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Why do most headphones have recessed mid range?

post #1 of 59
Thread Starter 
I don't really listen to music, all I do is game and watch shows, which obviously both of those need quite a bit of a bass and mid range, I was just wondering why almost any headphones I have looked at have recessed mids?

Sorry for my ignorance, one other thing, whats treble used for?
post #2 of 59

What headphones have you looked at?

post #3 of 59
Thread Starter 
The DT line up caught my eye.

I've tried out the HD558s but I want something pretty much the completely opposite of those. Needs more bass and more mids.
post #4 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by hisagishi View Post

I don't really listen to music, all I do is game and watch shows, which obviously both of those need quite a bit of a bass and mid range, I was just wondering why almost any headphones I have looked at have recessed mids?

Sorry for my ignorance, one other thing, whats treble used for?

What do you mean what is treble used for?  Treble is the frequency of sounds from roughly 2,000hz to 12,000hz (or higher).

post #5 of 59

Grado headphones have a ton of mid range,perhaps too much upper mid range depending on who you talk to. The DT880 are pretty balanced,maybe a little too bright depending on your tastes. 

post #6 of 59

It's called the smiley curve and it's because that's how, in music, the majority of people tend to enjoy their sound. A boost in the lows to give the sound "meat", a boost in the highs to help keep things clear through the bass. It's not a coincidence that reviewers frequently refer to headphones as "fun" or "lively" when they display these qualities. 

post #7 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by hisagishi View Post

I don't really listen to music, all I do is game and watch shows, which obviously both of those need quite a bit of a bass and mid range, I was just wondering why almost any headphones I have looked at have recessed mids?

 

What headphones are those exactly? Since you're into games and shows/movies I'd guess those are gaming headphones. They generally have a clear enough midrange if all you're doing is talk, like Skype, but since bass brings up such a wow factor for SFX, manufacturers tip up the bass response much like how some people would set up their HT subwoofers to shake the room - which in most cases means the bombardment of Minas Tirith and the charge of the Rohirrim will sound fantastic, but they might not be able to hear Theoden barking orders to the cavalry. In a similar sense, my brother and I use Skype with my tablet hooked up to cheap Creative speakers while my computer's on-board sound outputs to a 5.1 system when playing Total War, that way (even with the mic picking up sound from the speakers) I can hear noise around me as my infantry clashes with the enemy battle line (I play zoomed in to enjoy the graphics) but we can hear each others voice clearly enough to coordinate what his cavalry will do. Still beats shouting those orders to a guy on the horse next to me who will then shout that to the guy leading the drummers and flag-wavers.

 

If your soundcard has an EQ software or you can install a plug in that will work on all programs producing sound you might want to trim everything below 250hz a little bit.

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by hisagishi View Post

Sorry for my ignorance, one other thing, whats treble used for?

 

High frequencies. Cymbals, violins, sopranos and altos, everything on the right side of a piano, etc, in music; in SFX that will be breaking windows, Black Canary (DC) or Banshee (Marvel), ancient lizard screech like on pterodactyls or Nazgul wyverns, etc.

post #8 of 59
Thread Starter 
My current headset is a pair of vengeance 1500s. They have absolutely no bass at all. One of the reasons I want to upgrade.

I've tried out the HD558s and the voices were very much deeper, unrealistically sounding to every other audio device I have in my home. (4 sets of cheap speakers, some phones, and a pair of just alright bose speakers)

The bass on the 558s was alright, though a bit lacking in the lower bass department (as expected when I purchased them) Voices also sounded muddy and merged with background music during shows and in games, even sometimes being overpowered by the background music so it was hard to determine what the characters where saying.

Didn't like them very much so I sent them back the next day.

Also another reason I am upgrading is because my nephews headphones broke so I want to pass on these to him.
post #9 of 59

The 558s aren't exactly known for being the most balanced headphones; and along with your Vengeance 1500s, two headphones hardly make for "most headphones." Try something like a Grado. If the midrange on that still isn't clear I'd have an ENT check-up - best case scenario there could be some earwax build-up, so my ENT cleans out my ear every year while banning me from using Q-tips inside the canals as I just end up pushing it all in.* If your hearing is otherwise normal that should be all there is, but I just met a guy last weekend whose off-axis midrange hearing is shot. Meaning he has to be looking at you or your mouth is aimed into his ear canal for him to understand what you're saying, so if he lived a few hundred years ago, he wouldn't live to age 32 because he wouldn't hear the officers warning them of an incoming cavalry charge from the rear.



*He doesn't charge me a cent, he and his wife are like that with long-time patients (his wife was my pediatrician since birth), so I can confidently state that this isn't some scheme to make more money out of me

post #10 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by hisagishi View Post
Also another reason I am upgrading is because my nephews headphones broke so I want to pass on these to him.

^Professional re-gifter, I love it!

post #11 of 59

I don't think of Grados as being mid-centric: I think of them as bright because although they have an accentuated midrange, they have an even more accentuated treble.

 

When I think of mid-centric, I think of Fostex (or vintage AKGs). As I am loathe to recommend stock Fostex--regardless of my liking for it--you should look into a couple of Fostex mods. ZMF v1 has the best mids among the mods; it far surpasses MrSpeakers in the quality of its mids and treble.

 

Link: http://www.zmfheadphones.com/ 

post #12 of 59
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProtegeManiac View Post

The 558s aren't exactly known for being the most balanced headphones; and along with your Vengeance 1500s, two headphones hardly make for "most headphones." Try something like a Grado. If the midrange on that still isn't clear I'd have an ENT check-up - best case scenario there could be some earwax build-up, so my ENT cleans out my ear every year while banning me from using Q-tips inside the canals as I just end up pushing it all in.* If your hearing is otherwise normal that should be all there is, but I just met a guy last weekend whose off-axis midrange hearing is shot. Meaning he has to be looking at you or your mouth is aimed into his ear canal for him to understand what you're saying, so if he lived a few hundred years ago, he wouldn't live to age 32 because he wouldn't hear the officers warning them of an incoming cavalry charge from the rear.







*He doesn't charge me a cent, he and his wife are like that with long-time patients (his wife was my pediatrician since birth), so I can confidently state that this isn't some scheme to make more money out of me


 



Well when I said "most headphones" I was referring to the FR charts on headroom. I know this isn't the best way to tell, but I figured for certain frequencies being recessed it would be a good indicator.

Based on yours and claritas feedback I'd say the grados is a pretty good bet. Hows the bass?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Byrnie View Post

^Professional re-gifter, I love it!

 



Haha, well, kinda. Its not his birthday or anything though.
post #13 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by hisagishi View Post
 
Based on yours and claritas feedback I'd say the grados is a pretty good bet. Hows the bass?

 

The bass is steeply rolled off in the SR series. It can be brought up considerably using tape-modded L-cushions.

post #14 of 59
Thread Starter 
Hm, would it be easier to EQ in mids rather than EQ in bass? Is EQing advisable? Any drawbacks?
post #15 of 59
Quote:
Originally Posted by hisagishi View Post

The DT line up caught my eye.

I've tried out the HD558s but I want something pretty much the completely opposite of those. Needs more bass and more mids.

I'm really confused with your statement. The Hd558 Is all what you want but not V Shaped. For my ears and the ears of the vast majority of people this headphone is a Mid-Centric Headphone. However if you feel the headphones that way, I understand, one person have differente hearing than other. Look at the Vmoda M80 (is the most mid-centric headphone that i listened, and have good bass)

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