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[SurroundSound] Re: Alan Parsons interview scolumbo Mon Feb 13 07:00:05 2012

That's a great point about matching the audio equipment with the room,
especially speakers. What you hear auditioning equipment in a showroom
will sound totally different in your own space, whether it be in a
multi-purpose living room or a dedicated home theater. Even worse is
buying equipment relying strictly on a magazine review or someone's
opinion without first setting it up and then tweaking some of the
elements such as speaker and furniture placement. That's why it's
always better to buy equipment that can be loaned first, or returned
if it's not satisfactory.

I also agree that many times it doesn't take adding expensive acoustic
wall panels or such. Since we usually can't move walls to accommodate
our music, even minor adjustments to furniture or moving a sub from
one wall to another will have an impact. If there is a hard floor
without carpeting, it might mean adding a rug, or adding upholstered
chairs. Just think of the difference a room sounds without any
furniture or carpeting. Of course, all of this is easier when you have
a room dedicated to listening to music, but even in a multi-purpose
room, blending the right elements can make a big difference in room
acoustics.

I have mixed feelings about some of the digital processing such as
Audyssey MultEQ that are designed to overcome acoustical challenges.
For movies with lots of loud explosions and such, it has it's purpose.
For music, it can be both a blessing and a curse. Sometimes it can
sound fake and unnatural, but I've also used it to balance out some
MCH recordings that would otherwise sound harsh or out-of-phase. It
can improve bass management, especially when using a sub in a 5.1 or
7.1 system. I view it as just another tool that might help in some
situations where room acoustics aren't ideal.

On Feb 12, 9:00 pm, Britre <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> It is all true you will never have the royal albert hall in your
> listening room. However reproduction of a recording made there without
> the interference of your room acoustics is a chore and a half. My
> biggest problem personally is I like my music at a realistic volume
> which more often than not translates into loud. I like drums with
> impact, subtle voices that come out of nowhere and feeling the air
> from my ported speakers on louder material. Trouble being I go to loud
> and the room interfers with drywall rattling, doors in other rooms
> making noise, ect...
>
> I have learned after getting the room setup to be as nuetral as it can
> be, that setting my listening level is primo to my listening pleasure.
> It is as important as speaker placement and acoustic treatments when
> nessesary although like Scloumbo I do not believe spending money leads
> to better sound.
>
> Back in the day most speakers were designed with 12, and 16 inch
> woofers and 3 way, 4 way and more designs which lead to a bombastic
> 70's sound from everything and in those days the louder the better
> because you wanted the neighbors to notice your new gear.
>
> I found a 10" woofer is the right balance of bass in almost any room
> perhaps supplemented by a small sub-woofer on certain material, and a
> decent 3 way design with a high quality tweeter and 5" mids. 6 gets to
> big and makes for poor crossover and 4 is too small to reproduce a
> voice such as Warren Zevon or Cat Stevens at his lower register. Also
> if you have a Cello at normal range it needs that headroom.
>
> In smaller rooms a good 6" 2 way and a sub will give you awesome sound
> on a small scale. In my apartment days it was two pair of infinity's
> and a low end sub with my JVC 4VR 5445 which I still have today tucked
> away because it was an awesomely built peice of equipment. Never
> disturbed the neighbors and at low levels you got lost in the music.
> Things got much better when I got into my own home. Now unfortunately
> the neighbors do get disturbed but they like my taste in music.
>
> Take some time and do some research on this August as you will find
> the best paths to better sound are free if you are willing to do the
> work to get there.
>
> On Feb 12, 7:09 pm, scolumbo <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> > No reflective surfaces would be dead spaces. My main point (evidently
> > in agreement with Mr. Parsons) is that good acoustics have as much or
> > more to do with sound reflections as the equipment itself, and most
> > people pay little attention to it. Whether you like the acoustics of
> > some of the great natural amphitheatres versus a great music hall is a
> > matter of personal preference. However, I've never heard someone say
> > they just loved the acoustics of Giants Stadium.  It's not a
> > coincidence that the great music halls have great acoustics. The Royal
> > Albert Hall had horrible acoustics in its beginnings.  It took years
> > of renovation and many millions of dollars to reduce the echo that
> > made concerts there almost unbearable.  It's the right balance of
> > reflection and absorption that make great acoustics, especially in the
> > relatively small, enclosed spaces that most people use for listening
> > to music.
>
> > Oh, don't get me started on personal tastes when it comes to single-
> > malt scotch. ;-)
>
> > On Feb 12, 7:10 pm, "Noreltny-gmail" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
>
> > > I read somewhere that the best acoustics were in spaces with no reflective
> > > surfaces. Or the reflective surface is behind the performance, like an
> > > amphitheater, which might provide natural amplification. Others might feel
> > > that a room adds to the music, kind of like another instrument. Some old
> > > churches and their monstrous pipe organs wouldn't sound the same without 
> > > the
> > > reverberations. I guess it all comes down to what you like. I try not to
> > > pass judgment (try being the operative word) on people for their choice of
> > > musical taste, whether it be equipment or genre. It's kind of pointless to
> > > criticize someone for preferring strawberry ice cream over chocolate. It's
> > > all a personal taste. Now beer, that's a different matter...
>
> > > -----Original Message-----
> > > From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
>
> > > On Behalf Of realafrica
> > > Sent: Sunday, February 12, 2012 5:14 PM
> > > To: SurroundSound
> > > Subject: [SurroundSound] Re: Alan Parsons interview
>
> > > I have a question about 'room acoustics'.
> > > What if you remove the room completely?
> > > Like take the gear out into the garden?
>
> > > On Feb 12, 7:31 pm, scolumbo <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> > > > August-
> > > > The one issue I might disagree with is, while I don't think you need
> > > > to be in a concert hall to have good room acoustics, something like
> > > > 70% of the sound you hear in a room is reflected off the walls,
> > > > ceiling, furniture, etc. Maybe in a small room that number goes down
> > > > somewhat, but I believe even in a small space the room acoustics do
> > > > matter. Maybe you just have good acoustics to start with, but rooms
> > > > with a lot of windows, irregular shaped rooms, speakers not properly
> > > > positioned away from walls, too much hard surfaces, too much dead
> > > > surfaces, they all have a tremendous impact on the sound you hear.
> > > > It's why I agree with Parsons that too many people just buy expensive
> > > > equipment to get "high-fidelity" and don't pay attention to the single
> > > > greatest factor, other than maybe the speakers themselves.  If
> > > > listening to music only at low or moderate levels, it might not be
> > > > critical, but what fun is that. Bad room acoustics will definitely
> > > > show up at louder volumes.
>
> > > > On Feb 12, 1:27 pm, August Bleed <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
>
> > > > > This reminds me of the so called room treatment deals on AVRs.  I
> > > > > should preface this by saying I don't have an Arcam or anything that
> > > > > good.  At the same time, it was originally a 1500 dollar unit so
> > > > > definitely a bit more than yr average consumer system.  No matter
> > > > > how many times I've tried to use the PEQ settings on the rig using
> > > > > the measuring device that came with the unit, it never ceases to not
> > > > > only underwhelm, but takes whatever life hadn't already been
> > > > > squeezed out the recording and exterminates it once and for all.
> > > > > I'm not that great with EQ balancing anyway as I really don't
> > > > > understand how one frequency affects another--bringing out one
> > > > > particular area of sonics summarily buries the next.  The best thing
> > > > > I have found to do without physical treatments, is to turn
> > > > > everything off and leave the EQ at whatever the producer had in
> > > > > mind--if there isn't bass in the recording there isn't bass coming
> > > > > out my speakers.  My listening area is quite small (city living) for
> > > > > my speakers' sizes so for the most part this is pretty near field
> > > > > listening.  Less than 8 feet between speakers.  So I don't find the
> > > > > room to be as much of an issue as I would if the room were a bit
> > > > > larger and the volume was able to be cranked way up.  The times I
> > > > > have cranked it I of course start to notice more about the room
> > > > > acoustics.  But for most of my listening sessions at the volume and
> > > > > listening position I just don't think the room is that much of a
> > > > > problem.  I believe if I had a bit more room or volume I'd be
> > > > > singing a different tune.  It was interesting to see Parsons and the
> > > > > other dude at the DTS booth at CES.  I kept wondering what they were
> > > > > doing there!  They seemed to be promoting surround sound without any
> > > > > material!  One comment was really funny.  Something along the lines
> > > > > of waiting to get paid to do more surround.  Apparently DTS only
> > > > > pays them to sit around booths, not actually make say a product.  I
> > > > > just thought it was funny.  Then Alan goes into a spiel about 10.2
> > > > > mixing.  If 5.1 hasn't caught on the way we'd like, I'd like to be
> > > > > the first to predict the failure of 10.2 before it even gets
> > > > > started.  If the man is seriously bewildered that 5.1 hasn't caught
> > > > > on, he should have no problem seeing that
> > > > > 10.2 is GOING NOWHERE!  Perhaps when we get neural implants, or
> > > > > those CIA devices are able to route sound so that only the
> > > > > individual at whom the device is pointed hears the sound, then maybe
> > > > > I can see this.  But right now, most of us are dealing (here on
> > > > > earth anyway) with coffin boxes improving only incrementally over the
> > > years.
>
> > > > > On Sun, Feb 12, 2012 at 10:05 AM, scolumbo <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> > > > > > Sounds like the guy probably "deadened" the room too much. It's a
> > > > > > tricky business getting room treatments correct.  I don't have the
> > > > > > perfect room by any means, but then I don't go around bragging how
> > > > > > expensive my equipment is and why it makes me an audiophile.  Of
> > > > > > course, it's the people that spend $5000 on cables and buy $500
> > > > > > power cords that really make me chuckle.
>
> > > > > > I do have a dedicated room for critical listening, but then I also
> > > > > > pipe music throughout other rooms of the house where it's
> > > > > > perfectly fine for casual listening. Not many people these days
> > > > > > really sit down and listen to music anymore. It's probably why
> > > > > > surround sound remains a niche market. Most people listen to music
> > > > > > while doing 3 other things. It's much harder to appreciate
> > > > > > multichannel music when you aren't sitting in a sweet spot with
> > > > > > properly positioned speakers and really listening to the music.
>
> > > > > > On Feb 12, 11:41 am, "Noreltny-gmail" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> > > > > > > That's the tricky thing with our hobby. I
>
> ...
>
> read more »

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