Remedy for boxy sound from center channel? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 02:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi all,

I just hooked up a new center channel speaker to my Denon 1713 and run Audyssey MultEQ XT, and while the center sounds very clear (much sharper and nicer than my last center), the sound seems very localized (not blending well, distinctly coming from the speaker instead of being part of the sound stage) but more to the point, it's sounding a little boxy. Could this be because I haven't set an appropriate crossover point?

Speaker is about $300 so quality should be good when properly set up. I've also heard this model of speaker in someone else's setup, and it sounded better.

Any input appreciated!

Chris
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post #2 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 04:07 AM
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More info would be helpful. What brand and model speaker, is it front ported or rear ported, is it in an enclosed area of a TV stand or entertainment center, is it slid back in an entertainment center with a wall close behind it? These would all be important things to know in diagnosing a possible problem with the sound.

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post #3 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 04:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Mr. Eastside,

It's an Axiom VP-100. It's sitting in front of the TV stand, out in the open. The sound replication is actually outstanding (blows away my previous center) and the sound is really detailed - I just feel it's calling a little too much attention to itself.

Here's the speaker: http://www.axiomaudio.com/vp100-center-channel-speaker

And it's not ported.
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post #4 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 08:33 AM
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I suggest the Cambridge Audio S50 center speaker; it is excellent-sounding, and also compact.

A center speaker, IMO, should only operate from 120 Hz up. Some people buy speakers with drivers that are too large, and these do not usually sound their best in the critical mid-range. The Axiom, IMO, has two basic problems; aluminum cones and drivers that are too large.

I believe in letting the front main speakers put out bass down to 50 Hz or so, the sub operate only from 20 to 50 Hz, and the center from 120 Hz up.

You may get lots of different opinions on this, but that is what seems to work best in my experiences.
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post #5 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 09:20 AM
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That Axiom can only play down to 95hrz, so it will probably be crossed over at 100hrz which is ok. I've owned Axiom and for the price I think theres MUCH better options for the price. The drivers in the Axiom are too stiff, no venting, and actually don't measure 5.25" they only measure that if you include the frame. Outer Surround to surround they measure closer to 4.25-4.5" which is actually smaller than the Cambridge.

What mains are you running with the VP100? It you not running Axioms that might be the problem. Axioms have their own sound signiture, which tends to be forward and shill at least to me, so a more laid back mains would make the VP100 stand out.

I try Commsysmans recommendation a few weeks ago on crossing a center at 120 with my subwoofer crossed at 60hr and my mains crossed at 60hrz. Bass just wasn't there, and voices sounded off. Especially male voices they lost the "fullness" to there voices. Seemed like there was a fairly wide freq range that was missing.

Any bass that the center isn't producing gets crossed over to the subwoofer. But if you cross the subwoofer down much lower than you do the center you just plain lose that content. Thats why its recommend to do 80hrz across the front with a subwoofer xover at 80hrz as well. This lets everything blend together with no gaps in the response.

I've also found that crossing my mains at 60hrz and my subwoofer at 80hrz, has taken care of a few nulls at the listening position.
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post #6 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 11:29 AM
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chrisin:

As you can see, there is always a wide variance of opinions - drivers too big to drivers too small. I find that if there is too much bass in the CC, male voices can sometimes become chesty - annoying to me.

As you've noted, the VP-100 sounds very good on its own - maybe there is a significant timbre difference with your L & R that makes it stand out. If changing the crossover doesn't work, then perhaps knock off a couple of Dbs from the CC Audyssey Level to tome it down a bit.

I have a bit of a mismatched Axiom HT system where I use a Sony SS-LAC305ED CC (due to space limitations) that works very well with my M22s. I calibrate with Audyssey as well & cross it over at 80 Hz. According to the spec sheets the 305ED operates from 70Hz to 70Khz (!!). It works seamlessly & harmoniously with the rest of the system (despite minor timbre differences with the M22s) with excellent definition in every thing that I play from BD movies to SACD surround music...

TAM
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post #7 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 11:42 AM
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Commsysman has pushed that center channels SHOULD ONLY be dual 4" fullrange drivers no tweeters and nothing larger, nothing lower than 120-150hrz and no higher than 3k. Which is bizzare to me. I was pointing out that infact the Axioms 5.25" have a cone suface area of a 4.25-4.5" not 5.25" cause the frame doesn't produce sound or atleast its not suppose to. There for making the VP100 fit into his CC theory, better than the CA cc. There is no official standard of driver measurements. So thats not a knock against Axiom there. Dayton Audio drivers don't measure the more ideal way which is stating actual radiating surface area and not frame.

The center could be inside of a shelf causing a horn load effect. His other speakers might be tuned much differently than the Axiom. I ran Arx mains with a Axiom VP150, they did not blend well at all. Opposite ends of sound characteristics.

Axiom has a flat side and a slanted side if the center is sitting lower and aimed right at your ears try aiming it up alittle to see if it tones it down. Audyssey may be messing with the levels as well. I had M22 mains and a VP150 and for some reason Audyssey would always jack the VP150 up to +5 and my M22s to -1 causing the CC to become over powering and out of balance.
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post #8 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 11:48 AM
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I think that adjusting the crossover point on the subwoofer's filter up and down slightly will get you to where the two are working right together.


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Originally Posted by gtpsuper24 View Post

That Axiom can only play down to 95hrz, so it will probably be crossed over at 100hrz which is ok.

I try Commsysmans recommendation a few weeks ago on crossing a center at 120 with my subwoofer crossed at 60hr and my mains crossed at 60hrz. Bass just wasn't there, and voices sounded off. Especially male voices they lost the "fullness" to there voices. Seemed like there was a fairly wide freq range that was missing.

position.
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post #9 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpsuper24 View Post

Commsysman has pushed that center channels SHOULD ONLY be dual 4" fullrange drivers no tweeters and nothing larger, nothing lower than 120-150hrz and no higher than 3k. Which is bizzare to me.

Man, if that is the case I am in trouble. I use an eD[c]12 which has a 12" driver and IMHO it sounds awesome. biggrin.gif
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post #10 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 12:47 PM
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Since your CC is out in front of your TV & not inside an enclosure, horn load effect is probably not at play here.

Since we don't know what mains (L & R) you are using, it's hard to provide anything helpful. Seems to me that the timbre of the CC vs L & R are so different that the CC is standing out too much. I'd try the suggestions provided above.

Audyssey is not perfect & many people don't like the results & others 'tweak' the settings to their liking afterwards. Personally I happen to like what it does for my system...

TAM
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post #11 of 14 Old 01-25-2013, 01:12 PM
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Without knowing the make and model of the mains, it's impossible to diagnose this. It could be as simple as a total timbre mismatch between the center and the mains, something Audyssey can do very little to correct.

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post #12 of 14 Old 01-26-2013, 01:21 AM - Thread Starter
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Appreciate all the responses! Possibilities which seem likeliest are 1) I'm listening to a lousy surround mix or 2) timbre mismatch.

For now I've lowered the Center 2db, and it's blending much, much better.

I have a couple of Axiom bookshelf speakers, and I'm going to put them in the place of the towers to test the timbre match theory tonight or tomorrow.
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post #13 of 14 Old 01-28-2013, 03:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Update: with Axioms across the front (M3s and a VP-100) everything sounds great. The sound signatures of my old mains and the center were different.
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post #14 of 14 Old 01-28-2013, 03:28 PM
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Great - I'm glad that it worked out. There is something to be said for timbre matching across the front, especially if the differences are significant.

The timbre differences between my M22s L & R and Sony 305ED CC are very minor & therefore is a non issue in my system...

TAM
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