Have you ever listened to headphones for a long time? You may tend to notice some things slightly off with the sound presentation. Have you ever heard of headphones imaging? After an extended period of listening, the headphones may seem irritating due to sonic blob produced by the headphones. This is what is known as ‘listening fatigue, ‘and it is not a good thing for headphone lovers.
Psycho-acoustic problems in headphones are rear and this can be explained technically. Imagine you are in a room that you are listening to music from a pair of speakers. If you switch off the left speaker, you will still listen to your music using both ears. Now, imagine listening to your music using a pair of headphones. If you turn off the left channel, only the right ear will hear the sound.
The effect of listening with one ear to the brain is so unnatural since in a normal speaker based environment both ears will hear the sound. This is what is expected in a normal situation that sound is heard using both ears. When this happens, the mind does not know how to interpret the sound it gets from one ear. The sound end up being localized, hence premature listening fatigue occurs. The technique of imagining can also be used on headphones, but this is still work in progress. There some people who yet do not believe in this great technology, but the truth is it is in the market and ready to use.
This article talks about imaging and soundstage and what affects imaging of a headphone. Are you seeking for helpful information for personal fulfillment and guidance? This is an informative and educative article which gives you all the information you need to know about headphones imaging.

What affects imaging of a headphone?

When you are listening to your favorite music on a really good and properly set up system how does it feel? It seems like the speakers disappear sonically, and what is left is music floating in the space and some pair of boxes sitting on the floor- your speakers, seemingly with no function. That is how a good setup system should work.
With the many headphones today, though, this is different. The headphones do not seem to disappear, but the music appears like it is coming from somewhere in your head. If you use a good audiophile headphone that uses the headphone imaging technique, you will notice it. The headphones tend to image just like the speakers.
Imaging in headphones is created by the way the sound producing diaphragms are positioned. They should not face the auditory canal directly. The diaphragms should face you, just like speakers do, and are not playing directly to your ear canals but across them. Here are things that affect imaging of a headphone.

1.Weighted Amplitude Mismatch

The amplitude difference between the lift and right drivers in a headset affects the imaging effect. Headphones with amplitudes matching produce the intended imaging effect. On the other hand, headphones with amplitude mismatch will have either left-heavy or right heavy image.

2.Weighted Frequency Mismatch

This is the difference between the frequency response of the left and right drivers of the headphone. Headphones that have a poor response on either driver will have an uneven stereo image. The frequencies can either be offset to the left or right instead of being centered.

Amplitude mismatch and frequency mismatch are similar. They cover the same error. The frequency mismatch does that per frequency as opposed to amplitude mismatch that does that per channel.

3.Weighted phase Mismatch

Weighted phase mismatch is the difference between the response of the left and the right drivers of the headphone. A headphone that has a phase mismatch will have a stereo image that is not centered. In extreme cases, the mismatch can push objects to the side and leave a hole in the stereo image.

Headphones imaging for gaming

The headphone imaging technique is also used in the gaming industry. It helps the user to know where something is when it makes noise when playing a game. The imaging technique will help you quickly spot your enemy especially if they are behind an obstruction. However, only few imaging headphones manufacturers manage to strike a balance between charging a favorable price and reproducing the best mixer intended.
One of the good gaming imaging headphones in the market is Sennheiser HD 800S. It so far the best when it comes to imaging and soundstage technology in the market. Investing in this headphone will give you an unforgettable gaming experience. They are well known for their excellent audio production and their comfortable design.

The sound produced by the headphones does not sound sharp or piercing sound just like other common headphones do. On a brighter side, they lack base range and will not be as powerful as the base on a closed-back headphone set. The fact that these headphones adapt the imaging and soundstage technology, you are guaranteed to get the best sound that feels like you are listening to speakers other than headphones.

Headphone imaging versus soundstage: what is the difference?
Firstly, imaging in headphones is the left-right localization of sound. This is the ability to locate a sound source like an instrument on the right-left dimension. In a normal situation, three aspects contribute to this – the sound level between ears, sound time arrival differences and phase differences of the sound. A sound source on the left side will be louder on the left side than the right side since the head seems to block the sound to the right ear. This means sound waves will arrive on the left ear sooner than the right ear.

On the other hand, soundstage is the overall sense of the left-right sounds and the sound ambiance in a recording. When listening to different instruments coming from different directions, is there a sense of ambiance to the sound? This is determined by the amount of channel separation in the recording. Therefore, if your right and left channels are totally mixed, they give a monaural sound that has no left-right dimension. All the sound will be located in the middle. This is also achievable with a good pair of headphones. The greater the channel separation in the channel recording, the better effect will be on both soundstage and imaging effect. Most headphones enthusiasts seek soundstage effect on headphones. ‘Soundstage’ is a term used to mean placement of instruments when listening to the stereo sound.


The type of headphone you choose to use greatly affects the overall experience of music listening. To achieve this, buy a headphone with headphones imaging technique. Even though the best soundstage and imaging headphones will have an impact on your wallet, investing in a good pair will always return the value of the investment.
Today, headphone technology has greatly improved. The ordinary headphones have been greatly improved to give you the best experience. With this new technology, you can rediscover your favorite track and hear every detail, balance, and ambiance that your old headset could not give. The headphone imaging technology in your headphones can make you to re-listen to your to your entire album library without getting tired. Using the best soundstage and imaging headphones will give you an unforgettable experience.

Author's Bio: 

Grace Lee is an editor, freelance writer. Enjoy singing, sports with families and being interested and curious about highly technical sphere. And loves to keep a tab on what's happening in the world of technology.