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Why don't more people use EQ to get the desired sound? - Page 20

Poll Results: Do you use EQ regularly?

 
  • 34% (81)
    Yes
  • 40% (95)
    No
  • 18% (44)
    Absolutlely not!
  • 5% (13)
    Of coarse!
233 Total Votes  
post #286 of 299

ok.  i never have a flat response, maybe i have gotten to used to it.

post #287 of 299

If you look at the cowon settings they are offering much more than EQ.

- Ability to widen or tigthen stero depending of frequency band (is there a vst that allow this ?)

- Global stereo expanding

- BBE

- Mach3ABass

- Reverb

I  personally don't think that EQ is enough to enhance the whole listening experience.

post #288 of 299

Quote:

Originally Posted by TheOtus View Post

If we're keeping it real, of course well done EQ CAN improve the sound of clearly flawed headphone or record. (Obviously it can also dramatically reduce sound quality.) The point is, why buy such headphone? Same can't be said about records, it's just something to be tolerated in my opinion. Also seems that people do overrate the EQ quite a bit. I haven't tried any high end EQ programs so who knows how amazing they are. I still don't find them needed in my case, and just getting used to the sound still has many obvious upsides. I don't want to fight about this at all, and you clearly got my points too, no harm.


Because that's all that actually exists...

post #289 of 299
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOtus View Post

Quote:


If we're keeping it real, of course well done EQ CAN improve the sound of clearly flawed headphone or record. (Obviously it can also dramatically reduce sound quality.) The point is, why buy such headphone? Same can't be said about records, it's just something to be tolerated in my opinion. Also seems that people do overrate the EQ quite a bit. I haven't tried any high end EQ programs so who knows how amazing they are. I still don't find them needed in my case, and just getting used to the sound still has many obvious upsides. I don't want to fight about this at all, and you clearly got my points too, no harm.

 

Quote:


What do you think? I rather pick "flat" and use some decent headphones instead of suffering from awful distortion, as that's what happens with iPod's EQ.


Roller has described my opinion pretty much exactly. Ipod EQs are absolutely horrid and one of the primary reasons people bash Apple. Cowon's BBE and EQ implementation is in a completely different league altogether. As I was also saying, a good EQ does far more good than harm assuming it's the case of achieving neutrality. However, in Cowon's case, the EQ+BBE is so good, you can color the music all you want and you may or may not hear any distortion or phasing.

 

I personally would not want to "get used" to a headphone if it's only problem is a slightly overemphasized treble. Getting accustomed to exaggerated treble means desensitizing your ears from treble and maybe it's just paranoia, but I'd much rather not. It's not even comfortable for me to do in the first place. EQing for exaggerated treble is simple, does not require many bars, minimal to no change in detail depending on EQ used, and the results would be closer to accurate.


Edited by wind016 - 7/3/11 at 12:01pm
post #290 of 299

On the subject of the lousy, easy to overload EQ on the iPods I wrote this post a bit ago on page 8 of this thread, but it didn't engender very much interest:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/559247/why-don-t-more-people-use-eq-to-get-the-desired-sound/105#post_7558572

 

It has a link to an article on gain staging using a program called MP3Gain, which reduces the volume level your MP3 (or AAC) file decompress into when you play them, so that you avoid overloading the input preamps on the iPod EQ (which is the primary cause of the distortion).

 

Read it if that idea is of interest to you!

 

Terry

post #291 of 299
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOtus View Post


If we're keeping it real, of course well done EQ CAN improve the sound of clearly flawed headphone or record. (Obviously it can also dramatically reduce sound quality.) The point is, why buy such headphone? Same can't be said about records, it's just something to be tolerated in my opinion. Also seems that people do overrate the EQ quite a bit. I haven't tried any high end EQ programs so who knows how amazing they are. I still don't find them needed in my case, and just getting used to the sound still has many obvious upsides. I don't want to fight about this at all, and you clearly got my points too, no harm.

 


What do you think? I rather pick "flat" and use some decent headphones instead of suffering from awful distortion, as that's what happens with iPod's EQ.


 

Why buy such headphone? Because, IMHO, all headphones benefit from EQing, on different degrees, of course, as some require minute changes while others do benefit from broader/stronger changes.

 

That's settled then. You don't find EQing to be needed, and I prefer to EQ. There, two different preferences from different people, without us going at each other's necks :)

 

About iPods, I did hear enough horror stories related to their "EQs" as well as some experimenting of my own...


Edited by Roller - 7/3/11 at 1:38pm
post #292 of 299
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roller View Post

About iPods, I did hear enough horror stories related to their "EQs" as well as some experimenting of my own...


If all EQs were as badly implemented as I've heard the ipod's is then I sure wouldn't use it either...

post #293 of 299

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by maverickronin View Post


If all EQs were as badly implemented as I've heard the ipod's is then I sure wouldn't use it either...


I completely agree.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by tbritton View Post

On the subject of the lousy, easy to overload EQ on the iPods I wrote this post a bit ago on page 8 of this thread, but it didn't engender very much interest:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/559247/why-don-t-more-people-use-eq-to-get-the-desired-sound/105#post_7558572

 

It has a link to an article on gain staging using a program called MP3Gain, which reduces the volume level your MP3 (or AAC) file decompress into when you play them, so that you avoid overloading the input preamps on the iPod EQ (which is the primary cause of the distortion).

 

Read it if that idea is of interest to you!

 

Terry


That's interesting but that's going so far out of my way. Considering how well Apple is selling their Ipods, I wonder why they didn't give the EQ much thought. Their EQ doesn't need to be as good as Cowon's for me to prefer their players. If their EQ was even average sounding, I would have dropped the Cowon for multitasking that I could use with my Iphone/Ipod. I honestly think the EQu app is average sounding but the CPU usage is too high rendering the Ipod extremely laggy.

post #294 of 299
Quote:
Originally Posted by wind016 View Post

That's interesting but that's going so far out of my way.


I agree it is a bit of a lot of work just to make EQ on one's iPod useable, but there is an additional fringe benefit of using MP3Gain in that it removes the clipping inherently caused by the MP3 producing process itself. So, now I pass all my MP3's though this software (it does its work on entire folders including subfolders at once.)

 

I tried using iGain (a front-end interface for MP3Gain that hooks to iTunes database to get its song list), but it wound up crashing in Win 7. Also note that both iGain and AACGain work on both MP3's and AAC files at the same time.

 

Terry

post #295 of 299
Quote:
Originally Posted by sesshin View Post

In recording school they taught us that EQ, while integral and important, should always be the last resort. You should strive to get your audio sounding as perfect as it can without EQ, and then EQ the bare minimum amount and not any more in order to sculpt the sound the way you see fit.

 

I see a lot of judicial EQing going on, which may be fine if you are stuck with one particular setup, but it would seem to me from a purity standpoint you would want to change something in your signal chain before resorting to EQ to fix it. For instance if your signal is too bright, switching to a darker pair of headphones or a darker amp would yield richer results as opposed to EQing the crap out of it.

 

In photography (which is my profession now) its the same way. When you take a photo you want it to be as perfect as possible right out of the camera. Any post Photoshop work should be subtle and minimal. Photographers who go overboard with Photoshop editing are trying to cover up a bad photo. It's the same with audio.

Well said, I think this pretty much answers the question. Get yourself headphones you actually like, then make minor changes if you must via EQ.
 

 

post #296 of 299

Actually that may not be quite true on the reproduction end.  As I see it:

 

1. On source and amp components, the above approach is fine if the sound you're after is the most neutral sound, you'd just strive to look for equipment that reproduces signals faithfully.  Otherwise if you're looking for a "forward" or "laid-back" sound or whatever, a digital EQ can deliver such modifications by purely modifying the frequency response, while a source or amp component that delivers such a coloration does so by things like inductance, capacitance and output impedence or even outright harmonic distortion, all of which modify the phase response at the very least and often more besides.

 

2. On the actual headphones, someone mentioned in the first few pages that "surely it would be better to get phones with good bass in the first place than to get bright cans and EQ them to sound bassy".  (not exact quote) May not be true either.  Headphones are naturally bass-light, there's only two ways to make them bass-heavy:

 

i. via simple RC networks coupled to the driver, in effect a crude analog EQ hard-wired to the phones.  But if you simply took out the treble from cans that are physically bass light you'd end up with pathetic sensitivity.

ii. tuning the drivers / enclosure to resonate at certain bass frequencies.

 

The thing is, resonant bass is (to me it seems at least) by definition loose bass.  So if you're after strong, tight bass, it may be a matter of "pick any one" without EQ, whereas with an EQ you may pick up a pair of otherwise well-regarded phones that are somewhat bass light and EQ them to your desired level of bass.

 

Resonance happens in treble too--the 40-page long thread on EQ is all about resonances above 1kHz caused by turning your ears into a closed chamber when putting on headphones.  Here again the prominent frequencies are the resonating frequencies, which bounce back and forth between your phones and your eardrums and mess up soundstage, transients, etc etc.  Short of some magical way to mount your phones on a moving platform that anti-resonates at these frequencies, the only thing to be done is to suppress these frequencies with EQ and minimise their effect on the sound.

 

Also, when designing headphones, the goals of aiming for a good frequency response (very complicated for headphones, unlike loudspeakers you're not just aiming for flat FR) and eliminating resonances / improving transient response may play at cross purposes with each other.  I've always thought it would be interesting if a major headphone manufacturer were to spend all the R&D money for a model on just eliminating resonances and other things not FR-related and released the phones with a chart for the EQ you should set to correct the FR.  Or a mass market mfr doing the same thing and releasing an iPod/iPhone/Android app that does the EQ automatically for you!


Edited by Joe Bloggs - 7/5/11 at 10:57am
post #297 of 299
Quote:
Originally Posted by Markon101 View Post

One thing I've noticed over my time here at head-fi is that, for the most part, no one ever says "Not enough bass? Use a little EQ." Why is this? I have been EQ-ing for a long time. k701smile.gif ( I know that it can sometimes reduce the quality a bit)



IMHO most (there are some who uses eq) audiophile just like the idea of their respective systems and music to be delivered as pure as possible :)

post #298 of 299


I agree. Some EDM genres have to be EQ'ed in order to have a mind blowing bass, even with bassy headphones like the denons and ultrasones.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markon101 View Post

One thing I've noticed over my time here at head-fi is that, for the most part, no one ever says "Not enough bass? Use a little EQ." Why is this? I have been EQ-ing for a long time. k701smile.gif ( I know that it can sometimes reduce the quality a bit)



 

post #299 of 299

In the pre solid state era, to achieve sound stage sonic shifting one subjected their tube amps to tube rolling. Tube rolling is the EQ of yesteryear.

In the solid state era, solid state EQ is the way to go (and the cheapest alternative) when subjecting your amp to the fine art of sonic shifting.

 

If it works for your ears (and your amp), then tubes or EQ is the solution--and guilt free. Unless there is someone who would make an effort to persuade you otherwise.wink_face.gif

 

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