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Discussion Starter #1
I'm in the market for a new AVR and in the middle of research and have concerns about room correction software offered with various AVR brands.

My opinion on software room correction is that it can be of help even in treated rooms as long as it covers things that are not inherently treatable by physical room correction. It becomes invaluable in rooms that can only be partly treated or not treated at all.

Unfortunately, I fall into the “Room that cannot be treated” column. So with that, I know that I need the best software room correction package available on an AVR. I know about Audessey MultiEQ XT32 which would be a good choice.

However, here is my dilemma: I’ve narrowed down the field to Denon, Marantz, Pioneer and Yamaha. I’m looking at the high-end models of those brands and see that Denon and Marantz have the high-end Audessey package and the Pioneer and Yamaha have their proprietary packages. I’ve been reading up on them and so far have read that Pioneer has improved their software, while Yamaha seems to be the least liked in that area, but highly praised in sound quality especially for music which is highly important to me, but of equal importance is hearing dialog in movies and correct soundtracking. (My current Onkyo TX-R705 is showing age and having issues and was never good at giving me dialog, so time to replace). Wish I could go separates, but that is not financially in the cards for me.

I’ve been reading nothing but praise about the Yamaha sound quality and I like their build, especially for music and has me very interested. I have not gone out to demo yet, but I fear that I may like the Yamaha sound over Marantz (my two at the top of my list) and with my room (which was evaluated by a certified acoustical engineer to be untreatable) correction software is all I have. All I can do is let it do it’s best and settle for that. I read that the Yamaha correction software would be fine for a treated room, but lousy for partly treated or rooms that cannot be treated.

I have also read that ARC is just about as good as it gets at this level, but available only on Anthem receivers. I’m not knocking Anthem, they are great, but they lack some features I am looking for (ie: networking, internet streaming, etc.)

I did however run across the fact that ARC offers a stand alone product IK Multimedia ARC2 advanced for the reasonable price of about $150. However, the question is how would I integrate it with the chosen receiver? Also, wouldn’t the microphone need to be calibrated for the receiver?


Thanks for your help.

PS. I'll most likely be back with more questions when I narrow my choices down more and if I don't find the answer in the dedicated thread of said model.
 

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As far as I know, no one has ever done a proper comparison of the different automatic setups. A lack of actual facts, though, does not stop very many people from forming opinions. So I would not be surprised if you have read quite a few online comments from people writing about things when they really know nothing about it.


I personally would go with Yamaha, and have done so myself. Judging from online complaints, no one makes a more reliable product than Yamaha. That said, next in line for me would be the ones on your list, Marantz, Pioneer, and Denon (in no particular order). But I cannot tell you who makes the best automatic setup. All of them seem fairly reliable for levels and delays, but not so good for setting subwoofer crossover points.
 

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Discussion Starter #3

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Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24584166


As far as I know, no one has ever done a proper comparison of the different automatic setups. A lack of actual facts, though, does not stop very many people from forming opinions. So I would not be surprised if you have read quite a few online comments from people writing about things when they really know nothing about it.


I personally would go with Yamaha, and have done so myself. Judging from online complaints, no one makes a more reliable product than Yamaha. That said, next in line for me would be the ones on your list, Marantz, Pioneer, and Denon (in no particular order). But I cannot tell you who makes the best automatic setup. All of them seem fairly reliable for levels and delays, but not so good for setting subwoofer crossover points.

True about on-line comments and a lot of reviewers as well. The closest I got to comparison and factual data (maybe) is a write up dated Nov 2013 on Hometheaterreview.com. The article is called Automated Room Correction Explained and in my opinion is pretty darn good at breaking it down into english as opposed to tech jargon. The second part of the article got into the different flavors of auto correction stating that supposedly the author did compare them in real use. He stated that Audyssey is the big daddy and explained the differences of the package levels. (I personally like the MultiEQ XT32 for it's detail and it does well for subs from what I understand). He stated that Pioneer has improved depending on model of receiver of course and is on par with Audyssey MultiEQ XT9 (Not what I want). Finally stated that Yamaha is a bit better than Audyssey MultiEQ (that was only the second generation of Audyssey) and states that it has never set crossover points, speaker size (all of them default to large it seems anyway) or subwoofer levels correctly for him. He says while all corrections require a little tweaking after running it is especially true with Yamaha and requires major tweaks.

In his opinion Anthem's ARC is the best.

Yes, I've read a lot of praise about Yamaha's reliability, build design and quality and their sound. The offerings are very attractive to me, but I need good room correction as well. (Well, as good as it's able). I don't mind having to do a small tweak here or there as long as it's easy to do or the receiver gives me access to do it. I just don't want to go back to the stone age of doing it all by hand from scratch, like I did years and years ago. I don't think I could do it today as it was brutal back then and took 2 months on average and then it still wasn't right.
 

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First off, I think some people are putting to much faith in room correction on AVR's. In the end you have to trust your ears and not be afraid to adjust the levels set by the RC to what sounds good to you.


It "was evaluated by a certified acoustical engineer to be untreatable" ???


I have never heard of a room be "untreatable" . Please explain .... I'm quite curious.
 

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Discussion Starter #6

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Originally Posted by vzphoneman  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24584553


First off, I think some people are putting to much faith in room correction on AVR's. In the end you have to trust your ears and not be afraid to adjust the levels set by the RC to what sounds good to you.


It "was evaluated by a certified acoustical engineer to be untreatable" ???


I have never heard of a room be "untreatable" . Please explain .... I'm quite curious.

Well, taking what the engineer said and interpreting it the only real way I can think of. The engineer was from a well known acoustical treatment company. The room only has two walls, one fore and one aft separated by 12 feet. It is 28 feet long with a full sliding glass door at one end and open space (common area) at the other ending at the front door. There is only one corner in the room. The only wall where the system can be has a protruding fireplace making the front main speakers far apart (about 10 feet). The only fortunate thing about this is the main speakers themselves. it doesn't seem to bother them as they have adapted somehow. However, there is a host of sound issues especially and more so on HT functions (watching DVDs or Netflix, etc). Dialog being the biggest problem. Anyway, the room has a wood floor and flat standard height ceiling. Unfortunately, I can't afford the size rug I would need to make any difference (it would be equal or more than laying actual carpet). Also, only have the two walls makes it impossible to address any side relections. Being that it is an apartment also makes it impossible to do anything about the ceiling (or pretty much anything really). I did get a couple of panels for the wall behind the sofa, but they didn't make a huge difference. The engineer said that while normally he would chat me into at least 4 panels and two bass traps at minmum, he also said it would be a waste of money and effort in this situation. I have to give credit to the honesty of the company. He said there is not much I could do except put 3 panels on the wall behind the sofa, keep the vinyl blinds closed in front of the sliding glass door and if possible get an enormous rug. He also asked if I thought of moving, kind of jokingly. I had already removed any reflective items from the room (that was the first thing I did). I also have the speakers (all speakers minus the subwoofer, it is an apartment after all) in their proper places of course.

That's pretty much it in a nutshell and why digital correction is about all I can do as far as it goes. My next place, whenever that occures hopefully will at least have carpet.
 

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Discussion Starter #7

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Originally Posted by phantom52  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24584578


You could get something like this or a different brand(Dayton) or use REW and not buy any AVR due to its room eq method. Buy any you want with the features you want/need and set it up with relative ease.

http://www.audioholics.com/acoustic-reviews/xtz-room-analyzer-ii-pro-speaker-measurement-kit
This is what I was thinking with the ARC2 kit, but all those things do (including the REW approach) is tell one what one needs to address with physical room correction. Great items they are, but as far as I know they don't do auto room correction. I could be wrong, let me know.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by vzphoneman  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24584553


First off, I think some people are putting to much faith in room correction on AVR's. In the end you have to trust your ears and not be afraid to adjust the levels set by the RC to what sounds good to you.

.

I don't know much about other systems but I use Aud XT32 which came with my Onkyo 818. I'm in the same boat as OP. Very difficult room plus zero WAF (actually it's our living room so everyone has a say in it). One side two big windows, other side opens to a kitchen (it's L shaped). To cut the long story short I can only say this; my next buy may or may not be an Onkyo but, whatever I buy, it will have Aud XT32 (or whatever comes next).


Yes, trust your ears and it's easy to test. Just turn Aud XT32 on and off and listen. The diff is night and day (I'm assuming OP needs to integrate a sub into the mix).
 

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Sounds like a Manhattan loft ... I can see why you have issues. I my mind your a good candidate to try skipping room correction and do it by ear ... or at least readjust your settings after RC. Get a tape measure and measure the distance from each speaker to you seating area and set those in you AVR. This will make sure the "delay" is correct between all speakers. Next adjust the individual speaker levels. I would start with turning the surrounds all the way down (-10). Crazy as it may sound I would turn your center channel up all the way (+10) so you start with good dialog. Use the source you use the most (TV or DVD) and work on getting the front L/R and center sounding the best they can keeping the center a little more prominent so you don't lose the dialog. After you are happy with them (or as much as you can be) I would bring up the surrounds but I would make them only barely audible. Then live with it a few days and then readjust as needed. (that's my two cents worth at least)
 

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Discussion Starter #10

Quote:
Originally Posted by macuniverse  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24585883


I don't know much about other systems but I use Aud XT32 which came with my Onkyo 818. I'm in the same boat as OP. Very difficult room plus zero WAF (actually it's our living room so everyone has a say in it). One side two big windows, other side opens to a kitchen (it's L shaped). To cut the long story short I can only say this; my next buy may or may not be an Onkyo but, whatever I buy, it will have Aud XT32 (or whatever comes next).


Yes, trust your ears and it's easy to test. Just turn Aud XT32 on and off and listen. The diff is night and day (I'm assuming OP needs to integrate a sub into the mix).

Yes, same here, the room is the livingroom. Sliding glass door to one side and common way, kitchen and front door to the immeadiate other side.

I like what Aud XT32 has to offer which I can get with Onkyo (I don't really want another Onkyo), Denon and Marantz, but my fear as stated is liking the sound of the Yamaha over the Marantz and all others with it's supposed weak room correction. I'm trying to find out more factual info about that. (I'll be reading the threads regarding the Pioneer correction and hopefully there is a Yamaha one.


No, I live in an apartment (a poorly designed one from the early 80s) and so a sub in the mix is out of the question. (My main speakers go quite low though, of course not as low as a sub).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by vzphoneman  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24585912


Sounds like a Manhattan loft ... I can see why you have issues. I my mind your a good candidate to try skipping room correction and do it by ear ... or at least readjust your settings after RC. Get a tape measure and measure the distance from each speaker to you seating area and set those in you AVR. This will make sure the "delay" is correct between all speakers. Next adjust the individual speaker levels. I would start with turning the surrounds all the way down (-10). Crazy as it may sound I would turn your center channel up all the way (+10) so you start with good dialog. Use the source you use the most (TV or DVD) and work on getting the front L/R and center sounding the best they can keeping the center a little more prominent so you don't lose the dialog. After you are happy with them (or as much as you can be) I would bring up the surrounds but I would make them only barely audible. Then live with it a few days and then readjust as needed. (that's my two cents worth at least)

That's how I used to do it back with the first surround AVRs and it was a pain. I expect a bit of adjustment being needed after running any auto room correction, but at least it is a good start and allows only slight tweaks left to be done. Also, in my case I am forced to rely on it more than usual. It's not just levels for the speakers, it's also crossover, size, EQ bands, etc. It's too much for me today to do. I'd be forever adjusting for every little thing doing it this wayand neve be able to listen to music or anything. I hate gear, but love music. I don't mind setting up new gear of course, but I want to do it once or at least very seldomly and Ibuy a needed peice of gear to last and not have to replace every 1 to 5 years.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by vzphoneman  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24585912


Get a tape measure and measure the distance from each speaker to you seating area and set those in you AVR. This will make sure the "delay" is correct between all speakers. Next adjust the individual speaker levels. I would start with turning the surrounds all the way down (-10). Crazy as it may sound I would turn your center channel up all the way (+10) so you start with good dialog.

Distance and level calculations are not the issue. Any AVR can do that very reliably. The real benefit of Aud XT32 is to implement filters at certain frequencies to correct dips and peaks (to some degree of course). Plus Aud DEQ (Dynamic EQ) is a good tool to adjust music/video playback balance at any given volume level. If you live in a small flat and having concerns with your overall SPL DEQ helps a lot.


@OP: if you don't have a sub it may be more tolerable not to have a full room correction tool as the biggest benefit you get from Aud XT32 is sub integration.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by macuniverse  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24586341


Distance and level calculations are not the issue. Any AVR can do that very reliably. The real benefit of Aud XT32 is to implement filters at certain frequencies to correct dips and peaks (to some degree of course). Plus Aud DEQ (Dynamic EQ) is a good tool to adjust music/video playback balance at any given volume level. If you live in a small flat and having concerns with your overall SPL DEQ helps a lot.


@OP: if you don't have a sub it may be more tolerable not to have a full room correction tool as the biggest benefit you get from Aud XT32 is sub integration.

Yes, the filters are one of the very important parts to me plus the Dynamic EQ. I can't do that manually, at least not without very expensive gear requiring a Phd to operate and at least 12 months of not listening to an album or watching a movie or something, if doing such things manually are possible. I know that the Auto room corrections are not the last word, but they do help a lot and make life much easier with that assistance.

I have a sub currently in the closet because I went from house to apartment, but I'm also thinking that it would be wise to have the sub integration modes for possible future. I've read that Aud XT32 may make it possible to incorporate a sub even in an apartment (provided your not on a floating floor and have the placement for one). Currently, though I am on the first floor, it floats because parking is underneath and besides, there is no room for a sub in the space I'm in anyway.

So far it's looking like I have to choose only between Onkyo, Denon and Marantz even if I might really want a Yamaha. However, I'd also like to think that it ain't over yet.
 

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ARC is my favorite, but XT32 is a close second.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack D Ripper  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24584166


As far as I know, no one has ever done a proper comparison of the different automatic setups.
http://seanolive.blogspot.com/2009/11/subjective-and-objective-evaluation-of.html


Now fours years old, and some RC products have improved since e.g. Audyssey, while new products have appeared e.g. Trinnov, Dirac.


IMHO unlikely anyone now will provide the resources to repeat this endeavor.
 

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If you really want a Yamaha you need to go up to the Aventage series A3020/A3030 or A2030/2020 to get their best EQ programs. I have a A3000 and like the YPAO in it. Haven't used ARC or XT32 but have used XT in Onkyo 876 and I felt that the A3000 sounds better than the Onkyo.
 

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Discussion Starter #17

Quote:
Originally Posted by phantom52  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24587400


If you really want a Yamaha you need to go up to the Aventage series A3020/A3030 or A2030/2020 to get their best EQ programs. I have a A3000 and like the YPAO in it. Haven't used ARC or XT32 but have used XT in Onkyo 876 and I felt that the A3000 sounds better than the Onkyo.

It so happens I am looking at the top models of all:

Yamaha Aventage A3030, A3020, A2030 and A2020

Marantz 7008

Pioneer Elite SC72, SC75, SC79

Denon X4000

Onkyo TXR929
 

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Hmm, this may be a bit far fetched, but......

I'm just thinking, if one got a stand alone PC based room correction kit or REW or what have you, ran the program and got the measurements then transferred those to a flash drive.....and I think the AVRs I'm looking at have ports for flashdrives, then maybe one can load the measurements into said AVR and then I guess bring up the room correction program on the AVR and it would set things accordingly?

I read something on the Home Theater Shack forums that got me thinking this way: Under a title of Audyssey, Ypao or Mcacc it read: "You basically transfer your room correction data to a flash drive on your receiver and with the Pioneer program you download from their site your reverb measures in 2D or 3D. You see before and after with a group delay tab. You can print all the data and graphs to reference when tweaking adjustments. The person attached a you tube vid as well. I'll have to watch later to see what is going on there.

That's what got me thinking about how one would integrate a stand alone room EQ program such as offering from ARC or REW or etc. with an AVR.


Any real legitimacy to this or is this pure science fiction or my mind working overtime in a parallel universe or something?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvmusic  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24587674


Hmm, this may be a bit far fetched, but......

I'm just thinking, if one got a stand alone PC based room correction kit or REW or what have you, ran the program and got the measurements then transferred those to a flash drive.....and I think the AVRs I'm looking at have ports for flashdrives, then maybe one can load the measurements into said AVR and then I guess bring up the room correction program on the AVR and it would set things accordingly?

I read something on the Home Theater Shack forums that got me thinking this way: Under a title of Audyssey, Ypao or Mcacc it read: "You basically transfer your room correction data to a flash drive on your receiver and with the Pioneer program you download from their site your reverb measures in 2D or 3D. You see before and after with a group delay tab. You can print all the data and graphs to reference when tweaking adjustments. The person attached a you tube vid as well. I'll have to watch later to see what is going on there.

That's what got me thinking about how one would integrate a stand alone room EQ program such as offering from ARC or REW or etc. with an AVR.


Any real legitimacy to this or is this pure science fiction or my mind working overtime in a parallel universe or something?

Pretty much Science Fiction for AVRs, but programs like Room Eq Wizard do something like that with common equalizers such as certain Behringer models and maybe MiniDSP.


I think that the best way to exploit so called room correction software (Like others, I tremendously disagree with that name because you can't do a thorough job of correcting room acoustics with electronics) is to use measurement software and equalizers to get the best room response you can, and then touch that up with the AVR's "Correction" software. Most AVRs only expose the signal path to the subwoofer for separate equalization devices but that isn't bad because subwoofer equalization is often the weakest aspect of AVR "Correctors".
 

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Originally Posted by arnyk  /t/1526445/flavors-of-room-correcti...me-ideas-and-suggestions-please#post_24588217


Pretty much Science Fiction for AVRs, but programs like Room Eq Wizard do something like that with common equalizers such as certain Behringer models and maybe MiniDSP.


I think that the best way to exploit so called room correction software (Like others, I tremendously disagree with that name because you can't do a thorough job of correcting room acoustics with electronics) is to use measurement software and equalizers to get the best room response you can, and then touch that up with the AVR's "Correction" software. Most AVRs only expose the signal path to the subwoofer for separate equalization devices but that isn't bad because subwoofer equalization is often the weakest aspect of AVR "Correctors".

I do understand that AVR room correction programs only go so far, but they are good start points for sure and sometimes depending on the room, it's all you need. (Most often times though after-tweaks are in order). Also in the rare case of rooms that cannot be properly corrected with physical treatments such as mine. In my case it's filters I'm after which are Audyssey. Yamaha and Pioneer use parametric EQ. I don't know if I could get the same results or if it would be easy to do manually though. (I sometimes think that if I at least had carpet it would improve things, but then again I also need walls to hang panels and corners for traps....gods I think I either live in an igloo or a lean-to!).

Uh, I thought it was the other way around with the touch ups coming after running the AVR room correction program? I could be wrong, I am just trying to keep it clear in my now crowded head.

I'm not concerned about subs at the moment as I am not using one for now. I'm mostly concerned with handling the EQing and volumes and such of all the acoustical nightmare of my room.

You have me thinking REW and a Behringer 96/24 (or whatever that unit is) and of course a calibrated mic for readings, if possible. What if I need filters though? Can a set up like this offer that?

I think I'd feel better if I could at least find a way to make any AVR room Correction work as well as the Aud XT32 claims I've read at least or reinforced by a stand alone set up as you suggest. That way I could have less fear of going with a nice Yamaha unit should I like it over all others on my list.
 
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