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One of the most intensely compared features across AV Receivers is onboard room correction. For the lucky few (with perfectly shaped and treated theater rooms) this may be less of a concern, but for the vast majority of users some sort of correction is necessary to squeeze the most from a system’s perceived performance. Luckily, there are outboard products available that owners can tie into their systems if they feel their current equipment is lacking in the correction department. As evidenced by our Wayne Meyers’ glowing review of miniDSP’s nanoAVR-HD unit, these systems can get the job done.



Recently, miniDSP announced the availability of a second nanoAVR (nanoAVR-DL)…this time locked and loaded with the popular Dirac Live room correction algorithm. The unit, much like the nanoAVR-HD, is small enough to lay in the palm of your hand, measuring a mere 1.22 X 6.34 X 4.33 inches. It fits into your AV system’s HDMI chain between any HDMI source (such as a Blu-ray player) and an AV Receiver. Supporting two HDMI sources (selectable via the front panel , IR remote, or Android app), the nanoAVR-DL accepts PCM audio signals while switching video signals to the unit’s single HDMI video output (sans video processing).

Users will need a Windows PC (Intel Pentium III/AMD Athlon XP or later, 2 Gigs Ram+) to operate the Dirac Live Calibration Tool in conjunction with a Umik-1 microphone. Within this tool, a user-friendly guide leads a step-by-step process performing a set of multi-point measurements on systems as large as 7.1 channels. The process allows users to make arbitrary adjustments to a target response curve, individually or in groups, and to also define a frequency range of correction. The nanoAVR-DL can store four different filter sets, all of which are easily selected via remote.

Dirac Live’s software corrects the system’s magnitude response towards a user-adjustable target response that accounts for the natural frequency range of a system’s speakers, in addition to the normal effects of loudspeaker dispersion on measured in-room magnitude response.


An example of Dirac Live's magnitude response correction.

Secondarily, Dirac Live attacks impulse response (sharp transient sounds such as a drumbeat) with mixed-phase filters, which is critical to accurate sound staging, clarity, and bass response. Because Dirac Live takes measurements from multiple points, it’s able to apply correction across an entire listening area.


An example of Dirac Live's impulse response correction.

"We’re thrilled to bring Dirac Live to a much wider audience thanks to the affordable nanoAVR platform,” said Antoine Rouget, Managing Director of miniDSP. “The entire Dirac Research team has been a great partner during the past few months and we certainly look forward to future projects.".

The nanoAVR-DL is available now through miniDSP for $549, with an add-on option of a UMIK-1 microphone for $70. The total purchase includes a full license of Dirac Live.


Image Credits: miniDSP
 
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