'Brainless' would be more appropriate.
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My favorite (this thread reminds me of it) is the slang term for those power transformers which plug directly into the wall socket: the "wall-wart." Then there were the MTV "unplugged" concerts. That was a pretty catchy term, too. "Wall pluggers" doesn't have the spark. It doesn't have potential. It will be a phase in this thread but will short out in no time.
I have to agree with Roxy54, I don't really follow the logic of the original post??? I am assuming "Wall pluggers" are less distracted by gadgets between the "plug" and the "play" than the average audiophile.
But, if your circuit's power is clean and your outlets are adequate quality - "wall Plugging" may be the most "audiophilic" thing you can do... So regardless of the fuzziness of intent in the original definition, use of this new term will be subject to vagaries of interpretation and specific application as demonstrated by all the responses in the thread to date.
"Jaw dropping!" on the other hand is fairly unambiguous. I have to hand it to Lacee for trying though. If potentially derogatory and aimed at the "Wires Schmires" set, then I actually think it rings closer to "knuckle dragger" than "tree hugger".
To describe those who like to keep it simple - I prefer the term "Plug n' Players".
While to describe the rest of us I might use the term "AC-o-holics", where the 12 Step Program has more to do with the numbers of tweaks between your wall and each piece of gear than an external support group - although I do enjoy coming on here an chatting with you all.
PS - I am actually a "kelp hugger", but that is an entirely different story for a different time and a different meeting.
I'm a "straight plugger". If I hear any interference, something in the electrical path needs to be addressed. Nothing better than good old juice straight from the main distribution panel. One exception: If your area suffers from power surges (or dips), then you have no choice but to protect you equipment.
I prefer the term techno-weenie, to denote one who dedicates more time to equipment, tweaks, cords, wire etc. than listening to music. You know who you are, the ones with more time on test/demo discs than music. Those who have three songs they listen to, trying to get just a little more of.....well something. This group....well I like them. They keep the audio infused with fresh bunches of cash so the cash flow can keep audio shops open and I can go and evaluate new gear. Thanks to you all, keep up the good "wall plugging, tweaking, wires schmires, knuckle draggin" the economy needs you.....Jallen
Again, sorry for the poor initial post.
But irregardless of how the post was interpreted one thing jumps out at me crystal clear-the polarized climate that has evolved over the years in this hobby.
An audiophile today is either in one camp or the other.
My term "wall plugger" was not intended to cause a flame war or resentment.
But I can't help but note how much pent up anger seems to be on the rise in this hobby, a hobby that was, until the internet, a pretty solitary one.
'Wall plugger" is a lot less derogatory than some of the phrases that wall pluggers use to describe non wall pluggers.
Which brings me to another trait shared by most if not all wall pluggers.
They pretty much want to protect everyone from financial ruin. Anyone who buys an upscale power cord must surely be on the road to fiscal insolvency.Let's save him!, poor idiot.
Show him the error of his ways.Make him prove that there is some scientific reason why he would spend more than a few dollars on a power cord.
It never used to be this way.
Since you are on the subject of power cords, here is a little more fuel for whatever fire you are burning. I do not have any upgraded power cords. I use Belden, Carol, or good old 20amp cords, terminated with Marinco or Hubbel ends. That is exotic as it gets. I have trouble believing that a system needs to be built around the last 6 feet of AC line. For 100 ft. of wire to be magically transformed in the last 6 feet is a bit mystical for me. Now, that being said, will I say that cords do not make a difference? No, because they can sound different. I think that some are great filters and are good for digital, especially if you are near a lot of RF. A friend lived near a radio station, always had a noise issue. In went a Cardas Golden Reference, the digital was dead quiet, no comparison, a great improvement. The cords have a place, but are not a miracle in every instance and if one wants to give them a 3.5k welcome in their system, great. I would like to hear them if they are near me. I have heard the top of the line Shunyata King Cobra, and the other top ones. There was a difference in sound, but was it better? I need a bigger difference, for the better to plunk down 3.5k. I will upgrade a cartridge, or tubes, etc. Jallen
The entire audiophile culture has to do with direct experience. If it were as easy as comparing data sheets, and if these data sheets really did give you the last word regarding sound quality, then there would really be no reason for anything else in audiophile culture except for differing visual designs to differentiate between tastes. But this is not the case.
Take two violins, a Stradivarius and a Guarnerius del Gesu. Take any audio analysis software you want, with any amount of computing power you want, with any type of input device you want, compare them all, make thousands of graphs of phase response, fourier analysis, wood spectroscopy, laquer analysis; publish all this is a huge encyclopedia of comparative charts, graphs, and tables.
The result is that before listening to the two violins, you will not be able to state your preference in one way or another. You will not draw from such data an emotional response. Indeed, it is questionable even after all of that analysis and even after your direct experience of the sound, whether you will then be able to differentiate between the two violins on paper just looking at the data.
If you are open to this, you get a feeling for the sound of each violin. If you argue that it is just a violin and "what's all the fuss about?", then you will be an outsider looking upon those who have already developed personal experience and an emotional reaction to one or the other sound.
And you will say: "Wake up, people, it is just a piece of wood! Spend your energy on something more substantially important!"
But that is what art is all about -- it is about feeling. For the many people on this earth who have developed a feeling for these fine differences, to them, the concert can mean much more than for someone who has not developed this feeling.
Then you take this violin-loving concert goer into your car and you tell him how nice the paint job is, how you love this 1974 BMW model 2002. He just gets in and tells you where he lives. He doesn't care for the model of the car. But you go on to explain what a feat of engineering it is and what a symbol it is and how much work you've put into it. And he, all the while, is interested only in the sound he heard at the concert.
I'm sure you get the point.
The audiophile culture is all about experience. Many will have become dismayed because they did not hear a difference when swapping cables. But perhaps they were the wrong two cables. There are also many violins in the world which are overpriced. There are just as many cables which are overpriced. I wouldn't even say overpriced. I'd just say that the creator perhaps thinks higher of himself than his talent seems to the listener.
I have heard violins costing very little money, which sounded excpetionally beautiful to my ear. And I've heard violins which cost too much to justify their sound, which was lacking in beauty.
Looking for the scientific reason for art to affect humans is the wrong question altogether. That's like telling your wife you must have sex together tonight because there is scientific reason to believe that this action will enhance your relationship. There is no science here. It is a feeling.
There is no 'scientific reason' to spend money on an artist's work. I don't know if art should be considered merely utilitarian. If so, to me it would seem a very sad world.
If so, we should all run into concert halls all around the world and shout on stage that it is all a waste of time, that we should all be going home, and doing something more scientific.
But think about science: it happens to give people jobs, but the true scientist is the wonderer and the explorer into the yet unknown. And it is as yet not completely known what exactly are the parameters of sound quality. It is very interesting to go deeper, read some theories, run some experiments, and see where it gets you. It turns into a quest for knowledge and experience. This is in effect what science is all about.
I think your last sentence "Make him prove that there is some scientific reason why he would spend more than a few dollars on a power cord" is like telling someone "What's the point of going to the moon when you can see it from here."
If people are looking for adventure, they look for others who are looking for adventure, too. If they are not looking for adventure, they will never find it.
So, really, it is all about experience, and if you are unwilling to partake in this experience, you will not, and it is as simple as that.
I think the OP has the terminology reversed
Wouldnt Wall Pluggers be purists?
Sans anything between the esteemed gear and the outlet itself?
Kind of like tree huggers?
Im sure they would not wish to put anything between their rigs worth thousands of dollars and that pricey 25 cent outlet.
Its just throwing good money after bad, I say!
In fact their theme song could be?
We dont need no more expenses
We dont need no thought control
Hey! Leave them plugs alone!
Yeah! Leave them plugs alone!
All in all, its just another plug in the wall.
or not... just thinking on key.
My initial reaction to this post is that Maybe Lacee should have just asked the simple question whether anyone hears any difference with after market power cables and power conditioners instead of implying that those people that do hear differences are in a different audiophile camp. It almost sounds like the "non wall pluggers" are the purists of the hobby. Tell the truth, Are you "non wall pluggers" using lamp cord on your speakers?
Yes I think wall pluggers are purists, the "meat and potatoes" kind of folks and probably are that way in all things in their life.
Maybe I should ask how many wall pluggers own Porsches or Rolex?
But throwing good money at this hobby in a hap hazard way isn't any good either.
Try before you buy, and if the shoe fits wear it and enjoy it if you can afford it.
I like Sufjan Stevens cd, Illinoise.
It's dense and can sound like a bowl of mush on a lot of systems.
But on some systems where the power going into the gear had been "tweaked", some of that wall of mush disappears and you start to more fully enjoy and appreciate all the layers of voice and instruments this fellow puts into a song.
Now nothing is wrong with wall plugging.
Never said there was.
In the beginning I was a wall plugger, most of the non-wallpluggers were too.
But at some point in time they experienced a system that just had more going on than what theirs did.
So it's very hard to go back to wall plugging after you hear what can be accomplished with some attention paid to the electrical signal.
The power cord to your amp is the first thing that your amp sees, and if it can filter out some of the muck that has accumlated( like the mississippi river does on it's journey)from miles of wire then it is doing you a favour.
Unfortunately a lot of the stuff that really works is pricey, and this limits the number who can afford to join in on the fun.
I am quite certain that if someone were to build a power cord, or power conditioner for tens of dollars and not tens of thousands of dollars that really worked well, most wall pluggers would become non wall pluggers and opt for the gains in sonics.
But it doesn't make sense to use a $4000.00 power cord on a
It might make a sonic improvement that is noticeable or it may not.
The point is no one who has a $1000.00 integrated will buy that cord.
But if they at least try one, they may just have an ear opening experience.
Like the fellow who found that upgrading the receptacles on his power cords made an improvement.
He could have just stuck with the plastic molded ends and wall plugged it that way.
But he did notice a difference that he felt was better than stock and was willing to pay the cost of admission.
Much the same as most of the non-wall pluggers I have known.
We try, and don't buy if it doesn't improve the sound or if it is too expensive.
I would really like to audtion some of the exotic stuff eventhough I can't afford it now.
Just to give my ears a reference in case someone offering a cable for $40.00 sounds the same.
OK - that is helpful. I get what you are trying to say, but still think the "Wall Plugger" concept as you articulate it doesn't exactly fit to world of audiophile AC management.
1. Direct "wall plugging" is not necessarily a low tech or "anti-audiophile" approach if your electricity is fairly clean at the outlet. Many HiFi enthusiasts purposely bypass very expensive conditioners for some or all of their gear because they think it sounds more "alive" and "detailed" at the possible expense of some smoothness and slightly "noiser" signal. In the extreme this may mean drawing juice through high end circuit breakers, cryo-treated 10 gauge Teflon coated Romex wire in the wall to cryo-treated Rhodium outlets... but "wall plugging" never-the-less.
2. In addition to cleaning up unacceptably noisy AC, a GOOD power conditioner's best purpose may be to protect your other gear from polluted AC coming from your digital sources instead of from the wall or the room. Cheap "power conditioners" typically add or subtract more than they should by clipping transient peaks and limiting musical dynamics.
3. Better power cords may act as "filters" to some small degree, altering or organizing current as it passes from the wall or conditioner to your gear. But their main purposes are to both reject EMF/RFI from the room and your gear from affecting the AC traveling in your power cord, and (most importantly) contain EMF/RFI around your high current AC cables from affecting low current signals coursing through the circuits in your electronics and interconnects. Whether plugged into the wall or your power conditioner, the major benefits to system sound resulting from better designed power cords would be the same.
So there are several kinds of "Wall Pluggers" - "audio-neo-phile-ytes", who don't think about AC until they blow a fuse, audiophiles who know about and actively reject all forms of AC management as so much fairy dust, and audiophiles who heavily manage AC but reject power conditioners for some or any applications.
There are at least two kinds of "Non-Wall Pluggers" - "audio-neo-phile-ytes", who believe power management is achieved by using power conditioners they bought from a rack at Best Buy, and Audiophiles who have thousands invested in AC management, including complex and expensive power conditioners.
So I think the real difference you are trying to identify is between the "AC Tweakers" and the "Stock Corders", not "Wall Pluggers" and "Non-Wall Pluggers".