A distortion in the character of a sound, such as the emphasis of certain frequencies (low high or mid tones), that reduce accuracy. Since some people like high tones while others like low tones, the coloration of some speakers will falsely lead some people to choose speakers based on the speakers coloration, rather than choosing a speaker with a flat response.
Musical impurities that change the sound from the original recording. This is usually as a result of incorrect hardware settings that gives, for example, slow, boomy bass or squeaky treble. Ideally, music should pass through hardware using the shortest path and no tone controls. Cinema sound DSP modes adjust the sound signal to create the required effects, so colouration is less of a problem with surround sound.
Any move away from the natural rendition of the musical piece. Coloration is an unwanted – ‘booming' bass, ‘nasal' midrange or ‘screeching' treble, for instance.