Different sub settings for music & movies?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Kevin C Brown, Oct 13, 2003.

  1. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I personally have never really felt a need to adjust the sub level between music and movies. But I know a lot of people do. And I just read the manual from a sub that more or less says that due to the C-weighting scale and/or the Radio Shack meter's less sensitivity at low freqs, that you should increase the sub level in between 2 to 6 dB when setting up levels to compensate.

    I have always just set my system up with matched levels all the way around with Avia. But then if I think, that if I did want to change levels, how would I do it? And to be honest, I've always been more happy with the level for music, than for movies. For me, sometimes the bass is too loud for some movies. But then if I dare to think some more [​IMG], maybe I just have a good room and a good sub and that's the way it is supposed to be. I don't know. Just curious what y'all thought too. For those that change levels, music or movies, which do you prefer a higher sub level for?
     
  2. Rick Lyon

    Rick Lyon Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm new at this so I keep the same setting for everything. I get it adjusted the best I can and hope the receiver does it's part for music or HT. I figure if the bass is weak, that's the way it was intended or was poorly recorded. Either way, I'll listen to it that way.
     
  3. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Kevin, Kevin, Kevin......just can't leave well enough alone, can you?[​IMG]

    I am not at all averse to tweaking the sub level to suit my ears. I, like you, start out with balanced outputs, but if I think something is a bit bass shy, or a bit bass hot, so be it, I tweak the level....and I don't care who knows it!

    And I dare the HT police to try to get me!

    Having said that, I find I am more likely to want to do that with movies than music, and normally its because a given title is a bit bass heavy (Titan AE for example).

    Its rare to have a music disc where I think the bass is too hot, although perhaps Blue Man Group's Audio comes close?

    BGL
     
  4. Jason Brent

    Jason Brent Second Unit

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    I find that I don't mess with it too much. But I do run the TV input 2 dB hotter than the DVD input. And I run the DVD-A input -1 on the sub.
     
  5. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Brian- Yes! If anything, you'd turn down the bass for movies vs music. (Just like me.)

    Ahhh, and I think I had an epiphany last night too that might explain all this.

    If the Radio Shack meter is *less* sensitive to lower freqs than it should be, then we all sort of accidentally over compensate to raise the sub level to make it even with the rest of our systems. So in effect, we should be setting the sub level a little *lower* than the rest. Right?

    And, because most music doesn't have a lot of content below 40 Hz or so (some, but not a lot), we don't notice it much with music.

    And, that sub manual I read that said to *raise* the sub's level 2 - 6 dB has it backwards. (Now, I need to go back and see if I read that correctly! [​IMG] ) Not the sub I currently have, btw.
     
  6. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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  7. PhilBoy

    PhilBoy Second Unit

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    I thought it was just my HT...

    I've had the same sub for years now, an AR108PS and it has served me well for music.

    Now that I have a HT set up, whole new ball game.

    "Attack Of The Clones" has some ship effects that make my boomer bottom.

    I guess the only way around this is use two volume settings on my sub.
     
  8. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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  9. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  10. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  11. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Brian- Great find. [​IMG]

    I double checked, and I saw the reference to a suggestion to set the sub's level 2-3 dB hot in the manual, and on the web site it suggests 2-6 dB hot. But they do buffer it with the statement that sub levels are always best adjusted to the ear of the beholder.
     
  12. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    "Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder."

    I have only one setting, but it is about 3dB hot with RS meter. Just right for music, and a tad hot for DVDs, which is OK for most movies, but a few here and there can get scary.
     
  13. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    John- It's the scariness that I worry about. I like my rock and roll loud, but man, I think my family room's going to shake itself apart when watching stuff like the depth charge scenes in either Das Boot or U-571. [​IMG]
     
  14. Jonny K

    Jonny K Second Unit

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    I wish my receiver stored different bass settings for different inputs. When watching movies, I turn the bass down considerably to get the appropriate levels (which is still high bass). But for music (TV and radio) I crank the bass up significantly. Maybe it's because the radio and TV are compressed signals without dedicated LFE, but the bass just sounds much weaker from those sources. Also, I love to shake the walls with rich bassy music.

    Unfortunatly, every time I switch to a movie I need to adjust the bass again. It's annoying. I've got a Yamaha RXV-1300.


    Jonny K.
     
  15. BruceD

    BruceD Screenwriter

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    Jonny,

    I would hazard a guess that you are experiencing what is called "room modes" or "standing waves". These are specific bass frequencies that are being reflected off the walls to reinforce the source signal and generate higher SPL levels.

    CD's (except organ music) typically have less lower bass frequencies than most DVDs.
     

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