The CDP does not cause the tinnitus, it only helps to present the audible affects. Tinnitus is a ringing in the ear. Your CD player, and many are delivering frequencies that are instigating the affects of your ailment. It is likely that when the same music is played through your turntable, that these specific and likely higher frequencies are being rolled off and therefore not instigating the same inner ear affects. Tinnitus can be a sign of several different things, some of which can be very serious. I would consult initially with an audiologist and/or an ENT.
You have several good points here.
I had considered that the dynamics may be different, possibly the high freq might accentuate it, or even the speakers were contributing.
One thing I was interested in is if it were possible the cdp creates any emphasis on higher order harmonics.
The effect is not subtle, it's got to the point that even through headphones plugged into the cdp I can only take a few minutes, even at quite low level listening.
I can't figure out why the TT rig lessens the effect to such a high degree.
Just curious if any others had noticed this at all.
I also noticed your same results and finally found the cause of the ringing. I was playing with electrical outlets and changed to a FIM 880( all brass contacts) and the sound noticeble relaxed and the imaging improved. I also felt a relaxing in the upper frequencies that seemed more natural to my ears.I always thought it was digital that was responsible for this, but, now feel that digital is just showing what is truly in front of it.Neddless to say that all my outlets will now be brass in nature.Take care Dennis
Try an outboard DAC-should smooth things out enough to enjoy the music
Thanks for the ideas. I will try a different power source and see what happens. For the last few years I've had the cdp plugged into a BPI, I wonder if that could cause any problem here.
Thanks for the tip
Perhaps Machina Dynamica has a product for those who percieve this problem?
I sometimes noticed a definate "tinnitus effect" when listening to my system. Aside from the fact that I am getting older, I believe this ocassional experience of high frequency ringing may manifest from the superior playback ability of high-end equipment, thus perhaps revealing mastering errors. For example, I have the new B&W 802D's that, with the diamond tweeters, register way beyond "normal" human hearing in the high frequency range... and I have an excellent Wadia CD player also. I especially notice this with certain jazz piano music, especially when accompanied by delicate brushed cymbals, i.e.,in jazz trios. It almost sounds like a cell phone is quietly ringing in another room. This phemomena does not happen on all my CD's but only on some which leads me to my above opinion concerning mastering issues.
I highly doubt the tinnitus was caused by any electronic device/playback, but as previously suggested, may be aggravated by certain frequencies. I know, as I had tinnitus for years until I discovered the cause (acoustic neuroma)and got treatment. As someone else suggested, do go get it checked out. It's probably nothing, but sometimes it could be a sign of something more serious, and the earlier you treat it the better off you are, especially if you are an audiophile and love music. Trust me, I lost roughly 255-30% of my hearing in right ear (and thats lucky) because I waited several years to get checked.
What is "acoustic neuroma", and what was the treatment?
I've been watching this thread with interest, as I'm a tinnitus sufferer myself. I do think a new digital source or DAC would be likely to help; in a situation very similar to yours, it did for me. I still can't listen to my iPod at even low volumes (using AIFF files and AKG K501s) because of the experience you describe, but I can now listen comfortably through my speakers and headphones--and at higher volumes than before--using a Sony Playstation One. The Playstation aside--it's all I could afford to experiment with, and it's good enough I'm sticking with it for a while--I've since also listened to a number of other highly resolving digital systems I _loved_, with no tinnitus aftershock.
Tinnitus can be temporarily exacerbated by a lot of things--from music to coffee to alcohol--but Ckoffend is right: it happens when the tiny hairs in your inner ear that convey the highest frequencies are permanently flattened over, and a "detailed" CDP or system that emphasizes--or overemphasizes--those frequencies is going to hit them harder. For me, I find myself gravitating toward--and saving for--gear that is a little gentler in its presentation. For example, I'm now looking forward to swapping my K501s for a pair of Sennheiser HD600s, which I heard last weekend at Lyric Hi Fi through an Antique Sound Lab headphone amp with a Pioneer Elite DVD as the source: THAT's the sound I'm looking for, and I didn't feel it lost anything in terms of resolution. I could have listened for hours. Good luck with the medical and audiophile aspects of this.
Acoustic neuroma is benign brain stem tumor. It grows slowly, sometimes over decades, with symptoms ranging from tinnitus to gradual/complete hearing loss to balance problems to facial nerve spasms or weakness. The tumor rests on a block of nerves that include auditory, balance and trigeminal (facial) nerves. Although it probably won't kill you, if it grows large, it can certainly mess you up. There are two treatment options: surgery and radiation. There are two very distinct schools of thought on each, and doctors who specialize in either will push their specialty and denegrate the other. I chose radiation treatments (mild, no nausea or hair loss or stuff like that)at Johns Hopkins and, knock on wood, 5 yrs later, I'm doing great, and only lost some of my hearing and can still enjoy my audiophile habit. Sorry to go off topic, but if it helps anyone, I'm glad to help. Jeff
RWBadley ... fairly convinced you're inventing scenarios ... which is too bad both for you and for those who suffer from tinnitus ... mine began several years ago ... in no way associated with music or loud sounds ... and today floats between noticeable and not-noticeable regardless of what I've been doing or am doing ... anecdotal on my part, and most certainly so on yours ... give it up, please
As someone who has had tinnitus on/off for several years, mine was only really noticable at night when I was trying to sleep. It had the sound of "motor hum" a lower frequency noise. Interestingly enough it has been less noticable in the past year. I never noticed that listening to music made it worse. In fact many people need a bit of background noise/music to help reduce the effect.
I've never hear that listening to music made it worse. If that is the case then I suspect that you have more of an inner ear issue.
I also have the low freq motor hum. This one comes and goes and I haven't yet figured out the cause. Feels like around 70-100 hz maybe.
The issue I've most suffered is a high freq sound. I don't know the freq range, but seems like is more on the order of 6-8khz or like that. It becomes more intrusive during some music playback. It will then be more pronounced for a period of time then subside again.
I have time available in the next week and will be getting an overall health checkup. At that time I'll see if there may be a systemic cause or what.
Thanks to all for your well thought out replies.
Arkprof, from a sufferer of tinnitus (as you have stated) it surprises me that you are making such a statement. My wife is an audiologist with 10 years of undergraduate and post graduate training and another 15 years of practice. The idea that tinnitus may be set-off by certain audible situations (one of which could certainly be music/sound related) is not unusually rare, though not necessarily common either. Unfortunately, many people who suffer from tinnitus may simply be less congnizant of the situations preceding specific occurances.
On another note, I cannot sleep with my watch on, as the noise of the watch (with my wrist underneath) my pillow keeps me awake. I cannot hear my watch through just air when it is more than 12" away from my ear. If I am driving down the road during the summer with my window open, I can hear the power lines hum/buzz (if the lines are running next to the road). When I mentioned this to my wife she said this was impossible, that the noise from the open window in the moving car would overpower the hum/buzz from the power lines. She later tested my hearing in the sound booth at her clinic. She stated that I could hear certain frequencies at volumes that were lower than what normal human hearing should be able to discern. Don't get me wrong, I certainly am not one of those golden eared people that can hear super subtle differences, such as changing some cables (I can hear differences in some cases, just not all) or the difference when cables are on stilts vs. just on the floor. Also, I cannot sing worth S*#T, to me it always sounds like I am perfectly on key - but everyone around tells me I am no where close!
Now that you have a hearing complaint it would be worthwhile to have a hearing test. This might shed some light in your case. Further evaluation or reassurance might result.
And a baseline test could be very useful to you if later in life you have some other hearing changes.
We humans only have so many senses.
I have not got my ears checked by a specialist yet but I suspect I have tinnitus. Apart from listening to music at loud volumes, simple actions such as closing the door with a bang or talking loudly will trigger a slight ringing in my right ear. The ringing will only occur after the door is closed, or after I have finished the last sentence of my conversation. The ringing is slight and minor but is certainly there. Are these signs of developing tinnitus?
Any advice would be appreciated.
Excellent Isolation of your CD player and conditioning of your entire system will reduce a 'ton' of the cd 'noise' that bothers your ears.
I have extreme tinnitus and have therefore have gone to extreme lengths of isolation and found it 'transformed' my listening pleasure(and I listen daily).
I use an Equitech 2Q balanced transformer for the dedicated AC power to my system, and an MIT Z Iso HC and Z Ztabilizer ll for my CDP. Stunning improvement. Feel free to ask for details. Good luck.
To get back to the topic of this thread. RWBadley, as Psacanli has suggested, isolation and conditioning of the entire system will help. However, I believe the room is actually the biggest factor in reducing the effects of ringing in your ear apart from avoiding listening at high volumes. Apart from standing waves and modal ringing in the room, midrange and high frequency reflections can actually cause a lot of displeasure to the ear especially if the acoustics of the room is a bad one. Previously I have only diffusors at the rear wall. Just when I felt the reflections might be too much, I placed some of my left-over absorption panels at the rear, in other words a mix of absorption and diffusion, and the net effect is pleasingly advantageous not only in improving the room acoustics but in reducing the intensity of ringing in my ear as well.
If room acoustics have not been addressed, I would think it is worthwhile to look into it. You have to realize that loud noise exposure which includes high intensity music is a very common cause of tinnitus. Apart from listening at low to moderate volumes, a good room will definitely help alleviate the problem to a lower level. The effects of the room will be 10X greater in comparison to the CD player IMO.
Just food for thought.
I have found a better CDP - more "organic", maybe even rolled-off, Tubes in my Amps, soft-domed rather than metal Tweeters in my speakers, power conditioning, isolation devices for CDP and Amp and room dampening/diffusion have all made an audible difference to my tinnitus-affected listening.
And I agree the room was the single biggest factor in my particular journey.