Thursday, July 13, 2017

You Can't Even Trust What You Hear!

No- I'm not talking about politicians today. I'm talking about the actual process of hearing what you're listening to. I realized again this week how difficult it is to say what is really being heard.

I have had hearing aids for nearly eight years. (Years of loud music will do that to you!) They didn't have as many bells and whistles as are available today. So a few weeks ago I went for a hearing test and ended up with a new pair. So the other afternoon I was listening to some music on my computer through my headphones. I started playing around with the sound on the hearing aids.

To quote a phrase- OMG! What a difference! Not to mention that it didn't take a great deal of playing with the relatively simple treble and bass adjustments on the Smartphone App to realize I have absolutely no idea what is the real sound of the music.

Well, that's not quite true. I know all those sounds are obviously there or I wouldn't be able to hear them when I played with the controls. But what freaked me out is that I have been doing videos for years of live performances in bands I play in. In so doing I have often used sound equalization in Final Cut Pro to balance sound, drop background, allow some parts to be clearer, etc. The mind-boggling fact is that what I balanced it for was MY hearing. The result of my balancing may sound muddy to someone and a squeaky treble to someone else.


The hearing aid guy told me there are ways to make sure that things sound right (like, maybe, stop fooling with them? Nah. Won't happen.) But for now I will go back to playing with my new toys uh, hearing aids. I will let you know what I end up finding out.

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