Speaker impedance is sometimes shown as a complicated subject and thus is either misunderstood or ignored. A fundamental idea of speaker impedance is not hard, and it is beneficial when linking multiple speakers to an amplifier. This post will provide you with a simple understanding of speaker impedance and why does it matter.

Speaker Impedance Explained

The best way to explain speaker impedance should be to state that it’s the resistance a speaker provides to the voltage and current being used on it. In other words, your loudspeaker is actually an extensive resister-a great one. Furthermore, speaker impedance is sometimes labeled as a speaker’s resistance.

The tough portion is to understand that this is not a certain thing. Your speaker impedance shifts according to the frequency of the signal provided to it. As music includes a number of concurrent frequencies, everything you deal with is a thing identified as “nominal” impedance. That is basically the minimum level the speaker will drop down to in resistance to the load put on at any provided frequency located in its functioning range.

But specifications lie…and which means most of your speakers being tweaked to “approximately” fit in the 4-ohms to 6-ohms range. Although we believe that you do not commonly have any problems with that fact, there are a few things you can do to prevent any expected issues.

 

Why does the speaker impedance matter?

Mentioned previously, speaker impedance decides the current derived from the amplifier. Keep in mind impedance impedes (or restricts) the current, hence lower the impedance, the more current can pass. An increased current needs the amp to generate more power. Another method of looking at it is to say the reduced the impedance, the greater the load on the amplifier (and the harder it needs to work).

Many tower and bookshelf speakers are graded either 6 or 8 ohms. All the specific speaker impedance score that’s 4 ohms is usually gonna be a top quality, audiophile device that needs an amplifier which will seriously produce a bit of power. This is not a “snobby” thing. The loudspeaker vendor probably made a 4-ohm speaker as they understand what sort of amplifier will be needed (or often implemented with it) to achieve the required sound. Having a lesser impedance range, this also leads to different design options and choices.

For most of us, a 6-8 ohm speaker will probably be standard. Those kinds of speakers are very suitable to fit with the types of many AV receivers. This is not to be accepted as a blanket saying obviously, even more, adopts a loudspeaker as opposed to its impedance score. Yet, you will find indications you should know about when looking to figure out amplifiers and impedance ratings.

Conclusion

What you need to keep in mind is this: match your speakers to your amp or receiver so that you are not pushing the amplifier to work overtime simply to stuff your room with sound. Engineers and Product managers take tremendous care in the construction and design of those audio products. The best option is to stay inside the design guidelines. In terms of 4-ohm speakers and AV receivers, even so, only the most basic products should give you issues. In case you have a basic receiver you might find that you cannot receive all the volume you may need (same applies to have a big room). If, on the other hand, you have a mid-fi or advanced amplifier or AV receiver there’s no reason to baby your system. 4-ohm speakers definitely will work great in many instances.


You can ask any person if he actually want a subwoofer — audiophile enthusiasts, industry professionals, or movie lovers — the reply is probably yes. Still is this honestly correct? Let us try to answer this concern as genuinely and neutral as possible.

The cause that a lot of people want a subwoofer is because of the idea that a regular surround system is not going to be suitable for generating low frequencies noticed in movies or music. It is simply impossible. To produce the very low frequencies that match bass, heavy R&B music or those blockbuster movies with special effects , you will require a speaker driver a minimum of 8” in diameter, ideally larger. This is not promotion, it’s physics. To obtain precise low frequencies using a tower speaker you will have to look for top-quality solutions.

If you count yourself an audiophile and wish more depth than two channel stereo has to provide, then you will probably need a subwoofer. In other words, you are not gaining it all your music has to provide without having a sub. This is specifically true with bass heavy music.

If you are a cinephile, the same applies. Action movies with heavy explosions are likely to lean very much on low frequency reproduction using the subwoofer. Without one, you are not enjoying the movie in the way in which it was supposed.

Although imagine if you are none of these. What if you love movies, but just watch dramas? Let’s say you love music, but nothing with pounding bass?

If your aim is to stay away from a subwoofer, then you will need speakers with great woofers. Tower speakers normally have more drivers, and the point that the cabinets are bigger, implies more airflow, and consequently more bass. If you won’t need those extra low frequencies accomplished via subwoofers, towers can still render clean bass. Alone, bookshelf speakers are usually about to have difficulty reproducing bass. Despite the fact that you do not listen to so much material with significant bass, a subwoofer will always be a huge advantage if your primary speakers are smaller.

Nowadays, it is possible to have wireless subwoofers, in-wall subwoofers, and other versions that make working with the big black box convenient. We definitely suggest heading one of those paths instead of going without. Then again, if you are going without, make sure to do your research and buy yourself tower speakers that can actually pack a punch.


Many music and film fans love to experience the clearest sounds. However, installing a 5.1 home theatre speaker set can be quite complicated even for an audiophile. 5.1-channel audio consists of five discrete, full range main channels (Left, Centre, Right, Left Surround, and Right Surround) plus an optional LowFrequency Effects (LFE) channel, often called “subwoofer channel”. This article will look into how to install a great surround sound system to make the listeners feel as through they are in the middle of the action.

Choosing the Room

Firstly you need to consider what the room is going to be used for. If this is a family room where kids play then you might want speakers mounted to the wall that are out of the way. If you plan to put speakers in a room that is used for activities other than watching TV, then you’d probably consider keeping the speakers small.  On the other hand, if this is a dedicated theatre room, larger floorstanding speakers aren’t likely to pose a hazard to pets or kids.

Identifying the listening area

The layout of the room and how the positions of the speakers will affect sound need to be considered. A clear path between the listener and the speakers need to be created, e.g. if the speaker can not be seen by the listener, sound is being blocked. Speakers should not be hidden behind furniture or put too far from the TV.

The room size and the listening/viewing distance are the two criteria that drive any successful surround sound environment.

The first known factor when designing a new home theatre in the space where the home theatre will be. Product selection is often based upon the cubic volume of the listening environment.

Another factor to consider is the size of the screen and the distance from the screen to the centre of the seating area. Normally, moving to larger models in the manufacturers product line increases the possible distance from the loudspeaker to the listening area as the dispersion characteristics are optimised for longer listening distances. There are many manufacturers on the market producing different sized models and there is a loudspeaker to fit into any sized environment.

Practical Installation Considerations

Main Loudspeaker Positioning

Ideal loudspeaker placement is often compromised when working within the client’s wishes and room design restrictions. Often sound quality is third on the list after the room aesthetics and video requirements. However, with some attention to detail, it can be close rather than a distant third. A few of the more important recommendations found in standard are presented and discussed below:

1. Angles

  • Standard: Left and right are positioned 30º from the centre and the rears are positioned 110º ± 10º from the centre. The loudspeakers should then be angled so that they point towards the optimum listening position.
  • In practice: These angles are generally not respected in Home Theatres. The centre loudspeaker is usually in the correct place but the left and right loudspeakers are positioned according to the size of the screen (a practice inherited from the movie theatre ‘standards’). Multiple loudspeakers are used for the rear channels to increase coverage in the listening area and are positioned wherever is most convenient on the side and/or rear walls.

2. Distance

  • Standard: All loudspeakers should be equidistant from the “sweet spot.”
  • In practice: It is often difficult to place the left, centre and right loudspeakers equidistant front the “sweet spot” as the loudspeaker enclosures are normally positioned in the same plane, i.e. against a wall or in some cabinetry. The resulting timing differences are then electronically compensated for, using the processor. Unfortunately, this results in a compromise that is rarely referred to in most literature. The polar pattern of the loudspeaker is different at different listening distances and this cannot be compensated for in a simple digital delay.

3. Height

  • Standard: The front loudspeakers should ideally be placed at a height approximately equal to that of the listener’s ears (1.2 m / 4 ft from the floor). If the loudspeakers are to be placed higher or lower than the listeners’ ears, the loudspeakers should be angled vertically to point towards the listening position.
  • In practice: It is generally recommended for the speakers to be positioned at least 1.2 m / 4 ft off the floor so the floor reflection does not dominate the frequency response. If the loudspeaker is placed close to the floor, for example, below a screen, two things happen: a deep and wide notch occurs in the bass (typically around 100-200 Hz) and the loudspeaker is loaded which increases the entire bass output. Subjectively, the result is a muddy but thin sounding bass and midrange masking which makes speech less intelligible. Conversely, be careful that the ceiling reflection does not start to dominate instead.

Subwoofer Positioning

Below are some recommendations for subwoofer positioning:

  • Close enough to the front wall and slightly offset from the middle of the room, 30 cm / 1 ft, to avoid the first pressure minima position.
  • In a corner, close to both front and side walls. This position will maximise the system efficiency due to the corner loading. A second subwoofer in the opposite corner may be required to avoid localising a single subwoofer.

These locations are contrary to the common belief that the best position for the subwoofer is in the front, on the floor and in the middle of the room, equidistant from the side walls. This location can be a serious compromise since the subwoofer sits in the pressure minimum of the lateral standing wave. Also, it has to be remembered that:

  • Adjustment of the gain (Input Sensitivity) and frequency response (Bass Roll-off) of the subwoofer is necessary to balance the subwoofer to the main loudspeakers.
  • The subwoofer can also be flush mounted into the front wall or some cabinetry but the discussion of the position of the source relative to the room remains valid.
  • The phase adjustment on the subwoofer at the crossover frequency is important to achieve a flat frequency response in the crossover region.

Centre Speaker Positioning

The centre channel will reproduce almost all of the dialogue. Ideally, the centre loudspeaker should be mounted above the screen as this will reduce the effects of the floor reflection as the reflection distance and angle are both increased. Although this is not always possible, the centre speaker should be lined up with the midpoint and aimed directly towards you for the best sound.

Adjusting the listening space

Room acoustics is an area of home theatre is often overlooked. It is important and challenging but with some consideration, good sound can be the result. In fact, some improvements can be made quite easily.

Wall surfaces, ceilings and floors can be reflective, diffusive or absorptive. Combinations of these are often used. Hard surfaces such as glass, concrete, dry wall or MDF reflect the sound. Soft materials such as carpets and curtains absorb the sound. The thicker the layer is, better is the absorption. Irregular surfaces such as diffusers or bookshelves diffuse and spread the sound around, as well as two parallel surfaces in a room sustain the sound energy bouncing back and forth causing flutter echo, standing waves or cancellation dips. Optimal acoustic situation is when you receive a natural direct sound from the speakers to your listening position (a.k.a. sweet spot) without the room reflections colouring the sound and the stereo imaging.

If the room is heavily damped (thick carpeting, heavy curtains and lots of upholstered furniture) there will be a loss of energy in the midrange frequencies. On the positive side, it should be remembered that an absorptive room usually results in more accurate imaging. If there is any doubt in the choice between two models based on the listening distance or room volume then select the larger model.

Conversely, if the room is minimally furnished and has many hard surfaces with little absorption (although that would be a rarity in a dedicated home theatre) then it may be possible to step down a model in the range. Such a room will tend to be highly reflective and support the loudspeakers’ output, so some adjustment of the room response controls will be necessary.

Conclusion

After following the steps above, even if you were not able to place your speakers in their ideal locations due to room and furniture constraints, you can rest easy knowing that your system can still sound great. Don’t worry about perfection, many home theatre receivers offer automatic speaker calibration that takes care of things for you.

We do not have any particular speaker brand recommendation, although it is best to use “voice-matched” speakers from the same brand and the same family or series within the brand. For a 5.1 setup it’s best to go for accurate speakers with a flat frequency response to avoid having any kind of ‘signature’ sound.

Give us a call if you have any questions and we will be able to guide you through the details of installation.

 

 

 

 

 

reference: install guide by Genelec


Most people carry a smart phone or tablet that contains all of their music and video. Headphones are one of the most essential tools to have with you at all times. But chances are that your headphones are worn out and falling apart. It may be time to replace those worn headphones for a new headphone upgrade.

Here are a few signs that it’s time to toss out those old ones and buy an amazing set that will bring your music to life.

1. You’re using white earbuds.

If you’re using white earbuds instead of actual headphones, it’s time to toss them out and buy quality earbuds or real headphones.

2. Your headphones distort at high volumes.

There’s no point in using headphones if they’re going to distort at low or high levels. While you shouldn’t be listening to music at such high levels that they hurt your ears, you do still want headphones that actually work at those higher levels. If your headphones sound increasingly worse the more you crank up the volume, it’s time to replace them.

3. They’re not fitting right.

Whether you have an in-ear or on-ear style, if they’re always falling out, or sliding off your head, chances are they aren’t the right size for you. Even if they sound wonderful, you’re not getting your full music listening enjoyment out of them. A closer and better fit means you’ll truly enjoy that better bass response.

4. They’re connected by a wire.

The older style of headphones have a wire that connects to your stereo, TV, or device. While this is still a cool way to listen to audio, there are wireless headphones available that can take that additional aggravation away. Now you’ll never have to untangle cords again.

5. You use your headphones when working out.

Most headphones haven’t been designed for working out. They’ll often fall out at the least opportune time. You also need a sports headphone that won’t short out from sweat.

6. They hurt your ears.

Noise cancelling headphones are guilty for this issue. If you’ve ever been on a long flight and your ears have started to hurt, you can find a more comfortable pair of earbuds or an over-the-ear set of headphones. You can still block out the noise but keep your ears from getting squished and sore.

7. Your ear buds just don’t fit right.

Everyone has different sizes of ears. The Klipsch in-ear headphones utilize a patented contour ear gel material that has been anatomically designed to fit inside our human ear canals. They feature a soft oval silicon tip that actually reduces ear fatigue, yet still manages a good noise isolation and excellent bass response.

Now that you’re ready to toss your old headphones, here are a few ideas on what to replace them with. You have your choice of Bluetooth or wired headphones, with the quality that Klipsch is famous for.

 

KLIPSCH R6 II IN-EAR HEADPHONES:

These ear buds not only look fantastic but they utilize the same advanced acoustic engineering and industrial design that the Reference home theatre speakers have. Now you have great performance, voice, and design with the Klipsch Reference R6 in-ear monitors.

Buy Klipsch R6 II

 

KLIPSCH REFERENCE X12I IN-EAR HEADPHONES:

The X12i has won awards. They have a milled aluminum chassis that has a less than 6mm diameter. These wired earbuds have to be the smallest ones, and the best sounding ones in the world. They’ve been made with aluminum to be durable and extremely lightweight.

Buy Klipsch X12i

 

KLIPSCH REFERENCE ON-EAR II HEADPHONES:

One of the first products that Paul W. Klipsch designed was the headphones. The Reference On-Ear II headphones have been designed to be comfortable but still create the perfect seal so you can have extended listening enjoyment.

Buy Klipsch Reference On-Ear II

 

KLIPSCH AS-5i ALL SPORT IN-EAR HEADPHONES:

The Klipsch AS-5i headphones are lightweight, and moisture and sweat resistant for all of your outdoor or gym activities. They have a secure design that stays put on your head. There is also a customizable flex wire so you can position and fit them exactly the way you want.

Buy Klipsch AS-5i

 

KLIPSCH X12 NECKBAND HEADPHONES:

Klipsh has gone one step beyond the usual plastic headphones. The X12 Neckband headphones have been designed from scratch, with premium materials, real copper accents, and unsurpassed acoustic technology. Combined, you’ll have a superior listening experience. These in-ear monitors are durable, comfortable, and possess incomparable audio-grade sound.

Buy Klipsch X12 Neckband

 

KLIPSCH R6 NECKBAND HEADPHONES:

The Klipsch R6 Neckband headphones have incorporated a high-end neckband design with wireless technology. They have a strong electroplated exoskeleton covered with genuine leather. These headphones are strong and durable, and have been handcrafted with copper accent stitching and a black chrome finish. They ensure you’re provided with a great listening experience.

Buy Klipsch R6 Neckband

 

KLIPSCH REFERENCE OVER-EAR BLUETOOTH HEADPHONES:

These Klipsch Reference Over-Ear Bluetooth headphones contain the balanced driver technology that is essential in decreasing distortion in over-ear headphones. They have Bluetooth high streaming audio and contain the cVc® microphone. Your premium headphones will give you a comfortable and easy-to-use way to enjoy music without that high price tag.

Buy Klipsch Reference Over-Ear BT


Audio-Technica ATH-DSR9BT Headphones Review

By 2016, the Bluetooth market reached a turning point. Apple completely reworked their iPhone 7 smartphone, getting rid of the old 3.5mm earphone jack, and adopting Bluetooth technology. This led to triggering a completely new trend in the smart phone market. Wireless headphones are useful for mobility without having to worry about wires getting tangled around your possessions or body. And having no headphone jack also protects the smartphone interior from water and dust, as it can no longer get inside through the earphone jack. The momentum for Bluetooth technology has just began.

Bluetooth headphones don’t dominate the mainstream market due to the sound quality of the original wired version. Most sound labs still develop wired headphones first, then prepare the Bluetooth version as a variation. There can be challenges in transmitting sound over a limited bandwidth, but Audio-Technica has designed a set of Bluetooth headphones that addresses this issue. Perhaps other headphone manufactures will adopt this new tech, and all wireless headphones will have it in the future.

ATH-DSR9BT-GREY

ATH-DSR9BT Bluetooth Headphones

The Audio-Technica ATH-DSR9BT headphones are Bluetooth-based, and may just be the leading Bluetooth headphones on the market today due to embracing high-tech. These headphone utilise “Pure Digital Drive” and a “φ 45 mm” True Motion “D / A Driver” and the new codec “aptX HD”.

Full Digital Transmission of Bluetooth to the Last Stage

The ATH-DSR9BT headphones have been designed with a different signal transmission system than your usual Bluetooth headphones. The signals are kept to digital input before the diaphragm, avoiding being converted to an analog signal. This is a new technology called pure digital drive.


In  most Bluetooth audio devices, the encoded audio signal from a PC or smartphone device is converted and must be decoded, then is amplified by the amplifier when that signal is received through headphones. The sound is transmitted to the loudspeaker or driver unit where it then becomes sound.

But in the ATH-DSR9BT headphones, a digital signal is directly transmitted to a digital audio processor, called a Dnote, as well as to the voice coil which drives the diaphragm.

Headphones face challenges in sound quality due to the DA conversion which can cause the alteration of the signal, resulting in sound quality deterioration. But with the Pure Digital Drive, the sound always remains digital.

Advanced Tech of the ATH-DSR9BT

Another great new tech feature of these headphones is called “φ 45 mm” True Motion “D / A Driver”. This is positioned at the final stage of the Pure Digital Drive. Waveform data is generated by Dnote based on the density of the audio signal, and is transmitted to the diaphragm by a high-quality 7N-OFC bobbin that winds through a short voice coil of a newly developed  4-core stranded structure.

On one side, a pure iron integral type yoke that efficiently transmits magnetic energy to maximise driving force. The headphones have also adopted a DLC coating that enhances the rigidity of the diaphragm and secures high-frequency characteristics. These features have also been adopted in another set of headphones in the Audio-Technica line called ATH-A 2000 Z, which are the premium model in the Art Monitor Series called Things.

Now that this new Bluetooth headphone technology is out, it’s important to utilise it in the making of future Bluetooth headphones.

Fast Responsive Times to the Latest Audio Codec aptX HD

The amount of information handled by the sampling frequency 48 kHz / quantisation bit number 24 bits greatly exceeds 48 kHz / 16 bit of the existing codec such as in the AAC and aptX, and contributes greatly to improvement of sound quality. If it’s 24 bits, the sound can be represented with a fineness of 28 powers, or a 16 bit ratio of 256 times, which is a great improvement over other codecs.

Connectivity to Your PC

Most audiophiles enjoy having choices for their musical enjoyment.

Your Bluetooth headphones still connect to a PC with the included USB cable. Now you can enjoy 96 kHz / 24 bit audio through two different methods. You may play also your audio with high resolution software, such as foobar 2000 and Audirvana Plus.

Bluetooth Sound Technology Surprises Audiophiles

Many audiophiles may be surprised by the performance of the ATH-DSR9BT headphones. If you can dare yourself to remove the “Bluetooth” from the name of these headphones, you’ll be hard-pressed to figure out that they are in fact Bluetooth headphones. The sound that comes out is different in dimension that your standard Bluetooth headphones, or even when listening to sound on an iPhone 7. Not only is it crystal clear, but it has a certain power that surpasses even your wired phones too.

You’ll be able to hear the vocals of any song clearly. A single note from an accompanying piano will be clear. You’ll actually be able to hear that first intake of breath from the single. Together, you’ll feel the full depth of the song.

If you tried listening to these songs on the iPhone 7, which has a codec of AAC, you may hear the basic characters of right and left channels, but there is a fading of the sound, and the finish is not very strong. You can quickly begin to see the differences between your usual Bluetooth device, and the ATH-DSR9BT Bluetooth headphones.

Audio-Technica Influencing New Bluetooth Technology

Audio-Technica is a game changer in the Bluetooth headphones market. Perhaps with its new technology, all other audio device manufacturers will soon jump on board with the new digital drives, rather than relying on code conversion. It will be exciting to see a year from now how Bluetooth headphones can dominate a market that’s been traditionally for the wired models. This perhaps may be the entry point for an entirely new era of wireless headphones that are comparable in sound quality to wired headphones, and perhaps one day the sound quality will exceed every audiophile’s expectations.

Source: phileweb.com

ORDER AUDIO-TECHNICA ATH-DSR9BT BLUETOOTH HEADPHONES NOW


It’s no secret that audiophile headphones are only available at a premium price, but they’re certainly worth the cost. Anyone can purchase a cheap pair of earbuds, but to truly enjoy the audiophile experience, one must have a great set of headphones to listen in. The reasons for purchasing a quality pair of headphones can be numerous. But, the most expensive set may not necessarily mean the best.

Many people find that headphones can provide comfort, particularly when wearing them for extended lengths of time. Many musicians prefer a quality brand for doing their monitoring, recording, or playing the guitar. Some people use headphones for watching the latest action movie, or when playing their video games.

You may be a hardcore vinyl listener, rather than listening through your smart phone or device, though you may occasionally listen to music digitally, as that’s the most portable method of carrying music around.

Listening to music through a good set of headphones will make you truly appreciate how good music can really sound.

One problem many people have with cheap headphones is that they can grow out of them. The first time you get them out of their packaging and have a listen, it’s like wow! Then after a while, you get used to them. At this point, you may wish to take your listening to the next level and buy a premium set of headphones.

This is at the point when you may realise that you’re a true audiophile—a lover of sound. But many people may be hesitant to spend a lot of money on headphones if they’re only being used to listen to music or watch movies. Don’t let this belief hold you back.

First of all, audiophile headphones are often made from materials that do not include plastic. They can be made from wood, foam, and metal.

Even though you’re compressing sound into two tiny little speakers, you can still have great sound. You’ll want to begin by choosing fit and comfort. If your headphones are bulky or won’t stay up, find another set. They should feel comfortable and not squeeze your head. You’ll also want a nice tight seal between headphones and your ears to lock in sound.

The true high-quality audiophile headphones will have consistent quality no matter which pair you buy, with low distortion. More expensive headphones will contain a set of properly matched drivers with better and tighter quality control.

Some good headphones even contain several small drivers that fit inside the headphone. This is like having multiple speakers in the room—your listening experience is going to be better. And smaller drivers means that they are closer to your ears and it’ll be a lot like being right at the front of the stage.

The answer to the question of whether expensive headphones are worth it can be based on their capabilities. It’s not necessary to buy the most expensive, but on the other hand, you don’t want to buy cheap ones either. Consider stepping outside your budget a bit to purchase better ones that have had some focus placed on engineering and quality control.

Also consider trying your favourite brands. Remember that the audio experience will be subjective for everyone, so try a variety of different headphones to find the ones that best suit you.


How to Set Up a 7.1 Speaker System

Many people love the sound of centre channel speakers and bring them home, hoping they’ll be simple to install. It can involve a bit more attention than the plug-and-play aspect of a sound bar, but if you follow the exact instructions from the box, and your installation diagram, they shouldn’t be too difficult to install.

If you are curious about how to set up your speakers before you decide on a 7.1 speaker system, we’ll assist you with the best way to set one up step-by-step.

 

What is the Difference Between 5.1 and 7.1?

A 7.1 speaker system offers more audio channels than a 5.1 setup. A 5.1 has 5, while 7.1 has seven. The seven doesn’t include the subwoofer, which is present in the .1 of the configuration. When all the speakers have been installed in your living room, or home theatre room, you’ll have a full surround sound listening experience.

The seven speakers will comprise the following channels: left, right, and centre, left surround, right surround, left back, and right back, and your subwoofer.

 

Best 7.1 Speaker Configuration

Your speaker system isn’t your only part of your home entertainment system. You’ll have your receiver and your large flat screen TV also. Generally, your TV and receiver are going to sit at the back of the room on their entertainment stand.

Here is how the standard speaker configuration should be set up.

 

The Centre Channel Speaker

Your centre channel speaker will sit in the front of the TV. It will be in direct line to the centre of your couch. This speaker is usually placed immediately above or below your TV screen. It will directly face people who are sitting in the listening area. If you decide to install your speaker on a shelf or stand, you’ll want to ensure that it is flush with the edge of it. This will help to keep dialogue clarity from your TV shows or films.

 

The Front Speakers

When you set up our L, C, and R speakers, you are creating an X=Y=Z configuration, with a V shape. The left and right front speakers will be placed at equal distances from your TV screen on either side. Get out your tape measure and measure a distance of six feet. This is the optimum distance to place them apart from each other.

It’s recommended that you toe-in or angle your speakers to match the angle from left to the centre of the couch, or from right to the centre of the couch.

 

The Surround Sound Speakers

To either sides of the couch will be the SL and the SR speakers—the surround sounds. These should also be placed an equal distance apart from each other. They should also be slightly above and behind the person who is sitting in viewing position. The height should be about three feet.

You will then you place the SL and the SR speakers behind the couch. These speakers should also be installed at a height of three feet from the ground. They should also be behind the listener’s heads.

 

The Subwoofer

The subwoofer should be placed behind the TV on either the left or right sides. You’ll find that adding a subwoofer will add more bass to the listening experience.

The three most common positions in a room for a subwoofer are the corners, along a wall, or beside a front speaker. If you place it beside your front speaker you’ll find that it does a nice blend of sound. However, you may sacrifice your overall volume if you do that.

Often the subwoofer is installed in the corner and back from the TV and the centre speaker.

It’s recommended that you experiment a bit with your placement of the subwoofer. These adjustments can make a large difference in bass output.

 

Add a Second Subwoofer

Many people will choose to add a second subwoofer to the room, so there is also one on each side. This turns the 7.1 into a 7.2 configuration. If you choose to do this, you’ll want to place one subwoofer to the left rear spot behind the television, and the second subwoofer at an equal distance from the TV on the right hand side.

Again, be sure to experiment with the placement to gain the best sound experience.

 

Other Speaker Installation Considerations

This configuration can be simple for homeowners who have a basic rectangular-shaped room. But if your room isn’t that shape, don’t worry, you can still install your speakers, even if your room is square, T-shaped, or some other size.

You may also have issues with power sources, so you may need to run some cords where you didn’t expect. You may also wish to rearrange your furniture. It may be time to do a room redesign.

You may also find measurement guidelines for the optimum arrangement, however, no two rooms are the same, so don’t take this advice too seriously.

Just try to stick to the basic configuration: TV in the back, centre speaker above or in front, subwoofers to the back, left and right speaker in the front sides, and surround sound speakers to left and right of couch, and behind the couch. Don’t be afraid to make adjustments to fit them to your room and your listening enjoyment.

 

Benefits of the 7.1 Speaker System

When you see all the speakers together on a diagram you’ll begin to understand how they create that full surround sound experience which is far better than purchasing two speakers or a sound bar.

Remember that sound is fifty percent of your listening experience, and visual is the other half. You don’t want to sacrifice on your sound when you’ve already spent a ton of money on your flat screen television, PVR, and receiver. When you have installed your speakers in a perfect 7.1 configuration, you’ll be experiencing the true impact of your movies, TV shows, music, and video games. Now sit back and enjoy a complete home theatre experience!


Do Speaker Cables Really Make a Difference?

 

Speaker cables are those long wires that connect speaker to receiver. They deliver the sound from your CD player, PVR, or turntable to your speaker outputs. While there are wireless speakers, that’s an entirely different subject. Many people wonder if there are different types of speaker cables. Is it possible to buy cheap dollar store speaker cables for your home theatre system, or do different types of speaker cables really make a difference?

Many people question this as speaker cables are often sold at electronics stores, and the salesperson will recommend one type over another. Your first thoughts may be as to why the cables can be nearly half the costs of the speakers! Not only that, but there are a wide range of price differences.  If you ask any electrician, they’ll say they’re basically all composed of the same copper, plastic, and metal materials.

Generally, most people will agree that you can have differing speaker brands, and they will each sound different. Speakers can be up to your personal listening preferences, and the type of room they’ll be installed in. Of course different electronics will also sound different, such as a CD player, receiver, turntable, TV, etc.

There is great controversy over speaker cables. The controversy obviously lies more with your “premium” types of “high performance” cables which can cost considerably more. You’ll get everyone from beginners, to music professionals, who take one side or the other. Some people will say it doesn’t make one bit of difference. An electrician will say it’s all wires. Some people will say it does matter how they’re made. And even some experts can oscillate back and forth. It all comes down to whether they are worth what they cost.

 

What We Can Agree On

Have you ever purchased cables from the dollar store and they’ve broken after a few months? They’ve made with micro thin wires and a thin covering of protective plastic. The reason they broke is that the cable got twisted around and physically broke the wires inside.

 

Your At Home/In-store Experiment

The only way to prove to yourself that premium cables are worth the cost, or not, is to do an at-home or an in-store experiment. It should prove to your personal satisfaction whether the materials and how a cable is made will actually influence the sound of a stereo system. Other considerations may include whether factors such as capacitance, inductance, and resistance can also impact the general sound of your speaker cable.

 

Materials Required

Anytime you purchase a cheap electronic product, they usually include speaker cables in the box. Most of us have some of those lying around. If not, ask a friend if they have any in their junk drawer, or buy a cheap set from the store. Keep in mind that this experiment involves cutting up cables, so don’t use an expensive set. You’ll also need an X-acto knife.

 

Cable Autopsy

Most speaker cables or wires are held together by a lengthy strip of plastic. Some are clear, some are black, it depends on the manufacturer. Usually these are called lampcord or zipcord. You’ll notice how are made as two wider sets of wires with a plastic join in the middle. One is for the white and one is for the red part of your polarity.

Begin by opening up your speaker cord. Cut that plastic joiner along it’s length until you have a set of two cables.

Your next step is to make a circular cut around the cable’s jacket as close to the RCA connector as possible. The key is to cut as far through the plastic as you can, but to not cut the braided shield part underneath.

In total you want four circular cuts, for a total of four, including both ends of the cables.

Your next step is to make a single long straight cut on each cable, from the circular cut of one cable, to the circular cut at the other end of the cable. You want to cut the plastic but not the wires underneath. You may find this a bit tricky, so start by making a sharp bend in the cable starting at one of the circular cuts you have made at the RCA connector. This has the benefit of opening and widening the cut you previously made. It should now easily lift off and pull away from the shielding.

Place your blade between the shield and the jacket and the blade should slide right along. Now you should be able to just pull off the cable’s jacket in one long continuous strip.

After you’ve removed both cable’s jackets, put them back on. It helps to mark them so you place them back on the same spots.

Your test cables are now ready. Not only are they both the same materials, but the same construction, etc.

Plug your cables into your stereo system just like you would if you were planning on using them. Let them burn-in for several hours. Now your testing experiment is ready to proceed.

Play your favourite recordings. Listen to them until you know how the system’s sounds. Play the same songs over again.

The next step involves doing nothing else but removing the plastic jackets off your test cables. Leave the cables still plugged in. Now, listen to those same songs again.

While this experiment is based on the fact that surrounding materials may or may not affect your listening enjoyment, it doesn’t touch on manufacturers who may use higher quality copper in the wires that decrease inclusions and imperfections that can weaken the signal.

And most people agree that if you’ve spent under $100 on your stereo system you might as well use the cables that came with the packaging, but if you’ve spent thousands, then go ahead and buy those high end cables, because they will sound subtly different.

Conduct your own experiments. You’ll soon reach your own conclusions and can make your purchasing decisions accordingly.


 

There are many choices when choosing the best sound system for your home’s entertainment system. After you’ve chosen your big screen TV you’ll need to decide on how to best deliver the sound to your living room. Your first choice is sound bar versus centre channel speakers.

A sound bar is exactly what it sounds like. It’s a long rectangular box that houses all the components of the best speaker system. Generally, it sits right in front of your television screen.

Centre channel speakers are a surround sound system, and consist of many individual speakers placed around the room. The speakers connect to a centre channel that is generally placed behind the projection screen to give the allusion that that’s where the sound is coming from.

There are pros and cons of buying each type of speaker system. If you’re purchasing for a bar or restaurant you run, the rules may be a bit different. We’ll assist you in choosing the best speakers for your home theatre set-up. This guide will assist you in opening up your mind to different types of speakers. Each also requires a slightly different installation. And you’ll also be interested in learning about how the sound quality can differ for each type of system.

 

Benefits of a Sound Bar

There are some great benefits to purchasing a sound bar that you should note before making your choice.

Simple Installation

The first is that installation is super easy and doesn’t require the services of a technician. You’ll find that the connectivity is also simple. The plugs snap into each component and you’re done. There are minimal wires to install, as you only have to connect a sound bar, and perhaps a subwoofer, rather than 4 or 5 speakers that have to be wired around a room.

Sleek, Modern Design

Today’s sound bars have a sleek design that works with the modern design of a living room. The sound bar can be installed below a TV screen on the wall, or simply sit in front of the screen on an entertainment unit.

A sound bar is also a good solution for the smaller apartment or a smaller living room that doesn’t have a lot of space.

Pretty Good Sound

The sound bar can also provide excellent virtual sound. This sound can mimic the surround sound experience without have several speakers scattered throughout the room. Many people who have small apartment living rooms are pleased with a sound bar speaker.

Sound bars are also a lot better than stereo speakers at anchoring dialogue to the centre of the screen. Unless you have your viewers sitting at the right spot for regular speakers, the dialogue may be all over the room.

People who watch a lot of drama movies may prefer to purchase a sound bar, as it will create a more uniform sound experience around the room.

And purchasing a sound bar is still going to be way better than only listening to sound through your tiny television speakers. It will make the sound from your TV stronger and clearer. If this is your goal, rather than having a complete surround sound experience, then you’ll be happy with the sound bar.

Affordable

A good sound bar is going to cost from $200 and up. Most people who have a large flat screen TV are willing to spend some cash to buy the best speakers for their entertainment system, but may balk at the $400 price tag of 5.1 channel home theatre speakers.
Cons of a Sound Bar

There are some cons to using a sound bar rather than centre channel speakers. These may affect your decision to buy one or the other.

Bass Levels Will Suffer

A sound bar can’t recreate the bass levels as well as your traditional types of speakers. For this reason, many sound bar systems also come with a separate subwoofer.

If you’re watching dramas with a lot of dialogue you won’t miss the bass levels. But if you watch a lot of action adventure films, or musicals, you may wish to look at regular stereo speakers instead.

If you know you’re going to miss those bass levels, you may still need to purchase a separate subwoofer with a sound bar. This can increase your costs. Some of the Klipsch systems include a subwoofer with their speaker systems to make the purchase simpler for you.

Not the Best Choice for Larger Spaces

You’ll also need to take care in placing your sound bar and subwoofer. There may be specific sweet spots created around the room, making one seat more desirable than another. This means that you won’t get a complete surround sound system in your larger room. The sound bar may not work adequately for larger living rooms or recreation rooms.

A sound bar may be great for a single person in a smaller space, but not for a larger family in a bigger recreation room who will also be enjoying the speaker system.

Limited Placement

A sound bar cannot be placed on the ground like speakers, or you’ll lose most of the sound. Your two choices are either wall-mounted, or on the entertainment stand in front of the TV. Some people may have neither of these spots available, so they may have to ditch their old furniture and buy a new entertainment unit so they can adequately set up a sound bar for the TV.

 

Benefits of Centre Channel Speakers

Your second purchase option for your home theatre system are centre channel speakers. These are for people who prefer the traditional style of speaker and enjoy doing the installation. There are benefits to installing centre channel speakers in your home.

Better Sound Experience

Buying centre channel speakers will give you a complete and full range surround sound experience, just like you can experience in a large theatre. Not only do you get to choose from five different types of speakers but you may also place the additional speakers in different locations, which will provide the most optimal acoustics.

For listeners who enjoy a lot of bass, you’ll get the maximum bass out of centre channel speakers. This may also be the best setup for the audiophile who wants only the best home theatre system presentation, and has also gone to the expense of purchasing a big screen TV and several comfortable arm chairs for their entertainment room.

For the Audiophile

Many people enjoy audio/video as a hobby. They enjoy shopping around and putting together a home theatre package. These people take their time with installation, and may even build their own home theatre system furniture. They’ll ensure that there are no wires showing, and that every seat in the room has the best sound experience. These types of people will shun the simplicity of a sound bar which is simply not good enough for them.

The Social Aspect

People who go to the expense of setting up a home theatre system with centre channel speakers are the ones who are more social. If you’re the type of person who enjoys watching the game with a large group, you’ll enjoy showing off your home theatre system to your friends.

Adaptable

If your sound bar breaks, you’re going to be left without a good source of sound, but if one of your speaker breaks on your centre channel speaker set, you’ll still have several others to use until you can get the broken one fixed. You can also replace one speaker at a time if you wish to upgrade. You’ll have the adaptability in upgrading and maintaining your speaker system.

 

Cons of Centre Channel Speakers

Centre channel speakers may not be for everyone. Here are some of the cons of buying this setup.

More Complex Installation

The time it takes to install centre channel speakers can be much longer than your simple plug-and-play sound bar. For people who aren’t technically-oriented, or people with mobility issues, they’re not going to want to spend time or effort on trying to get the system set up properly.

Besides the lengthier installation time it’s more expensive to not only buy centre channel speakers, but to install these types of speakers. Many people choose to hire a technician to install these types of speakers. There can be considerable costs associated with this as there is an hourly fee charged. You’ll also be at the mercy of their schedule and will have to wait for your speakers to be installed.

Suitable for Bigger Rooms

If you decide to buy the centre channel speakers you’re going to need to run wires from the receiver to each of the individual speakers. Not only do the speakers take up more space, but you’re going to have to find space for those wires, and a reliable way of tying them down so they don’t get tripped over, or look unsightly.

Many people conisder that bigger speakers means that they’ll be better. But while they may provide the looks to impress your friends, they can be deceiving too. Large speakers provide that loud eardrum pounding sound, which is great for a large room. However, a smaller sound bar or smaller speakers are still capable of providing good sound too.

Centre speakers may also be a poor choice for badly insulated apartment buildings. You run the risk of annoying your landlord and neighbours.

Greater Expense

There can be greater costs associated with buying centre channel speakers. This is because there are five plus speakers required, which means more materials used to manufacture them. People who want a better surround sound experience will also be tempted to purchase the best speakers they can afford, and are more likely to spend hundreds of dollars, rather than the budget-conscious person who is happy with a $200 sound bar.

 

How to Choose Your Brand New Speakers

Whether you decide on a sound bar or centre channel speakers, there are some other considerations to take into mind before your purchase. You’ll need to consider performance standards. Your four main considerations are going to be: sensitivity, frequency response, power handling, and impedance.

Sensitivity

The sensitivity is based on a speaker’s ability to convert the wattage or power, into decibels, or volume. Surprisingly, to get the higher sensitivity, the speaker needs less power to deliver great sound. You’ll want to check the sensitivity rating of a potential purchase. For example, 85 dB, 89, dB, 92 dB, etc. Higher is better.

Frequency Response

The frequency response is based on the range of frequencies the average human ear can hear. Usually it lies from 20 to 20,000 hertz (Hz). It’s certainly possible to feel more than hear the lower frequencies, such as below 35 Hz. These come from the subwoofer. Check the frequency response range on any speakers you are checking out.

Power Handling

The power is in watts and is based on how much it can deliver before the speakers are toast. The higher the handling, the louder the speakers will be.

Impedance

Impedance is the electrical resistance against the current flowing from the outputs. This will fluctuate as your speakers deliver sounds at varying frequencies. 8 ohms is normal, though you’ll see some as low as 4 ohms. Ensure that your receiver matches up for compatibility.

In the end, it will be up to your ears to choose the best speaker system. Listen to a few different types in your local electronics store and don’t be afraid to shop around. Always do your homework first before choosing the best speaker system. Review the specs and the performance standards for each system you are considering. Consider whether the pros and cons of the sound bar or centre channel speakers will work for or against your intentions of your home’s entertainment system. Now that you understand speaker features you’ll be able to make an informed decision for your room.

Whether you choose a sound bar or centre channel speakers, it really does come down to personal preference, as it’s you who will be listening to your home theatre system every day.


How to Set Up a Turntable

Listening to music from a stereo system rather than a tiny MP3 player can be a real listening experience. Not only do you really feel the music from real speakers but you also get to share your music with others too. It was only a couple of decades ago that everyone knew how to set up their own stereo systems for work or home, but with the advent of the MP3 player and headphones, that skill has been lost through time.

When the first CD came on the market in the early 80s, they were a bit slow to catch on. People loved collecting their vinyl. We could look at the artwork on the front and back covers, and some albums even opened up to display song lyrics inside, or photos of the bands. By the 90s everyone was ditching their turntable and buying a CD player.

Surprisingly, CDs have been around all these years. Many people believed a smaller disc would replace the CD, but when Apple came out with their first iShuffle in 2005, suddenly CDs grew out of favor for electronic devices. Then smart phones suddenly had the capability to play music. You could even buy cheap little speakers to play your MP3 or smartphone music to your friends.

Around 2010 vinyl made a resurgence. DJs were never quick to discard it, and their fans soon caught on. Today, even the most popular electronics store still sells vinyl. This has made the popularity of the actual stereo system have a resurgence in popularity too.

While it may seem a bit daunting at first to be presented with several different stereo components and a variety of cables, it’s actually fairly simple to set up a turntable.

1. Unpack it from the box. Remove any protective packaging or tape.

2. Insert the cartridge. If your turntable doesn’t already have it installed, you’ll need to remove the cartridge from the box and insert it yourself. Some music enthusiasts may also choose to buy a better cartridge. Generally, the more expensive the cartridge, the better the sound quality, power output, frequency range, and tracking.

3. Add a slip mat. Some turntables will come with a non-slip rubberized mat, but you may wish to do an upgrade. A good mat will protect the record, give better sound improvement and provide friction reduction for the DJ. The best mats are actually made from felt. A felt mat will help to improve sound quality as well as allowing the DJ to hold the record while the platter still spins around. The rubber mats will dampen vibrations while a cork mat provides a different listening experience.

4. Connect audio cable to turntable. Connect the red plug and the white plug to the pertinent spot at the back of your turntable. These slots are marked by color.

5. Connect audio cable to preamp. Match the colors to the slots in your preamp.

6. Connect grounding wire. Your turntable may or may not have one. Turntables that will need the grounding wire are the ones that do not have a built-in preamp. If you do have a grounding wire on your turntable but don’t attach it, you will hear an obvious humming noise, so it’s essential that it’s connected. This is a long narrow black wire with a two-pronged tip. If you do have one on your turntable, connect it to your preamp. There will be a silver screw that loosens. You insert the wire under the screw and then turn the screw so that it holds the grounding wire down.

7. Connect preamp to amp. You’ll use the same type of audio cable. Match up the colors again.

8. Connect amp to speakers. Plug another cable into the amp and then connect the other end of the cable to the speakers. Don’t forget to do the other speaker too.

9. Connect components to power. Connect turntable to power, as well as your other components. Some will draw their power from the amplifier. If you have no power slots left, you can add a good surge protector to your set up.

10. Keep your packaging. If you discover that your turntable isn’t working properly it’s a lot easier to return an item if you have kept both the receipt and the packaging.

Once you do it the first time you’ll discover how easy it is to set up a turntable, and you’ll be able to do it at any location. Now you’ll be able to hear for yourself how you can have a totally immersive listening experience for your friends or customers.