Accurate or musical

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pgarrish
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by pgarrish » Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:37 pm

Id be interested to know what parameter we might measure that conveys 'musicality' in an otherwise accurate reproduction. I suspect its mainly timing related as you can listen to very poor quality recordings that still sound "musical". I say that having played in a real band so I do have experience of live, not PA, music. I have heard very good players bore me to tears and lesser players bring me to tears playing the same piece, so its not quality of playing, or accuracy of pitch or exact timing (i.e. being exactly on the beat) that underpins music for me, its a 'rightness' that is very hard to describe but you know when its there and when its not. We may well be measuring everything about the sound, but we currently (for me) lack the means to convey what really matters about the music
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SteveTheShadow
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by SteveTheShadow » Wed Dec 06, 2017 8:59 pm

I don't think I'd ever owned or built an accurate system.
I've built plenty of thoroughly unpleasant systems and plenty of "nice" systems.
Unpleasant systems seriously restrict your listening choices, which makes you try to go the "nice" route to get blessed relief.
The nice route widens your acceptable repetoire beyond smooth jazz, but bores the pants off you eventually, because it fails to engage you in any meaningful way.

IME a great deal of hi-fi is complete crap, and a waste of your hard earned.

I've now got a decent system, thanks to both NVA and my own designed SET amplification. Whether it is accurate or not I have no idea. As I have said too many times now, I no longer give a flying toss about accuracy in the conventional sense, simply because IMO, it is a lazy assed, wishy washy, term that means nothing when you think about it, except to marketing people trying to prise what's left of your wallet open for one last upgrade.

I don't think it is possible to get "accuracy" whatever that is, by going down the conventional route. None of stuff I would regard as getting me closest to the music itself is "conventional." Nicks big monoblocks, the Doc's amps, semi-omni and some open baffle speakers, good single-ended DHT amps; these get me closer to the music than anything else I've heard in over 40 years.

My conclusion is that "accurate" is a marketing term and the marketers sneeringly define "musical" as a term for coloured, when actually, it is the complete opposite.
Last edited by SteveTheShadow on Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Dr Bunsen Honeydew
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by Dr Bunsen Honeydew » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:15 pm

Is music like a painting or a photograph.

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SteveTheShadow
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by SteveTheShadow » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:21 pm

A music score is a photograph, a music performance is a painting.
Different performers will produce a different painting of that music score photograph.
The job of a music system is to run a HD movie of whichever painting is put in front of it.
How the system lights that painting determines how good the painting looks when the movie plays through.
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Lurcher300b
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by Lurcher300b » Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:41 pm

Dr Bunsen Honeydew wrote:
Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:15 pm
Is music like a painting or a photograph.
Neither. Music is a performance art (normally), its a interpretation or improvisation performed at a time and place by musicians. Maybe you mean is a recording like one or the other?
I have heard very good players bore me to tears and lesser players bring me to tears playing the same piece, so its not quality of playing, or accuracy of pitch or exact timing (i.e. being exactly on the beat) that underpins music for me, its a 'rightness' that is very hard to describe but you know when its there and when its not.
Yes, me too, but I am not sure that has any direct relevance to the topic (sadly). I would suggest that a accurate system will reproduce the boring version and remain boring, and the captivating one should still captivate.

If the suggestion of people here is that a musical system will make both of them ok, the crap one better and the great one worst, then I will stick to accurate. I am happy to endure crap so I can get the occasional moment of joy.

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Lotus Seven S
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by Lotus Seven S » Thu Dec 07, 2017 6:26 am

Seems like you like accuracy and precision Lurcher, and that's what gives you "moments of joy".

In other words your perception of a live trumpet must be matched by your perception of a reproduced trumpet for your homesystem to be joyful.

So what is they key element here?

Perception - the intermingling of Event+Organism, and these three ingredients (Perception, Event, Organism) cannot be meaningfully separated.

Whether you can match these trumpets is also and always dependent on the whims and arrows of your body and mind and not just the design principles of the hifi system.

Accuracy & precision is just one of your buttons - no better and no worse than one of my buttons (for example "light & shade").

By the way.

I said
There is no understanding without speech (and of course lots of misunderstanding). Even the measuring instruments of objectivists are based on speech. We live in a totally human world.
and you said
Any deaf person or mathematician would say you were wrong there.
Please note, that both the deaf person and the mathematician are saying it.

S.
I am not a number. I am a free man

Lurcher300b
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by Lurcher300b » Thu Dec 07, 2017 9:48 am

Please note, that both the deaf person and the mathematician are saying it.
Ok, assuming you are using a definition of speech that doesn’t involve speaking.
Accuracy & precision is just one of your buttons - no better and no worse than one of my buttons (for example "light & shade").
Ok, agreed, but they are just words, we have got no closer to any shared understanding (BTW, accuracy is not the same as precision, if precision was important, I would probably need to ensure the SPL was the same as the original, I don’t).

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SteveTheShadow
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by SteveTheShadow » Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:45 am

Is there any shared understanding of accuracy to be had Nick?
The problem is that we are trying to marry the world of science and art/subjectivity, so we are on a hiding to nothing really.
Hi-fi is just one of the areas where science and art clash so that never the twain shall meet.
Another area is education.
The difference with hi-fi is that the debate about accuracy vs musicality harms no-one. It just ruffles a few feathers sometimes.
In education the debate about "academic" subjects vs the arts and humanities, does a lot of harm.
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Dr Bunsen Honeydew
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by Dr Bunsen Honeydew » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:15 am

I draw the comparison again between my work with qigong and taiji and hi-fi / music. For me they are based on the same principles in terms of trying to communicate the reality. In both case when I say what is the reality of the experience I am told I am delusional and it can't be happening and here is why..........In both case I KNOW when something is right because I feel it. You are all capable of the same just some people are blocked. I have said over and over again all you need is an open mind and an ability to feel, call it soul, call it perception, call it what you want.

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Lotus Seven S
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Re: Accurate or musical

Unread post by Lotus Seven S » Thu Dec 07, 2017 11:21 am

but they are just words
Well, I think they (words) are the only things we have - and thus I would never use the word "just" in this context. But for you they are "just" words - which therefore means there is something more important. But Where?

As to speech and speaking, we just have to hop to the next level and use the word language. Russians, deaf and mathematicians all have their own language - a norm based use of signs. If you use the signs wrongly you will be corrected.
but they are just words, we have got no closer to any shared understanding
This does not make any sense. It is only through words we have a chance of reaching a shared understanding. Again if you use the signs wrongly you will be corrected.

But but but....this is where we differ..... You are convinced there is something behind the signs (to which the signs are referring) and we can get closer to it. But How?

In other words you belong to the class one of understanders - who believe in a direct contact with the world. Whilst I believe there is meaning (lots of meaning) but without reference.

These two beliefs penetrate your and my different uses of language and make it impossible for us to reach a shared understanding.

S.
I am not a number. I am a free man

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