Listener Fatigue Tips

Discussion in 'General Audio Discussion' started by Woland, Jul 19, 2021.

  1. Woland

    Woland Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2021
    Likes Received:
    779
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    a friendly land
    I noticed you had the Dear plug-in shown in a screenshot, and I've used the free version DearReality. You haven't recommended it though.. is it not as good as Waves NX or just targetted to different needs?
     
  2. Woland

    Woland Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2021
    Likes Received:
    779
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    a friendly land
    What we like from a tube amp might not be the tubes specifically - it might be the high-voltage transformers in the gain stage or other parts of the design that you get with tubes. I've become quite happy with the 'LISST' solid-state tubes in my tube hybrid amp, and am using them about 75% of the time. They work in a Lyr 1.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2021
  3. Woland

    Woland Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2021
    Likes Received:
    779
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    a friendly land
    I agree this makes a massive difference with pre 1970s studio recordings, where the performers are often panned hard left and hard right. I don't find it as important for recent mixes though.. what's your experience?
     
  4. GoldfishX

    GoldfishX Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    Likes Received:
    103
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Utterly and completely indispensable for headphones, especially closed-backs. I stumbled upon it in Rockbox and haven't looked back. The implementation in Neutron is very nice and really helps out my Sony WH1000X3's. I think it helps create space in a lot of recent mixes, especially rock/metal, and makes instruments easier to pick out.

    On the topic of recent mixes and ear fatigue, remember that the loudness wars present an issue for a lot of mainstream CD's. I definitely recommend Replaygain to the files. Especially important to my playlists, where I get 1980s Dokken followed by Dragonforce afterwards...
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  5. RedFuneral

    RedFuneral Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2016
    Likes Received:
    197
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Location:
    CT, USA
    You make an excellent point here so far as long term listening is concerned. The sound we subjectively like best when gear testing is not necessarily the one which will bring longer enjoyment or comfort. This is why it pays to form(and read reviews taking into account) long term ownership. Sometimes it takes months to realize that as much as you think you enjoy a component you've been listening to less & less music as time goes by.

    Also while I don't have tinnitus, I do have a neuro issue which at times makes all music/audio fatiguing as if I was listening to noise. One must always be aware of their own health as well as the hows/whys it impacts their listening. I've tried to build systems around reducing listening fatigue during episodes and it was an exercise in futility AKA wasting money. Acceptance and not spending were the answer here. I've also made an effort to remain mindful of myself while critical listening as it wouldn't be helpful to others to leave impressions on gear which have been impacted by things irrelevant to the average person.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 2
    • List
  6. atomicbob

    atomicbob dScope Yoda

    Friend BWC MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    16,747
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    On planet
    While very flexible, dearVR music reminds me of listening to a mid tier SR system at a club. The other two maintain the original tonality better, in my opinion.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  7. wormcycle

    wormcycle Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Likes Received:
    1,574
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Toronto, ON, Canada
    Yes, different types of listening fatigue seem to be mixed up in this thread. Relaxing with music, critical listening to gear, and analytical listening to music are very different, and probably engage different parts of our brain.

    How I listen most of the time is trying to hear how the music reveals itself with every note played by every instrument, in for example string quartet. That requires complete focus and has to be tiring, there is no other way, no matter what gear you are using. But at the same time is extremely rewarding, there is a lot of beauty in music, the architecture and the sound of it, that is hidden if you just put on a great sounding HPs and keep them for 10 hours.
    The setup has to be revealing without being harsh, but the fatigue comes sooner or later. And I cannot mix it with any other type of activity. In the best of times it is like 2-3 hours and sometimes I cannot do it at all.

    For me listening to gear and comparing gear is entirely different and the most fatiguing. I wrote very few posts with gear review because it difficult for me.

    And relaxing with music? I can do it from time to time but it is the actually the type of listening I enjoy the least.

    In all three cases the gear will contribute to how fast you get tired, of course, but having a perfectly " non fatiguing" gear will not eliminate fatigue that comes simply from being focused for a long time.

    Bottom line is that enjoyment from listening to music in greater fidelity is not effortless, no matter what the setup. So we get tired with time.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 3
    • Epic Epic x 1
    • List
  8. tyan

    tyan Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Likes Received:
    8
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    Norway
    Lots of good advice here on the technical aspects of headphones and related gear so I just wanted to make a comment about the fatigue inducing production process of modern music (To my ears atleast). Say early 2000's and onwards. My rule of thumb is 80's about 20-24db dynamic range and from then on about 10db less per decade. My solution for older music was to hunt for original masters on cd and for the later stuff what's left is to find an eq and listening volume that makes it bareable...
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  9. GoldfishX

    GoldfishX Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    Likes Received:
    103
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Just enable Replaygain and it should level out the listening volume. I actually go a step further and employ Wavgain on all my files (it's non-reversible, but the volume leveling will apply wherever I play the music). It just removes one massive variable from all my music, although Wavgaining everything is time-consuming. Like I said, going from Dokken to Dragonforce in a playlist without volume adjustments is...not pleasant.
     
  10. Armaegis

    Armaegis Friend

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    5,335
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    @GoldfishX
    have you ever tried this?

    Basically it's covering your ears and using the snapping to produce a loud thock sound through your skull which triggers the stapedius reflex. It's the total opposite of something I suggested earlier in this thread, but I know some guys with Tinnitus that this has provided temporary relief for.
     
  11. Woland

    Woland Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2021
    Likes Received:
    779
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    a friendly land
    I really appreciate the contributions to this thread that are likely to lead to real increases in members enjoyment, and alleviation of discomfort.

    It's understandable that the audio industry is very focussed on hyping the newest audio gear, after all it's an industry that wants sales. I think it's quite sad that so many audiophiles and audiophile sites follow and hype potential incremental enjoyment through gear upgrades.

    There are many other ways to increase enjoyment, and we should be sharing and promoting them more. The tips in this thread have been amazing. Keep it up!
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 2
    • List
  12. Stuff Jones

    Stuff Jones Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2016
    Likes Received:
    2,058
    Trophy Points:
    113
    I only get fatigue with bright equipment. At first bright gear may sound good with enhanced clarity but overtime invariably I get fatigue.
     
  13. Thad E Ginathom

    Thad E Ginathom Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    9,972
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    India
    Replaygain (which I don't use: the volume knob is within arm's reach) does just that. But it is not what tyan is talking about.

    I think that @tyan makes one of the best points on the thread so far. The Loudness Wars have been going on for decades. but compression (as in no dynamic range) seems to have become a very severe on the time scale that he mentions.

    I'm suggesting that @Woland check out the wave form, and see if there is any apparent connection between dynamic range and fatigue. I know there are tools to come up with a number, but eyeballing it for nice clear peaks and deep valleys is surely enough --- and more intuitive.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  14. GoldfishX

    GoldfishX Facebook Friend

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2015
    Likes Received:
    103
    Trophy Points:
    33
    Yes, I guess I got ahead of myself. At this point, I am aware of the loudness wars (like most people, I learned about it via the Guitar Hero 3 version of Death Magnetic and I keep that as a reference to how I like modern metal to sound...ha!) but I just do not care to just...throw away music I might like because of how it is made. Replaygain and crossfeed are two ways I mitigate the damage done to the music and it makes for a less fatiguing experience overall. On the same hand, the flatness of many 80s CD's can hurt the engagement, even though they may score high in the DR database. It's kind of a recording-to-recording thing.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  15. Woland

    Woland Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2021
    Likes Received:
    779
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    a friendly land
    I feel that applying equalization (through DSP) has helped. I'm currently using the Harmon Target because it's one of the few choices in the DSP software. Is there a better, more neutral target?
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 1
    • List
  16. Gazny

    Gazny Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    May 11, 2020
    Likes Received:
    799
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    SoCal
    I wouldn't call Harmon neutral, but it is statistically preferred for most outside of the audiophile population, and maybe some within.

    This raises the question what is neutral? Not sure if people can really point the the Goldilocks Frequency response. But we all have our own neutral to us. I quite enjoyed this thread, specifically this post
    what-is-neutral-frequency-response
     
  17. Woland

    Woland Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2021
    Likes Received:
    779
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    a friendly land
    Thanks. I will try weighted averages of Harmon and diffuse field, and see if it's possible to get the advantages of each.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2021
  18. imackler

    imackler Key Lime Pie Infected Aberdeen Wings Spy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,827
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Anaheim, CA
    This is going to sound nuts. When I've had tinnitus recently, I've been rolling my eyes around, so that the pupils make a sweep from 9:00 to 9:00, with my eyes closed. I'm not sure if it takes the attention away from the tinnitus, or if there's a muscle getting stretched, but it's been helping. Crazy home remedy.

    Edit: Actually, I do this with my eyes open. I had an opportunity to try it today when the AC was on. Always starts up my tinnitus.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 3
    • List
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2021
  19. Armaegis

    Armaegis Friend

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    5,335
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    This piqued my curiosity so I dug around a bit. There's some interesting reading on this...

    https://trialsjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13063-018-3121-6

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2633109/

    http://arquivosdeorl.org.br/additional/acervo_eng.asp?id=451

    No magic fixes, but there's enough there to give you a bunch of keywords to search up more articles.
     
    • Like / Agree Like / Agree x 3
    • List
  20. imackler

    imackler Key Lime Pie Infected Aberdeen Wings Spy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,827
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Anaheim, CA
    No way! That is insane. I'm going to have read those. I hadn't searched anything yet.
     

Share This Page