Epik Empire Distorting on Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 12:43 PM - Thread Starter
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I recently purchased an empire and I seem to be having some trouble. In watching a few movies, most recently Mission impossible during the prison escape scene when the whole is opened in the floor, my sub seems to be distorting significantly at a volume level of roughly 10 below reference on my Integra Pre/Pro. The sound is like the driver is almost flapping uncontrollably in the enclosure. Is this normal? I am not listening to it that loud and I am suprised that it is distorting at that level. It says on Epik's website that this subwoofer is virtually impossible to overdrive. I am wondering if I have a defect with this one?

Any thoughts would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 01:17 PM
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I just watched the "hole opened in the floor" scene 4 times in succession with my system at 10db below reference . I've got dual Empires & an Ultra 12. No uncontrollable flapping at all from the subs, but when the pipes above the characters heads rattled, I thought that $hit on my equipment rack was about to fall off. Turned out just to be the rattling pipes from the soundtrack, which I hadn't even noticed until the 3rd or 4th viewing of that scene, 'cause I was looking around the room trying to figure out what was coming loose.
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post #3 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 02:42 PM
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What's your .1/LFE output level set at on the processor and the Empire's level? What has Audyssey set things to? I have yet to hear the Empire make any distressing sounds under heavy LFE, so I would guess it's either settings or defect.
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post #4 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vraxoin View Post

What's your .1/LFE output level set at on the processor and the Empire's level? What has Audyssey set things to? I have yet to hear the Empire make any distressing sounds under heavy LFE, so I would guess it's either settings or defect.

I agree. I have had my Empire for about 2 weeks now and have yet to throw anything at it that even comes close to stressing it.
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post #5 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 05:55 PM
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The only time I got my Empire to audibly distort was using the 25 hz lift setting on my Antimode 8033s during heavy LFE.
What kind of room correction does your Integra have? IIRC one of the older Audyssey versions sometimes gave inordinate levels of boost at the lowest octaves. Also what's the sub level in the AVR?
Tim
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post #6 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 07:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Just for the record, I have an Integra 80.3 with ParaSound Halo amps. The sub is EQ'd via Audyssey and is not running hot. I have heard that Audyssey does occasionally try to inflate subsnic frequencies. That said, I turned Audyssey off and still had the same problem. I guess I will be calling Chad.
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post #7 of 28 Old 04-20-2012, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post

Just for the record, I have an Integra 80.3 with ParaSound Halo amps. The sub is EQ'd via Audyssey and is not running hot. I have heard that Audyssey does occasionally try to inflate subsnic frequencies. That said, I turned Audyssey off and still had the same problem. I guess I will be calling Chad.

It's very rare but you could have a bad driver.
Tim
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post #8 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 02:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodorthopod View Post

It's very rare but you could have a bad driver.
Tim

I don't know what else it could be. I tried testing it again today. It's pretty obvious something is not working properly.
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post #9 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 03:10 PM
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Is there a particular point in the movie that it does this? I was going to watch this today on VUDU (hdx). I will set my AVR to -10 volume and try out my empire. FYI, I have my Empire set at the 10:00 position and 75db on my SPL meter.
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post #10 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 03:10 PM
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nevermind. I just saw that you mentioned the hole in the floor scene...
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post #11 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 04:04 PM
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If you gently push the driver(s) in, does it move about freely?? Any weird noises or rubbing sounds?
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post #12 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 04:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post


I don't know what else it could be. I tried testing it again today. It's pretty obvious something is not working properly.

I wouldn't jump to conclusions like that. If the driver is bad,it would act up all the time not just on certain tracks.Also that scene is very demanding and would challenge many subs as it did mine (I have different brands).If anything is off I would blame the protection, as it might not kick in or it's faulty .
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post #13 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by netudki View Post


I wouldn't jump to conclusions like that. If the driver is bad,it would act up all the time not just on certain tracks.Also that scene is very demanding and would challenge many subs as it did mine (I have different brands).If anything is off I would blame the protection, as it might not kick in or it's faulty .

Very true.
If it were a bad driver you should be able to hear the same artifact you describe (with the same scene or any heavy LFE) at lower volumes distinctly from the bad driver.

Also the vast majority of the time when you do what edogg mentions above (gently pushing on the cone) there is resistance to motion and a slight grind if it's the driver.

It's most likely a combination of Audyssey boosting around the Empire's native 22 hz peak and a demanding scene played back at high spl. If you're in doubt try the above and let us know what you find.
Tim
Edit: Also try the same scene with Audyssey disengaged and report that back here in that as well.
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post #14 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 06:55 PM
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Try playing music at the same level but with the mains off.
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post #15 of 28 Old 04-21-2012, 07:16 PM
 
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If your sub is ported there know to flap. I didn't have any issues with that scene with my jbl es250p..
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post #16 of 28 Old 04-22-2012, 09:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodorthopod View Post

Very true.
If it were a bad driver you should be able to hear the same artifact you describe (with the same scene or any heavy LFE) at lower volumes distinctly from the bad driver.

Also the vast majority of the time when you do what edogg mentions above (gently pushing on the cone) there is resistance to motion and a slight grind if it's the driver.

It's most likely a combination of Audyssey boosting around the Empire's native 22 hz peak and a demanding scene played back at high spl. If you're in doubt try the above and let us know what you find.
Tim
Edit: Also try the same scene with Audyssey disengaged and report that back here in that as well.

I tried it with Audyssey disengaged and it still distorted. On another note, speakers when they are failing will often only show distortion when pushed. In other words, at lower volumes they will appear to function perfectly.
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post #17 of 28 Old 04-22-2012, 11:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post

I tried it with Audyssey disengaged and it still distorted. On another note, speakers when they are failing will often only show distortion when pushed. In other words, at lower volumes they will appear to function perfectly.

Call Chad. It's hard to say if it is the sub, receiver, or system settings. Was it purchased new or used?

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post #18 of 28 Old 04-22-2012, 12:23 PM - Thread Starter
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It was purchased new. I already have an email into them with a recording of the distortion.

John
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post #19 of 28 Old 04-22-2012, 01:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post

It was purchased new. I already have an email into them with a recording of the distortion.

John

Calling seems to be the best way to get a response. I would call him.

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post #20 of 28 Old 04-27-2012, 11:49 PM
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I just watched Ghost Protocol and had some bass issues. In searching around, I came across this thread. I heard the very same type of flapping distortion with Audyssey on and off during the described scene as well as the other major explosion scenes. The big difference is that I don't have a sub, so it was my ported mains were distorting (Salk STs). I too was listening at -10dbs, so not really that loud. Should I expect this since I don't have a sub?
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post #21 of 28 Old 04-28-2012, 07:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chargedmr2 View Post

I just watched Ghost Protocol and had some bass issues. In searching around, I came across this thread. I heard the very same type of flapping distortion with Audyssey on and off during the described scene as well as the other major explosion scenes. The big difference is that I don't have a sub, so it was my ported mains were distorting (Salk STs). I too was listening at -10dbs, so not really that loud. Should I expect this since I don't have a sub?

I would expect to hear distortion in most bass heavy movies using full range speakers. That's asking a lot from your speakers!! Now, I haven't heard your speakers or even seen the specs so maybe they can handle more than most but still.... you gotta get a sub man!!

Do you watch a lot of movies or mostly music? Do other bass heavy movies not distort?
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post #22 of 28 Old 04-28-2012, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by carp View Post

I would expect to hear distortion in most bass heavy movies using full range speakers. That's asking a lot from your speakers!! Now, I haven't heard your speakers or even seen the specs so maybe they can handle more than most but still.... you gotta get a sub man!!

Do you watch a lot of movies or mostly music? Do other bass heavy movies not distort?

I use my speakers mostly for music, but they serve as HT speakers as well.

I've NEVER noticed distortion like this before and I've watched other bass heavy movies such as Lord of the Rings. Maybe there is something particularly difficult about the low frequency in Ghost Protocol. The explosion scenes and the scene described by the OP resulted in horrible sounding flapping/clapping.

The SongTowers extend to about 42Hz, so they obviously are not meant for reproducing these low frequency explosions, etc. I'm currently planning an LMS 5400 build, so the mains will be relieved of bass duty during movies.

I am still curious if this type of distortion should be expexted at volumes that are not that demanding? Even at about -16 to -17dbs or so, I was still getting distortion like this.
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post #23 of 28 Old 04-28-2012, 10:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post


I don't know what else it could be. I tried testing it again today. It's pretty obvious something is not working properly.

Please post the gain settings on your empire and audyssey trim settings. My guess is that your gain/settings are too high, because if you had a bad driver you'd be hearing it with everything going through it, not just one scene.
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post #24 of 28 Old 04-28-2012, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chargedmr2 View Post

I use my speakers mostly for music, but they serve as HT speakers as well.

I've NEVER noticed distortion like this before and I've watched other bass heavy movies such as Lord of the Rings. Maybe there is something particularly difficult about the low frequency in Ghost Protocol. The explosion scenes and the scene described by the OP resulted in horrible sounding flapping/clapping.

The SongTowers extend to about 42Hz, so they obviously are not meant for reproducing these low frequency explosions, etc. I'm currently planning an LMS 5400 build, so the mains will be relieved of bass duty during movies.

I am still curious if this type of distortion should be expexted at volumes that are not that demanding? Even at about -16 to -17dbs or so, I was still getting distortion like this.

Nothing particularly difficult about the bass in Ghost Protocol. Possibly just had a peak at a weak point for you speakers or there was no other frequencies masking the distortion at that point in the movie. You just need subwoofers. 5" drivers can't keep up with the bass demands of today's movies. If you build a lms 5400 and put the power to it, it will be a whole new ballgame for HT. Welcome to the subwoofer forum.
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post #25 of 28 Old 05-03-2012, 11:02 AM - Thread Starter
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Hey all,

I talked with Chad and he wants to try swapping out the amplifier. I personally think this is not worth trying. He has suggested that they would go that route and if it does not work swap the whole unit. I think we should just go to the second phase. If it was an amplifier problem, you would experience the issue in many areas of the frequency spectrum.
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post #26 of 28 Old 05-03-2012, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post

Hey all,

I talked with Chad and he wants to try swapping out the amplifier. I personally think this is not worth trying. He has suggested that they would go that route and if it does not work swap the whole unit. I think we should just go to the second phase. If it was an amplifier problem, you would experience the issue in many areas of the frequency spectrum.

Why is it not worth trying? It is much cheaper to send out an amp, than return the whole unit and have another shipped out.
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post #27 of 28 Old 05-13-2012, 07:13 AM - Thread Starter
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I just wanted to let everyone know, once again, how good the customer support Epik offers truly is. Following a few conversations, Chad just offered to swap out the sub. He could have gone the route of swapping out parts, but just decided this would be the easier route for the customer. Go figure, a company that really cares about the customer! Chad, my thanks to you and your company for making a great product and standing behind what you sell!
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post #28 of 28 Old 05-14-2012, 04:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nohjy View Post

I just wanted to let everyone know, once again, how good the customer support Epik offers truly is. Following a few conversations, Chad just offered to swap out the sub. He could have gone the route of swapping out parts, but just decided this would be the easier route for the customer. Go figure, a company that really cares about the customer! Chad, my thanks to you and your company for making a great product and standing behind what you sell!

THE reason why I will be a repeat customer.
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