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#203269 - 04/05/08 05:46 PM speakers
patwho Offline
buff

Registered: 03/27/08
Posts: 47
Loc: Long Island.N.Y
Hello,
I've ordered my speakers a couple days ago.I have a few questions for the forum.The first is what kind of speaker cable is best? The second question is what is the best subwoofer cable should i get? What is the best way to calibrate the speakers? Should i get someone to do this for me? Is there home thearter people that installs speakers and do they calibrate? Sorry for so many questions. Thanks Pat

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#203272 - 04/05/08 05:59 PM Re: speakers [Re: patwho]
HomeDad Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/29/05
Posts: 3301
Loc: Central,California
Pat, you should be able to fill all your cable needs at Monoprice.com, or if you want cables that Imo are a little more attractive and still won't break the bank you can try Bluejeanscable.com
To calibrate your speakers get yourself a sound level meter from radioshack or an audio store.
There are people that will come to your home and do all of it for you, but even to the novice it's really fairly simple. One of the joys of this hobby is learning and doing it yourself.
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#203274 - 04/05/08 06:07 PM Re: speakers [Re: HomeDad]
RickF Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/26/05
Posts: 5210
Loc: Vero Beach, Florida
Also Pat, if you spend some time on the Axiom boards most everybody here will walk you through the calibration process .... you'll be tweakin' and graphin' in no time.
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#203277 - 04/05/08 07:37 PM Re: speakers [Re: RickF]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13565
Loc: Iowa
You can go to any home improvement store like Home Depot, Menards, Lowes, etc. and buy decent speaker wire piced per/ft off a spool. Don't pay extra for name brands like Monster. Or, as the others have said, monoprice.com online is a great resource with killer prices. For the sub you need coax with rca ends, monoprice has them as well very cheap.

You don't need to have someone calibrate for you, it is not that hard, and we can help. Basically, you want all your speakers to be matched. Most receivers have built in test tones that you run from speaker to speaker, the goal is to get them all at the same sound level. Some do this by ear, but you can also get an SPL meter from Radio Shack. If your receiver has a built in setup option with microphone, those do a great job as well setting speaker levels and speaker distance from the listening position.
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#203361 - 04/07/08 08:06 AM Re: speakers [Re: SirQuack]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6955
Loc: PEI, Canada
Ditto!
Please don't give Monster any money for their insultingly overpriced cables.

I saved a ton by ordering all the speaker and sub wire for my new room over the Internet (cable from Monoprice and ends from Parts Express) but if you need it quicker, bulk speaker wire from your hardware store of a good thick gauge, 12 for long runs, 14 or 16 for short. (If your buying bulk, I suggest buying all 12 gauge to keep it simple and so you will never second guess.

I put all my long, in-wall subwoofer runs in using RG6 Coax (coax, same as used for cable TV) and buying RCA wall plates to terminate them with for the sub positions. For short lengths, an appropriate length of sturdy looking sub cable or RCA cable from radio shack will do fine.

For calibration, there are three main steps unless you want to get crazy later on.

First, you want to set up your speakers exactly where you want them before you calibrate. If you move them significantly later, you will have to recalibrate.

Axiom has a really nice article on the desired speaker positions for differnt types of setups including pictures of each one.
url=http://www.axiomaudio.com/home_theater_layout.html]Surround Sound Speaker Positioning[/url]

Secondly, You will want to go into your receiver and set the size and distance for each speaker. Normally, if you are running a subwoofer, you want to set all the other speakers up as [small]. Even your main speakers. This is so it will send the really deeeep bass sounds to your subwoofer, freeing up your other speakers to do what they do best.

It probably will also allow you to set the distance to each speaker from your main listening position. This can be done with a measuring tape and entered into the receiver or, as mentioned, it might all be part of the auto setup feature of your receiver. Good to double check them anyways.

Finally is the actual sound level calibration. There are more detailed guides in this forum but basically you get your receiver (or a test disk like Avia's) to play a test tone into each speaker, one at a time. The receiver will start out somewhere very close to it's reference level (usually 75, 80 or 85 db). Use the setup feature on the receiver to calibrate this first speaker to exactly the desired level (say 80db). You will need a sound meter in your main listening position. Adjust the setting until the needle or numbers are where you want them to be.

((NOTE: I know I don't need to mention it but you need to adjust the numbers in the receiver's setup screens. If you just adjust the volume knob it won't remember what you did.)

Then, simply repeat the process for all of the other speakers.

Post questions here and I'm sure folks will love to answer them.



Edited by Murph (04/07/08 08:12 AM)
Edit Reason: spelling
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#203393 - 04/07/08 11:34 AM Re: speakers [Re: Murph]
DaveG Offline
aficionado

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 868
Loc: WI
Please don't feed the monster. Get your cable and wire from monoprice.com or Blue Jeans and save yourself some money, you won't hear any difference.
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#203462 - 04/07/08 08:45 PM Re: speakers [Re: HomeDad]
patwho Offline
buff

Registered: 03/27/08
Posts: 47
Loc: Long Island.N.Y
Hello,
Thank you everyone for all of your generous help. It is greatly appreciated by me. Thanks again Pat

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