Audibility of Distortion Listening Test...FUN!

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I have a pair of Acoustic Research wireless headphones and using those the best I could do is -18db. These are plugged into my Yamaha HT receiver. The receiver is connected via SPDIF to my HTPC using on board HDA (high definition audio).
Now, my hearing isn't what it once was, but when I play this through my 3-way active speakers I can consistently get to -24 and on occasion -33db
The setup for that is the Yamaha's front pre-out connected to the active amp.

It would be nice if they had a few different songs and artists to add variety. I'm not a big fan of Tracy Chapman.


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Some of the octave tests I can go to -36.

I think I'm learning how to listen for distortion.

What's most evident is that I can easily imagine kinds of distortion that actually sound GOOD.

I wonder how hard it is to pick out 2nd harmonic from 3rd on a similar test to this...

I saw this as well but didn't take till tonite...

Here's how I did w/ Sennheiser 485's and stock HP mb soundcard
-21 dB consistently.. once to -24 dB... of course, my right ear has been full of fluid for thee past 2 mos....:bawling:

I'll have to try it through my planar dipoles...

John L.:


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Disabled Account
Joined 2007
Re: Re: Audibility of Distortion Listening Test...FUN!

planet10 said:

Your still using IE?

This looks an interesting test... i'll give it a try (but now now, the masking from the windstorm would make it difficult)


Yes, it works fine.
Besides, I have better things to do than experiment with different browsers.

This test should be a cinch for you, especially on the Enabled drivers.
I look forward to the results.
Disabled Account
Joined 2007
Daveis said:
Is this more a test of your hearing or of your equipment?

I think it's a test of your equipment (notice the lack of resolution in my AR headphones) and your ability to perceive distortion. Hearing might have little to do with it (my hearing sucks - occupational hearing loss).

My girlfriend has way better hearing than me, and the best she could do was -12db. Such a waste.
I saw this a while ago, and got into the middle somewhere.

I really wish there were some details on how the simulate driver distortion. It already seems hard to fully describe, simulating it seems like a real cr--shoot. But who knows?

It definitely blows sand in eyes of the -120dB camp if we can't spot distortion below -30dB.

I used to study science. Now I think it is all art...:apathic:

I took a little over half the test and my results hovered around -15,-18,-21. Was using Sound Blaster Live, Gainclone, and DIY MTM speakers. I think you would have an advantage using headphones.

My ears are not that great being 62 but, I do drive most people nuts complaining about distortion that I can't explain.:bawling:
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