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Opinions Please for Improved Bass

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by joust, Jan 7, 2003.

  1. joust

    joust
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    Hi All,

    I have the following AV setup:

    Arcam DV88, Marantz SR5200, Tag DAC20, Mission 773e fronts, 77C1 centre, 700's rears, REL Staduim II.

    I am basically happy with the performance of the system, however, I feel that I am not using the sub to its best potential. the Mission fronts are good performers, but lack bass performance - in reality they are only good for about 60Hz, so I currently run the sub at a x-over point of around 80Hz at a reduced gain.

    I would like to run the sub at a lower x-over and increased gain to improve the performance sub 40/50Hz.

    So question is, what should I replace my front speakers with? I am quite happy to buy 2nd hand, and would also (or prefer to?) consider models that are 4+ years old, however, it is very difficult to understand how they perform (and even more difficult to demo). I am quite happy to consider floorstanders (WAF not too difficult as already have FLS).

    Joust
     
  2. Matt Horne

    Matt Horne
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    I am no expert .. but why would new front speakers help with getting improved bass from your sub? Surely you just need to play with the x-over on the sub/amp.

    I have Mission M74/M73 Floorstanders.. have them all set to small on the amp and the pipe all the LFE to my (crap) sub.. or I am missing the point here somewhere ?

    Matt
     
  3. joust

    joust
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    Matt,

    Perhaps I haven't explained myself very well.

    You're right - I could run the front speakers as 'small' and keep the x-over on the sub turned up (as I have it setup today), however, I believe that I can do better. In my current set-up I have to keep the gain down as the sub will begin to distort at the higher bass frequencies (and also overpower the mid bass frequency response).

    I would like to turn the x-over on the sub down to run at lower frequencies, at increased gain - this will give me an increase in sound pressure in the sub bass frequency region. However, my current speakers aren't capable to fill in the hole between 40-60Hz as there is a significant fall off in frequency response.

    Hope that this explains things better.

    Joust
     
  4. Matt Horne

    Matt Horne
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    Ah ha... I get your drift... I have all this to look forward to when I buy my new sub...eventually!

    Cheers

    Matt
     
  5. Lowrider

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    Joust,

    If you are using the high-level connection, you should set the sub´s xover to a lot less then 80hz, 40 or 50 tops, or you will get overlap and hence cannot raise the volume on the sub...

    I prefer all speakers small and LFE connection, will save the speakers and the amp from the hard work of reproducing bass...
     
  6. joust

    joust
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    Hmmm, not sure what you mean there Lowrider. I have the sub connected to the amp via the 'sub' pre out (is that the same as the LFE connection?).

    I would like to turn down the x-over, but as I say there is quite a drop off in performance below 60Hz on the 773e's, and I'm sure that if I set the sub to 40Hz, although some frequencies will be produced above that, they wont cover the hole from 40 to 60Hz adequetly.

    However, after discussing all the theories, any decent 4yr old plus speakers that can be bought for sensible money???? (probably up to the £500 mark).

    Joust
     
  7. Smurfin

    Smurfin
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    Joust the mission 775e's are a world apart from the 773e's, although I must admit I too have mine set to small.

    The 775s will integrate well with your centre speaker, think they can now be had brand new for £399 from superfi (used to retail for £800). They are big buggers though....
     
  8. 7ThGuest

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    Hi Joust

    Myself and petrolhead have fiddled/tweeked/played at length with these settings and contrary to popular belief we have our crossover set to about 50Hz using low level connection, all front speakers set too large;

    My front end: Kef Q35.2 FS, Q95.2C, PS 1000 sub Told off by Apoc for putting the wrong sub down!!)

    Petrolheads front end: Kef Q1's, Q9C, Rel Storm (I think)

    By the way this is not a Kef appreciation society :)

    ph is running a Denon 3802 and I am running an Onkyo 575 (soon to be replaced - within the next 8 hours :D - with a Marantz SR4300)

    I/We felt that there was definitely a lot more missing, obviously bass, from the overall feel when the speakers were changed to small.

    I use my setup for quite a bit of 2CH and I must admit IMHO the sound/presence/feel is much more involved with the speakers set at large.

    Unfortunately I do not know the 773e's but why don't you see if you can demo some of the 775e's as smurfin is intimating and try the 2 settings then you should know for sure.

    Regards

    7ThGuest :)
     
  9. Lowrider

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    Joust,

    I see you are using the LFE, low level, connection, then you need to set all speakers to small, and xover 80hz, or 60hz if your amp allows, but set the subs xover to off if you can, or maximum if you cannot turn it off...
     
  10. Reano

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    Ok I have just put my asbestos suit on but I love my Kef q55's for front and set to large. AMP crossover at 80hz Velodyne CHT-12 no probs!
     
  11. Lowrider

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    You dont need an asbestos suit, it depends on many factors, speakers, sub, bass management quality on the receiver, room, and mainly your personal taste...

    But still, I think that if you setup properly, you should gain clarity with all speakers set to small... :rolleyes:
     
  12. bob007

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    Not being rude here but to be honest I think the reason you are getting better results with the Kef Q35's set to large is mainly down to the quality of the sub, the Kef PSW1000 is only rated at 40Hz, hardly any difference between that and your main speakers. So when you are setting the Kefs to small you are replacing those frequencies that were once reproduced with some quality by a sub that is definitlely lacking.

    I think replacing the sub with one that has the ability to go lower but with quality is the answer, then try setting your speakers to small, you will definitely hear a difference, it will be like listening to a new system. ;)
     
  13. 7ThGuest

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    Thanks Bob :rolleyes:

    Something else to upgrade :D it's a good job the wife does'nt talk to me much or I would really be in dog house ;)


    That being said I am sure petrolheads goes down further than mine (REL somthing) and it still sounds better IMHO, after all its all down to taste. Maybe it's the cold affecting our hearing up here ;)

    Regards

    7ThGuest :)
     
  14. joust

    joust
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    Hi All,

    Thanks for some interesting suggestions. However, some problems - the SR5200 can only run a x-over frequency of 100Hz. I've tried this and found the sound to have less 'presence', and also the mid-bass to be directional (the sub is located to the right of my TV as you look at it). As Lowrider said - if I could turn the amp x-over to 60Hz I would probably solve my issue, but I've only just changed to this amp and the missus would kill me for changing it again! (oh and I do also like the 2ch performance of this amp - previously had a Sony 930!!!)

    So I really want to run the front speakers as full range speakers (really looking for something that can handle down to 40Hz) and lowering the sub x-over and turning up the gain (this should also give an improvement in directionality, and low end performance).

    So, any good suggestions for a front set of speakers?


    Joust
     
  15. Nobber22

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    How about scouting around for some second-hand B&W 605 S2's. They have a built-in 150w (I think) amp in the bass of each floorstander and should go plenty low. Were £1300 new, should be able to get them for around half that now.
     
  16. bob007

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    Yeh, would help if you posted the model number correctly of the piece of equipment you own. :clown: :D

    To find this have a look round the back of the sub, normally found on a small metal plate. :p
     
  17. 7ThGuest

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    Already changed Bob007, and suitably told by Apoc. I think I might need specs!!

    With that in mind Bob007, does your explanation still hold regarding the level of bass between my speakers and (new ;) ) sub.

    And how come petrolheads also sounds better IMHO. I am a comparative newbie, still, so all knowledge advice greatly accepted.

    Regards

    7ThGuest :)
     
  18. bob007

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    Can't really comment on your PS1000 :) as I have not heard one in action, the only reason I posted is because my son has the Kef PSW1000 and I knew it's limitations.

    But would think the same rule applies to any speaker sub combination, if the speakers can't reproduce the lower frequencies/full range then set to small and direct the bass to the sub. Same applies to the sub, if the sub is no good at reproducing the frequencies from the xover (say 80Hz) and below ??Hz then I would stay with the main speakers set to large. Budget subs, mid woofers what ever you want to call them ruin systems by doing this, they can't produce clean bass with out distortion (boom) and the frequencies up around 80Hz sound terrible. That's why it is better to have no sub than a poor quality sub. A good quality sub should produce deep clean low down bass with no distortion, the frequencies above that to the xover point should be of the same quality. Just my thoughts. :)
     
  19. 7ThGuest

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    Thanks for that Bob see where you're coming from.

    I think the reason I stayed away from the higher crossover 80Hz is becaues my speakers go down to 50Hz, the crossover on the sub goes from 50 - 150 and the sub lfe goes down to 24Hz.

    The speakers nor amp don't seemed pushed when going down that far and IMHO opinionit sounds better with a bit more bass from the fronts. I have checked my sub and I have the crossover set to 60 Hz, giving a reasonable overlap.

    All a bit subjective really, but many thanks for the comments :) it all helps. I feel as we have hijacked this thread a bit so I'm off to lie down in a dark roomfor a bit, hopefully someone will join me :D

    Regards

    7ThGuest :)
     
  20. petrolhead

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    If I may interupt here for a second.

    I am using the Rel Starta III.

    I can concur 7ths findings and have talked at length about this on a previous threads. Its not to everyones taste to have the fronts set to large but you must at least try it and see what you think.

    7th

    Again been thinking (I know!!) You have always thought that my LFE souded better than yours even when I had the PDR10.
    I recon the main reason is your room accustics ie the Floor. Its can be the only reason as your living room is only a tad smaller and the house is the same layout and construction. Buy yourseld a good size rug (Or borrow mine if that helps). I am sure you will see an improvement
     
  21. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Offering to lend him your wig is the kindest thing that I have seen for ages.
     
  22. 7ThGuest

    7ThGuest
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    Ian J

    I did'nt know you knew petrolhead so well (now you know where he gets his name from:D :D )

    Don't like the style brushed back with loads of gel, at least I think it's gel he was watching 'something about Mary' the last time I met him!!

    7ThGuest ;)
     
  23. bob007

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    I have tried all the various settings available and find I get better results with all speakers set to small, whether this is down to the speakers, room acoustics or personal taste, (which will play a big part) I don't know, but to the members that I have recommended switching from large to small have all been thrilled with the end results.

    A comparison I use is the beginning of "The Mummy" when the King comes riding up in his chariot, with my speakers set to large the sound of the horses as they gallop towards the screen are slightly dull and muffled, but setting the speakers to small I find there's a lot more detail to be heard. Try it. ;)

    At the end of the day it's what sounds best for you. :)
     
  24. petrolhead

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    Oh Ian, not again.

    We have told you about being nice.

    Now if you continue we will have to report you to Uncle Spectre ;)
     
  25. 7ThGuest

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    Hi Bob007

    Will definitely give it a go.

    One of the best sections we found for doing a comparison was in gladiator (ch2 I think) when they are preparing for war with the 'huns' as the battle starts you have wave after wave of arrows going out but as the shot pans from left to right you can here the wind blow across the battlefield as the scene carries on you get the alsation running, seemingly alone, again as the shot pans right to left you can hear the dog panting.

    These scenes are only a couple that seemed to highlight the difference in speaker size. Set to small the effects could not be heard IMHO when large they could be, just seems a shame to miss bits especially if your speakers are capable of it.

    Will go and have a fiddle with the 'Mummy' tonight (Oh Err Missus)

    Regards as always

    7ThGuest ;)
     

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