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Very different things. One is about emphasis and the other is about volume. Bright means emphasis around ~5-8khz whereas loud can be any frequency. Best way to know is to run SineGen and see if it gets louder as you approach that area.
 

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Elite Shackster
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Bright is generally leaning to a harsh sound, and that harsh sound can sound worse as volume raises. The harsh sound will be really in your face, and you can have a sound be loud without that occurring. As already pointed out, its also generally the higher mid to high frequencies that are over highlighted that cause this sound. It generally leads to a fair bit of listening fatigue as well, where as without a bright or harsh sound you can usually listen at elevated levels for extended periods without it become to much for you. Bright and harsh are sometimes also described as being a very metallic sound.

Ive found that when you take a full range speaker, and feed it from a processor cutting anything from 80hz out, it will usually brighten that speaker up. This effect is less pronounced with smaller more limited range speakers IMO. The room can also be a contributing factor in this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So when listening to the Michael buble concert it sounds fantastic. That is until the audience claps after the performance. That sound is kind of ear piercing. Would that be considered bright?
 

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Elite Shackster
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Pretty much yeah, although if content generally is ok it could be more to do with the source than the speakers themselves. You need to use a DVD or CD as your bench mark really. Its also possible they are trying to highlight the crowd by making it sound more in your face.

I think as long as your not finding most things to be bright like that, your system probably isnt overly bright.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
can anyone suggest a recording that wouldn't be bright/good source material that i could use as a benchmark?
 

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Elite Shackster
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I think you would be better with source material that is known for being harsh, because if it doesnt sound harsh, then your golden. If it does sound harsh it would then be worth trying something known for being warm.
 

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I consider bright as said above: peirceing and harsh where as loud is just as the word means loud could be distorted or clear.
 

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I think you would be better with source material that is known for being harsh, because if it doesnt sound harsh, then your golden.
Would that not imply that the system is a bit muffled?

If it does sound harsh it would then be worth trying something known for being warm.
Hmm. The best choice might be find materials that are quite well-balanced. If that sounds OK, fine. If it is too bright, then the fault lies with the system or, possibly, with the listener's personal preferences.

Let me suggest Bob Ludwig's excellent masterings of Roy Orbison's Black and White Night on DVD, SACD or BluRay.

Kal
 

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Elite Shackster
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I consider bright as said above: peirceing and harsh where as loud is just as the word means loud could be distorted or clear.
I think if a system is really good, loud actually doesnt seem as loud as it actually is, if you get my meaning.

Would that not imply that the system is a bit muffled?

Hmm. The best choice might be find materials that are quite well-balanced. If that sounds OK, fine. If it is too bright, then the fault lies with the system or, possibly, with the listener's personal preferences.

Let me suggest Bob Ludwig's excellent masterings of Roy Orbison's Black and White Night on DVD, SACD or BluRay.

Kal
I guess what really needs to be done it a comparison of bright, warm and neutral recordings, and evaluate the system as a whole on that basis.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
You are spot on! My system turned up sounds great and detailed. However those claps almost made my earns bleed. Well maybe not that bad but pretty close.

I will try other recordings and post back. Never really used my surround for music.

Thanks for all the help.
 

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I think if a system is really good, loud actually doesnt seem as loud as it actually is, if you get my meaning.
Yes i do that is one of the first things i learned about when purchasing "good" equipment years ago, the salesman (actually the same one i still buy from 20yrs later) taught me about good sound.:sn:
 

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I'm not sure how some define loud.. as being loud or not...
But for me, something that's louder with some distortion....... makes my ears bleed.
Clean audio played *very* loud without distortion sounds SO much better than quieter content with distortion.

I think distortion makes a huge difference with how loud something sounds.... and naturally better equipment has lower distortion.

I have no clue if bad tweeters make something sound bright... or just loud and distorted.
 

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you can kinda think of it like this if you want.

If you compare to listening in a music hall. You're sitting in the front section, its overtly loud and the sounds are being forced up your ear, you leave and your ears need to adjust, that would be similar to bright. If you are sitting in the middle of the hall, then that would be neutral, full detail and sound staging with out being overtly loud, but loud enough so you don't miss any detail, if youre in the back of the hall that could be considered a dark sound, as youre struggling to get the full sound and detail.
 

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Best way I can think of differentiating the two is by comparing cinema to music. Most good public theaters are run by Klipsch speakers (at least in my area), and that pentrating treble you hear in crashes and whatnot is a bit bright if you compare it to a flat equalization, though I personally think that tone is perfect for cinema and I use Klipsch speakers to that effect in my theater as well.

On the other hand, "not bright" is like putting some music on a vintage hifi speaker with a "warm" quality. The key word is that the treble doesn't penetrate, you simply hear it how it was recorded. The treble can get loud enough to do serious damage, but since it's so perfectly in balance with the mids and lows, you don't feel like your ears are gonna bleed, even if they are ;)
 
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