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Golden Ears? Spatial Processor Plugins
Old 17th May 2018
Gear Addict
mitchiemasha's Avatar

Golden Ears? Sounds We Can't Unhear

What with Yanny and Lauren exploding all over social media right now, which is very similar to the Tritone Paradox that many of us here should know about, it got me thinking about an old audio illusion i stumbled upon...

Sounds we can't unhear... I can't find the original example i heard, it was better but this one will do.

Here's my theory. Mix/Mastering engineers with the so called Golden Ears might be missing this trait normal people have. They always hear what they hear, not filling in any gaps. We all know how we expected to hear our sound and once we've heard it, we can never hear it for the first time, again. If you lacked this trait, you'd always hear it as is.

This also stems into my beliefs how different genres are completely bizarre to other listeners. They haven't journeyed the path that sound has followed to evolve to become as it is. The extreme is less if you heard the songs before them.

I'd be interested to know, how these audio illusions play out on the kings of the field.

Last edited by mitchiemasha; 18th May 2018 at 09:14 AM..
Old 18th May 2018
Copied from my FB page --

I have to admit, when I tweaked the audio and brought it to a specific level, I could literally change what I was hearing simply by thinking of the one I wanted to hear. Not unlike that "spinning girl" GIF file from some years back.

At first, I figured there was no way in hell anyone could ever hear anything but "laurel" and it's quite obvious that's what the recorded word actually is. But through careful EQ manipulation combined with turning down to a specific volume, there's no doubt that I'm sure some people hear "yanny" every time. #laurel #yanny
Old 18th May 2018
Gear Addict
mitchiemasha's Avatar

I hear Yanny by default but after some listening picked out Lauren. I suppose The device will play a huge part in this. Turning the tweaters down helped me. It's all to do with which frequencies our brain prioritises.

I guess those who here Lauren prefer lower voices or are used to lower voices, Yanny higher! Quite like the TRITONE PARADOX. Where we here th next note as higher or lower depending, when in actuality there are 2 notes, both higher and lower at the same time.

However, my intention here is a much more to do with the sounds you can't unhear. When we thing about that phenomena and connect it to mixing mastering theory, it's a Pandoras Box.

Have a read.

I wish i could find the original example i found some years back.
Old 18th May 2018
Gear Nut
JR Mastering's Avatar

This is strange. There are dozens of sites that have this recording. Some I hear Laurel clearly, some I hear Yanny. But it's consistent. What i hear on these sites doesn't change. This might be a scam. Ha!

I've won concert tickets several times by guessing songs where they only give you one hi hat or drum hit. Basically you have to guess 5 songs given 4 drum hits and a hi hat. I picked all 5 songs in 10 seconds. My hearing and memory is great.

That being said, this yanni laurel thing is irreverent to mixing and mastering for me. I'm basically matching EQ levels, brightness, boominess, clarity, overall loudness compression levels against commercial radio quality standards. This is different from guessing words or song lyrics.

And correct, I don't fill in gaps or second guess anything. It's a sonic match, it's close, or it isn't. And then I do what i need to do to get a sonic match.
Old 21st May 2018
Gear Addict
mitchiemasha's Avatar

Thought it might of been a more interesting subject. Has nobody got more insight on this? Has anyone done the sounds you can't unhear test?

Do you hear it as is every time or do you fill in the gaps like most of us? Our brains using the pre acquired knowledge, even if we've consciously forgot?
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