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A very basic question on bass reproduction from Floor Standers

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Vivek Rao

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Just sharing my experience - Many years ago I had a passive subwoofer from a reputed company. I struggled with this since the Bass was very weak and just not right. Since I had bought this in Europe and lugged it to India it was not possible to return it. In frustration I opened it up only to find the polarity of one of the Bass drivers reversed near the crossover !! After correcting this everything. Hence please dont go by Red and black coding only.
John - just mentioning this since I see that you are getting good bass close to each speaker.
 

john_k_antony

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Just sharing my experience - Many years ago I had a passive subwoofer from a reputed company. I struggled with this since the Bass was very weak and just not right. Since I had bought this in Europe and lugged it to India it was not possible to return it. In frustration I opened it up only to find the polarity of one of the Bass drivers reversed near the crossover !! After correcting this everything. Hence please dont go by Red and black coding only.
John - just mentioning this since I see that you are getting good bass close to each speaker.
Oh Wow... really. That's really strange! I thought all these so called "reputed" companies do proper quality check before the units leave the manufacturing facility. But what you explained is a very bad quality flaw.

I can try changing the polarity of the speakers by swapping the speaker terminals. That's easy to do than opening the speaker cabinet. So if I just swap the polarity to test things will not blow up my drivers right :).

-John.
 

john_k_antony

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I just returned from commercial street visiting Mr Murthy for speaker cables. He don't have a pair ready made :sad:. But he promised to make me a pair by this Friday. He also told me that I can try it before I pay him :clapping:. That's too kind of him to offer me the cables to try out. He said the new cables he will make for me will have some "factory burn-in" , but he said it will take more than 100 hrs of burn in to bring the best out of his cables.

He also had some high quality power cables and RCA ICs.

I showed him my existing speaker cables and he said the resistance is okay, but he was concerned about the inductance of them. He said his cables can fix the uncontrolled high frequency and make the lows sound better.

Looking forward for the cables on Friday and lets see how it turns out.

-John.
 

john_k_antony

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Dear Antony, Imho bass is non directional. You may have revrse polarity and cables are mostly never so effective untill and unless cable resistance is too high (cables arent equalizers or amps) I suggest get a multimeter. Its always handy. What is the rated power of the amp. Is the impedance of spkrs and amp matching. And bass is best reproduced when subs are at a min dist frm the floor.
Kaps,

I have a DMM. What parameters of the cable should I measure? just the resistance?

Impedance of my amp and speaker are rated at 8Ohms. I am not using the Sub woofer after I hooked up AP power amp. I was using the Sub with Denon 2310. I actually wanted to get rid of the Sub and wanted my KEFs to produce good enough bass :).

The rated power of my AP Power Amp is 75W @8ohms and Denon 2310 was 100W @8ohms. I guess the 75W from AP is more refined and cleaner than the 100W from Denon. I assume that 75W AP will be good enough to drive KEF iQ7.

-John.
 

murali

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Kaps,

I have a DMM. What parameters of the cable should I measure? just the resistance?

Impedance of my amp and speaker are rated at 8Ohms. I am not using the Sub woofer after I hooked up AP power amp. I was using the Sub with Denon 2310. I actually wanted to get rid of the Sub and wanted my KEFs to produce good enough bass :).

The rated power of my AP Power Amp is 75W @8ohms and Denon 2310 was 100W @8ohms. I guess the 75W from AP is more refined and cleaner than the 100W from Denon. I assume that 75W AP will be good enough to drive KEF iQ7.

-John.
I don't know whether this will help you but my advice is always to get your basics right from my experience.
With a full-range floorstander, please bear in mind that it will reproduce the frequency range depending on its design of the drivers and crossovers. Your starting point is its placement from the rear wall and side walls and your listening distance. Many make the mistake of placing it close to the walls to boost the bass and if you have done it, that is wrong. I place my floorstanders as far away from the rear wall as possible, at least more than 3 feet, if possible, 5 - 6 ft. Next, you keep the distance between them somewhere between 6 to 9 ft. Make your listening position in such a way that if your listening distance is 10 ft from the speakers, the distance between the speakers should be 70 - 80 % of that, or 7 to 8 ft. Then adjust your toe-in so that you get the best imaging and soundstage possible. Many people make the mistake of fixing the distance between speakers and that between the walls and the speakers as well as listening position to get the best bass out of the speakers. To me, that is wrong. You fix the speaker position to get the best width and depth of soundstage and the best midrange possible. Whatever bass you get from this is what your speakers can give you. If you are not satisfied, look for a subwoofer, is possible, a pair.

I am wiriting this because I saw your listening distance given as 15 ft or something that I consider weird unless your speakers are 15 to 20 ft apart, not possible unless you are living in a Maharaja's palace.

You try to get what your speakers are built for.

After all this, still if you are not satisfied, look for room corrections and modes as others say.

Amplifiers and cables can only fine-tune this but cannot cure the basics if got wrong.

Trust this helps.

Good luck.
murali
 

john_k_antony

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Hi Murali,

Thanks for the detailed explanation. I think my speaker placement is completely wrong.

Here is my current placement

Speakers are kept 7' apart with a slight toe-in.

Speakers are 2' away from the rear wall. Its not a rear wall its a full glass french window.

Listening position is around 15' from the speakers.

Left speaker is hardly 0.5' away from the side wall.

Right speaker is around 3' from the side wall.

I will be moving to my new house in 2 months. So I will be placing the same speakers in the Living room.

New placement option

I can afford to have 13' between speakers.

I can place the speakers 2' from the rear wall

My listening position would be 18-19' from the speakers.

And I will be using a tube Pre and AP power amp with these speakers in my new home. Denon will go to my dedicated HT room for 7.1 surround sound only for movies.

Note : I tried the audyssey room calibration in Denon once and it did produc some bass, but the over all sound quality was pathetic for stereo. But 5.1 surround sound for movies, it did created a good effect. But I turned audyssey as I wanted better stereo sound and always use 'Pure Direct' mode in Denon for stereo.

-John.
 

murali

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Sorry, I am afraid yoy are again getting the basics wrong. Even the "best" speakers available are limited to maximum of about 9 ft spacing between them in our home listening environments. In most cases, 7-8 ft will be the most practical as long as you have 2-4 ft clearance with the side walls to avoid first reflections. Play a vocal and by little adjustments of this speaker-to-speaker spacing starting from a minimum of 6 ft, at one point, you should get the singer precisely centered. Fine tuning is then made by toe-in angle.

If you expect to sit more than 10 ft away from the speakers, forget about performance. It will be like sitting inside a movie theater without center speaker. Many people advocate equilateral triangle positions among speakers and listening point but as I said earlier, your listening position can be a little more than the distance between the speakers, but not too much.

Regarding your rear wall, any windows with glasses will be reflective and you will lose the depth of the soundstage. The golden rule is to make the wall behind the speakers as much absorptive as possible, like hanging thick curtains, whereas the wall behind the sitting position should be reflective.

Just to end my participation in this, I keep my speakers about 5 ft away from the rear wall and 1.5 ft from the side walls (my room is 19 ft X 10 ft). My speakers are 7 ft apart (center to center distance) and I sit about 9 ft away from the speakers (speaker to listening position). Thick curtains hang on the window on the rear wall and some sound absorbing tiles at the corners as well as the first reflection points on the side walls. When I play some orchestral or symphony music, the depth of the soundstage as well as the width extend several feet beyond these walls. Vocals are precisely centered. The only drawback is that I have the TV as close to the rear wall as possible (because my HT and music systems are integrated) and that affects a little the imaging.

Good luck and enjoy your music.
murali
 

alphacentury100

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KEF's IQ series speakers are known to produce lean sound and bass is not their strong point. So Imho your speaker cannot perform beyond its capability. The seating position also appears to be too far. Changing the position of the speaker and changing the cable, power amp may improve the bass response a bit, but not up to the level of your expectation. Your best bet now is to get a good musical sub-woofer and crossover the sub around 80Hz or lower, thereby, you wont have any sub-woofer localization problem.
(if you are ready to buy a good sub, I would advice HSU ULS15 or the Rhythmic subs. Velos are good, but way too expensive and you need to step into the DD range to get good musical performance. IF you want the ultimate musical sub, then import a Seaton Submersive-HPi(yet to be released) or a JTR Captivator S2 and forget about the Bass problem forever after).
 

john_k_antony

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Hi,

I always thought about getting a good musical sub for my KEFs. But I just wanted to try my luck here before I spend money on the Sub. I was wondering if I could get some tips that can actually make the KEF IQs to produce good bass. I am starting to realize that I am expecting something impossible from KEF IQs :(. I think I will have to get a musical Sub to complement the iQ7. I was delaying the purchase till I move to my new home. I had the Velodyne EQMax 10" in my mind. Which have select-able musical and HT mode.

I thought a power amp will improve the bass significantly. But it did not do so. However the power amp improved the sound stage significantly compared to Denon 2310. So I am very happy with the purchase. Now I will add a tube Pre to the power amp and use Denon only for HT. However I will also try the speaker cables from Murthy. I might get them tomorrow with some factory burn-in :)

-John.
 

alphacentury100

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Audire of coimbatore was dealing with HSU. But few years ago they stopped selling HSU. So up to my knowledge, your only way is to import them directly from HSU.
(The KEF IQ range speakers are very very sexy and beautifuy. The new Q range can't even come closer in look)
 

john_k_antony

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Audire of coimbatore was dealing with HSU. But few years ago they stopped selling HSU. So up to my knowledge, your only way is to import them directly from HSU.
(The KEF IQ range speakers are very very sexy and beautifuy. The new Q range can't even come closer in look)
I will check with HSU directly.

Yes, KEF iQs are very good looking and very well built. I wish they produced bass the way they looked ;)
 

sdurani

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OT: How are the HSU center channel speakers? - HC-1 MK2 Horn Bookshelf Speaker

Any one used it ?
Had 7 Hsu speakers in my set-up for about 14 months. The centre speaker lobed off axis, like most centre speakers with a WTW design. So I bought a 2nd centre speaker and used them vertically as my L/R speakers (had to rotate the tweeter horn 90 degrees). For the centre, I used one of their bookshelf speakers, lining up the tweeters of the 3 front speakers to the same height.

The results were stunning. With no drivers on either side of the tweeter, the dispersion was wide and consistent. Doesn't matter which side of the couch you were sitting, it sounded like you were in the sweet spot. Soundstage was terrific (pin-point imaging), tonality was surprisingly neutral for a horn speaker (not bright, like most horns) and the bass was unreal for a bookshelf speaker (flat down to almost 40Hz).

Luckily the Hsu office is driving distance from my home and their lead sales rep at the time was a desi, both of which allowed me to get a good deal on the speakers (sale price, no shipping charges). If you can get them at an affordable price locally, then they make for a great system, especially if you're not planning on using a subwoofer (e.g., apartment dweller).
 

john_k_antony

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Sorry to hijack my own thread :eek:

Thanks Sanjay for the detailed report. Seems like they sound pretty good. I was in-fact planning to get 3 center speakers and use them as LCR and book shelves for surround and rear.

I do have one question regarding their surround and rear speakers. They are not bi-pole or di-pole. How do the HSU BS compare to Di-pole/Bi-Pole surround and rear speakers?

I have a dedicated HT room and its not an apartment :). I can afford to have the biggest and earth shattering sub (well with in a budget though :) ).

I am not sure if there are any HSU dealer in India right now. I will check out with HSU directly in getting the whole 7.2 package shipped to india

-John.
 

sdurani

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I was in-fact planning to get 3 center speakers and use them as LCR and book shelves for surround and rear.
Should work well unless you lay the centre speaker horizontally.
How do the HSU BS compare to Di-pole/Bi-Pole surround and rear speakers?
Not as diffuse as bipoles and much less diffuse than dipoles. If you want phantom imaging between your front speakers and side speakers, then you'll get a lot of that with monopoles (like the Hsu bookshelves), less of it with bipoles and almost none with dipoles.
 

john_k_antony

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I checked with HSU. For a 7.2 package that worth $3300, the shipping cost is $7500 over air and $1500 over sea :eek:

I think its not worth spending that much on shipping. I would rather use that money to get some other speakers in India.

I might go in for Velodyne EQ-Max series that are okay-okay music performers. And for HT I already have the following short listed

Front LCR - 3 x KEF iQ600C
Surround - 2 x KEF iQ800ds
Rear - 2 x Jamo S416 (I have these speakers already)
Sub - 1 x Velodyne EQ Max 15"

For my living room, I am planning to get Velodyne EQ Max 10" Sub to complement the Kef iQ7 FS for 70% music.

-John.
 

prasun

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Thanks 4 all the discussion as I have been benefited. In my opinion god bass means a lot to me.Good Bass is not only the low frequency coming out of the speakers but also the clarity of the low frequency which can be distinctly heard, i.e if we can hear the base guitar and the drum set simultaneously played clearly along with other low frequency notes we can perhaps come to the conclusion that my system is having good tonal quality. On the other hand we could have heard only high bass boom--boom which we even find in car stereos also. So in my opinion a good bass response with clarity of maximum low notes is the main trick in checking the the bass of a speaker and not only the boom-- boom bass coming out.
 
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