TOPIC: Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 4 weeks ago #19381

Hello everyone!

I play guitar on my computer via S-Gear. The problem is that my sound is great in my headphones (AKG K702) but horrible in all the speakers I tried, even my monitor speakers (Focal Alpha 50).

In the speakers, the sound is hyper-bassy, the high frequencies do not stand out, the sound seems choked and distant as if the speakers could not express themselves. And the headphones sound so well balanced, always, whether I play software presets or personal settings.

Configuration (Headphones)
Guitar -> Apogee One -> IMac -> S-Gear (Software) -> Apogee One (3.5mm Jack) -> Headphone

Configuration (Speaker)
Guitar -> Apogee One -> IMac -> S-Gear (software) -> Apogee One (3.5mm Jack) -> Speaker (XLR Port) (I am forced to use a jack cable to XLR because the apogee one 1st gen only has this out)

I bought these speakers last night, I did not have time to test the button on the back to amplify by 6dB the signal. I forgot to say that when I listen to music it sounds great on speakers and headphones.

Do you have any ideas?
Thank you in advance.

Ps : (The only subject I found on this but without real solution.)

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 4 weeks ago #19387

I would make a guess that your listening environment is impacting the results you are hearing through your monitors. If there are resonances and reflections in your room it will greatly impact the guitar sound through your monitors, much more apparently that it would do with a full range music recording.

I'm sure others here will offer further suggestions and insight.

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Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 3 weeks ago #19408

If I had to bet I'd say that the room is introducing those issues. Though the signal chain isn't ideal (3.5mm output jack) it shouldn't mangle the sound in the ways that you're describing. Unfortunately, a less than ideal room is a tough fix. I'd suggest grabbing a song you know well, moving the monitors around -- slightly at first -- to see if that recorded music sounds more expected to your ears, then find the most neutral location. Hyper-bassy often indicates that you're too close to the wall behind the monitors.

Do you have a lot of reflective surfaces near the monitors, like mirrored closet doors? They can introducing phasing in the high end which might explain the lack of definition. Sometimes just having the monitors shifted to one side of the room can do the same. Reflections bounce off each side wall but arrive at the ears at different times and the result is blurry mids and high end.

The good news is that it's sounding great in headphones, so it's just a matter of tweaking your listening environment.

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 3 weeks ago #19414

A good rule of thumb is that something that sounds good quiet will sound good or better louder, and something that sounds good on a speaker will sound good through headphones - but the opposite is very often not true. First make sure you're not clipping at the audio interface input or output. If music sounds good on your monitors (through the same audio interface), but S-Gear doesn't, but both sound good through headphones, then I suspect you need to put some EQ between S-Gear and those speakers to account for the difference. It could be simply that you can't get the volume loud enough in your environment to make it sound/feel good.

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 3 weeks ago #19424

Thank you for your involvement and your response Mike and the others! You were totally right!

I took into account your comments and I listened attentively to the sound of the speakers comparing them to headphones.

Listening to the music, I found myself dropping the bass a lot to get the same sound, without having to touch the treble.

After thinking, I told myself that the problem came from the position of my office, which was stuck along a wall, in a corner of the apartment.

I changed the configuration of the apartment in order to have the office in the center of the room.

The difference is huge. With the bass / treble settings at 0, the sound is perfectly balanced when listening to music.

When using S-Gear, it's much better. It's no longer the fog that it was before. But there is still some improvement to make.

While playing clean sound trough Custom 57, it’s not really a problem cause it sound nice and round. But with the Stealer and AC/DC sort of sound, it didn’t work as well as with headphones. It hasn’t the punch that it should have, and I find myself turning the bright contour from 2 to 6 to compensate.

I think my other problem come from the output gain on my sound card. I can’t change the volume on my speaker (no volume button), so I’ve to drop down the output gain on my sound card however it’s insanely loud. With my AKG headphone, the impedance is high so i set gain higher on the sound card, the volume is not too loud, and it sounds far better.

On the sound card, there is a led indicator which became green if the gain is correct. This led become green with the headphones gain, not with my monitor. That’s why I think my problem can come from here.

What do you think about it?

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 1 week ago #19514


Just a little message to say that I reread the record of my speakers. I adjusted the height of each by buying highs, to have the tweeter at the ears.

Then I ended up lowering the bass by -4dB and increasing the treble by + 1dB. I'm pretty happy with the sound I'm getting.

It's not perfect (maybe I should still lower the bass in the future) but I can play ambient volume without disturbing my neighbors with sound quite exploitable.

Thank you all for your thoughts! :)

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 1 week ago #19518

I use Sonarworks to flatten the frequency response of my headphones and speakers. This really makes my mixes transfer better between different listening platforms (e.g. earbuds, car stereos, headphones, home stereo systems, etc.).
Various Gibson, Fender, Epiphone and Cort guitars
Scuffham S-Gear
PreSonus Studio One Professional 4.1.1

Check out my website

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 3 days ago #19566


I’ve already seen this software/mic solution. But it’s seems to be expensive. On my precedent audio setup (it was a home cinema that I found for free), there was a ton of bass, it was un-usable to play guitar. I download a general Eq that I set up by ear. It was not « monitoring » at all, but it gave me a pleasant audio signature.

But I had to change it for something really good to play guitar. Focal works great for me.

A thing really funny, I play with a custom settings on the Stealer. Trough the AKG-K702, it sound soooo much like a JTM45 (pure Back in Black sound) and trough my Focal, it sounds (to my ears) like a JCM800. O_o’ More bassy and a little bit more modern. (I will post a screenshot of the settings)

But I can play with it at a low volume, that’s all that matter for me. 🙂
Last edit: 1 year 3 days ago by Thony.

Diffeurent sound : Headphones / Studio Monitor 1 year 1 day ago #19578

Here is the settings.
On the guitar, volume is about 6/10 on treble pickup usually.
Last edit: 1 year 1 day ago by Thony.
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