Hold your horses

April 1, 2022
 by Paul McGowan

I am delighted to announce that I have, over many years of hard work and effort, developed a way to conclusively measure sound quality.

It’s amazing.

Of course, it won’t keep happy or make quiet those looking to use their existing audio measuring tools for this daunting task, but that is ok.

We understand nothing will.

Given that today is a day for fool’s jokes and goofs one might think that’s what this is all about.

But they would be wrong.

No, seriously, I’ve got it figured out.

It should come as no surprise that just like I can consistently rely upon my sense of taste and smell to identify things that resonate with me, I can do the same with my ears.

Wait! We’ve known that all along.

Yes, indeed we have. I was just confirming what you already knew.

Sometimes that’s what we need.

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16 comments on “Hold your horses”

  1. On April 1 the core message: “Trust your own (!) ears!” But haven’t we learned here that nothing is perfect in the realm of audio and that the weakest link is found in the inherent faults and deficiencies of them loudspeaker-design? And then the problem of finding a speaker with acceptable (!) deficiencies begins. One design is best for human voices (BBC- design philosophy). Another design is voiced for heavy metal but make listening to classical music unacceptable. One design is best for piano or plucked string instruments, another for wind instruments. People as Paul seem to be blessed having the best loudspeaker on hand in the best listening room.

  2. Aye, aye captain…the ears have it 😎

    And for those who would like an April Fool’s joke, here’s John Darko, who
    last year taught us how good house plants are as bass traps & diffusers.


    Take special note of how far the soundstage goes, left & right, with this
    particular set-up…
    (& how many Hi-Fi cliches he manages to cram into this video)

    Have a great day everyone ✌

  3. Fellow audiophile’s, hi-fi enthusiasts, music lovers, aren’t we all fools?
    We’re just lucky to have this day in April to celebrate our foolishness.
    Certainly chasing that perfect system is something of a fools errand.
    But when it comes to musical enjoyment in the home, we most certainly have the last laugh.

    1. Yes sir reel Bob. Here in upstate N.Y. it’s Opening Day of trout season. So, it’s freezing out and we got over an inch of rain in the night. I think I’ll stay in and play Mel Torme’s song, I’m Gonna Go Fishin’

      1. Being in Upstate NY have you heard of Lee Taylor the speaker builder?
        I have read good reviews if his speakers but never auditioned any.
        He is coupled with Madisound for speakers and he does the cabinets.

        1. No Larry, I have never looked into kits or commissioning a custom cabinet. Nor have I heard of his designs. It turns out he is located just an hour’s drive from me. I’ll have to look for a trout stream near there. And perhaps he has a showroom I could scope out? Columbia County is beautiful…

          1. Lee Taylor’s cabinets are beautiful-
            Madisound supplies the Seas speakers he uses
            Also he will custom the cabinet with a wide variety of finishes

            I lived in the Lower Hudson Valley for 33 years and it is truly magnificent.
            I lived on the Croton Dam-did a fair amount of fishing and photography there- Super peaceful unlike my current abode in Miami!

  4. I often wonder if any of the hifi manufacturers have a knowledge of
    Basic psychoacoustics , especially the use of conventional terminology ???

  5. Sorry this is late. I just read more replies to yesterday’s post, commenting on speaker distance from walls. Paul may want to say more about this in a future post.

    Many years ago research at Bell Labs determined that direct sound from a speaker and reflected sounds from room boundaries should be separated by at least 10 milliseconds for greatest clarity. Fortunately sound travels at close to one foot per millisecond so this becomes easy to calculate.

    For side wall reflections the distance from the speaker to the first reflection point on a side wall and on to the listener’s head should then be 10′ greater than the distance from the speaker directly to the listener’s head. Many times that may not be possible so this is where diffusion at the reflection point can be helpful.

    Similarly, panel or other dipole speakers should be placed at least 5′ out from the front wall. Thus the reflected sound will travel 10′ before passing the speaker to the listener. Again when this is not possible then diffusion can help.

    No joke. This may be somewhat off topic but few would see it if I added it to yesterday’s post.

  6. A sound presentation that ‘resonates’ with one’s ears.

    Now interface that with statements like this equipment is most correct, or faithful and or accurate. Then maybe one can get a sense of the ‘set in concrete ideas’ and biases that exist in the land of high(er) end audio.

  7. Exactly Paul. The ear is the best sound testing device known to man. So make sure you take care of your hearing and keep them in good working condition.

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