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Midwest Audio Fest

It’s that time audio enthusiasts!

Registration for the 2019 Speaker Design Competition is now open! Visit midwestaudiofest.com for details and to list your speaker project.
We are excited to see all returning participants, and look forward to meeting some new designers this year, as well!

Be sure your plans include a visit to the Parts Express Tent Sale for the lowest prices of the year, and the Audio Swap Meet where you can buy and trade with other audio fans.

We hope to see you this summer!

Vivian and Jill
2 of 2 < >

Midwest Audio Fest

It’s that time audio enthusiasts! Registration for the 2019 Speaker Design Competition is now open! Visit midwestaudiofest.com for details and to list your speaker project. We are excited to see all returning participants, and look forward to meeting some new designers this year, as well! Be sure your plans include a visit to the Parts Express Tent Sale for the lowest prices of the year, and the Audio Swap Meet where you can buy and trade with other audio fans. We hope to see you this summer! Vivian and Jill
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Sound Quality:* What matters and what doesen't?

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  • #31
    Originally posted by isaeagle4031 View Post

    Don't do what exactly?
    I suppose if I had to equate what it is i’m going on about to something it would be tube rolling.......as in ‘cap rolling’.

    Those of you who say there is no difference in sound between caps of the same type and value are missing out on another level of tuning.

    Comment


    • #32
      Originally posted by kevintomb View Post

      I was in a botique antique shop a few years back, and heard the most MAGICAL sounds ever....

      They were playing some new agey type stuff, calming tranquil music, with sounds of water etc...it just floated all over the ceiling and filled the room.
      The room had a Barrel vaulted ceiling and the huge spacious sound just amazed me!

      I asked the owner just what expensive sound system he was using to get this huge magical sound, and what speakers he was using, as I could not even see speakers or anything.

      He pointed up to an alcove below the ceiling and I saw nothing.....
      He said.,..."That white metal thing"


      I looked closer, and it was those Radio Shack Minimus 7's in white metal color, 8 of them arranged around this shelf at the top of the wall and pointing towards the ceiling...!!!

      He was using some 1970's stereo receiver!

      That was my lesson, in realizing how much placement and the room matters and how applications can work well in some set ups.
      Oh, I'm not trivializing the setup or the room. I have a listening room with numerous ceiling absorbers, etc. to get the sound I want. But everybody has a slightly different idea what a good speaker should sound like.
      Francis

      Comment


      • #33
        Originally posted by kevintomb View Post

        I was in a botique antique shop a few years back, and heard the most MAGICAL sounds ever....

        They were playing some new agey type stuff, calming tranquil music, with sounds of water etc...it just floated all over the ceiling and filled the room.
        The room had a Barrel vaulted ceiling and the huge spacious sound just amazed me!

        I asked the owner just what expensive sound system he was using to get this huge magical sound, and what speakers he was using, as I could not even see speakers or anything.

        He pointed up to an alcove below the ceiling and I saw nothing.....
        He said.,..."That white metal thing"


        I looked closer, and it was those Radio Shack Minimus 7's in white metal color, 8 of them arranged around this shelf at the top of the wall and pointing towards the ceiling...!!!

        He was using some 1970's stereo receiver!

        That was my lesson, in realizing how much placement and the room matters and how applications can work well in some set ups.
        I always liked the way those old minimus 7’s sounded......but yes a good room makes a big difference, in fact I kept that in mind when I designed the house we’re in the home stretch of completing.

        Comment


        • #34
          (I'm new to this hobby so my comments are to taken with a grain of salt :-).

          Ultimately, I think it's okay to experiment with different premiums caps and drivers. It's all a matter of what pleases oneself.

          If my budget allows, and a specific designer has recommended certain quality caps for a kit they are offering - then I proceed with purchasing.

          Sometimes I think my ears are just poor at picking up slight nuances in sound. Maybe I can hear the difference between a $2 cap vs $12 cap - but I don't think I can hear the difference between a $12 cap and $120 cap.

          This does not mean that those who claim they can hear the difference are BS-ing. All it simply means is I (personally) can't hear the difference. I would never discourage anyone who feels they hear differences to change their ways or opinions (whether it relates to caps, coils. drivers, power cables, speakers cables, etc.).

          For me, despite not hearing the difference, if Wolf, Jeff B., Paul C., and other well respected DIYer recommend certain premium parts, I don't mind trying it (again - as long as it doesn't break my budget).

          I have decided for myself that before spending $100s/$1,000s on premium crossover parts and drivers, I owe to myself to employ more room acoustics treatment. I've done a little bit of work already and the improvement has been leaps and bounds above any crossover components upgrade, any power cable/interconnect/speaker cable upgrade, and any amplifier/pre-amplifier upgrade. I know room treatment can also be expensive but it doesn't have to be if you don't mind DIY.

          Lastly, I just recently built a speaker kit that uses the Accuton C158. I know it was mentioned earlier that Accuton distortion measurements are nothing to write home about, but I'm really impressed with the sonic characteristics of this driver. It's weird but it has a really detailed and pleasing sound all at the same time. Its a driver where, if the sound quality of the recording is good - then the reproduced sound is incredible. If the sound recording is poor - the resulting reproduced sound is also not very pleasing to listen to. So, not sure about other Accuton models, but my personal experience with the C158 has been a good one.

          Comment


          • #35
            Originally posted by dkalsi View Post

            I have decided for myself that before spending $100s/$1,000s on premium crossover parts and drivers, I owe to myself to employ more room acoustics treatment. I've done a little bit of work already and the improvement has been leaps and bounds above any crossover components upgrade, any power cable/interconnect/speaker cable upgrade, and any amplifier/pre-amplifier upgrade. I know room treatment can also be expensive but it doesn't have to be if you don't mind DIY.
            .
            I don’t believe investing time and money into something that your going to keep is a bad thing,100s anyways!
            1000s is problematical up into diminishing return territory......the rule of thumb I commonly see agreed upon is spend no more on the crossover than the drivers.

            I ganked the 10uf Jupiter’s I had for my next project (cinema 10s) to try in my burhoes (glad I did) and I’m saving for some Jupiter VT to replace them with as the cinema 10 has a horn tweeter I looked for a cap with the most descriptions of smooth I could find.....these are $130 apiece (10uf) and that is the most extravagant as I ever plan to be.

            And if I find that They’re not worthy i will surely not cry about it......they’ll just go into the box marked ‘Harley parts’ !

            i don’t think the op should be discouraged to try a few different versions of the same thing as long as it doesn’t take food off the table.....I mean it’s just money right?

            bob

            Edit...I meant to mention, I tried to get the wife to allow a couple of those Tetrus looking wood block panels on each side of the lp but it was epic failure......I think those things look so cool, whether or not they actually do anything!

            Comment


            • #36
              Originally posted by dkalsi View Post

              Lastly, I just recently built a speaker kit that uses the Accuton C158. I know it was mentioned earlier that Accuton distortion measurements are nothing to write home about, but I'm really impressed with the sonic characteristics of this driver. It's weird but it has a really detailed and pleasing sound all at the same time. Its a driver where, if the sound quality of the recording is good - then the reproduced sound is incredible. If the sound recording is poor - the resulting reproduced sound is also not very pleasing to listen to. So, not sure about other Accuton models, but my personal experience with the C158 has been a good one.
              I was going to stay out of this thread but things often get taken out of context and information gets blown out of proportion. Based on Curt's measurements which do agree with the factory measurements, 3rd order distortion is down 55 - 60 db from 500 Hz to 2,500 Hz based on in cabinet measurements at 2.8 volts which is a normal listening volume and correlates to about .1% distortion. I agree with Dhar the C158's are a spectacular sounding driver. It's obvious to me, cone material does matter.

              That said, there are some Accuton drivers that measure extremely well and others that don't, so pick wisely.

              My $0.02 worth....

              Jim

              Comment


              • #37
                Originally posted by dkalsi View Post
                (I'm new to this hobby so my comments are to taken with a grain of salt :-).

                Ultimately, I think it's okay to experiment with different premiums caps and drivers. It's all a matter of what pleases oneself.

                If my budget allows, and a specific designer has recommended certain quality caps for a kit they are offering - then I proceed with purchasing.

                Sometimes I think my ears are just poor at picking up slight nuances in sound. Maybe I can hear the difference between a $2 cap vs $12 cap - but I don't think I can hear the difference between a $12 cap and $120 cap.

                This does not mean that those who claim they can hear the difference are BS-ing. All it simply means is I (personally) can't hear the difference. I would never discourage anyone who feels they hear differences to change their ways or opinions (whether it relates to caps, coils. drivers, power cables, speakers cables, etc.).

                .
                I think this comment is case by case specific though.

                On THIS FORUM, I tend to take comments and opinions about sound and components with a lot more believability.

                On OTHER FORUMS I frequent at times, have to take many of the claims with a grain of salt.
                Some of the descriptions I read are so far out of reality, they can become laughable at times....(other forums)

                I have a phrase that I think sums up "Some" of the more questionable or debatable things........

                There are things people hear, and then there are things people "think" they hear. 2 slightly different things.

                One can easily be shown with a blind test, one fails the same standards.

                But either way the opinions in here are mostly solid in my mind.

                Comment


                • #38

                  When I put a large value capacitor(30 uf and up to 500 uf) in series with a speaker(mainly to protect my amplifier in the subsonic region)I immediately noticed a change in sound quality usually more grainy and less clean than before . The same thing happened when I inserted a small value capacitor (such as 0.022uf) into the line level input of an amplifier( this should act like a high pass for the amplifier and speaker). I would expect a slightly reduction in bass but the masking effect was all through the audio range and this bothers me. I wonder if other people have the same experience as I had or I am blessed with very sensitive ears?

                  In the case of speaker level capacitors, NP electrolytes sounded the worst. But they did sound better when by-passed with other capacitors of higher quality. The following large film capacitors I bought on eBay also changed the sound quality even by-passed with other small value film capacitors.

                  Cornell Dubilier, 947C361K801CAIS, Polypropylene Film Capacitor, 360uF, 800VDC

                  NWL "1510-0403-01 A" industrial Capacitor, T00223. 245uF, 250 Volts, 3%

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Originally posted by dkalsi View Post
                    (I'm new to this hobby so my comments are to taken with a grain of salt :-).


                    Sometimes I think my ears are just poor at picking up slight nuances in sound. Maybe I can hear the difference between a $2 cap vs $12 cap - but I don't think I can hear the difference between a $12 cap and $120 cap.

                    This does not mean that those who claim they can hear the difference are BS-ing. All it simply means is I (personally) can't hear the difference. I would never discourage anyone who feels they hear differences to change their ways or opinions (whether it relates to caps, coils. drivers, power cables, speakers cables, etc.).

                    .
                    Depending on what forum you are on. (this one seems fairly rooted in reality and sensible) you will read all types of claims.
                    Some huge, some inflated and many inferring the claimant is hearing something that only a few are privy to hearing.

                    I have found over the years, that claims are a dime a dozen and actual verified claims are very rare

                    Take that all with a grain of salt also!

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Drjay View Post
                      Hi Gentlemen,
                      This is a bit of a follow up to my query as to what speaker folks found most impressive. I just finished reading Floyd Toole's book, Sound Reproduction: The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms, Third Edition and his view is that sound quality is primarily related to very flat on axis response, smooth off axis response and bass quality. He seems to think issues of driver construction, cone material, cabinet design, crossover topology, phase, distortion and component quality are much less critical in and of themselves and will be reflected in the FR. That is, as if, " When you get the on and off axis FR right, it is due to everything else being right."

                      On the other hand, on Tech Talk it is not infrequently said the a speaker can measure well and sound lousy. I noticed that many of the speakers refferenced in the "most impressive" thread had very expensive drivers and wonder if something about driver quality is a key to great sound.
                      First of all, one of Floyd Toole's fingernail clippings contains more audio wisdom than my entire body. :-)

                      What Toole names are the most important things.

                      As far as driver construction, yes -- there are aspects of drivers not captured by FR and off-axis response.

                      Paper cone drivers tend to have a pleasing sound. That's why you tend to see them in high end woofers (Scan-Speak, etc) even though on a technical level they are inferior to lighter, stiffer materials. Most people would say that paper cones probably slightly smear things in the time domain, which won't show up in FR measurements but nonetheless sounds pleasing to the ear in moderation.

                      Another example would be ribbon tweeters. They have their own unique sound that again is not something you can know by looking strictly at FR measurements. Prevailing wisdom here is that because a ribbon tweeter can travel at a tremendous rate of speed it reproduces those microtransients in a way that a dome tweeter typically cannot.

                      However, Toole's conclusion still stands. I know from experience that even mediocre drivers can sound pretty darn nice with sufficient amounts of coercion via Audyssey, EQ, or really heroic passive crossover efforts.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        These are some of the crossovers used in the Revel performa3 series (up to 5K). Yes they use electrolytic caps and what appears to be Bennics caps. Yet they have rave review! I don't believe caps make a significant difference... and if it does, I don't it's worth the price. BTW, these revel performa3 measurement extremly well, flat on axis with controlled off axis behavior.



                        Chuck

                        PS : Forgot, even TAD Refence one (almost 80k) use electrolytic caps.

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          The horse has been beat so much there is just a turd and a hoof left.
                          craigk

                          " Voicing is often the term used for band aids to cover for initial design/planning errors " - Pallas

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by craigk View Post
                            The horse has been beat so much there is just a turd and a hoof left.
                            Magic unicorn hoof?
                            Francis

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by fpitas View Post

                              magic unicorn hoof?
                              yes
                              craigk

                              " Voicing is often the term used for band aids to cover for initial design/planning errors " - Pallas

                              Comment


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by craigk View Post
                                The horse has been beat so much there is just a turd and a hoof left.
                                Thanks Craig, I haven't laughed that hard in a long time.

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