Discussion in 'Headphones' started by Gravity, Sep 13, 2016.
Is there anything else that can't be measured?
Half the shit HF spouts.
Expectation bias is hard to measure.
A bias voltage or current, however, is quantifiable.
All the stuff we don't know yet about. When digital was introduced it was being hailed as 'perfect'... until, well, jitter* was discovered, and kind of poured a cold shower on the whole notion of 'perfect'. In other words, there are some effects that we know of (and some which can be measured), but there may ALWAYS be some effect still waiting to be discovered that could be perceived by the human brain...
* i.e. the effect of 'timing accuracy'
Actually that can be measured. Would be funny to grade each post in a thread as follows and tally the results:
score = (content relevance) x (quality of post)
4: very relevant
3: contributory / informational or interesting off topic post
2: off topic
quality of post
4: expert / respected
2: shilly / from someone who seems to like everything / from self-proclaimed expert in certain field
1: from a "I'm not an audiophile" but a "music lover"
0: HF rando (not be mistaken for a SuperBAF rando, which is 1,000,000 years more evolved)
No, soundstage cannot be measured. Neither can plankton or macrodynamics, although it may be possible to devise measurements to do so, and there are some measurements that do correlate somewhat.
Moved from the Jotun thread...
In headphones? Sure. One can measure the left channel (left driver to left ear) and the right channel (right driver to right ear). But in headphones, all the other cross channels don't exist. And forget about ear position to source interactions and in most cases visual queues. All of which play an important role in perception of soundstage.
Those channels need to be recreated by other means. It's not just left and right frequency response when it comes to soundstage IMO. Unless that's all we got, and if so soundstage will be compromised.
That is one thing.
In real life stuff I believe there is more than two channels. Proly way more. And once all things get mashed together into two channels, separating again into multiple channels might be quite hard. I mean look at your 15485.486 capable receiver. Compare real 7.2 vs. 2 channel to 7.2 using DTS Neo The One 6, Dolby's Pro illogic or so. Not same.
On the topic of soundstage, I find that only the most resolving sound system can portrait a sense of height from two channel audio.
Natural Sounding Stage Depth is also something more diffcult to reproduce vs width.
Also I find that I get fatigued more easily if the iem/headphones have a very closed in soundstage.
Soundstage is certainly a real thing, thus can be measured. (Phase, timing, fr oddities and relations, amplitude differences bw ears.)
The difficult part about defining it is the way our brain handles the information.
Not too unlike how we see with our eyes. The information on the optic nerve is supposedly ridiculously complex because of our eyes are not like a ccd sensor.
Yet vision doesn't seem to raise so many questions.
The obvious stuff is that good 2 ch speakers setup in good acoustics can portray every room cue there probably is on the recording. More resolving, more technically adept hp setup is not capable of that for some reason. There are probably a few parameters missing on the equation with hp-s.
That is interesting point. When I first got HD800, I had some yulong.
The soundstage was unbearable. I used all sorts of wizardry (crossfeeds, room dsp-s etc pornography) to let my brain relax a bit.
Then I got proper chain and the strain disappeared.
Maybe our monkey brains doesn't like the sensation of being in enclosed space?
soundstage is an interpretations of the sound by the brain. to measure an interpretation aside from how many tickets you can sell for a show, I don't know that we can.
the actual sound, now that can be measured obviously, else how would it be copied.
for soundstage the stuff your brain cares about are :
- what we see, the eye is the dominant interface with the world. if you see something but hear something else, you will most of the time trust what you see and interpret the world based on visual information. that's why even a DJ with an usb drive will feel more realistic than watching the wall, and the source of the sound is secondary to that IMO.
- ILD the loudness difference between the sound going into the right ear and the left ear.
- ITD the delay between a sound hitting the left and right ear.
- HRTF how sound is modified by my own body before reaching my eardrum, knowing that this changes depending on where the sound comes from, the brain uses typical changes in signature and stuff to ass information to the basic ILD ITD localization system(information like up or down, in front of me or behind me).
- reverb without some matter of reverb you can't get the sensation of a room.
- felt bass from the body like you would in real life. it doesn't help locate things because low freqs are too long for effective triangulation with both ears(or we need bigger heads^_^), but it will certainly add to the feeling of reality. so I'd say it's a nice bonus factor, not a direct one.
now for albums mastered with speakers, and listened to on headphones, all of those variables are wrong. as you might guess it doesn't really help getting a realistic soundstage. good guy brain still works his brain butt off to make sense of the sound it gets and create some matter of a headstage or whatever you call it here. but it is not how the record is supposed to sound/feel and the positions are all wrong. they can be impressive, they can feel right, but they're not.
my post is gloomier than it should, because panning is artificial anyway, most instruments are recorded in mono, so getting it right isn't all that important. is that reassuring or did I just push 10 more people to try and kill themselves with a spork?
If the brain gets wrong bits of information that won't fit and too many gaps it gets annoyed.
What exactly is plankton and macrodynamics? How does one go about elaborating on a devices plankton and macrodynamics? Is there a microdynamics?
See, now that's interesting to me. This explains the gestalt I've always experienced with live performances. I once saw an acoustic guitar performance that I was later able to listen to a recording of. The recording was actually quite good - it sounded incredibly close. Tonally correct. Fine dynamic nuance and wide range. The room sound was even there. So it sounded quite a lot like I remembered, but it didn't feel the same as when I was seeing the instrument being played and associating the sound with that source. Not at all. Something was missing. It felt like misplaced deja vu. Just very strange and baffling to try and internalize.
This also explains why I really only experience the HP soundstage when my eyes are closed. That shit blew my MIND the first time I tried it. All of the descriptions I had encountered finally made sense. Going by what you're saying, this happens because I've taken visual cues out of the equation by closing my eyes, meaning the only way for me to perceive a sense of space/depth is through auditory cues. Sometimes I even feel as if I am physically moving. Whereas if I "hear" a concert hall, but I see a small room, the concert hall bits of information will be discarded to avoid sensory conflicts. It's quick, too. I can immediately sense it all getting sucked into my head when I open my eyes.
Sometimes, I think this visual canceling-out doesn't work for me... ...the two perceptions clash and I get disoriented. HP soundstage kind of makes me uncomfortable sometimes... ...especially those really diffused-sounding cans where there's more space than there are things in it.
My theory behind why I could barely pick up on space with HP's had to do with the fact that my ears are covered. I thought maybe somehow my brain must know that my ears are covered and is just kinda like, "Haha, nononono... ...not fooling me!" It made sense when I considered that even my low-end M-Audio BX5's had a pretty noticeable soundstage at all times... ...like somehow my brain just caught the spacial cues when they were actually coming from things in the room.
My understanding of macro/microdynamics is that there are two important ways to look at dynamics. There is range, which is the extent of the difference between loud and soft. And then there are the finer graduations, which are the difference between individual steps across the range... ...sort of like the "resolution" of the dynamics.
Something with good macrodynamics will have a lot of impact. When things are loud, they're LOUD. And when they're soft, they're really soft. It reaches further on both ends, so the difference between sounds on either end is more apparent and visceral. Things sound cohesive and substantial. Less compressed and more open.
Something with good microdynamics will have more intricate attack and release. A sound will not simply be "loud" or "soft" but will instead have varying degrees of loud and soft scattered across the envelope. More little dips and peaks throughout the larger underlying curve. I perceive it as texture and realism. This is where the distinctive sounds of a plucked guitar string, a ghost note on the snare, the little background percussion sounds in an orchestra, a string slide, and so on come from.
Plankton... ...I don't know. I feel like I know it when I hear it, but it's tough to describe. I think it's a combination of fine microdynamics and low level information in the mids. It's the stuff you peel back and dig into, if that makes sense. Something that resolves a lot of low-level frequency changes in the mids has plankton. Yeah... ...not so sure about that one.
I close my eyes anytime I really try to focus on the sound. that got me a few laughs from people at meets watching me frozen in place with my eyes closed for 30seconds. ^_^
an element I didn't mention(well that directly impact the rest so it's strongly suggested), it's moving your head. when you're unsure about the position of a sound, you would tend to "aim" at it with your ear(or even better to look at it and confirm with the eyes), that too or just moving around, doesn't work with headphones. I'm waiting for the bt tracker from Wave and next year for the smyth realiser to check if this is as I suspect the main reason why I get mono sound to rise in my mental image when they don't with speakers.
but clearly we do not know how to totally isolate a sense from another so listening is usually more than just listening.
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