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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just purchased and received an HSU STF-2 yesterday, and first impressions are that it's _loud_! Keep in mind that I didn't have a sub prior to this, so I have nothing to compare it to.


I do have a question regarding calibration though. I bought the Radio Shack analog SPL meter and tried to set up the sub with it and my receiver's pink noise test tones. So I set the volume of the receiver such that the output of the main speakers is at 75 dB and then switched to the sub output only to configure its volume level. However, even before I get close to 75 dB, the sub's output is overpowering. At 75 dB, it's so loud that it's unlistenable. I eventually had to settle for about 65 dB for the sub and 75 dB for all my other speakers. Even at this level, the sub is incredibly loud during movies (I tested with the opening scene of FOTR, the launch scene of Apollo 13, and the New York scene of Armageddon). My question is am I doing something wrong with the calibration? If not, how can other people enjoy any movies with the sub output set so high?
 

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Because of the inaccuracies with the RS SPL meter, 72db is probably the number you shoot for to be calibrated with your speakers. Even so it shouldn't be overpowering like you say. Being that this is your first sub, maybe your really just not used to bass of any magnatude. But it should blend itself nicely if calibrated right. I would try some music and see if it's overpowering at a 72db level, if it seems right than it's just your not used to it. The other thing is maybe your test tones aren't too accurate on your reciever. You might try a audio setup disk like Avia or Sound & Vision to recalibrate and see what results you get. And finally, have you tried different placement options, maybe your getting a bad peak somewhere that moving it might correct.
 

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I would agree that if your receiver does not have a specific speaker calibration routine where it goes from speaker to speaker and outputs a specific sound to each speaker then you should use a setup disk. Your receiver setup manual should describe how to setup each speaker using its internal tones. If not use a setup disk.


..Doyle
 

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I'll second the recommendation for getting Avia or Sound & Vision. In my experience a calibration DVD is better than the receiver test tones.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Sorry, should have been more clear. I was using the receiver's speaker calibration system to set up my speakers. It sends noise to a specific speaker so I can calibrate each one independently. Each speaker, except for the sub, was set up correctly prior to calibrating the sub. I do have the Avia disc, so I'll try that tonight -- I just wanted to do the quick and dirty method to test out the sub, assuming that that method would get me close enough.
 

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When using receiver test tones of pink noise, or the Avia et al, you're sending a broad range of requencies to the sub, right?


So, when setting the sub's level, you're setting the "average level"? Now, do all you experts here really accept this sub "average" as the calibrated level? If so, then depending on the low end reach of our subs, freqs like 25Hz to 30Hz will be much below the 75dB calibrated level.


Or do y'all try to get more of the low end of the sub to the reference level, at the expense of having excessive bass at, say, 40 Hz?
 

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I'm presuming you connected the receiver's LFE output to the sub's input.


Perhaps you are using the crossover on the subwoofer? If so, you might be clipping the higher sub-friendly frequencies. Turning up the volume on what remains could explain why the bass sounds so loud.


I'm not sure whether the phase switch on your sub is in effect if the crossover is disabled (or if you need it). So, I'd either run with the crossover disabled or with the crossover frequency set to the max: 100Hz.

http://store1.yimg.com/I/hsusubs_1778_89


Using the test disk is also a great idea, of course.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
You are correct, the sub is connected to the receiver's LFE output. I've tried enabling and disabling the sub's crossover and the volume level was not affected. I've noticed that if I disable the sub's crossover, I get a very slight hum coming from the sub, so I left the crossover enabled and crossed at 90Hz (which is the max). I've also tried both phases and there was no difference that I could tell.
 

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My PW2200 V.2 was calibrated with S&V. I do not have an SPL Meter, nor do I feel I need one. I can't listen at reference levels anyway, too loud for one thing, and I really don't want to get used to that sound level. If I did, I would be saying "What?" a lot when people were speaking to me.


The sound level of my PW2200 is at 10:30. This blends very nicely with my speakers. I can 'feel' the bass when it is turned up, but also when it is at a 'normal' listening level. Best to describe my normal listening level is you would have to speak loud to me, but not shout and would have to be facing me - -30 on my HK520.


For your sub, you should not be able to 'localize' it, if you can, it is too loud. But bear in mind some people really love bass and run the sub too hot. With my setup, at my volume level, you can hear the bass fine, but it sounds like it is coming from my mains, and not localized at the sub location. You only can tell if you walk right over to my sub where the bass is coming from.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That's a good point. I do find that the sub is a little too localizable. But that just means that at -10dB from the main speakers, it's still too loud. So my calibration must really be off.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Eyleron
When using receiver test tones of pink noise, or the Avia et al, you're sending a broad range of requencies to the sub, right?


So, when setting the sub's level, you're setting the "average level"? Now, do all you experts here really accept this sub "average" as the calibrated level? If so, then depending on the low end reach of our subs, freqs like 25Hz to 30Hz will be much below the 75dB calibrated level.


Or do y'all try to get more of the low end of the sub to the reference level, at the expense of having excessive bass at, say, 40 Hz?


Mine seemed boomy, and I lived with it for quite a while. I recently lowered the x-over to around 65-70Hz (from 100-110Hz), and it sounds way better, and is not over-powering anymore. I calibrate it evenly with all other speakers at 80dBs.
 

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My last guess: Do you have your receiver set so that it is sending low frequency info to both the mains and the sub?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Unfortunately, it's a fairly old receiver (Onkyo TX-DS747) that doesn't let me specify if the mains are large or small. I can tell it whether or not I have a subwoofer and I'm assuming that if I say "yes" to that then it won't send LFE to the mains.
 
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