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  #1  
Old July 1st, 2009, 10:29 PM
myspark1 myspark1 is offline
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Red face New and Stupid.....please help me!

Hey, guys. First-time poster here and let me say in advance I appreciate any help you can offer.

I recently purchased the Enthusiast 2 setup. I have been dreaming about this for two years (ever since I first visited the showroom, and on my recent trip there again two weeks ago) and I am excited beyond all measure to have them in my home now. While I do plan on expanding to 7.1 to take advantage of the lossless audio available in BluRay, I am waiting until Dr. Hsu releases the in-wall speakers to use as my back channels, broadcasting forward.

OK.

My room is 14 x 14 x 9, three walls obviously one is uneven with ceiling height of 10. My flooring is tile. The opening is fairly large, with the space being the foyer, dining room and great room of my home. The open-sided room and tiling make this pretty much everything you DONT want in a listening space, but it is what I have. The only real furniture is a sectional and ottoman. There is no sound-absorbent material anywhere so far. The sectional (and, to be honest, the marching orders from The Wife) dictates that the subwoofer be placed in the front right corner, with the driver firing toward one wall and the ports venting toward another. There really is no other place for it.
Now, I have read elsewhere on the Board that the desired volume on the back of my VTF-3 Mk 3 should be between 9 and 10 oclock on the dial. Got it. After that, Im a goner. At what distance should the subwoofer be placed from those walls? Is there a safe minimum distance that I should adhere to? What should the crossover dial be set to? Is it 80? Should I be in-phase or at 180, given the size and dynamic of my room? Foam plug out, or in? I want the best balance between movies and music that I can get, but were I allowed only one it would be movies; and I value sonic purity over the ability to impress my neighbors I want the depth charges from the U-571 BluRay to sound REAL, man. Do I need to ensure that the switch back there matches whatever Im doing with the foam plug? That crossover switch should it be In or Out? I have an Onkyo SR-876S receiver with the Audyssey MultiXT equalizing program, and it has worked out for me so far with FAR lesser speakers than these (sorry, no SPL meter or knowledge of how to use one go ahead and yell at me now). Should I tell it my speakers are Large or Small? And as to the HB-1s: at what distance should they be from the wall (up front) and the listener (side)? Im asking all of this because I am obviously deeply stoopid but also because I really do care about this and want to get it right. I have dreamed of not just somewhere to watch my movies but actual Home Theater for so long, and I am now close to it. I just need some help.

Thanks for taking the time to read this; and thanks in advance for any advice you care to offer.

---- Mark

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  #2  
Old July 2nd, 2009, 3:59 AM
shadyJ shadyJ is offline
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Wow, that's a lot of questions! I think it would be easier to read in a list form. I will try to give you a few tips, although I am far from an expert. Many of your questions are actually covered in the manual, but maybe I can help explain things in a less technical way.

Firstly, the enthusiast 2 package comes with the VTF2.3, not the 3.3, so that throws me a curve ball. Perhaps you worked out a deal with the HSU sales for a upgrade. As far as placement goes, that location doesn't sound that bad, just make sure that the ports aren't blocked- they will need a few inches to breath, so there should be space between them and the wall. The manual has a lot to say about placement, but if you are limited to one spot, you don't have many options. By the way, the HB-1s and HC-1 are rear ported also, so you want to leave space between the back of them and the wall as well.

If you lay down a rug, that should help with the acoustics, especially a big shaggy rug.

As far as the volume dial goes, the desired level to set is entirely situational and mostly a matter of personal preference. I believe that 9 or 10 is something people do when they are setting up audyssey.

As for the crossover dial, that depends if you are going to use the subwoofer's crossover or the reciever. If you decide to use the sub's crossover (by setting the crossover switch to "in"), that will enable that dial to work, and you can control what frequencies you want to limit your subwoofer to playback. It is a low-pass frequency filter. Ideally you want to have it set where the other speakers lose ability to handle bass. If you experiment with this, you'll get the idea, and then you can set it to whatever sounds the best to your ears.

Phase isn't something that you can't know until you set everything up and start using it. Try both settings, and stick with whatever sounds most natural to you.

Regarding the foam plug, that depends on what mode the VTF is in. If you are using it in Maximum Extension mode, keep the foam plug in. Take it out for Maximum Output mode. Try both modes to see which one you like the best- there is no correct mode, again it is a matter of personal preference.

You should have the Onkyo set to small speakers. I don't know about that particular model, but on some receivers if you set them to large speakers, it makes the receiver believe your regular speakers are so good that you don't even need a subwoofer so it won't send any signal at all through the sub out connection. Setting it to small speakers tells the receiver that you intend to use a subwoofer so it won't make the regular speakers play the low frequencies, it will just have the sub handle them. To know more about the small speaker setting, you will have to refer to your receiver's documentation on its bass management.

As far as placement of the HB-1, that is covered in the manual, however if that recommended placement isn't feasible for you, don't worry too much, just try to get it where it sounds the best for you. It will still sound great. But, like I said before, make sure the rear ports have some space to breath between the walls, I would give them at least four or five inches.
Also you should try listening to the speakers with the grills on and off. Some people have reported that making a big difference with the HBs, although I haven't detected a real difference, but that may be due to my particular situation.

That probably doesn't answer all of your questions, and if there is anything you are confused with, keep asking away. Hopefully someone else can chime in and clarify these answers more authoritatively.
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  #3  
Old July 2nd, 2009, 9:31 AM
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mystro mystro is offline
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Hi,
Welcome member, I too just ordered the enthusiast 2 package this week.

I have been eyeing on HSU since 2007, didn't pull the trigger because of many reasons. Have asked lots of questions though, and I believe they were friendly in answering all my questions. Even till the end, I could not decide whether to go for VTF3.3 or VTF2.3 package, however, thanks to Pete when I showed him my floor plan he told me mine is more suitable for a VTF2.3 package. I thought he will encourage me to pay more and buy the best, but no, he did give me some frank and logical advised I felt, and I was glad. In the end, instead of getting an extra MBM I went for another 2 HB1 speakers and made it a 7.1 systems. As I recall back then, this forum were full of people posting questions and answers, virtually every now and then you can see people making a purchase, that was very tempting, now not as much posting I feel. Maybe because of the economy or most have gone to AVS forum instead, I am not sure.

Anyway, thanks for your questions some I do believe are relevant for me too.

Last edited by mystro : July 2nd, 2009 at 9:42 AM.
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Old July 2nd, 2009, 9:35 AM
new_to_bass new_to_bass is offline
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Don't worry, you'll figure it out!

You are in the right place to get help, believe me... There are many helpful people here, and just reading and researching will help a lot.
As was mentioned here, the manuals of the speakers will be a helpful starting point, and I'm sure others will chime in with suggestions as well.
Your mention of the absence of a SPL meter got me thinking, and even without that, the microphone and built-in calibration in that nifty Onkyo receiver will probably help a lot... Some here may disagree, but I think that the simple built-in process will provide a good (and easy) start on calibration of your speakers. I have a far less-expensive Onkyo myself, and it gave me a good start on speaker calibration.
Please read and research, and continue to ask questions, you will get there. And the cool part is that it's all fun, and even when everything isn't 100% "dialed in", it usually sounds pretty good anyway!
Have fun!
-Glenn
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Old July 2nd, 2009, 11:39 AM
myspark1 myspark1 is offline
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Talking

Thanks for all the helpful tips and well-wishes, guys! I am going to sally forth and try my best in just a few minutes' time. I really, really appreciate you taking the time to offer up advice to such a rockheaded neophyte.

BTW, shadyJ, that was a good call. I *did* get the VTF3.3 as an upgrade when I ordered the setup, shortly after my family (wife and in-laws) and I had heard it in the showroom. Pete was totally cool - played the Balrog scene from LORD OF THE RINGS, the Diva Playalaguna from THE FIFTH ELEMENT and the final 1812 Overture montage/finale from V FOR VENDETTA, all at my request - and the other employees that we met were kind and gracious, as well. Gave a real feeling of Family about this, and that as much as anything else sold the speakers for me. I had been to the showroom once before but had had no "backup ears" to confirm for me what I was hearing. This time I did, and purchased a dream.

And now the Family thing continues here on the Board. Thanks again for helping (and not scorching!) such a Luddite. I will take your recommendations, as well as dive deeply into the manuals. I'll send pics once I have the 7.1's/in-walls (Pete had said that Dr. Hsu had signed off on the design & we saw them there; I guess they are due at the end of the summer) & have had a chance to engage Magnolia or, hopefully, some competent-but-affordable private installation expert to do up a bitchin' discrete install.

I'll keep checking in and will keep you posted. Be Well and Happy, folks.

---- Mark
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  #6  
Old July 3rd, 2009, 11:33 AM
Pete_Hsu Pete_Hsu is offline
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Thank you so much Mark, I had a blast meeting you guys and demoing that material

The Lord of the Rings - Fellowship of the Ring is such an amazing movie, I love that one!

Hope you all have a great 4th of July weekend!

Sincerely,
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Old July 3rd, 2009, 12:48 PM
myspark1 myspark1 is offline
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Talking

Back atcha, Pete.

My father-in-law is still bragging to his friends that he got to see where "the best subwoofers made" were made!

I managed to get everything hooked up and have started to play. I have not engaged the Audyssey yet, as I am goofing around with material and getting a feel about what I want from the VTF3.3 (I *think* I am going to go with plug out and switch flipped down; at the 18hz setting with plug, the sub effortlessly covers the room - to my surprise, given its awful dimensions - and may be muddying up the vocals/dialogue from the HC-2). The Audyssey will come in to "fine-tune" things when I think I'm close.

This is also easily the best system for listening to the kind of "Torch" songs that my wife and I adore, EVER.

I priced out the full-tilt boogie discrete install from the Magnolia. Including speaker wire, placement of the in-walls whenever they are in production, assembly and installation of some gripping-type, wall-mounted, tilt-and-swivel speaker brackets that I found, and whatnot, it came to less than $700. I was shocked and expected much more - guess times are tough. That price also includes an Audio Calibration, which is the guy with the SPL meter & also ensuring that my BluRay and HDDVD are decoding to and being recognized in the lossless formats.

Never thought I'd say that I can't wait for the summer to end....but looking forward to those inwalls, Pete and Dr. Hsu!

Be Well and Happy, all.

---- Mark
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Old July 3rd, 2009, 7:21 PM
Pete_Hsu Pete_Hsu is offline
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Hey Mark,

Forgive me for asking, but what are these "Torch" songs?
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Old July 4th, 2009, 2:57 AM
myspark1 myspark1 is offline
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Talking

Known usually for smoky voices or "hot" topics, Torch songs are all over the place. Think Michelle Pfeifer in THE FABULOUS BAKER BOYS, Diana Krall, Sally Kellerman, etc. They usually exhibit wide dynamic range, due to the fact that there are whisper-quiet passages with just that smoky voice to guide you along, followed by loud, brassy and sassy sections. Good stuff.

Let me know if you want a good starter list!

---- Mark
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