Do you "fiddle" or do you "set it and forget it"?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by gene c, May 23, 2004.

  1. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    What do you do with your A/V controls (bass, treble, individual speaker volume, etc.)? Do you calibrate with a meter and a disc and then forget about it or do you change things as you swap disc's? Many here advocate setting things once and leaving it alone. I don't. Here's why. First, I own mid-level moderate equipment. If I had higher end stuff, maybe less fiddling would be needed. Second, I live in a rather noisy area with nearby neighbors. Most of the time I have to turn the sub down, and at night, off with the crossover changed from 80 to 120. I know, I lose allot, but it keeps the phone from ringing. Also, some disc's seem to need a little adjustment like Donald Fagen's Nightfly on DVD-A. Love the thing but have to turn the treble down a bit. A little bright compared to others. On Fly Like An Eagle by Steve Miller Band (on DTS) I have to lower the rears. Too loud. I know, to some this ruins the "artists intent" but I'm more concerned about my intent. Which is to enjoy it as much as possible. After all, I paid for it[​IMG] . Plus, I love playing with this stuff and I can always set everything back to "calibrated" if I chose. I wrote the numbers on the cover of the A/V manual. So, am I way off base as usual or are there others here who are constantly fiddling with things?
     
  2. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I set and forget.

    But, I've followed that path ever since I had a simple Yamaha receiver too.

    Really, it's what works for you.

    One trick I *did* learn though, is that due to less sensitivity of the Radio Shack meter at low frequencies, you should actually set the sub's level down about 2 - 3 dB. (I.e., if you "match" levels, the sub is too loud because the meter isn't as good at reading that low. If you think about it for a second, you'll get it. [​IMG] ) But again, it's up to you.
     
  3. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    I fiddle, fiddle, fiddle. I'm very glad that I do because the D-Range for my Yamaha receiver had been set to a setting that made the sound seem a bit weak. Through the process of fiddling, I was able to resolve the setting issue bringing forth some great sounds.

    While one doesn't need to fiddle a lot, I think it's good for one to just do a "double-check" of all the settings to make sure things are where they should be and you're not missing anything important.
     
  4. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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    I fiddle too. I have the settings from the meter written down and I keep them for DVD playback with the exception of sometimes boosting the sub a few dB, but for TV viewing in PLII or Neo6, I'm always changing the surround levels and the PLII adjustments depending on the show I'm watching(it would be nice to have a processor with individual level controls per input). I rarely mess with the tone controls; I usually keep it in bypass mode.

    DJ
     
  5. mackie

    mackie Supporting Actor

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    My receiver has a nice memory feature were it remembers setting for CD, DVD, TV, etc., so I usually leave things alone. I couldn't do this with my previous receiver which drove me crazy.
     
  6. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    No fiddling, but it took a lot of fiddling to get to the point where I don't have to anymore. I tweaked until I got something that works for basically all situations, aside from a sub adjustment here and there.

    I have never used the tone controls on my current or previous receiver.
     
  7. Dan_Shore

    Dan_Shore Auditioning

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    I have Surround Sound settings for "Movie Mode" and "Music Mode" as I listen to SACD and DVD-A discs from my universal player. Basically all I change is center speaker and the surround speaker levels - everything else remains the same. When listening to redbook CD's, I go 2-Channel and do not worry about the A/V settings.

    Later...Dan
     
  8. gene c

    gene c Producer

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    I wish I had as much self control as you guys have. But I just love playing with this stuff too much. I think I'm trying to make a moderate system sound better than it can. On a regular basis! I fiddle much more with music than movies (except for the sub) and I also think I don't hear as well on the right side. That may have something to do with it. Or maybe I'm just looking for excuses for my deviant behavior!
     
  9. Johnny_M

    Johnny_M Second Unit

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    I fiddle like crazy and then I forget it. But 10 mins later I remember and fiddle some more!!

    GOD BLESS FIDDLING!


    Johnny
     
  10. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    On my receiver, the multichannel inputs are calibrated separately. I use this for my SACD player. Redbook (from the same SACD player via digital) and DVDs use the regular receiver parameters.
     
  11. Erik.Ha

    Erik.Ha Supporting Actor

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    I fiddle until it's "just right"... then I NEVER TOUCH IT AGAIN!!! (this is pretty much how I approach everything in life.)
     
  12. PaulT

    PaulT Supporting Actor

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    ahhh, but is it ever "just right" ?? [​IMG]

    I used to fiddle, but now I spend a day making my wife crazy with test tones, then leave it alone until a new piece of equipment shows up at the house :b
     
  13. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    I think people often get emotional satisfaction from the very act of fiddling with things, regardless of wether it's objectively better. This helps explain why so many love to try out the "flavor of the month" with respect to wires, ICs, DACs, settings, etc.
     
  14. johnny..bon

    johnny..bon Second Unit

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    I'm the kind of person who has to have everything perfect.
    I first calibrate everything, then listen, then make the adjustments untill it sounds perfect to my ears. this process usually takes about a month.
     
  15. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    I did not pay all this $$$ to set it and forget it! I fiddle like crazy! It makes me feel like I've justified the purchase! [​IMG]
     
  16. raymond caputo

    raymond caputo Stunt Coordinator

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    glad to hear that most people, like myself, fiddle!! mostly when i play dvd audio, i have to turn the bass down quite a bit....i have the lex mc-8, so everyone that is familiar with this unit knows that you can fiddle till u turn blue
     
  17. ChrisDixon

    ChrisDixon Second Unit

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    For me, it is somewhere in the middle. I set it once and let it go for a while, but I always go back and re-fiddle every now and then to make sure that nothing was reset or went out of calibration. Plus, if I fiddle, it gives me something to do other than buying something new!

    Chris
     
  18. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    I always think it's interesting to watch the mixing person at a live concert. Usually, they are fiddling the whole time. Even though you'd think that once evrything's set, bam, that's all you need to do. Makes me wonder sometimes if they had it right to begin with, and when they mess with it they make it worse, even though they think they are making it better! [​IMG]

    But for me, yes, the "fiddling" takes place when I get something new, but after that, I just want to watch and enjoy the movie, or relax and listen to the CD. I don't want messing with the eqp to intrude. But I can certainly see how the "process" of fiddling could be something different people enjoy too.

    Oh yeah, and I even remember the only movie I ever "fiddled" during: Star Wars Episode 1, I raised the center channel volume. A common issue with that DVD. [​IMG]
     
  19. Shane Martin

    Shane Martin Producer

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    Count me in as one who fiddles.
     
  20. DanaA

    DanaA Screenwriter

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    And count me, like John, in as someone who may fiddle a lot when I first get something (almost obsessively), but once I get it where I want it, I rarely mess with it. Actually, I might fiddle a lot too, if I wasn't so lazy. [​IMG]
     

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