How Often Do You Listen on Headphones at Home? - AVS Forum
View Poll Results: How Often Do You Listen on Headphones at Home?
Never 117 39.80%
Occasionally 92 31.29%
Often 82 27.89%
Exclusively 3 1.02%
Voters: 294. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 03:38 PM - Thread Starter
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How Often Do You Listen on Headphones at Home?



Headphones offer certain advantages over speakers, but also certain drawbacks. Do you use them at home, and if so, how often?

As a die-hard home-theater geek, I love listening to movies, TV shows, and even music on a multichannel speaker system. But speakers face several challenges—room acoustics, placement issues, and a sleeping family late at night to name a few. Of course, you can avoid all these problems by listening on headphones. On the other hand, headphones mostly provide a 2-channel experience, though systems such as DTS Headphone:X and the Smyth Realiser simulate surround sound in a pair of cans.

These musings lead me to wonder how often you listen to headphones in your home theater? Do you prefer them over speakers, or do you use them only to promote domestic tranquility after everyone else has gone to bed? What make and model of headphones do you use? Do you use a headphone-based surround-simulation system?

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post #2 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 03:50 PM
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I voted often, but it depends on what I'm doing.

For the ht and regular tv usage practically never.
But when I'm on my computer this is reversed and I use my logitech g930 headset almost exclusively.
Wireless is nice for computer work but I'm seriously starting to want something better, the audio fidelity in a pair of logitechs are almost cringe worthy. But they have so far stayed since voice chat is a large part of what they are used for.

If I had a better set and I could hook it up to my ht I could probably use them a lot more, but since I am bachelor and get along great with those living upstairs, when I bought 2 identical 12" subs I gave my old one to them :-P

So I don't really need to use them for ht uses.

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post #3 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 03:59 PM
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For years I use to use them almost every day! I lived in an apartment and my upstairs neighbors complained they could hear the tv thru the floor and it bothered them. For a while I tried watching tv as quiet as I possibly could, constantly turning it up or down when it got quieter or louder, etc, but they still weren't much happier and it made it hard to just relax and watch tv. Plus I also tend to mainly watch tv later in the evenings (after 10 or 11) and I think they were the early-to-bed type.

So I bought the Pioneer SEDIR800C wireless "surround" headphones. They're convenient cuz the transmitter takes spdif optical input I can feed out of my receiver, and you can use multiple headphones with one transmitter. I think they sound pretty damn good, the virtual surround sound seems fairly realistic, and the bass isn't even that bad, there's times I forget I'm wearing headphones and will try to adjust the volume on the receiver or something. Of course if you wear them a long time (hours) then they can get uncomfortable on the head/ears. Of course it's only convenient when watching alone. I did buy a second set of headphones with the thought of using them when I had a guest over, but didn't really end up using them them that way much.

Since moving out of that apartment, I only use them ocassionally, like if my wife is reading or studying or something while I want to watch tv. But wearing the headphones kinda puts you in your own world, makes it harder to talk or even be aware of what's going around you; don't even notice sounds from outside, my wife could say something or leave the room and I wouldn't even notice unless it was during a quiet part of the show/movie, etc.
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post #4 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 04:01 PM
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Scott, I couldn't vote. ...Because Occasionally doesn't apply to me anymore.

* It would have to be (more precisely): Rarely (very), which is different. ...Or which are both (occasionally & rarely) still very vague.
{I guess from the 4 options up there, "occasionally" would apply to me as the closest one - so now I voted.}

<<>> Dolby Atmos might change all that.

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post #5 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 04:16 PM
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I quite often listen to music on headphones. I love the sound of classical and jazz music on a good set of open-back headphones.

For hardware, I currently have an AKG K702 and Sennheiser HD650. I recently sold my Benchmark DAC1 and got a Denon DA-300USB, an affordable and most reliable solution that drives the two headphones perfectly.
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post #6 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 04:20 PM
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My house is not fit for loud music/movies so i use headphone often. Actually i like it. I can hear all detail and i have focus because my ears are shut off from outside word. Headphone is more intimate than speakers (probably because sound is much closer to your ear) imo.

I do not have a need to listen often to my speakers, once a while a song or a record is good enough for me. When i do use my speakers the music has my full attention. Sound is more of a real world experience compared to headphone because sound is out there in the house instead of in that thing that surrounds your ear. One of the things a like the most about the speakers is the bass.

I do not use surround options. btw according this article sound already appears to be surround when wearing headphones because headphones eliminate the sound localization cues provided by the outer ear.

I have my Grado SR225 hooked up to my amplifier (using my big fat Grado extension cable). In my experience when headphone is directly hooked up to TV sound is mediocre so i never used it on my TVs.
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post #7 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 04:45 PM
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I live in an apartment so I have an agreement with my neighbors that after 1:00am, on go the headphones. I have two sets of Ultrasone Headphones, the Pro 550 and the DJ 1. Both are great phones, IMHO.


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post #8 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 05:04 PM
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I use them several times a week to listen to music while I play video games with my wife. She doesn't like my music and don't have much time to enjoy it so I throw my headphones on and enjoy while we coop games like Boarderlands.

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post #9 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 05:21 PM
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I use my headphones almost exclusively since I went back to school. I have the Denon AH-D600 plus the AQ Dragonfly. Great for tuning out everything and studying.


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post #10 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 06:31 PM
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I use headphones daily, but only when gaming and walking the dogs.

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post #11 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 06:47 PM
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I put never, but I do occasionally use ear buds when exercising. I much prefer speakers for music and HT as I like to feel the bass as well as hear it.

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post #12 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 07:05 PM
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All of you, like me, that want to see a surround movie with a good surround experience should try the Out Of Your Head software. Maybe it's not the perfect software but it works with all kind of headphones and seems very good to my ears.
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post #13 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 07:57 PM
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If I'm watching something on my TV setup, I never wear headphones. I only wear headphones when on my PC to play games, listen to music, or watch the odd TV show.
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post #14 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 08:20 PM
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I rarely use headphones at home. I use them at home for testing purposes, it's much easier diagnose what might be an audio problem with headphones, I love to come home and listen to a good sound system, without headphones.

No surround simulation just:
AKG K 240DF my critical listening headphones
Byerdynamic DT 770, for field recording, sealed back
Audio Technica ATH-M20 simi-sealed back, for field recording that's less critical I use these good sounding but inexpensive headphones

Cheers

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post #15 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 09:14 PM
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I voted "occasionally". I have a pair of Koss Porta Pros that I enjoy and I use them to reference certain aspects of sound in contrast to my main system. I'm currently in the process of upgrading though.
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post #16 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 09:21 PM
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I use headphones and "earpods" daily with my iPhone.

What I would like to see is some surround headsets that are affordable - either USB or toslink would be fine (for AVR use). If there are some decent ones around please point them out so I can use them late at night while watching movies.
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post #17 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 09:22 PM
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While I don't use them for watching TV/movies, or for gaming, I use them exclusively when I'm listening to music. It's been this way for most of my life, and I don't foresee this changing any time in the future.
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post #18 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 10:34 PM
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Got Sonys Surround 7.1 headphone system and i can play as loud as i want with out ever bothering nobody, and im always in the sweetspot on movies.
Love them.
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post #19 of 51 Old 08-01-2014, 10:43 PM
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With my HT system: never.
With my bedroom/2-channel system, occasionally. I find the sound of my HD598s to be really pleasing (and they sound great connected to my integrated amp), but I still prefer listening to the speaker/sub combo.
Headphones for me are worn mostly while in the gym, and are of the in-ear variety. Currently rotating some beater JVCs that sound like crap, and my MartinLogan Mikros 70s.

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post #20 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 02:18 AM
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Use them daily on my iphone and computer for music. Never for TV and movies.

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post #21 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 02:40 AM
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I hate them! Too close to the ears is never a good thing and the stress they give me is distracting. Between using headphones and waiting to be alone at home so I can listen at reference level, I chose to wait.
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post #22 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 03:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 8mile13 View Post
My house is not fit for loud music/movies so i use headphone often. Actually i like it. I can hear all detail and i have focus because my ears are shut off from outside word. Headphone is more intimate than speakers (probably because sound is much closer to your ear) imo.

I do not have a need to listen often to my speakers, once a while a song or a record is good enough for me. When i do use my speakers the music has my full attention. Sound is more of a real world experience compared to headphone because sound is out there in the house instead of in that thing that surrounds your ear. One of the things a like the most about the speakers is the bass.

I do not use surround options. btw according this article sound already appears to be surround when wearing headphones because headphones eliminate the sound localization cues provided by the outer ear.

I have my Grado SR225 hooked up to my amplifier (using my big fat Grado extension cable). In my experience when headphone is directly hooked up to TV sound is mediocre so i never used it on my TVs.
Sorry to be OT.

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post #23 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 05:06 AM
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Never. When I use to play PC games it was daily though.
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post #24 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 06:26 AM
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Even though i own a great pair of M Audio earbuds, I voted NEVER. But more accurately it would be very rarely.

For TV/Movies my Def. Tech 5.1 is the way to go. Also I have always preferred listening to music in 2 ch stereo (2.1) on speakers rather than headphones.

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post #25 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 08:26 AM
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I only use them on planes and only noise cancelling ones at that. A real godsend on long flights. At home, I prefer listening on speakers.
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post #26 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 10:36 AM
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I use some Tenqa Remxd bluetooth headphones connected to my HTPC. I use them every night after the wife and kids go to bed.
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post #27 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 03:19 PM
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IMO this poll is too subjective....

This would give more objective data:
Do not own headphones
Never in past 12 months (for those that bought but don't use them or stopped)
Approx once/month
Approx once/week
Approx 2-3 times/week
Daily

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post #28 of 51 Old 08-02-2014, 03:31 PM
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Almost all of the music I listen to tends to be on my iPod through headphones. After hearing heard someone on a forum decry compressed music, on a whim I took out one of my CDs and popped it into my Blu Ray player and played it via HDMI. I was really stunned at the fullness of the sound, you really do forget when you only know one thing. But living with my parents, I tend to use headphones most of the time, or simply the speaker on my iPhone when I'm in my bedroom. The fact that the damn Dream Machine is now incompatible with iPhone 5 doesn't hell either .
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post #29 of 51 Old 08-03-2014, 06:27 AM
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I voted occasionally because i work nights. So i'm only home two nights a week. I love watching movies with My 5.1 Definitive technology speaker setup, but at night, my seven year old is in bed before 9pm. So on the occasions that I'm home at night, I must resort to using my Shure SRH840 headphones. They're not 5.1, but they sound great. On the occasion that the wife wants to watch with me, I got a headphone splitter from monoprice with separate volume controls. Her headphones are the Vmoda crossfade m100.
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post #30 of 51 Old 08-03-2014, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dnoonie View Post
I rarely use headphones at home. I use them at home for testing purposes, it's much easier diagnose what might be an audio problem with headphones, I love to come home and listen to a good sound system, without headphones.

No surround simulation just:
AKG K 240DF my critical listening headphones
Byerdynamic DT 770, for field recording, sealed back
Audio Technica ATH-M20 simi-sealed back, for field recording that's less critical I use these good sounding but inexpensive headphones

Cheers
I thought I might be the only person left w/ a pair of 240DF's....not that I enjoy them as much as my Senn 600HDs, but they do have their place.

To keep with the OP, I found myself listening to headphones at home a lot while my Onkyo was in the shop being treated for the dreaded hdmi board failure (fixed for free at least). In general, though, I much prefer speakers. Relatively, a good sound setup w/ speakers is much more expensive, but the cans just can't duplicate the spacial aspects of a well tuned stereo setup.

I do use the headphones while gaming mostly to spare the wife of my nerdness.
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