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Dialog rough in some, but not all movies. Need help with new setup. (1 Viewer)

AaronMK

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Oct 30, 1999
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Aaron Karp
I recently purchased HTD Level II's and an Onkyo SR500. I I really like how it sounds for a most of my movies, however there are quite a few where the dialog sounds flat and/or rough. The biggest offneders are Harry Potter (especially Hagrid), Face/Off, and The Mask of Zorro.
Sound effects and music sound fine.

I was wondering if there is something I might be overlooking that would cause this.

Thanks for any assistence.
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Not really sure what you mean by “rough” or “flat,” Aaron. Typical center channel problems are:
  • Volume set too low in relation to the other speakers.
  • Harmful interactions caused by less-than-ideal placement, like in an entertainment center.
  • Poorly EQd dialog in the movie’s soundtrack. Not much you can do about this.
If your speaker is on a shelf or in a cabinet, make sure it is situated a far forward as possible. Also, if your receiver has some EQ controls for the center channel, try playing with them.
If you provide more details of the problems it might be possible to make other suggestions.
Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

Marc H

Second Unit
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Aug 22, 2001
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My receiver (Yamaha RXV3000) has an eq feature for the centre speaker and raising the upper frequencies does wonders for those movies with a garbled dialog track.
 

Stephen Houdek

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S
Since you have an Onkyo I'll tell you what I did.....My Onkyo (797) has a feature called "Center Width". My 797 defaults to 3/5......Moving it up to 4 or 5/5 spreads the center sound out to the mains to some extent.

I found playing with this improved the spoken audio and have it set to 2 at present, which is a subtle difference than the 3 default setting.

Not sure if your Onkyo has this adjustment, but if it does, you might give it a try and see if it improves things at all.
 

AaronMK

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Oct 30, 1999
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Orlando, FL
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Aaron Karp
Thank you for the replies.

To better describe it, it sounds a little like the short commings of tape when compared to CD on some movies. Othertimes, edgy. (Sorry I am not better at describing sound)

The receiver has bass and treble controls, but not for the center channel independently. It also doesn't seem to do anything for DD or DTS tracks. It also does not have the width adjustment.

I have the center channel placed on top of a 27" TV. I moved it forward a few inches, and thought that I might be hearing a difference for the, but nothing I would be able to pinpoint in a blind test.

I have also hooked up the center output to another speaker, and I couldn't really tell a difference except for placement.

I just find it strange that for most of my movies, I think the system sounds great compared to other stuff within the price range, but feel dialog is subpar for about 10 or so of my discs, most of which have gotten favorable reviews for their sound.
 

WesleyHester

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Feb 14, 2002
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Selma, AL
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Some DVDs simply have subpar dialog tracks that some people don't notice and others can't stand.
The worse one for me so far has to be Dr. Dolittle 2. In several scenes with Eddie Murphy's voice, there is distortion from the center speaker.
I was considering upgrading my JBL N-Center to a S-Center until I watched Dr. Dolittle 2 on satellite in HD. The high-definition broadcast also had the vocal harshness. So I'm saving $150+ and not upgrading after all because like you, I don't experience this problem for the vast majority of the time with other DVDs.
I think you will really like to check out this thread:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...hreadid=142970
P.S. I agree with MANY of the observations in this thread.
 

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