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Soundstage does it exist with headphones ? - Page 6

post #76 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by extrabigmehdi View Post

 

So can it  (i.e Izotope Ozone or Noozxoide)  compete with the effects from iCan, or does the iCan bring something unprecedented.


I do not have either setup with the software approaches as I have drastically simplified to using the Altmann Tera Player. So going just from memory, I would say the Noozxoide had the most realistic effects for creating a wide soundstage, with the iCAN a close 2nd. The iCAN to me has a great advantage since it is so simple to use and there are only three choices or settings. I find with the more complex software with lots of adjustments, I can spend more time tweaking my sound than listening to music. And yet it is nice to be able to vary the sound a bit when I get restless or the sound of a particular piece of music is too bright or too lively. With the iCAN, this just means reaching over and flicking a switch. I wrote this about it in a follow up post on my review thread:

 

I have had some more time with the Beyer T1s and the iCAN, and it is making me appreciate the lower ("one dot") setting on the 3D effects switch. I was intrigued that Vincent from iFi said he mostly listened to this setting, as on the HD650s it is kind of soft and muted although the music is nicely focused and unified. But the T1s tend to be very bright to my ears with already pretty good soundstage so the high end boost and space infusion of the "three dot" upper setting is simply too much on a lot of music. So I spent some time with the switch down on the one dot setting and found that with this very different effect, the T1s became very easy to listen to. The upper setting is a bit like the Ferrari in my car metaphor: tremendous potential but a bit finicky and difficult to get the most out of it. The lower setting is more like a big luxury sedan that you can just relax and enjoy. Still a nice taut and powerful ride, but a lot of comfort and ease also. The Ferrari can be incredibly stimulating and fun, but not necessarily something you want to spend days and days of driving with.

 

So the T1s with the full on 3D effect work best with simple ensemble music (say 1-5 musicians) where the added space and detail creates that spooky real sense of the sound being in the room. With more complicated music or with music that already has a lot of room ambience in the original recording, the sound gets a little scattered. And with overly bright recordings the sound gets a little too edgy. But then I just reach over and switch to the one dot setting and everything calms down and is much more forgiving. Again it is a sound you could listen to for hours. The little bit of crossfeed makes it much easier on your brain to just take in the flow of the music and not have to work so hard at keeping everything sorted.

 

In contrast the HD650s seem to need that injection of adrenaline and space that the three dot setting provides. Otherwise they can seem kind of thick and heavy. So with these phones, it is much more of a set it and forget it proposition. Mostly I just leave the switch up in the three dot position and listen from there. Only very occasionally does a song come on that has me wanting to tone things down a bit and now I go to the one dot setting for my dose of relaxation.

 

Instead of just one sound signature, I seem to like a lot of variety of sounds, which typically means reaching for a different set of headphones. But with this amp, I can just flick a switch when I get restless and experience a new gestalt to the music instantly.

post #77 of 88

This is a silly discussion. 

 

Of course it exists in headphones, but it's never going to sound the same as a properly setup 2 channel or 2.1 channel home stereo. 

 

Now whether you prefer headphones or speakers, that is up to you. For a lot of people a nice speaker setup isn't an option, so that is where headphones can come in. For me I'm kind of torn between the two. I do have a nice 2.1 speaker setup that is properly setup, and I'm still sitting here as we speak with headphones on my head. I like my stereo, but for some reason I just get more into the music with headphones. 

post #78 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonb View Post

 

Of course it exists in headphones, but it's never going to sound the same as a properly setup 2 channel or 2.1 channel home stereo. 

Well I remind making a confusion between the sound coming from my pc speakers , and my hd595 so it's not that obvious. Or believing there's a dog coming from outside, or an helicopter above my head, while listening music with portable headphone, and then realizing it's in the recording.

 

I was scared as hell while doing my jogging with my ksc75, and listening for the first time this

(Melt banana - blank page of the blind  : At begin there are dogs barking).

 

 

Also I've read once an article that drivers can be disturbed if there's a siren in a  song ,

at the radio (maybe something like Beyoncé - Ring The Alarm). I imagine this could lead to accidents.

 

My point  is that regarding "sound localisation", we can be easily fooled,

and yep it can sounds  on headphone similarly to speakers, at least regarding soundstage.

That was the reaction of my dad when I've let him try my hd800 : "it sounds as if it comes from speakers."

post #79 of 88

I think its difficult to achieve soundstage in any case. If your looking for realistic soundstage from speakers acoustic room treatment becomes very important.

post #80 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonb View Post
 

This is a silly discussion. 

 

Of course it exists in headphones, but it's never going to sound the same as a properly setup 2 channel or 2.1 channel home stereo. 

 

Now whether you prefer headphones or speakers, that is up to you. For a lot of people a nice speaker setup isn't an option, so that is where headphones can come in. For me I'm kind of torn between the two. I do have a nice 2.1 speaker setup that is properly setup, and I'm still sitting here as we speak with headphones on my head. I like my stereo, but for some reason I just get more into the music with headphones. 

 

Yes, it's never going to sound the same - but is one better than the other?  I personally don't think so.

My (2 channel stereo) speaker setup is never going to put the sound of a xylophone inside my head -

psychoacoustic trickery borne of the studio.

 

And of course while it doesn't "belong" there, the effect is nonetheless marvelous and delightful.


Edited by zazex - 6/23/14 at 5:49am
post #81 of 88

It's impossible to have a believable sound stage when using headphones. That doesn't stop people talking about it's existence however.

If you want the intended sound stage that stereo reproduction was intended to more accurately portray, you have to use loudspeakers in front of you positioned a distance apart and sit a specific distance from them in order to perceive the image of a sound stage that possesses width and depth, the idea being to convey a live performance.

If you really feel it necessary to hear the difference, just face the loudspeakers towards each other and sit between them, I promise you the sound stage will have no depth ;-)

Try it and you'll see what I mean and let's cut out all this nonsense about headphones and sound stage ;-)

You will never hear a opera or orchestra with the intended sound stage with headphones.

For a sound stage both ears have to hear the combination of left and right channel combined, the differing recording levels of right and left channel will determine the position of the source.

If you want to hear a voice at centre stage, the signal is recorded equally in left and right channels. It will appear to come from the centre in front of you using loudspeakers. That's because the ears can detect direction.

With headphones, you would be hearing the voice as 2 equal signals from the left and right direction, so the ears will hear sound from the left and right direction and will not come from the intended centre of the sound stage. You can use your imagination as much you want but it will only exist in your imagination. I don't need any imagination to hear the various position of instruments when using loudspeakers.


Edited by wilderturkey - 2/7/14 at 2:09pm
post #82 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by wilderturkey View Post
 

It's impossible to have a believable sound stage when using headphones. That doesn't stop people talking about it's existence however.

If you want the intended sound stage that stereo reproduction was intended to more accurately portray, you have to use loudspeakers in front of you positioned a distance apart and sit a specific distance from them in order to perceive the image of a sound stage that possesses width and depth, the idea being to convey a live performance.

If you really feel it necessary to hear the difference, just face the loudspeakers towards each other and sit between them, I promise you the sound stage will have no depth ;-)

Try it and you'll see what I mean and let's cut out all this nonsense about headphones and sound stage ;-)

You will never hear a opera or orchestra with the intended sound stage with headphones.

For a sound stage both ears have to hear the combination of left and right channel combined, the differing recording levels of right and left channel will determine the position of the source.

If you want to hear a voice at centre stage, the signal is recorded equally in left and right channels. It will appear to come from the centre in front of you using loudspeakers. That's because the ears can detect direction.

With headphones, you would be hearing the voice as 2 equal signals from the left and right direction, so the ears will hear sound from the left and right direction and will not come from the intended centre of the sound stage. You can use your imagination as much you want but it will only exist in your imagination. I don't need any imagination to hear the various position of instruments when using loudspeakers.

 

Studio "effects", which have been with us for years and of which there are many,

play an important role in the perception of "depth", "soundstage", and related aspects of

any particular recording. 

 

They do apply far less to classical recordings than to pop/rock/jazz -

especially where electronic sounds are present.

 

Sitting between two stereo speakers facing each other, as you suggest,

does not accurately simulate the spatial effects of music from headphones

being worn as designed on your head.

 

With discussions such as these, I for one prefer to avoid such terms as

"impossible"...

post #83 of 88

headphones can accurately portray amazing sound stage. if you don't believe me just listen to biaural recordings to hear the effect. 

post #84 of 88

Without crossfeed headphone soundstage is indeed very limited. I have used dsp crossfeed with foobar for years and I've been quite happy with it. After I got spl phonitor I'm even more impressed by crossfeed. Of course it's not a soundstage of a good tower speakers listened to a proper distance but it is as good as two genelec 6010's listened from a close distance.

post #85 of 88

Of course, Soundstage is possible with headphones. Even if you don't use binaural recordings.

A good example is the Sennheiser HD558. I don't know how they did it, but this headphone is able

to produce a nice soundstage.

 

And you don't need SACD or FLAC quality. Spotify or Google Play Music's quality (MP3, 320kbps) is

enough to hear the soundstage.

 

There is no need to argue about that. Just open your ears and listen.

 

Most important is the original recording. Many Pop/Rock recordings have no or very few

soundstage. If you want to hear Soundstage, try Doug MacLeod's "Come To Find" or "You can't take

my blues" albums. Also Classical Music often is a good choice to test the soundstage.

 

You should keep your head in a fixed position. Do not shake your head around because that

confuses your brain (the whole virtual room moves around). It may take a bit until you can

clearly "see" the perfect position of the instruments. In good classical recordings, the

instruments are several meters in front of you. Doug MacLeod and his guitar is a bit more close,

like 1 Meter in front of you with the drums clearly placed behind him, maybe 2-3 meters away.

 

You can enhance this effect if you use a sound processor. There are apps available for iOS

(search for "Rondo" or "Audio3d". Android even has a built-in function since version 4.3. (They

licensed Fraunhofer's Cingo sound system).

 

Also a very nice headphone is Parrot's "Zik" headphone, which has a built in sound processor for

this effect.

 

With these electronic "helpers" you can even get a good soundstage for music that has very few

soundstage in the original recording.
Depending on the original recording you have to chosoe different settings to get a realistic

soundstage. With Parrot's Zik you can even move the virtual speakers in the room to another

position.

 

A perfect situation is when you sit in front of your speakers but using your headphone. Listen to

your headphone and if you have the imagination that the sound comes out of your speaker, then you

got it right.

 

It is much more expensive to get a speaker system that is able to reproduce the soundstage and

definition as accurate as a good headphone can do. And you also have to carefully choose the

location of the speakers and the listening position. But remember: Either the headphone must be

designed to produce a soundstage or you have to use a sound processor.

post #86 of 88

Little diversion, love me some Melt Banana and I am 55 :o

post #87 of 88

The perception of sound stage requires the mind to subconsciously process spatiality cues. A recording of a drum played in a anechoic chamber will sound different than a recording of the same drum played in a cardboard box or in a metal box. Additionally, different audio reproduction devices will produce different reflections, and different listening environments or users' HRTF's will also produce different reflections, and so these three different things will contribute to the perception of soundstage differently.

 

Human perception is highly variable, but generally speaking, from the sound reflections, the human mind is able to identify to some degree the dimensioning and spatial positioning of objects. These spatiality cues can exist within recording information, or they may be created by audio reproduction devices, or they may be created by the environment of audio reproduction, which in the case of speakers would be the listening room, and in the case of headphones the user's HRTF.

 

The question of whether soundstage is possible with headphones I think is pretty silly, because there's always soundstage in recordings. If the microphone is capable of receiving the sound reflections off walls when a note is played by a musician, that is soundstage information, which would be the altered sound waves after bouncing off the walls, having its sound pressure level reduced and its frequencies changed due to the distance traveled and the acoustic absorption characteristics of the wall and other objects in the environment, received by the microphone, and played back by an audio reproduction device, and heard as a time-delayed altered sound wave by the human ear, and processed by the subconscious mind as sound stage information.

post #88 of 88
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nirmalanow View Post
 

There are ways to create a more realistic soundstage ranging from software to hardware:

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/642013/noozxoide-for-android#

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/361251/the-holy-grail-of-true-sound-stage-cross-feed-the-next-generation

 

http://www.head-fi.org/t/648968/a-headphone-shootout-from-a-speaker-listener-testing-eight-headphones-from-80-to-1-200/75#post_9210326 (This headphone review features a new amp called the iCAN that has a 3D feature built in. I just got a loaner of this amp that I am going to review)


To this I would add http://www.head-fi.org/t/418401/long-awaited-smyth-svs-realiser-now-available-for-purchase. If you want true stereo imaging from headphones, get (and properly calibrate) a Smyth Realiser. It's expensive, but it works.


Edited by jk6661 - 6/23/14 at 11:57am
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