The shape of our ears

Prev Next

The shape of our ears

The shape of my ears is different than those of yours. Yet, you and I hear the same things.

How is that possible?

I think of this in the same way I might imagine different microphones. Mine is a ribbon microphone, and perhaps yours is a condenser. Each has a very different sonic signature, yet in the end, we run it through a processor that removes all differences.

That processor is, of course, our brains.

From the day we are born, we train our brains to understand the world around us: We see shapes, and over time we learn what they are. We hear sounds and, over time, develop a catalog of what those sounds represent.

What's truly fascinating is how detailed and precise our catalog of sounds is. We can pick out the tiniest of nuance in harmonic and timbral structures. We have learned to differentiate between the amount of rosin on a bow when it scrapes a string.

Yes, our ears are quite different from each other and yet our understanding of sound is very much the same.

Which is why we can both sit down in front of a high-performance audio system and come to the same conclusion.

It is not the shape of our ears or their range of hearing that matters.

Training and exposure to the sound of music is the ultimate differentiator.

Back to blog
Paul McGowan

Founder & CEO

Never miss a post


Related Posts