Are my ears broken? Reply #25 – 2009-12-17 17:42:37 Quote from: greynol on 2009-12-17 17:25:51I've often wondered how much of an impact this has in helping people successfully ABX with headphones.If the resulting overall frequency response is comparable with what you'd get from speakers (which is the idea) then it shouldn't make any.What is hugely different is the impulse response (i.e. no reflections vs lots of room reflections), and the interaural separation (i.e. perfect vs only a few dB). I've always assumed this is what makes most of the difference.More practically, good headphones are arguably available far more cheaply than good speakers - so more people get to hear what's actually in the recording with headphones than speakers.There are things you can't hear on headphones though. Most obviously, if the recording has transaural processing, and the encoding damaged it, you wouldn't hear this so clearly (or at all) through headphones, as the original undamaged effect wouldn't work properly anyway.A lot of audiophiles would claim that certain recordings (they consider them to be good recordings) have sound staging that is somewhat like that created by transaural processing - i.e. significant front/back depth, and sound sources that extend beyond the speakers.Problem with this argument is that even low-ish bitrate mp3 preserves both binaural and transaural signals just fine! In fact it's one of the last properties to be destroyed as the bitrate is lowered - persisting long after transparency and even transient response have been audible compromised.Cheers,David.