You Don't know What You Got 'Til It's (Temporarily) Gone

S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
3. Multi-Channel Stereo - This configuration uses all 9.2 speakers in stereo. It's a powerful wall of sound.

I used to use that all channel stereo mode on my old Yamaha 3300 when I had all Def Tech bipole speakers but I never had great imaging with my old 2003 era BP10 towers. A “wall of sound” probably describes it well. Sound bouncing everywhere. LOL :)

I would think Dolby DSU would do better for you than the multichannel stereo. (Turn center spread on). This allows the main 2 channels to shine and preserve the imaging.

Also on crossover of the speakers set as small, you might tinker with 90hz or 100hz to see if that’s better.

Either way enjoy it however you like it. :)
 
VMPS-TIII

VMPS-TIII

Full Audioholic
Curious why you choose to limit the LFE to 80 Hz instead of the full program content which goes up to 120Hz?
I'll try 120Hz. I set it there as that was where the crossovers were set on non-subs. Have you read this Denon note?

"If you set the Bass Setting or *Subwoofer Mode to LFE nothing will output to the Subwoofer with the exception of the LFE from a Dolby or DTS encoded track."

Is that true? If you don't use LFE+Main do the subs only work with Dolby or DTS in LFE only mode?
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
I'll try 120Hz. I set it there as that was where the crossovers were set on non-subs. Have you read this Denon note?

"If you set the Bass Setting or *Subwoofer Mode to LFE nothing will output to the Subwoofer with the exception of the LFE from a Dolby or DTS encoded track."

Is that true? If you don't use LFE+Main do the subs only work with Dolby or DTS in LFE only mode?
No, your receiver sends all info below your crossover setting to the subs, even in stereo as long as your speakers are set to small. The LFE setting is a whole different thing from your crossover setting. I have mine at 120 also, but my crossover is at 80-90 hz. If I understand correctly the LFE setting affects only the information in the .1 channel, which as Ryan pointed contains info up to 120 hz. That info is then distributed to your speakers and subs according to wherever your crossover is set. Lowering the LFE setting actually filters out part of the signal altogether and you're missing information.

I'll bet you have a massive wall of sound in all channel stereo alright. Comb filtered with skewed soundstage and imaging, but definitely lots of noise, lol. One time my son and I were listening to some music and he asked why I don't use all channel stereo because he thinks it fills the room with sound better. I then turned it up another 15 dB (-20 to -5) and asked "is the room filled with enough sound now?". He covered his ears and nodded his head "yes", lol.

I would love to get you in my living room to listen to my stereo setup in 2 channel mode because I think you'd be surprised. I've spent a lot of time and effort dialing everything in with measurements, positioning and DSP. For me, all channel stereo just cancels out all that effort and collapses the image and soundstage. I would think having multiple sets of main speakers would make it even worse.
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
No, your receiver sends all info below your crossover setting to the subs, even in stereo as long as your speakers are set to small. The LFE setting is a whole different thing from your crossover setting. I have mine at 120 also, but my crossover is at 80-90 hz. If I understand correctly the LFE setting affects only the information in the .1 channel, which as Ryan pointed contains info up to 120 hz. That info is then distributed to your speakers and subs according to wherever your crossover is set. Lowering the LFE setting actually filters out part of the signal altogether and you're missing information.

I'll bet you have a massive wall of sound in all channel stereo alright. Comb filtered with skewed soundstage and imaging, but definitely lots of noise, lol. One time my son and I were listening to some music and he asked why I don't use all channel stereo because he thinks it fills the room with sound better. I then turned it up another 15 dB (-20 to -5) and asked "is the room filled with enough sound now?". He covered his ears and nodded his head "yes", lol.

I would love to get you in my living room to listen to my stereo setup in 2 channel mode because I think you'd be surprised. I've spent a lot of time and effort dialing everything in with measurements, positioning and DSP. For me, all channel stereo just cancels out all that effort and collapses the image and soundstage. I would think having multiple sets of main speakers would make it even worse.
Yup. :)

I’m surprised Denon lets you change LFE. Yamaha only defaults at 120. :)
 
VMPS-TIII

VMPS-TIII

Full Audioholic
I noticed the Sierra Towers were significantly more edgy in my main listening room than my Canton Vento Reference 9.2 DC bookshelves in my office. I was able to test this by playing the same song on both systems simultaneously and simply walk from one room to the other and take a listen. It was clear the Canton was silky and the Sierra Towers a little on the edgy side.

I was trying to think of a way to confirm if it was the speaker or the hardware. So, I picked up the Sierra Towers and placed them on my desk in my office and hooked up the Hegel 90 integrated amp to them instead of the Canton Reference 9.2 speakers. Now the Sierra Towers were much smoother than when powered by my Adcom amp. (They were also the biggest desktop speaker ever on this desk) :D

While placement was obviously lousy the Sierra Towers were much more relaxed and smooth. This leads me to believe the Sierra Towers sound can be impacted significantly by electronics.

@Pogre - which amp are you using on the Sierra Towers? Is it a 7 channel monolith or a different version? I'm going to try the Sierra Towers with another amp in the main listening room to see if it might change the sound quality. Normally, I have not seen a difference in using a different amp - but today I experienced a significantly smoother Sierra Tower with the Hegel 90.


11.png
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
I noticed the Sierra Towers were significantly more edgy in my main listening room than my Canton Vento Reference 9.2 DC bookshelves in my office. I was able to test this by playing the same song on both systems simultaneously and simply walk from one room to the other and take a listen. It was clear the Canton was silky and the Sierra Towers a little on the edgy side.

I was trying to think of a way to confirm if it was the speaker or the hardware. So, I picked up the Sierra Towers and placed them on my desk in my office and hooked up the Hegel 90 integrated amp to them instead of the Canton Reference 9.2 speakers. Now the Sierra Towers were much smoother than when powered by my Adcom amp. (They were also the biggest desktop speaker ever on this desk) :D

While placement was obviously lousy the Sierra Towers were much more relaxed and smooth. This leads me to believe the Sierra Towers sound can be impacted significantly by electronics.

@Pogre - which amp are you using on the Sierra Towers? Is it a 7 channel monolith or a different version? I'm going to try the Sierra Towers with another amp in the main listening room to see if it might change the sound quality. Normally, I have not seen a difference in using a different amp - but today I experienced a significantly smoother Sierra Tower with the Hegel 90.


View attachment 39676
I think it's likely the room, placement and placebo are what's responsible for the differences you hear. What you tested were differences between the rooms and speaker placement, not amps. I have never, ever heard any significant difference from one amp to the next. It's all in the speakers, how you set them up, where you place them, room correction, DSP, etc.

Have you read through these forums and gotten a general consensus on power amps and receivers and hearing "differences"? You keep saying things that to me, fall on the woo-woo side...
 
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KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
I noticed the Sierra Towers were significantly more edgy in my main listening room than my Canton Vento Reference 9.2 DC bookshelves in my office. I was able to test this by playing the same song on both systems simultaneously and simply walk from one room to the other and take a listen. It was clear the Canton was silky and the Sierra Towers a little on the edgy side.

I was trying to think of a way to confirm if it was the speaker or the hardware. So, I picked up the Sierra Towers and placed them on my desk in my office and hooked up the Hegel 90 integrated amp to them instead of the Canton Reference 9.2 speakers. Now the Sierra Towers were much smoother than when powered by my Adcom amp. (They were also the biggest desktop speaker ever on this desk) :D

While placement was obviously lousy the Sierra Towers were much more relaxed and smooth. This leads me to believe the Sierra Towers sound can be impacted significantly by electronics.
It is pretty easy to test this out for yourself (and preferably blind test it if you have a friend)!
Get one of these (~$12.50):

The idea is to use it in reverse, so take a source like a CD player and plug it into the "output" (that you are actually using as the input) and then select two (of the 4) sets of input terminals to connect to your Hegel and your Adcom setups (which, of course, are in the same room with speakers adjacent to each other). Set both units to "pure direct" (or whatever is closest). Switch back and forth until you have matched the levels. Now you have instant, level matched switching, so you can really home in on any differences you might hear.
I like to use my CD player for this because it has an "A to B" feature on the remote that allows me to continuously repeat playback of a specific short phrase (where I had designated A and B) and I can switch on each repeat to allow me to really home in on the specific differences I hear.
I have still found expectation bias to influence my perception, but it certainly eliminates so many variables!

If you have a friend to help you, establish the correct volume for level matching for each permutation you plan to evaluate. Then you can leave the room and he can swap things around. Ideally he leaves the room (resulting in a double blind) and you come in and do the test. As long as your RCA cords look the same (and you might grab a bath mat to throw over the cords to obscure which runs to which amp), you should not have any way to tell which amp is driving which speaker.

Once I compared two power amps (a respected HiFi amp vs a respected pro-audio amp) using a similar setup with two pairs of identical speakers. I got really excited that I heard a clear (though subtle) difference.
However, then I swapped the positions of the speakers and, sure enough, the shifting of the speaker positions (which I ha set up side-by-side with 1/8" between them) resulted in the differences I heard (ie - my conclusions regarding the amps were exactly opposite). Thus I concluded that any audible differences that may exist between amps was dwarfed by that slight difference in speaker positioning!
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
I was trying to think of a way to confirm if it was the speaker or the hardware.
Just reading this part, I'm wondering why it doesn't occur to you that the room and speaker placement have far more impact than the electronics? That's audiophile 101 stuff there, but never even entered into your thought process. Your test was extremely flawed and a classic exercise in confirmation bias. Like Kurt is saying, even a slight difference in positioning, in the same room can make a big difference.

When I read your posts and comments they just scream confirmation bias and audiophool woo. You want it to be the amp so any "testing" you do is skewed before it even starts. I would love for you to participate in a true DBT with proper level matching that eliminates your preconceived notions and biases. I really truly believe you'd be in for a big eye opener.

*Edit: I just realized I didn't answer your question. I have a Marantz SR6011 and a Monolith 7 amplifier. I've also owned Denon and Yamaha receivers.
 
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VMPS-TIII

VMPS-TIII

Full Audioholic
Just reading this part, I'm wondering why it doesn't occur to you that the room and speaker placement have far more impact than the electronics? That's audiophile 101 stuff there, but never even entered into your thought process. Your test was extremely flawed and a classic exercise in confirmation bias. Like Kurt is saying, even a slight difference in positioning, in the same room can make a big difference.
You sure are critical. Sounds like I'm bothering you. :p

My two rooms are right next to each other and the difference in SQ is obvious. I can't imagine the Sierra Tower placement is better sitting 29" off the floor. Both systems were being feed by an identical CD player. The Adcom amp is 22 years old and never serviced. The Hegel H90 is new. I need to open the Adcom top and see how the capacitors look.

I'll try some of your ideas and substituting different amps. I had already moved the Sierra Towers all around the main listening room with no difference. Thanks guys!
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Warlord
You sure are critical. Sounds like I'm bothering you. :p

My two rooms are right next to each other and the difference in SQ is obvious. I can't imagine the Sierra Tower placement is better sitting 29" off the floor. Both systems were being feed by an identical CD player. The Adcom amp is 22 years old and never serviced. The Hegel H90 is new. I need to open the Adcom top and see how the capacitors look.

I'll try some of your ideas and substituting different amps. I had already moved the Sierra Towers all around the main listening room with no difference. Thanks guys!
Critical?? How?

Of course the difference is obvious! They're 2 different rooms! That's what we're saying! My Sierra 2s and Ultra bookshelf speakers sound completely different in my spare room than they do in the den or in the living room. Different shape, size, timing of reflections, boosts or nulls, different furniture, distance from walls... all of it has significant effects on the frequency response of any given speaker. Room acoustics. I'm sure you've heard of room acoustics? If not that, and there really is an audible difference between your amps then it's highly likely there is something wrong with one of them.

And no, I'm not irritated. I just think the differences you hear aren't what you think they are, and sighted comparisons and expectation bias are clouding your judgement even further. I'm trying to free your mind, Neo. :p

Plus you're calling my speakers edgy so I have to defend their honor... :p :p
 
VMPS-TIII

VMPS-TIII

Full Audioholic
And you didn’t love the Canton as much as I love my Canton either. And mine are Vento not reference. LOL :)
I have to tell you I really like the Vento Reference 9.2 DC. I don't know if they broke in or my ears adjusted. But I enjoy them with my Hegel H90. They have a sweet sound.

55.png

I was reading page 66 about the 7.1 + Front B setup with the Denon 4500 today. I set it up with the VMPS SuperTowers on the "B" front channels which is the "high2" terminals. Then, I tested it and as soon as I selected the "B" front setting this horrible crackling/popping noise started coming from the right tower. I quickly shut it down and moved the VMPS tower to another channel and it worked fine. But now both "High 1" and "High 2" right Denon channels spill crackling garbage into any speaker connected. The "High 1" channels was working before this. I had not tried the "High 2" terminals since purchasing it in Feb. 2020. Not sure if it arrived with this issue or not.

I changed the set up back to the Front (Sierra Towers), Center, Surround (VMPS Tower) and Rear Surrounds (VMPS Dipoles) and it works but now the right "high 1" channel spits out pops and ugly noise. So the High channel is retired for now. I have to call Denon and see how to get this fixed. Sounds like down time waiting for repairs. o_O

444.png
 
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S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Ninja
Sorry to hear of the damage to your AVR. But I’m glad you warmed up to those Cantons afterall. :)
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
It is pretty easy to test this out for yourself (and preferably blind test it if you have a friend)!
Get one of these (~$12.50):

The idea is to use it in reverse, so take a source like a CD player and plug it into the "output" (that you are actually using as the input) and then select two (of the 4) sets of input terminals to connect to your Hegel and your Adcom setups (which, of course, are in the same room with speakers adjacent to each other). Set both units to "pure direct" (or whatever is closest). Switch back and forth until you have matched the levels. Now you have instant, level matched switching, so you can really home in on any differences you might hear.
I like to use my CD player for this because it has an "A to B" feature on the remote that allows me to continuously repeat playback of a specific short phrase (where I had designated A and B) and I can switch on each repeat to allow me to really home in on the specific differences I hear.
I have still found expectation bias to influence my perception, but it certainly eliminates so many variables!

If you have a friend to help you, establish the correct volume for level matching for each permutation you plan to evaluate. Then you can leave the room and he can swap things around. Ideally he leaves the room (resulting in a double blind) and you come in and do the test. As long as your RCA cords look the same (and you might grab a bath mat to throw over the cords to obscure which runs to which amp), you should not have any way to tell which amp is driving which speaker.

Once I compared two power amps (a respected HiFi amp vs a respected pro-audio amp) using a similar setup with two pairs of identical speakers. I got really excited that I heard a clear (though subtle) difference.
However, then I swapped the positions of the speakers and, sure enough, the shifting of the speaker positions (which I ha set up side-by-side with 1/8" between them) resulted in the differences I heard (ie - my conclusions regarding the amps were exactly opposite). Thus I concluded that any audible differences that may exist between amps was dwarfed by that slight difference in speaker positioning!
You had too many variables in your test- you can't use two sets of speakers because they aren't the same on any kind of absolute level and any driver or crossover component specs have a fairly wide tolerance. The speaker positions definitely make a difference and even having two sets of speakers in a room messes with the response because the unused pair act to absorb energy from the ones that are operating if the amplifier leaves the connection to the speakers open (not shunted).

Mark your speaker positions and move them slightly- turn one to one side and listen to the same passages repeatedly, listening for small differences. Move around the room, too- when I positioned mine, I found that the "problems" I had been hearing were mostly due to the speaker positions. I was surprised by the differences made by small changes- before, I would move my head to one side or the other and the sound wouldn't be the same and now, I have a larger 'bubble' where the sound is better.

No, I don't want to see any bubblehead jokes. :)
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
You had too many variables in your test- you can't use two sets of speakers because they aren't the same on any kind of absolute level and any driver or crossover component specs have a fairly wide tolerance. The speaker positions definitely make a difference and even having two sets of speakers in a room messes with the response because the unused pair act to absorb energy from the ones that are operating if the amplifier leaves the connection to the speakers open (not shunted).

Mark your speaker positions and move them slightly- turn one to one side and listen to the same passages repeatedly, listening for small differences. Move around the room, too- when I positioned mine, I found that the "problems" I had been hearing were mostly due to the speaker positions. I was surprised by the differences made by small changes- before, I would move my head to one side or the other and the sound wouldn't be the same and now, I have a larger 'bubble' where the sound is better.

No, I don't want to see any bubblehead jokes. :)
The test I proposed to VMPS did not involve two sets of speakers, but I have to admit that there are many potential sources of error in any tests I have done.
Yet, I feel like I have learned much from the many scientifically "sloppy" tests I have performed.
The best I can practicably do is maintain awareness of the shortcomings and minimize them as best I can (or just throw my hands up and not try)!
Even Harman cannot eliminate the delay between listening to different speakers as their turntable spins.
I wonder how well you could design the acoustics of a room to minimize the differences between speaker located side-by-side in specific locations.
I would love to see the differences at the listening position between speakers playing with vs without a second pair as measured from a reasonable listening distance!

I think it is a matter of making the best compromises you can and also how little the effect you are trying to determine might be.
For example, a comparison of Pioneer BS-22's vs Philharminic BMR's results in obvious enough differences that it would take some pretty extreme expectation bias to conclude the Pioneers were overall better in a sighted test! As far as scientific rigor, it is deficient; but I believe it would statistically result in a pretty good correlation to the results of a more definitive (and difficult) test!

However, I do agree with your main point and it is always good to point out the sources of error!
 
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VMPS-TIII

VMPS-TIII

Full Audioholic
I routed the High1 and high2 thru the pre-outs on the 4500 to an external amp. Now the 4500 is working fine. I then tried the high2 speaker outs again and they crackle. Definitely in the amp section. I'll have to send it in for warranty repair. If this happened out of warranty I would just live with the pre-outs.

The pre-outs should help extend the lives of these receivers.
 
panteragstk

panteragstk

Audioholic Ninja
I routed the High1 and high2 thru the pre-outs on the 4500 to an external amp. Now the 4500 is working fine. I then tried the high2 speaker outs again and they crackle. Definitely in the amp section. I'll have to send it in for warranty repair. If this happened out of warranty I would just live with the pre-outs.

The pre-outs should help extend the lives of these receivers.
That sucks. Guess it's a good thing the warranty is still good. Hope it doesn't take too long to get it back.
 
highfigh

highfigh

Audioholic Overlord
I would love to see the differences at the listening position between speakers playing with vs without a second pair as measured from a reasonable listening distance!

I think it is a matter of making the best compromises you can and also how little the effect you are trying to determine might be.
For example, a comparison of Pioneer BS-22's vs Philharminic BMR's results in obvious enough differences that it would take some pretty extreme expectation bias to conclude the Pioneers were overall better in a sighted test! As far as scientific rigor, it is deficient; but I believe it would statistically result in a pretty good correlation to the results of a more definitive (and difficult) test!

However, I do agree with your main point and it is always good to point out the sources of error!
Two pairs of speakers in an enclosed space can't sound the same if they're in different locations- the only way to test them without the room's geometry affecting the sound would be to test in an anechoic space and even then, the unused speakers would need to be removed or blanketed, in order to eliminate the diffraction they cause.
 
KEW

KEW

Audioholic Overlord
Two pairs of speakers in an enclosed space can't sound the same if they're in different locations- the only way to test them without the room's geometry affecting the sound would be to test in an anechoic space and even then, the unused speakers would need to be removed or blanketed, in order to eliminate the diffraction they cause.
I agree with you, but would like to see measurements of the magnitude of the effect from the second pair. The first several speaker comparisons I did, I swapped locations of the two pairs and established (to my satisfaction) that the difference associated with location (when side-by-side) generally was small compared to the difference between speakers.
However, as I concluded when comparing amps, the difference associated with location exceeded the difference between amps so as to render my attempt at a comparison under those conditions as worthless (other than to conclude that the difference between amps was slight enough as to generally look at changes in other parameters (like speaker location) instead of amps)!
 

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