I have a couple quick questions regarding the Alpine H701:
What is Graphical EQ Defeat? Should it be on or off?
In your first listing, you have the different frequencies followed by different numbers. For example:
Is +20.5 the suggested starting point for the db settings? The alpine only goes up to +/- 9db's on all frequencies...do different eq's go higher than 9db. Am i misinterpreting that these are suggested starting points? I am curious to see what others have their frequencies set at...
Edit: Nevermind, I read that over again...those settings are for the RadioShack device....i see
The Defeat button turns off the EQ (whichever one your using), MX, bass compensation, etc... but not the x-over in order to protect the speakers. Any time you use the EQ you want to make sure the Defeat button is turned off. It's nice in that you can hear the differences between a flat EQ and the changes you've made by switching back and forth. If you have the H700 then try not to use the MX or bass compensation as they tend to muddy the bass and change all kinds of things.
That first list is the correction numbers for the digital Radio Shack meter. Anything under 20Hz should probably be blocked anyway. There's pretty much no music down there unless you listen to specially recorded albums that have cannon blasts or pipe organs. They can play that low, but you will also need the subs and the power to reproduce them otherwise you'll just damage your equipment. In fact, the H700 has a high pass filter on the subs that you can set to 20Hz and a 30dB slope to act as a subsonic filter.
Anything below 20Hz is considered subsonic and usually below the threshold of human hearing. You will feel it though, like an earthquake, but you won't hear anything. Usually subsonics will cause your woofers to flap around wildly.
I want to write up a philosophy for EQ tuning as well. I just don't have time right this minute. Basically do as much sound shaping as you can with speaker positioning and crossovers so that you have the smallest amount of correction as possible with the EQ.
The EQ is sort of the last resort and needs to be as little as possible.
Always reduce the peaks in your cars response first as they will be the most noticable to your ears.
It's always preferable to cut a freq than it is to boost a freq. becausing boost will add some distortion.
I'll try to add more in the next few days.
If anyone does use the Radio shack digital meter and plot their cars response, post it up here so I can see it. I'll point out the areas that need attention. We'll try the x-overs first as well as the amp gains to get the sound balanced as much as possible before seeing what EQ corrections need to be made. You want to shoot for no more than about 4dB of correction on any particular freq. It all depends though. Just don't overcorrect. Most view the EQ as a crutch, but it can really make the difference between so-so sound and really spectacular sound, especially in a car setup. Cars are just ugly beasts to a sound system. No doubt about that. :)
Thank you for all the advice. I just purchased the radio shack digital sound level meter (it was $49.99) and will be tuning my system tonight. I plan to plot down all of my recordings and I'll try and record every step. I'll post picks and comments. I'll stick your guide and post the updates.
Just keep in mind all the little things you need to do before plotting out your cars freq response. Turning the tone controls to zero, etc.. Then adjust your gains and x-overs to get the best sound. Get it sounding as best you can THEN plot everything out and start the EQ tuning procedure. Depending on your components you may need to adjust the signal level from the source to the amps to keep the noise floor as low as possible. That's a whole other subject.
I haven't really heard the results of that downloaded test tones. I hope they are at the proper levels. It also helps to have some well recorded albums. There are several specialty CD's out there. One of my favorites is Sound Check: Professional Audio Test Disc (UltraDisc II) (see below)
Whatever you use, try and focus on getting the vocals to sound natural and realistic. If you can get the vocals, male and female, sounding like they are in the car, then your way ahead of the game. On the above CD, if you look at the tracks you will see a variety of instruments. Tracks 60-79. Stuff like that can really help you tune. Plus it's also good to boost certain freqs up and then down and listen to what part of the music it effected, just to help you develop an ear for what sounds are at certain freq. It really helps to hear a sound and you know what freq that is.
Once you get the plot of your car and fix the obvious flaws in the response you still need to adjust the overall tone of the system. It is NOT going to be a flat line from 20HZ-20KHz. This is where things get tricky and personal preference come in. If you get this far, let me know.
haha, ya know, i'm just rereading this and i didn't get your msn. (i have yahoo as well). I'm 2 days and hopefully no bidders away from the alpine. Took a while, but i was having issues with the original seller, among things. PM me. I'll do some tuning when i get the last component (6.5 rear- i'm well aware that rear fill isn't neccessary, but i am attempting to lean more towards HT than CA)
Also, would you suggest that i use the 7 bands for the front and use the rear as complete fill or do the 3/4 front/rear eqing that i have the option of? Speakers are infinity reference.
Still trying to get that 3402? The H510 is better. :) Anyway....
The front speakers and subs should have priority. Do all the steps like I mentioned. Keep the rear fill off the whole time. Once you have the whole system sounding as good as you can without the EQ, then plot your speakers in car response. Depending on the curve you have will decide how you should divide up the EQ bands. If your lucky you may only need 4 bands for the front 2 channels. Then you can use the other 3 bands for the rear fill. If you need more than 4 bands to do up the front speakers and sub properly, then set it up so that all 7 bands are on the front speakers/subs.
How is your signal divided? Are the subs running off the 2 front channels and the rear fill running off the 2 rear channels? If not, that's how I would recommend doing it. Let me know if that doesn't work for you.
Typically you will end up with most of your bands focusing on the under 300Hz region as it's the most troublesome area. Once you get the main speakers set up then you can turn on the rear fill and set their volume level and see how well they integrate with the main speakers.
wait wait wait...you want my subs on the front two channels? Intresting approach though i can see why, as they are the channels we're messing with. I wish i could attach a word doc (my wiring diagram is a flow chart in word that i was too lazy to convert to PDF and then jpeg).
I'm basically running an NX on 4 speakers setup (front and rear, FR from now on, FRS means front rear subs)to the 3401/3402 (hehe, look at me downgrade ;) ) and from there FR to an Audicontrol 3xs and then FRS from there. The FR goes to a 4040DSM and the subs goes to a basslink.
Now, given that particualr set up, and a soon to be replete supply of RCAs, i can either have the fronts go into the EQ for 7 lovely PEQ channels to play with, as the rears go straight to the 3xs, or have everything hit the PEQ, everythign hit the 3xs and call it a day. In the end, the crossover is the only variable i can't figure out as it's complicating things in my mind and DAI, so i really should take it easy on the complications...but it was working and $20...
What i kinda was hoping to do, based on what i read and learned is pretty much what you told me to do, excpet you wree muhc more helpful with the specifics, which is good and as always as it means i didn't waste my time reading somethign some posted to mess with little upstarts heads, like myself. However, i believe, for some reason that the alpine's rears cover the latter 4 an the fronts do the former 3. I dont' know why they would do that, but hey, i'm not a muiltimillion dollar car company, i just buy stuff from them...or just from someone who bought it from someone who bought it from them. We'll see if i win. IF not, i will try again, and agian, and again. Maybe even take you up and chekc out your H510.
EQ the fronts to flat, as they are priority, and then adjust the rears to match. I was wondering wouldn't an unequalized rear produce the smae problems you had initally, even though they reflect off the back? Or am i supposed to make sure they're low enough to be certian that doesn't happen. See, that right there is counter intuitive as the rears were turned up in almost every car i've been in, though it makes perfect sense looking at my 5.1 HT system (huge multi component fronts, little itty bitty rears).
Also, when i finally do this all, after i do all this lovely equalizing and crossing over without John Edwards, is it then that i adjust the gains on the amps and the basslink? ...which is and amp and therefore i'm being redundant.
Finally, after i flatten out everyhing, what happens when i decide on my NX, to play with the eq settings (the plan was faltte it out with the PEQ and then make it awesome with the A2 NX). But since the NX is restting everything BEFORE the PEQ, would it not adversely affect the music, or am i to custom eq everything to fit the car.
Also, i'm not sure if you have an NX, but is it possible that the time scaling can be used like the high end, sub competition, HU components. Like where you cna time scale to your position? How would that adversely affect your EQ options?
See, the idea behimd me getting all this stuff is this: If one day i ever decide, hey, i have some time and another half K of extra cash, let's see what i can do after investing in a few good amps and much better speakers, i wouldn't mind seeing how far i could try in the comp circuit. Yes, i want to be like Red, she's my hero ;). Will too. But really, it would be an expensive fun hobby. Just thinking ahead and maximizing my possibilities.
So now, as i hit "Post quick reply" and chuckle a bit, PM me your MSN.
OK, I PMed you, maybe we can get your stuff all sorted out THEN we'll worry about the EQ. :)
lol, PMed back! See, look at that, i'm just messing with everyone's heads:)
BTW, what the hell, ofcourse that is going to rock the poor little alpin ei want. The thing has 3 optical ins!
After recently installing a new system, I'm working on the tuning. This
thread has been very helpful. I have the following system:
Head: Alpine CDA-9857
Amp : Audison VRx 4.300
Processor: Alpine PXA-H701; Controller: RUX-C701
Sub: JL Audio stealthbox - (2) 10W3v2-D4
I used the Alan Parson Sound Check2 CD with a Radio Shack Sound Level
Meter. Attached is the curve I got - any suggestions?