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How Has Your Hearing Changed Over Time?


SWL
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My hearing as far as music listening goes has changed considerably in the last few years. Most notably the high frequencies. I just turned 50 recently and I would think that as one gets up there in age the treble knob would go up as well. I've known older guys that have gone in that direction and that seems to make sense to me.....but I have been the opposite.
 
Also, three years ago I put Dave A's MAHL tweeters in my speakers. Like many others have said, they are on the hot side but are very clear and smooth. With a little EQ I liked them very much.....until I couldn't handle it anymore. I put the stock tweeters back in (with titanium diaphragms) and everything seemed right.
 
I dunno.....for years the only way I listened was balls to the wall. For the last 5-7 years or so I listen normally just below 70db. I regularly let it rip on the weekends though only for a short period of time.
 
Anyone have similar/opposite/unusual circumstances with their hearing over time?
 
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The drone of four R-3350s in a B-29 ruined my father's hearing above 6 kHz, yet in his later years he could still hear the difference between cassette and CD.

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I've gotten my hearing tested about every five years since my mid-fifties. That first test showed a slight loss in the highest frequencies. Each subsequent test the loss has gotten a little more severe and  moved further down in the frequency range, but it still isn't too bad...nothing that can be improved with hearing aids. What has caused me more problems over time is the tinnitus. That causes problems hearing things like female speech when there are competing noises. As you might imagine, my wife is not particularly happy with that. It doesn't seem to cause much problem when I'm listening to music.

 

I've always listened with my tone controls flat. When I get everything set up in the house, I'm going to do some testing with an SPL meter and see if I need to do some tweaking.

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With age comes greater sensitivity to loudness, perfectly happy to listen at reasonable quieter volume now, about 70 db.  When I started this game back in 1980, Klipsch speakers were marketed as speakers with kick, I would often take advantage of this capability for a few songs, well over 100 db.

 

Probably just normal high frequency loss, sometimes some tinnitus.

 

As for EQ, I value the tone controls, and like to add a couple of db to the bass, and roll the treble off a couple of db.  

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On 3/2/2022 at 3:55 PM, SWL said:


I dunno.....for years the only way I listened was balls to the wall. For the last 5-7 years or so I listen normally just below 70db. I regularly let it rip on the weekends though only for a short period of time.
 
SWL, I believe that someone hacked your account based on the above statement.🤣  I enjoy your system when you let it rip, it's like being at a live concert!

 

I know that you like to switch out your gear on a regular basis, could that be part of it or are you still listening to the KLF-30's?

 

It could also be related to tinnitus, which I have had for many years.  By reducing the volume for the last 5-7 years doesn't make up for the early years.🤘

 

Did you have someone else give your system a listen recently?  Another set of years could confirm if it's you or your system.


 

 

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Yes, I have a certain level of tinnitus/ear ringing. I am a heavy equipment operator and although I wear hearing protection 100% of the time, it's my understanding that vibration is something that can't be avoided and plays a detrimental role in this regard.

Add that on top of years of loud concerts etc. In my own evaluation, I feel like I hear accurately but the mild ear ringing is merely a nuisance and distraction.

Before I continue on and pretend that I'm not a deaf MFer like the rest of you guys......let's forget about hearing loss for a bit and let me crank this next song. Rock on.

Sent from my SM-G991U using Tapatalk

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With age comes greater sensitivity to loudness, perfectly happy to listen at reasonable quieter volume now, about 70 db. 


I can totally relate to that. My main system has a sweet spot established at 11 feet/equilateral triangle. I never listen loud in that room anymore. Loud volumes at that close of a distance is just annoying to me these days. However I have no problem cranking it in a secondary basement system that is a wide open area.



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I was tested in a quiet chamber by an audiologist friend while I was in my 20's.  I could hear easily into the 17 kHz range with a hole in my hearing around 15 kHz.  That means sound was there, as the frequency changed, the sound went away and then returned.  "perfectly normal" to have a hole in your hearing I was told.

 

I'm now 66 and have self-tested with Youtube vids.  I can't hear anything above 12 kHz.  Subjectively, I don't feel any different in terms of what I can hear out of recorded music.

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I would like to find out. Nothing that I can notice at this point - I have always been very cautious with my hearing. My last test was over a decade ago though. At that time I had a comment from the audiologist that my hearing was considerably better than average for my age, whatever that means.

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10 hours ago, wvu80 said:

 

 

I'm now 66 and have self-tested with Youtube vids.  I can't hear anything above 12 kHz. 

these are pretty lousy hearing  tests -I would not take these results for granted

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15 hours ago, RandyH said:

these are pretty lousy hearing  tests -I would not take these results for granted

 

Agree.  I know there are better methods than listening to one's home speakers using Youtube.  I look at it as a quick and dirty test just for fun.

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Interesting as I just had a professional hearing evaluation with my new insurance after turning 65. I have a test chart from 30 years ago that shows I've lost some high frequencies, but the audiologist said if he were just looking at my test results instead of me, he would have predicted a mid 40 year old. So I got nothing to complain about. But I've been pretty careful with my hearing but I now regularly work on big drilling rigs that can be quite noisy.  So...ROCK ON Garth!  

 

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I’ve had my hearing tested professionally a couple of times in the last eight years, as part of a long-term study on aging, and was given a Pass both times.  The test only goes to 8 kHz, though.

 

My hearing sensitivity seems unchanged, in that I can dependably hear very low-level sounds.  However, it often sounds to me like people are mumbling, and this has worsened in the last few years.  In conversation, I sometimes have to ask people to repeat themselves.  As a result, I usually watch TV with the subtitles turned on, and find this is especially important when hearing unusual words or names.

 

Ironically or luckily, I’m not sure which, the last few upgrades to my stereo have increased its resolving ability, to the point where I’m now picking up on details in long-familiar songs that I’d never noticed before.  Also, twelve years ago, my building had an extensive remediation, which included installing the latest in high-insulation-value windows.  Not only do they keep out the heat and cold, they keep out the city noises, so that the living room’s noise floor is now much lower than it was with the previous drafty windows.  Closing a window now is like watching TV and turning off the sound.  It’s that dramatic, and everyone in the building was very pleased about that, since the building is right downtown.

 

Speaking of ambient city noise, one big difference between Toronto and Victoria is the presence of highways in Toronto.  They run across the North, South, East, and West, so that anywhere in the city you can hear the sound of tires, faintly in the dry, and more loudly in the rain.  In Victoria, the nearest highway is North of the city, and it leads directly away from the city, not across it, so that faint or not-so-faint sound you’d hear in Toronto, depending on where you were, is not part of the local audioscape.  New word.  Do you like it?

 

As a former 12-year railway employee, another sound I could almost always hear in Toronto was the sound of locomotive engines.  There are several main lines, as well as a commuter train line, running across the city.  The bass content of the sound helps it carry across the city, but most people never notice it, until you point it out and they listen carefully.  The commuter trains are only six or twelve cars long, so their locos can pull them up to cruising speed fairly quickly, at which point they’re throttled back somewhat, becoming much quieter.  For the freight locos, it’s a different story, as they may be pulling as many as 100 cars, so they have to pull at full throttle for a long time, resulting in much more noise, or sound, if you enjoy hearing unmuffled turbocharged V-12 and V-16 engines that put out 3,000-4,000 horsepower.  That’s the sound that drones faintly across Toronto, but is unheard of in Victoria, or anywhere on Vancouver Island, since there’s no rail service here at all.

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Here in downtown Victoria, the main noise is the sirens:  ambulance, Fire Department, and police.  We have all three, but luckily you can go hours, or even a day, without hearing one.  This is the first place where I’ve noticed pedestrians covering their ears as a vehicle with a siren screaming drives by, and now I do it too.  The streets aren’t wide, and with all the new high rise buildings that have popped up in the last decade, the sirens get lots of boundary reinforcement, or reflection, whichever is more accurate, so it can get really loud at street level.

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10 minutes ago, Islander said:

Here in downtown Victoria, the main noise is the sirens:  ambulance, Fire Department, and police.  We have all three, but luckily you can go hours, or even a day, without hearing one.  This is the first place where I’ve noticed pedestrians covering their ears as a vehicle with a siren screaming drives by, and now I do it too.  The streets aren’t wide, and with all the new high rise buildings that have popped up in the last decade, the sirens get lots of boundary reinforcement, or reflection, whichever is more accurate, so it can get really loud at street level.

I'm veering a bit off topic, but... my last project before I retired was with the University of British Columbia. Unfortunately, I never made it to Vancouver Island, but it's on my list. You live in God's country.

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17 minutes ago, Islander said:

Here in downtown Victoria, the main noise is the sirens:  ambulance, Fire Department, and police.  We have all three, but luckily you can go hours, or even a day, without hearing one.  This is the first place where I’ve noticed pedestrians covering their ears as a vehicle with a siren screaming drives by, and now I do it too.  The streets aren’t wide, and with all the new high rise buildings that have popped up in the last decade, the sirens get lots of boundary reinforcement, or reflection, whichever is more accurate, so it can get really loud at street level.

It is a nice town, not too large or small. Sort of the sweet spot.

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6 hours ago, YK Thom said:

It is a nice town, not too large or small. Sort of the sweet spot.

 

Since Victoria’s the Provincial Capital, and a holiday destination town, its arts and culture scene is like what you’d find in a much larger city.  There are three annual music festivals alone (International Jazz Fest, Ska and Reggae Fest, and the Blues Bash), as well as a number of other music events, including free summer concerts beside City Hall.  As well, you can drive right across the city in 15 minutes, so many people walk, scoot, cycle, or even skateboard to work.  You also see quite a few of those 3-passenger bicycles that carry an adult and two small children.  The mild winters make it possible to get around like that all year.  It makes a very pleasant change, if you’re accustomed to very snowy winters, like in nearly all of Canada.

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I am in similar age as SWL. I had my hearing damaged still in young age and tested then in my 20s, my right ear hears 70% of what my left ear is hearing. I was not into hi-fi that far back so I can not tell but in last decade I do not feel much difference in my hearing. I also tried that youtube videos with frequency tests, with decent headphones I can hear between 13-14 MHz. But in real life, it appear that does not change so many things. I can hear many if not all differences and nuances in various systems when visiting audio shows. What matters is I still can enjoy music. Yes, sometimes I feel that turning the treble a few notches up could help, but it might just as well be the recording.

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