You can guess I subscribe to the "if you haven't heard it..." camp. And besides, Cno is one of only a handful of regulars here whose advice/experience I'd be happy to trust.
The 'you don't know man, you weren't there' argument of personal experience is a claim that only you can know if a product will work or not. That strongly suggests that there is nothing inherent in the product that can cause the differences heard. So it is weak basis on which to buy something, unless you have the intial outlay and can return it without quibble.
That some here report a difference and others do not whilst using sighted testing also shows there is nothing inherant in the product which makes a difference. If there really was something the reports would be more towards, I heard a difference and liked/did not like it. That is what you get with the parts of the hifi chain which really do affect sound, like speakers.
Black Ravioli also fails to get itself scientifically examined in anyway. I am quite sure that would be a matter of setting up a hifi, measuring vibration, then putting BR under the various parts and measuring vibration again. Now comes the very hard missing link that pretty much all audiophile product makers ignore, evidence to show a causal link to differences in sound quality.
If you buy BR based on the maker's claims you are buying a hypothesis only.
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JD said,' I do have one - serious - question though; if you expect to hear no difference, are you more likely to hear no difference?
Indeed you are, just like the reverse which is normally jumped on by people of a certain persuasion.
Still he did give it a go and therefor can't be criticised for condemning a product without experience of it, unlike far too many other people.
So how did the dealer react when you told him you couldn't hear a difference?
Presumably he sells the product because he's a believer and set the demo up in a system where he's heard a difference?
P.S. hope you used a hi-end source, good quality cabling and clean mains in the demo
Not that any of these things matter, of course, just as a control to eliminate the possibility that a tiny improvement wasn't masked by other factors.
So in my opinion Black Ravioli is a total waste of time and money. A small amount of vibration doesn't seem to make any difference to the sound that amplifiers make.
Good for you for trying it, and if you could humour me, I do have a few questions :
- Was the Ravioli placed under the feet or the chassis?
- Which Ravioli did you listen to (ie. Original; Double; Big Feet etc)?
- Did you place it in three or four places, and did you try to put in under the power supply, and towards the outside?
- Was anyone from the shop with you, and were they of the same opinion......did they have an explanation as to why you heard no difference?
- Did you try it under the source?
- What was the system you tried it in, how long did you listen and were you familiar with the system/music played.
I'm sorry of the interrogation, but since every time I've tried it, I have got a change.....usually for the better, but not always. The company usually recommend starting at the source and working forward to assess the improvement.....though saying that, I would have expected you to have heard a change of some sort. I take it that the dealer themselves have a favorable view of it.
Anyway, thank you for reporting in and putting the opposing view (having tried it).
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Or because he/she runs a shop, a business, and stocks things that customers like to buy.
My local bookshop has a 'religions' section where there are books about lots of different beliefs.
Is it necessary for the staff (or even the owner) to believe in any of them to sell the books?
I am sure (actually I know) there are vegetarians working in places where meat is sold.
In every area of retail there are businesses that sell some products that their staff (and owners) may not have any liking for, or personal belief in.
Why does the hi-fi shop have to be an exception?
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The 2 specialist dealers I deal with, only keep stuff that they believe in and can demonstrate the improvement.....otherwise they would lose credibility and repeat business. Building trust with their customers pays higher dividends than a quick rip-off sale.
I can't speak for any other dealers of course.
Granted, I'm making assumptions that might not be true.
I'm assuming that the kind of hi-fi dealer who stocks this product is a specialist retailer in the higher end of the market. Normally these people are enthusiasts themselves.
I can well imagine a hi-fi dealer selling a product like a CD player that isn't their personal favourite, but it still plays discs and some people may indeed prefer the sound--everyone's taste and system is different. Maybe it even got a 5* review in WHF so everyone automatically assumes it must be the thing to have.
But in the case of BR, the accusation is that this product makes no difference and, indeed, cannot make a difference because no-one is willing or able to explain what it's made of or how it works (thus the people who have heard a difference are deluding themselves). I find it hard to believe, though not impossible, that a dealer would sell something that either a) they don't have a clue about or b) know that it doesn't work i.e. is a rip-off.
That's an exellent question John.
Is it possible for expectation bias to stop you from hearing a difference that you would otherwise have noticed if you'd done a blind test? Hmmm, yeah maybe.
As far a my test went I admit that I was biased against it not making any difference with the solid state amp because I wasn't expecting to hear any difference. With the valve amp I wasn't sure what to expect so I don't think that I was biased here even though I was sceptical.
It's also worth mentioning that the tests were sighted A/B tests with about a minute inbetween the comparisons. So all in all it was a very unscientific experiment really.
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Under the feet.
The cheap £30 ones.
No, just under the feet.
Hehe. Yeah the guy in the shop said he could hear a difference with both amps. I'm not sure if he was trying to convince me or himself but I got the impression that he was lying though.
The valve amp was a Fatman tube amp and the solid state amp was a Sony AV receiver. An iPod was used for the source playing 320kbps MP3's that I know well. I only listened to each amp for about five minutes.
No need to apologise Cno. I welcome any constructive questions and criticism.
I do openly admit that the this particular test wasn't very scientific or thorough though.
Steve, thank you for the comprehensive reply.
The reason I asked, was the only time I heard no improvement, was when they were put under the feet of the component by someone who had never used them before. They are designed for under the chassis, lifting the feet off the ground, otherwise they have little effect. It usually takes two high of the original pads to lift the equipment off its feet.
The fact that the person in the shop let you test with them under the feet and then claimed to hear a difference shows he has little knowledge.
Anyway, you may still not hear a difference, but I'm afraid the test needs re-done (if you can be bothered). This time, start at the source and work forward, with the pads under the chassis.....or better still borrow some and experiment at home.
Hi Cno I have heard the difference that black ravioli makes and ai for one will be buying some when funds allow my dem was carried out using my audiolab 8000px connected to a cyrus preamp/dac and a cyrus transport the amp had 4 br pads £25 ones to start with and after 45 mins 3 x £25 br pads were placed under the preamp /dac the same music was replayed and much to my supprise there was a noticable difference a bigger sound stage and the bass tightend up 30mins later 3 x £25 br pads were placed under the transport and again another improvement so Cno you are not alone in I was going to say in thinking there was a difference but you know as well as I do there is a difference
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I may have missed a post, but what are these things made of? I did look on the (very pretty and very stylish) Black Ravioli website and there seems to be little or no reference as to what they are made from. Presumably someone makes them for Black Ravioli and from a pre-existing material. If it is EPDM foam, then this is available for next to nothing and one can do a very cheap try-out to see if they work before considering purchasing the 'Real Thing'.
Or not, as the case may be.
Nobody will be able to tell you what they're made of....they are not rubbery, spongy or foamy, but have a layered construction. Sailforth UK, who makes them, brought isolation tech that was developed for Nuclear Subs.
Anyway, you may still not hear a difference, but I'm afraid the test needs re-done (if you can be bothered). This time, start at the source and work forward, with the pas under the chassis.....or better still borrow some and experiment at home.
Thanks for the report Steve.
Looks like I was wrong about the professionalism of the shop assistant!
P.S. Cno, how is he supposed to test the BR with active speakers;) ?
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