Zero Connector DIY Silver/Gold Interconnect

Discussion in 'DIY Discussion' started by 3DSonics, Oct 21, 2004.

  1. 3DSonics

    michaelab desafinado

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    IMO it's far easier to convince yourself of a differenece that doesn't exist than to convince yourself there is no difference when one does exist - the motivation to hear non-existent differences is usually much stronger too. In the past when I've "heard" differences I've generally gone along with whatever the consensus in the room was, not willing to admit that in fact I knew inside that I'd heard no difference. If I heard a clear difference it would be hard to deny to myself. You always know, when you're being honest with yourself, whether you heard a difference or not. What you say to the other people in the room is another matter though, perhaps in order to save face.

    Your example of how to trick a cable non-believer is amusing but it's not of any scientific value, other than illustrating a point of human psychology. In order for an ABX test to have any validity, the people being subjected to the test must not know what is being tested, just that they are being asked to say if they can identify whether, on each listen of X, whether X is A or B. Your example immediately put the non-believer in the situation of wanting to "prove" to the believer that cables made no difference so he disregarded what he was actually hearing and just made sure his resposnes showed he could hear no difference. It's likely he was quite able to hear the polarity inversion but wasn't about to let the cable believer have his triumph by admitting it.

    When I mean "honest" I mean honest to myself. I know when truly when I've heard a difference and when I haven't. I always evaluate everything on the basis that it is potentially audible and I don't attach any emotional reaction to these things at all. Sometimes during testing of cables I've even walked up to my equipment, changed nothing, and then sat down again and listened to the same track again and quite frequently it appears to sound subtly different, and I KNOW I haven't changed anything. This illustrates the problem with human hearing memory, which is that it's pretty awful. To really be able to hear a subtle difference requires many repeated listens back and forth in relatively quick succession, slowly starting to focus on perhaps just one aspect of the sound that you think might be changing and then concentrate on that. Otherwise you haven't a hope of reliably detecting a small difference. That method is obvioulsy as valid for determining that, in truth, there is no difference that you are able to detect.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Oct 29, 2004
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  2. 3DSonics

    3DSonics away working hard on "it"

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    Hi,

    Actually, with respect, you will find it equally easy to convince yourself of either. How convinced you are will depend upon how strong your convictions are. Our brain is amazingly capable when it comes to make our senses report what we wish to be true.

    You do? Like the people in the Oohashi ultrasonic experiment whose brainwave patterns showed a reliable change when the test subjects claimed not be able to hear a difference and their AXB scores showed randomness....

    I do not think that auditions with large numbers of people are usefull, unless scored anonymously and correctly statistically analysed, plus with strict orders to people to not to talk during audition untill papers are marked!

    I never claimed it was more than that.

    How often is that the case in any of the widely published ABX Tests on subjects as cables, amplifier differences etc?

    If you know the statistical system that underpins ABX testing you may find it difficult to retain this position. If he had merely "inverted" his reaction the score would still be significant.

    Perhaps. Perhaps not. Before I revealed what I had done he was honestly shocked that everyone else in the test had "perfect" scores identifying differences and he had not.

    This is a very philosophical point. If I want to know what I have heard, for my own satisfaction I apply the same principle. If I wish to ascertain if what I hear is shared by at least a significant fraction of people I need to test others.

    That works for me only in some cases. I find long term auditions more telling for subtle differences, if I review my reactions to music over a long period. Is my attention retained (I have a severe attention deficit, if something does not retain my attention I drift off to other things), am I feeling more strained or relaxed etc.

    Anyway, your methode clearly works in your reality, even if does not in my own....

    Ciao T
     
    3DSonics, Oct 29, 2004
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  3. 3DSonics

    michaelab desafinado

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    In that case, clearly, the change in brainwave patterns was not connected with what the subjects were conciously able to hear.

    I do know the statisticaly system, and I thought about that before saying what I did. If you want to score a deliberately non-significant result then you merely need to alternate between A and B in each test or ensure that you answer A as often as you answer B. In a test with enough trials this should cause a result showing you are unable to tell the difference between the two.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Oct 29, 2004
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  4. 3DSonics

    3DSonics away working hard on "it"

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    Hi,

    Absolutely. But IT WAS connected with what the subjects where OBJECTIVELY able to hear.... (chew on that for a while and consider the implications).

    So, you suggest that my "nonbeliever" deliberatly attempted to achieve a "null" result? The simple A/B alteration obviously does not apply to any ABX test. No, the data he gave when asked if X was A or B was sufficiently random to suggest that he was unable to hear any difference, meaning both identical pairs where identified as identical and non-indentical and equally non-identical pairs.

    Ciao T
     
    3DSonics, Oct 29, 2004
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  5. 3DSonics

    michaelab desafinado

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    I'm suggesting that's possible. OTOH he may actually have not been able to hear the polarity change, in which case it would be logical to assume he couldn't hear differences in cables even if these were huge.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Oct 29, 2004
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  6. 3DSonics

    Markus S Trade

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    Changing the polarity on one channel only meant that the system was out of phase. If you're not Mick Parry and your speakers aren't Briks, that should be audible to anybody.
     
    Markus S, Oct 29, 2004
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  7. 3DSonics

    michaelab desafinado

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    I too believe that an out of phase system should be audible to anybody. OTOH I also find it hard to believe that someone could be so conditioned by what they wanted to hear as to be unable to hear such an obvious change. We're not talking about hearing a change but denying it, we're talking about (apparently) not conciously being able to hear the change.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Oct 29, 2004
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  8. 3DSonics

    sideshowbob Trisha

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    I have no difficulty spotting polarity errors. Significant cable differences, OTOH, well... ;)

    Having said that, I'm quite tempted to pick up a 47 Labs OTA cable kit when I'm in Japan next year. The plastic solder-free connectors are interesting to say the least, and I like the simplicity of the idea.

    -- Ian
     
    sideshowbob, Oct 29, 2004
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  9. 3DSonics

    3DSonics away working hard on "it"

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    Hi,

    It is, UNLESS the individual hearing it expects to hear a change he firmly believes to be inaudible. On the second round, now knowing what was tested the subject identified the change correctly EVERY TIME. So we have an issue that something which may be OBJECTIVELY audible or inaudible may be SUBJECTIVELY percieved by the test subject as inaudible or audible (respectivley), depending upon the subjects personal believes and prejudices.

    Please note, I DID NOT ASK YOU TO BELIEVE, I asked you to empirically evaluate this. So please, instead of keeping to religion, try some science.

    Just ensure the deception is reasonably thorough, sufficient to fool people well. I gave a little lecture and demo before all else, actually describing how the cables differed in sound and all that. Nice performance I must say.

    BTW, what prompted me to that little test (and one or two more similar ones) was that I demoed a modified CD Player against a Stock one (Marantz CD-67) under blind conditions and while I perfectly well knew there where differences I found non audible (but I did have a bad case of performance anxiety). Enough others heard the difference under blind conditions and described differences similar to what I noted at home.

    It led me to question how much our expectations and believes influence what we subjectively percieve. I found that in audio as much as elsewhere the old Nietsche quote "We are all much better artists then we give ourselves credit for" holds true. Our perception alters reality as much as possible to present us with what we expect or fear to percieve.

    Ciao T
     
    3DSonics, Oct 29, 2004
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  10. 3DSonics

    sideshowbob Trisha

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    Whether something is audible or not is an entirely subjective question, there's no "objective" about it. Signals that (objectively) measure differently may in fact sound exactly the same to a listener, depending on their hearing abilities.

    However, I agree with you it's possible to convince oneself either way, but audiophilia is a hobby in which individuals mostly train themselves in the expectation that they are hearing differences, especially when they've spent a lot of money.

    -- Ian
     
    sideshowbob, Oct 29, 2004
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  11. 3DSonics

    michaelab desafinado

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    OK then, there is no explanation that I find acceptable for the results you obtained. Incidentally, I use the word believe not in it's religious sense but in it's more broader meaning of "It is my opinion that..", "I think that" etc. It's not got anything to do with faith.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Oct 29, 2004
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  12. 3DSonics

    3DSonics away working hard on "it"

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    Hi,

    Recent test made using brainwave patterns as indicator suggest a different position, to me at least. If changing the acoustic stimulus in a certain manner and fashion changes the brainwave pattern reliably, for many different subjects we have a good indication of a OBJECTIVELY AUDIBLE effect. If despite this no subjective change is percieved than the SUBJECTIVE PERCEPTION is such that objectively audible changes are not percieved (fr whatever reasons).

    And then comes the backlash where they swing to various degrees the other way where "everything sounds the same".

    As usual, the truth is in the middle, but it's not a comfortable place to sit, if you wish for your peers to approve of you.... ;-)

    Ciao T
     
    3DSonics, Oct 29, 2004
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  13. 3DSonics

    sideshowbob Trisha

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    If a brainwave pattern alters yet that alteration doesn't lead a subject to identify an audible difference then the effect simply isn't audible to the subject, end of story. Audibility is a property of listeners, not of brains, and listeners are not simply made up of brain-states.

    There's a long and undistinguished tradition in philosophy of attempting to map states of perception to patterns of activity in the brain, it's never yet got very far, despite the fact that it seems a promising starting-point for a philosophical materialist (of which I am one). Calling a brain-state "objective" and a perception of audibility "subjective" is merely a function of language, and begs all the important questions.

    Edit: sorry, I think I misunderstood your post and misread this as a personal attack, when on second reading it isn't.

    I think the realisation that often things sound more similar than they are different is quite a big leap forward for many people suffering from audiophilia nervosa. ;-)

    -- Ian
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 29, 2004
    sideshowbob, Oct 29, 2004
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  14. 3DSonics

    3DSonics away working hard on "it"

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    Hi,

    I repeat, I did not ask you to accept or believe ANYTHING. I asked you to find out for yourself.

    Well, in my defintion "It is my opinion that..", "I think that" are fundamentally statements that arise from the mind operating in "religious mode". To me religion is a system of believe/opinion that has no reliably provoable basis (lack of proof positive on anything does not constitute the proof of the negative!) to the individual holding such a system as true. It has as such nothing to do directly with faith in a specific deity (in fact, atheism is a religion, by definition), but with the acceptance as fact of unprooven postulates.

    So, sorry, in my view you use the word believe precisely in the religious sense, moreover, it is simply IMPOSSIBLE to use "I believe" in any other sense.

    If you wish to convey that are certain of something because you have proof you should use "I know".

    If you wish to indicate that you feel there is in your view a reasonable possibility of something but you lack proof and you refuse to take the point advanced as TRUE without proof you may wish to employ "I feel that" or "I suspect".

    If you want to say that you hold a certain point true without good reason or proof, on blind faith, then "I believe" is very apropriate.

    Ciao T
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 29, 2004
    3DSonics, Oct 29, 2004
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  15. 3DSonics

    michaelab desafinado

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    Well, we are arguing about semantics. When I have used "I believe" in this thread you should read it as "I suspect that". To me (and many others) they are interchangeable ways of saying the same thing allthough I accept that, strictly speaking, they are quite different.

    Michael.
     
    michaelab, Oct 29, 2004
    #35
  16. 3DSonics

    Kit

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    I get good results from a cable like this, in PTFE tube with a bit of SCSI ribbon cable as ground. I think it sounds better if the conductor isn't folded back, but it then becomes a nightmare getting it to make contact with the phono socket.

    Anyone know a good source of the little O-rings? TIA
     
    Kit, Oct 29, 2004
    #36
  17. 3DSonics

    BlueMax

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    The phenomena of 'cable non-believers' and others who make claims that they can not hear any difference; whilst others can, often in blind testing, is an interesting one. They automatically give up on trying out a new cable or a tweak and make claims such as “30 years experience†to defend their stance or make posts based on simplistic understanding of electricity.

    Could this be due to hearing deficiencies?

    Age related hearing loss is called Presbyacusis. For most people with Presbyacusis it is the high frequency sounds that disappear first and gets Progressively worse. As people get older the hair cells in their inner ear begin to die. Some people lose their hearing ability earlier and faster than others do. They begin to lose their sense of hearing when they are in their 30s and 40s. One out of five adults and more than half of all people over the age of 80 suffer from hearing loss. However, more than half of hearing-impaired people are of working age.

    Decreases in hearing, especially of higher frequencies, can happen after age 20. Some form of nerve deafness affects 1 out of 5 people by age 55.
     
    BlueMax, Nov 1, 2004
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  18. 3DSonics

    sideshowbob Trisha

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    Not wishing to start an old debate again, but can you point me to some well-documented examples of people hearing differences in a blind test?

    Plenty of cable sceptics are quite able to hear other differences with no problem at all, so I doubt hearing loss has anything at all to do with it, although it's obviously true that very few people have perfect hearing, and all of us suffer some hearing loss as we age, cable believers as much as cable sceptics.

    -- Ian
     
    sideshowbob, Nov 1, 2004
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  19. 3DSonics

    analoguekid Planet Rush

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    ireckon your first stop should be a plumbers merchant, B&Q do a packet of o-rings with various sizes in one pack for a coupla pounds, but they only have a couple of each size.
     
    analoguekid, Nov 1, 2004
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  20. 3DSonics

    3DSonics away working hard on "it"

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    Hi,

    I got mine from Wickes, plumbing section, bag of a variety of sizes 99 pence or such.... Picked up a few bags. Once you are shure about the right diameter and you need bulk supplies you can buy from RS Components.

    BTW, the 30AWG Silverplated copper wirewrap wire from RS can be used for this cable too, if you strip off the insulation.

    Ciao T
     
    3DSonics, Nov 2, 2004
    #40
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