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Please help me set up KEF Eggs

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by soni, Feb 10, 2005.

  1. soni

    soni
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    Hi Guys, I’m after some help please!

    I’ve got 7 x KEF Eggs - 7.1 - FL, CTR, FR, SL, SR, RSL, RSR and the Denon 3802 AV Amp.They are the Mk1's.

    7.1 Speaker Set-up

    I’ve always had the settings on the amp set-up as follows:

    Power Amp Assignment Multi/Surround Back: Surround BackSpeaker Size Small/Large: Large for all
    LFE or LFE+Main: Should I have this on LFE or LFE+Main?
    Sub Crossover Frequency: Think its set at 80hz

    However, I’ve read somewhere on here today, that within the manual for the MK2’s, KEF have recommended setting the speaker size to small, otherwise it will cause damage, but I havn’t seen this in my Mk1’s manual? Is this correct?

    I thought the KEF Eggs are quite capable of reproducing the low frequencies?

    I would appreciate if somebody could run through the above settings with me in laymans terms, as I’m not an AV expert.

    I’ve read somewhere that the crossover frequency for the sub depends on the frequency of the speakers, apparently it shouldn’t be set to close to the speakers frequency – is this correct? What should it be set at then?

    I know I havn’t got the speakers/amp set up correctly, as a classic example: When I was watching Gothika the other evening, I had to have the volume turned right up to hear the speaking, but when something nasty happened in the film and you got a large piece of action music, the sound went through the roof and was driving my Mrs up the bloody wall – I ended up sitting there for the whole evening with my finger on the remote volume control turning it up and down every five minutes – its driving me nuts!

    P.S. If the speakeers are set to small, won't this take the sound away from the speakers and send it to the sub - and then it won't sound as good will it?
     
  2. wookie

    wookie
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    All speakers should be set up as "small".
    LFE only to sub.
     

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  3. Jules Tohpipi

    Jules Tohpipi
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    "However, I’ve read somewhere on here today, that within the manual for the MK2’s, KEF have recommended setting the speaker size to small, otherwise it will cause damage, but I havn’t seen this in my Mk1’s manual? Is this correct?"

    All the Eggs should be set to small. Take a look at them - they are quite small aren't they ! Small speakers cannot handle lots of deep bass and, in extreme circumstances, it can damage them - or even destroy them completely. By telling the Denon that your Eggs are small, the Denon will then filter out all the deep bass stuff and divert it off to the subwoofer instead, which is a good place to send it, as the subwoofer is specifically designed and there for handling deep frequencies. The crossover frequency refers to the point at which the Denon will stop sending bass to the Eggs, and send it to the sub instead. If your Eggs were even smaller, then you would raise this crossover point. As for LFE or LFE + main, then you should have it set to LFE. In all likelihood, once you have set all your speakers to small, then the LFE+main option will disappear - as LFE+Main would send deep bass to the speakers. Selecting LFE will send all the subwoofer channel info to the subwoofer only. Which is exactly how you want it.


    "I thought the KEF Eggs are quite capable of reproducing the low frequencies?"

    Er... no. But then I suppose it depends how low you define low to be. 80Hz is not bad for a small speaker.


    "I’ve read somewhere that the crossover frequency for the sub depends on the frequency of the speakers, apparently it shouldn’t be set to close to the speakers frequency – is this correct? What should it be set at then?"

    As the Denon is now handling all your bass management (by setting your front speakers to small) then your crossover frequency setting on the KEF sub becomes a lot less critical. Set it to a minimum of 80Hz and increase it to taste depending on how much upper bass LFE you like to hear. Or, if the KEF sub has an input on the back that bypasses its filters, then use that input - because all your bass management is being done already in the Denon. In simple terms, make sure it is at 80Hz or above and increase to taste.

    "I know I havn’t got the speakers/amp set up correctly, as a classic example: When I was watching Gothika the other evening, I had to have the volume turned right up to hear the speaking, but when something nasty happened in the film and you got a large piece of action music, the sound went through the roof and was driving my Mrs up the bloody wall – I ended up sitting there for the whole evening with my finger on the remote volume control turning it up and down every five minutes – its driving me nuts!
    "

    Welcome to the world of proper hi-fi ! You're going to get that I'm afraid. If I whisper to you then it will be quiet, if I shout it will be loud. If I put a megaphone to my mouth such that you can hear my whisper at normal levels, then when I shout it is going to be f***ing loud ! The same goes for a good hi-fi and exploding Deathstars are very noisy objects with no respect for the neighbours. Granted, that can be very annoying at night when you want as little intrusion as possible. Check the Denon for a 'Night-Listening' option or similar in the menus (it goes under different names depending on the manufacturer - some cal it Dynamic Range Compression), this is a feature designed to reduce the disparity between quiet and loud passages in the film without you hitting the volume control. But they tend not to work that great anyway...


    "P.S. If the speakeers are set to small, won't this take the sound away from the speakers and send it to the sub - and then it won't sound as good will it?"

    In a word... "No", as you will discover, and not least because they are small speakers and need to be set-up as such.

    Don't Panic !! It will all be fine !
     
  4. soni

    soni
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    Many Thanks for attaching that manual Wookie, i didn't get anything like that with my MK1 KEF Eggs. Thanks again M8!
     
  5. soni

    soni
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    Lost Cause: Thanks very much for your detailed and easily understandable explanation. I'm just about to go into the set-up menu on the amp to change the settings as you've recommended, and i might need some additional help a bit later on if you don't mine. Its a shame that suppliers arn't as helpfull as you've been, as i purchased the Amp and Speakers from a very very well known retailer (chain) thoughout the country, and all i ever got when i asked them questions a couple of years ago (when i originally purchased the kit) was 'you've got to try the settings and adjust them to suit your own listening taste!' it sounded like it was a programmed response drummed into them during their sales training to avoid any technical training that would be required. Thanks again Lost Cause!
     
  6. soni

    soni
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    Sorry, one more question, i've got an option on the Amp for the crossover frequency of 80 100 or 120 and also a knob on the back of the Sub, do i set the amp to 80 and the control knob to 80?

    Sorry to be a pain! :thumbsup:
     
  7. Jules Tohpipi

    Jules Tohpipi
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    Hi again,

    I've just popped over to the KEF website for a double-check and yes, you ought to be setting the crossover frequency on the Denon to 80Hz. KEF quote the Eggs as being -3dB at 80Hz, so the Denon should be set accordingly. This means the Denon will be filtering out bass at 80Hz, which is exactly where the Eggs are going to start to drop off anyway.

    The setting you need to choose for the sub needs a minor amount of background explanation first, so that you can understand it properly. Because your sub is being required to do two independent jobs simultaneously:

    1. Handle bass frequencies for the Eggs.
    If you set the crossover frequency on the Denon to 80Hz, then the Denon will restrict the frequencies sent to your subwoofer to 80Hz and below, i.e. it won't let any frequencies higher than 80Hz go to the sub - those go to the Eggs. Therefore, correspondingly, on the KEF subwoofer you need to make sure that the setting is at least 80Hz. Note that the filter on the sub works in a similar manner and is also designed to prevent the sub receiving higher frequencies.

    So, as an example. If you were to set the crossover frequency on the sub to 50Hz, and the Denon is sending 80Hz downwards, then you will lose to the ether the frequencies in the 50Hz-80Hz range. They'll just vanish in the KEF filter.

    By the same token, if you set the crossover on the sub to 80Hz, then no frequencies whatsoever will vanish, because the two are interlacing (crossing over) perfectly.

    If you set the sub's crossover to 120Hz then it won't make the blind bit of difference compared with the 80Hz setting, because the subwoofer lead coming out of the Denon doesn't contain any frequencies above 80Hz anyway ! The Denon has already filtered everything out above 80Hz. This is why I said before that the sub setting on the KEF is not so critical - if the Eggs are set to small.

    2. The LFE channel
    This is entirely seperate to what is going on above, where the sub is giving the Eggs a helping hand.

    The LFE (Low Frequency Effects) channel is basically the 'subwoofer' channel. This is a dedicated bass channel recorded onto the DVD for the subwoofer and the subwoofer alone. It is independant of all the other left/right/centre etc channels. LFE channels are present on Dolby Digital and DTS recordings and is the '.1' part of 5.1.

    The LFE (subwoofer) channel ranges from just above 0Hz thru to 120Hz. That is its range.

    So, in overview, we have two things going on at once. The sub doing its own LFE channel - where really the KEF sub should be set at at least 120Hz to let all the LFE channel through. And the subs second job of giving the little Eggs a leg-up in the bass.

    Technically, you should set the filter on the KEF sub to 120Hz, as this will allow all the LFE bandwidth through. As discussed above, this will not impact on the minimum 80Hz setting required for the Eggs - so everyone's a winner.

    However, for various reasons (mostly due to a matter of boom), most audiophiles don't like hearing their subs produce sound in the 100Hz-120Hz region. Most subs get quite boomy in that region. So, most will set their subs crossover to around 90-100Hz for LFE, sacrificing that little be of bass at the top-end of the range, in order to get rid of that nasty boom that subs can emit if asked to reproduce those frequencies. Hence also why I suggested before a minimum setting of 80Hz, and to then increase it to taste.

    My fingers are hurting now from the typing, but I hope this helps and makes some kind of overall sense, and gives a background to the mechanics of it all.

    :)
     
  8. soni

    soni
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    Lost Cause: Thank you very much for a detailed, and VERY clear explanation. I especially liked the following paragraph which sank in like a brick does to water!!! (thats a new phrase i've just come up with by the way)

    'If you set the sub's crossover to 120Hz then it won't make the blind bit of difference compared with the 80Hz setting, because the subwoofer lead coming out of the Denon doesn't contain any frequencies above 80Hz anyway ! The Denon has already filtered everything out above 80Hz. This is why I said before that the sub setting on the KEF is not so critical - if the Eggs are set to small.'

    Very good example, and thanks again - i'm looking forward to setting it up this evening - as i have Blade 2 to watch on DVD and its recorded in DTS ES Discreet - so should sound pretty damn hot once i've got the audio set up as you've recommended above. Thanks again M8!!!! :clap:
     
  9. soni

    soni
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    Lost Cause: I'm back again M8! - i've set the settings as you suggested - but one last quesion if you don't mind please!

    I've looked at the back of the sub, and it also has a High Pass Output Left & Right - is this the connection you said that bypasses its filters? Should i put the subwoofer lead in that instead of the line in left that it is currently in? I wouldn't have thought so as it says high pass output, but then i suppose that could mean to things? I don't want to guess it - because if it is only high frequencies that should go in - i might end up blowing it up!

    Also, it has a phase adjust knob, but i can't seem to notice any difference with this - what is this for?

    Apologies for question after question, but the thin piece of card that came with the Mk1 KEF system is not really that informative.
     
  10. Jules Tohpipi

    Jules Tohpipi
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    Hi Soni,

    Glad things are going well so far. I think you're nearly there !

    No, the High Pass L+R outputs do not bypass the filters, and the only input you should be using is the main input i.e. Line In Left. The High Pass outputs provide a line-level output - to go onto another amplifier or similar - with the bass subtracted. Subtracted depending on what point you set the crossover frequency.

    Or to explain in another way - let's suppose you didn't have an AV amplifier, but instead a seperate stereo pre and power amplifier. You could feed the preamplifier output into the KEF sub. You set the KEF sub's crossover to 100Hz. The KEF therefore will output bass up to 100Hz. You would then feed the High Pass output onto your power amp, and on that output would be the entire music signal - minus all frequencies from 100Hz downwards (or whatever you had chosen on the crossover). You would then connect the power amp to your main speakers. So, in essence, it works just like the crossover control in the Denon. You may ask why KEF bothers with all this, but if the KHT system is going to be used with an old Dolby Pro Logic only amplifier, then those amplifiers never contained any bass management stuff, so you'd have to do it 'manually' like this to protect the Eggs.

    As for the 'phase' control then, in your particular configuration, it is not really going to make any noticeable difference - as you have discovered. There's no quick or short way of explaining what this does, that would in any way be meaningful. Other than to say that it's there to make sure that, at and around the crossover frequency, the Eggs and the subwoofer blend together correctly. For your set-up you'd need the ears of a bat to detect any difference, but for the sake of completeness here's how you should set it:

    1. Temporarily set your front left and right speakers to 'Large' on the Denon.
    2. Temporarily set the KEF's crossover frequency to its maximum setting .i.e a high figure such as 150Hz or similar.
    3. Choose a bass heavy CD, such as a dance music track.
    4. Switch the Denon to Pro Logic and play the CD at a moderate level *with all speakers and subwoofer playing together*. This test relies on the Eggs and sub performing together. Don't go mad with the volume level, but play it loud enough that you can hear it easily and clearly(damage will only occur if you act outside of your common sense).
    5. You *must* be sat at your normal listening position - this assesment must be done at the main listening position.
    6. Ask *somebody else* to flip the phase control back-and-forth for you.
    7. In this configuration, if you listen carefully, you will notice that one phase setting will offer marginally more bass (upper bass) than the other.
    8. The correct setting is the one where you can hear more bass.
    9. Now return back to your normal settings on the Denon and the KEF sub - leaving the phase control as above.

    The phase test is dependent on your room, your listening position, and the relative positioning of the L+R Eggs to the Subwoofer. If you decide not to bother with any of that, then you just might not notice the difference anyway.

    Should be sounding pretty good after all this I reckon :)
     
  11. soni

    soni
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    Thanks again Lost Cause - your a diamond Geeeeeeeezer!

    I reckon i'll have the best sounding AV kit in town by the time i've finished thanks to your advise - although it might cost me my marriage in the process!!!!

    I'll be awaiting your invoice for consultation fees! - Damn, i better put the house on the market on Monday!!!!

    Thanks Again M8 for all your detailed and prompt advise - Its people like you that make these forums what they are!!!!!! :clap:
     
  12. Jules Tohpipi

    Jules Tohpipi
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    Nice one ! Nice system. Enjoy !

    :)
     
  13. IanMcc

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    Hi Lost Cause,

    I have found your explanations on this thread extremely helpful and very easy to understand, but I have just one question. You mention setting the speakers to small - how do you do this? Does the amps auto set-up not do this for you?

    Thanks, Ian
     
  14. Jules Tohpipi

    Jules Tohpipi
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    Hi Ian,

    No, the auto configuration cannot cover this, so you have to do it manually. There will be a set-up menu somewhere on your amplifier, with a sub-menu of 'Speaker Sizes/Set-up' or similar, and you can manually configure them in there. This is assuming that you have a Dolby Digital compatible amplifier.
     
  15. IanMcc

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    Hi Lost Cause,

    I have been finding that my front speakers are vibrating with basslines on some dance tracks when the volume is only at -17db!! I thought that maybe my front speakers where set to "large" on my Yamaha 750 amp and therefore getting lower frequencies sent to them than they should be handling, but I have since found the setting on my amp and the auto set-up had already set the speakers to small !!

    However when I was in the set-up area, I noticed that the auto set-up has set the crossover to 160Hz, which would seem to be too high from reading your earlier posts. You seemed to suggest 80Hz as good point for setting the crossover, but if I have understood your advice correctly, this would only result in more low frequencies (between 80 and 160Hz) going to the front satellites, which would only serve to make the vibrations even worse. When I originally went to see what the crossover had been set to on my amp, I was hoping it had been set too low, which could then be increased to transer bass from my satellites to the sub therefore reduced the vibrations. Obviously I am now at a loss as to what to do - either I have completely misunderstood your posts, or I have a problem with my speakers.

    Any advice? :lease:

    Ian
     

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