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Confessions of a DigiPhile IV



OK, so I jumped straight into the deep end!


I got a pair of Genelec 8260s last Wednesday.

I have a 2 weeks full refund on them, so the speakers in my living room are actually loaners.

They'll order min as soon as I say go.


My listening room is small, relatively bare and untreated -so far.

The whole building will have all outer walls replaced next year, so I'm not about to add a lot of treatment until after that.


They sounded quite good off the bat, but bass heavy and a little muddy.

All to be expected due to the room.


Friday I picked up the GLM calibrated microphone and room compensation package.

Connection and first calibration took, well a few minutes.

It seems that I have 12-15dB gain in the 20-80hz area.


WOW, I mean WOW. Everything cleared up after calibration.


I am still trying to get to terms with the sound.

First I was somewhat disappointed - I mean - Is that all you get for all that money?

It just sounds like - well it sounds sort of like a live concert in a well treated room.

And I easily play way too loud, as everything is so clear and clean.


I have heard quite a few top systems over the last year, but none like this.

They all disappointed me. Or rather: their performance in a real life room was disapointing.

More room treatment and some DSP would have brought them up to par.


My current system:

USD 3.000 Weiss AFI-1 Firewire -> AES/EBU with internal precision clock

USD 11.000 2 x Genelec 8260A 3 way monitors

USD 1.000 GLM Genelec Loudspeaker Management system

USD 15.000 Total system ex. computer


I love this, and I am going to expand it to at least a 5.1 setup.

This system will adapt to where ever I put it, deliver great sound in any room and audiophile sound ind improved rooms.


The 8260As will even do internal A/D if it is needed.

This is however still on my to do list.


Remember to compare total system costs!

This is what the system actually contains:


- Weiss re-clocking/jitter reduction with firewire input

- Calibrated mic for room response measurement

- Pro soundcard for calibration

- Digital loudspeaker cable in robust 24/192 AES/EBU

- Digital x-over 6 channels

- DSP for room correction and attenuation 6 channel

- 2 x 120W Amp and 3/4" treble

- 2 x 120W Amp and 5" midrange

- 2 x 150W Amp and 10" bass

- Treble and midrange in coaxial unit for seamless x-over


And the most important part: Great Sound ;-)


Find my blog: “Confessions of a DigiPhile” at http://www.computeraudiophile.com/blogs/7638-DigiPete


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yes indeed Chris, I am having lot's of fun.




Don't forget that you are partly to blame, you and all the hang-arounds at CA!




I feel almost like I have cheated, buying self-optimizing equipment rather than spending years tweaking cables and bickering over which are bass shy or a little too bright.


I buy XLR AES/EBU cable at USD 100 a pop and get perfect result - every time.




My frequency response may not be flat as a pancake yet, but at least I know exactly what I have, how much it has improved, and I'll be able to tell exactly what a piece of room treatment has done.

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Congrats on the Genelecs! I'm a very happy owner of them as well.




How did you hear about them? Most folks in the traditional hi-fi crowd don't know about them since they are mostly sold to the pro audio market.

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the hard way: surfing the net.




It turned out that a music store not far from here sells Genelec, and they actually have the whole 8200 series in the store.


Since then I have searched high and low to find the best way to rip and play the different file types into AES/EBU.




I ended up with the Weiss AFI-1 8 channel firewire to AES/EBU with precise internal clock.




Ripping Bluray on a MAC still seem to be a problem, so I will probably have to resort to a dual boot option or an extra Windows computer :-/




PS. I just love how I don't have to worry over loudspeaker cable anymore.


AES/EBU is just so convenient, especially for a surround setup.


USD 100 for a 10m/33' no-loss no-noice no-coloration cable - LOL

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Pete, I know what you're saying but you were smart, IMO, to go with the fine tuning equipment. Room treatments and speaker positioning is so critical that getting it right is worth it. When you get a chance, please post some pics of your set up. Very cool to hear about actives, since I'm just not familiar. Regards, Steve

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Steve, I may not be cheating, but it sure almost feels like it!




My setup is so far rather crude and not optimal, but it as good as it gets for now.


I will get heavily into treating the room later, but a little is better than nothing.




The first picture shows the basic setup.




Music signal path:


MacBook Pro ->Firewire -> Weiss AFI1 -> AES/EBU sigle wire -> Right 8260A -> AES/EBU sigle wire -> Left 8260A






Calibration and setting and control of volume:


MacBook Pro -> USB -> GLM network box -> Cat 5 network cable -> Right 8260A -> Cat 5 network cable -> Left 8260A


Calibrated mic connects to the sound card in GLM network box while calibrating.




The pictures shows my crude room treatment:




Inflatable hiking sleeping mattres on back wall


5" mattresses on side walls at mirror points


Soft furniture


2 persian rugs on floor


Bookshelf in rear corners




And my room mate Sheela to oversee the operation from the corner ;-)




Enjoying "live in Paris" By Diana Krall in 16/44.


Great album - well recorded - and this setup really digs out all the joy found in the bit stream.

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. . or rather - NOT.




I case anybody thinks that DSP is going to be the end of all room treatments - please think again.


Do as much as you can within the WAF and budget!




The attached frequency response plot shows the shortcomings of my room and smart DSP speaker setup.




at 18 - 80hz:


+15dB / -0db without DSP


+3db / -6db with DSP




Way better with DSP - but far from optimal.


I at least now know what is going on, and where to put the efforts.

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