Question Dali Oberon 5 advice

silversurfer24v

Well-known Member
My room is 3.6m x 5.5 m and I would be sat 3.5m away on the narrow measurement, I have no speakers at the moment as the CD player is connected to the sound bar by optical cable

Would the room accommodate floor standers ? In particular these Dali Oberon 5 as they can come as a bundle with the Arcam SA10

Cheers for any advice and comments or recommends for other speakers that would suit
 

muljao

Well-known Member
I know I was the one who put doubt in your mind on these. I just looked at the specs and size, ( they are even smaller than I'd thought)I believe they'll be ok in your room. I have a similar size of tdl rtl speakers and they don't dominate the way a larger speaker may
 

aidencoder

Novice Member
Just chipping in on this in the hope other's can help because my room and setup is similar:

I have Dali Oberon 5 floorstanders in a 3m x 4m room, with the speakers/listening position being a 1.8m equilateral triangle across the narrower width. They're connected to an AudioLab 6000A using AudioLab 6000CDT for input. I also have a Dali E-12F 12" subwoofer. The speakers are around 7" off the wall.

livingroom.png


I'm hoping the room is the issue here, because while the top end is presented amazingly, the mids are an absolute mess. There's no detail, they're recessed and they fall over with any even slightly demanding mix. Honestly, i'm considering changing speaker to something else at this point.

For light jazz, vocal, acoustic the mids are acceptable ... but try anything like metal and they just buckle. Even with music that the woofers seem to handle, the imaging is lacking any energy and are really recessed.

Any suggestions before I whack them on ebay and try something else?!
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Could be issues with the first reflection point behind the sofa with the audio being fired across the narrow part of the room. Easy to check, try hanging a duvet down the wall to see if it helps with the problem. Then experiment with toe in.

If you do indeed hear a difference then that points to some form of room treatment. Speakers with a wider dispersion may help dampen but not truely overcome the problem.
 

aidencoder

Novice Member
Could be issues with the first reflection point behind the sofa with the audio being fired across the narrow part of the room. Easy to check, try hanging a duvet down the wall to see if it helps with the problem. Then experiment with toe in.

If you do indeed hear a difference then that points to some form of room treatment. Speakers with a wider dispersion may help dampen but not truely overcome the problem.
I'll give something a go, I actually have a large canvas painting behind the sofa which may break things up as it stands. I'm wondering if distance could be the issue, as the listening point is only 6ft from each speaker which seems short maybe? I'll play around with the room a bit, but nothing i've done so far made any difference. Might cover the TV too
 

aidencoder

Novice Member
OK, so the biggest impact I had from the following:
  • Soft cover on the TV
  • Pop the speakers further apart and toe in
  • Bring speakers forward
Was covering the TV. The TV is actually much further forward towards the front of the stand than in the image ... about 5" back from the tweeters, which it seems project quite a lot of energy back.

Clearly a large glass panel at tweeter level was pushing the treble forward with too much energy. So covering with a thick blanket, that pushed the treble back and balanced it against the mids. It also meant the detail on the mids resolved much better. I'm not expecting miracles at the Oberon 5 price point, but they sound much more balanced.

There's a really noticable dip now (that sounds like a phase or crossover issue) around 190Hz which I need to work out next. I suspect maybe the TV stand itself, as the front face is inline with the woofers.

Other than that, big improvement so with regards OPs issue ... the room is a good bet.

I found they didn't like toe in and didn't like a slightly wider angle.
 

aidencoder

Novice Member
More info for anyone sad enough to care:

The frequency range that deadens at my listening position is 160Hz-210Hz.

Testing this out, if I move my head backwards, I can hear that frequency range at proper volume. If I rotate my head in the listening position on the horizontal axis, I actually hear the problem frequency loudest in the direction of the wall.

This leads me to believe that the reflections from the back wall at the listening position phase cancel 160Hz-210Hz to some degree. I'll be grabbing some sound treatment.

Long story short, my Oberon 5 problems all seem room related.
 

JJHook

Standard Member
Hello. Did the anti-reflection measures at the rear of your listening position help? I'm wondering if something similar in my similar set up is causing my high frequency detail clarity issues with the Oberons.
J
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
More info for anyone sad enough to care:

The frequency range that deadens at my listening position is 160Hz-210Hz.

Testing this out, if I move my head backwards, I can hear that frequency range at proper volume. If I rotate my head in the listening position on the horizontal axis, I actually hear the problem frequency loudest in the direction of the wall.

This leads me to believe that the reflections from the back wall at the listening position phase cancel 160Hz-210Hz to some degree. I'll be grabbing some sound treatment.

Long story short, my Oberon 5 problems all seem room related.
How long have you had the speakers? I have the same speakers. Cracking speakers for their price. In the beginning I did notice that the sound was similar to a degree like you describe. But this got much better after 30 hours of playing around 70db. After that the sound got more mellow. I would say this though: Dont listen to Dali’s recommendations about not using any toe in. I toe in my speakers so they cross my ears. The midrange gets much more forward, not so thin then. But perhaps you should look at Sonus Faber, qAcoustics speakers. They tend to have fuller midrange. Though Dali need the correct amplifier. Marantz works fine. The new PM6007 would be an excellent option. Good luck. Ps, as mentioned use tone controls if you have them, that’s why they are invented.
 

JJHook

Standard Member
Hello. Thanks Helix re tone controls. I have used these previously and not solved my particular issue although some improvement was found.
However, I've been faffing around with this a little more.
I've stuffed a dish sponge in each of the ports. They are partially blocked now and only with this open sponge material. This is better than socks, it calmed the over powering bass bloat which has helped the clarity a little without choking the speakers. Worth a try, it seems to have helped the upper mids and bass detail too. To enhance this further I've added a little treble on the tone control. Further still I've been moving them around. As Aidencoder found, they didn't like a wider angle or toe-in from a wider angle but I did find that in my situation the ob5s are better with a narrower width, closer to eachother than they are to the listener. The speakers are now 1.85m centres apart, and 2.60m from the main listening position, which is the 0.6m off the back wall. They sound better to me and have improved stereo imaging in this position. The total sum is not perfect but is much better. Aidencoder, I can hear some improvement in the mids with this set up. This may be simply because I can turn it up louder without suffering full bore bass bloat in my lugs, which then clearly helps mids and highs. However the placement has helped too.
 

JJHook

Standard Member
The dish sponges are the slightly higher quality moulded grip type with scouring material on one side haha 😀
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
@JJHook, do you use the supplied spikes, or rubber feet’s which is supplied with the Dali speakers? I am using the rubber feet’s, since this gives the speakers fuller sound then spikes. This is epically true on hardwood floor. So try the rubber feet’s. Also try stone slabs of some kind. Speaker placement is a never ending story. I use no toe in on some recordings, since no recordings are created equally. Then I use toe in if I want the speakers to give more focused soundstage. So I don’t think Dali can claim they don’t require no toe in, as this depends on the sitting distance. Then I cheat a bit with if I want more bass, treble, even the midrange. My amplifier has a midrange control. I’m not sure which amplifier you use. But Arcam,Denon, NAD, Marantz suits Dali very well. Arcam, Marantz is the best options.
 

JJHook

Standard Member
Helix, yes I'm using the spikes through the carpet although I think they need to be longer. I've also tried on slabs too. The difference is minimal in my room, maybe a slightly more focused mid bass on slabs, but the bloating still the same, although I know from past experience in previous rooms and systems that this can make a good difference.
I'm using a Cambridge Azur 851A. I've compared this side by side with the Arcam SA20 in my set up and room. They sounded very similar although the Cambridge just nicked it paired with my 2 DACs - RDac and SMSL M500 Sabre Pro. It was very close. The Cambridge sounded a touch more agile on some recordings. I also chose the Cambridge due to it having tone control, which I value to use on the odd poorly produced source material.
I think my issues are mainly room related causing bass and mid bass bloating and the drowning out of highs and possibly upper mids.
When I demonstrated the Oberon 5s they sounded superb, beating speakers bigger and more expensive, so I'm reasonably sure it is a lot related to my room, although I'm thinking some of the better metal dome tweeters might be good for my faster metal music. The Cambridge Audio CX80 amp I switched to part way through the demo also blew the £1800 amp we started with out of the room too. Nothing is guaranteed on this journey!!
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
Helix, yes I'm using the spikes through the carpet although I think they need to be longer. I've also tried on slabs too. The difference is minimal in my room, maybe a slightly more focused mid bass on slabs, but the bloating still the same, although I know from past experience in previous rooms and systems that this can make a good difference.
I'm using a Cambridge Azur 851A. I've compared this side by side with the Arcam SA20 in my set up and room. They sounded very similar although the Cambridge just nicked it paired with my 2 DACs - RDac and SMSL M500 Sabre Pro. It was very close. The Cambridge sounded a touch more agile on some recordings. I also chose the Cambridge due to it having tone control, which I value to use on the odd poorly produced source material.
I think my issues are mainly room related causing bass and mid bass bloating and the drowning out of highs and possibly upper mids.
When I demonstrated the Oberon 5s they sounded superb, beating speakers bigger and more expensive, so I'm reasonably sure it is a lot related to my room, although I'm thinking some of the better metal dome tweeters might be good for my faster metal music. The Cambridge Audio CX80 amp I switched to part way through the demo also blew the £1800 amp we started with out of the room too. Nothing is guaranteed on this journey!!
Your completely right. Sometimes it is not the most expensive amp that wins. If you have a carpet floor instead of hard wood floor then spikes might be better then soft feet. You could try Soundcare Superspikes, whether they make difference, that is another story. Still I think spikes, soft feet can really make a difference instead of cables. Cambridge is good brand. I don’t how long you had the speakers, but you could try and adjust the bass on full, and give them a real workout. I always use tone controls when I’m burning in speakers.
 

JJHook

Standard Member
They should be burned in by now but that is worth a note for future reference, it seems to me to make physical sense.
I've never had the same issues as with this room. I thought having the speakers further away from the side walls on the long wall would be better than having them at the end of the room, closer to the side walls, and it probably is. However, listening across the narrow of the room seems to cause more reflection off the wall behind the listening position, and also quieter listening volume due to proximity to the speakers, which obviously has an effect on the balance of the output, with the speakers possibly not operating at their optimum volume. Some frequencies suffer. This is where the tone controls help!
Helix, which amp are you using with a mid tone dial?
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
They should be burned in by now but that is worth a note for future reference, it seems to me to make physical sense.
I've never had the same issues as with this room. I thought having the speakers further away from the side walls on the long wall would be better than having them at the end of the room, closer to the side walls, and it probably is. However, listening across the narrow of the room seems to cause more reflection off the wall behind the listening position, and also quieter listening volume due to proximity to the speakers, which obviously has an effect on the balance of the output, with the speakers possibly not operating at their optimum volume. Some frequencies suffer. This is where the tone controls help!
Helix, which amp are you using with a mid tone dial?
It can help moving the sofa/sitting chair further towards the speakers. But I seem to remember the sitting distance is about 3 meters. Probably don’t have enough space then. But have you tried vice versa: moving the sitting chair longer back in the room? It might be wise to put up some bookshelf behind the speakers to dampen the room even further. Buy some thick curtains, rugs etc. Or you can use the mirror trick with a friend, and see where the tweeter is on the side walls, then hang up acoustic panels. But the more I read your replies perhaps the Dali sound is not for you. Perhaps try and borrow some other speakers, then see. You have of course Rew software, Dirac etc. But I know little about those things. Just that there are amplifiers with build in room eq software, so you don’t need any additional hardware. But I think you should stay with the current amplifier, and as I said try KEF, qAcoustics speakers etc.I think the Oberon 5 sound fairly neutral, but still a bit warm sounding. But I also think they can sound thin in the midrange at times. But I won’t say they have V-curve sound (boosted treble, boosted bass, no midrange).
 
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JJHook

Standard Member
I've tried conditioning the room and moving things around as much as I can but I'm a little restricted in that it isn't a dedicated AV room.
I quite like the overall sound of the Oberon's now I've bunged the ports and changed things around, and even if it is slightly 'V' shaped, this tends to suit my main type of music in many respects. I definitely don't want to reduce the treble. My current issue is the detail within that treble. Slow tracks sound great, but when things speed up and get more complicated, the detail in the higher frequencies gets muddled.
I borrowed a pair of KEF q550. These were different in many ways but the Oberon's sounded overall better, although I must say the Kefs had a very enveloping sound stage. The Kefs had more pronounced upper mids but I wouldn't describe them as being meatier in the mids. The upper and lower frequencies didn't live upto the Oberons and therefore didn't really help with my issue (without introducing other issues) although to be fair the Kefs probably did have slightly better detail in the highs but within an inferior overall presence, I.e. less air and liveliness if that makes sense? I also borrowed and old pair of Acoustic Energy aegis Evo 3s which are 3 way compact floor standers. These things weigh a ton and have great mids and bass. They sound great turned up loud (and after a bit of room faff in my case). Detail, thud, timbre, all excellent but at mid to lower volumes below 65db they are beaten again by the Oberons overall presentation in my environment.
I'm fairly relaxed and enjoying the Oberon 5s at the moment now I've made some adjustments but I think I might keep an eye out or maybe borrow some Monitor Audios with the aluminium tweeters to see if that helps. Maybe the older models with the front firing ports may be good in my room.
 

xmb

Well-known Member
Given your room issues maybe it is time to consider changing amplifier for something that employs room correction? Something like the Lyngdorf TDAI 1120 may solve all your problems.
 

JJHook

Standard Member
Thanks, I'll look into that. I didn't realise this was available on 2 channel amps.
I do have a pioneer 7.2 AV vsx924 receiver plugged into the Azur 851A and have run room correction on that, which is quite comprehensive compared to some once switched to "expert" set up. It does sort out phasing etc but having the pioneer in the signal path for two channel music is something I would rather not have. It's great for my limited movie requirements. It still doesn't sort the muddled detail in the highs, which is another reason why I wonder whether it is simply a weakness of the Oberons, or potentially a weakness of my amp.
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
Perhaps the Monitor Audio Silver 200 might suit you better, or the Oberon 7 instead. Or the Bronze range from Monitor Audio. If you like a bit more sparkle in the treble then I think Monitor is a good choice,
 

Helix Hifi

Well-known Member
Or some Spendor speakers. If you have the opportunity to borrow speakers with a more neutral sound, then the 3050i from qAcoustics we’ll perhaps suit you better.
 

xmb

Well-known Member
The Lyngdorf TDAI 1120 room correction system is miles above that used by AV receivers. I would try and get a home demo to see how good it actually is.
 

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