What's the psychology behind the audiophile "everything sounds different belief?
I would suspect that if your 'audiophile' friend actually did rigorous testing of some of these upgrades, he may come to the same conclusion as the non-audiophile: there's no difference.
His audio spending is causing much friction with his wife.
I think that what you're asking about isn't specific to audiophiles. People do the same kinds of upgrades to cars, computers, sporting equipment, and so on, and perceive that their investment results in improvement of whatever it is they're putting their money in.
I don't understand the psychology. Why do some women spend too much money on shoes? Why do I lust for a Ferrari?
The thing that distinguishes audiophiles is the peculiar belief that they are immune to this. When they hear a difference, they refuse to acknowledge the possibility - nay, the liklihood - that it is nothing to do with any change in the actual soundfield.
How can I explain the illusion that every new audio component or wire changes the sound, and usually seems to make the sound quality better, to a non-audiophile who doesn't notice any changes?
Why do so many audiophiles think everything sounds different
The term is quite simple. It's called "The placebo effect". It's a biased illusion that something is better, based on ones preference.
"That foundational belief in audio is that "all things can influence sound". That is held a priori. Anything from there - whether what we hear has a correlate with measurement, the robustness of our perception mechanisms, the amount those mechanisms can be biased and the relative merits of particular testing methodologies – is contingent upon that a priori statement."
If everybody accepted the conclusions typically drawn from blind testing and objective measurements audio would be a dull hobby with no real point.
You're correct that it's the Placebo effect. However, note that the Placebo effect is a weird and wonderful thing with quite deep implications and often misunderstood. For example, the placebo effect doesn't make you *think* stuff sounds better, it will actually make it sound better to you.
So, what is the real point of this hobby?Most of the examples saying that it's just like other hobbies doesn't looks fit to me. IMO, clothing isn't a hobby for women, it's their nature.
Quote from: cliveb on 16 September, 2009, 03:38:16 AMThe thing that distinguishes audiophiles is the peculiar belief that they are immune to this. When they hear a difference, they refuse to acknowledge the possibility - nay, the liklihood - that it is nothing to do with any change in the actual soundfield.And like I said, there seems to be something peculiarly male about that behavior... speaking as a stereotypically behaving member of the gender, of course.
Hobbies are hobbies and are contingent on there being some point in the hobby.If everybody accepted the conclusions typically drawn from blind testing and objective measurements audio would be a dull hobby with no real point.
I guess we have to let them believe what they believe, throwing their money away in the process. There is absolutely no point in trying to talk any sense into them. Thanks for posting that. It solves a lot of problems.