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“Audio Memory” ?

Discussion in 'audio' started by fegs, Jun 13, 2020.

  1. fegs

    fegs pfm Member

    I'm exactly the same mate and that to me is often a curse!
  2. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    Me too but I don't think we are judging the room. I can think of two very expensive systems in particular that sounded terrible but were in really nice rooms. I think it's more that a budget system can sound really good and top system can sound really bad. I'd go further and say that I think most expensive systems are probably under-performing.

    It's not that hard, it just requires conscious effort. What we aim for is forgetting the system and being drawn into the music but to be able to figure out what's wrong with something you have to break it down. Identify individual characteristics and flaws. You know you've cracked it when this becomes hard to do because you keep getting drawn back into the music!

    Yeah, it depends. I've argued with my wife because the way she's arranged items in the kitchen cupboards isn't logical! But you can apply it in a work context to be very effective at your job. It doesn't matter what the task is, I'm constantly trying to figure out how to do it better. Of course it means other people drive you up the wall because they're operating in 'who gives a s***' mode!
  3. S-Man

    S-Man Kinkless Tetrode Admirer

    Sainsbury's for me... I can taste the difference :D
  4. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    My brother works in a plant that processes and packs salmon for supermarkets. He said to me 'You know what the difference between M&S and Morrisons smoked salmon is? The M&S fish has to be has to look right, has to be sitting straight in the packet etc. The Morrisons fish is just chucked on, but it's the same fish!'.
  5. Zombie

    Zombie pfm Member

    Delete only Maybe as appropriate?
  6. James

    James Lord of the Erg\o/s

    I didn't say it was hard to identify differences to the performance. I said it was difficult to attribute the differences to individual components in the hifi. The only way you can be certain is to swap bits in and out. But even then, you don't know what other trade offs you have unwittingly made. I tend to judge the system as a whole, and in the context of a well sorted room. I have a friend who is throwing good money at his system to fix a poor room. I don't think he will get very far, and he knows it.
  7. Rockmeister

    Rockmeister pfm Member

    to the OP, I'd say in my case it's very, very short. OFC memory exists, in every form, and ofc those abilities vary per person, but as mentioned above, when forced, or wanting, to really concentrate on the task (as, maybe, during blind testing of several similar components) If the gap between the component audition exceeds a minute or so, then I was never quite certain that my memory of the's exact nature, was accurate. However if I wrote down my experiences (The Cello is positioned exactly in line with that curtain, and the sound has real timbre, sounding louder than the Violin just to its left) then I can compare better.
    One can remember general character fine amp warm, one cooler sounding etc, but precise details, not so much.
  8. docstocker

    docstocker pfm Member

    My take on this is that is usually easy to hear if there is ‘more information retrieval’ after a change to a system but it is much harder to be sure that a system is ‘more enjoyable.

    For instance the change, years ago, from swapping in and SME 3009 in place of the big black ball arm on my TD150 was immediately apparent. Much much much more detail and it did retain its place in my system for 15 years.
    However, I have made very few changes to my system over the last forty years and still have almost all the equipment I have ever bought.
    But... some days my system sounds sublime and record follows record or I have pieces of music queuing up to be streamed into the small hours, however, other days it doesn't quite grip me and I find myself being sidetracked into reading or this website.
    So the system hasn’t changed enjoyment of it has.
    narabdela likes this.
  9. Sue Pertwee-Tyr

    Sue Pertwee-Tyr Well, I can dream, can’t I?

    The fallibility of our aural memory is something commonly cited by people who are often also the advocates of blind tests, which strikes me as odd because the blind test relies almost entirely on accurate memory.

    But that aside, I think there are different types of aural memory, and some persist for decades while others are pretty transient. I can instantly recognise a piece of music I have not heard for years, similarly a familiar voice I haven’t heard for decades. And, as others have said upthread, I can remember salutary experiences with hifi kit.

    The trick, I think, is to learn to apply the appropriate type of perception, and get the appropriate types of memory. If you witnessed a crime, the police would ask you for a description, but they wouldn’t ask you to tell them the exact height, weight, shoe size, brand of wristwatch worn, and so-on, because we just don’t go around noticing that stuff. Yet it is exactly what we attempt to do when auditioning hifi kit. That’s the mistake, I think.
    Fatmarley, awkwardbydesign and Mr Pig like this.
  10. awkwardbydesign

    awkwardbydesign Officially Awesome

    Do you realise you said that out loud? :D
    Sue Pertwee-Tyr and deebster like this.
  11. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    And I'm sure we don't all hear and process in the same ways.

    How much are you forgetting about the system and just enjoying the music? How many parts of your body are moving to the tune? When the music ends, are you keen to play it again or get something else on or do you feel like switching the music off and doing something else?
  12. awkwardbydesign

    awkwardbydesign Officially Awesome

    I do like that!
    But as to memory, I am affected badly by sibilance, and that is not something I will forget hearing.
  13. awkwardbydesign

    awkwardbydesign Officially Awesome

    But isn't that memory of the emotion, rather than details of the sound?
  14. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    I'm quite tolerant of it, has to be bad before it's a problem. What I've found is that getting rid of it totally often also results in losing things you want to keep. If it's on the recording, which it often is, it's impossible to get rid of it without doing damage.
  15. darrenyeats

    darrenyeats pfm Member

    If everything sounds sibilant, that's a bad sign; if nothing sound sibilant, that's also a bad sign - IMO.
    Fatmarley, Sue Pertwee-Tyr and Mr Pig like this.
  16. Mr Pig

    Mr Pig ^'- -'^

    That makes sense.
  17. Robert

    Robert Tapehead

    I'd argue the fundamental benefit of the blind test is the removal of visual bias. I wouldn't say it's inherently any more reliant on memory than any other method.
    A/B testing, now this does rely heavily on memory and of course is often combined with blind testing, though the reliance is on very short term memory.

    As I mentioned up-thread, these things have their place and can be useful tools, but they can also be a pointless distraction.
  18. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    Oxygen Free Copper memory.
    That’s a new one on me...
  19. Martyn Miles

    Martyn Miles pfm Member

    Indeed I did.
    We all like different music.

    It appears the majority on this Forum love David Bowie.
    He doesn’t do anything for me.
    I know it’s controversial, but I don’t think he could sing that well.
  20. Marchbanks

    Marchbanks Hat and Beard member

    I’m often accused of that too.

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