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Setup of JL Audio Fathom F112 with McIntosh MX150 (or MX151) RoomPerfect

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
I have looked around but have not found the answer so apologies if this has been answered before (please provide link if it has).
Just added McIntosh MX150 pre/pro with RoomPerfect. Want to know a simple step by step how to properly integrate two JL Audio Fathom F112 subs.
L/R speakers are B&W 803 Diamonds, center is B&W HTM2, and surrounds are in wall B&W 7.3s. Amps are MC452 for fronts and MC207 for center and surrounds.
The simpler the procedure the better to establish base line and from there with more input from everyone can improve later if needed.
What are the correct settings for the JL Audio sub before running RoomPerfect?
What should be the variable gain setting on each sub before running RoomPerfect? (want RoomPerfect to be at or close to reference 0 instead of minus dB for the subs)
Should I run ARO before or after RoomPerfect? Or at all?
After running RoomPerfect what should I then set the sub settings?
Should I press the defeat on the sub to bypass ARO?
How do I determine phase? simple way
How do I determine polarity? simple way
I have a radio shack meter.
Before running RoomPerfect should I set distance and level?
Suggestions on running RoomPerfect focus point 1 and room measurements to get close to 100% room accuracy?
Should I run additional focus points?
More questions I did not ask?
I know I am asking a lot. I want to get settings right today for movie night.
Jim
post #2 of 24
If you purchased the MX150 from a dealer they should assist with the setup.


Here's an article on the MX150. http://www.stereophile.com/content/music-round-46-page-2
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks. I am mainly interested in working with integrating two JL Audio fathom f112's with RoomPerfect using the MX150. How do I work with both of the sub settings?
post #4 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

Thanks. I am mainly interested in working with integrating two JL Audio fathom f112's with RoomPerfect using the MX150. How do I work with both of the sub settings?

How do you have the subs connected to the pre/pro? I suggest you run them in Master/Slave mode. Are their manufacture dates the same. (or very similar)? When I had my pair of JL F112's, the manufacture date was about a year apart and JL had made a running change to the gain structure of the amp. They were 12 dB different. I called JL and they sent me a new amp with the identical gain structure to my newer sub and all was fixed, but I only knew of the problem because I measured them.

How are the subs placed in the room? Are they equidistant to the listening position? If so, you should be able to leave the phase and polarity settings at 0.

It's been a while since I had my JL's, but IIRC, when you run them Master/Slve and run ARO, it applies the filter to both subs. Check the manual, but I believe that is the case. If so, do that before running the Mac software.

For the level settings, I would use the detented 0 setting and let the Mac set the levels from there. It should do the calibration, and you shouldn't need to mess with it afterwards.

I'm not familiar with the Mac, so I can't advise any further on that.

Good luck. You're gonna love those subs. Just be somewhat judicious with the Master Volume Control. They have great sound quality and they dig to 20 Hz, but they're not SPL monsters.

Craig
post #5 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

Thanks. I am mainly interested in working with integrating two JL Audio fathom f112's with RoomPerfect using the MX150. How do I work with both of the sub settings?

I use an F112 in my main system along with a Velodyne SMS Digital Subwoofer Management System, the SMS allows for in room frequency response to be measured and using a calibrated microphone and to be viewed on a monitor. Using the on-board B-band digital parametricequalizer you manually adjust the settings. I didn't utilize ARO and instead left the settings to there out of the box default. I then ran the SMS, adjusted the EQ ran the in room test tones (SMS) again then adjusted the sub settings and basically went back and forth until the in room response was as flat as possible. Here is a photo of my current settings.



post #6 of 24
jameslrock, craig john is one of the most knnowledgeable members on this site regarding the integration of subs, well all things subwoofer related.
You're in good hands.
post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 
The F112 subs are of same date and both are set up as master off a splitter from sub out.
The are set to the outside of each L/R speaker about 6 inches back and three inches from the speaker and 18" from back wall and a few feet from side wall.
Both subs are same distance to focal point 1 (my seating position - aka the king position).
Before running RoomPerfect I set polarity to 0, phase to 0, elf to 0, freq to 130, LP filter off, master level to ref, ARO defeat.
I then ran RoomPerfect but with the gain at Ref the subs were most likely running "hot" so the RP turned down the dB of the subs.
I have the ports plugged for now so after RP I set the polarity to 180, set phase to about 90, elf still 0, all else same including leaving ARO at defeat.
By the way I had ran ARO before I changed out to the MX150.
I have been advised to run RP again but this time with gain at about 9 o'clock to get RP to set at near 0 dB.
I have also been advised to run RP with subs off and then afterward turn subs on and run ARO and set gain to match.
I am still uncertain and hope that someone with experience with RoomPerfect will walk me through the process.
I am not a happy camper. Looking forward to the guidance.
post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 
Hopefully there is a procedure I can follow to step through this in the correct order that will properly integrate these subs with RoomPerfect.
post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

The F112 subs are of same date and both are set up as master off a splitter from sub out.
The are set to the outside of each L/R speaker about 6 inches back and three inches from the speaker and 18" from back wall and a few feet from side wall.
Both subs are same distance to focal point 1 (my seating position - aka the king position).
Before running RoomPerfect I set polarity to 0, phase to 0, elf to 0, freq to 130, LP filter off, master level to ref, ARO defeat.
That all sounds correct. What are your settings in Room Perfect. According to the article posted above, you need to enter the number of speakers, their distances, size and crossovers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I then ran RoomPerfect but with the gain at Ref the subs were most likely running "hot" so the RP turned down the dB of the subs.
That is part of the calibration process and is not problematic. You don't *need* the subwoofer trim to be 0, it just needs to be within the range of adjustability of the pre/pro.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I have the ports plugged for now so after RP I set the polarity to 180, set phase to about 90, elf still 0, all else same including leaving ARO at defeat.
Ports on what? The F112's don't have ports. They're sealed subs. Why did you reset the polarity and phase? Those should not be changed after running Room Perfect.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

By the way I had ran ARO before I changed out to the MX150.
If you have it defeated, it doesn't matter. If you want to turn it back on, you'll need to re-run Room Perfect.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I have been advised to run RP again but this time with gain at about 9 o'clock to get RP to set at near 0 dB.
See above.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I have also been advised to run RP with subs off and then afterward turn subs on and run ARO and set gain to match
That's bad advice. Most of what Room Perfect does is correction of the bass. If you're going to do that, don't even bother with Room Perfect. Just use your SPL meter and do a manual calibration.
.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I am still uncertain and hope that someone with experience with RoomPerfect will walk me through the process.
I am not a happy camper. Looking forward to the guidance.
Kal Rubinson, (the guy who wrote the Stereophile article linked above), is a forum member. Just search for his name, send him a PM, and he will help you out.

Craig

PS. As K Shep noted, why is your dealer not helping you out?
Edited by craig john - 3/17/13 at 6:05am
post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the great input. What I meant to say about plugging the ports is that I plugged the ports of the speakers. I can pull the plugs but I was trying to eliminate the extra bass "wash" from the speaker ports. Not sure if best. Also I can't remember, is it customary to set polarity and phase to 0 for a vented box speaker and 180 for a closed box speaker or am I confusing the two and this rule of thumb is for phase only?

So let's say I place the sub settings to polarity to 0, phase to 0, elf to 0, freq to 130, LP filter off, master level to ref, ARO defeat. This to me will put the subs to a fairly "neutral" or basic setting where the sub settings are not taking charge. I then run RoomPerfect and let RP integrate the subs. I then leave the sub settings alone and just watch movies and listen to music. Is this simple approach the most effective way to integrate the subs? Just not adjust at the sub but instead let RP do its thing?
Also interesting but when I ran RP the first time the initial tones allowed RP to set the distances and high cuts for speakers and low cut for subs. It set the L/C/R speakers (3-way) at a custom 63 hz and sub at 80 hz, The surrounds at medium (RP speak for 80 hz high cut). I did not set the distance or cut myself but allowed RP to set. I could adjust if I need to. Also interesting is RP set the sub distance at 24" further than the L/R speakers even though they are just 6" back. I have heard should set sub distance back further to allow the subs to "catch up" with the L/R speakers since the sub mechanics need more time to get to focal point.

I will PM Kal to see what he says about the best step by step process to integrate two JL Audio subs with RoomPerfect and the MX-150.

Thanks, Jim
Edited by jameslrock - 3/17/13 at 7:49am
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

Thanks for the great input. What I meant to say about plugging the ports is that I plugged the ports of the speakers. I can pull the plugs but I was trying to eliminate the extra bass "wash" from the speaker ports. Not sure if best. Also I can't remember, is it customary to set polarity and phase to 0 for a vented box speaker and 180 for a closed box speaker or am I confusing the two and this rule of thumb is for phase only?
What speakers do you have? If RP sets the crossovers above the tune point of the ports, it shouldn't make a whole lot of difference if you plug the ports or not. They won't be producing much output anyway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

So let's say I place the sub settings to polarity to 0, phase to 0, elf to 0, freq to 130, LP filter off, master level to ref, ARO defeat. This to me will put the subs to a fairly "neutral" or basic setting where the sub settings are not taking charge. I then run RoomPerfect and let RP integrate the subs. I then leave the sub settings alone and just watch movies and listen to music. Is this simple approach the most effective way to integrate the subs? Just not adjust at the sub but instead let RP do its thing?
Anything you do to the system AFTER you run RP will screw up RP. Make ALL adjustments before you run RP, then let it do it's thing. Then enjoy. The only way you should make any other adjustments is if you have the capability to measure the effect. If you don't have measuring capability, you are better off going with the RP settings than haphazardly changing them afterwards.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

Also interesting but when I ran RP the first time the initial tones allowed RP to set the distances and high cuts for speakers and low cut for subs. It set the L/C/R speakers (3-way) at a custom 63 hz and sub at 80 hz, The surrounds at medium (RP speak for 80 hz high cut). I did not set the distance or cut myself but allowed RP to set. I could adjust if I need to. Also interesting is RP set the sub distance at 24" further than the L/R speakers even though they are just 6" back. I have heard should set sub distance back further to allow the subs to "catch up" with the L/R speakers since the sub mechanics need more time to get to focal point.
As I said, I have no experience with RP, so I was just going by what Kal wrote in the posted article. If RP sets those for you, I would keep those settings. Setting the sub further away than actual is usually correct. The DSP, (ARO), in the subs introduces a little bit of latency. Adding some Distance accounts for that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I will PM Kal to see what he says about the best step by step process to integrate two JL Audio subs with RoomPerfect and the MX-150.

Thanks, Jim
Kal is gonna be your best resource. He's a very helpful guy. Give him a shout and I'm sure he can provide more guidance than I can.

Craig
post #12 of 24
I would not trust any automated algorithm to best optimize my sub / mains integration. The only way you can really do it properly is to get some form of acoustic measurement rig and then use that to integrate your subs. Once they are as well integrated as possible you can then run JL ARO and finally Room Perfect. When you do run Room Perfect make sure it doesn't screw up your integration.
post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 
What I will find most helpful is specifics on how to set up the JL Audio subs with RoomPerfect. While I appreciate general advise the lack of specifics leaves me with questions but very little in a way of answers. Surely I am not the only one with JL Audio subs and either the MX-150 or MX-151. Please there must be someone that can give a step by step approach to properly set up these subs and run RoomPerfect. Detailed guidance is what I am looking for including the sub settings prior to and after running RoomPerfect and guidance on RoomPerfect. I am sure there are others and the proper post to this will then be available to others as a much appreciated resource.
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

Surely I am not the only one with JL Audio subs and either the MX-150 or MX-151. Please there must be someone that can give a step by step approach to properly set up these subs and run RoomPerfect. Detailed guidance is what I am looking for including the sub settings prior to and after running RoomPerfect and guidance on RoomPerfect. I am sure there are others and the proper post to this will then be available to others as a much appreciated resource.

You may be the only member on this site with your setup, retail on the MX150 is $12k after all. It has become apparent that you purchased the Mac piece used (2 have commented on the fact that your dealer will help with your set up questioins).

You've heard advice from one of the most knowledgable members on this site regarding sub integration, not good enough.

Take a look at Nylar Mellor's ^^^^ website. He will fly to NC and set up your room. If you can afford the gear you own the you should be able to hire an audio consultant.
post #15 of 24
The only member I know of with a similar setup (MX 150, 2 x f113, different speakers) had his dealer do the install & calibration.

MX 150 thread here, which may or may not help.
post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RUR View Post

The only member I know of with a similar setup (MX 150, 2 x f113, different speakers) had his dealer do the install & calibration.

MX 150 thread here, which may or may not help.

Thank you.
post #17 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

You may be the only member on this site with your setup, retail on the MX150 is $12k after all. It has become apparent that you purchased the Mac piece used (2 have commented on the fact that your dealer will help with your set up questioins).

You've heard advice from one of the most knowledgable members on this site regarding sub integration, not good enough.

Take a look at Nylar Mellor's ^^^^ website. He will fly to NC and set up your room. If you can afford the gear you own the you should be able to hire an audio consultant.

I bought the MX-150 as a demo unit from a dealer. Yes he did set up RoomPerfect but with the sub settings basically flat and let Room Perfect take charge. I want to better understand how this works and the best process to integrate these subs. I have been seeking guidance here.

I have referred mainly to Craig John's excellent reply for guidance but since he has not used RoomPerfect I was hoping to hear more from someone who has worked with RP and these subs.

Sometimes forum posts can leave me with more questions and need for clarification.

As for the cost of the unit and the assumption that means I have funds to fly someone in as an audio consultant is not the case at all. My dream of 2 channel and home theater started over 30 years ago and with time I have been able to add pieces that have allowed my system to improve and have passed prior generations of equipment to my son. It all depends on what you set as priorities and what you love to do with your time and limited funds. I have chosen listening to music with my wife as the most important. We have sacrificed elsewhere but I believe we have made the best choice.
post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I bought the MX-150 as a demo unit from a dealer. Yes he did set up RoomPerfect but with the sub settings basically flat and let Room Perfect take charge. I want to better understand how this works and the best process to integrate these subs. I have been seeking guidance here.


Thank you for the clarification.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

I have referred mainly to Craig John's excellent reply for guidance but since he has not used RoomPerfect I was hoping to hear more from someone who has worked with RP and these subs.

Sometimes forum posts can leave me with more questions and need for clarification.


Hopefully in time you'll meet people who are able to help you. I have over the years. For instance I have used REW to measure my room, it is complicated. I have a friend, I met on this site, that has experience and is knowledgable about how to best use REW and I call him each time I utilize the free software. http://www.avsforum.com/t/1449924/simplified-rew-setup-and-use-usb-mic-hdmi-connection-including-measurement-techniques-and-how-to-interpret-graphs

Quote:
Originally Posted by jameslrock View Post

As for the cost of the unit and the assumption that means I have funds to fly someone in as an audio consultant is not the case at all. My dream of 2 channel and home theater started over 30 years ago and with time I have been able to add pieces that have allowed my system to improve and have passed prior generations of equipment to my son. It all depends on what you set as priorities and what you love to do with your time and limited funds. I have chosen listening to music with my wife as the most important. We have sacrificed elsewhere but I believe we have made the best choice.

My attempt at sarcasm feel flat.

My suggestion about hiring a consultant wasn't sarcasm. Especially since your dealer isn't giving you the attention you deserve.

I had the opportunity to see the MEN220 in action at a dealer in Mountain View CA., in a 2.2 configuration. I didn't see them set up the unit with the Mic and running the test tones but I did hear the system with the Roomperfect turned on then off and their was an audible difference. I hope I'm not contributing to the more questions issue.

It seems to me you've had your dealer set up the system the same way the Craig suggested and the way that makes most sense, which is to allow the Roomperfect to adjust the subs. It sounds like you have time to manipulate your audio system and what a wonderful system you own, congrats.

Patience is a virtue.
post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 
Patience is a virtue.[/quote]

Well I certainly have been patient. Started in college where I worked in an audio store helping out (or getting in the way) so that I could eat (seriously!) Then when I got my first job I purchased a new to me NAD 3020 integrated and Boston Acoustic A40 bookshelfs with a Harmon Kardon turntable. We bought an album when we could and enjoyed those times. Almost 33 years later I still have the NAD and Boston speakers and of course the wife too. All work just perfectly fine to this day and are still put to good use from time to time biggrin.gif . I have substantially upgraded the system ( not the wife) since then. I have to admit I am pretty particular so that is why I am probably being obsessive with getting the sound just right. I have pretty good knowledge but still not advanced enough to fully deal with the sub issue and I do not have anything more than the radio shack meter to help me. That is why I was looking for setting up subs with RoomPerfect class 101.

To add to the discussion I have accumulated the recent MX-150, amps are MC452 to L/R B&W 803 diamond speakers, MC207 for center B&W HTM2 and surrounds B&W CWM 7.3 x 4, source is Oppo 95, Sonos, PS3, Apple TV, multiple 20 amp circuits, two Furman Elite 20 PFi (one for the two subs and one for the amps).

Also thanks for your last post,. I very much appreciate the help.
post #20 of 24
With as much as you have invested in your system, and as much as you seem to enjoy it, I think you owe it to yourself to get some measurement software and spend some time learning how to use it and interpret the graphs. For the cost of a USB mic, and some free software, (REW which K Sep linked above), you can be up and running fairly quickly. There is even a step-by-step guide to talk you through the process: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1449924/simplified-rew-setup-and-use-usb-mic-hdmi-connection-including-measurement-techniques-and-how-to-interpret-graphs/270#post_22823228 If you run into trouble, you can ask in that thread and there will be a dozen guys ready to help.

If you want something more plug-'n-play, Nyal Mellor sells XTZ at his website: http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/Acoustic-Measurement/XTZ-Room-Analyzer-II-Standard.html or http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/Acoustic-Measurement/XTZ-Room-Analyzer-II-Pro.html

Either of those systems will tell you what you need to know to optimize the subwoofer response in YOUR room. Here is my experience with XTZ and my 3 Submersive HP's: http://www.avsforum.com/t/759877/seaton-sound-submersive1/4500#post_19446901
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by K Shep View Post

You may be the only member on this site with your setup, retail on the MX150 is $12k after all. It has become apparent that you purchased the Mac piece used (2 have commented on the fact that your dealer will help with your set up questioins).

You've heard advice from one of the most knowledgable members on this site regarding sub integration, not good enough.

Take a look at Nylar Mellor's ^^^^ website. He will fly to NC and set up your room. If you can afford the gear you own the you should be able to hire an audio consultant.

Thanks for the shout out! FWIW I can do calibration work including sub integration remotely so travel is not absolutely required.
post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by craig john View Post

With as much as you have invested in your system, and as much as you seem to enjoy it, I think you owe it to yourself to get some measurement software and spend some time learning how to use it and interpret the graphs. For the cost of a USB mic, and some free software, (REW which K Sep linked above), you can be up and running fairly quickly. There is even a step-by-step guide to talk you through the process: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1449924/simplified-rew-setup-and-use-usb-mic-hdmi-connection-including-measurement-techniques-and-how-to-interpret-graphs/270#post_22823228 If you run into trouble, you can ask in that thread and there will be a dozen guys ready to help.

If you want something more plug-'n-play, Nyal Mellor sells XTZ at his website: http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/Acoustic-Measurement/XTZ-Room-Analyzer-II-Standard.html or http://www.acousticfrontiers.com/Acoustic-Measurement/XTZ-Room-Analyzer-II-Pro.html

Either of those systems will tell you what you need to know to optimize the subwoofer response in YOUR room. Here is my experience with XTZ and my 3 Submersive HP's: http://www.avsforum.com/t/759877/seaton-sound-submersive1/4500#post_19446901

I wrote a blog post on setting up a home theater system with XTZ.

At a generic level I recommend the following process:
1) integrate subs with mains using an acoustic measurement package and the approach documented in the blog post
2) run any room EQ built into the sub
2.5) remeasure and check the EQ improved things. If it didn't turn it off
3) run any room EQ built into the AVR or pre-pro
3.5) remeasure and check the EQ improved things. If it didn't turn it off.
4) see if any further improvements can be made to sub / mains integration using the approach documented in the blog post. Audyssey in particular is not good at optimally integrating mains and subs so whilst it might help reduce some room mode effects it may be possible to improve upon it's integration

By sub integration I am referring to the process to set crossover point, phase/distance and levels
post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nyal Mellor View Post

I wrote a blog post on setting up a home theater system with XTZ.

At a generic level I recommend the following process:
1) integrate subs with mains using an acoustic measurement package and the approach documented in the blog post
2) run any room EQ built into the sub
2.5) remeasure and check the EQ improved things. If it didn't turn it off
3) run any room EQ built into the AVR or pre-pro
3.5) remeasure and check the EQ improved things. If it didn't turn it off.
4) see if any further improvements can be made to sub / mains integration using the approach documented in the blog post. Audyssey in particular is not good at optimally integrating mains and subs so whilst it might help reduce some room mode effects it may be possible to improve upon it's integration

By sub integration I am referring to the process to set crossover point, phase/distance and levels
Hi Nyal,

I know Audyssey is not the topic of this thread, but I would like to make one point about your process above. Audyssey ignores all settings in place before it runs. Therefore, setting subwoofer levels and distances prior to running Audyssey will not be helpful. OTOH, I totally agree that Audyssey is not particularly good at sub integration and I always do that step *after* running Audyssey. smile.gif

Craig
post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by craig john View Post

Hi Nyal,

I know Audyssey is not the topic of this thread, but I would like to make one point about your process above. Audyssey ignores all settings in place before it runs. Therefore, setting subwoofer levels and distances prior to running Audyssey will not be helpful. OTOH, I totally agree that Audyssey is not particularly good at sub integration and I always do that step *after* running Audyssey. smile.gif

Craig

That's true but I like to have a baseline so that I can compare properly setup before Audyssey with the after Audyssey results. That comparison normally enables me to see if I need to modify the Audyssey settings for distance and level.
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