What is "reference level"? - Page 2 - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #11 of 81 Old 01-18-10, 01:54 PM Thread Starter
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Re: What is "reference level"?

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SteveCallas wrote: View Post
Based on how you described your setup, I take it you are going to run every channel as "large" and set the sub to "none"? Every speakers will get it's full 3hz-20khz signal and the mains will also get the 3hz-120hz LFE channel.
Yes, spot on! You see i still want the same performance give or take when i listen to 2 channel music.
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As far as reference level at home, personally I find it somewhat hard to listen at that level. I usually listen at anywhere between -10dB to -20dB under reference at home. I don't know, it's not that it's necessarily that loud, but it just feels different. Maybe it's just a combination of things, like worrying about neighbors, worrying about who else is home, etc.
Agreed, however there are mad occasions when i like to go a little mad lets say 99% of the time i probably listen to somewhere about 90Db at the listening position, though as the evening wares on i might turn it up a bit, followed by a bit more...

The idea is simply to make a system that will be more than i ever need. Thus i'll be the one that backs down when things get loud, rather than the system producing vast quantities of distortion.

I'll not be deliberately loading the bass drivers with either the rear or side walls, i know what nasties that can produce. I'm not into one note or boomy bass


Thanks for the comments everyone! When i get building you can be sure of seeing a thread on the subject, i'll guess it'll be in "full range" speakers - simply because they will be
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post #12 of 81 Old 01-19-10, 11:40 AM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

True, I will admit that I do push my system beyond the level of my own comfort zone on occasion!

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post #13 of 81 Old 02-21-10, 01:59 AM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

What size room and how much power do you have for all that?
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post #14 of 81 Old 02-21-10, 07:06 AM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

Reference level is something you don't play when the neighbours are in.
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post #15 of 81 Old 04-05-10, 10:55 AM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

What is "reference level"?

Reference Level is the volume where your neighbor, that doesn't share your taste, Calls the Police!

Last edited by Cincyborn; 04-26-10 at 10:56 AM. Reason: typo correction
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post #16 of 81 Old 05-24-10, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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Re: What is "reference level"?

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True, I will admit that I do push my system beyond the level of my own comfort zone on occasion!
lol, i'll tell you a little story.. End of an evening & i retired to a different room where i was listening to some music on a pair of Celestion Ditton 66 monitors. The music was great & sounded fantastic so it got a little loud.. So loud in fact that a rather heavy 15" sub that was sat on top of one of the Celestion cabinets decided to walk off of the top & drop iteslf on a recently disconnected digital TV box. At the time i didn't see the damage that the 15Kg driver caused Yes i'd had a few drinks, but man the music sounded good.. Was i upset at the crushed TV box. Not really
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What size room and how much power do you have for all that?
5 x 4M with a Mackie M3000 to drive the subs, should do the trick me thinks
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Reference level is something you don't play when the neighbours are in.
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Cincyborn wrote: View Post
What is "reference level"?

Reference Level is the volume where your neighbor, that doesn't share your taste, Calls the Police!
Actually i can get away with any volume level that doesn't involve Saturn V take offs. Nice solid brick built house which is totally detached. The window has been "filled in" as i have a PJ in here for movies so no rattling glass etc & a nicely low lit room for these purposes. Never had a single mention asking me to turn it down a bit.

& that's not because i haven't heard people knocking at the door
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post #17 of 81 Old 05-24-10, 02:19 PM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

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What is "reference level"?

Reference Level is the volume where your neighbor, that doesn't share your taste, Calls the Police!
Been there, next time it's a ticket not a ''could you please turn that down''.
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post #18 of 81 Old 06-29-10, 12:20 PM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

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Been there, next time it's a ticket not a ''could you please turn that down''.
The trick is to passive-aggressively mention to all the neighbors that they should feel no remorse in telling you to turn it down, and even on top of that let them know in passing that you plan on watching such and such at a certain time, so give a call if it's a problem. They'll smile and say it's never been a problem even if it annoys them, and you have nothing to worry about.

It's actually pretty amazing what a smile and a forewarning can do for leniency towards sound levels allowed during a movie Of course, once I close on my new house my theater will be surrounded by concrete and 10 acres for a buffer zone, so my little "good neighbor SPL levels" problem won't last much longer anyways
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post #19 of 81 Old 06-29-10, 01:26 PM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

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The trick is to passive-aggressively mention to all the neighbors that they should feel no remorse in telling you to turn it down, and even on top of that let them know in passing that you plan on watching such and such at a certain time, so give a call if it's a problem. They'll smile and say it's never been a problem even if it annoys them, and you have nothing to worry about.

It's actually pretty amazing what a smile and a forewarning can do for leniency towards sound levels allowed during a movie
I live in an apartment and have done this with my neighbours and don't see how it is passive aggressive. I also asked that if it became an issue, to let me know 'when' so we could work out what I was watching, how loud etc and if it were at an odd time so I could maximise my fun at minimum inconvenience to them. So far zero complaints, but I tend to crank it at reasonable times and watch dialogue driven flicks at less friendly times like late at night.

Movies I also find are less of an issue than modern music with a regular beat. Doof, doof is more annoying to many than a couple of minutes of not readily identifiable loud noise from a movie which is not consistent or predictable.

I'm still going to add more soundproofing as I work on the room acoustics as I would like even less potential for neighbour disturbance and for me to play louder at times.

Solid walls and acreage would be nice but lotto-win dream for many of us unfortunately.
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post #20 of 81 Old 06-29-10, 03:43 PM
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Re: What is "reference level"?

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Spuddy wrote: View Post
The trick is to passive-aggressively mention to all the neighbors that they should feel no remorse in telling you to turn it down, and even on top of that let them know in passing that you plan on watching such and such at a certain time, so give a call if it's a problem. They'll smile and say it's never been a problem even if it annoys them, and you have nothing to worry about.

It's actually pretty amazing what a smile and a forewarning can do for leniency towards sound levels allowed during a movie Of course, once I close on my new house my theater will be surrounded by concrete and 10 acres for a buffer zone, so my little "good neighbor SPL levels" problem won't last much longer anyways
Being that my neighbors are hard to track down i had conciderd putting a sign out in the front yard telling them that if it's too loud just let me know instead of calling the police. But that would just invite thieves, allthough with too ''monster dogs'' in the house i really don't think any uninvited guests would enter.

My solution to the problem has been to keep the volume at a recpectable level, i've got 13 month old twins now anyways so turning the volume up isn't really an option anymore. Problem solved.
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