Author Archive

AV Rant #404: Pyramids are Dumb

October 19th, 2014 No comments

In a week where we recorded two podcasts back-to-back, Tom couldn’t find time to post either. He submits himself to your judgement and prays for mercy. In this podcast, we hear from Jeff and his SVS PB12-Plus/2, Tony found a speaker company in Australia that he wanted us to look at (LINK), and Nick explains why he chose to audition two Aperion Audio Verus Grand Center speakers rather than their bookshelf speakers. After hearing our interview with Chis from Audyssey (LINK), Jon tried out the Audyssey Media Player App and gives us a review and Eliezer has a little fun with Zu Audio (LINK and LINK). Moanis has a question about which surround speakers he should buy, Wilson has some questions about Audyssey and the Pinnacle speakers (LINK), and Barney wants to know if we think a room can be optimized for both surround sound and two channel music (LINK). Fred is shopping for subs and took Tom’s advice about spreadsheets (LINK and LINK) and Tim is building a new home theater and needs equipment advice. Look for another episode in a couple of days.

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AV Rant #403: Josh Pollard of Entertainment 2.0

October 10th, 2014 1 comment

This week we thank listeners Kendrick and Stephen for supporting the podcast. We welcome Josh Pollard from Entertainment 2.0 to the podcast. He answers all your questions about home theater PCs and home automation covering recent news, remote control selection, front end programs, and more. Jonathan lets us know how he liked Rob’s tailgating recommendation, Jeff reminds us of another Oppo player with 7.1 analog outputs, and Raul fixed his bass. Jerrod wants to know what color to paint his room and has a question about absorption panels, Jeff and Steve have power conditioner questions, and John has a question about the gamma setting on his display. Lastly, Jim wants to build boxes for his in-wall speakers and wants to know what we think. We’ll probably record two podcasts to catch up on the questions. If yours hasn’t appeared, it is coming.

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AV Rant #402: Interview with Chris Kyriakakis of Audyssey

October 1st, 2014 1 comment

This week we bring you a special interview with Chris Kyriakakis of Audyssey. In it, Chris addresses all the questions you asked and some you didn’t including:

1) What are the things to remember between the different versions of Audyssey?

2) What are some of the differences between FIR filters, parametric EQ filters, “notch” filters, etc.? And what does Audssey MultEQ use? (from Andy E.)

3) What are the sampling rate and bit-depth limitations of the various versions of MultEQ?

4) Some AVRs that include MultEQ XT or MultEQ XT32 also say that they “support MultEQ Pro”. What is MultEQ Pro? And how close does MultEQ XT32 with Sub EQ HT get to MultEQ Pro without the upgrade? (from Jason S.)

5) Should speakers that measure very well anechoically still be EQ’d? (from Andy E.) Are there any special considerations when setting non-traditional speakers such as electrostatic or magneplanar, etc.? (from Matthew D.) What about di-pole Surround speakers where the 1st measurement position will be in the null? (from Jared M.)

6) We’ve frequently recommended using Audyssey Dynamic EQ. Can you explain how Dynamic EQ works – especially the “Reference Level Offset” feature?

7) What about Dynamic Volume and Low Frequency Containment – how do those technologies work?

8) So Rob H. has introduced this myth that setting an AVR’s master volume to 0 (zero) dB prior to plugging in the Audyssey setup microphone improved the automatic setup results vs. leaving the master volume at some other setting (eg. -30dB). Is there any possible way that the setting of the master volume level prior to plugging in the setup microphone is actually making any difference what-so-ever?

9) What parts of the automatic setup process are handled by Audyssey? What parts of the setup process are dictated by the AVR’s manufacturer? For example: speaker distances, trim levels, sizes (small or large), crossover frequency.

10) Home Theater Shack has a massive “Audyssey FAQ and Setup Guide” (LINK). It’s far too large to go over everything, but we’re particularly interested to know whether their description of “How Audyssey Works” (LINK) is accurate. And we’d also like to know if their examples of various microphone placement patterns (when using a version of MultEQ that supports taking measurements from several different positions in the room) is good advice that should be followed (LINK). –(from Tony C.)

11) Related to the last part of the question above, How does Chris personally go through the Audyssey automatic setup and room correction process? Does he exit the room completely or stand in a particular spot within the room during the measurements? Does he use a particular microphone stand? Does he place the microphone in a particular pattern? (from Cameron K.)

12) Is Audyssey MultEQ going to change or introduce a new version now that Dolby Atmos is here and other “immersive audio” formats are on the horizon? Is Audyssey looking at a way to implement elevation measurements? (from Cameron K.)

13) How will the current implementations of MultEQ cope with the Atmos-enabled upward-firing speakers and Modules?

14) This year, it appears as though Onkyo/Integra opted to no longer license MultEQ. That leaves fewer manufacturers that are still offering MultEQ in their AVRs and Pre/Pros. Is Audyssey MultEQ going away? (from Cameron K.)

15) Audyssey as a company offers more than just MultEQ, what would you like to share with our listeners about Audssey’s other products and services?

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AV Rant #401: Budget Speaker Recommendations

September 25th, 2014 1 comment

Special thanks to Niels and Todd for supporting the podcast. We can’t do this without you! This week, an announcement about our Audyssey interview with Chris Kyriakakis and an update about our interviews with the Digital Media Zone guys. If you have HTPC or home integration questions, get them in now. Camereon sent us a link to the first reported sighting of Dolby Atmos in a tablet – the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 (LINK). Dolby also released more information about Atmos Mobile (or whatever they are calling it). (LINK) Mike is interesting in more speakers on his ceiling, Nick compared three of our favorite speakers and reports and he also has a sub recommendation, and Sim wants to know what we think of multi-tweeter speaker designs. Infinite Gary has some questions about powered speakers, Atmos speakers, and whether a reflective floor or reflective ceiling is worse. Bill is planning his home theater and has questions about screen size and projector choice, Damon asked for some budget speaker recommendations (LINK) and Rob forgot to mention EMP Tek (LINK), and Tim is upgrading his 90’s equipment and wants to know what to keep and what to toss. Rob and Tom disagree on that one. Cameron has some questions about localizable bass and what to do with his OTA antenna, Jay is curious about amplifier ratings, Dan wants to know who to trust when shopping for a TV and our specific recommendations, Michael is having DVR issues, and Leighton wants to know if he should upgrade his speakers.

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AV Rant #400: Bronie

September 17th, 2014 9 comments

Special thanks to Niclas H. for supporting the podcast. His work to get us on TuneIn is much appreciated. Don’t forget to get your home automation and Audyssey questions in. We’ll be doing interviews soon. Steven has a suggestion on how to add a sub to your system, Andy recommends the videos from the Southeastern Michigan Woofer and Tweeter Marching Society (LINK), and Barney is interested in the CEDIA announcements from Trinnov (LINK). Gary has some questions about DTS UHD, Anthony Grimani’s assertion that the subwoofer crawl doesn’t work (LINK), Grimani’s high-end speaker offerings (LINK and LINK), and an article about 2.35:1 screens (LINK). Kevin wants our help on what to buy next for his growing home theater, Michael has a crossover question and a problem with connecting a record player (vinyl) to a receiver, and Bruno is concerned about a light in his home theater. Cameron is worried about a planned SVS sub shaking his doors and the thin jumpers on his speakers while Sim has a subwoofer placement question. Tom talks a bit more about the Oppo PM-2 headphones (LINK) and Rob makes a very strange recommendation.

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