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Reciever Sound Processing Help (Audyssey/THX)


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#1 of 10 Adam Sanchez

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Posted September 10 2012 - 03:57 AM

Hey guys. I have a Onkyo HT-RC270 Receiver. This past weekend I have spend a lot of time familiarizing myself with all the sound options it has. A little background: I recently moved in with my girlfriend into her townhouse. Because there are neighbors, I want to be consider at times of the day where surround might bother others. It was this that lead me to really trying out Audyssey Dynamic EQ and Volume for the first time. I was a bit ignorant of these modes and use to shun them thinking they were artificial to the sound of my movies. Artificial in a bad way. In the past I had ran Audyssey speaker setup, made slight adjustments and then never messed with it again. All my movie and TV watching has always been done using the THX Cinema listening mode. Then the other night I try out Dynamic EQ. I have it set to on and dynamic Volume set to light (and medium a bit too.) From trial and error it seems that when THX listening modes are ON, the Dynamic EQ/Vol features are OFF. (I discovered this morning how to bypass this, so I could have Dynamic EQ/Volume ON in THX Modes if I want.) Now when I have a source playing a Dynamic EQ and Volume are engaged, my content is MUCH louder at much lower volumes. For comparison, while watching a movie I would usually have it at about level 55 volume with THX Cinema mode. Now when THX is off and I'm using the Dynamic EQ/Volume, the volume is very loud and full at around 30-35. My first question is, why is there such a huge difference in volume now? I did some A/B comparisons and surprising as it is to me, the dynamic EQ/Volume on, seems much "fuller" than THX Cinema, which I had always thought was the way to go. Receivers have so many options for sound and I wonder what ones cancel the other out, and what can and even should be used together. As I mentioned above, I discovered today I can use THX Cinema and preserve the settings of Dynamic EQ and Volume, but by using both together, what am I getting at that point? What it comes down to is I am looking for a way to have a mode for Dynamic EQ/Volume on in order to limit drastic volume spikes when watching movies at a time where I need to be considerate of neighbors, and I would like a more "Natural" movie mode for times of the day when volume isn't much of a factor. I'd like a way to quickly switch between a pure movie mode when needed, and a Dynamic volume mode when I don't want to be riding the volume on the remote. My initial thoughts were to have THX off when I need to use the Dynamic Volume and turn it on when I want just normal movie watching. Also, if I turn preserve THX settings off, which lets me have a THX mode enabled with Dynamic EQ and Volume enabled, at that point what is THX still even doing to the sound? In that configuration, it would seem to me the Dynamic EQ and Volume is doing most of the work. I also want to ask the option of THX RE-EQ and Loudness Plus. Thank you for your time.

#2 of 10 schan1269

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Posted September 10 2012 - 05:34 AM

I'll try to answer the questions I think you are trying to ask... Dynamic EQ has nothing to do with volume control. What it does is "evens out" bass response when you turn the volume down. Essentially, as you lower the volume...bass trails off first(cause it requires the most power). This is essentially a "low volume bass boost" and that is it. Period. Dynamic volume is DRC(Dynamic Range Control) plain and simple. When explosions occur...there isn't as much KABOOM. Your BD player and your Cable/Sat box should also have DRC as well. Typically, using the DRC of the source is better than using DRC in a receiver...and, if you wanted, you could "stack" the DRC(meaning turn the DRC in your Cable/Sat box on while also having DRC on in the AVR) Audyssey and THX are "sound control functions". THX adheres to the "movie theater experience" and Audyssey adheres to "real world in your living room". THX Loudness Plus is essentially THX's version of Audyssey's Dynamic EQ. Dynamic Volume should work with all sound modes. You shouldn't be able to turn on Dynamic EQ and THX Loudness Plus at the same time. When you do turn on THX modes, even if Dynamic Volume and Dynamic EQ are both turned on, THX will override Dynamic EQ with THX Loudness Plus.

#3 of 10 Adam Sanchez

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Posted September 10 2012 - 05:59 AM

Thanks for the reply. It did help somewhat. One of the nagging questions I still have is why my sound is so loud now at a much lower volume when I am using Dynamic Volume with THX modes turned off. The same volume level I would usually have at around 55 (absolute) is now at about 35 when using a mode with Dynamic Volume and EQ. I'm just wondering if this is artificial or actually more "normal?" i always did find it odd my receiver needed to be so high to have any kind of decent sound. On my Onkyo Receiver, I CAN use Dynamic Volume and EQ within THX modes. I just have to set "Preserve THX Settings to NO" in a menu and then even in THX Cinema, it's still using Dynamic Volume and EQ. But at that point, I wonder what THX is still even doing to my sound? I did know about DRC and yes my BD player does have it. That helps me understand Dynamic Volume a bit more. I'm a little surprised to hear that Loudness Plus is basically THX's version of Dynamic EQ, as it never seemed to do much to me. Historically speaking, I just use my surround with THX Cinema with whatever defaults were set, which was mainly Loudness Plus on (and also Re-EQ -- which I am not sure what that does?) Loudness Plus. Re-EQ. Re-EQ (THX). Dynamic Volume. Dynamic EQ. Ugh!

#4 of 10 schan1269

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Posted September 10 2012 - 06:11 AM

It would help to know what speakers you are using as well. Re EQ lessens the "harshness" of the theater sound(cause again, THX adheres to the "movie theater experience"). If you already have "laid back speakers", Re EQ probably doesn't have an effect. It also depends on what movies you are watching. A movie like this(if this is your taste) http://www.amazon.co...mmortal beloved The sound modes won't do much. The only thing DRC would do is "ruin" the classical music. Now, this... http://www.amazon.co...ng private ryan The sound modes would have a lot of work to do.

#5 of 10 Adam Sanchez

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Posted September 10 2012 - 06:18 AM

I have the Infinity TSS-800 speaker set. If this is any kind of litmus test (which it probably isn't), me and my girl watched Inception last night with Dynamic Volume set to medium. We went well past 10pm, when we need to be more mindful of the noise, and she never told me once to turn it down. Only up during some dialogue.

#6 of 10 schan1269

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Posted September 10 2012 - 08:44 AM

I misspoke about Aud Dyn Vol... It isn't a "dynamic range"...It is a "volume leveler"(I'm a purist, I don't use any of the "wizardry" beyond room correction)... All it is supposed to do is when you switch from BD to Cab/Sat box is make sure the "inputs are even"(meaning they are the same volume in case one has a "hotter" output). It leaves Dynamic Range intact. Your receiver might have "night mode". That will be the receivers DRC. If it has it, it will be a button on the front of the AVR(or it will be listed in the OM on where it is) However, here is what I have found to be the easiest thing to do when I have people sleeping in the house and I want to watch something. The subwoofer is the usual "complaint"....go into set-up and "remove" it. Then, during the day, "put it back in".

#7 of 10 Adam Sanchez

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Posted September 10 2012 - 08:50 AM

Yeah it does have night mode (with 3 levels) but I've never used it. Dynamic Volume also has 3 levels.)

#8 of 10 schan1269

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Posted September 10 2012 - 09:04 AM

Well, start using Night Mode then...there is the feature you were looking for.

#9 of 10 Adam Sanchez

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Posted September 10 2012 - 09:14 AM

I think Dynamic Volume is what I want, isn't it? I like the idea of not having to constantly adjust the volume. Up for low dialogue, down for loud explosions, etc...

#10 of 10 schan1269

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Posted September 10 2012 - 09:25 AM

No, I just said... Night Mode is DRC. Aud Dyn Vol, all it does is make ALL YOUR INPUTS THE SAME VOLUME, while not doing a thing for DRC. So...from your own post... "I want to be consider at times of the day where surround might bother others." The answer to that "might bother others" is... Night Mode.




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