Astonishing bass correction with a DSpeaker antimode 2.0

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newlash09

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Hi all :)

I guess bass boom and room modes have been a headache to most of us. And like most of us, being located in a apartment in a urban area where place is a premium. I didn't have the luxury of placing my speakers in their ideal position, or the permission to install large bass traps.

To add to my woes, my system resides in a small corner in my daughter's bedroom, so aesthetics were important.

Now coming to my story. I have some large pmc 20.26 speakers in a not so ideal 12x15 foot room. They have otherwise amazing bass as they are a transmission line design. However in this room, the bass used to over power everything else. I realised long time ago, that taming the bass a priority, before even considering upgrading any thing else. As all I could ever hear was only the booming bass.

So I tried measuring my room with REW, but quickly got lost in all the graphs . So decided that being dumb as Iam, I needed a automated bass correction system, with some manual intervention if required, after the automated correction.

My research led me to a lot of options, the cheapest of which seemed to be the Dspeaker antimode 2.0. This small nifty device is a Swiss army knife, with a bass correction system, an inbuilt dac, analogue to analogue bass correction, and even a preamp section to directly drive power amps. However, what really caught my eye was its ability to take a usb or optical feed and correct it in real time, and output via optical out to a dac of ones choice.

This is how Iam presently using it. I have a CCA feeding it via digital in, and the digital out goes to my dac. I had to place the supplied microphone in my listening position, and read the manual for 15 mins to under stand the process, and once I got started. It shot out 7 very long blasts of sound to measure my rooms bass response and show me a before and after graph of the room response. The after was mighty pleasing, as you can see the graph in the picture below.

Upon my first listen, I was stunned at the day and night difference it made in the sound. Gone was the bass boom, there is suddenly so much new texture in the bass, the mid range clarity has increase tremendously, and treble has become much clearer.

Just thought I'd share my experiences with it, just incase someone is looking for a automated bass correction system like me. If interested please Google it, as it has lot more inputs and outputs and lot more functionality than I can write about. But please bear in mind that this is primarily a bass correction system, that can only correct upto a Max of 500hz. Though I found best results correcting only upto 300hz. That is where I felt the corrected bass , felt connected with the mid range. Even after the correction, I have option to modify the corrected curve with my own house curve, though I didn't find a need to do it. It was so good straight out of the box. And for correction above 500hz, it only has PEQ with 14 custom points, which I didn't bother with.

Though in the long term, the Dspeaker antimode will be shifted to correct via analogue preamp in to analogue preamp out, to just feed the corrected bass signal to the power amps driving only my bass drivers in my 3 way active triamped system.

PS : Please note that dirac live 2.0 is a Better option if one wants full range correction. As it also does to the bass what the DSpeaker antimode does. Maybe I will try it in the future, if I can read around to under stand it enough. But for the time being, the Dspeaker is worth it's weight in gold. I guess I've spent more on stupid cables, which absolutely didn't do a fraction of what the Dspeaker did in my room. Iam so happy, Iam already contemplating ordering some absorption panels from a site called www.technoacoustuc.in as they have designer customisable panels, that my wife or daughter shouldn't complain about, as long as I have their pics imprinted on them :D

Edit : The red curve in the below curve is uncorrected bass response. The black curve is the corrected bass response. As you can see there is still a deep dip at 75hz that I did not wish to correct as it is room induced. I did not want to blow my tube amps pouring too much power trying to correct it. The Dspeaker gives us th is option to either try to correct these dips or not. Ideally I should either change my speaker position or my listening position to correct it. However both are sadly not possible. So once I get my class D high power amps for the bass driver, I will attempt to see if the extra power can help to some extent. Though it might also proove to be impossible.

All the best. And thanks for reading my long rant :) SmartSelect_20200729-165928_Gallery.jpg

Specifications page for better clarity :) 2020_07_30 05_33 Office Lens.jpg
 
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prateekatasniya

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Hi all :)

I guess bass boom and room modes have been a headache to most of us. And like most of us, being located in a apartment in a urban area where place is a premium. I didn't have the luxury of placing my speakers in their ideal position, or the permission to install large bass traps.

To add to my woes, my system resides in a small corner in my daughter's bedroom, so aesthetics were important.

Now coming to my story. I have some large pmc 20.26 speakers in a not so ideal 12x15 foot room. They have otherwise amazing bass as they are a transmission line design. However in this room, the bass used to over power everything else. I realised long time ago, that taming the bass a priority, before even considering upgrading any thing else. As all I could ever hear was only the booming bass.

So I tried measuring my room with REW, but quickly got lost in all the graphs . So decided that being dumb as Iam, I needed a automated bass correction system, with some manual intervention if required, after the automated correction.

My research led me to a lot of options, the cheapest of which seemed to be the Dspeaker antimode 2.0. This small nifty device is a Swiss army knife, with a bass correction system, an inbuilt dac, analogue to analogue bass correction, and even a preamp section to directly drive power amps. However, what really caught my eye was its ability to take a usb or optical feed and correct it in real time, and output via optical out to a dac of ones choice.

This is how Iam presently using it. I have a CCA feeding it via digital in, and the digital out goes to my dac. I had to place the supplied microphone in my listening position, and read the manual for 15 mins to under stand the process, and once I got started. It shot out 7 very long blasts of sound to measure my rooms bass response and show me a before and after graph of the room response. The after was mighty pleasing, as you can see the graph in the picture below.

Upon my first listen, I was stunned at the day and night difference it made in the sound. Gone was the bass boom, there is suddenly so much new texture in the bass, the mid range clarity has increase tremendously, and treble has become much clearer.

Just thought I'd share my experiences with it, just incase someone is looking for a automated bass correction system like me. If interested please Google it, as it has lot more inputs and outputs and lot more functionality than I can write about. But please bear in mind that this is primarily a bass correction system, that can only correct upto a Max of 500hz. Though I found best results correcting only upto 300hz. That is where I felt the corrected bass , felt connected with the mid range. Even after the correction, I have option to modify the corrected curve with my own house curve, though I didn't find a need to do it. It was so good straight out of the box. And for correction above 500hz, it only has PEQ with 14 custom points, which I didn't bother with.

Though in the long term, the Dspeaker antimode will be shifted to correct via analogue preamp in to analogue preamp out, to just feed the corrected bass signal to the power amps driving only my bass drivers in my 3 way active triamped system.

PS : Please note that dirac live 2.0 is a Better option if one wants full range correction. As it also does to the bass what the DSpeaker antimode does. Maybe I will try it in the future, if I can read around to under stand it enough. But for the time being, the Dspeaker is worth it's weight in gold. I guess I've spent more on stupid cables, which absolutely didn't do a fraction of what the Dspeaker did in my room. Iam so happy, Iam already contemplating ordering some absorption panels from a site called www.technoacoustuc.in as they have designer customisable panels, that my wife or daughter shouldn't complain about, as long as I have their pics imprinted on them :D

Edit : The red curve in the below curve is uncorrected bass response. The black curve is the corrected bass response. As you can see there is still a deep dip at 75hz that I did not wish to correct as it is room induced. I did not want to blow my tube amps pouring too much power trying to correct it. The Dspeaker gives us th is option to either try to correct these dips or not. Ideally I should either change my speaker position or my listening position to correct it. However both are sadly not possible. So once I get my class D high power amps for the bass driver, I will attempt to see if the extra power can help to some extent. Though it might also proove to be impossible.

All the best. And thanks for reading my long rant :) View attachment 47906
Congratulations..
Other music enthusiast will understand the important of equalization after reading this..
Also the movie enthusiast who think just a good subwoofer or just two similar subwoofer without EQ will sound heavenly.
 

newlash09

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Congratulations..
Other music enthusiast will understand the important of equalization after reading this..
Also the movie enthusiast who think just a good subwoofer or just two similar subwoofer without EQ will sound heavenly.

Very true prateek...as you might know I dipped my toes into dsp with a Dayton dsp400. Which though not automated or as advanced as the Dspeaker, still gave tangible results in its own right. That was convincing enough to take the plunge to spend on proper DSP solutions . There is no looking back now. The signal is still just as pure as it is directly from the CCA . Absolutely no downside to it. In fact after the correction, the transparency has increased by leaps and bounds.
 

Kannan

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This DSP seems quite versatile, possibly just a step below a proper DRC like the Dirac.
Happy to note you are getting more than satisfactory results
 

superczar

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. I guess I've spent more on stupid cables, which absolutely didn't do a fraction of what the Dspeaker did in my room
Guess we have another convert for the room correction camp ;)
J/K but I so completely get where you are coming from!

BTW this is the first time I have heard of this new algorithm. - would have liked to try it but unsure if It will be worth switching from ARC and XT32 custom curves.
Would love to hear any comparative notes if possible
 

newlash09

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Guess we have another convert for the room correction camp ;)
J/K but I so completely get where you are coming from!

BTW this is the first time I have heard of this new algorithm. - would have liked to try it but unsure if It will be worth switching from ARC and XT32 custom curves.
Would love to hear any comparative notes if possible

Hi...I havent compared the Dspeaker to audessey XT32. As audyssey is inbuilt into my AVR. I don't have anything with ARC built in too. So difficult to compare. But if you can check the reviews on Google, you will find that every single review ends in high praise. Probably the only system that can better it might be dirac in my opinion. However, as I mentioned earlier, I choose it only for its automated set up, which all reviews mentioned that it nailed the bass completely in every system they tried. It takes about 10 mins to complete its test sweeps, so it is just a specialist DSP only for bass, mainly designed for 2 channel systems.

I could have tried dirac, as it is cheaper than the Dspeaker. But I didn't want a full range correction, but only wanted for the bass. Hence I choose this. I still feel dirac needs some knowledge to fine tune it. The last time I tried it many years ago for full range correction , I didn't like the result. Could be I didn't know what I was really doing then :D
 

drkrack

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But please bear in mind that this is primarily a bass correction system, that can only correct upto a Max of 500hz. Though I found best results correcting only upto 300hz.
Well that's quite a Focused device on tough to treat lower frequencies & practically higher frequencies can be easily tamed by basic acoustic treatment. Another niche thinking here is, our ears a less sensitive in the lower frequencies. The attenuation of dynamics in lower frequencies (Which is one of the common argument against using digital room correction) tough to be noticed by even trained ears. Since it doesn't alter the dynamics of higher frequencies above 500 hz, even puritan crowds will be pleased. Making it noob friendly, is like an icing on the cake. XLR I/O, Digital Output, Bundled Calibration mic, all checklist ticked. All in all its a very well thought device, thanks a lot for sharing. At 700+ Euro it isn't cheap but considering the effectiveness it's a good investment. In fact I will be looking forward to getting one, if the bass trap doesn't work out for my room. I'm able to Control the Bass response via Parametric EQ /free VST plug ins on Audirvana /Windows PC.

BTW you can compare Audessey, Dirac and Dspeaker and give us a first hand experience. With so many boxes at your disposal, What is your current chain like? And how are you planning to integrate with the new speakers?
 

superczar

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Well that's quite a Focused device on tough to treat lower frequencies & practically higher frequencies can be easily tamed by basic acoustic treatment. Another niche thinking here is, our ears a less sensitive in the lower frequencies. The attenuation of dynamics in lower frequencies (Which is one of the common argument against using digital room correction) tough to be noticed by even trained ears. Since it doesn't alter the dynamics of higher frequencies above 500 hz, even puritan crowds will be pleased. Making it noob friendly, is like an icing on the cake. XLR I/O, Digital Output, Bundled Calibration mic, all checklist ticked. All in all its a very well thought device, thanks a lot for sharing. At 700+ Euro it isn't cheap but considering the effectiveness it's a good investment. In fact I will be looking forward to getting one, if the bass trap doesn't work out for my room. I'm able to Control the Bass response via Parametric EQ /free VST plug ins on Audirvana /Windows PC.

BTW you can compare Audessey, Dirac and Dspeaker and give us a first hand experience. With so many boxes at your disposal, What is your current chain like? And how are you planning to integrate with the new speakers?
Actually I too had disabled correction over 500 hz on ARC and also in audyssey (on the box that supports it) for speakers that have a reasonably flat response (while leaving full range correction on for the less capable speakers like a Boston A26)
That's why all the more intrigued to see a device that specialises in this band
 

newlash09

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Well that's quite a Focused device on tough to treat lower frequencies & practically higher frequencies can be easily tamed by basic acoustic treatment. Another niche thinking here is, our ears a less sensitive in the lower frequencies. The attenuation of dynamics in lower frequencies (Which is one of the common argument against using digital room correction) tough to be noticed by even trained ears. Since it doesn't alter the dynamics of higher frequencies above 500 hz, even puritan crowds will be pleased. Making it noob friendly, is like an icing on the cake. XLR I/O, Digital Output, Bundled Calibration mic, all checklist ticked. All in all its a very well thought device, thanks a lot for sharing. At 700+ Euro it isn't cheap but considering the effectiveness it's a good investment. In fact I will be looking forward to getting one, if the bass trap doesn't work out for my room. I'm able to Control the Bass response via Parametric EQ /free VST plug ins on Audirvana /Windows PC.

BTW you can compare Audessey, Dirac and Dspeaker and give us a first hand experience. With so many boxes at your disposal, What is your current chain like? And how are you planning to integrate with the new speakers?

Hi karthik :)

I guess I have to elaborate further why exactly I choose the Dspeaker. 700 euros is not exactly beer money. So please let me explain further the specific choices I made :

1. Audyssey - It did a lovely job in the HT. I felt full range audyssey correction killed the liveliness in the sound. However once I limited the correction to 250hz. It sounds lovely. But I wanted to do the correction in the digital domain, so that I can continue using the dac's whose sound signature I really like. So I don't know of any audyssey kit, that do It in the digital domain. They are mostly inbuilt into AVR's as far as I know. But I could be wrong here.

2. Dirac live - Very senior and experienced friends on international forums, who have been running active setups for years. Have told me reliably that dirac does a Better job, as it also does full range correction. But Iam trying to get the computer out of the audio chain completely and settle for a streamer. So that meant to do dirac live correction in digital realm , I would be shelling out close to the same money. And Iam not exactly a fan of full range correction. It did improve sound stage and more precise imaging. But the hard-core liveliness that I need for my electro punk and EDM went missing. So I wanted to correct only the bass, and use absorption at first reflection points where possible. And I wanted a fully automated setup, that can nail the bass completely , everytime with out any guess work. That is where the 700 euros come in. This is a custom software designed only to do bass.

3. Dspeaker- In my actual use. Once I manage to haul over the new 3 way speakers. They will be active triamped. So the Dspeaker will come after the active crossover, and will only correct the bass via analogue in / analogue out to feed the bass amps that will only connect to the bass drivers. This is a plug and forget it kind of thing. So this suited my requirement.

Now I also want to point out why it might not be for every one :

1. Limited sampling rates- it won't accept any thing beyond 44.1 / 48 Hz via usb . And won't accept anything beyond 24/96 via toslink spdif. So for the hires lovers, that might be a bummer. Lets forget DSD altogether.

2. No coaxial inputs, so for folks not using a pc. They will have to use their streamers via optical only at a reduced sample rate of 88.2 or 96 khz.

3. So for folks who want to still use higher sampling rates , they will have to use it after their dac's. And even though ADC/ DAC conversion has moved leaps and bounds and is completely transparent in today's world. It is still a very hard sell for the conservative hobbyist.

However, for my specific requirement it is a perfect fit. So fondly hope everyone considers the above points before emptying their wallets :D
 
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newlash09

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Actually I too had disabled correction over 500 hz on ARC and also in audyssey (on the box that supports it) for speakers that have a reasonably flat response (while leaving full range correction on for the less capable speakers like a Boston A26)
That's why all the more intrigued to see a device that specialises in this band

Hi superczar :)

Fondly hope I answered your query in my elaborate reply above. If one is using any computer of sorts as a streamer , then dirac is a cheaper fix. Despite having 2 pcs and a elaborate roon chain with LPSU, and dedicated roon end point, I find the chain unnecessarily too long and too complex to get some tunes playing. Thus Iam junking every thing. And will settle for a simple digital streamer.

The CCA feeding only 44 khz samples from gaana, feeding the Dspeaker, and then feeding the corrected signal to my dac. Thrashed, let's say mopped the floor with my roon digital chain playing tidal. And the roon digital chain costs more rhan twice the dspeaker alone. And lets forget the superior CD quality of tidal too. The difference is so enormous, that I wouldn't bother about hires or DSD from now on.

But I will still not be putting the Dspeaker ahead of the dac for the simple reason that I have multiple digital sources. So I need it to go only after the preamp. If I had only one single digital source, then game over. I've found my cure :)

The only issue I with dirac live, is that it can only correct the digital stream that you play from your pc. It could be ripped tracks from your hdd or streamed music. It can't correct your TT rig or your CD player or your tuner or cassette deck. In the configuration, that I plan to use it in. I can still use all the above sources , and still have the bass correction that made a night and day difference. That is why this specialist device still has a place in the market, despite dirac still being there.
 

newlash09

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So my rant continues as I keep exploring its other capabilities :D

Iam presently trying it out as DSP cum DAC into my passive preamp. And it is sounding really great. Anyone coming from a SS DAC will have absolutely nothing to complain about. All the details and macro details Iam normally used to are all there in spades. It really is silly value for money for 700 euros. It sounds exactly like the chord2qute dac I used have once. Same sense of wicked rhythm, same pace, stunning bass , and complete neutral sounding. Absolutely no colouration of any kind.

But coming from a tube dac back ground, I would wish it had better tonal colour ( read sweet tube distortion ) . And a little more weight to the vocals and strings. Apart from that there is absolutely no need to complain. Okay I will stop now, lest I start looking like dspeaker's paid Indian ambassador :D
 

Nikhil

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Great stuff newlash09! Thanks for sharing.

My experience has also been to leave the mids and HF alone and focus on taming the LF.
Most room issues are primarily in the LF region. This looks like a great solution for that.



.
 

drkrack

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Have told me reliably that dirac does a Better job, as it also does full range correction. But Iam trying to get the computer out of the audio chain completely and settle for a streamer.
Dirac live Comes with 2 versions when its bundled as a part of hardware with Various Manfacturers. Dirac LE ( Limited Edition probably) and Dirac Live Full which is mostly a 99 USD upgrade.
Dirac Live LE is limited to Frequencies below 500hz only and it is mostly automatic setup like Dspeaker. If You want a full spectrum correction you need to buy 99USD Dirac full version upgrade. Lots of devices have been added to the Dirac LE group, so you aren't compelled to use PC for enjoying the Dirac advantage. One of the devices which I suggested you earlier was NAD c658 . Its a DAC, streamer, Preamp with Room Correction (in the form of Dirac Live LE), 2 subwoofer out. I was thinking of getting this one, once I'm out of the black magic spells of vintage tubes ;) .

We all know the limitations of Audessey but its a necessary evil in the HT side, though we often have to tweak it further to suit our preferences. Most importantly it sets the delays and tonality correction more efficiently when different types of speakers are used in multichannel scenario. It doesn't help a great deal for stereo listening via AVR in my experience.

Most of the Hyderabad FMs are quite eager to listen to your new speakers and triamp setup, hadn't the Covid19 scare been there, we could have planned it easily. By adding a Dspeaker correction after active crossover it'll be most sophisticated correction for LF, where many of us will be happy with separate volume control for LF as offered by active crossover. I'd love to hear that ASAP.
So as I understand, The Chain will be
CCA/Other Streamers You have/ AMR777 DAC - Passive Pre - Active XO - Dspeaker for LF & 3set of amplification - Speaker drivers. Correct me if I'm wrong here.
 

newlash09

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Dirac live Comes with 2 versions when its bundled as a part of hardware with Various Manfacturers. Dirac LE ( Limited Edition probably) and Dirac Live Full which is mostly a 99 USD upgrade.
Dirac Live LE is limited to Frequencies below 500hz only and it is mostly automatic setup like Dspeaker. If You want a full spectrum correction you need to buy 99USD Dirac full version upgrade. Lots of devices have been added to the Dirac LE group, so you aren't compelled to use PC for enjoying the Dirac advantage. One of the devices which I suggested you earlier was NAD c658 . Its a DAC, streamer, Preamp with Room Correction (in the form of Dirac Live LE), 2 subwoofer out. I was thinking of getting this one, once I'm out of the black magic spells of vintage tubes ;) .

We all know the limitations of Audessey but its a necessary evil in the HT side, though we often have to tweak it further to suit our preferences. Most importantly it sets the delays and tonality correction more efficiently when different types of speakers are used in multichannel scenario. It doesn't help a great deal for stereo listening via AVR in my experience.

Most of the Hyderabad FMs are quite eager to listen to your new speakers and triamp setup, hadn't the Covid19 scare been there, we could have planned it easily. By adding a Dspeaker correction after active crossover it'll be most sophisticated correction for LF, where many of us will be happy with separate volume control for LF as offered by active crossover. I'd love to hear that ASAP.
So as I understand, The Chain will be
CCA/Other Streamers You have/ AMR777 DAC - Passive Pre - Active XO - Dspeaker for LF & 3set of amplification - Speaker drivers. Correct me if I'm wrong here.

Haha..thanks karthik.....even Iam waiting for the situation to improve to start building the system. You've nailed the setup configuration there. Thought it would be too complex for most people to under stand the chain. But you are an exception as always :D

Great stuff newlash09! Thanks for sharing.

My experience has also been to leave the midst and HF well alone and focus on taming the LF. Most room issues are primarily in the LF region. This looks like a great solution for that.

Thanks nikhil :)

I really didn't know where I went wrong in both my previous attempts at full spectrum correction. There are others who have nailed it completely. But like a lot of us, even I've decided to go the passive room treatment method for MF and HF. Thanks
 
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drkrack

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Thought it would be too complex for most people to under stand the chain. But you are an exception as always
This patronizing won't work, you'll still have to go through lots of discussion and scrutiny in our group for this evidently complicated signal chain instead of Keep it Simple approach which we're used to.
I admire your patience and relentless pursuit for excellence against all odds, and looking forward to seeing the results as soon as possible.
 
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prem

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Newlash09, it’s fascinating to read how people take such different approaches but as they say, all roads lead to Rome :)
 
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