I suppose if you use your PC for a sterio. Mine is stricly gaming.
I paid much more for my headphones than my speaker set, so I found that they had better sound quality, and used them much more than my speakers.
So much so that I ended up giving my speaker set away, from lack of use.
If you paid more for a set of headphones that you did for your speakers, you really can't make a valid comparison between them. "Real speakers" can cost thousands of dollars and the listening experience can be unparalleled. I well understand money, space. parents, family, and neighbors, so I sympathize completely, but at the end of the day having a set of phones clamped over your ears is really the second best listening experience. People tend to turn headphones up to way loud, so they're bad for your hearing as well.
Its true that I can't compare it like that, but I posted that fact so you know what influenced my decision.
I believe that having a set of phones clamped over your ears is the best listening experience, as you don't have to build a room to spec, and cover with acoustic foam and all that, as well as having the speakers positioned properly to enjoy what would really be the best listening experience possible.
As for turning them up to way loud, really, you can do the same with speakers as well, with the same effect on your hearing, with the addition of the hearing of those around you. The point is kinda moot there.
Also, with the right pair of headphones, they are really comfortable. They might be a little bulky with padding, yet I've never heard anyone complain about weight (5.1 earphones are a different story, those aren't really "good quality").
Thinking about it, I cannot figure out any application in a professional setting where the use of speakers is preferable to headphones when good sound quality is required.
As I said, the first part of my original reply deals with the unfortunate side effects of dealing with other people, not with the methodology of supplying music via loudspeakers. For me anyway, "the best possible listening experience", varies with , source, mood, and whatever else I may be doing simultaneously. Accordingly, I use my sound system appropriately. IE; 5 channel surround for serious movie (and concert DVD) watching, and simple 2 channel stereo for getting me up, and out of the chair focused on doing something productive.
In this case, music listeners tend to be their own worst enemies. The potential for abuse is readily available for headphone listeners, since they don't have to answer to other people, and normally listen at much higher volumes. Headphones don't require the same amount of amplifier and speaker cone area to produce a much higher amplitude of sound. They're firing right into your ears at "point blank" range. The effect that headphones have of "making it seem like you're right there", is a byproduct of a small drivers' dramatic transient response, coupled with the extremely close proximity to the eardrum. I agree completely, that you can also ruin your ears with loudspeakers. But the point isn't totally moot, since you're much more likely to do so with phones.
Modern multi-channel sound recording techiques, (especially for movies), is oriented around the ability we have to localize sound. For example, a well recorded concert DVD should place you in the middle of the crowd when it's time to applaud, and in the front row when Mettalica (or whomever) is playing. You really can't develop this sound field with headphones, not even the crappy 5.1 kinds.
Professional sound engineers use loudspeakers to do their final mix, for a variety of reasons.
Sound from loudspeakers is delivered to the whole body in general, and quite a bit of it reaches the ears through bone conduction. Large loudspeakers move large quantities of air so this aspect of "listening" just isn't present with headphones. To be sure the drivers in headphones will fake low bass, but they won't deliver the fact of it. Basically, with a set of full range decent quality loudspeakers, the sound washes over your whole body, and (for me at least) it doesn't get any better than that.
Okay, lets not discuss how people might use headphones or speakers, that tends to be very subjective.
Fair enough, for movies, 5.1 surround may be the only way to truly enjoy them (more than 5.1 perhaps?). However, you'd still have to invest in a really high end system, spacial sound does not rate higher than sound quality, until a certain threshold is reached anyway. I'd rather be able to listen to the actors talking, than to just hear that they're talking somewhere in front of me instead of behind, that kinda of thing.
I'm not sure about professional sounds engineers tho. Most recording companies (according to my friend, who works in the industry), uses headphones. I might be wrong, since its second hand info anyways.
Either way, I'm sticking with my trusty set of headphones
Total crap mate, ANY well known and respected sound engineer will use a set of speakers for a final mixdown. PERIOD.
Thanks for the tag in, I had been expending too much effort pointlessly trying to finesse that....!
Speakers are better in general and if you're alone you can at least hear the phone!
Headphones, not everyone wants to listen to what I'm listening to.
Can anyone recommend a good set of headphones? Mine are getting a bit worn out and most the ones I see in the stores are either too small or too big or have some big fat control on them that requires a double A battery.
I have the Beyerdynamic DT 880s, they are amazing headphones, but they also have an incredibly high ohm rating so you need a fairly powerful system to drive them.
Then I also have a pair of Polk RTi 10s with a Polk CSi 5 center channel. 2 smaller floorstanding Polks for surrounds (forget the model number) and a Klipsch 12" 650W Powered Sub.
I can't complain about either the headphones or speaker setup I have.
i defenately cannot play with out sound. i need to hear whats going on, hear the footsteps of thos who i will soon destroy, i think sound is an important part of gaming.
i use headphones for the sole reason i live with 4 others and do not want to disturb them, if its me and one other person i would like the speakers because there are no wires around you and you dont have anything jammed into your ears.
i have laptop so it has pretty horrible speakers. I got some shure noise canceling earphones and i have to say they rock. awesome for travel.. just put them on and u can have ur music at low volume and its crystal clear in the subway and on a plane.. i have tried both. but then again my friend has a really good 5.1 speaker system which i am going to buy nxt.
I prefer almost any good pair of headphones over speakers. I can hear a lot more clearly when playing CS:S, etc. and mine drown out sound around me (not all the way like I want, but they were $20, so yeah...).
headphone, no one in my house want to hear my stuffs.
I use both and it depend on what time and who is near me or if I disturb then I change to headphones...
I don't speakers but I use my head phones. Besides, my speakers are busted.
If you don't use speakers, how did you break them?
Oh I didn't exactly break them. Long before I use to simply use my laptop speakers but then suddenly one day they just died out. At full volume you can barely hear anything from them, unless you put your ear up to them.
It was after that I started regularly using head phones.
I prefer headphones. They just seem to give a lot better quality.