The Two Channel Advice Thread

Discussion in 'Advice Threads' started by purr1n, Nov 10, 2016.

  1. Pocomo

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    Looks like a really great space to relax and enjoy music.

    It sounds like you are not completely happy with the Vivids. What other speakers have you tried?
     
  2. Greg121986

    Greg121986 Almost "Made"

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    I had Focal Electra 1028be before these. I am trying not to go down the rabbit hole, but the Vivid is worlds different. The Focal was like a laser beam which I enjoyed. It made for super precise imaging and dramatic sound stage. The Vivid has such an insanely wide and even dispersion that you can sit almost anywhere and it will still sound good. You can walk around the room and it will still sound good. However, this also seems to impact the sound staging and imaging. I feel like the Vivid renders things too large. So a voice will be very large in the center, rather than "human sized" like the Focal did. A saxophone will be the size of a bass drum.

    I think part of it is my Holo Spring 3 DAC and possibly my amp/preamp. The Spring and other R2R DACs I have tried definitely exaggerate sound stage and imaging and add a lot of bloom. I tried an AKM OG Schiit Magnius and that was actually more to my liking than the Holo. I have been using HQPlayer with the Holo Spring and that has helped immensely to improve imaging and focus. My Audia Flight amps are also pretty warm and seem slightly rolled off at the top. This was really good for the Focal because it tamed the high frequencies perfectly and made for an awesome presentation. But now with the Vivid it may be a bit too tame. The bass from the Audia Flight is really great, though. I am apprehensive to upend all of my gear and buy new stuff but I may be heading down that path.

    Someone here has a Boulder 866 integrated and I've been meaning to ask about it. I think I will borrow one from my dealer soon.
     
  3. Pocomo

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    You had mentioned Dirac - did enabling it make an appreciable difference in your system/room? I dislike sounding like a shill but it made a big difference for me. So much so that my multi-decade case of Nervosa is in remission for now ;)
     
  4. Greg121986

    Greg121986 Almost "Made"

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    DIRAC definitely makes a huge difference for the better. I find the Monoprice HTP-1 to sound really good. I'm only using it for 2 channel but it makes for a really great experience for movies/tv/Youtube. I do wish the software was more robust, though. I am trying really hard to stop myself from experimenting with multi-channel. I stop myself from impulse buying multi-channel stuff every day.

    My concerns are mostly for 2 channel listening with my 2-channel DAC source (Holo Spring 3 KTE). I believe my current chain overall is just far too warm for me. The bass shown in Dirac is just strange. There are other things I am trying to resolve/understand but the asymmetrical bass really threw me off because I have painstakingly measured the speaker position so they are absolutely equally spaced and toed-in to less than 1/8" difference between them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2024
  5. Polemarkos

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    You've got a tough room; significant untreated highly reflective/non-absorptive surface area and a high ceiling. Unless you're willing to add a significant amount of extra treatment it might be wise to treat the first and second reflection points with your existing panels, play with speaker positioning in combination with DIRAC to attenuate low-frequency problems by at least killing the peaks and call it good. You might also consider a couple of subwoofers, which when correctly located will help linearize the low-end somewhat.

    You haven't treated enough of the surface area of the room with broadband absorption to get meaningful reduction in low frequency peaks or nulls. If you're committed to treating the room sufficiently do a google search on the null frequencies you're concerned about to get some perspective, or use AMroc to identify the relevant room modes at your listening position. It looks like that null at 70 hz. is likely a function of the axial mode between your ceiling and floor and some amount of SBIR, as the dip isn't as bad from one of your speakers. If ceiling treatment is out of the question I'd suggest at least getting your existing panels on the back wall 3" or more off the wall to improve their efficiency. You're not getting much low-frequency absorption of out of them in their current configuration, and 4" panels would be significantly more absorbent of LF than 2" especially when combined with an air gap. There are a lot of other surfaces to treat/bass-trapping locations that would help but it would dominate the room and that's probably not what you're looking to do.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2024
  6. shotgunshane

    shotgunshane Floridian Falcon

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    My understanding is a bass null is created by the reflected sound cancelling the direct sound in the room. Since it is just your right speaker doing that, I would try moving the right speaker around a little and remeasuring until you can remove it as much as possible. A small move may fix a lot of it. I can see the boundaries around the right speaker are different from the left. The main concern is that you can't really fix room nulls with EQ, only peaks. I would also experiment with only letting DIRAC correct from 200 to 300hz and below. It is my understanding that any EQ above that should really be to fix anechoic response, not room response, so unless you can find those measurements for your speakers, I'm not sure I'd bother.
     
  7. Armaegis

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    You've got a big square room which is never great to start with. Any wavelength that hits a wall at the 1/4 or 3/4 wave point is gonna have some strong interference patterns, and then you're dealing with that on both axes.
    80 Hz = 14 ft 1 in
    100 Hz = 11 ft 3 in
    I'm calculating a 1.25 wavelength of 13.2' so that's right on the mark.

    If I go with the lower frequencies, 53Hz is 21 ft which is the 3/4 wavelength of your room, and hey look at that you've got a null in the low 50's.

    Weirdo suggestion, have you tried asymmetric placement of your speakers in the room? (though I realize there's not much you can do if the tv position is fixed).
     
  8. yotacowboy

    yotacowboy McRibs Kind of Guy

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    It's a huge PITA, but @Greg121986 could try a 1/3 + 2/3 corner setup. Looking at the rendering, imagine rotating your entire setup 60 degrees to the left/counter-clockwise. The right channel speaker would be placed about 1/3 of the 16'4" wall distance, and the left channel would be placed about 2/3 along the 16'6" wall distance (probably right near where the small bump out into the room is situated. Or, vice versa, rotate everything ~210 degrees clockwise; place the left channel speaker about 1/3 along the wall with the 2" acoustical panels and the right channel near the door with the acoustic panel covering the glass. Then, throw out the couch stuffed into the corner there and fill that space with bass traps (kidding, but sorta not; that nook would make a great bass trap space!).
     
  9. Greg121986

    Greg121986 Almost "Made"

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    That's a fat yeesh from me, @yotacowboy I will mock that up in my rendering but I do not believe I can stomach the rotation you are talking about. The feng shui is not going to jive for me. It will also block my two doors which are to a balcony and closet/laundry space so it would make life difficult.

    *Edit* Quick render and I don't hate this as much as I thought I would. The balcony door is behind the TV and left speaker which would make it pretty difficult. I use this access rarely, but I still do need it.

    rotated-stereo-space.jpeg
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2024
  10. artur9

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    I experimented by backing up from directly between my speakers and backing up to the seating position. I think the wide dispersion of the BMRs negate any major effect from toe-in.

    I do have a TV between them. I had it on the front edge of its stand and I pushed it back (about 18"?) to the back of the stand. Surprised to hear the percussion on Sultans of Swing follow it back. With the TV at front, everything is a bit more in-your-face.

    Pushing it back also made the bass a bit less forceful. No free lunch in this hobby, eh?
     
  11. yotacowboy

    yotacowboy McRibs Kind of Guy

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    The thing to keep in mind is (generally) visual symmetry = symmetrical sound reinforcement. So that can be good or bad. Placing speakers that were designed/voiced to be more free-field in a corner is going to screw up stuff. Likelwise, placing speakers that rely on boundary reinforcement and/or are high directivity is going to jangle the jimmys.
     
  12. gepardcv

    gepardcv Almost "Made"

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    What’s the current SBAF hive mind take on the Ragnarok 2 with the multibit DAC module as an all-in-one solution with moderately sensitive speakers (94+ dB/W)? Like Tekton Lores?
     
  13. artur9

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  14. Pocomo

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  15. colloquiallyjust

    colloquiallyjust New

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    Hello, everyone

    I currently have a 2 channel setup. I have:

    - pair of B&W 704s (before they started making S-versions)
    - Rotel RA-1062 integrated amplifier
    - Simaudio Moon 100D DAC

    The DAC is fed from a TV/Chromecast combo via Toslink. I also have a Pro-ject Debut turntable I use sometimes with an Audio Note IQ cartridge.

    I'm looking for advice on an upgrade path. The Rotel amp was the first and only amp I've owned. I bought the B&W 704s a couple years later and I recall the salesman saying the Rotel amp shouldn't have any problem driving the 704s but things could certainly be improved by upgrading the amp, so here I am. Here's what I'm wondering:

    1. Is it worth upgrading to separates? Could that done piecemeal?

    2. If I were to stay on the integrated route, where should I look? And is it worth going all integrated (pre/amp/dac/streamer/etc)?

    3. Is Class D worth exploring?

    SBAF seems to like Schiit a lot. I've also read good things about Nuprime and quite like the smaller footprint. Of course I'm looking for great synergy with the B&Ws. I'm willing to order, listen and return, so a great return policy would be appreciated.

    I have two budgets I'd like to consider: $2K and $5K CAD give or take a little. I'm in Canada so would like to stick with locally available gear or stuff that isn't insane to import.

    Thanks!
     
  16. bixby

    bixby Friend

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    Just my 2 centavos, and yes, I have been playing this game for decades.

    1. No
    2. Not sure you need to; sure you should change the amp (we know nothing about your source other than the Chromecast via Toslink (ugh) and if that is for your digital music consumption, spend money to fix that.) Part B: No, no , no
    3.Not before fixing the source. Class D if done well can be good.

    Really, of all the decades spent in this hobby, the one thing I have always known is that aside from the speakers (and you seem to like yours, since you did not mention changing them), the source is the absolutely most important thing. It was in the analog vinyl days and it is today in the digital days.
     
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  17. colloquiallyjust

    colloquiallyjust New

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    Thanks for taking the time bixby. My source is Plex casting to the Chromecast and remote controlled through Plexamp. Others cast using Apple Music or Spotify. Sounds like I need a proper streamer. What would you suggest? And are there any connection types, like toslink, I should avoid?

    Thanks.
     
  18. dasman66

    dasman66 Self proclaimed lazy ass - friend

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    In general, toslink is considered lowest on the totem pole with the most jitter. Then it really depends on what other inputs your dac has and which input on your dac is considered the "best" to your ears. On most dacs, USB is usually avoided... although that is changing with better USB interfaces being implemented by the dac manufacturers.

    Since your dac has RCA SPDIF, that's probably where you want to start.

    RE streamers... depends on how much DIY you want to be involved with. I would typically recommend Pi2AES on a Raspberry Pi if you are comfortable with computers. An out of the box solution would be an ifi zen stream or a Pi2design Mercury.
    ----edit-----
    spelling
     
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    Last edited: Feb 26, 2024
  19. Armaegis

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    I'm probably one of the few people here who has owned a bunch of NuPrime products. In general I do like their stuff, but they do not tune to reference/neutral. All their products have a distinct sound based on customer feedback. At least that was the case a few years back; I don't know if that reflects their current design philosophy.
     
  20. Biodegraded

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    There's an ifi Zen Stream (USB in, coax out) for $400 just over the water from you in West Van. Also a Zen Dac V2 for $300 and Zen Can headphone amp for $200, but unless you're thinking of adding a headphone setup, just go for the streamer at this stage:

    https://www.canuckaudiomart.com/det...ream-zen-dac-v2-zen-can-cable/images/4945903/
     

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