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Sometimes you can trick a placebophile

Not sure where this story should go, so I posted it here.  Mods can move as appropriate or delete.

I have a friend who insists that his rather expensive 7.1 Klipsch speaker make it blatantly obvious that FLAC files are far superior to MP3s.  This person claims that MP3s sound "flat" compared to FLAC files on his "high end" setup.

So, a few weeks ago he asks me to help him set up a music server like the one that I have so that he can stream music to his phone and cast to his Chromecast.

So, I helped him setup Subsonic, which is a personal music streaming server.  What I DIDN'T tell him is that I configured Subsonic to transcode all FLACs on the fly to 256K MP3s.  So, for a few weeks now, he's been listening to MP3s and not knowing it.

The day we set it up, he played me a song and said "There is no way that sounds as good as an MP3.  Just listen to how good that sounds."

I figure, if I do actually tell him that he's been listening to MP3s the whole time, he'll immediately say "I knew something didn't sound right.  Could you fix it?"  Which will immediately be followed by "Oh wow, that sounds much better now!" when I do.

Sometimes you think you can win, but then you realize you're not going to.

But I'm still getting a chuckle over the whole thing...

Re: Sometimes you can trick a placebophile

Reply #1
You made me chuckle too.

i had my share amout of debate with self proclaim gold ears.  but when faced with a simple. " ok lets test that
  they suddenly have a lot of excuses and thing to do that make them unable to listen for a few mins of music... :D
Sven Bent - Denmark

Re: Sometimes you can trick a placebophile

Reply #2
You can't win against a placebophille.  Their brain is wired to convince them that the gobs of money they spent on audio equipment is totally justified.

I consider myself a recovering placebophile in training.  I managed to get some sanity before I blew gobs of money on stuff.  My most extravagant purchase was a pair of Fidelio X2 headphones I bought for $150 used.  If I was single without kids, I would have already owned at least 2 tube amps, some B&W speakers and had hundreds of purchases on HDtracks.  But, sadly, I could only dream of owning "sick high end gear."

Then I properly ABXed something and my world changed.

That's why placebophiles annoy me.  Their attitude of smug superiority had me convinced that cables make some kind of HUGE difference.  I was looking at oxygen free copper and silver cables.  And I was looking at hideously expensive DACs.  I actually pulled out my album collection and was looking at buying a turntable.

A turntable?  In the 2000s.  We can fit pretty much every album we ever own in our pockets now and take them with us everywhere and placebophiles are going nuts over vinyl.

I've become a huge digital snob.  If the source isn't digital (CD, ripped CD, or digital download), then I don't want it.  I gave all my albums away to a coworker.

Ah well.....

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