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post #1 of 31 Old 12-31-2013, 02:54 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, this is a surround system my local "higher end" non box store spec'd out for me. This is for my basement and will be used 50/50 music/movies or possibly even 60/40. No games other than occasional Wii which im not really concerned about sound.

The entire 20x24 area with 10ft ceilings is open but a 13ft deep section is set up as the "living room" I have a 60" plasma and thats it until i order my 5.1 system.

Paradigm Monitor 7 floor standing speakers
Paradigm Monitor series 7 center
B&W M-1 rears
Paradigm Monitor sub 8
Yamaha RX-A730 Aventage receiver

The only thing they suggested I might do if money allowed was go to a 10" sub and a more powerful receiver as the current puts out 90W/ch.

Any comments and suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks!
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post #2 of 31 Old 12-31-2013, 04:07 PM
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I'll just comment on that sub - an 8" (or 10" for that matter) is going to accomplish next to nothing in a 4800 cubic foot room....my room is about the same size and I have 4 15" subs that are still not quite enough. Just sayin'. smile.gif
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post #3 of 31 Old 12-31-2013, 05:28 PM - Thread Starter
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OK. This is not my area of expertise by far so Im looking for advice. this is not a large room so I imagine many other people have systems in similar sized areas, what should be used for a single sub?
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post #4 of 31 Old 01-01-2014, 07:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capboy View Post

OK. This is not my area of expertise by far so Im looking for advice. this is not a large room so I imagine many other people have systems in similar sized areas, what should be used for a single sub?

12" minimum, 15" better.
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post #5 of 31 Old 01-01-2014, 08:14 AM - Thread Starter
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I will definetely discuss that with the store. Also, just to clarify.......a 20x24 room is only 480 sq ft, not 4800. Not sure if that was a typo by Alan P above but wanted to clarify. Again it doesn't seem like a huge room but if I should be looking for a 12" - 15" sub I can do that.
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post #6 of 31 Old 01-01-2014, 08:36 AM
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It's the VOLUME of the room that counts; not the floor area. It is 4800 CUBIC FEET.

You need a 12-inch subwoofer with at least 350 watts of RMS Power (about 600 watts Peak). an 8 or 10 inch sub is totally inadequate.

Your receiver can put out 90 watts to ONLY TWO channels, when driving a resistor test load; read the specs. It won't deliver that much without distortion to two real speaker systems.

It will probably be limited to about 40 watts per channel, with low distortion, when driving 5 REAL SPEAKERS.

Any specs that imply something different are BS.

If you want a receiver with decent sound quality that can properly drive the speakers you are considering, a NAD T748 would be a good choice.
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post #7 of 31 Old 01-01-2014, 08:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Oh, Now I undertsand, Thank you very much. I will look into the receiver you mentioned as well.
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post #8 of 31 Old 01-01-2014, 11:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

It's the VOLUME of the room that counts; not the floor area. It is 4800 CUBIC FEET.

You need a 12-inch subwoofer with at least 350 watts of RMS Power (about 600 watts Peak). an 8 or 10 inch sub is totally inadequate.

+1

Let;'s put it this way, my audio system has a listening distance of about 12 feet but it is in a room that is in a home with a fairly open plan so the joint open area is maybe 25 x 20 with a 9 1/2 foot ceiling. I have 2 12" subwoofers and the 2 15" subwoofer drivers on hand to complete the project.
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Your receiver can put out 90 watts to ONLY TWO channels, when driving a resistor test load; read the specs.

Agreed. but with a significant difference in interpretation that is based on strong engineering principles and experience both on the test bench and in actual use.
Quote:
It won't deliver that much without distortion to two real speaker systems.

Well taking a narrow reading I have to agree, the AVR "...won't deliver that much without distortion to two real speaker systems", it will deliver far more!

Here's some reasons why:

The impedance of speakers may go below their rated impedance over part of their range, but on the average they tend to go higher. Here's an example that I picked to be a reasonable worst case:



Notice that there are some dips below 4 ohms, but there are more peaks that go well up to 6, 8 ohms and beyond. I picked this speaker for my example because just about every other speaker I know of would illustrate my claims even better.

This argument is even made stronger because speakers have a property called reactance that is far more than that of the resistors used to bench test and rate AVRs. A reactive load does not dissipate energy like a resistor, it just stores energy and shortly later "gives it back" to the receiver during other parts of the output wave cycle. Basically what happens is that while you are playing music with the AVR some of its power is taken from the positive voltage power supply, momentarily stored in the loudspeaker's reactive components and then absorbed back into the AVR's negative power supply, and vice versa.

Secondly, music differs from the pure sine waves used in the tests referenced above in that it has a significantly higher values of a property called crest factor. High crest factor means far less strain on parts like power transformers, output transistors and heat sinks. The crest factor of music is so much higher than that of the pure sine waves used to bench test and estimate power ratings of AVRs, that the 2-channel tests mentioned above could be achieved for 6-8 channels with real music and real speakers.

Old school receivers and amplifiers had far heavier power transformers and heat sinks, but what they brought to the table mostly went unused.
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post #9 of 31 Old 01-01-2014, 09:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Let;'s put it this way, my audio system has a listening distance of about 12 feet but it is in a room that is in a home with a fairly open plan so the joint open area is maybe 25 x 20 with a 9 1/2 foot ceiling

Hang on a second.
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

The calculator I generally recommend picks up information about room gain from information that the user supplies about where the speaker is located in the room:

http://myhometheater.homestead.com/splcalculator.html
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I've been trying to get the most accurate possible determination of the actual peak power required to reach standard reference level in my system which is pretty typical, and it appears to be around 30-50 watts. That means that for most audiophiles having more than 50 wpc is pretty meaningless. OK, so the equipment manufacturers are recognizing this. What's the harm in that?




Is 98.7dB your idea of reference level? I'm being nice too, with a more typical sensitivity rating and at the lower end of "all that is required power", this drops to 92.5dB.
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post #10 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 12:40 AM
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An important thing to understand is that these calculators generally use 6 db as the SPL loss per meter. That is the right number in the great outdoors or in an anechoic chamber. In a real room it is more like 3 db. In my own room it is less than 2 db. So I recommend you cut the listening distance at least in half to get a more meaningful calculation. Try about 5 feet in the distance field and you will be closer to a real number for a real room. Real life doesn't always follow the dictates of internet calculators.
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post #11 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 01:46 AM
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Have a look at the data more closely FMW. It's closer to your real world example of dispersion loss then you think it is.
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post #12 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 04:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audionut11 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Let;'s put it this way, my audio system has a listening distance of about 12 feet but it is in a room that is in a home with a fairly open plan so the joint open area is maybe 25 x 20 with a 9 1/2 foot ceiling

Hang on a second.
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

The calculator I generally recommend picks up information about room gain from information that the user supplies about where the speaker is located in the room:

http://myhometheater.homestead.com/splcalculator.html
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I've been trying to get the most accurate possible determination of the actual peak power required to reach standard reference level in my system which is pretty typical, and it appears to be around 30-50 watts. That means that for most audiophiles having more than 50 wpc is pretty meaningless. OK, so the equipment manufacturers are recognizing this. What's the harm in that?



..and this ignores the subwoofer(s).


Is 98.7dB your idea of reference level?

I believe the book answer is 85.0 dB.
Quote:
I'm being nice too, with a more typical sensitivity rating and at the lower end of "all that is required power", this drops to 92.5dB.

I see the usual rookie/power addict mistake in the calculator usage above. People seem to like to pretend that their speakers are in the middle of a very large room. I don't know about you, but mine are close to a well, actually near the junction of a wall and a ceiling.

This is the calculated results for my system:



A more typical speaker placement along a wall would cut the calculated SPL by 3 dB, and still yield 106 dB which is still in excess of THX peak levels.

The above ignores the not insubstantial contributions of 2 12" subwoofers.

Confirmed by SPL meter measurements which do not capture very short term peaks...

Getting back OT for the typical 50 wpc surround system I would estimate:

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post #13 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 05:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMW View Post

An important thing to understand is that these calculators generally use 6 db as the SPL loss per meter. That is the right number in the great outdoors or in an anechoic chamber. In a real room it is more like 3 db. In my own room it is less than 2 db. So I recommend you cut the listening distance at least in half to get a more meaningful calculation. Try about 5 feet in the distance field and you will be closer to a real number for a real room. Real life doesn't always follow the dictates of internet calculators.

+1

The other serious mistake was to put the speakers in the middle of a very large room.

In the disagreeable judgement call department we have the ignorance of the substantial contributions of the center channel speaker which the model can address, and the ignorance of the contribution of the subwoofer(s) which the model can't address.
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post #14 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Audionut11 View Post

Have a look at the data more closely FMW. It's closer to your real world example of dispersion loss then you think it is.

I didn't say anything about dispersion loss, whatever that is. I'm talking about the SPL loss over listening distance. If you think the calculator is considering room gain, then consider that it can't calculate the room gain without knowing the room. That pretty much has to be measured. What is nearly impossible to measure in an actual room is the anechoic SPL loss which is what the calculator does because it can't do any better than that. Room gain is significant. So the calculator calculates A and you think it is applicable to B. It really is only applicable to A, the anechoic room.

What I measure in my room may not be the same as you experience in yours but the difference will be in the same ball park, nowhere near the difference between real world and anechoic. Based on my own measurements in my own room, Arny's 50 watts is conservative. I'm pretty sure I've never dissipated 50 watts per channel in my system on peaks - subwoofer excepted. I've never actually measured more than 18 watts on the main speaker channels on peaks. The measuremtns have to be made with test tones and I don't measure while listening to music or soundtracks. So throw in another 3 db to be on the safe side and I'm at 36 watts or so.

The calculator is better than nothing but I can tell you that its results are very, very conservative wheher by design or by necessity. They would be closer to reality if they used 3db per meter rather 6 db per meter to calculate SPL loss over distance. Just plug in 6 feet as the listening distance, fix the placement problem and you will have a more realistic result from the calculator - without a subwoofer.
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post #15 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 02:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Since all that is waaay beyond my understanding.......

So in layman terms if I can afford a 12" sub and maybe a receiver with more than 90 w/ch I would be doing OK?I know I won't be able to do 2 or more subs so I'd at least like to get a quality capable sub and receiver.
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post #16 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Capboy View Post

So in layman terms if I can afford a 12" sub and maybe a receiver with more than 90 w/ch I would be doing OK?

That will be fine.
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post #17 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 05:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMW View Post

I didn't say anything about dispersion loss, whatever that is. I'm talking about the SPL loss over listening distance.

They are the same thing wink.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Getting back OT for the typical 50 wpc surround system I would estimate:


Really? In what universe is 3 speakers a typical arrangement? Besides, how many speakers play a test tone when you engage your receivers test tone facility?

As you well know, with a test tone @ -20dB, we should be aiming for a measurement level of 85dB. This is with a single speaker. Of course, this implies that when a signal @ -0dB is delivered to the speakers the SPL measured should be 105dB.

So, let's stick with a sensitivity rating of this typical speaker as having 90dB (above areage IMO, but whatever), we will use 1 speaker (because each speaker should be capable of producing 105dB), and I'll throw in 6dB of room gain for good measure.



104.2dB. We end up just short.
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post #18 of 31 Old 01-02-2014, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capboy View Post

The only thing they suggested I might do if money allowed was go to a 10" sub and a more powerful receiver as the current puts out 90W/ch.

Any comments and suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks!

Paradigm website retails the Sub 8 at $699. I would prefer two 10" subwoofers from Hsu Research stf-2 $319 plus $46 s/h each. You might be able to negotiate shipping at a lower price by buying two subs.

http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/stf-2.html

There is no need to match Paradigm sub with other Paradigms, and the two Hsu subs will offer better performance. If placement of two subs is awkward, then the $519 + s/h $67 12 inch Vtf-2 would be the next choice.

http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-2mk4.html

The VTF-2 will produce a little deeper bass than each Stf-2 when one of the VTF's ports is sealed, and offers Q adjustment.

If you haven't heard of Hsu, don't worry. The company has been around for more than a decade, and their products are considered among the best in any price category. The Paradigm Sub 8's wireless feature is its only advantage to my eyes.
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post #19 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 05:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Audionut11 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by FMW View Post

I didn't say anything about dispersion loss, whatever that is. I'm talking about the SPL loss over listening distance.

They are the same thing wink.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

Getting back OT for the typical 50 wpc surround system I would estimate:


Really? In what universe is 3 speakers a typical arrangement?

It is typical of the three front speakers that are usually playing more or less equally during the loudest parts of a movie or a song.
Quote:
Besides, how many speakers play a test tone when you engage your receivers test tone facility?

Silly me, I thought that we were building systems to play commercial recordings as typically provided!

Are you saying that test tones are all that matters? Well,you have a right to your opinion about that and I have mine.

Please post again when you are willing to talk about using audio systems for listening to recordings of music and drama, as opposed to some weird numbers race with rules of your own private contrivance and interest..

My interest in $! measuring contests reached its lowest point shortly after I sired 4 healthy children about 30 years ago. ;-)
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post #20 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 07:30 AM
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To the OP:

The larger sub will definitely make a bigger difference than a more powerful receiver in this case. Go for the Paradigm Monitor Sub 12 or check out other 12" subs from online retailers like HSU or SVS.

Unless you like to play things REALLY loud, I think that receiver should be adequate. But you might want to consider a receiver in the same price range that has better room-correction technology. Yamaha uses their own proprietary tech called YPAO. Some other receiver manufacturers use something from a third party, called Audyssey, which generally seems to get better reviews. One receiver in this price range that uses Audyssey would be the Marantz SR5008. This receiver also has a little more power.
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post #21 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 08:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk
Are you saying that test tones are all that matters?
Arnold, if you're going to quote THX reference level, then you should at least have some idea what it entails, and how to reproduce it.

This should get you off on the right foot.
I added a little of my own bold to help you concentrate on the important parts.

http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/hom...eference-level
Quote: Reference level for all channels except low frequency effects is calibrated by adjusting the audio chain such that a pink noise signal recorded at -20dB relative to full scale (0dB) creates 85dB sound pressure level as measured with a C weighted SPL meter at the seating locations. Volume levels are adjusted for each channel individually until they read 85dB.


Kids these days and their technology, what is the world coming to!

I am curious about how you determine reference level without using a reference signal. Do you just rely on a faulty understanding of how things work?

If you insist on using 3 speakers in the calculator to find this typical power requirement value, that will help you to save the world, the magic number you are looking for is 109.8dB.

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk
I see the usual rookie/power addict mistake in the calculator usage above.
I used that as an example. The logical tool I used is called "Hanging your opponent from his own petard" by presuming that his questionable claim is true, and showing the mess that it could lead to.
amirm likes this.

Last edited by Audionut11; 06-24-2014 at 11:17 AM. Reason: Fixed link
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post #22 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 09:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you, I will check out some 12" subs and the Marantz receiver.

I appreciate the advice from everyone. I will post what I end up deciding on, which may not be the perfect sysytem but should be a solid performer for my 50/50 movie and music use.

Thanks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk 
I have 2 12" subwoofers and the 2 15" subwoofer drivers on hand to complete the project.

I look forward to the completion of this project sometime in 2018.
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post #24 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 11:13 AM
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I used that as an example. The logical tool I used is called "Hanging your opponent from his own petard" by presuming that his questionable claim is true, and showing the mess that it could lead to.

The how and why behind that example was not properly introduced or documented. If you want to justify parameters based on a standard, the standard you cite has to be indentified, quoted and has to contain a complete set of parameters, not a cherry-picked few.
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post #25 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by goneten View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk 
I have 2 12" subwoofers and the 2 15" subwoofer drivers on hand to complete the project.

I look forward to the completion of this project sometime in 2018.

I may not be alive by then! ;-)

I'm thinking 2014.
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I may not be alive by then! ;-)

I'm thinking 2014.

If you don't mind me asking, how old are you? biggrin.gif
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post #27 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I may not be alive by then! ;-)

I'm thinking 2014.

If you don't mind me asking, how old are you? biggrin.gif

67, but this was a pretty nasty year health-wise.
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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I may not be alive by then! ;-)

I'm thinking 2014.

There are quite a many to be saved by you from buying multi thousand dollar DACs and stereo amps and. instead, their audio lives enriched with the "holy" Audyssey XT32 smile.gifsmile.gif
So its gonna be long long time (in good health) !!!

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post #29 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Hifisound View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

I may not be alive by then! ;-)

I'm thinking 2014.

There are quite a many to be saved by you from buying multi thousand dollar DACs and stereo amps and. instead, their audio lives enriched with the "holy" Audyssey XT32 smile.gifsmile.gif
So its gonna be long long time (in good health) !!!

The difference being that I don't control AVS no matter what some people think, but I do control my table saw in a manner of speaking. ;-)
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post #30 of 31 Old 01-03-2014, 01:58 PM
 
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67, but this was a pretty nasty year health-wise.

The reason for my sarcasm earlier is because your DIY subwoofer goals have taken a back, back, back seat if you know what I mean? biggrin.gif I think I first heard about this DIY monster project 3 years ago or something. LOL.
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