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Do you use the tone control? (1 Viewer)

keir

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Jan 16, 2002
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I found a post on axiom's forums I thought was interesting. An anonymous poster said that you should turn the treble up quite a bit to get the most out of the paradigm atoms. When I compared my titans side by side with the axiom m22 I did notice that the titan's treble was quite a bit more subdued. I tried bumping up the treble on my titans by 4 (dB i assume) on my kenwood vr-407 receiver and they did sound quite a bit closer to the m22s sound. The symbals jump out more and overall they are conveying more detail in the treble that i couldn't hear before --without sounding harsh or unbalanced. the treble control seems to affect very little besides the highest notes, and doesn't change anything except the cymbals and some guitar string squeeking sounds and such.
I question whether its smart to leave the treble bumped up like that. I have seen graphs of the atom's frequency response and its very flat.. would bumping the treble up make it less accurate? But I also know the axiom m22s have a flat response. So why does the treble sound so much louder on the m22?
I guess my general question is, do most audio enthusiasts think its taboo to use the tone controls? or should i just go with what i think sounds best with my speaker and room?
 

Mark Romero

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If I have tone controls, I use them. I prefer a little more treble than most people probably because I may have lost a little hearing from too many Kiss concerts. I say whatever you like is good. I don't think bumping up the treble would cause any problems. Either your speaker passes the freqs or they don't. Whatever suits you.
 

Steve_Ma

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I never use them. At the risk of sounding like an audio snob.....I like the idea of hearing what was intended (to the extent my room and equipment will allow anyway :rolleyes.)
Ultimately, you need to enjoy what you're listening to, so that's the most important. But my main point for consideration is: How do you really know what you enjoy if you keep bastardizing the material you're listening to?
--Steve
 

Barry_B_B

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Mine stay in the flat position, but it took some getting used to. Try it and see what you think.
 

Paul Clarke

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I never use any bass boost or loudness control. The treble is very slightly elevated on the H/K due to personal hearing/age preferences. Also running a mildly elevated EQ curve on the Analog CD input mainly affecting the mid-range.
 

MatthewJ S

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I would say that if you alter the output (much) to make the speakers sound "right", then they don't or ,maybe, you don't like their sound?!? This arguement doesn't apply to "room response" issues, which ,of course come into play...
 

Mike Strassburg

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It's all a matter of personal preference. If "you" like it that way then adjust away. I will set treble at -2 sometimes when really cranking up some music as it takes away the brightness my horns can sometimes have at EXTREME volumes.

"I like the idea of hearing what was intended " Perhaps this statement should be changed to "I like playing it back the way it was intended" since we all hear differently (otherwise we'd all by the same system). I spent many years in printing and I just don't hear the highs like some people do, that's probably why I like the Klipsch horns while others consider them to be bright.

My teenage son would probaly turn up the bass (if I let him touch my system) since he's the typical "basshead" who wants the loud/thumping/bloated/one-note bass sound. I've got to educate that boy!!
 

Larry B

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Steve:

At the risk of sounding like an audio snob.....I like the idea of hearing what was intended (to the extent my room and equipment will allow anyway
I will add that tone controls are rarely found on high-end equipment as they (the tone controls) are felt to have deleterious effects on the waveform.

Larry
 

John Garcia

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This is very likely due to the fact that the Axioms are brighter in general than the Performance and Monitor lines of Paradigm.

As for tone controls, I never adjust them. I feel that if they need to be changed, you are compensating for a deficiency in some portion of your system. Buy gear that sounds the way you want it to in the first place.
 
Joined
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Messages
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I use the tone controls on my receiver to adjust the treble by 2 decibels. I don't see this as a problem or bastardizing the original recording. The chances that my room match the acoustics of the recording studio where the music was recorded and then mixed is zero. So claiming to destroy the sound of the original recording by using the tone controls, if you don't have an equilizer, are unfounded.

It's true that some high end equipment does not include tone controls,that is because they expect you to use an equilizer to tame the room acoutics. An equilzer is nothing more than a ten or twenty band tone control.

If you feel that the music or movie sounds better to you when you adjust the tone controls, then by all means do what you like. The purpose of all the equipment you have spent your hard earned dollars on is to please yourself not the rest of the world.
 

John Garcia

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I agree that taming room effects is a valid reason for using tone controls, and I also feel that it is perfectly within the right of everyone to adjust their system to their personal taste.

My main reason for not using tone controls is not that it somehow "damages" the recording, but that I feel the fewer tweaks I need to make the better.
 

PaulG

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I turned my treble down quite a bit because of an overly bright room. After putting up some wall hangings I have been able to put the treble back toward normal.
 

keir

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Jan 16, 2002
Messages
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I would say that if you alter the output (much) to make the speakers sound "right", then they don't or ,maybe, you don't like their sound?!? This arguement doesn't apply to "room response" issues, which ,of course come into play...
i have also thought of another possibility. i noticed my system sounds better to me at above normal levels (levels that might bother someone in the next room, or that at least bother my brother). i think maybe at low volume i like the treble boosted so it sounds as clear as it does at high volume.
 

Saurav

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i think maybe at low volume i like the treble boosted so it sounds as clear as it does at high volume.
Your ears are less sensitive to bass and treble at lower volumes. So, a system that sounds 'flat' at X dB, will sound rolled off in bass and treble at lower volume. Look up 'Fletcher Munson curves' on Google if you want to read more about this.
 

Mike Veroukis

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The idea of hearing what the artist intended makes sense, but its not just the artist, it's also the studio/production engineers. I have many albums (mostly from the 80s) and a lot of them are recorded painfully bright. The Cure's best of (For Lovers, Sinners and Ravers, or whatever it was called) is one example. Croweded House is another good example. When I listen to those I have to turn down the treble because who ever mixed these albums must have some serious hearing loss in the higher registers.

So even if you have a system that accurately reproduces the original recording, it's possible that you might not like the way the original was recorded! It's sorta like putting extra salt on your meal at a fine restaurant.

- Mike
 

Steve_Ma

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May 7, 2001
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OK, "bastardizing" certainly wasn't the best choice of words. I meant no offense. Of course, personal preference is the ONLY thing that ultimately matters. I was merely trying to point out that MY efforts at adjusting tone controls in the past left ME changing the bass and treble settings with every disk I listened to. I eventually decided I wanted to get my system as "accurate" as I could so I'd have more confidence in my ability to evaluate good recordings, bad recordings, possible equipment changes, and etc. But that's just me. I have no taste when it comes to movies and music anyway. Just ask my wife :D.
--Steve
 
Joined
Jun 30, 1997
Messages
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Steve, I hear ya about the wife. Mine thinks a boom box is high fidelity sound. When I bought my last receiver she almost had a heart attack when I told her what it would cost and she could not understand why it was worth it to me.
I also agree that striving to achieve accurate reproduction of the recording is the most important functions of quality equipment. Why else spend the bucks we do on this hobby. I am still striving for the perfect sound but I doubt I will ever get there,at least thats what my wife keeps telling me:)
Tone controls, equalizers and the such are all a matter of personel taste, just as the music or movies we like are.
What I really don't like is when someone comes to MY house and changes MY tone settings and tells me that I should know better then to set them that way. Oh well, I guess I'm just anti-social or something:)
Tony
 

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