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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a Yamaha Aventage 3010. I have JBL L-300 front speakers which usually on their own have excellent voice/dialogue clarity and tonal balance (to me). I bought Klipsch Reference 62 surrounds and center 64 channel based upon being told that the klipsch center was an excellent dialogue unit. I understand that the klipsch RC64 and JBL do not have the same vocal characteristics (the Klipsch seems warmer with less voice strength;the JBL horn a little cooler but more vocal clarity and strength). Somehow during a program things seem to change. I do not know if it is equipment related or actual recording variations on the same program.
While watching a movie on Dish network or a show or broadcast on Dish network (I have not yet tried to duplicate this on my Oppo 93 bluray yet) sometimes while on "straight" on the Yamaha (All three front speakers and surrounds), the voice becomes a little too muffled for me to understand the dialogue easily. If I switch to the 2 channel stereo Yamaha setting (no center) listening to the front JBLs only it seems to be more "comprehensible" I will listen there for a while and it then possibly on a different scene on the same movie it may get hollow, out of phase sounding and I need to switch back to the Yamaha straight (all three front speakers) mode.

Am I having a problem with the Dolby decoder or something? If it did not have this aspect of actually changing characteristics, I might be able to get the Klipsch brighter and more clear with the Yamaha internal parametric equalizer settings. I have played with phase on the JBL midrange horns and with the JBL woofer as well as the overall phase compared to the Klipsch center channel and that is not the problem despite reminding me of what odd sound I am hearing at times. When sounding "hollow" it sort of has the sound of putting a tin cup near your ear. When sounding muffled it is like putting your hands over your ears. I am not sure if this is equipment related or actual "recording" related. Anyone else run in to this phenomena? Might it be worth buying a low cost 1/3 octave equalizer to just pin down where this change is occurring so I can then zero in on it with the Yamaha Parametric internal eq? I tried contacting Yamaha tech support but they seemed to be a consumer group that I had trouble communicating with. I had to explain how the Yamaha wanted all speakers to be large using the YPAO and I needed them small to move the surrounds and center crossover to the front mains to a higher freqency to prevent box tuning differences causing subwoofer phase differences below 30 cps. (JBL's tuned to 27 cps box and SVS 13 ultra tuned to around 18 yields a big phase fight about 25 cps yielding a 10 to 15 db drop there. Looks like a dromedary!) He had a lot of trouble understanding that the Yamaha YPAO and set speaker size to large every time it is run. I wanted to understand what the manual meant by "YPAO /Front" selection did which the manual explained "Adjusts individual speakers to achieve the characteristics same as the front speakers meant. Did it do this without another run of YPAO after you set the parametric to "Front" or was it automatic based upon last run of YPAO? How could I adjust the front eq manually then run the Set Front without re running YPAO or was Eq totally independent of YPAO?" You cannot pick this unless you go to manual. I wanted to understand if this would eq the center and surrounds to have the tonal characteristics nearer those of the front JBL's. I do not think he ever understood what I was talking about. Not sure if it was me or him but we did not communicate well.

Somewhere on the forums I saw that Sonnie reviewed an Avantage slightly newer than mine but I cannot find how to directly send him a message so I just started this post with my fingers crossed that someone will have some ideas for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I found that the center speaker was set about 3 dB too low to get good output of dialogue. Raising it 3dB produced an improvement but I still need a good way to find out what area of the sound spectrum I need to tweak to get rid of tinny, hollow sounding dialogue.
 

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Yes I also run my center channel about 2.5 - 3 db higher than my L/R ... I would experiment with tweaking the EQ of the CC in the 2.5-4k range....as "tinny" or "hollow" sounds to me like the upper mid range ... but as you say it could also be source related / maybe the OPPO will confirm this...

I have never preferred Yamaha due to the "confusing" decoding scheme they use...probably my lack of education on the use of their product - however the display on my ELITE receiver is very straight forward and i never have any guess work about what surround mode Im using at any given time... to be fare though the Yamaha's do produce a very good sound quality once set up properly..
 

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I found that the center speaker was set about 3 dB too low to get good output of dialogue. Raising it 3dB produced an improvement but I still need a good way to find out what area of the sound spectrum I need to tweak to get rid of tinny, hollow sounding dialogue.
That would probably be the 2-4 kHz area. Cutting a few dB may well make a noticeable improvement.

Regards,
Wayne
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The REW scan for that area is already down a few dB. I did an upload of the file. View attachment best one 13 only 16 tune eq 1 and 2 room center.mdat The midrange is on a horn from about 800 cps to somewhere around 8K, then a slot radiator takes over. I left the radiator high since my HF hearing at age 72 is a bit down. Kind of funny, it comes back about 13k to 15 k though. I have the response reasonable now. Also I put the yamaha set to do a boost of low volume hf and bass. I tried my TV system with a cd and despite my new subwoofer, the stereo system with my JBL 4343's at the other end of the room really shows the music sound quality over that of the tv system. For movies though the sub really shines. Thanks for the advice and info. I will try a tweak there.
The boost of the center channel did wonders though. Seems strange since the center channel klipsch RC64 is supposed to be super efficient 99dB at 2.83v at 1 meter. My JBL is supposed to be about 93 db yet I need to boost the klipsch about 5 dB to get it up to anywhere near the output balance needed (meaning volume equivalent when switching between stereo and straight) with the jbl front channels. Sounds pretty good now. Goofy.
I still want to play with the sub location to increase the "punch" or "snap" I like. Right now it is near a corner which has a G&K acoustics soffit trap. Not sure another location can give me equivalent "flatness" to what I am getting now though. Have to listen to more movies first though.
Bill Shenefelt
 

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What is your room like, and how is the Klipsch center channel oriented/mounted? Is it close to a wall, in a cabinet, on a dedicated speaker stand, etc?

The JBL-L300's are ported on the front and the Klipsch RC-64 is sealed (ie: non-ported), correct?

I had similar issues with center channel dialogue when I moved into my current house, and it was due to the built in cabinet in our living room. The center speaker is below the TV, on a shelf in a built in. The one I was using was rear ported, and it was causing issues due to the built in acting as a sort of band pass enclosure. I ended up replacing the speaker with a sealed unit and recently EQ'ed it with REW, and the dialogue is fantastic now.

The equipment you are using is MUCH better than anything I have, but what you're describing really sounds like the same thing I was experiencing, so it makes me wonder what your room is like and how the center channel is positioned.

Another thought is if there are any environmental effects going on. Could it be possible there's something else switching on and off causing frequencies to be impacted? Maybe an HVAC system, which when running, is causing your hearing to be effected? Considering your comment about the sound changing intermittently would lead me to wonder if there may be an outside influence impacting your perception of the audio in the room.

Also, at what levels are you listening? Hearing fatigue at moderate levels over time can really change how we hear certain frequencies as well. As an active musician: how the stage sounds when doing an initial sound check, and how it sounds after finishing a set, is very different just do to the time spent exposed to the levels. Also note our hearing is different in the morning than it is at night, etc ...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
What is your room like, and how is the Klipsch center channel oriented/mounted? Is it close to a wall, in a cabinet, on a dedicated speaker stand, etc?

The JBL-L300's are ported on the front and the Klipsch RC-64 is sealed (ie: non-ported), correct?
Yes But they are being cut off at 80 cps since they (having a box tune of 27 cps) result in a phase shift there, which interferes with my SVS sub which has a box frequency of 18 cps). If crossed over low it results in a big response dip at about 25 cps. For info, since this photo had been taken I have put an SVS PC 13 Ultra inboard (to the right and behind) the left JBL. It replaced the SVS PC 12 seen to the Left of the JBL left speaker. The big JBL sub in the foreground is not in use because I have no good crossover for it and it is also about a 27 cps crossover so will not combine well with the SVS 13 ultra. In addition, the SVS does go much lower and with more power in the SVAS amp than My heath 200 watt amp bridged for the 18 inch JBL sub.

I had similar issues with center channel dialogue when I moved into my current house, and it was due to the built in cabinet in our living room. The center speaker is below the TV, on a shelf in a built in. Same with my RC 64 but it is sealed. The one I was using was rear ported, and it was causing issues due to the built in acting as a sort of band pass enclosure. I ended up replacing the speaker with a sealed unit and recently EQ'ed it with REW, and the dialogue is fantastic now.

The equipment you are using is MUCH better than anything I have, but what you're describing really sounds like the same thing I was experiencing, so it makes me wonder what your room is like and how the center channel is positioned.

Another thought is if there are any environmental effects going on. Could it be possible there's something else switching on and off causing frequencies to be impacted? Maybe an HVAC system, which when running, is causing your hearing to be effected? Considering your comment about the sound changing intermittently Usually the source changing scenes or a commercial. It is definitely affecting some part of the spectrum, not an equipment thing but a broadcast (or movie scene ) thing would lead me to wonder if there may be an outside influence impacting your perception of the audio in the room.

Also, at what levels are you listening? TV about 65 dB. movies, maybe 75 in dialogue areas. Hearing fatigue at moderate levels over time can really change how we hear certain frequencies as well. As an active musician: how the stage sounds when doing an initial sound check, and how it sounds after finishing a set, is very different just do to the time spent exposed to the levels. You should see what happens to your hearing while driving thru the Holland tunnel with the windows up taking my daughter to an audition. She warms up and really blasts. After a few minutes, I probably could not notice the sound if in a bell tower! She now sings with Pittsburgh Opera Chorus so I don't get much chance to get recordings anymore but I do have a lot of DAT and Nakamichi cassette masters of her as well as the McKeesport Symphony orchestra, several local choral groups and some Professional theater organ concerts I taped for the theater organ concert sponsor and performer. Also note our hearing is different in the morning than it is at night, etc ...
The increase in the center channel level has helped a lot. Now very tolerable. The JBL's still do emphasize speech or voice much more than the Klipsch though. The Klipsch are a bit "warmer which does de-emphasize clarity. All in all, I am starting to like the theater sound setup but only for tv and theater. It does not come close to matching the JBL 4343's at the stereo end of the room for music. I built them slowly due to the cost. I started with only one bass driver and horn/lens mid-range. A year or so later I added a second channel. then I added the slot radiators which made them something like L-300's. Later yet I changed them to a JBL 4343 mockup by changing the horn length and adding the 10 inch mid-ranges with all new crossover parts. I did not box mount all drivers like the real 4343 which is probably causing less than ideal box baffle for the 10 inch, but I kind of like my design appearance anyway. Problem is that by the time I was able to afford making all the changes, at my age my hi frequency hearing is not all that great.
 

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shene wrote:

the center channel klipsch RC64 is supposed to be super efficient 99dB at 2.83v at 1 meter
That center is very effecient, but probably more like 96 dB. If you read the fine print, they claim the speaker is 8 ohm compatable. Don't know, but probably closer to a 4 ohm, whick when driven with the 2.83 v (2 watts) gives about 3 dB's improvement in the spec. Still very nice!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Even so, it should be more efficient than the 93 dB JBL L-300's. Maybe it is because there are two of the JBL's for the front? But I would think in stereo mode versus 5.1 channel mode they would receive less "dialogue" in the 5.1 mode than the Klipsch. Oh well, it works anyway! My final setting with Yamaha yapo was front (JBL's) 0.0 db and Klipsch RC64 center channel +5.0 dB.
 
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