Have been experimenting with Room EQ

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
I was considering that to see if I liked Dirac, problem for me is it can only handle 8 channels. Even if it could do more there's no way to get them to the atmos speakers.

The other issue is I hate the JRiver user interface...

Haha fair enough. Although if you only wanted to use JRIver EQ without dealing with its UI, it can be set as an audio processor/driver. So any and all sound playback regardless of software used will go via JRiver. Since I don't Atmos haven't checked fully but I believe it too is limited to 7.1.

However in my situation, for a temporary solution, the idea sounds almost too good to be true, the only thing missing DLBC. I hear people mention MSO a lot which im guessing does the same thing but is more labour intensive. I hope Dirac don't limit the trial version to stereo only.
 

AndreNewman

Active Member
Haha fair enough. Although if you only wanted to use JRIver EQ without dealing with its UI, it can be set as an audio processor/driver.
At one point I was looking at VST plugins, found one that could do decoding from a bitsream, including atmos and some virtual speaker stuff that sounded like one of Trinnov's features.


this is a cheaper version that doesn't do the virtual speaker thing, there's a gaming version that cheaper still. I didn't get far in with this so not certain it really will do what's needed.

Then there's the Dirac Live Desktop, don't need JRiver, all works through the normal Windows sound system, you need a VST host, which could be Jriver but there are others including some free ones.

Need to chain them together but if you already use JRiver then you can use the Dolby,DTX,etc decoder that provides.
However in my situation, for a temporary solution, the idea sounds almost too good to be true, the only thing missing DLBC.
Maybe they will add that one day, they may have some exclusive deals in place now or maybe it's just not implemented in the plugin yet.
I hear people mention MSO a lot which im guessing does the same thing but is more labour intensive. I hope Dirac don't limit the trial version to stereo only.
H'mm well the trial button is next to the stereo buy now button so maybeee.

But if you can get it working in Stereo in less than 14 days you'd know if you want to spend the $449.
 

Wull

Well-known Member
At one point I was looking at VST plugins, found one that could do decoding from a bitsream, including atmos and some virtual speaker stuff that sounded like one of Trinnov's features.


this is a cheaper version that doesn't do the virtual speaker thing, there's a gaming version that cheaper still. I didn't get far in with this so not certain it really will do what's needed.

Then there's the Dirac Live Desktop, don't need JRiver, all works through the normal Windows sound system, you need a VST host, which could be Jriver but there are others including some free ones.

Need to chain them together but if you already use JRiver then you can use the Dolby,DTX,etc decoder that provides.

Maybe they will add that one day, they may have some exclusive deals in place now or maybe it's just not implemented in the plugin yet.

H'mm well the trial button is next to the stereo buy now button so maybeee.

But if you can get it working in Stereo in less than 14 days you'd know if you want to spend the $449.

I've never seen that O3A decoding. The closest thing I had seen is the Auro-3D creative tool:

 

AndreNewman

Active Member
I've never seen that O3A decoding. The closest thing I had seen is the Auro-3D creative tool:

I found that one too.

My reading of the O3A plugin was that it would decode all the usual surround formats including Atmos, Auro 3D and DTS:X but I don't know the terminology of VST plugins well enough to know if it would really work in a home cinema setup.

There's supposed to be an audio bus for connecting (chaining) plugins together, 32 channels I think so in theory the O3A could decode to discrete channels, chain those to the Dirac Live plugin, maybe multiple instances of DL as that only does 8 channels.

All in theory, an almost new DDRC-88A appeared in the classifieds and I dropped the idea. I never have a good experience when Windows is involved so making Windows a critical part of my Home Cinema didn't appeal.

I have a MadVR Kodi HTPC but if it blows up I can just put a disk in the player or more likely fire up the AppleTV and still have a working sound system.
 

Wull

Well-known Member
"There's supposed to be an audio bus for connecting (chaining) plugins together, 32 channels I think so in theory the O3A could decode to discrete channels, chain those to the Dirac Live plugin, maybe multiple instances of DL as that only does 8 channels"

I see. I wandered how you could get past the Dirac 7.1 count. Starts to get pretty complicated by the sounds of things.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
Well I've been at it all day, crashed on the sofa even lol.

Initial impressions on the desktop setup, wasn't overly impressed, it sounds different but was it better, couldn't say. Also had to limit the eq to 2khz, full range was just horrible. Further effort required I think.

Went over the download and setup process in the main system on a HTPC. Requested a new trial but since it was under the the same account only got access to the one I got yesterday, either way it seems the same trial license works on two different PCs. Hmm! Chances of it working like that on a full paid for license? ;)

After numerous measurements, filters, REW sweeps, listening at the moment I've settled on filters based on 3 measurement positions. Haven't done any adjustments on the AVP other than what was already there so not sure if it's done right but impressed by the subtle difference its made. It sounds more open without that brittle digitaly processed signature sound that I was expecting. The sound is slightly more focused but expansive at the same time, what kind of wizardry is this? The other thing evident is impact, instruments sound more immediate and decay just the same. Switching Dirac on/off all the differences are subtle but combined the result is I'd say pleasing to the ears, not what I expected to be honest.

Surprisingly on this system full range EQ sounds best, I'm guessing the extra headroom (which isn't available in the desktop system) and heavily treated room makes all the difference. To confirm, as feared the trial is limited to stereo only, got excited for a moment when it recognised the avp as 8 channels but then like a jobs worth it got in touch with their servers and came back "computer says no!". I'll get in touch with their CS and see if they can sort it out. The way its going I think it'll be worth a punt either way but in the meantime got the weekend to tinker.
 

AndreNewman

Active Member
Well I've been at it all day, crashed on the sofa even lol.
I know that feeling...

Initial impressions on the desktop setup, wasn't overly impressed, it sounds different but was it better, couldn't say. Also had to limit the eq to 2khz, full range was just horrible. Further effort required I think.
Interesting, what sort of room is this, what sort of speaker placement?

After numerous measurements, filters, REW sweeps, listening at the moment I've settled on filters based on 3 measurement positions. Haven't done any adjustments on the AVP other than what was already there so not sure if it's done right but impressed by the subtle difference its made. It sounds more open without that brittle digitaly processed signature sound that I was expecting.
I get a little of that with full range processing but limiting to 12kHz fixes it, I'm still debating if I prefer 12kHz curtains or 400Hz. I suspect that 400Hz with some subtle PEQ above will be my final resting place.

I'm having some "fun" with PEQ and Dirac interacting at the bottom end, I think PEQ only is better up to ~60Hz in my room.
The sound is slightly more focused but expansive at the same time, what kind of wizardry is this?
Yeah, weird stuff, nice :cool:
The other thing evident is impact, instruments sound more immediate and decay just the same. Switching Dirac on/off all the differences are subtle but combined the result is I'd say pleasing to the ears, not what I expected to be honest.
I get exactly that, good description.

It's what I'd been led to hope for but I was surprised it was achieved.
Surprisingly on this system full range EQ sounds best, I'm guessing the extra headroom (which isn't available in the desktop system) and heavily treated room makes all the difference.
I was told years ago by the UK Arcam rep that Dirac gives best results if the room is at least treated in some way. I guess I could pull the bass traps out, take the heavy curtains down and run Dirac to see (hear) but I can't be bothered.
To confirm, as feared the trial is limited to stereo only,
Not so surprising I suppose.
 

AndreNewman

Active Member
"There's supposed to be an audio bus for connecting (chaining) plugins together, 32 channels I think so in theory the O3A could decode to discrete channels, chain those to the Dirac Live plugin, maybe multiple instances of DL as that only does 8 channels"

I see. I wandered how you could get past the Dirac 7.1 count. Starts to get pretty complicated by the sounds of things.
I think so.

Sufficiently that I couldn't really decide if it would work other than buying all the software and hoping.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
Interesting, what sort of room is this, what sort of speaker placement?

A small PC/study with standard 2.2 setup. The speakers don't have any headroom at all, so when Dirac attempts to correct a dip between 2-5khz, it does more harm than good i suspect. Also I'll have to re-run calibration with less measurements due to the small space as they do recommend 40-60cm between measurements. I find however JRiver PEQ did a good enough job up to 2khz.

20200618_120313.jpg20200618_120235.jpg


I get a little of that with full range processing but limiting to 12kHz fixes it, I'm still debating if I prefer 12kHz curtains or 400Hz. I suspect that 400Hz with some subtle PEQ above will be my final resting place.

On the main system I found Eq curtains cause minor phase issues so its either all on or off with Dirac. With JRiver PEQ up to 2khz is good.

I was told years ago by the UK Arcam rep that Dirac gives best results if the room is at least treated in some way. I guess I could pull the bass traps out, take the heavy curtains down and run Dirac to see (hear) but I can't be bothered.

Yeah, I'd imagine that be the case with all EQ systems or no EQ but haven't tried them all to know for sure.
 

AndreNewman

Active Member
I forgot to mention that I tried the full wide area Dirac measurements and the results were quite unpleasant. I did the middle "sofa" scheme and the results were a lot better, that's what I'm using now.

I was also doing MSO measurements using the same mic placements, the wide area 17 measurements gave some really extreme sweeps and the MSO results was also unpleasant in it's own way. I re-ran MSO with a reduced set of measurements and I got a nice even result, plots looked better, EQ was less severe and sounded much better.

Maybe because my room is narrower than long 4.3m x 5.4m the measurements closer to the walls are pretty nasty.
 

MI55ION

Distinguished Member
I forgot to mention that I tried the full wide area Dirac measurements and the results were quite unpleasant. I did the middle "sofa" scheme and the results were a lot better, that's what I'm using now.

I was also doing MSO measurements using the same mic placements, the wide area 17 measurements gave some really extreme sweeps and the MSO results was also unpleasant in it's own way. I re-ran MSO with a reduced set of measurements and I got a nice even result, plots looked better, EQ was less severe and sounded much better.

Maybe because my room is narrower than long 4.3m x 5.4m the measurements closer to the walls are pretty nasty.

Thats interesting, less is more it seems. Dirac suggest taking more yield better results, suppose much depend on the room and system as a whole.

Must admit the more im using it to listen, the more I'm liking it, even got the the nod of approval from swmbo. Just a shame I can't test it for 7.1. One final test im hoping to do tomorrow on the main system is to take the Antimode out of the equation and see how it handles EQing the subs and speakers rather than acting as a global EQ post Antimode.
 

AndreNewman

Active Member
Thats interesting, less is more it seems. Dirac suggest taking more yield better results, suppose much depend on the room and system as a whole.

Must admit the more im using it to listen, the more I'm liking it, even got the the nod of approval from swmbo. Just a shame I can't test it for 7.1. One final test im hoping to do tomorrow on the main system is to take the Antimode out of the equation and see how it handles EQing the subs and speakers rather than acting as a global EQ post Antimode.
I found that Dirac didn't do much for my lfe & bass management channel, I'm using it currently but it's the next step I want to improve before I go down the all pass satellite optimisation hole.

I would say that whatever Dirac does greatly improves my surround and atmos experience, I haven't tried Stereo yet but as my L&R speakers responses were the main reason to try Dirac I have high hopes for Stereo results.
 

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