Innerfidelity after Tyll Hertsens.

So Tyll retired to travel the world in his van Putt, hope he’s having fun and also hope he shares that fun with his old readers. After all, some of us enjoy other things besides Headphones.

Anyway, the new editor behind Innerfidelity is the reason I’m writing this entry, you see Mr. Rafe Arnott is not Tyll Hertsens and he will never be to be sincere, this new editor alienates some of the crowd who enjoyed Tylls writing so much.
From all posts, I had to read on both Innerfidelity and outside of it, I noticed this new editor lacks the technical skills to review gear objectively like Tyll did, and that was a mistake from the new owners of Innerfidelity.
I actually gave the man some chances but with articles defending subjective over objective the man is up to a really awful start.
Perls like and I quote: “measurements never really meant a lot to me from a listening standpoint.” (Read the above link for more) Yea, this editor isn’t Tyll FOR sure!

Then we have his way of dealing with comments, can’t take the heat, write some pearls like this one:
Captura de ecrã de 2018-06-13 22-01-08.pngI think that idea (Tyll V2) was pretty much dead after reading his last articles.
Also related with comments, unlike Tyll Mr. Rafe enjoys a good moderation filter like the one below, can’t take the heat?
Yea, after almost a day and multiple comments published, mine is nowhere to be seen, looks like the filters are biased towards Mr. Rafe and not his “haters”.
To be fair my comment was fairly polite and low tone but when you lack an editorial backbone, critical comments tend to go up in smoke.
I will leave my comment for your consideration:
Pretty hardcore right? I totally deserved to be censored! I was mean to Mr. Rafe!
I never in my YEARS of reading Innerfidelity had a comment taken down by the editor, and believe me some should have been taken down for pure trolling.

So what’s next? Well, nothing really.
I’ll just stop reading the site and go on with my life. Innerfidelity is pretty much gone to me. Tyll was the soul of the place and only an experienced editor with his way of dealing and connecting with the readers could have saved the site from crashing and burning, sadly the publishers made a huge mistake by giving a balanced site built upon objectivity to someone who pushes subjectivity.

Tyll might have hated Beyerdynamics but I always loved the guy, and that’s saying a lot about the way he connected with his readers.
You are missed Tyll, so very missed.


11 thoughts on “Innerfidelity after Tyll Hertsens.

Add yours

  1. I think Rafe deserves more credit here. The article linked is a short introduction for the theme of Vinnie Rossi’s thoughts as much as it’s Rafe’s manifesto. Rafe concedes: “Measurements are helpful and they can be invaluable to people when it comes to certain things to look for when building a system from disparate components.” But he goes on to state that measurements fall short of capturing every aspect of audio performance.

    I don’t think it is fair to read that as “measurements don’t matter.” I’d rather read it as “measurements are not a perfect substitute for performance.” Performance requires the context of a goal; when that goal is the listener’s/reader’s subjective pleasure, performance is a hard to define quality. Even for those who are capable of interpreting measurements accurately (not everybody), first-hand listening is valuable. At least this is the end of the road that I reach on this thought experiment when it comes up.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think Rafe doesn’t connect with the core readers of the site, I see a lot of them complaining, now not so much because he censors their comments.
      The more I read his articles the more I feel he was not a correct choice by the publisher, if I had to pick a subjective reviewer for Tylls place I would go for Steve Guttenberg (The Audiophiliac), at least he connects with the core crowd, plus his shirts are also high fashion. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Saw Tyll in the flesh at Rocky Mountain Audio Fest last year. Didn’t say hi though. I never was a follower of his, so I cannot comment on the state of Inner Fidelity, but I do have to say I agree with the article you linked regarding subjective over objective measurements. I just don’t need a graph to tell me whether I like a headphone or other piece of gear or not. Just as people have different tastes in music, they have different tastes in sound signatures. Some people love tubes while being entirely aware that they fuck with the sound in a way that’s not entirely true to the original recording. I basically only look at measurements when I’ve never heard a piece of gear before and I want a vague idea of how it might sound, but, as many people have experienced, measurements aren’t always a perfect representation of how a piece of gear sounds to a human ear.

    A lot of people enjoy doing measurements. I see it as the audio enthusiast’s equivalent of benchmarking to a DIY PC enthusiast: It’s something other people do and it doesn’t bother me that they do it, but I have no desire to do it and it doesn’t really have any influence on my participation in the hobby. In this regard, I’m definitely a subjectivist. As someone who pays more attention to objective measurements than I do, what was it about the article that bothered you or, at least, that bothered you the most?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I don’t have a problem with subjective reviews in any other site or blog (including mine, even if I do use FR and other data to help me on my opinions) I do have a problem when a new editor comes in to a established site with a balanced audience built upon measurement objectivity and says he doesn’t need objective measurements to review headphones, it’s a massive lack of respect to the readers and to the prior author who did measurements to strengthen his point of view.

      Measurements can help find particular problems with headphones and gear. FR curves can be proof like when Tyll reviewed headphones from Focal only to find out later that other equal models didn’t sound like his pair.
      I love music and many of it is mastered on gear that has tubes etc, I don’t mind that at all if the final result does not distract me from enjoying the music and yea that’s pretty subjective.
      Using your equivalent to DIY PCs imagine that some editor would come in to your favorite site and said that he would start reviewing PCs only by the way games behaved on them, without using benchmarks or giving a crap about temperature and other measurements. Rafe did just that on innerfidelity, looking at the shitstorm some members sent his way I believe he’s gonna try to at least include some opinions on the FR measurements, if he doesn’t do it then it’s worse than I believed to be.
      I know I shouldn’t give a crap about the way Rafe does his thing, but it’s sad to see a good site go down in flames because of one man.
      Next on innerfidelity, USB and LAN cables that change sound, audio connectors which improve the resolution and soundstage of headphones. I hope I’m wrong…

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I too tried to post a comment yesterday but it STILL hasnt been approved for posting so i am posting it here instad…….

      “Some constructive, non-hostile criticism.

      Rafe — welcome. Personally speaking I could care less that you are not interested in measurements and prefer writing from a 100% subjective point of view.

      You say:

      “As someone who has written hundreds of reviews based on listening sessions conducted in my home, in bricks-and-mortar shops, in manufacturers demo rooms, and in more hotel rooms at trade shows than I could possibly count, measurements never really meant a lot to me from a listening standpoint.”

      What does a ‘measurement-free’ Rafe Arnott review look like, however?

      Whilst I wait for your first Inner Fidelity review, I hopped over to your previous employer looking for samples of your work. I took an hour to scroll through the 40 page index of your posts on PartTimeAudiophile. I’m retired now so I have the time LOL. As you stated above you have indeed written hundreds of posts since your first for PartTimeAudiophile in May of 2015. 391 posts to be exact.

      Of those 391 posts the majority are news items, best of lists, dealer demos and show posts. Your photography skills are out of this world and your words are decent but surely you woulnd’t have us believe that a show rep or a dealer demo is a review? Would you?

      When it comes to reviews done at your own home I was able to find on thirteen (13!) with the majority being turntable related:

      Pertinent to your appointment as editor for this site, there is not a headphone review among them!! The one review posted that comes close to headfi is of the SPL Phonitor X headamp from just over a year ago.

      In it, you say at the start that:

      “I’ve got a somewhat complicated relationship status with headphone listening. It’s something we’re working through, and perhaps I’m being too needy. The thing is I feel that I’m getting shortchanged on the big listening experience I’m used to from my two-channel rig. In an effort to address this emotional attachment to my loudspeakers I dipped my toe into the head-fidelity pool, and committed to a couple of headphone amps for a month to see if I was capable of an open audio relationship.”

      The audio scene needs ‘youngbloods’ like you but perhaps you might see lower amounts of pushback from veteran Inner Fidelity readers if you admit it us, and to yourself, that you are starting from zero when it comes to headphone reviews and that your broader ‘at home’ review experience isn’t much further down the road.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Tks for the visit, that’s a pretty great comment. Don’t know why he censored it. Innerfidelity is no more,it’s sad when core users can’t even post comments like yours. Best regards Firebird.


  3. I wasn’t expecting Rafe to be “Tyll V.2”, but I wasn’t expecting him to be an overly sensitive, all-fluff, *lifestyle*-based audiophile who teams up with manufacturers and posts press releases, either. Good God! What is happening to InnerFidelity? The only thing it has going for it now is Keith Howard, Rafe’s photography (credit where credit is due), and Tyll’s archives. LMAO. It’s so funny it’s sad. Sad because it’s not just InnerFidelity that suffers, but it’s the headphone community, too.

    I offered Rafe some friendly constructive criticism last week and he responded with (yup, you guessed it!) poorly written snark and hostility. Went back the next day and he deleted the entire thread. O_______O Yup. Not just our comments, but his negative replies to other readers as well. Anything that made him look bad, I’m guessing. That’s probably why he turned the comment filter on. It’s easier than deleting all the negative comments AFTER they’ve been seen. I’m never going back now. What a n00b. He knows nothing about headphones AND has no journalistic standards or writing skills? AND he has the gall to attack his readers? I’m out. I feel bad for his readers, for people just discovering headphones who’ll think that’s what our community is all about, and for Tyll, whose empire is quickly burning to the ground.

    Keep up the blog, man. We need honest people in this hobby, and that’s clearly not going to come from InnerFidelity anymore.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your comment, I will keep writing about headphones as long as I love this hobby and have the ear for it.
      Yesterday 18/06/2018 Mr. Rafe posted yet another fluff press release on Innerfidelity. -_-
      Yea, I feel bad for the newbies on this hobby also, but I have hope other sites will rise to meet their demands for fair reviews.


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