"Official" Audyssey thread Part II - Page 234 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #6991 of 7146 Old 09-30-2019, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by David Aiken View Post
There's not much you can do. As far as your AVR goes, the answer is pretty much nothing, there's minimal provision for changing Audyssey results provided by the AVR. You can manually adjust the trims to adjust the level of different channels but that doesn't alter the correction filters in any way so whatever peaks and dips there are in the curve will remain, just a little louder or softer due to the trim level adjustment.

I think the first thing to consider is how you like the sound of the result. It sounds like you're concerned about the flatness of the curve in the bass region and the fact is that you can look at a bass response curve, see peaks and dips and think it looks bad—which it can—but what looks bad on a plot doesn't sound anywhere near as bad to our ears. We don't "hear" the curve. What we "hear" has been filtered by the auditory processes in our brain and a lot of the things that can look bad on curves just aren't noticed by us so there's no need to obsess about achieving a perfectly flat curve. The audible result of doing that is much smaller than the visible impression that the flat curve creates. Even great sound does not measure perfectly and good to great sound never looks as good on a curve as it sounds to our ears.

Provided you have an AVR that can work with the MultEQ app on an iOS/Android device, the MultEQ app gives you the ability to tailor the curve quite a bit which is something that your AVR lacks. If you want to try adjusting the curve a bit then the MultEQ app is the best and really the only way that Audyssey lets you play with adjusting the response curve in any way so it's worth looking at.

Apart from that your options default to:

1- rerunning Audyssey and experimenting with slightly different mic position placements for the measurements, closer or further apart mic positions. There's no way of predicting what kind of mic placements will produce a result you'll like the look—and sound—of so be prepared to try lots of different mic placements.

2- adjustments to speaker positioning and listening position placement and rerunning Audyssey. You may be able to get a smoother looking response but it may take a fair bit of experimenting

3- different room correction processors included in other makes of AVR or other processing systems such as Dirac

4- physical room acoustic treatments in conjunction with Audyssey or some other processor, and that brings with it the same warning that there's no way of predicting what will give you what you want and you're going to need to experiment.

If your ability to alter your speaker placements and listening position location are limited then the MultEQ app is the most flexible way to go. You can do a single measurement process and then play with different adjustments to the response curve at your leisure without needing to keep repeating the setup process and the app is way cheaper than a different processor and/or physical acoustic treatments.

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Originally Posted by garygarrison View Post
  • Audyssey itself provides EQ over hundreds of points (as opposed to, maybe, 36 points/ranges with an equalizer). Be sure to use all mic positions. That will probably produce flatter sound than you could ever produce with a conventional equalizer (with Audyssey Flat; with Audyssey Reference, you get a little dip at about 2K, and about -2 dB at 10K, sloping down to -6 dB at 20K).
  • Either put in any absorbers or diffusors or bass traps you intend to use before running Audyssey, or run Audyssey again after putting in the acoustical treatments.
  • Stay away from "Base copy" or the like, because it isn't really copy in that it loses a great deal of information (hundreds of points) that Audyssey collects.
  • Just because Audyssey gives you a pretty flat room, doesn't mean you will like it, for many reasons. Audyssey calls this the difference between Reference and Preference. No matter, we can fix! See J. Gordon Holt's article "Down with flat" -- Apr 29, 1985, https://www.stereophile.com/asweseeit/138/index.htmlon the Stereophile website, and the rebuttal by Cordsman, indexed at the bottom of the article. Part of what Holt is getting at is many recordings in his day have high frequency distortion, so you may want to back off the treble, or otherwise change the EQ due to differences in taste between you and the recording engineers. There's good news and bad news. The good news is that high frequency distortion due to things like mis-tracking cartridges, or over-recorded digital are much rarer today. The bad news is that recording companies tend to pump up the upper midrange, and reduce the ultra highs, and, especially the bass for ridiculous reasons (see Chris A, "The Missing Octave," https://community.klipsch.com/index....racks/page/13/ and his other posts on de-mastering on the Klipsch Community Forum). IMO this is one reason why almost all Audyssey users turn up the bass after calibrating, by 3 to 9 dB, using a bass tone control (if available) and/or turning the gain knob on the subwoofer up a bit. Caution, don't turn the subwoofer trim in the AVR up that much; for how to do it right, see forum member Mike Thomas's GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES
    * "The Guide linked above is a comprehensive guide to Audio & HT systems, including:
    Speaker placements & Room treatments; HT calibration & Room EQ; Room gain; Bass Preferences; Subwoofer Buyer's Guide: Sealed/ported; ID subs; Subwoofer placement."
  • For the (fewer) music recordings or movies with treble distortion, Audyssey Reference works well, in most cases, even though that's not exactly what it is meant for. The end result with good recordings may be fairly flat response (+/- 3 dB, or better) above 80 or 100, or 200 or 800Hz, and boosted bass below. In my case (with Audyssey Flat), I get +/- 2.5 dB from 800 to 15Khz, and bass boosted grandly below, up to an average of + 9 dB below 80Hz. I can't help it, I like the authority it gives timpani, bass drum, tom, tam-tam, and some of the rest of what we orchestra members used to call the kitchen. It's not flat, but it is smooth and graceful, not kinky, as it was before Audyssey.
Mike's guide, above, is the more up to date, but you might scan the FAQ, chiefly by another forum member, Keith Barnes: "Audyssey FAQ Linked Here"

Sorry for taking so long to thank you!
Super value information you both gave me

@David Aiken - I agree with you regarding the "data Vs ears" question.
Still, I am curious to know what is happening in my room and although I tend to agree with you, there are things one needs to adress in order to achieve a more... integrated sound.
Peaks and dips are two of those things. No room is perfect, we all know that, but we have to do what we can with what we have to try to achieve that magical place we like to call "Earvana" (or at least, to get close to it eheh).
Sadly my SR7009 doesn't support the MultiEQ app, so I can't perform any kind equalisation/tailoring to the sound.
Quite frankly, for now, that isn't my intention - I have scarse knowledge regarding the theme so I won't be spending my money on something that would probably (for now) do more harm than good...
Of course, for 20 bucks, the app would be an acceptable (super cheap!) investment to make and would allow me to learn more about the process while giving me a bit more control over the sound, but as I said, my AVR isn't supported. Bummer...
You basically covered all my options there

You brought up the question about how I like the results... well... I have to say that I haven't been very happy with them. I often feel that "something's missing"... but I can't identify where the problem lies... is it Audyssey? Is it my room? Both? Is it content related? Something else? aaaaargh
I've been struggling throughout the years to get a consistent performance/behaviour from my system. Sometimes I watch a movie and think: "Oh! This is sounding good!"... then I watch another one and things seem way off... (D.Eq and D.Vol set to OFF - lately I've even been turning Audyssey EQ OFF!). Watching live concerts (even with DTS HD-MA/True Hd tracks) often results in... disapointment... it's weird! The sound sounds THIN!
Getting clear dialogs has been difficult.
Many times I find myself raising the volume to compensate for that lack of clarity but then the bass becomes overwhelming... raising the center channel level doesn't cut it either (in a near future I'll upgrade the Monitor Audio Bronze center channel to a Golden Ear Supercenter XXL and hopefully it will improve!). The sound I get from the front speakers seems dull/softened... it lacks impact!
It's hard to explain, sorry!
Could it be related to the volume I listen my contents?
I live in an apartment so I usually don't go beyond (-)20dB (after calibration, I matched all the speaker levels to 80dB with an SPL meter - boosted the center channel by 1dB)... I feel that is very difficult to achieve a good balance between a present bass and clear dialogs.


Now, I have to share this (and it goes towards the "data Vs ears" question you raised) - I re-ran Audyssey today and level matched the speakers to 80dB (center channel boosted by 1dB). Turned OFF - D.EQ/D.Vol./MultEQ XT32 and every sound processing gimmicks... Played one of the movies I'm familiar with and........... WOW! What the heck??? Dialogs are fuller and louder! The Triton's are sounding good and delivering a snappy, powerfull, rich sound!
The mic positions I used were the same, everything was set to OFF as it was before... so, what on earth changed?!
I forgot to change the crossover settings!
Until today, I always manually set the size and crossovers following the rules of thumb: SMALL/(around) 80Hz/4 to 5dB boost to subwoofer level.
But because I forgot to do this, I was listening to the front speakers set to LARGE, the center channel with a XO set to 40Hz and the surrounds to 120Hz...
I need to watch/listen my contents carefully again (still in the honeymoon period lol), but this seems to be a case where it all seems to sound right (or at least, better than it was) but with a set of non recommended settings (ok, exception made to the Tritons... Sandy's advice is to always set them as LARGE)... go figure LOL
I suspect that because the Triton's have built-in subs, this is helping to even out the bass response in the room (Gene from Audioholics refers to the importance of dual subs to bass management a ton of times in his videos!).

@garygarrison - will definetely look into that article! Thanks!

Sorry for the wall of text and sorry for any writing mistake I probably made (English is not my native language)

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post #6992 of 7146 Old 09-30-2019, 10:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edi-MC View Post
Sorry for taking so long to thank you!
Super value information you both gave me

@David Aiken - I agree with you regarding the "data Vs ears" question.
Still, I am curious to know what is happening in my room and although I tend to agree with you, there are things one needs to adress in order to achieve a more... integrated sound.
Peaks and dips are two of those things. No room is perfect, we all know that, but we have to do what we can with what we have to try to achieve that magical place we like to call "Earvana" (or at least, to get close to it eheh).
Sadly my SR7009 doesn't support the MultiEQ app, so I can't perform any kind equalisation/tailoring to the sound.
Quite frankly, for now, that isn't my intention - I have scarse knowledge regarding the theme so I won't be spending my money on something that would probably (for now) do more harm than good...
Of course, for 20 bucks, the app would be an acceptable (super cheap!) investment to make and would allow me to learn more about the process while giving me a bit more control over the sound, but as I said, my AVR isn't supported. Bummer...
You basically covered all my options there

You brought up the question about how I like the results... well... I have to say that I haven't been very happy with them. I often feel that "something's missing"... but I can't identify where the problem lies... is it Audyssey? Is it my room? Both? Is it content related? Something else? aaaaargh
I've been struggling throughout the years to get a consistent performance/behaviour from my system. Sometimes I watch a movie and think: "Oh! This is sounding good!"... then I watch another one and things seem way off... (D.Eq and D.Vol set to OFF - lately I've even been turning Audyssey EQ OFF!). Watching live concerts (even with DTS HD-MA/True Hd tracks) often results in... disapointment... it's weird! The sound sounds THIN!
Getting clear dialogs has been difficult.
Many times I find myself raising the volume to compensate for that lack of clarity but then the bass becomes overwhelming... raising the center channel level doesn't cut it either (in a near future I'll upgrade the Monitor Audio Bronze center channel to a Golden Ear Supercenter XXL and hopefully it will improve!). The sound I get from the front speakers seems dull/softened... it lacks impact!
It's hard to explain, sorry!
Could it be related to the volume I listen my contents?
I live in an apartment so I usually don't go beyond (-)20dB (after calibration, I matched all the speaker levels to 80dB with an SPL meter - boosted the center channel by 1dB)... I feel that is very difficult to achieve a good balance between a present bass and clear dialogs.


Now, I have to share this (and it goes towards the "data Vs ears" question you raised) - I re-ran Audyssey today and level matched the speakers to 80dB (center channel boosted by 1dB). Turned OFF - D.EQ/D.Vol./MultEQ XT32 and every sound processing gimmicks... Played one of the movies I'm familiar with and........... WOW! What the heck??? Dialogs are fuller and louder! The Triton's are sounding good and delivering a snappy, powerfull, rich sound!
The mic positions I used were the same, everything was set to OFF as it was before... so, what on earth changed?!
I forgot to change the crossover settings!
Until today, I always manually set the size and crossovers following the rules of thumb: SMALL/(around) 80Hz/4 to 5dB boost to subwoofer level.
But because I forgot to do this, I was listening to the front speakers set to LARGE, the center channel with a XO set to 40Hz and the surrounds to 120Hz...
I need to watch/listen my contents carefully again (still in the honeymoon period lol), but this seems to be a case where it all seems to sound right (or at least, better than it was) but with a set of non recommended settings (ok, exception made to the Tritons... Sandy's advice is to always set them as LARGE)... go figure LOL
I suspect that because the Triton's have built-in subs, this is helping to even out the bass response in the room (Gene from Audioholics refers to the importance of dual subs to bass management a ton of times in his videos!).

@garygarrison - will definetely look into that article! Thanks!

Sorry for the wall of text and sorry for any writing mistake I probably made (English is not my native language)
You may find some of what I'm about to say somewhat "challenging" but that's OK :-) I'm not having a go at you and I'm not being anti-Audyssey but I am going to say some things about my experience over the last 20 years or so that you may not immediately accept.

I run 2 systems. One is an AV system with Audyssey in an open plan area. The other is an audio only system in a different room with no Audyssey or other EQ and some physical room treatment.I've been playing around with physical room treatment for all of that 20 years or so I mentioned and with Audyssey for a bit more than half of that. Both sound very good but they do sound different and working with both has led me to some conclusions.

The "elephant in the room" with EQ systems as I see them is that you have to have a target response. The problem is that there's no agreement about what that target should be and there's evidence, including from Audyssey because they based their target response on preferences from listening tests, that not everyone likes the same target. What's the target that's going to press all of your buttons and give you "earvana"? You don't know unless you're lucky enough to find yourself in an "earvana" situation and can measure it. Then you've got the information you need to replicate it. Unless you know what you're aiming for then you do what I do with Audyssey, try it, and decide whether or not you're happy enough with the result. I'm happy enough so I can say that Audyssey works for me. I'm also less critical about the results I get with Audyssey in the AV system because our brains prioritise vision over hearing so as long as I'm watching something that is visually engrossing me I tend not to pick holes in the audio presentation.

The "elephant in the room" with my audio system is that I don't have a target or any way of doing good measurements so I do the physical room treatment by ear and play with things like the placement of panels and the speaker and listening positions until I get a result that I like. Because there's no visual content in music and I tend to listen with my eyes closed I listen a lot more critically than I do with the other system and when I have to change things because of something like a change of speakers it can take me months of slow experimentation before I'm really happy with the result. It's not that things sound bad before I'm really happy, they usually sound quite good most of the time but if there's something that I start noticing that niggles at me then I start playing around again until I fix that. It can take quite a lot of experimenting to get to the point where I'm happy to stop experimenting. When I take crude measurements with an iPhone app there's still peaks and troughs, especially in the bass, but I'm not noticing them. There's no room that produces a totally smooth response curve, there's always peaks and troughs and they often look bigger than I expect but they simply aren't noticeable. Our brains respond differently to the way a microphone does and our brains developed long before we were able to measure anything. Our brains never learnt to get off on smooth response curves which is great because we never quite get a smooth response curve. If I compare the measurements I can make in that system with the Audyssey response curve there is a similarity in that there's a falling high frequency response but the slope of the fall is different, probably a bit steeper than the Audyssey slope, and the overall sound is a little warmer than the Audyssey sound. I like the extra bit of warmth for music but I like the extra bit of high frequency response I get with Audyssey for the extra bit of detail and clarity it can give with a movie soundtrack. I can happily listen to music without video on the Audyssey system but I prefer to listen on the other system, and I could happily listen to soundtracks on the music system but I think I'd prefer the Audyssey system for that though I don't know for certain since I've never had a screen in the room with the music system.

The next thing to consider is that whether you're listening to a CD or LP or you're listening to a soundtrack, what you're listening to isn't a test signal Some things, like the lead instrument taking a solo or the dialog in a soundtrack are going to be louder than the rest of the sounds in the recording because if that weren't the case then those sounds would be masked by the background sounds to some degree, they wouldn't be as clear or understandable, and you wouldn't be happy with the recording. Then there's things like the spatial presentation, how things are placed in a stereo sound field and the directions from which sounds come in a multichannel soundtrack. Differences in level between channels contribute to that. All of those differences are created in the mix by the mixing engineer and they do that by ear. They're listening on a different system to yours in a different room to yours and they're mixing to their preferences. They probably play the mix on one or more different systems including a system that's more basic than yours in a room without EQ or physical treatment because that's how most people listen and they want to deliver something that works for everyone so the end result is usually something that works reasonably well for most people and better, even much better, for those of us who have better systems and room setups. You don't need perfection to get good or even very good results.

Bottom line: there is no perfect target. Different people have different preferences. The same person can have one preference for music and another for soundtracks to movies and video. Our ear/brain system has evolved in ways that ensure that our preferences are based on what we hear rather than on how what we hear actually measures and what we like doesn't measure anywhere near as neatly as we would expect from the pleasure it gives us. Obsessing about how the measured result looks in order to achieve some particular target response for whatever reason we have for choosing that target is going about things the wrong way.

I'm not saying that measurements aren't useful. They can be great for diagnosing problems and great for checking whether a fix for a problem has moved things in the right direction or not but they aren't useful for telling you that you've achieved something that will make you happy. The way you find out whether a result makes you happy is to listen and see if you end up with a grin on your face.

The basic Audyssey result works well for most—i.e. more than 50%—people and you can tweak it a bit to get it closer to your preference in various ways but what counts in the end is not how the response curve looks, it's whether there's a grin on your face. The acid test isn't your measurement result, it's how the result sounds to you. Measurement results can help you get a grin on your face easier than trying to do things by ear, especially if you don't have practice at interpreting what you hear and knowing what to do to change that in the way you want to change it, but measurements aren't going to tell you that you've got a result that makes you happy. It's simply listening which is going to tell you whether the result makes you happy. Don't lose track of that.

And yes, the volume you listen to is a factor. Our ears are less sensitive in the lows and the highs than they are in the mids and the sensitivity of our ears at low and high frequencies reduces as voiume decreases. That's less of an issue with the highs because anything above 7-8 kHz is an overtone, not a fundamental, and lower in level than the fundamental plus there's always a natural fall off in the highs because of absorption when the sound strikes a surface in the room and because air itself becomes increasingly absorptive as frequency increases. That's why low frequencies carry for much longer distances than high frequencies. What this ear sensitivity thing means, however, is that the volume control is also to some degree a tone control and turning the volume down acts to a degree like a tone control which reduces the bass and treble. DEQ is intended to compensate for that to some degree but many of us find that we need to adjust the subwoofer trim to give us a bit more bass than DEQ provides.
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post #6993 of 7146 Old 10-01-2019, 11:00 AM
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Hello,
I'm a little confused by the final 2 positions (7 and 8) that go behind the couch.
The first 6 positions are all ear height, the final 2 positions it tells me to set up the tripod behind the couch. If i do that, the mic won't see the front 3 speakers due to the high couch back.
Should i be raising the mic for position 7 and 8 behind the couch, which will make it much higher than ear level?
Any suggestions?


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post #6994 of 7146 Old 10-01-2019, 03:14 PM
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@David Aiken Completely agree and thank you for sharing your experience and insight!
Most of the times it really is a matter of preference instead of reference as you pointed out.
People's tastes are, well, people's tastes and regarding sound it's no different.
The main goal to all of us outhere that are into this world of speakers, subs, receivers, cables and God knows what lol Is to be happy with what we hear.

A trained ear can get you very far (and then more!), no doubts there. The human brain is an extraordinary tool!
But if I feel that something's off, my personal approach tends to be a little more focused on getting verifiable data instead of trial and error by ear. It's just the way I am. After collecting the data, I then try to make the necessary (or possible!) adjustments in order to get a kind of sound that matches my likings.

You've summed it up very well when you said that measurements are useful for "diagnosing problems and great for checking whether a fix for a problem has moved things in the right direction or not". That's the reason why I want to perform them.
And although I agree that, like you also said, "they aren't useful for telling you that you've achieved something that will make you happy", I feel that having them gets you closer than if you didn't.

"If you don't have practice at interpreting what you hear and knowing what to do to change that in the way you want to change it" - right on the money! Bingo! Hopefully I'll develop those skills with time and experimentation... And I'm pretty sure that being able to measure the results of fhe changes one makes will greatly help to get there

"It's simply by listening which is going to tell you whether the result makes you happy. Don't lose track of that."
I surely won't! Thanks



@Dustin Windsor Are you using the diagram suggested in the guide?
If so, positions 7 and 8 are located in front of the 1, 2 and 3 positions and can be raised above ear level.
If you're setting things up according to the Audyssey calibration of your AVR, I think we might have the same problem...
My couch's pillow ends above ear level. What I did was set the mic directly above its top (behind the couch as suggested by Audyssey), so it wouldn't be blocked by it.
It's not at ear level, but my line of thinking was: its best to capture the sound than to be blocked...
It's a compromise...
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edi-MC View Post


@Dustin Windsor Are you using the diagram suggested in the guide?
If so, positions 7 and 8 are located in front of the 1, 2 and 3 positions and can be raised above ear level.
If you're setting things up according to the Audyssey calibration of your AVR, I think we might have the same problem...
My couch's pillow ends above ear level. What I did was set the mic directly above its top (behind the couch as suggested by Audyssey), so it wouldn't be blocked by it.
It's not at ear level, but my line of thinking was: its best to capture the sound than to be blocked...
It's a compromise...

I was using the exact prompts that Audssey/my 7013 is giving me. 7 and 8 are behind the couch but i have a huge high back couch...


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Ok, so, searching in Audyssey.zendesk, I found this:


"DathonDecember
06, 2009 00:56
Chris, I have read conflicting things about the mic placement and Audyssey set-up on several forums. Maybe you could please clarify?

If the couch back is slightly higher than ear level, should you raise the mic above the couch back so reflections from the back wall are captured?
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Audyssey LabsDecember 07, 2009 05:01
Yes, I would recommend raising the mic above the couch back to avoid reflections from the couch back that could interfere with the measurements"


I guess my assumption was right
Here's the link if you want to do further research: https://audyssey.zendesk.com/hc/en-u...one-placement-
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post #6997 of 7146 Old 10-02-2019, 10:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Dustin Windsor View Post
Hello,
I'm a little confused by the final 2 positions (7 and 8) that go behind the couch.
The first 6 positions are all ear height, the final 2 positions it tells me to set up the tripod behind the couch. If i do that, the mic won't see the front 3 speakers due to the high couch back.
Should i be raising the mic for position 7 and 8 behind the couch, which will make it much higher than ear level?
Any suggestions?
Over the years, the folks in this thread have found that a smaller mic pattern usually produces better results and the "behind the seating" mic positions are typically not used. Here is a good quote from @mthomas47 's great Guide to Subwoofer Calibration and Bass Preferences (linked in my sig):


"As a general rule, it is a good idea to measure smaller areas, as opposed to larger areas, for the reasons cited above. We want our measurement area to be large enough to accurately represent the binaural (hearing with both ears simultaneously) nature of our hearing. But we may not want to measure such a large area that we present Audyssey's fuzzy-logic weighting system with too much anomalous information. Patterns that vary in size from as small as about 6" to 12" out from the MLP (mic position 1), to as large as about 24" to the side and forward are typically used. I would not generally recommend going further to the sides, or forward more than about 24" from mic position 1.

It is interesting to note that, in the last couple of years, Audyssey has revised it's owner instruction manuals to recommend a smaller microphone pattern than they used to recommend. They used to recommend 3' to 4' out from the MLP. I believe that they now recommend about 2' or less. Their revised recommendations seem to parallel the experience of many Audyssey users, who discovered that smaller microphone patterns often resulted in better sound quality, over a wider area, than large mic patterns did. That is consistent with my own experience, and with that of a number of others on the Audyssey thread."



From this section of his guide.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dustin Windsor View Post
Hello,
I'm a little confused by the final 2 positions (7 and 8) that go behind the couch.
The first 6 positions are all ear height, the final 2 positions it tells me to set up the tripod behind the couch. If i do that, the mic won't see the front 3 speakers due to the high couch back.
Should i be raising the mic for position 7 and 8 behind the couch, which will make it much higher than ear level?
Any suggestions?

Hi,

Alan's answer should already have clarified things, but I would like to add something, just in case. First, I wouldn't go behind the couch with my Audyssey microphone, unless there is an additional row of seating back there, and perhaps not even then. As noted in Alan's post, the best results are usually obtained from a more uniform listening area, that won't skew the system of fuzzy logic weighting that Audyssey uses. Despite the Audyssey instructions, which are rarely written by design engineers, there really wouldn't be any reason to measure behind your couch if there is no one actually listening back there.

Second, it can sometimes be helpful to raise the measurement mic by a couple of inches, for approximately two mic positions, irrespective of rear surrounds and seat heights. My own explanation for why that may sometimes be helpful is that our ears are shaped in such a way as to funnel sound down from above, more than up from below the ear canal. If six of the mic positions are centered on the ear canal, and two of them are at about the top of the pinnae of the ear, it may help a little.

A model microphone pattern, that may help to get you started, is illustrated in the Guide section that Alan linked. That mic pattern has proved successful for a number of people. As with everything in audio though, some experimentation may be required to determine what actually works best in your specific circumstances.

Regards,
Mike

GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES

* The Guide linked above is a comprehensive guide to Audio & HT systems, including:
Speaker placements & Room treatments; HT calibration & Room EQ; Room gain; Bass
Preferences; Subwoofer Buyer's Guide: Sealed/ported; ID subs; Subwoofer placement.
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post #6999 of 7146 Old 10-02-2019, 01:42 PM
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A crude drawing of the diagram from Mikes guide. Other then the MLP, you can move the mic in any order you wish, I used the numbers you see to do the least amount of mic stand movements.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mthomas47 View Post
Hi,

Second, it can sometimes be helpful to raise the measurement mic by a couple of inches, for approximately two mic positions, irrespective of rear surrounds and seat heights. My own explanation for why that may sometimes be helpful is that our ears are shaped in such a way as to funnel sound down from above, more than up from below the ear canal. If six of the mic positions are centered on the ear canal, and two of them are at about the top of the pinnae of the ear, it may help a little.

Regards,
Mike
Mike,

I won't dispute your comment that it can be helpful to have a couple of higher mic positions in the measurement pattern. The proof for that is whether people prefer the result when they do that. I will dispute your explanation.

Our ears are shaped to funnel sound from above into the ear canal as you said, and also to funnel sound from in front down the canal as well since the canals don't point to the front, but the mic measures sound at the point in space where it is located and that sound is moving in all directions because it includes reflections from every room surface. A lot of that sound is not going to strike our ear surfaces or reach the ear canal directly and if it doesn't do that then it doesn't get into the ear canal.

Theoretically I'd say that the best results would come from measuring at points where listeners may have their ears during listening and that would mean at a range of heights based on the ear height of different listeners in the locations where those listeners sit while listening. That would mean over a wider spacing if you usually have more listeners and a closer spaceing if you only have one or two listeners in a single chair or on a sofa. The larger the area in which measurements are taken then the greater the probability that the differences in result at each position will be larger and the greater the difference in the result the greater the challenge the "fuzzy logic" has to work with as you observed. A couple of inches difference in height in some positions would help Audyssey to compensate for the range in ear heights for different listeners which can be expected but I doubt that's going to be because of the way the ear funnels sound to the canal, it's going to be because of where ears are located when we're using our systems.

In the end, however, why placing the mic at a couple of higher positions can give a better result doesn't matter. What counts is that it can give a better result. My recommendation for a height range would be ear height at the main listening position for the person who sits there most often and for other positions at the ear height of the people who sit closest to that position. I wouldn't go higher than the ear height of the tallest listener and I would even do a lower measurement or two for the ear height of shorter listeners such as children if you have them. As you said, measurements behind the MLP aren't all that useful if no one ever sits behind the MLP. The different positions are really a sampling process and the best area to sample is the area where ears are going to be located. I've even measured as low as just above the armrest at the side of the sofa where my ears are located when I'm lying sprawled on the sofa rather than sitting.
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[Boldface and underlines are mine -- GG.]


Quote:
Originally Posted by Edi-MC View Post
Ok, so, searching in Audyssey.zendesk, I found this:

Chris, I have read conflicting things about the mic placement and Audyssey set-up on several forums. Maybe you could please clarify?

If the couch back is slightly higher than ear level, should you raise the mic above the couch back so reflections from the back wall are captured?

Audyssey LabsDecember 07, 2009 05:01
Yes, I would recommend raising the mic above the couch back to avoid reflections from the couch back that could interfere with the measurements"

I guess my assumption was right
Here's the link if you want to do further research: https://audyssey.zendesk.com/hc/en-u...one-placement-


Some of this may depend on how far you are from the back wall. Is it 20 feet back, or 5 feet or is your couch right up against it? Regardless of how far back it is, your ears are shielded from direct reflections from it by the couch back.


IMO, in 2009, the questioner was asking whether capturing reflections from the back wall is a good thing. But, since your ears are not going to get direct reflections from the back wall because your couch back is slightly higher than ear level, I would think the mic picking up direct reflections from the back wall would not be a good thing, since you won't hear them until they bounce off of other surfaces, causing an elevated mic to get misinformation.


What I think Chris of Audyssey was talking about in his answer was whether to avoid a mic position too near the couch back. Your ears are at least a little forward of that, and point to the side and forward (i.e. don't point backward, in most specimens), but the mic is omnidirectional. I've often wondered if Audyssey ever tried the "dummy" head method, with the microphones buried in the ears, like the ones used in making true binaural recordings. Anyway, we hear that Audyssey revised some of their recommendations since 2009.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan P View Post
Over the years, the folks in this thread have found that a smaller mic pattern usually produces better results and the "behind the seating" mic positions are typically not used. Here is a good quote from @mthomas47 's great Guide to Subwoofer Calibration and Bass Preferences (linked in my sig):
"As a general rule, it is a good idea to measure smaller areas, as opposed to larger areas, for the reasons cited above. We want our measurement area to be large enough to accurately represent the binaural (hearing with both ears simultaneously) nature of our hearing. But we may not want to measure such a large area that we present Audyssey's fuzzy-logic weighting system with too much anomalous information. Patterns that vary in size from as small as about 6" to 12" out from the MLP (mic position 1), to as large as about 24" to the side and forward are typically used. I would not generally recommend going further to the sides, or forward more than about 24" from mic position 1.

It is interesting to note that, in the last couple of years, Audyssey has revised it's owner instruction manuals to recommend a smaller microphone pattern than they used to recommend. They used to recommend 3' to 4' out from the MLP. I believe that they now recommend about 2' or less. Their revised recommendations seem to parallel the experience of many Audyssey users, who discovered that smaller microphone patterns often resulted in better sound quality, over a wider area, than large mic patterns did. That is consistent with my own experience, and with that of a number of others on the Audyssey thread."

From this section of his guide.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mthomas47 View Post
Hi,

Alan's answer should already have clarified things, but I would like to add something, just in case. First, I wouldn't go behind the couch with my Audyssey microphone, unless there is an additional row of seating back there, and perhaps not even then. As noted in Alan's post, the best results are usually obtained from a more uniform listening area, that won't skew the system of fuzzy logic weighting that Audyssey uses. Despite the Audyssey instructions, which are rarely written by design engineers, there really wouldn't be any reason to measure behind your couch if there is no one actually listening back there.

Second, it can sometimes be helpful to raise the measurement mic by a couple of inches, for approximately two mic positions, irrespective of rear surrounds and seat heights. My own explanation for why that may sometimes be helpful is that our ears are shaped in such a way as to funnel sound down from above, more than up from below the ear canal. If six of the mic positions are centered on the ear canal, and two of them are at about the top of the pinnae of the ear, it may help a little.

A model microphone pattern, that may help to get you started, is illustrated in the Guide section that Alan linked. That mic pattern has proved successful for a number of people. As with everything in audio though, some experimentation may be required to determine what actually works best in your specific circumstances.

Regards,
Mike

Agreed.
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post #7002 of 7146 Old 10-02-2019, 04:33 PM
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I just wanted to put in a post a Thank you too all who made this sticky possible.. I read through it and found alot of really good info here that I was not aware of before.. I ran through another calibration this afternoon and was not aable to get a listen yet but I am sure it is going to sound better then ever..

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Since the subject of “mic boom stands” comes up often for use in holding the Audyssey mic in its various positions when calibrating, thought I’d add my recent experience.

While I don’t run Audyssey often, I read all the reviews of the cheaper Chinese mic stands, and the majority of the comments were how they worked at first, then not long later, broken cheap plastic parts, that eventually meant the entire stand becoming useless garbage. Personally, I’m tired of buying twice chasing a few bucks, and in the end buying twice. This stand cost me $78, one month ago, now it’s $58. I’m still glad I bought it, and can put it away knowing the next time I use it, it will function properly. K&M is evidently know for making professional stands. This model out of the many they sell has all the right features for doing our Audyssey calibrations, just add a spring clamp to hold the mic. Has a standard 5/8” male thread on the end of boom.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Probably a dumb question, but I just bought the MultEQ Editor app for my phone and went through the steps. Is it possible that running Audyssey from the Editor App didn't actually overwrite the settings on my Denon x4400h after I ran it? I often allow it to apply a trim (the last time I ran it before this is had calculated -8 dB; this time I moved the volume up and got it to calculate a trim of -6.5), and then bump it up manually 1-3 dB as I see fit, using the Speakers - Manual Setup - Levels - Start Test Tones settings...

I had moved the trim from -6.5 to -4.5 from within the Editor App.

When I opened up Audyssey to adjust that (reduce the boost to something like -5.5, I saw that the setting was at -6.0, which is where I'd had it from the last time Audyssey calculated the -8.

What am I missing? Did the app not overwrite/reset all my old audyssey settings?

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post #7005 of 7146 Old 10-04-2019, 01:30 PM
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I may be missing something.. But when you made the change in the app did you resend to the receiver?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocky1 View Post
I may be missing something.. But when you made the change in the app did you resend to the receiver?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Nope!

I smelled that this was a "dumb user error" sort of thing... never used it before, was under time crunch to finish in time to get my Kindergarten daughter off the bus... missed that. Thanks!
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post #7007 of 7146 Old 10-05-2019, 07:51 AM
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Got my Marantz SR5013.

Plugged it in, and Vol knob is at 40 by default. Play a few songs in 2.1 ch setup.

Run Audyssey , play same songs again and I have to turn the Vol knob to around 50-60 to get the same sound level. Check speaker settings and it looked like Audyssey sets my bookshelf speakers to Large with a -10db correction.

What gives?

I am very tempted to just down/reset Audyssey to get my sound level back, and since I am mostly running 2.1 for music and TV, I probably won't use much EQ.

Thoughts? What am I losing if I turn off Audyssey, if all I do is TV and 2.1 music?

Thanks
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post #7008 of 7146 Old 10-05-2019, 12:05 PM
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Quick question...is Audyssey able to correct two different rooms in receivers with multiple zones? Looking at getting a Denon X3500.
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post #7009 of 7146 Old 10-05-2019, 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted by smokarz View Post
Got my Marantz SR5013.

Thoughts? What am I losing if I turn off Audyssey, if all I do is TV and 2.1 music?

Thanks
You might lose a great deal, especially with 2.1 music (and any TV program or movie with music)

You would lose Audyssey correcting your speakers + room frequency response over hundreds of EQ points. Right now, your sound system knows nothing of the acoustical influence of your room, which often creates peaks and valleys of as much as 7 to 10 dB (in some cases, more). And all speakers introduce non-linearities.

Spending a few hours working with Audyssey is well worth it for most people.

When you are done, expect to need some bass boost, but it can be done smoothly, since your frequency response curve will no longer be kinky. Bass can be boosted AFTER you run Audyssey by turning up the subwoofer a bit, and/or (additionally) by using tone controls if you are not using DEQ, or by simply relying on DEQ + sub boost if you like DEQ.

But first, get a coffee, and read this -- it started as an Audyssey manual of sorts, and now brings in ancillary material as well (if you don't have an hour, use the Cliff notes at the beginning to help you):
Mike Thomas's GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES
* "The Guide linked above is a comprehensive guide to Audio & HT systems, including:
Speaker placements & Room treatments; HT calibration & Room EQ; Room gain; Bass Preferences; Subwoofer Buyer's Guide: Sealed/ported; ID subs; Subwoofer placement."

Here is an older one, in question and answer format, not up to date in some sections: Keith Barnes: "Audyssey FAQ Linked Here"
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post #7010 of 7146 Old 10-06-2019, 05:14 PM
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Does anybody know of a reverb/ambience black box with pre-delay and adjustable reverb that I can patch into my two rear channels without going through a computer? The laptop is not always nearby. I'm thinking of one that would go between my pre-pro and the two freestanding power amps going to my two surround speakers.

Context:

I used to have my main speakers and surround Heresy IIs in a very small room, so I got a Lexicon CP1 to add subtle, realistic reverb to the two rear channels (Heresy IIs) ONLY, which were in a loft above and behind the room. I emphasize just a touch of reverb from the rear did the job. I used a pre-delay (to put the first simulated wall encounter about 50 imaginary feet away) and used moderate concert hall style reverb (which a reviewer said should have been labeled "ambience"). After a few days of tweaking, I got it just right. It was quite musical, but unobtrusive.

A few years later, we moved.

For the last 8 years we have had a combination music room/home theater/library in a 4,264 cu.ft. room, with Audyssey making our sound better than ever, except the room is a little too dead. I never thought I'd need reverb in a room that large. The instruments sound real and beautiful, but the reverberation time is too short. I don't want to change the room treatments or content -- it has wall to wall carpeting and many bookshelves and books. Audyssey is working beautifully, and I'd like to preserve what it does for the front three channels. The Lexicon is long dead (developed noise in one channel that is very noticeable unless I have the reverb turned way too far up, or crank up the input up to the point at which it is in the red zone for peaks in orchestral recordings), and no one wants to repair it, for any amount of money, including Lexicon. It is no longer available new, and originally cost > $1,000. They are on the used market for suspiciously low amounts ($30-$60), and I'm not sure how to know if they've developed noise (the amount in my single channel might not bother a garage band, with constantly loud music, but it drives me nuts on soft classical passages).

There are intriguing, much more modern, units around, some quite inexpensive (or even free!) but they all seem to need a computer. Is there any way around this?

I'd just like to give it a shot.

Here is one that is priced right, has pre-delay and everything I need, but it needs a computer.

AD034 EOS2 $60

Any ideas?
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post #7011 of 7146 Old 10-06-2019, 08:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garygarrison View Post
Does anybody know of a reverb/ambience black box with pre-delay and adjustable reverb that I can patch into my two rear channels without going through a computer? The laptop is not always nearby. I'm thinking of one that would go between my pre-pro and the two freestanding power amps going to my two surround speakers.

Context:

I used to have my main speakers and surround Heresy IIs in a very small room, so I got a Lexicon CP1 to add subtle, realistic reverb to the two rear channels (Heresy IIs) ONLY, which were in a loft above and behind the room. I emphasize just a touch of reverb from the rear did the job. I used a pre-delay (to put the first simulated wall encounter about 50 imaginary feet away) and used moderate concert hall style reverb (which a reviewer said should have been labeled "ambience"). After a few days of tweaking, I got it just right. It was quite musical, but unobtrusive.

A few years later, we moved.

For the last 8 years we have had a combination music room/home theater/library in a 4,264 cu.ft. room, with Audyssey making our sound better than ever, except the room is a little too dead. I never thought I'd need reverb in a room that large. The instruments sound real and beautiful, but the reverberation time is too short. I don't want to change the room treatments or content -- it has wall to wall carpeting and many bookshelves and books. Audyssey is working beautifully, and I'd like to preserve what it does for the front three channels. The Lexicon is long dead (developed noise in one channel that is very noticeable unless I have the reverb turned way too far up, or crank up the input up to the point at which it is in the red zone for peaks in orchestral recordings), and no one wants to repair it, for any amount of money, including Lexicon. It is no longer available new, and originally cost > $1,000. They are on the used market for suspiciously low amounts ($30-$60), and I'm not sure how to know if they've developed noise (the amount in my single channel might not bother a garage band, with constantly loud music, but it drives me nuts on soft classical passages).

There are intriguing, much more modern, units around, some quite inexpensive (or even free!) but they all seem to need a computer. Is there any way around this?

I'd just like to give it a shot.

Here is one that is priced right, has pre-delay and everything I need, but it needs a computer.

AD034 EOS2 $60

Any ideas?

Hi Gary,

I have no experience with reverb units, but I wonder if you might not be able to achieve some of the same effect with your existing instrumentation. I'm just spitballing this as I go, so if it's a dumb idea, don't waste any time on it. But, you could change the distance setting on your rear speakers to introduce either more or less delay, depending on which gave you more of what you want, and you could experiment with the dimension and panorama settings in PLII. I know that you like to tinker with settings, and it may be that you could achieve some of the effect that you are looking for without buying a reverb unit.

Meanwhile, I hope that someone can suggest a unit that doesn't require a laptop.

Regards,
Mike
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GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES

* The Guide linked above is a comprehensive guide to Audio & HT systems, including:
Speaker placements & Room treatments; HT calibration & Room EQ; Room gain; Bass
Preferences; Subwoofer Buyer's Guide: Sealed/ported; ID subs; Subwoofer placement.
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post #7012 of 7146 Old 10-07-2019, 12:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mthomas47 View Post
Hi Gary,

... But, you could change the distance setting on your rear speakers to introduce either more or less delay, depending on which gave you more of what you want, and you could experiment with the dimension and panorama settings in PLII. I know that you like to tinker with settings, and it may be that you could achieve some of the effect that you are looking for without buying a reverb unit.

Meanwhile, I hope that someone can suggest a unit that doesn't require a laptop.

Regards,
Mike

Thanks, Mike!

Hmmm .... so if I want the surrounds to sound like they are farther away, i.e., more delayed, then I should change the distance setting to much closer, right? I assume if I set the distance to very close, the Marantz pre-pro (AVP) will delay them more to push them back to the same "distance" that all the other speakers are. Or is it Audyssey that sets the delay -- I really don't want to have to rerun Audyssey to get it to do that because, even with my old notes I'm not sure I could duplicate the mic positions that serendipitously helped make Audyssey sound so good to me (after several tries). So I hope the distance thing is separate from the EQ and time domain filters, and the Marantz can alter the delay in response to my demands without bothering Audyssey-- I should know this, and once did.

I will read up on PL II again, and tinker away.


I still wouldn't mind making a bet of $100, + - , on a ambience/reverb unit that doesn't need a computer.

Or maybe all three approaches.
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post #7013 of 7146 Old 10-07-2019, 06:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garygarrison View Post
Thanks, Mike!

Hmmm .... so if I want the surrounds to sound like they are farther away, i.e., more delayed, then I should change the distance setting to much closer, right? I assume if I set the distance to very close, the Marantz pre-pro (AVP) will delay them more to push them back to the same "distance" that all the other speakers are. Or is it Audyssey that sets the delay -- I really don't want to have to rerun Audyssey to get it to do that because, even with my old notes I'm not sure I could duplicate the mic positions that serendipitously helped make Audyssey sound so good to me (after several tries). So I hope the distance thing is separate from the EQ and time domain filters, and the Marantz can alter the delay in response to my demands without bothering Audyssey-- I should know this, and once did.

I will read up on PL II again, and tinker away.

I still wouldn't mind making a bet of $100, + - , on a ambience/reverb unit that doesn't need a computer.

Or maybe all three approaches.

You are very welcome, Gary! I actually think that it may take a combination of factors to achieve what you want, and I'm not absolutely sure that you can do it without a reverb unit. But, I think that you can get at least part way there with some tinkering.

The distance, trim, and crossover settings are independent of the filters that Audyssey set. Changing the distance settings on the rear surrounds in the way you suggested, to introduce some delay, may or may not help you in this case. But, you won't need to rerun Audyssey, and you can always return to the original post-Audyssey settings if you don't like the results.

Similarly, you can experiment with PLII to see if that, perhaps in conjunction with the timing of the rear speakers, will give you an enhanced sense of spaciousness or ambiance. The dimension feature controls how much content is being directed to the surround speakers. The panorama feature spreads-out the sound a little more. You are trading some pin-point sound for additional spaciousness.

My best guess is that you might want to push just a little more content to the rear speakers, and then experiment with the panorama control. I have never used the panorama feature since I feel that I have just the right amount of ambiance in my room anyway, so I'm not sure exactly what trade-offs you may find with that. As you know, nearly everything in audio involves some degree of compromise.

Regards,
Mike
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GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES

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post #7014 of 7146 Old 10-07-2019, 03:43 PM
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Thanks again Mike!

I'll try it all.


I am currently experimenting, listening and cogitating.
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Last edited by garygarrison; 10-07-2019 at 04:28 PM.
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post #7015 of 7146 Old 10-08-2019, 06:20 AM
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Here's one for you guys. I got some new speakers yesterday (yay!). Ascend Sierra Towers w/RAAL and a center-oriented 2EX RAAL, fwiw). After helping with dinner and bathing the kids, the most of the remainder of the night last night was spent unpacking/unboxing, redoing some wire management, etc etc. I spent 45 minutes or so just listening in Pure Direct mode last night with no Audyssey and no subwoofer.


So this morning, very briefly after my wife and kids had left, I ran through a *very* quick Audyssey calibration (only 3 points) using the Pro app on my phone. Quick and dirty, because I know everything isn't set up quite right yet (need to replace the Rears with ones from upstairs, for one thing). It seemed successful. I listened to a few songs. Most everything was working mostly as I wanted, and I was mostly happy. I'd selected the reference curve with the more gradual high end roll off, and disabled mid-range compensation... and I liked what I was hearing, at least for "this stage of steup," for 2.1 music.


Then I switched over from the Reference Curve to a FLAT curve, and... the music stopped playing. I started thinking it was my software; I confirmed Roon was still playing the song on my phone. I started thinking it was my Endpoint (Chromecast Audio), so I switched to another endpoint on the same AVR (OPPO UDP-203)... music played while the AVR was set to Reference. As soon as I switched over to the FLAT curve, the music stopped... Roon kept right on playing the song, but my speakers didn't make any sound...




Is it possible that the 3 point cal I did wasn't sufficient to configure the FLAT curve? This was all working properly before, on my last (8 point) calibration using my old speakers and the same AVR... I had the FLAT curve set as the default curve for the CCA and often used it when listening to music using the OPPO... never had any problems with it. Is this normal?

Last edited by psuKinger; 10-08-2019 at 06:49 AM.
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post #7016 of 7146 Old 10-08-2019, 06:56 AM
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Power cycle your receiver and reboot the app. Had the same issue though it "seems" fixed after a Denon firmware update.

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post #7017 of 7146 Old 10-08-2019, 09:16 AM
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Audyssey iPad app and OS X Catalina

Apple released OS X Catalina yesterday. A new features is the ability to run iPad apps in OS X. Does anyone know if the Audyssey iPad app works in Catalina?



I'm still trying to find out how this works and assume the app would need to be re-compiled to support this.
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post #7018 of 7146 Old 10-08-2019, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by au-734 View Post
Apple released OS X Catalina yesterday. A new features is the ability to run iPad apps in OS X. Does anyone know if the Audyssey iPad app works in Catalina?



I'm still trying to find out how this works and assume the app would need to be re-compiled to support this.


iPad apps have to be ported over using Mac Catalyst in order to be used in Catalina. It will be up to developers if they want to do this of course.


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post #7019 of 7146 Old 10-09-2019, 03:03 PM
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Just submitted the question via Ask Audyssey. I will update when I receive a response.

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post #7020 of 7146 Old 10-09-2019, 03:56 PM
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Originally Posted by hawkster27 View Post
First, I use Audyssey all the time and am quite happy with it. But here's a quirk I can't figure out: Audyssey MultiEQ consistently sets my mains to crossover between 150 and 200 Hz. And here's the thing: over the years this has happened with an Onkyo and two Marantz pre-pros, with Klipsch Forte IIs and Martin Logan 60XTs (all set to small), using both the built in Audyssey and the phone app, and in two different living rooms! (The crossovers for the surrounds and Atmos get set to between 40 Hz and 60 Hz.) After I run Audyssey, I reset the crossovers for the mains to 90hz, but this just seems weird. FWIW, my sub is a Klipsch RSW-12, with the crossover dial set to 100Hz.

Well, the mystery is solved. My 25-year-old Adcom amps are failing. Although they still produce sound, they are obviously not driving the bass response. I couldn't figure out why my mains were crossing over at 200 Hz, and the surrounds at 60. Today I connected the 60XTs to the Emotiva amp I use to drive the surrounds. I ran Audyssey with the iPhone app, and the 60XTs were flat down to 40 Hz, so much so that the app reset them from small to large and dispensed with the crossover entirely. With the old Adcoms, they sloped down at a 45 degree angle between 0 and 120 Hz. That's the good news. The bad news I now have to buy a new five channel amplifier!
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