Prologic II BETTER than DD/DTS? Could it be?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by James Zos, Nov 24, 2002.

  1. James Zos

    James Zos Supporting Actor

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    I know this is going to sound crazy, but ...
    Last night my DVD player (Panasonic RP31) died. Just quit reading discs. (I have never really liked this particular player to begin with, but that is another story.)

    On a whim I decided to pop in an old VHS tape. I haven't used my VCR to actually watch a movie in years, but I have some videos that I don't have on DVD. I started with Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and immediately my ears perked up. The picture was, of course, awful, but I really liked the way it sounded compared to Dolby Digital on my DVD player!
    The soundstage (sorry to impersonate an audiophile - I'm not one really) seemed much wider and spacious. With DD, I'm always aware that the sound is coming FROM each individual speaker.
    As an example, I'll watch a scene where a car drives from left to right, and I think, yes, there it is coming out of my LEFT speaker, now the CENTER, then the RIGHT, etc.
    With Prologic II, the car still moves from left to right, but it seems to float through the air, as opposed to being anchored to each individual speaker in turn. In other words - in case I'm not making myself clear - the sound of the car moving from one speaker to another seems to blend together much better, a smooth pan, instead of a kind of 1,2,3 effect.
    I also like the way vocals sounds with Prologic II. Again the sound seems to float in front of me, instead of sounding like it is coming directly from the center speaker. I don't mean to say that it has lost all sense of direction; the vocals still seem connected to the charachters on the screen and don't sound like they are coming from the left or right, they just don't sound ANCHORED to the center speaker.

    To sum up, I think Dolby II sounds better in SOME ways, than DD! I'm amazed I'm even typing those words, but it is true. Maybe I find DD almost TOO sharp, too defined, too localized, and prefer the softer, "floatier" sound of Prologic II?

    Does anyone else have an opinion on this, or a similar experience? What could account for the difference in sound apart, of course, from individual preference? Could my system just be set up poorly for DD?

    In case anyone is interested, I have a Denon 3802, front three channels running on IRD Audio 100W monoblocks (same thing as nOrh Le Amps) paired with Klipsch RC-3 center, RB5 bookshelves, matching surrounds, and a KSW12 woofer (the weakest link, I believe.)

    Curious to hear other opinions ...
     
  2. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  3. James Zos

    James Zos Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the quick response Michael!

    Yes, I have measured everything with a Radioshack SPL meter. Ref. level is around 85 db though I don't listen at anywhere near that volume. I will experiment further with speaker position, but if that were a big factor, I wonder why would my speakers sound fine where they are with Prologic II? I swear PII creates a more difuse sound that is somehow more "realistic" than the sound I get from DD ...
     

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