Listening to music with a deaf left ear...
Dec 9, 2003 at 11:34 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 8

dohcmark8

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My left ear is deaf, so therefore when I am wearing headphones, I cannot hear anything in the left stereo channel, I have devised several methods to allow me to hear everything, read: something that will mix the right and left channels together and output the same mix to the left and right channels. Noting that my right ear has extremely good hearing.

I have 2 ideas so far:

1. Encode all my mp3's into mono (currently using this method, working great with my sony mp3/cd player)
2. Buy a stereo-mono adapter at Radioshack (This will alow me to listen to retail cds in mono also)

Does anyone have any other ideas?

Also, having one deaf ear is not as bad as it seems. Im in highschool right now, and I can hear everything fine, except for sometimes I have to walk with my friends on the left side so I can hear them better, other than that, normal conversation, teachers, everything can be heard perfectly well. And I do NOT wear a hearing aid.
 
Dec 9, 2003 at 11:52 PM Post #2 of 8

cadobhuk

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When listening to music on your computer,use foobar2000,it has "downmix channels to mono" plug-in in the dsp manager
 
Dec 9, 2003 at 11:57 PM Post #3 of 8

dohcmark8

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Thanks. I use winmap 2.91, so I just set the mpeg plugin to output to mono.
 
Dec 10, 2003 at 12:02 AM Post #4 of 8

fewtch

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If you like older music (particularly jazz and classical), check out some of the great mono stuff recorded in the 1940's and 1950's. Music originally mic'ed and intended for mono will probably sound better to you than downmixed stereo. Some people (with 'normal' hearing) believe that those classic mono releases are better than later stereo recordings, and manage to convey a true soundstage without the help of two channels.

A turntable would help there of course, but there are some "stereo" CD re-releases that just have the same information on both channels.
 
Dec 10, 2003 at 12:12 AM Post #5 of 8

dohcmark8

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Thanks. I just prerfer to mix my current music into mono. If anyone doesnt have any more ideas, than I think what I am doing is the only way to go. Unless there is a way to give the mono a more natural stereo-like sound.

The kind of music I listen to now: Train (fav band), Maroon5, Jason Mraz, Coldplay. Mostly soft rock.
 
Dec 10, 2003 at 1:20 AM Post #6 of 8

mkmelt

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For home use, consider one of the older integrated amplifiers or receivers. These almost always have a stereo/mono switch. Some, such as the Marantz model 1070 can be switched to provide:

Left Only (output to both channels)
Right Only (output to both channels)
Left + Right (Mono)
Stereo
Reverse Stereo (Left and Right channel outputs swapped).

The model 1060 amplifier performs the same switching, except for the reverse option.

Also, although not a headphone option, the model 1070 provides for two sets of stereo speakers, and can be switched to provide ambient surround mode from one of the sets of speakers. This mode provides an early form of surround sound and is based on a circuit developed by pioneering amplifier designer David Hafler. The Hafler circuit extracts the ambient information present in many recordsing by extracting just the difference component of the normal stereo signal (Left - Right, and Right-Left). Properly set up, the addition of the two extra speakers to provide the surround channels can add to the listening experience.
 
Dec 10, 2003 at 2:50 AM Post #7 of 8

dohcmark8

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Thanks, but I was looking for a way to give the mono headphone experience a more natural sound.
 
Dec 10, 2003 at 5:32 AM Post #8 of 8

Quincy

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Hi dohcmark8


My right ear is deaf.

I think you got the big problem fixed - how to get everything to mono.

Most everything else costs money.

I use a headphone amp, and between the source and the headphone amp, I short the left and right channels together to get mono.
I always use the crossfeed processor (my amp and crossfeed is Headroom's), seems kind of silly to have crossfeed with one ear, but it seems to me that when I use it, I have an easier time following multiple sources, like hearing the guitar over the bass and drums, and then hearing the drums over the guitar and bass, and so on. There is no sense of left and right, just more abstract layering. Otherwise things tend to mush together and it's harder to hear the details. I'll admit it might be a placebo effect.
The main thing with amps is that it sounds much better, not louder; better with percussion, bass, the power hungry stuff, and the detail....so you may benefit with an amp.

Also, be aware the all headphones are not equal. Some will render detail better than others, and some will render bass better than others. Koss makes the best cheap headphones, can't remember what their best cheap model is. Do a search on Koss on this website. Etymonic makes headphones that cost from $100 to $350, that insert into your ear like an earplug. They are generally considered the most detailed headphone out there. I own the er-6 and am very happy with them (it). A few companies now make Etymonic knock-offs that are a bit cheaper, and maybe nearly as good. (like Shure, and ? can't remember who else).

If there is a way to mix the MP3 with some basic surround sound effects you might want to try that, but it will likely degrade the sound. You can still differentiate sound from front and back, and up and down. Maybe there is a way to take advantage of that. I'm not proficeint with MP3 software, but I know that surround sound options are out there.


Anyway, experiment. When I first lost my right ear, I was bummed, but then I got into headphone amps, and headphones, and it's been a fun, although expensive, hobby.



quincy
 

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