Two listening tests with six different headphones were conducted. The objectives of these tests were to investigate listener sound color preferences using 1) the actual headphones and 2) dummy head recordings made with the same devices. The purpose of the recordings was to simulate the timbres of the actual devices as well as possible when played back through a pair of compensated headphones. The results from the two tests were compared and despite of some similarity, the analysis showed significant differences between the two cases. Additionally, the diffuse-field responses of the headphones were calculated from frequency response measurements. The obtained headphone preference order cannot fully be explained based on the flatness of the diffuse-field response as a measure.
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