Crossover Settings

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by GregBe, Aug 15, 2003.

  1. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    I know this has been covered in several threads, but I can't seem to figure it out for my situation. Several calls to the manufacturer have yielded as many different answers. I have the Cambridge Soundworks Newton Series MC200's for my mains, the MC300's for my center and the P200 for my subwoofer. I have an Onkyo 600 with the choice of 80, 100 or 120 for my crossover. According to the website, the MC200's "play down to below 80Hz". The specs say 80HZ - 22KHZ. These speakers are two way with 1 inch tweeter and 4 inch woofer.
    I have heard to set the crossover at 80 Hz to match as low as they will comfortably go. I have heard to go 20Hz above the low (100), and I have heard with any 2 way with a single 4 inch woofer at 120Hz no matter what. I am confused, and have always gotten great advise here.

    Thanks for the help
    Greg
     
  2. James Edward

    James Edward Supporting Actor

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    120Hz. Even if it could play much below 80Hz, a 4" speaker cone would benefit from the much shorter excursion a 120Hz crossover would provide. The whole system will sound less strained at higher volumes with the higher crossover point.
     
  3. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    If you set the x-over to 80Hz, the speakers will still be receiving sound below 80Hz, potentially as low as 40Hz with a 6dB/octave x-over (though at a much reduced output by this frequency). They may not be comfortable with this.

    I would try 100Hz first, but as noted by the previous response, your best bet with 4" drivers is likely to be 120Hz. This is going to work your sub harder, and may localize it a bit (you will be able to tell where it is in the room) because it will be playing higher frequencies.

    If/when you decide to upgrade, I would recommend the MC400 or the M60s.
     
  4. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    Thanks for the advise. If I were to try it at 100Hz, what should I be listening for to figure out if 100 or 120 is better.
    Also, many times I watch movies late at night, with sleeping kids in the house. I have toy'd around with the idea of setting a macro to turn down the sub and turn on the compression mode for dolby digital during these situations. I I do this, is there any advantage to setting a lower crossover to tax my mains as much as possible when the sub is less utilized, or is it better to alway keep them blended correctly.
     
  5. James Edward

    James Edward Supporting Actor

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    2nd question first: Once an optimum setting is found, you're best off leaving it that way- compressed or not.

    As far as what to listen for in choosing your crossover setting: A dip in response ~100Hz would result in a 'thinner' sound- perhaps voices may not seem as full as they ought to... A setting of 120Hz would most likely alleviate this.

    However, as John stated earlier, a higher setting can sometimes 'localize' the sub's output, thereby drawing attention to itself. This can be greatly reduced simply by placing the sub up front along the same plane as the L/R speakers.

    One of the above solutions should satisfy you. But, like everything, you may have to compromise; does the sound of a dip at 100Hz bother you less than being able to locate the sub's sound.
     
  6. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    Thanks,

    Since the sub is placed in front between the speakers, I don't think localization will be an issue. I will try it at 100, but if localization is the only issue, it apears 120 is the way to go.
     

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