AV Rant #571: Stuffy and Pretentious
Our Listeners of the Week are Brian and James (twice) for their donations, along with our 42 Patreon Patrons, including Clarence K. and Steven T. We’d also like to thank James C., who sent both of us Christmas presents, Steven T. for writing to SVS CEO Gary Yacoubian when he bought a pair of PB12-NSD subwoofers, Jason S. for mentioning us to Accessories4Less when he bought a Marantz SR7011, and Chris T. who got a pair of SVS SB12-NSD subs and let SVS know it was because of us.
Tom finally has his new sofa and four Atmos speakers in action, so he gives some quick initial impressions, including some thoughts on the Focal Bird speakers.
In the news, after last week’s announcement that they’d be changing and increasing service fees, and the resulting backlash, Patreon apologized and is keeping their current fee structurefor the time being. Disney bought Fox Studios for $54 billion, although the sale still needs to pass regulation. And Amazon Prime Video released about 100 HDR10+ titles that only work on select 2017 Samsung TVs for now.
David F. got rid of the spider web inside his projector, but he still had dust blobs. BenQ came through for him in a big way with a free cleaning service, so he’d like to applaud their customer support. Steven T. found SVS PB12-NSD subwoofers on Amazon that were still at the Black Friday sale price, so he snagged two of them. And Ryan T. won a pair of Focal Shape 65 Studio Monitors, and he’s astounded by their sound quality.
Infinite Gary is finding HDR unpleasantly bright sometimes, so he gets our opinions, asks why two calibrated displays can still look so different from one another, and asks if the type of backlight in an LCD TV can affect its motion blur. Travis D. replaced his subwoofer, but he was expecting there to be a 10dB boost from the dedicated LFE channel, so we clarify. And Ted M. sends us on a rant about budgeting for a home theater.
Greg L. was set to install a false wall when he discovered a leaking pipe. With the wall and floor opened for repairs, we tackle floor construction, wall construction, false wall construction, riser construction, speaker placement, subwoofer placement, and HVAC upgrades. Weldon B. wants to know what benefits he’d glean from larger, more expensive subwoofer models when pressurization of his large, open space is never going to happen no matter what. And Bobby M. built shelves above his seats, so he wants to know if he can install speakers firing down through the bottoms of those shelves, and we also recommend ButtKicker Isolator Feet for separating any seat from the floor.
Tyson W. used Rob’s crazy ideas about acoustic treatments to convince his wife to let him use a smaller, enclosed room as a dedicated theater in their house, but he wants to know whether the high ceilings in that room will be a problem. Scott B. is considering lenses for his glasses that filter some blue light from computer screens, but he wants to know how they might affect his TV viewing. And Yanick D. asks why iTunes Canada has so many fewer 4K HDR titles than iTunes USA, and he gets our thoughts on using two screens with constant image area rather than constant image height or constant image width, while providing a link to Display Wars to help visualize the differences.
Robert G. is deciding between the ButtKicker LFE and the ButtKicker Mini LFE, and he wants to know if his existing Dayton APA100 amplifier could drive either of them. Karl R. knows to use the JVC projector HDR and wide color settings for HDR content, but now that the AppleTV 4K can switch between HDR and SDR, he’s wondering which settings he should use. Karl also gets some info about “Atmos-ready” headphones. And Jason B. made some DIY speakers for his family room, but he’s still unsatisfied with his dialogue intelligibility, so we share some thoughts, and recommend the Denon AVR-S720W or Yamaha RX-V383 or RX-V483 from Accessories4Less for a low cost, but nicely featured AV Receiver.
Clarence K. asks if the ELAC Uni-Fi speakers are a big upgrade over the KEF Q Series, and also about using a bookshelf speaker with concentric drivers as a Center speaker, and what advantages Towers plus a sub have over bookshelf speakers plus a sub. Mike M. gets our thoughts on his mix of speaker brands in Canada where we suggest sticking with SVS all around for his five floor-level speakers and using OSD ICE650 in-ceiling speakers. And Joe K. wants to know if he should opt for a pair of enormous Power Sound Audio subwoofers or just get a single SVS PB16-Ultra.Thanks for listening. Check out our Facebook Page. Click here for our YouTube channel where you can see the recordings of our show videos. Download Tom’s FREE superhero-themed ebook Bob Moore: No Hero wherever ebooks are sold (or given away in this case). Visit Tom's website for download links as well as links for the two full-length followups - Bob Moore: Desperate Times and Bob Moore: Hostile Territory. Lastly, if you live in the Tampa Bay area and are interested in a mobile climbing wall, check out Fearless Mobile Climbing and meet Tom in person!