Harmonics and *why* harmonic distortion matters

I found a couple good videos discussing and breaking down what harmonics are and why harmonic distortion matters in audio quality.
It’s a very basic explanation as to why different amps/dacs sound different… “warmer” or “analytical” etc… why Tube amps tend to sound warm… etc. Why THD measurements matter just as much as FQR measurements…


Harmonics (added by equipment) is key. Too much and it goes from warm and sweet to veiled, thick, and colored.

None - and you are on a search on how to mellow the sound. Room treatments, DAC with some, etc.

Personally I hate the fatness in tube amps of over 50 watts, not to mention retubing costs. I found my fix with Pass amps going back to his days at Threshold. Little bit of HD in there, a consistent amount, no retubing.

Odd order harmonic distortion - to be avoided, for sure.

Look at it this way. Recording/mixing/producing does not capture the full experience of the music. The electrical chain - in particular the transducers and the room or the confined spaces of a headphone - mangles the music. Small/medium amounts of HD can add back - not what was lost, but, something that’s akin to it. As long as you don’t overdo it.


That is actually really insightful! I have never thought of it thay way.