YouTube creator burn out and therapy

There is a huge number of videos on the mechanics of creating videos from setting up good sound and lighting to increasing engagement however not a lot of content on the typical concerns of YouTubers.

This video raised a number of points that resonated with me.

1) Feeling demotivated when the YouTube stats reward metrics (views, engagement, subs..) for a particular video don’t relate to the effort one has put into it, or when overall views for one’s channel drop for no reason one can fathom
2) Benefits of the YouTube video creation process for self development and one’s work life outside of YouTube, plus potential unexpected incidental opportunities arising from YouTube ‘work’
3) Not wanting YouTube creation to feel like a job/work. Keeping it fun/taking a break (days, weeks, months) while balancing that against one’s perception of audience expectations, and concerns about the impact of that on ‘the algorithm’
4) “I’m just leaving this here” and low expectations/high hopes mentality to videos i.e. just do and be damned..why not if view ‘rewards’ can come months or years later with ‘slow burners’
5) Family motivating influences, things we do to ‘decompress’ and generally stuff that keeps us sane! (e.g. listening to music, watching YouTube, sports/exercise in my case btw)
6) Massive checklist for prepping for videos and then everything that comes afterwards prior to publishing..and dreaming of having an editor/admin to do all the boring stuff!
7) “Just say no” / pushing back techniques and mental health / wellbeing
8) Finding good honest people with no ulterior motive to seek help from when needed
9) The ‘grind’ v ‘blow up’ reality of YouTube growth, appreciating/visualising every single subscriber/viewer and developing multiple income streams to balance income risks
10) Poor maintenance by public authorities and avoiding potholes 🙂

One more ?paranoid thought for the day – I sometimes wonder whether YouTube (or even manufacturers of items I happen to have a positive opinion of) has bots viewing my videos and subbing to/unsubbing from my channel to keep me motivated to produce content for their platform/products..maybe that’s just me! 🙂

In a nutshell there is a tension between

(a) the stress caused by the habits and goals and disciplines we set for ourselves and

(b) our constant evaluation of whether (a) is ‘worth it’.

How do we balance working for a better/happier future against enjoying the present? And to what extent do we trust received wisdom and the truths offered or perhaps even ‘sold’ (literally as well as metaphorically) to us – just as history is said to be written by the victors, perhaps our perception of the present is equally manipulated by those with their own agendas to push. After all, every piece of information takes time, effort and hence money to be propagated.

Cheap high sound quality earphone meta review

I have bought several earphones over the years (no pun intended) and will never be able to try every earphone on the market so rely on reviews from several sources for my purchasing decisions.

But to what extent do we trust received wisdom and the truths offered or perhaps even ‘sold’ (literally as well as metaphorically) to us? Just as history is said to be written by the victors, perhaps our perception of the present is equally manipulated by those with their own agendas to push. After all, every piece of information takes time, effort and hence money to be propagated.

I qualify and curate these sources based on the similarity of their descriptions of earphones I know to my own experience of those earphones, and the sound ‘signature’ preferences the sources express explicitly or implicitly. Some reviewers, like Super* Review and DMS for example, prefer a leaner bass and more open and less intimate ‘in your ear’ vocal presentation than I do so, while I respect their analysis, I know I may not necessarily enjoy the earphones they do (and vice versa).

Sources include YouTube reviewer videos and viewer comments against those videos, Amazon reviews, consumer websites like CNET and Rtings, enthusiast websites like Head-Fi and soundguys, Google searches for blog posts like the one you are reading and, most recently, the community around my YouTube channel.

https://www.youtube.com/user/gichowdotcom

So let’s start this investigation of the best sounding sub $50 earphones with a comment I posted against a video comparing several hyped budget earphones, that the reviewer agreed was a fair summary.

“Hi, very informative comparison..so trying to summarise the cons (-) and pros (+) does this look right:

  • BLON BL03 $27: -cable/treble detail +bass/mids 
  • CVJ CSN $38: -bright +adequate bass/soundstage
  • Moondrop SSR $40: -lean bass +comfort/treble 
  • Tripowin TC-01 $47: -weight +adequate bass/mids/treble/soundstage
  • Tin T2 Plus $54:  -fit +cable/tight bass/mids/adequate treble
  • TFZ LIVE 3 $69: – boomy bass/mids/treble/soundstage +cable/sub bass”

So the winner from this bunch for my tastes looks to be the Tripowin TC-01, though I personally am not a fan of cold metal-bodied earphones such as that of the TRN v80 which was very widely recommended by the audiophile online communities in 2018 (and which, with a filter modification to reduce its exaggerated bright treble, becomes a very nice sounding earphone).

The group test reviewer, Ricky RDT, is less polished and articulate than some other reviewers however his less florid sound descriptions are often both much more quickly understandable and ring true with my own experiences.

Next stop, check out the Porta.Fi review of it. This is a reviewer who employs a consistent format and spends several minutes describing the sound of an earphone using a precise vocabulary of audiophile terms and through comparison to other known earphones.

So, he really likes it though keeps it real by saying there are earphones above $100 that sound better i.e. this isn’t a ‘giant killer’ which even the Blon BL03 has been touted as, e.g. by one of the most popular audiophile reviewers Z Reviews in this review.

Now the Honest Audiophile is someone I like the review style of. I don’t share his opinions of the Shuoer Tape and Monoprice Retro reviews, however, so take his often contrarian views with a large pinch of salt. He has a problem with the TC-01 bass (though video comments suggest he may benefit from better tips) and doesn’t rate them as anything special, or even beating the Blon BL03.

So we are starting to chase our tail and go in circles. Not unusual for this hobby.

Let’s take another starting point and check out $50 recs from inToit, an unusual reviewer who wears a mask but who I feel employs language and audiophile terms in a coherent way.

To summarise his video using the Head-Fi convention of ‘>’ meaning ‘has better sound quality than’:

Jade EA3 (musical and less technical but good to go cable and tips) > Jade EA1 (technical but ‘reference’ bass and poor tips) > Moondrop SSR (HD600 clarity, better soundstage, lean bass) > Tin T2 Plus (better extension, detail and clarity and less mid bass bleed than Blon BL03) > KBEAR Lark (treble rolls off)

Above $50 he recs Shozy Form 1.1, Tin T4, TFZ No 3, Final Audio A4000, IKKO OH10, Tanchjim Oxygen, Final Audio B3.

By contrast, employing one of my own YouTube channel viewers as a starting point, he recs the Blon BL03, Tin T2 and QKZ VK4 which has no overlap with the inToit recs.

Now considering his recs together with the inToit top rec, HiFi Dreams describes the Blon BL03 and QKZ VK4 as more even handed than the fun V shaped TRN v90 and Jade Audio EA3.

Furthermore, he has developed this impressively detailed and comprehensive spreadsheet

HiFi Dreams IEM spreadsheet

as shown in this video.

He strongly recs the KBear KS2 which he rates as competitive with earphones several times the price. He also likens the tonality of the VK4 to his $120 Thieaudio Legacy 3 (his 2nd favourite earphone after the $250 FiiO FH5) with the VK4 having a slightly lower technical performance.

In the search for independent verification, Ricky RDT compares the KBear KS2, which he characterises as v-shaped (more and less fast bass with recessed mids against the Lark), to the inToit recommendation the Jade Audio EA1 (better than the Lark, with more resolution and without sibilance) and the KBear Lark, described as bass light and with a peaky and sibilant treble in this video.

Zpolt compares the KS2 (balanced with sufficient tight bass and some treble shimmer) to the KBear KB04 (brighter and more analytical) and Blon BL03 (boomy bass and smoother treble with less shimmer) and KZ ZST X (boomy bass and smoother treble with less separation and less revealing vocals)

But then Vortex, a British reviewer of almost every ChiFi earphone of note, describes the KS2 vocals as a bit thin with upper mids elevation and prefers the less bassy (but still v-shaped) KBear KS1, which he describes as having more realistic vocals and overall puts on par with the QKZ VK4. The BA on the KS2 gives that earphone apparently slightly better instrument separation on complex tracks where there’s a lot going on and more detail resolution but also results in a brighter and even more v-shaped sound with an unnatural timbre.

So, once again no unanymity of support for the KS2 and for the combination of natural tonal balance with technical detail I’m yet to find a common recommendation from these sources.

From personal experience, I highly rate the clarity of the Etymotic MK5 in the sub $100 range, however only once modified with (a) the introduction of tissue paper into the nozzle to allow the bass level to be brought up without the treble becoming unbearable and (b) a flange being removed from the triflange tips to improve comfort of their deep insertion design which prevents the natural bend in the human ear canal from compromising the sound. One of the longest serving audiophile reviewers, and former audio salesman, Steve Guttenberg is also a fan.

From the various sources above, it seems the Blon BL03 or KBear KS1 or Jade Audio (FiiO) EA3 may be a good choice for those who are happy to forego some detail resolution to obtain a natural tonal balance at an affordable ‘budget’ sub $50 price.

I still rate my TRN v80, which for me are like a more comfortable if brighter sounding MK5 (the treble brightness can be attenuated by putting tissue or foam in the ear tips), and HiFi Dreams rates their later TRN v90 successor up with the Blon BL03. He recs both and describes the Blon as being more coloured and warm sounding, like the audiophile reference Sennheiser HD650 headphone and the TRN as being less coloured and with a sparklier treble.

Vortex also rates these two earphones in this comparison so we have some commonality at last.

These two earphones then deliver different but equally enjoyable presentations of music. Perhaps in the search for one earphone to rule them all, in the budget sector at least, one may be better served by two, whose complementary qualities together provide an experience of what is possible with audio reproduction. Mellifluous, smooth and musical or clear, resolving and analytical.

A little above the $50 price point, the FiiO FD1 is also recommended by Ricky RDT, HiFi Dreams and Audiophile Heaven for its bass quantity and slam, natural timbre and treble detail though inToit Reviews prefers the cheaper Jade Audio EA1, which has the same beryllium driver, and the EA3.

While earphones come and go all the time, and we can expect further value and sound improvements from new materials and technologies and economies of scale, I suspect we will see no major sound quality improvements until new technologies, like the magnetostatic drivers in the Shuoer Tape with their highly realistic transient response, become more widespread and mature.

Previous earphone models, that are no longer being touted as the latest and greatest, may offer the highest ‘sound per pound’ value at any point in time, which is not dissimilar to other areas of HiFi.

I find it curious how much representation ‘ChiFi’ has in several reviewer recommendations. Is this a reflection of their value for money or some unrevealed reviewer allegiance or sponsorship – or perhaps Chinese bots are ‘viewing’ these reviews to make YouTube serve them up to us more frequently?

I’ll add to this post as the research continues and tentative conclusions form!

Why YouTube has a new YouTube Studio logo

Everything happens for a reason.

New YouTube Studio logo

And sometimes even the smallest thing can reveal fundamental truths and speak volumes. Every fan of the American detective series Columbo already knows this of course.

When YouTube introduced a new logo, app and notifications icon for YouTube Studio, the tool creators use to check on and change their videos, various theories for the rationale arose.

The more obvious were around brand identity and consistency but digging deeper considers how YouTube connects with and expands its audience and begins to reveal the fundamental nature and direction of YouTube.

Check out this 1 minute ‘#Shorts’ video to learn more.

https://youtube.com/shorts/mfd9zuIgVk4

24 carrot gold

24 carrot gold

I asked an acquaintance who I’d seen had lost a lot of weight over lockdown, despite exercising even less, how he had managed it. “When I feel I want a treat I have a carrot” he said. Having tried this recently to address my own lockdown weight gain I have to thank him for this simple suggestion!

A kilo costs 50p which lasts me several days and peeling and trimming gives me a little routine to occupy my mind.

The calorie count is surprisingly low given how sweet they are and their famous use in carrot cake and while all the carbs are sugars there is a decent relative proportion of fibre, protein and even fat.

Carrot nutrients

Other snack staples are gherkins and pickled onions and steamed beetroot.

For a tasty quick snack wok stir fried bean sprouts (just a teaspoon of oil is needed) with a dash of soya sauce are another recent find that are also very nutritious with a good proportion of fibre and protein to carb..and super cheap at 70p for a 300g a packet.

Affiliate links

Here’s a list of Amazon affiliate links to products I’ve bought and reviewed on the YouTube channel.

https://youtube.com/user/GIChowDotcom

I also review items directly on Amazon without necessarily making a video, since videos can be very time consuming to make. My Amazon reviews are available here – please like any that help you since this improves my chances of getting further products from Amazon to review.

http://amzn.to/37xE0qo

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Should you ever happen to purchase one of these items new then you will pay the same price and the channel will receive a small commission if you use my affiliate links below for your country – if you use the link from another country no commission is received unfortunately. Prices are those when added to the list and the current price will usually be less:

US links
* = sonic bargain!

*Creative Stage v2 https://amzn.to/2T5Zvdo

Sony WF-1000XM4 $270
https://amzn.to/3wrdPeJ

Sony WF-1000XM3 $180
https://amzn.to/3zrGmCR

Apple AirPods 3rd generation $180
https://amzn.to/3BuLsxY

*Apple EarPods $20
https://amzn.to/3Csj8xO

Anker Soundcore Liberty 3 Pro https://amzn.to/3pjnsvn

Sony WF-1000XM3 (Renewed) $100
https://amzn.to/3gyg3lR

*Sennheiser CX 400BT $100
https://amzn.to/35kjbfV

Sennheiser HD 600
https://amzn.to/3lr8BLC

Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro
https://amzn.to/30MfPjK

Shure Aonic 50
https://amzn.to/3cy2CAD

Beyer Lagoon ANC
https://amzn.to/3lVlnSD

Sony WF-1000XM3 $180
https://amzn.to/3cIpHlE

Audio Technica ATH M50xBT https://amzn.to/3fixHLs

*AKG K371-BT
https://amzn.to/31iWGpP

Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro $145
https://amzn.to/2YKDZde

Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro $130
https://amzn.to/3tpr7Y6

*Sennheiser CX 400BT $100
https://amzn.to/39LYc8X

Sony WF-1000XM3 (Renewed) $100
https://amzn.to/39NguGV

Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 $80
https://amzn.to/2YHZw6r

Moondrop Aria https://amzn.to/3dFxsIR

*Anker Soundcore Life A2 NC $70
https://amzn.to/33KhtUt

*Anker Soundcore Life Q30 $68
https://amzn.to/3e6zPWj

*Etymotic MK5 https://amzn.to/3AoMPiw

*Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 (Renewed) $56
https://amzn.to/2Mr9fM6

*Mpow H17 $50
https://amzn.to/2Pj8MN0

Mpow M30 Plus (100h) $40
https://amzn.to/36Gs1G2

*Superlux HD668B headphones $40
https://amzn.to/3uA0RuZ

AKG K175 studio headphones $39
https://amzn.to/3uESLkF

*Aukey EP-T27
https://amzn.to/3wfIVX6

Aukey EP-T21S
https://amzn.to/2RnSHXn

*Monoprice Retro https://amzn.to/3wf1Ekx

*Mpow M30 $33
https://amzn.to/3jeI9DE

*TaoTronics SoundLiberty 92 $32
https://amzn.to/3tqgl41

Blon BL-01
https://amzn.to/3gocUa5

UK links
* = sonic bargain!

*Creative Stage v2 https://amzn.to/3zRJGrc

Majority K2 https://amzn.to/3vWq6aa

Sennheiser HD 600
https://amzn.to/3qPoDjo

Shure Aonic 50
https://amzn.to/3tzUzdx

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro Black
https://amzn.to/2NPVoiR

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro Silver
https://amzn.to/2NPT2Au

Apple AirPods 3rd generation
https://amzn.to/3GxnqGt

*Apple EarPods
https://amzn.to/3BnJmQt

Beyer Lagoon ANC https://amzn.to/2QtE5oL

Sony WF-1000XM3
https://amzn.to/3rl65Ii

Anker Soundcore Liberty 3 Pro https://amzn.to/3BXPmk4

Audio Technica ATH M50xBT https://amzn.to/2OYNkgz

*AKG K371-BT
https://amzn.to/2PuRSes

Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro
https://amzn.to/2NiU2wO

Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro
https://amzn.to/2LQr9aD

Samsung Galaxy buds live
https://amzn.to/3kWCbqi

Yamaha TW-E3A
https://amzn.to/3pZQVaS

*Sennheiser CX400BT
https://amzn.to/3s8CqDl

Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro
https://amzn.to/2My1HqD

Moondrop Aria https://amzn.to/3xhSDbx

Anker Soundcore Life Q30
https://amzn.to/3su6dpq

*Anker Soundcore Life A2 NC
https://amzn.to/3eOaX5p

*Anker Soundcore Life Q30 renewed
https://amzn.to/3sCcdNg

Jabra Elite Active 65t https://amzn.to/3Ebkyx3

*Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2
https://amzn.to/2YH0zn5

Earfun Free Pro
https://amzn.to/2Xl8wha

*Sony WF-XB700 https://amzn.to/3nqgsKM

*Etymotic MK5 https://amzn.to/3qIBmpH

*Koss Porta Pro
https://amzn.to/37bZHuC

VE Monk Plus
https://amzn.to/3fLZDFD

SoundPeats Truengine 3 SE
https://amzn.to/38s5HS0

Mpow M30 Plus
https://amzn.to/3kQ8kQb

AKG K175 studio headphones
https://amzn.to/2PaLZmi

Aukey EP-T27
https://amzn.to/31ZIbHZ

Aukey EP-T21S
https://amzn.to/3fUR79C

*Superlux HD668B headphones
https://amzn.to/3bJsnNX

*Mpow H17
https://amzn.to/3uHE9kn

*Monoprice Retro https://amzn.to/3xcaosS

*Mpow M30
https://amzn.to/3kM4CY0

*Taotronics SoundLiberty
92 https://amzn.to/3mWcsQv

Blon BL-01
https://amzn.to/3sqvwsm

Soundpeats TrueAir2
https://amzn.to/39Tbkte

*Samsung EHS64
https://amzn.to/2VeXaKF

Why music moves us

This is just the beginning of what may become a collection of musings on what aspects of songs/pieces of music that I find particularly moving might make them so emotionally affecting.

Starting with the live performance by the Chemical Brothers of The Golden Path

2021 and crying, laughing, inspiring.. absolutely chemical, bros! @1:26 the seamless transition from insistent staccato isolated almost plucked sounding notes searching high and low to melodic uptempo phrases integrated with vocal harmonies conveys for me a sense of learning, achieving togetherness and resolution. Certainly different to the album version tho both have a nostalgic/lamenting yet optimistic and loving feel..like upsetting times but older and wiser afterwards. Not really sure what I’m talking about or why it’s so emotionally affecting but love it.

‘Fragments of Bliss’ is a very appropriate title for this piece which again inspires and moves me to tears. Against a deep pulsating monotonic deep bass drone (a constant earth / environment) synth strings play and chords rise and fall in melodic washes that transport us on an epic journey from uncertain shifting places to a beautiful warm idyllic beach paradise.

A repeated haunting but jaunty plucked note melody conveys a sense of nostalgia but this is combined with a bassier driving guitar rhythm that says to me life goes on, keep those sad times and losses in mind but keep ploughing on, working through past upsets and happier times will come.

Not a piece of music this time but a principle which this tutorial sets out. Any repeating part (sequence of notes or rhythm), however dissonant or uncomfortable, is something we eventually become used to and get to like. This struck me as a potential analogy to life where even if something is unpleasant but we continue to live through that unpleasantness we come to associate that particular unpleasantness with continued life and hence as something ‘good’. Something may not be nice but it’s familiar and ‘what we know’. Perhaps this relates to what is meant by someone who is ‘twisted’ – their unhappy life experiences have formed them / they have grown around, and come to embrace, unhappy life experiences developing into a grotesque form as a way of surviving those experiences.

It takes ‘courage’ which is perhaps really ‘just’ the willingness to take a risk (i.e. accept the possible negative consequences of an action for the potential upside) to break free from such a way of living. Courage can I suspect be developed..maybe by doing things outside one’s comfort zone?..and doing them well enough that one survives them relatively unscathed. I guess the inspiring thing about the willingness to take risks is that there is the conviction or belief that there is or should be something better or more harmonious than where one is right now.

So my work in progress summary of why music moves me:

Notes, timbres and rhythms evoke aspects of nature e.g. low notes convey the idea of something big, high notes of something whimsical and ethereal.

The interplay of notes over time depicts a story or sequence of events giving us an idea of cause and effect.

Notes played together can convey harmony and peace of mind or disharmony and tension.

Repetition can create a sense of familiarity and stability.

Voices, sounds and words can bring some emotion, thought, character or action of the vocalist or instrumentalist to mind e.g. we can empathise and know the movements and energy required to create a frenetic drum pattern or the dexterity required to perform a sequence of notes or the feeling that evokes a vocal intonation or form of words.

Parts of a piece of music can remind us of other pieces of music and bring those associations to mind.

Music can lead us to anticipate what note comes next and when an ‘expected’ note arrives, maybe after a long period of tension, that can result in a sense of euphoria, perhaps because we experience a sense of connectedness to the composer/performer.

What do you call sliding or swiping through a video?

Scrubbing through a video
Scrubbing through a video

A lot of words and terms are used to describe the action of sliding your finger or dragging your mouse to move through the frames of a video that is playing on a screen.

You may hear swipe, seek, scroll, scan, slide, drag, pan, drill or glide and the corresponding gerunds swiping, seeking, scrolling, scanning, sliding, dragging, panning, drilling and gliding however the most specific term in the context of video is scrub and scrubbing.

The action of pressing down and then moving one’s finger back and forth while keeping it held down resembles the action of physically scrubbing – as opposed to swiping, which suggests a more exuberant gesture ending with one’s finger off the screen.

Hope this helps.

And for free information about the insulin response and how I used this basic biochemistry to lose 4 stone in weight healthily check out http://www.gichow.com

24 Hours in A&E music

If you love the incidental music in the UK Channel 4 series 24 Hours in A&E by the composer Richard Spiller please leave a comment below or like this tweet to support a request for a compilation being made available on Spotify, SoundCloud or YouTube.

24 hours in A&E music
24 Hours In A&E

I find it movingly captures so much of the many emotions from jaunty, upbeat and playful to anxious, pensive and ethereal.

Some of Richard’s music from the series is on SoundCloud.

InShot code 4868 internal storage is running out when trying to save a video

If you get this message when trying to save your video it can be very disheartening since there appears to be nothing one can do to get around it meaning the prospect of losing potentially hours of editing work on one’s project.

InShot info code 4868

It is particularly frustrating when it suddenly appears with a big jump in the stated free space required even when one previously successfully rendered and saved a video of the same length with the same amount of storage space available.

InShot requires much more free space available than the space taken up by your final video file in order to render your video and that amount of space depends on the number of audio and text/sticker tracks so adding just one more sticker on screen at the same time as another can cause the required space to suddenly jump. Extracting audio from a talking head video clip in order to add B roll to a voiceover can also cause the free space requirement to jump. I have found that extracting audio with Android audio extractors or Audacity rather than InShot can significantly reduce the InShot free space requirement from say 5G to 3G.

Some Android audio extractors

While we can’t change how InShot demands space there are several workarounds to help you render your project and avoid losing your work and they are outlined in this 1 minute YouTube video. Please subscribe to the YouTube channel if you get value from it – the channel focuses on high quality tech for an active life at a low price with a focus on mobile device headphones/earphones so will be useful for creators. Video ‘likes’ are appreciated too 🙂

Hope this helps.

And for free information about the insulin response and how I used this basic biochemistry to lose 4 stone in weight healthily check out http://www.gichow.com

Fix OLED TV screen burn green faces with picture settings

If faces near the centre of your OLED TV have a green hue this is due to the red pixels there having darkened simply through use over time.

OLED TV green face from red pixel wear
OLED TV green face

Don’t bother running the many colour changing patterns on YouTube to fix this. It won’t. Try to progress a warranty repair however if that fails or while it is progressing you can change 3 picture settings in under a minute to improve the picture appearance considerably.

Change colour temperature to cool, increase colour and reduce tint (the balance of green to red). I show this on my Panasonic TX-55EZ952B in this #short video.

If it works for you a comment, like or subscribe against the video helps share the info and support the channel.