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Subject: RE: Koss Porta pros
From: Green, Tom (
Date: 2004-06-21

> I never meant to suggest that measurements could quantify the quality
> music or photographs, the emotional content, etc. That is, and always
> should be, a wholly subjective area.

Gotcha. Agreed.

> But you can measure the accuracy in reproducing music. We have crude
> measurements now like "total harmonic distortion" that does not even
> take into account that odd order harmonics are very annoying while
> order harmonics are not.


> With photography, the can definitely measure most of the important
> aspects of a camera, lens, or film. You can measure pincushion
> distortion in a lens, color accuracy of film, chromatic abberation of
> lens, sharpness of focus across the focal plane, accuracy of shutter
> speed, response of metering, etc.

True again - But, we're in agreement that these quantities don't always
relate to "good" picture taking or "good" art. I suspect that Jimi
Hendrix wasn't too interested in "accurate" reproduction of his guitar -
it would appear that in most cases he was after a certain "distorted"
sound and feel, which helped make his music unique.
> Stairs used to "feel" right or wrong. Now we have specific guidelines
> for rise and tread (i.e., The sum of two risers and one tread should
> 24 to 25 inches., The sum of one riser and one tread should be equal
> 17 to 18 inches., The height of the riser times the width of the tread
> should equal between 70 and 75 inches., Never make a tread below 9
> inches wide and 7 to 7 5/8 make the best risers.) I hope that some
> we can have an equally good understanding of what makes on audio
> component sound better than another.

Good point about the stairs, but remember, these types of guidelines or
"standards" are usually based on a bell-curve average. This leaves out
folks at the two ends of the spectrum, by design. For instance, people
with very short, or very long, legs might find the "feel" of a different
stair ratio to be more to their liking. I personally don't want someone
telling me what sound I should like, based on some calculated,
bell-curve, set of measured quantities, whatever they might be. Agreed,
the numbers are nice to know, and can serve to compare different
components, but in the final analysis, what matters is personal taste,
which I think we agree can't be "measured" very well.

> I would argue that, with calibration, the variability in your hearing
> from hour to hour would be greater.

Yup, I'd have to be a fool to disagree with that one. (Especially
regarding MY hearing). :-)

> A very good point. For example, the vinyl noise, ticks, and pops
> inherent in LP recordings drives me insane (you knew that something
> to blame for that ;-). When I'm listening to music and hear a tick,
> destroys the illusion for me. It would be like watching a movie and
> seeing the set fall down.

Yes, good analogy. I think we learned to live with clicks and ticks on
vinyl just because it was just there. Now with digital, we have the
ability to NOT hear it, so we're getting used to that. I guess that's
probably one of the reasons I don't listen to my vinyl much anymore.
Even though I took VERY good care of my albums, well, MOST of them
anyway :-), they still have noise on them which seems to bother me now
more than it used to.



Page was last modified "Jan 10 2012" The Rockbox Crew