Secrets Review of Aragon Stage One

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Ricky T, May 8, 2003.

  1. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/volum...or-5-2003.html

    The silver Stage One looks even better in full color photography in the Sound & Vision review. The Secrets reviewer was incorrect in stating that there is no subwoofer distance/delay settings....the Stage One does have this (and to the nearest inch).
     
  2. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    Ricky

    You ready to unload your Lexicon MC-1 for this $4,000 pre?

    How good does Logic 7 sound to you? Would you miss it much?

    Artie
     
  3. Jerry Klawiter

    Jerry Klawiter Screenwriter

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    I think his MC-1 was gone long ago [​IMG]
     
  4. Michael Langdon

    Michael Langdon Stunt Coordinator

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    Besides incorrectly stating that there is no subwoofer distance/delay settings, the reviewer also stated that the front panel display cannot be turned off. The front panel display can be turned off. The light below the Aragon name on the front right can be dimmed or turned off. When you turn off the front panel all lights including source lights turn off.
     
  5. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    Artie,

    I bought a used Aragon Soundstage about 3 months ago, then I got a great deal on a new, black Stage One (was contemplating upgrading the Soundstage). So Jerry is correct, my MC1 was gone when I decided to get the Stage One.
     
  6. Brett DiMichele

    Brett DiMichele Producer

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    A beautifuly crafted piece of equipment [​IMG]
     
  7. Arthur S

    Arthur S Cinematographer

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    Ricky

    When you had your MC-1 did you set up 7 speakers to get a reasonable feeling for Logic 7? Seems like Logic 7 is the ace for Lexicon. Clearly Logic 7 did not make the MC-1 a keeper for you. I'd be very interested in your take on Logic 7.

    Thanks

    Artie

    PS Then again with your interest in moving up to high end, the MC-1 may have been a keeper in Ricky time [​IMG]
     
  8. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    Artie,

    I had the MC1 for full Logic7 for 16 months, easily the longest keeper ever in Ricky time [​IMG] If you do a search on this site (and HTguide), you can read some of my Aragon Soundstage and Stage One thoughts from the past 3 months.
     
  9. Geo

    Geo Stunt Coordinator

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    Is it true that the Stage One only has global crossover settings? If so, why? Even the $3k B&K Ref 50 has individual settings. And how important, in the real world, is having the ability to set each speakers crossover?
    I guess it depends on the system.
    Regards,
    geo
     
  10. Darrel McBane

    Darrel McBane Second Unit

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    I noticed the review yesterday and was going to post on it today. Thanks Ricky.

    I also have the Stage One and it's a great HT processor. I was using it for two channel also. Which sounded really good. But, I just added a Audible Illusions Modulus 3A tube preamp. And as good as the Aragon sounds with direct bypass on SACD and redbook CDs. There is no comparison to this tube two channel preamp. The dynamics and detail of the Audible Illusions puts any processor that I've ever heard to shame. For HT the Aragon fills all of my needs for HT. And I don't plan on changing it anytime soon.

    I also upgrade my stock power-cords on the AI and my Rotel 1090 amp to ByBee power cords. Another leap forward in my system. As much as I love HT. Two channel has taken over as my main interest these days.

    Geo the Stage One doesn't allow each speaker to have its own crossover. Some may find that an important feature. I personally think it just doesn't add up to much for my system.
     
  11. Eric A

    Eric A Second Unit

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    Actually the B&K has global settings for xovers. I know this for sure as I just sold mine to go back to a Lexicon.
     
  12. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    The global settings for all speakers set to small for HT doesn't affect my setup a whole lot either. I set my mains to large; the other 5 speakers are set at 65hz for HT. The ability to have a different crossover for music can be helpful for some folks...ie, a lower crossover like 35hz for music.
     
  13. StephenL

    StephenL Second Unit

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    Miscellaneous Ramblings on Subwoofer Crossover Frequencies by Colin Miller and Brian Florian

    http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/volum...rs-9-2002.html

    "If you want consistent bass response from each channel of your 5.1 system, in our opinion, you're best to set all speakers to "Small", set them all to the same crossover point, and set that point no lower than what you are comfortable throwing away from the LFE channel. If your main left and right speakers are genuinely full range (be honest now!), then you are better off running them full range as opposed to high-passing them at a ridiculously low frequency."
     
  14. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    Brian is wrong. He talks about phase issues when adding in all the low freq content. He doesn't understand that this is a much smaller issue than being able to customize the crossover freq for each speaker in your set up. Phase is a continuous function of freq, such that if you have crossovers set at say 60, 90, and 120 Hz, if you adjust the phase for *any* of them, the others will not be that far out. Plus, *most* speakers are not even phase coherent within themselves. (Between the various drivers.) Only Vandersteen, Dunlavy (RIP), and Thiel, among very few other manufacturers actually sell phase correct, time aligned speakers.

    Brian is also wrong in his assumption on how most pre/pro's do the crossing over. He assumes that the pre/pro sums *all* of the channels, then applies the low pass to the sub signal. He states that then for a speaker high passed at a higher value than the global low passed signal, that there'd be a "hole" in the response. The ideal way to apply the high pass and low pass filters to each channel individually, *then* sum the low freq signals to the sub output. I know for a fact that the Sony TA-E9000ES, the Outlaw 950, and all the Lexicons do it properly. Brian states garbage facts with no supporting details in terms of tests to support them. In fact, after the "article" originally came out, I sent an email to Secrets asking them to comment on exactly all the issues I've just brought up. Not a peep out of them.
     
  15. StephenL

    StephenL Second Unit

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    Yes, but many (most?) receivers/processors sum the channels, then low pass them. Many audiophiles are demanding variable crossover frequencies for each channel, but how is a potential customer to know which companies are doing it properly? Perhaps a set of standard tests could be developed to check for proper bass management and other parameters.
     
  16. Geo

    Geo Stunt Coordinator

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    Eric,
    You're right about the Ref50 having global crossover settings, don't know what I was thinking about.
    Maybe I was thinking about the Lexicon MC-12B.

    Ricky,
    Doesn't the StageOne allow for different crossover settings for 2/ch, I thought I read that somewhere?
    I know some processors/receivers allow you to turn down or even turn off the sub for 2/ch.

    Regards,
    geo
     
  17. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    Geo,

    Yes, the Stage One allows one crossover for surround modes and another for 2 channel. ie, someone can use 70hz for HT, and 35hz for 2 channel.

    What are you using now? (in your 2-3 systems...LOL!)
     
  18. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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  19. BruceD

    BruceD Screenwriter

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    The key to understanding how the bass management is manipulated is to read the firmware operation notes for the specific DSPs used in the various prepros/receivers. Some of the common DSPs that are used are; Cirrus and Motorola.

    Typically the prepro/receiver manufacturer doesn't change the basic bass management operation provided by the DSP chip manufacturer, except for Meridian and Lexicon who write some of their own code.
     
  20. Jonathan M

    Jonathan M Second Unit

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    OT regarding the xover discussion:

    I personally agree with the advice given in the Secrets article. I do not necessarily agree with the reasons given, but my advice to beginners is certainly to use small at around 80Hz or so as their best option.

    IMO if one is worried so much about the xover frequencies for each individual speaker, one should also be aware of the following:

    1. Often speakers specs are inaccurate. The frequency response quoted may be accurate as far as the bass alignment goes, however does the speaker have the excursion capability to achieve realistic HT levels down that low? A lot don't.

    2. Most speakers bought nowadays are ported enclosures. IMO this is not ideal, and one should not then try and cross at the F3 point of a ported speaker. It should be at least an octave higher IMO. Reason being that the highpass filters used in most pre-pros are 2nd order Butterworth filters. A ported speaker is equivalent to a 4th order acoustic highpass, thus they combine to give a 6th order highpass. The lowpass filters to the sub on most pre-pros are 4th order Linkwitz Riley alignments. This will yeild improper summing of the acoustic response. This is, however, not as bad as it seems in most rooms, as the room plays just as big a role (Or bigger) anyway. Keeping the highpass higher than the F3 of the speaker minimizes the errors introduced. Ofcourse, if you are using a 2nd order lowpass on a sub as well, then leaving the xover on both the receiver and the sub at the F3 of the mains (or slightly higher) is the best bet - you then have matched 6th order slopes.

    3. The filters in most pre-pros as described above are designed to match SEALED speakers with an F3 point of 80Hz or whatever the xover frequency in the receiver is. This is the ideal system in most rooms where full range speakers are not feasible.

    As for measuring what a particular receiver is doing - this is easy. All one does is feeds in a digital MLS signal into the channel of intrerest (eg via a DDWAV CD or DTS CD) and measures the frequency response at both the pre-outs for the sub and the channel of interest. One can also check for things such as the LFE boost of 10dB, whether the LFE is getting lowpassed, whether bass is being thrown away with different settings etc. etc. Anyone with a computer and CD burner can do this - it's reasonably straight forward. I have been planning on getting up instructions and tones etc. for download for a while now, but haven't got around to doing so.
     

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