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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just watched the {dts soundtrack} Limited Edition of Memento and during one scene, Cary Anne Moss and Guy Pearce were yelling at each other. As each of their voices got more and more intense, the center channel seemed to 'crackle' when their voices were at their maximum. After finishing the movie, I checked and rechecked all the connections.


I have my PolkAudio CS400i biwired, which is bare-wired connected to the terminals on the speaker and two sets of bananna plugs on the back of the receiver.


My question is am I just hearing imperfections of the DVD or is there some type of distortion from with the tweeter? I have watched many movies and some have this 'crackle' and some do not. This leads me to believe that it is imperfections in the DVD, but if it is not, can someone give me a suggestion of how to relieve the problem?


Thanks! :)
 

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J B,

There are some DVD's out there that just do not get the audio recording attention needed to sound like sonic excellence. A quick test for you would be to considerably lower the volume at a specific point in the DVD where you know there is distortion. With the volume way down, hearing a distortion peak is a sure sign of a poor audio recording, which would eleminate your system as a culpret. I have experienced the same issue(ie: Terminator 2, Vanilla Sky, and Fast and The Furious). Some manufactures of DVD's take the time out to creat close to perfection, and some don't. Hope this helps...


Doggin
 

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I have also experienced this crackling effect on several dvd's, notably when there is screaming from the actors. I used to think that it was my receiver not being powerful enough to handle the vocals, but I still notice it after I switched to some Bryston amps and a full range B&W 804 center channel speaker. As Doggin stated above, some dvd's apparently do not get engineered very well, and a quality system will reveal those flaws. I am getting pickier about the dvd's I buy, for this reason. I noticed that on Air Force One Superbit dvd, there is a part where the president's wife and daughter are screaming. Even on ths "superbit" dvd I noticed the same effect. You are not alone......Happy listening, pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Wow, I am very relieved! There are many discs that this "crackle" happens on and it is really quite disturbing in some cases. My PolkAudio CS400i is also a full-range speaker and I am driving it with a 500 Watt (100 watt/channel) a/v receiver, so I diffently was clipping my system. Also I wasn't listening to it very loud, so there it is.


Thanks you guys. This is why I love AVS Forum! :D
 

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This thread prompted me to get off my butt and do some checking to my system. Fortunately, I have the same floor standing speakers all around. I changed out the center channel and rechecked the center level with the Video Essentials dvd. I still had the crackling effect on the same problem discs, and then I tried some discs that don't have the crackling, and they sounded perfect.

It's very irritating to get that in a movie. It sounds like you are damaging a tweeter or overdriving the system, when you are not.

Full Metal Jacket was hard to sit through because the Drill Instructor's voice crackled through the center channel like mad when he yelled, which was through half of the movie. There are many more out there, just like that.

I rent movies before I buy them, now. I pretty much buy DVDs that are reference quality. I just wish I could keep my wife from buying crappy sounding DVDs!

Happy crackle free listening!, Pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah, I just watched Vanilla Sky and everytime someone shouted or yelled the center crackled a whole lot. Quite annoying so I am glad I only rented it. I am glad I am not alone. Thanks for all your replies! :)
 

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Hi;

My question is, why is it always the center channel?

Never heard this from other speakers at all.

I'm only set up for DD right now. Does this happen with DTS also?


Jim
 

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I am glad I decided to read this post. I just received my new JBL NSP1 speaker set and have noticed the same thing in many DVDs. I was thinking that I might have to return the set of speakers because the center channel was all ready broken. While i am glad to hear that it is not my center channel, it is still not good news to hear that the source material is the problem. The JBLs' replace a set of Sony cube speakers which is why I have probably never noticed the crackling before.


David
 

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I have heard this effect to. I thought it was my new center channel, but as I discovered it was not. I don't have a powerful system, but I guess it's revealing. The worst disk I have noticed it on was the DTS fifth element.


Why only on the center channel though?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That is pretty funny that you mention the Fifth Element SB. I Just watched and noticed a distrubing amount of crackle during the movie. For a Superbit, you would think they would design the dialog and vocals better. Shame! :)
 

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Hi again


Let me get this straight now, The crackling distortion is definitely a DVD

mastering problem? Because I know if there are other things going on in the center channel other than dialog I don't hear anything nasty.

I never noticed it at the movie house either.



Jim
 

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I have only heard the crackling effect with dialog in the center channel. I have not found it in 5.1 music, or dynamic explosions in movies. I guess it is the way the dialog with the actors was recorded and engineered. In The Wedding Singer, the soundtrack was great and the movie sounded good, except for a part where Adam Sandler was screaming at a wedding, near the beginning. It makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up when you here that crackling distortion like effect, but it's from the dvd for sure. I can take other dvds and crank them up without it, so I believe that it is in the dvd. I heard this effect a long time ago, when I had a small center channel speaker and a weak receiver. I thought that it was just the speaker or lack of power overdriving the small center speaker. But since I gradated to separates and a larger floor standing center channel, I still have ths same problem on some dvds. Happy listening, ...pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Anyone that hasn't seen the thread yet, David has a very interesting thread that lists the titles of all the movies that have "crackle" or distortion. It is under the DVD Software forum and if you haven't seen it, it would be a good place to start if you are looking for "crackle" free DVDs.
 

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I have never heard any crackeling in my DVDs. OT- But, LAX how many DVDs are you upto now? :)
 

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I don't go to the movies much anymore, since I've had the home theater. The last few times I went, I left feeling like I should have waited for the DVD to come out and seen it at home. The local theaters claim to have the ultimate sound, which, in reality, is substandard to my home system.

My guess why some people do not hear the crackling in the theaters is that:

1) the volume is cranked up too high to get any real detail from it anyway;

2) I think the mastering process from film to dvd may have something to do with it;

3) I would imagine that it would be hard to do an " A-B" test, since most movies on DVD aren't in theaters anymore.

This is my unprofessional opinion and hypothesis, but I think that the guy who has the boom microphone and sets the levels may be the one responsible for getting the vocals all messed up. If someone calibrates vocals for recording at a certain level, and then there is shouting which sends the level meters pinging, this may account for distortion being recorded at those levels. Just my guess. Any professional movie sound guys out there want to explain how the recordings are made and mixed?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Steve: The Big 40! That is up from like 20 at the begining of this year. I need to get a job so that I can buy more.
 

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Congrads LAX! Im upto 33 now and Im waiting for 2 more from Amazon. Im going to work most of the summer but my earnings will go towards car insurance rather them my DVD fund :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Yeah, tomm is tuesday and I just got my paycheck. I might add 1 or 2 more DVDs to my collection.
 
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