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Christian Beuschel
You can't always win, but you can always suck. - So don't be afraid to suck.
You can't always win, but you can always suck. - So don't be afraid to suck.
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Looking for a network enabled scoreboard that allows you to create plugins to connect to any game related information system?

https://github.com/chris109b/AmericanFootballScoreboard
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Room stereo trick for headphones

If you listen to music on a stereo with good speakers and a good speaker placement and ... and ... and ... you know what I'm talking about, your music usually sounds the best.
With good headphones the experience isn't that great (depending on the recording). The reason is simple. The recording is mixed/mastered for a speaker stereo system. The sound of both speakers reach both ears just in a slightly different way. If you listen to the same music with headphones on the other hand, the left channel gets only to your left ear and the right channel gets only to your right ear. So there is definitly a difference.
I did some experimenting to find a simple and effective way to get more of a speaker sound with headphones.

Here is what I discovered so far:

* A difference in volume for the left or right channel doesn't make much of a difference in sensing direction.

* A difference in timing/delay makes a world of difference in perceiving the direction a sound is coming from.

And here is what I did:

I took a standard stereo music track and opened it in Audacity. There I cloned the stereo track to a second one. On the second one I interchanged the stereo channels (left=right, right=left) and lowered the volume by 6 dB (values between -3 dB and -12 dB should be fine). Then I took the move tool to delay the second track about 0.0004 seconds - right - 0.4 milliseconds. Every value between 0.3ms and 0.5ms should be fine, which is a distance between 10,3 cm and 17,2 cm, if you are travelling with the speed of sound through air, which is exactly what your music does.

The result I got was a much better roomier stereo sound with headphones, at least to my ears. - But don't trust me. Try yourself. Take any music you have on your computer and play with it.

Give me feedback about your experience.

And if you are talented in electronics you might able to even build a headphone amplifier, that can do this kind of treatment* live. (* split the signal -> switch left and right channel -> turn down the volume -> delay the signal by about 0.4 ms -> mix it to the original signal)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Audacity_(audio_editor)
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For the time being, I'm on a high end audio trip. I want music that sounds better than CD quality.

But the more research I'm doing, the more I discover that we don't even get CD quality anymore.

One reason is MP3/AAC/... compression. But that's only the minor problem. The much bigger one is the so called Loudness War and its victim the dynamic range which dies in this war.
( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Loudness_war )

In short: The peak level of an digital recording is limited. Therefore you have to compress all parts of a song as high as possible to make it sound louder in comparison to another song. The music labels want to sound their recordings as loud as possible, because louder sells better. They happily sacrifice dynamic range and quality, because the don't want to deliver the best product. - They want to have the best selling product.

Now there is a way to stop this madness. If you can, apply to your music something called ReplayGain. Basically it changes the volume of each track or if you chose so of each album as a whole to have the same level of loudness. Which mean that no matter how much compression has been applied to a song, it won't sound any louder to you, it just sounds more flat and less dynamic, which it does anyway.
( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ReplayGain )

The standard loudness for ReplayGain is 89 dB, which leaves 14 dB of headroom. I applied it to some of my more recent music and which led to an average lowering for the volume of 6 dB.
Which means if everybody would apply ReplayGain to all Music we would get 6 dB more headroom for dynamic range, because the compression level would not be so high, because it wouldn't make any sense to aim for a loudness higher than 89 dB.
Actually we should go even further and follow the EBU Recommendation R 128 which suggests 23 dB headroom. - Remember how loud music actually is is your choice anyway, because you turn the volume nob. Tho only difference is how much dynamic range you get.

You should also ask your music streaming provider for following EBU Recommendation R 128 or at least ask the for loudness normalization.




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High quality music needs a change in thinking for the whole industry, but it is possible.
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Lend me your ear. :-D Live photo coverage of events, was my dominating topic two years ago. Live video coverage was the primary achievement of last year. All these topics are still present but this year I might be able to push a little bit the audio side of live. :-)
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DIY Softbox for flash or flashlight
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