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Better Hearing During the Night - Page 2

post #16 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Erik View Post
The power does not go directly into your circuit, though.

Power goes through a transformer and then into a network of devices designed to filter the electricity. There are diodes, tubes, capacitors, chokes in a number of different configurations that remove noise from the power and turn it into clean DC.

If you want an analogy, think about a water filter. Suppose the filter is capable of filtering out up to 100ppm of pollutants. Say the water you're filtering has 10ppm of pollution. Now, if something happens to the water supply where the pollution goes to 20ppm or 30ppm, the water coming out of the other side of the filter is going to be the same because the filter removes up to 100ppm.

Power supplies are exactly the same way. Maybe there is nominally less noise on the line after dark. But all of it should be filtered by the power supply equally, even if it's a little less noisy at night.

I think the phenomenon of better hearing at night is part psychological and part physiological. Our bodies change over the cycle of the day. Night might sync up well with our ability to hear. Psychologically, you're tired and know the day is nearly over and are anticipating a relaxing night. During the day, you usually have some anxiety about things that need to be done.
Well said!
post #17 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by alvin sawdust View Post
There is a lot less polution on the mains at night time,sure this makes a difference to how our systems sound.
definitely! it's a well known fact...it's been thoroughly discussed on some audiophile forums. this and all the nasty wifi connections going on during day time
post #18 of 53
Could atmospheric pressure affect the sound in any way (at the very least, open-backed headphones)? I don't hear much difference with my ER4P between day night, but my Grados sound a little different during the night..

Maybe I'm just tired most of the time.. :S
post #19 of 53
No experiences on this really... Huge part naturally is the varying amount of ambient noise. But I still find it possible that it is a physiological thing also. Hearing works even when we´re asleep, with a "filter" that ignores non-threatening sounds. Okay, that had nothing to do with the issue exactly, but just an example. So during the night it´s well possible that hearing is in a different state than usual.

And if the different load in mains changes the sound significantly, back to the drawing board, please... Then though, I don´t live in a city. A tightly build area could even have this issue I suppose.
post #20 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by xkRoWx View Post
Could atmospheric pressure affect the sound in any way (at the very least, open-backed headphones)? I don't hear much difference with my ER4P between day night, but my Grados sound a little different during the night..

Maybe I'm just tired most of the time.. :S
Ear pressure in the ear itself can affect hearing easily.
This is very apparent with in-ears as air can get trapped between the earphones and the inner ear. That why I blow my ear every so often to 'pop' my ears get rid of that ear pressure.

Anyway, hearing is better during night as it was a survival mechanism. With our sight being less useful at night due to low light, hearing helped us detect predators. Also in practical terms, less ambient noise is typically at night.

As you just woken up is also a good time as you body is fresh and repaired while you slept.
post #21 of 53
I'd say it's ambient noise, so the noise floor is lower. Somewhat unrelated, I recently noticed that during day times, I can't hear my computer from my bed, but at night time, I can hear the whirring of air clearly.

I know Silent PC Review does their measurements for fan noise at odd hours in the morning to avoid noise pollution.
post #22 of 53
I definitely notice it.

I don't subscribe to the power theory by any means. If you want an easy bit of proof, plug in your portable player and you'll hear the same thing.

I don't know exactly what the real reason is, but it's probably a combination of lower ambient noise, lack of light 1) causing you to focus more on your music and 2) causing something to go on in your brain which I'm not even going to attempt to explain due to me not being a neurobiologist.
post #23 of 53
Wow, I was thinking for the past few weeks to start this exact same thread. I've found the same thing consistently. So much so that I've started to make time at night to listen to music rather than the daytime.

Personally, after much thought, I've come up with a few hypotheses, listed in order of plausibility:

1) Physiological state of being a bit tired and unfocused lets you get lost in the music more easily as well as focus less on flaws.

2) Less ambient noise at night lets you hear more microdetail, such as room/hall acoustics and sense of space.

3) Potentially cleaner power at night and better resultant SQ, but this could easily be a placebo effect produced by the first 2 points.
post #24 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post
Wow, I was thinking for the past few weeks to start this exact same thread. I've found the same thing consistently. So much so that I've started to make time at night to listen to music rather than the daytime.

Personally, after much thought, I've come up with a few hypotheses, listed in order of plausibility:

1) Physiological state of being a bit tired and unfocused lets you get lost in the music more easily as well as focus less on flaws.

2) Less ambient noise at night let you hear more microdetail.

3) Potentially cleaner power at night and better SQ, but this could easily be a placebo effect produced by the first 2 points.
It is a combination of all of these, but IMO the cleaner power would be second in the list - and it's real and not placebo. One consideration to the physiological state of being is that you're more likely to have had a glass or two of your favourite drink by late evening, and that really helps too!
post #25 of 53
This cleaner power stuff is rubbish. Unless you have a hella noisy power supply (in which case you'd notice the effect on other electrical items) then it's not going to make an audible difference.
post #26 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shahrose View Post
1) Physiological state of being a bit tired and unfocused lets you get lost in the music more easily as well as focus less on flaws.

2) Less ambient noise at night let you hear more microdetail.
2nd is obvious, but first? If you´re tired and unfocused, how are you suppose to hear better and more detailed??
post #27 of 53
You still don't get it guys. It is the moon's influence over the equipment and the headphones + ears. It has everything to do with astronomy and gravitational forces.

Now seriously speaking I have another approach which hasn't been said in the way I am going to say so. As we are animals in the biological sense we keep looking for self preservation of our species and ourselves as individuals. For that reason when night comes there is less visibility and "danger" is always present, but can't be seen as easy as when there is light.

Consequently our senses may work in a more thorough way. For that reason our pupils dilate and our brain might give more attention to sounds.

I am sorry if I have not expressed it correctly, in the way I thought about it, but I am tired and my english doesn't come out as easy as I'd like it to.

Basically when night comes we have to become more aware of our surroundings (eyes and ears, as our eyes can't see as good as when there is light). On the other hand, the reason might be what koyaan said.
post #28 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOtus View Post
2nd is obvious, but first? If you´re tired and unfocused, how are you suppose to hear better and more detailed??
It's a curious thing and seems counter-intuitive but it is in fact what I've found IME. Just to clarify, I don't think being tired makes you focus on more details, rather it lets you immerse yourself more fully and more easily in the music. I'm not sure why, but when I'm a bit tired I enjoy the music much more. Ofcourse, being tired could mean several things, such as being physically fatigued, bored etc. but I specifically mean "sleepy" in my case. I'm also not saying that it requires an extreme of such a state, like being completely exhausted or mentally drained; just a slight drowsiness is sufficient.

I actually think focusing too much on a particular aspect of the music is detrimental to its enjoyment. It's much better when taken in as a whole, and this is what being tired accomplishes for me. I've always felt this, but really started getting interested in this phenomenon in the past year when I changed my schedule to accommodate more night-time listening.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bullseye View Post
As we are animals in the biological sense we keep looking for self preservation of our species and ourselves as individuals. For that reason when night comes there is less visibility and "danger" is always present, but can't be seen as easy as when there is light. Consequently our senses may work in a more thorough way. For that reason our pupils dilate and our brain might give more attention to sounds. I am sorry if I have not expressed it correctly, in the way I thought about it, but I am tired and my english doesn't come out as easy as I'd like it to. Basically when night comes we have to become more aware of our surroundings (eyes and ears, as our eyes can't see as good as when there is light). On the other hand, the reason might be what koyaan said.
This is an excellent point. We've evolved to do many things to help propagate our species (mostly in ancestral times). It's not unlikely that the tendency to have keener senses at night was selected for over time to detect threats such as predation. This would also help explain why listening to music with the lights turned off is more pleasurable for many (including me).

Edit: I realize that chinesewiki already made this last point in post #20. I also saw Uncle Erik's post and strongly agree with his observations as well. The psychological aspects he described make sense. As for physiology, we go through cycles of hormonal change throughout the day that affect sensations, perceptions, thoughts etc. Circadian rhythms are a well-known example, which determine sleep patterns according to the amount of sunlight. All this only strengthens my belief that the effect of better SQ at night is primarily physiological/psychological in nature.
post #29 of 53
Shahrose I think you're on the right track. At night our bodies begin to slow down and our minds are more at ease and relaxed. I think it's great for the enjoyment of music, but unfortunately I often fall asleep while listening!
post #30 of 53
Is everyone talking about past midnight listening? Sometimes I go to bed and listen for a couple of hours starting at 10pm and I feel there's still a lot of noise in the music that early, then after 1am the music seems significantly cleaned up and less fatiguing, but I seldom stay up that late to listen to music.

Kudos to the OP for trying to prove his hypothesis by listening to music in a darkened room, but the only way to rule out the dirty power possibility is to get a power conditioner designed specifically for audio and video equipment and see if you notice a difference.
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