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New system Vocal Distortion

bobcat11

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My new hi-phi is really wonderful but...
Vocals are often raspy. It sounds like a broken tweeter.

About half of my music sounds wonderful. But some recordings really have a lot of squeakiness in voices. I've heard this on other systems. It's just more noticeable now.

My new system:

Elac B6.2 speakers.

Fosi Audio v3 power amplifier.

WIIM Mini streamer.


I tried another DAC. Qedelix -5k. It was actually even brither, even after applying a peq I found for the Elacs.

I've been checking the most noticeable recordings for these distortions on headphones. I do hear the silence and raspy harmonics but they don't jump out at me.
I wonder if the harmonic is a result of vocal processing. Vocals generally sound natural and balanced except for this.

The WIIM Mini only has 10 band graphic eq. I can't quite tune out the unwanted sound. I probably need either a better DAC, or a MINIDSP.

I think it's mostly the tweeter in these Elac v62 that is a bit hot somewhere around 8Khz.

My room is kind of bright and untreated. No carpet. I recently moved. The JBL LSR305 speaker system I was using for a few years in my previous apartment just sounded horrible in here.

I have 10 days to return the Elaccs. What will give me the 3d magic they have and all the good things I like about them but not upset my tinnitus? DBR62?

I am totally blind. I should have better audio. I'm on a low income. HI-FI dealers in my city are not at all willing to take returns. I can not test in my home. This is the main reason I don't invest more. It's like gambling. I've been burned to much.

Amazon and Crutchfield Canada have good trial policies but don't have some speakers I want to try. Most of the approved audio gear on the net is not available in any big box stores with good return policies in Canada.
 
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BDWoody

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First of all welcome to the forum!

Hopefully you can get some good suggestions.

Some thick padding and carpeting might not be a bad step as you get settled in.

I've become a big fan of the powered speakers, with JBL 708ps and 705ps that I am very happy with, but I'm sure you'll get a lot of suggestions.

Have a read through some of the speaker reviews as you narrow down your choices and you should end up with something that works for you. Getting a calibrated mic and learning to use the free software REW will also help give you insight into your room.

However it goes try to enjoy the process!
 

DVDdoug

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What will give me the 3d magic they have and all the good things I like about them but not upset my tinnitus?
I don't know about those speakers but with a pair of speakers, "soundstage" or "3d" is obviously an illusion and it depends on the listener, room acoustics, speaker placement, and the recording. Speakers probably have a minimal effect except for dipole or omnidirectional speakers.

Or, I have a surround setup and I like to use a "hall" or "theater" setting on my AVR.

A room with hard surfaces and reflections is probably going to sound more 3-diminsional, but reflections and reverb in a small space don't sound good like the natural reverb in a large music hall.
 

Sgt. Ear Ache

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I'm not sure there's much value in applying EQ settings found on the internet to your speakers. Some of your troubles may be room-related and in that case you'd probably be better off trying to get some measurements at your listening position (perhaps a friend could help you out) to see if you can notice any issues there and then just doing your own EQ work from that point - although that 10 band EQ isn't likely going to do the job unfortunately. Don't bother changing dacs as it's pretty highly-unlikely that's where the issue is. The speakers should provide reasonably good sound too.
 

AnalogSteph

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My room is kind of bright and untreated. No carpet. I recently moved. The JBL LSR305 speaker system I was using for a few years in my previous apartment just sounded horrible in here.
That's a major red flag.

If your room screws up the JBLs this badly (which have anything but bad dispersion), acoustics must be complete and utter garbage. Possibly flutter echo galore. Try playing some handclap samples over the speakers to assess the situation. Chances are you'll need various furnishings of the absorptive and diffusive kind (thick carpets, drapes, the odd sofa, misc. other furniture) and possibly even dedicated acoustic elements though.
 
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bobcat11

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To me, vocals sound distorted to a varying degree on the majority of sources because they were recorded that way, if only unintentionally. I'm quite serious. I'm a retired broadcast TV audio production guy and I'm super-sensitive to that.
I think so too. Wasn't there something called an aural Exciter that was used to make vocals more exciting back in the 60s? A lot of my music is from 60s and 70s.
Something in my setup (probably the room) seems to bring that out more.
The Elac b62 may just be to analytical in that region.

Bob
 
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bobcat11

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First of all welcome to the forum!

Hopefully you can get some good suggestions.

Some thick padding and carpeting might not be a bad step as you get settled in.

I've become a big fan of the powered speakers, with JBL 708ps and 705ps that I am very happy with, but I'm sure you'll get a lot of suggestions.

Have a read through some of the speaker reviews as you narrow down your choices and you should end up with something that works for you. Getting a calibrated mic and learning to use the free software REW will also help give you insight into your room.

However it goes try to enjoy the process!
I wanted to try the 705's but just out of my budget. the 305's could sound quite good in my previous appartment but needed equalization there. similer room but a bit larger with carpet. Did real well pulled out in the room on stands. I don't have the space for stands now. So. Need to place ond shelving units agains the wall. This is why I tried the Elacs as they were designed for sucha position.

As others have said. I think I need to treat my room first.

Bobb
 
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bobcat11

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I don't know about those speakers but with a pair of speakers, "soundstage" or "3d" is obviously an illusion and it depends on the listener, room acoustics, speaker placement, and the recording. Speakers probably have a minimal effect except for dipole or omnidirectional speakers.

Or, I have a surround setup and I like to use a "hall" or "theater" setting on my AVR.

A room with hard surfaces and reflections is probably going to sound more 3-diminsional, but reflections and reverb in a small space don't sound good like the natural reverb in a large music hall.
This is probably herisy but I loved Carver sonic holography, SRS, Qsound, and other stereo image processers. I don't have any of them now. Speaker positioning was paramount with any of those systems.

I was amazed how close the Elacs came to the best imaging I had in the past, considering how poorly the 305s performed here.
 
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bobcat11

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I'm not sure there's much value in applying EQ settings found on the internet to your speakers. Some of your troubles may be room-related and in that case you'd probably be better off trying to get some measurements at your listening position (perhaps a friend could help you out) to see if you can notice any issues there and then just doing your own EQ work from that point - although that 10 band EQ isn't likely going to do the job unfortunately. Don't bother changing dacs as it's pretty highly-unlikely that's where the issue is. The speakers should provide reasonably good sound too.
I sincerely wish I had a friend to help me!
I can not use REW on my own. I tried.

I also used Equalizer APO but haven't set up my old pc since I moved. It's just all to much for me these days.
 
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bobcat11

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That's a major red flag.

If your room screws up the JBLs this badly (which have anything but bad dispersion), acoustics must be complete and utter garbage. Possibly flutter echo galore. Try playing some handclap samples over the speakers to assess the situation. Chances are you'll need various furnishings of the absorptive and diffusive kind (thick carpets, drapes, the odd sofa, misc. other furniture) and possibly even dedicated acoustic elements though.
I notice that I hear quite a bit of echo at higher frequencies when I clap. I don't have any clap samples yet but will look for some.

I will try to treat my room first before changing speakers or electronics. You all have given good advice to me.

I may have to spend a lot because I'm not up to doing it myself.
 

Cbdb2

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That's a major red flag.

If your room screws up the JBLs this badly (which have anything but bad dispersion), acoustics must be complete and utter garbage. Possibly flutter echo galore. Try playing some handclap samples over the speakers to assess the situation. Chances are you'll need various furnishings of the absorptive and diffusive kind (thick carpets, drapes, the odd sofa, misc. other furniture) and possibly even dedicated acoustic elements though.
To test for flutter echoes just clap your own hands standing between the 2 largest parallel walls. No need for a recording
 
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Cbdb2

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I notice that I hear quite a bit of echo at higher frequencies when I clap. I don't have any clap samples yet but will look for some.

I will try to treat my room first before changing speakers or electronics. You all have given good advice to me.

I may have to spend a lot because I'm not up to doing it myself.
Start with what you have, carpets, couch, upholstered chairs, pillows, drapes and go from there. Your electronics will make no difference, your speakers will, and your room definetly will.
 

BDWoody

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I sincerely wish I had a friend to help me!
I can not use REW on my own. I tried.

I also used Equalizer APO but haven't set up my old pc since I moved. It's just all to much for me these days.

Here's a suggestion from left field...

Have you thought of using a receiver with good room correction? Denon is a favorite around here. I run an x3700 into my 708s and with the app it can do some pretty good work.
 
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bobcat11

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Here's a suggestion from left field...

Have you thought of using a receiver with good room correction? Denon is a favorite around here. I run an x3700 into my 708s and with the app it can do some pretty good work.
I would like to try a good amp with room correction like the Denon. I'm not sure it would be accessible to me without sight.

Cost plus accessibility is a complex situation for me. I've heard good things about Denon.
 
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bobcat11

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The Elac tweeter has a narrow distortion peak at 9 kHz: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/elac-debut-2-0-b6-2-speaker-review.14272/ It starts at 8 kHz and ends at about 11 kHz. 2.5% distortion at 96 dB. Maybe that's what you're hearing.
Thanks for pointing me to the review. It seems only measured so high at 96db. I don't listen that loud. I wonder if that is what I hear. I don't hear much about 11k these days. I noticed I'm very sensitive to sounds just at the top of my range.
Does the DBR62 have the same distortion?
 
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bobcat11

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Hear is what my system looks like. Pretty low rent. I know it needs work.

Did the picture turn out?

IMG_0722.jpg
 

DavidMcRoy

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I think so too. Wasn't there something called an aural Exciter that was used to make vocals more exciting back in the 60s? A lot of my music is from 60s and 70s.
Something in my setup (probably the room) seems to bring that out more.
The Elac b62 may just be to analytical in that region.

Bob
I'm familiar with the Aphex Aural Exciter. It's still in widespread use. To my ear, if used judiciously, it imparts a pleasant "tube-like" distortion and what sounds like a little peak around 8kHz, a combo that can sound subjectively "clean." It isn't the kind of distortion I'm refering to, which is more like garden-variety, nasty grunginess.
 
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Cbdb2

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I think so too. Wasn't there something called an aural Exciter that was used to make vocals more exciting back in the 60s? A lot of my music is from 60s and 70s.
Something in my setup (probably the room) seems to bring that out more.
The Elac b62 may just be to analytical in that region.

Bob
The exciter came out in 1975 but it took a few years to get popular. So most of the music you listen to didn't use it.
 
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