[Marxism] Comp Help Needed - Reverb In Online Spoken Videos - Cure?

Jeff meisner at xs4all.nl
Tue Nov 10 15:20:33 MST 2009

At 16:45 10/11/09 -0500, Bill Quimby wrote:
>I find that many of the online videos I want to see - on YouTube
>for example, are recorded in class lecture halls with no sound
>absorption. The result is that the video sound has a high degree of
Actually the reason is because they placed the recording microphone
somewhere in the room, rather than on the podium in front of the speaker's
mouth (or equivalently, using a feed from the sound board). The sound
quality was ruined before it even got digitized.

>Admittedly my computer has a very old - 10 years at least -
>sound card, and trashy speakers.
This has nothing to do with your computer per se; it is an audio problem

> Is there anything I should do
>or can do to improve the sound quality on my end
Not much, but I can make one suggestion. More of the reverberation you hear
is at lower frequencies whereas most of the useful speech information is at
higher frequencies. Frequencies below 300 Hz are unneeded for comprehension
(as are frequencies above 3000 Hz, but that's not the issue). You can
adjust the bass and treble controls, or even better use a graphic equalizer
to eliminate frequencies that are not needed for comprehension. However
that may be aesthetically unpleasing since the actual tone of the speaker's
voice will be altered and sound "tinny."

Some computer sound driver software includes tone controls, but usually
not. Some computer speakers have bass and treble controls. But the best
solution is to run your computer's sound output into your stereo (or buy a
cheap stereo amplifier for the purpose: you can just as well hook it up to
cheap "bookshelf" speakers if you are not interested in music quality). If
the stereo has a graphic equalizer that is even better. Otherwise turn down
the bass all the way, and turn up the treble until you can't stand it
anymore: that will give you the best clarity for speech purposes (but
again, it will not sound natural). With an equalizer turn the lower
frequencies (below about 300 or 500 Hz) all the way down.

In the computer I'm using right now, I've plugged an 1/8" splitter into the
audio output jack (a cheap adapter that sends the signal to two 1/8" jacks)
and plug "computer speakers" into one, and the other goes to a cable to the
aux. input of my stereo for when I'm listening to music. (Listening to
music through average computer speakers means you miss all the deep bass!).

- Jeff

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