But unless you listen to several dozen systems that are all using the same speakers but different sources and amps
... how can you possibly "know" that it's the speakers that are making the significant differences?
It is very obvious. As you move from room to room you observe the change of sound and you feel it is the speakers/room.
But why do you "feel" that? What's the basis for that conclusion? There's no way you can determine that it's solely down to speakers.
Your'e missing my point, I know how to identify differences in sound but how do you know it's solely down to the speakers? In every room the speakers AND the amps will be different, as will the room, which could be as large a factor as anything else (I've been to a number of shows and the exhibitors always moan about the room they've been given!), how many times do we see people here saying they loved a speaker or system in the demo room but it didn't work when they got it home?
I'm not necessarily disagreeing with your conclusion btw, I'm just trying to say that your listening sessions at shows have so many different variables it's impossible to arrive at your conclusion without a lot more listening using a common amp, more than one in fact, you'd have to listen to a number of speakers on the same amp, decide which ones you like and then listen to them again on a different amp to see if you can hear a difference. If you can't THEN you can say it's primarily the speakers that make the difference but if you DO hear a difference your suggestion is dead in the water.
But you can't just walk into a room with a system you've never heard before and "feel" that it's the speakers making the difference.
(don't want to change the thread topic, BTW)
Yes, yes, academically it is true. but I am talking practically -
Say, there are two rooms with different bookshelf speakers of same type (electrodynamic), different amps (of moderate power, say one Ss and one valve) and different sources (say a SBT playing hi-rez and a turntable) . they both sound largely the same. of cause you will hear the vinyl artifacts, you will hear small differences in sound between the speaekers but none of the differences will be major. then you walk into a small room with a Zingali speaker and bang - it booms endlessly, compared to the fist two. So, can this boom come form the source? no way. amp? maybe. speaker? oh, more than likely. you make a note and proced to another room. there is an open-baffle speaker, playing from CD via a non-descript amp. the sound is tinny, distorted and irritating. is that the CD? probably not, nt to that degree! Amp? maybe, but again, not to that degree. Speaker? most likely. then you hear, say, a SBT with a valve amp and huge horns. again, clear sound signature - loud, punchy sound. is that the SBT you hear punching? very unlikely. the amp? mybe. The speakers? definately.
After 30 rooms, you can start to notice that all horns, all open baffles and all small electrodynamics sound about the same, regardless of source and amp. you also notice that some systems sound very significantly dirrefent to others and most of the time this is clearly due to speakers e.g. very small size, or very peculiar driver (e.g. parasitic voxative - unbeleivably distorted and harsh or electrostats - clean mids). In other rooms the impression is the opposite - there is a lot of systems and speakers that sound largerly the same and these are mostly electrodynamic speakers, 2-3 ways, driven by amps and whatever sources. there is no difference in the character of sound, all have same flaws (usually boom), limitations (usually high distortion at high volume) etc. the caracter changes mostly with the speaker, and more and very clearly so with type of speaker. these are very clear and obvious.
the only clear differenc I noticed between types of sources and amps was with truntables. otherwise - CD, DVD, stream, hi-rez, mp3 - all sound almost identical. I will not be able to identify them blind. no way. Amps - same. will never reliably identify any of them blind. you dont pick up any pattern related to sources or amps from listenting to dozens of these systems - except turntables. None.
this brings you back to speakers. and combined with a bit of theoretical knowledge about acoustics it all comes together: you need a high-performance speaker, driven well by the amp, with as little room problems as possible. have any source (including LP if you are ok with the sound of cracks) and that is your best bet.
that is my thinking, the practical side.
System here http://www.whathifi.com/forum/your-system/my-dream-system-oh-maybe-one-day
FWIW. My personal experimentation has led me to the conclusion that amps can play a huge role.
I have found speakers that I can't sit in the room with, on some amplification; and then sound very good with others. A forward, highly detailed but slightly clinical amp, will sound totally different from something like an Audio Note SET Valve amp, or a Pathos Hybrid.
This also works the other way round as well, and the differences in speakers can be even bigger ie. I've amps that I can't sit in the room with, until the right speakers are found.
Interestingly, I would rather get the amp right first...which goes against what a lot of people believe. This is because you can't get the sound of Class A or Valves, any other way, no matter how many speakers you try.
"Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again." André Gide
As mentioned previously on other threads that my cd player is from the early nineties, but this year i did spend several hundred pounds on a kenwood in car entertainment so i'm now enjoying to listening to music on the move.
formerly known as slewis ---
You also got some CAT 5 (Kitten), if I remember right!
sorry, cannot edit my above post any more. wanted to add - that was my revelation from this years shows.
here is an idea: somebody join me to Scalford 2013. I go blind. Guide me through the rooms and we both make separate notes on sound quality and then publish them to compare the sighted vs blind. or both do a blind round followed by sighted, both with notes, and then compare. Any takers?
You also got some CAT 5 (Kitten), if I remember right!
here is an idea: somebody join me to Scalord 2013. I go blind. Guide me through the rooms and we both make separate notes on sound quality and then publish them to compare the sighted vs blind. Any takers?
IMO. Hi-Fi systems often sound nowhere near their best at shows, due to the far from ideal conditions (and possibly music). It is as likely to give you the completely wrong impression, as the right one.
Also imo. they are a brilliant way to see what's out there, and meet the people behind the equipment.....but often gives no more than a cursory feel for what they might offer.
This year was a full year for me regardering Hi-Fi, i' ve build my kit from scratch, bought Rega DAC, SBT, Rega Brio R, Dynaudio Excite X12, Synology DS213, and bought loads of albuns from HD tracks, 24-96 and 16-44.1/48.
This is the streaming year, i've read alot of hifi mags, WHF, HF choice, Stereophile, HF world, Absolut sound...
i've learn alot with the reading, and with YOU GUYS i might ADD!!!
I've done some demos, and now i've exactly the sound i've had in my head before spending my money.
I've almoust give up on home theatre and dedicated my self intirely to STEREO!!!
My wife likes as mutch as I do, i'm a happy man !!!
Good thread by the way :clap:
And this has been a funny year, it has been like christmas all year round!
Rega RP3 / Goldring 1012gx # Synology DS213 > QED Performance USB > Rega DAC > QED Performance RCA > Rega Brio R > Supra Classic 2x4mm > Dynaudio Excite X12 and some times BK XLS200 MK II
SBT > G&BL teflon line RCA > NAD 3020i > Supra Classic 2x4mm > Monitor Audio RS1
2012 has been the year of starting to settle down for me, a realisation and acceptance that I can't keep devoting inordinate amounts of my life to worrying about whether my hi-fi is the absolute best I can get it.
I have also realised just how remarkable my original Quad 11Ls are and although I've still got 685s and various other speakers in back-up storage, I really do think the Quads are the best I'm going to get without spending too much money. The Quads need an amp that grips them at all volumes and the Denon 720AE really does a great job without breaking the bank.
2012 has seen me get back into vinyl in a bigger way too and I'm enjoying my RP3/Elys 2 combo more than ever, particularly as the Denon has a very good phono stage built in. Vinyl and CD are my main sources despite the occasional dalliance with my Squeezebox Touch and, given the amount of vinyl out there and the proliferation of superb value CD box sets, I don't think this is going to change. I still love the process of looking through my library of music and handling the real article and I find the sound of vinyl and CD more than good enough.
Musically, I've got back into listening to classical music more frequently again, culminating with the purchase this month of a mammoth 68CD/5DVD set of Murray Perahia - The First 40 Years. My love for all things Barclay James Harvest is as strong as ever and I loved seeing the band live a few weeks ago, for the 7th time. I also had the wonderful opportunity to see Ralph McTell for the 5th time and he was a superb as ever, with the bonus that I got to meet him after the concert and found him to be a lovely, genuine man. Favourite albums of the year include the brilliant 'Weather Systems' by Anathema and 'Piramida' by Efterklang. Also Ralph McTell's 'Sofa Noodling'. My best vinyl purchase was the new remaster LP of 'Abbey Road'.
In 2013 I'm most looking forward to the new John Lees' Barclay James Harvest album, and I'm hoping to get to some orchestral and piano concerts at the Bridgewater Hall and RNCM. At some point I'd also like to do some performing myself having taken a year off this year.
Rega RP3/Elys 2, Roksan K2 CDS, Squeezebox Touch, Denon PMA720AE, Q Acoustics 2020i, Sennhesier HD595, Beyer-Dynamic DT770PRO, Chord Crimson/Chord Rumour 2
Best hifi moments of the year - discovering class A amps, in particular Sugden and Accuphase. Biggest disappointment - Modern Naim gear.
In the 2012 I redescover my passion for music and descover the HIFI world wich has been very nice and also very expensive!!!
OLIVE 06 HD/ CHORD QDB76HDSD DAC / CHORD PRIMA PREAMP / ATC SCM50 ASLT / MERIDIAN i80
Where did my post disappear to?
Little green men in whooly hats ate it.
Ah, so that's where they went.....and why they are now not hungry!
I keep telling them, "No posts before lunch, as it will spoil your appetite".
I've done EDITED all this year.
Bought nothing to do with hi-fi, can't remember what CDs I've bought but I'm pretty sure there's nothing new in there wrt new groups/artists.
Oh, I did cobble together a mini system in the pool room (table, not swimming) from old components, Sky+ box for radio (it feeds the kitchen in the TV via RF2) and my old Pro-ject Debut II and Pro-ject Phono Box USB connected into a pair of Creative Gigaworks T20s all sitting on my old Sound Organisation rack, it's not hi-fi but the room doesn't really lend itself to that anyway (bare slate floors for a start and a pool table...) but the T20s work surprisingly well, particularly with some of the old Mono LPs I've picked up where a decent stereo stage doesn't matter.
Don't get to listen to it much though, the missus gives me black looks if I spend too long out there of an evening...
No signature worth mentioning...
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