Of course it is! Or rather, it USUALLY is. Without the use of DSP (digital signal processing as used in products like the Smyth Realiser) and/or binaural recordings, headphone listening is an "unnatural" listening experience. Although it would not be accurate to say that loudspeakers do not also present an "compromised" listening experience in some ways as well. How do headphones win out over loudspeakers? Because you're not being forced to muck around with room acoustics problems, halfway decent headphones will transmit a level of detail retrieval that all but the best loudspeaker systems struggle to re-create. And while headphones do not always present things like "soundstage" in a completely realistic way, they provide avenues for PSYHCOLOGICAL realisms that adequately enable the all important "suspension of DISBELIEF" - just like loudspeakers can do when they are set up properly. Headphones can provide us with an artificially (but pleasantly!) enhanced sort of *insight* into recordings. It could almost be said that, because headphones present stereo recordings in such a pure manner, it's as if the headphone listener is endowed with the aural equivalent of supernatural, penetrating x-ray vision. Superman, eat your heart out! There are tradeoffs to made in all types of listening but the ultimate "natural" listening experience, given the level of technology available to most consumers today, should (in theory) come from the loudspeaker system. It's one reason why the costs of home loudspeaker systems sometimes run into the millions of dollars - you pay more, you get more.