Audio Terminology (Subjective terms used on SuperBAF)

Discussion in 'Tales from the Bully Pulpit' started by purr1n, Dec 1, 2016.

  1. OJneg

    OJneg The Most Insufferable

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,761
    Dislikes Received:
    37
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Denver area
    HD800 uses warp drive technology actually.

    Playnars and electro-suck-dicks are still discovering the combustion engine
     
    bazelio and Serious like this.
  2. Priidik

    Priidik Friend

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,737
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Estonia
    It often does sound like it. Mostly with crappy recordings, like it tries to get ahead of its job in time.
     
  3. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,707
    Dislikes Received:
    15
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    small island claimed by China
    Can someone expand on wet/dry? I've seen these terms used usually to describe mids and highs. Still don't have a good grasp of what sonic characteristics are being described. Also maybe the etymology. Why would a reverby sound seem wet?
     
  4. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    68,301
    Dislikes Received:
    112
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Antarctica
    ON "WET" VS DRY

    Reverb, bloom, are often heard on tube gear. I seldom use wet and many times I see this term used the wrong way, or at least a way I would use it.

    It's kind of a combination of things, an internal bloom, inner warmth, rich harmonics from micro-vibrations of tube filaments.

    Gear that I would describe as having this quality: DNA - just the right touch; Elise with Mullard 6080 - quite a bit. WA5 - quite a bit; ZDS - a bit; MicroZOTL - hints of this, but with other stuff too; Leben CS300 - someone's diaper didn't work.

    In the case of the Leben, probably less so that it's wet, but rather distorted and overly warm. Wetness doesnt have much to do external warmth, but many tube amps happen to be warm sounding. Wetness is tube coloration that doesn't correlate with high second order.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2016
    taisserroots, OJneg and gixxerwimp like this.
  5. T.Rainman

    T.Rainman Acquaintance

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2015
    Likes Received:
    62
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    18
    AFAIK the term 'wet' was coined to describe sound with LOTS of reverb.. as in a shower cell ... shower, singing, reverb ---> wet
    No sound processing is usually referred to as the opposite of 'wet' i.e. 'dry'.

    Nowadays (in studios) dry means 'no effects added' and wet means 'with added effects'.
    Obviously you can vary the amount of effects such as reverb/echo between wet and dry.

    Closely mic'ed recordings and those in mic booths as well as in treated studios sound very dry... reverb is almos always added with these types of recordings to make it sound more natural.

    What do you call a recording without processing recorded in a shower cell ? :confused:
     
  6. gbeast

    gbeast Mighty Moral Power Ranger

    Friend
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,749
    Dislikes Received:
    17
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Phoenix
    Home Page:
    In the studio 'wet' is used to describe the amount of effects placed on an instrument i.e. reverb etc. Most usually, if a vocalist is recording dry it is without reverb or delay added to the vocals.

    Based on that mentality, the term wet to me in regards to gear and how it I hear it, is most attributed to decay and how much or little echo, reverb, or delay the notes have to it. Something can be dry but full in the midrange, or wet but midrange scooped. A super fast decay can sound unrealistically dry and acoustically sterile.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2016
  7. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    68,301
    Dislikes Received:
    112
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Antarctica
    The studio angle: added coloration, effects, reverb... translated to gear, usually tube gear as inner warmth, rich harmonics, bloom, micro-vibrations, is apt for wet.

    Point being that warm tonality, thickness, or distortion is not "wet" per se. This is were I see the term most often misused, although I know what people are trying to say.

    The opposite is dry, where more clinical or sterile sounding solid state amps are described as dry sounding.

    The terms wet and dry can also be used in a relative as opposed to an absolute sense. So take note of context.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2016
    taisserroots, OJneg and gixxerwimp like this.
  8. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    11,357
    Dislikes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    When I say "dry," I often mean that edges, timbre, or just the whole dang sound brings this to mind:

    [​IMG]
     
  9. gixxerwimp

    gixxerwimp Professional tricycle rider

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,707
    Dislikes Received:
    15
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    small island claimed by China
    Thanks for the above explanations. I have a much better grasp now and the "shower stall" analogy makes a lot of sense.

    Can wetness be seen in CSDs? Or is the time scale of the reverb too fine?
     
  10. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    11,357
    Dislikes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    A ragged frequency response in the mids and treble and/or lots of nasty ringing can contribute to a subjective sense of dryness, sort of, with headphones. Vice versa can be true. However, this isn't always the case, because audio measurements can be tricky.

    As for amps and DACs...
     
  11. kiss m

    kiss m Dill weed - acquaintance

    Banned
    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2016
    Likes Received:
    63
    Dislikes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    NORTH PORT FLORIDA
    What about compression? It seems to be used by a few members here in a way that doesn't line up with the original definition.
     
  12. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    11,357
    Dislikes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    I use compression in terms of dynamics. Either big dynamic swings (macro dynamics) get shoved down or small swings (micro dynamics) get pushed up, the latter which is akin to what you'll find in most modern recordings (loudness wars, etc.).
     
    JK47, Dino, Serious and 1 other person like this.
  13. LauSing2

    LauSing2 Facebook Friend

    Contributor
    Joined:
    May 8, 2016
    Likes Received:
    128
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Location:
    The Pearl of the Orient Seas
    I've been trying to learn how to put what I'm hearing into words, being able to articulate what it is I'm hearing, and this thread, and this forum, in general, has been very helpful to that end. So, I have been doing a whole lot of "critical listening" the past couple of months, and one of the tracks I've been listening to regularly is from one of Dr. Chesky's albums, Three For All by The Bucky Pizzarelli Trio, which is track #4 from The Ultimate Headphone Demonstration Disc album. With the 64 Audio A12's, the guitars, to a certain extent, seem to sound like a ukelele or something like that, while from my headphone rig, the sound of the guitar seems so convincingly real with every strum of the strings feeling almost "palpable" to me. Although it's a very unfair comparison as the A12's are being driven directly from just an AK Jr, while my headphones are being driven by an Yggdrasil/V281 combo. I intentionally did it that way to make it easier for me to hear the differences. Unfair comparison aside, how do you properly describe that? What are the implication of these sound differences?

    Also, listening to Lose Yourself to Dance of Daft Punk's RAM album w/ the A12's, the bass seems to be enveloping, seeming to have a lot more quantity (with relatively inferior quality) than heard from something like the HEK, or HD600/650, wherein the bass seems to be more layered and separated, although also not as full sounding (almost feels lacking to my ears). Words that come to mind are "bloom," "congested," and "full." Is this what people mean when they say that the bass leaks into the other frequencies?
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
  14. Grahad

    Grahad Guest

    To me, how instruments/vocals/etc sounds relates to the timbre, and wrt the bass I'd call it bloated, and maybe not "full" as it does not convey the excess as well as terms like "bloat" or "boomy" do. "Full" sounds like a synonym of warm sound, instead of being somewhat negative.
     
    LauSing2 likes this.
  15. TjH

    TjH Rando

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2017
    Likes Received:
    10
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    BTW, I would REALLY REALLY love if someone did like a youtube video demonstration of these concepts by using exagerated sounds to highlite what each of these things mean. I mean in reality the distinction between good and not so good microdetails is prbly not something you can necesarily pick up on youtube, but i feel like we could use exagerated examples to illustrate a point.
     
    Viper Necklampy likes this.
  16. TomHP

    TomHP Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2016
    Likes Received:
    172
    Dislikes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    Taiwan
    A term a read a lot on here is digititus. I tried finding an explanation of it through search but failed. Can anyone point me in the right direction?
     
  17. k4rstar

    k4rstar Done his time

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2016
    Likes Received:
    4,966
    Dislikes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Catch-all term for the variety of nasty elements found in digital audio reproduction that can lead to listener fatigue. Good examples include the coarse/dry (opposite of sweet) treble timbre found in many delta-sigma implementations, the temporal grain (feeling of strain/lack of ease like the music has been chopped up and pieced back together again) associated with high jitter and poor clock management, lack of true resolution via the masking of low-level information that causes our brains to work harder to "fill in" what we feel is missing (thus leading to fatigue), or chip-specific traits like ESS Sabre upper mid glare.
     
    FlySweep likes this.
  18. econaut

    econaut Facebook Friend

    Contributor
    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2017
    Likes Received:
    137
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    EU
    I have seen the use of the term "delicate" as of late. I know what it means literally, but I'd highly appreciate an explanation what it means in the audio world.

    In German 'delikat' basically means yummy, which is kind of misleading.
     
    Richgard likes this.
  19. ColtMrFire

    ColtMrFire Writes better fan fics than you

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2016
    Likes Received:
    4,313
    Dislikes Received:
    51
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I feel like that's one of those self explanatory ones. Soekris 1321 sounded delicate to me compared to other dacs. You know it when you hear it.
     
  20. Gaspasser

    Gaspasser Flatulence Maestro

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2016
    Likes Received:
    5,161
    Dislikes Received:
    16
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Suburban DC
    The various recent considerations of the term “slam” have me seeking a consensus on the meaning, especially here at SBAF.
    Going through the various definitions, I found a good starting point is the Stereophile glossary which states:

    slam: British for impact
    impact: A quality of concussive force, as from a deep, strong bass attack, which produces a brief sensation of visceral pressure.

    I’m confused then about the relationship to macrodynamics which I thought is more about the range between loud and soft sounds a system reproduces. However, Robert Harley (Introductory Guide to High-Performance Audio Systems, 2007) states, “Macrodynamics refers to the presentation’s overall sense of slam, impact, and power -bass-drum whacks and orchestral crescendos, for example”.

    I personally always thought of slam as the speed/force the bass hits are communicated via the transducers. Blub, blub bass has low levels of slam whereas something like properly amped HE-6 bass can have high levels of slam.
    I respectfully request opinions on this.
     
    Biodegraded, crenca, Jinxy245 and 3 others like this.

Share This Page