Is flat frequency response a hoax?

I have seen a number of speaker companies claiming that their design has a ruler flat response. They then proudly display a graph with a flat line as if it's an indication of its superior quality. Poppycock.

Flat response is a myth. Everybody has different hearing so there's no reason to expect that there would be a one size fits all frequency response.
We don't all wear the same sized shoes do we? Everybody has different sized feet. 

There are plenty of flat response speakers that sound horrible. I've heard quite a lot. There are many non ruler flat great sounding speakers too.
Do not be duped by this hogwash. 

If the mixing engineer used a pair of speakers that is 3db down in the mids and top end then he may have boosted that region by a similar amount. Now when the track gets played on a ruler flat speaker it sounds too bright. So as you can see, a flat response is useless.


Showing 9 responses by kenjit

I quit eating ice cream because none was custom built for my taste buds.

You're using the wrong analogy. The audiophile community is quite big. There is no similarly large community of ice cream eating enthusiasts that is as fastidious about the flavor of their ice cream as audiophiles are about sound. 

You are either not a real audiophile or you are in denial. If you dont care about sound quality, what makes you an audiophile?

You may be duped into buying a speaker because its designer says its perfectly flat. This is a myth. What you need is a speaker that is tuned to your ears not a flat response. 

If you disagree, you need to state your reasons and stop being sarcastic. 

but sound very different because of phase shifts (different harmonics summing). Still, all measurements are useful.
poppycock. if different harmonics are summing they will show up on the frequency response. 
In monitoring the recording the volume its played at affects the balance they hear which in turn affects the response they build into the recording. In short the only way to hear what they heard is to play it at the volume they heard it at.
There are many factors that affect the response they build into the recording. Playing it at the same volume is not the answer. Your hearing is unlikely to be the same as theirs. Thats going to affect what you hear
Why ask a question when you, once again, have all the answers?
Because some people may not know the answer and need to be taught. Other people may not be willing to accept the truth and they may need a bit of persuasion. There are many myths in this hobby that need to be revealed. 
why so many recordings have a playback volume that sounds "right".
nonsense. I will play my music at the volume that suits me. If it doesnt sound right then it needs to be fixed. Why should we be forced to listen at a particular volume? 
Speakers should not be flat because everybody has different preferences. Why dont speaker companies take that into account?
Just like with any mass produced product, the quality will never be true high end unless its custom tuned to your ears and your needs. 
We are being deceived. 

Have you considered (Gasp!) a little EQ to tailor your speakers sound to those “exquisite” ears? Every recording, and I do mean all of them, you have ever listened to has been “EQ’ed” in some way before your ears ever heard it...
Thats exactly what ive been urging people to do on here. Do you use EQ? Do most audiophiles use EQ? No they dont. Why not? 
You apparently think every designer should consult with the individual they are building each and every pair of speakers for and then spend massive time and money on the "one off" build out of that pair.  
whats the alternative? Its to mass produce a cheap speaker and claim that it has been tuned to suit each and every audiophile out there and in the process make a lot of profit. 

Why do you think brands have a few to sometimes several models and lines?
 because its a scam. More speakers = more profit. 
If ready made speakers can’t be found to suit your tastes....perhaps build your own?
I have already stated my compelling arguments that we are all being duped. I'm not the only victim. We all are. Some just dont want to accept it. Every person has a different hearing response. You agree with me yet you seem reluctant to object to the majority of audiophiles who dont even use EQ. That would be a start towards customization wouldn't it?

In any case EQ cant be the only answer to this. If it was, all we would need is any pair of speakers and a graphic equalizer. 

Mass produced speakers are fraudulent. You have been warned.