The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
Does analog gear really sound "better", or is it just a learned response?
Old 17th August 2020
  #6991
Lives for gear
 
robert82's Avatar
9 posts to go.
1
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #6992
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11 View Post
“ transparent” in this case, is being used as a marketing term, since your two converters sound different, they can’t both be transparent.

Since many units sold use the same conversion chips, it should also be evident there’s a lot more to it than just the converters.

If you put both of your units up on the test bench, I’m pretty confident they would measure differently.
I never said they were both transparent, but they fall into the broad category of gear that's described as transparent. I also said measurements would show the difference in sound that I perceive. 'Transparent' is not only a marketing term, it's a subjective distinction. It's a theoretical ideal, but not an absolute distinction, like qualifying a Turing Machine or describing Turing completeness.

All I ever said was they sound different to me, and the difference is easy to hear.

And, if one were to sit next to me as I demonstrate it, and couldn't tell, then I'd say it's a matter of shortcomings in auditory acuity, which can be developed, you know 'ear training' - such as things like the Golden Ears tutorials, or just through brute force methods like untold hours of listening and evaluation.
Old 17th August 2020
  #6993
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by robert82 View Post
People think they hear stuff, and maybe they really don't, is all that quote seems to be saying.
That's sensible and in the realm of psychoacoustics inarguable.

But I was responding to your extrapolation of that sentiment to include 80% of all threads on this forum, which I counter that figure would reflect no care about measurements.
Old 17th August 2020
  #6994
Lives for gear
 
robert82's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by twelvetone View Post
That's sensible and in the realm of psychoacoustics inarguable.

But I was responding to your extrapolation of that sentiment to include 80% of all threads on this forum, which I counter that figure would reflect no care about measurements.
Picky picky picky.

6 more and we're there.
1
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #6995
Lives for gear
 
norfolk martin's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11 View Post
Yes made “fragile” in 1971 as a series of stitched together sections cut up by razor blade and assembled with adhesive tape. Some of those section were only a minute or so in length.


"Close to the Edge," was even worse It was never rehearsed as a contiguous piece, and, was first assembled by editing a large number of previously unrelated segments together. It frustrated both Bruford and Wakeman, who wanted to work on contiguous pieces as a band, rather than plying bits with no idea of the final context.
1
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #6996
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by robert82 View Post
If everyone here fully agreed with this quote, 80% of threads on this forum would evaporate.
I don't particularly care if everyone agrees with it, but everyone should understand it!
1
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #6997
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mfnickster View Post
I don't particularly care if everyone agrees with it, but everyone should understand it!
That's a very low baseline.
2
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #6998
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by robert82 View Post
Picky picky picky.
Well, please excuse my plectrum-esque response.
3
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #6999
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by twelvetone View Post
That's a very low baseline.
Hopefully that places it in the category of "not too much to ask"!

One more to go!
1
Share
Old 17th August 2020
  #7000
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mfnickster View Post
Hopefully that places it in the category of "not too much to ask"!

One more to go!
It's not. But it's elementary. One that doesn't necessarily need a light bulb moment from reading Ethan Winer's writings.
Old 17th August 2020
  #7001
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by robert82 View Post
People think they hear stuff, and maybe they really don't, is all that quote seems to be saying.
The essence of it, I think, is that of the 4 factors which influence audio fidelity (noise, distortion, frequency response, timing errors), we can measure all of them. We know where the threshold of audibility is for each of them. If your equipment measures lower than the threshhold of audibility on each factor, there is literally nothing to hear added to or subtracted from the signal.

As Ethan has pointed out quite often, there's no magic to it. It's science and engineering. "Golden ears" never seem to beat the odds.
Old 18th August 2020
  #7002
Lives for gear
 
robert82's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfnickster View Post
As Ethan has pointed out quite often, there's no magic to it. It's science and engineering. "Golden ears" never seem to beat the odds.
You: "Golden ears" never seem to beat the odds.

Gearslutz: Hold my beer.
2
Share
Old 18th August 2020
  #7003
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sharp11 View Post
Does that mean dave hill makes a lower fidelity converter?
I'm not a designer so I can't answer that question, but they're not cheap to buy due to having a very high quality analog front/back end before the A/D/A. The Power supply is very stable and the clock is also very stable and accurate. When I clock other converters from my HEDD 192 they noticeably improve!

The HEDD 192 is an older design now, but I always think of it being to digital that which Studer is to analog.

The recordings it captures just sound very musical and detailed with genuine depth to my ears - not the slightest hint of that digital "cold steel" so many other converters have to my ears.
Old 18th August 2020
  #7004
Lives for gear
Here's a good question and answer session with Steve Albini.

At this point in the video he is asked "How much of that warm analogue sound found in older recordings is due to harmonic distortion of old gear"

- and Albini replies that it comes from technique and work flow, not the gear... because that gear was designed to be as transparent as possible when used correctly.

Kind of what I was saying about transformers in gear - it should be being designed into the gear because it's the most transparent option, not to colour it.

So where does the idea that the analogue gear *is* causing nice distortion and not being transparent? I personally think that happens in the mind, in the romantacised version ... which then causes bias in the listening and equipment purchase decision making.

Meanwhile digital is much more transparent and easier to avoid problems with... but what you can do with it can cause poor work flow or overwhelm with options meaning people never master the basics.

This could be what Donnylang was getting at subconciously (although he seemed to accept the "sound" of analogue part).

Here is the link, starting at the right place: https://www.youtube.com/embed/sKEzHie9tAI?start=5109

Here it is embedded but you have to fast forward to 1:25:10

3
Share
Old 18th August 2020
  #7005
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by thehightenor View Post
I'm not a designer so I can't answer that question, but they're not cheap to buy due to having a very high quality analog front/back end before the A/D/A. The Power supply is very stable and the clock is also very stable and accurate. When I clock other converters from my HEDD 192 they noticeably improve!

The HEDD 192 is an older design now, but I always think of it being to digital that which Studer is to analog.

The recordings it captures just sound very musical and detailed with genuine depth to my ears - not the slightest hint of that digital "cold steel" so many other converters have to my ears.
There's a sound on sound article about external clocking converters.. up shot is they often measure worse but sound subjectively better..
Closed

Similar Threads

Thread / Thread Starter Replies / Views Last Post
replies: 295 views: 58311
Avatar for anguswoodhead
anguswoodhead 26th March 2013
replies: 1296 views: 155133
Avatar for heraldo_jones
heraldo_jones 1st February 2016
replies: 4639 views: 316092
Avatar for javd007
javd007 3 minutes ago
Topic:
🖨️ Show Printable Version
✉️ Email this Page
🔍 Search thread
🎙️ View mentioned gear
Forum Jump
Forum Jump