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App Projects Studio-Quality Sound with 100+ Headphone Models

by Natalie Daher

Photography by Unsplash

Affordable headphones can provide studio-quality sound with a new app from New York-based company SonarWorks, according to The Next Web.

The app, called True-Fi, costs $79 and is only available for Mac and PC, although mobile versions are in development. More than 130 headphones, including models from Bose, Beats, Plantronics and Sony, are currently compatible with True-Fi.

The app works by syncing with users’ headphones to calibrate better sound. True-Fi “flattens” the audio output’s frequency response to match levels of a professional mixing studio. The app is simpler than equalizing (EQing) headphones, according to SonarWorks, because it produces higher quality sound and avoids common problems including muddiness, distortion, clipping and sibilance.

“Imagine a world where True-Fi – or something like it – were integrated into popular services like Spotify and Netflix,” writes The Next Web’s Napier Lopez, who visited a Manhattan recording studio to compare True-Fi with professional speakers. “Your specific headphones could be tuned to sound like the exact studio your favorite music or movie was mastered.”

The quality of sound playing from $50 Marshall Major 2 headphones, using True-Fi, and thousand-dollar speakers was “wild,” Lopez reports. Lopez listened to tracks from new movie Black Panther through True-Fi and EQing headphone, reporting the latter produced “noticeably worse” sound.

True-Fi asks users for basic information like gender and age to compensate for hearing loss. The pitch by True-Fi is that the app works across any genre, from classical to hip-hop, allowing listeners to hear music “like the artist intended,” The Next Web reports.

A 10-day trial is available here.

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