Denon 3803 & calibrating output levels

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Shane Morales, Oct 22, 2003.

  1. Shane Morales

    Shane Morales Second Unit

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    Seems I can only do an SPL calibration using the built-in tones on my receiver (Denon 3803). It's no use running the AVIA setup because I can only change the level output via the Denon's menu and when the Denon's menu is up it totally overrides the DVD output.

    Is there anyway around that?

    Also, what volume level should I set my receiver? I turned it up to "-05" and set the SPL meter on 70db and calibrated everything to +2. Is that retarded or does it really matter?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Shane Morales

    Shane Morales Second Unit

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    Anyone?
     
  3. ToddTho

    ToddTho Auditioning

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    I have the denon 3802 and the on screen menu only works when the tv and receiver is on the dvd input.I have a coaxial from dvd player to digital in in back of receiver and one from video digital on receiver to video 1 on tv.So I can only adjust the receiver settings with dvd, not while watching cable.Its probably a matter of switching a wire or something.
     
  4. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    Hi Shane. Could you give us a idea how you have your Denon set up? I had a slight problem in adjusting my sep speaker levels with a calibration disk and all it was is that I had the receiver in the wrong mode. Do you have coax feeding the receiver from your DVD and if so what mode comes up on your receiver when you power it up? I have the 1804 so it should be similar in setting up.
     
  5. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    I'm not sure about the 3803, but the 3801/2 only displayed the on-screen menu from s-video and composite. Hook your dvd up to the s-video through the receiver and then s-video from receiver to tv. Use this to calibrate with Avia.
     
  6. Shane Morales

    Shane Morales Second Unit

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    Hi Shane. Could you give us a idea how you have your Denon set up?

    Yeah, I have coax going from the DVD player to the receiver. I have component from the DVD player to the receiver to the TV.

    It comes up in whatever mode it was in when it was turned off (if I understand you correctly).

    But, y'now, even if the DVD content and the Denon menu came up at the same time, the Denon makes its own sounds so I'd be getting signals from the setup disk and from the receiver at the same time. Wouldn't I?
     
  7. Dave Nibeck

    Dave Nibeck Stunt Coordinator

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    You should be able to play the tones via dvd and hit on onscreen button from the receiver (It works with a 4802). You may have to connect monitor output of the reciever (composite on mine) directly to the tv.

    The 2nd part of your question, I set my volume to -0- and callibrate to 75db. The amount of adjustment will vary depending on speakers, placment, and room acoustics.
     
  8. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    I think Daves answer ought to do it for you Shane. I do not use on-screen. I should go hook it up with all the cable I have hidden away. If you set your volume to -0 and calibrate you will be able to keep track of the level very easily. It's really no big deal though. If you would like to calibrate at a lower level like -5 then just calibrate to 70 on your meter then.
     
  9. Bill Leahy

    Bill Leahy Agent

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    Hi all. Now I am confused about my calibration using the radio shack analog meter. I have the Denon 2800 and I load the Avia disc, bring up the test tones, pause them, and switch over to video 1 and bring up my receivers test tones and adjust them. then, jump back to my dvd input and run the test tone and see how close I am. Am I doing this wrong? And could someone fill me in? Thanks a bunch
     
  10. MichaelDDD

    MichaelDDD Supporting Actor

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    Hmm, FWIW, I have the AVIA disc too. But for the speaker calibration, I just use the test tones directly from the receiver. Pink noise is pink noise and the reading on the meter is what it is. No onscreen menu probs. [​IMG]

    I use the AVIA disc for the video calibration only.

    Good luck Shane. [​IMG]
     
  11. Bill Leahy

    Bill Leahy Agent

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    I too have used the test tones on my receiver,. but read where it is better to use the disc on DVD seeing as it is DVDs that I watch the most. Any thoughts?
     
  12. Dave Nibeck

    Dave Nibeck Stunt Coordinator

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    The purist say to do from DVD player. There has also been a lot of discussion about problems with Thx Optimizer.

    I use the receiver's tone.
     
  13. MichaelDDD

    MichaelDDD Supporting Actor

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    Hmm, that does make sense, Bill. Now I wonder if my system has been "off" the whole time b/c of this? [​IMG]

    I know that all my speakers were matched perfectly using the RatShack meter and the receiver's tones...how much of a diff could it make using the DVD vs. the receiver's tones?
     
  14. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    It can and will make a difference. I have never had mine match up. They are close generally but still not a match. From my very limited understanding of this subject the DVD is the source so the calibration disk is what we should be using.

    Bill Leahy> On my 1804 when I am calibrating using the disk I press the arrow button to the right or left as the tone hits the speaker to bring the level up or down to match the spl reading I'm looking for. When you are viewing a movie or music you can press the middle (channel select enter button) to bring you to the speaker you might want to adjust, like your center or SW setting and adjust to taste while viewing or listening.. Go ahead and PM me if you should need or want more info.
     
  15. Chuck Kent

    Chuck Kent Supporting Actor

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    Shane: As Steve notes, the 3803 (and to my knowledge all xx03 Denons) can adjust individual channels levels in most modes (including turning off the subwoofer.) As you've already noted, the level adjustment and test tone section of the main setup menu resets all modes back to a baseline default.

    Go to the lower half of page 55 of the 3803's manual. The details of how to make the settings are there...
     
  16. Darren_N

    Darren_N Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello,

    Just got the Denon 3803 last night and got around to calibrating today. It was easy enough but I wanted to get opinions from other 3803 owners on my settings. To me, the individual speaker levels seem too high. Using VE and an SPL meter, I adjusted all speakers to 75 db (sub at 78 db) with 00 db on the master volume as reference level. In order to get 75 db for all speakers, I had to set the following individual speaker levels:

    Front L and R: 11.5 db
    Center: 5.5 db
    Surrounds: 10.0 db
    Sub: 4.0 db

    The range for all speakers is -12 to +12 db and I believe the maximum master volume is +15 db for Dolby Digital. Am I driving the receiver too hard by having settings this high? My speakers (JBL NSP-1) are not very sensitive. Could this be the reason? Instead of 00 db as reference should I use +5 or +10 db so I can lower the individual settings?

    FYI - I have the crossover set at 80 Hz, all speakers set to small, and subwoofer set to "yes".

    Thanks in advance for any replies. Take care.

    With regards,
    Darren
     
  17. Harry Lincoln

    Harry Lincoln Stunt Coordinator

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    I dont have AVIA but I do have the Ultimate DVD platinum calibration disc. I have compared the tones on this DVD to the internal 3803 tones and they were very close, from memory the surround channels were out by 0.5db and all the others matched. The internal tones make it much easier to calibrate EX/ES systems because it can send a tone to each surr back speaker individually, where a DVD can only send a tone to both simultaneously as they share a channel(thats if you can find a calibration DVD that supports these formats in the first place).

    Adjusting the levels is much easier using the enter key on the remote to cycle through the channels as mentioned above.


    ============
    Front L and R: 11.5 db
    Center: 5.5 db
    Surrounds: 10.0 db
    Sub: 4.0 db

    The range for all speakers is -12 to +12 db and I believe the maximum master volume is +15 db for Dolby Digital. Am I driving the receiver too hard by having settings this high? My speakers (JBL NSP-1) are not very sensitive. Could this be the reason? Instead of 00 db as reference should I use +5 or +10 db so I can lower the individual settings?
    ============

    As I understand it the maximum volume on the 3803 is +18db when all channels are set to 0db. Because your mains are boosted by 11.5db your max volume setting will be +6.5db (18db - 11.5db = 6.5db). So dont worry, you're not driving the receiver any harder by having these settings. You can confirm this by selecting an input with no source connected, crank the volume and see where the display stops.
     
  18. Darren_N

    Darren_N Stunt Coordinator

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    Harry,

    Thanks for the reply. I checked this morning and like you said, the max master volume is now 6.5 db to make up for the 11.5 db boost in the mains. I also just found out that the max master volume (with individual gains set at 0 db) depends on what surround mode you use. I believe it's +18 db for DD and stereo, +15 db for DPLII, and +12 db for DTS and DTS Neo:6.

    Depending on the source, I usually have the volume at 10 to 20 db below reference. I was just concerned because I didn't expect to have to set the individual gain for the mains and surrounds so close to the maximum level of +12 db.

    Thanks again for your help.

    Regards,
    Darren
     
  19. Harry Lincoln

    Harry Lincoln Stunt Coordinator

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    =======
    I believe it's +18 db for DD and stereo, +15 db for DPLII, and +12 db for DTS and DTS Neo:6.
    =======

    Anyone know the reasoning behind the different maximum levels?
     
  20. Chris Bedard

    Chris Bedard Stunt Coordinator

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    you can just use the channel level button (the middle button on the up/down/left/right pad, and then adjust the channel levels for ALL sources right from the remote while playing a dvd.
     

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