Bass on multchannel recordings

Discussion in 'Music' started by Hartwig Hanser, Oct 17, 2003.

  1. Hartwig Hanser

    Hartwig Hanser Second Unit

    Oct 9, 1998
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    So, now I have several SACDs and DVD Audios, some of them utilizing the .1 channel. I am not sure, what the intentions of the mixers are: Sometimes I get the impression that the bass info is both on .1 and the main channels, so that owners of small satellite systems get there bass delivered even without proper bass manegement. But this would make it a double bass dosis for those with large main speakers. Does anybody know , what the guidelines for mixers are in this respect? Are there any SACDs or DVD Audios, that rely entirely on the .1 channel for bass reproduction, so one could not just switch of the sub if one has large main speakers? I know of no such disc, but would be interested in other opinions.
  2. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

    Apr 9, 2000
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    Unfortunately, there are no simple answers to your questions, although there are solutions for most every system. Actually, there is one simple answer: "the Outlaw ICBM-1". Unfortunately, even this answer becomes complicated by the practical exigencies of its execution.

    For practical answers, go here:

    For abstract discussion, go here:

    If you read both, you'll have a good foundation in the principles and problems of hi-res bass management.
  3. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

    Jul 8, 1998
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    Hartwig, you experience echos my own.

    I have at least one disc (Telarc Tribute to Weather Report DVD-A) where it appears that the bass is doubled, and one (Bowie's Heathen SACD), where it seems to be mostly in the .1 track.

    In fact, there is a note in the booklet of the Telarc disc suggestion that the user not use the .1 channel if they have small sats and a sub.

    As Rich said, for that disc, the ICBM allows for an easy solution; I can dial the LFE channel back by up to 9 dB, which in my rig brought the bass down to a subjectively reasonable level.

    Bowie is fine, but if you have all large speakers and no sub, you best have a player that redirects the .1 to the mains, or you are hosed.


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