You mentionned about tinnitus, you don't suffer from hyperacousis? It's a condition that is the result of overexposure to loud sounds and thus may come along with tinnitus. Essentially, the threashold of discomfort and eventually pain is much lower than for healthy hearing, which will make one favor recessed phones in the most sensitive region of the hearing (e.g 1-4kHz range). Not saying you're deaf, but once you have any sign of hearing impairment (like tinnitus even if mild), it's worth to question its own hearing before claiming someone else prefers "brighter sound signatures".
I doubt I have hyperacousis as my dislike of bright phones pre-dates my tinnitus. It's probably more that I've always listened to heavy orchestral music and wanted to capture the "concert hall" sound, which is usually far from bright unless you're sitting in the front seats. As for the 1--4khz region, I would say I am particularly sensitive to that region, but that it's more to do with this being the critical region for orchestral strings; any accentuation here can make them unbearably schreechy. (I also don't agree that bright phones suit classical. Quite the opposite in my view).
Regarding your last sentence, I was simply pointing out that no review is of any use until you first identify where the reviewer's taste differs from your own and adjust accordingly. This is true of every review. As for questioning my hearing, I question it frequently ("You still there, Hearing?'); nevertheless it remains that a couple of the phones to which David was especially kind--DT880, HD800--are widely regarded, rightly or wrongly, as being bright and even a little peaky, so it can't be just my personal claim, especially as it's been brought up a couple of times already in this thread. The question is, once you're aware of it with regard to your own taste, does it matter?
Edited by pp312 - 11/14/12 at 3:26pm