In Reply to: Some observations do not need or require verification of any sort. posted by jj on November 14, 2002 at 18:41:37:
If I prefer Coke over Pepsi because I like the color or the Coke can better, then it is end of discussion. That cannot be argued.
However, if I prefer Coke over Pepsi because it tastes better, then should I not be able to tell the two apart in a blind taste test? Presumably there would be something about Pepsi I didn't like or something about Coke that makes it taste better. I may or may not know the ingredient which is causing my preference and I probably don't care.
But if I take a blind taste test and cannot tell them apart, where does that leave me? Looking pretty dumb, I guess.
I don't think it leaves you *Looking pretty dumb* unless you are in a supermarket where Coke is on sale for half-price and Pepsi isn't, and you still buy the Pepsi.
This whole business of DBT is a little overblown, judging by the heated discsussions below. It seems to me as if it were scientifically proven that a certain cable design were 100% accurate, then the only motivation for designing a cable outside the bounds of that accurate one would be to provide a cable to audiophiles that wasn't 100% accurate. I can see the ads for such cables in my mind's eye now: Our Cable is 110% accurate. Don't settle for less.
Another thing to consider is that while science may be able to demonstrate some audio component or cable to be more accurate than another, the initial point made about the differing degree of and/or the approach that individuals take towards perception render the results of any scientifically conducted DBT moot.
If you like something, having full knowledge of the whole gestalt around it, what's the problem? "I like this wire, it sounds good to me" can be understood as the whole gestalt resulting from the wire, its colour, the phase of the moon, its price, and everything else.
What's the problem with that?
At the end of the day, the only point is satisfaction, yes?
There is no problem, per se, with having a preference. That was not my point. My point is, if you state why you have a preference, like Coke tasting better than Pepsi, and cannot even show you can tell the difference between the two in blind testing, then that says something about your credibility.
Having participated in several single and double blind experiments, I distrust their validity. I do not think the task assigned corresponds to listening to music. Long ago I participated in a double blind preamp test in which the Bozak preamp was pick as best by the designers of many early other preamp designs. I think you do not listen the same in this context as in normal listening. DBT does not certify the scientific method.
We're talking generalities and principles, not whether the taste test can be conducted perfectly.
Hey, are you annoying me because I am a bully?
Anyways, back to business. The Perfect Test is the taste test between Coke and Pepsi where all external factors have been eliminated (liquid temperature is the same, same carbonation, same glass, etc.) and the number of test runs is infinity to eliminate statistical errors.
Look up terms like "mouth sealers" in flavour chemistry.
Then you'll see why the test you refer to is anything but perfect.
Taste tests have an enormous "hangover" in flavour effects due to the chemestry of how you taste, and in what order.
Just for hoots, see what happens when the drink with the pepsin comes first vs. second.
I believe this is the crux of the problem. You seem to prefer to believe that the subjects are fooling themselves. I seem to believe that the testers are.
You are the one who uses words like credibility describing the subjects. I wonder, who has the most to gain or loose in a test, the testers or the subjects? Now I don't really believe that there are that many disingenuous testers out there, good tests are just had to design. I'm just saying that if a test gives a non intuitive answer, IMO the design of the test should be given at least as much scrutiny as the credibility of the subjects.
But did the blind taste test use drinks from a can, bottle or fountain. How long did they leave the drinks out after they were poured, what temp were the drinks served at. Had you just eaten a chocolate barů
A bad test is worthless.
I trust my taste buds a lot more than I trust (most) people to set up a good blind test.
Same for my ears.
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