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In the Forum: Playback Listening
In the Thread: The elusive “absolute tone”.
Post Subject: "The curious incident of the dog in the night-time"--or, a matter of approachPosted by Gregm on: 11/9/2007
As most of us know, the answer to Sherlock's pointer is, the dog did nothing in the night-time -- and that was the curious incident.
 morricab wrote:
Romy sez: "I see things differently. My view advocates that playback creates NEW Sound from scratch and the relation between the Sound of original event and the Sound of produced by playback have no inner-correlative point in audio and they mapped ONLY through listening consciousness."

Where is the support for such a position?  If the data encoded in a recording is 99% of the original event (just for supposition) then this so called relation is a very close one and supports the more conventional view I think.
I could offer my own view of why reproduction should be qualitatively seen as independant from the original event.

Basically, it requires one to look for a final result and work backwards -- rather than other way round. That's what SH did.

In reproduction we have two major ingredients: 1) the recorded material -- this I consider "constant" 2) the sound reproduction system -- this I consider "variable".
Considering the recording as raw material (I don't care how good or bad this recording is, at this point), we strive to create a musical experience through the combination of 1&2 above.

{The variability of "2" allows us to influence the sonic result...}

Now, what we are creating in the room is not a simulation of the original event as it's saved onto the source medium -- but rather, we are creating a new musical event that's based on the recording of the other (we call this "original") event.

In order for this new event to be acceptable, it must comply with certain standards; to take tonality as an example, the new event must be capable of supporting the differences between say a Strad & another instrument if these are elements of our "raw material".

The point is not, "is the reproduction system offering a text-book rendition of a Strad as per another, real event" but rather, "within the context of this new musical event, is the system also catching the flavour of the instrument as well as the flavour of the player?"

 morricab wrote:
"So, I ask this question again - if you agree that “live” musical event might have the “Absolute Tone” then why you deny that sonic event produced by playback might have the “Absolute Tone” as well?"
Because I don't accept your basic premise of a new sound from scratch that's why.

I will agree with you at least that a playback system does have its own sound and that this sound should be relatively constant from recording to recording (I am not entirely convinced of this either as some distortions are dynamically related and thus would not show up on non-dynamic recordings.).  However; can you tell me where else we can reference this system??  Its sound is in one way absolute but who is to know when it is correct or not?  There is no reference but itself and this is an untenable position IMO.  At least with a real instrument in a real space you can say unmistakeably, AH that's live!
Yes, but you are departing from the premise that your reproduced event must be absolutely indexed upon a prior "live" event. Rather than "absolutely" indexed...

...Why not go backwards -- as I propose further up.

Say, for a moment, you forget what a hi-end system "should do" and "how" and you just say "let me create some nice music in my room. As a base, I'll use XYZ (recording)". For this experiment to be successful & at your experience level, you'll have to satisfy many things and most will come spontaneously. Your experience which includes live events, is surely one of these things, so you dont have to think about the matter at all; you just need to focus on making the system create the musical event, as you have conceived it, in your room...

The funny thing is that, if the system has some tonal capability, then the in room musical event allows one to recognise a particular instrument in another, live session and vice versa. Nevertheless, as you imply, were we to match "bit to bit" the actual event of that instrument and the "new" event based on the recording of that instrument... there woudl be important differences...

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