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Anyone use a Graphic Equalizer??

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Gregory_S, Nov 22, 2006.

  1. Gregory_S

    Gregory_S Member

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    Hi,
    Maybe this is a stupid question but I was tinkering with the thought of adding a graphic EQ to my system. I have the Pioneer VSX1014 and you can only tweak bass/treble in "stereo" mode. Has anyone added one? and if so, are there any particular brands that are better than others? Thanks Greg.
     
  2. ColinM

    ColinM Well-Known Member

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    If you want room correction, Behringer has a few models to look at, complete with calibrated mic, around $400.

    DEQX, $2000.
    Rives, $4000+?
     
  3. Doug_

    Doug_ Well-Known Member

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    I use an Audio Control Bijou EQ. I would recommend looking at Audio Control and Rane. They make some of the better EQs.

    However, I would look into room treatment first. I started with room treatment and then polished things with the EQ. Just throwing an EQ into the system usually does more harm than good.

    Room treatment is easily dollar-wise and performance-wise the best investment I have ever made in my HT room. It doesn't have any bells or flashing lights, but it should be considered before many of the upgrades people do (I took the long route on this myself, always putting it off to buy a new amp or whatever).
     
  4. Gregory_S

    Gregory_S Member

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    Doug,
    When you refer to "room treatment", are you referring to placement of speakers, furniture, sound dampening, etc. or something else?
    Sorry, I'm a little to to HT...[​IMG]
    Greg
     
  5. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt Well-Known Member

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    If your system is set up in your living room, typically you’ll find that regular room furnishings are all the treatment you need. However, big windows or hard floors (wood, tile) can cause reflections and echoes that require additional treatments such as rugs, heavy draperies, etc.

    If you’re talking about a dedicated room, sometimes they do require special treatments.

    Regarding your equalizer question, you don’t find them in used in home theater as much as you used to back in the two-channel days. You can’t use them in tape monitor loops any more, so you have to connect them between the pre-amp and main amps, which means you have to have a receiver with those connections. If not, you can’t use an outboard equalizer.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  6. Doug_

    Doug_ Well-Known Member

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    Greg,

    Furniture placement and so forth does make rooms sound different. In my case, I have shiny wood paneling in my dedicated HT room and had to add some fiberglass insulation around the ceiling to seal the room off and some GIK acoustic panels to deaden the slap echo (just take your hands and clap in the room and see if it gives you an echo). Bass really tightened up and panning from one speaker to the next was incredibly smooth after doing this.

    I had to use thirteen 2' x 4' GIK panels of different thicknesses to really get my room under control. If you have open areas where sound can escape, or thick carpeting, non-reflective walls, etc. you can get away with much less.

    In general, you should be worried about the first reflections from the front speakers. You can find where these occur by having someone hold a mirror against the walls/floor/ceiling with you in your seating position. When you see the speaker in the mirror that is the first reflection point. It is a good start to put something here to absorb reflections. Tri-corners (where 2 walls meet the ceiling or floor) are good places to try and absorb bass.

    To absorb lower frequencies (bass) you need thicker material than for higher frequencies.

    As Wayne stated, you can use curtains or tapestries, carpet, plush furniture, etc. to help absorb reflections.
     
  7. Gregory_S

    Gregory_S Member

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    Thank you all for your replies.
    Acoustically, I think my room is in good shape. It is a family room that is open partially on one side, is carpeted and has no audible echo. I was looking more for the adjustment for preference rather than to correct an acoustical issue. HT use sounds fine, but when playing some music (CD's, LP's), I sometimes would like to fine tune outside the capabilities of my Receiver. Thanks Greg.
     
  8. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt Well-Known Member

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    For a CD player, you could connect an equalizer between the player and receiver. You’ll have to use the analog the connections, though.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  9. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Well-Known Member

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    I have one that I connect my cd player through as mentioned above.
     
  10. John Brill

    John Brill Well-Known Member

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    I use an equalizer for my CD player, LP, and Reel-to-Reel (before the days of IPods and MP3's!) components using analog connections.
     
  11. Geoff Gunnell

    Geoff Gunnell Well-Known Member

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    Behringer and ART are two good brands in the less expensive price range.

    Here's a list of EQ's sorted low price to high at Full Compass:
    http://www.fullcompass.com/category/...rder=Price-Low

    If you want to do room correction, that is, notch filter out room resonance frequencies (generally under 200Hz), you'll need a parametric EQ that can focus in on an exact frequency. Behringer is good here as is Rane.
     
  12. Nick Chavez Beverly Hills

    Nick Chavez Beverly Hills Well-Known Member

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    This is actually a very good topic and something I was debating and wondering about for a long time -- I actually love the sound a graphic EQ would give back in my two channel days, boosting the audio to bright, punchy levels that were my personal preference; I wanted to add an EQ to my surround receiver, but never was able to figure out exactly how to do it or if it would be beneficial -- is there a way to EQ digital signals such as Dolby Digital and DTS with a receiver, and would this even make sense or would it muck up more of the engineer's intentions for the soundtrack on the disc than to do any good?
     
  13. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt Well-Known Member

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    You have to equalize after the processing, which means between the pre amp and amplifier. If you want to EQ all channels that obviously requires at least five of them (i.e. three old-styled stereo EQs or a single multi-channel home theater EQ). Unfortunately, few if any receivers have pre-outs and main-ins on all channels – typically you only see them on two or three of the front channels. The other channels, you’d have to use outboard amps. As you can see, the price of per-channel equalizing adds up in a hurry.

    The news isn’t all bad, though. These days receivers have digital EQ capabilities for all main channels, which are all you need in most cases. Alternately, you can patch a stereo EQ across the front L/R channels, since that’s what people are mostly concerned about. This will allow you to EQ the L/R channels of any source. It’s not hard to find receivers with pre-outs and main-ins for the L/R channels to accomplish it. Failing that, you can connect one behind a CD or DVD player’s analog connections, as described in previous posts, which will allow you to EQ music (but not FM radio).

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  14. Nick Chavez Beverly Hills

    Nick Chavez Beverly Hills Well-Known Member

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    "You have to equalize after the processing, which means between the pre amp and amplifier."

    Thanks Wyane....which means that because it is a RECEIVER with preamp and amp built in, this would be nearly impossible?

    "If you want to EQ all channels that obviously requires at least five of them (i.e. three old-styled stereo EQs or a single multi-channel home theater EQ)."

    Right...

    "Unfortunately, few if any receivers have pre-outs and main-ins on all channels – typically you only see them on two or three of the front channels. The other channels, you’d have to use outboard amps. As you can see, the price of per-channel equalizing adds up in a hurry."

    Why would you need "main ins"? I know many do not have pre-outs, as mine does not.

    "The news isn’t all bad, though. These days receivers have digital EQ capabilities for all main channels, which are all you need in most cases."

    Indeed; unfortunately, my receiver is a good few years old and does not have any EQ functions whatsoever, and from what I understand about this brand, no model offers the feature; I merely have bass and treble control.

    "Alternately, you can patch a stereo EQ across the front L/R channels, since that’s what people are mostly concerned about. This will allow you to EQ the L/R channels of any source. It’s not hard to find receivers with pre-outs and main-ins for the L/R channels to accomplish it."

    Ahhhhh.....okay. Is that what it would take -- another receiver with pre outs and main ins? As I said above, my receiver does not have any pre outs or main ins; my main concern is to EQUALIZE Dolby Digital and DTS DVD soundtracks so they are more "punched up" as stereo sources benefit from with a graphic EQ....can this be done?

    "Failing that, you can connect one behind a CD or DVD player’s analog connections, as described in previous posts, which will allow you to EQ music (but not FM radio)."

    Indeed; in my system however, I am only running a DVD player, no CD deck, and the connections are being made via Optical Digital to the receiver -- not analog; is there ANY way to equalize Dolby Digital/DTS soundtracks and is this even recommended rather than just "letting them play the way the engineers probably intended us to" just right from the source, to the receiver, to our speakers?

    Thanks for your help!

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt[/size][/font][/quote]
     
  15. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt Well-Known Member

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    Nope – not with that receiver. With no pre-amp outputs for the five channels, you’re out of luck.

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  16. Alex/d

    Alex/d Well-Known Member

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    I have a Teac EQA-10 that I use to connect my computer to my Onkyo... I can also hook in my portible music players (MD mainly).
     
  17. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

    Wayne A. Pflughaupt Well-Known Member

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    Dang Alex, that’s a lot of vintage gear you have there!

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     

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