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Old 5th Apr 2019, 7:47 pm   #621
duncanlowe
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Default Re: Audiophoolery?

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That's to say, for them, it's just like distinguishing themselves from the masses by buying a Lamborghini Diablo or Pininfarina bodywork. Now we may argue that these cars are subjectively worth spending cash on because they're very fast and beautiful in the eyes of some/ many.
I'm kind of glad that some people have the money to buy particularly expensive cars because they like something about them, be it the craftsmanship, power, appearance or just buying in to the brand. It keeps me in a job! Now some of those mentioned attributes can be definitively measured, some merely demonstrated, and others are purely an opinion.
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 8:34 pm   #622
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Hi Duncan,

Great point! I’m on the hoof so can’t use the quoting system, but thanks for posting!
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 8:56 pm   #623
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I know this will activate some people, but having looked around, I think that some people with unlimited piles of cash are doing this buying quite consciously. They aren't victims...

That's to say, for them, it's just like distinguishing themselves from the masses by buying a Lamborghini Diablo or Pianfarina bodywork. Now we may argue that these cars are subjectively worth spending cash on because they're very fast and beautiful in the eyes of some/ many.

And we may argue that it's just silly to buy a cable made of palladium tetra-oxide polyvalent mammoth-breath stardust...

It it's the act of buying something/ anything that's expensive, that in its own right gives pleasure, then there's no stopping the super-elites and there kind of shouldn't be! I think this is a victimless pursuit.
Some may believe that selling this BS comes from a place of bad intention and should be bolted down and stopped, but I think it's a daring enterprise. I don't particularly admire it, but it's pretty bold. And I'm not saying I spend time wishing that was me, or would actively promote it in any way.

Just... I don't think that someone buying a cable for a grand is likely to be financially exploitable or vulnerable. Just sayin'...
Well, they are victims - or at least some (more likely many) of them are because they're taken in by the audiophool media gobbledegook and they don't have a background that enables them, one iota, to challenge the smoke and mirrors that is preached in the hallowed upper echelons of the world of 'expensive' hifi. A lot of very rich people begin as a 'hifi enthusiast', then they start to read the magazines, the reviews, the forums, etc etc and they become what we know as audiophools. It starts with them becoming familiar with the buzz phrases and the 'in', often very expensive pieces of kit. They then - as upstart 'experts' on hifi and sound reproduction - start to voice their thoughts and regurgitated opinions and phrases on forums, and so on and so forth. And that's where the problem begins, people writing audiphool trash in magazines and online that is being swallowed and regurgitated by other media operating in the same vein. Trust me, I've been watching the audiophool movement since the mid 70s.

The bottom line is, if people want to follow the audiophool route in the name of happiness or pleasure, then as far as I am concerned the attainment of happiness is what it is all about. Now, saying that, being happy with one's hifi system (no matter how much it cost) and whether or not it's accurate is a different matter. And that's where many audiophools trip up, they simply don't have the technical knowledge or background, but they sure as hell are able to quote all the audiophool buzz phrases that makes them 'appear' to be knowledgeable to other audiophools. And there the disease is passed on, swallowed, digested and regurgitated as if the word of god.
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Old 5th Apr 2019, 9:38 pm   #624
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The whole stereo thing is just an acoustic illusion. Two loudspeakers cannot possibly reproduce a live concert experience, whether that is rock or classical.

I have often closed my eyes at an orchestral concert or opera, and tried to pin down the equivalent of imaging. Where are the violins, violas, woodwind etc. It is damned nearly impossible. Yet we expect that attribute in reproduced music.

So - stereo is just an illusion. Siegfried Linkwitz (RIP) had it right - his term was "phantom image", and it requires a particular set of loudspeaker attributes, and particular their interaction with the listening room, to create a credible phantom image from two loudspeakers.

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Old 6th Apr 2019, 8:56 am   #625
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Parting with large sums of cash to buy a high-end/prestige car doesn't just buy an expensive car. Sure, it'll likely be fast, very quiet, very comfortable, be a real 'looker' and have all the signs of true craftsmanship, but also, the high-end safety aspect too. You know in the event of an incident, you and your occupants have a better chance of survival. You'll be thankful you spent that money, plus intrinsic value when you sell-on, since a good example will likely be an investment.

Spending the same on audio? You very quickly hit the ceiling at a price-point, where no real audio gains can be had, but perhaps bragging rights with no substance or proof as backup, except the packaging says 'x'. These days, it's all down to very clever marketing, and moving a problem onto you, though the people who spend huge sums on audio, for example, have no shame or guilt of debt, should it come to that.

The times I've been to events, truly astonished by what I've seen and heard, it's when you're on this forum or meeting forum members face to face you realise, the smile/laughter you had at 'that' event was for all the wrong reasons!

Though fortunate enough to own a prestige car, when it was new it cost more than two average houses. That said, I bought it 4 years ago and cost less than a week away.

My HiFi, not worth anything in real terms today, didn't cost much in the first place and it's still hugely enjoyable, just like my 35 year-old car.

Presumably, those who do spend vast amounts on snake-oil fuelled audio have had their hearing scientifically tested with calibrated equipment, whose specification exceeds all known knowns, naturally using cables supplied from the previous links on this thread(?)

Mark
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 9:17 am   #626
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Default Re: Audiophoolery?

As Slartibartfast* said 'I'd far rather be happy than right anyway'. So it seems that audiophools are following in his footsteps and being happy rather than right.

Malcolm

*Hitch Hikers Guide To The Galaxy
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 9:38 am   #627
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Here's a link to audio grade fuses:- https://www.analogueseduction.net/fu...a-uk-fuse.html

What are your thoughts on the write-up?

Curiously, no reviews have been submitted.

Mark
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 10:00 am   #628
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They do UK mains plugs AND socket, but they aren't gold plated. Don't they need to be? They carry the same current as the fuse. Where do you stop?

But even with the wonder fuse, you don't get a smooth flow of power. It's Altrnating current after all. the waveform is a sinusoid and the power flowing is the square of a sinusoid if the load has good power factor. More often it's even spikier. The mains is going between zero and full power and back again 100 times per second. It doesn't get any unsmoother than that.

I also thought BS1363 fuses had to have ceramic tubes and sand filling to handle high rupture currents without shattering. Are glass fuses in plugs even legal?

It's a good laugh, but their reasoning is inconsistent if not self-contradictory.

David

If any of this gets through to the speakers, the listener is going to notice.
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 10:02 am   #629
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Default Re: Audiophoolery?

The corollary to the Slartibartfast line is a quote originally, it seems, used in the context of addiction to alcohol:

"The truth will set you free, but first it will p*** you off"

I've seen it referenced by a few 'cable believers' whose own blind tests eventually convinced them that all cables actually sound the same.

Cheers,

GJ
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 10:23 am   #630
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Most 'cable believers' are afraid, nay terrified of exposing themselves to the dreaded ABX test. They come up with all kinds of pseudo phycological based reasons such as the 'stress' of the test etc etc ad infinitum, as to why it 'doesn't work'. Quiet simply, it doesn't work for them because they are unable to identify what cable is being listened to! And remember, a 50/50 result is the same as flipping a coin. If you pass an ABX test you should be getting results at or near to 100% accuracy. If not then each time you get the answer wrong, clearly you were unable to identify the cable in use. But like I say, if people are happy to live in an imaginary world for the sake of happiness, then that's up to them, they've got more money than sense bless em, but I do feel anger towards the people making and supplying snake oil products and the many in the hifi media who review them and propagate audiophoolery. Because the next generation of people entering the world of hifi read the mags and forums and not being any wiser, take on board what is being said as gospel. And so on and so forth until the whole hifi industry is swamped with misbeliefs, as it is now.
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 11:16 am   #631
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I note that they do not say that the fuse complies with British Standards. Having experienced first hand the effect of a short circuited electric iron on a non-BS fuse, they do appear to be a fire risk.

The unbranded fuse in the iron plug, bought by mum in a street market in the 1960's, did not break the current, but resulted in arcs both at the short circuit in the cable and within the plug itself. The arc resistance limited the current, so the 30A ring main wire fuze didn't blow. I guess things might be different with a modern circuit breaker installation, but hey, that will have a finite resistance too! Perhaps the true audiphool should install a cooker point for his gear, fitted with a high tripping current mcb to minimised circuit resistance.

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Old 6th Apr 2019, 11:21 am   #632
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Suppose we take a sine wave current. The electrons move in one direction during the first half cycle. The area under the first current half cycle of a sine wave is the charge that has been moved in that time

Q = I(root 2)/(pi x f)

The root 2 gets from RMS current to peak, which is what you need for the equation.

Lets take 10A flowing at 50Hz. The charge transferred in the first half cycle is 9 x 10^-2 C from the equation. The charge on the electron is 1.6 x 10^-19 C and so the number of electrons for this charge is 9 x 10-2/1.6 x 10^-19 = 5.6 x 10^17.

That sounds like a lot, but there are 8.5 x 10^22 electrons per cc in a copper conductor!

Lets take a 1mm^2 cross section wire (that would be under rated for 10A, but this is a though experiment which will scale for different values). 1mm^2 = 0.01cm^2.

So there are 8.5 x 10^22 x 0.01 = 8.5 x 10^20 conduction electrons per cm of 1mm^2 section wire.

So in the first half cycle of the mains waveform, the electrons move 5.6 x 10^17 / 8.5 x 10^20 = 6.6 x 10^-4 cm = 66 microns.

Then in the next half cycle they move back again. So the electrons shuffle back and forth by 66um peak to peak - or about the thickness of a human hair.

Now let's scale it. Let's take a typical audio mains cable of 12AWG, which is 3.31 mm^2. And the current might typically be 1A for a really chunky class A amplifier (so 240W of standing dissipation).

That means that the peak to peak electron movement in the wire is 1/10 x 1/3.31 x 66 = 2 microns. So about four times the wavelength of green light.

For lower currents of more typical power amps, and certainly preamps the current will be <<1A, so the amplitude of electron motion is down in the wavelength of light territory.

Of course the same calculation holds for signal cables and loudspeaker cables.

SO - if for the moment one accepts that there is an audible difference between cables, the mechanism is definitely not related to the tiny AC amplitude of electron motion.

Craig

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Old 6th Apr 2019, 11:44 am   #633
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I like that.
You need to use DC from a battery to burn a cable in.
You need a special battery for the job so that the user knows the herrtage of the chemicals the battery was made from so that the correct grade of electrons are used to wash out the ones that were in the cable when it was made.
Then you need a special clean charger to charge the battery up again for the next run.
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 12:04 pm   #634
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... Now let's scale it. Let's take a typical audio mains cable of 12AWG, which is 3.31 mm^2. And the current might typically be 1A for a really chunky class A amplifier (so 240W of standing dissipation) ...
On a couple of points of detail, first someone trying to sell a high-end cable would probably be comparing it with the 'ordinary' IEC lead supplied with the amp. I imagine the ordinary one would have rather thinner wires than 3.31 mm^2. So they might be able to claim that there's a real difference between good and ordinary. Second chunky amps might draw 1A average but it might be a lot more than that peak (probably limited by the properties of the mains transformer) and, as has been pointed out already, the resistive losses in the cable will be worse as a consequence.

(For the avoidance of doubt, I'm pretty sure that average differences between mains cables are inconsequential and that any peak transient demands placed on the psu by the music will have to be handled by components on the secondary side of the mains transformer, not the primary.)

Cheers,

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Old 6th Apr 2019, 1:33 pm   #635
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I don't think it is down to resistive losses in the cable. If we had 1 metre of 1mm^2 wire, the loop resistance is 0.034 ohms. So even if you had 10A transients that would drop 0.34V in 240, or 0.014%.

By comparison 12AWG would drop about 0.1V or 0.004%

Neither of which has any significance whatever as compared with the ring main, or the transformer primary resistance in the amplifier.

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Old 6th Apr 2019, 2:15 pm   #636
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I don't think it is down to resistive losses in the cable. If we had 1 metre of 1mm^2 wire, the loop resistance is 0.034 ohms. So even if you had 10A transients that would drop 0.34V in 240, or 0.014%.

By comparison 12AWG would drop about 0.1V or 0.004%
Er... I make those 0.14% and 0.04%. Still negligible of course, which is your point.
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 2:41 pm   #637
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Bewilderingly they managed to patent this nonsense. Has to be the same outfit - patent and company are both in Texas.

Craig
That is what I once believed too, until a Patent Lawyer spelled it out.

I was amazed at patents I reviewed for some medical equipment where the data on the graphs in the patent showed conclusively that the invention was ineffective !

In another case, a patent was modified to contain every conceivable variation of a device ,but nearly all of the modifications rendered the device ineffective. When I complained about this the patent Lawyer said : "A patent is a legal document, not a scientific one"

So it pays to remember that and just because something has a patent on it neither guarantees it will serve its claimed purpose or is even an original invention for that matter.

Also I think somebody managed to patent a new type of gyroscope that had rotational inertia and was suspended from a pleurality of fixing devices placed radially near the center (It was a wheel).

Often things get patented merely to bolster up a company's IP portfolio.
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 3:08 pm   #638
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Indeed - I have quite a number of patents in my name (but none in my ownership, alas), so I understand the patenting process quite well.

But a patent absolutely has to demonstrate that it has been "reduced to practice", in other words that one has been made, and contain sufficient information that someone else "skilled in the art" can build one. In addition the patent has to have at least one inventive step and be novel over and above the prior art.

Of course many patents are for things of no practical utility, like dog washing machines that resemble an iron lung. You could certainly build one based on that patent, but no dog would get remotely close to the thing. And even if it has been spooned into the device that would absolutely be the last time it got near it.

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Old 6th Apr 2019, 3:10 pm   #639
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Quote:
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I don't think it is down to resistive losses in the cable. If we had 1 metre of 1mm^2 wire, the loop resistance is 0.034 ohms. So even if you had 10A transients that would drop 0.34V in 240, or 0.014%.

By comparison 12AWG would drop about 0.1V or 0.004%
Er... I make those 0.14% and 0.04%. Still negligible of course, which is your point.
You're right. I divided the resistance and not the voltage drop!

Duur...

Craig
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Old 6th Apr 2019, 3:28 pm   #640
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The movement of an individual electron may be small, and its mean velocity may be very low, but the rate of movement of a wavefront of electron motion can be a large fraction of the speed of light. Like a bicycle chain, you get on and start to pedal slowly and it takes seconds for an individual link to get from the pedal sprocket to the wheel sprocket, but the delay from the pedal moving to the wheel moving is far less.

Rectifiers tend to charge reservoirs in short surges of current on waveform peaks, so the peak currents can be huge, but it doesn't matter the amount of charge provided to the reservoir has to balance that taken, so Craig's calculations come out in the wash.

What worries me is he's mentioned green light. If this post gets seen by the wrong people, they'll get their green pens out again!

David
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