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Difference between "revealing" and "detailed"? - Page 2

post #16 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by NimbleTurtle View Post

Hi I'm new to this sound science forum. Glad I found it. 

 

One of many questions I have is the question of my title. My HD598 shows the difference between 160-320 kbps files and lossless files. Others have testified to this, remarking on the HD 598's ability to reproduce its source accurately. However, others say the HD 598 isn't as "detailed" as other headphones. What's the difference? 

Your only going to get opinions which are neither right nor wrong, so here's mine.

 

I guess with revealing you've got your answer. You say you could tell the difference between different quality rips and so it's revealing in that regard. I don't know of many other situations when I think of the word 'revealing' when listening to cans. I guess once you advance ahead of the SQ level of crap headphones close to where the beats and bose ones lie, you're into the territory of 'revealing' headphones in general.

 

With detailed though, this isn't much of a helpful word to use when describing any headfi 'tried and tested' headphone in my opinion. Okay, maybe when A/B'ing two different headphones out of the same setup (with volume matching) if you hear bass notes on one headphone that the other headphone reproduces as a single mushy rumbling note, then yea headphone 'A' is more detailed than headphone 'B' in that regard. I heard such a thing when A/Bing the denon d7k with the d2k. I can't remember which track it was but it was clearly noticable that the d7k was more detailed.

But in most instances it's too hard to say as given any two headphones you normaly have two very different sound signitures (unlike the d2k and the d7k). One may be treble happy, whilst the other bass happy- then you've got a problem.

 

I reckon the best use of 'detailed' is when describing dac's and amps. Get any crap dac (nuforce udac 2 is perfect) and compare it to a decent one (similarly priced hrt music streamer is perfect). One is definitely more detailed than the other (it's obvious which is which in this case). Amps can offer more detail as well. I actually didn't believe this that much untill I heard the musical fidelity hpa headphone amp. 

 

Anyway, that's a good question you asked there NimbleTurtle! 

post #17 of 55
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your response. Your experience with amp has fascinated me, to say the least. I have never heard that amps can make the sound more detailed. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CantScareMe View Post

Your only going to get opinions which are neither right nor wrong, so here's mine.

 

I guess with revealing you've got your answer. You say you could tell the difference between different quality rips and so it's revealing in that regard. I don't know of many other situations when I think of the word 'revealing' when listening to cans. I guess once you advance ahead of the SQ level of crap headphones close to where the beats and bose ones lie, you're into the territory of 'revealing' headphones in general.

 

With detailed though, this isn't much of a helpful word to use when describing any headfi 'tried and tested' headphone in my opinion. Okay, maybe when A/B'ing two different headphones out of the same setup (with volume matching) if you hear bass notes on one headphone that the other headphone reproduces as a single mushy rumbling note, then yea headphone 'A' is more detailed than headphone 'B' in that regard. I heard such a thing when A/Bing the denon d7k with the d2k. I can't remember which track it was but it was clearly noticable that the d7k was more detailed.

But in most instances it's too hard to say as given any two headphones you normaly have two very different sound signitures (unlike the d2k and the d7k). One may be treble happy, whilst the other bass happy- then you've got a problem.

 

I reckon the best use of 'detailed' is when describing dac's and amps. Get any crap dac (nuforce udac 2 is perfect) and compare it to a decent one (similarly priced hrt music streamer is perfect). One is definitely more detailed than the other (it's obvious which is which in this case). Amps can offer more detail as well. I actually didn't believe this that much untill I heard the musical fidelity hpa headphone amp. 

 

Anyway, that's a good question you asked there NimbleTurtle! 

post #18 of 55

Sightly on-topic: am I the only one who considers "detail" and "speed" to be the same? At least they are the same characteristic showing up in different ways, a detailed IEM/headphone will have a lot of speed. I'm talking about the ability to pinpoint exactly where a sound begins and ends, like a drum beat, instead of a long decay.

post #19 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by NimbleTurtle View Post

Thanks for your response. Your experience with amp has fascinated me, to say the least. I have never heard that amps can make the sound more detailed. 

 

I haven't come across that many amps but i've only heard one amp punching out more detail than another one on one occasion. Rare, yea!

In my experience though, two audio components where one is more detailed than the other I find to be the case mainly with dac's.   

post #20 of 55
It's likely that the amp wasn't making the difference, but something else in the chain.

Speed as it relates to most headphones is a LOT shorter than the attacks and decays in music. If any headphone is flapping around bad enough to seriously affect drumbeats, it's probably broken, and it's going to be mushing up much more than just musical transients. Speed is actually is how fast the transducer recovers from wide excursions. It affects how clean the bass is presented. Loose and sloppy or tight and controlled.
Edited by bigshot - 7/23/12 at 12:54pm
post #21 of 55

The transducer effects detail much more than the amp/dac.  Those have an effect too, but no amp/dac can make the HD650 more detailed than the HE500 or T50rp (well modded).  HE500 out of ipod is going to be more detailed than HD650 out of uber amp/dac.  IME

post #22 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

It's likely that the amp wasn't making the difference, but something else in the chain.
Speed as it relates to most headphones is a LOT shorter than the attacks and decays in music. If any headphone is flapping around bad enough to seriously affect drumbeats, it's probably broken, and it's going to be mushing up much more than just musical transients. Speed is actually is how fast the transducer recovers from wide excursions. It affects how clean the bass is presented. Loose and sloppy or tight and controlled.

 

Well I don't mean a transducer ruined enough to the point of sounding really muddy, but for example compare a cheap dynamic to a B2 or a decent balanced armature. Besides the obvious change in sound signature, the B2 has a really short decay, every hit on the drums begins and ends precisely where it should. It's like putting on a pair of glasses after walking around all day without them: first you couldn't exactly tell where each shape ended and the other one started, but now the distinction is very clear.

 

I'm asking because I recently bought a used RE-0 and I was expecting to hear this. I do hear a lot more small aspects of music that I didn't before, like background vocals being more noticeable, and I'm assuming this "detail" has nothing to do with my previous definition, which was in fact decay. I've only had about 1 hour with the RE-0, but I'm curious if I've been walking around with a wrong idea this whole time. Also I realize these terms go through a very thick subjectivity filter.

post #23 of 55
The thing is, how much of a sloppiness of speed are we talking about? The attack of a drum hit is about 2-3 milliseconds and it sits right around 2-3kHz. Are there headphones that are sloppy in the 1 millisecond range at that frequency? I'm not sure, but I'm guessing that almost all headphones are fast enough to render that properly.

It seems to me to be much more likely that if snare drum hits sound dull, the odds are that there's a bump in the frequency response at around 1kHz masking it, or a dip right in the middle of the fundamental around 2kHz. Not hearing the attack clearly would make the sound of the hit sound all spread out.

Now, I *can* picture sloppiness in much smaller bits of time... Perhaps in a range that might affect the shape of the waveform in low notes where the top of the waveform is further apart from the bottom.

I don't know this for sure, I'm just trying to get a feel for the scale of the problem.
Edited by bigshot - 7/23/12 at 3:18pm
post #24 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

It's likely that the amp wasn't making the difference, but something else in the chain.
 

Maybe, yea

 

I was meaning that detail, in my experience, comes to the table when comparing two different dacs (using a single top tier headphone) or amps. I don't think I've ever got my hands on two different top-tier headphones and have been able to for sure say that one is more detailed than the other. They just present stuff in different ways I find.

post #25 of 55
Headphones have a much wider range of sound than DACs. If a DAC sounds different, there's probably something wrong with it.
post #26 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by rhythmdevils View Post

The transducer effects detail much more than the amp/dac.  Those have an effect too, but no amp/dac can make the HD650 more detailed than the HE500 or T50rp (well modded).  HE500 out of ipod is going to be more detailed than HD650 out of uber amp/dac.  IME

 

Agreed

post #27 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by rhythmdevils View Post

The way it's used on this forum, revealing generally means tons of treble and not very much bass.  The more treble, the more revealing, and the worse recordings will sound.  (it's not used very accurately on this forum).  Revealing in the real world should mean uncolored and showing you what upstream actually sounds like.  Making recordings sound worse than they actually are is not actually revealing.  That's ruthless coloration.  Same goes for encoding. 

 

Detail is synonomous with bright on this forum most of the time too.  But detail means actual, real detail extraction, not boosted FR for clarity coloration.  A warm headphone can be just as detailed as a bright headphone.  And a bright headphone can be just as dull as a warm one.  Though you'd find that hard to believe looking at impressions. 

You don't have to have frequency response aberations to be revealing  or dtailed. One can have both without aberations. A lot depends on source & amplification as I have found. You can have flat boring sound or you can have exciting sound that also happens to measure flat. The trick is to find what causes flat boring sound & correct it. I have done that & the results are amazing especially when from frequeny response measurements, they measure the same.

post #28 of 55
If music sounds dull through headphones, the problem is very likely the headphones. It's relatively easy to create a great sounding DAP or CD player. All of the good ones sound exactly the same. But transducers are always the wild card, and some headphones are deliberately designed to NOT have flat response.
post #29 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

...It's relatively easy to create a great sounding DAP or CD player. All of the good ones sound exactly the same...

Hmmmm, not sure I agree here, but your overall point still stands

post #30 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by germanium View Post

You don't have to have frequency response aberations to be revealing  or dtailed. One can have both without aberations. A lot depends on source & amplification as I have found. You can have flat boring sound or you can have exciting sound that also happens to measure flat. The trick is to find what causes flat boring sound & correct it. I have done that & the results are amazing especially when from frequeny response measurements, they measure the same.

 

Maybe you should read my post again.  Completely misunderstood what I was saying.  I said both how the terms were used on this forum frequently, and then explained what they should mean. 

 

And no, a lot doesn't depend on the source.  A neutral headphone would still sound very neutral out of an ipod assuming it didnt have extremely unique powering requirements.  The transducer is what determines the vast majority of how revealing and detailed the final sound will be.  And unfortunately your Denons are not neutral. 

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