These headphones are the ones having big ear cups that cover your ears securely. Choosing this type of headphones means you need more space for it has a bigger driver. Aside from this, over-ear headphones offer you deeper bass, better sound quality, and frequency response.
But the disadvantage of using over-ear headphones is that it is not advisable if you live in a warmer area because you’ll sweat a lot in your ears and can damage your headphones. Remember that moisture can promote wear-and-tear of any electronic.
Types of over-ear
Over-ear headphones also have three types: semi-open, open, and closed back. The
has the back of its ear cup closed for better sound isolation. This means that there will be fewer inside sound escapes. In contrast, closed-back headphones are designed to provide more accurate sound and an airy-open sound. When using an open-back, you are like listening to speakers in a room; that is why they are used mainly in mixing studios. open-back
type is designed to be a closed-back, but the speakers are not completely sealed. Remember that the bigger the openness, the more immersive the sound experience but the risk of sound leakage. semi-open back
🎧 On-ear headphones
On-ear type is smaller than the over-ear, and it usually sits on your ears. But, unlike the over-ear, the sound can leak because of the small gap between your ear and the ear pad. That is why on-ear headphones are the only alternatives to over-ear headphones. These headphones also typically are cheaper and can’t make your ears sweat. On-ear is also very handy due to its size, so you can easily carry them around or put them inside your pocket.
🎧 In-ear headphones
In-ear types are also called canal phones. This is because they literally go inside your ears. In-ear headphones are also portable because they only take a little space from your bag. But the comfort when using it really depends on the person because we have different ear canal sizes. There are also users who are not comfortable because of the materials and weight of the earphones.
The downside that you must consider when using in-ear headphones is the fatigue you can get. When you use this type of headphone, your ear and brain can feel exhausted after a prolonged session.
And I’m sure you already watched some viral videos where they put wax inside the ear (like the video below). This is where people mold the ear to have the perfect-fit headphones and have fewer leakage. These headphones are also the ones that your favorite artist wears on stage.
Earbuds are like in-ear headphones physically, but they work differently. These headphones only sit outside your ear, and since they do not penetrate, sound isolation is not achieved. Another thing to consider is that earbuds usually have only one size fit, so if you’re not comfortable with them, better choose other types of headphones. But earbuds are going popular these days, but people still buy them due to the trend, and maybe some have achieved comfort while wearing them.
Please do remember that every headphone sounds different, and the sound quality is subjective. So before going to the store and buying one, better to try them out first and check for your comfort. Also, you can ask for some recommendations from an expert, depending on your goals, such as for gaming, music, or movie purposes.
UNDERSTANDING EQUALIZER WINDOW
Almost everyone is afraid of altering the equalizer of any device. The loops and tabs might seem intimidating, but there is a simple way to understand the meaning of different settings allowing you to improve the sound quality.
|̲̅̅○̲̅̅|̲̅̅=̲̅̅|̲̅̅○̲̅̅| Frequency window
This is where you can see the frequency waves chart in relation to various sound changes. The frequency window also provides multiple control points to make some adjustments to those frequencies.
You can see a frequency ruler in the middle of the window, which is responsible for the adjustments. Another ruler is the amplitude ruler, which gives you a rough idea of how much you are boosting any given frequency. These rulers are essential because they indicate how high or low the frequency changes you had made. So before adjusting the waves, make sure to remember the pre-set ruler so that you’ll know how to come back in case you messed it up.
|̲̅̅○̲̅̅|̲̅̅=̲̅̅|̲̅̅○̲̅̅| Treble and Bass
The most important control is the volume knob. You will have a decibel ruler to know how loud the audio is. Aside from this, you’ll also have to split bass from the treble. The bass will be responsible for the depth of a sound, while the treble is for the brightness.
Aside from the treble and bass, another spectrum is needed called mids. As its name suggests, it’s located in between the bass and treble. They contain a lot of important audible information for our ears to be able to hear a lot of tonal qualities of any given sound. Boosting the mids too much can cause a bit of a boxy tone or those sounds coming from an old wooden speaker. But if you lower it, you may hear a lot of basses and a good amount of frequency.
It can certainly be frustrating to have poor quality music sounds coming out of your iPod or computer. There are many adjustments that go into what equalizer range to use, and you have to know what are the uses of each range. The five general EQ ranges are lows, low mids, mids, high mids, and highs. Understanding these five ranges will give you the freedom to adjust your equalizer anytime.
If you boost the range between 20 and 125 Hz, the sound will be fuller as you increase the volume. Remember that the lower the pitch of an instrument, the more you must be careful because it would easily overdrive the sound by adding too much low end.
On the contrary, if you decrease the volume of the low range, you can hear a loss of natural frequency and will sound thinner than the original sound. The advantage of lowering this range is when you play the music that has low-end sonic information. So you can use this if you want to separate voiceover to music because you will surely get both tracks to play well.
🔊 Low mids
The low mids have a lot of warmth and body. But adjusting this can also create a lot of muddy-sounding audio. When boosting the low mids, you can hear a significant amount of immediate overdrive. But as you lower it, you can start listening to it, like pulling out far too much of the fundamental frequency or making it weaker.
Having low mids is optional, but adding a little in a voice can warm it up a bit. Or, you can also use it if you have got too much power making it sound better.
As mentioned in the first part, the mids are responsible for the boxy sound. Anytime you boost the mids or cut them at around 500 Hz, the boxy sound will be stronger, creating the “honk sound.” As you increase the mid-range, you can hear the audio being boxy quickly, and this is not advisable for vocals.
But if you drag it down, it will not sound as bad when you boost it, but it’s still not good enough. This is because there is a big cut in this area, and you are losing some of the frequencies. But as you learn how to adjust the mid-range, you can improve the signal without touching the neighboring frequencies.
🔊 High mid-range
This part is very sensitive to boosting and cutting. High mid-range is responsible for the vocals or audio speech where you adjust some of the intensity of the words you hear. Before increasing the volume of the high mid-range, be aware that the boosting side will create unpleasant sounds such as nasally tone, harshness, and sensitivity to words having S-sound known as sibilance. But as you lower it, you start to hear how muffled the audio is.
This will be the last range on an equalizer. If you increase the high range, you will open up the very top end of the sound and will bring a sort of airy audio. It can also cause sibilance depending on the headphones you are using. When you decrease the volume of the high range, the sound may go dull. Some people make wide cuts in this range to remove too much bright sounds.
IMPROVING HEADPHONE SOUND QUALITY
Equalizer settings for your music headphones can sometimes be tricky to set. You want the best sound quality, with a little bit of bass. But you can’t just throw in any old settings, or you will regret it. So before you race to your computer, let’s discuss some basic settings that look great on almost any type of device where headphones are applicable. Whether you want to enhance the cinematic experience while watching or improve the sound of your music, the following tips may help you with this.
📱 Dolby Atmos
The first thing to look for is the default sound setting of your device. Some mobile devices already have sound enhancements built. If you drag down your android’s screen, you will see the Dolby Atmos. Most android users may not know what this is for, but it is essential in improving the sound quality of your device. You can adjust the setting according to your desired goal, such as music or movie mode when you tap it on.
📱 Main sound settings
Aside from Dolby Atmos, you can do more by going to the main sound settings of your device. Depending on the unit you have, there is a built-in equalizer where you can set a music style. You can also change the definition of the sound and customize the volume of each frequency to enhance according to your preference. Play with the tabs and see what refreshes your ears while wearing a headset.
If your phone doesn’t have a built-in equalizer, you can download an application for this. You can search for the one having the best review. But regardless of what app you download, you need to study the tabs for better adjustments. Usually, there is an equalizer tab that allows you to change the volume of each frequency. Lastly, there is also another tab responsible for some effects where you can just turn them on and off according to your preference.
📱 Adjusting the media
Another method to improve the sound quality is to adjust the setting of the media you are listening to. Some devices allow you to change the streaming quality without changing the primary setting of your device. This is useful if you want to change specific music or movie on your device while maintaining the overall sound quality of your phone.
GETTING MORE BASS FROM YOUR HEADPHONE USING SPOTIFY
It’s really easy to adjust your phone settings to make it produce more bass. In this section, we are going to change it on your Spotify app.
First, open up your Spotify, go to your library, and hit the Settings icon. Scroll down and press the Equalizer. After that, you need to adjust the EQ settings in Spotify by selecting a pre-set. There are lots of options such as electronic, bass booster, and deep settings to get more bass out of your music. What this will do is it’ll actually change how the music sounds, and you can also adjust it manually by moving the dots you see on the screen.
To use the bass booster on your phone, you need to connect a headset or headphones, and you will notice that a circular dial will turn gray, and this will actually boost the bass of your music. That’s how easy you can boost the bass, especially if you want to boost it while playing music on Spotify.
EQUALIZER SETTINGS FOR CLEAR SOUNDS DURING GAMEPLAY
This section is for you if you want to know how to adjust your equalizer settings because you want to hear everything while playing games like Valorant. As of March 2022, Valorant has recorded more than 15 million players, which is why we will focus on this game to make it a better play. And the setting that I will reveal will allow you to hear almost everything but reduce unwanted noise.
Though we are talking about the audio settings, the type of equipment plays a big part also. If you don’t have the right equipment, regardless of what settings you use, you won’t be able to maximize the audio to sound like it should fully. But if you don’t have enough budget to buy equipment, you can stay on your regular speakers that are built into your phone, pc, or laptop.
To start adjusting your audio, you need to look for the head-related transfer function or HRTF. Navigate the audio tab and look for the very last option on the “Sounds.” You’ll see the HRTF there, and this is responsible for playing audio in simulated surround sound audio space. It will make specific sounds more directional, such as reloads, footsteps, or deathmatch.
HRTF is a unique feature that’s important for every player because you can easily navigate other players due to the sounds they make. In short, HRTF makes every movement clearer. Remember that you can only determine the changes when using headphones, so everything will just sound exactly the same if you don’t have them.
🖥️ Windows Settings
HRTF is not for everyone because some are having difficult times adapting to the new setting. For these players, it is advisable to turn on a particular Windows setting to enhance and boost surround sound quality. Just go to the bottom right of the taskbar, and right-click the speakers. After that, go to spatial sound and turn on Windows sonic for headphones. What does this setting do is creates greater and better surround sound and mimic the effects that HRTF produces.
This setting is available to all Windows PC, but it is expected that it wouldn’t produce as intense of an effect as the HRTF. Don’t be disappointed because this setting gives enough directional audio, and you can still play smoothly. Lastly, if you have both HRTF and Windows Sonic, just choose one setting to turn on. If you turn them on at once, the effect may clash and can lead to inaccurate audio feedback.
🖥️ VOIP Ducks Music
This major audio setting must be kept on. It is an important setting because it lowers the volume of the music when the chat voice is audible. VDM regulates the audio by mitigating other noises if someone is talking. Because Valorant is a “screaming” game, this setting will be helpful to clean the audio and not mix the music, movement sounds, and players’ voice all at once.
🖥️ Agent Flavor
If the VOIP needs to be turned on, the Agent Flavor must be turned off. This setting makes agents more lively. As its name suggests, it gives audio flavor to the game to liven up the atmosphere. But having too many effects can be distracting. If you turn on the Agent Flavor, you can have a hard time concentrating in an intense battle. Though this is just an optional setting, it is still advisable, especially for hardcore players.
🖥️ Sound Tabs
Set all the tabs to the maximum level for the most precise and loud audio possible. But leave the voiceover volume at about 75% only because a player can’t determine when an agent is going to speak. There are various triggers that can make an announcer speak, and we don’t want to be shocked whenever this happens. So lower down the voiceover to enjoy the game without the distracting announcements.
🖥️ Mono and Stereo
These two settings are very common on any audio tabs. The difference between mono and stereo is the playback. The mono is played using a single channel, while the stereo is played using two channels. So what do these channels do? The additional channel in stereo makes it produce a better width perception. It helps with localizing sound better, so better to choose a speaker.
If you have a new headphone or a good set of speakers, then it is time for you to get to know your equalizer options. It is no longer good enough to plug in your device and start playing music with the volume maxed out. This can not only hurt your ears but also lead to poor-quality playback. Instead, the reasonable thing to do is learn how to use equalizers and make the most of this technology. By learning a bit about how the equalizer settings work on your computer or phone, you can customize it to make your listening experience create the best sound possible.
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