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Low Volume Vocal Distortion (1 Viewer)

Stephen M.

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New to the site. Not entirely familiar with terms and best practices. Forgive me.

I recently received a Yamaha RX-V683 receiver as a gift, and I found a pretty decent deal on a set of Definitive Technology ProCinema 600 speakers. Both are new, both appear to be undamaged.

I bought high quality speaker wire, and carefully (and with slight OCD) prepared and wired in the speakers. I am running the front L, R, and center speakers through the receiver, not the sub. The subs crossover is set to max as per instructions when being run from the receiver via a pre-made sub cable. At high volume, everything sounds pretty darn amazing. At low volume, the center (and possibly the right and left fronts) seem to distort vocals a significant amount. I have noticed a crackling at low volumes in the surround L and R too.

Any suggestions? I really would love to be able to listen to things at levels lower, more comfortable levels sometimes.

Thanks!
 

Stephen M.

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Have you run the YPAO calibration test?

Todd,

Thanks! Hoping to learn a lot.

Yes. Several times now with different placements of both the YPAO mic, and the speakers. I have attached the speaker specs to this reply.

I have them set as "small" and the receiver set them all to 120Hz crossover. From what I have read, it is generally good to have the sub at 80Hz, and the speakers 10-20 above their lowest value. Should I just set them all to 80Hz then?

After the YPAO calibration, anything under about -20 to -25 dB's creates vocals, mostly male, that sound like they came out of a coffee can, and crackling on the surround speakers. If you were having a concert though, it sounds fantastic.

-Stephen
 

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Todd Erwin

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I would check to see if the wire connections are good and tight. Also, I always use the calibration settings as a starting point, then play around with the settings manually until I think they sound "right." This includes speaker levels and your crossover settings on the receiver.
 

Stephen M.

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I would check to see if the wire connections are good and tight. Also, I always use the calibration settings as a starting point, then play around with the settings manually until I think they sound "right." This includes speaker levels and your crossover settings on the receiver.

Todd,

I will look at all of these connections again. I will probably just pony up and buy high quality banana ends to eliminate that possibility, since currently they are just raw wire ends screwed down.

Thanks,
Stephen
 

David Willow

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"High Quality" does not mean expensive. Not sure what you paid for the wire but if it was more than $1 per foot you probably paid too much. Same thing with banana plugs. Less than $5 per pair is all I would ever pay.

Check out monoprice.com or blue jeans cables.
 

JohnRice

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I keep reading this thread and trying to figure out what on earth it could possibly be. Distortion and crackling tend to be problems with damaged speakers, but it's usually worse it high volume, though a damaged voice coil can show up more at low volume. It just doesn't add up to anything that makes sense to me. My first inclination is the speakers are damaged, though. Either that or the receiver. Unfortunately, I tend to think it's something serious, not just a calibration issue.

Anyway, there is nothing wrong with bare wire connections. In fact, that makes for the best electrical conduction, but it isn't as convenient for disconnecting and reconnecting. As David said, do NOT spend a bunch of money on wires and cables. Monoprice is a great source for most of that stuff. Their 14 or 12 ga OWC speaker wire is all you need and a great value. They also have great interconnects of all kinds. For banana plugs, I really like the Nakamichi ones, though they are sold under many different brand names. They take some time to connect to the wire, but then they're rock solid. You can usually get them for $1/ea or less. An example of one is THIS at $20 for a 24 pack. BTW, I wouldn't use anything smaller than 14ga with those connectors, since it'll probably be too small for it to grab onto.
 

xx Brian xx

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Just to see if the roll off on the crossover is causing this, set the three front speakers to Large and turn on double bass. See if it changes. If it does, then set center to large and fronts to small and see what happens. Experiment a little and try to narrow it down.

Also go to Yamaha's website and see what version firmware is current. Make sure receiver is updated.

Good luck, this can be frustrating to trouble shoot.

Brian
 

Stephen M.

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I keep reading this thread and trying to figure out what on earth it could possibly be. Distortion and crackling tend to be problems with damaged speakers, but it's usually worse it high volume, though a damaged voice coil can show up more at low volume. It just doesn't add up to anything that makes sense to me. My first inclination is the speakers are damaged, though. Either that or the receiver. Unfortunately, I tend to think it's something serious, not just a calibration issue.

Anyway, there is nothing wrong with bare wire connections. In fact, that makes for the best electrical conduction, but it isn't as convenient for disconnecting and reconnecting. As David said, do NOT spend a bunch of money on wires and cables. Monoprice is a great source for most of that stuff. Their 14 or 12 ga OWC speaker wire is all you need and a great value. They also have great interconnects of all kinds. For banana plugs, I really like the Nakamichi ones, though they are sold under many different brand names. They take some time to connect to the wire, but then they're rock solid. You can usually get them for $1/ea or less. An example of one is THIS at $20 for a 24 pack. BTW, I wouldn't use anything smaller than 14ga with those connectors, since it'll probably be too small for it to grab onto.

I do the same thing generally. I appreciate all the info on connections. It is the most frustrating situation. Both items are brand new, and neither has damage to the shipping boxes. That doesn't eliminate the idea of product damage though. I will put in an email with the manufacturer of both and see if they have heard of similar issues.

Disappointing though. The quality of everything else is pretty darn good. I am an engineer by day, and a music/video game fan by night. The Red Dead Redemption audio is pretty amazing minus the futuristic robot voices.
 

Stephen M.

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Just to see if the roll off on the crossover is causing this, set the three front speakers to Large and turn on double bass. See if it changes. If it does, then set center to large and fronts to small and see what happens. Experiment a little and try to narrow it down.

Also go to Yamaha's website and see what version firmware is current. Make sure receiver is updated.

Good luck, this can be frustrating to trouble shoot.

Brian

I will try this. I updated the firmware immediately, so I know this is current. Would you suggest having the front left and right speakers run through the receiver, or through the sub? Currently each is tied directly through the receiver, but the sub has the option to run them.
 

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