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Improving stereo over headphone


andi.k

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The stereo grands and certain stereo effects (tremolo) were giving me headache when playing my stage piano through headphones. But I found a fascinating solution: crossfeed filter networks :D

 

There exist several circuit variations:

http://headwize.com/projects/showfile.php?file=meier2_prj.htm

http://headwize.com/projects/cmoy1_prj.htm

http://headwize.com/projects/showfile.php?file=kemhagen_prj.htm

 

I chose the first one and built it into a headphone amp that was modified according to http://www.rock-grotto.co.uk/B-tech.htm. Also, I added a 3-position rotary switch for selecting from 2 crossfeed intensities and bypass.

 

Everyone that's working with headphones should try this - it's a big - I mean: HUGE - relieve! Really!!

 

Happy new year to all :)

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Uhmm... sort of. But it is also a frequency dependent blending of the stereo channels - as opposed to a simple blending with a mixer by utilizing two mono channels and the pan knobs.

 

If some of you guys want to try it but don't want to solder, there is a free VST plugin that can be applied to the line-in of a sound card in real time:

 

http://www.ohl.to/audio-tools-and-thoughts/audio-softwares-and-vst-plugins/crossfeed-and-eq-for-headphones/

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Right, these imitate the fact that each ear hears both speakers. Software versions are even better since they include the additional delay from the opposite speaker (due to the sound going around your head a bit, which is also what causes the filtering). These are based on average head configurations and ignore the effects of your ears, so it's still not the same thing as speakers -- but much closer.

 

And some mixes that work fine in the living room but are annoying through headphones (usually because of too much hard panning or poor tone balance) would sound a lot better too.

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Not to mention radio stations - many of them apply some special stereo processing to make their music sound more spatial through kitchen radios... while a housewife might appreciate this, headphone listeners will get hypnotized or something :freak:
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