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Differences between loudspeaker listening & headphones listening

daftcombo

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#1
Ok, this might sound stupid, but I just noticed this: when you listen to loudspeakers and nod your head to the music (which I do most of the time, provided there's a beat going), the position of the head changes and might (?) create tone or phase very small changes, that could be good in a way.

With headphones, you can nod your head but the position of the ears to the sources of music won't change.

Do you think that observation can be of any interest? Psychoacoustic experts perhaps?
 

pozz

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#2
The head is actually moving constantly. You just don't notice. There's an averaging/filtering mechanism that helps you cue into what you're hearing spatially. You likely don't notice your friends' voices change between facing them or hearing them speak just from one side, though the measured changes in level and timing are completely different.

I think there's a difference between informational listening, when you are focused on obtaining certain cues, and the sort of critical listening where you're assessing the perception as is. Even when listening hard you're doing a mix of both.

Headphones are strange that way, since head movements don't translate to timbral changes. I often catch myself moving my head with them on when trying to clue into an element I can't quite recognize or distinguish.
 

wwenze

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#3
On the other hand with headphones if you wear it slightly differently the frequency response changes
 

thewas_

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#4
Ok, this might sound stupid, but I just noticed this: when you listen to loudspeakers and nod your head to the music (which I do most of the time, provided there's a beat going), the position of the head changes and might (?) create tone or phase very small changes, that could be good in a way.
Yes, that helps a lot for localisation, that's why good headphone based loudspeaker emulation systems use head-trackers.
https://smyth-research.com/
https://www.waves.com/hardware/nx-virtual-mix-room-nx-head-tracker
https://www.patentlyapple.com/paten...utomatic-dynamic-re-centering-operations.html
 

Ilkless

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#5
Ok, this might sound stupid, but I just noticed this: when you listen to loudspeakers and nod your head to the music (which I do most of the time, provided there's a beat going), the position of the head changes and might (?) create tone or phase very small changes, that could be good in a way.

With headphones, you can nod your head but the position of the ears to the sources of music won't change.

Do you think that observation can be of any interest? Psychoacoustic experts perhaps?
I'm a bit rusty on the subject, but this is what I cover in an upcoming article for a headphone publication. Dynamic cues help to externalise sound in the absence of a precise HRTF match. But it is still tonally coloured versus correcting for individual HRTF (or at least having a generic HRTF that's close enough).
 
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