Outlaw Audio home shop products hideout news support about
Page 8 of 10 < 1 2 6 7 8 9 10 >
Topic Options
#43333 - 11/19/02 12:50 AM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
Smart Little Lena Offline
Desperado

Registered: 01/09/02
Posts: 1019
Loc: Dallas
Now, having done that, set your 950 to "no center" and play a DVD-A disc through the 6-channel analog inputs. Is anything coming out of your center speaker?

Sanjay, no nothing out of the center with 6-channel analog/ Panny center speaker ON/ Outlaw Center speaker NONE/ speaker wire removed from the FL/FR. And the Law (or the Panny) is definitely Not trying to downmix to the surrounds. Things get awfully sparse.

Azryan, I listened one more time to Alanis Track 3 “Hands Clean” she starts out a few seconds into the track heavy with a quieter vocal in the center (does not have A LOT of instrumentation going on here). I can hear that her vocals are in the FL and FR very very faint. Although I still feel it looses some impact, there has got to be downmixing going on. What I hear in the FL/FR with center on in this portion just doesn’t create the detail of her whispery stylized voice coming from the center speaker. She’s almost sliding on her S’sssss in the center here and I don’t hear that from ear to the FL/FR. When I switch to center/none its there in the FL/FR, so it must be dividing it between the two.

Have I found a DVD-A for you! Simply labeled “Trey Anastasio” I didn’t know what or whom it was I just picked it up because it appeared to be one of those mismarked priced as a regular CD.
So far I really only like a couple of tracks on it. BUT, the guy must be big 2-channel aficionado who likes surround (or his mixer forgot that option on the board). There is practically nothing recorded in the center channel, once in a blue moon there’s a few runs/notes played through the center. But he just stays out of it most of the time. At least in my quick 1-min play of the start of each track just now. And put this one also in the group of DVD-A’s with which you can disable center thru the panny.alone. (now 4 out of 5).

Top
#43334 - 11/19/02 03:49 AM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
sdurani Offline
Desperado

Registered: 01/23/02
Posts: 765
Loc: Monterey Park, CA
Lena,
Quote:
Sanjay, no nothing out of the center with 6-channel analog/ Panny center speaker ON/ Outlaw Center speaker NONE/ speaker wire removed from the FL/FR. And the Law (or the Panny) is definitely Not trying to downmix to the surrounds.
Thanx for checking. So at least we know that nothing gets sent to the centre when it's set to 'NONE'. Next step, if you're willing: reach behind the centre speaker and unplug the wires, leaving only the Left & Right working up front.

Now, play a DVD-A that you know has some significant centre channel content. In the 950's set-up menu, go back & forth between centre set to 'NONE' and back on. If you hear a difference between the two settings, then some sort of downmixing is going on; you'll clearly hear it in your front-main speakers. If you don't hear any difference between the two settings, that means that centre channel contentis not being re-directed to the fronts.

BTW, the reason I'm asking you to check whether there's a phantom downmix feature in the 950 and not the RP-91 is because, if it this feature is present in the 950, then it'll be good news for anyone who wants to listen to DVD-A and/or SACD without a centre. I mean, if it turns out that this feature exist only in the RP-91, that's nice but it doesn't help anyone who doesn't have that particular player.

Thanx,
Sanjay
_________________________
Sanjay

Top
#43335 - 11/19/02 02:33 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
azryan Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 09/10/01
Posts: 222
Lena you mentioned -
"You can get a bigger soundstage, in the sense of is it a 3 piece band (like) Vs orchestra (like) spread out and full, - when the recording is bad."
"-An effect will pan from center then L/R then to the surrounds. (A 3 stop movement to audibly track)"

It seems like you prefer to have the center speaker sort-off 'disconnected' from the mains though which is counter to what most people try to do... to blend the center so that it's seamless into the mains (though that's often tough to do for many reasons).

Maybe I misunderstand what you meant, but it kinda sounded like that?

What I hear with my phantom center is one soild soundstage. If something's recorded dead center that's what you hear, BUT (I think this is what you're asking?)...If it's recorded slightly left of center that's where you hear it.
It doesn't sound like it's coming from the center, nor does it sound like it's from the left speaker because the right speaker is playing some of that info.

When a soundtrack is cut-up into 5.1 tracks, the left right and center aren't totally sepp. tracks. All three have sounds constantly panning left/center/right. I just skip the center, but the panning is exactly the same, and none of the info is lost, or shifted in it's imaging.

It just doesn't work well when you're sitting far off center of course, but I never am, and then you can't get around the fact that your speaker levels will be off and your view of your screen will be on an angle. So center or none, sitting off-center is a poor spot anyway.

In fact w/ my mains being a few feet in front of my screen, even when I'm WAY off center (like past my left main speaker, the angle I'm sitting at from the screen still makes the center info (which then comes much more from the left than the right) line up w/ the center of the screen.

Was that too confusing they way I wrote that?

About your speakers you wrote -"But how much more detail can you hear than when a lip catches as singer breathes???"

You might be suprised. Having already had my Newforms for a couple years, and the 950 for several months, I tried the eARTwo digital amp, and found the improvement to be as big as when I replaced my old speakers for the Newforms. And the Newform ribbon is one of the best reproducers of micro details like the breating you mention.

Might want to try the Acoustic Reality eAR amp. It's costly, but you'll hear even more detail than you do now, and from day one (though it does break in over a few months). And if you don't hear a diff., send it back and get a full refund. Next to no risk to hear for yourself.
NO WAY I was gonna send mine back though.

And yeah, just like you mentioned... all this was still just what the 950 was outputting. Though I don't think the 950's one of the best, it's better than most people are probably hearing it. (I thought I might send the amp back because the 950 held it back, but the improvement was BIG).

Top
#43336 - 11/19/02 02:54 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
azryan Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 09/10/01
Posts: 222
Oh yeah Lena... about that new DVD-A..

You said "So far I really only like a couple of tracks on it. BUT, the guy must be big 2-channel aficionado who likes surround (or his mixer forgot that option on the board). There is practically nothing recorded in the center channel, once in a blue moon there’s a few runs/notes played through the center."

Are you 'sure' that there's even any center chan. recorded? Your system should have NO problem fooling you into thinking you're hearing center chan even if there's none recorded.

Have you tired some scenes of the Matrix yet? Flipping back and forth from center-small to center -none will show your exactly what the diff. is. It might help you tweak your mains placement to sharpen up the center (if you find it less sharp that's probably why).

There's a very clear test of phantom center pannig with the menu screen to Apocolypse Now! (sp?).

Helicopters pan across the screen in front of you, (and you also hear them behind you-but that's beside the point).

In my system the panning is perfect. The sound doesn't change at all as it goes from right to left. That's what I mean by 'one solid soundfield'. To get it that smooth you have to have a perfectly matching center (almost impossible due to horizontal design and diff. driver arangement and diff. axis response, and physical speaker placement above or below the screen).
It can be done, but all that amp/speaker cost and adjustment trouble just to get the effect most people can create with their mains alone.

Room shape (and stuff in it)/speaker placement constraints sometimes keep the mains from being set optimally though which may degrade a phantom center like I described above, but then that's what you hear from all your 2-chan CD's (that most people haven't maxed out to their full potential -including myself)
We can only make due with the room and equipt. we own right?

Top
#43337 - 11/19/02 03:01 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
azryan Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 09/10/01
Posts: 222
Sanjay, you wrote, -
"BTW, the reason I'm asking you to check whether there's a phantom downmix feature in the 950 and not the RP-91 is because, if it this feature is present in the 950, then it'll be good news for anyone who wants to listen to DVD-A and/or SACD without a centre."

Great point. For the 950 to do this though, it 'must' convert the analog signal back into digital right?
And then it's able to downmix a phantom center and do all the other stuff like level balance and full bass managment (meaning 'not' the analog 80 Hz setting).

Maybe the best test is for someone (say... Lena the A+ Best Sport!!) to compare normal DVD-A analog playback (from a disc that 'has' a center recorded) to what (if any) audible damage the 950 does by proecessing it digitally and then back into analog.

This test could be with the center on or off/downmixed since the main thing would be to hear someone's preference or opinion on how 'clean' the 950 re-processed the analog DVD-A signal.

That's what you're talking about right?

Top
#43338 - 11/19/02 03:42 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
sdurani Offline
Desperado

Registered: 01/23/02
Posts: 765
Loc: Monterey Park, CA
Ryan,
Quote:
For the 950 to do this though, it 'must' convert the analog signal back into digital right? And then it's able to downmix a phantom center and do all the other stuff like level balance and full bass managment (meaning 'not' the analog 80 Hz setting).
Actually, I was talking about the Analog Bypass function on the 950, not the digital path. After all, we're trying to figure out how you can listen to DVD-A with a phantom centre; and this involves analog bypass specifically. Right?

BTW, I don't see why the 950 would need to convert the DVD-A signal to digital in order to do a phantom centre mixdown. It just has to re-route the analog signal of any speakers that aren't being used to the front Left & Right. Once that is done, it can then apply the analog 80Hz filter.

So there were two things I wanted to check: first, when the centre is set to none, will the 950 actually turn off that output. (Already answered.) And second, to find out what happens to the signal that was supposed to come out of the centre output. If it turns out that the 950 does indeed re-route the centre channel signal (even when using the Analog Bypass connection) then that allows you to use any player you want and still get a phantom centre.

Best,
Sanjay
_________________________
Sanjay

Top
#43339 - 11/20/02 12:34 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
Smart Little Lena Offline
Desperado

Registered: 01/09/02
Posts: 1019
Loc: Dallas
re you 'sure' that there's even any center chan. recorded? Yes, for all of this testing, because I have tried to determine what’s recorded in each channel, I have been walking over to the speakers and putting my ear up to them to hear what’s coming from what. This guy just doesn’t like the center, but uses it for a quick ‘run’ of notes once in a little while with no rhyme or reason. (PS. I got excited over this for a sec, cause I thought OKAY he popped into the dead quiet center channel for a sec, surely this will only be in the center channel, but when I moved to the FL/FR, the little bit he popped into the center WAS repeated in the FL/FR....urgggg.)

Have you tired some scenes of the Matrix yet? Not yet, somebody borrowed and it has not found it’s way home, (Lost many DVD’s this way, I’m starting a ‘checkout’ list, so we can track who took what in future this gets expensive!)

The sound doesn't change at all as it goes from right to left. No, NO I don’t mean chopping out of one speaker and popping into another distinctly, that would be distracting! I do mean the seamless pan…
But as far as what I trying to word on why I like having a center. I’ve just always had one in the mix since I started paying attention to all this and am used to it. I guess I just think its more ‘fill’ like adding BS’s into the back of your mutli-channel system. But I really do understand your great passion for the seamless front stage 2-channel creates, (only just now after purchasing the new FL/FR) which could also bypass any extra issues with matching your center into the blend. When I’m listening to my 2-channel and it’s a ‘great’ recording there’s nothing better! So I should give it some time to play with this on some DVD’s.
But since I paid so much for the damm thing (center).and like it. I intend to ‘use’ it, (most of the time)

Now on to the nitty gritty. I have not run Sanjays latest experiment yet. Maybe tonight, BUT I may have confirmed (for myself) that neither the Panny or the Law are downmixing. Sanjay or Azrayan, either of you would have been quicker to pick up on this than I. But the reason for changing my stance suddenly at this point hinges on a tiny section in ‘Under Rug Swept” Track #4 “Flinch”. Yesterday AM, I was waiting for my ride to the barn and she was running late, did not think I had time to run the ‘test’ so just ran the DVD URS to better familarize myself with it. On all the prior tests, due to time contraists, I never played these DVD’s through, I was skipping forward each track/ each disc for about 1 min of play looking for ANY disc that had exculsive center channel info. and could not find ANY that was not reapeated to one extent or the other in the FL/FR. Without playing every one of my DVD-A’s straight through and standing at speaker fabric the whole time it has been amazing that I could not find any infor that was in center that was not repeated in the FL/FR. The reverse is much more common in these recordings where you can find information in the surrounds which is not in the mains, but that’s not what we needed.
Because the stage is seamless in the past I would hear what I thought (hoped) to be stronger center infor and walk over to the speakers, and each time what I heard which I thought might be a section recorded in center only was always repeated in the Fronts. But while letting it play I ran into some tiny moments on this track (if memory serves) around at .50 sec.. Where Alanis sings a line…..So ….The one tiny word ‘So” is repeated as an Echo or reverb effect either recorded by her and added in by the mixer, or it is her backup singers. Later at 1 min + you hear the backups faintly echoing one word here and there but this is ONLY in the surrounds so it gets confusing. Then in around the 3-4 min mark. Again there is a whole refrain where a faint echo repeat of one or more of her words is sung in the background very faintly I believe that this part of the recording (not to be confused with every other time it is also in the surrounds) and IS recorded ONLY in the center channel.
So at .50 sec. The one word ‘So” and a few instances at the 3-4 min range, a few more individual ‘echo’ words. Appear to truly be recorded only in the center channel. When I quickly ran through this several times setting the Panny to no center or the Law to no center. I could not hear the one word ‘So’. It was gone. I’ll play with all this some more and run Sanjays test especially on this portion of URS I just found.

I never would have dreamt that on these several DVD’s so much in the center track is also in the FL/FR. When you disable center, they pick up the slack so perfectly throwing a phantom center up out of the same info in FL/FR it is really hard to determine whats going on. If any one has a DVD-A title they can ‘CONFIRM’ has heavy exclusive center channel, I’ll buy it if I can find it. This has been very enlightening as regards the way most DVD-A are mixed.


[This message has been edited by Smart Little Lena (edited November 20, 2002).]

Top
#43340 - 11/20/02 01:43 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
azryan Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 09/10/01
Posts: 222
Sanjay, you wrote,
"BTW, I don't see why the 950 would need to convert the DVD-A signal to digital in order to do a phantom centre mixdown. It just has to re-route the analog signal of any speakers that aren't being used to the front Left & Right. Once that is done, it can then apply the analog 80Hz filter."

Oh you do mean an analog downmixing from the Outlaw. Interesting. I never thought of that. That would certainly be good enough for me and solve my problem, but I've never heard of ANY system that did that?

I didn't think it was even possible (or at least 'if' possible, highly complicated and costly to implement).

Can you think of any pre/pro or Rec. that downmixes the center info to the mains in the analog domain?

Top
#43341 - 11/20/02 02:10 PM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
azryan Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 09/10/01
Posts: 222
Lena,

"But since I paid so much for the damm thing (center).and like it. I intend to ‘use’ it, (most of the time)"

Heh.. yeah I can understand that!
I always had a center in my past systems (well... at least since prologic first came out), but once I hit the higher end with signal quality and speakers (like you are at yourself) I sold my last center speaker and wasn't interested in getting a new one.

You actually might NOT want to try using a phantom center on any DVD's, even for a test.
It might make you wish you spent the center speaker cost on something like a new DAC to further improve your 2 chan. CD's.

If you do wanna test it though, try ANY DVD. It doesn't matter if it's the Matrix or not (I was just saying 'yeah' when you first said it).

Actually a quiet dialouge-heavy (sp?) flick might be a better test.
Probably more difficult for a phantom center to pull off than a sound effect heavy flick with lots 'o stuff spread out to all the speakers.

And the cool thing about that test is that it's so fast and easy to switch the 950's center on and off, and replay the same DVD scene both ways.

No guessing about the diff. you heard like you might do if you have to get up, switch cables, adjust volume, junk like that that makes directly comparing stuff so hard.

I say 'no more lending people your DVD's' too if they don't give 'em back to you. That's low. You're probably just being 'too nice' IMO. heh

That seems like a definitive answer now that you heard that one little 'so' from the center on track 4. I'll have to listen for that on my CD of it, and listen if they did any phase tricks to put sounds in a phantom surround. Probably not, but they could have.

You'll have to try that Roger Waters CD to hear this phantom surround effect. It's amazing. I think some Madonna stuff is recorded in Q-Sound too, but I don't listen to her. You probably don't listen to the Heavy Metal band 'Tool', but there's a lot of this effect on their CD's too even though they're not listed as Q-Sound.

I think it's just a matter of recording a specific layer of sound and varying the phase. 180 degrees and it sounds like it's coming from your rear speakers (~20 degrees behind you), while everything recorded normal (in-phase) images up front like you'd expect it to. It can move from front to back and vice-versa too.

Top
#43342 - 12/08/02 12:49 AM Re: Wow! DVD-A/SACD
charlie Offline
Desperado

Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 1176
Quote:
If I can ask a slightly off-topic question...
Anyone with any of these Pioneers (or Lena with your Panny) know if they will downmix a 'phantom center' while playing DVD-A or SACD??

I've asked this EVERYWHERE and no owners seems to ever know.


I had an idea, although it's not exactly what you asked about. If you really want to downmix the center into the L&R to get a phantom center maybe you could use a small studio mixer to mix the 3 into 2? 'SoundHound' would be the guy to ask on this one I suppose, but it seems like it might work and might let you avoid getting a center speaker and still enjoy DVD-A.

Have a good one.
_________________________
Charlie

Top
Page 8 of 10 < 1 2 6 7 8 9 10 >

Who's Online
1 registered (Tom M), 109 Guests and 1 Spider online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
DavidR, Tom M, philto, HiFiFan, xmar
8522 Registered Users
Top Posters (30 Days)
Tom M 8
butchgo 5
gentlejax 4
DaveWoj 4
reet 4
Forum Stats
8,522 Registered Members
86 Forums
11,254 Topics
98,447 Posts

Most users ever online: 386 @ 01/14/20 03:43 PM