"What a refreshingly honest blog about listening to music through hi-fi. So happy to see views based upon the enjoyment of music rather than so-called sound 'quality'." - Peter Comeau, Director of Acoustic Design at Mission / Wharfedale

Friday 28 March 2014

Don't Believe What They Tell You By Default - Mesurements Can Be Subjective Too

I've always been of the opinion that measurements, where they relate to how music is reproduced on an hifi system are only there to give some clues.  There are those who believe that measurements can tell you everything you need to know and you can buy kit based on those measurements.  I'm of the opinion that there are still limits to our knowledge and that measurements only cover some parameters, not all of them.

Recently I've seen forum posts that cite the dynamic range (a measurement of the difference between the quietest sounds and the loudest sounds) of an album definitively proves if an album is going to sound good or not.  Of course, dynamic range is an important measure and an important indicator, but it doesn't tell you anything about distortion levels, the quality of the recording equipment / mixing desk / analogue to digital converters, the care with which the recording was made, the imaging in the mix, the frequency range etc. etc.  So its and indicator, but its not definitive.

So its interesting to see this article on the audiostream.com site which exposes some very specific measurements and how they were taken and why they are not necessarily even indicative of what they claim to be measuring.


So, like I suggest above, just listen and decide for yourself - you'll like it or you'll not like it, but you'll be using the most important measuring technique you have available, and the most trustworthy available.  Be confident in your own ability to hear the differences and make a decision.

No comments:

Post a Comment