Mad Lust Envy's Headphone Gaming Guide: (8/7/2020: Sennheiser HD6XX Review added)
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debugman

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People who say VSS is a gimmick are people who listen to it for two seconds and hear how utterly different it is to what their ears are accustomed to. It's the same reason I will never believe in short demos of headphone impressions. Ears are like our eyes. They take time to adjust to your surroundings. You can't see in the dark when you first walk into a dark room, right? Then wait a bit and you can see a bit better. Same with ears. You wake up, and your hearing is super sensitive where you can hear a pindrop from a hundred feet away, but then later on, you'd have to be in the same room. Your ears have compensated.

People wonder why I'm positive on all types of headphone sounds. That's because I spend time with them and let my ears adapt to their specific sound. If I went from listening to the Ananda for days then go to the LCD-GX. I would not like the sound of the GX. And vice versa. You have to spend DAYS to saturate your ears with that kind of presentation that is a heavy contrast from the other.
I can't talk about all VSS as I only have experience with one: Turtle Beach DSS and I use the Philips SHP9500. I believe that in some games it sounds better than others, but in all games the stereo sounds better and more clear.

How can something that only gives you left and right audio cues and merges between the two be better than something that gives you a 360 degree amount of audio information? With stereo there is some guesswork on where sounds are coming from. With VSS, you can literally close your eyes and know that something is behind you at 5 o' clock for example. Stereo doesn't have that,. It can't for example, differentiate something that is at 2 o' clock from something that is at 5 o' clock. So then you have to rely on visual cue to know. So no, I will never ever accept that stereo is better than VSS. AT raw audio fidelity, yes. But I'll take a hit to sound quality if it lets me know exactly which directions sounds are coming from as opposed to guesswork.

I guarantee if someone were to set up a test between myself listening to VSS and someone listening to plainb stereo with both having blindfold on, and being asked which direction sounds are coming from, I would be the first to point the direction everytime.
But there are two speakers on a headphone in either ways, stereo or VSS, so I can't agree with you on this argument. I can clearly hear directional sounds in stereo because there are more ways to make you hear surround sounds other than what is called VSS.

I think the guy in this video explain it quite well:
 
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mindbomb

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I think a lot of the criticism stems from those who don’t realise that they are often already listening to / using in-built VSS mixes (as many games these days offer but don’t specify) and mistake it for being “normal” stereo, therefore erroneously concluding that normal stereo must always be better than multichannel VSS.
Well, that reminds me of a big pet peeve of mine, when people cite the virtual barbershop video as evidence that they don't need virtual surround sound, with no understanding that a binaural recording only has good positional audio because it naturally has hrtf, and that the only way to get hrtf in games may be to use the combo of surround sound output + virtual surround sound dsp.

But I find the biggest problem is actually the opposite - people assuming the default game mix is ideal for headphone users. When I tell people that adding processing can add directional information, either through an in game hrtf option or through virtual surround sound, people can't understand how that is possible, and start acting like I had told them they could download more ram. Of course, the reason why it works is that when you convert to plain stereo audio without hrtf, much spatial information is lost, and when you use vss or in game hrtf, you can replace that conversion with something that uses hrtf to stuff more information into the audio for headphone users.
 
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But there are two speakers on a headphone in either ways, stereo or VSS, so I can't agree with you on this argument. I can clearly hear directional sounds in stereo because there are more ways to make you hear surround sounds other than what is called VSS.
This is a little like saying "well, you only have two eyes, so a 2d movie and a 3d movie must both have great depth". When one medium is exploiting giving differential information to the two sensory organs, and the other isn't, there will be consequences.
 
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I can't talk about all VSS as I only have experience with one: Turtle Beach DSS and I use the Philips SHP9500. I believe that in some games it sounds better than others, but in all games the stereo sounds better and more clear.



But there are two speakers on a headphone in either ways, stereo or VSS, so I can't agree with you on this argument. I can clearly hear directional sounds in stereo because there are more ways to make you hear surround sounds other than what is called VSS.

I think the guy in this video explain it quite well:
Have you ever heard VSS versus stereo? Yes we only have two ears, but does everything in the world sound like stereo to you? NO.

VSS is attempting to relay audio information the way our ears naturally pick up sounds. Stereo does not do that. It simply blasts audio from one side to the other. It does not take in spatial information, like distance, room reflections, etc.

You only have two ears, and yet you KNOW when someone is behind you because of how the sound they make reaches your ears.

I can't believe I even have to argue about this.

Virtual surround might be VIRTUAL, but it is mimicking the way a dummy head picks up audio from a room with speakers. There is information there that stereo will never, EVER pick up or relay to you.
 
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This is a little like saying "well, you only have two eyes, so a 2d movie and a 3d movie must both have great depth". When one medium is exploiting giving differential information to the two sensory organs, and the other isn't, there will be consequences.
No, what I meant is more like saying there are more than one way of showing you a 3d movie.

"PAINFULLY HONEST TECH"

More like painfully uninformed.
What did he say that was uninformed?

Maybe it depends on a combo of things, like the game itself, and it sounds options, obviously the VSS implementation and maybe its just individual preference. I don't know for sure until I will experience more.
 
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debugman

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Have you ever heard VSS versus stereo? Yes we only have two ears, but does everything in the world sound like stereo to you? NO.

VSS is attempting to relay audio information the way our ears naturally pick up sounds. Stereo does not do that. It simply blasts audio from one side to the other. It does not take in spatial information, like distance, room reflections, etc.

You only have two ears, and yet you KNOW when someone is behind you because of how the sound they make reaches your ears.

I can't believe I even have to argue about this.

Virtual surround might be VIRTUAL, but it is mimicking the way a dummy head picks up audio from a room with speakers. There is information there that stereo will never, EVER pick up or relay to you.
In the end of the day, I hear exactly where a sound is coming from in my DSS in both modes, but with bypass it sounds better in PUBG and in Apex Legends.
 
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Anyways, I don't have time to go through this old argument that comes up on a regular basis. Some people just can't grasp how it is actually STEREO on a headphone that is much more fake than virtual surround. Our ears don't pick up sounds from just one ear or the other. It is UNNATURAL to hear sounds the way stereo headphones provide them to you. So in reality, virtual surround is more natural than stereo will ever be. The only problem is that VSS adds extra layers of processing which makes it less ideal than stereo in terms of pure audio fidelity. So you sacrifice pristine audio for a more realistic sense of spacce the way our ears tend to hear our surroundings.

I'm in the process of converting all my old images on the first page to google photo links so as not to lose them, as I know google ain't gonna go under any time soon and cause broken links. So stop distracting me, guys. :p
 
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I'm gonna have to make some hard choices, and start removing some things that no longer exist like the Victor SU-DH1 from the guide. I'm running to some image limits in both hosting and as attachments. Sacrifices must be made.
 
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If it's possible for the Admins to put a new post below the OP you could split the content in two posts. Does the forum software allow this?
 
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It does not.
 
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I could put the old stuff in my second post. Is there anyway, you can remove the post above my second post? I mean it's kinda old, and inconsequential, and canoners hasn't posted in 7 years. I'll edit my second post with the non-headphone gear...
 
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AxelCloris

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We've done something similar in the past, but it will require the permission of the person who made the post. I'll reach out to them in PM.
 
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Could remove 2 and 4. It's from the same guy. Then you have good headroom for the future.
 
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I can't talk about all VSS as I only have experience with one: Turtle Beach DSS and I use the Philips SHP9500. I believe that in some games it sounds better than others, but in all games the stereo sounds better and more clear.



But there are two speakers on a headphone in either ways, stereo or VSS, so I can't agree with you on this argument. I can clearly hear directional sounds in stereo because there are more ways to make you hear surround sounds other than what is called VSS.

I think the guy in this video explain it quite well:
Did you watch the video? He doesn't say that VSS does not work. (And his title is click baity silliness.) The fact of the matter is if a game offers no VSS or HRTF-simulating audio option, and you are stuck with its straight left/right stereo audio, you are beholden to that game's audio engineers as to how well you are going to be able to discern surround cues. That's all this guy is saying. So what you are saying is if all stereo sounds better to you even for directionality, you are basically claiming that all stereo implementations in all the games you have ever played are better than the 5.1/7.1 surround mixes and all of the different virtual surround implementations you can use to try and get that surround sound awesomeness in your headphones. Which most people are going to be dubious of since usually, based on experience straight stereo isn't going to be very good versus a well implemented virtual surround solution. I don't know, maybe you only play a handful of games which for some reason have terrible surround implementations? Or maybe your current VSS solution is junk and you don't have an adequate comparison? I am not familiar with the Turtle Beach (and am too lazy to see for the purposes of this post if MLE reviewed it.)

But nothing in that video says VSS does not work, or is fake, its click bait title aside. My guess is you have for whatever reason succumbed to the echo chamber of misinformed online comments on this topic. "bUT yOu onLY hAVE tWO eARs!!!11" etc.
 
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