Audyssey XT vs XT32 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 235 Old 12-02-10, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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Audyssey XT vs XT32

Hi, I'd like to chime in on the XT vs XT32 comparisons (only brief, still have a lot of listening to do) and maybe get some answers on another issue with my setup. First the equipment. I had (still have) an NAD T-785 AVR with the AS-EQ1 setup (so XT with equivalent XT32 setup for the subs). This setup sounded pretty awesome, especially in the bass range. I purchased the Denon A100 (XT32 based) mostly for both the Audyssey upgrade (love Audyssey products, this will be my 5th one) and the other options (network capability, etc.). As for the AVR's Amp stage, I feel that I down graded (the NAD has two toroid trannys and the unit weighs 16lbs more than the Denon). I can really tell when playing at reference levels, but not at low to moderate levels (at reference, I used to be able to hit 109db on the peaks, with the Denon, only 105db). This is most likely to speakers that are not that efficient.

Now for the comparison (subjective at the moment, need to do some measurements to see what's happening), the XT32 seems to be much 'brighter', it seems to be boosting the treble much higher than the XT. Wondering if it was a mic problem, I used a mic from another Denon receiver I have (same model, so I assume it's calibrated the same way). I got the same results. The blending of the mid/treble range is incredible, but I'm just not used to the increase in level compared to the rest of the spectrum. Is this normal behavior or am I getting strange results? I did run the 8 series of mic positions several times and got the same results (and then compared them to the NAD XT version just to confirm). The XT32 over all gives a sense of greater envelopment than the XT version. I tried many movies that I've seen several times on the previous system and felt the same way. I have not tried the DSX capabilities yet (wides/heights) as my room is too small to accommodate them).

As for the subs, I have another issue here. I'm using two subs, so did run the A100 with the 2 sub setup. When done, I seemed to have lost some bass (the sound is good, just 4 db lower than with the NAD/AS-EQ1 setup at the reference level). So, I wanted to check if the issue was with the way the A100 leveled the subs (taking into account coupling from 2 subs). I went ahead and put the AS-EQ1 in the chain, calibrated the AS-EQ1, then re-calibrated the A100 with the new setup. Yep, got the 4db back. This seems strange as the levels should be the same without the AS-EQ1 in the link. I re-calibrated the system again a couple times with and without the AS-EQ1 and got the same results every time (in fact, when I went back to calibrating the A100 without the AS-EQ1, it mentioned that the subs were too hot and had to drop each one by a couple db before moving onto calibration, when I went back to the AS-EQ1, I had to bump up each sub by the same amount to hit the 75db requirement). I 'really' wanted not to have to use the AS-EQ1 in the system (one of the reasons for getting the A100), but at the moment, it sounds better with it in the chain (even if I bump up the A100 sub levels to match when the AS-EQ1 is not in the system). I wonder if this is because of the additional EQ being done in the sub range by the A100 on top of the AS-EQ1 (I do have a dip in the 30Hz range that is not fully taken care of with the AS-EQ1, due to room dimensions). Also, I do use the 32 positions when calibrating the AS-EQ1. The A100 is limited to the 8 positions, so may be part of the 'sounding different' portions, but not the levels - this one is puzzling me.

Another question, will purchasing the Pro kit change this difference? If so, I can remove the AS-EQ1 from the system.

Ray

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post #2 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 02:25 AM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

Hello Ray, quite a lot going on in your system over I presume the last few weeks with the introduction of the Denon amp, now although the Denon maybe using the new Audyssey XT32 in theory when calculating the results with the ASEQ1 in the loop the Denon should not be looking at the subs otherwise you are adding another layer of EQ on top of it, I would still rate the standalone ASEQ1 to be the more powerful unit out of the 2 but tbh I have not looked at the full specs.

What I would imagine is happening is that the overall power of the amps in the Denon that is making the sound brighter, as 104db is relatively high in most systems volume and it is the amps in the Denon running ot of steam and making the sound brighter by the hardening of the amps straining to push to the same levels as you did with the Onkyo.

Have you considered getting a 5-7 channel poweramp to add to the Denon as it would be a shame as the processing and features are high on the Denon and would be a shame to loose them? I would think that you would be surprised by the results when adding the additional power and bringing your system back to the way you want it, and the brightness will disappear using the extra power, using something from Emotiva should not break the bank as they offer excellent VFM and have high power ratings.

By using the Pro calibration kit (depending on whether you can use it and I would check with your dealership first) I would of expected the results to be even more accurate as the PRO kit is quite a bit more money and calibrated with more accuracy so may well give better results, but as mentioned previously I would consider the power to be the main problem causing your system to sound brighter.
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post #3 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

Thanks Recruit! BTW, the previous AVR is the NAD T785, not and Onkyo. I was figuring out as much that the amp stage of the Denon just did not match the one in the NAD. I'm looking ad adding the XPA3 from Emotiva to the front three channels. As far as the processing being doubled, I can't disable the SubEQ from the Denon with the AS-EQ1 in the line, but the Denon should be doing minimal processing if the corrections are already pretty close to the flat target range that Audyssey is hitting. I already have the XPA3 driving my 2 subs and will move it to the front three once I get another amp for the subs (looking at the EP4000, it should do the job fine for the subs - unless there is another recomended amp, the XPA2 is a bit expensive, I could go with another XPA3, but it's pretty large to have another one.

Thanks for chiming in!
Ray

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post #4 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 11:03 AM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

Excuse the off topic question but does the Aseq1 use XT?
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post #5 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 11:27 AM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

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Excuse the off topic question but does the Aseq1 use XT?
Yes it is quoted as being Multi EQ XT form of Audyssey and after the recent firmware upgrade it calculates IIRC the same as the XT32 but for the sub channels only so it has some serious horsepower just for sub EQ.
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post #6 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 11:31 AM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

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Thanks Recruit! BTW, the previous AVR is the NAD T785, not and Onkyo.
Sorry my bad Ray
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post #7 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

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Sorry my bad Ray
Not a problem. I like Onkyo/Integra also! Was deciding on which route to go when getting the Denon.

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post #8 of 235 Old 12-03-10, 04:36 PM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

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Yes it is quoted as being Multi EQ XT form of Audyssey and after the recent firmware upgrade it calculates IIRC the same as the XT32 but for the sub channels only so it has some serious horsepower just for sub EQ.
Thanks. I have A Marantz with MultEq now and I am debating whether to add the ASEQ-1 or not.
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post #9 of 235 Old 12-04-10, 04:50 AM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

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Thanks. I have A Marantz with MultEq now and I am debating whether to add the ASEQ-1 or not.
It most probably work out extremely well seeing that the sub has its dedicated own powerful EQ leaving the Marantz to take care of the other channels
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post #10 of 235 Old 12-04-10, 09:27 AM
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Re: Audyssey XT vs XT32

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It most probably work out extremely well seeing that the sub has its dedicated own powerful EQ leaving the Marantz to take care of the other channels
I had the Sms1 and the Antimode 8033 and didn't really hear a difference useing them or just useing the Audyssey in my Marantz. But with the SVS it measures so many more positions and has more proccessing so I am definitley considering giving it a try.
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