general radio shack spl meter question

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Ted Lee, Jul 9, 2001.

  1. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    i almost picked one up yesterday...
    i see a lot of posts about this tool, and i am wondering if it is even worth it. it seems to almost cause more confusion then before. but, at the same time, i just don't know if i can trust my ears when setting my channels.
    do you guys use this? if so, did you feel it was worth the investment? was it hard to use?
    any suggestions appreciated!
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  2. Lee Bailey

    Lee Bailey Second Unit

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    If you are serious about properly setting up your system, then this is a 'must have' tool. I've used one for years, they are very simple to operate. The confusion comes in what sequence you should be adjusting your system.
    Always start by adjusting the Left and Right Front speaker volume, using your main volume knob. After that is set, DO NOT adjust this knob during the rest of the calibration! You can now adjust your center channel speaker using the receiver's adjustment for the the center channel volume, then adjust the rear speakers, and finally the subwoofer(if you have one). I'm assuming you have a DVD player, and if so, I recommend either the Avia or Video Essentials DVDs for setting up your system, although the internal tone generator on your receiver will suffice. What volume level you decide to calibrate to, i.e., 70db, 75db, etc, is not too important. What is important is that all the speakers come out at the same volume level in the measurements. There are references here on the forum, that you should set your subwoofer volume 4 to 6db higher than the rest of your system.
    Have fun!
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  3. Stefan A

    Stefan A Second Unit

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    Yeah Ted, Go ahead and get one. They are really not that confusing. Once you understand how it works (3 minutes to learn), you can easily make all the speakers the same. From there you can adjust certain speakers differently if you want - but it gives you a good starting point. I keep my surrounds and center 1 or 2 decibles louder. Probably not neccesary, but I think it makes me feel better [​IMG]
    Stefan Antwarg
     
  4. Curt Jett

    Curt Jett Agent

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    I know my ears did not even have them close. The first time I calibrated with the meter and listened to movies/music I just sit back and said "WOW". It was the best $40 I had ever spent on the system. It's also something you will use over and over anytime you make any changes. You could always take it back after you have calibrated but I bet you will not.
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  5. JohnFR

    JohnFR Stunt Coordinator

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    I second Curt's post. I reluctantly bought one with the intention of returning it if I did not find it useful. I thought I had my system balanced fairly well by ear. Wrong. I haven't used the calibration disk yet, but I have improved the sound of my HT 100% just using the pink noise. You'll use it time and time again as you make changes to your system.
     
  6. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    thanks all...
    i think i'll go pick one up. thanks for your comments & suggestions.
    yay! another toy my girlfriend won't understand...
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  7. Ryan Pream

    Ryan Pream Stunt Coordinator

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    I had earballed the center and rears pretty well. The SPL meter was critical in setting up my sub though. It's damn fun to play with too :).
    Ryan
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