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Sennheiser HD 600 Impressions Thread - Page 588

post #8806 of 8809
Quote:
Originally Posted by Head1 View Post

 

To be honest I wouldn't have thought decay would be a problem in most modern headphones. Even in budget headphones in a half decent recording I can hear when a pianist is pedalling, playing staccato, legato, percussively etc. I probably need to hear to it to understand.

 

Decay issues come from excessive response - it's not so much that the driver is still vibrating when it should have stopped, rather the problem is that if there's something wrong (relatively more than absolutely) with the response, you can effectively hear longer decays. Let's take bass for example - when the bass instead of "THUDTHUDTHUDTHUDTHUD" or "dum dum da da dum" turns into "THWAAATHWAAADTHWAAADTHWAAAD" and "duwooduwooomdwaamdwaamdwooooom" it's not that the diaphragm is vibrating excesssively, but that the response has too much low bass and not enough (even in relative terms) of the upper bass, you just don't hear the next note properly. In effect, it's not actually that THUDTHUDTHUD has no extension in the decay (I mean, really, sit next to a bass drum and have someone give the pedal a good kick), it's just that since the upper bass response is relatively strong or are both relatively even, you hear the next THUD while the decay of the previous THUD is gradually and quickly dissipating (as opposed to being too loud). You can test this by adding, say, a +10dB bass boost at below 80hz (but doesn't affect 120hz and up much) on a headphone that sounds "fast." Conversely, one may encounter a headphone known to be "flat" and then its bass drum sounds more like a snare with a pillow stuffed inside - that's because the headphone may be generally flat but then the low end response drops off early (like, compare some 5in stand mount speakers to a tower speaker with three 6in drivers).

If you look at the graph of the HD600 (and barring how accurate these should be in reality, when not taken with a mic inside a skull encased in ballistics meat, with a simulated ear canal shape going to the mic/s) there'a plateau in the bass response up to well above 100hz. On brand new pads this is absolutely no problem, especially with powerful, clean, neutral amps. However, use an HD600 with squished, worn out earpads (that exacerbate that bass response as the drivers are closer to the ears, and the earpads are effectively sealing in more bass), and even with a neutral amplifer and source chances are the decay issues (which is actually a frequency response issue) will be audible.

post #8807 of 8809
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post
 

 

Decay issues come from excessive response...

That's kind of backwards.  The subject is headphone quality that allows the natural decay of music sounds to be heard - which is a positive and desirable trait.  You're saying decay is a fault or a problem to be solved inside the headphone.  No.

I see you're trying to talk about transient response and internal diaphragm self-dampening etc. but...

post #8808 of 8809

Decay information should be portrayed through the recording, not the headphone.   Ideal headphone would have no decay whatsoever.

post #8809 of 8809
Quote:
Originally Posted by Billheiser View Post
 

That's kind of backwards.  The subject is headphone quality that allows the natural decay of music sounds to be heard - which is a positive and desirable trait.  You're saying decay is a fault or a problem to be solved inside the headphone.  No.

I see you're trying to talk about transient response and internal diaphragm self-dampening etc. but...

 

I didn't say all decay was an "issue," I meant that if there were issues with the decay - such as when it lingers too long - then it stems more from some problem with the frequency response (the reverse of when what you have is a bass drum that sounds like a snare with a pillow in it). If I had meant that all decay was an issue then I wouldn't say "decay issue" and just say "decay," as if instruments just stop vibrating right after you hit or pluck it.

 

Oh and I specifically was not coming from transient response and what not. Transient response as is commonly understood suggests that the diaphragm of the speaker/headphone has problems stopping when it plays a note, when in reality it's not like it actually stops vibrating (considering all other notes are still playing). The problem, again, is that if you have excessively uneven response that has a lot of low bass relative to the upper bass you get what effectively is "slow transient response," but it has less to do with the driver being "nimble" enough to start and stop as necessary than with its frequency response. The HD6x0 cans sound flat through the bass because it is - there's a plateau on the bass response but it's even up to the higher bass frequencies, so they are easily audible as well as maintaining effective/audible "speed." Use worn out earpads and you lose that. In this forum I believe the common term is "V-Shaped" (that includes the treble though). 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by TMRaven View Post
 

Decay information should be portrayed through the recording, not the headphone.   Ideal headphone would have no decay whatsoever.

 

Precisely. Decay is natural because instruments don't stop vibrating immediately, and neither would a playback diaphragm just stop vibrating for one note. It becomes a problem precisely when there is an issue with the frequency response, and instead of the note decaying/fading out naturally as you hear the next predominantly upper-bass "hit," you get a bloated lower bass fade-out of the previous note that interferes with how the following "hit" is heard.

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