I'm new to the whole AVR scene. My Denon 2113 + Wharfedale surround system is the first time I've invested time and money into an audio system for my house. I'm very much the newbie. Considering my newbishness, I thought it best to create a separate thread rather than disturb the official owners thread. My current settings are the default Audyssey recommended ones. Dynamic EQ is on as well as Dynamic Volume and Cinema EQ. I only have a 5.0 system. No sub.
I have a few questions:
1. I have been watching movies and listening to music fine. However, I'm a little miffed at the **level** of the sound. I was warned not to go too high or that I'd be putting my speakers at risk. However, I frankly don't hear anything substantial until I go past 40-45 and often need to hit 60 to be able to enjoy something. I often find myself watching movies at 70-75+. I've set the maximum to 80 and can't go past that. I don't find 80 all that uncomfortably loud either. Is this normal?
2. What part does the source's audio level play in all this? The sources in (1) were set to the maximum level. I see that there's a "Source level" setting in Setup where I can increase the level from 0 to 12db. This does increase the volume somewhat, but feels like more of a hack than a fix.
3. The whole Zone 2 experience has left me underwhelmed. The interface is so ridiculously clunky. Is there any way to get the Denon display to function the same way for zone 2 as it does for zone 1? For example, when playing something on Internet Radio or iPod/USB in the main zone, the denon display informs me of the current track, etc. However this is completely missing when these sources are access via Zone 2.
It's highly possible that all this is due to my own errors. Please let me know how to address these questions.
1. After the Audyssey calibration, 80 is "reference". When the volume control is set there, it'll nominally produce the same sound level in your listening room at your primary listening position as you'd hear when watching the same movie in a calibrated movie theater. Modern receivers use a logarithmic volume scale which is similar to the sound level response of our own hearing. Many people don't like to listen at high volume levels, so they tend to listen to movies (over HDMI) at a level about 25dB below reference (80 - 25 = 55).
There really is no equivalent to movie reference sound levels in other audio formats, though. For example, pop music released on CDs is both compressed and recorded at higher sound levels, so people often listen to them another 10dB below reference.
You need to adjust both Dyn EQ and Dyn Vol to match your own preferences.
Try listening with them both disabled, for example.
Dyn EQ takes into account that we can't hear the lowest and highest frequencies as well at lower sound levels as we do at higher. Dyn EQ boosts the lowest and highest frequencies so you'll hear the frequency balance of a movie soundtrack as was intended by the studio when you're listening at volume levels below reference.
Dynamic Volume reduces the difference between the quietest and loudest sounds, so loud explosions don't annoy other people while quiet dialog is still audible. Many people don't bother to engage this unless they're watching movies while someone else is trying to sleep.
2. 12 dB increases the apparent volume by more than a factor of two, and required power by more than 8. If you're raising all of the inputs, then you're bypassing the limit you've put on the volume control. I suggest removing that limit instead.
3. In most cases, you should think of additional zones as after-thoughts. They were originally intended just to supply stereo music in other rooms and have gradually acquired other features with succeeding generations of receivers. The 2013 X4000 receiver provides more features than the 2012 (xx13) generation of Denon receivers, for example. I personally don't use multiple zones, though, so someone else will have to answer in detail.
Thank you, Selden. I've turned off Dynamic Volume. I've now set my default volume level to 30 and am telling myself that I'm now at 0
I've not actually added the 12Db source boost. I just noticed it's existence. But I'm considering using it to balance the volume levels of different sources. My set top box is less audible than my media player, for example.
As for zone 2, I'm just a little miffed that I can't tell what I'm trying to play.
Thank you for your assistance! I'm going to hop over to the "Owners" thread now.