Archive for February, 2010

How Good is that Sound ? Part One – The Plan

Monday, February 15th, 2010

If you are into high quality audio, as I am, you probably rate your ears as the ultimate test equipment for your sound rig.

Still as a confirmed geek, I like to measure things… it’s in my geek DNA.

So this post is about benchmarking the performance of a sound system, or in my case, benchmarking my newly-built solid-state headphone amplifier — essentially an M3 design — against my small collection of valve amps – a heavily modified Melos SHA-1 GOLD and a Musical Fidelity X-CAN V3 with mods by Parts Connexion prior to my purchase of it.

My plan is to use my computer to run a set of high-end audio tests on each amplifier and then use the results to compare the amps. With any luck, the measurements will put some quantification on the sound differences I can hear.

I need a few key pieces. The set up I’m going to use  is to run Right Mark Audio Analyzer software on my PC driving my M-Audio Audiophile sound card with my sound system attached on the back-end as a loop from the outputs of the sound card back into its inputs. (more…)