SH Spotlight Test the midrange purity of your system and/or your computer speakers using Bing Crosby!

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Steve Hoffman, Jan 30, 2016.

  1. Stefano G.

    Stefano G. Ab alto, speres alteri quod feceris.

    The first easy and economical thing to do is to change the position of the speakers in the room, possibly away from walls and floor (walls and floor enhance low frequencies but destroy midrange...) , taking into account that in a very small room it is always very difficult (if not impossible) to feel nuances of the sound. Before throwing the system, it is crucial to test the same system in a different room.
    As for a test like this, the room is fundamental, more than the audio system.
    Anyway, your Bowers & Wilkins speakers start immediately disadvantaged because they are "bookshelf speakers" and a bookshelf is the worst place where speakers rest...
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016
    Exile On My Street likes this.
  2. mindblanking

    mindblanking The Bourbon King

    Baltimore, MD
    For those concerned because they only heard a "slight emphasis", keep in mind it doesn't last long at all and if you can hear it, that's a good thing. It's actually very pronounced but comes and goes quickly so some might be calling that "slight emphasis". Gee, now I kinda feel like I work for a suicide hotline.
    Exile On My Street likes this.
  3. Vocalpoint

    Vocalpoint Forum Resident

    Where are you guys seeing a "gazillion" copies when you click that link.

    I see exactly two copies. One for 59.99 and another for $207.14. Clearly I am not looking in the right spot :)

    Stallings likes this.
  4. MrRom92

    MrRom92 Forum Supermodel

    Long Island, NY
    I'd say so. Try your local public library. I'm gonna pick this one up later for the princely sum of $0.00 :shh:
  5. Exile On My Street

    Exile On My Street Forum Resident

    New York
    Prior to this thread there were "two" gazillion copies all selling for under a buck. :D
    rxcory likes this.
  6. brimuchmuze

    brimuchmuze Forum Resident

    What's a good "mid-range" demo/test example that is not as brief as this one?
  7. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host Thread Starter

    Fortunate Son/Creedence echo trails on intro. Longer.
    rxcory likes this.
  8. Gregster

    Gregster Forum Resident


    Don't forget that it's a test only, & that if you could pick the "illusion" up, you're in the ball-park already. This is what I'd do since you asked....

    1. Visit your local Doctor, & have your ears tested. There's always going to be some frequencies etc that as humans (through a working life & age) would have lost the ability to hear. You might as well learn how good you can still hear things.

    2. Buy yourself a copy of the CD, & take it with you to analyze equipment with.

    3. I personally don't miss-match my equipment where possible, as I believe the design criteria from a manufacturer starts from the amp, & all the way through to the speakers. This also means your CD will be able to be played through many more systems in more stores, as they're typically set up brand for brand.

    4. You can also follow the spec-sheets on equipment & match-up from there, but that's where you're possibly starting to take a chance on things without hearing them first.

    5. If you're happy with your equipment, why not keep it ! Adjusting your EQ ( if possible ) may reveal the illusion with a little tweaking, & save you heaps of $$$.

    6. It all starts with what condition your ears are in though, so have yours tested !

    You did ask, & this is my $00:02 LOL !


  9. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host Thread Starter

    Take some pink noise off a test CD (Stereophile, etc.) or just tape some detuned FM radio noise, feed it through your speakers and get a feel for your tonal balance. Now, try moving the speakers an inch at a time to see if the midrange comes more in to focus. If it does, try Bing again, he should be more reverberant in the test spot. There, better and you didn't spend a dime..
    eyeCalypso likes this.
  10. barno

    barno Active Member

    Also overlooked and messes up the midrange frequency is earwax... Go to an audiologist and have wax removed if needed.. VERY cheap UPGRADE if your ears are semi full... EVERYONE should have their ears checked.... Especially IF people are tying to hallucinate subtle differences in cables, equipment etc.. And especially if they are writing off some peoples designs, remasters etc, and calling then "crap" and the like... I thought my speakers sounded "thin"... Then I got my ears cleaned and WOW , I was wrong.. ALL the mid and especially lower midrange was there in spades....
  11. Stefano G.

    Stefano G. Ab alto, speres alteri quod feceris.

    Your contribution is commendable, but this is a forum for audiophiles, not an infirmary.
  12. Joy-of-radio

    Joy-of-radio Forum Resident

    Good advice. At 56 years of age, I detect hearing loss especially in my left ear. For example, if I listen to a true monaural recording through properly functioning headphones, cymbals and tambourines appear less pronounced in my left ear. In some recordings, those percussive elements are completely missing. for those who think it's cool to listen at high volumes, STOP IT NOW!!! After a listening session, if your ears ring or you perceive sound similar to that of a speaker with a broken driver or come, you've already damaged your ears. What's scary is that one may seemingly recover, but the symptoms of the real damage may lie dormant for years and even decades.

    We now return you to our regularly scheduled programming. Happy listening everyone! :agree:
    qwerty and Gregster like this.
  13. barno

    barno Active Member

    Just reporting my experience that helped my hearing and often overlooked there Stef..... Not much more than that... Interesting thing, It improved the mid to lower midrange for me noticably without expecting anything.. But, Doc Bottlehead's Dan Schmalle said that when he had his ears cleaned, it improved the highs for him...
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2016
    Gregster likes this.
  14. SamTheSham968

    SamTheSham968 Well-Known Member

    With speakers, I only hear a very subtle change in room ambience, starting during the instrumental section just before Bing returns at 0:27 with his vocal. In trying to sort out whether the limitation is speaker placement or something else in my listening chain, I tried with headphones (Sennheisers, HD600 and also an old HD420), but heard even less through them. Is this something that also should be hear-able via 'phones?
    Joy-of-radio likes this.
  15. Stefano G.

    Stefano G. Ab alto, speres alteri quod feceris.

    This is not a test for headphones.
    Joy-of-radio likes this.
  16. Joy-of-radio

    Joy-of-radio Forum Resident

    IMO yes. No two headphone models are tuned identically. For example, my Grado RS1 tend to be topheavy. I totally agree that the effect is occurring EXACTLY in the recording as you describe. You're hearing the effect...that's a good thing!
  17. Joy-of-radio

    Joy-of-radio Forum Resident

    While this is technically so based on the title of the thread, the effect can absolutely be heard through tonally balanced headphones and equipment.
  18. barno

    barno Active Member

    It absolutely can...
  19. This effect can be heard and appreciated on headphones. However, it does require a pretty darn good headphone system to pull it off to a suitable degree.
  20. qwerty

    qwerty A resident of the SH Forums.

    I'm still waiting for my copy of Bing, I got it cheap, so I hope it actually arrives (international postage).

    I've found this an interesting test to perform and thread discussion. I'm wondering if anyone is aware of similar topics (ie, easy ways to test an audio system's fidelity/setup) which have occurred on this forum? It's something which would be hard to use the search facility to find.
  21. barno

    barno Active Member

    Haha, I have a Shawn Philips "The A&M Years CD and it always amazed me that one song like "Ballad of Casey Deiss" just sounds so rich and amazing. Then other tracks will sound so hard and nasty... It makes you wonder who was doing the "nasty" sounding mixes.. It is usually just Him with an acoustic guitar... I would think it would be tough to make that sound hard and rough...
  22. Adam9

    Adam9 Forum junkie

    Toronto, Canada
    Well I just received the CD today. I listened to it on my upstairs system (Rotel amp and Smaller Advent speakers) and it found it a great sounding CD. I was thrilled to hear the effect on "You Are Too Beautiful" easily. Tried it on my downstairs system (Denon receiver and New Large Advent speakers) and it was obvious as well. I couldn't hear it on my portable bedroom system though (Panasonic boombox).

    Edit: I definitely hear the PA maybe mixed with the unamplified voice.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2016
    Joy-of-radio likes this.
  23. mds

    mds Forum Resident

    Philadelphia, PA
    Just a question on what people are hearing. Is it a deepening in the chest cavity that all of a sudden happens? At least that is what I seem to hear. The sound is good, maybe thin and then all of a sudden it sounds as though he is singing from deep within his chest, just a fuller,richer sound.
  24. Exile On My Street

    Exile On My Street Forum Resident

    New York
    That's exactly what I hear, like he reached down and sang much deeper. I interpreted this as a 'fail' because people are describing massive reverb as if he is suddenly in a large room but I don't hear it that way. Although I do hear some reverb it's not as obvious as some are saying. When Bing hits on 'by' his voice suddenly becomes richer and deeper.
    mds likes this.
  25. all ears

    all ears Member

    Santa Rosa, CA
    A big fail here. I love the sound of my system, so while I might attempt a couple tweaks, I'm not concerned in the least if Bing doesn't cooperate. :)
    barno likes this.

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