Poll: What's your primary headphone "listening style"?
Mar 26, 2002 at 8:07 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 54

markl

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It occurs to me that one's listening style can have a large impact on how one appraises a given headphone. Because headphones are so mobile, there are far more ways to interract with them than, say, a set of speakers. I think this complicates our headphone reviews in a way we maybe haven't explored yet. Maybe "listening style" is something we should also ask of reviewers the same way we ask about sources, amps, music preferences, etc.

What do I mean, "listening style"? I'm referring to the way in which you primarily listen to your phones-- on the go and at the gym, at work while you're doing other things (working?), at home with a cat in the lap, a glass of wine and a fire in the fireplace, etc.

Yes, you may have a home and a mobile rig, but which one do you spend the most time with, and how are you listening to it?

I'd be willing to bet that "listening style" can be as influential on how we evaluate headphones as the style of music we prefer.

I'm especially interested in finding out who among us use headphones as background to other tasks, and who actually just sits and listens, focused only on the music.

I'm also keenly interested in who listens with their eyes open and their eyes closed. I have a hypothesis about how eyes opened/closed can affect the way we hear headphones and what we look for in a headphone, but I'll save it until we see how this poll goes.

markl
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 8:31 PM Post #2 of 54

redshifter

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i can't vote for some reason.

i listen on the go (commuting, walking around downtown seattle) and at work. in general i probably listen more at work. i listen with my eyes open so i don't get run over.
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at home i also listen with eyes open most of the time, unless i'm in bed. if i'm alone i will turn on the tv to a nature show, mute the tv and listen to music with my headphones.
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 8:35 PM Post #4 of 54

dhwilkin

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Usually at home while surfing the web or something that doesn't require too much attention, though sometimes I'll just lie down on the bed and listen when my eyes need a break.
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 8:51 PM Post #5 of 54

Milestones

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I listen to my headphones only at home and I almost always focus solely on the music. If I am doing something else (cleaning, cooking, paying bills, etc. ), I listen to music with speakers - not headphones.

When listening at home with headphones, I would say I listen about half the time with my eyes open and half the time with my eyes closed. If I'm listening in the morning or afternoon (weekends) or early evening, I will listen with my eyes closed. If I'm listening in the late evening (this is when I do most of my listening - after my son has gone to sleep), I find I have to keep my eyes open. If I don't, I fall asleep pretty quickly without a chance to really enjoy my music.
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 9:27 PM Post #6 of 54

dcg

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I picked option #2, but it was a difficult choice. I spend a significant amount of time listening in each of the scenarios.

One thing I would point out is that my choice of headphones changes depending on listening situation. On the go, it's almost always sportapros, sometimes sony v6. When I'm at home, it's usually Grados (out of my sony d-25s) or senn 580s (out of the ZOTL).

As for your hypothesis about the eyes being closed - I definitely keep them closed when I'm evaluating new phones or really focusing on the music, which unfortunately does not occur as often as I'd like.
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 9:41 PM Post #7 of 54

BDA_ABAT

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No choice... I listen while on the move and while sitting still and the time is fairly evenly split.

Your hypothesis about listening with eyes open vs closed is accurate in my case. Apparently, I'm mentally challenged... I do not have the ability to maintain critical focus while doing more than one thing at a time. I've found that I don't really hear the music as well when watching TV (even with no volume from the TV). In order to critically listen (e.g., doing A/B comparisons), I need to be in a low stimulous environment.

Bruce
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 10:00 PM Post #8 of 54

AdamP88

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Most often I listen focused solely on the music, lights out (usually), and about half of the time with eyes open, half closed. Sometimes I read with headphones on, and other times I'll move the OBH-11 next to the computer and listen while surfing or doing work.
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 10:03 PM Post #9 of 54

Braver

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while surfing, reading as background, but that usually ends up in listening to the music with eyes closed or open, staring at the air, enjoying the special moments in the music.

and ofcourse in bed (dark eyes closed too), but thats with speakers (cheap ones tho they are).

I rarely sit down and listen, more like I start with something and music in the background, which ends up in just listening
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Mar 26, 2002 at 10:14 PM Post #10 of 54

hinors14

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I do only listen to music while I'm in bed with my 'phones on. Every humming or noisy device is shut off and then I turn on the music. The only downside to this is that I tend to get sleepy when in bed
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Mar 26, 2002 at 10:22 PM Post #11 of 54

gaineso

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I would need to pick all but one so I didn't vote. I don't listen to speakers nearly as much as I'd like, so 'phones is it a lot..
 
Mar 26, 2002 at 10:39 PM Post #13 of 54

MooGoesTheCow

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I'm usually doing something else while listening to music. Homework, reading, surfing the net, instant messaging, etc. Gotta always keep the mind occupied.
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Although I do enjoy 15 or 20 minutes a day of just lying down and listening to music, followed by a short nap. Nappies rule. But not today.
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Mar 27, 2002 at 12:12 AM Post #14 of 54

slindeman

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It's a pretty even split for me. I listen 2-3 hours a day while at work, and I listen 1-2 hours at night, sitting in bed concentrating on just the music. I use similar headphones for both (HD580 at work, HD600 at home). Sometimes I listen with my eyes closed, sometimes not (at home, not at work). For equipment comparisons I usually have my eyes open. I used to listen to music while reading fiction, which has led to many musical pieces conjuring up images from books in my mind. I don't do that so much anymore.
 
Mar 27, 2002 at 12:48 AM Post #15 of 54

tanfenton

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Just me and my music. I can't listen, otherwise. If I had a portable system I'd never get anything done, so don't give me any ideas!
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When the music is playing—watch out—nothing else matters.

NGF
 

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