Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Talk about your MIDI interfaces, microphones, keyboards...

Moderators: khz, MattKingUSA

User avatar
funkmuscle
Established Member
Posts: 2261
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:30 pm

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby funkmuscle » Tue Jan 09, 2018 3:56 pm

CrocoDuck wrote:
funkmuscle wrote:Dude that's amazing! If you can figure this out that would be amazing for people like myself that are stuck in the bedroom that's not setup for mixing.


Seems like David already wrote a program to do it, and did a tutorial on how to use it. It looks like a Matlab thing. Not sure whether the code is available somewhere, but it looks simple in principle.

Now for the hardest part: finding time to make an enhanced cool Linux version...

hey CrocoDuck, check this out:
https://www.ollo.si/play2me

and here is a sample mix from a dude in the facebook Mixbus group
https://clyp.it/3hbsjjwx
his comments:

Code: Select all

'Wow is a proper statement here. I've never heard a headphone mix sound that good before.'
 'the thing is the feeling and sound is like using Monitors with a sub'

User avatar
CrocoDuck
Established Member
Posts: 1052
Joined: Sat May 05, 2012 6:12 pm
Contact:

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby CrocoDuck » Sat Jan 13, 2018 10:42 pm

funkmuscle wrote:hey CrocoDuck, check this out:
https://www.ollo.si/play2me


I just had a cursory look at it, but I am not really convinced about any of that.

It is true that low frequency sounds propagates well through liquids, cavities and solids, such as blood, organs and bones. Hence, I see potential truth in the claim that their pillow thing can for real enhance perception of low frequency. In fact, low frequency attenuation for ear protectors, for example, will always be lower due to the effects of your body cavities and bones (but also wave propagation laws at low frequency and lumped system behaviour).

What I don't really understand is how an arbitrary boost in low frequency perception, arbitrary due to the different transmission line offered by your body, can really make for a better balanced reproduction system. The risk I see with that is excessive boost of low frequency, and hence unbalanced mixes. I wouldn't be surprised if most of the people happy with that were just hyped by the low frequency, which usually gives a feeling of enhanced "depth" and "spaciousness", thus biasing the perceptual judgment of it regardless of how it actually balances things out, which is what we aim to really.

They seem to offer a bundle with Sonarworks calibrated headphones, which I am more and more convinced that are not really optimal. Good balance can be made only on the user ears. If done on some other measurement system, even someone else ears, it will fail. There is more evidence to this even in David's slides.

I think the beauty of David's method is that it uses loudness perception, which is the most reliable of human's sound perceptions together with pitch (and the best understood one), to calibrate systems on users ears without needing probes and invasive methods. I would rather bet on an enhanced version of David's method than a pillow that will arbitrarily boost low frequency.

Still, there is one thing to be said: depending on the headphone low frequency boost without low frequency distortion might be hard to reach at all listening levels.
Check my Linux audio experiments on my SoundCloud.
Browse my AUR packages.
Fancying a swim in the pond?

User avatar
funkmuscle
Established Member
Posts: 2261
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:30 pm

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby funkmuscle » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:03 pm

CrocoDuck wrote:
funkmuscle wrote:hey CrocoDuck, check this out:
https://www.ollo.si/play2me


I just had a cursory look at it, but I am not really convinced about any of that.

It is true that low frequency sounds propagates well through liquids, cavities and solids, such as blood, organs and bones. Hence, I see potential truth in the claim that their pillow thing can for real enhance perception of low frequency. In fact, low frequency attenuation for ear protectors, for example, will always be lower due to the effects of your body cavities and bones (but also wave propagation laws at low frequency and lumped system behaviour).

What I don't really understand is how an arbitrary boost in low frequency perception, arbitrary due to the different transmission line offered by your body, can really make for a better balanced reproduction system. The risk I see with that is excessive boost of low frequency, and hence unbalanced mixes. I wouldn't be surprised if most of the people happy with that were just hyped by the low frequency, which usually gives a feeling of enhanced "depth" and "spaciousness", thus biasing the perceptual judgment of it regardless of how it actually balances things out, which is what we aim to really.

They seem to offer a bundle with Sonarworks calibrated headphones, which I am more and more convinced that are not really optimal. Good balance can be made only on the user ears. If done on some other measurement system, even someone else ears, it will fail. There is more evidence to this even in David's slides.

I think the beauty of David's method is that it uses loudness perception, which is the most reliable of human's sound perceptions together with pitch (and the best understood one), to calibrate systems on users ears without needing probes and invasive methods. I would rather bet on an enhanced version of David's method than a pillow that will arbitrarily boost low frequency.

Still, there is one thing to be said: depending on the headphone low frequency boost without low frequency distortion might be hard to reach at all listening levels.

If you join the Mixbus FB group, you'll see that Tom, the Admin is very old school.. he was a skeptic until her purchased the Ollo stuff. He is blown away by it and as you can hear, a pretty good mix done through headphones. Maybe it's his years of being an engineer so frequencies come naturally but I was impressed with the Play2Me thing.
So maybe join the group and question these seasoned engineers, maybe we're missing something.
If the method from David is even better and you figure it out, Linux will be onto something for bedroom engineers. :-)

User avatar
CrocoDuck
Established Member
Posts: 1052
Joined: Sat May 05, 2012 6:12 pm
Contact:

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby CrocoDuck » Sun Jan 14, 2018 11:51 am

funkmuscle wrote:If you join the Mixbus FB group, you'll see that Tom, the Admin is very old school.. he was a skeptic until her purchased the Ollo stuff. He is blown away by it and as you can hear, a pretty good mix done through headphones. Maybe it's his years of being an engineer so frequencies come naturally but I was impressed with the Play2Me thing.
So maybe join the group and question these seasoned engineers, maybe we're missing something.


Experience of other people is not evidence, especially on psychoacoustics. These sort of things can only be understood by experiment and measurement. Still, I don't doubt that in many situations a device like that is gonna improve mixing results.

For example I can imagine that pillow to be the best way to simulate. in your room, how your mix is gonna sound in a club, as it will make you hear the bass through your body. That's something I can easily think as realistic.

What I think this device will for sure fail to do is giving a neutral sound reproducing system, which is what we are after. It just can't (*). This doesn't mean it is useless. After all, they don't claim the purpose of the thing is to offer neutral sound reproduction, now that I look at it again.

David's method is pretty much just an audiometric test. It is a tweaked version of what your doctor does to check your loudness perception. I think it is the best way to calibrate a headphone (or also speakers) for neutral reproduction.

It depends on what you need. If you need neutrality the pillow cannot help for real (*): the amount of low frequency anybody will perceive will vary because their body and even the chair you sit on will have a role. If you need to simulate how your mix sounds in a club-like environment, where low frequency is so loud to make your body vibrate, then I cannot see any better tool than that pillow. It will do just that, but without blasting low frequency for real in a confined space.

(*) Well, actually nothing forbids to apply David's method to headphones and pillow... this should make possible to calibrate that too... Oh, in that case, if we calibrate a headphone + pillow system with David's method, it would be also neutral... Uhm...
Check my Linux audio experiments on my SoundCloud.
Browse my AUR packages.
Fancying a swim in the pond?

User avatar
funkmuscle
Established Member
Posts: 2261
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:30 pm

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby funkmuscle » Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:30 pm

CrocoDuck wrote:(*) Well, actually nothing forbids to apply David's method to headphones and pillow... this should make possible to calibrate that too... Oh, in that case, if we calibrate a headphone + pillow system with David's method, it would be also neutral... Uhm...

interesting!

Fourstepper
Established Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Mar 26, 2019 5:47 pm

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby Fourstepper » Tue May 07, 2019 7:54 pm

Hi guys, did anyone get the latest Reference running on linux as systemwide? I lately don't make much music anymore due to work duties, but I still love to have proper sound and am using linux basically exclusively now.

Thanks for any advice/guide in this regard,
Robin

User avatar
sysrqer
Established Member
Posts: 1821
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2013 11:47 pm
Contact:

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby sysrqer » Wed May 08, 2019 6:32 pm

Fourstepper wrote:Hi guys, did anyone get the latest Reference running on linux as systemwide? I lately don't make much music anymore due to work duties, but I still love to have proper sound and am using linux basically exclusively now.

Thanks for any advice/guide in this regard,
Robin

Hi Fourstepper, you need to load the vst in a host to start with. As far as I know only Carla can do this so install that if you don't have it, you can find it in the kxstudio repo if you are on debian/ubuntu based distro - https://kx.studio/Repositories

Then route your applications to carla and choose your preset in Sonarworks.

To set it up so there's no hassle and is always set up when you reboot there are a few ways. Currently I am using qjackctl's patchbay function, it basically saves connections so things are routed to carla rather than automatically connecting to the wrong output or not being connected at all. Just connect all your applications to carla and route carla to your soundcard and go to qjackctl > patchbay, create a new preset, save, activate. Then add carla to your autostart so it loads automatically. I've only just started with this set up but it seems to require you to 'activate' in qjackctl sometimes when you reboot so it applies the connections. I would recommend catia or patchage for doing the routing, it's just clearer for me rather than qjackctl.

You can also use a combination of cadence and claudia from kxstudio. Set up jack in cadence and select to load ladish session on startup, create a studio in claudia, add carla to it and load sonarworks, save claudia. I think you also need to create a preset for carla with sonarworks loaded and then save the studio in claudia. I can't remember what happens with connections this way, I think you need to select 'ignore self requests' in the jack settings of claudia but after that connections are remembered as far as I remember.

Fourstepper
Established Member
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Mar 26, 2019 5:47 pm

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby Fourstepper » Sun Jul 14, 2019 3:59 pm

Hello,

this guide was very helpful for me to create systemwide functionality, works like a charm: https://www.reddit.com/r/headphones/com ... _on_linux/

I will probably create a video about this as well sooner or later

User avatar
Capoeira
Established Member
Posts: 1226
Joined: Tue May 12, 2009 1:01 pm
Location: Brazil

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby Capoeira » Thu Aug 15, 2019 11:18 am

funkmuscle wrote:
tramp wrote:Maybe this is of some use for you:
https://github.com/ShanonPearce/ASH-BRIRs

Even if it is developed for a windows EQ, the HPCFs been implemented as IR wav files and could be used with any Convolver.

Hmm, thanx bro! This got me thinking. Would IR files of good mixing rooms work for headphones? I mean simulations of mixing rooms from the point of view of engineer to monitors.


I am trying it out right now and I can't believe my ears. I had to fiddle around a little with the routing to make it work. it was 1am as I sudenly had the right configuration. I was configuring the left channel only. when I had it right I thought my left monitor was actualy playing (which would suck since it was 1am). I knew that my monitor where off, I saw it had no lights on, but I still had to take my headphone off to be sure. it is that realistic my people.
and yes, their headphone correction works like Sonaworks, too (pro-tip: the ridicoulus cheap Superlux 681 turns into a $1000 headphone)

If there is interest I create a seperate topic for this

on a sidenote: room correction can by done with http://drc-fir.sourceforge.net/

User avatar
funkmuscle
Established Member
Posts: 2261
Joined: Mon Jun 02, 2008 2:30 pm

Re: Sonarworks Headphone Calibration Software

Postby funkmuscle » Thu Aug 15, 2019 11:40 am

Capoeira wrote:
funkmuscle wrote:
tramp wrote:Maybe this is of some use for you:
https://github.com/ShanonPearce/ASH-BRIRs

Even if it is developed for a windows EQ, the HPCFs been implemented as IR wav files and could be used with any Convolver.

Hmm, thanx bro! This got me thinking. Would IR files of good mixing rooms work for headphones? I mean simulations of mixing rooms from the point of view of engineer to monitors.


I am trying it out right now and I can't believe my ears. I had to fiddle around a little with the routing to make it work. it was 1am as I sudenly had the right configuration. I was configuring the left channel only. when I had it right I thought my left monitor was actualy playing (which would suck since it was 1am). I knew that my monitor where off, I saw it had no lights on, but I still had to take my headphone off to be sure. it is that realistic my people.
and yes, their headphone correction works like Sonaworks, too (pro-tip: the ridicoulus cheap Superlux 681 turns into a $1000 headphone)

If there is interest I create a seperate topic for this

on a sidenote: room correction can by done with http://drc-fir.sourceforge.net/

Please do start a separate thread as we don't want to hijack this and I am definitely interested in finding out what you did.


Return to “Computer Related Hardware”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests