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#165138 - 05/20/07 11:22 AM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: chesseroo]
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.
Just for my own curiosity how many that say all amps sound the same and double blind listening test are the proof of this have actually done or sat in on these tests of amps.

I for one have not.
_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#165139 - 05/20/07 11:28 AM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: Wid]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13324
Loc: Iowa
Good point Rick, and one I've been wanting to ask as well. Seems many like to reference articles and base everything on math, etc., but have they actually been involved in real world test themselves.

I'm looking at a Russound AB-2 switcher so I can jump back/forth between my Denon and Amps. I plan to invite some friends over for some tests. I'm not even going to tell them what they are testing.

Randy
_________________________
M80s-VP180-QS8s-EP600-2xEP350 Denon3808 Outlaw7700
M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
Audio Nirvana

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#165140 - 05/20/07 12:58 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: Wid]
Mojo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 01/21/07
Posts: 3292
Wid & Randy,

Did you read my post on the double blind test I did with my family? My friends have told me that they are probably tone deaf but I doubt it. All three play the piano and my daughter plays the flute and picollo too.

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#165141 - 05/20/07 01:29 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: SirQuack]
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4801
Loc: western canada
Quote:

Good point Rick, and one I've been wanting to ask as well. Seems many like to reference articles and base everything on math, etc., but have they actually been involved in real world test themselves.

I'm looking at a Russound AB-2 switcher so I can jump back/forth between my Denon and Amps. I plan to invite some friends over for some tests. I'm not even going to tell them what they are testing.



Been there, done that, a fair bit lads.
You would have to search back through many of my past posts (one example here) to see my comments on A/B tests we did. Most of these were single blind tests using a near instantaneous switcher with equalized SPL. I used at least one friend and/or wife and sometimes a fourth (and a TRUE believer audiophile until he built himself a switcher, the very one we used).

Off hand i've compared 4 AVRs (from $100 or less to $1800 retail), 6-8 SS amps (varying from $1200 retail to $4000 including Coda, Anthem, Parasound, Robertson) and at least 2 tube amps (one a relic, one 1980s newer) in the past 3-4 years. I've also compared about 5 or 6 different speaker sets including Tannoys, Monitor Audios, Axioms, KEF, Boston Acoustics and some generic speakers.
Since my friend built his switcher he has also tested several various amps at his house along with an electronic guru friend of his. These boys collect vintage electronics and have a very impressive set of equipment, including a tube amp which recently sold on ebay for over 3k and Krell components. This electronics guru fellow in particular owned an electronics repair store (primarily audio) for 20 years and has fixed more speaker surrounds, static controls, blown caps, tube amps than you could shake a stick at. He has 2 'subwoofers' in his basements, home made that house 2-30 inch drivers!! He is one who has also long believed in the 'difference of amps' hypothesis, UNTIL these boys started using their switcher. As i understand it, their general opinions have dramatically changed from "there are definite differences" to more of an "IF there are differences, they are subtle and alot less than originally heard" point of view.

I'm not out to change one's hardcore belief structure but even that change of opinion is one huge jump for these two long time stereophiles. I didn't do any direct persuasion to put them on that course but my friend also happens to be of a scientific background and after enough conversations about wanting to hear comparisons equally, leveled and blind, he built the switcher for himself, mostly out of curiousity. Needless to say he is a bit saddened that his amp collection does not look as fun and shiny as it used to now that he's honestly settled in his brain with conclusive, self-experienced objective evidence (the best kind) that they sound identical. He told me some time ago that he's decided to sell one of them since there is no point keeping both anymore. He used to use one for some certain type of music (because it was supposedly softer sounding) and the other amp for whatever other type of music he enjoyed.

Never assume that people have not tried A/B testing themselves. Many may not take the lengthy time to post all the details involved in the process. I think many here know of craigsub and his testing with subwoofers and he is certainly one person who has a strong, well thought out methodology (public posted out on the forums for scrutinizing) to reproduce great results in this regard. He could just as easily setup tests for amps, if he hasn't already done so in the past (i imagine he has, Ajax may know).

It is not that hard to setup if you have one key piece: a switcher with gain controls or a similar third equipment piece for gain control. I also own a Russound unit which i'm planning on modifying with a non-stepped potentiometer and banana jacks.

I have to admit that the results of these blind tests can take some of the joy out of wanting to buy another or new piece of equipment. I like changing the aesthetics around or contemplating the idea that there is always a better sounding amp out there for my sweet home stereo system; something to make it that much better. However, to me, doing the A/B testing is as enormously fun as those who like to buy a new piece of equipment, stand in front of it and wow about much better (or worse) it sounds compared subjectively to their previous unit.
I just prefer to do the tests from a more objective perspective possibly because i'm a frugal buyer. (Aren't all Axiom folks supposed to be frugal buyers? )

  • Is that 2k amp really worth $500 more than just a $1500 AVR?
  • Is there really a difference in sound?
  • How can i equalize the factors to make it an objective conclusion so i can decide whether i want to pay that extra $500 for more than bragging rights and pretty lights?


The answer? A/B blind testing
Don't knock it until you try it.
I've had many a fun afternoon doing auditioning tests with this stuff. Wires running everywhere, volume up, volume down, switching components, telling the dogs to go lay down, grabbing a beer, swapping chairs.
Oh ya, tons of fun.

_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#165142 - 05/20/07 02:05 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: LT61]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16268
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
Quote:

I predict even more back-pedaling than there's been, to follow




I hear the sound of the freewheel clicking, but the "all amps sound the same" crew seems to be going downhill and picking up speed.
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#165143 - 05/20/07 07:43 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: Mojo]
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.
I can't say I was aware of your tests Mojo. I was well aware of the extensive tests Chess had performed though. If you can point me to your post I would be more than willing to give it a read.
_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#165144 - 05/20/07 09:30 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: pmbuko]
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5349
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
>>I hear the sound of the freewheel clicking, but the "all amps sound the same" crew seems to be going downhill and picking up speed.

I know this is fun to watch, but are we maybe missing the point here ? The "all amplifiers sound the same" statements are normally made when someone asks whether a Denon or Yamaha AVR will be a better match for their Axiom speakers. Our response, which I think is fair, is that it's generally going to be very difficult to hear a difference between two amplifiers of similar power and similar design.

I have always believed that a big honkin' high quality power amp is going to sound better than a good moderately powered amp/receiver, but the difference is relatively subtle compared to spending the same $$ on speakers and there is still lack of agreement on what really makes the better amp sound better. It may really be placebo effect, I don't know -- my personal theory is that watching the analog power meters excites different areas of the brain and improves the overall listening experience

Double-blind speaker testing is relatively easy to do since the switching is easy. Double-blind electronics testing is harder and -- I hate to say it -- that is probably the real reason we're still arguing about this after 50+ years of audiophiles have had their say.

I am still a bit suspicious of digital amplifiers in general, for no good reason other than a healthy respect for what has been proven to work. Having said that, I also have confidence that if anyone comes up with a breakthrough amplifier there's a decent chance that Ian and Tom will be the ones who do it.

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#165145 - 05/20/07 09:42 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: chesseroo]
LT61 Offline
aficionado

Registered: 02/23/04
Posts: 836
Loc: Illinois.
Quote:

As i understand it, their general opinions have dramatically changed from "there are definite differences" to more of an "IF there are differences, they are subtle and alot less than originally heard" point of view.



When people have posted, their personal experiences with Audio and/or various Audio equipment.....and have made claims of "improved sound", (whether it was high end Amps, CD players, Tubes vs. Transistors, Analog vs. Digital, etc.) they usually sound sincere, and credible.....just wanting to share their "find".

The posts I have seen here over the years, have often said just that...."subtle improvements", or a "more pleasing sound" etc.

I don't recall any wild, or exaggerative posts claiming otherwise.
Isn't this just nit-picking?

I have come to this conclusion:

"There are no absolutes in audio"
_________________________
LIFE: "Choices, balance, and timing"

(Larryism)

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#165146 - 05/20/07 09:48 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: LT61]
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5349
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
What about The Absolute Sound ?

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#165147 - 05/20/07 10:25 PM Re: Release date of the A1400-8 [Re: bridgman]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16268
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
John, about the freewheeling post -- I was just having a little fun. My current opinion about amps is that as long as it has enough juice to cleanly drive your equipment to the levels you desire, then you'll be hard pressed to hear any difference in a controlled situation such as a blind listening test. Remove the blind, and I am certain most people will hear a difference between a Mark Levinson amp and anything else not looking half as sexy.
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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