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How to connect two sound systems.

 

New member
Username: Kristof_l

Post Number: 1
Registered: Aug-12
I need some help connecting two separate sound systems in order to play music on both systems from one source. I tried using a regular RCA cable by connecting the OUT channel of one amp with the IN channel of the other amp, but that doesn't seem to work. Any suggestions?
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1837
Registered: Oct-10
Kristof, by "amp", do you mean a receiver, integrated amp, preamp or power amp? What do you mean by "out channel"?

You should be able to connect a pair of cables to the tape deck record output of a receiver, integrated amp or stand alone preamp. You will need to see if it' possible to select a record source independently of the soure you're listening to and if so, make sure it's set to the source player you want.

You can also connect to the zone 2 or 3 out of a multizone receiver.You will need to make sure that A) the zone you're using is on, B) that zone is set to the source you want and C) the volume control for that zone is turned up enough to get sound from the other system (the system connected to the other end of the cables attached to the zone 2 or 3 output of the receiver).
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17300
Registered: May-04
.

Sounds as if you need a simple "Y" splitter from the outputs of the source player.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1840
Registered: Oct-10
"Sounds as if you need a simple "Y" splitter from the outputs of the source player."

That would work too, but he'll need a pair of Y splitters and long cables for each source player. This won't be too bad if he uses 3 or less sources. However, a jumbled mess could easily result if there are more.

How many source players are you using Kristof?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17304
Registered: May-04
.


"This won't be too bad if he uses 3 or less sources. However, a jumbled mess could easily result if there are more."


You're kidding me? Right? You just thought you had to say something? Right? "A jumbled mess"?



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Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1842
Registered: Oct-10
Kidding? Just had to say something?

Not at all Jan. How much have I really responded to you at all since April, 2011? Not a whole lot!

Look Jan, I'm not interested in going another round with you. We each gave the op our advice, now it's up to him to decide what to do. Okay?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17307
Registered: May-04
.

You get soooooooo defensive when you've been making stuff up.

LOL
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1843
Registered: Oct-10
Making stuff up huh Jan? Yeah, okay!

Kristof, if you have other questions, I'll be back. Otherwise, this tread is over.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17308
Registered: May-04
..

I repeat, LOL!


Use a "Y" connector unless you haven't told me something important. Two RCA interconnects will not turn into a "jumbled mess".




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Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1847
Registered: Oct-10
Also Kristof, you may want to see about using a wireless connector. I believe Rocketfish makes a transmitter and receiver that might be suitable at a reasonable price.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 2821
Registered: Oct-07
I think the missing piece is how FAR apart the 2 systems are located. RCA has length limits so I'd be careful.

I'd also be curious as to why a simple daisy chain didn't work.

And while MY wiring is not neat, I'll bet Jan's IS very orderly. A simple 'Y' should not be a deal breaker......if the systems are close enough.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1851
Registered: Oct-10
"And while MY wiring is not neat..."

So IE Leo, you do see how running a bunch of interconnect cables from one room to another using a pair of Y splitters could easily become a jumbled mess right?

"A simple 'Y' should not be a deal breaker......if the systems are close enough."

That's the other side of it. The two systems might very well be further apart than RCAs can reach.

So, provided the systems are close enough for RCAs to reach, what's wrong with using a single run of cable and one system's tape out or zone 2 out? Not a darn thing! Otherwise, what's wrong with going wireless? Not a darn thing!

"....I'll bet Jan's IS very orderly."

Who cares?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17315
Registered: May-04
.

"Kristof, if you have other questions, I'll be back. Otherwise, this tread is over."



Kristof hasn't checked back.

Has he?



For anyone who is concerned about my wiring layout; it is effective IMO.




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Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1854
Registered: Oct-10
"For anyone who is concerned about my wiring layout; it is effective IMO."

Who cares?
 

New member
Username: Kristof_l

Post Number: 2
Registered: Aug-12
Sorry for not responding to the posts sooner. I've been having some problems getting into the tread. Anyway, thank you all for the responses.
What I'm trying to do is connect two integrated amps from two separate surround sound systems, each with their own set of speakers.
I tried using an rca cable by connecting the "audio out" from one surroundsound system, to which the audio source is connected, to an "audio in" of the second surroundsound system. That doesn't seem to work.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1855
Registered: Oct-10
Kristof, The audio out on system one: What kind of audio out is this? Is it a record out (like for a tape deck), a zone 2 or 3 out or simply labeled "audio out? Is it possible to select the source for this output indepndenty so that one can listen to one source in one room and another source in another room? Got the owners manual handy? What brand and model is this integrated amp?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17318
Registered: May-04
.

Kristof, all you did was repeat your op. Unless you are keeping some information from us, you simply need a "Y" splitter on the output of the source player. Is there a reason this will not work for your system?


If you try running from out to in and get into a game of requiring certain components to be switched to look at this input rather than that input and to route that output while looking at another input, you are going to create a system which is highly confusing with no real purpose to the confusion. Two RCA calbes are not going to create a "jumbled mess" any more than two RCA cables connecting from one component to another would create.

Use a "Y" splitter unless you have some unstated reason this will not work in your system.



.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1856
Registered: Oct-10
"If you try running from out to in and get into a game of requiring certain components to be switched to look at this input rather than that input and to route that output while looking at another input, you are going to create a system which is highly confusing with no real purpose to the confusion."

Nope! Not true! Most receivers, integrateds and stand alone preamps that allow one to listen to one source in one room while another source plays in another room can also be set so that both zones are always on the same source. This is extemely easy to do. When home alone, I can listen to Charlie Parker's "A Night in Tunisia" while I move around the house because zones 2 & 3 are set to always play the same source as the main zone. When we're all home, I can have Miles Davis on in the music room while my wife listens to Bread in the living room and my sons and friends listen to Metallica on the porch.

"Two RCA calbes are not going to create a "jumbled mess" any more than two RCA cables connecting from one component to another would create."

No, 2 RCA cables (from one source) won't create a mess, but that's not what I was talking about, now is it? I was talking about multiple sources. Of course, I'm not surprised that you missed that Jan. Kristof has 2 integrated amps. What if he has a cd player, turnable, tuner, cassette deck, 8-track deck, iPod dock and runs his computer audio to the systems as well? He's going to use 12 Y spltters and run 6 pairs of cable from one system to the other?

The Y splitter solution is only good for 3 source players tops!
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1857
Registered: Oct-10
So Kristof, If I want to hear the same thing throughout the house, I set zones 2 & 3 to "source" and the main zone to witch ever source I want to play. If 3 different sources are desired, I set each zone to which ever source is wanted for that zone. This is very simple to do and beats the crap out of having multiple pairs of RCA cables running through your house connected via Y splitter. What if you put a system in a 3rd room and want to use the same source players as you do in system one?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17319
Registered: May-04
.

"The Y splitter solution is only good for 3 source players tops!"


And Kristof only wants to connect between two components.


I suppose you'll go over the edge again when I point out Kristof hasn't said anything about his components having "zoned" capability. If you're going to stay in the thread, stop trying to find fault where there is nothing to be found and simply answer the question as it was presented.



.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 2825
Registered: Oct-07
Super,
In an 'nth' degree system of higher refinement.....and Jan has been working on it incrementally for years, wiring neatness pays for itself.

Not only for someone who changes things frequently or on a regular basis, (not Jan, I suspect) but SONIC benefits where some stuff can interfere with each other. That's why I take advantage of optical or balanced when possible.

My wiring is not quite hopeless. Since I have a TV sitting ontop of a lowboy, I have those 'holes' in the back for wires. This is an absolute Worst Case Scenario. Open racks are easier to wire, but absolute dust magnets.
The cure? I've seen flat feedthru's which are gasketed and sealed

If I turned someone like Jan loose on straightening out my wires, I'd bet on improvement in sound and service ability.....


And Nope, I'm not worried about 'zones', but rather the proximity of the 2 systems keeping in mind reasonable RCA length limits.......

.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1859
Registered: Oct-10
"And Kristof only wants to connect between two components."

No, he wants to connect between 2 systems. We don't know the total number of components yet.

"I suppose you'll go over the edge again when I point out Kristof hasn't said anything about his components having "zoned" capability"

Go over the edge? You're kidding me. Right?

"If you're going to stay in the thread, stop trying to find fault where there is nothing to be found and simply answer the question as it was presented."

ROTFLMAO!

It's not humanly possible to count the number of times you have tried to find fault where there is none.

Clearly, your suggestion about using a Y splitter is not the best solution here Jan. So far in this thread, you have conducted yourself as the troll you are. You haven't offered the op one bit of actual help and you're obviously demnstrating that at 60 years old, you are still an insecure little boy. Btw, being knowledgeable doesn't make you any less a troll. TROLL!

I'd be willing to bet Jan, that you didn't have any friends in grade school or high school and that you've never been very popular in any job you've ever had. So, at 52, you discovered ecoustics and folks here actually liked you. So, you decided that you would spend your 50s & 60s being king of ecoustics! How pathetic!

As for if I am going to stay in the thread, you don't make the rules Jan. I am offering Kristof good advice and you are not. I will post in any thread I choose to post in and say what ever I want to in said thread. So, deal with it!
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1860
Registered: Oct-10
"Super,
In an 'nth' degree system of higher refinement.....and Jan has been working on it incrementally for years, wiring neatness pays for itself."

True Leo, but I don't care in the slightest how neat or sloppy Jan's wires are.

"If I turned someone like Jan loose on straightening out my wires, I'd bet on improvement in sound and service ability....."

That's between you and Jan.


"And Nope, I'm not worried about 'zones', but rather the proximity of the 2 systems keeping in mind reasonable RCA length limits......."

From what Kristof says Leo, his systems seem to be in reach of each other via RCA cables. Isn't it better to run one pair of RCA cables between the 2 amps using either a tape or zone 2 out than an anaconda of cables and Y splitters?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17320
Registered: May-04
.

Buzz off.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1861
Registered: Oct-10
"Buzz off."

ROTFLMAO!

Truth hurts, doesn't it?
 

New member
Username: Kristof_l

Post Number: 3
Registered: Aug-12
Thanks to all for your valuable advise. I was able to get the problem resolved.

Have a great day All and cheers,
Kristof
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 1897
Registered: Oct-10
Okay Kristof, but how did you solve the problem?
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1522
Registered: Jul-07
I see nothing has changed around here.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 17347
Registered: May-04
.

Just fewer people to help swat the flys.
 

Gold Member
Username: Hawkbilly

Nova Scotia Canada

Post Number: 1523
Registered: Jul-07
Yeah, I got fed up with the pest control issues. Bless you for your patience, but I've stopped trying to make rational arguments with a-ho!es and idiots. I do what I do in the real world......avoid them.
 

New member
Username: Andys_sounds

Post Number: 1
Registered: Sep-15
SOOOOOOOOOOO here is what i have i have a sony Gx450 and a logitech z 906 i have both connected to one source its rather simnple
things that you will need.
two sound systems that are close in wattage cause that will not cause one to over power the other system
a piggy back audio cable simular to the link http://img2.wantitall.co.za/prodimages/Male-RCA-Audio-Splitter-Cable-for-Turtle- Beach-174-Gaming-Headsets-Gold-Plated-Xbox-One__41h44bmaicL.jpg
have one rca cable white and red one
plug the system that you want as your primary mine would happen to be the logiech system with the piggyback cable plug the regular rca red and white cable into the piggyback and run it to the system that is considerd your second mine would be the sony system turn both on and make sure that they are both on a simular volume or one will over power the other
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18085
Registered: May-04
.


Splitting one output to feed two inputs is not a problem.

You should never combine two outputs into one input though unless you go through a transformer based system or an active circuit.

As to this statement, "two sound systems that are close in wattage cause that will not cause one to over power the other system", you need to realize wattage means little to nothing in this.

Loudspeaker efficiency, and more specifically the speaker's electrical sensitivity, is far more important to overall SPL than are watts. You can have a two watt amp and a two hundred watt amp and they will both play equally loud if the loudspeaker sensitivity is properly adjusted and selected.



.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3255
Registered: Oct-07
Keeping in mind that whatever speaker you choose must 'please' you.
A high sensitivity speaker which hurts your ears or doesn't match your goals is not a good solution.

I became 'hooked' on panels many years ago and while they are low sensitivity, are not particularly 'hard' on amplifiers. Any competent amp, tube or SS works fine.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18086
Registered: May-04
.

"A high sensitivity speaker which hurts your ears or doesn't match your goals is not a good solution."



The only "goal" here seems only to be to have MORE speakers.



Why? I don't know. Adding more speakers is still a pretty inefficient way to add SPL's.

Assuming, of course, the amp is even capable of driving the load without strain.

More loudspeakers outputting the same signal certainly has the logical conclusion there will be far more comb filtering as measured at any location with the room and, therefore, lower overall sound quality.

One must logically assume just adding more speakers is not at all about sound quality in any conventional value.

Just as equally, a low sensitivity speaker that hurts your ears or doesn't match your goals is still pretty sucky.



Electrical sensitivity has nothing to do with any speaker quality other than how many acoustics watts come out with one electrical watt coming in. And, technically, electrical watts aren't really the issue. Voltage and load are the real values which matter.



However, I would be quite hesitant to suggest high sensitivity in any way correlates with bad sound, leo.


.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3256
Registered: Oct-07
I ran a 3 channel system 30+ years ago. The rears were out of phase with the fronts and a pair were wired in SERIES. They had there OWN amp which provided a level control for F/R balance.

The 'you are there' feeling was, to use a word I HATE, Palpable. I hate myself for even WRITING that word.

In THIS case, more WAS more, at least with LIVE recordings which were Ambiance Laden.

Studio Recordings? The setup was a waste of natural resources.

I don't know that Sensitivity of a speaker has ANYTHING to do with SQ. Or at least consensus agreement about same.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18087
Registered: May-04
.



OK, you've lost me.

Obviously, more channels require more speakers.

That has nothing to do with high or low or average sensitivity speakers.

Sensitivity itself is a pretty nebulous spec that manufacturers and reviewers have kicked around for decades to promote a specific product and to confuse the buying public.

"90dB @ 1 watt."

What's that say?

Virtually nothing.



"I don't know that Sensitivity of a speaker has ANYTHING to do with SQ. Or at least consensus agreement about same."




I have no idea what that says either. It sounds like you're arguing climate change and you can find someone who disagrees with the 97% who say "X".



There's no "consensus" about the issue of speaker sensitivity other than it is a fairly meaningless spec. It is a measure of acoustic watts output (and measured from a specified distance away from the driver/baffle) when the driver/system is fed 2.83 Volts of input.

But move the measuring mic 10 degrees off axis in any direction and you may change the measurement by a noticeable amount. Change the input frequency and you will quite likely find a different measurement.

That's all "sensitivity" is about. A spec to put on paper to sell something.



It is not a predictor of "sound quality". In fact, static, lab based specifications and measurements of loudspeakers are pretty poor at predicting sound quality overall.

To reach that point, wouldn't we all need to agree on what constitutes good sound quality?

I don't see that happening any time soon. There is no "consensus" on that topic at all.


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New member
Username: Devil91

Post Number: 3
Registered: Oct-15
<b>h</b>
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3260
Registered: Oct-07
At least speaker sensitivity can be measured with some degree of repeatability.

The 'spec' (alleged) which I find MOST meaningless is 'speaker watts'.

I had one guy tell me his speakers driven by some Mondo Mc Monoblocs would take all of 1.8kw continuous and higher peaks. Ridiculous.

I'm not going to link it, but Elliot Sound Products has a decent article about 'speaker watts' and how much power a speaker really will handle.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18088
Registered: May-04
.

"At least speaker sensitivity can be measured with some degree of repeatability."




Well, ... yes and no. If one magazine or one lab performs the measurement, the test stands a good chance of being repeated in more or less identical fashion with multiple loudspeakers You can read about, say, Stereophile's measurements and the method they have chosen to maintain a certain consistency in their results.

Yet, the technical editor of Stereophile will readily admit their test does a good job at remaining consistent only when the loudspeaker under test conforms to the "norm" of being configured as are most loudspeakers. Once the speaker is less than average in construction the test begins to fall apart.

And, truth be told, Stereophile's tests are conducted "in room" meaning the reviewer's room in some cases and not in others. How consistent should we assume two tests can be when they are in different environments?

While the measurement techniques are intended to minimize the variability between rooms, the tests still lack the consistency of "rigorous standards".

Though, to be fair, I doubt most Stereophile readers would select a loudspeaker based solely on its electrical sensitivity. On the other hand, to be critical, Stereophile makes note of how far from the manufacturer's stated spec their tests indicate the single model under test falls. I've always felt this somewhat unfair since this is their first measurement in their reporting and can, IMO, lead the more OCD reader (of which Stereophile has no lack of numbers) to too easily conclude a manufacturer may be trying to mislead them when it is merely a difference in sample to sample variability combined with Stereophile's own test methods.

Though the differences would not be earth shattering, the measurements taken when Stereophile worked from New Mexico and the measurements taken in their current location of New York would show some differences despite the same test procedure being followed.



The most obvious example of such a problematic speaker to measure using "standard operating procedures" would be your panels. Or any diploar, bipolar or omni-directional dispersion pattern designed into the system with the belief this broad dispersion and in room sound leads to a more life-like presentation of the music. Which, if I remember correctly, was at one time, the very definition of "high fidelity".

Quite obviously, the design of the original Bose 901 with its single front facing driver of limited dispersion would have been highly mis-measured by the conventional testing procedures.

A stepped or sloped baffle can also lead to problems of measurement as diffraction effects can mislead a microphone connected to a machine which lacks cognitive recognition of input data. As it stands, any standard measurement technique can be skewed by an unconventional crossover design due to acoustic phase anomalies, comb filtering and cancellations.

If the test technique does not take into account the lobing of certain frequencies or the combining of certain groups of frequencies which occur only at specific distances away from the front baffle, then the test will provide meaningless results. We are all probably aware of a preferred listening height for a loudspeaker. Yet that specific height varies with each loudspeaker and certainly, standmounted systems are going to be influenced by the support they sit on. Consistency only in the stand height will easily change the results for certain system designs when the stand places the system in a position dictated by "standard operating procedures" to be above or below the preferred listening height of that particular loudspeaker.

Loudspeakers which rely on room boundary effects(,say, a heavily slanted front baffle intended to place the driver's on axis response above the listener's ears or a low frequency driver placed down close to the floor with a mid/tweeter placement at ear level) and certain horn loaded systems are equally disadvantaged by standard test methods which look for the norm and ignore the less average.

Sub/sat systems can be equally mis-measured by their very design.




Nor does a spec which only takes into account on axis performance measured at one meter from a sometimes imaginary and arbitrary front baffle plane relate in any way to the actual performance of a loudspeaker which by design must be placed into a "live" (read: "lively") listening room.




We have seen loudspeaker manufacturers operating like politicians and corporate lawyers for decades. Until the generic rules introduced by High Fidelity magazine became more or less the norm for measuring loudspeakers in the late 1970's, measurements were absolutely meaningless for the consumer. Once rules and limits were introduced in hopes of creating a more consistent method of comparison for the consumer the politicians and lawyers in the marketing departments set about finding ways to stay within the boundaries of the rules while saying the exact opposite.




Consumer audio for the marketing folks has always been about selling, not truth. We see numerous ways to say something that has no relation to how the other guy has said the same thing. Measurements of acoustic output were first said to be "at one watt input". Then we realized that wasn't a good technique since 8 Ohm watts and 4 Ohm watts aren't the same Voltage across the load. A swap to "@ 1.83 Volts" was suggested but never implemented with consistency.

We've seen marketing speak which claims a certain loudspeaker is X sensitive "in room" which totally defeats the purpose of measuring on axis performance. Other marketers tells us their speakers are Y sensitive "in pairs" which is logically how we use a stereo system but not how speakers are measured in a lab.




Nit picking just a bit more, speaker sensitivity measurements are taken at a few specific frequencies - all in the middle of the range since room effects cannot be eliminated from the measurements without a very large and very expensive anechoic chamber and high frequency measurements can be very misleading - and then combined to build one number for marketing purposes. This means a speaker with a fairly large frequency irregularity as measured can still technically perform as another speaker with a less irregular response but show completely different summed measurements. And, of course, sound quite unlike another speaker.

It's sort of the equivalent to taking all the ingredients which go into a minestrone and calling it soup rather than something else.

So, yes, measurements can be consistent but they don't have to be and, in reality, seldom are.

And, no, there really is no real world consistency in loudspeaker sensitivity measurements even within the same testing facility.




Give those measurements to the marketing department and all hope for meaningful results has just been sent up in smoke (and mirrors).


.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3261
Registered: Oct-07
I just want to address the stereophile database of measured data.
This is probably the ONLY such data base I know of. Maybe some private industry has such measures, maybe made in Anachoic conditions, but generally I'll go with the stereophile stuff.
It is rare that they are far from the manufacturers spec'd value.
And yes, there are MANY sources of error in making ANY measurement.
I would do measurement capability studies. I would corral 3 operators to measure the SAME 10 pieces 3x EACH and record their results. You'd be surprised at what I'd learn. Sometimes the MACHINE was very operator sensitive and deemed 'incapable' of doing what we needed to the requisite accuracy AND repeatability. Don't get me started on NIST standards and traceability. I had one of the few sets of such standards in our company, QC having the OTHER set. Too bad they didn't know What they had or How to use 'em. Such standards are sent OUT on an annual basis for ReCertification.

I would SUGGEST that Stereophile do some 'measurements of the measuring equipment'. Not only should the cal'd microphone be tested and certified annually (more often in cases of abuse) but the PEOPLE using it should also know.

The 3 major sources of measurment error are 1.Man, 2.Method and 3.Machine ALL must be accounted for if you even PRETEND to have a 'measurement system'.

As for measuring a speaker in an anachoic environment? I've been IN a very dead room. A Custom made room (by my dad!) which had non-parallell walls, and other construction features to make it correct. It was spooky. Except in a few intentionally 'live' spots you simply lacked most of the aural cues you're accostomed to 'hearing'. even subliminally.

IF I were to measure a speaker given my ability to improvise? I'd find a large open area with access to power. This is semi-anachoic, at best, but would do for a first pass effort.

And if you measure the same speaker 3x and get different results? Look to the 3 things which must be right. You don't have a 'system' at that point, but some kind of artifact.

And agreed about marketing. Most is to be ignored as the proof is in the listening.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18089
Registered: May-04
.


I think you've gone a bit astray to talk about what you know, leo.

Atkinson does the testing at Stereophile. Mic's are calibrated but a calibrated mic is still rather useless when the loudspeaker system itself can fool the machine. Which is quite easy to accomplish.

In the end, leo, speaker sensitivity measurements predict little and certainly not anything related to sound quality. Over a decade agao Atkinson promised to create a data base which linked measurements - more than simple sensitivity - to sound quality but that project never took off.

The two chimps over at Audioholics did recently send me an email promising to explain in a video how speaker measurements could predict sound quality. Since they tend to spend most of their on camera time snickering at subjective listeners, I didn't bother to watch.




.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3264
Registered: Oct-07
Jan,
they've written books about what you DON'T know about metrology.
Me, too, for that matter. But I worked it and know it.

As for the rest? Sure, Sensitivity, like Impedance and some other 'measures' is No guarantee of anything. One measure I think DOES make sense is that of the reactance of a speaker. Coupled with the impedance curve or simply presented in a Smith Chart, you can bet that impedance minima WITH a high reactance is trouble for all but the most robust amps. But even those speakers can make good sound if partnered with the proper amp.

The loudspeaker 'fool' the machine? Sure, Linkwitz has gone on about the difficulty of measuring dipoles. He oughta' know! As for the rest? I'd have to see the method, examine the training and run a few repeatability tests of my OWN.

And a Calibrated mic is only ONE step in the mechanical (and electrical) chain required to measure. The other variables as I said, are MAN and METHOD.

Your Audioholics comment is a crack-up.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18090
Registered: May-04
.

"Jan,
they've written books about what you DON'T know about metrology.
Me, too, for that matter. But I worked it and know it."




Once again, leo, I have no idea what that means.


Ya'know, this all began with you stating something to the effect high sensitivity speakers are likely to hurt your ears.

Considering I use relatively efficient SDFR systems and have sold and lived with many high and low sensitivity systems, I can't agree with the implications of that statement. The increasing numbers of high efficiency systems available to be paired with the larger and larger numbers of SET amps make it rather clear "audiophile" sound quality is easily attained with well chosen systems who feature high input sensitivity.

With my diy systems the amp is directly connected to the dipole drivers, not even a pair of binding posts between them. While I am aware my tastes are not the norm for the typical audio buyer, the immediacy of the music is, at times, startling. Much more so, IMO, than, say, a B&W 804 driven by a megawatt amp still struggling with the demands of the load.

For the most part, high sensitivity systems, whether SDFR or multi-way tend to present very simple and quite easy to drive loads to the amplifier. Even a seventy year old design like the Klispchorn is a pretty simple system for any amp. It had to be considering the average wattage of a home system at the time was about seven to ten "music" watts and all tubed with transformers back in the late 1940's. The horns do much of the acoustic filtering required and there just isn't much to the crossover. The horns aren't exactly to my taste as I am not a fan of room eating speakers which require I live around them but they do a job most designers lost sight of after the invention of the transistor and the advent of "watts is cheap" thinking.

If you want to discuss difficult to drive system, then you are typically discussing low efficiency system where the drivers are limited in some way and the crossover soaks up Volts while thoroughly screwing with phase and the NFB circuits of most amplifiers - if they exist in the amp. Again, another reason for SET's and high efficiency systems.

What we like is what we like but over the years it seems more and more music lovers are going for higher efficiency systems - HT use not included - due to the way lower efficiency systems can murder sound quality.







What's next?



.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3265
Registered: Oct-07
Jan,
You're slipping.
I NEVER said that high sensitivity speakers hurt your ears.
That IF listening to one wasn't pleasing, the high sensitivity wouldn't help. You should be able to find something pleasing at a range of sensitivities.

From my post which you misquote:
'A high sensitivity speaker which hurts your ears or doesn't match your goals is not a good solution.'

One other point about speaker sensitivity and measurement. Sterophile is usually in very good agreement with manufacturers specifications. I haven't read enough Stereophile data to know how often they disagree by say, more than 2 or 3 db. I'm sure you'll agree that given the nature of the measurement, and factoring in accuracy and repeatability, not to mention operator (measurer) and methods, that within 1 or so db is quite good. And as the majority of stereophile measurments agree with the manufacturer, all to the good.(within reasonable limits)
For those cases where the measurement is off by say greater than 3db, a call to the manufacturer about HOW they measure may clear up the difference. If stereophile is CONSISTANTLY above OR below manufacturers numbers, than a systematic difference may exist.
I would expect SOME sample to sample variation. I'm not familiar with current manufacturing tolerances but certainly a 3sigma of +-0.2db should be attainable in series production.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3266
Registered: Oct-07
One final point:
We are in fundamental agreement about 'bad loads'. Funny you should mention the B&W which has a number of speakers which consume watts like you own stock in the electric company.
I rather doubt much tube gear is happy with such speakers.
Couple huge reactance with low impedance minima and you've got trouble.
If you are still capable of learning something, look up 'power cube' which is a measuring system which stresses and amp with -+45degree AND pure resistive loads at 8, 4 and 2 ohms. The resultant graphic really shows which amps are capable into some of the wacky loads common today.
And since you are such a stickler for minutia, NO, in advance, such measures are NO substitute for listening, but IMO may help create a short list of amps capable of driving bad-load speakers, if you insist on owning some.


My panels? Very low sensitivity. But a generally 'benign' load so nearly ANY competent amp will make pleasing music. I've run panels with everything from a Kenwood Integrated (KA-7100, still in service with my nephew!) to a CarverCube and even Rotel (never again) and later some 'd' amps which didn't last (close but no cigar) to my current Parsound which WILL last since they have NO sonic sins and will allow me to go to a DSP based crossover and DITCH the last vestiges of the speaker level crossover.
I generally 'call' people who talk about bad-load panels. I just aint' so.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 2277
Registered: Oct-10
The question I have Leo is, what was wrong with the amps that did NOT last? It would seem that speakers that present an easy load would not be a problem for any amp. Was it just that the amp/speaker combos didn't sound good to you?
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3268
Registered: Oct-07
The 'd' amps have an output Zobel. This causes phase shifts in the HF end of things. Panels are somewhat beamy to begin with. The interaction of the amp and speaker EVENTUALLY got to me. I know a LOT about panel setup. Even in places you may not think the will work, something might be worked out. Another effect of the output zobel is that frequency response (upper end) is impedance dependant. So, as impedance drops, so does HF extension. The worst example I've seen is a certain module is 0.5db down at 20khz at 4ohms. That is a LOT since it is beginning to drop like a rock. This has effects in the audible band. Phase Shift. One measurable effect is poor 10khz square wave performance. While square wave are few and far between in actual music, various problems CAN be seen using this test. The speaker from either the Mylar side OR the Pole Piece side had 'picket fencing' in the HF response which was very distracting. Once I tuned into it.

I rather suspect that the amp I sold found a very nice home. With box speakers.

Elliot Sound Products has a very understandable paper on this measure.
 

Gold Member
Username: Superjazzyjames

Post Number: 2279
Registered: Oct-10
Thanks for the explanation Leo. It's funny how some amp/speaker combos can be great and others just don't work. I don't have experience with panels, but this does make sense.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18092
Registered: May-04
.

"While square wave are few and far between in actual music, various problems CAN be seen using this test."


Actually, square waves do not exist in nature at all. They are purely man made things which can only be seen - not heard - when viewing the output of a circuit on a scope.

While a 10kHz square wave can be instructive, the usefulness of such a test (particularly at 10Khz) is, IMO, questionable. I feel building for good square wave performance is essential to a good circuit design but I've seen amps measure rather poorly and still sound magnificent on real world music sources. You'd be hard pressed to find a SET amp that looks good on a square wave test at any frequency.

Most tubed power amps don't do well at all on a square wave test due to the intervening transformer between the output devices and the load. It's one of the most often repeated slogans of the objectivists that "toob" amps suck based solely on measurements. Of course, I listen to music and do not spend my time looking at test reports. It is why I am mostly at odds with the purely objectivist buyer.

My first "real" power amp was a solid state Citation 12D from HK. HK had been involved in research, since their days of tubed amplifiers, which suggested high current delivery, broad bandwidth (4Hz-120kHz minimum), fast rise times and good settling rate circuits which could produce an excellent 100Hz square wave pattern simply sounded better on real world music.

I sold the heck out of HK products using that technology as the explanation for HK's "better" sound quality, especially when it was introduced into their stereo receivers.

I loved that 12D. I still have it though it hasn't been in service for awhile. Yet, after the better part of a decade of use, when I moved to the transformer coupled McIntosh amps, they sounded much more musical with tighter bass despite a lower DF and very good square wave performance from a transformer coupled amp but still nothing like the HK's measurements.



Most of the class D amps I've run across include Zobels at their outputs to help keep the amps stable. In fact, many "traditional" solid state amps include Zobels for just that reason.

The (now rather ancient) Italian Autocostriere kit type chip amp I built allowed the builder to eliminate the Zobel in the "audiophile level" build. The idea there was more to simplify the connection between output devices and the load.

I'm all for simple and I did leave the Zobel out of my amp but with my FRSD speaker systems, component to component matching was still the best answer to a six of one, half dozen of another situation. There is no free lunch in this hobby and, if you risk doing away with the Zobel but have no idea how to match an amp to a load, you may end up with one dead Zoble-less amp.



Otherwise, leo, you and I have been over this material several times prior to. No one else is paying attention to this.

And, no, I'm not "slipping". You singled out a specific type of loudspeaker as being troublesome.

Rather than the sentence you have actually repeated, which is, "A high sensitivity speaker which hurts your ears or doesn't match your goals is not a good solution", you should have posted, "Any speaker which hurts your ears or doesn't match your goals is not a good solution."

If you had done that, I wouldn't have had a problem with your words.

Sensitivity does not translate into poor performance. As with the Zobel network and square waves, measurements do not ensure good musical performance from any amplifier or circuit.

Period.

Buying based on measurements is one way to go about this hobby. Just not a way I've pursued for the last forty years.



. }
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3270
Registered: Oct-07
Jan, My comments while global in nature were specificly aimed at MOST 'd' amps. I believe the late N'Core amps from Hypex are listed as 'load invariant' which and apparently do NOT suffer from impendance linked response issues.
It has also been beaten to death that measurements and audible preference sometimes DO and other times DO NOT, go together.
I believe that my speaker / amp match was NOT the best with my 'd' amp and my panels.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18094
Registered: May-04
.

Sure they do ... if you think they do. If you are convinced they do, they certainly will.

It's called "expectation bias".

No surprise there.



Otherwise, beyond saying a speaker that rolls off at 6kHz and a speaker that rolls off at an equal rate at 25kHz probably don't sound that much alike on full frequency music sources, not so much.


.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3271
Registered: Oct-07
It was with NO such bias that I purchased the 'd' amp. Why would I purchase something EXPECTING trouble? It's not a FORD, after all.

And square wave has about 20 or so 'failure' modes, some of which DO indicate various problens or potentialities. Audible? you decide.

From ESP:
http://sound.westhost.com/articles/squarewave.htm
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18097
Registered: May-04
.


"It was with NO such bias that I purchased the 'd' amp. Why would I purchase something EXPECTING trouble? It's not a FORD, after all."


That isn't what I said, leo.


"Failure modes" have nothing to do with music. I told you I believe in designing for good square wave performance.

I don't believe in judging music by measuring square waves.



.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3272
Registered: Oct-07
Sure, by all means LISTEN.
Some tales of incredibly measuring amps selling 5 units, word got out and the company folded. Stuff like that.

There are probably 100 bases or more to touch when designing a good amp. Square wave? Why NOT, if you can?
But I could rattle off a dozen issues from grounding scheme to short signal paths to some specialty components.
Pass believes, for example, in minimal number of gain stages. He has worked his philosophy and good EARS, along with more experience than than all but a select group of OTHER amp guys. You could name 'em, I'm certain. Maybe Curl and that guy who started Krell. Maybe even include Bob Carver?
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18098
Registered: May-04
.

I think you're missing the larger picture of what it takes to design for good square wave performance.



"Why NOT, if you can?"



No, just, why not?

It's nothing new and it needn't be expensive. It just can't be cheap.

To be fair, most class D amps measure poorly though not because they are cheap. Class D divides as much as tubes vs solid state, but for those who find little fault with a class D output stage - those who heed the requirements of the system, I'd say, - measurements and musical performance are even further apart than the classic tube vs transistor screaming matches.

If you think the Mac tube amps didn't measure well before the transformers, you've missed the point. A good SET will measure well when put into the right load situation and fed the right input signal and before the transformers. SET's are your classic example of simple, short signal paths.

That asks whether you are measuring the amp or the transformers when you hook the component up to a bench. And that asks, does it really matter how the d*mn thing measures?



None of that, however, matters when what you are using as a load is not real world and what you are driving the amp with as a signal has no relationship to music.



.



.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3273
Registered: Oct-07
Amp design is a 20-dimensional or MORE teeter totter. Balance of elements? sure.

If I can't listen to your amp without transformers, why would I measure it that way?

Stay Dry. More awful stuff coming: Film at 11
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18100
Registered: May-04
.

"Amp design is a 20-dimensional or MORE teeter totter. Balance of elements? sure."



Excuse me while I claim total bullsh*t. Go examine the circuit for, say, a Decaware Zen Triode amplifier.

"A signal path featuring a mere 2 resistors and 1 capacitor."

Explain to me how you can find 20 dimensions in that?!

A rhetorical question, leo. No need to go over all the BS you find so fascinating to know and post.

There is, IMO, one dimension to this. Music goes in and music comes out. Period!

Your 20 dimensional design is, once again, expectation bias! If you see some mirage of 20 dimensions to begin with, then you won't be happy until you can count all 20. You won't be happy until, you can "clue into" the Zobel network as one of those twenty.

Take your time doing your counting and getting clued in.

I'll be over here listening to music.

Which is why I own a music reproduction system in the first place.



"If I can't listen to your amp without transformers, why would I measure it that way?"


Again, you've totally f'ing missed the complete f'ing point.

First, why are you "listening to your amp"?

What exactly does it say to you?

Do you answer back when it talks to you? Not to would be rude, no?

What does your amp say about ... oh, a bent flatted fifth?



If you can't listen to music without a dynamic source and a constantly variable load, why would you measure it any other way?

That's like saying you want to know how fast a car can go so you will measure the tire pressure.






It comes down to one single, all important dimension; what is the purpose of a music reproduction system or component?

It's certainly not to produce square waves which cannot exist outside of a circuit.

No loudspeaker - which is something you must have to reproduce sound or music - can do a square wave.

So what is the purpose of measuring an amp's output with square waves?

That is a rhetorical question, leo. You do not need to go into the details of what you've read over on Elliot. I get square waves, OK?

The purpose of an audio component is definitely not to listen to pure sinewaves.

Or to work into a static "perfect" load though, if we could ever arrive at that point, things would become far more apparent to the numbers are all gang.



I own a music system because I prefer to listen to music. See? One dimensional thinking.

All the rest is nothing but elaborate BS you have bought into because it makes you feel better to play around with 20 dimensions. Because you spend your time listening for what's wrong with the system and less time listening to the music which it can produce.

That, to me, is wasted time.


.
 

Gold Member
Username: Magfan

USA

Post Number: 3274
Registered: Oct-07
Jan,
Read the article from ESP on Square Wave. IF the goal is good SquareWave, than you've got a LOT to consider when looking at the scope. Each 'signature' has a cause / effect relationship, POSSIBLE sonic consequences and possible 'cures'.

KISS? Sure. Pass amps have 2 or 3 gain stages. But than, the N-Core / Hypex stuff has 60db or so of NFB! The new N-Core has been getting very good press and listener reviews. Pass also Parallels large numbers of output devices.

Jan, you know NOTHING about my listening habits. NOTHING whatsoever. You, contrary to self-opinion are NOT psychic.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 18101
Registered: May-04
.

Your post, IMO, proves my point, leo.

It's time to end this BS.

I'm here to assist folks who feel they need help.

You have this all figured out, you don't need me.



.
 

New member
Username: Crysmarye

Post Number: 1
Registered: Oct-16
you should use two cable to connect sound system
http://prodissertation.co.uk
 

New member
Username: Rorence

美国

Post Number: 3
Registered: Apr-17
Before reading this post, I have the same trouble with you. Now I get easy solution to deal with this trouble quickly. Thank you so much.
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