Need advice: Center Speaker, Dialogue, Crossovers, and Frequencies - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
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So, I've been reading around here for quite some time but I finally got around to making an account. :)

 

Anyway, I've been trying to dig up information but I can't seem to find anything specific to what I need to know. So allow me to jump into my set-up:

 

Fronts: Diamond 9.0

Center:Diamond 9.CC
Surrounds: WH-DFS (dipole)

Yamaha Presence Speakers: Diamond 9.SR

Subwoofer: SW-100

 

Receiver: Yamaha RX-V773

 

Note that all the speakers above are from the Wharfedale Diamond 9 HCP with the exception of the the presence speakers.

 

I've been using this setup for a few months and I noticed that there are sometimes problems with dialogue clarity. I'm guessing that it's probably because of the small center that I'm using. Are there other possible reasons I should be looking at?

If it is the center, I was thinking of jumping into a large center for future-proofing. For timbre matching, I have access to the 9, 10, and 100 series Diamond centers. The 100 looks like a major redesign though (including the lack of a 3-way in the family). Between the 9 and 10, I was looking at the 9.CM and 10.CM. Will these speakers be too large for my setup or will level adjustment resolve that anyway?

 

I have a few more questions but I'll leave those as a follow-up. TIA!

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post #2 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 02:07 AM
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My personal opinion is that smaller is often better in a center speaker, because I find that the center speaker should only operate from 100 Hz and above, to provide midrange clarity for voices and instruments.

I can't say whether your center speaker is any good or not, but my advice is to stay small (4-inch or smaller drivers) for best clarity. A center speaker should NEVER have any bass output IMO, and larger is usually NOT better, but worse! Others may disagree, but that has been my experience. One review I read said that the clarity was very good with your center speaker, for what that is worth.

I hate dipole speakers, because they totally screw up the sound pattern in most rooms. That could be your whole problem.

My approach would be to totally disconnect the presence and dipole speakers and see how the clarity is with just the front 3 speakers operating.

If it is still poor, I would recommend replacing the center speaker with the Cambridge Audio S50, which is one of the best I have heard.

If the front 3 speakers sound good by themselves, consider replacing the dipole speakers with conventional speakers that don't have such a messy radiation pattern. My bet is that the front 3 speakers will sound very good by themselves, and that you have some messy acoustical issues with the other speakers that need sorting out.

Also, carefully try different locations for the presence and other speakers.

If all else fails, maybe you just want a 3.1 system ( or 2.1) in that room, Sometimes simpler sounds a lot better. Go with what works.

I also don't think the clarity of ANY Yamaha receiver is very good. IMO your whole system would sound a LOT better if you invested in a NAD receiver; much better sound quality in all respects to my ears.
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post #3 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 04:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nightsky87 View Post

So, I've been reading around here for quite some time but I finally got around to making an account. smile.gif

Anyway, I've been trying to dig up information but I can't seem to find anything specific to what I need to know. So allow me to jump into my set-up:

Fronts: Diamond 9.0
Center:Diamond 9.CC

Surrounds: WH-DFS (dipole)
Yamaha Presence Speakers: Diamond 9.SR
Subwoofer: SW-100

Receiver: Yamaha RX-V773

Note that all the speakers above are from the Wharfedale Diamond 9 HCP with the exception of the the presence speakers.

I've been using this setup for a few months and I noticed that there are sometimes problems with dialogue clarity. I'm guessing that it's probably because of the small center that I'm using. Are there other possible reasons I should be looking at?

Looking at your options, the 9.cc is a straight MTM design, which is probably the most common, cheapest to implement, and worst configuration for a center channel speaker:



Moving right along the 10CS is more of the same:



The 10CM is a more preferred configuration - a 3 way design with the upper range drivers stacked:




Quote:
If it is the center, I was thinking of jumping into a large center for future-proofing. For timbre matching, I have access to the 9, 10, and 100 series Diamond centers. The 100 looks like a major redesign though (including the lack of a 3-way in the family). Between the 9 and 10, I was looking at the 9.CM and 10.CM. Will these speakers be too large for my setup or will level adjustment resolve that anyway?

That's hard to predict from a distance, but here's the relevant question - how well is level adjustment working for your current configuration?

If dialogue is a problem, the first thing to adjust is the easiest thing to adjust - the level for the center speaker.

The first question is really "Have you given YPAO a shot?"

If YPAO can't work things out, then: Manual adjustment of speaker levels, particularly the center. However you may also want to turn down the surrounds a bit.

Failing that, there are questions of speaker positioning. Moving your L&R speakers further apart or closer together (if possible) will have some effect. Room acoustics are hard to judge from thousands of miles away, so I can't predict which way will be better, so judgement of any changes is up to you. As you move speakers, reun YPAO and redo any follow-on manual adjustments.

Dialog clarity can also be a problem if the room has strong reflections. Acoustic treatments to deal with that may be in order.

Finally as your last option is the matter of center speaker upgrades. All other things being equal a larger center channel speaker will provide better localization of dialog which will probably be a good thing.
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post #4 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 05:34 AM
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Originally Posted by nightsky87 View Post
 

So, I've been reading around here for quite some time but I finally got around to making an account. :)

 

Anyway, I've been trying to dig up information but I can't seem to find anything specific to what I need to know. So allow me to jump into my set-up:

 

Fronts: Diamond 9.0

Center:Diamond 9.CC
Surrounds: WH-DFS (dipole)

Yamaha Presence Speakers: Diamond 9.SR

Subwoofer: SW-100

 

Receiver: Yamaha RX-V773

 

Note that all the speakers above are from the Wharfedale Diamond 9 HCP with the exception of the the presence speakers.

 

I've been using this setup for a few months and I noticed that there are sometimes problems with dialogue clarity. I'm guessing that it's probably because of the small center that I'm using. Are there other possible reasons I should be looking at?

If it is the center, I was thinking of jumping into a large center for future-proofing. For timbre matching, I have access to the 9, 10, and 100 series Diamond centers. The 100 looks like a major redesign though (including the lack of a 3-way in the family). Between the 9 and 10, I was looking at the 9.CM and 10.CM. Will these speakers be too large for my setup or will level adjustment resolve that anyway?

 

I have a few more questions but I'll leave those as a follow-up. TIA!

 

Arny has given you good advice. All I would add is that if dialogue is not clear, then this is a problem which needs identifying and solving. Mixers go to huge lengths to ensure dialogue is properly reproduced so if it is not clear and intelligible in your system, at a 'normal' listening level, then there is a reason. It may be that your centre speaker is of low quality, I don't know as I have no experience of the speaker.

 

But more often one finds dialogue intelligibility is adversely affected by reflections. These can be the result of an entirely untreated and untamed room or as a result of poor positioning of the centre speaker. If the former, acoustic treatments are the real answer, and if these are not possible, then trying to using furnishings, drapes, bookshelves etc can bring some benefit.

 

If the centre speaker is on a shelf or some sort of cabinet it is vital that the leading edge of the speaker be slightly overhanging the edge of the cabinet or shelf.

 

Finally, if you have a large reflective surface between you and the centre speaker - eg a glass or otherwise shiny coffee table - this too can play havoc with dialogue intelligibility. If you can't remove it (best advice) then cover it with books and magazines or even a thick blanket when you are listening.

 

There is absolutely nothing at all wrong with using dipole speakers for the surrounds and in fact these are recommended by THX. The M&K SS150T speakers are a dipole/tripole design and these have often been referred to as the 'Rolls Royce' of surround speakers. I use these speakers in my own HT and I have zero problems with dialogue on any modern-ish disc I have ever played.  Do not look to the dipole surrounds as a potential cause of poor dialogue reproduction!

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post #5 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 06:07 AM
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my RC-62 set as Large (full range) and I have no issues with clarity or  mid range bass. I've tried to set it as Small and crossed at 80 and 100Hz and even my wife noticed the difference. if it set to Large all dialogs sound more realistic, deeper, clearer, more defined and mid range bass is more defined.


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post #6 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by dimanata2007 View Post
 

my RC-62 set as Large (full range) and I have no issues with clarity or  mid range bass. I've tried to set it as Small and crossed at 80 and 100Hz and even my wife noticed the difference. if it set to Large all dialogs sound more realistic, deeper, clearer, more defined and mid range bass is more defined.

 

Not disputing what you hear, but if a setting of Large (ie bypassing bass management) is required for good dialogue intelligibility, then it suggests something isn't quite right somewhere. You will also be missing all low bass that is being sent to the centre channel because it is no longer being redirected to the sub and the centre channel won’t be capable of playing it as well as a decent sub can.

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post #7 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 07:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
 
My approach would be to totally disconnect the presence and dipole speakers and see how the clarity is with just the front 3 speakers operating.

 

I actually tried that before posting (not with dialogues though). The sound quality with the surrounds enabled doesn't suffer so much as compared to having no surrounds. On the other hand, I've tried comparing the sound with the front 3 vs just plain stereo and there is a significant degradation in quality. I'm not sure if it's because of the surround decoding process or because of the center itself.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

If the front 3 speakers sound good by themselves, consider replacing the dipole speakers with conventional speakers that don't have such a messy radiation pattern. My bet is that the front 3 speakers will sound very good by themselves, and that you have some messy acoustical issues with the other speakers that need sorting out.

 

Before I put up the dipoles, the surrounds used to be powered by the 9.SR. IMO, the sound is certainly better with the dipoles for my setup.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

That's hard to predict from a distance, but here's the relevant question - how well is level adjustment working for your current configuration?

If dialogue is a problem, the first thing to adjust is the easiest thing to adjust - the level for the center speaker.

The first question is really "Have you given YPAO a shot?"

If YPAO can't work things out, then: Manual adjustment of speaker levels, particularly the center. However you may also want to turn down the surrounds a bit.

 

That's actually what I did once I got the HT up and running. The YPAO calibration got all the levels good. In fact, YPAO already has the center set at +2.5 dB over the rest of the speakers. The problem isn't the loudness but rather the clarity of the sound.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Dialog clarity can also be a problem if the room has strong reflections. Acoustic treatments to deal with that may be in order.

 

Admittedly, my room does have strong reflections from the walls which I'm trying to minimize using heavy curtains soon. Unfortunately, complete acoustic treatment isn't an option at this point since it's a multi-purpose room.

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Finally as your last option is the matter of center speaker upgrades. All other things being equal a larger center channel speaker will provide better localization of dialog which will probably be a good thing.
 
That's good to know. :) Going back to my question though, if I get a larger center and adjust the levels, is there a chance that it will overpower my fronts? Any thoughts on 2-way vs 3-way in terms of clarity?
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post
 

 

Arny has given you good advice. All I would add is that if dialogue is not clear, then this is a problem which needs identifying and solving. Mixers go to huge lengths to ensure dialogue is properly reproduced so if it is not clear and intelligible in your system, at a 'normal' listening level, then there is a reason. It may be that your centre speaker is of low quality, I don't know as I have no experience of the speaker.

 

But more often one finds dialogue intelligibility is adversely affected by reflections. These can be the result of an entirely untreated and untamed room or as a result of poor positioning of the centre speaker. If the former, acoustic treatments are the real answer, and if these are not possible, then trying to using furnishings, drapes, bookshelves etc can bring some benefit.

 

:(

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post
 

There is absolutely nothing at all wrong with using dipole speakers for the surrounds and in fact these are recommended by THX. The M&K SS150T speakers are a dipole/tripole design and these have often been referred to as the 'Rolls Royce' of surround speakers. I use these speakers in my own HT and I have zero problems with dialogue on any modern-ish disc I have ever played.  Do not look to the dipole surrounds as a potential cause of poor dialogue reproduction!

 
Thanks for that info. At least that removes that factor.
 
So... I guess it's the 9 or 10 CM models.
 
Onto my next question then. Right now, I have *all* speakers set to small with the crossover set at 80 Hz. The low-end frequency of the speakers are as follows:
 
9.0 - 60 Hz
9.CC - 80 Hz
9.SR - 70 Hz
WH-DFS - 70 Hz
Sub (highest) - 85 Hz
 
If I replace the CC with CM, the new set would be:
 
9.0 - 60 Hz
9.CM - 55 Hz
9.SR - 70 Hz
WH-DFS - 70 Hz
Sub (highest) - 85 Hz
 
In that scenario, is it still better to set the crossover to 80 Hz or is it possible to bring it down to 60 Hz since only the surrounds and presence speakers that suffer? Or is it an option to keep the crossover at 80 Hz and just set the center to large to allow for a wider frequency response at the center? The Yamaha doesn't have individual crossovers so these are the two options I can think of. Any thoughts?
 
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post #8 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by nightsky87 View Post
 
 
Onto my next question then. Right now, I have *all* speakers set to small with the crossover set at 80 Hz. The low-end frequency of the speakers are as follows:
 
9.0 - 60 Hz
9.CC - 80 Hz
9.SR - 70 Hz
WH-DFS - 70 Hz
Sub (highest) - 85 Hz
 
If I replace the CC with CM, the new set would be:
 
9.0 - 60 Hz
9.CM - 55 Hz
9.SR - 70 Hz
WH-DFS - 70 Hz
Sub (highest) - 85 Hz
 
In that scenario, is it still better to set the crossover to 80 Hz or is it possible to bring it down to 60 Hz since only the surrounds and presence speakers that suffer? Or is it an option to keep the crossover at 80 Hz and just set the center to large to allow for a wider frequency response at the center? The Yamaha doesn't have individual crossovers so these are the two options I can think of. Any thoughts?
 

 

The manufacturer's specs for FR of the speakers can be largely ignored. Their measurements are taken anechoically in all probability and in any case, the response of any speaker is highly influenced by the room it is in and its position in that room.  Here is some general advice from the Audyssey FAQ - I know your AVR doesn’t have Audyssey but the FAQ answer gives several good reasons why setting a XO of, typically, 80Hz is a good idea (assuming you have a competent sub):

 

c)2.   Why do I often see advice to raise the Crossovers to 80Hz?

 

I would also leave the centre channel with a XO of 80Hz - same logic as for the other channels.

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post #9 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post
 

 

The manufacturer's specs for FR of the speakers can be largely ignored. Their measurements are taken anechoically in all probability and in any case, the response of any speaker is highly influenced by the room it is in and its position in that room.  Here is some general advice from the Audyssey FAQ - I know your AVR doesn’t have Audyssey but the FAQ answer gives several good reasons why setting a XO of, typically, 80Hz is a good idea (assuming you have a competent sub):

 

c)2.   Why do I often see advice to raise the Crossovers to 80Hz?

 

I would also leave the centre channel with a XO of 80Hz - same logic as for the other channels.

 

Thanks! The thing is I'm not sure if the sub itself is competent. It's part of the discontinued Diamond 9 Home Cinema Package and there I can hardly find any reviews. From a purely subjective no-comparison perspective, I like how smooth the low frequencies are with the current setup. Is there any clarity reduction in diverting the bass from the center to the sub?

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post #10 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 08:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kbarnes701 View Post
 

 

The manufacturer's specs for FR of the speakers can be largely ignored. Their measurements are taken anechoically in all probability and in any case, the response of any speaker is highly influenced by the room it is in and its position in that room.  Here is some general advice from the Audyssey FAQ - I know your AVR doesn’t have Audyssey but the FAQ answer gives several good reasons why setting a XO of, typically, 80Hz is a good idea (assuming you have a competent sub):

 

c)2.   Why do I often see advice to raise the Crossovers to 80Hz?

 

I would also leave the centre channel with a XO of 80Hz - same logic as for the other channels.

 

Thanks! The thing is I'm not sure if the sub itself is competent. It's part of the discontinued Diamond 9 Home Cinema Package and there I can hardly find any reviews. From a purely subjective no-comparison perspective, I like how smooth the low frequencies are with the current setup. Is there any clarity reduction in diverting the bass from the center to the sub?

 

IDK the sub so can’t comment. What is the spec for it?  Size of driver, wattage of amp etc?   It is probably better at reproducing bass than a Diamond satellite speaker though (not criticising Diamonds - I like them, just sayin').

 

Far from reducing clarity, diverting low bass to the sub should improve clarity. Why?  Because reproducing low bass is a big ask for any speaker and/or amplifier. Loud bass is very demanding on an amp and a speaker, so relieving both from the job of attempting it can help the amp and speaker to work better at the frequencies they are more comfortable with.  This is why the introduction of a good subwoofer can have a beneficial effect on the entire frequency spectrum and not just the bass frequencies. By letting the sub do the job it was designed for, and do the heavy lifting as it were, the rest of the speakers are able to do their work more easily. So offloading low bass to the sub should tend to improve dialogue clarity etc rather than diminish it.

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post #11 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 08:24 AM
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Any thoughts on 2-way vs 3-way in terms of clarity?

http://www.audioholics.com/loudspeaker-design/center-channel-designs
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post #12 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 08:27 AM - Thread Starter
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IDK the sub so can’t comment. What is the spec for it?  Size of driver, wattage of amp etc?   It is probably better at reproducing bass than a Diamond satellite speaker though (not criticising Diamonds - I like them, just sayin').

 

Far from reducing clarity, diverting low bass to the sub should improve clarity. Why?  Because reproducing low bass is a big ask for any speaker and/or amplifier. Loud bass is very demanding on an amp and a speaker, so relieving both from the job of attempting it can help the amp and speaker to work better at the frequencies they are more comfortable with.  This is why the introduction of a good subwoofer can have a beneficial effect on the entire frequency spectrum and not just the bass frequencies. By letting the sub do the job it was designed for, and do the heavy lifting as it were, the rest of the speakers are able to do their work more easily. So offloading low bass to the sub should tend to improve dialogue clarity etc rather than diminish it.

 

From the HCP manual, it says the sub has a 200mm long throw drive unit (~7.87 in) fed by a 100W amp. Sensitivity of 250mV for 75W. The sub should be down-firing IIRC.

 

On the other hand, the 10.CM center should have 165mm (~6.5 in) bass drivers for handling low frequencies coupled with a 50mm dome for mid-range and 25mm tweeters.

 

I know I could always play this by ear but I want to know what to expect as well.  :)

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post #13 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 08:38 AM
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IDK the sub so can’t comment. What is the spec for it?  Size of driver, wattage of amp etc?   It is probably better at reproducing bass than a Diamond satellite speaker though (not criticising Diamonds - I like them, just sayin').

 

Far from reducing clarity, diverting low bass to the sub should improve clarity. Why?  Because reproducing low bass is a big ask for any speaker and/or amplifier. Loud bass is very demanding on an amp and a speaker, so relieving both from the job of attempting it can help the amp and speaker to work better at the frequencies they are more comfortable with.  This is why the introduction of a good subwoofer can have a beneficial effect on the entire frequency spectrum and not just the bass frequencies. By letting the sub do the job it was designed for, and do the heavy lifting as it were, the rest of the speakers are able to do their work more easily. So offloading low bass to the sub should tend to improve dialogue clarity etc rather than diminish it.

 

From the HCP manual, it says the sub has a 200mm long throw drive unit (~7.87 in) fed by a 100W amp. Sensitivity of 250mV for 75W. The sub should be down-firing IIRC.

 

On the other hand, the 10.CM center should have 165mm (~6.5 in) bass drivers for handling low frequencies coupled with a 50mm dome for mid-range and 25mm tweeters.

 

I know I could always play this by ear but I want to know what to expect as well.  :)

 

It's a very small sub. I'd still give it the benefit of the doubt though as it has been designed for one job only so should still do it better than a more general purpose speaker. I’d suggest, if you can run to it, that your next major upgrade should have the word "subwoofer" in it. It will benefit your entire system. The secondhand market is full of good subs being sold by the constant upgrade crowd....

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post #14 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 08:52 AM
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If the centre speaker is on a shelf or some sort of cabinet it is vital that the leading edge of the speaker be slightly overhanging the edge of the cabinet or shelf.

I have my center channel on a home made stand that raises it above the TV. As you can see it it does protrude beyond the stand but not the TV. Do you view this as a possible major issue with dialog clarity? I'm having trouble wrapping my feeble mind around the theory of this, but that isn't all that unusual. If you could offer a explanation I would appreciate it.

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If the centre speaker is on a shelf or some sort of cabinet it is vital that the leading edge of the speaker be slightly overhanging the edge of the cabinet or shelf.

I have my center channel on a home made stand that raises it above the TV. As you can see it it does protrude beyond the stand but not the TV. Do you view this as a possible major issue with dialog clarity? I'm having trouble wrapping my feeble mind around the theory of this, but that isn't all that unusual. If you could offer a explanation I would appreciate it.

 

Ideally the front of the speaker (defined as the front of the baffle board that the drivers are in) would be clear of any other potential obstruction. The reason is that the sound leaving the drivers can be adversely affected by reflecting off anything in their way. This is why many speakers these days have rounded edges to the cabinets for example. I can't tell from your picture if the TV is in the way or not but if you think it is, try moving the speaker forward a little and see if you hear any difference. If you move the speaker you ideally need to rerun any room correction software such as Audyssey.

 

If you are having dialogue intelligibility problems, this is only one potential cause and you really need to address any others that may also be causing these issues. See my earlier post for some other potential issues - eg undamped early reflections, coffee tables etc.

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post #16 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 05:10 PM - Thread Starter
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It's a very small sub. I'd still give it the benefit of the doubt though as it has been designed for one job only so should still do it better than a more general purpose speaker. I’d suggest, if you can run to it, that your next major upgrade should have the word "subwoofer" in it. It will benefit your entire system. The secondhand market is full of good subs being sold by the constant upgrade crowd....

 

Copy that! The subwoofer is really somewhere in the upgrade pipeline but for budget reasons, I don't think I can do it anytime soon. So diverting the bass from the center even if it has dedicated bass drivers is advisable? What about the 60 Hz crossover idea since the sub is quite small?

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post #17 of 22 Old 12-21-2013, 07:22 PM
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Not disputing what you hear, but if a setting of Large (ie bypassing bass management) is required for good dialogue intelligibility, then it suggests something isn't quite right somewhere. You will also be missing all low bass that is being sent to the centre channel because it is no longer being redirected to the sub and the centre channel won’t be capable of playing it as well as a decent sub can.

I have a few buddies that own pretty impressive HT's and they all agreed that it sounds better if fronts and center set to "Large". I know that most ppl recommend to cross all speakers no matter how big and capable they are, but in my case and or for my ears "Large" setting work much better. My fronts and center set to "large" and sub set to "Sub +" (LFE track and all lower frequencies) and of all settings I've tried this one sounds just perfect- big, heavy, dramatic, clean and realistic.

I had less capable center and 8" sub before and all speakers were crossed at 80, but now with bigger center my HT sounds bigger and more like the real theater.

IMHO larger center completely transformed my HT and put on completely different level.


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post #18 of 22 Old 12-22-2013, 05:06 AM
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It's a very small sub. I'd still give it the benefit of the doubt though as it has been designed for one job only so should still do it better than a more general purpose speaker. I’d suggest, if you can run to it, that your next major upgrade should have the word "subwoofer" in it. It will benefit your entire system. The secondhand market is full of good subs being sold by the constant upgrade crowd....

 

Copy that! The subwoofer is really somewhere in the upgrade pipeline but for budget reasons, I don't think I can do it anytime soon. So diverting the bass from the center even if it has dedicated bass drivers is advisable? What about the 60 Hz crossover idea since the sub is quite small?

 

Your sub is very small, there's no doubt about that, but it has still been designed as a sub and devoted to just that one job. It also has its own amp and that has to help the main amps driving the other speakers. So yes, I'd still consider it worthwhile to use the sub for its intended purpose. But with a sun this small you'd be best to try different options and see which delivers the best end result.  I'd cross it over at 80Hz initially and then do a listening test on some bassy music and adjust it up or down from there.

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Your sub is very small, there's no doubt about that, but it has still been designed as a sub and devoted to just that one job. It also has its own amp and that has to help the main amps driving the other speakers. So yes, I'd still consider it worthwhile to use the sub for its intended purpose. But with a sun this small you'd be best to try different options and see which delivers the best end result.  I'd cross it over at 80Hz initially and then do a listening test on some bassy music and adjust it up or down from there.

I'll be sure to test it by ear then. Thanks for all the help!

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I'll be sure to test it by ear then. Thanks for all the help!
not familiar with that sub, however, many times a bad sub that produces a spiked response in the mid bass area could be affecting the sound you are hearing thru the center channel. You would be surprised at how much better you're overall system will sound with a better subwoofer. Too many subwoofers don't accurately produce the bass in a movie, thus, creating other problems in the systems. Notably, dialogue clarity. One option could be to test drive a sub from svs to see how a good sub affects the sound in your system. Svs is a good choice BC of the free shipping both ways. Just a thought.
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post #21 of 22 Old 12-23-2013, 02:29 AM
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I'll be sure to test it by ear then. Thanks for all the help!
not familiar with that sub, however, many times a bad sub that produces a spiked response in the mid bass area could be affecting the sound you are hearing thru the center channel. You would be surprised at how much better you're overall system will sound with a better subwoofer. Too many subwoofers don't accurately produce the bass in a movie, thus, creating other problems in the systems. Notably, dialogue clarity. One option could be to test drive a sub from svs to see how a good sub affects the sound in your system. Svs is a good choice BC of the free shipping both ways. Just a thought.

 

Good idea. And SVS make great subs too.

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post #22 of 22 Old 12-27-2013, 12:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Well, I thought I'd just update this thread. :)

I went ahead and bought the 10.CM (which is a massive monster compared to the 9.CC - I'm even afraid to go under it for fear that the brackets won't hold up). The sound produced by the entire setup is now worlds apart from the old setup. The addition of this new center improved clarity even without the addition of curtains (I guess I have Yamaha's YPAO Reflected Sound Control to thank for that as well). It also seemed to stitch together all the speakers. Sound was powerful enough and immersive before but now the sound field feels almost seamless. Even the surrounds seem to give a more realistic feel.

 

On the matter of crossovers, after a bit of testing, I ended up using an 80 Hz crossover with all speakers set to small. Setting the center speakers to large made very little difference - in fact, setting it to small gave a small improvement in clarity. A 60 Hz crossover was a bit too boomy probably since the speakers couldn't handle the bass all that well.

 

Anyway, thank you to everyone who gave their thoughts and opinions!

 

P.S. I'm in a different country so I can't test drive subs that easily. I'm pretty satisfied with the bass right now so maybe I'll look into subs in the distant future when there is sufficient budget for a good one.

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