How important is Calibration?


Some people like me just turn every channel up as loud as it can go & be happy with the sound. Is that wrong or do I need a sound meter? I hear the Pioneer is coming out with consumer brand (MCACC) Multi-Channel Acoustic Calibration.

The new VSX-D912-K receiver will be available in March at a suggested retail price of $475.

It's pretty important to use an SPM. I recall one posting from someone who found he had set the levels correctly by ear when he first used his SPM, but most people's experience (including mine) is that they did not get it right until they used an SPM. It sounds better when it's right.

Caesar Cardona
A sound preassure meter is an important piece for every audio aficionado. It will let you get the right tonal balance for every speaker. Calibration always must be done every time you change speakers, wires, audio component such as dvd's, vcr and cd players also even if you change your home theater from one room to another. The environment will also affect the equipment tonal balance. Why? very simple, is because every audio/video component and speakers have a different output level by factory. Some people tend to do this by ear but you will never get an accurate sound distribution and balance. There is no difference between 1db+ but you'll definitive will have a difference between 1db and 3db+. To explain things more likely decibels are part of the receiver amplification, as more space you have in a room more decibels are necessary to gain amplification in a bigger environment. For example every receiver should be set with a master volume reference (-20db in most receivers otherwise consult your receiver manual for details) and the sound pressure meter should read 75db in all channels. In theaters the calibration set-up is 10db higher (85db) because of the size of the room and accoustics. How many of you have gone to a showroom demostration and listen to a particular A/V receiver and when you decide to take it home everything from that awesome sound effects that you were listening now they sound as cheap as a $2.00 headphones from Wal-mart? I think everybody. You should listen better ambience effects and channel separation with a good calibration process.
Recommendations: Radio Shack Sound Preassure meter (analog or digital)
A tripod for the SPM (for better level readings because body precence will affect the SPM readings) Avia or Video Essentials calibration disc.
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