**As many attendees are traveling long distances, please be patient with comments/pictures/thoughts. I'm as anxious as you all to read them.
** I also reserve the right to add details as I remember to add them in.
Really the fun for a few members began on Friday night as a few met at Popalock's house for a fun filled ULF evening. I'll let him share the details of that night.
Original planning thread:
Blind Attendees and links to listening impressions:Beastaudio, BrandonJimWIlson, Jimironhead1230, MikeReefdvr, Daverx-8, Billmhrischuk - Mikerush2049 - Bencarp - SheldonArchaea - JonathanFOH - KevinGooddoc - Mark
Wow, what an incredible day. EPIC, EPIC, and more EPIC. For sure my favorite event so far. Thanks to ALL attendees and vendors/designers for coming out to make the event happen. Thanks to all who helped plan, organize clips, haul your heavy a$$ speakers to the event, traveling from all over, provide news coverage, bring food, help with planning food, moving speakers, and general coordination. I feel blessed to have everything go smoothly throughout the day. Everyone (especially myself) seemed to be all smiles, but I will let each individual share their own experiences of course. A link to this thread is sure to stay in my signature for some time coming.
*Disclaimer - To avoid bias, for now I'll reserve any detailed opinions since I was not part of the official blind testing*What happened yesterday? Recap -
Participants: 15 listeners, 11 of which were blind. Vendor/designer support from Mark Seaton, Matt Grant, and Rick Craig (and his son). Newscoverage early in the day from Imagic - Mark.
-Start time for setup - 7:30AM. After a brief coffee and donut session, we begin breaking down my existing setup and screen in preparation for the days activities.
-Setting up the Equipment: Marantz 8801 pre-pro for all equipment - balanced XLRs to all. Peavey IPR7500 used on all passive setups. Selah's used their own proprietary active eq/crossover setup and a Marantz amp. Ben (rush) provided a HTPC and a DAC for all tracks. We used my DIY Seymour XD based 130" AT screen to hide the gear being played - including speakers and amps. My 8 X 18" sealed setup with 10x10 minidsp coupled with a pair of DTS-10s and 2 X FP14000 clone amps were used to cover the LFE. We really weren't lacking in those areas.
-First setup - The SEOSR build. Due to the setup required and the sheer mass of objects to move, this was NOT part of the official testing of the day. 4XTD15M drivers coupled with a SEOS24 waveguide and monster BMS 2 day compression drivers. See link below for the full build log. Fully active setup with 5 X crown amps with DSP! When we first stacked these things in the room, I had to LOL for a few minutes. We took more pictures during this setup than any other section of the day. Simply jaw dropping. And a perfect fit behind my screen area I have to say.
It took us a solid 3.5 hours to get these setup but it was worth it to be part of the initial demonstration of this animals. Big props to Jake and Matt for pulling off the last minute tweaking and assembly to share with the group. We used the standard volume here for the majority but cranked up several a bit more at the end. We got through the whole 1 hour 20 minute approximate track list and then some quick demos on the blu ray demo disc - Book of eli shootout scene seemed to be a crowd favorite.
-Lunch around 1 or 1:30 or so - Philly hoagies, chicken fingers, and various sides. YUM!
-After a quick lunch - Blind testing setup and execution has begun! We began using the standardized track list (Below). This was a LOT of work and time consuming but my GOD was it worth it!! Highly recommended for all future GTGs to come. All gear was moved by myself, Sibuna, popalock, Rick Craig, and Chopshop. Everyone else had not a clue (as you will see from the comments) what was being done or set up. We moved gear while sending everyone upstairs. All unused gear was hidden in another covered room and the gear playing was behind my Seymour XD DIY screen. We played many tricks on the members (Cruel) throughout the night to keep them from guessing. This included hiding the lights on the peavey amp, playing with the amp gain to keep from guessing sensitivity, etc. Each attendee was given a stack of note cards - one for each speaker with room to write comments for each track being played for speakers A/B/C/D.
We used a fairly loud level for calibration - 95DB for the mains + about 6-8db or so hot on the subs (will have to confirm with the others as they chime in) from about 18-20' back
from the speakers behind the second row. I believe we were seeing peaks in the low 100s fairly often back at the bar.
The level matching was done with the screen back up for all attendees to see and confirm for all. The first row was quite a bit louder so many attendees were able to move around to avoid fatigue if they felt necessary. We took omnimic sweeps for each. When the sweeps are posted, keep in mind these are NOT max level/spl sweeps, they will simply indicate their native response in my room.
Track Start Time End Time Genre Artist Song
1 0:00:00 2:25:00 Classical Sherlock Holmes OST Discombobulate
2 2:27:00 5:23:00 Classical John Williams 40 Years of Film Music Close Encounters of the Third Kind. (intro)
3 5:25:00 8:32:00 Classical Robin Hood Prince of Thieves Main Theme
4 8:33:00 10:51:00 Classical The Island My Name is Lincoln
5 10:53:00 13:38:00 Soul Rebecca Pidgeon Spanish Harlem
6 13:40:00 16:42:00 Country Eagles Gone Country Hotel California
7 16:44:00 18:22:00 Folk John Denver Leaving on a Jet Plane
8 18:24:00 20:21:00 Folk Ramblin Jack Elliot Soul Of A Man
9 20:24:00 21:39:00 Folk Indie Dispatch Hey Hey
10 21:40:00 24:15:00 Folk Indie Edwarde Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes Home
11 24:16:00 26:55:00 Pop Madonna The Power of Good-Bye
12 26:57:00 29:40:00 Rock Fleetwood Mac Go Insane (Live 1997)
13 29:42:00 31:28:00 Rock Fleetwood Mac Tusk (Live 1997)
14 31:29:00 32:44:00 Rock The Cars Since You're Gone
15 32:46:00 35:39:00 Rock Nils Lofgren Keith dont go
16 35:40:00 37:33:00 Rock Alt Collective Soul December
17 37:34:00 38:47:00 Rock Alt Incubus Echo
18 38:49:00 40:04:00 Rock Alt Puscifer Dear Brother
19 40:06:00 43:04:00 Electronic Blake Reary Nowhere Near
20 43:06:00 44:39:00 Electronic Blake Reary Dance With Me (Blake Rearys Sky High Mix)
21 44:41:00 46:01:00 Classical Daft Punk Tron Legacy Overture
22 46:03:00 47:03:00 Electronic Lindsey Stirling Moon Trance
23 47:05:00 49:48:00 Symphonic Metal Within Temptation Somewhere
24 49:50:00 51:22:00 Rock Alt Tool Jambi
25 51:25:00 53:43:00 Rock Alt Tool Undertow
26 53:44:00 55:48:00 Rock Electronic Pendulum The Tempest
27 55:50:00 58:17:00 Classical Peer Gynt Suite from Hall of the Mountain King
28 58:19:00 60:17:00 Rock Industrial Trent Reznor Carbon Prevails
29 60:19:00 63:22:00 Rock Latin Gustavo Santaolalla The Last of Us
30 63:24:00 65:41:00 Rock Prog Dire Straits What It Is
31 65:43:00 69:15:00 Rock Prog Pink Floyd Time
32 69:18:00 71:16:00 Rock Prog Styx Renegade
33 71:18:00 72:20:00 Rock Soul Boz Scaggs Thanks to You
34 72:22:00 74:20:00 Metal Cello Apocalyptica One
35 74:22:00 75:16:00 Metal Doom Woods of Ypres Finality
36 75:18:00 76:12:00 Metal Heavy Disturbed Inside the Fire
37 76:14:00 77:22:00 Metal Prog Dream Theater Another Day
38 77:24:00 80:46:00 Metal Prog Dream Theater The Count of Tuscany
39 80:48:00 82:14:00 Metalcore Atreyu An Interlude
40 82:16:00 88:12:00 Trance Pop Oblivion OST Oblivion (feat. Susanne Sundfør)
Speaker A played first - These were the Seaton Catylsts. Don't remember the exact time but I believe this was around 3:30 or so.
Speaker B played second - The Selah Game Changer line arrays. By this point we had the blind testing switchout down to about 20-25 minutes per pair which was drastically better than the morning. We started to get in the swing of things now!
Dinner around 7:00 or so - pizza and wings from a local favorite of mine. It seemed to go fast!!
At this point Austin and I decided to mess with members of the group and took the JTR Single 8s from upstairs and hid them in the secret room with hidden gear. From this point on many blind participants (especially owners with gear in the event) became very nervous.
Speaker C next up - The Danley SM60F's.
Finished with speaker D - JTR Noesis 212 ending around 11PM.
We HAD planned on including the Single 8s in there for fun but at this point it was a VERY long day and I think most of us were tired of listening.
Teardown and BS session lasted until around 12:30.
Done yet? NAH!! Around 12:30 or so a select few of us (about 10 or so) went upstairs to play around for a "encore" presentation. My DIYsoundgroup Sentinels were played at high volumes (powered only by my Onkyo 818 AVR) for several tracks full range with no subs. We listened to some of the classics using spotify premium - Spanish Harlem, Metallica's Orion (For carp, beast, and myself), lots of acoustical, Chinese drums, etc. The group seemed to enjoy this setup and I received lots of positive feedback. Kudos to Matt and Erich from DIYsoundgroup!
Throughout the day/night there were various side events which can be detailed more from the other members - but included active switching of different coax setups, free air testing of an SI 24" subwoofer, arm wresting, consumption of mass amounts of beer, drunken discussions of converting my bathroom to an IB subwoofer setup, and heckling of blind testing members by the setup crew. Overall I'm still giddy thinking about the day and can't wait for the next one and to see all the pictures, comments and video to be posted soon.
Sunday morning - A few other members went to Craigjohn's theater for a demo - hopefully they will share the details here as well. Chopshop and MTG90 stopped over this morning for one last crank session for a few movie scenes with my Yorkvilles (215's), SEOS surrounds, and subs back in the mix.
I enjoyed that quick session this morning and it's equally rewarding how quickly I got my setup back up and running.
Hope you all enjoy reading the results!