user. Does QSC even make an amp without
a fan?

For a while last year, I had an Hafler Pro 2400 power amp, at 120 wpc.
It had no fan and sounded pretty good. It has a nasty turn-off
transient and ran quite hot, but it sounded OK. The Hafler P1000
amps I'm using now have no turn-on or turn-off transients and
sound terrific. They're also 50 wpc so they don't run anywhere
near as hot either and I like the way they sound.


If you take the time to listen to different amps, you do find real
sonic differences. I'm not about to suggest that most pro amps
sound as good as a good audiophile/consumer grade amp. But I do
think it makes good sense to take an honest listen.

Even though we all have champagne tastes, the truth is that the
vast majority of us have budget constraints. My Orion setup requires
8 channels of amplification at approximately 60 watts per channel.
If I were to go with some big name hi-end 2-channel amps at $2000
each, that would be $8000, which is a whole *LOT* more than I could
possibly spend on amplification. And $2000 for a 2-channel amp is
pretty pedestrian compared to the likes of Rowland Research, Krell,
Audio Research, Conrad-Johnson, etc. Imagine what it would cost me
to run 4 McIntosh MC275 amps, not to mention the cost to re-tube
every couple of years. It would provide great home heating in the
winter, but would kill me in the summer!

The differences between amplifiers is nowhere near as great as the
differences between loudspeakers. So there may well be a pro amp
that would be a great value for the home user. It would certainly
be interesting to spend a couple of days doing comparitive auditions
with the greats such as McIntosh tube amps, Rowland Research,
Audio Research, more budget minded gear such as Parasound or B&K,
compared to pro line gear (without fans) such as Hafler, Crown (do
they have anything without fans?) and even older Altec pro grade
tube amps.


A Lexus is just a gussied up Toyota Camry. They share the same
frame and drive train. But the Lexus has a lot of luxury details
the Camry lacks. The Camry is a very comfortable and reliable
car, but they sure sell a lot at the Lexus dealership!

Russ



Hi, i know this is an old thread, but it is after reading this topic that i went out and bought an entry level Audiophile Integreated amp... Cambridge Azure 640 V2 which i paid $100 (yep) this thing worth more i know.

My new Cambridge is replacing a QSC RMX 250 DJ Amp that is still working perfectly fine by the way.

the reason im doing the switch is because i was tired of the fan noise in my home environment.

Now that i have plugged everything, im more able to compare between a QSC RMX DJ amp to my Audiophile Cambridge.

Now here is my 2 cents.

To be honest, i prefer the QSC RMX DJ amp. Maybe because i havent gave enough time to adapt to the new sounding but the reason i like the DJ pro amp over the Cambridge is the SOUND in the music!.

I don't know what it is, i don't know if im having a vision or something but the sound from a DJ pro amp is giving more life to the music itselft.

When i listen to the sound coming from the QSC RMX DJ pro amp, i simply want to dance.
I have a very good hearing and i can see a tiny little slight increase in quality when i listen to the Cambridge Azur Audiophile entry level amp. But that quality increase just don't make enough. I just don't want to dance at all.. My young wife likes to dance, and the Cambridge although it sounds slightly and barely better, does not make her want to dance either. There is something missing in the sound to make it ALIVE!

Bottom line is:

If you can live with the fan noise, stick with a DJ pro amp...
If youre having a party at your house, stick to a DJ pro amp..
If you want to dance, stick to a DJ pro amp.

But if you are looking for quality and clean sound but wants to fall asleep in a couch while listening, then go with the Azure Cambridge or any Audiophile entry integrated amp.

By the way, im comparing both amp set to the same volume and music tracks.

DJ pro amp sound are more alive!



Thats my 2 cents,... any explanations to my opinion is welcome..
October 31, 2012 2:03:28 AM

Quote:
Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

How do they compare? This question arises because a customer of mine
asked me about one of his amps, made by Crown. All he could tell me is
that it cost about $500 and has a rated output of 450 watts per channel.
I have been told that the finest components made are for professional
use, but the prices for examples I have been given were very high. I am
concerned about the many pro amps like this one that are so much cheaper
than their consumer counterparts. Even though I have been in the audio
business since 1978 I have no experience with the power amplifiers sold
for professional use, as they are usually made and sold by different
companies, and when a company makes both they have separate sales forces
and dealer networks. Different stores - different customers.
If this is a good $500 450 wpc amp what are high end consumers doing
paying much higher prices for their amps?


Wylie Williams
The Speaker and Stereo Store
Saint Louis, Missouri
I am an old audiophile about 41 years in this. Crown use to be made in Indiana and was good solid gear. I owned the Crown DC300A Amp. Now Crown is really poorly made and is owned by some Chinese Company.It is not the Crown of years ago.
!