Aggrivated tinnitus from speakers?


I'm new to the forum and was looking for some advice. I recently put together a system comprised of a McIntosh MA6900 + a pair of KEF R7s.

I've always had hearing sensitive to high frequencies, and have a very high frequency tinnitus at 18,000k. That's why I went with the Mac, as everyone talks about how smooth and musical it is. When I was shopping for speakers, I was doing a lot of research but then the KEF R7's went on crazy sale and I was able to pick up a pair for under 2k. It seemed like too much of a deal to pass up, especially with all of the glowing reviews, but maybe that was a mistake on my part...

I'm noticing when I listen to the system, my tinnitus activates at a lower frequency for several hours afterwards. I notice this most on FLAC / MQA - quality tracks on Tidal (via WIIM w/ integrated DAC, at very reasonable volumes - <85db ) It seems to happen less when I listen to vinyl or CD-Quality tracks, but it still happens.

It's driving me crazy and I'm so disappointed as I thought this was going to be my ultimate setup and I dropped a lot of $. The Mac has just been to an auth service center for new lamps and was bench tested and given a perfect bill of health after a small bias adjustment, so I don't think it's the problem.

I decided to use some headphones to see if I experienced the same thing... Senn. HD650's let me listen for long periods without problems. HD660S2s seem to give me maybe a little sensitivity after awhile, but the sensitivity I get from the KEF's is totally different.

I realize I should have demoed the speakers, but I just jumped on the deal - partially on their reputation and also because their narrow, tall size was ideal for the room layout.

Any advice on how to get to the bottom of this? Do I need to test different speakers or do I need to treat the room? I'd hate to give up the Master level recordings because I mentally swim in the detail and love it. I just hate the thought of not being able to enjoy the system properly, but I'm not sure where to start on making  it work for me.




@evanpress Thank God someone else is noticing it! 'It' being the total lack of spelling, punctuation and,,, just writing a coherant sentence in general! Did some of you not go to school? Go back. It seems like many who post regularly on here are illiterate. Or lazy or with sight issues. Some may not have English as their native language, which is understandable, but there's many on here who are American born, and should have been educated to at least be able to write and punctuate a simple sentence. Rant over.

I have tinnitus from gunfire, and a "missing" band of high frequencies. It is especially aggravated by horn tweeters, but not by ribbons, AMT, electrostatics, or soft domes. RAAL tweeters are especially lovely to me. I think your problem is probably your speakers, and maybe the room as well. As I understand it, there is no final solution to your problem, but definitely try some different speakers. I doubt that it is the electronics.

I have tinnitus also.  Try to keep in mind this is a medical psycho acoustic condition.  I would recommend going to a medical professional to have your hearing checked.  Tinnitus typically is a sign of some sort of hearing loss.  So far as fixing the problem there are hearing aids that can filter it.  Just try to find the best sounding speakers (for you) and enjoy them.  Life is all about compromise.

I also deal with tinnitus. Mine is in the 8-9Khz range. I will be receiving a new FDA approved medical device (Lenire Neuromod) later this month in hopes of mitigating the 50 dbs ish tinnitus level.

Having said that, I treat my dedicated listening area with hanging acoustic drapes behind the front wall behind the ML Ethos speakers, and behind the listening position....this has helped, along with equalizing down the 8-9Khz range of frequencies that seem to "excite" my tinnitus. I will send an update on the Lenire treatment progress in a month or so.