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Timing test results - a poll

The lowest timing you can reliably pass

  • 100ms

  • 50ms

  • 20ms

  • 10ms

  • 5ms

  • 2ms

  • 1ms


Results are only viewable after voting.

HighImpactAV

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In live sound and in-ear monitors (IEMs), the rule of thumb is to not to allow any longer than a 7 ms delay. Shure recommends 5 ms or below. Some bass and drum players don't like more than a 2 ms delay.

The issue isn't that you are hearing distinct sounds. It is that the phase changes caused by the delay alters the sound and is audible.

I listened with speakers for the tests.

2ms Delay.jpg

1 ms Delay.jpg

50 ms Delay BD+HH.jpg
 
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Grooved

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I'm saying when someone asks "I want a short delay added" I would give them many options, my point is when I've gone as low as 10mS they look at me like I have two heads when I say I added a "delay". I'm not saying if I asked them to sit down and concentrate to hear a difference between the original signal and the delayed signal they wouldn't be able to do so. They don't accept it as a "delay" until it gets up near 100mS and above. In that time domain is where it's an acceptable level of "delay" effect. When asked to richen up a signal I'll often add a very short delay, like 10mS and yes it's audible but the artists don't consider it a delay. So non-professional sound engineers (musicians) has essentially empirically defined for us where a "delay' begins and where the effect of a small time delay begins to be defined as a different style of effect.

I'm not sure you're comparing this test with the right example. Here, it's not really "do you hear a delay?" but more "do hear a difference between a kick and hi-hat with attacks aligned and kick and hi-hat with attacks not aligned", and you have both to compare.
It would be harder if there was only one and asking you to find the delay between both attacks in this file.

Not the same thing, but it's a bit like there are people who can find notes after hearing a A 440, but not if you're not giving them this A 440 first, and other can find any note without reference first.

Just using my computer monitors speakers I found the test pretty easy, especially @ 1 ms which to me had more difference than 5 ms or 2 ms? Is it possible crappy speakers make this easier? This test doesn't seem right to me.

Depends on your speakers, but I found this test very easier on 2-way speakers (even small ones) than headphones, and the first reason I found, maybe I'm wrong, would be: most of the hi-hat comes from the tweeter, and most of the kick comes from the woofer, so it adds source separation
 

captainbeefheart

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I'm not sure you're comparing this test with the right example. Here, it's not really "do you hear a delay?" but more "do hear a difference between a kick and hi-hat with attacks aligned and kick and hi-hat with attacks not aligned", and you have both to compare.
It would be harder if there was only one and asking you to find the delay between both attacks in this file.

Not the same thing, but it's a bit like there are people who can find notes after hearing a A 440, but not if you're not giving them this A 440 first, and other can find any note without reference first.

It wasn't so clear to the OP either, he initially thought hearing the delay was required also. It doesn't matter as long as we are all on the same page which is why I wanted clarification, maybe others were confused but didn't want to ask.

We are answering the poll for the lowest time you can reliably pass where you hear ANY audible difference in reference to the sync track.

Funny thing about the find notes after hearing A440. When I first started ear training for music I couldn't just sing or tune my A string to A440 without hearing it first. It took a while to learn the intervals, so any one note and then the second note in relation to it, like minor third, sixth, flat fifth etc... But finally after maybe 20 years or so of ear training I can string a guitar and tune A440 near perfect without reference. It amazes me when a kid has perfect pitch that took them like a year to get accurate.

I started thinking actually hearing a delay is required, but I think it turned into "any" change is still good, as long as one passes the blind tests. I am fine with that.
 
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Grooved

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If you can create such files for us, that would be great.

So far, I have found that Chrome on Windows 10 very consistent in terms of clues I got with my listening chains.
I recorded it as WAV files, but I don't know if we can share files with the same sound than the ones on the test website?

Note that the peak level in the 1ms file is the highest of all (-2.7dB), 0ms, 2ms and 5ms are in the -3.3 -3.5 range and then is goes down from -4dB to -5.9dB
This is not what I was searching for when testing 0ms Vs 1ms but it may help a bit, I will retry to see if I feel a level difference

0ms
0ms.PNG


1ms
1ms.PNG


100ms where the hi-hat has almost nothing left when the kick starts
100ms.PNG
 

Grooved

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It wasn't so clear to the OP either, he initially thought hearing the delay was required also. It doesn't matter as long as we are all on the same page which is why I wanted clarification, maybe others were confused but didn't want to ask.

We are answering the poll for the lowest time you can reliably pass where you hear ANY audible difference in reference to the sync track.

Funny thing about the find notes after hearing A440. When I first started ear training for music I couldn't just sing or tune my A string to A440 without hearing it first. It took a while to learn the intervals, so any one note and then the second note in relation to it, like minor third, sixth, flat fifth etc... But finally after maybe 20 years or so of ear training I can string a guitar and tune A440 near perfect without reference. It amazes me when a kid has perfect pitch that took them like a year to get accurate.
Better be as clear as possible indeed.

Regarding the notes, I remember when we were about 15 years old that a friend of mine (playing saxophone) was able to find the exact frequency without reference, like giving him first 443 and he said "not 440, it's 443" and it just left us eyes wide opened :)
 

captainbeefheart

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Regarding the notes, I remember when we were about 15 years old that a friend of mine (playing saxophone) was able to find the exact frequency without reference, like giving him first 443 and he said "not 440, it's 443" and it just left us eyes wide opened :)

Yes that's what I am talking about, totally mind blowing. I am not that precise at all, I'm more like "that's a little flat/sharp of 440" but to the exact frequency is bonkers.
 

clearnfc

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Yes that's what I am talking about, totally mind blowing. I am not that precise at all, I'm more like "that's a little flat/sharp of 440" but to the exact frequency is bonkers.

I would say the most important thing is not to understand human abilities. It alot more mysterious and more powerful than what we could comprehend...

We have animals that have sensors thats way better than the best equipment we ever made.
 

danadam

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I recorded it as WAV files, but I don't know if we can share files with the same sound than the ones on the test website?
You get download option after donating:
Is AudioCheck free? Not for me. Your support keeps this site running. Any donation will be rewarded with
  • uncompressed .wav files downloads for every test
  • increased durations and sample rates up to 192 kHz in the Tone Gen section
  • a feedback/suggestion box on every page
 

Jimbob54

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I would say the most important thing is not to understand human abilities. It alot more mysterious and more powerful than what we could comprehend...

We have animals that have sensors thats way better than the best equipment we ever made.
Thus spake a true scientist.
 

pkane

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I would say the most important thing is not to understand human abilities. It alot more mysterious and more powerful than what we could comprehend...

We have animals that have sensors thats way better than the best equipment we ever made.

Mysterious and powerful - yes. Better than the best equipment? Not by a long shot. It's awesome that you can hear a 1ms delay. Now try a billion times smaller. Let's see if you can beat the best measurement equipment.
 

clearnfc

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Mysterious and powerful - yes. Better than the best equipment? Not by a long shot. It's awesome that you can hear a 1ms delay. Now try a billion times smaller. Let's see if you can beat the best measurement equipment.

My fault, i am supposed to say underestimate... No idea why i type understand instead.

But I can tell you, someone will beat it. If its something humans cannot beat, animals will.

Dolphins "sonar" is way better than anything we have. Shark ability to sense is way more sensitive than anything we have too. Even dogs... We don't have anything that can beat their nose...

I am not here to debate about objective vs subjective. My point is that humans ability are able to outdo even our best equipment. When it comes to an instrument sounding "right", nothing beats a highly skilled musician's ear.
 
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RHO

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Hey Pdxwayne, can you send me a PM? (yours seems to be disabled)
 

danadam

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I strongly suspect in the case of that online timing test there is some interaction in play between the browser, windows audio settings and different dacs used that creates the different results observed. If I try and play them just using chrome on my phone it glitches as often as plays properly.

I don't think it's a sound footing to base any conclusions about playback equipment on.
AFAICT, the sync file has 44100 sampling rate and the delayed ones have 48000 sampling rate. I suspect this can cause glitches when switching between them.

I already asked about it on the page, I'll let you know when I get the answer.
It was fixed, both files have 44100 sampling rate now.
 

Jimbob54

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It was fixed, both files have 44100 sampling rate now.
I'll see if that means I can actually do the test via my phone. Good work.
 
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