Appropriate for 2.0/2.1 listening?

My understanding is that Audyssey is (primarily) intended for correcting 5.1 and 7.1 systems for home theater use. I have a 2.1 system in a small listening room that is a bit challenging acoustically, and as my stereo receiver just died, I was considering purchasing a new receiver with MultEQ. Would it be an appropriate use of MultEQ to apply room correction to a 2.1 system for music listening?

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13 Comments

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    Chris Kyriakakis

    Audyssey MultEQ measures and corrects the response of each speaker separately. So, it doesn't "care" if you have one or eight speakers. Each one will be corrected individually by measuring how it interacts with the acoustics of the room. So, yes, MultEQ will apply room correction to your two stereo speakers.

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    Matt

    Thanks for your prompt response Chris.  I have been looking at older receivers such as the Onkyo 705 and 706 as well as newer models such as the Denon 1910.  Research has provoked more questions:

    • MultEQ is effective at achieving a flat response (dB) but how effective is it at reducing decay times (RT60)?  Would it minimize the need for acoustic treatments for this purpose?

    • The Onkyo 705 has MultEQ XT while the 706 dropped XT in favor of the standard MultEQ and added Dynamic EQ.  While I do not have the equipment to do a full analysis, using test tones I have found problem frequencies at 50-55Hz, 80Hz, and 120-130Hz.  Given that XT uses higher quality filters for the speakers, would the 705 be more appropriate to tackle my issues at 120-130Hz?

    • Is MultEQ updated/improved in newer models?  That is, ignoring other factors, would one expect better results from a 2010 MultEQ product vs a 2007?

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    Chris Kyriakakis

    Hi,

    MultEQ is not intended to minimize the need for acoustic treatments.  It will improve any room, but when combined with the right acoustical treatments the results can be spectacular.

    Yes, MultEQ XT has higher resolution filters and this is more evident in the low frequency correction where it can fix narrower peaks and dips.  

    There have been no major changes to the algorithm from 2007.  Please look for announcements later this summer on improvements to MultEQ.

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    Jim Thompson

    I have a 2.1 setup with Klipsch RF-7 and a Klipsch sw-310 sub.  I just bought a Onkyo NR809 receiver.  I've run the Audyssey several times and the sound is awful, sounds distant, no sub response.

     

    Any ideas what to do?  If I crank the individual speakers way up it sounds a lot better, I'm just surprised how awful it sounds.  (Hollow and distant)

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    Chris Kyriakakis

    Several things could have gone wrong.

     

    1.  No bass.  This is caused by the AVR setting speakers to FullRange.  It's not an Audyssey decision or recommendation, but we are not in charge of that setting.  Full Range = Don't send bass to the subwoofer.  These must be changed to have a crossover after the calibration is finished.

    2. Hollow.  This is a possible sign of non-functioning drivers in the speakers.  Please make sure that all speaker drivers are working (midrange and tweeters).

    3. Measurement pattern for mic.  Please make sure you have the mic at ear level on a camera tripod and not on the floor or couch.  Also check here for recommended mic position pattern.

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    Jim Thompson

    Should I manually set the crossover to 80?  It always resets to 40.

    This system rocks with my old Carver Ct-6 preamp.

    Used tripod and eight positions surrounding the two recliners for listening.

    There is a Reference Level setting that I just saw in manual.  Will try that.

    Could be defective unit, I've got a replacement on the way.

     

    Thanks for quick response

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    Chris Kyriakakis

    Yes, the 809 does not have MultEQ XT32 so higher crossover is better.  More content is sent to the sub where the MultEQ filters have higher resolution.

    Reference Level Offset is for Dynamic EQ not MultEQ.  Info here

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    Jim Thompson

    What seems to be amazing about the 809 is that every single setting you need for Audyssey -- is set wrong, before and after running it.

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    Chris Kyriakakis

    AVR makers are set in their ways.  It takes a long time to change their thinking...

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    Jim Thompson

    One of the other issues is if you run the Audyssey set up.  I can turn the volume all the way to 100 and not get full volume.  My old stereo pre amp hooked to the 350w amp would have blown the speakers up or made someone deaf.

    If I go into the speaker settings and turn them from -10db to +10db it sounds better and will get pretty loud.  Is this right?

     

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    Chris Kyriakakis

    Digital systems have a limited amount of headroom.  Every process in the chain (decoders, bass management, tone controls, up mixing, Audyssey, etc) takes some of that away.  AVR makers can upgrade to a higher level Volume IC, but they don't...

    The purpose of level calibration is to (1) set the speakers to play at the same level as each other and (2) to have the system play at reference film level when the volume control of the AVR is set to 0 dB.  If you change the speaker levels from what was found to be the correct calibration value you are skewing the level calibration of Dynamic EQ, but it has no effect on the room correction filter (MultEQ).

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    Jim Thompson

    Thanks I'll have to think about that a bit.

     

    I'll check the settings again when I get a chance

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    Jim Thompson

    Thanks  for suggestions.

    Last night I found out the receiver was resetting the sub cut over to 40Hz after running the Audyssey.

    Also I set the Reference Level to 15db since my direc TV and Blu-Ray music is coming in at lower levels than a movie (Blu-Ray).

    Now it the dynamic equalization works at moderate volumes and I can get it pretty loud. I was listening to some rock at 0db and it was shaking the house.

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