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Thread In-ear monitors... the down side....?

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claytonian@sbcglobal.net

claytonian@sbcglobal.net

11 posts
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1 Posted on 04/19/2016 at 10:14:03
I'm watching "The Voice" which I think is the best-of-breed on the i-box right now... I hear allot of pitchy vocals and I'm thinking it might be due to the ( now ) nearly universal use of in-ear monitors...?

In the studio, I'll often recommend a singer leave at least one side of their headphones off so they can hear an uncompromised open acoustic version in addition to the feed into their ear canal ( along with the consequent resonances caused by their own unique physiology )... Most of the time with in-ear, I hear people no quite getting there when shooting for the high notes, in other words... they're singing flat.

Has anyone experienced a similar effect and do you know of any studies which might illuminate this question..?
Mike Levine

Mike Levine

1066 posts
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2 Posted on 04/20/2016 at 07:42:23
Quote:
Has anyone experienced a similar effect and do you know of any studies which might illuminate this question..?

I haven't heard of any studies like that, but it's an interesting question. Even if what you postulate is true, the question still remains, do the benefits of in-ear monitors (quieter stage sound, less ear damage, better customization of mixes, better sound out front due to lack of monitor wedge bleed, hearing oneself louder), override the potential pitch issue? I would vote yes on that. Still, while I'm sure you're right in some cases, I think in-ears are beneficial, in most cases, from a pitch standpoint. If they caused pitchiness, why would so many major touring artists use them? After all, wedges are easier from a setup standpoint (no worries about fickle wireless frequencies), and cheaper than in-ear systems overall. My assumption is that the reason the switch has been made to in-ears is that they simply work better and provide more control than wedge-based systems.
claytonian@sbcglobal.net

claytonian@sbcglobal.net

11 posts
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3 Posted on 04/21/2016 at 10:57:59
Thanks for your perspective... Those who have made the switch are certain to endorse their choice ( simple human confirmation bias ), and especially because it is new and sexy, but I'll be interested to watch over time to see if the real benefits ( and they are substantial ) do indeed override the need for a perfectly-pitched vocal...

Interestingly, you bring up another phenomenon which is the apparent lack of concern ( in some new artist's ) for a well tuned vocal... I first began hearing some of the top vocalists singing tuneless melodies about 15 years ago, and it seems to have become "a thing" in some circles... I'm a dino and things do change, so-it-goes...and I'm now remembering Bob Dylan...Hum mm...???
claytonian@sbcglobal.net

claytonian@sbcglobal.net

11 posts
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4 Posted on 12/10/2020 at 11:20:25
Now, more than ever, I'm convinced in-ear monitors are degrading performance... Again, currently on "The Voice", most of the contestants who make it thru the trials have great pitch... But they are all singing out of tune, and I'm certain if they'd just leave one ear open to natural sound, and by virtue of the transmission of their voices thru their jaw-bones, they'll be better off... :P:
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