HK AVR 525 set up help, please!

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Willy_P, Dec 5, 2003.

  1. Willy_P

    Willy_P Extra

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    Just got the HK AVR 525 and I'm having trouble setting the speakers for 5.1 surround properly.

    I tried the Ezset and had to turn the volume to 10db to get the Ezset to be able to set the levels correctly (they recommended using a volume of 15db). Problem is that it set rear surrounds to 10db while everything else was set to around 5db. When playing a movie (the most recent 007) at a level loud enough to hear the voices well, any action scene was way too loud....my ears are still ringing today [​IMG]

    So, I tried setting things manually, which I haven't quite finished fooling with yet, but I can tell that in order to hear voices well I will have to set the center channel much, much louder than everything else. I'm not the most knowledgeable with this stuff, but that doesn't seem right to me since I thought that I supposed to hear the test tone evenly from speaker to speaker, but if I increase the volume on the center to where the voices sound right the test tone is much louder coming from the center than anywhere else.

    Any help at all towards getting this set up right will be greatly appreciated. Here's what I have for speakers:

    Center - Cambridge SoundWorks CenterStage
    Fronts - Infinity REFERENCE 2000.1
    Surrounds - Cambridge SoundWorks Surround II 5.1
    Sub - Klipsch KSW100
     
  2. John S

    John S Producer

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    Did you happen to try a different placement at all??? (I know, I know, it is a center where else ya gonna try it??
    I mean just temp, just to see if it makes any difference.
    In front of the TV just below the screen is a position many are finding more favorable these days.

    There just may be something going on the room, making this happen. I often find myself adjusting my center for dialog purposes as well though. I don't think it is as drastic as your situation sounds though.

    I never gave it to much thought, and you should try more titles too. Every now and then, I just don't like the mix on the title especially concerning the center channel.

    I'll be curious to read what others think as well about this as well.
     
  3. Willy_P

    Willy_P Extra

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    I can't move my center from where it is now, it just won't work with my set up.

    With my old kenwood, I always had the center higher than everything else as well, but I thought that this new system would handle this type of thing a little better.

    Am I correct that the test tone should play evenly across my fronts and center? I'm pretty sure I'll be able to get this thing to sound good by having the center set higher, but I'm concerned that it will throw off the whole surround affect a little.
     
  4. Tim Streagle

    Tim Streagle Stunt Coordinator

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    I use a Radio Shack dB meter with the test tones on my AVR525 and it works beautifully. The manual says to test at -15 dB volume on the display, not +15dB! When finished, I usually end up with overall volume measured at about 90-95dB at eight-ten feet from the speakers (C weighting). The EZ-set gets ballpark close, but the difference between close and dead on is very noticeable.

    Notice any difference between DTS and DD decoding? We always hear dialogue better in the DTS movies.
     
  5. John S

    John S Producer

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    But I did not mean permanent, just to se if it helps any really.

    You really should try to get a db meter, if you were in the Denver area you would be welcome to barrow mine.

    Last time I calibrated, I actually used an old oscilliscope and tone sweep generator hooked to a very high end studio mic. As to try to detect any phase issues by finding dips in the frequency curve, not because it was important to do this, more just because I planned an entire weekend for the speaker upgrade, and I had the equipment, and it ended up being very fun, and very telling of speaker position / angle and other fun stuff like that.

    Really all it did was confirm that s38's are very flat reference quality speakers, and my 15" Velodyne sub goes really low with force... lol

    And yes calibration does make a difference, I think if you did this, you would find your dialog not getting lost near as bad, even if you did have to slightly raise and lower for various titles.
     
  6. Chris Q

    Chris Q Agent

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    Willy
    I was having the same problem with my yamaha 5450,and i also used to leave my center up higher than the others,and i always felt like there was something missing,i finnally used the test tone and leveled everything out,and as soon as i began to play my next movie,i could not believe all the things i was missing in the left and right channel!but it took me awhile to get used to the center channel level being tuned down,but i have gotton used to it.so maybe that will help?maybe not,but it could be something that simple.

    Chris
     
  7. Willy_P

    Willy_P Extra

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    Thanks for the help. The ezset was the problem...it was way, way off....at leats the way I was using it anyway.

    I did it manually and things sound great now. For what it's worth the fronts and center are now at 0, with the surrounds at +2.

    I've watched about 5 movies now and the HK 525 is really amazing! I'm hearing and feeling things I never knew were even there with my old Kenwood.
     

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