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Difference between " upper bass", " mid bass" and " lower bass"

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by chetanappu007, Aug 5, 2012.
  1. chetanappu007
    Hi guys, can anyone explain the difference between " upper bass", " mid bass" and " lower bass". Please explain in simple terms as i am no good with the technical terms. Just curious about it as most of the headphones reviews talk about these things. Give examples if possible.
    Thanks in advance.
    I use Bayerdynamic dt770 pro 80ohm headphones with a Fiio E11 amp. I really enjoy listening to them at normal volume level but,when i increase the volume a bit high i feel that the sound coming from these headphones are somehow not very clear and the bass is not very accurate or tight( it feels like it is somewhat muddy). I am just trying to understand what this is all about. Also please do give me suggestions on how to improve the sound quality of the headphones. If i have posted this in the wrong section, forgive me.
  2. mikeaj
    Bass is the low frequencies.  Upper bass would be the kinda low frequencies, mid bass would be the pretty low frequencies (lower than upper bass), and lower bass would be the really low frequencies (lower than mid bass).  I don't think there's a standard for precise definitions for which frequencies, so there may be some disagreement and confusion with regards to the language used.  There are a couple issues with this, but this might help:
    They only divide bass into "Sub Bass" and "Bass" there, but it's the same idea.  Sub (lower) bass is lower.
    As for what's going on when you're listening...some people might blame the amp or headphones, but it could be a number of other things (personally I really doubt it's the amp at fault, unless you have a defective sample).  First of all, ears are weird, and we hear things differently at different volumes—not just how loud things are, but some aspects are masked and others brought forth more; the balance changes.  That's normal, and these kinds of effects exist no matter what setup you have.  Maybe increased volume is letting you hear details or problems with some part of your setup (possibly a cruddy music recording, a low bitrate file, maybe some really flaky audio source that's connected to the E11).  Or maybe the volume's just too high for your ears.  Maybe you accidentally also turned the bass boost on.
    Mkoll likes this.
  3. chetanappu007
    Thanks a lot for the link, it has helped me a lot in understanding the different sounds. 
    Coming to the issue with the headphones, i use lossless audio files(.flac) and play them in my laptop. I don't use the bass boost function on my amp as these hedphones are already bass heavy. As you have said it may be also because of the high volume levels because different people hear differently. But i definitely want to try everything i can do to resolve the issue before blaming my ears.
    Thanks for the reply, keep the suggestions coming in.
  4. RPGWiZaRD
    For me it goes:
        0 - 80Hz: Lower-bass / subbass range
     80 - 150Hz: Mid-bass
    150 - 250Hz Upper-bass
    You can download for example Audacity which is freeware program which can generate sinwave frequencies, where you could for example compare how 50Hz vs 100Hz vs 200Hz sounds like.
    If you want some examples for example the thumping here is what I'd concider midbass & upperbass which is often used in techno/trance:
    Some subbass (very low), the low-humming only:
    The DT770 Pro aren't known for having a tight bass, it's very subbass skewed, so it's rather slow. Subbass = slower decay (rumbles), midbass & upper-bass = faster decay / "punches". Both DT770 Pro and XB700 were too subbass skewed for my taste, I want equally strong mid & subbass personally so both the "rumble" and "punching" is balanced in volume. :p Particularly important for hardstyle which combines these different bass frequencies, there you talk about a punch & kick which refers to mid/upper bass & subbass.
    chetanappu007 and mib91 like this.
  5. chetanappu007
    RPGWiZaRD your answer is really awesome and simple. You explained it all with just 2 words " rumbles" and " punches". You are exactly right my headphones are good when it comes to these rumbles, but the punches are muddy at high volumes. According to you these headphones are made that way. Is there any way i can make the mid and upper bass more tight and controlled?
  6. RPGWiZaRD
    Well different amps bring different results but it may just be the wrong headphone for you which it was for me but for me it wasn't just the lacking midbass but also very recessed midrange versus a bit too pronounced highs for my liking.
  7. iim7V7IM7
    Here is another way to think about it....

    Low Bass 20 - 80 Hz

    Pipe Organ down to <20 Hz
    Piano down to 28 Hz
    5-string bass down to 30 Hz
    4-string bass down to 41 Hz
    Cello down to 63 Hz

    Mid Bass 80 - 320 Hz

    Guitar down to 80 Hz
    Timpani Drum down to 90 Hz
    Tenor Sax down to 110 Hz
    Trumpet down to 170 Hz
    Flute down to 250 Hz

    It's not about test signals, it's about music (at least to me).

    Yes, there is some cool stuff that goes on < 50 Hz and > 10 kHz, but 99% of what we listen to lies here. Hearing is generally considering to be between 20 hz to 20 kHz. My hearing now attenuates around 16 kHz (gettin old). Keep in mind that I cited low notes for these instruments. Most of there sounds goes into the midrange ( > 320 Hz, < 5,000 Hz). Many Headfi audiofiles focus on subsonic bass ( < 20 Hz) and very deep bass (20 - 40 Hz ) when discussing headphones. While it is cool, there just not that much music down there other than an occasional low note and resonances. Part of perceiving deep bass is physical and goes beyond one's ears which headphones are limited to.

    My $.02

  8. germanium
    To me low bass is below 40Hz, mid bass is from 40-80Hz, upper bass is from 80-160Hz, above this you are getting into the lower mids whic is 160-320Hz. the mid mids go from 320 to about 1KHz, from 1KHZ to 3KHzis upper mids to me, this is also the presense region & where human hearing is the sharpest. Lower treble goes from 3KHz to 6KHz, regular treble from 6KHz to 12KHz & high treble is anything above that.
    Note that I allocate more bandwidth to the midrange type frequencies, close to 6 octaves. These are the most musically interesting frequencies. You can do without the others without losing to much of the vibrance of the music with the exception of the lower treble which is important to the mids as that is where much of the mids overtones are. None of the other ranges of music are interesting at all by themselves. Bass has overtones the extend into the mids & even sometines into the treble. Without these overtones bass instuments are pretty dull to listen to.
    Most speakers can not really do low bass well & that includes many so called subwoofers, Mine didn't originally until I modified it.
  9. NimbleTurtle
    To add to these specific examples, a 110 hertz would be the very beginning note (G) of this famous cello suite prelude: 
    If you can't hear it well, listen to other recordings. The "G" note actually repeats over and over for the first few beginning part of the successive measures. As you can tell, the "G" string - 2nd string from the left -is about the same pitch as a low male voice. 
  10. NimbleTurtle
    Oh oops I was thinking of the wrong note. I was thinking of low A, which is 110 hertz. The G would be somewhere around 90-100 hertz. Sorry! 
  11. NimbleTurtle
    Argh wish I understood this better as well. I know exactly what the hertz ranges are for each type of bass. However, I have a hard time distinguishing the pitch of a note, especially with synthetic / drum sounds. If it was something that was like the sound of a cello, it would be much easier to distinguish. 
    Btw I'm pretty sure head-fi made a list of "vocabulary" for musical terms. In it, they describe the range of the bass, midrange, and treble. Too lazy to find it though. 
  12. bigshot
    You can google up a chart that assigns frequencies to notes. For instance A is 440hZ. Look up "A440 musical notes Hz". That should do it.
  13. NimbleTurtle
    Yeah. If TC has a piano, and knows where middle C is, he can easily find A = 400 hertz. Basically TC, an octave above doubles the hertz and an octave lower halves the hertz. 
    So if you go 8 notes below the A, the A = 220 hertz. 
  14. NimbleTurtle
    Ah shizz. I made another mistake *facepalm. The opening G is actually closer to around 220 hertz. I can't do simple math :frowning2:  

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