“A man should look for what is, and not for what he thinks should be.”
- Albert Einstein

blue_Room.jpgAudiophiles generally don’t talk about “placebos”, “expectancy effects” and so on, when they are discussing their favourite audio components. They reserve that for what they call the “tweak” products.  Obviously, if they were arguing all the time about whether these more established audio products worked or not, they would never get anywhere in their discussions, and it would be pointless to have audio discussion forums. However, there always were and will always be people who can’t hear differences among any audio component you care to name, including different loudspeakers. I’ve seen this with my own eyes. So now, does that mean all audio components sound the same, nothing changes anything in the sound? That can’t be, because even the famously deaf  wouldn’t make such a claim.

When you’re dealing with alternative audio products, that work on alternative principles to conventional audio, forget about what you understand as “logic”. What skeptics fail to understand is that the term “logic” and “common sense” have no real meaning. They have only a relative meaning. And if the audio skeptics were half as smart as they think they are, they would not misapply it. If you insist on looking at the world through the filtered prism of what you know, you will be at odds with learning anything new. Anything that isn’t regarded as “logic and common sense” becomes “silly and nonsense”. When in fact, what is silly and nonsensical is to believe that you can apply fixed definitions of “logic” and “common sense” to everything, and safely reject whatever doesn’t fit your particular definitions of that.

You’re down the rabbit hole now, when you are exploring AA (advanced audio) products, and you must conform to the laws of another science than Newton’s view of the world. A science that may or may not be well known. Those who have been able to determine for themselves that AA products are as valid and make as credible a difference as their coventional products, only see the mockery and ridicule from the naysayers (who may not even have tried them) as reaffirmations that the world is populated largely by arrogant fools. Learned fools perhaps, but arrogant fools all the same. And believe me, it’s not a very encouraging sight.

Under conventional laws of audio science, or what is known as “logic and common sense” by the conservative audio establishment, generally, when you make a change to one hifi system, you make a change to that system only. Advanced audio may have other definitions of “logic and common sense”, because under the laws of those products that operate on Beltist principles (mostly from PWB Electronics), when you make an improvement to one stereo in the home, you improve everything. Every other hifi system in your home, every mini-component system, every mp3/mp4 player (used in the home), and even every video screen. Under the laws of Beltism, it’s also not impossible for your tv upstairs to improve, after you’ve applied products to your stereo downstairs. I know… “that isn’t logical and doesn’t make any common sense”.

PWB products are about the only audio products you can buy to improve both sound and vision. The only audio products that can improve, say, an iPod, or a car stereo system, your portable cd player, or the color depth on your computer monitor. Using “conventional” products, about the only way you may be able to improve the performance of such items, is if they have a wire. Then you upgrade the wire or headphones. Whoopee!. I already have good headphones for my mp4 player, and speaker wire in my car stereo. I don’t want what I have to be my “ceiling” for quality performance. I want high fidelity sound on my portable equipment as I expect at home, and I appreciate being able to improve the performance of the computer equipment I already have. One reason I dig advanced audio is because the Belt products are the only things that have been able to provide that, easily and very effectively. There is nothing like them in the world. Nothing that can do what they do. At least I don’t know of any other single product in the audio marketplace that can at once improve the performance of a hard drive, a USB cable, a glass of wine, a book, an LCD monitor, an mp4 wristwatch, and a $10,000 tube amp1.

Although again, I can’t speak for all alternative audio products, I can say that what makes the PWB products so special with audio, is that nothing sounds like them. That is to say, they change the sound by changing our perception of sound, and in doing so, produce a “sonic signature group” that is unique to this type of product. Although each Belt product, as with conventional audio products, have their own sonic signature, you can not duplicate the sound with any conventional audio upgrade. From knowing what this signature group sounds like, I can generally tell whether a product works under “Beltian” or “Newtonian” principles. For this reason alone, I feel they are worthy of consideration by all who consider themselves serious audiophiles.

don’t you wonder sometimes
about sound and vision?
…I will sit right down
waiting for the gift
of sound and vision
and I will sing
waiting for the gift of
sound and vision”

- “Sound & Vision”
: David Robert Jones

the advanced audiophile Being a chemist.

Footnotes:

1PWB’s “Cream Electret” is one such product that may be able to improve all of those things.

2Note to Basil: The movement of the earth’s crust in Machina Dynamica’s literature does not refer to “earthquakes”. It refers to the fact that the earth is constantly moving, in small measures. However, I must say it is absolutely typical of so many knee-jerk reactionaries on audio forums to misunderstand even elemental science, while purporting to champion “the good science” when arguing against advanced audio products that may employ lesser known areas of advanced or alternative scientific principles. Then, as “Basil” is seen doing, using their scientific ignorance as a basis to form misguided arguments against the “weird scary audio gizmo” in question. With the intention of mocking the audio products, and pretending to take a superior position of knowledge against the product, its manufacturer, or its advocates. There is no presumption made that the author of the commentary may be wrong, and no presumption made that there’s something inherently wrong in twenty five audiophiles going on a free-for-all mocking spree against an AA company, without knowing anything concrete about the company’s products. Including how they work and whether they work (“pretending to be an expert” doesn’t count). As it always appears to be on these discussion groups, ignorance is a contagion, skepticism is the breeding ground!