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Multimedia => Media Talk => Topic started by: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 08:38:05 am

Title: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 08:38:05 am
Try to lower your volume in case this is not good for your ears, but basically this is a video with an audio file that goes from 20 Hz frequency up to the maximum that can be heard by most humans:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qNf9nzvnd1k


Anyway, for me, starting at 5400 Hz, the volume seems to decrease in every 20 to 20000 KHz video/sound files I listened to, then around 5700 KHz it starts increasing again

I wonder if it might be my headphones, if it happens to others or if I have some hearing loss happening? O.O I know that older people hear higher frequencies less sometimes, but I thought this was weird that there are mid-range frequencies I hear less in particular
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on December 06, 2016, 09:08:22 am
didnt happen to me, but I'm only able to hear it until 18kHz (https://codewalr.us/walrusirc/smileys/bigfrown.gif) my ears!! :'(
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Travis on December 06, 2016, 11:51:01 am
I'm getting some pretty weird results. With my cheap desktop speakers there are odd stereo-panning-like effects even though there is no panning in the audio. This could be because the speakers are awkwardly placed behind my monitors, and the monitors and other crap are in a weird asymmetrical configuration (limited desk space/crappy desk/really bad eyesight that forces me to use monitors at unconventionally close distances). Maybe that results in some weird acoustics.

On my headphones, I get less of this, but still an apparent "pan" around 1800Hz, for instance, and I have some weird, very sharp dips around 4100 Hz and 6900 Hz (which don't seem to happen with the speakers). Also, I can apparently hear from about 30 Hz up to only 14.5 KHz (where it drops off sharply and I don't hear much else other than some faint aliasing noise at times), but I feel I remember being able to hear a bit higher than that not too long ago.

Now, I did have a flu or something early November, and I had a lot of fluid in my ears for a long time, and technically I'm still not quite completely over all the effects nearly a month later (I feel pretty much fine but am still coughing some), so I figure this could be having an effect, too. Maybe I'll have to wait another month or so and see if things are any different then.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on December 06, 2016, 11:52:16 am
tried it with apple headphones had no such weird experiences. Only the fact I couldnt hear super high stuff...
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 07:38:17 pm
@Travis have you tried putting one of your ear next to each speaker while blocking your other ear to see if it makes any difference? Try with each ear. If you see a difference then maybe your hearing abilities became slightly different from ear to ear?

In my case I used to be able to hear very high pitched sounds slightly when at max volume, such as this in 2009 https://www.omnimaga.org/humor-and-jokes/if-your-over-18-you-wont-hear-anything/ , but I just listened to that MP3 clip Eeems posted in that thread and nowadays it's no longer the case. On http://www.noiseaddicts.com/2009/03/can-you-hear-this-hearing-test/ , 14 KHz is the max I am able to hear. That said, headphone quality might come into play there, but I could be wrong. I am using $25 headphones right now (from back when the only expensive headphones being sold in Canada were EB Game exclusive's Turtle Beach)
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: gameblabla on December 06, 2016, 07:56:09 pm
I don't hear anything after 18khz.
I'm glad to hear (see what i did there lol) that unlike my vision, i don't seem to suffer from hear loss.
Probably because i don't listen to music that much (and when i do, i never increase over 75%) and i never went to parties.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on December 06, 2016, 07:59:10 pm
trolling plans for next year:
create fake scientifical news website talking about serious ear problems among teenagers, linking to youtube vid.
edit the youtube vid so the volume goes down after 15kHz and its only silence after 16kHz
Sell ebook on "how to fix my hear loss"
:trollface:
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 08:00:19 pm
I bet the many concerts I attended around 2012-15 as well as the pubs I went to did it for me, but again I am 30 years old and they say most people above 18 won't hear the sound in Eeems topic on Omni.


One serious issue I had since I am teen, though, is how I can't hear what people are saying if there is a lot of noise around
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Streetwalrus on December 06, 2016, 08:08:38 pm
I'm not sure if it's my speakers (can't crank it very loud either cause my mom complains :P), but I can only hear up to around 16khz.
I only hear a gap in volume around low frequencies (60-100hz), I suppose it's due to the transition band between my subwoofer and my speakers, which is weird considering I have the cutoff frequency maxed out on the sub.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 08:26:48 pm
That's weird. In any case, I hope that me not hearing high mid-range frequencies did not cause my created music to have all sort of weird crap going on in the 5.5K-6K range that only others can hear... O.O
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on December 06, 2016, 09:29:20 pm
probably satanic massages if you play the songs backwards? ;)

nah ur songs were aresome (except the 10k beats per second stuff...) ^^

@Streetwalrus have you tried with different headphones, too?
I still cant hear any changes in volume. it only goes down for me at 18kHz as I cant hear anything past that point...
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Juju on December 06, 2016, 09:40:31 pm
I get my hearing loss at around 13 kHz. Did that test before, it's getting lower and lower for me...
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on December 06, 2016, 09:45:14 pm
uuh okey, that sounds bad... :(

maybe we should turn this topic into a poll "how much can you hear" or something like that, I wonder mine (18kHz) is the average... ^^
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Streetwalrus on December 06, 2016, 09:57:52 pm
Quote from: p2 on December 06, 2016, 09:29:20 pm
@Streetwalrus have you tried with different headphones, too?

I'm using my stereo, and my speakers are quite good.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Travis on December 06, 2016, 11:42:04 pm
Just for the record, the way I listened to the test video was by setting the volume to the maximum that the loudest-sounding frequencies were still comfortable to hear, then left it there. I didn't crank it up further to try to hear the high frequencies better. Under these conditions, my hearing range is apparently 30 Hz to around 14-15 KHz right now.

I listen to music on headphones frequently, but usually no more than a couple of hours or so at a time. I prefer decent or maybe even rather high volume but try not to go overboard. But I have no idea what sound level it would equate to. Other than that, I'm not normally exposed to loud noises.

It's known that people inevitably lose the ability to hear high sounds as they age, though frequent exposure to loud sounds without protection accelerates the process.

Quote from: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 07:38:17 pm
@Travis have you tried putting one of your ear next to each speaker while blocking your other ear to see if it makes any difference? Try with each ear. If you see a difference then maybe your hearing abilities became slightly different from ear to ear?


That makes sense. Maybe I'll try it with the headphones on and playing sound out of just the left side, then the right side, and see. I seem to remember listening to some demonstrations of some interesting auditory illusions once that involved left vs. right ear sounds but can't remember what it was now.

QuoteIn my case I used to be able to hear very high pitched sounds slightly when at max volume, such as this in 2009 https://www.omnimaga.org/humor-and-jokes/if-your-over-18-you-wont-hear-anything/ , but I just listened to that MP3 clip Eeems posted in that thread and nowadays it's no longer the case. On http://www.noiseaddicts.com/2009/03/can-you-hear-this-hearing-test/ , 14 KHz is the max I am able to hear. That said, headphone quality might come into play there, but I could be wrong. I am using $25 headphones right now (from back when the only expensive headphones being sold in Canada were EB Game exclusive's Turtle Beach)


My headphones are a Seinnheiser model and were much over $25 (I don't remember the exact cost but it was over $100; I bought them several years ago), and I consider them very good quality. But it could be that another pair of headphones would give me another result. Unfortunately, I don't have another pair handy to test at the moment.

It could be that my onboard motherboard sound is crap quality, too. Who knows. (I will say that there's more noise and interference in the analog output than should be considered acceptable.)

I would certainly expect the quality of the speakers, headphones, and other equipment to play a big factor, so this stuff is tricky. At the very least, don't use something like a cheap $5 microcassette voice recorder and speaker to judge your hearing abilities or you might think you can't hear anything over 4000 Hz or so. :P
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on December 06, 2016, 11:48:04 pm
I bet that people living in cities suffer from hearing loss much earlier, because they constantly have to deal with loud noises non-stop from vehicles on busy roads. >.<

Could someone have issues hearing a certain mid-range frequency due to hearing too many loud noises around those frequencies and still hear low or very high frequencies fine? If for example someone was always exposed to loud white noise I mean.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Travis on December 07, 2016, 08:33:26 am
I tried the test again with one ear at a time, and the results I got are still consistent; that is, where the sound appeared to pan to the right, I heard a dip in volume when playing it just in my left ear.

However, I also found that while the dips always seem to occur at roughly the same points, the effect seems to vary slightly depending on exactly how the headphone cups are positioned on my ears. So I have some suspicion that at least some of this is due to the headphones. If I manage to find a different set to test, I'll report the results of those.

Another thing I discovered: the waveform this video plays seems to be altered a bit, presumably due to the lossy audio compression. So I can hear aliasing noise (or some other artifact) at frequencies above and below my actual threshold of hearing, which makes it confusing to tell the actual range. When I generate and play raw, uncompressed sine wave tones in Audacity at those frequencies I don't get this noise. The spectrograms of the raw sine tones vs. the ones in the video also appear different even though the waveforms look and sound more or less the same. Finally, it's possible that the high frequencies are actually filtered a bit when the video is encoded for quality reasons (again, to suit the audio encoding scheme used).

So, I think a more accurate test would require a video using only uncompressed or losslessly-compressed audio.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on December 07, 2016, 08:38:19 am
Yeah I recommend using some of the audio files on the other site. That said, I bet even at 320kbps Mp3 quality, someone might notice some artifacts, even if minimal. Youtube quality is often very crappy.
The most accurate test would have to be a WAV/FLAC file or something.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on December 07, 2016, 08:59:43 am
Are you super old maybe...?

Another posibility is these stupid sound systems you use against mice and stuff...
You almost cant hear them as they are working on pretty high frequencie but when having them around for too long it affects your hearing abilities, too.
and because you almost can'T hear some of those sounds, they sound like 10dB but actually are at 60dB or something like that...
(for your hearing ability, they're similar to living next to a busy street, despite the fact you just almost dont hear it because of the higgh frequencies)
maybe your neighbors used such a thing for a few years?
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Travis on December 07, 2016, 09:34:34 am
I'm 34, and I don't know of any of those ultrasonic mice repellents ever being used around me.

I tried the clips on the noiseaddicts site DJ posted. 14 kHz appeared to be the highest I can hear, except for on the 21 kHz clip only, I hear a faint, lower hum that definitely doesn't sound like 21 kHz. I got a similar effect with certain frequencies in Audacity above 20 kHz, but not the same ones. I still think there's some kind of aliasing going on.

So I set the project sample rate to 96 kHz instead of the usual 48 kHz (don't know if my sound card can actually do 96 kHz, but figured I'd give it a try), and the weird phantom tones at frequencies above what I can hear disappeared.

Then I realized that the faint clicks that happen when a sound starts and stops seemed to be having a psychological effect of making me think I was hearing the tone when I really wasn't (because the clicks were cluing me in to when the tone started and stopped), so I went through a series of tones in Audacity with quick fade-outs at the end to avoid the clicks. Then, if I could tell that the tone stopped with my eyes closed, I decided I could hear the sound. So now, finally, it looks like roughly 15,300 Hz is the frequency where I begin to have trouble reliably recognizing the tone, at least with the headphones I'm using.

And I thought determining my hearing range was going to be a simple task. :P
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on March 13, 2017, 09:42:40 pm
Quote from: p2 on December 07, 2016, 08:59:43 am
Are you super old maybe...?

Another posibility is these stupid sound systems you use against mice and stuff...
You almost cant hear them as they are working on pretty high frequencie but when having them around for too long it affects your hearing abilities, too.
and because you almost can'T hear some of those sounds, they sound like 10dB but actually are at 60dB or something like that...
(for your hearing ability, they're similar to living next to a busy street, despite the fact you just almost dont hear it because of the higgh frequencies)
maybe your neighbors used such a thing for a few years?
It's possible that certain sounds we hear daily at work or home could have done it, although I rarely hear very high-pitched noises. Maybe they're there but I can't hear them much or it's caused by low-frequency sounds such as machinery or car engines?

In any case, though, my main problem is hearing what people says around me while other noises are occuring, eg if I am pushing an empty shopping cart on cement and someone behind me says hi, I probably won't understand it, while if I am pushing 3-4 shopping carts at once, I will not even hear him at all. That issue has been going on since much earlier than my frequency hearing loss, though.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: p2 on March 13, 2017, 09:54:06 pm
Why would you push 3-4 shopping carts full of cement around at the same time...? Also as far a I remember u didnt have legs and arms like John Cena, so how do you do it?  O.O

is it because of an actual hearing problem? Or is it rather a problem with distinguishing sounds?
If it is the second, u could try watching movies while listening to music ;) Sounds stupid, but it might help u improve at that point ^^
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on March 14, 2017, 12:00:55 am
I meant empty shopping carts rolling on a cement floor, not full of cement lol. And my job involved pushing shopping carts in large amounts, and when they're empty they're very noisy when pushed around on top of an uneven surface like concrete or asphalt.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: _iPhoenix_ on March 14, 2017, 12:38:50 am
Just saying, this looks REALLY cool through a spectrogram. Also, the Shepard Tone (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shepard_tone) looks absolutely awesome, and isn't as bad on your ears.

You aren't the only one. Looking it up, it appears this has been noticed before, and under spectrogram there is absolutely no volume changes as you described. I then analyzed the sound coming out of my speakers, and for me, it is pretty consistent. Therefore, I assume it is our ears, perhaps due to fatigue. Also, your ears desensitize to higher pitches first, so I guess volume loss is the beginning signs of that.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Travis on March 14, 2017, 04:15:26 pm
I don't consider myself that great at trying to understand speech with too much noise, either. I often have trouble working out unfamiliar syllable/accent patterns even in crystal-clear speech, for that matter. (But I also get kind of OCD about trying to understand every single word, which means rewinding a TV show a million times and then giving up and turning on the closed captioning just to figure out one particular word. Very annoying, but that's a whole different story. :lol:)

I've to the conclusion that (at least in my case) the odd dips in sound level I'm hearing are likely just my headphones. Whether that's considered normal or a result of headphone age/wear I have no idea, but I got different results when listening with desktop speakers. Also, reading around, it seems that my cutoff frequency of around 15 kHz is considered more or less normal for my age.

Oh yes, the Shepard tone is pretty cool. :)

One more random tidbit I thought I'd throw in: According to Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hearing_range), there are animals like certain bats and whales that can hear beyond 100 kHz but not below 1 to 10 kHz, which means they probably can't hear human speech at all. :D
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on April 21, 2017, 11:08:03 pm
My main issue really, ever since I am like 14-15, maybe even before, is understanding what people say while there is full of noise around. Maybe I got Sensorineural deafness, which can apparently appear right at birth or later.


And yeah there are animals that can hear sounds of very high frequencies, which is why they can communicate with each others from far away, while we won't hear anything.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: Travis on July 25, 2017, 02:28:53 am
I know this is an old topic, but here's an interactive page that makes it much easier to investigate hearing thresholds and such than that YT frequency sweep clip: http://www.szynalski.com/tone-generator/

You can slide the frequency around at will to look for dips/peaks in the sound. It might also be useful for getting an idea of frequency response and setting up equalization for your sound setup and such.

I notice the same apparently rather sharp peaks and dips with my (somewhat pricey) headphones, and the upper limit of my hearing still seems to be centered right around 14.5 kHz. I get a different set of peaks/dips on my dirt-cheap desktop speakers, and in fact it seems the latter actually sound more flat (though not perfectly so), at least as far as sine waves go. O.O No idea if it's my hearing or something wrong with my headphones or if maybe it's actually normal. I'm still trying to research this. One thing I'm starting to think which complicates matters is that there's a big difference between what a "perfect" frequency response measuring tool reads and what we actually hear, as I'm pretty sure the frequency response of our ears is anything but flat. Probably by design, even--for instance, in normal hearing the most sensitive hearing range is said to be at around the frequencies that are crucial in speech/communication, which probably isn't a coincidence.
Title: Re: Am I the only one? (sound frequency hearing levels)
Post by: DJ Omnimaga on July 26, 2017, 07:07:40 am
Around 12 KHz there's a dip that ends around 12.2 KHz or so. But the dip is only noticeable at low volume. After 13.9K I hear nothing. Also what I noticed is that 2.5K to 3.5K or so is louder.

Something I wonder is if sensory issues caused by autism spectrum disorder or other things like that can affect what frequencies you can hear.