Then I agree: a negative blind test is just that, a test that fail to prove that there is an (for example) audible difference.
No, I said they can easily fail to prove there is no difference, even when there is a very distinct difference
. And I also mentioned several reasons that may give a particular result, of which you always seem to choose the no audible difference.
Blind tests are kind of hard to do right, and quite tedious. There have been studies of how training and background affect the ability to discern two audio examples. I think that for loudspeakers, it has been found that two hours of training or so is what separates Joe Average from expert listeners.(take my memory with a grain of salt)
Bollocks. I've never had any 'training', yet it's blinding obvious that some audio kit and not just speakers can sound very markedly different. I have two sets of speakers in my office as it happens and they both have very individual sounds. You may as well say all digital cameras produce identical results.
For many of us, failure to be distinguishable at all in a fair, relevant blind test is reason enough to avoid spending significant money on a product, be it wine, cables or cameras.I think it is fair to say that there have been quite a number of blind tests carried out on phenomena relevant to audiophilia, few have been shocking. There is a reward of 1mill$ awaiting those who can pass a well-defined blind test of audio cables in the James Randi challenge. Stereophile magazine and the major cable companies have rejected to participate.
I think that one can fairly describe many products, companies and individuals in the audiophile community as "operating with the same scientific credibility as many dietary products and homeopathy". Which is not to say that it has been proven wrong, but that if it turns out to be right, text-books from elementary school and up to University-level might have to be fundamentally rewritten.
A few years back, unprompted I remarked after entering my flatmate's room that his hifii sounded somehow better. It turned out that he'd replaced the stock scrawny phono leads with some others he'd made himself with more substantial and better performing parts from a local electrical store. So for me replacing crappy cable with something more substantial made a noticeable difference. However I'm not convinced that replacing his quite cheap home made cables with some mega expensive ones would have made any further difference. No rewriting of textboks needed as they already say that thin cable with poorer quality conductivity are not as effective as chunkier cable with gold connectors.
Also when buying new hifi kit, the difference in sound quality between kit can be very marked and more expensive certainly does not mean better in my experience. I found the differences to be very surprising [and depressing as I couldn't afford the better kit]. Better is also a personal preference.
I can easily see the difference between different cameras or different viewing systems, so I think it's worth getting the better kit [again not necessarily the most expensive kit] and do not see the problem with those who also can appreciate better audio doing the same. Most people in my experience don't even realise when a film is being projected out of focus at the cinema. It's still out of focus even though most of the audience does not notice.
The other thing I'd suggest to people doing any listenings tests is to use young people to do the listening, as their hearing is almost certainly very much better than people over say 30.Real world application of this