Dvd-a & Sacd Bass Management

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Kevin Knebel, Jan 28, 2003.

  1. Kevin Knebel

    Kevin Knebel Extra

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    Can someone help me understand what bass management is for DVD-Audio and SACD? What does your receiver have to do in order to have proper bass management for these two formats? I have an Onkyo TX-SR800 receiver. I am looking down the road to purchase a DVD-A/SACD player. Are there any sources of info on the internet that someone can point me to where I can can learn more on bass management?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Tony Genovese

    Tony Genovese Supporting Actor

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    Bass management sends the bass to your subwoofer and the other stuff to your other speakers. I don't know of any receivers that incorporate it. It needs to be done at the player, as the only way (except for the Pioneer 47txi and 47ai) to get high res audio into your system is through the analog inputs.
     
  3. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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    Kevin, since neither SACD nor DVD-A currently offers a digital connection, you cannot use the bass management features of your pre-pro or receiver. Some SACD players offer bass management, but I was very disatisfied with the onboard bass management system of my Sony C555ES player, and it's generally considered one of the better ones.

    Outlaw Audio offers an outboard analog bass manager, the ICBM-I, for $199 (b-stock). I bought one, and solved all my bass management woes.
     
  4. John-Miles

    John-Miles Screenwriter

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    Just to clarify what Tony said, Most receivers do not do any bass management on the analog inputs, since you need to use the analog inputs for these formats the bass management ahs to be done at the player side of things. one exception is the pioneer that Tony mentioend this is because there is a digital connection between these components which then will allow the receiver to do BM.

    there are a few high end receivers which will do BM on the analog inputs, but not many.
     
  5. Bert D

    Bert D Stunt Coordinator

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    Is the HK 525 one of these that you can manage bass with ?
     
  6. Charles Gurganus

    Charles Gurganus Supporting Actor

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    The best method to handle SACD and DVD-Audio bass management is to use large speakers all around. That seems to make a moot point of any conversion in the PCM realm, where bass management is handled. Of course very few people have the large speakers all around. My center isn't large but I took the approach of sending the full range signal to my center anyway. I just use the high-pass connection on my sub and let that handle the lows and then the center handles the rest. I've told the DVD player and my processor no sub. So far I am pretty happy with this approach as it keeps me from adding another cable jungle the ICBM would induce.

    I don't think I am losing any thing in home theater or audio with this setup. The LFE seems to go to the front mains and the NHT VT2's (biamped with a Sherbourn 5/1500) go to the mid 20hz range.
     
  7. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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  8. Tyler DJW

    Tyler DJW Stunt Coordinator

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  9. Charles Gurganus

    Charles Gurganus Supporting Actor

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    I reallize the ICBM is the better solution for most people. I just wanted to throw out another way of handeling the issue.

    Rich, did you read my post? The main point of my post was to describe how I handled this issue. My center channel is NOT considered large (NHT VS2a) but I do run it large. I just use the high pass input on my sub for center channel duties. So I run the speaker wire from my center channel amp output to the high pass input on my sub and dial in the high pass filter to about 80hz. Then another set of speaker wires go to the center with the 80hz and higher frequencies. This method works quite well for people with 4 large speakers (I realize that is a minority) and a sub that can use the high pass inputs.
     
  10. Yumbo

    Yumbo Cinematographer

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    sorry for the repeat,

    I have bass management woes on my Marantz 8300.

    I don't have access to an ICBM unit, but have 2 unused receivers.

    Can I use 1 as an alternative outboard BM unit?

    Do I just run the subwoofer cable into the external amp (where I adjust the sub level somehow), and route back into subwoofer input on my main amp?

    please advise.

    thanks!
     
  11. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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    Charles many DVD-A players won't fold the LFE content into the mains by selecting "no" for sub,but rather discard it. This inclueds my Denon 2900.
     
  12. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Here's my Controversial Opinions About Bass Management For MUSIC Surround Systems post:

    * To me, full-range speakers are anything that reaches down to 40Hz using the +/-3dB scale. Below that seems to be mostly just movie FX and church organ music. And anyway, such a speaker doesn't just stop right at that frequency--there is always bass past that point but there is just less of it as the frequencies get lower (this is especially true of acoustic-suspension speakers) though I do realize there is a point where the speaker just can't reproduce anything.

    * After reading quite a few articles about surround music mixing, cramming the five satellite channel's bass into one channel--plus the subwoofer's bass--doesn't seem to be a good idea. It seems that the reason surround music sounds better (or to others, at least different [​IMG]) from stereo is that all those extra channels create much more acoustic "room" so the studio mixer can bring up the levels of all the different bass instruments (bass guitars, drums, synthesizers, etc) where they can be heard better......or heard at all in some actual cases. Stereo has much less space to work with & instruments can get smothered. There is a scientific reason for this, but I'm trying to keep this explanation short. [​IMG] So there is a solid technical reason the surround version of a stereo track sounds clearer and more "separated", besides just the extra physical acoustic space that the five satellite speakers use. Anyway as I mentioned above, stuffing all those bass sounds with their oh-so-carefully chosen levels into one channel could very well result in a sonic mess.

    * Potential phase problems when using five full-range speakers all the way around. The worst phase problems occur IMO when the same bass sounds emerge from all the speakers and meet each other in the listening room.

    But:

    What if each channel carried a DIFFERENT bass signal?

    Then--I think--phase problems shouldn't be a big deal. Though placement of each speaker for best bass output will still be an issue. And as mentioned here once before, electrical phase problems can also arise when combining multiple channels into just one.

    Surround mixing articles have hinted that mixers use the subwoofer channel for specific bass effects, and each satellite channel can also get its own specific signal. But it almost seems as if they are talking about something secret & won't say anything specific about this, so I am not sure exactly what to think regarding this issue.


    * Certain surround music companies and mixers themselves strongly reccommend the use of five full-range speakers. I've seen this on websites and on the disc labels themselves. Based on what I have informally researched the past couple of years, now I think I know why I keep seeing this stern warning.

    So for me, I am planning on a surround music system using five full-range satellites, a subwoofer and NO bass management of any kind. For my particular living situation, this translates into a preliminary plan of using four sats with 8" woofers, a large center with two 6.5" woofers and a 10" subwoofer. My bass-reflex Boston Acoustic CR9's go down to 42Hz and most definitely have bass past this point, even of the "rumbly" variety; Infinity's Alpha 37C acoustic-suspension center goes down to 45Hz--this huge model is as big as I can tolerate sitting atop my TV, but I also think most mixers are aware most people don't own truly FULL-range center channels. And very importantly it uses a vertical tweeter/midrange array to minimise irritating lobing effects, something I won't tolerate with music reproduction. So I figure this speaker will cover my needs nicely.

    Any thoughts or corrections to the above are welcome. [​IMG]

    LJ
     
  13. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

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    Forgot to add this:

    I'll bet surround mixers were aware & worried about that there would be no properly functioning bass management systems at the consumer level for people that absolutely had to use b.m. And as we have found out (with a few exceptions) they were right!

    And: all those extra xovers can add certain types of distortion to the signal--not good.

    We've been listening to music for years with non "full- range" speakers for years. Why all of a sudden are so many people worried that their music will sound horrible using anything less? So I'm really quite sure the mixers don't mean for all of us to run out and buy five 5ft tall floorstanders with two 12" woofers.

    LJ
     
  14. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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    Lance,
    I see were you coming from,but I dissagree,on what is a full range speaker,or that sub/sat+ BM isn't a good way.
    As you pointed out 5 true full range speakers could create more problem then good in a typical room.Unless the room is specially treated[how many of us can do that]to combat this,it could end up in "disaster".
    This whole 5 large speakers is really comes from the industry that looks down upon subs still,and believe that it has only place in a HT set up.However they reckognized the fact that most surround content is being played back on such systems,and not on some esoteric quintet they monitor their recordings on.The same goes for BM in general.
    Also regarding speaker's rating and actual response in a room could be very different,so I wouldn't rely on that.
    To me full range speakers should at least to be flat to[F3]32hz.There is plenty of instruments that reach that low.Subs should go one more octave below that,if they used to extend the mains.I say this there is no perfect solution here but acceptable compromises,one just have to decide how much and where.
     
  15. Tom Grooms

    Tom Grooms Second Unit

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    I with ya Lance, especially the 40hz full range comment. People would rather muck up the presentation by adding a ICBM to the signal path. Run them full range and enjoy. BM is for movies....
     
  16. Chuck Kent

    Chuck Kent Supporting Actor

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  17. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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  18. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  19. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  20. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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    I don't know about that Lewis. For natural instruments, the Piano goes the lowest, around 27 Hz, but how often are those lower keys used? Next would be the Harp and the tuba, around 32 and 38 Hz respectively(again not alot of music material down there). The lowest E on the string bass is around 40 Hz.

    For music, most intrument's practical range is going to be around 60 Hz and up. Of course, there are exceptions for electronic music and cannon blasts. [​IMG]

    DJ
     

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