Originally published at: Six ways to make your headphones sound better - Fairphone
So you bought a new pair of headphones, but you feel there’s something missing in the sound. Or maybe you feel your existing pair isn’t delivering the same zing it did when you first got them. Either way, there are a few hacks you can use to get them to sound better. Here are six tips and tricks to make sure your headphones are performing at their sonic best.
Experiment with presets
Do your headphones come with a dedicated app? If they do, there’s a good chance you’ll find equalizer settings and preset profiles tuned to give you a more customized sound experience. The Fairbuds XL can be linked to the Fairbuds app on your Apple or Android device, with signature presets tuned by the good people at SonarWorks. There are three tailor-made presets inspired by the most popular headphone brands in addition to our bespoke ‘Amsterdam’ preset, unique to Fairphone.
Tweak that EQ
The thing about sound is, one size doesn’t fit all. Sometimes, you need to go beyond presets and find your unique soundscape. You can customize the EQ settings on the Fairbuds XL to make sure your highs, mids, and lows are tuned just how you like them.
The low frequencies (20 Hz to 250 Hz approximately) play with the bass on your headphones, from deep, powerful thumps of the kick drum to the rumble of rolling thunder. At the other end, you have the high frequencies (4kHz to 20kHz approximately) to tweak the treble, affecting the shimmer of cymbals for example, or the twang of a guitar, as well as the crispness of a singer’s high notes. The mid-frequencies (250Hz to 4kHz approximately) is where the heart of your sound lies, and includes the range of most musical instruments as well as vocals. The mids are also what you often fiddle with to make movies and videos sound better.
Balance is key
Which brings us to balance. Finding the right balance between your bass and treble is crucial. Too much bass can muddy your sound, while too much treble can be quite harsh on the ear. Again, everyone hears different, so make sure to adjust both together for that full, clean sound.
This might look like a basic move, but it might just be what is affecting your sonic experience from one song to the next. Make sure to opt for high-resolution audio files to get the most out of your headphones. Lower quality files can limit the potential improvement in sound. In today’s streaming era, picking the highest stream quality possible does make a difference. Of course, this might come at a premium, so how much of a difference depends on how much of an audiophile you are. By the way, if you ARE an audiophile, you’ll be happy to know the Fairbuds XL comes with AptX HD codec support as well.
Keep it clean
Cleaning your device regularly can also play a difference in your sound quality. Dust is the enemy of electronic devices, hiding inside secretly. This can actively hamper performance and functionality. Sometimes, a muffled conversation or a weak bassline is because of dust being where it shouldn’t be. The Fairbuds XL has a leg up on the competition, because of its modular design. You can take the entire set of headphones apart for a deep cleanse and make it sound like new again. It also helps with easy DIY repairability, allowing the Fairbuds XL to stand the test of time. Make sure to put together it tightly when reassembling. Otherwise, you run the risk of loose parts rattling around, affecting the sound.
Repair and replace as needed
Make sure all the parts on your headphone are as they should be. For example, if your ear cushions are not making a proper seal around your ears, you will see features like active noise cancellation taking a hit. If some part is cracked, it could lead to extra vibrations that affect the sound as well. Make sure to do periodic checks and replace what is needed. This includes the battery as well. Just like any other battery, headphone batteries too can recharge only a set number of times. Explore options of getting the battery replaced if you feel your headphones are beginning to give up on you. With the Fairbuds XL, swapping in a replacement ear cushion or a new battery is not only a breeze, it is super economical as well.
What else would you do to improve the sound quality of your headphones? We would love to hear your thoughts. Join the conversation on the Fairphone forum.