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Trance is sounding horrible on my JH16's

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Just got my JH16's w/freqphase a few weeks ago.  They are really great, but trance just sounds terrible on them.  Is there anything I can do to make them sound better?

 

I'm using an Audioengine D1 and it makes things marginally better.  98% of my collection is 320 or FLAC, the other 2% is the sad few that just don't readily exist in HQ.

 

I'm at the point where either something is wrong with the headphones, or trance is just on average, horribly produced.  Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

post #2 of 16

What don't you like about it? What about the tonality doesn't work for you? If it's the bass heavyness, Like many modern CIEMs, they are designed to have that but perhaps something is adding to it. Make sure that your PC sound is set for flat with no effects etc. on the sonds and audio in control panel. PCs have settings for speaker types that can change things. Using a player capable of wasapi, kernel or ASIO is the way to go.

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

What don't you like about it? What about the tonality doesn't work for you? If it's the bass heavyness, Like many modern CIEMs, they are designed to have that but perhaps something is adding to it. Make sure that your PC sound is set for flat with no effects etc. on the sonds and audio in control panel. PCs have settings for speaker types that can change things. Using a player capable of wasapi, kernel or ASIO is the way to go.

To be honest a lot of tracks sound really, really muddled.  I'm on a Macbook, there really aren't any audio settings.  

post #4 of 16

I have had extensive conversations about this. A few things are happening. 

 

1. Trance, generally, is horribly produced. ESPECIALLY DJ mixes. Think about it. You're taking a pile of songs that are produced by different people at totally different qualities, mixing them all together with some other equipment, and then mastering that whole thing to sound consistent across the mix. It's an inevitable train-wreck. 

 

2. Trance enjoys a large sound stage and imaging. That's an IEMs most weak spot. It may sound great, but if the sound stage and imaging sucks, it's really gonna hammer on your experience. 

 

Basically, Trance and high-end audio don't mix for many people, like me. Mid-fi glosses over the flaws instead of revealing them. Many people went back to mid-fi after going hi-fi, as avid trance listeners. And then you've thrown an IEM into the equation, and a BA at that. 

 

I keep my trance to full-size, or the MG6Pro, which is a dynamic custom. Slams hard, sounds great. 

post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundFreaq View Post

I have had extensive conversations about this. A few things are happening. 

 

1. Trance, generally, is horribly produced. ESPECIALLY DJ mixes. Think about it. You're taking a pile of songs that are produced by different people at totally different qualities, mixing them all together with some other equipment, and then mastering that whole thing to sound consistent across the mix. It's an inevitable train-wreck. 

 

2. Trance enjoys a large sound stage and imaging. That's an IEMs most weak spot. It may sound great, but if the sound stage and imaging sucks, it's really gonna hammer on your experience. 

 

Basically, Trance and high-end audio don't mix for many people, like me. Mid-fi glosses over the flaws instead of revealing them. Many people went back to mid-fi after going hi-fi, as avid trance listeners. And then you've thrown an IEM into the equation, and a BA at that. 

 

I keep my trance to full-size, or the MG6Pro, which is a dynamic custom. Slams hard, sounds great. 

For IEMs, I feel like the imaging & soundstage is pretty great on the 16's.  I don't listen to many mixes, just single tracks, and yeah, trance is just horribly produced most of the time.  But then you listen to a track like Tiesto- Elements of Life, and you realize that trance can sound phenomenal, if only it is made well, and mastered well.   What is BA?

post #6 of 16

For an IEM the JH16 is pretty good. But it's no full-size. 

 

BA = "Balanced Armature." That's the driver type in your monitors. They have a different sound than the most common (for full-size) "dynamic" driver. There's also electrostatic, and planar magnetic... 

 

Lots of people don't like trance on BA's since it "lacks punch."

 

And yes, when you get well-produced Trance, it's magic. It's just most of it is not. 

post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundFreaq View Post

For an IEM the JH16 is pretty good. But it's no full-size. 

 

BA = "Balanced Armature." That's the driver type in your monitors. They have a different sound than the most common (for full-size) "dynamic" driver. There's also electrostatic, and planar magnetic... 

 

Lots of people don't like trance on BA's since it "lacks punch."

 

And yes, when you get well-produced Trance, it's magic. It's just most of it is not. 

It's a struggle.  A lot of trance nowadays is made & engineered to be played live, not at home, so you're really playing tracks that are meant for multimillion dollar mono speakers.  If anything it would be nice to get them to at least get the sibilance in check, and stop with the harsh highs.

post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlesnick View Post

It's a struggle.  A lot of trance nowadays is made & engineered to be played live, not at home, so you're really playing tracks that are meant for multimillion dollar mono speakers.  If anything it would be nice to get them to at least get the sibilance in check, and stop with the harsh highs.

 

Has the OP tried EQing? It sound like absolutely flattening everything over 16kHz would be a big help - and I start by shoving the EQ setting to absolute lowest level and see what the effect is. Then you might EQ the next band down, but much less drastically - and maybe even the next. Primitive, but it will not just sibilance but a lot of distortion products.

post #9 of 16

You output impedance of the D1 is 10 ohms and the macbook is even higher. It can cause various odd frequency deviations and general lack of bass control (damping factor). I don't agree about BA lacking anything if done right and there's little value in comparing it to a full size phone or speakers. Try finding an amp with a low output impedance that mates well and see if it helps. They will always have more bass than neutral but that's what you paid for.

post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibes View Post

You output impedance of the D1 is 10 ohms and the macbook is even higher. It can cause various odd frequency deviations and general lack of bass control (damping factor). I don't agree about BA lacking anything if done right and there's little value in comparing it to a full size phone or speakers. Try finding an amp with a low output impedance that mates well and see if it helps. They will always have more bass than neutral but that's what you paid for.

Yeah, but I did neutral with the se530/535s for years, and was ready to step it up a notch, bam.

 

What would you recommend to keep the sound in-check

post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by scuttle View Post

 

Has the OP tried EQing? It sound like absolutely flattening everything over 16kHz would be a big help - and I start by shoving the EQ setting to absolute lowest level and see what the effect is. Then you might EQ the next band down, but much less drastically - and maybe even the next. Primitive, but it will not just sibilance but a lot of distortion products.

OP does not like EQing.  Thank you though.  


Edited by jlesnick - 2/21/13 at 2:52pm
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlesnick View Post

 If anything it would be nice to get them to at least get the sibilance in check, and stop with the harsh highs.

 

Boy isn't that the truth. That's the worst part. 

 

And getting an amp with the impedance better matched will help a little bit. What's your budget? The RSA P-51 Mustang has glorious mids, robust bass, and smooth highs. If you can step that far, it's a great amp for IEMs. 

post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundFreaq View Post

 

Boy isn't that the truth. That's the worst part. 

 

And getting an amp with the impedance better matched will help a little bit. What's your budget? The RSA P-51 Mustang has glorious mids, robust bass, and smooth highs. If you can step that far, it's a great amp for IEMs. 

That doesn't seem to be too expensive, I'll have to def check it out, thank you!  When you say "getting an amp with the impedance better matched," what exactly do you mean?  Sorry for the n00b question, I'm still learning.  

post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundFreaq View Post

For an IEM the JH16 is pretty good. But it's no full-size. 

BA = "Balanced Armature." That's the driver type in your monitors. They have a different sound than the most common (for full-size) "dynamic" driver. There's also electrostatic, and planar magnetic... 

Lots of people don't like trance on BA's since it "lacks punch."

And yes, when you get well-produced Trance, it's magic. It's just most of it is not. 

I beg to differ

Trance souns fantastic and engaging through the following

Klipsch X10
UE700
TF10
W3
Heir 3.Ai
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by jlesnick View Post

That doesn't seem to be too expensive, I'll have to def check it out, thank you!  When you say "getting an amp with the impedance better matched," what exactly do you mean?  Sorry for the n00b question, I'm still learning.  

 

If an amp is not meant to drive low impedance stuff, like the D1, it won't do the bass any favors. It's best to have gain options like you do with the RSA stuff, so you can match the gain and impedance to the earphone. If the impedance is really off, the sound suffers somewhat. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by djvkool View Post


I beg to differ

Trance souns fantastic and engaging through the following

Klipsch X10
UE700
TF10
W3
Heir 3.Ai

 

Thus, this is why I qualified my statement with "lots of people." And I maintain it is still "lot of people." Not all, not you, not most. I've owned or heard Trance through the majority of those. Meh.

 

What's your experience with dynamic IEMs?

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