Problems using Mac Computers and REW - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

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post #1 of 11 Old 04-27-14, 12:50 AM Thread Starter
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Problems using Mac Computers and REW

Hi All,

I'm a Windows guy, and REW works flawlessly for me using my both my Windows laptop and my Windows desktop. My friend and also my brother in law are both mac guys and I tried using both of their computers to do some measurements. I'm using a MiniDSP UMIK-1 for a microphone, and premium monoprice cables for the 3.5mm to RCA connection to the receiver.

1) Both of them had difficulty installing the Mac OS REW file from the downloads area of the website. My brother in law had to allow something (not sure what) before it would install. My friend's Mac wouldn't do anything with the Mac OS file, but we did get the .jar? files onto his computer and eventually were able to figure out how to get it open. Does anyone have any helpful tips for getting the right MacOS installed on a Mac? Any help here would be appreciated!

2) Both of the Macs also didn't output a full signal down to 20hz (or lower). Both macs, in two different rooms, with different associated equipment seemed to have some kind of major rolloff below 60hz. Any idea what would cause this? Seems strange to me.

3) For an experiment, I took a sweep of my system in my room with all my equipment and my Windows laptop this evening. Everything worked just fine. Then, all I did was unplug my 3.5mm cable (audio source) and the USB cable (UMIK-1) from the laptop and plugged them right into my friend's Mac. Opened REW (.jar file thing), ran a 10hz to 100hz sweep (my sub has good output from about 15hz on up) and we noticed the same 60hz rolloff going on with his Mac. So that tells me that there's a Mac issue, and that the issue doesn't lay in the equipment, cables, procedure, etc.

Any help on any of this?
Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of 11 Old 04-27-14, 05:56 AM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

I can only give a little advice concerning your item (1):

REW comes without an official developer signature. That's why one has to explicitly allow it execution. The easiest way is to change the respective system setting "Security -> General -> Allow Apps" to the least secure one. (I'm on a german OS, so I guess it would read "no restriction" or "all sources" or the like on an american english OS).
It is described on the HTS site, too http://www.hometheatershack.com/foru...oads-page.html
A .jar file is a Java resource. I would recommend to prefer the dedicated MAC OS version. When using the bare Java version you will probably have to do more adjustments "by hand", especially concerning driver settings or the like.
Concerning your items 2) and 3), I can only offer one question: did your HEAR a distinguishable difference between the Windows and the Mac sweeps? If so, the problem appears to be on the Audio output side of the Mac. If not, it would be the USB-Mic input side of the mac. The latter seems more likely to me, but you ought to be able to hear that lack of low freq. that you get measured.
But IF it is a problem of Audio out there maybe a workaround there. Audio out on Macs is usually dual digital optical AND analog. If you happen to have an adapter 3.5 to TosLink (or S/PDIF or whatever they call it), you can use that digital path. I would not bet THAT much money on the audio out circuitry's HIFI capabilities…

Hope to have helped, and good luck!
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post #3 of 11 Old 04-27-14, 07:04 AM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

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jcisbig wrote:
<<<<SNIP>>>
Any help on any of this?
It's a good idea to read this sticky thread called Getting Around the Limitations of JavaMac

Also, historically REW support for the Mac OS has been patchy & is now very limited ( especially with Apple's new "Mavericks" ).

Mac support was at it's best when REW was operated on an Intel based Mac ( running OS 10.6 thru 10.8 ) while using a ( USB connected ) 2-chnl ( only ) soundcard ( with builtin Microphone pre-amps ) .

If a Mac user is serious about long-term use of this software, I recommend using one of those older OS(s) .

Apart from that, ( as you've discovered ) REW is really a PC oriented bit of software ( & it's compatibility for all flavors of Windows going back to XP clearly supports that ) .


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post #4 of 11 Old 04-27-14, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

Thanks for the help so far guys! Hopefully we'll be able to get the MacOS install sorted out with some of the ideas above.

Also, regarding the question as to whether or not we can hear the difference between the Windows and Mac sweeps, yes we can. The Mac sweeps were really lacking in any sort of deep bass. So the Mac itself wasn't outputting the sweep correctly.
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post #5 of 11 Old 04-28-14, 02:30 PM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

Make sure the MAC isn't set up for some sort of mains+sub configuration and applying a crossover to the main outputs - see that from time to time on PCs, though mostly those with multi-channel soundcards.
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post #6 of 11 Old 05-05-14, 11:55 AM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

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Make sure the MAC isn't set up for some sort of mains+sub configuration and applying a crossover to the main outputs - see that from time to time on PCs, though mostly those with multi-channel soundcards.
This is AFAIK quite unlikely since it is rather tricky to discover the respective system setting panel. Plus, it does only offer settings other than Stereo when a capable device is digitally connected.
I'd still like to know whether the thread-starter has tried a digital optical connection and if it lead to any differences. BTW, did he use the soundcard calibration feature? Has anyone tried this on a mac with any result worth mentioning?
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post #7 of 11 Old 05-05-14, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

eyespy,

I haven't been able to try an optical connection from my buddy's mac. I'm not sure if we have the right cables?

I'm not sure about the right way to go about using the soundcard calibration option either, is there a file somewhere that would provide the proper values for that?
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post #8 of 11 Old 05-06-14, 01:45 PM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

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eyespy,

I haven't been able to try an optical connection from my buddy's mac. I'm not sure if we have the right cables?

I'm not sure about the right way to go about using the soundcard calibration option either, is there a file somewhere that would provide the proper values for that?
I haven't used that calibration feature, either. But as far as I understand from hints in REW, you can do your own calibration and generate such file yourself. This option can be found via preferences -> tab "soundcard".
I don't know how this feature works, but I guess it MIGHT help solving your problem, or at least diagnosing it.
Concerning the cables, any TosLink cable with mini-jack to S/PDIF adapter ought to do the job.
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post #9 of 11 Old 05-10-14, 06:27 PM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

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jcisbig wrote: View Post
Thanks for the help so far guys! Hopefully we'll be able to get the MacOS install sorted out with some of the ideas above.

Also, regarding the question as to whether or not we can hear the difference between the Windows and Mac sweeps, yes we can. The Mac sweeps were really lacking in any sort of deep bass. So the Mac itself wasn't outputting the sweep correctly.
Ok guys I am here in search for answers. I have a Mac mini and had REW working flawlessly for almost a year. AVS Member JPA had provided a guide using sound flower which is a free audio pass through software. Anyway long story short I began to get weird measurements about a month ago. Nothing in my room has moved in respect to speakers and subwoofers. (LCR JTR Triple 8's and two Seaton Submersives). Anyway I began to get low subwoofer levels in my sweeps. Even then they were inconsistent. For example (I will post graphs) but I would get one dropping hard from 30hz to 200ish hz and then one extending up to 70-80hz before it dropped. And if you are familiar with these sweeps and listen you can easily tell the difference in spl up to 80hz. I tried to un-install everything and re-install. Now I cannot get the REW SPL meter calibrated! I now have a noise floor of 74db lol!!! And I know how to do all of this and am very familiar with it all. But there is no explanation to why. Mavericks came out more than a month ago and everything was working fine for me after Mavericks update. My best guess is if there was a "small" software update I just mindlessly clicked yes on and it changed something. Would have to have been about a month ago.

Ok I haven't been around here much and don't know how to post pics. So I will link the Seaton Submersive forum on AVS. I have a couple posts of graphs on there. User name "jlpowell84." But you can see my normal RAW response and then the new wacky responses

http://www.avsforum.com/t/759877/sea...bmersive1/9420
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post #10 of 11 Old 05-11-14, 07:08 AM
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Re: Problems using Mac Computers and REW

Quote:
jlpowell84 wrote: View Post
Ok I haven't been around here much and don't know how to post pics. So I will link the Seaton Submersive forum on AVS. I have a couple posts of graphs on there. User name "jlpowell84." But you can see my normal RAW response and then the new wacky responses
If you click the 'Go Advanced' button then in the Additional Options section there is 'Manage Attachments - Upload files and Images'. It would be best to attach mdat files for measurements that do and don't show the problem.
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