Audio Engineering Society and cables

This paper discusses some very interesting issues that have been poorly managed in other attempts at double-blind listening trials involving audio components. I am especially glad to see that some thoughtful scientists are not blindly accepting ABX style paradigms as the gold standard for testing differences between cables or other audio gear. The authors point out that rapid, brief exposure to auditory stimuli may be confounded by overlap between what is being heard in earlier and later samples. The results of this study make a strong argument for presenting listeners with longer samples of music and introducing a "palate cleansing" break between samples so that the differences between samples do not become blurred by trying to fit them all into a brief chunk of short-term memory. This approach is consistent with the argument from audiophiles that it is important to use more extended listening sessions to compare different audio gear, whether listening is done blindly or not.

For those cable measurers who over-focus on differences in frequency response being necessary to hear a difference between cables, the authors caution against a simplistic analysis that focuses mainly on frequency response. Other issues appear to be more important, especially those related to noise handling and possibly phase response. It is interesting that this study provides scientific evidence that two cables that have virtually identical frequency response can nevertheless be distinguished from each other based on double-blind listening. 

I was also pleased to see that the "better" interconnect in the study was a Straight Wire product while the alternative was a Monster Cable interconnect. In 1992, I replaced my Monster ICs with a much better sounding pair from Straight Wire. I guess it still took several decades for science to catch up with my ears. ;-)

Oh Dow Jones…. Stop being silly. Why is there anything, and if there is nothing, is nothing something? 😂😂
Yeah, but it's gotta be thick or I couldn't stand up.
Or is that, lay down?
@thyname-  Well… there is a lot of historical precedence on this phenomenon. Example: how many years (centuries?) did it take to prove earth is not flat? Or that sun does not orbit earth but the other way around? I can name many examples."

      How about: the current theory that the entire universe is, "flat" (two dimensional).
                                 And: there are a plethora, that get ever stranger!

       The breakthrough that dispelled the junk beliefs you mention, was Galileo's telescope (a better way to VIEW and MEASURE cosmic phenomena).    It took The Hubble Telescope, to prove Einstein's Cosmological Constant, which even he (purportedly) considered a blunder, correct.  

         For all the science, technology, measurements, PHDs (Doctors and Scientists), elimination of variables, careful choice of testers/listeners, scrupulous application of double-blind test procedures, etc, that went into to the above study:

                                 The naysayer's response will remain, "YEAH, BUT!"
"The difference between low end and high end audio is what occurs below 40db"

It's the low level details that make or break.

Don’t be surprised. Millions of people still believe that. Not as radical as the QAnon theories, but still. Google “flat earth society”.
Here is a theory on the cables and the cable haters, just a theory, no blind tests or measurements to show 😉:

These “contrarians” who poo-poo the efficacy of expensive cables often appear in many other forums, threads, audio groups,  questioning the merits of ALL expensive audio products. They are either disgruntled with their lot in life (e.g. a spouse who wears the proverbial pants, a wallet that squeaks so loud they hate to open it, etc.) or their skills of self-persuasion require constant exercising with selfish expectations of indulgence on our part.  

Not having a fact-based opinion because it's foreclosed by those circumstances, however, doesn't prevent them from expressing their frustration-based comments.

It's not about whether they can or cannot afford to pay more.

Hobbyists who operate within a prescribed budget are quite content with value-based high performance systems and work diligently to accomplish that end. They bear no grudge against those who chose to spend more. These folks… not so much. Kinda “why build a better house for myself, rather burn down my neighbor’s house” mentality 

"Cable haters will remain haters. No matter what. It does not matter what kind of proof is shown."

Yup. The Song Remains The Same.
Well… there is a lot of historical precedence on this phenomenon. Example: how many years (centuries?) did it take to prove earth is not flat? Or that sun does not orbit earth but the other way around? I can name many examples.

nonoise7,190 posts06-16-2021 6:40pmSame old, same old. It's like they're all singing from the same hymnal.
Goes to show that indoctrination is a thing.
there is little correlation between improvement and price.

Would be greatly appreciated if you could provide the links to the studies you drew upon to come up with that statement.

Thanks in advance.

Same old, same old. It's like they're all singing from the same hymnal.
Goes to show that indoctrination is a thing.

All the best,
😂😂😂🙄🙄 Of course 🙄🙄

Cable haters will remain haters. No matter what. It does not matter what kind of proof is shown. 
Hearing a difference is not always an improvement, and there is little correlation between improvement and price.
Thought the following interesting.........

The temporal discriminability  of the human auditory system is much finer than one might infer from the upper audibility limit of fmax <18 kHz [44], and not directly related to it. Previous experiments [45]–[46] set an upper bound of ~ 5 s. But it should be noted that those listening trials used an SSC protocol with a very simple form of stimulus (7 kHz square wave tone) and therefore may have overestimated . The experience of the present work suggests repeating those experiments with music, rather than a tone, and following an EMP approach to determine a more accurate (and probably shorter) estimate of . Similarly, the theoretical value for which was estimated to be as low as 2 s from neurophysiological modeling [45], was also based on SSC and is potentially an overestimate. Furthermore, there may be possible exotic time-domain effects that prolong the decay beyond the nominal decay times calculated here, which are based on idealized reactive behavior. These questions are worth revisiting in future.


I will admit, it is hard for me to understand how there can still be a controversy after all these decades. I got my first high quality interconnect about 45 years ago. I had relatively cheap equipment and it just pass more of the poor signal through instead of limiting some of it… so no change. But the second cable I bought so completely changed the sound I was astounded… sounded like someone took the component out and brought in a new and better one. From that instance on, after every upgrade I would carefully choose and upgrade my cables and interconnects. Each time they have provided a very significant contribution to the overall sound quality. Btw, I pulled out that old first set of interconnects a few years ago… the ones that didn’t do anything… they made a profound impact on my contemporary system in a good way… my audio guy had steered me in the right way… only my equipment was not good enough to be improved by them.

Well, maybe I answered my own question. If you have a relatively poor signal to start with, passing through a cleaner version of the signal is probably not noticeable.

Also, some folks are under the incorrect impression that something like sound reproduction can be fully characterized by a few scientific measurements. I was trained as a scientist and worked as a scientist and engineer for over a decade and very quickly abandoned the idea that I could characterize the performance if audio equipment with a few simple variables and used listening and professional reviews as my evaluation criteria.
Well if all cables sound the same then God probably did something wrong.  
High-end audio is a subject that is shrouded in controversy. Aside from loudspeakers, consumers exhibit varying degrees of skepticism as to what affects sonic performance. The most contentious ingredient in the chain is the interconnection between components, which concerns both the topology (balanced versus single-ended) and the characteristics of the cable itself. This work shows that two system configurations differing only by the interconnect pathway are audibly discernable, even by average listeners with no special experience in music or audio.
I really wish I could not hear a difference. It would definitely make life easier. How about if all food tasted the same? $50 cut of filet? Nope,it's ground possum for me! 
Thanks Chuck. Now I can’t get The Nile Song out of my head!
I though the the link might be ...even worse....

as for the cables. well that’s just ...not even on the page, not the table ...or even in the room.

life is one hell of a lot more complex and deep than this simple idea that cables OBVIOUSLY sound different. That cables sound different, doesn’t even make to the level of doggie doo to wipe off my shoe, in that it is a --done deal.

Real things that are complex and defy the mind of the linear thinker are easy to come by. Here’s one that is proven to be real that will drive most of the naysayers batty to the point that their heads spin off and they shake and spit blood everywhere. There’s a million real things that they can’t approach.

I’d feel bad for them... but due to their trying to kill and stab me left and right, my sympathy for their lack... withered and died a cold lonely death -decades ago.

Now I’m just indifferent to them and deal with them without changing the look on my face.

I really don’t have a problem pushing them off a cliff. Maybe they’ll learn something on the way down.

So I look at the whole ’cable debate’ and I think, when dealing with the nay sayers....’such a simple life, such a limited box of a life....they can’t even make it past these tiny little nothings...just a dangerous unpredictable fenced in animal life. Jebus.’

What’s it like to be so mentally small? I can’t imagine the horror.

Eg, the new and big flap with UFO's. well, with UFO's.. if gravity is a wash a done deal, then everything else comes along for the ride. A whole pile of stuff that really blows the lid off the nature of reality into areas that can break humans. big time. Start at the bottom. learn it all again.

To understand that the ufos over the capitol buildings were seen by tens of thousands and the flap over it was as big as JFK's death. Actually, news wise, it was Bigger than the ending of WWII.

Note how that event was virtually erased from the record.

And people worry and argue about whether a cable sound different or not. It does.

So get over yourself ...and move on to much more important things.
Reading to figure out 2+2=4? 

Now if they got a paper on how to measure soundstage then maybe they got something interesting to read.
No $hit $herlock. Who here wants to pay $33 for the pleasure of reading pages of dippy geeky word salad all to learn what we already know?
This is just freakin’ unnecessarily abusive, guy. People here should be free to post within the forum rules without your insult. We don’t exist solely for your silly amusement.

As an FYI, reading is for many people a trivial task. You might be surprised what you’d learn if you could be bothered. A man who doesn’t read has no advantage over a man who can’t.
Post removed 
"No, they will never be done. It’s not just a river in Egypt, you know."

Thanks Chuck. Now I can’t get The Nile Song out of my head!
Do I really need a "paper" to tell me cables sound different?  Definitely a waste of time.
No, they will never be done. It's not just a river in Egypt, you know.
Nevertheless, it is peer-reviewed scientific proof that different cables sound different. The naysayers are done.
Okay. I get it now. But you know who, as bad as he is at listening, is even worse at reading.
No interest on this for me whatsoever. This was not posted for me. Or for you. But you know who. I only need my ears for this stuff
"this work utilized a high-performance audio system and extended-duration listening protocol that more closely resembles audiophile auditioning conditions. With these measures the present work was able to prove through direct psychoacoustic testing that two different analog-interconnect pathways can be audibly distinguished."
No $hit $herlock. Who here wants to pay $33 for the pleasure of reading pages of dippy geeky word salad all to learn what we already know?

Thyname why don’t you go for it, since you think it newsworthy, and then paste it in here. Thanks and you’re welcome.