WinISD Test Tone Generator

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by SteveCallas, Jul 8, 2005.

  1. SteveCallas

    SteveCallas Second Unit

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    Has anyone used the WinISD test tone generator to calibrate their subwoofer as opposed to Avia or other discs? Does the quality matter if it is output from your soundcard when it is only sine wavs?

    I would think this would be much easier to use because you have total control to to input any specific frequency, stop and start on a dime, and don't have to keep navigating through menus.
     
  2. stephanX

    stephanX Stunt Coordinator

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    winisd outputs 0db sine waves, as opposed to the -20 ones that avia includes. So unless you wanna use the sine waves in winisd, and calibrate all your speakers to 105db (which i would REALLY REALLY not reccomend) id use avia. or a test tone generator that will allow you to create -20db sine waves.
     
  3. SteveCallas

    SteveCallas Second Unit

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    Wouldn't this depend on how high I have the gain up on my amplifier or how high I have my system volume set at?
     
  4. Ryan Schnacke

    Ryan Schnacke Supporting Actor

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    Calibrating "at 85dB" is only necessary if you actually care about such things as "reference level" and only makes sense if you have some measuring equipment much more accurate than the Rat Shack meter.

    Most people only care that all their speakers are balanced with respect to each other. And that they're all in phase with each other. They'll play their movies at whatever level is comfortable to them, rather than what the director recommends (which is usually dang freakin loud).

    The Rat Shack meter does not have a good track record for absolute accuracy. So it should not be used to determine where exactly 85dB is. But it should be fine for relative measurements, so you can easily identify if your left speaker is playing 3dB louder than your right.

    You can calibrate your sub using a tone generator. The advantage of Avia (and other calibration DVD's) is that they play a broad spectrum of frequencies during the calibration. This way you're calibrating based on some average of the frequencies that are used. But if you choose to use a tone generator and you only use a single frequency then you might pick a frequency where your listening position is in a room null from your subwoofer. So you'd end up calibrating the sub way loud to compensate. But all the other frequencies (that are not a null at your listening position) would sound way too loud.

    Soooooo ... if you're going to use a tone generator to calibrate your sub, don't just compare a single frequency. Measure many frequencies and average the measurements.

    Another note is that it is very handy to use a tone generator to calibrate your subwoofer phase:

    Play a pure tone at the crossover frequency (usually 80Hz) through only the right & left speakers (turn off the sub) and measure the SPL at the listening position. Play it again through only the sub (disconnect the right & left speakers) and measure the SPL. Adjust the subwoofer level until the SPL is equal to what you measured for right & left. Now play it again through right & left and the sub. Adjust the phase until you get max SPL. This will be 6dB louder than what you got for right & left or for the sub by themselves.
     
  5. SteveCallas

    SteveCallas Second Unit

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    I guess I mispoke. I wouldn't be using the tone generator to calibrate the sub with my other speakers, I would be using it to measure frequency response. I have a variety of bass sweeps and general tones with which to calibrate my sub to my speakers.
     
  6. stephanX

    stephanX Stunt Coordinator

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    then yes, 0db tones are fine for that, and remember, your response will be very similar weather you find your fr at 85 db vs 105 db, save your ears and your sub, dont blare tones.
     

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