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  • Balance problem

    I recently added new electronics and new speakers (Solstice kit). At home, the left channel appears to be louder than the right. I tried reversing the right/left speaker leads from the amp, but the problem did not change sides, so I don't think its in the electronics. I thought it might be the room or the furniture, because the wall on the affected side has French doors which are perpetually open, but I tried closing the doors and nothing changed. That leaves the speaker itself. Is there anything which could make it less sensitive or efficient than its sibling on the other side? I did not notice an imbalance of any sort when these were played at InDIYana this year. I did drop one of the tweeters during the build, but it didn't seem to have any apparent damage. Thoughts?

  • #2
    Placing the 2 cabs side by side ( and away from reflections ) and feeding a mono noise signal would also help make any differences more discernible.
    Using test tones measure voltage along the signal path to completely eliminate electronics as culprit.
    A SPL db meter might confirm speaker disparity.
    "Not a Speaker Designer - Not even on the Internet"
    “Pride is your greatest enemy, humility is your greatest friend.”
    "If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."

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    • #3
      Physically swap speakers left to right. You didn't say you tried that.

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      • #4
        I have the same issue at home. The only solution I've found was using the DSP manager in J. River and playing with delay or distance.
        "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

        http://www.diy-ny.com/

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Sydney View Post
          Placing the 2 cabs side by side ( and away from reflections ) and feeding a mono noise signal would also help make any differences more discernible.
          Using test tones measure voltage along the signal path to completely eliminate electronics as culprit.
          A SPL db meter might confirm speaker disparity.
          Somewhere I do have an SPL meter, so if I can find it I will try that. I have no way to check the voltage in the signal path, but I can try a mono signal.
          And I can try swapping the right and left speakers, no problem.
          But if the problem is in the electronics, wouldn't you expect it to change sides when I reversed the speaker leads?
          This is not a huge difference, but the left channel always seems louder to me.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by djg View Post
            Physically swap speakers left to right. You didn't say you tried that.
            Agreed- that's the next step. If it moves, it is the speaker. If it remains in the same place, it's the room or setup.
            Later,
            Wolf
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            • #7
              Originally posted by skatz View Post
              But if the problem is in the electronics, wouldn't you expect it to change sides when I reversed the speaker leads?
              Yup.
              This is not a huge difference, but the left channel always seems louder to me.
              A subtle difference - perhaps in the high frequency section? Drivers,etc aren't precisely matched.
              "Not a Speaker Designer - Not even on the Internet"
              “Pride is your greatest enemy, humility is your greatest friend.”
              "If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."

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              • #8
                Originally posted by djg View Post
                Physically swap speakers left to right. You didn't say you tried that.
                +1, the last test to isolate if it is fact the speakers. Swapping the leads at the amp with no difference eliminated the everything up to the amp's output (so check the wires as well (perhaps a bad connector).

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                • #9
                  All you have to do is connect a DMM across the cabinet leads (so, in parallel w/the amp). Play something the same (that's non-varying) on both channels and read AC voltage. I'd try 100Hz, 1kHz, and 10kHz for starters. Then maybe 50Hz, 500Hz, and 5k.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Chris Roemer View Post
                    All you have to do is connect a DMM across the cabinet leads (so, in parallel w/the amp). Play something the same (that's non-varying) on both channels and read AC voltage. I'd try 100Hz, 1kHz, and 10kHz for starters. Then maybe 50Hz, 500Hz, and 5k.
                    OK that I can do, but likely not until the weekend. I thought he meant at points within the amp!
                    What exactly would I be looking for with this set up?

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                    • #11
                      You're just verifying that the signal through the "chain" is equal (for both stereo channels) at your speaker cabs.
                      Also, most would have tried swapping the L/R cabs between channels by now.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Chris Roemer View Post
                        All you have to do is connect a DMM across the cabinet leads (so, in parallel w/the amp). Play something the same (that's non-varying) on both channels and read AC voltage. I'd try 100Hz, 1kHz, and 10kHz for starters. Then maybe 50Hz, 500Hz, and 5k.
                        Make that a true RMS DMM.

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                        • #13
                          Also, doesn't the Solstice have dual woofers? Make sure they're not fighting each other (out of phase).

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Chris Roemer View Post
                            Also, doesn't the Solstice have dual woofers? Make sure they're not fighting each other (out of phase).

                            Yes it does, but I was extremely careful about that in building them, and Jeff B listened to them and heard no problem. I don't think that is the issue. I don't have an RMS DMM, just ordinary DMM, can I still use that? \
                            In fact a whole room full of people at InDIYana heard them, and there were no imbalance problems, or any problems noted with woofers being out of phase; bass was robust for the size the drivers are.

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                            • #15
                              You don't need an "RMS" voltmeter. You're not trying to calculate/estimate a sensitivity spec here. You just want to know that you're feeding both cabs (say, a 1000Hz sine wave) the same voltage. It won't even matter if your meter is off, as long as you use the same meter for both sides. You just want to know relatively if the cabs are getting the same power.

                              If they measure the same @ 1k, then try a few more tones in whatever range you SEEM to feel the imbalance is in. 1k should cover voice fairly well. Run 1-3 octaves lower for bass. 1-3 higher for higher registers/harmonics. Did you do that speaker swap yet? Cab position can sometimes make a significant difference in presentation.

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