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Article: Audiolense Digital Loudspeaker and Room Correction Software Walkthrough


mitchco
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Thanks, Mitch, for another superb article!  Obviously this was quite time-consuming to write up, and your efforts are appreciated!

 

Can you provide some guidance regarding the relative strengths and weaknesses of Audiolense vs. Acourate for a passive, 2-channel system?  After adjusting both systems iteratively to achieve what you considered the best sound, were the results essentially identical, or do the two algorithms tend to produce different audible results?   How do they compare in the effort required to achieve the very best results?

Mac Mini (2012 i7) > HQPlayer > RME ADI-2 v2 > Benchmark AHB-2 > Thiel 3.7

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Awesome job Mitch!

 

WRT using a pair of time aligned subs in AL:

 

You can individually time align each sub in AL. You can also use them as either mono or stereo subs. However, AL cannot measure a pair of mono subs at the same time. The only situation this sort of measurement would be needed is when the subs are used on opposing walls in opposite electrical polarity and time aligned for axial mode cancellation. I’ve talked to Bernt about measuring subs at the same time and it doesn’t appear that he wants to include this feature in 5.0. It’s the only thing holding me back from getting it. 

 

In your room, you probably would not need/want to set up your subs in this way. 

 

Ive been using the flat to 1khz filter now for two years and haven’t wanted to change it. It’s very versatile for all types of music, especially electronic bass heavy music. 

 

I do love how easy AL is for transferring filters to Jriver. 

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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On 05/12/2017 at 11:52 PM, Bob Stern said:

Thanks, Mitch, for another superb article!  Obviously this was quite time-consuming to write up, and your efforts are appreciated!

 

Can you provide some guidance regarding the relative strengths and weaknesses of Audiolense vs. Acourate for a passive, 2-channel system?  After adjusting both systems iteratively to achieve what you considered the best sound, were the results essentially identical, or do the two algorithms tend to produce different audible results?   How do they compare in the effort required to achieve the very best results?

 

Bob, thanks for your kind words. The simple answer is both products provide excellent results . For two channel, passive speaker correction, the workflows are similar. Beyond that is a point of departure, and comes down to ones’ specific requirements and preferences. There is enough info in this article and previous articles I have written where a keen reader should be able to sort out any differences.

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On 06/12/2017 at 4:39 AM, dallasjustice said:

Awesome job Mitch!

 

WRT using a pair of time aligned subs in AL:

 

You can individually time align each sub in AL. You can also use them as either mono or stereo subs. However, AL cannot measure a pair of mono subs at the same time. The only situation this sort of measurement would be needed is when the subs are used on opposing walls in opposite electrical polarity and time aligned for axial mode cancellation. I’ve talked to Bernt about measuring subs at the same time and it doesn’t appear that he wants to include this feature in 5.0. It’s the only thing holding me back from getting it. 

 

In your room, you probably would not need/want to set up your subs in this way. 

 

Ive been using the flat to 1khz filter now for two years and haven’t wanted to change it. It’s very versatile for all types of music, especially electronic bass heavy music. 

 

I do love how easy AL is for transferring filters to Jriver. 

Michael, good to hear from you and understood. Your use case is very specific and may have arrived at the best result. However, Audiolense does account for low frequency room reflections, it may be that you would get similar results with a traditional subwoofer setup. My subs have arrived and I will be able to confirm that sometime soon.

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11 hours ago, Bob Stern said:

@DallasJustice:  I see you're active in both the Acourate and AudioLense listservs.  How would you respond to my questions above?

I think it's a tough call between the two.  I haven't upgraded to AL 5.0, so Mitch may be in a better position than me to answer questions about sound quality differences.  My best guess is that they are very similar.  For now, I prefer to use Acourate due to the flexibility it offers and some of the other tools which can be helpful for better speaker positioning.  For example, the IACC tool can be used to optimize speaker position if you mostly care about higher frequencies.  This works for me since I can totally control the low frequencies with two subs and a little EQ.  

 

I really like how easy AL is to use and to experiment with. I don't remember ever needing any help from Bernt. It's very simple to use.  OTOH, Acourate can get a little complicated.  But if you are just using Acourate with two channel passive speakers, its also very easy to use.  I'd give the nod to Acourate just because its a little more flexible.  But you can try both of them out your self.  I forgot how Bernt does his trial, but you should be able to get some sort of trial first.  I know Uli offer a trial well.  

 

Comparing the older version of AL to Acourate, I would say the sound quality is very similar.  I'd be skeptical of anyone who claims one sounds significantly "better" than the other.  The differences are more to do with usability and flexibility.  

 

I think Uli and Bernt are both great guys with awesome products.  I think you will get your money's worth either way you go.  OTOH, you could dump a bunch of money in a new DAC just because it does MQA.  Maybe you could buy some bitcoin and then sell it in a day or so.  You'd prolly have enough money to buy both.  :D

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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Super job.  Typical for Mitchco.  Very informative, and detailed.  

 

Thanks. 

And always keep in mind: Cognitive biases, like seeing optical illusions are a sign of a normally functioning brain. We all have them, it’s nothing to be ashamed about, but it is something that affects our objective evaluation of reality. 

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On 12/7/2017 at 12:13 PM, mitchco said:

Michael, good to hear from you and understood. Your use case is very specific and may have arrived at the best result. However, Audiolense does account for low frequency room reflections, it may be that you would get similar results with a traditional subwoofer setup. My subs have arrived and I will be able to confirm that sometime soon.

Mitch,

The delay values are automatically generated by AL5?  Is this a new AL feature? I don’t remember the old AL showing the delays calculated. Is it possible to manually adjust the delays?  Do the delay values correspond to the delays you may have already manually calculated using Acourate?  I’m just curious to know how accurate you think the delay values are. 

Thanks again,

Michael. 

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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23 hours ago, aj said:

Thanks Mitch for this elaborate piece of work.
Maybe I missed it, but will Audiolense (or Accurate) work with panel/open baffle speakers?
Thanks

Hi aj, I don't have personal experience using Audiolense with panel or open baffle speaker designs.  You could post your question to the Audiolense user group. Anecdotally,  I know others have with success. If you look at my eBook reviews, I believe reviewer Xan has a pic which looks to be open baffle design. You could send him a note as well...

Kind regards,

Mitch

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19 hours ago, dallasjustice said:

Mitch,

The delay values are automatically generated by AL5?  Is this a new AL feature? I don’t remember the old AL showing the delays calculated. Is it possible to manually adjust the delays?  Do the delay values correspond to the delays you may have already manually calculated using Acourate?  I’m just curious to know how accurate you think the delay values are. 

Thanks again,

Michael. 

Michael, the last time I used AL was for a passive design, so I can't say for sure, but I believe yes, it was in previous versions. I have my subs running and time aligned. As you know, getting sub time alignment is very difficult due to the natural low pass of the sub, as it takes time to peak. This leads to additional delay - typically 3 to 4 ms. Additionally, if you run a sub sweep that ends at 300 Hz, the sub will appear to have more delay than if the sweep is run to 1 kHz.

 

I am really impressed with Audiolense's ability to time align my subs, even with a low XO point of 40 Hz. My subs run from 12 Hz to 40 Hz.  I have repeated the measurement a few times and it has been exact each time. I can't say that for all of the other methods I have tried to date. I plan to write another article going into the gory details of this and a few other advanced features.

 

Hope that helps,

Mitch

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13 hours ago, number8 said:

What a super article. In the introduction you refer to electroacoustic speakers. I run a pair of Martin Logan electrostatic speakers. Shall I expect the same improvement level?

Thanks @number8 I don't have first hand experience with this, but @aj asked Bernt about this on the Audiolense forum and Bernt responded by saying that Audiolense does work with open baffle and panel type speakers. On another forum, I know someone using DSP with Martin Logan speakers with excellent results, so I would expect the same or similar results for yours.

Kind regards, Mitch

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2 hours ago, mitchco said:

Thanks @number8 I don't have first hand experience with this, but @aj asked Bernt about this on the Audiolense forum and Bernt responded by saying that Audiolense does work with open baffle and panel type speakers. On another forum, I know someone using DSP with Martin Logan speakers with excellent results, so I would expect the same or similar results for yours.

Kind regards, Mitch

I may give a try, thanks for confirming the nice results with Martin Logan

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Hello OP and thanks for this excellent article.

 

A few questions for OP or anyone who knows the answers. I appologize in advance for these most likely stupid questions but I'm just starting to dip my toes into the waters of thought around using DSP and subs:

 

1. Is it possible, and just as importantly, has anyone successfully been able to use the "corrected" configuration file/files exported from Audiolense with ROON's DSP feature? If so, what are your thoughts on it?

 

2. How important of a role does having the Lynx Hilo play in this picture besides the hardware piece to feed the Amps a signal? By this I mean, could someone just as easily use "insertotherdachere" in combination with necessary Windows PC that runs the Audiolense software to generate the corrected files to be used with, perhaps, ROON or JRiver?

 

3. Is the reason for Lynx Hilo or maybe even Merging HAPI to allow for an accurate means of room/system measurement because they have proper ASIO drivers to feed into the AD section of these devices? Could one still use a DAC and Analog PRE of their choosing once the corrected file was built via Audiolense or is Lynx needed going forward?

 

4. Lastly, is the ultimate goal of Audiolense just to provide a means of measuring and creating a corrected fir file to then be fed into whatever DSP device/software one chooses to use?

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30 minutes ago, cjf said:

Hello OP and thanks for this excellent article.

 

A few questions for OP or anyone who knows the answers. I appologize in advance for these most likely stupid questions but I'm just starting to dip my toes into the waters of thought around using DSP and subs:

 

1. Is it possible, and just as importantly, has anyone successfully been able to use the "corrected" configuration file/files exported from Audiolense with ROON's DSP feature? If so, what are your thoughts on it?

 

2. How important of a role does having the Lynx Hilo play in this picture besides the hardware piece to feed the Amps a signal? By this I mean, could someone just as easily use "insertotherdachere" in combination with necessary Windows PC that runs the Audiolense software to generate the corrected files to be used with, perhaps, ROON or JRiver?

 

3. Is the reason for Lynx Hilo or maybe even Merging HAPI to allow for an accurate means of room/system measurement because they have proper ASIO drivers to feed into the AD section of these devices? Could one still use a DAC and Analog PRE of their choosing once the corrected file was built via Audiolense or is Lynx needed going forward?

 

4. Lastly, is the ultimate goal of Audiolense just to provide a means of measuring and creating a corrected fir file to then be fed into whatever DSP device/software one chooses to use?

WRT Roon’s convolver and Audiolense filters, my experience is that Roon’s convolver does not work properly. I started a thread on Roon forum about the problems. Roon hasn’t fixed the issue I’ve experienced but acknowledged they’ve reproduced it using my Audiolense filters. Of course, I’m super disappointed Roon’s convolver does work right. But I am hopeful they will fix it. 

 

IMO, Jriver’s convolver is great because you can just drop the file in the Jriver convolver and you are set. There’s no need for zip files or relative file paths, etc. I can also trust Jriver because Jriver has an ASIO line in. The first thing I do after I create the filters is to send a sweep out REW into Jriver’s convolver and record the result in REW. This can be done well with a Hilo because it’s driver is multi client (handles two apps at once). OTOH, the Hapi uses Ravenna ASIO. It is explicitly not multi client. So it cannot work off two apps at once. There is a (maybe) work around using the steinberg multi client server app. I’ve used it with a prism Titan and it works. When I had the Hapi, I didn’t get that far. I sent the Hapi back. Things may be better now with the Hapi. I know of some reports on Acourate forum where users have used Hapi for recording log sweeps. So maybe it would work. 

 

Personally, I own a NADAC, Prism Titan and Lynx Hilo. Overall, the Hilo is the most versatile of the bunch. I’m in midst of resetting things up and I may just stick with the Hilo from now on. It’s just so much simpler and more flexible. I think the Hilo sounds killer too. 

 

Michael. 

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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Thank you Michael, very useful info.

 

I''ll most likely pickup a Lynx in the next week and see what options it opens up for me depending on answers to below follow-up Q's:

 

1. Can the Lynx be used in direct to Amp via balanced XLR & also to a powered Sub at the same time?

2. Is USB Input the way to go or DANTE for Lynx?

3. Are you able to use the Lynx as a MIC Input for measurement purposes?

 

Thanks again for the info

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13 minutes ago, cjf said:

Thank you Michael, very useful info.

 

I''ll most likely pickup a Lynx in the next week and see what options it opens up for me depending on answers to below follow-up Q's:

 

1. Can the Lynx be used in direct to Amp via balanced XLR & also to a powered Sub at the same time?

2. Is USB Input the way to go or DANTE for Lynx?

3. Are you able to use the Lynx as a MIC Input for measurement purposes?

 

Thanks again for the info

I just returned my LT-Dante card. Dante/Audinate is truly a joke. I’d stick with USB. 

 

I have four channel setup; stereo setup with a pair of cascaded mono subs. I document the setup in the link below. It’s the best step response I’ve ever been able to achieve; never heard before bass!

https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/cascaded-multi-driver-subwoofers.1341/

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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