Older people hear music better and there is hope for high-end audio as the earbud-wearing, cheap-headphone-toting kids grow older and start to hear more and more nuances and finer details of the music they are listening to
Some think we heard better when we were younger.
I used to think YES. This is exactly right.
That music sounded glorious in our teens because we could hear harmonics better. So even inferior stereo systems sounded Grrreat. [Boy, did they!]
That we spend our later years having to build systems with more and more resolution and harmonic content because we have a hard time getting the musical content past our aged ears and hardened listening centers and into our poor overworked tired brains
But now I really wonder if this is Bull Hockey.
That the young have unformed, lazy, uneducated ears. That they could hardly benefit from high res and rich harmonic content because their young ears and brains just cannot process it.
Of course, some people’s ears never grow up. They remain lazy and dull in their admittedly extra-curricular job as fine listening instruments.
But this explains why we have all these iPod, earbud-listening kids. This just sound grrreat to them. But later, as they get older, their ears will begin to develop and they will want a more refined listening experience.
This bodes well for the high-end audio business in the next couple of decades.
I came around to this point of view because sometimes I notice my ears becoming VERY sensitive. The sound of my [long] hair moving across my face was loud and annoying me. WTF?
I have come to realize that my hearing is often incredibly sensitive, especially in the early morning or late at night.
Often painfully so.
Well. Not painfully. Supremely annoyingly so, anyway, in the wrong environment.
So, it is not that screaming kids irritate adults because the kids are all that loud. It is that adults have more and more sensitive hearing as they age.
Sure we lose a few Hz at the top frequencies as we grow old, but the overall effect is one that allows us to hear the most fantastic nuances in music, voice, and in the sounds of the world all around us.