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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am currently using a Cerwin-Vega center channel speaker. I expect I am experiencing some sort of deafness problem, as I frequently cannot understand speech, particularly if there is background noise or music.

While I realize this forum does not give medical advice I would like to have a center channel speaker that has a frequency response more peaked for

voice, or which is at least reasonably adjustable.

Help much appreciated.

Frank

P.S. Can we keep the cost down to $200 or less please?
 

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Frank


Firstly start of with matching loudspeakers, I say again matching loudspeakers for the left centre and right, then start worrying about whether there's some sort of problem between the, centre channel.


Matching fronts = matching timbre of sound like pink noise, travelling from left centre and right, one example would be, (Hiss, hiss, Hiss) not the same ok lets try again shall we (hiss, Hiss, hiss). This is the common mistake and it's often the manufacture who hasn't got a single clue what home cinema means and ships out these mismatching loudspeaker packages, only a few do have clue to the meaning.


Ok one more try with matching fronts, (Hiss, Hiss, Hiss) we have a match triple three-screen now, but there's more to this much more.


If you where to turn off or disconnect the loudspeakers left and right and surrounds as well and then note the difference in the centre channel, while down-mixing it to Dolby pro-logic and then up-mixing it back to Dolby digital discrete note how it changes in the mix from common crosstalk errors that are encountered with Dolby pro-logic over Dolby digital.


How do I tackle this, well I have developed a solution that I'm still working on and it involves a few extra pieces of audio equipment to make something happen.


I'll talk about when you're online next.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for your reply. It would make good sense to have all three speakers the same, but there are budgetary considerations here. I have tried just the center channel by itself and it sounds fine, but it simply needs to project voice frequencies a little better. All three speakers seem to have about the same degree of efficiency as far as I can tell, so lower volume in the center channel is not the problem. The speaker really needs a little more of a "public address system" quality where voice frequencies are accentuated (to accommodate my hearing issue.) My older KLH's have a control on the back to make them more or less "bright" sounding. Don't any of today's speakers have that? (I haven't bought new speakers in *quite* awhile.)


.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by frank1492 /forum/post/0


Thanks for your reply. It would make good sense to have all three speakers the same, but there are budgetary considerations here. I have tried just the center channel by itself and it sounds fine, but it simply needs to project voice frequencies a little better. All three speakers seem to have about the same degree of efficiency as far as I can tell, so lower volume in the center channel is not the problem. The speaker really needs a little more of a "public address system" quality where voice frequencies are accentuated (to accommodate my hearing issue.) My older KLH's have a control on the back to make them more or less "bright" sounding. Don't any of today's speakers have that? (I haven't bought new speakers in *quite* awhile.)


.

What receiver are you using? Some receivers have center channel tone controls, to help them match the fronts (at least my Yamaha HTR-5730 does). It allows you to boost or decrease several frequencies, such as 100, 1k, 3k, and 10k Hz.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I use an old Technics. It has bass and treble controls, but these are not speaker specific. Your Yamaha has exactly what I am looking for. I was hoping I could get better results with the right speaker rather than having to replace the whole receiver but I guess I will have to consider this unless other ideas are forthcoming.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by frank1492 /forum/post/0


I use an old Technics. It has bass and treble controls, but these are not speaker specific. Your Yamaha has exactly what I am looking for. I was hoping I could get better results with the right speaker rather than having to replace the whole receiver but I guess I will have to consider this unless other ideas are forthcoming.

That Yamaha (HTR-5730) isn't that great of a receiver, but for $200 retail, it's pretty good for what it does (all the sound processing, PLIIx, etc.). The tone controls are for the center channel only. I believe the model's been discontinued, but you can check for newer versions.


The best option is matching your speaker manufacturers and lines for LCR. I have identical speakers for all 3, and it's a huge jump in dialog clarity doing so. I used to run Infinitys as centers with JBLs as the mains, and had the same problem as you.
 

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frank1492,


Have you calibrated your system? If not, this is the *first* place you should start. If your old receiver does not have a test tone generator, get a test disc like Avia and an SPL meter and set the speaker levels relative to each other. (Avia has a great self-explanatory intro that will teach you how to use it.)


If you don't want to go the trouble and expense of calibration, try raising the level of the CC a few dB and see if that helps.


Craig
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JBLsound4645 /forum/post/0

Frank


Firstly start of with matching loudspeakers, I say again matching loudspeakers for the left centre and right, then start worrying about whether there's some sort of problem between the, centre channel.


Matching fronts = matching timbre of sound like pink noise, travelling from left centre and right, one example would be, (Hiss, hiss, Hiss) not the same ok lets try again shall we (hiss, Hiss, hiss). This is the common mistake and it's often the manufacture who hasn't got a single clue what home cinema means and ships out these mismatching loudspeaker packages, only a few do have clue to the meaning.


Ok one more try with matching fronts, (Hiss, Hiss, Hiss) we have a match triple three-screen now, but there's more to this much more.


If you where to turn off or disconnect the loudspeakers left and right and surrounds as well and then note the difference in the centre channel, while down-mixing it to Dolby pro-logic and then up-mixing it back to Dolby digital discrete note how it changes in the mix from common crosstalk errors that are encountered with Dolby pro-logic over Dolby digital.


How do I tackle this, well I have developed a solution that I'm still working on and it involves a few extra pieces of audio equipment to make something happen.


I'll talk about when you're online next.

What in the hell are you talking about
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by frank1492 /forum/post/0


That is very interesting. What brand are your speakers?

Gallo Nucleus Micros- they're small satellites, similar to Orbs, but do a great job in the human voice range. The point is that with the same (or similar) speakers, test tones sound exactly the same, but just move around the room as they shift from speaker to speaker.


The old setup was JBL S38 as mains and Infinity RS2002 for a center, which caused dialog problems. It was better to run phantom center than with a mismatched center, which may be another solution.


Craig John has a good idea too that helped with the Infinity/JBL problem- run the center a little "hot" by raising the level a few dBs.


Edit: What speakers are you using all around. Are they all C-Vs?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The Technics SA-AX910 does have a test tone generator. I now remember calibrating the unit some years ago, but I will redo it. I think the main problem with this receiver is that there is no tone control for the center channel, but I will double check that too and report back. From a subjective viewpoint, the balance of the channels has always seemed just fine to me.

Forgot to thank you all for your help as I work through this! I may not post until tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
For everyone's info, the C-V is an E76C and the L/R's are KLH Model 33's from the

60's. For those of you who may be guffawing about the KLH's (I think they do very well) please remember that it's the C-V that is at issue. The KLH's are not bright loudspeakers to begin with (some even think the Model 6's sounded muffled) and I think my tests will show that their levels are substantially less (subjectively) than the C-V.

BTW, if you could experience the Pana AX-100U (my Christmas present to myself) you would quickly forget about all the speakers!!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by frank1492 /forum/post/0


For everyone's info, the C-V is an E76C and the L/R's are KLH Model 33's from the

60's. For those of you who may be guffawing about the KLH's (I think they do very well) please remember that it's the C-V that is at issue. The KLH's are not bright loudspeakers to begin with (some even think the Model 6's sounded muffled) and I think my tests will show that their levels are substantially less (subjectively) than the C-V.

BTW, if you could experience the Pana AX-100U (my Christmas present to myself) you would quickly forget about all the speakers!!

Upgrading the video image in my system was the impetus to upgrading the audio. Like yourself, I found that, once you have that big image, it's hard to ignore the limitations of your audio system. Therefore, I think that few who "experience the Pana AX-100U" will "quickly forget about all the speakers!!" The big video image goes hand-in-hand with a big audio image.


Craig
 

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Try adding 2-4 Db at 3kHz and 1-2 Db at 5kHz, this should add presence and clarity to the dialogue as a temporary fix until you decide to get a new speaker.


Edit: Sorry, I didn't realize that your receiver did not have EQ control.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ubersanger, this is *exactly* the answer I have been looking for. But how do I do this without an external processor? Won't this exceed the cost of a new speaker?And even if I did get a new speaker, how would the new one be "peakable" at those frequencies? Please state possible options.

Thanks very much!
 

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You are right. If you do not have some sort of EQ control on your reciever, you would need some other sort of processor so porbably not the best option. Probably no way to get around it without some sort of money spent. Have you tried going the phantom center route, where the receiver routes the center signal into the fronts instead, which most receivers give you an option to do with the set-up controls? It might be something to check out to see if you like the sound.


The question is how much of the sound problem is the speaker itself and how much may be an acoustical issue with the space that its in which would need calibration and EQ tuning to compensate for.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I have tried the "phantom" speaker approach and that is why I added the center channel speaker in the first place. And the room acoustics probably do play a major role although this is a fairly "hard" room.

It is difficult to say how much of the problem is the speaker and how much is me. Dialogue is a problem when voices drop off or are muffled. Some material sounds fine and I don't have a problem. But when listening to "Pirates" or "Narnia," for example, where there is a lot of background noise or music, I

miss a lot. I know there is a hearing difficulty, but I know it can be fixed with the

right frequency response mapping.

I will look for an AV receiver with an equalizer built in and see if I think I can afford it.
 
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