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  1. #1
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    I don't know why, but my speakers just got better!

    I finally got around to setting up the stereo in the new house over the weekend. I put in the new Opeth just to make sure it all worked and HOLY SMOKES the sound just blew me away!!!

    I'm not sure exactly what's different...my speakers, which are middle of the road but decent speakers, were crisp and clear like I've never heard them before.

    I did make a few changes. First of all, we were using a Sony DVD player to play CDs on. I liked that I could load it up with five disks and put it on shuffle. But just before we moved I bought a Toshiba DVD recorder and that's what I used to spin the Opeth disk on over the weekend. Would a new player change the sound like this?

    Second. I used to run the audio of the DVD/CD player directly through the receiver. When I hooked it up this weekend, I ran the audio to the TV first and then the TV runs through the receiver. Logic would tell me that this might dilute the sound, but could it be that this route improved the sound?

    Three. Different house = different room = different accoustics. The set-up (i.e. distance from speakers) is essentially the same. But no more carpet, lots of wood floor and trim, and nothing on the walls yet. Could it be that the room just has better accoustics?

    Up until Sunday, I had only played the Opeth CD on my car stereo and the sound wasn't blowing me away. When I put it on the home stereo I really wasn't expecting much sound-wise. So I was very pleasantly suprised when I got such great sonics from it.

    I don't know exactly what's different. But I may not need that speaker upgrade after all.

  2. #2
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    It's the room.
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForeverAutumn
    Three. Different house = different room = different accoustics. The set-up (i.e. distance from speakers) is essentially the same. But no more carpet, lots of wood floor and trim, and nothing on the walls yet. Could it be that the room just has better accoustics?
    Bingo. We moved 5 years ago, and the main system went from a cramped speaker placement configuration (due to size constraints) to a MUCH larger room w/ wall-to-wall carpet and a vaulted ceiling. Made an immense difference with my (ahem) mid-fi system...i.e. Boston powered towers, Onkyo receiver, Toshiba DVD.

    All I can say is, congratulations! And enjoy!
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  4. #4
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForeverAutumn

    I did make a few changes. First of all, we were using a Sony DVD player to play CDs on. I liked that I could load it up with five disks and put it on shuffle. But just before we moved I bought a Toshiba DVD recorder and that's what I used to spin the Opeth disk on over the weekend. Would a new player change the sound like this?
    . Possible, newer digital players continue to put slightly better, upgraded components in them.

    Second. I used to run the audio of the DVD/CD player directly through the receiver. When I hooked it up this weekend, I ran the audio to the TV first and then the TV runs through the receiver. Logic would tell me that this might dilute the sound, but could it be that this route improved the sound?
    Can't make it better - most you could hope for is equal sound. I would run the cd player/dvd player directly to the receiver for best sound quality where possible.

    Three. Different house = different room = different accoustics. The set-up (i.e. distance from speakers) is essentially the same. But no more carpet, lots of wood floor and trim, and nothing on the walls yet. Could it be that the room just has better accoustics?
    Here's the odd thing - people go out of their way to treat their room with exactly what you don't have - carpet, stuff on walls etc. You are hearing a more lively sound for sure. I'm guessing you prefer it.

    Are the speakers further out from the wall (2-4 feet) further away from side walls (2-4 ft) or is the room itself bigger (higher ceiling, longer dimensions?). These would have significant impact on sound quality. I have noticed that for my own preferences, room width is a deal breaker- wider rooms sound so much better to me than narrow ones - less than 12 ft wide at about 8 feet back and everything sounds too smooshed to me. Higher ceiling helps too. YMMV.

    Up until Sunday, I had only played the Opeth CD on my car stereo and the sound wasn't blowing me away. When I put it on the home stereo I really wasn't expecting much sound-wise. So I was very pleasantly suprised when I got such great sonics from it.
    Which Opeth? New one? Any good? U Rawk!!!
    I don't know exactly what's different. But I may not need that speaker upgrade after all.
    Super awesome. Decent speakers should last a long time. Try placement recommendations, positioning of any area rugs, wall hangings bookshelves etc, and even thicker speaker wire, before upgrading speakers. You'll get the most out of them that way.

  5. #5
    Stainmaster Finch Platte's Avatar
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    Like the others, I'd say it's the room, but are you sure you didn't have the speaker wires reversed on one of the speakers in the old house (polarity issues)?

    fp

  6. #6
    Suspended 3-LockBox's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finch Platte
    Like the others, I'd say it's the room, but are you sure you didn't have the speaker wires reversed on one of the speakers in the old house (polarity issues)?

    fp
    I was thinking the same thiing. I had a buddy move to a new place and he came to work and complained that his stereo sounded like crap in the new place. I went and listened and it was all phasey sounding and weak in the bass. Sure enough, he didn't pay attention to speaker polarity. I switched it around (one side was out of phase) and voila, major improvement.

  7. #7
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finch Platte
    Like the others, I'd say it's the room, but are you sure you didn't have the speaker wires reversed on one of the speakers in the old house (polarity issues)?

    fp
    I'm sure. That's something that I'm always very careful about. Its not that the speakers sounded bad in the old house, they just sound so much better in the new one. Kex described the sound well with the word "lively". It's like my speakers just came alive! Frankly, I didn't know that they had it in them!

    The old room was an L-shaped living and dining room. The right speaker was about four feet from a wall and the left was about eight feet. Both speakers were about 5 feet in front of the couch.

    I was thinking that the new set-up was similar, and it is from a TV viewing standpoint. But when I think about speaker position within the room it's actually quite different. The room itself is about 25 feet long and 10 feet deep. The distance from the couch is now about 6-7 feet. The left speaker is about three feet from the wall, while the right speaker is at least 15 feet, with a large opening into a hallway, behind it and just to the right. The ceiling is higher, around 10 - 12 feet.

    The speakers themselves are a mid-sized set of StudioLabs. They're too big to be called bookshelf speakers and too small to be towers. I've got them sitting on speaker stands about 1.5 feet on either side of the TV.

    I'd take a picture if I knew where I packed my camera's battery charger!
    Last edited by ForeverAutumn; 07-03-2008 at 06:15 AM.

  8. #8
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kexodusc
    .

    Which Opeth? New one? Any good? U Rawk!!!
    Yep, the new one. It's very good. About 50/50 clean and CM vocals. I like it more with each listen.

  9. #9
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Just repeating what other have already said -- it's the room. Like Kex pointed, it's ironic that your speakers sound better in the type of room that other audiophiles would likely want to deaden or otherwise modify acoustically.

    The thing about lively rooms is that they can actually work well with bland or inaccurate speakers. This is because different materials reflect and absorb sound at different rates at different frequencies. For example, glass is highly reflective at high frequencies, whereas carpeting is highly absorptive in the midrange, and wood has resonances to contend with. Professionally installed media rooms will typically use acoustic panels on the walls. That's because products designed for acoustical control tend to have more even reflective/absorptive characteristics across a wider frequency range than standard building materials.

    A more accurate speaker would benefit from having the reflections and absorption as even keeled as possible across the audible spectrum. But, an inaccurate speaker might actually benefit from having the sound reflected back at higher levels for certain frequencies. You really don't know what you'll get until you set up your speakers in the new room, and you seem to have hit on a combination that works for you. Almost as good as hitting 4 out of 6 on a lottery ticket...
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  10. #10
    Rep points are my LIFE!! Groundbeef's Avatar
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    You most likely have them the optimal 12' apart. That can make a huge difference. Unless one gets stolen off your porch. That sort of kills the dynamic.
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  11. #11
    Do What? jrhymeammo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ForeverAutumn
    I
    Both speakers were about 5 feet in front of the couch.

    Alot of speakers sound like pure dog poo, when you listen to them upclose. Maybe it's a difference in distance between you and speakers. Even though you only sit 1-2' further back than before, maybe you are letting sound resonate more before sound reaches your ears. Without knowing what type of speakers you hasve, 6-7' still sounds too close.

    Congrats on your new house.

    JRA

  12. #12
    Man of the People Forums Moderator bobsticks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Groundbeef
    You most likely have them the optimal 12' apart. That can make a huge difference. Unless one gets stolen off your porch. That sort of kills the dynamic.
    I have to commend you on the amount of mileage you're getting off this.


    Congrats on the house and the good audio fortune Autumn.

  13. #13
    Forum Regular Ex Lion Tamer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrhymeammo
    Alot of speakers sound like pure dog poo, when you listen to them upclose. Maybe it's a difference in distance between you and speakers. Even though you only sit 1-2' further back than before, maybe you are letting sound resonate more before sound reaches your ears. Without knowing what type of speakers you hasve, 6-7' still sounds too close.

    Congrats on your new house.

    JRA
    The "further away" theory definitely has merit - especially if the StudioLabs have a first-order crossover like my old Thiel 3.6s. I had to sit a minimum of 10 feet awaty from them so that the sound from the drivers arrived at my ear at the same time - too close and the sound was a muddled mess. If you have seating flexibility - you might want to try moving your seat even further away to realize the true potential of your speakers.

    Having said (written) all that, the short answer is; IT'S THE ROOM!
    "I don't know. A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It's a proof. A proof is a proof, and when you have a good proof, it's because it's proven." The Right Honourable JC.

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