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Rel Strata II - What the dials mean?

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by Mark Ward, Jul 11, 2002.

  1. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Just got a S/H Rel Strata II to compare to my M&K V75 Mark II

    The winner stays, but I need some info tto help me set it up.

    The three dials are:- FINE, GAIN & COARSE. How do I use these to setup/configure the crossover freqs for the sub?

    Also... Advice on the Rel site recommends connecting the Neutric connector as well as the phono for AC3 setup. The Strata II has no mode switch, so will it be OK receiving the speaker level signal simultaneously to the Phono connection?

    Other advice on the setup page on the site recommends NOT using the spikes???

    Thanks for any help,

    Mark.
     
  2. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Mark,

    eric@rel.net is very helpful and emailed me a manual which covers all of the St series.

    If you PM me your email address I will forward it to you
     
  3. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Hi Ian,

    I've PM's you my email address.

    I tried the Rel today and found it very "boomy" compared to the M&K.

    I've calibrated at +3dB above the rest but it's just too much. I'm sure after I've played with the setup I'll be a lot happier. I couldn't currently describe it as even remotely integrated into the rest of my system.

    Thanks for your help,

    Mark.
     
  4. Ian J

    Ian J
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    I bought a second hand Storm which I find integrates quite well with my M&K speakers although I had to set it up by ear.

    I also found it to be way to loud when using an SPL meter so used the traditional method of turning up the wick until I could hear it, turning it down a bit then turning it down a bit more.

    Testing on the depth charges in U571 shows it to be about right
     
  5. ChuckWagon

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    Ian

    You lost me on the technical stuff there.

    :D

    Chuck
     
  6. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Chuck,

    I am sure that by the time you've outgrown your Toys R Us plastic cassette player you will be ready for a more advanced lesson in plugging in the headphones to your Walkman.
     
  7. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Thanks for the manual Ian, most informative and helpful.

    Unfortunately I appear to have messed my system setting up bigtime. I can get it better than I did before, but not nearly as good as I had with the MK75 Mark II.

    Taken from Rel here
    Well I did this and it definitely sounds much better for music, but it's just too much for movies.

    Should I really be connecting the Neutrik AND the phono connector? Using Avia my sub registers at +6db now on the front L & R over the other speakers. Understandable as the mains are in effect getting 2 feeds.

    I've been playing all afternoon and am getting no-where. Looking at my setup in my sigfile, could someone recommend some settings to start from?

    Should I really use Neutrik AND Phono (not switchable on Strata II so both will be always active)?

    What should I set the Rel X-Over at?
    What should I set the Lex SUB Xover setting at?

    If I set my speakers to small (always prefered the sound on LARGE previously) should I set the Xover @ 40Hz or 80Hz.

    I've got the kids home now and all weekend and my system is sounding...well...relatively pants really.

    Any help out there please?

    Thanks,

    Mark.
     
  8. Jase

    Jase
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    Hi Mark

    Not sure what the Strata 2 does in terms of its crossover, does it ignore it at low level?? Or does it affect both High & Low level at the same time??:confused:

    Jase
     
  9. Lowrider

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    I don´t know the Lex, but make sure the bass goes only to the sub, not sub + main...
     
  10. Ian J

    Ian J
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    If it's any help I have the sub crossover set to 80Hz with the amp crossover also at 80Hz on my Storm and only use the low level connection with the speakers set to small but my speakers won't go as low as yours.

    If you prefer the sound of yours set to large, keep them that way with the sub crossover set to a maximum of 50Hz

    To compare the Strata to the M&K the obvious way to start is with exactly the same settings as you had on the M&K.
     
  11. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Doing this makes the M&K a winner by an absolute mile, unfortunately I already sold it.

    I'm sure that the Rel will be better than the M&K when configured properly.

    Thanks for your help, I'll try your settings & work from there.

    Cheers,

    Mark.
     
  12. Lowrider

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    Ian,

    The LFE output can go up to 120hz, so I think you should either disable the sub´s crossover, if you can, or set it to maximum, I disable it in my Stratas...
     
  13. Lowrider

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    Mark,

    Start with only low level LFE connection, the crossover in the AV set to 80hz, thats all your surrounds and center will handle, all speakers small, crossover in the sub disabled, or maximum... and play with the volume and location until bass is ok for you...

    This is the way I have my setup, but crossover at 50hz, all my speakers handle down to 40hz at least...

    Next you can complicate, if you like your speakers set to large, do try that, (actually the info between 80hz and 50hz is very important for music, and I am sure your front speakers play it better than any sub), connect the high leads, set the sub´s high crossover to just under your front speaker´s low freq limit, around 40hz, I guess, set it to bypass the crossover for low, and adjust the volume for high, I assume it has separate controls, and don´t forget to set bass to sub only in the AV, if you have that option, otherwise it must be default...

    I hope you get my English... ;) Have a nice weekend...
     
  14. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Your English is better than that of many Englishmen on this forum :D
     
  15. COPEY

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    Hey Mark,

    I sold all my multi channel kit years ago so my experience is based purely on using the High level input for 2 channel purposes only.
    My Strata II originally came with an XLR connection But after I experienced bad humming when the Strata was sitting idle the XLR was replaced with the Neutrik by the dealer on REL's advise.

    I now use the Strata with a pair of Mission 773e's and have the REL set as follows:

    Course - Position 2
    Fine - Position 1
    Gain - At about 10 O’clock
    Phase - 180

    The Crossover setting's equal 43Hz and at that setting it integrates seamlessly with the Missions and I’m sure reaches bellow the quoted 20Hz limit without ever sounding boomy.

    I auditioned the M&K range before buying the REL and in my opinion the REL was far Superior.
     
  16. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Whilst that may work for music, with DD and DTS films you will be missing all of the LFE that is only present at the sub output stage on the amp, if you only connect with the speaker level connections.
     
  17. COPEY

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    I always found the LFE channel a bit unrealistic my self and so never bothered using it as the REL provided all the Grin factor I needed.

    A scene in Braveheart (Laserdisc Version) after William buries his dad and the young Murron hands him a thistle, all you here is the wind and the music (A Gift Of A Thistle) ...but there is more there, the REL was making hardly any sound but the driver was going ten to the dozen and shifting some serious air???

    The REL was loading the room big time and making you FEEL the moment rather than hearing it...in my opinion that was better than any huge explosion and indicates that when properly setup the REL will go very low indeed without the help of a LFE input.
     
  18. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Many thanks for all help, I'll report back tomorrow when I've tried all your suggestions.

    Mark.
     
  19. Lowrider

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    Thanks Ian... :blush:
     
  20. kwijibo

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    Why???


    Because you want it to as you've financially committed to it?

    M&K have been designing, manufacturing and installing subwoofers in both domestic and studio set ups for over 30 years. Perhaps they know something about it!
     
  21. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    My previous comments
    • 1/I tried the Rel today and found it very "boomy" compared to the M&K
      2/Doing this makes the M&K a winner by an absolute mile, unfortunately I already sold it.
      3/I'm sure that the Rel will be better than the M&K when configured properly
    Kwijibo said:-
    I accept that M&K know something about bass but Rel also know a little bit.

    I've found that the people on these forums really know their stuff and too many people sing the praises of the Rel ST-range for there not to be something in it.

    I can immediatley recognise the "tonal?" and musical qualities of the StrataII are far superior to the M&K model I owned but with no manual and advise I couldn't set the StrataII up properly.

    Truth be known, I'm still not there yet but now I understand what I'm doing it's merely finding the optimum config for my location.

    I found the M&K v-75II to be a fine sub, however it had some characteristic I didn't like. I didn't like that fact I had to choose between high & low level connection, with the Rels you can connect both.

    I also found that I couldn't stop odd rumbles from the sub when watching TV where the freq. was just borderline sub range, it was very distracting. The Rel's roll-in (if that's the right term) is more subtle.

    The Rel is downward firing and that's ideal in my room where the only real option for positioning the sub meant that the M&K fired into the back of a chair at a range of 75cm.

    The Rel has a more powerful amp too.

    I actually paid less for the Rel that I did for the M&K so it wasn't a financial move.

    Neither of these subs will be my final purchase. I hope to visit the AV Forum "Power Buys" area when I can afford too. But like others in these forums I like to get the best out of what equipment I currently have.

    Sorry if I offended your obviously M&K biased leanings but this was an objective decision.

    Mark.
     
  22. kwijibo

    kwijibo
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    Mark,

    Sorry, came in after far too many glasses of wine last night and was feeling antagonistic. Good luck with the Rel.
     
  23. Lowrider

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    I you set the AV to NO sub, (the front speakers default to large), and the .1 (LFE), is routed to them, so COPEY is probably still getting all those special effects...

    The result is that he is overworking is amplifier and speakers with that non musical stuff, as REL´s high is in paralell, the sub still gets the low end, up to 43hz, as well as the front speakers...

    The reason it doesn´t bother him now, I suppose, is that the sub is set to lower frequency and volume, so he ears it less...

    COPEY,

    Sorry I mentioned you without knowing you or your setup well, it was just to make my point... :blush: , anyway, I think that if you setup the low connection carefully it might be advantageous, less distortion on the main channels, (oops, maybe your power and speakers are good enough not to be affected by it), then again, you probably already tried it and dindn´t like it. Please dont take me wrong, just trying to help... :)
     
  24. COPEY

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    Lowrider,

    No problem... I have been running the REL like that since 1996 with no problems. Maybe I have a slightly different model from the others here?

    Perhaps I'm just lucky with my placement and general room dimensions so I get the best out of the REL?
     
  25. Lowrider

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    Sure, if it works don´t change it... ;)

    I have all kinds of pressure from "audiophiles" to use the high level connection, including from the guys where I buy my hifi, but then they visit, and they like very much what they ear... :cool:

    So do I, and I am not going to bother trying, plus I already have enough wires running all over the place... :(
     
  26. rory29

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    Hi Mark,
    you could try?
    setting mode to 2 this bypasses all the filtering inside
    your sub <it does on my storm 3> connect with low level
    connection only set your speakers to small and your lex
    to 80hz ,now using the low level control you can adjust
    the subs volume, bring up your channel levels and come about
    6-10 dbs under the rest of your speakers it works for me

    PS setting the mode to 4 reverses the phase this aslo can help
    Rory.:)
     
  27. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    Hi Rory
    Strata II has no mode control, I feel this would be a good solution other wise.

    I've currently given up on the high level connector and I'm just using the RCA phono low level one.

    I calibrate my system to 80dB and as such the channel output to the main speakers is fed to the high level sub connection at that level. This is great when only using high level, but the gain control on the strata affects both high & low level signals.

    With the LFE channel calibrated to 83dB the high level gets further amplification via the Rel's GAIN control making it just too over the top.

    The Lex allows +10dB to -10dB range for each channel, but with the front high level connector at the correct GAIN setting the low level connector would need to be way more than +10db.

    Official solution.... Use low level for now & see how it goes. I'd have loved to use high level for 2-Ch music but it just won't work out.

    Thanks for all help,

    Mark.
     
  28. Lowrider

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    Mark,

    Does the Strata II have just one set o controls that affects both high and low level inputs, or do they just affect high level ?

    Does the Lex have a direct mode, stereo without any processing, it must have...
     
  29. Mark Ward

    Mark Ward
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    I'm not sure about the crossover settings control but the Gain control affects both High & Low Level connections.
    Lex has a fabulous direct mode, you can take a digital in directly to the Lex's DACS with no signal processing what so ever or you can use analogue in to use the DVD players Dacs. With a Lex & an FMJ27 I'm spoilt for choice here.

    The problems I'm having are entirely movie related.
     
  30. Lowrider

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    Mark,

    You have one alternative, and it might be better with music, on your setup, even though you will be putting more strain in your front channels, try it, you can always go back...

    Its the same Copey is doing: set no sub and front to large in the LEX, connect high level, set the crossover just under the lowest response of your 2.2, about 40hz, fine tune for your taste with a bassy CD, TAG´s test one has great tracks...

    This is the audiophile setup... ;)

    Tell us what you prefer, good luck...

    Oops, I almost forgot, leave the center and surround small, and crossover 80hz, as now...
     

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