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How to equalize your headphones: advanced tutorial (in progress) - Page 8

post #106 of 111
Originally Posted by MaciekN View Post

I did the measurements with the headphones on my head but the mic was not inside my ear, it was just close, so I guess they would reflect the in-ear response.


If I understand you correctly I should first use an inverse of the DF curve, and then EQ to flat sounding with sweeps? But in this case it would only work if a headphone was DF equalized in the first place, wouldn't it?


I did similar thing with an IEM, I listened to log and linear sweeps to EQ it to flat sounding, then added the DF curve and the tonality is really nice now, so in this case it kinda worked.





If you're measuring at the EAM and not the eardrum, just EQ the response so it matches a blocked-meatus DF reference. Don't try to EQ it to flat because your ear does not have flat response.

post #107 of 111

For some reason, I get an audio delay.  Like when I watch a video using VST Host and VAC, I click play and there is like a fraction of a second delay before the audio starts playing, and it really messes up the sync between the video and audio.  Anyone know how to fix this? Does it have to do with the wave import or wave output in VST? Thanks.

post #108 of 111
Originally Posted by wjellybelly View Post

For some reason, I get an audio delay.  Like when I watch a video using VST Host and VAC, I click play and there is like a fraction of a second delay before the audio starts playing, and it really messes up the sync between the video and audio.  Anyone know how to fix this? Does it have to do with the wave import or wave output in VST? Thanks.


Are you using low latency ASIO drivers with VSTHost (native ASIO, asio4all, etc.) ? If you are then try by minimizing the ASIO buffer size (latency) and if possible, by adjusting I/O latency compensation buffers.


(Maybe ReClock could be used for syncronization in some cases?)

post #109 of 111

Has anyone done a thorough EQ of hd800? So far my curve looks like this:

For now at least. Besides, why should one EQ out the resonant frequency in the ear canal, as it must occur at all times, headphones or not?

post #110 of 111

For me, I just think it sounds a lot better with the EQ.  When I don't EQ headphones, I can hear hissing noises from the treble.  Sorry, don't own the hd 800s, so I don't know much about them.

post #111 of 111

thought I'd butt in. this tuto has been a great help for me(I also started with piccolo's tuto). but at first I got scared by the apparent amount of softwares and efforts needed. and I imagine that just like me, a lot of people gave up on trying because of this. or because one of the software was not free.


I'm part of a cheapo IEM EQ challenge tour http://www.head-fi.org/t/726569/review-tour-somic-mh412-viper4android-the-put-up-or-shut-up-review-and-tour . and trying to do my own EQ to see if I can match Joe Bloggs work made me think about that topic and where I went since I first saw it.

so if you mind reading something that will probably be a little long, I want to talk about the alternatives, how it's not as complicated as it appears, and why I do favor his technique(with whatever mean to achieve it) instead of other more straightforward EQing methods.



the 3 ways talked about on this topic:

I/ EQ with whatever you have(on your DAP, on your audio player software on the computer...)and just try to make it sound good.

what we all did at some point and what led so many people into thinking that EQ was bad for sound. sometimes because that specific EQ software was really poor. but usually just because the user used too much of everything like a newbie he was, mistaking clipping with what the EQ can do.




II/ jiiteepee made something real nice and accessible( thanks a lot for making it a freeware). you can use it as your usual EQ (EQ by ear until it sounds as you wish), or rely on measurements to try and reverse the variations. it works pretty well, and it is not too hard to accomplish as you can compare shapes and values instead of using your ears. I believe it to be a great way to start in the EQ world if you're not very confident, as the graphs and practice bring a fair share of pedagogy about EQing. you will get out of it knowing yourself and your headphone better.


I see one problem though:

by following headroom's graphs or others, you follow what they measured, with what they picked as a compensation curve, and how much smoothing they decided upon. overall it can lead to something close to flat for the chosen compensation curve. but that's it.

so if you hear flat with that compensation curve, great for you, you have found the perfect tool. but if your ears are different, then you'll just be making your headphone flat for the dummy head, not for yourself.

the other problematic situation is if you don't actually wish for flat. you can always do the job for flat, and then add a few DB of bass or medium just like you love it, but you end up doing I/ with a closer to flat headphone. I believe that with experience this is still the best option, as you'll slowly learn what you like and know from experience how much DB this is for a given frequency. so in the long run, I do like this method. but the newbie to EQ might end up with a "flat" headphone not loving the sound, and not knowing how to get it better.

and of course you can't really do much if you can't find a graph for your headphone.



III/ this is in my opinion where Joe Bloggs tuto has an interesting thing to it.

what he's making you do is take something you like(flat or not), and try to get another headphone to sound just like it. so you never start from nothing, you actually have a listening reference. so you can estimate if you're close or not and if you should redo it.

the second strong point of that method is that instead of trying to make your headphone flat by ear and deal with the result, he's making you do one exercise twice. on the model headphone/speaker, and the headphone you want to EQ. so you don't have to be good at making the EQ flat, you just have to be consistent on both attempts.

you can be wrong by 15db on your equal loudness curve, it doesn't matter one bit. as long as you're wrong twice ^_^.  and that's the real value of that method in my eyes.


the real problem of that method is that you do need a model sound. if you have no headphone with the signature you want(flat or something else), then you're screwed.




so as you can see there isn't one perfect way and you need to pick the one for your needs.









now 4 dumb screenshots to show 4 ways to use Joe Bloggs method with different softwares:



I call this the "barely better than nothing" equipment:
here I'm using foobar2000 and viper4windows and some test tones in wave. each software has a basic EQ so you can use one to make an equal loudness EQ, and then use the second one over it to set your second headphone flat. with that system it's real simple to install, only 1 special setting to make it all work at the same time.


you will need to find or create test tones and play them in foobar. most likely those tones will be in mono, so you will have to do that 1 special setting here ^_^:

on the top left of foobar press "file" -> "preferences" -> DSP Manager. on the right column you got "Downmix channels to mono" you must double clic it and check that it is now on the left in the "Active DSPs" column and press apply. that's it you're all set to play the tones and EQ as you need.

other problem, the sliders of both EQ are not exactly on the same frequencies, so it's a little messy. but it does work.

the EQ on viper4windows makes scratchy noises and sometimes crashes.

and lastly you will also have to lower the pre-gain to avoid clipping.


all in all it's easy to prepare the softwares, and hard to do the EQ itself.


the real perk of that way is for android, as you can do it on your smartphone with viper4android(same link as viper4windows). so let's say you EQ to equal loudness with the EQ in power amp. then you change to the headphone you want to EQ and use V4A to do the second EQ.  all you'll have to do is to play test tones with power amp or whatever audio app.







this one is all in one software.

the difficulty will mostly be to install a vst wrapper for foobar. then as I couldn't find how to launch 2 electriQ EQ at once, I just installed 2 different EQs that work as VSTs for foobar ^_^.

the other one is easyQ it's very much an electriQ copycat.


here just like above you'll have to find yourself some test tones and deal with the mono problem(see foobar+viper explanation just above). and if you have to use too much EQ boost, go change the gain in foobar to avoid clipping.

so here it's a little harder to prepare, and then it's very easy to use(see Joe's first posts on how to use the EQ). use one EQ to set the equal loudness of your model headphone/speaker using test tones. after that, use the second EQ to do the same thing again with the headphone you want to EQ. the result of that second EQ is what you will want to use from now on for that headphone. the end. 








and that's exactly what Joe Bloggs recommended in the first post (here the EQs are 2 easyQ instead of electriQ, but they're the same thing).

just to say that it might look complicated, but if you just install all the softwares and follow step by step, it's in fact not that complicated. virtual cable for example, you install it, and that's it. ^_^

for vst host you have to guess a little if you're not into reading manuals(RTFM!!!!!)

you'll have to create 2little boxes with the vst EQ. to do that you go to "file"-> "new plug in" and you browse your computer to get the .dll of the EQ you want to use. you do that twice to have 2EQs.

then you need to unchain the first EQ box from the output (using the little chain icon on the top left of the output box and unchecking the one you don't want linked).

then pick "virtual cable" as the choice of input for wave and you're done.

it's really not rocket science.

but virtual cable isn't free and the demo voice is nerve breaking. so be prepared to find an alternative to virtual cable or to pay for it( it was something like 20euro if I remember well, so you don't have to sell a kidney).


the end result is pretty much like using 2 EQ in foobar, except that here you can use sinegen. and when it comes down to test tones, it's really a nice tool.





here is as someone suggested in the topic, the free version of it. in fact you just add a VST sine wave generator in the chain of vsthost (again you just pick the .dll of the VST you want to use). here I use MDA test tones (it's the testtone.dll in the zip)

in that configuration you do not need virtual cable so you save 20bucks.

also you get one software dedicated to your EQing that doesn't mess with the rest. using foobar you have to undo or deactivate all the DSPs before going back to play your favorite music, not a challenge, but still a little boring. so the configuration from that screenshot is my favorite and what I've been using for some times now.


maybe it's possible to do the same with foobar by adding a sine wave generator that is a VST, but that one didn't work (something about GUI but I don't remember). but maybe with another vst it works?










for those wishing to use wasapi, only the "all in foobar" option(second screenshot) will allow for it. but it really doesn't matter at all, you're just creating an EQ profile here, you will not listen to your music with that system. later on, you will just use the EQ you created directly in foobar and will indeed be able to use wasapi. even if obviously EQed signal is not bit perfect, but at least you bypass windows.


anyway I hope that someone will find this useful, and get one of the possibilities working. there are a lot more softwares to try, but I guess we have it covered already here just by trying other VSTs.

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