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View Full Version : equalizers? i have no idea.

req
09-16-2004, 02:34 PM
alright, first of all, all my equipment is in the sig for refrence.

now, i am thinking that the alpine is in need of some tweaking, and it is only 2-band.

i was thinking of getting a 5~15 band equalizer, but i dont know what too look for\at\anything.

what exactally does an equilizer do(aside from change the frequencies .. duh), how do i have to power it, what kind of input (i know it takes RCA but where does it go...between the amp\HU?), ect.

im using this on 2 pairs of CDT components (listed in sig) and the alpine HU.

i have a really good spot where i can put this in my dash - the cupholder can come out and its 8~10 inches long and 2~3 inches tall. a custom fiberglass flush mount will make one of these units look incredible. but thats later down the road...

so i was browsing, and saw a orion 600eqm equalizer equillizer- its 5 band-

any suggestions on what kind of equilizer i should get? i was looking to spend $50~$100.

thanks again. :wacky:

nosaj070
09-16-2004, 02:48 PM
Well it seems like you want an indash graphic eq. I belive Audiocontrol makes one, and they make some quality EQ's. A Very good fit would be the AC Three.1, has single rca inputs, lowpass output, front highpass and rear highpass. Also has a very nice line driver, and a few bands of EQ adjustment. This is not what you want if you are planning on RTAing your system, this will simply help slightly more than your HU. Installation is easy, you can use high gauge wire, 12 would work, maybe even higher and wires are the same as amps, positive, ground, remote.

DFW40
09-16-2004, 02:52 PM
It is wired just like an amp or headunit with the pos neg and remote wire. It has RCA inputs and outputs some have front/rear/subwoofer and some have just one set. You can mount it in your dash or in your trunk but as far as the signal path it goes between the headunit and the amplifiers. They make 30 band and even more for those folks that are very serious about their sound but they are hard to get set and you really need a (can't remember) instrument to do it right.

The 5 to 15 band are much easier to use but the fewer the bands the less control you have over your frequencies. I have found them useful to decrease or boost certain frequencies to get the sound you want for a particular sound or type of music. I found them most useful at lower volume levels, but at higher volume levels it is very easy to clip a signal. They can be fun to mess with but I didn't miss the one that I had once I took it out.

req
09-16-2004, 03:56 PM
so should i get one then?

im not too fussy, but it sounds like im missing somthing from my music- it might just be the MP3 quality of the songs im listning to though. i have to rip all the music i have myself. i dont trust people to do it right anymore.

nosaj070
09-16-2004, 04:04 PM
so should i get one then?

im not too fussy, but it sounds like im missing somthing from my music- it might just be the MP3 quality of the songs im listning to though. i have to rip all the music i have myself. i dont trust people to do it right anymore.

I feel that those indash eqs are nearly pointless except to adjust sub levels. If you are going to get a equalizer you might as well get one with like 13 bands or more, I love my EQX, and the difference was like night and day after it was tuned.

DFW40
09-16-2004, 04:10 PM
Go ahead, if you do not like it you can always take it out and sell it.

squeak9798
09-17-2004, 01:25 AM
Not sure why this is in the "amplifer" section ;) But anyways.......

You should work on your install before worrying about an EQ. Work on proper deadening and killing resonances, proper speaker aiming/placement, killing reflections, new crossover points (if needed), proper balancing and level matching between mid/tweeter/sub, etc etc.

EQ should be the very, very, very last thing you do and only used after everything else is properly done. And remember, EQ's should be used mainly to lower peaks and not raise valleys in the frequency response. An EQ is not a band-aid (though many times it functions as one). It should be the "final touch" to a properly designed and installed system.

req
09-17-2004, 09:02 AM
okay, well i got kicks (5.25 CDT) for the front imaging w the tweets on there,

i got 6.5 cdts in rear and my ported re10"

what else should i do? once i get my 4channel amp to run the components, then ill be all done with my stuff.

trunk has p&s, im gonna put some more in the doors.

how do i find resonance, reflections- and where else would i need crossover points?

and how do i "properly balance and level match" mid\sub\tweet? ive never known anyone that is into car audio (and knows what the hell they are talking about) so im learning all i know from research and trial\error.

so far i can install almost anything, and build what i need to build (mdf\fiberglass included). i can find out how to wire speakers correctly- but all the stuff regarding frequencies and the EQ stuff ive not gotten into. i figured it would be kinda like you said, make it all come together at the end.

i just dont know how to do that, and i figured an EQ would play that part.

again, thanks for the help squeak. your a good guy.

squeak9798
09-17-2004, 12:24 PM
Courtesy of Matt Borgardt of Image Dynamics:

1) Set gains
2) Set x over points
3) Repeat rules 1 and 2 till you get a balance in the system, do not worry about the stage height or if the sub is in front of you or in back of you at this time...
4) Must have at least some good music to listen to. A test disc would be best (NO HIP HOP or mp3) My 14 year old son can record better...
5) Listen for the height of the system (is it near eye level or low like mid dash or leg level)
6) flip the phase of both Mids so that they are out of phase with the tweeters. Listen to the system again. You may only need to flip one mid out phase to make this work....
Remember to only do one thing at a time and right it down so that you do not repeat a step...
7) Repeat steps 4 threw 6 till you get the stage height near eye level
8) Now listen to the sub, I f the sub seems to anchor in the back of the can flip the phase on the subs and listen again...
9) Listen to the system and see if your balance is correct repeat step 1 and 2 if needed...

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This is courtesy of Chuck Music, IASCA Judge and Competitor:

1. Set all bands flat, as well as the head unit bass and treble.

2. Turn off the subs. Using music with a good bass line, run the highpass crossover up and down until the midbasses can play as low as possible without any distortion or excessive door panel vibrations.

3. Unhook the mids and tweeters [for a 3-way system, for a 2-way system you only need to worry about unhooking the tweeter], allowing only the midbasses to play. Listen to mono pink noise or a well-recorded song with a centered vocalist. Test CDs such as the IASCA test CD or Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 will work great. Listen to where the centered sounds are coming from. Then reverse the polarity of one midbass (Reverse the speaker wires coming from the passive crossover and going to the speaker, just flip the positive and negative wires. I usually flip the driver’s side speaker.) and re-listen to the test CD. If the sounds are more centered then keep it as is. If the centered sounds are more diffuse and un-locatable, then flip the polarity back to where it was originally.

4. Then unhook the midbasses and play the mids only and follow the same polarity and listening tests as before. Mark your best settings. [this step is only necessary for a 3-way system. If you have a 2-way system, proceed on to the tweeters]

5. Do the same procedure for the tweeters.

6. When you have tested for the proper polarity from all three ranges of speakers, hook all of them back up with respect to each set of speaker’s best polarity. You can have any combination of polarity, such as all the midbass and tweeters straight and one midrange reversed.

7. Now you should have the correct “acoustic” polarity set within each set of speakers. Next is to set the acoustic polarity between the sets of speakers.

8. Listen to some very familiar music with a good range of sounds. Then flip both midbass’ polarity and listen again. Before you only flipped one midbass, now you are doing both at the same time. For example if the left midbass was reversed and the right was not before, now the left will be not reversed and the right will be. Listen to the music again. If the midbass is more powerful and full then leave the wiring as is. If the midbass sounds weaker and wrong then restore the wiring as before.

9. Perform the same listening tests while flipping the mids and tweeters, and use the wiring configuration that sounds the best.

10. If you have went though all these steps adjusting the polarity of the speakers then the system should sound really good without any eq adjustments. You might want to play with the gain adjustments on the crossover and/or amp to better blend all the speakers together.

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Then you need to sound deaden, sound deaden and sound deaden some more. Floors, doors, etc etc. Underdash pads (cardboard with thick foam and carpet) and dash mats can help also. If you have a center console, cover it with something non-reflective. You can line the inside of your kickpanels with clay to reduce their resonances. Maybe try re-aiming your kicks if you still have the materials and some free time.

Only after all this stuff (and more) has been done should you start worrying about the EQ.

Some good sound quality forums to check out are http://forum.elitecaraudio.com/ and www.carsound.com

crash813
09-17-2004, 02:56 PM
Very good info there Squeak, but I still have to question your advice on saving the EQ to last. I think you're giving the impression that an eq is unnecessary if the rest of the system is setup correctly. This is assuming you are listening to the same music or test cd as when you set it up. For a lot of consumers out there, our ambition with an audio system is to enjoy music at its best which can come from cd’s, mp3’s, the radio…….all of which are less than perfect and can greatly be improved with the tweak of a few bands. I’ve got tons of low produced local cd’s which would not meet the above criteria of ‘Good Music’ or a good audio source. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want to listen to it in the best possible way. Also, as I was unsuccessfully trying to explain to someone else in another thread, many of us don’t use kick panels, are limited to angles we can change the speakers, or don’t want to spend hours fine tuning our systems. I think EQ’s fit those needs superbly and improve the listening experience. Is it a band-aid……….depends on how you look at it………I look at it simply as a tool that can be taken advantage of.

squeak9798
09-17-2004, 04:11 PM
I never said EQ's were completely unnecessary. Like I said, they are the "final touch".........the last thing you do after everything else is done right. There are many things you can do with the install that will reduce the amount of EQ'ing that needs done. Ask a lot of competitors and they will tell you that there is such a thing as "over-eq'ing" a system. Let the speakers play the natural signal as much as possible, and adjust the EQ only as needed.

As for the aiming thing; Many car audio speakers are designed to work very well off-axis. Actually, a lot kick-panels are actually very off-axis, almost as much as door speakers are. Kickpanel's advantage is in the pathlengths.......and a lot of door setups can achieve close to the same results by putting time into properly phasing all the speakers to give a psuedo-time alignment affect.

req
09-17-2004, 05:07 PM
ok, so as im doing this.

what the hell am i looking for? i still dont understand how i judge what sounds better than what?

ive never actually heard a "good" system in a car that wasnt anything more than aftermarket speakers amped (if that) and a sub.

how do you know what sounds the best. i assume flipping phases allows for the difference in speaker distance(wavelength distance\out of phase) to the listner and the timing of the waves comming on to a single point right?

but i dont know what 'a good range of sounds' is. hell. i hardly know what good SQ is compared to my old equipment- this stuff just sounds so much better. i admit, that the stuff i had was terrible and i dont understand how i ever listned to it.. and right now i can hear one of my 6.5's surrounds barely touching the MDF ring its mounted on a high volumes, and when i pointed it out to a friend, he said "what noise you freak, it sounds amazing"

i do know however, that my kick panels are way off alignment. i suppose ill have to make some more. when i stretched the fleece, the hot-glue'd chopsticks i used to hold the baffle all did one of these " \ \ " and the baffle's went all stupid on me and are aiming the wrong ways. so i have them sitting on the floor aiming at my head.

but basically all that in a nutshell = i should flip the phases until it sounds nice and has a "wide range of sounds"?

i also have 6.5 mids in the rear, i guess that means its a 3 way system... and i have not hooked up the tweeters from the CL-62's at all. should i mount those in the front on the 5.25's xovers and use them as imaging tweeters? the factory location of my 3.5" speakers is right at the base\left of the windshield and i can aim them upward\forward at the windshield.

heres the low down i guess-

using a well recorded song

1- unhook subs and set all bands to flat
2- Using music with a good bass line, run the highpass crossover up and down until the midbasses can play as low as possible without any distortion
3- Unhook the mids and tweeters
4- Listen to a well-recorded song with a centered vocalist on the midbass
5- Listen to where the centered sounds are coming from. Then reverse the polarity of one midbass- and re-listen to the test CD. If the sounds are more centered then keep it as is. If the centered sounds are more diffuse and un-locatable, then flip the polarity back to where it was originally.
6- Do the same procedure for the mid\tweeters
7- hook all of them back up with respect to each set of speaker’s best polarity.
8- Listen to some very familiar music with a good range of sounds. Then flip both midbass’ polarity and listen again. If the midbass is more powerful and full then leave the wiring as is. If the midbass sounds weaker and wrong then restore the wiring as before.
9- Perform the same listening tests while flipping the mids and tweeters, and use the wiring configuration that sounds the best.

then eq?

let me know =\ im still kinda confused on all this EQ stuff.

crash813
09-17-2004, 05:13 PM
I don't think that we're arguing different points here. The original poster wanted to know why he might want to use an EQ. While you make excellent points of why he might not need an EQ, or atleast wait on one, I wanted to show him a different aspect in which he might want to use an EQ now.

I think you are absolutely correct when it comes to set up a high SQ system, but I think its missing alot of real world scenerios. Setting up the system correctly will not compensate for poor recordings, bad mp3's, radio broadcast and an eq, to some extent will.

squeak9798
09-17-2004, 11:39 PM
Just play with it req.......that's really your best bet right now. Just go out there and follow the tutorials and see what changes you notice (don't forget to listen for changes in the soundstage also). It will be much easier if you can hear it yourself rather than me try to explain it over the net from 1k miles away :D Report back with your findings, and we'll see where we need to go from there.

Go, have fun, knock yourself out :) Well, don't knock yourself out cause then you won't be able to hear the music, but you get the point.

And it would be a really, really good idea to try to find the time to re-aim the kicks. That could be part of your problem right there. And what exactly is your process for aiming the kicks?? Anyways, go ahead and try out the tutorials first......see what they do for ya.