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#308378 - 05/27/10 11:29 PM Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout
fredk Offline
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Registered: 12/06/07
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#308380 - 05/27/10 11:57 PM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: fredk]
unclebob Offline
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Registered: 04/23/10
Posts: 5
I saw this and hoped for some answers. No luck. Seems to me like same old same old but even worse in that the audition was flawed from the get go and admitted to. Sounds like all had fun but the results said all tested models (and even one not tested) would be fine in the ear of the beholder. Pick your poison and all will be fine no matter what. Just advertising with a twist.

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#308381 - 05/28/10 12:26 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: unclebob]
BlueJays1 Offline
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Registered: 09/19/08
Posts: 4116
Loc: Porch,enjoying Bombay Sapphire
It is definitely a good read. I enjoyed it. While I agree with implementing most of the tweaks mentioned on future shootouts it still brings across the importance of human bias and how it influences perception - blind results vs sighted results, most notably the results amongst the Klipsch speakers which actually scored the highest blind. I have always found Klipsch to get an unfair bad rep across their prodocut line that is based mostly on hersay about horn tweeters.

What would have been great was to have the exact number of trained vs untrained listeners. It would be interesting how that would influence the scores (if at all). I'm sure the untrained listeners loved the "energetic" sound of the Klipsch.

The author did mention in his own listening tests (that were not apart of the blind listening tests) that the JBL's were the most neutral speaker of the bunch and the Klipsch speakers were most different sounding.
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#308382 - 05/28/10 12:33 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: BlueJays1]
fredk Offline
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Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 7786
Loc: Canada
The higher ratings of the Klipsch may have been for two additional reasons:

1. The Speaker cloth they used had a noticeable affect on sound, perhaps giving an advantage to a brighter speaker.

2. There was a noticeable difference in ratings between 'trained' and 'untrained' listeners. This is something that Dr. Toole felt very strongly about.

The most interesting thing to me is that Audioholics has gone to blind testing. In the past they have resisted this.
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#308383 - 05/28/10 12:43 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: unclebob]
fredk Offline
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Registered: 12/06/07
Posts: 7786
Loc: Canada
Unclebob. If you want the definitive answer its, as always, 42 (which makes no sense if you are not a scifi fan).

Put another way, sometimes there are no definitive answers. Axiom and RBH (Emptech) are both known to make excellent speakers and both have had speakers in Audioholics reference rooms.

Klipsch, if you look past the stereotyping, also makes some good speakers, though they tend to be in a higher price category than the ones reviewed here.

To me, the most interesting part is Audioholics discussing the shortcomings of their methodology. I have never seen anything similar in any print mag.

For what its worth, I have seen Audioholics criticize speakers, even in more recent reviews.

As always, the best way to get the definitive answer is to listen for yourself. Admittedly that is not always easy.
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#308385 - 05/28/10 12:48 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: fredk]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7463
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
I liked the shootout. It was very informative and highlights some of the difficulties with comparing speakers--blind or not. I like how the article points out that "bright" speakers usually fair well in comparisons. That's generally speaking, of course. I always remember my days of going to the local audio store to the listening rooms. Inevitably, there was the sales guy talking to a potential customer cranking up a pair of speakers to painful levels saying, "Check it out, you can feel the bass!"

Of course! but I can't hear anything else!!

I started out with a pair of Klipsch speakers. They were dynamic and fun. I can see why the brand appeals to a lot of people.

I guess my point is--sometimes when things jump out at you when listening you have to ask yourself is the highlight a good or bad thing? While at first it may stand there pointing and saying, "Look at me!" is it because it is a good quality or a potentially annoying one? Some faults are easier to spot, as well as some good things. My best bet was to spend some real time with a speaker and listen to it over time. Sometimes it is the balanced speaker that is good for the long haul, the one that doesn't beat you over the head with one particular thing.

But!!! Speaker comparisons are still fun! It's a great way to tell differences and similarities between speakers--especially with an A/B switch. I had a blast listening to speakers with Dean. Looking forward to a future session with multiple bookshelf speakers. Great way to try different flavors of sound.
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#308392 - 05/28/10 02:24 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: St_PatGuy]
CV Online   confused
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11677
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
 Quote:
Axiom has also claimed to refine the tweeter performance over the years and eventually plans on adding magnetic grilles and completely aluminized cones so all of the mid and bass drivers will appear completely silver.


Tom, was it you who suggested this?

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#308395 - 05/28/10 02:30 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: CV]
CV Online   confused
Founder, Axiom Upgrade Club
shareholder in the making

Registered: 07/20/06
Posts: 11677
Loc: Richland, WA, USA
Also, they referred to the M60 as being v2 throughout the article, but the scorecard graph said v3. They're messing with us.

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#308399 - 05/28/10 02:44 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: unclebob]
jakewash Offline
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Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10415
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
 Originally Posted By: unclebob
Sounds like all had fun but the results said all tested models (and even one not tested) would be fine in the ear of the beholder. Pick your poison and all will be fine no matter what.
Unfortunately that is what it all boils down to, the ear of the beholder, as it has to sound good to you. For example I know of a few people that love the sound of the new Monitor Audio RX silver series, they are lifeless to me. Many love the sound of the M3, I am not a huge fan of them. I wouldn't be looking to reviews for answers. The answer resides in you.
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#308403 - 05/28/10 03:22 AM Re: Kerpow!! Gotta love a shootout [Re: jakewash]
grunt Offline
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Registered: 12/04/06
Posts: 3569
Loc: Nirvana
One thing I wish they would have included are the speaker preferences of the evaluators. The test is interesting and I especially appreciate them trying to identify the biases. However, any test/review where I’m not told the usual speaker preferences of the evaluator has little external validity for me since I have no frame of reference to compare how the reviewers evaluation/preferences might compare to mine.

I noticed that the amp used for the test was the Axiom A1400-8. \:\)
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