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Old 03-31-2019, 09:12 AM
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Default Beats were driving me nuts...

We had boguth a set of Beats for my son years ago and when he wanted a blue tooth pair we upgraded him to that and I inherited the older set of Beats. Very nice headphones. I bought an extension cable to make monitoring my recording easier.

The thing about Beats though.... They conduct sound very well, so good that any movement my body made against the cord where it plugs into the headphone was being amplified and heard by me as well in the headphones. So I kept hearing this brushing sound while I was playing/recording and it was driving me up the wall. I never heard it in a recording, so it was all just transmitted within the headphones themselves.

Ear buds don't work with me, I'm too clumsy so I bought the relatively inexpensive AKG k240 Studio headphones. The wire input is higher up on the left side than the Beats and I can't hear any brushing anymore. Problem solved. Going up the food chain isn't always better I guess.
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Old 03-31-2019, 01:34 PM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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Not all headphones are good for the same purposes. For tracking, you want to be able to hear yourself well and you don't want to be distracted by outside noises. But you also don't want bleed from semi-open headphones like your AKG k240 set to show up on the track, so for tracking a set of closed back headphones that cover the entire ear are usually preferred. I use Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO for tracking.

I also use headphones as a secondary tool in conjunction with my monitors when I'm mixing or mastering. For that I have a pair of Massdrop HD 6XX which is the same as the Sennheiser HD 650. For mixing, you don't want any kind of hype to the sound as is common with consumer listening headphones like Beats.

So it's not really a question of expense so much as it's a question of intended purpose. The right tool for the job and all that.
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Old 03-31-2019, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by jim1960 View Post
Not all headphones are good for the same purposes. For tracking, you want to be able to hear yourself well and you don't want to be distracted by outside noises. But you also don't want bleed from semi-open headphones like your AKG k240 set to show up on the track, so for tracking a set of closed back headphones that cover the entire ear are usually preferred. I use Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO for tracking.

I also use headphones as a secondary tool in conjunction with my monitors when I'm mixing or mastering. For that I have a pair of Massdrop HD 6XX which is the same as the Sennheiser HD 650. For mixing, you don't want any kind of hype to the sound as is common with consumer listening headphones like Beats.

So it's not really a question of expense so much as it's a question of intended purpose. The right tool for the job and all that.
Wow, I see what you mean about the open phones. I didn't notice any bleed through on trial recordings I just did though. Something to keep an eye on, thanks.
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Old 03-31-2019, 07:45 PM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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Wow, I see what you mean about the open phones. I didn't notice any bleed through on trial recordings I just did though. Something to keep an eye on, thanks.
It's less of an issue of the player/singer is staring straight into the mic and the sound from the open backs is being projected at a right angle away from the mic. But if the player turns his/her head to look at the fretboard, the mic is now pointing much more directly at the microphone and you'll pick up more bleed.

The Sennheiser DT 770 pro headphones aren't cheap at about $179 but they're very good. They're very comfortable and cup is big enough to fit over the entire ear. I never get any bleed with those.

Something to know about headphones... many of the better sets are available in different ohm ratings. The higher the ohm rating, the more transparent and clear the headphones will be. However, the higher the ohm rating, the more power you'll need to drive the headphones. I had a pair of AKG K240DF that were rated 600 ohms that required me to have the HP volume knob on my interface cranked to full to get a usable level. My DT 700 pair is rated 80 ohm. That's easily handled by just about any interface (for tracking headphones I don't concern myself too much with transparency so long as they're good phones). You might want consider a pair of those or something similar.
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  #5  
Old 03-31-2019, 09:31 PM
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Originally Posted by jim1960 View Post
It's less of an issue of the player/singer is staring straight into the mic and the sound from the open backs is being projected at a right angle away from the mic. But if the player turns his/her head to look at the fretboard, the mic is now pointing much more directly at the microphone and you'll pick up more bleed.

The Sennheiser DT 770 pro headphones aren't cheap at about $179 but they're very good. They're very comfortable and cup is big enough to fit over the entire ear. I never get any bleed with those.

Something to know about headphones... many of the better sets are available in different ohm ratings. The higher the ohm rating, the more transparent and clear the headphones will be. However, the higher the ohm rating, the more power you'll need to drive the headphones. I had a pair of AKG K240DF that were rated 600 ohms that required me to have the HP volume knob on my interface cranked to full to get a usable level. My DT 700 pair is rated 80 ohm. That's easily handled by just about any interface (for tracking headphones I don't concern myself too much with transparency so long as they're good phones). You might want consider a pair of those or something similar.
These have a 55 ohms impedance rating. Is that the same rating you're talking about? I can see headphones are yet another rabbit hole,

Maybe I'll wrap the back of them with aluminum foil,
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Old 03-31-2019, 10:35 PM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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Quote:
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These have a 55 ohms impedance rating. Is that the same rating you're talking about?
No, the DF was a version that were on the market 10 years or more ago. They've since been discontinued.

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I can see headphones are yet another rabbit hole,
This stuff is for neither the feint of heart nor wallet. ;-)

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Maybe I'll wrap the back of them with aluminum foil,
I'd say make a hat and scarf to match the earmuffs but spring is upon us.
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Old 04-01-2019, 12:50 AM
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Why do you use headphones while recording? I use them if I'm recording to a click, or overdubbing. For solo guitar, all they do is make it hard to hear myself and what my tone really is. I don't even find them very useful for mic placement, things just sound too different in phones vs speakers. So I do mic setup by a combination of meters (for balance and phase) and repeated listening to short sample tracks. Then for the real recording, I don't listen to anything while I'm recording. I have had the issue with microphonic headphones cables in the past, but the solution is easy, just skip the headphones.
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Old 04-01-2019, 02:00 AM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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Why do you use headphones while recording?
Many folks play and sing a bit more inspired when you can add a bit of reverb in the cans.
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Old 04-01-2019, 02:11 AM
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Many folks play and sing a bit more inspired when you can add a bit of reverb in the cans.
I can see that with singing, but Barry plays instrumentals. For that, personally, I'd avoid reverb in the monitors, it can hide what you're doing. I don't want to be fooled into thinking my guitar sounds good, or have the reverb mask what I'm playing, I want to be able to control what it really sounds like and make it sound good in the room. But that's just my preference, I was wondering why Barry would use them.
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Old 04-01-2019, 06:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug Young View Post
Why do you use headphones while recording? I use them if I'm recording to a click, or overdubbing. For solo guitar, all they do is make it hard to hear myself and what my tone really is. I don't even find them very useful for mic placement, things just sound too different in phones vs speakers. So I do mic setup by a combination of meters (for balance and phase) and repeated listening to short sample tracks. Then for the real recording, I don't listen to anything while I'm recording. I have had the issue with microphonic headphones cables in the past, but the solution is easy, just skip the headphones.
Good question, I forgot why I got into the habit of recording while wearing them. Maybe I did it at first to see what level I can raise the recording gain to before I heard "the room." I just got into the habit of wearing them. Good point Doug.
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Old 04-01-2019, 10:52 AM
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Good question, I forgot why I got into the habit of recording while wearing them. Maybe I did it at first to see what level I can raise the recording gain to before I heard "the room." I just got into the habit of wearing them. Good point Doug.
In terms of playing solo acoustic HP's help (like you say) for checking level and where to position mic etc. But once you are rolling as Doug points out they are as much of a possible hinderance as help.

And jim1960 may have helped me solve a mystery on the very last recording I just did I did, where play to click and even though I have a pair of closed back Senn HD280's (albeit with the cover over the foam pads missing ) at the very end of the recording you can hear the click and I am now guessing I turned my head to look at the computer screen
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Old 04-01-2019, 11:14 AM
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Good question, I forgot why I got into the habit of recording while wearing them. Maybe I did it at first to see what level I can raise the recording gain to before I heard "the room." I just got into the habit of wearing them. Good point Doug.
I have used headphones to identify noise - crank the volume as loud as you can (and don't make any sudden noises!) and then walk around the room with a mic and listen. If you're like me, you'll find lots of little things that contribute to noise, light switches, wall warts, speakers, lights. They don't sound loud in person, and our brains tend to tune them out, but the mics hear them. So now you know what to turn off when you record. I've gone as far as to throw the breakers on every room in my house except the studio when recording - it's really funny, because I think the house is quiet, and then I turn off all the breakers, and everything goes down another notch. Kind of eerie.

But I'd suggest not letting the room noise determine how loud your record levels will be. Set your levels to what you need for the guitar. The noise is what it is, and will be the same relative level with your guitar no matter the gain you use (unless your preamp itself is noisy when turned up). If you turn the mics down to record, the room noise seems to be lower, but so is your guitar. Later, if you raise the level in your DAW, the guitar comes up and so does the recorded room noise, exactly the same as if you'd just set the gain to a good level to start with.
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Old 04-01-2019, 11:22 AM
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Later, if you raise the level in your DAW, the guitar comes up and so does the recorded room noise, exactly the same as if you'd just set the gain to a good level to start with.
Used to be that you could count on the background noise in the listener's room to be at least as loud as the junk in your recording. Earbuds have kinda wrecked that, unfortunately.
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Old 04-01-2019, 03:20 PM
jim1960 jim1960 is offline
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And jim1960 may have helped me solve a mystery on the very last recording I just did I did, where play to click and even though I have a pair of closed back Senn HD280's (albeit with the cover over the foam pads missing ) at the very end of the recording you can hear the click and I am now guessing I turned my head to look at the computer screen
I learned that lesson the hard way. My first serious headphones were the AKG K 240DF pair I mentioned earlier. They weren't closed back and I didn't know better. I wound up picking up a pair of Sony MDR-7506 phones for tracking.

Those AKGs were pretty popular when they came out but every pair I ever saw in a studio had the same problem. There's a round plastic piece of trim on the back side of the wired-side cup that always came loose and dangled.

Anyway, I'm glad I may have solved your mystery.
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