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Would this rackmount parametric equalizer work for removing HRTF from headphones?

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by kodhifi, Jan 6, 2013.
  1. Kodhifi
    I'm trying to eliminate HRTF resonances in my listening setup. Right now I'm using a software parametric EQ but that only works in winamp and I want to do my entire signal path so that it works in games, in fruityloops, Itunes, etc so I can game, listen, and master, without those annoying 5k, 7k, and 10k HRTF resonances.
    The EQ I have my eyes on is a rackmount Behringer which is primarily designed for feedback elimination in live sound, but it includes a fully programable parametric eq and it supports 2 channels so I think it might do the job, and it's only $150.
    What do you guys think?
    For an idea of my setup:
    Q701, DT880, V6, on an E9 with an X-fi signal source/DAC. I have an E7 on the way to act as my DAC.
    This is the EQ http://www.musiciansfriend.com/pro-audio/behringer-feedback-destroyer-fbq1000-parametric-eq?src=3WWRWXGP
    I've used Behringers stuff for years in my studio as inexpensive mixers with low noise and a lot of headroom. Their new kit seems to be especially good as the new usbDAC mixer I just got has the lowest noise mic preamp in the world right now. IT makes my Rhode mic silky smooth.
  2. MalVeauX
    I think it may do what you want, but the new issue you're introducing is the quality of the line-output from that EQ. A lot of the entry level ones will be noisy with hiss/hum making a headphone setup not really ideal, as it's more for speakers and outside/live event, so they tend to be noisy signals. Might wanna make sure you can return it without question just in case.
    Very best,
  3. Kodhifi

    I couldn't really find something made for our purposes with a google shopping search. What might you suggest for a hardware paraEQ under $200?
    I just bought 2 new sets of cans this week and I don't think the wife will be as understanding if the spending spree continues. :)
  4. obobskivich
    What exactly are you trying to do? HRTF is not a frequency related phenomena, it's a time related phenomena. And it isn't something headphones will come with - it's something your head has, and something that various software packages can approximate (using generalized parameters) - if you aren't using such a software package, there's nothing to "remove" (and if you are, just turn it off if you don't like it; it's not an EQ could remove though). So what do you mean by "HRTF resonances" then? If you mean you'd just like to EQ your headphones to change the sound, that's another story altogether - and there's a guide and thread for that (and generally you'll be referred to software parametric EQs because they're going to give you more flexibility and get around a lot of the problems Mal pointed out with cheap rack gear). If you're trying to create HRTF specific to your head, that requires some very expensive hardware - Smyth Research is an example (and your budget and their hardware are nowhere close).
  5. Kodhifi
    I'm trying to remove small resonance peaks that are introduced because of the shape of my ear canal, distance to the headphones, etc. I'm currently doing this with deep, but thin notches in a software parametric EQ. For instance, attenuating 7500-7800hz by 10db.
    It's easy enough to find graphic eq's but I need to be able to select a frequency, set an attenuation, and the Q of the band I'm adjusting.
  6. obobskivich
    Software DSP will be better than a rack-mount - have you looked at the MiniDSP device by chance?

    Also, what you're meaning to adjust isn't "HRTF" - I forget the acronym for what you're talking about though (it's something like HRPTTF or something like that). HRTF is what happens because we have stereo hearing.
  7. Kodhifi
    Is this the product you're talking about?
  8. obobskivich
    Yes. You could build whatever kind of filter you wanted, and it wouldn't require you to use your PC once it was set-up (afaik).
  9. drtturnip
    The Behringers stuff is a great value but they usually compromise the signal path at some point with lower quality dacs or op-amps. It is not audiophile equipment. You might want to consider one of the EMU products which incorporate high quality components and include dsp effects. You can stack parametric and shelf eq to your hearts content all done in the digital domain. I have found it very effective in dealing with the extreme peaks and valleys inherent in headphones. You would only need a good amplifier as the dacs are professional grade. I will warn you that the dsp software has a fairly steep learning curve unless you are familiar with studio gear.
  10. Hipper
    I have used a Behringer DEQ2496 for the last six years in my speaker system. I have a seperate CD Transport and DAC and the Behringer sits in between them working in digital mode only. My other gear is much more then the Behringer but I wouldn't be without it.
    My speaker maker, VMPS, used a Behringer DCX2496 in order to have active crossovers. Using the Behringers ADC and DAC and he found them neutral and very satisfactory.
    I would think the DEQ2496 is a bit over the top for headphone equalising. I should try it perhaps.
    For those not familar with Behringer Pro products they use XLR connections.
    I also agree that these sort of products do require a lot of time to properly understand and exploit.
  11. Kodhifi

    For the price you really can't beat that amount of control over your audio stream. They run around $300 which in the audiophile world is dirt cheap. Hell my DAC and amp cost more than that. I have headphones that cost more than that hehe. I'm just wondering how I would hook it up though. I suppose I could find a soundcard with fiber optic spdif, run that in to the EQ, then out from there into spdif in on my Audioengine DAC and juse use USB for power.
    Out of curiosity and since I'm really fond of my current sound cards, does the Behringer accept analog in and still provide spdif out? I'm pretty sure my Xfi doesn't do fiber optic out, and the spdif on my Line6 UX2 is coaxial.
  12. Kodhifi
    Oh my god, finally! I finally found something that does EXACTLY what I was wanting it to do. This has a hook into the windows audio subsystem that started with Vista and includes Windows 7 and Windows 8, to install a Parametric equalizer in-line with the sound driver. It doesn't use ASIO and doesn't require any tricks to get it to work. Any windows audio will be equalized including Itunes, Windows Media Player, computer games, anything so long as it doesn't bypass the windows driver. IE WASAPI or ASIO would bypass the equalizer as well.
    It's free and while it's a little funky actually setting up the EQ it works really well. It uses a series of .txt files that you modify to change the EQ curve. A line might look like this
    Filter Settings file

    Room EQ V5,01
    Dated: 29.02.2012 20:04:50

    Notes:Simple bass boost

    Equaliser: Generic
    No measurement
    Filter  1: ON  PK       Fc    20,0 Hz  Gain   5,0 dB  Q  1,00
    Filter  2: ON  PK       Fc    45,0 Hz  Gain   5,0 dB  Q  1,00
    Filter  3: ON  PK       Fc    60,0 Hz  Gain   4,0 dB  Q  1,00
    And you can add as many filters as you want, up to 100.
    When you hit save on the .txt file the change takes effect immediately. You can have several of these .txt files for different headphones and switch between them by making 1 small change in the .txt file.
    Best of all it's free and so far with critical listening on my Q701's it doesn't introduce any distortion or funny stuff.
    Here is the link.
    and documentation http://sourceforge.net/p/equalizerapo/wiki/Documentation/
    obobskivich likes this.
  13. Hipper
    I'm glad you've found what you want.
    The Behringer DEQ2496 can be used with the ADC in and digital out, or the other way round. I used it that way when I had a turntable and used another DAC. There is an In/Out page where these things can be controlled.
  14. Armaegis
    Have you seen this thread? http://www.head-fi.org/t/615417/how-to-equalize-your-headphones-advanced-tutorial-in-progress
    Lots of good information there, including software that will let you use your VST plugins across all programs. 
  15. ev13wt
    How are you measuring the sound in your ear canal?

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