Originally Posted by glugus2000
Hello everyone. First post to this thread and just want to send a big thanks to all for the very educational info. It has taken me about 3 months from the time I found this thread to catch up and I wanted to read all I can before posting.
I've just started measuring and plan to do more, maybe later today and might even post some graphs, room layouts and such. But who knows. My room is open and not very flexible and I'm pretty sure treatments are out due to WAF. I can move the mains and subs a bit, but guess I better measure more first. My big problem is dialog clarity. The wife and I both have trouble understanding voices at times. Thank goodness we can back up the TiVo and listen again.
Welcome to the thread, or more accurately, welcome for your first post here.
Please do post your measurement graphs so we can see how your room is performing for you and maybe make some suggestions. Lack of dialogue clarity can have various causes but, assuming you have a decent centre speaker and it is properly positioned, angled towards the MLP, it is often caused by unwanted reflections. Sometimes these are from a big, reflective coffee table positioned between the centre speaker and the MLP. Sometimes the room is just too reflective and the reflections are causing difficulties in hearing dialogue clearly. IME, almost every modern movie that I own has very good dialogue clarity. I almost never, for example, stumble on a word or phrase - this is how I’d expect it to be because the guys mixing these movies are very professional and, of course, dialogue is essential to almost every movie. If dialogue clarity is poor, it can ruin the enjoyment of the movie.
So the question is, what can we do about it? If we know that it isn’t a problem in the source, and if you have a decent centre speaker, properly positioned, then the problem will almost certainly lie with the room. If you could post some snapshots of the room, showing the speaker placements and the listening seats, as well as the walls, then this would be a great start to helping the diagnostic process. Also, when you do your measurements, please include some graphs of the ETCs - the Impulse response which will show what reflections you are getting in the room.
Often significant improvements can be made just by relocating the speakers or listening chairs by a small amount. And you could consider the WAF-friendly acoustic panels that have artwork on them so they look like pictures hanging on the wall. If your AVR has Audyssey, then using that can also bring benefits to dialogue clarity. Please tell us what AVR and speakers you have.
Finally, for now, have you read the really excellent beginner's guide written by thread member AustinJerry? "Jerry's Guide" as we tend to call it is the first port of call to getting a good set of measurements. The Guide details what measurements you should be taking, how to take them, how to set the parameters for the various graphs and so on - it is essential reading and I recommend downloading it and studying it before posting your results. It is linked from Jerry's signature in the thread.
I am sure that the collective wisdom in this thread can help you with the dialogue problems and help you get more enjoyment from your setup. Just provide the info asked for and you will receive many useful suggestions I am sure.