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What is the purpose of bass and treble controls in Stereo amplifier.

kvandhi

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#1
What is the purpose of bass and treble controls in Stereo amplifier.
Previously i was using Class D amplifier(Scansonic ) which has no tone controls. Now i have upgraded to Marantz 5005 which has both controls.

How the scansonic adjust the bass and treble control automatically or Is it flat and output the original recordings from the source.

In the marantz amp :- If i keep the both bass and treble to flat , does it mean the sound is original from source.

Just curious to know, why these bass and treble control required in Amplifier when i am expecting the original recording (at least near to that) of music without any adjustments.
Kindly share your thoughts.
 
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ratheesh

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#2
It's just for optimizing the content for your personal preference or to overcome the shortages in the speaker. You can play around to see what suits you. If you think flat suits you then it is. Sometimes speakers might need some push from the amp to bring out it's potential.
 

efernand1

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#3
What is the purpose of bass and treble controls in Stereo amplifier.
Previously i was using Class D amplifier(Scansonic ) which has no tone controls. Now i have upgraded to Marantz 5005 which has both controls.

How the scansonic adjust the bass and treble control automatically or Is it flat and output the original recordings from the source.

In the marantz amp :- If i keep the both bass and treble to flat , does it mean the sound is original from source.

Just curious to know, why these bass and treble control required in Amplifier when i am expecting the original recording (at least near to that) of music without any adjustments.
Kindly share your thoughts.

The scansonic does not automatically adjust itself based on source content to give good clear output.

The Bass + Treble helps to compensate the loss in output quality ....again depends on the sources being used for playback.....boost treble or bass....high end stereo amps would have Bass Mid and Treble....(further refinement)

If you recall the old setups (Cassette days), we used to have amps + Equalizers to get the best optimized sound from our speakers.
 

Mi_10

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#4
What is the purpose of bass and treble controls in Stereo amplifier.
Previously i was using Class D amplifier(Scansonic ) which has no tone controls. Now i have upgraded to Marantz 5005 which has both controls.

How the scansonic adjust the bass and treble control automatically or Is it flat and output the original recordings from the source.

In the marantz amp :- If i keep the both bass and treble to flat , does it mean the sound is original from source.

Just curious to know, why these bass and treble control required in Amplifier when i am expecting the original recording (at least near to that) of music without any adjustments.
Kindly share your thoughts.
Bass and Tone controls are nothing by simplified form of preset equalizers. Just like EQ, they have a preset freq and a bandwidth (usually quite wide) that allows for tweaking the Bass region (40-150 Hz) or the Treble region (3 - 8 KHz) . again these numbers are just a sample, it will depend amplifier to amplifier !

Leaving them untouched doesn't guarantee a flat output, since flat output has many other parameters including in room acoustics. Original or authentic to the source has various levels, depends on which level you want to play. If you are paranoid with loads of cash, then it might need more than the Marantz and the place where it is being housed might need a major revmap too.
 

Mi_10

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#5
.

Just curious to know, why these bass and treble control required in Amplifier when i am expecting the original recording (at least near to that) of music without any adjustments.
Kindly share your thoughts.
Essentially, a pure play 'Amplifier' sticks to its job for just amplifying the input signal. However, these days they term them as 'integrated Amplifier' which usually include a Preamp stage, a power amp stage and some tone circuits in a bid to give more features for the end users (in a one box package). Purpose as such is, these tone and bass controls help the user to customize the sound to his liking or adjust for any frequency dips one is experiencing because of the ambiance.
 

tuff

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#7
It's like using straight mode in avr's. All preamplifiers have some EQ happening even if they don't have bass/ treble controls. Recently I bought schitt sys passive volume controller and plugged it into my crown XLS power amplifier. The system sounded dull and uninspiring. The Peachtree has a great preamp section, which makes the system sound good. So a good power amplifier should reflect the changes in the front end, which seems is what the crown is doing.
In an integrated amplifier, having tone control is tweaking the preamp section, as the power amplifiers primary job is to simply amplify the incoming signal, and let the preamplifier be in charge of the sound signature.
 

jls001

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#8
One fine use of the tone control knobs is to tame the sound against room issues. Many rooms have too much bass. Turn bass knob down and more often than not you can arrive at a balanced sound in the room. You can soundly ignore what audio purists may say about avoiding tone controls. It is better to equalise the sound to get acceptable sound in the room than blindly follow an audiophile dogma and have bad sound in the room. Please remember that studio engineers use tons of EQ-ing to arrive at the sound you hear in the CD. If it's essential for a pro, it shouldn't be sneered at by the home audio enthusiasts. This of course does not take away the fact that not all tone controls are created equal. Like in all things home audio, some implementations are simply better than others.
 

kvandhi

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#9
I do not think there is common one time setting of Tone control in amplifier for all genres of music in our playlist( for instance using Foobar ). At the same time, totally ignoring tone control also not good decision. Confusion ! I am more happier with old amp Scansonic , because there is only one button (on/off/volume). :)
Interested to know, how you guys are handling tone control for your playlist.
 

Kannan

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#10
@kvandhi
Some use tone controls to compensate for room response combined with the character of the speaker to fine tune to their taste. This is more or less a one time setting.
However the other common use is to compensate for varying recording qualities which can be quite cumbersome if you have lots of poor recordings.

In the digital domain another popular tool used are DRC plugins. Most music players like foobar and JRiver support them. This is a kind of digital processing tool and once the room responses etc are measures, it gets digitally applied to each song before it is sent to the DAC.
You can even define house curves and other parameters within the DRC.
The free version is a very complex tool, but there a number of paid iterations with minimal user intervention.
The same is also available for all platforms (windows, mac, linux, android and IOS)
 
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hifitoaster

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#15
The purpose of Bass treble or eq orginally was to compensate the colouration due to speaker itself and boost / dip happening due to the placement in your room. It should only be used if you find something missing or something overpowering at your listening spot .
 

Hari Iyer

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#16
If your amp does not have tone control then it's better if your speakers are neutral or musical. Otherwise you will have a tough time balancing the soundstage to your room.
 

drkrack

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#17
The Tone Control are provided to mitigate the effects of undue emphasis or dampening of certain frequencies throughout the audio reproduction chain. The Coloration may be anywhere from Source file, to amp, or Cables or speakers or Room Or Listener preferences itself ; Tone Controls are designed to provide the intended flavor of the Sound which the listener prefers.

Unfortunately poorly implemented ones degrade the SQ to a certain extent.
Its better to have tone controls but it's always better to have a Defeat /Source direct /bypass switch whenever an Amp Provides the Tone Control Options.
 

celester340

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#18
Kvandhi you are in the right direction to be an audiophile there should be no bass or trebale control.
With this logic, anyone who has an amplifier with tone controls is going in the opposite direction of being an audiophile?

With the controls you are altering the recordings.
Maybe u should for sometime just read a little bit more on the forum and what other more experienced and knowledgeable members are trying to say. And then start making such bold statements.
 

marsilians

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#19
All power amplifiers dont have any controls.
if one goes back to fundamentals, in the most basic sense, power amp's main role is to amplify an input signal. Given this, there is no need for any filters such as tone or mids or bass controls. A pre-amp main role, in a basic sense again, is to prepare an incoming signal either by amplifying it or processing it (such as in a receiver) while not degrading the signal to noise ratio. To be able to process the signals in such a way, tone and bass controls are essential.

In addition, since a majority of music and HT setups are never ideal, controls provide an option to tackle speaker placement issues, room characteristics, etc. Parasound P7, Vincent hybrid integrated amps, are some examples of equipment with well implemented contols.
 
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#20
@kvandhi
Some use tone controls to compensate for room response combined with the character of the speaker to fine tune to their taste. This is more or less a one time setting.
However the other common use is to compensate for varying recording qualities which can be quite cumbersome if you have lots of poor recordings.

In the digital domain another popular tool used are DRC plugins. Most music players like foobar and JRiver support them. This is a kind of digital processing tool and once the room responses etc are measures, it gets digitally applied to each song before it is sent to the DAC.
You can even define house curves and other parameters within the DRC.
The free version is a very complex tool, but there a number of paid iterations with minimal user intervention.
The same is also available for all platforms (windows, mac, linux, android and IOS)
Truly agree, i feel the need for tonal controls with old and poor quality recordings, some of the 80's and 90's CD collection which i have, are recorded in a very poor fashion(mostly attributed to recording equipment available at that period of time), the highs tend to be screechy, and i feel the need of tonal controls to be present. This helps to alter the sound signature which makes those songs more pleasing to listen to.
 
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