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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all. So I recently bought myself a set of Harman Kardon HKTS-18 5.1 speakers along with the Onkyo 606 receiver. Overall, I'm extremely happy with the setup, but lately I've been noticing what sounds like mild distortion from the front speakers when listening to a variety of content (stereo music, Dolby Digital DVDs, Dolby Pro-Logic TV, Xbox 360 video games, etc.). 99% of the time, the speakers sound perfect, but this problem occurs very briefly during strong instances of mid-high frequency ranges, but it's starting to really annoy me, especially considering I never heard any distortion on this same content with my previous surround sound setup. I'm listening at regular levels, too!


I've tried adjusting every single setting on the Onkyo to compensate for this, but nothing seems to work! The self-calibrating Audyssey doesn't get rid of it, matching the sound levels manually using an SPL meter doesn't help, adjusting the EQ for particular frequency ranges does nothing, and lowering the overall treble level on the receiver doesn't help either. I've even played with the speaker distance settings and frequency crossover ranges in desperate hopes that I'd stumble onto a fix!


Can anyone offer any recommendations, please? At this point, the only other fix I can think of would be to connect my Xbox 360's HDMI to the receiver and get the sound directly from there (right now the HDMI goes straight to the TV and audio is fed to the receiver via optical), but I'm wondering if that would even make a difference? But I'd still like to hear any alternative suggestions before I try that. Thanks!
 

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What volume level are you experiencing the problem at? Do you have your Onkyo configured for "small" speaker sizes for the front/center/surround speakers?


The HKTS-18 speakers are rated at 120 watts maximum power - that's 120 watts PEAK maximum power, the rating is probably closer to 35 watts RMS. If you were driving them at peak levels, I'd expect some distortion.


Greg
 

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What other setup are you comparing the HKTS-18 to? These are relatively inefficient satellites (86dB @ 1W/meter according to the HK site) so even your "regular listening levels" may be pushing the system too hard.


- Val
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I could be wrong, but I don't think the Onkyo 606 receiver lets you choose speaker size (and if it does, can someone please show me where?).


My previous surround sound setup was the Spherex Xbox 5.1 speakers, which were surprisingly clear and powerful for a HTIB! They were great, but I'd had them for about 4 years and it was time for an upgrade. Again, I really like these speakers so far, but those tiny instances of distortion are just so distracting while watching movies or playing games. As for my usual listening level on this system, the volume on the Onkyo is set between 40-50, and the distortion occurs at any of those levels.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coniption /forum/post/14191580


I could be wrong, but I don't think the Onkyo 606 receiver lets you choose speaker size (and if it does, can someone please show me where?)

Pages 72-73 of the manual - Advanced Setup, Speaker Setup


Assuming the sub is connected with an single RCA cable to the subwoofer pre-out on the receiver, You want to make sure 'Yes' is selected for the "Subwoofer" and none of the speakers is set to 'Full Band', but rather 120 Hz. Also, "LPF of LFE" should be set to the same '120Hz'.


The distortion you are hearing maybe trying to play frequencies outside of the speakers' range.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by vinipux77 /forum/post/14192010


Pages 72-73 of the manual - Advanced Setup, Speaker Setup


Assuming the sub is connected with an single RCA cable to the subwoofer pre-out on the receiver, You want to make sure 'Yes' is selected for the "Subwoofer" and none of the speakers is set to 'Full Band', but rather 120 Hz. Also, "LPF of LFE" should be set to the same '120Hz'.


The distortion you are hearing maybe trying to play frequencies outside of the speakers' range.

WOW! It worked! To think, I spent an entire week trying to calibrate this system to sound just right, and then another week just trying to get rid of the distortion, and all I had to do was adjust these settings! To be honest, I wasn't 100% sure how to set these particular settings, so I let Audyssey take care of it, but apparently it got it wrong: all the satellites were set to 150Hz while the LPF on the LFE was at 90Hz. But applying the 120Hz settings seems to have fixed it! Even at louder than normal levels (just for testing purposes), I can't hear the distortion in the high-frequency areas I heard it before! Thanks so much, vinipux! You've just made my week! Now I can finally get back to enjoying my media instead of just using it for identifying distortion!
 

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I am very glad that exercise worked! As great as the latest auto-calibration and auto-tuning functions work, they are not bullet-proof, and it's best if you can do the basic speaker setup manually, such as crossover frequency, level and distance.


Now, I don't know what other adjustments you tied (you said "every single setting on the Onkyo"), but it may be a good idea to do a cursory check-out of the settings to make sure there are no other extremes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Oh, I already went back and redid everything manually, including speaker levels, distance, EQ (off), etc. Anything that I could manually set, and that I knew how to set, I did myself.


Out of curiosity though, how did you know what frequency to set these speakers at? What information did I miss in figuring that out? (I just started school for sound engineering, so I'm extra curious, plus, I should know this stuff anyway!)
 

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A good educated guess
- 80-100 Hz is too low, and 150 Hz is just way too high, as bass becomes localizeble. Some of these (2 1/2 - 3 1/2") satellite systems have HPF/LPFs at around 120 Hz as well in both the speakers and the subs.


It may have been some goof on part of Audyssey that was corrected by manually configuring speakers.


EDIT: It just occurred to me, the distortion could have been a mechanic rattle as something in the environment was coming into resonance.
 

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If I recall correctly, the HKTS satellites are rated for 105Hz and up, so, generally, setting the crossover at 120HZ is the best bet. Set the sub

LTE's up to that level, as well. Enjoy!
 

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Hey coniption I too am having the same problem. Even went as far as ordering a replacement center channel. I am not too sure what you did to perfect the problem can you help me. If you could contact me I would really appreciate it. Thanks. Andrew
 
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