Originally Posted by penngray
ak, great test and write up but your test is incomplete because you have to test both your speakers and speakers that do high SPL/low distortion to have a complete test and understanding. Your speakers are not remotely high end (nothing wrong with them for most people but they are not designed for high spl).
Only then can you conlude that you are uncomfortable with high SPL from any speaker.
I would be happy to test higher end speakers, but with dialogue in the 60db range and peak scenes in the 80db range I am not convinced that there is distortion at all. I am hearing no audible distortion in these ranges with my equipment, and if I can't hear it, well, I can't hear it.
As far as high SPL you have my somewhat confused. Even if you are listening to dialogue with high SPL speakers in the 85db range, it is still 85db. Distortion or no distortion the SPL meter will not lie
It will still be the equivalent to somebody shouting at you. extremely loud. I am not sure what difference a high SPL speaker would make here except to the point that it will play louder with less distortion at high SPL levels. I get that.
You also have to realize that no one is questioning you or your system. Replies like yours makes me wonder if people understand discussions on here about theory and top end performance. Many seem to take it personal when someone posts "Brand X,Y and Z are the only top SPL, low distortion options out there".
I am not taking it personal at all. I wanted to determine at what levels you guys are listening at (from your sitting position) to be getting dialogue in the 85db range and peaks above 100. I have no beef with you doing that at all, and I can understand why you would want a sensitive speaker and/or lots of wattage to get there. It makes perfect sense. If somebody came to me and told me they like dialogue in the 80-90 range and peaks at or above 105, I would definitely not recommend my speakers and receiver. They probably would not be happy
You do not need higher SPL, you do not listen at high levels at all and you have a small room. On the other hand my family room is approx 35x40x12.....its rather large room that houses can fit into, Great for hosting sporting events, etc. Do you realize what is needed for 21 feet back? (btw, its an acoustical nightmare too, that is why I love my Custom HT room).
I totally agree that room dynamics and acoustics (ie vaulted ceilings, hard surfaced floors, room size, etc) play a huge role. I am in the same boat in my living room upstairs and the ceilings peak at 22' and there are hardwoods. This room was exactly why I built a media area downstairs
The discussion about distortion is a generic one and should be understood and accepted. This doesnt mean people have bad speakers it just means they should realize what happens IF they are turned up past X dBs.
Agreed. Distortion is a reality and higher decibel levels play a huge role. But as I pointed out earlier, there are few bookshelf speakers out there in the $1K and below range that are rated above 90db. I would be curious what speakers you would recommend to get the high SPL levels you are talking about at a realistic price (say under $4K a pair).