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Lost all my bass, no idea what happened. (Busted headphones?)

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Posting this more as a WTF than anything else, because there's no logical explanation.

 

> Enjoy some music on my laptop (EQ'd, through my AT M50s)

> Enjoy some music on my Clip+ (no EQ, through the M50s)

> Update firmware and RockBox on my Clip+

> Load some more music on

> Listen and think WTF?  It sounds hollow, I can barely hear the basslines of the songs I'm listening to (that I was listening to ten minutes earlier).  Percussive bass sounds like a hollow tap rather than a thud/thump.

> Assume that the new FW or Rockbox has messed with something (not sure what, since I was running it unEQ'd before I updated it, perhaps something affecting it's ability to power the phones?), so look around in the settings and find nothing obvious.

> Figure I'll fix it tomorrow morning, and resume listening on the laptop.

> Same thing - hollow/nonexistant bass.

> Freak out thinking that it must be in my head while knowing that it's not.

 

Has anyone ever had the sound of their phones inexplicably mess up?  I cannot explain it at all - the laptop hasn't had anything changed on it yet it's exhibiting the same problem, which means it's ... the 'phones or my ears?  Can 'phones develop a fault that messes up the response without killing them completely?  I'm at a complete loss.


Edited by Dragunov-21 - 4/17/12 at 6:36am
post #2 of 12
I'm not sure if you've tried a source other than the clip, but that'd be my first guess. Second guess would be the cable. Actually, in my experience, sudden hollowness is almost always the cable. If neither of those is at fault, then I'd start worrying about the drivers. But if it's both ears, it's the clip or the cable, most certainly. Not likely that you blew up two drivers at the same time unless you had the volume waaaay too loud.

At least, this is my inderstanding of things.
post #3 of 12

Which hp are we talking about here?

post #4 of 12

Its got to be a bad connection, stressing the cable can break a solder connection or the copper wires may have frayed somewhere. If you have no bass in both cups it is most likely the fault is at the jack on the common pole. I have encountered this problem when I first was learning to solder new cables, all that was needed to fix the problem was a new jack for me.

 

Should be an easy fix. Good luck!


Edited by GM325i - 4/17/12 at 12:03pm
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Cheers, GM ;) Picked up a new jack (and 6ft of star quad, since the original cable has been mauled by the cat). We'll see how it goes.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 

This is really weird... =/

 

Recabled the ATH-M50s with some star-quad and a connector half the size of my Clip+.  I've not had a lot of sleep lately and could barely see the tracks while soldering, but the multimeter doesn't lie - it was a success.

 

Net Result:

 

 - Cable is ridiculously robust

 - Cable is now reasonably microphonic

 - Plug makes it look like I've got a 1/4" stuck in there (half awesome, half stupid)

 - The 'phones are now noticeably more revealing.  I'm a skeptic and would normally put this down to placebo, but this really came outta left field.  No idea what to think.

 - Bass is there... kinda, but it still feels off. The best way of explaining it is that I can hear it, but can't feel it at all - there's no impact, and it seems as though increasing the volume increases the volume of the mids/treble but the bass stays at pretty much the same volume.

 

Any further thoughts?


Edited by Dragunov-21 - 4/18/12 at 3:13am
post #7 of 12


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dragunov-21 View Post

This is really weird... =/

 

Recabled the ATH-M50s with some star-quad and a connector half the size of my Clip+.  I've not had a lot of sleep lately and could barely see the tracks while soldering, but the multimeter doesn't lie - it was a success.

 

Net Result:

 

 - Cable is ridiculously robust

 - Cable is now reasonably microphonic

 - Plug makes it look like I've got a 1/4" stuck in there (half awesome, half stupid)

 - The 'phones are now noticeably more revealing.  I'm a skeptic and would normally put this down to placebo, but this really came outta left field.  No idea what to think.

 - Bass is there... kinda, but it still feels off. The best way of explaining it is that I can hear it, but can't feel it at all - there's no impact, and it seems as though increasing the volume increases the volume of the mids/treble but the bass stays at pretty much the same volume.

 

Any further thoughts?



um... maybe try eqing it?

post #8 of 12

My M50s died completely and I believe the cable is at fault ... I've never replaced a headphone cable. Would you consider posting a short guide on how you did it? Or could any of you point me to such a guide? I'd be much appreciated ...

post #9 of 12

I know what you mean about the lac of bass, that last little bit is what really matters rolleyes.gif 

 

Did you use silver bearing solder? Remember not to heat the wires too much? 

 

Also the quality of copper has a HUGE effect on the bass and clarity in fine headphones. I am not familiar with the star quad cable or what AT uses on the M50s but you may have taken a downgrade in the cable because the star quad isn't oxygen free (I think). 

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 

I'm a sparkie - I used standard lead/tin/copper alloyed solder. That makes enough of a difference?  For the record, this isn't a small difference/disctinction I'm picking up - I'm no critical listener.  I figure that since I've replaced the plug/cable, it has to be one of two things:

 

 - Capacitance attenuating low frequencies

 - Earcups or HP housings not sealing.

 

Thing is, neither would just change over the course of 20 minutes unless I dropped the bastids.  Guess I'll have to wait until I get the chance to listen to some other phones I'm familiar, or some other M50s to compare with.

post #11 of 12

Well lets not over complicate this. you haven't changed the capacitance or the quality of the seal enough to make any real difference. The fact is that different cables give headphones a different sound, that is why audiophiles spend thousands on getting the right cables. The difference you hear is most likely just that. If I were you, I wouldn't worry about it, just eq to your taste and enjoy your music. That's what we are all here for anyways right?

post #12 of 12

Ok i dont know if youll get to this but.... What happened is a program changed your sound settings. I noticed right away and went to the search bar in the start bar. Typed in sound. Selected playback device and clicked properties.. Then changed the quality from dvd to studio and hit apply.    Whenever i make a beat or another program uses the primary sound card it can change a setting. Bass came right back.

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