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post #7141 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 07:20 AM
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Hi Can,

Think about how we derive an ideal target curve. By this, I mean the custom curve which sounds subjectively best, to you.

Starting with a baseline curve e.g. flat, you tweak and listen, tweak and listen and repeat as necessary until you've designed a target curve which you find ideal. As part of this process, a filter set has been created to yield that curve by comparing measured response to the target curve.

Now, let's assume that a) you've used some perfectly accurate, error-free, mythical mic to do this and b) that we "anchor" the target curve @ 10kHz to be 0dB i.e. all other frequencies in your curve are relative to that 0dB, 10kHz point. The filter value @ 10kHz is zero.

If you'd used mic A from my earlier example, it would measure +1dB at 10kHz and when the filter set is calculated it would include a -1dB filter @ 10kHz. If you'd used mic B, it would include a -2dB filter @ 10kHz. In either case, your ideal target is achieved, and which mic was used is immaterial.

Does this help?

Ken
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post #7142 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cannga View Post

Let's assume B is the more accurate mic, and measures a boost at 10 kHz of 2 dB as you mentioned.
A, the inaccurate mic, measures only a 1 dB boost, inaccurately.
Let's rephrase the very starting point because it is important:

Let's assume B is the mic with the flatter response, and natively measures flat at 10kHz. A, the less flat mic, measures -1dB at 10kHz. Both were individually "calibrated" before leaving the factory. Mic B's calibration file had zero compensation applied at 10kHz. Mic A's calibration file included +1dB compensation at 10kHz. When used with their calibration files both mics measure flat at 10kHz.

Stick them in your room and they will both measure the same unless the angle of incidence of 10kHz is different than under the calibration conditions. Here's where a very good omnidirectional mic will have more accuracy than a poor one because it reads truer under diverse angles of arrival. However, you are talking about decimal places of accuracy in a system that averages and smooths - it's spurious accuracy. Unless of course the weaker mic is so crap that it can't be deemed omnidirectional i.e. only measures true when the angle of incidence is exactly the same as its calibration conditions.

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post #7143 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 06:22 PM
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Ken, thank you. Yes your posts help, but see Steve K's explanation above - it would be the calibration (correction) file that makes the 2 target curves the same.

Regards, Can
Theta: Stunning 3D soundstage, sublime details, unlimited dynamics and low end response - THE processor for audiophiles! My system & CBIII HD review & setup help - Post # 3913 & 3914
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post #7144 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post
Let's rephrase the very starting point because it is important:

Let's assume B is the mic with the flatter response, and natively measures flat at 10kHz. A, the less flat mic, measures -1dB at 10kHz. Both were individually "calibrated" before leaving the factory. Mic B's calibration file had zero compensation applied at 10kHz. Mic A's calibration file included +1dB compensation at 10kHz. When used with their 1. calibration files both mics measure flat at 10kHz.

Stick them in your room and they will both measure the same unless the 2. angle of incidence of 10kHz is different than under the calibration conditions. Here's where a very good omnidirectional mic will have more accuracy than a poor one because it reads truer under diverse angles of arrival. However, you are talking about 3. decimal places of accuracy in a system that averages and smooths - it's spurious accuracy. Unless of course the weaker mic is so crap that it can't be deemed omnidirectional i.e. only measures true when the angle of incidence is exactly the same as its calibration conditions.

Steve K, very nice, you've addressed all three issues that my next few questions were going to lead to. Again, all "real" questions for my curiosity (please forget about whether we could hear it for the moment - this is strictly number crunching):

1. Agreed.
2. Agreed, good point. I recall you mentioned mic come with 2 calibration files (pls correct me as needed): on axis (0 degree pointing straight at speakers) and diffuse (mic pointing up at 90 degrees)? Strictly for the sake of measurement discussion: but aren't we using something in between, x degrees from horizontal - which is not included in the calibration files? In Carl Huff's case: x being 15 degrees from horizontal sitting, and 45 degrees from vertical standing?
3. Agreed, good point. Just curious: do you happen to know what decimal place does Dirac curve correct to, for example 1 dB, 1.5, or 1.55? What decimal place is the calibration file?

Regards, Can
Theta: Stunning 3D soundstage, sublime details, unlimited dynamics and low end response - THE processor for audiophiles! My system & CBIII HD review & setup help - Post # 3913 & 3914
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post #7145 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bruzonsky View Post
I remember the Tice clock very well, though didn't try it myself. In fact, it was a tweak discussed at the Tweaks forum here at AVS quite a bit back in the early 2000's. Yes, I am that OLD! (three weeks to hip replacement, counting down!)

But you had to plug the Tice clock into a wall outlet on the same circuit as your stereo gear.
We're jokin' here about wearing a watch to change the sonics to the ear on the same side.
Who knows? Someday it may be a reality, an adjustable "HALO" watch (do you watch the Sci-Fi
Channel show "Continuom" which has a "HALO" watch for health, etc purposes)!


Steve B,

I actually have the Tice Power Block, a large isolation transformer type line "conditioner," but definitely have shied away from advertising ownership ever since this Tice clock debacle. Poor Tice - I think he was doing well with his other products until this clock thing more or less completely destroyed the Tice name.

No I am not following Continuum - recommended (I am a huge Star Trek fan)? I still have the last season of Breaking Bad to do.

Congrats - Brand spanking new hip in 3 weeks! Wishing you a speedy recovery and great result. "Live well and prosper." :-)

Regards, Can
Theta: Stunning 3D soundstage, sublime details, unlimited dynamics and low end response - THE processor for audiophiles! My system & CBIII HD review & setup help - Post # 3913 & 3914
Give vinyl and tube gears a try - the sound from heaven :-).

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post #7146 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 11:25 PM
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Post Dirac

Alright, finished my first set of tests and downloaded the curve to the Theta. Sounds great! But what happened to my volume??? I is about 25 lower when the Dirac Live is engaged. Can't get enough volume for listening when at MAX VOLUME!!!


Must have done something wrong. I set the input on the Microphone all the way up to in the red, correct? (It says this in the docs).


What to do?


Thanks

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post #7147 of 7341 Old 06-24-2014, 11:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cannga View Post
Steve K, very nice, you've addressed all three issues that my next few questions were going to lead to. Again, all "real" questions for my curiosity (please forget about whether we could hear it for the moment - this is strictly number crunching):

1. Agreed.
2. Agreed, good point. I recall you mentioned mic come with 2 calibration files (pls correct me as needed): on axis (0 degree pointing straight at speakers) and diffuse (mic pointing up at 90 degrees)? Strictly for the sake of measurement discussion: but aren't we using something in between, x degrees from horizontal - which is not included in the calibration files? In Carl Huff's case: x being 15 degrees from horizontal sitting, and 45 degrees from vertical standing?
3. Agreed, good point. Just curious: do you happen to know what decimal place does Dirac curve correct to, for example 1 dB, 1.5, or 1.55? What decimal place is the calibration file?
Looks like Theta have been diligently checking re calibration orientation since I went back to them again asking them to check once more. I just received a new set of calibration files for 90 degree orientation from which I will select the one that relates to my mic's serial number. Good stuff.

Can, previously there was just one calibration file supplied and I suspect, given the above, it was indeed and "on-axis" profile. Now we have both. If you follow Dirac's instructions, for 5.1/7.1 calibrations you will point the mic vertically. Tilting it forward (whether it be 15 degrees up from horizontal as Carl wrote or 15/45 degrees forward of vertical) would likely compromise the surround and rear channels (the pressure sensor would be more sheltered from high frequencies than when calibrated because it is tilted away from the speaker).

Note that the positions are sweet spot - which I assume for most is sitting - above sweet spot and below sweet spot (obviously to the left and right also). I would not refer to the below sweet spot as "sitting".

3 decimal places

Here is one of the files so you can look for yourself: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...92/7002358.txt

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post #7148 of 7341 Old 06-25-2014, 12:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterS View Post
Alright, finished my first set of tests and downloaded the curve to the Theta. Sounds great! But what happened to my volume??? I is about 25 lower when the Dirac Live is engaged. Can't get enough volume for listening when at MAX VOLUME!!!


Must have done something wrong. I set the input on the Microphone all the way up to in the red, correct? (It says this in the docs).


What to do?


Thanks
By a bigger set of amps?

The input volume is just to ensure you get good measurements. It doesn't affect the output volume.

Dirac Live is biased towards attenuation because you don't want the filter to drive clipping. So, yes, as previously communicated you need to turn the volume up with a Dirac filter engaged. Someone mentioned that in other implementations there is the possibility to add back the 6dB attenuation. I have raised this with Theta as something to think about. Drop John a line.

BTW what is the maximum volume level on the CB? I have never had mine beyond 43.

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post #7149 of 7341 Old 06-25-2014, 04:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevekale View Post
By a bigger set of amps?

The input volume is just to ensure you get good measurements. It doesn't affect the output volume.

Dirac Live is biased towards attenuation because you don't want the filter to drive clipping. So, yes, as previously communicated you need to turn the volume up with a Dirac filter engaged. Someone mentioned that in other implementations there is the possibility to add back the 6dB attenuation. I have raised this with Theta as something to think about. Drop John a line.

BTW what is the maximum volume level on the CB? I have never had mine beyond 43.
Could be a big issues if you have low sensitivity speakers. Dirac attenuates 8dB by default, which can be adjusted back up in the latest version of the Dirac processor running on a PC. Since Theta is effectively running the Dirac processor in their Dirac implementation, it would indeed be incumbent on Theta to implement this feature.

If your amp/speaker combo was capable of playing sufficiently loud pre Dirac, they are still capable of doing so with Dirac in the chain. The issue is the amp get a too low input voltage, so rather than messing with amps / speakers, I would advocate adding a gain stage between the Theta output and the poweramp. If you add about 10dB gain you should be OK. I would think that if your amp was not clipping playing at this volume pre Dirac, it won't be with Dirac + gain stage either. The gain stage simply jacks up the output voltage that got cut back in the digital domain by applying Dirac.

May be more qualified experts can weigh in on the merit of this approach. I'm personally planning on going down this path just for my center channel, which is limiting overall maximum volume level of my system.
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post #7150 of 7341 Old 06-25-2014, 04:57 AM
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Running the Dreadnaught II and even with the output now at MAX (73) it is barely loud enough to listen to.

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post #7151 of 7341 Old 06-25-2014, 04:59 PM
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Steve K, thanks.

Previously someone asked whether we could set frequency range of room correction in CB4's Dirac, for example 20 hz to 5 khz, instead of 20 hz to 20 khz. Do you happen to know the answer to that?

Regards, Can
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post #7152 of 7341 Old 06-25-2014, 07:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cannga View Post
Steve K, thanks.

Previously someone asked whether we could set frequency range of room correction in CB4's Dirac, for example 20 hz to 5 khz, instead of 20 hz to 20 khz. Do you happen to know the answer to that?
You can create filters in the calibration tool on the PC/Mac that only operate in that frequency range. The CBIV will just run the filter in the runtime engine.
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post #7153 of 7341 Old 06-25-2014, 11:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterS View Post
Alright, finished my first set of tests and downloaded the curve to the Theta. Sounds great! But what happened to my volume??? I is about 25 lower when the Dirac Live is engaged. Can't get enough volume for listening when at MAX VOLUME!!!
Have you tried to adjust the analoge input levels ? (If U are using analoge inputs).
This can be done global, and also for each input. (Page 75 in latest manual).
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post #7154 of 7341 Old 06-26-2014, 04:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cannga View Post
Steve K, thanks.

Previously someone asked whether we could set frequency range of room correction in CB4's Dirac, for example 20 hz to 5 khz, instead of 20 hz to 20 khz. Do you happen to know the answer to that?
Can

Have a look at the guide I linked to previously. A lot of your questions will be answered by it (plus extrapolation beyond a stereo setup).

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post #7155 of 7341 Old 06-26-2014, 07:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cannga View Post
Steve K, thanks.

Previously someone asked whether we could set frequency range of room correction in CB4's Dirac, for example 20 hz to 5 khz, instead of 20 hz to 20 khz. Do you happen to know the answer to that?
There are two "gates" in the Dirac Live frequency display. You can click and drag the right hand "gate" to the left to set a limit for high-frequency correction. Clicking and dragging the left hand "gate" to the right sets a limit for the low frequency correction.

Jeff
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post #7156 of 7341 Old 06-27-2014, 04:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Stereojeff View Post
There are two "gates" in the Dirac Live frequency display. You can click and drag the right hand "gate" to the left to set a limit for high-frequency correction. Clicking and dragging the left hand "gate" to the right sets a limit for the low frequency correction.
Jeff
Thanks Jeff, that's great. How the audiophiles could have fun playing with this. I shudder to think of the time I am going to waste once I have it.

Regards, Can
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post #7157 of 7341 Old 07-03-2014, 05:09 PM
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Finally got my upgraded CBIV today and basic set up was a breeze. The sound is as amazing as everyone says. But I haven't a clue how to set up Dirac. I assume there is a website from where I can download the software but I received no information about a website (or any other instructions,for that matter, like how to download the Dirac settings into the CBIV.) I was going to spend the weekend playing around with this but Theta is shut down for the weekend so I thought I would see if anyone here can fill me in.

Thanks.

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post #7158 of 7341 Old 07-04-2014, 08:47 AM
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do you have your Dirac code from Theta?

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post #7159 of 7341 Old 07-04-2014, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by stevekale View Post
do you have your Dirac code from Theta?
Theta forgot to send me the website address for downloading Dirac.

I finally got the website and downloaded Dirac. But no matter how carefully I follow the directions, the software does not recognize my CBIV. I am connecting the USB to the Digi In card and starting my laptop from scratch, but I cannot get a handshake.

Is there some trick I am missing? (E.g., does it matter what source I select?)

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post #7160 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 12:56 AM
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So you registered with Dirac, got the email with the download link and have Dirac installed. Good progress.

I had problems the first time because Windows couldn't find the serial driver needed. After awhile Windows just gives up. You will need to delete the device in device manager and force Windows to search again. Make sure you have a good Internet connection. Post a pic here of what's displayed in Device Manager.

When I first connected my CB IV a new device called FT32R USB UART appeared in Device Manager and Windows couldn't find the driver for this. See pic attached. Basically, Windows won't keep looking for a driver after several attempts. If you have this, delete the device in Device Manager, reconnect the CB IV (make sure your USB connections are good) and Windows should find a new device attached and search again for the driver.

Here's an excerpt of an exchange I was having with Theta when I first got my CB IV:

Success!

I went to device manager and uninstalled the device that was appearing there, downloaded the software and installed again (although I don't think this mattered), plugged the Casablanca in again and this time after about 20 minutes of scanning the Internet it found a driver for a USB serial converter. This installed but it still didn't work. However, when I unplugged the cable and plugged it in again it all started working. USB serial port appeared in device manager and a rescan within Dirac Live found the CB IV !!!

It was my IT manager that gave me the tip to delete the device and reconnect.

(Once Windows finds the USB serial device driver it needs it will work fine. A few posts back I posted a link to a guide to how to use Dirac at a basic level. Once you manage that, you can get more sophisticated in how you use it.)
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post #7161 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 06:48 AM
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Steve,

I had exactly the same problem. I tried deleting the device this morning but could not do so. Or at least I don't recall any specific step that resulted in the device being deleted. And yet Dirac worked this time, up to a point. I did all the calibration and saved a correction file. But then Dirac no longer recognized my CBIV and now I am back to square one.

Thanks for helping...maybe you have a bit more magic to work?

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post #7162 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 07:10 AM
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I'm going from memory… to delete the device (e.g. FT32R USB UART ) you can right-click on it in Device Manager and select delete.

You have to be very careful with USB connections (mic and computer). If you lose the cable connection you are basically back to square one.

I suspect you lost your device (physical) connection, reconnected and then Windows had the same problem not finding the driver. When I started doing this stuff I was using an old borrowed laptop from the office. I then started using my audio server rather than the laptop as it is a very fast Windows computer. I've not had problems since and it is very fast at finding the driver on connection.

Basically this is infuriating Windows stuff and nothing really to do with the CB IV. I hate Windows with a vengeance. If it weren't so entrenched it would be obsolete by now.

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post #7163 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 07:20 AM
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I'm going from memory… to delete the device (e.g. FT32R USB UART ) you can right-click on it in Device Manager and select delete.

You have to be very careful with USB connections (mic and computer). If you lose the cable connection you are basically back to square one.

I suspect you lost your device (physical) connection, reconnected and then Windows had the same problem not finding the driver. When I started doing this stuff I was using an old borrowed laptop from the office. I then started using my audio server rather than the laptop as it is a very fast Windows computer. I've not had problems since and it is very fast at finding the driver on connection.

Basically this is infuriating Windows stuff and nothing really to do with the CB IV. I hate Windows with a vengeance. If it weren't so entrenched it would be obsolete by now.
So now I have no problem deleting the device (I just delete the driver named "USB Serial Port". And I have no problem finding the driver driver and installing it. But 19 times out of 20 I still can't get my PC to recognize my CBIV. I have managed to do it twice. But each time when i think I have made it to the end I am unable to load the filter onto the CBIV. I get a message "Export failed: calibration data processing failed." I don't know if this is a handshake problem or something else. And as I cannot establish another handshake, I don't think I can find out.

I hope to speak with John Baloff this week and see if he has any ideas.

I do know that it took John eight weeks to do my update -- it seemed to have lots of issues. I wonder if this is one of them.

Thanks for your help.

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post #7164 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 12:36 PM
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If you have no problem finding the driver and USB Serial Device showing in device manager before you start and at the start of the Dirac calibration process you see your CB IV then my bet is that at some point your cable comes lose while doing the calibration. Are you using the cables provided?

BTW I did not say to delete USB Serial Device if it appeared but rather FT32R USB UART. If when you plug in the CB IV you see in the bottom right of your screen that it has found a new device and installed the driver then you should be ok. If Dirac Live can't see the CB IV at the beginning you can't start the calibration.

Egglestonworks Andra III, Andra III Centre, Rosa (as surround). Rel Stentor II. Theta CB IV. Krell FPB 200 and two KAV 150a amps. Custom-built audio server. Oppo 103EU. Apple TV. Pioneer PDP-LX608D. Synergistic Research "Element Copper" front speaker cable. Cardas Clear Light bal interconnects.

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post #7165 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by stevekale View Post
If you have no problem finding the driver and USB Serial Device showing in device manager before you start and at the start of the Dirac calibration process you see your CB IV then my bet is that at some point your cable comes lose while doing the calibration. Are you using the cables provided?

BTW I did not say to delete USB Serial Device if it appeared but rather FT32R USB UART. If when you plug in the CB IV you see in the bottom right of your screen that it has found a new device and installed the driver then you should be ok. If Dirac Live can't see the CB IV at the beginning you can't start the calibration.
While FT32R USB UART appears on my list of devices on the Device and Printers page (where there is no option to delete it), it does not appear as such in the Device Manager. Only USB Serial Device appears there. Thus, I don't know how to delete FT32R USB UART other than to delete the Serial Device.

The cable is not loose.

I have tried about 50 times to get this to work and had partial success only twice. Still have not finished the job. Oh well.

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post #7166 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 04:02 PM
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FWIW, I went back into Dirac on my system. Same problem here now. The only other thing I did last time was to uninstall and reinstall the Dirac Live software.

Egglestonworks Andra III, Andra III Centre, Rosa (as surround). Rel Stentor II. Theta CB IV. Krell FPB 200 and two KAV 150a amps. Custom-built audio server. Oppo 103EU. Apple TV. Pioneer PDP-LX608D. Synergistic Research "Element Copper" front speaker cable. Cardas Clear Light bal interconnects.
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post #7167 of 7341 Old 07-05-2014, 04:26 PM
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The 51st time was the charm! I turned off the Theta before starting Dirac. Dirac did not recognize the Theta of course. But then I turned on the Theta and restarted Dirac and it worked. I did this again and it worked again. As far as downloading the filter, I needed to turn Dirac off on the Theta before downloading. Once I did this, the download went perfectly.

Oh btw, the music never sounded better!

Thanks so much for helping me out. I know you probably had better things to do this holiday weekend!

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post #7168 of 7341 Old 07-06-2014, 02:17 AM
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As far as downloading the filter, I needed to turn Dirac off on the Theta before downloading.
Ah yes. Sorry I missed giving you that tip. Have a good weekend also - not a long one here and the weather sucks so low opportunity cost. Glad it got working for you!

Now start thinking about what's really happening with the combination of DL's curve and your crossover settings. There's more to come...

Egglestonworks Andra III, Andra III Centre, Rosa (as surround). Rel Stentor II. Theta CB IV. Krell FPB 200 and two KAV 150a amps. Custom-built audio server. Oppo 103EU. Apple TV. Pioneer PDP-LX608D. Synergistic Research "Element Copper" front speaker cable. Cardas Clear Light bal interconnects.
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post #7169 of 7341 Old 07-06-2014, 06:08 AM
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Thanks Jeff, that's great. How the audiophiles could have fun playing with this. I shudder to think of the time I am going to waste once I have it.
I look forward to your subjective impressions. You are very good at communicating your observations.

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post #7170 of 7341 Old 07-06-2014, 07:02 AM
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But once again we are getting back to the "more money must = a better product or result". More than one expert person here including more than one manufacture has already stated that the quality of the microphone is not that critical in the overall calibration. Reason being there are so many much larger unavoidable errors in the room correction process, any error produced by the mic is irrelevant to the final calibration.

This is exactly what keep the high end audio products industry in business. - FUD sold to those with non technical backgrounds*!

*This is not meant as an insult. A distinguished doctor, lawyer, or finance master is certainly no fool. It's just that there are charlatans in this business that take advantage of this.
What many need to be doing is investing in room treatments first and then investing in microphones.If you ask Dirac, the response will be swift and that will be that room correction does not negate the need for room treatments.10k in cables and not a single room treatment in sight in typical.

Frequency response below about 500Hz radiates like a wave. You do not need a very good microphone to measure this. Here are where most of the benefits to room correction are IMO. If you want to roll off the highs, of course you will need to do a broader correction. Most of the problems in "bright" sounding rooms are not from the accuracy of the speakers reproduction but rather, the secondary reflections from items in the room like glass tables and windows reinforcing the direct sound. Eliminate those and you greatly reduce the need for high frequency room correction.Low frequency correction is a lot more difficult to address with room treatments and benefits more from attenuation of the frequencies boosted by room gain.

Never become so involved with something that it blinds you.
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