What Do We Mean By "Resolution"?

Big Dog RJ

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Blackmorec; yes very true.

In fact, I have noticed the very same phenomenon of where everything is mushed up together on mediocre stuff. As if all tunes are coming from one spot with no spatial information at all. Then there's the loudness/ compressed material where some are not easy to listen to compared to a few others.

Recently I purchased just one of those Venus labels comprising of Bill Charlap Trio. From the first note onwards it came through with a real blast! I had turned down the preamp but it was still always loud right throughout... I'm not sure why it was intended this way and recorded on some format called Hyper something, whatever it was, it was Hyper alright! It was as if his Trio had just drunk a 1Ltr can of Red Bull!

I was just wondering if the Rec Engineer intended to increase the resolution factor and by mistake increased the overall loudness subsequently, I don't know.
Maybe he was trying to achieve improvements in other areas, such as clarity and definition. However, the actual music is good. Bill's Trio are capable of some great tunes, so at the moment leaving aside those other flaws, at least I'm enjoying his tunes.

Cheers, RJ
 

Mikem53

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The less I muck with the source signal, the more resolving my system becomes without being artificially accurate. Lower Noise , distortion, etc.. is easier to achieve with less than to remedy it by actively counteracting it in some overly complicated way.. The less is more approach to audio has its merits.
 
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Blackmorec

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Yes :)

At least 5 feet. Any less than that and the ear interprets the delay as harshness.
Here’s the same effect from a studio production perspective. Interesting little article

 

KostasP.

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The less I muck with the source signal, the more resolving my system becomes without being artificially accurate. Lower Noise , distortion, etc.. is easier to achieve with less than to remedy it by actively counteracting it in some overly complicated way.. The less is more approach to audio has its merits.

I think you may have to qualify what you mean by "muck" and "artificially accurate". Your proclaimed achievements are also equally claimed by the "prosthetists" - those who pile on the tweaks and the game changers. How many claim musically "uplifting" results by cable lifters, others .....wait for it.....HUGE improvements by changing ....wait for it.....the AC wall sockets, fuses, not to mention the "ingenious" ways of suppressing noise and vibrations.

Have you always been a reductionist \ minimalist or have you also had a recent "apocalypse" and redemption through "repentance"? Does the "less is more" approach negate the "more is more" approach or are they equally revealing and effective to those who implement them?

Are we still in the real audio domain or have we entered the unquantifiable and slippery psychoacoustic quagmire? And has the placebo \ nocebo effect been neutralized by our "experiential knowledge" accumulated over decades on our collective stratospheric systems?!

Only a...single note can provide the answers, for the note is what it is....neither subjective nor objective!

Cheers, Kostas.
 
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Mikem53

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I think you may have to qualify what you mean by "muck" and "artificially accurate". Your proclaimed achievements are also equally claimed by the "prosthetists" - those who pile on the tweeks and the game changers. How many claim musically "uplifting" results by cable lifters, others .....wait for it.....HUGE improvements by changing ....wait for it.....the AC wall sockets, fuses, not to mention the "ingenious" ways of suppressing noise and vibrations.

Have you always been a reductionist \ minimalist or have you also had a recent "apocalypse" and redemption through "repentance"? Does the "less is more" approach negate the "more is more" approach or are they equally revealing and effective to those who implement them?

Are we still in the real audio domain or have we entered the unquantifiable and slippery psychoacoustic quagmire? And has the placebo \ nocebo effect been neutralized by our "experiential knowledge" accumulated over decades on our collective stratospheric systems?!

Only a...single note can provide the answers, for the note is what it is....neither subjective nor objective!

Cheers, Kostas.
Which is why I stated the less “I” muck with things.. not you or Harry, joe or fred.

Yes I was quite the opposite of a reductionist for most of my life. I had a large system in a large room filled with some Nice gear and was forever tweaking and replacing.
I spent a lot of money to learn that you don’t need to spend a lot to get a good sounding system.

When I retired, I needed to change my VSA VR7’s to something less than half their size, sold off the heavy tube stuff and went ss. So I basically started over again. After a couple pairs of speakers, I found a pair that matches my room and gear quite well.

I just sold off my active Preamp for a custom built passive that cost less than a 1/3 the price. No remote, only one set of inputs, no selector switch, less wires, solder joints, etc.. Changes I could hear instantly. Yet this passive preamp isn’t for everyone, but it matches my source and amp components very well.
My amp is a very special single stage VFET low powered amp, think SET amp with balls, 18wpc. Very
minimalistic and considered by some to be world class +.

I still slober over myself when I see @Carlos269 show off one of his systems, same for @Mike Lavigne , @Tango and many that I’ve seen on here. So I have no prejudice towards others who choose another route be it DIY or Ultra high end Or Vintage.
My 5th decade into this audio hobby has me doing more with less.
I’ve almost come full circle as I started with a 2A3 SET and some plywood lowther’s.
Maybe this answered a few of your questions.. or Not.. either way, I’m enjoying the music more with less and have no desire to change back anytime soon..
Be well and enjoy the music.
 

stehno

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Jul 5, 2014
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I think you may have to qualify what you mean by "muck" and "artificially accurate". Your proclaimed achievements are also equally claimed by the "prosthetists" - those who pile on the tweaks and the game changers. How many claim musically "uplifting" results by cable lifters, others .....wait for it.....HUGE improvements by changing ....wait for it.....the AC wall sockets, fuses, not to mention the "ingenious" ways of suppressing noise and vibrations.

Have you always been a reductionist \ minimalist or have you also had a recent "apocalypse" and redemption through "repentance"? Does the "less is more" approach negate the "more is more" approach or are they equally revealing and effective to those who implement them?

Are we still in the real audio domain or have we entered the unquantifiable and slippery psychoacoustic quagmire? And has the placebo \ nocebo effect been neutralized by our "experiential knowledge" accumulated over decades on our collective stratospheric systems?!

Only a...single note can provide the answers, for the note is what it is....neither subjective nor objective!

Cheers, Kostas.

Good questions. However, I suspect the more important question is, how many (if any) of our preconceived narratives have we overcome?
 

stehno

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We audiophiles talk endlessly about various sonic attributes we believe we discern from stereo systems. One of these attributes is "resolution."

The 6th definition of "resolution" in the American Heritage Dictionary provides:
6. The clarity or fineness of detail that can be distinguished in an image, often measured as the number or the density of the discrete units, such as pixels or dots, that compose it.

Does this definition work if we modify it to provide: the clarity or fineness of detail that can be distinguished in reproduced sound?
Since audio (and visual) is entirely subjective, the answer should be no. For example. One could have all the highest resolution hardware for a HD television but if there's unknown distortions or even a loose connection, one may never realize the high definition. At some point we have to separate the actual from the potential. A HD TV can have the potential to present a high resolution picture. But what is it actually presenting with that loose connection in the back?

What, exactly, do "we" mean by "resolution" in the audio context?
In and of itself, resolution should mean nothing more than a state of being. Kinda' like, the car is running. Could be running bad or good but it's running.

What is your definition of "resolution" in this audio context? What, precisely, do you mean by "resolution"?
Without adjectives it's just a state of being. With adjectives, I'm either indicating much detail is hidden or revealed.

How do we know that one component or one audio system is more "resolving" than another component or than another audio system?
That's not so easy to answer. For example. Adding a new component could actually be superior to its replacement and yet the playback presentation could leave one covering their ears. Some might exclaim the new component is too detailed but in reality there is no such thing. But what the new more highly resolving too detailed component may be doing is exhibiting more music detail but also more pre-existing distortions elsewhere in the system yet to be sufficiently addressed. Where many will interpret this too detailed component as evil and remove it, it could be that the new "too detailed" component is making audible the system's cry for help elsewhere in the playback vineyard.

Same or similar concepts can apply to an entire system. Especially since every playback system is a journey and never a destination. IOW, no playback system has arrived. But where it is today is but its current state of resolution. :)

How do we decide where on the spectrum of less resolving --> to --> more resolving a particular component or a particular audio system sits?
I suspect serious due diligence in most/all aspects is our only hope. But of course, now we get into another subject matter entirely which is listening skills. In all seriousness, does anybody really care if a 5-year old says a sonic presentation is high resolution? How about a 5-year old's sufficient definition of high resolution? It's one thing to parrot the phrase but it another thing entirely to use it in a proper context based on sufficient past due diligence, experiences, listening skills, etc.
 

KostasP.

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Good questions. However, I suspect the more important question is, how many (if any) of our preconceived narratives have we overcome?

Actually, my questions were more or less rhetorical. That is the reason why "only the single note " can provide the answer.

Is there really such a thing as a "more important question" in a subjectivist \ objectivist dichotomy?
Your noise remover is my harmonics enhancer!

Before we overcome our preconceptions of self-perceived realities, we have to overcome our conceptions of them, perhaps via self-deprecation and shared knowledge; individual knowledge is limited and can often serve to amplify opinion.

A good start is to concentrate on ideas rather than ideologies! This hobby is rampant with the latter. Cheers.
 

stehno

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Actually, my questions were more or less rhetorical. That is the reason why "only the single note " can provide the answer.

Is there really such a thing as a "more important question" in a subjectivist \ objectivist dichotomy?
Your noise remover is my harmonics enhancer!

Before we overcome our preconceptions of self-perceived realities, we have to overcome our conceptions of them, perhaps via self-deprecation and shared knowledge; individual knowledge is limited and can often serve to amplify opinion.

A good start is to concentrate on ideas rather than ideologies! This hobby is rampant with the latter. Cheers.
There you go with your preconceived narratives again. ;)
 
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Kingrex

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The rear firing information of any speaker that makes it is very useful. But to take advantage of it, the speaker needs to be at least 5 feet from the wall behind it, so the reflected information from the rear of the speaker arrives at the ear at or longer than about 10milliseconds later. If this is the case, the ear can use that information as echo-location; in a nutshell improving the palpable nature of the soundstage.
Isn't part of this based upon the frequency. Don't sound waves travel at different speeds. If the midrange is a little smeared, how far should I really start pushing them forward. With a dipole speaker that is.
And should this help clean it up. Or do I really need to focus more on reflections from walls, floor, ceiling and other items in the room. Is the 5 foot more an affect than way to make higher resolution.
 

Ron Resnick

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This thread got me thinking about speakers and room interactions. If your speaker is a dipole of any sort, or a rear ported speaker, it seems there is no way to eliminate out time reflected waves from influencing the primary sound wave. And then there are all the other waves from the side, top and bottom.

Isn't a big part of resolution keeping reflected waves from cancelling certain frequencies were sound is lost. As well as keeping waves from coupling, where they oversaturate and bury other.

As well as timing errors that blur.

So what can you do?

Over damp and get rid of all reflections? I see all these engineeed rooms that appear as such. Isn't a big piece of resolution ridding outside influences to keep the primary signal pure?

Provided the speakers are the distance from the front wall necessary to achieve an optimal time delay I believe in preserving as unadulterated as possible (no diffusion, no absorption) the back wave of a dipole speaker.

This affords the openness and soundstage realism I believe I hear from planar dipole speakers.
 

Mikem53

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A good start is to concentrate on ideas rather than ideologies! This hobby is rampant with the latter. Cheers.
When I answered your rhetorical questions, I knew I was going down a rabbit hole, yet it was my actual experience’s I was speaking from, not just an “ idea “ but rather a proven ideology by many. Nelson Pass comes to mind. His whole First Watt business effort is based on the “Less is More” ideology, not just an idea.
 

bonzo75

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Can someone periodically post scores please, hard to follow this thread and keep track of who is leading
 

Mikem53

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Can someone periodically post scores please, hard to follow this thread and keep track of who is leading
That depends, is this just an idea of yours or a WBF ideology
 

spiritofmusic

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Can someone periodically post scores please, hard to follow this thread and keep track of who is leading
My bank manager has looked at my 25 years account, and says I'm WAY behind.
 

User211

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Provided the speakers are the distance from the front wall necessary to achieve an optimal time delay I believe in preserving as unadulterated as possible (no diffusion, no absorption) the back wave of a dipole speaker.

This affords the openness and soundstage realism I believe I hear from planar dipole speakers.
I used to believe that.

Then after playing with rear absorbers I realised I was wrong.

Which doesn't make me right, of course;)
 

tima

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Can someone periodically post scores please, hard to follow this thread and keep track of who is leading

On silly threads everyone loses.

For music: a dissonant chord followed by a consonant chord.
That works for me. Some 20th C. music fails to resolve. It's why some don't like Bartok, et al.

What's the antonym of resolution?

Dictionary.com says:
indecision
apathy
fear
flexibility
idleness
insincerity
laziness, etc.

Antonymswords.com says:
denial
timidity
indetermination
instability
indecision
awkward situations, etc.

Synonyms.com says antonyms are:
aggregation
amalgamation
integrity
synthesis
collocation
entanglement
confusion, etc.

It's a bad word for audio use. Instead of using 'resolution', describe what you hear.
If you think 'focus' proves 'resolution' is an objective attribute, check the dictionary for 'focus' and also look at synonyms and antonyms. If I wrote "there is a certain irresolution in the midrange of that cartridge", what does that communicate?

'Resolute' does work for audio: firm, stalwart, bass with fortitude - nonetheless a subjective assessment.
 
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Kingrex

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Provided the speakers are the distance from the front wall necessary to achieve an optimal time delay I believe in preserving as unadulterated as possible (no diffusion, no absorption) the back wave of a dipole speaker.

This affords the openness and soundstage realism I believe I hear from planar dipole speakers.
I agree Ron. I moved my home made 4" thick fiberglass absorber from behind and moved it to the side. Its better there. PAP advocates the same.
As the speakers get pushed further out, does the rack inbetween them become less an issue.
Is a rack behind a dipole a greater sonic detriment. Or does a rack maybe scatter some and at a minimum, not hurt that much?

I really need to move these questions. Is there a good thread about dipole speaker placement somewhere. Anyone have the link?
 

Atmasphere

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Don't sound waves travel at different speeds.
No- they all travel at the same speed but have different wavelengths.

The issue is you have to be careful of is that speakers with rear firing information be far enough from the wall behind them- if too close the ear will interpret the reflected information as harshness, the same way that early side wall reflections cause that issue (and is an advantage of horns since they can have controlled radiation patterns, allowing you to reduce side wall reflections). For this reason 5 feet from the wall behind them is the magic number for dipoles and bipoles. That gets you to a 10mS delay which will allow the ear to use the information for echo location.
 

KostasP.

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When I answered your rhetorical questions, I knew I was going down a rabbit hole, yet it was my actual experience’s I was speaking from, not just an “ idea “ but rather a proven ideology by many. Nelson Pass comes to mind. His whole First Watt business effort is based on the “Less is More” ideology, not just an idea.

You have a narrow perception of the word "ideology". Ideas will give you flexibility and a much more open mind; ideology clinches to dogma and is restrictive.

By the way, I use an excellent Pass Labs amplifier and fully concur with your comments but Nelson is far from being dogmatic. He explores ideas with an open mind! Cheers.
 

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