Audio woo now defined

Rational Wiki writes:

Audio woo consists of unsupportable claims for devices or methods for getting better sound quality from systems that reproduce recorded music. Such claims are made by manufacturers, hobbyists, and writers in the field.

An audiophile is someone dedicated to producing the highest possible fidelity in the playback of music. While this is a reasonable goal, much of the industry that caters to them sells extremely high priced equipment that claims to improve sound through highly dubious mechanisms and/or badly misunderstood real science. Most double-blind studies have shown that there is no difference in detectable sound quality for most of the equipment sold,[1] and some of it is actually inferior in quality to less expensive products. Many of the products use appeals to magical thinking and pseudoscience to explain their mechanisms. While some of them do indeed provide a small, subtle improvement in sound quality, the unscientific claims by the manufacturers as to why they might sound better lead to a subculture of people who are utterly deluded about how to get the best sound from an audio system.

These particular audiophiles are widely known in the electronics trade as people who put subjective sound experience above objective measurement as the primary way to judge sound reproduction; as a result, many refuse to admit that their beloved "warmer" sound (often lamented as having disappeared with the introduction of transistors, and then the compact disc) is actually a form of distortion. Double-blind testing is ............