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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000388.txt from 2005/08

From: "kevin fay" <>
Subj: RE: [kl] Testing. Was "Ah, ligatures....Gold vs. Silver"
Date: Sat, 20 Aug 2005 22:24:54 -0400

Bruce posted:

<<<I'm inclined not to consider Kevin's experience biased at all. The
problem is the experimental design: he gathered and then interpreted the
wrong data for the hypothesis he really wanted to test. His conclusion was
correct, but the hypothesis wasn't. The hypothesis he wanted to test was,
"This change in equipment will be apparent to someone listening to me play."
The hypothesis he actually tested and drew his conclusions from was, "This
change in equipment will be apparent to me, the player."

Kevin, when he played the instruments, received one set of data: how the
instrument sounded to him--mitigated by bone conduction, multi-modal
transfer of the feel of the instrument in his mouth and in his hands, and
his position in relation to the instrument; that is, close to it and "behind

it," essentially. His wife, who said she couldn't hear a difference, heard
what she heard from an entirely different place, and with no tactile
feedback to muddy things.

It seems perfectly reasonable that Ken could detect differences that his
wife couldn't. He wasn't dreaming: the differences were probably real. The
question is, were those differences moot for anyone but him? Could anyone
but he hear them? His wife's response indicated that they weren't.>>>

Actually, my hypothesis was simpler - I wanted to buy a clarinet, and
thought it a good idea to have my wife's good ears help me out whilst trying
out a pile of them.

At the Yamaha table, the tech/rep stated that key plating made a sonic
difference. Egads! thought I, another impossibility asserted as fact!

. . . so I did a little blindfold test on the spot. Didn't touch the keys
- no peeking.

I could perceive a difference. Much less than from a different reed,
certainly not anything to obsess about. Since my spousal unit couldn't hear
one, it's *really* not worth obsessing about. Nevertheless, there was one.
Oh well.


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