Attenuate highest highs?

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~misfit~

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Feb 13, 2020, 9:44:15 AM2/13/20
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I have a pair of 2-way speakers that I like very much - except they go too
high and are too bright. They're Sony SSK-30s and otherwise make great
near-field monitors in my office. They image and reproduce voice
exceptionally
well.

I'll be 60 next year and can't hear a huge amount above around 16 - 17 kHz.
However they distract me too much with sounds that I can barely hear (no
other
speakers that I've heard lately do this). Because of this they're tiring to
listen too. Sony sold them as being ideal for SACD and claim they go up to
70
kHz (and call them "Extended Definition" speakers).

So what can I add to the cross-over to attenuate the highest highs but leave
the main body of the upper frequencies at the same level? A tiny inductor?
Surely a resistor would drop all tweeter frequencies and mess with the
balance?

I have other speakers I could use but these just sound so damn good
otherwise.
Re-discovering music from my past through these is amazing, music I've been
listening to for decades has new stuff in it... (A cliche but very true in
this case.)

I tried using a pair of Goodmans Mezzo IIs (that I've always liked) for a
few
days but they are lacking in the very upper frequencies (likely due to the
32mm SEAS tweeter). I want the highs to be there but not in a piercing way.

Input appreciated.
--
Shaun.

Unsteadyken

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Feb 13, 2020, 12:17:35 PM2/13/20
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In article <hal5ls...@mid.individual.net>,

~misfit~ says...

> So what can I add to the cross-over to attenuate the highest highs but leave
> the main body of the upper frequencies at the same level?
>
Try the acoustic disrupter method:-)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tissue_paper#Acoustic_disrupter


--
Ken

Peter Wieck

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Feb 14, 2020, 7:39:24 AM2/14/20
to
What are you using for a pre-amp/power amp and/or integrated amp? Does it have tone controls? A small cut to the treble might solve this neatly. But:

I run an AR Athena sub-sat system in my office - via a Dynaco PAS-3x & ST-35. Given that even though I am "the boss", I am in an office environment so I keep the volume low. Were I to run the system "flat", I would have exactly the problem you describe. The 3x has a 'loudness' switch that boosts the bass relative to the treble, just a bit. That allows a more balanced perceived sound at the low levels I use. That capability went out of style more-or-less in the 1980s. The other option would be an outboard equalizer - overkill certainly, but an option.

The 'disrupter' method, while cute, may require you to try many sorts of materials before you are satisfied and/or may require different materials based on the signal at hand. It does *work* however.

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 14, 2020, 12:32:14 PM2/14/20
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**If your hearing is attenuated at HF, then you don't need to further
attenuate HF (assuming the speaker has been competently designed).
You've already stated that you can't hear anything above 16 ~ 17kHz.
Perhaps you should consider room effects. Have you measured the in-room
response?

--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Peter Wieck

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Feb 14, 2020, 3:37:05 PM2/14/20
to
I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy is being dissipated in the high range. And, the brute fact of the matter is that there is not a whole lot going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP perceives that his speakers are overly bright, we should start there.

I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But neither is tweaking room acoustics. We need to work with the Human Ear and how we perceive sound at various volumes.

Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer, especially given that one does not normally blast music in an office. At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets to the bass driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker efficiency drops. These are 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not great either.

Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness" function, start there. If they have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the bass - again that nasty issue of low-volume weak bass is more at-issue than excess treble (at low volume). Failing both these things, is it possible to relocate the speakers, moving them more towards room corners, or closer to the floor, or similar so as to help 'boost' the bass response. However, this might sacrifice sound-stage.

Only after the obvious fixes have failed should we push towards more heroic measures.

dpierce.ca...@gmail.com

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Feb 14, 2020, 4:19:19 PM2/14/20
to
On Thursday, February 13, 2020 at 9:44:15 AM UTC-5, ~misfit~ wrote:
> I have a pair of 2-way speakers that I like very much - except they go too
> high and are too bright. They're Sony SSK-30s and otherwise make great
> near-field monitors in my office. They image and reproduce voice
> exceptionally well.
>
> I'll be 60 next year and can't hear a huge amount above around 16 - 17 kHz.
> However they distract me too much with sounds that I can barely hear (no
> other
> speakers that I've heard lately do this). Because of this they're tiring to
> listen too. Sony sold them as being ideal for SACD and claim they go up to
> 70
> kHz (and call them "Extended Definition" speakers).
>
> So what can I add to the cross-over to attenuate the highest highs but leave
> the main body of the upper frequencies at the same level? A tiny inductor?
> Surely a resistor would drop all tweeter frequencies and mess with the
> balance?

I would posit that what you find irritating is not the presence of
stuff above 15 kHz, but stuff below that. And if there IS a lot of
HF material, especially extended bandwidth material (and I'd give
at least even odds there is NOT), then what you are finding annoying
is the result of some non-linear process in the speakers.

To put it bluntly, I would not be the least bit surprised to find
that something in your speakers (or, more generally, somewhere in
your system) is broken. It could be a mechanical problem in the
tweeters like a buzz or rattle problem, there could be some electronic
issue somewhere, all of which is if there IS very high frequency
information, generating signal at a level higher enough and a frequency
low enough that it would be EASILY audible to you if isolated.

That's the suspect I would be pursuing, knowing what I know about
such things.

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 16, 2020, 1:29:45 PM2/16/20
to
On 15/02/2020 5:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy is being dissipated in the high range.

**Unlikely. Assuming nothing is broken is the system (as suggested by
Dick), then it is almost certainly a room problem. Room and speaker/room
interaction *IS*, by a very considerable margin, the dominant factor is
perceived audible problems in an audio system.


And, the brute fact of the matter is that there is not a whole lot
going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP perceives that his speakers
are overly bright, we should start there.

**Well, again: Assuming there is nothing broken in the speaker (which,
obviously, should be checked first, to ensure correct functioning), then
the room is the next item to check.


>
> I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But neither is tweaking room acoustics. We need to work with the Human Ear and how we perceive sound at various volumes.

**And trust me on this: The room is, by a very considerable margin, the
dominant factor in audible problems with systems.

>
> Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer, especially given that one does not normally blast music in an office. At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets to the bass driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker efficiency drops. These are 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not great either.

**I am making several assumptions in my diagnosis:

1) That the speakers have been professionally and correctly designed and
constructed. Either of these things may not be true. I don't know. Sony
is a proper brand, so I assume design and construction has been done to
decent standards.

2) That the amplifier is not broken.

Therefore, the room is the problem. Room treatments can be challenging
to apply, but they can be very, VERY cost-effective.

The room will be the problem. Too many hard surfaces is most likely.


>
> Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness" function, start there.

**No. Tone controls (and loudness controls) are very much a hit and miss
treatment. Without proper measurements and controls, tone controls are
pretty much a waste of time.


If they have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the bass - again that nasty
issue of low-volume weak bass is more at-issue than excess treble (at
low volume). Failing both these things, is it possible to relocate the
speakers, moving them more towards room corners, or closer to the floor,
or similar so as to help 'boost' the bass response. However, this might
sacrifice sound-stage.

**The speakers should be placed in a location where they have been
designed for. Any other location will deliver unpredictable results.

>
> Only after the obvious fixes have failed should we push towards more heroic measures.
>

**Room treatments are hardly heroic measures. Room treatments are
FUNDAMENTAL to the proper operation of a sound reproduction system. In
fact, I would posit that the STARTING point of a sound reproduction
system is the room. Everything else is secondary. And, when I say 'room
treatments' I do include speakers and speaker location as part of the
process. However, since the speakers are already chosen and, presumably,
located appropriately, then room treatments (damping materials) is the
next approach to take.

--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

~misfit~

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Feb 16, 2020, 1:31:23 PM2/16/20
to
I considered physical barriers (I no longer leave the grilles off them and have considered
'thickening' the upper part). That section of Wkipedia you linked ends with ... "suggesting that
more controllable and less random electronic filtering would be preferable" which is where my
thought processes ended up.

I have a few examples of acoustic lenses on my parts shelf (mainly from old Sansui speakers) but
after researching and finding they were designed to disperse high frequency sound horizontally
rather than attenuate it decided against trying to use a lens.

Cheers,
--
Shaun.

"Humans will have advanced a long, long way when religious belief has a cozy little classification
in the DSM"
David Melville

This is not an email and hasn't been checked for viruses by any half-arsed self-promoting software.

Mat Nieuwenhoven

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Feb 17, 2020, 12:13:34 PM2/17/20
to
On Thu, 13 Feb 2020 01:19:43 +1300, ~misfit~ wrote:

>I have a pair of 2-way speakers that I like very much - except they go too
>high and are too bright. They're Sony SSK-30s and otherwise make great
>near-field monitors in my office. They image and reproduce voice
>exceptionally
>well.

It is possible there is a nasty resonance in the tweeter. That can
only be determined by measuring the speaker, but requires some
hardware (electret microphone, analog audio input/output
possibility), you don't need a 'dead' room for that. If you can go
that route, check out www.artalabs.hr, I have no relation with them.

Mat Nieuwenhoven



dpierce.ca...@gmail.com

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Feb 18, 2020, 6:56:44 AM2/18/20
to
On Sunday, February 16, 2020 at 1:29:45 PM UTC-5, Trevor Wilson wrote:
> On 15/02/2020 5:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
>> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being
>> dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy is being >> dissipated in the high range.
>
> **Unlikely. Assuming nothing is broken is the system (as suggested by
> Dick), then it is almost certainly a room problem.

AAT the kind of frequencies the original poster is talking
about, it is almost certinaly NOT a room problem. It would
be about the LAST thing I would go looking after.

Room and speaker/room

> interaction *IS*, by a very considerable margin, the dominant factor is
> perceived audible problems in an audio system.

Not at the kinds of high frequency (>10 kHz) the poster is taking
about, no.

In all the speakers I have measured in rooms, and that number is
not inconsiderable, the higher frequencies, and especially that
region around and above 10 kHz, shows the closest approach to the
anechoice response of the loudspeaker.

Why? For it to be a room problem, you have to have a LOT of paths
(and by "a lot", I mean the preponderance of all possible paths)
whose length is proximal to whiole number multiples of eithe 1/4
or 1/2 a wavelenngth to within a high degree of precision (maybe
+- a few degrees total phase error), and we're talking wavelength
on the order of an inch or less. Further, all these paths must have
a very low total absorption along the paths.


> And, the brute fact of the matter is that there is not a whole lot
> going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP perceives that his speakers
> are overly bright, we should start there.

I would suggest this will be a fruitless pursuit.

Now, if it was just a LITTLE lower in frequency, like a factor
a hundred times lower, you might have a case.

~misfit~

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Feb 18, 2020, 6:57:19 AM2/18/20
to
On 15/02/2020 7:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy is being dissipated in the high range. And, the brute fact of the matter is that there is not a whole lot going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP perceives that his speakers are overly bright, we should start there.

A lot of the material I listen to is 'full range' and does have a reasonable amount of high
frequency content.

(I was listening to the Lindsey Buckingham Christine McVie album the other day and there were
'tinkling' noises in one track that I could hear but not clearly. It made me wonder why two 70 y/o
plus musicians were using sounds that they likely couldn't hear!)

> I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But neither is tweaking room acoustics. We need to work with the Human Ear and how we perceive sound at various volumes.
>
> Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer, especially given that one does not normally blast music in an office. At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets to the bass driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker efficiency drops. These are 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not great either.

I do generally listen to music with a wide dynamic range so the volume is set higher than it would
be if I were listening to compressed pop or rock music. I sometimes listen to music while computer
gaming and it can be louder than you'd expect in an 'office'.

I use the term 'office' loosely to mean the area of the house where my computer and desk are. It's
a habit I picked up when I owned a small business and did my stocktaking and accounts etc. from a
home office.

> Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness" function, start there. If they have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the bass - again that nasty issue of low-volume weak bass is more at-issue than excess treble (at low volume). Failing both these things, is it possible to relocate the speakers, moving them more towards room corners, or closer to the floor, or similar so as to help 'boost' the bass response. However, this might sacrifice sound-stage.

The bass is good. I'm using a small kitset pre-amp with no tone controls which goes through a
crossover in a second-hand kitset subwoofer amplifier. (Playmaster 300W Subwoofer Amplifier.) The
crossover takes away all of signal below a certain point, sums it and feeds it to the 300W MOSFET
amp. It has three selectable crossover points and a level control.

I've got it set to the lowest of the crossover points (which are 70, 90 and 120Hz) as I want to
preserve as much directional information from low frequencies as possible. The Sony SS-K30EDs seem
to handle frequencies down to 70Hz just fine with minimal drop-off.

The subwoofer is a very inefficient thing that I built braced 25mm MDF a couple of decades ago.
It's a 10" driver in a ~40l internally-braced sealed box and as such is very 'musical' when
compared to ported subwoofers that I've heard. It's response tails off below about 26Hz but I'm
fine with that.

> Only after the obvious fixes have failed should we push towards more heroic measures.

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 18, 2020, 6:57:51 AM2/18/20
to
On 15/02/2020 1:11 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
> What are you using for a pre-amp/power amp and/or integrated amp? Does it have tone controls? A small cut to the treble might solve this neatly. But:

Sorry Peter I didn't see your post until now and have replied to all of the others in this thread
so there might be relevant info there. I'm using a very basic pre-amp with no tone controls and a
certain Dynaco ST120 power amp. There is a pass-through crossover between the two taking everything
below 70Hz to a 10" subwoofer as described in another post.

> I run an AR Athena sub-sat system in my office - via a Dynaco PAS-3x & ST-35. Given that even though I am "the boss", I am in an office environment so I keep the volume low.

As mentioned elsewhere my 'office' is a 'soft' alcove (there's carpet, an armchair, curtains etc.)
off my main open-plan dining / kitchen area where I have my computer and desk. As I live alone and
usually listen to material with a wide dynamic range I tend to listen at levels higher than most
people would in a true office environment.

I shouldn't have called it an office really, it's not an accurate description of the space.

> Were I to run the system "flat", I would have exactly the problem you describe. The 3x has a 'loudness' switch that boosts the bass relative to the treble, just a bit. That allows a more balanced perceived sound at the low levels I use. That capability went out of style more-or-less in the 1980s. The other option would be an outboard equalizer - overkill certainly, but an option.

I've been watching auctions for good quality EQs but unfortunately anything other than used
gimmicky plastic 90s things (that people seem to ask new prices for) are well beyond my price range.

> The 'disrupter' method, while cute, may require you to try many sorts of materials before you are satisfied and/or may require different materials based on the signal at hand. It does *work* however.

I did a bit of reading on the subject (mainly
<http://www.bobhodas.com/examining-the-yamaha-ns-10m.php> ) and dismissed it - for now at least.

Peter Wieck

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Feb 18, 2020, 10:30:14 AM2/18/20
to
Please note the interpolations.


> so there might be relevant info there. I'm using a very basic pre-amp with no tone controls and a certain Dynaco ST120 power amp. There is a pass-through crossover between the two taking everything below 70Hz to a 10" subwoofer as described in another post.

I see that. And you mentioned that the Sub amp has a level-control. Have you tried boosting that just a bit?

>
> > Were I to run the system "flat", I would have exactly the problem you describe. The 3x has a 'loudness' switch that boosts the bass relative to the treble, just a bit. That allows a more balanced perceived sound at the low levels I use. That capability went out of style more-or-less in the 1980s. The other option would be an outboard equalizer - overkill certainly, but an option.
>
> I've been watching auctions for good quality EQs but unfortunately anything other than used
> gimmicky plastic 90s things (that people seem to ask new prices for) are well beyond my price range.

The SE-10 I mentioned came my way for $0, as it was perceived as totally dead from the BIN (Buy-it-Now) pile at Kutztown. You will notice that the fuse is inside... and missing in the example I found. As I have my original example purchased as a kit, I do not need two. So, to you it would be cost-of-shipping, not inconsiderable.

>
> > The 'disrupter' method, while cute, may require you to try many sorts of materials before you are satisfied and/or may require different materials based on the signal at hand. It does *work* however.

Getting back to your sub-amp. I am assuming that it is strapped for a single output at 300 watts into 4 ohms. For the record, driving 2N3773s in that configuration to 300 watts is wildly optimistic. Much as one *can* operate a Ford Focus engine at 6,000 RPM - just not for very long. All that aside, I also understand that particular amp sometimes has a problem amplifying mains current hum? When I looked it up, I saw no associated power-supply (or, to be fair, no transformer) or diode/capacitor block. Just a "suggested power supply" http://home.alphalink.com.au/~cambie/PM300/PM300.htm I would also 'fix' the bias (replace the pots) for stability, once you are sure of the proper value(s). A number of US manufacturers used pots back in the day - and as the pots went open, all that magic smoke escaped. And given that device was designed c. 1980, that may be a consideration.

Cutting to the chase, try playing around with the bass output levels, and keep in mind that pretty much anything below 500 HZ is non-directional in any case - such that distance between the treble source and bass source (and you) are the governing factors, not direction. Leading to having the bass source, ideally, the same physical distance from your ears as the treble source. Do also verify phasing - speakers out-of-phase give all sorts of unhappy effects.

Some "stuff" on that: https://us.kef.com/blog/how-to-get-the-most-out-of-your-subwoofer-phase-and-positioning

Some further experimentation with placement may be in order.

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 18, 2020, 2:44:07 PM2/18/20
to
On 18/02/2020 9:27 am, dpierce.ca...@gmail.com wrote:
> On Sunday, February 16, 2020 at 1:29:45 PM UTC-5, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>> On 15/02/2020 5:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
>>> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being
>>> dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy is being >> dissipated in the high range.
>>
>> **Unlikely. Assuming nothing is broken is the system (as suggested by
>> Dick), then it is almost certainly a room problem.
>
> AAT the kind of frequencies the original poster is talking
> about, it is almost certinaly NOT a room problem. It would
> be about the LAST thing I would go looking after.

**I've read the OP's words and there is ZERO reference to specific
frequencies. The OP could be referring to frequencies around 3kHz for
all any of us know. I see no measurements, nor anything else that could
provide a starting point for investigations.


>
> Room and speaker/room
>
>> interaction *IS*, by a very considerable margin, the dominant factor is
>> perceived audible problems in an audio system.
>
> Not at the kinds of high frequency (>10 kHz) the poster is taking
> about, no.

**I don't see how you can infer that >10kHz is the problem. >10kHz is
NEVER, IME, a problem for anyone other than children.

>
> In all the speakers I have measured in rooms, and that number is
> not inconsiderable, the higher frequencies, and especially that
> region around and above 10 kHz, shows the closest approach to the
> anechoice response of the loudspeaker.

**Sure, but you are assuming the OP knows that >10kHz is the problem. I
posit that the likely problem frequencies are lower. MUCH lower.


>
> Why? For it to be a room problem, you have to have a LOT of paths
> (and by "a lot", I mean the preponderance of all possible paths)
> whose length is proximal to whiole number multiples of eithe 1/4
> or 1/2 a wavelenngth to within a high degree of precision (maybe
> +- a few degrees total phase error), and we're talking wavelength
> on the order of an inch or less. Further, all these paths must have
> a very low total absorption along the paths.
>
>
>> And, the brute fact of the matter is that there is not a whole lot
>> going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP perceives that his speakers
>> are overly bright, we should start there.
>
> I would suggest this will be a fruitless pursuit.
>
> Now, if it was just a LITTLE lower in frequency, like a factor
> a hundred times lower, you might have a case.

**I will bet you that the problem can be solved using appropriate (and
inexpensive) room treatments. It always is. Room effects dominate ANY
system. And, frankly, I don't know why you are arguing this point with
me. You know I am correct. What neither of us know, is the ACTUAL
frequencies that are causing discomfort. I betcha it is somewhere around
3kHz. After we see some measurements, then we will know for sure.



--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 18, 2020, 2:44:39 PM2/18/20
to
On 18/02/2020 3:28 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
> On 15/02/2020 7:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
>> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being
>> dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy is
>> being dissipated in the high range. And, the brute fact of the matter
>> is that there is not a whole lot going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if
>> the OP perceives that his speakers are overly bright, we should start
>> there.
>
> A lot of the material I listen to is 'full range' and does have a
> reasonable amount of high frequency content.
>
> (I was listening to the Lindsey Buckingham Christine McVie album the
> other day and there were 'tinkling' noises in one track that I could
> hear but not clearly. It made me wonder why two 70 y/o plus musicians
> were using sounds that they likely couldn't hear!)

**Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz. You need
to employ some room treatments to deal with the problem.

>
>> I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But neither
>> is tweaking room acoustics. We need to work with the Human Ear and how
>> we perceive sound at various volumes.
>>
>> Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer,
>> especially given that one does not normally blast music in an office.
>> At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets to the bass
>> driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker efficiency
>> drops. These are 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not great either.
>
> I do generally listen to music with a wide dynamic range so the volume
> is set higher than it would be if I were listening to compressed pop or
> rock music. I sometimes listen to music while computer gaming and it can
> be louder than you'd expect in an 'office'.

**Is the amplifier being allowed to enter Voltage limiting (aka:
Clipping)? If so, then all bets are off. You may need an amplifier with
more output Voltage capability.

>
> I use the term 'office' loosely to mean the area of the house where my
> computer and desk are. It's a habit I picked up when I owned a small
> business and did my stocktaking and accounts etc. from a home office.
>
>> Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness"
>> function, start there. If they have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the
>> bass - again that nasty issue of low-volume weak bass is more at-issue
>> than excess treble (at low volume). Failing both these things, is it
>> possible to relocate the speakers, moving them more towards room
>> corners, or closer to the floor, or similar so as to help 'boost' the
>> bass response. However, this might sacrifice sound-stage.
>
> The bass is good. I'm using a small kitset pre-amp with no tone controls
> which goes through a crossover in a second-hand kitset subwoofer
> amplifier. (Playmaster 300W Subwoofer Amplifier.) The crossover takes
> away all of signal below a certain point, sums it and feeds it to the
> 300W MOSFET amp. It has three selectable crossover points and a level
> control.

**You're an Aussie then?

>
> I've got it set to the lowest of the crossover points (which are 70, 90
> and 120Hz) as I want to preserve as much directional information from
> low frequencies as possible. The Sony SS-K30EDs seem to handle
> frequencies down to 70Hz just fine with minimal drop-off.
>
> The subwoofer is a very inefficient thing that I built braced 25mm MDF a
> couple of decades ago. It's a 10" driver in a ~40l internally-braced
> sealed box and as such is very 'musical' when compared to ported
> subwoofers that I've heard. It's response tails off below about 26Hz but
> I'm fine with that.
>
>> Only after the obvious fixes have failed should we push towards more
>> heroic measures.
>
> Cheers,


**Room damping treatments and ensuring your amp is not clipping should
go a long way to solving your problems. Give me a call. I'm in the book.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 18, 2020, 6:11:53 PM2/18/20
to
On 19/02/2020 6:41 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:

>
> **Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz.

**Should read: "....somewhere around 3 ~ 5kHz."

Very few instruments possess fundamentals that reach 5kHz. A very tiny
number posses harmonics of significant levels that exceed 10kHz.

Turn the volume down and see if the sound is still annoying. I suspect
you are clipping your amplifier. Clipping can generate large amounts of
high frequency harmonic content. And, just to shut down any myths you
may have heard: Valve amplifiers WILL clip and WILL generate excessive
high frequency harmonics if over-driven.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 8:40:34 AM2/19/20
to
On 19/02/2020 3:45 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
> Please note the interpolations.
>
>
>> so there might be relevant info there. I'm using a very basic pre-amp with no tone controls and a certain Dynaco ST120 power amp. There is a pass-through crossover between the two taking everything below 70Hz to a 10" subwoofer as described in another post.
>
> I see that. And you mentioned that the Sub amp has a level-control. Have you tried boosting that just a bit?

Yes. I've tried boosting and dropping it. In fact I adjust it depending on source material. With
older source material it sounds better with a slight boost, with more recently recorded stuff I
drop the bass level a bit as it can become overpowering.

>>> Were I to run the system "flat", I would have exactly the problem you describe. The 3x has a 'loudness' switch that boosts the bass relative to the treble, just a bit. That allows a more balanced perceived sound at the low levels I use. That capability went out of style more-or-less in the 1980s. The other option would be an outboard equalizer - overkill certainly, but an option.
>>
>> I've been watching auctions for good quality EQs but unfortunately anything other than used
>> gimmicky plastic 90s things (that people seem to ask new prices for) are well beyond my price range.
>
> The SE-10 I mentioned came my way for $0, as it was perceived as totally dead from the BIN (Buy-it-Now) pile at Kutztown. You will notice that the fuse is inside... and missing in the example I found. As I have my original example purchased as a kit, I do not need two. So, to you it would be cost-of-shipping, not inconsiderable.

Thanks for the kind offer.

>>> The 'disrupter' method, while cute, may require you to try many sorts of materials before you are satisfied and/or may require different materials based on the signal at hand. It does *work* however.
>
> Getting back to your sub-amp. I am assuming that it is strapped for a single output at 300 watts into 4 ohms.

320 watts into 4 ohms and 200 watts into 8.

> For the record, driving 2N3773s in that configuration to 300 watts is wildly optimistic. Much as one *can* operate a Ford Focus engine at 6,000 RPM - just not for very long.

It uses three pairs of 2SK1058 / 2SJ162 TO-3P power MOSFETs.

> All that aside, I also understand that particular amp sometimes has a problem amplifying mains current hum? When I looked it up, I saw no associated power-supply (or, to be fair, no transformer) or diode/capacitor block. Just a "suggested power supply" http://home.alphalink.com.au/~cambie/PM300/PM300.htm I would also 'fix' the bias (replace the pots) for stability, once you are sure of the proper value(s). A number of US manufacturers used pots back in the day - and as the pots went open, all that magic smoke escaped. And given that device was designed c. 1980, that may be a consideration.

That's a different amplifier. Unfortunately it seems they recycled the name. The unit I'm using was
described in Electronics Australia 1995-04 and 1995-05 issues and was sold as a kitset through
Jaycar Electronis and Dick Smith Electronics in Australia and New Zealand.

The power supply uses a 300 VA toroidial transformer and has 20,000uF of capacitance on each
channel. The active crossover was previously released as a stand-alone kit (1994-09) but integrated
into the same case as the power amp in this version.

I have pdfs of the magazines but can't find them hosted on-line anywhere.

> Cutting to the chase, try playing around with the bass output levels, and keep in mind that pretty much anything below 500 HZ is non-directional in any case - such that distance between the treble source and bass source (and you) are the governing factors, not direction. Leading to having the bass source, ideally, the same physical distance from your ears as the treble source. Do also verify phasing - speakers out-of-phase give all sorts of unhappy effects.

Thanks. The sub is directly below the left channel (bookshelf) speaker, facing the same way. I've
tried swapping the phase and it sounds best in-phase. The output from the subwoofer is more than
enough (and I like good clean bass) so that the level control is rarely above ~85% - and that high
only with material recorded in the 70s and early 80s (such as Rickie Lee Jones' eponymous album on CD).

I rarely have the issue of half-heard fatiguing highs on older material. It's mainly on stuff
recorded after 2000 or so.

> Some "stuff" on that: https://us.kef.com/blog/how-to-get-the-most-out-of-your-subwoofer-phase-and-positioning
>
> Some further experimentation with placement may be in order.

I'm a bit limited within the space in which I use them but have experimented with toe-in and
subwoofer placement and the current set up seems optimal - except for that annoying half-heard high
frequency stuff. Maybe it's just that my age, the condition of my hearing and these otherwise
excellent speakers aren't suited together?

That would be a shame as they are by far the most revealing and best imaging speakers that I own.

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 8:41:03 AM2/19/20
to
On 19/02/2020 11:14 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
> On 19/02/2020 6:41 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>
>>
>> **Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz.
>
> **Should read: "....somewhere around 3 ~ 5kHz."

It seems to be higher.

FWIW I just did this on-line frequency hearing test:
<http://onlinetonegenerator.com/hearingtest.html>
and through my monitor-mounted Dell soundbar (with 25mm drivers) I could hear to just over 12.5kHz
but through the stereo in question could only hear to about 11.5kHz. That's quite a bit lower than
the last time I used a similar tool a few years back. Maybe those years when I spent hours several
nights a week at a mixing desk at live (loud) gigs in my 20s are coming back to bite me?

So now I'm a bit baffled. The issue I have is due to sounds at the highest frequencies that I can
hear and that seems to be ~11kHz with this system in the current configuration. Maybe they have a
peak about there or are flatter than the other speakers I've tried...

> Very few instruments possess fundamentals that reach 5kHz. A very tiny number posses harmonics of
> significant levels that exceed 10kHz.
>
> Turn the volume down and see if the sound is still annoying. I suspect you are clipping your
> amplifier. Clipping can generate large amounts of high frequency harmonic content. And, just to
> shut down any myths you may have heard: Valve amplifiers WILL clip and WILL generate excessive high
> frequency harmonics if over-driven.

It's not clipping. The Dynaco ST120 I have hooked up at the moment is a solid-state amp and I no
longer own any valve amps.

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 11:37:12 AM2/19/20
to
That should have read 36mm (1 1/2") SEAS tweeter, the same H-087 Alnico magnet driver that was used
in the Dynaco A25 and A35 speakers.

>> Input appreciated.
>> --
>> Shaun.
>>
>
> **If your hearing is attenuated at HF, then you don't need to further attenuate HF (assuming the
> speaker has been competently designed). You've already stated that you can't hear anything above 16
> ~ 17kHz. Perhaps you should consider room effects. Have you measured the in-room response?

The speakers HAVE been competently designed. Sony still sell these SS-K30EDs in Japan (albeit with
a 'piano black' finish rather than my vinyl-wrapped version) and they're still popular. Also I've
checked them to the best of my ability (I often open older speakers and rotate woofers 180 degrees
to combat sag in the suspension) and they seem to be in perfect condition.

My hearing is attenuated above about 16 - 17 kHz. However it's not a clean shut-off. More like a 6
db/octave slope. I have trouble hearing quiet test-tones but a lot of what I listen to seems to
have quite a bit of high energy high frequency content. As I can barely hear it it makes me strain
to do so, which is fatiguing. Also I keep checking if there's someone at the door or things going
on in the back yard etc.

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 11:38:17 AM2/19/20
to
On 15/02/2020 10:05 am, dpierce.ca...@gmail.com wrote:
> On Thursday, February 13, 2020 at 9:44:15 AM UTC-5, ~misfit~ wrote:
>> I have a pair of 2-way speakers that I like very much - except they go too
>> high and are too bright. They're Sony SSK-30s and otherwise make great
>> near-field monitors in my office. They image and reproduce voice
>> exceptionally well.
>>
>> I'll be 60 next year and can't hear a huge amount above around 16 - 17 kHz.
>> However they distract me too much with sounds that I can barely hear (no
>> other
>> speakers that I've heard lately do this). Because of this they're tiring to
>> listen too. Sony sold them as being ideal for SACD and claim they go up to
>> 70
>> kHz (and call them "Extended Definition" speakers).
>>
>> So what can I add to the cross-over to attenuate the highest highs but leave
>> the main body of the upper frequencies at the same level? A tiny inductor?
>> Surely a resistor would drop all tweeter frequencies and mess with the
>> balance?
>
> I would posit that what you find irritating is not the presence of
> stuff above 15 kHz, but stuff below that. And if there IS a lot of
> HF material, especially extended bandwidth material (and I'd give
> at least even odds there is NOT), then what you are finding annoying
> is the result of some non-linear process in the speakers.

There is a lot of HF material in the music that I like. I guess the speakers could be non-linear in
the high-end, they were sold as "ED" (for extended definition) and Sony says they go up to 70kHz.

These speakers have quite a following. In Japan (where they are finished in 'piano black' lacquer)
they're sold singly and are often used for all positions in a home theatre.

They weren't a success when sold in the US so there were a lot of forum posts when Circuit City
slashed the retail price of them to $60 or less a pair to clear the line in 2006.
<https://audiokarma.org/forums/index.php?threads/insignia-vs-sony-ss-k30ed-one-year-later.120083/#post-1273521>

<https://audiokarma.org/forums/index.php?threads/60-00-pair-audiophile-speakers-from-sony.76953/>
<https://www.reddit.com/r/audiophile/comments/3duahs/sony_ssk30ed_bookshelf_speakers_from_mid2000s/>

I bought mine second-hand maybe two years ago. They had been used as monitors in an A/V recording
studio for over 10 years and they were only selling as they were going to powered monitors so they
could do away with their amplifier rack.

Sadly (for me) they were never sold cheaply here and, as everyone seems to live on the internet
these days and can find reviews like the above, people selling them second-hand are asking crazy
prices. I just saw four of them being sold for $600 last month and they had tears in the grilles
and the vinyl covering wrinkling and bubbling so had likely been in sunlight for extended periods.
They sold quite quickly.

> To put it bluntly, I would not be the least bit surprised to find
> that something in your speakers (or, more generally, somewhere in
> your system) is broken. It could be a mechanical problem in the
> tweeters like a buzz or rattle problem, there could be some electronic
> issue somewhere, all of which is if there IS very high frequency
> information, generating signal at a level higher enough and a frequency
> low enough that it would be EASILY audible to you if isolated.

I've tried them with different amps, pre-amps and sources and the issue remains. There are no
issues with the drivers or cabinets. I have had other people listen to them and they comment on how
clear and bright the highs are.

> That's the suspect I would be pursuing, knowing what I know about
> such things.

I appreciate your input.

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 11:39:12 AM2/19/20
to
On 19/02/2020 8:41 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
> On 18/02/2020 3:28 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
>> On 15/02/2020 7:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
>>> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being dissipated by the speakers in the
>>> high range, then too much energy is being dissipated in the high range. And, the brute fact of
>>> the matter is that there is not a whole lot going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP perceives
>>> that his speakers are overly bright, we should start there.
>>
>> A lot of the material I listen to is 'full range' and does have a reasonable amount of high
>> frequency content.
>>
>> (I was listening to the Lindsey Buckingham Christine McVie album the other day and there were
>> 'tinkling' noises in one track that I could hear but not clearly. It made me wonder why two 70
>> y/o plus musicians were using sounds that they likely couldn't hear!)
>
> **Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz. You need to employ some room
> treatments to deal with the problem.

They sure don't seem to be and I don't have an analyser.

>>> I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But neither is tweaking room
>>> acoustics. We need to work with the Human Ear and how we perceive sound at various volumes.
>>>
>>> Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer, especially given that one
>>> does not normally blast music in an office. At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets
>>> to the bass driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker efficiency drops. These are
>>> 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not great either.
>>
>> I do generally listen to music with a wide dynamic range so the volume is set higher than it
>> would be if I were listening to compressed pop or rock music. I sometimes listen to music while
>> computer gaming and it can be louder than you'd expect in an 'office'.
>
> **Is the amplifier being allowed to enter Voltage limiting (aka: Clipping)? If so, then all bets
> are off. You may need an amplifier with more output Voltage capability.

It's not clipping. I've tried different power amps and the problem is with the speakers.

>> I use the term 'office' loosely to mean the area of the house where my computer and desk are.
>> It's a habit I picked up when I owned a small business and did my stocktaking and accounts etc.
>> from a home office.
>>
>>> Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness" function, start there. If they
>>> have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the bass - again that nasty issue of low-volume weak bass is
>>> more at-issue than excess treble (at low volume). Failing both these things, is it possible to
>>> relocate the speakers, moving them more towards room corners, or closer to the floor, or similar
>>> so as to help 'boost' the bass response. However, this might sacrifice sound-stage.
>>
>> The bass is good. I'm using a small kitset pre-amp with no tone controls which goes through a
>> crossover in a second-hand kitset subwoofer amplifier. (Playmaster 300W Subwoofer Amplifier.) The
>> crossover takes away all of signal below a certain point, sums it and feeds it to the 300W MOSFET
>> amp. It has three selectable crossover points and a level control.
>
> **You're an Aussie then?

I live in South Auckland.

>> I've got it set to the lowest of the crossover points (which are 70, 90 and 120Hz) as I want to
>> preserve as much directional information from low frequencies as possible. The Sony SS-K30EDs
>> seem to handle frequencies down to 70Hz just fine with minimal drop-off.
>>
>> The subwoofer is a very inefficient thing that I built braced 25mm MDF a couple of decades ago.
>> It's a 10" driver in a ~40l internally-braced sealed box and as such is very 'musical' when
>> compared to ported subwoofers that I've heard. It's response tails off below about 26Hz but I'm
>> fine with that.
>>
>>> Only after the obvious fixes have failed should we push towards more heroic measures.
>
>
> **Room damping treatments and ensuring your amp is not clipping should go a long way to solving
> your problems. Give me a call. I'm in the book.

Thanks for the input Trevor. I live in rental accommodation and am 'under the sword' - the property
could be sold to developers at any time and I'll need to find somewhere else to live. (It's been
that way since the landlord warned me a year ago and there's a housing shortage here.) So I'm not
that keen on spending too much effort on room treatments. More pressing is selling the
surplus-to-requirements speakers and old Thinkpads etc. that are filling the back bedroom!

Trevor Wilson

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 6:31:15 PM2/19/20
to
On 19/02/2020 1:02 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
> On 19/02/2020 11:14 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>> On 19/02/2020 6:41 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>>
>>>
>>> **Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz.
>>
>> **Should read: "....somewhere around 3 ~ 5kHz."
>
> It seems to be higher.

**Until it has been measured, then we're both guessing. Few instruments
go as high as 5kHz. There is almost nothing beyond 10kHz in any music.

>
> FWIW I just did this on-line frequency hearing test:
> <http://onlinetonegenerator.com/hearingtest.html>
> and through my monitor-mounted Dell soundbar (with 25mm drivers) I could
> hear to just over 12.5kHz but through the stereo in question could only
> hear to about 11.5kHz. That's quite a bit lower than the last time I
> used a similar tool a few years back. Maybe those years when I spent
> hours several nights a week at a mixing desk at live (loud) gigs in my
> 20s are coming back to bite me?
>
> So now I'm a bit baffled. The issue I have is due to sounds at the
> highest frequencies that I can hear and that seems to be ~11kHz with
> this system in the current configuration. Maybe they have a peak about
> there or are flatter than the other speakers I've tried...

**Until you perform some measurements, you're guessing. You could try to
acquire a (preferably digital) parametric equaliser and perform some
measurements.

I still betcha room treatments will solve your problems. IME (which is
substantial), room treatments solve most mid-HF problems, PROVIDED there
is nothing inherently wrong with the equipment, or the amp is not being
clipped.

>
>> Very few instruments possess fundamentals that reach 5kHz. A very tiny
>> number posses harmonics of significant levels that exceed 10kHz.
>>
>> Turn the volume down and see if the sound is still annoying. I suspect
>> you are clipping your amplifier. Clipping can generate large amounts
>> of high frequency harmonic content. And, just to shut down any myths
>> you may have heard: Valve amplifiers WILL clip and WILL generate
>> excessive high frequency harmonics if over-driven.
>
> It's not clipping. The Dynaco ST120 I have hooked up at the moment is a
> solid-state amp and I no longer own any valve amps.

**You've checked with a 'scope to ensure no clipping then? Or are you
guessing again? It might worth looking at the waveform on a 'scope to
see if there are no parasitics present.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Trevor Wilson

unread,
Feb 19, 2020, 6:31:56 PM2/19/20
to
On 19/02/2020 12:28 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
> On 19/02/2020 8:41 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>> On 18/02/2020 3:28 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
>>> On 15/02/2020 7:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
>>>> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being
>>>> dissipated by the speakers in the high range, then too much energy
>>>> is being dissipated in the high range. And, the brute fact of the
>>>> matter is that there is not a whole lot going on above 15 kHz
>>>> anyway. So if the OP perceives that his speakers are overly bright,
>>>> we should start there.
>>>
>>> A lot of the material I listen to is 'full range' and does have a
>>> reasonable amount of high frequency content.
>>>
>>> (I was listening to the Lindsey Buckingham Christine McVie album the
>>> other day and there were 'tinkling' noises in one track that I could
>>> hear but not clearly. It made me wonder why two 70 y/o plus musicians
>>> were using sounds that they likely couldn't hear!)
>>
>> **Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz. You need
>> to employ some room treatments to deal with the problem.
>
> They sure don't seem to be and I don't have an analyser.

**They will, almost certainly, be below 5kHz.

>
>>>> I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But
>>>> neither is tweaking room acoustics. We need to work with the Human
>>>> Ear and how we perceive sound at various volumes.
>>>>
>>>> Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer,
>>>> especially given that one does not normally blast music in an
>>>> office. At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets to the
>>>> bass driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker
>>>> efficiency drops. These are 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not
>>>> great either.
>>>
>>> I do generally listen to music with a wide dynamic range so the
>>> volume is set higher than it would be if I were listening to
>>> compressed pop or rock music. I sometimes listen to music while
>>> computer gaming and it can be louder than you'd expect in an 'office'.
>>
>> **Is the amplifier being allowed to enter Voltage limiting (aka:
>> Clipping)? If so, then all bets are off. You may need an amplifier
>> with more output Voltage capability.
>
> It's not clipping.

**How do you know?


I've tried different power amps and the problem is
> with the speakers.

**Again: How do you know? How do you know that the room is not the problem?

>
>>> I use the term 'office' loosely to mean the area of the house where
>>> my computer and desk are. It's a habit I picked up when I owned a
>>> small business and did my stocktaking and accounts etc. from a home
>>> office.
>>>
>>>> Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness"
>>>> function, start there. If they have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the
>>>> bass - again that nasty issue of low-volume weak bass is more
>>>> at-issue than excess treble (at low volume). Failing both these
>>>> things, is it possible to relocate the speakers, moving them more
>>>> towards room corners, or closer to the floor, or similar so as to
>>>> help 'boost' the bass response. However, this might sacrifice
>>>> sound-stage.
>>>
>>> The bass is good. I'm using a small kitset pre-amp with no tone
>>> controls which goes through a crossover in a second-hand kitset
>>> subwoofer amplifier. (Playmaster 300W Subwoofer Amplifier.) The
>>> crossover takes away all of signal below a certain point, sums it and
>>> feeds it to the 300W MOSFET amp. It has three selectable crossover
>>> points and a level control.
>>
>> **You're an Aussie then?
>
> I live in South Auckland.

**Ah. We Aussies always forget about our Eastern state. :-)

>
>>> I've got it set to the lowest of the crossover points (which are 70,
>>> 90 and 120Hz) as I want to preserve as much directional information
>>> from low frequencies as possible. The Sony SS-K30EDs seem to handle
>>> frequencies down to 70Hz just fine with minimal drop-off.
>>>
>>> The subwoofer is a very inefficient thing that I built braced 25mm
>>> MDF a couple of decades ago. It's a 10" driver in a ~40l
>>> internally-braced sealed box and as such is very 'musical' when
>>> compared to ported subwoofers that I've heard. It's response tails
>>> off below about 26Hz but I'm fine with that.
>>>
>>>> Only after the obvious fixes have failed should we push towards more
>>>> heroic measures.
>>
>>
>> **Room damping treatments and ensuring your amp is not clipping should
>> go a long way to solving your problems. Give me a call. I'm in the book.
>
> Thanks for the input Trevor. I live in rental accommodation and am
> 'under the sword' - the property could be sold to developers at any time
> and I'll need to find somewhere else to live. (It's been that way since
> the landlord warned me a year ago and there's a housing shortage here.)
> So I'm not that keen on spending too much effort on room treatments.
> More pressing is selling the surplus-to-requirements speakers and old
> Thinkpads etc. that are filling the back bedroom!
>

**Room treatments can be VERY, VERY cheap and easy to apply
(temporarily). Old rugs, mattresses, etc work just fine. In fact, back
in the 1990s, I took part in a couple of hi fi shows in Las Vegas. At
one show, some other Aussies (Krix Loudspeakers) had their room near to
mine. Their room possessed extremely poor acoustics and the guys set
about to rectify the situation as quickly and inexpensively as possible.
They used some old cardboard boxes, duct tape, a Doona™ cover and some
Dacron™. They constructed a false 'wall' from the cardboard and duct
tape, measuring around 3.5 Metres X 2.5 Metres X 400mm. They filled it
with the Dacron™ and covered the whole thing with the Doona™ cover (for
appropriate cosmetic effect). Problem solved at the cost of some Dacron™
and a roll of duct tape.

I would encourage you to try room treatments, before you spend too much
time, money and effort on other things.

--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

~misfit~

unread,
Feb 20, 2020, 7:49:57 AM2/20/20
to
On 20/02/2020 10:57 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
> On 19/02/2020 12:28 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
>> On 19/02/2020 8:41 am, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>>> On 18/02/2020 3:28 pm, ~misfit~ wrote:
>>>> On 15/02/2020 7:32 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
>>>>> I think you are missing the point. If too much energy is being dissipated by the speakers in
>>>>> the high range, then too much energy is being dissipated in the high range. And, the brute
>>>>> fact of the matter is that there is not a whole lot going on above 15 kHz anyway. So if the OP
>>>>> perceives that his speakers are overly bright, we should start there.
>>>>
>>>> A lot of the material I listen to is 'full range' and does have a reasonable amount of high
>>>> frequency content.
>>>>
>>>> (I was listening to the Lindsey Buckingham Christine McVie album the other day and there were
>>>> 'tinkling' noises in one track that I could hear but not clearly. It made me wonder why two 70
>>>> y/o plus musicians were using sounds that they likely couldn't hear!)
>>>
>>> **Those "tinkling noises" you hear are somewhere around 3kHz. You need to employ some room
>>> treatments to deal with the problem.
>>
>> They sure don't seem to be and I don't have an analyser.
>
> **They will, almost certainly, be below 5kHz.

I might have to look for a phone ap. That said my low-end Samsung phone is very low on storage
space, I've had to delete apps recently...

>>>>> I agree that attenuating the high range is not the answer. But neither is tweaking room
>>>>> acoustics. We need to work with the Human Ear and how we perceive sound at various volumes.
>>>>>
>>>>> Which is why balancing the speaker output does seem to be an answer, especially given that one
>>>>> does not normally blast music in an office. At low volumes, in general, not enough energy gets
>>>>> to the bass driver(s) to balance the treble, especially as speaker efficiency drops. These are
>>>>> 88 dB speakers, not horrible, but not great either.
>>>>
>>>> I do generally listen to music with a wide dynamic range so the volume is set higher than it
>>>> would be if I were listening to compressed pop or rock music. I sometimes listen to music while
>>>> computer gaming and it can be louder than you'd expect in an 'office'.
>>>
>>> **Is the amplifier being allowed to enter Voltage limiting (aka: Clipping)? If so, then all bets
>>> are off. You may need an amplifier with more output Voltage capability.
>>
>> It's not clipping.
>
> **How do you know?

I don't KNOW per se but I've used different amps and I don't listen at volumes above about 50%.

>  I've tried different power amps and the problem is
>> with the speakers.
>
> **Again: How do you know? How do you know that the room is not the problem?

As I mentioned elsewhere I've tried these speakers in different rooms including my very 'soft'
bedroom and the problem follows them.

>>>> I use the term 'office' loosely to mean the area of the house where my computer and desk are.
>>>> It's a habit I picked up when I owned a small business and did my stocktaking and accounts etc.
>>>> from a home office.
>>>>
>>>>> Eschew needless complexity. If the electronics have a "Loudness" function, start there. If
>>>>> they have tone-controls try *BOOSTING* the bass - again that nasty issue of low-volume weak
>>>>> bass is more at-issue than excess treble (at low volume). Failing both these things, is it
>>>>> possible to relocate the speakers, moving them more towards room corners, or closer to the
>>>>> floor, or similar so as to help 'boost' the bass response. However, this might sacrifice
>>>>> sound-stage.
>>>>
>>>> The bass is good. I'm using a small kitset pre-amp with no tone controls which goes through a
>>>> crossover in a second-hand kitset subwoofer amplifier. (Playmaster 300W Subwoofer Amplifier.)
>>>> The crossover takes away all of signal below a certain point, sums it and feeds it to the 300W
>>>> MOSFET amp. It has three selectable crossover points and a level control.
>>>
>>> **You're an Aussie then?
>>
>> I live in South Auckland.
>
> **Ah. We Aussies always forget about our Eastern state. :-)

Heh!
Cheers. I fondly remember the 'listening room' in a flat I was in a few decades back. All of the
walls above chair-height were covered in op-shop blankets / duvets then covered in egg trays
(mainly to disguise the mismatched blankets). We also had double-layer egg trays on the ceiling.

My flatmate had a good turntable, (as well as tone arm, cart and stylus) that was made from a solid
block of marble, all really expensive by our standards. I forget the make or model. As long as the
source is good I've always been about the speakers and to a lesser extent amplification. Then (and
especially these days) I believe the biggest gains in a system can usually be made with the choice,
design and placement of speakers.

Peter Wieck

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Feb 20, 2020, 9:13:05 AM2/20/20
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Snark Warning!

_____________________________________________________________________
This from last year in another thread:

As it happens, and apart from (very) exceptional room acoustics, your dilemma was addressed quite specifically by no less than Acoustic Research and Edgar Villchur back in the dim and distant 1960s. And, much of the ARs designs historically were based on solving placement issues.

All of the above based on minimum 8"/200 mm woofers and against the wall in "conventional" box-type front-firing speakers. Smaller woofers are hopeless in delivering clean bass unless in many multiples - which brings on more problems than it solves.

As follows:

Starting on the LONG wall of the listening room:

a) Place speaker A at the 1/4 point from one corner. Makes no difference which. The woofer should be at least one (1) woofer diameter off the floor - making the center-line at 1.5 diameters. The tweets should be IN or UP.
b) Place speaker B at the 1/3 point from the opposite corner.
c) While playing a full-range, well-recorded, familiar signal at normal/slightly lower volume, tweak Speaker B to achieve the best sound-stage. 95% of the time, B will move closer to A. Starting out, your sound-stage will be ~2/3 as wide as the distance between the speakers and about as deep as half the distance between them.
d) Once you have achieved a comfortable sound-stage, tweak either/both speaker heights to achieve the best possible signal balance. If you have wide-dispersion (as in dome) tweets (and, ideally mid-ranges) *YOUR* ear level will not be critical.

And, this should do it - excepting very strange rooms or strangely shaped rooms.

Notes:

1. At no time should the speakers be symmetrical on a given wall _UNLESS_ there is something between them (such as a fireplace) that renders their relationship asymmetrical within the room. Symmetrical placement invites standing waves, cancellation waves and other forms of interference. For the same reason, no speaker should be placed at a mind-point between two walls.
2. Exactly the same exercise obtains on the short wall, except that bass will be enhanced, sometimes too much.

3. Exactly the same exercise obtains from the ceiling rather than the floor - but the speakers should be bass-up if vertical in that exercise. No change if on their sides - tweets in.

4. With good speakers (clean response curve) final placement will very much depend on the listener and his/her preferences. And, therefore why the exercise should be with all settings "FLAT" and with familiar and full-range signal. Changes from a good start will not require changes in speaker location(s).

5> And to repeat: NOT SYMMETRICAL!

Once you have found a configuration that pleases you - give it a week. Mark the locations in some way, then start over but with a different signal. If you wind up at the same points, you are done. And, of course, inches do make a difference - and why you should give it time until you are very happy with the result.

Side note: AR added a center-channel to its flagship receiver as back when stereo was "new", recording engineers often exaggerated separation as an "Oh, WOW!" factor. And David Hafler designed the Hafler Circuit to address that issue, which evolved into the Poor Man's Quadraphonic system. Be careful that the signal you use is well engineered *and* well recorded.
__________________________________________________________________

This pretty much summarizes my approach to speaker placement. There are overly bright rooms, there are overly dull rooms. But in the typical household, they are the rare exception. For the most part, speaker placement is bunged by practical needs such as 'the speakers can't go there because...', there by requiring compromises, not always pleasant. And in the case of Shaun's speaker/amp/sub-woofer system, I expect that electronic equalization will be the most practical solution, and also the most transferable of the options should he have to move. I admit to keeping an equalizer - but it hardly gets used as I am also blessed with an understanding wife who allows me to put the speakers where they 'want' to be in both listening areas. That one pair are Maggies makes her even more remarkable.

~misfit~

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Feb 20, 2020, 10:17:05 AM2/20/20
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Of course I'm guessing. I know this is rec.audio.high-end but I don't have (or have access to) a
parametric equaliser or an o'scope. When I say I'm not listening at low 'office level' volumes I
also don't mean ear-bleeding party volumes. Maybe somewhere in the 'half volume' range on a 60 - 80
wpc amp... I've currently got a Marantz Stereo Reciever SR4023 hooked up set to 'flat' (it has a
pre/power loop for the subwoofer amp) and the issue is the same - but the amp belongs elsewhere.

However I have used these speakers with a few different amplifiers, (from 25 watts /channel class A
up to 160 w/c RMS) and at different volumes and in different locations and the issue I perceive
persists.

I realise that without measuring we're all making educated guesses. Really I just wanted to know
what to add to the speaker crossovers / tweeter wires to attenuate frequencies above say 10kHz by
maybe 3db (and not attenuate the crucial frequencies where female vocals and the upper reaches of
electric guitar solos and harmonics reside).

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 20, 2020, 1:09:30 PM2/20/20
to
**Without proper measurements, we are all still guessing. However,
should you wish to perform some experiments and spend a little money,
this product MAY solve some or all your problems:

https://www.behringer.com/Categories/Behringer/Signal-Processors/Equalizers/DEQ2496/p/P0146#googtrans(en|en)

Even at the retail price of around AUS$600.00, it delivers phenomenal
performance for the money.

Fortunately, the products are easy to find on the second hand market.
Prices tend to be quite low.


Here is one I found on eBay:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Behringer-Ultracurve-Pro-DEQ2496-24bit-96kHz-parametric-graphic-equalizer-CLEAN/264639370704?epid=1120285389&hash=item3d9dbc55d0:g:MfAAAOSwfOBeTBi8

To put that price into perspective, I recently sold an analogue
parametric EQ for AUS$500.00. For some reason, some people prefer the
old, far less powerful and far less flexible, analogue EQs. I've used
Behringer products many times and, while they're not perfect, they
generally deliver excellent performance for the money. A parametric EQ
is a very powerful tool. A digital parametric, like the Behringer, much
more so. You can zero in on a very narrow band of frequencies and notch
any problems out. Like all EQs, you can also misuse them.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Peter Wieck

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Feb 21, 2020, 9:27:10 AM2/21/20
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I have to question the suggestion of a device with exclusively XLR inputs and outputs (1/4" phone jacks for auxiliary output) for a non-commercial Audio 2.0 application.

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 21, 2020, 3:36:32 PM2/21/20
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On 21/02/2020 11:37 pm, Peter Wieck wrote:
> I have to question the suggestion of a device with exclusively XLR inputs and outputs (1/4" phone jacks for auxiliary output) for a non-commercial Audio 2.0 application.
>

**Why? XLRs are very good connectors. They're robust, easy to wire up
and earth makes first and breaks last. Adapters are easy to source.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Peter Wieck

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Feb 21, 2020, 4:26:24 PM2/21/20
to
On Friday, February 21, 2020 at 3:36:32 PM UTC-5, Trevor Wilson wrote:

> **Why? XLRs are very good connectors. They're robust, easy to wire up
> and earth makes first and breaks last. Adapters are easy to source.

Because:

The system in question is a home audio system.
The system in question is quite vintage, using RCA jacks exclusively.
The individual asking for suggestions is of limited means, physically and, likely, financially.
The individual in question may have to move on short notice.
Adapters may be easy to source, but that does not make the cost of the equalizer together with the four (4) adapter needed cheap.

Generally, when giving advice, it is both courteous and common sense to make the suggestions fit the conditions at hand, and not add needless levels of complexity.

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 22, 2020, 5:08:45 PM2/22/20
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On 22/02/2020 7:48 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
> On Friday, February 21, 2020 at 3:36:32 PM UTC-5, Trevor Wilson wrote:
>
>> **Why? XLRs are very good connectors. They're robust, easy to wire up
>> and earth makes first and breaks last. Adapters are easy to source.
>
> Because:
>
> The system in question is a home audio system.

**Irrelevant. XLRs are VERY common in higher end domestic systems. XLRs
are an entirely appropriate connector and inexpensive.

> The system in question is quite vintage, using RCA jacks exclusively.

**Sure. Most are. However, 2 female and 2 male XLR connectors/adapters
are not a crazy idea.


> The individual asking for suggestions is of limited means, physically and, likely, financially.

**Possibly. Which is why I pointed to an eBay sale. The Behringer is a
cheap option and, IME, cheaper than a quality, analogue, paramtetric EQ.
Either way, I already provided the most suitable solution, which could
cost almost nothing - room treatments. Room treatements will almost
certainly solve the problem.

> The individual in question may have to move on short notice.

**Irrelevant. XLRs can be disconnected and re-connected as rapidly as RCAs.

> Adapters may be easy to source, but that does not make the cost of the equalizer together with the four (4) adapter needed cheap.

**Sure. However, a standard 10 band EQ is almost a waste of time. At the
very minimum, a parametric EQ is the only item worth bothering with.
Parametric (analogue) EQs tend to be expensive, unless one is looking
for a digital parametric EQ. I related a story about an ancient,
analogue parametric I recently bought and re-sold for a substantial sum.
A second hand Behringer can be a much cheaper option. And one that has
some significant advantages. That said, I will stand by my original
suggestion - room treatments are the best option. They can be cheap,
effective and easily removable.

>
> Generally, when giving advice, it is both courteous and common sense to make the suggestions fit the conditions at hand, and not add needless levels of complexity.

**I agree. Room treatments will be, by a long margin, the best option.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au

Trevor Wilson

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Feb 24, 2020, 6:39:18 AM2/24/20
to
On 21/02/2020 12:18 am, Peter Wieck wrote:
> Snark Warning!

> This pretty much summarizes my approach to speaker placement. There are overly bright rooms,

**Yep. And these are, far and away, the worst rooms for listening to
reproduced music.


there are overly dull rooms.


**Ummm, no. The BEST room to hear a music reproduction system in is an
anechoic (or, more properly: Near anechoic) room. I've done so on
several occasions and it never fails to demonstrate just how vital room
reflections are to destroying the integrity of recorded music.

But in the typical household, they are the rare exception. For the
most part, speaker placement is bunged by practical needs such as 'the
speakers can't go there because...', there by requiring compromises, not
always pleasant. And in the case of Shaun's speaker/amp/sub-woofer
system, I expect that electronic equalization will be the most practical
solution, and also the most transferable of the options should he have
to move. I admit to keeping an equalizer - but it hardly gets used as I
am also blessed with an understanding wife who allows me to put the
speakers where they 'want' to be in both listening areas. That one pair
are Maggies makes her even more remarkable.

**Maggies are particularly critical WRT placement and room effects, due
to the bipolar nature of the sound.


--
Trevor Wilson
www.rageaudio.com.au
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