More SPL?

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by Chuck Bogie, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. Chuck Bogie

    Chuck Bogie Second Unit

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    Existing system:

    Sony DVD/SACD player
    Denon 2803
    Hafler DH-225 (mono)
    Infinity Entra Center Two
    Hafler DH-500
    Infinity Entra Three fronts
    Hafler DH-500
    Infinity Entra Two sides
    Hafler DH-225
    Infinity Entra Center rears (two, mounted 6" from ceiling)
    Behringer Feedback Destroyer
    Parts Express 240 watt plate amps (2)
    Dayton Audio Quatro 15 subs (2) in 5.5 cube boxes, ported to 18hz

    Room is 34x17, with seating about 12-13' from screen/center/subs.

    Ceiling is dropped "acoustic" tile.

    It just doesn't seem to get loud enough. I mean, it's "okay" for movies, etc., but if I toss in a concert DVD (Who, Jet, AC/DC, etc...), things just don't seem that loud. Sounds nice, and it's seamless around the room, but it just doesn't reach out and hit you.

    I commonly run the Denon at "zero" on its scale (it starts at -60, and I think that zero is supposed to be "reference." If I run it much hotter than +5-6, it seems like I'm getting distortion. I _should not_ be clipping those amps, right? The speakers seem to get a little shriller, etc., which goes with the Entras - I definitely can't use them to listen to jazz, etc., but they work okay for rock (my maggie MMGs upstairs cover the more refined music...).

    Any suggestions?
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Sounds like you have enough amplification but the speakers may not be up to the task. That is a huge room; you'll probably want to look for some more efficient speakers.
     
  3. Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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    Tough one. An SPL reading would have been nice to let us know what your idea of “loud” is, but the speakers have 90 and 91 dB efficiency ratings, which is pretty decent. Yes, the room is huge, but it looks you have the seating in close proximity to the speakers; the main room/loss issue would be the lower frequencies (and it looks like you have that covered).

    Pre-amps can run out of headroom if driven too hard. It’s possible the Denon just doesn’t have enough output to fully drive the Haflers. Take a look at all your speaker level settings – if they’re all really low, that might be the problem.

    Also, for hard rock music you might be looking for a little more aggressive sound. Boosting the EQ a few dB at about 2 kHz will give the guitars a little more “edge.”

    Regards,
    Wayne A. Pflughaupt
     
  4. Randy C Sr

    Randy C Sr Stunt Coordinator

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    What are the spec's for the speakers and your power amps. The efficiency of your speakers is important. The higher the SPL the better (they take less power for a given loudness). An 88 dB SPL rated speaker will take more power to play at the same level as a speaker rated at 92 or 93 dB. The other thing to keep in mind if you're planning to upgrade your power amp's is you have to double the power output to heard a difference in volume. To play twice as loud the power has to be multiplied ten times. My point being, if you have amp's rated at 100 wpc unless you got to 200 wpc you will not hear a difference.
     
  5. Geoff L

    Geoff L Screenwriter

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    Another thing is if a system is playing clean and it's FR is close to flat at the listening position, it will not appear to sound as loud as it actually is many times. This especially if in a treated (traps) or a really absorbent room.

    When something is pushed beyond it limits, the weak point, whether the subs, speaks or amplification of either, distortion begins to creap in & it is very noticable. "Possibly" the shrill you speak of, but certainly can not be concrete with the info posted so far. Over driving speaks with clean power can cause a similar effect, another possibility.

    As Wayane mentioned, a spl reading of average dialoge and peeking spls during a nice action movie (where you say it just dose not seem that loud) will tell you just how loud it really is, of course taken at the listening position...

    That is a large room, and if open anywhere even larger. Take some measurments with your spl meter and also look into Waynes (check your speaker line level ouput #s in the AVR feeding the Haf-Amps and "where their set on their scale"). You might not be getting all the power from your Half-Amps.

    If you bumb up the line out levels to your Haf-Amps in the Denon AVR for the fronts, rears, ect, you'll have to recalibrate the system of course.

    Cheers
    Geoff ¥
     
  6. John S

    John S Producer

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    You can use more power. Maybe look to external amplification for the easy fix.

    I would not install that AVR in that room without some outboard amps, no way.
     
  7. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    He appears to have plenty of amp power, though as Wayne points out, they may need some tweaking to get the most out of them.

    Another question: Do ALL movies sound like they aren't loud or just a few? It could be the discs themselves.
     

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