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SOUND OFF!!! Ever have something REALLY bugging you and nowhere to vent about it? Well, this is the place. It does not have to be fauna oriented at all! Get it off your chest right here.

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Old 03-10-2022, 04:15 PM   #1
Question Things I just don't understand...

So OK, I know sometimes I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer. But I really hate when I feel that my nose is being rubbed into that fact.

First some background.

After Connie goes to bed, often I will be up much later, either playing a game, or perhaps watching YouTube videos of something of interest I find there. After I do my normal chores on the websites, of course. So instead of cranking up the speakers on my PC, of course I want to use headphones to keep from disturbing Connie in the next room. Well, headphones don't last forever. Not that the actual hardware goes bad (well I did have some plastic fall off of my V-moda headphones and the company would not sell me replacement parts) but what usually happens is that the foam sound insulation in the earmuff parts get old and start disintegrating. Or, as is the case with the V-moda, the leather covering over the foam is having the black coating sloughing off. So usually when I close things down to go to bed, I will go into the bathroom, look in the mirror to make sure I am still me, and see all sorts of black flakes all over my ears and sides of my head. At first that freaked me out because I thought I had been severely infested with ticks. Lord knows I find enough of them as it is after working outside, so it wouldn't have really surprised me too much.

Yeah, I guess I could try to replace those foams, but I figure that if the earphones are old enough for the foams to start deteriorating, then perhaps the speakers themselves are getting past their prime too. And surely V-moda wouldn't sell replacement pads anyway. They just want you to buy a new pair of headphones from them, from what I gathered is their policy.

So, time to look for new headphones.

Well, maybe the options I see now have been around for a long time and I just never noticed or paid attention to them, but I found there are a few camps for headphones now. Earbuds are out, simply because I just don't want to be sticking things into my ears. So "over the ears style" is what I want. But there are two choices there: "Open back", and "closed back". So I had to figure out what that meant. It sounds like it should be obvious, but they COULDN'T mean what I think "open back" means, could it?

Yep, sure does. Apparently "open back" earphones will project what you are hearing with your ears, outwards into the room around you for the rest of the world close enough to hear also. So this is when I started feeling stupid. Why in the world would anyone mount headphones on their head to listen to something instead of just using regular speakers if the results to anyone else within listening distance will be the same? Had I bought these things and started using them late one night while playing a game, how long before Connie would come into the den and tap me on the head about the explosions that rocked her out of bed? I probably wouldn't have realized what was going on.

Isn't the whole idea of using headphones to isolate your ears from outside audible influences as well as insulating others from what you want to listen to? Maybe there is some exotic audiophile reasoning for "open back" headphones that I just cannot fathom, because I sure cannot think of one. Is the quality of the sound better? Well, why don't you buy better speakers then? Could 7.1 audio via headphones be better than 7.1 audio from actual decent speakers be better?

So if this is actually explainable, can someone explain this to me, please?
Old 03-10-2022, 04:18 PM   #2

It gets better. I am now looking at gaming headphones that actually have flashing lights on them.

Again, WHY???

Maybe I got out of the wrong side of the bed this morning and landed in the twilight zone.
Old 03-12-2022, 11:04 AM   #3
I wear hearing aids so in the ear headphones do not bother me. Kind of opposite for me. I bought over the ear wireless headset and couldn't stand wearing them. In the ear allows me to watch a movie without using theater set sound so I don't have to hear a car door slamming that sounds like a tank exploding. And when people whisper in the movie I know what they said!

Here is a site that explains open back vs closed back.
Old 03-12-2022, 01:33 PM   #4
I still haven't settled on a pair of headphones. Two are possibles, but they have a history of the plastic above the ear cups cracking and breaking. I don't expect something to last forever, but things that only just last to the day after the warranty runs out, nah...

Those two are the HyperX Cloud Orbit S - Gaming Headset and the Audeze Mobius Headphones. Which are pretty much the same thing. But I tend to treat my stuff gently, so perhaps the cracking issue would be a non problem for me. But sometimes things are just a poor design made worse with low quality materials that there is no getting around.

I actually found a site selling headphones priced at $4,500. I didn't bother to save the link to that page. For that amount of money they had better rub my back too, when I wanted them to.

I can't remember it taking so much time and effort to buy headphones in the past like it is now. Have things just gotten more complicated, or have I become much more discriminating? If the latter, I sure am going to hate it when my desktop PC gets too old and I have to buy a new one. And that isn't even addressing the problem of the outrageous prices that the top end graphics cards are going for these days. Thank you very much bitcoin miners.
Old 03-18-2022, 09:31 PM   #5
Well, today I was sitting in the den (where I usually am while in the house) and happened to glance over at the set of headphones I have on my laptop. Hmm... That looks like a bunch of little holes in the backs of those headphone cups. Taking a closer look, I can see the "speaker" diaphragm through those holes. Wha?? Well I'll be darned! I have been using a pair of open backed headphones for years and just never noticed it. I cranked up a YouTube video playing some music, put the volume level to "STUN" and just listened to them at arm's length. Nope, can't hear a thing. So I moved them to about 6 inches from my ear and THEN I could actually hear the music. Tinny sounding, but it was audible.

So what do you know? Seems that the issue between open backed and closed backed is really a non issue. Anyone who could hear what someone else is hearing wearing open backed headphones is WAY too close to that person anyway. My concerns about waking up Connie while I am playing a game late at night were just completely unfounded. Which, I guess, when thinking about it, had the noise been THAT loud externally, then that noise internally would have been loud enough to blow my eardrums into my head, crushing my pea brain.

Oh well. I have a set of the Audeze closed back headphones on order, but it appears I didn't have to fret so much looking for a closed back set instead of an open back set.

Live and learn, I guess. At my age, I guess it is getting embarrassing to admit that I learn something new every day. I should know EVERYTHING by now! Of course, I am probably forgetting something old at least twice a day.
Old 04-07-2022, 06:04 PM   #6
Speaking of things I don't understand, are Americans the only people in the world who don't pronounce A L U M I N U M as A L U M I N I U M?
Old 04-07-2022, 10:02 PM   #7
Originally Posted by WebSlave View Post
Speaking of things I don't understand, are Americans the only people in the world who don't pronounce A L U M I N U M as A L U M I N I U M?
Far as I know, it's pronounced how it's spelled. I've never heard of anyone pronouncing it as "A L U M I N I U M"
Old 04-08-2022, 06:40 PM   #8
Originally Posted by Insomniac101 View Post
Far as I know, it's pronounced how it's spelled. I've never heard of anyone pronouncing it as "A L U M I N I U M"
Well, I can come up with four examples with little effort:

At time 0:22.

At time 2:40.

At time 1:37.

At time 1:36.

There are a LOT more examples I have watched rather recently, much less over the years.
Old 06-03-2022, 08:48 PM   #9
Yeah, well, this is all minor stuff now.

What I REALLY don't understand is how someone's universe can fall so completely apart in such a short space of time?
Old 10-10-2022, 09:38 PM   #10
Originally Posted by WebSlave View Post
Speaking of things I don't understand, are Americans the only people in the world who don't pronounce A L U M I N U M as A L U M I N I U M?
In the UK (and most UK influenced countries I've been in) it's spelt and pronounced A L U M I N I U M

For some reason the US dropped an I (or the UK added one, I'm not sure which way it went).

I have fun with it when teaching SCUBA to US students as we use Aluminium tanks. I regard it as cultural education.

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