Bose Accoustimas / Onkyo Receiver / BOOMING base!

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by jvaruzzo, Sep 2, 2009.

  1. jvaruzzo

    jvaruzzo Auditioning

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    I'd like to thank in advance any advice. This is my first post. I have always been appreciative of audio/video gear, but I'm interested in really learning technical details and understanding why good is good and bad is bad.

    My first question is I have a room that is rectangular and about 30' by 16', it is my living room and center of my home theater. It is currently a carpeted room.

    I started with an older 5.1 Onkyo (ST-5** I believe) along with a Bose Accostimas original that was given to me for free, so I couldn't complain. It was a 3.1 system, later I added a 15" down firing Infinity Sub which I only use while watching movies.

    Recently I was offered a like-new Bose Accoustimas 15 Series 3 for $500, it seemed like a very attractive price for the system, and it came from a close friend and sounded great in his room.

    After purchasing a 50" 1080p Samsung Plasma w/ HDMI and Sony S350 Bluray player w/ HDMI I decided to upgrade to the Onkyo SR-605 (or similar) w/ HDMI switching and pass through.

    Now the problem - my Bose system (without the LFE hooked up, as the LFE goes to the inifinity which is powered off), sounds horrible while watching most TV. It has an unbearable boominess to everything even voices on news channels and or commercials. It is obnoxious, i have the volume on the bose bass module turned all the way down, and the bass on my receiver turned all the way down, it still rumbles away.

    It sounds FANTASTIC w/ movies. The sub was directly in front of me next the receiver underneath the TV. I thought perhaps having it directly in front of me was why I was hearing such a substantial amount of bass. I relocated it to the rear corner of the room (with a tremendous amount of work and extensions of all the wiring to reach), it is now notably WORSE.

    I've read about bass traps and would consider putting them in my room, but I'm not so sure blindly throwing up bass traps will solve my problem. I also understand the Bose system is not a very good system and overall most real enthusiasts consider it garbage.

    Before I try to sell it for something else (which is a huge hassle as everything is wired in-wall), I'm wondering if anyone has advice on this particular problem?

    I apologize for the really lengthy post, I just want to introduce my system, room type and history to provide as much info as possible!

    Thanks again for any help!!

    -Justin
     
  2. David Willow

    David Willow Babbling Idiot
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    Unfortunately Justin, if you search these forums (or any HT forum) for BOSE, you will learn why we don't like them.

    The one thing I find strange about your problem is describing it as 'boomy' since the BOSE is NOT a subwoofer (they call it a bass module).

    I have to ask, do you have it hooked up as the manual recommends or do you have the speakers connected directly to the receiver?
     
  3. SethH

    SethH Cinematographer

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    It's very strange to me that you say this is a problem when watching TV, but that everything sounds great when watching movies. That leads me to believe the issue is with your source or, possibly, your wiring (e.g. connection to your cable box).
     
  4. jvaruzzo

    jvaruzzo Auditioning

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    The bass module with the newer Bose is much more substantial than the bass module with the older Bose.
    My first-gen Bose bass module (not-powered) simply filled in the lows the small cubes could not. The newer bass module (powered) is triple the size and seemingly designed to act as a subwoofer as well (including an LFE connection).

    I should better explain the "boominess" - my 15" sub obviously can produce VERY low sounds, but it does so sparingly, and blends perfectly with everything else.

    The Bose bass module is NOT like the sub. I could my large sub anywhere in the room AND stand anywhere, it would sound identical. The bass module depending on your listening height or position in the room has dramatic changes to what bass is heard.

    The rumble I refer to is for a show like "COPS" for example, the drone of the bass module rumbling while a police car is in motion.

    The bass lines in music on TV sounds like the sound system in a Honda Civic owned by urban youth, just an over the top rumbling. The 15" Sub can rumble as well, but as mentioned it has much more punch and a sound that is more felt than heard. In an explosion scene the 15" Sub will rumble, but sound amazing, punchy, deep and accurate. It barely makes a peep during a dialouge heay scene.

    The cubes are connected to the module (as required). Everything is wired via HDMI.

    I've read that TV broadcasts overcompensate for lows for the most common TV built-in speakers, which could be why TV tends to sound much worse (especially certain channels) than movies.

    I agree for the most part with most peoples views on Bose, especially after owning this system. However, for the record the first-gen Bose system was absolutely incredible for standard stereo music, and I imagine that is what put the Acoustimass system on the map.

    I'm considering just using my TV speakers for TV, and the full system for movies.
     
  5. jvaruzzo

    jvaruzzo Auditioning

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    One more question - what are the views on bass traps? What "problem" is solved by using them in the corners of the room? What acoustical alteration is beeing seeked when bass traps and difusers are used?

    Thanks,
    Justin
     
  6. Jasonp31

    Jasonp31 Auditioning

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    Do you change settings on your receiver when you watch a movie as compared to watching TV?

    How is the Bose module hooked up to the receiver?
     
  7. jvaruzzo

    jvaruzzo Auditioning

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    I do not change any settings between TV and Movies.

    The Bose system is attached via the supplied ribbon cable from the receiver to the bass module, than the speakers are connected to the bass module via the supplied RCA cables.
     
  8. BadMojo12

    BadMojo12 Auditioning

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    Justin:
    Did you ever figure out this problem? I had a Sony STR D885 hooked up to my Acoustimass 15 and all was good. Receiver was kind of dated so I got an Onkyo HT-360. The bass is unbearable with a constant thrum through everything and the mids and highs are somewhat muddled. I tried everything, including unhooking the LFE to no avail.
    Please tell me how you resolved this problem; it is so bad that I am considering switching back to my Sony (and thus losing a bunch of features).
    Ryan
     
  9. Number1AVdork

    Number1AVdork Stunt Coordinator

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    Get a refund from your so called friend. Bose is awful. Boomy bass is not abnormal in Bose at all. The Bose module is expected to do the midbass/midrange frequencies that the little jewel cubes can't perform. What you are hearing is exactly what Bose sounds like. If you don't like it, it's not going to get any better. Sorry to burst your bubble.
     
  10. Claire Panke

    Claire Panke Second Unit

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    The first gen Bose Acoustimass systems were incredibly awful for stereo listening. All generations were regarded with disdain and derision by high end audiophiles. What sold these systems was their tiny, decor friendly size and Bose's superb marketing. Bose was not then, nor it it now, serious or satisfying audio. They were usually decorating choices, not musical choices. You just can' t get around the laws of pbysics in the real world.
    As for your issues, the bass module simply isn't capable of deep, tuneful or tight bass for either music or movies. Save your energy - and your money - and start over...after you've listened to several quality music and HT sound systems at your local dealers.
     

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