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Will static noise from hurt your headphones?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Ok so I just got my ATH-M50's and I usually use my ear buds to talk to people online and listen to music quietly in the background at the same time.  However, when I'm talking to people there is that mic staticy noise that happens.  Will that constant noise hurt my headphones.  I know people play pink and white noise in their headphones to burn them in, and I have also heard people say that it makes them lose bass or wreck the headphones.  I just don't want to wreck my new headphones.  So I was thinking of wearing my ear buds plugged into my computer to chat and then using my headphones over them to listen to music from my iPod so I don't get the constant static noise in my headphones.  Will that be worse, I also think it may hurt my ears as well.  Don't want to try anything till I know more.

post #2 of 10

It doesn't, it's not really any different then any other sound. Don't worry.

post #3 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffJeffery View Post

Ok so I just got my ATH-M50's and I usually use my ear buds to talk to people online and listen to music quietly in the background at the same time.  However, when I'm talking to people there is that mic staticy noise that happens.  Will that constant noise hurt my headphones.  I know people play pink and white noise in their headphones to burn them in, and I have also heard people say that it makes them lose bass or wreck the headphones.  I just don't want to wreck my new headphones.  So I was thinking of wearing my ear buds plugged into my computer to chat and then using my headphones over them to listen to music from my iPod so I don't get the constant static noise in my headphones.  Will that be worse, I also think it may hurt my ears as well.  Don't want to try anything till I know more.


As long as it's not hard clipping your audio, no it won't. Hard clipping can destroy a speaker because of the abrupt signal changes under power, like turning a radio up so loud it distorts. I skype with my 880's all the time and all is well.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

What is hard clipping?

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

And the constant noise, for prolong periods of time wont hurt them, I read somewhere that their headphones got wrecked because they played pink or white, I don't really know what that is, to long.

post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffJeffery View Post

What is hard clipping?


Hard clipping is what solid state amplifiers do when they run out of headroom. If you looked at it on an oscilliscope it would look like a square wave, because all of the peaks are being cut off hard. One of the reason tube amps are so valued is that they 'soft clip'. There is still distortion when over driven but it's much gentler.

 

Hard clipping a speaker is kind of like sending it a distorted square wave all on or all off with little in between, very hard on a driver. I've driven 50watt speakers at 110watts and never blown one as long as I didn't let it distort. But DJ'd at a party once and let others mess with the controls and I blew a woofer on 150watt speakers that were being driven with a 100 watt amp.

 

What can wreck a speaker over long term is heat. Especially in tweeters that are driven hard, they have to move the voice coils so fast that friction and heat from the voice coil itself will begin to break down the smooth frictionless environment and if the speaker should begin to catch it could blow the voice coil from the sudden rise in resistance. Power into resistance = heat. flash, dead speaker.


Edited by Kodhifi - 1/9/13 at 8:14pm
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

I'm not really sure what all of that ment, sorry.  How could I do that, so I can avoid it.  Does it only happen with amps, I don't use one currently

post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffJeffery View Post

I'm not really sure what all of that ment, sorry.  How could I do that, so I can avoid it.  Does it only happen with amps, I don't use one currently

lol me too

post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kodhifi View Post


As long as it's not hard clipping your audio, no it won't. Hard clipping can destroy a speaker because of the abrupt signal changes under power, like turning a radio up so loud it distorts. I skype with my 880's all the time and all is well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kodhifi View Post


Hard clipping is what solid state amplifiers do when they run out of headroom. If you looked at it on an oscilliscope it would look like a square wave, because all of the peaks are being cut off hard. One of the reason tube amps are so valued is that they 'soft clip'. There is still distortion when over driven but it's much gentler.

Hard clipping a speaker is kind of like sending it a distorted square wave all on or all off with little in between, very hard on a driver. I've driven 50watt speakers at 110watts and never blown one as long as I didn't let it distort. But DJ'd at a party once and let others mess with the controls and I blew a woofer on 150watt speakers that were being driven with a 100 watt amp.

What can wreck a speaker over long term is heat. Especially in tweeters that are driven hard, they have to move the voice coils so fast that friction and heat from the voice coil itself will begin to break down the smooth frictionless environment and if the speaker should begin to catch it could blow the voice coil from the sudden rise in resistance. Power into resistance = heat. flash, dead speaker.

+1 to all of this. Especially when talking about speakers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffJeffery View Post

I'm not really sure what all of that ment, sorry.  How could I do that, so I can avoid it.  Does it only happen with amps, I don't use one currently

Basically if you're trying to turn stuff up louder than your amplifier can provide, the amplifier starts distorting, here's the Wikipedia page (and it has pictures):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clipping_(audio)
And here's a great in-depth article on it:
http://sound.westhost.com/clipping.htm

Generally headphones can take substantial input relative to the output levels we want, so killing them with clipping is *extremely* rare (you have a better chance of doing it with DC or by abusing them physically); the M50 are rated to take upwards of 1W/ch, and normal listening levels will be <.1mW/ch. Most amplifiers (and you actually are using an amplifier, even if it's built into something like a phone or mp3 player) output less than their maximum input as well (and things would be way too loud for you to tolerate before you got to that point anyways). I'm not saying "impossible" but basically to recreate this with a headphone, you'd need to set up conditions to do it, normal usage is very unlikely to accomplish this unless you're hooking them up to experimental amplifiers.

The random pops and static interference you get from VOIP or similar is probably more of an annoyance to you than it is a risk to the headphones or anything else, as you're still unlikely to be pushing them anywhere near their max input power.
post #10 of 10

OP, you have nothing to worry about. The static you hear from a mic cutting in and out should have no effect long term on your headphones.

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