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  #21  
Old 02-22-2012, 06:15 PM
Enigmatic Enigmatic is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
But that doesn't mean that all iPod models sound "neutral."
I agree that the above statement might be true.
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There's been a lot of variation in the actual hardware used over the years.
The above is definitely a true statement. But do differences in hardware mean differences in sound quality? For amplifiers, it is possible for different designs to sound the same. For CD players, it is possible for different designs—using different DACs--to sound the same. So your claim that different versions of the iPod touch, because their hardware is different, sound different is not necessarily true.
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  #22  
Old 02-23-2012, 01:00 AM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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As one example of how much the hardware inside Apple products varies, and its performance, take a look at:

http://macintoshhowto.com/itunes/whi...o-quality.html
Not really sure what they're plotting, but its not what they're claiming. 25dB roll off over 50Hz is simply not possible for a headphone output. Something is wrong with their test.

Edit: Wow that page is misleading to the point of outright bullshitting. That or the guy is just plain stupid. They claim that is the frequency response of the iPhone, but really its the frequency response of the iPhone's headphone input. That isn't roll off or bad frequency response, thats a digital filter meant to clean up voice quality when you're talking on the phone. That has nothing to do with playback quality!

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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
And Redwine, who specialize in modding iPods for sound quality, will only work on certain models:

http://redwineaudio.com/imod
That page is really stupid. Modding the line out of an mp3 player makes literally no sense. Its just meant to separate fools and their money.

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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
So either Apple fans are even more susceptible to bs than I thought, or Apple products vary a lot in SQ and you can't tell him SQ from his Touch is fine when you don't even know what version he has.
Its more that you've somehow found a few of the worst possible links to draw a conclusion from.
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Last edited by saratoga; 02-23-2012 at 01:06 AM.
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  #23  
Old 02-23-2012, 01:16 AM
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Marvin the Martian Marvin the Martian is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
And Redwine, who specialize in modding iPods for sound quality, will only work on certain models:

http://redwineaudio.com/imod

So either Apple fans are even more susceptible to bs than I thought, or Apple products vary a lot in SQ and you can't tell him SQ from his Touch is fine when you don't even know what version he has.
I would substitute "Apple fans" above with the word "audiofools" and if you needed any further proof of that, it is on the RedWine page itself...http://redwineaudio.com/imod
Quote:
5th and 5.5 generation iPod

  • Headphone jack remains unchanged, and can be used for headphones
  • iPod’s internal docking connector now outputs an audiophile-grade signal
  • 5G / 5/5G iMods require ALO Audio iMod dock cable*
  • Apple-supplied USB cables still support charging and music transfer
Go on to click that link and you'll find this.....
http://redwineaudio.com/cables#imod_dock_cable
Quote:
iMod Dock Cable

Exclusively for 5th and 5.5 generation iMods

ALO Audio iMod cable V2
  • LUX-FEP 18awg occ
  • Incorporate paralleled film caps, sounding similar to ALO Auricap iMod caps docks
Add To Cart
Price: $195
Quote:
iMod to RCA

Exclusively for 5th and 5.5 generation iMods

Use this cable to optimize sound quality when connecting your 5G / 5.5G iMod to a preamplifier or integrated amplifier.
  • ALO UPOCC Cryo iMod-to-RCA
  • ALO Audio 20 gauge cryo-treated wire
  • Terminated in Cardas Audio rhodium over silver-plated RCA plugs
Add To Cart
Price: $195 / 2ft


Add To Cart
Price: $265 / 3ft
Anyone who would buy that stuff is a fool indeed!
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  #24  
Old 02-23-2012, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
The advice I gave was sound. I'm not going to base the advice I give on anyone's subjective test. Especially someone that believes there's a difference in sound quality based on which chip is in the player they are "evaluating"
If you have seen ABX test results that show all iPods sound the same, that's significant - but I don't see any linked evidence. So this comes to your faith that ****all**** DACs and amps perform the same - which with any piece of hardware that generates an analog signal I find hard to believe - against (yes, subjective) eyewitness statements that they don't. (This is NOT negated by the fact that +90% of players DO sound the same under common test circumstances!)

..You also seem to be skipping over those lab test results that show a bunch of Apple players behaving very differently.

More, from hydrogenaudio, which probably is the most expert on this type of thing:

http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/...howtopic=81909

Summarizing: most dedicated MP3 players now sound the same, but some phones fail noticeably in sound quality, and there have been problems with some models/instances of the Touch having excessive noise - probably due to the touch screen implementation.

...So I really don' t think that it is completely safe to assume as a certainty that every Touch will pass an ABX test with a Fuze/Clip. And as it is cheap/free to test this particular Touch - in fact, it might even be profitable - why not do so?

As for why I'm suggesting expensive headphones instead of cheapish IEMS:

- The OP wants high end SQ; he won't get this without high end output devices

- IEMs are horribly vulnerable to damage, so I'm guessing this is why the OP is willing to spend money on the source and not on the IEMs; the HD25 phones are tough and user repairable, so they should reassure him. They also isolate well and are a portable size.

- If he wants IEMS as well, then the FXC80s are an excellent price for the reported quality.

Last edited by skip252; 02-23-2012 at 09:56 AM. Reason: Stop multi-posting. Use the Edit function
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  #25  
Old 02-23-2012, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
If you have seen ABX test results that show all iPods sound the same, that's significant - but I don't see any linked evidence. So this comes to your faith that ****all**** DACs and amps perform the same - which with any piece of hardware that generates an analog signal I find hard to believe - against (yes, subjective) eyewitness statements that they don't. (This is NOT negated by the fact that +90% of players DO sound the same under common test circumstances!)

..You also seem to be skipping over those lab test results that show a bunch of Apple players behaving very differently.

More, from hydrogenaudio, which probably is the most expert on this type of thing:

http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/...howtopic=81909

Summarizing: most dedicated MP3 players now sound the same, but some phones fail noticeably in sound quality, and there have been problems with some models/instances of the Touch having excessive noise - probably due to the touch screen implementation.

...So I really don' t think that it is completely safe to assume as a certainty that every Touch will pass an ABX test with a Fuze/Clip. And as it is cheap/free to test this particular Touch - in fact, it might even be profitable - why not do so?

As for why I'm suggesting expensive headphones instead of cheapish IEMS:

- The OP wants high end SQ; he won't get this without high end output devices

- IEMs are horribly vulnerable to damage, so I'm guessing this is why the OP is willing to spend money on the source and not on the IEMs; the HD25 phones are tough and user repairable, so they should reassure him. They also isolate well and are a portable size.

- If he wants IEMS as well, then the FXC80s are an excellent price for the reported quality.
Your appeal to authority kind of failed considering one of the people you are arguing with had the last word in the expert proof debate [hydrogenaudio] you provide.... Just saying.
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  #26  
Old 02-23-2012, 10:24 AM
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Good call sideways,...
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  #27  
Old 02-23-2012, 05:41 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
If you have seen ABX test results that show all iPods sound the same, that's significant - but I don't see any linked evidence.
That would be quite impressive since its impossible to show that two things sound the same with an ABX test.

You'd have to use ABX tests to show that they sound different. Which would be hard, since they're all pretty similar except for the iPod 4G which was kind of bad compared to the newer ones. But if you're so sure, feel free to try.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
..You also seem to be skipping over those lab test results that show a bunch of Apple players behaving very differently.

More, from hydrogenaudio, which probably is the most expert on this type of thing:

http://www.hydrogenaudio.org/forums/...howtopic=81909
Ha, good to know you think I'm an expert on these things.

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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
...So I really don' t think that it is completely safe to assume as a certainty that every Touch will pass an ABX test with a Fuze/Clip.
If you're so sure, go ahead and try. Or better yet, just look at the RMAA tests:

http://www.gsmarena.com/latest_featu...view-171p2.php

The output on iphone line is extremely good, and very much comparable to the Sandisk players, so its probably not possible for you to ABX the difference.
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  #28  
Old 02-23-2012, 08:49 PM
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More measurements. http://www.bostonaudiosociety.org/foster/index.htm. And, yes, I know they got AIFF wrong.
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  #29  
Old 02-23-2012, 09:16 PM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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And you assume that I haven't volume matched each generation of Touch and Clip, recorded the signal, then put the results to ABX testing for what reason? When I said they had a good source it was from what my ears have told me from hearing every generation of Touch made.

Since the results of that fall in the same category as the "Wolfson is best" article I don't want to present that as any proof the Touch from each generation sounds pretty much the same and are equal to the Clip+. However my subjective impression from what my ears tell me is that if someone volume matches a Clip+ and a Touch they should be hearing pretty much the same output. There's no difference I can hear.

That was the basis of my recommendation to the OP to look at upgrading their headphones rather than looking for a better sounding player. I'm still comfortable with that advice.
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  #30  
Old 02-24-2012, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Enigmatic View Post
But do differences in hardware mean differences in sound quality?
Generally, yes - unless they have been designed to sound the same, eg to match a very tight spec. And there is no reason to believe that Apple has a constant spec for sound, let alone that is the same as Cowon's!

Anyway, I will now trump any other argument by appealing to Ultimate Authority - himself (Himself?) backed up by Sacred Test Measurements and Holy Graphs. Yes, I'm talking about NwAvGuy! From his comparison of the Clip (just the Fuze in a smaller case) and an iPod:

>>>>>
http://nwavguy.blogspot.com/2011/02/...-measured.html

FINAL SCORE: I count 4 wins for the iPod, 3 for the Clip+, and 2 ties. That makes it a fairly even battle--impressive considering the huge price difference. But given many of the iPod's wins are likely an inaudible advantage, and the opposite is true for the Clip+ (the lower output impedance, higher output at less distortion, and better square wave performance), one could argue the Clip+ is more likely to sound better in real world use. This will especially be true with balanced armature type headphones.

SUMMARY: As stated near the beginning of this review the Clip+ turned in excellent performance for just about any portable player, let alone a really tiny one under $40. While the iPod has the performance advantage in several areas I'm not sure any of them will result in audibly better sound quality. I am, however, fairly confident the lower output impedance and higher low distortion output power of the Clip+ are an audible advantage over the iPod with many headphones--especially balanced armature types such as most of the Etymotic IEMs, Shure IEMs, Ultimate Ear IEM's etc. These all tend to have wider impedance swings which, combined with the iPod's roughly 7 ohm output impedance, will create audible frequency response variations compared to the Clip+ (see the earlier graph)
<<<<<

..So as trying the Fuze is so cheap, and might actually generate money from the sale of the Touch, I'd try the Fuze. There just isn't a downside.

Oh - and anyone who disagrees is A CURSED HERETIC AND THEIR HEADPHONES WILL EXPLODE!!! At least if they're using a Schiit Asgard amp... http://nwavguy.blogspot.com/2011/07/...t-head-fi.html
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  #31  
Old 02-24-2012, 01:10 PM
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So you concluded that the clip and ipod sound pretty much the same, and that SQ is not a deciding factor. That pretty much brings us back to Skip252's original argument that one should shop features and not sound quality.

The Sansa players are solid, so are the Sony and Cowon offerings. Ipods are fine as well if you can stand the sticker price and inherent limitations. No matter what you end up with there are pros and cons to each system.
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  #32  
Old 02-24-2012, 01:19 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
Generally, yes
Bullshit.

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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
Anyway, I will now trump any other argument by appealing to Ultimate Authority - himself (Himself?) backed up by Sacred Test Measurements and Holy Graphs. Yes, I'm talking about NwAvGuy! From his comparison of the Clip (just the Fuze in a smaller case) and an iPod:
Hes saying that the lower output impedance will allow it to drive a wider range of exotic headphones. You can always find a pair of headphones that will make two devices sound different by operating them sufficiently far outside of their design spec. Few things fail exactly alike. That doesn't mean what you want it to mean though. Its wrong to claim that they sound different.

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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
Oh - and anyone who disagrees is A CURSED HERETIC AND THEIR HEADPHONES WILL EXPLODE!!! At least if they're using a Schiit Asgard amp... http://nwavguy.blogspot.com/2011/07/...t-head-fi.html
I don't understand what you're trying to do. Quoting people who understand this better then you doesn't help you if you do not understand anything you're reading. And clearly you do not given some of the fools you've tried to hold up as experts.
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  #33  
Old 02-24-2012, 01:24 PM
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  #34  
Old 02-24-2012, 02:34 PM
Enigmatic Enigmatic is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
Generally, yes - unless they have been designed to sound the same, eg to match a very tight spec.
For MP3 players, I will agree with you that there will be special cases—such as headphones or music used—that will produce differences in sound quality if the hardware changes. But I would be very cautious in claiming that differences in hardware mean differences in sound quality. Once upon a time, before ABX was developed, there was a widespread belief that different amplifiers sounded different. We now know better. This is the same with CD players.

Anyone who wants to know why and the details can see my signature. Have MP3 players reached this point? No. But for MP3 players from the major vendors, it is probably getting close—at least for the more mainstream headphones and for listening to most music. Let us say one MP3 player is down 3 dB at 20 Hz but the other is 0 dB. Is there a difference in sound quality? Not with the vast majority of music, because the vast majority of music has very little happening below about 50 Hz.

A similar case can be made if an MP3 player is down 3 dB at 20 kHz or has lower channel separation or slightly higher distortion. I am not aware of anyone that has conducted a large-scale ABX test of MP3 players and has had the results published on the Internet. The closest to this that I am aware of is from dfkt.

My recommendation is, for those individuals that are concerned about sound quality from their MP3 players, is to not worry too much about it. Buy new headphones instead. The headphones that are typically bundled with MP3 players are disappointing in sound quality. This is not to say that there will not be any MP3 players that hum, buzz, hiss, produce noise, etc. But, thankfully, these MP3 players appear to be in the minority, especially from the major vendors. This is why I believe we have given nick.nack9 sound advice.
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  #35  
Old 02-24-2012, 05:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Marvin the Martian View Post
I would substitute "Apple fans" above with the word "audiofools" and if you needed any further proof of that, it is on the RedWine page itself...http://redwineaudio.com/imod
Go on to click that link and you'll find this.....
http://redwineaudio.com/cables#imod_dock_cable

Anyone who would buy that stuff is a fool indeed!
I have to confess: I'm sometimes tempted to set up a business selling magic cables - or even better, those special rocks or pieces of wood that supposedly absorb evil resonances - myself...

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Originally Posted by saratoga View Post
I don't understand what you're trying to do. Quoting people who understand this better then you doesn't help you if you do not understand anything you're reading. And clearly you do not given some of the fools you've tried to hold up as experts.
This is a failure of very basic logic on your part.

1. I didn't quote Redwine as experts: I quoted them as evidence that people with Apple players don't think they are the same as each other.

2. That Redwine sell high priced cables to idiots does not mean that another product they engineer is poor or that they don't understand audio engineering. I hate to shock you, but there is a thing in business called "profit".

3. If I had misunderstood Redwine, that would mean nothing at all concerning the validity of the quote from nwavguy. It is either correct or incorrect regardless of its route of transmission to you. That you do not understand this is, frankly, weird.

Quote:
Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
And you assume that I haven't volume matched each generation of Touch and Clip, recorded the signal, then put the results to ABX testing for what reason?
I don't assume that. But if you had done so, then it would have intelligent of you ***to make the fact clear.*** Which you did not. For you to perform that ABX test meaningfully even for yourself, you'd need every generation of Clip and Touch together at a single time and location, which is a pretty weird thing that does need pointing out!

More, one abx test does not produce absolute certainty that two players sound the same! It just proves they sound the same ***to that individual***, with whatever IEMs or phones he used. To make meaningful generalizations about what other people will probably hear, you need a pretty large population of test subjects and repeated tests.

..So I rather think that you're in danger of replacing one set of voodoo beliefs (magic cables etc) with another (abuse of the scientific method to extrapolate results impossible from the claimed experiment.) And by "danger" I mean "This is in fact what you have already done."

Also, once again:

- Measurements taken by a competent engineer suggest that the clip and pod will sound different to at least some people, with some iems/phones. No person who understood what an ABX test can actually do would disregard this until a considerable population of test results said otherwise. Until then a difference in SQ is a distinct possibility that has to be weighed against the actual cost of comparing for the actual user.

- Trying the clip or fuse has the advantage that, if they are preferred, the OP will make a profit selling the Touch. The main common sense reason - cost - of experimenting with players doesn't really apply here. Fuze as good or better: sell Touch, make much money. Otherwise: return Fuze. Fuzes are cheap, used Touchs sell for a damn good price. Why keep an expensive Touch if after trying a cheaper player it is preferred? It shouldn't require a Black Monolith to grok this logic -money good!

Last edited by skip252; 02-24-2012 at 05:50 PM. Reason: Posts merged again. Last warning, stop multi posting.
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  #36  
Old 02-24-2012, 08:33 PM
Enigmatic Enigmatic is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
I didn't quote Redwine as experts: I quoted them as evidence that people with Apple players don't think they are the same as each other.
This is not saying much, because it is like saying that individuals with fancy wires do not think they sound the same as ordinary wires.
Quote:
For you to perform that ABX test meaningfully even for yourself, you'd need every generation of Clip and Touch together at a single time and location, which is a pretty weird thing that does need pointing out!
Actually, this may not be necessary. The AMS version-2 AS3525 system on a chip is used in the version-2 Clip, Clip+, and Clip Zip. The version-1 Clip uses the AMS version-1 AS3525 system on a chip. http://www.rockbox.org/wiki/SansaAMS#Models.

Incidentally, meanwhile, it is generally frowned upon to multi-post. So please stop multi-posting. Please scroll up to read skip252’s message to you asking you to stop multi-posting.
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  #37  
Old 02-25-2012, 07:43 AM
skip252 skip252 is offline
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Just to make it clear, I own a working model of every Clip ever made. I don't have every capacity and color but I have a representative of each version.

I don't own a single Touch. However I have family members and friends that do. The only model that isn't in the house right now is the 3G. That will be back when that family member arrives back in town from a business trip.

Before you get any closer to calling me a liar take a look at a partial quote from a good while back.
Quote:
Originally Posted by skip252 View Post
I have given over 20 Sansas to people across the last 2 1/2 years.
Open out to the full thread and note the date.

Those were the Sansas I'd given away at that time. Toss in at least another 20 since that time. I've also gifted at least a eight Zunes. There's about 6 Sonys in there. Add on another half dozen iPods of various types and you get close to what I've GIVEN away. I've given a couple of Cobys to people I didn't like but I won't count those.

Start to get the picture?

There's a good number of people that when they have a question about their computer or a mp3 player, guess where they turn? I'm the digital geek for a lot of people. Do you genuinely think I have any problem asking someone if it's OK if I borrow a DAP for a day or so?

Your lack of understanding of the ABX process shows when you ignored one thing I said.
Quote:
And you assume that I haven't volume matched each generation of Touch and Clip, recorded the signal, then put the results to ABX testing for what reason?
Once I have recorded the signal I no longer need physical possession of the player to conduct ABX testing.

To do hardware based ABX testing is fairly difficult. The need for volume leveling, fast switching and time syncing the signals presents problems that wouldn't make it worthwhile for my casual tests. Properly done, ABXing the recorded signals using foobar2000 and the ABX Comparator brings the same result at a fraction of the effort and expense.

I'll admit that my volume matching procedure might be flawed. Matching the Replaygain values of the signals being output, then recording them probably isn't as good as what it could be but it's close enough for me to feel comfortable with the results. If there's a problem with that method someone like saratoga will no doubt let me know where I've gone wrong.

I'd have to start over then. Not a problem, I've still got the players available.

You haven't said what testing procedure you envisioned by having the physical players all in one spot. If what you had in mind is typical of the rest of your posts in this thread I'd guess it's flawed in some essential way. It's not nice to make that assumption without hearing your side so I'd be interested in what procedure you would think was needed when you seemed to challenge whether I had the ability to access the players.

No member of this forum needs to include enough information in a recommendation to satisfy you. I haven't done so in the past and won't in the future. To obliquely question my honesty by saying you find it weird that I own and can access the players I do could be considered insulting. Fortunately you alleviated that with absolutely hilarious statement
Quote:
it would have intelligent of you ***to make the fact clear.***
The intelligent thing to do is ignore the type poster that would make that statement. Unfortunately I'm not feeling very intelligent right now.

No one is demanding that you post fully detailed test information regarding the Senn HD-25. Your subjective impression is good enough for your review to be posted on this forum. The lack of detailed test information doesn't make it invalid for you to make a recommendation.

You haven't produced proof that you ever owned them but if I express doubt publicly then essentially I have called you a liar. That's what you have done to me. That's a really nasty thing to do on a forum.

I have been making recommendations here on player, headphone, and software choices for some time. I make those recommendations from both my personal experience and by reading the experiences shared by other members here. They have been the springboard for incredible amounts of learning and some marvelous listening experiences.

I would take the time to try to truly understand the information you find instead of trying to reshape everything you read into something to bolster your point of view. As saratoga said you obviously don't understand the significance of the statements you quote.

I have learned a tremendous amount from hanging out here. It has allowed me to enjoy my portable music at levels I wouldn't have though possible before I joined. Part of being able to learn has been not being bothered with the presence of trolls. Your demand that I post in a way to satisfy you is trollish.

You will notice the decided absence of trolls on this board. They tend to starve around here. I'm done feeding this one.
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  #38  
Old 02-25-2012, 01:38 PM
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Well said!!!
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  #39  
Old 02-25-2012, 07:06 PM
saratoga saratoga is offline
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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
This is a failure of very basic logic on your part.

1. I didn't quote Redwine as experts: I quoted them as evidence that people with Apple players don't think they are the same as each other.
Don't bullshit me. You held up several obviously untrustworthy/stupid links and appealed to their authority. You did this because you can't tell the difference between snakeoil and the real thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
3. If I had misunderstood Redwine, that would mean nothing at all concerning the validity of the quote from nwavguy. It is either correct or incorrect regardless of its route of transmission to you. That you do not understand this is, frankly, weird.
Quote me making a statement about "the validity of the quote from nwavguy" (in this thread at least).

Seriously. Do it. You can't of course, because I didn't question the validity of it, I just pointed out that you had no idea what it meant.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
More, one abx test does not produce absolute certainty that two players sound the same! It just proves they sound the same ***to that individual***, with whatever IEMs or phones he used. To make meaningful generalizations about what other people will probably hear, you need a pretty large population of test subjects and repeated tests.
Quote:
Originally Posted by saratoga View Post
That would be quite impressive since its impossible to show that two things sound the same with an ABX test.
If your'e going to talk about ABX tests, you might want to look up what they do and how they work!

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Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
- Measurements taken by a competent engineer suggest that the clip and pod will sound different to at least some people, with some iems/phones.
They absolutely do not suggest such a thing. Measurements of tiny difference say nothing about audibility. They reveal only ... tiny differences.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meanwhile View Post
No person who understood what an ABX test can actually do would disregard this until a considerable population of test results said otherwise.
'No person who understood what an ABX test can actually do would disregard this until [something an ABX cannot do]'

Irony.

Anyway, you've obviously never done any ABX testing, nor do you have a grasp on how to interpret quantitative measurements, so why are you arguing about them with people who have done ABX testing and understand measurements? You should have just shut your mouth when you held up those obviously wrong test results as truth, and then tried to figure out how you were so completely fooled by those sites. Now you're just making a fool of yourself.
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