Poll

What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?

Headphones
5 (45.5%)
Speakers
4 (36.4%)
Surround system
2 (18.2%)

Total Members Voted: 11

Author Topic: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?  (Read 6408 times)

Ekstasis

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What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« on: January 28, 2009, 10:23:58 PM »
What is the ultimate way to experience ambient music if you have a choice ?
If you have any more option you want to add...please tell me...

My choice is Headphones...


sio

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2009, 06:32:50 AM »
Mine is listening on my 5.1 system, no preset so it doesn't change the sound, just a discreet Pro Logic II Music.

Bill Binkelman

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2009, 08:52:55 AM »
IMO, there is no one ultimate way...it depends on the type of ambient music, your mood, and other factors. For some ambient music, I think a dark room and good stereo speakers is the way to go. In other cases, perhaps headphones. And I think some ambient music is best heard in a car...yes, in a car driving on deserted rural highways at night. So, I can't answer that with a single statement...

...except I will say that I don't usually enjoy ambient as much on headphones except in short bursts because, frankly, no matter which headphones I have owned, none are very comfortable because of the shape of my head and the fact that my ears stick out more than is "normal" which means eventually the pressure of the headphones starts to hurt my ears.

Ekstasis

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2009, 12:24:22 PM »
I have never actually had the opportunity to listen to a professional sound system..besides my headphones which is of studio reference standards...
But it is way more demanding to get a good sound with a speaker system, it cost many times more, and you also need a room directly adapted to your sound system..
But I still feel you come closer to the music in headphones, it is like it does echo inside your mind, the music have a more subconscious presence in your mind, I think it is hard to get that same experience with a speaker system.

I have always wondered what it would feel like, to perceive sound waves through the wind, sometimes while I am standing in the forest against the wind, I do in my mind I hear distant music in the wind......I would wonder what it would feel like to feel the pressure of sound waves touch you... while you feel totally absorbed in sound waves and they massage your body...

SunDummy

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2009, 01:13:35 PM »
Ideally, I'd have a top-notch stereo system cranked while floating naked in a darkened isolation tank with Naomi Watts...   ;D

But in the real world, two good speakers, spaced properly along one wall, with plenty of furniture and carpets to keep reflections in check, and I'm happy.

I prefer stereo speakers over headphones, which feel too confining.  I also like how the sound fills a room, so that moving around in the space (like getting up to get a glass of wine) changes the sound - it's more enveloping to me than headphones.

Surround sound (unless the music is specifically mixed for it) sounds too 'artificial' for my tastes.  Anybody remember Carver's Hologram Generator from about 20 years ago?  This little unit recaptured the placement information of each instrument in a recording, so that you could hear it in 3D, effectively placing each musician clearly within the 3 dimensional space.  It worked great for live recordings, or orchestras, but sucked for studio stuff.  To me, that's how suround sound sounds - too forced.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2009, 01:18:27 PM by SunDummy »
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Scott M2

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2009, 01:49:41 PM »
I highly recommend Diatonis' ambient surround-mixes.
He's set the bar high for ambient surround works.
It doesn't sound forced or un-natural. Just the opposite.
Beautiful musical sound environments.

hdibrell

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2009, 02:26:21 PM »
I, too, prefer listening on a good stereo system. Headphones sre good for a certain experience , but I miss the feel of the sound all around me. I think at times I can hear or feel the sound through my chest as well as my ears. I like the Pauline Oliveros quote that 'she listens to music with the soles of her feet'. I would like to learn more about surround sound , but have only heard it in "hi-fi" stores.     Harry
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Altus

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2009, 05:13:08 PM »
The ability to shut out the world with headphones makes it my preference.   I also enjoy hearing the little nuances you might miss listening on speakers, as well as allowing one to hear the stereo field clearly.
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APK

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2009, 06:07:08 PM »
The ability to shut out the world with headphones makes it my preference.   I also enjoy hearing the little nuances you might miss listening on speakers, as well as allowing one to hear the stereo field clearly.

My thoughts exactly.

There is an intimacy and total immersion with good, comfortable headphones that I don't find with speakers.

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Wayne Higgins

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2009, 09:49:12 AM »
Whenever I am doing something else and want ambient music to fill my atmosphere as opposed to commercial infested garbage.
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DeepR

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2009, 02:21:08 PM »
In the dark/at night, in bed, with headphones, eyes closed.

For me the ultimate way to listen to all ambient/atmospheric electronic music. It adds so much more to the experience than just 'casual listening' (eyes open / no headphones / while doing something else).

The only true test to determine how much I really like the music. My all-time favorites in electronic music all came to be after listening sessions in bed.

At the risk of sounding arrogant, but I have a hard time taking people's opinions on ambient serious, if they never listen to ambient like that. If there's one genre in music that just asks to be listened to this way, it's ambient.

Ekstasis

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2009, 06:17:38 PM »
In the dark/at night, in bed, with headphones, eyes closed.

For me the ultimate way to listen to all ambient/atmospheric electronic music. It adds so much more to the experience than just 'casual listening' (eyes open / no headphones / while doing something else).

The only true test to determine how much I really like the music. My all-time favorites in electronic music all came to be after listening sessions in bed.

At the risk of sounding arrogant, but I have a hard time taking people's opinions on ambient serious, if they never listen to ambient like that. If there's one genre in music that just asks to be listened to this way, it's ambient.

I agree with you with 100%
It is only in night in bed with headphones I can fully sink into the music and shield of the outer world completely.
I also always use an "Mindfold" (can be bought from steveroach.com)

Both Steve Roach, robert rich and Asianova probably give me the most deepest listening experience...

Bill Binkelman

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2009, 06:54:18 PM »
In the dark/at night, in bed, with headphones, eyes closed.

For me the ultimate way to listen to all ambient/atmospheric electronic music. It adds so much more to the experience than just 'casual listening' (eyes open / no headphones / while doing something else).

The only true test to determine how much I really like the music. My all-time favorites in electronic music all came to be after listening sessions in bed.

At the risk of sounding arrogant, but I have a hard time taking people's opinions on ambient serious, if they never listen to ambient like that. If there's one genre in music that just asks to be listened to this way, it's ambient.

Yeah, I'd say "arrogant" just about covers it for me.  ;D (but only kinda  ;D, the rest is  >:( )

sraymar

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2009, 03:45:26 AM »
So far, for me anyway, hearing it live through a good PA. That with visuals and comfortable seating wins the cigar.

Steve
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Sighthound

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2009, 08:33:03 AM »
I like listening to ambient music: On headphones, in the car, on my 5.1 surround, and in person.  As long as I can be immersed in the sound, how I listen at that time is the best way.  I've been to live performances that did nothing for me, and I've been to live performances that totally enfold me in the sound.  A lot depends on mood.  Some stuff sounds good on the 5.1, other stuff doesn't, but sounds pretty good on the cans.  Could be daylight, could be night.  Oh, heck, It's all good!  :)

petekelly

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2009, 09:07:58 AM »
 
I'm in the headphone camp - well the earphone camp actually.

I use my Shure E500 in-the-ear phones for serious listening. They keep noise out and I love the
'immediacy' of the sound. Have to be very careful about volume levels though, as they are so close
to the eardrum.

Was wondering if any of the headphone people have heard good quality binaural recordings ? I've
been involved in surround sound in various guises and a good binaural recording is quite an
experience.     

cheers
Pete

Ekstasis

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2009, 09:52:40 AM »
I have never tried professional ear-phones, only really cheap ones.
If I buy an mp3 player some day, I might consider to buy ear-phones.
However, I could never imagine that they sound anything near as good as full size headphones...(it is at least very hard to imagine)

ffcal

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #17 on: February 03, 2009, 10:19:34 AM »
I tend to split my ambient listening between speakers and phones.  I tend toward speakers during the day and phones at night.  I like the sound of my Grado phones, but they can become fatiguing to wear after a while.

Forrest

Scott M2

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #18 on: February 03, 2009, 10:42:20 AM »
I have never tried professional ear-phones, only really cheap ones.
If I buy an mp3 player some day, I might consider to buy ear-phones.
However, I could never imagine that they sound anything near as good as full size headphones...(it is at least very hard to imagine)


To properly appreciate ambient using an mp3 player with earbuds - these are your only serious choice.


Scott M2

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Re: What is the Ultimate way to experience Ambient music ?
« Reply #19 on: February 03, 2009, 12:28:12 PM »
And these are the only speakers currently approved for serious listening to glacial ambient.