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Re: New M60 owner looking for help
C.A. Duncan #288231 01/23/10 03:31 AM
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One other point to consider as well is that you have been listening to your Polks for some 10 yrs and become accustomed to their sound, so it may take a little while to get used to your M60s or any other speaker. It would be interesting to listen to your M60s for a couple of weeks once you feel you have them set up to your liking, then give your Polks another listen to compare.


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Re: New M60 owner looking for help
C.A. Duncan #288245 01/23/10 04:28 AM
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I think in this case, it sounds like "keeping it simple" would be the best way to judge the M60's sound. Try playing a good CD, with excellent sound quality, in the basic stereo setting. You can always connect the sub, and center later, after the critical listening session.


LIFE: "Choices, balance, and timing"

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Re: New M60 owner looking for help
Adrian #288272 01/23/10 05:24 AM
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 Originally Posted By: Adrian
One other point to consider as well is that you have been listening to your Polks for some 10 yrs and become accustomed to their sound, so it may take a little while to get used to your M60s or any other speaker. It would be interesting to listen to your M60s for a couple of weeks once you feel you have them set up to your liking, then give your Polks another listen to compare.


That's a good point and relevant to my experience. I went from Polk bookshelf speakers to M80s and still wasn't entirely wowed when I first got them. After doing more extensive listening, I started to realize just how much I'd been missing. It was an adjustment period.

Re: New M60 owner looking for help
C.A. Duncan #288299 01/23/10 12:36 PM
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 Originally Posted By: C.A. Duncan
Thanks for all the input, gang. I picked up an analog sound level meter today at Radio Shack. I'll spend some time on your suggestions tomorrow and report back.

I sure appreciate it!

CD

C.A., here are some links that may (or may not?) help. The articles are getting a little long in the tooth, but the basics still apply.

AN INTRODUCTION TO TEST & CALIBRATION DVDS aka "Why the hell do I need one of these things?" (To learn about DVE and AVIA, scroll down far enough to read "THE DIFFERENT DISCS AND THEIR ATTRIBUTES")

Essential Accessories: The Radio Shack Sound Pressure Level Meter

A Quick Overview of Home Theater Calibration

Calibrating Your Home Theater System (this link is to page 4 of a 7 page article. Be sure to check all the pages for more info)

How To Set Up a Subwoofer (or Subwoofers) for Home Theater

Common Subwoofer Set-Up Errors by Edward J M


Jack

"People generally quarrel because they cannot argue." - G. K. Chesterton
Re: New M60 owner looking for help
fredk #288308 01/23/10 02:57 PM
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sirquack, that's a helpful link thanks. I'll be picking up one of those for when my new M60's come in.

Re: New M60 owner looking for help
C.A. Duncan #288330 01/23/10 05:06 PM
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Hi C.A.,

And welcome to the Axiom forums!

STOP breaking in your new M60s! Mechanical/acoustical break-in is a myth, and happens in seconds. Psycho-acoustical break-in takes longer--it's your brain and ears adjusting to a new reproducer in your room that's imitating the sound of musical instruments and voices.

About your leaving the CD changer running when you go out, I worry that a CD with much louder maximum recording levels may have come on and driven your modest Onkyo into clipping damaging one or more of the M60s's tweeters or midrange drivers. This happe ned to a friend of mine who was an executive at Mirage; he came home to find his amplifier smoking and his M3s silent for because he'd left a changer going, loud, all day.

Play a jazz or rock CD with pronounced cymbals and percussion and put your ear next to the M60 tweeters and midrange drivers to make sure they are working. You can use the pink noise test signal in your Onkyo instead.

The M60's spatial qualities are really very good, which makes me think there may be a midrange tweeter problem.

I can't speak to your Polks other than to say that over the years of reviewing Polks and hearing them at press intros, the line was very inconsistent. Some models were quite good and others very colored and inaccurate.

As everyone has noted, rooms and setup are very important, but please check the midrange and tweeter drivers. Run them full range, "Large", no subwoofer, and let us know.

Regards,


Alan Lofft,
Axiom Resident Expert (Retired)
Re: New M60 owner looking for help
C.A. Duncan #288366 01/24/10 02:32 AM
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C.A., welcome. As Alan points out, forget about the speaker "break-in". Also, your 504 is a fine receiver and a great bargain; it can easily drive the M60s.

As to what could possibly be a problem(beyond becoming more accustomed to the sound over time), Alan's suggestion about checking to be sure that all the drivers are actually operating should be followed. One further thought on that area is to make sure that the connecting strips on the M60 terminals are tight so that both the high and low frequency sections are in fact connected.


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Enjoy the music, not the equipment.


Re: New M60 owner looking for help
JohnK #288558 01/25/10 05:37 PM
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 Originally Posted By: JohnK
C.A., welcome. As Alan points out, forget about the speaker "break-in". Also, your 504 is a fine receiver and a great bargain; it can easily drive the M60s.

As to what could possibly be a problem(beyond becoming more accustomed to the sound over time), Alan's suggestion about checking to be sure that all the drivers are actually operating should be followed. One further thought on that area is to make sure that the connecting strips on the M60 terminals are tight so that both the high and low frequency sections are in fact connected.


Connecting Strips? You mean the 2 sets of wire terminals?


"A fanatic is someone who can't change his mind and won't change the subject" Churchill
Re: New M60 owner looking for help
Argon #288581 01/25/10 06:29 PM
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The pieces of metal between the terminals.


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Re: New M60 owner looking for help
Ken.C #288624 01/25/10 09:03 PM
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I really want to say how appreciative I am for all the suggestions, folks. This really is a remarkable community.

So it turned out I had less time to spend with the M60's this weekend than I had hoped, but here's what I did do:

- Removed the sub from being wired in-line with the L and R channels and put it on the LFE output.

- Completely zeroed out the "tone control" for treble and bass in the receiver.

- Set all the speaker distances properly in the receiver. (A question about speaker size later)

- Placing the sound level meter in my usual listening position, I adjusted the individual speaker levels in the receiver so that they were all at 75 dB using the pink noise test tones. They really were not far off, which may be typical, but did need very slight adjustments (I think L and R were ~1 DB and 2 dB lower than center before adjusting).

- Measured and slightly adjusted speaker positioning to assure as much symmetry as possible.

And, I have to say, it may be a psycho-"placebo" effect, but it does sound better. Not blow-me-away better, but better, cleaner. I think we're getting there.

Regarding speaker sizes: my understanding based on something (heaven knows what) I've read in the distant past was that your receiver handles bass in one of two ways based on set speaker sizes. If front L and R are set to small, no frequency below the crossover point is sent to those channels. If front L and R are set to large, frequencies below the crossover point are sent to both the front L and R AND the LFE channel. Is this right? So I thought if you had nice fronts that could go fairly low and then "bow out" gracefully when they reached their bottom, you basically wanted them getting the same frequencies that go to the sub. But some of you guys have suggested setting the M60's speaker sizes to small, which I think tells the receiver not to send them any signal below the crossover point? Am I understanding correctly? I'm sure a really nice sub has a lot more low-end than the M60's, but they aren't bad, and I'm not sure that the M60's aren't doing a better job with frequencies, down to, say, 60 Hz, than my little 8" sub is - although the sub clearly does better when it gets really low. I guess when you have nice fronts the whole small vs. large speaker size is a little unclear to me. In addition, my receiver has an ON/OFF setting called 'Double Bass', which according my best interpretation of the manual, specifies whether or not the L&R channels are fed the frequencies below the crossover (in addition to the LFE channel). In what tinkering I did, what seemed to sound best to me was setting the L and R speaker sizes to large, crossover at 100 Hz, and 'Double Bass' set to ON. Does that sound remotely correct?

Alan, thank you for your comments. I did physically remove the grills and lightly touch all the drivers to make sure they were all moving, but did not verify the operation of any driver/tweeter more closely than that. I'll try to find some good material and give it an ear test. Thank you for educating me about the "break-in" issue. I think it would be unlikely that anything was damaged by my leaving the CD changer playing during the day because I left it at a very comfortable listening level; I don't think anyone would've called it loud.

I really do think some component of what's going on here is probably the "psychological break-in" factor on my part. Today is only the 11th day I've had them, and I've not gotten to listen to them every day. In another 10 days so I want to hook the Polks back up in place of the M60's for comparison. I think the difference will be more apparent to me then.

Thanks for all the links, Ajax. Some good reading material I look forward to delving into. \:\)

CD

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