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Rethm Bhaava - A listening experience

prem

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#41
Hari, below is a link to a Stereophile article by John Atkinson

Measuring Loudspeakers, Part Two Page 4 | Stereophile.com

This link talks about impulse and step response. According to John Atkinson, a great time and phase coherent speaker does not mean timbre will be good. Also impulse response is dependent on where the mic is placed and is very tweeter led.

I don't think it's simple as you put it. It doesn't harm to have a great step and impulse response but that does not guarantee great sound. In one of the three articles, John even mentions that most of the Stereophile recommended speakers do not necessarily measure well
 
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Kannan

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#42
All big companies design their crossover to do time correction, phase coherence and gain matching usually in dead rooms.
They also use matched drivers that have inaudible differences in T/S parameters.
Similarly care is also taken to design the enclosure to arrest resonance and other parameters.
it is for the company to provide these accurate parameters at the point of sales.
A person going to audition it can have a look at these graphs if he has the technical acumen to understand it and then try to interpret its accuracy with a listening session.

But no one that i know of in my audio circle really likes to listen to a speaker with a 20hz/20khz flat response.
I have friends with discerning ears who EQ to precision to suit their taste and others who hate any kind of EQ (which includes myself).

Thirdly modern music have excessive digitization and a bumped up SPL with hardly any natural timbre of instruments, compare a Jimi Hendrix guitar pluck to a modern guitar recording and one can realize what is missing or a soulful strumming by Gary Gilmour or even the layers in percussion that hardly sounds human in modern recordings.

The electronics have to struggle to match to modern recordings as compared to a much more balanced recordings of the yore.

Ultimately the aspects of response measurements has to be left to the speaker designer or a DIY enthusiast, but for the end user, there is no better tool than his ears.

Also, how many can afford to correct their rooms which is the biggest contributor to colouration, irrespective of how well the speakers are designed.

For the passionate, it is a never ending journey for the search of the elusive.

Happy listening
 

Hari Iyer

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#43
Hari, wouldn't the Scroeder response be hugely room dependent?
No i dont think so as its a filtered impulse response which study only the step. Gating will be of no use here and hence its not room dependent.

Also would two speakers with the same step response, impulse response and Schroeder response sound the same in terms of tone, timbre and harmonics?
Yes, if the system phase and filter phase are also the same.

What are these parameters like Schroeder response, step response, etc dependent on? Is it the crossover design, the speaker design, the room, the driver?
Box loading & stuffing, and more on crossover design (particularly the filter phase, SPL phase and Impedance Phase). A clean & smooth Schroeder response will indicate good integration between lows, mids and highs. Also the step response will be very good and with a clean impulse response. Impulse response will indicate if there are any energy storage in the box after the initial rising pulse.

Also I have heard a neodymium magnet Lowther and a alnico magnet Lowther. The alnico to my ears has a better tone. So how does one choose a driver for a speaker? What parameters does one look at?
I have not heard much of Alnico magnet speaker and will not be able to comment on that. This imo will form the subjective analysis of listening.

For me depending upon the loading reqd (vented, TL, OB or horn) i will look at important parameters - Vas, Qtc, Qes, Qms, BL, Fs, Mms, Le, Z, Re to name a few.
 

Hari Iyer

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#44
Measurements till a certain point to validate integrity of design. The ear is the arbitrator after that point.
No doubt on that. Any amount of objective measurement cannot replace subjective listening.

I usually never do any measurement for a week after i build my speakers the reason being i don't want my subjective listening to be influenced by what i have objectively measured. After i have completed my subjective listening for a week, i go ahead and do objective measurement.

I usually maintain an excel of all my subjective parameters and make a note of how i felt about the subjective part before any measurements.

The objective measurement is more to co-relate with my subjective findings. It should never be the other way round imo.

Why i am asking for the objective measurements for the Rethm Bhaava is because it would not be immediately possible for me to listen to them. Hence from the objective measuremetns i can atleast make some personal opinion of how they could probably sound because of my experience in doing both.
 

Hari Iyer

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#45
Hari, below is a link to a Stereophile article by John Atkinson

Measuring Loudspeakers, Part Two Page 4 | Stereophile.com

This link talks about impulse and step response. According to John Atkinson, a great time and phase coherent speaker does not mean timbre will be good. Also impulse response is dependent on where the mic is placed and is very tweeter led.

I don't think it's simple as you put it. It doesn't harm to have a great step and impulse response but that does not guarantee great sound. In one of the three articles, John even mentions that most of the Stereophile recommended speakers do not necessarily measure well
I have read this article and also a video presentation in youtube many years ago.

The industry standard for measurement is 1w/1m but can vary depending upon the size of your woofer. The step response is usually measured at the tweeter axis and the woofer typically having a larger wavelength if is in constructive interference at the mic position will show a perfect step. Some movement of the mic can again ruin the step response measured and hence you need to be consistently measure at this reference point.

At your sitting position the step would not be accurate as you dont sit at 1m and dont play at 1w.

Also in his video JA has mentioned that its very difficult to find a speaker that does not measure very well but sound too good. But if you see any full range drivers reviews, they mesusre bad but subjective claims are very different.

I am not aware of why Stereophile recommended speakers do not measure well but are still recommended. May be there is some commercial angle to it (not sure though).
 

SoundCraft

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#46
Am very glad to finally see some constructive debate on Subjective Vs Objective.

I see many here prefer to listen to a speaker or a setup to see whether they like it or not rather than sit and read pages upon pages of Waterfall,impulse,impedance and what not graphs,Although the idea of measurements are good in theory but in practical as others have stated it's always ears that one must and has to go by.

Well quite frankly I myself like to listen to a speaker rather than read pages of smoothed and or subverted curves/graphs ! But have always had some sort of problem in convincing some people to give more importance to what they listening than what they reading !

It took a Rethm and a Bhava to bring this factor to the limelight now else Am 100% sure if the same words were written or said in any other thread,Lets a DIY Speaker or a small boutique companies product thread,Thread would've by now escalated into a full blown war and most of the people would've ruled that speaker out as a mere co-incidence or a fluke or whatever.

Just cause Bhava has got rave reviews and is being represented by who's who of the Audio world in the west,We Indians like to appreciate that even more ( Also added to the fact that it retails at double the price there helps to its advantage too),Now Am not in the very least suggesting or out rightly saying anything about the Bhava's themselves ( I have not heard them yet,So for all intentions and purposes I will go with majority and say they are brilliant),But merely pointing out that if a product is sold in the west and commands a good position there it automatically becomes a hit here with or without any graphs,where as majority of DIY or a small time Indian company will never get to enjoy such fan following !

Am very very sure had it not been for that by now most people would've ruled the Bhava's out just as they have done before to countless DIY and small time manufacturers ! Again Rethm is mere example and I have nothing against it.

Am sure we can show the same respect or the very least some appreciation towards some of the serious folks who have done some wonderful work in the same field who unfortunately are not half as famous as Rethm ! I do not wish to name and make this take a different turn.

I just wanted to put my views on the subject that one should not harp about the lack of graphs and such and simply listen to a speaker and make up one's mind ! Because at the end of the day most of us spend few mins to a few hours in listening to a speaker and selecting it (may be few with brains to interpret the graphs look at it once or twice not more) ,Which becomes our primary speakers for years to come,I have heard or seen anyone sitting and reading those graphs day after day and appreciate how good they are on paper and not hear the actual speaker which was bought purely because it was superior on paper with all the right graphs !!

Am sorry if this has in anyway derailed the thread, Also I suggest that the Non Bhava posts be separated and put in the new thread and people interested can discuss stuff there and this thread be purely dedicated to the Bhava's.
 
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square_wave

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#47
@ Soundcraft,

Good points.

I have been following Indian products for more than a decade now. Making loudspeakers is not exactly rocket science anymore especially if you are only after great measurements. There are zillion such manufacturers worldwide. A lot of them are in china. Most designs are well documented and speaker units with published measurements are available off the shelf. All kinds of crossover and cabinet designs are well documented. Any aspiring speaker designer with common sense and some listening skills can make a great measuring loudspeaker these days. Marketing skills is what will sell them or not !!

However, there are very few designs out there which sound special ( Indian or western make ). The ones that never let you turn your music system off. They make a lasting impression upon your mind. When you encounter such designs, you write about them. You share the experience.

So far, I have encountered "some" such speakers from Cadence, Rethm, and some models from Acoustic portrait and Audire from India.

I have also heard about / sometimes encountered some high end diy for personal use as well. These wonderful folks have no interest in the market hence they dont make any noise about them.

However, I have not personally encountered any other speaker brand that made a lasting impression from India. It would be great if people can share their experience with other Indian brands as well.
 
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jls001

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#48
Am very glad to
Am sure we can show the same respect or the very least some appreciation towards some of the serious folks who have done some wonderful work in the same field who unfortunately are not half as famous as Rethm ! I
Yes, we must respect and appreciate serious folks.

I do not wish to name and make this take a different turn.
However, it is too tough to show respect and appreciation to said serious folks if we don't even know them!
 

ghatgepatil

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#49
Took me some time to look up the older threads. Many serious speaker manufacturers had tried their luck through this medium. From what is present in those threads, not only the many small-time 'manufacturer-sellers' sounded serious and technically sound, but full-marks to the buyers as well for giving an opportunity as well as encouraging it, by the way of providing seed-capital for such one-off ventures.
 

apk

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#50
@ Soundcraft,

Good points.

I have been following Indian products for more than a decade now.

However, there are very few designs out there which sound special ( Indian or western make ). The ones that never let you turn your music system off. They make a lasting impression upon your mind. When you encounter such designs, you write about them. You share the experience.

So far, I have encountered "some" such speakers from Cadence, Rethm, and some models from Acoustic portrait and Audire from India.

However, I have not personally encountered any other speaker brand that made a lasting impression from India. It would be great if people can share their experience with other Indian brands as well.
good perspective square_wave!

I have also been keenly following 'Indian' audio brands for a few years now - starting with my first listen of 'lyrita audio' way back in 2006 in Delhi.

I have heard select models of all the four brands that you mentioned (Cadence, Rethm, Acoustic Portrait & Audire) - and except for the Audire (IO2), I came away impressed with all of them. Even in the Audire's case, I don't think it was the speaker's fault - more the setup and matching

To the list, I would like to add a few more - though not all may be playing in the hi-end audio space. However, they still offer excellent value for money. I am only listing those brands that I have heard, and in no particular order:
- Lyrita audio: Excellent value for money valve amplifiers, horn and single driver speakers. Have heard quite a few products from this brand, and will wholeheartedly recommend their products if the sound floats your boat. Viren, the proprietor of Lyrita audio is a gem of a gentleman.
- Norge audio: Good starting point for a beginner, at costs far lower than any comparable international brand. One can set up a decent Norge based setup (speakers & amp) for less than Rs 25K. Sadly, the owner (Mr Bajaj) passed away last year, though I hear that his daughter is continuing the business
- Lithos Acoustic: Though Rajiv (the owner) focuses more on the HT segment since that caters to a larger audience, some of his speakers (the Kontra for example) are quite good for 2 channel audio.
- Enbee: This brand - though extinct now due to the death of it's owner (Mr Nakhra) a few years ago - was famous in the NCR area for high 'quality' sound. Having owned a complete system from this brand for the past 8 years, I have had no desire to change my setup - in spite of having heard quite a few combinations over the past few years. I know of a couple of people in the Delhi/NCR region who have owned Enbee setups for nearly 25 years!
Only a house shift towards the later part of this year - where this setup will not get enough space - has me looking for alternatives. And guess what? the Rethm Bhaava and Acoustic Portrait setups are a couple of serious alternatives that I am considering!

I am sure there are many more such Indian brands that provide excellent value for money - at different price points. Will be good to hear from other FMs too about such brands!

It is interesting to note that we cannot discuss any of these brands without talking about the owner/proprietor. This holds true for Cadence, Rethm and the other brands mentioned. Most of these brands are small, and are run as much from the passion of the owner as with the intention of making money. It is also easy to see the personalities of these gentlemen (no ladies in this business yet!) in their products. Having met quite a few of them, I also understand why they are not able to or are not interested in scaling up. They are mostly 'boutique' mom-and-pop setups offering a very personalized experience/products - something that is very difficult to scale up as a business.

best,
apk
 
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Kannan

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#54
Measurement mics are precise equipment and if what it measures is what one hears, then he is blessed to have absolute golden ears and will actually not need a mic for measurements.
Now that sounds like an oxymoron.
 

Hari Iyer

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#55
Ears are more sensitive in mid freq and not very sensitive in very low and very high frequency. Add to that the age factors which can reduce listening by another 10% to 15%. But measurement mic usually don't suffer from these issues and are very consistent. Maybe that could be one reason why subjective and objective are not always correlated. Subjective findings can differ from personal experience but objective is more consistent for scientific analysis.
 
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