I am here to ask some technical questions about differences between some audio devices and about them point by point. I am a beginner or nerd in audio devices and sound editing.

Why professionals do not use earphones for audio editing? And can we use it for professional sound editing?

And can we use speakers for professional audio or music editing?

because I think:

2 Answers 2


If you're 'just' editing, at a push you can use pretty much anything.

If you're mixing, or any situation where you need to be aware of true EQ, levels or placement within a stereo field, then headphones can often be misleading.

With speakers, your brain can figure out not just what, but where each sound is & the relative levels between them. On headphones, spacial awareness is lost, & with it for some reason I don't know the physics of, you can be very confused over actual levelling. You can somehow 'listen past' the soundfield & pick out individual sounds in a mix, which confuses you into getting the levels wrong.

This is very probably all due to the Precedence, or Haas, effect

All that said, I would never use any kind of 'earbuds' [& certainly not something that costs less than $5] for audio work. If you want headphones, get headphones.

  • So do you think that speakers are good for editing? Commented Jul 22, 2020 at 16:02
  • shivam - speakers are the only thing you should use. Once editing is complete, make sure you listen through speakers, headphones, earbuds, everything you can - to see if any of those sound bad and you need to remaster, but only edit using speakers
    – Rory Alsop
    Commented Jul 23, 2020 at 11:22
  • @RoryAlsop, thanks but I doubt then why does professionals like creators or singers use professional headphones most of the time but not speakers (maybe my observation could be wrong but please correct me if i am wrong) Commented Jul 24, 2020 at 2:33
  • 1
    Composing is different to Editing is different to Mastering...
    – Rory Alsop
    Commented Jul 24, 2020 at 15:23
  • @RoryAlsop, thanks very much for helping me out. Commented Jul 28, 2020 at 7:23

First, you do whatever you want. If it works for you, it works for you.

If you want other people to like listening to your music you do however need to work with tools that helps you making it sound good also for them.

If you mix and master ONLY on your headphones, it very often sounds bad on other headphones or speakers. Not necessarily and not always. This experience is the reason that professional mixers / mastering engineers work using speakers in a good acoustic environment. And this tends to go even if you have extremely good headphones.

You can use your headphones a lot, but not as the ONLY means for mixing and mastering. Headphones are a very good tool to listen for the small details in a mix. You hear a lot of the clicks and disturbing stuff and can fix that. My experience though is that they do NOT work as well for setting relative levels between the different instruments, and especially bad for setting reverbs and delays.

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