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Center Speaker Volume

Old 01-21-02, 06:00 PM
  #1  
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Center Speaker Volume

I have an Onkyo TX-SV717PRO Surround Sound Tuner / Amplifier. I recently purchased a center speaker for my system. The three front speakers are all B&W. Before this purchase I used the surround system using Phantom mode to simulate the center speaker. With the new center speaker, I have experimented with Normal and Wideband mode and I have also checked the volume using the test mode to check the volume of each channel. The problem I find is that with many movies it is difficult to hear what they are saying. I have my center channel louder than the side speakers to compensate for this but it is of limited help. Is this normal for surround? The three front speakers are suppose to be a fairly well matched system. Suggestions or comments please.
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Old 01-21-02, 06:39 PM
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Re: Center Speaker Volume

Originally posted by Frugalfart
I have an Onkyo TX-SV717PRO Surround Sound Tuner / Amplifier. I recently purchased a center speaker for my system. The three front speakers are all B&W. Before this purchase I used the surround system using Phantom mode to simulate the center speaker. With the new center speaker, I have experimented with Normal and Wideband mode and I have also checked the volume using the test mode to check the volume of each channel. The problem I find is that with many movies it is difficult to hear what they are saying. I have my center channel louder than the side speakers to compensate for this but it is of limited help. Is this normal for surround? The three front speakers are suppose to be a fairly well matched system. Suggestions or comments please.
Have you used an SPL meter to calibrate your speakers? I'm not sure what 'test mode' you checked your speakers with, but even if you have all the channels at the same settings on the receiver, their distance from the listening postion, placement, etc can cause them to still be out of balance with each other and in turn make one louder then the other when sitting at the primary listening position. Do yourself a favor and get an SPL meter from Radio Shack and use it (along with a calibration disc like Avia or Video Essentials, or even your own receivers internal test tones)to balance your speakers volume with. Once your speakers are properly balanced, you may still wish to bump up the center channel a bit if you like, and there is nothing wrong with that.
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Old 01-21-02, 07:11 PM
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You may want to check your receiver's settings. A lot of HT receivers have a "cinema EQ" mode or a mode that uses compression on the sound(i.e. every thing is at the same volume, quiet scenes are made louder and loud scenes made quieter).

I had the same problem with the center channel on my receiver which was resolved when I shut off all the cinema EQ crap.
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Old 01-22-02, 03:11 AM
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Many receivers also allow you to input the distance each speaker is from the ideal "listening position," i.e. your couch/chair. Then, as stated above, you should get an SPL meter to make sure all five speakers have the same output volume.
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Old 01-22-02, 05:34 AM
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Originally posted by palebluedot
You may want to check your receiver's settings. A lot of HT receivers have a "cinema EQ" mode or a mode that uses compression on the sound(i.e. every thing is at the same volume, quiet scenes are made louder and loud scenes made quieter).

I had the same problem with the center channel on my receiver which was resolved when I shut off all the cinema EQ crap.
The Onkyo has ReEq & as stated above, it may be activated on your receiver.
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Old 01-22-02, 06:57 AM
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Re: Center Speaker Volume

Originally posted by Frugalfart
I have an Onkyo TX-SV717PRO Surround Sound Tuner / Amplifier. I recently purchased a center speaker for my system. The three front speakers are all B&W. Before this purchase I used the surround system using Phantom mode to simulate the center speaker. With the new center speaker, I have experimented with Normal and Wideband mode and I have also checked the volume using the test mode to check the volume of each channel. The problem I find is that with many movies it is difficult to hear what they are saying. I have my center channel louder than the side speakers to compensate for this but it is of limited help. Is this normal for surround? The three front speakers are suppose to be a fairly well matched system. Suggestions or comments please.
You need to balance all three across the front. If the left and right are balanced at too high a level you may have a problem getting the center level high enough. Make sure all enhancement settings are off and that the polarity of the center is correct, ie. in phase.

Good luck.
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