How much does one effect the other…do you have a wack measuring set up that sounds dope to you, do you only worry about measurements and not even worry about music…or indeed a combination of both?
If its something I have, then I really couldnt care less if the graph is bad as long as it sounds good to me.
BUT, when I am looking to buy something, they are very helpful to me since I cant demo anything…
A reviewer I like essentially said “If it measures like dog shit it sounds like dog shit, but just because it measures well doesnt mean you will enjoy your music”
That I find very true. That said, I think refining the science of music reproduction is super crazy important. The better our understanding of how the system works the better we can tune for it. Just how lots of modern music works best on V shaped gear bacuse thats what it was mastered for, if we can step up our reproduction standards to a higher level we can start getting better mastering methodologies as well
I think the causality between quality of mastering and quality of reproduction is rather loose.
The former is fundamentally measured by a unit sold metric, so the goal is good enough on equipment owned by those people likely to purchase it. Not that some don’t try for more.
The latter is about reproducing what has been mastered as pleasingly as possible.
Or making stuff that measures flat if your in the measurements camp.
The assumption that there is some correct rendering of some source material is just flawed.
It’s not the goal of either process.
You also can’t just stop at the ears, you need to understand the psycho acoustics of listening to even know what you should measure.
I see Crin’s measurements, go “ah yeah, these totally suck. Should not buy them,” and buy them anyways. The only headphone I don’t like in terms of stock tuning is my M40x. All others, even the EW9 that Crinacle gave a D, I like quite a lot.
Well, I also disagree with a lot of his rankings. But his graphs are very useful for me since I dont really trust any “reviewers” anymore…gotten burned too many times…
Only measurement I would pretend to care about would be MTBF, or the time it lasts before it needs service or replacement.
When buying audio things (usually less common devices), I look for negative customer reviews to tamper expectations, then “professional” reviews to give me an idea of what to expect.
Measurements matter. The correct measurements that is. They won’t tell you if you’ll like something but they WILL tell you if you WON’T like something. You really need to know what to look for though. Simple example: you want a neutral can so you find one that’s been measured by a reputable source and it measures pretty flat. Ok cool. But that can may have a resonance (aka “ringing”) at say 4K. You won’t see that on a FR graph - you need the CSD plot. Because that 4K ringing that looks flat on a FR graph may drive you absolutely insane.
I’ve got 8 IEM’s which all get used regularly some more so than others but used nonetheless and I enjoy each and every one for what they bring to the audio table and I can put my hand on my heart and say I’ve not got the foggiest how any of them graph. I came by this collection based on watching and reading reviews from a cross section of reviewers I trust, some my have shown graphs but it’s not something I dwell on it’s more how their library has been portrayed and how a set sounds to them using music.
I have very diverse tastes when it comes to music so having various sets to match a genre or mood is important to me (I don’t EQ) so knowing what their graphs look like is of no real use to me but maybe it would to some folks