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What distortion/Issues are you most sensitive to?

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  • What distortion/Issues are you most sensitive to?

    All systems are a compromise. What compromise have you made to make you happiest? What compromises are you least inclined to make? What distortion or issue is more uncomfortable for you?

    I seem to get listening fatigue easily, I am working to try and set up a system that is not fatiguing and trying to figure out what is causing this and what is bothering me in a system. What has found makes you the most comfortable and energizes you to listen?

  • #2
    Perfect midrange bite, flat tonal balance, maybe a touch emphasis in the bass depending on the design and requirements, low 3rd order HD, and mainly- tamed breakups.
    Not in any particular order,
    Wolf
    "Wolf, you shall now be known as "King of the Zip ties." -Pete00t
    "Wolf and speakers equivalent to Picasso and 'Blue'" -dantheman
    "He is a true ambassador for this forum and speaker DIY in general." -Ed Froste
    "We're all in this together, so keep your stick on the ice!" - Red Green aka Steve Smith

    *InDIYana event website*

    Photobucket pages:
    http://photobucket.com/Wolf-Speakers_and_more

    My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
    http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

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    • #3
      midrange bite? Care to describe that? Also what does high 3rd order HD sound like?

      Comment


      • #4
        I don't like midrange that is recessed, murky, or lifeless and dull. If brassy ballsy trumpet is not brassy and ballsy, then I'm not happy with it.

        High 3rd order HD is not pleasing. Let's just put it that way.

        I imagine you know what breakup and cone resonance sounds like.

        Later,
        Wolf
        "Wolf, you shall now be known as "King of the Zip ties." -Pete00t
        "Wolf and speakers equivalent to Picasso and 'Blue'" -dantheman
        "He is a true ambassador for this forum and speaker DIY in general." -Ed Froste
        "We're all in this together, so keep your stick on the ice!" - Red Green aka Steve Smith

        *InDIYana event website*

        Photobucket pages:
        http://photobucket.com/Wolf-Speakers_and_more

        My blog/writeups/thoughts here at PE:
        http://techtalk.parts-express.com/blog.php?u=4102

        Comment


        • #5
          I know that breakups and cone resonance are, but not what they would sound like.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by DearSX View Post
            I know that breakups and cone resonance are, but not what they would sound like.

            Best way to describe it would be aggressive, gritty, harsh, irritating, bright, etc. Basically the exact opposite of pleasant. It can make a speaker that measures flat sound very harsh and overly bright if not properly supressed even if it measures overall flat.
            -Kerry

            www.pursuitofperfectsound.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Intermodulation distortion (IMD)

              Originally posted by DearSX View Post
              I know that breakups and cone resonance are, but not what they would sound like.
              Find a Guitar Player with a small combo amp; Cone breakup is an integral part of many a Guitarist Sound.
              "Not a Speaker Designer - Not even on the Internet"
              "If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Sydney View Post
                Intermodulation distortion (IMD)


                Find a Guitar Player with a small combo amp; Cone breakup is an integral part of many a Guitarist Sound.
                If someone could only standardize a way to measure and quantify IMD, I believe many questins will be answered.
                .

                Comment


                • #9
                  http://www.audiocheck.net/testtones_imd.php
                  http://www.nti-audio.com/en/news/let...%E2%80%A6.aspx
                  "Not a Speaker Designer - Not even on the Internet"
                  "If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Thanks Sydney, as always your tank of knowledge is bottomless!

                    I should clarify: it is measurable, what is not well understood is its effect, or how to quantify its effect on complex spectra like music.

                    If everything was woop woops, this speaker this would have been figured out long ago and we would all be weaving baskets.

                    As to the OPs question.... Sometimes its not distortion that makes a speaker (or system) unlistenable.

                    I find the most engaging and enjoyable systems are the ones I do not have to blast myself out of the room with. They typically are 'high contrast' with a very quiet background and resolve extreme shades of musical 'color'. I believe there are several elements that add up to this.

                    A major one is power response and raidiated in-room power. People are quick to blame a room when we LIVE in rooms and our hearing biases and HTRFs take care of most room issues...save the most extreme. (See Toole and Collums)

                    Acoustic enegry and how the air is excited counts. Get the crossover right in these domains, use drivers that have good step response, conciser breakup, group delay, and for the love of god control the cabinet and its resonances....And the result is usually a very listenable speaker that may not be flat in the frequency domain (not flat...+/-3dB through the midrange), but flat in the the acoustic domain in-room resulting in great spatial imaging, detail and sound power.

                    Balls are there when they are reqired at all levels, and a delicate touch keeps you pulled into the music without distraction.

                    YMMV, IMHO

                    P.S. Never neglect the source. Garbage in, garbage out. No speaker cam fix a bad source and a good speaker can sometimes reaolve the worse, worse!

                    This happened to me aboyt 15 years ago when I had e pair of JM Labs Electra towers driven with an Audio Research 100W amp. I thought the speakers sucked after enjoying them quite a bit at the audio store I worked at. I was super bent about it.... I sold the speakers and took a bath on them.....Wasted more money on a pair of speakers I heard in several systems so I knew them well.

                    The buggers sucked in my system! Low and behomd it was my Cambridge Audio CD player that was flat and lifeless, to spite good resoultion. Replaced it with a Rega Juipter and the music came to life.

                    Spent too much time and money chasing something thay was not the issue. So be careful. It can happen.
                    .

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                    • #11
                      Suppose for me it's like the difference of a Chorus in Harmony ( which is Euphonic ) vs having "someone" in the group who is flat - it stands out.
                      "Not a Speaker Designer - Not even on the Internet"
                      "If the freedom of speech is taken away, then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by DearSX View Post
                        I know that breakups and cone resonance are, but not what they would sound like.
                        Totally depends on the size of a driver, and the material it's made of.
                        Isn't it about time we started answering rhetorical questions?

                        Paul Carmody's DIY Audio Projects
                        Twitter: @undefinition1

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                        • #13
                          What am I most sensitive to? High order harmonics and high intermod cause sound to be "noisy" regardless of volume. Intermod and harmonics go hand in hand. To me there is a big difference between loud and noisy, I don't like noisey. Highly compressed audio (I am talking dynamic compression here) is noisy as well of course, as anyone who has watched a TV commercial should be very aware of.
                          Don't waste your money on a new set of speakers, You get more mileage from a cheap pair of sneakers. Next phase, new wave, dance craze, anyways it's still rock and roll to me!

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                          • #14
                            What seems to affect me the most is too much upper midrange / lower treble. If a speaker has a lot of energy in the 1-3k region, I seem to get listener fatigue very quickly. I'm sure there's more to it than that, but this is what I've noticed. I'm generally attracted to speakers with "the classic BBC dip" or speakers that have a sloping response from the bass to the treble. I think I'm just really sensitive to treble output.
                            Eric L.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by brkitup View Post
                              What seems to affect me the most is too much upper midrange / lower treble. If a speaker has a lot of energy in the 1-3k region, I seem to get listener fatigue very quickly. I'm sure there's more to it than that, but this is what I've noticed. I'm generally attracted to speakers with "the classic BBC dip" or speakers that have a sloping response from the bass to the treble. I think I'm just really sensitive to treble output.
                              IMO this is caused by two factors, one being the directivity change as the speaker crosses over from a beaming woofer (narrow directivity) to a wide dispersion tweeter. Just above the crossover point there will be more energy in the tweeters output because of the wide dispersion, even though the on-axis response may be flat. The other factor may be the distortion products excited by the woofer's breakup, which can also be looked at as excess energy in this frequency range.
                              Don't waste your money on a new set of speakers, You get more mileage from a cheap pair of sneakers. Next phase, new wave, dance craze, anyways it's still rock and roll to me!

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