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Author Topic: Paul's Orelino speakers vs my MKII's  (Read 11869 times)
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manisandher
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« on: September 16, 2014, 08:04:21 pm »

I popped into Paul's (Scroobius's) place on my way back home from a meeting in London earlier today. And oh boy am I glad I did...

I didn't spend long there, but long enough to know that Paul has now achieved quite an amazing sound. I really can't remember the last time I was so impressed with a system. Sitting quite a way back from the speakers, the sound is totally coherent and holistic. We played a number of tracks from different albums, some not particularly well recorded, and in all cases, the sheer musicality emanating from the speakers was lovely. Nothing false-sounding, just utterly natural. I would swap the sound that I'm getting from my system for Paul's in a heartbeat.

What was really, really interesting for me was the quality of his bass. His Orelino MkII speakers have 3x 12" drivers per channel. My Orelo MkII speakers have 3x 15" drivers per channel. My speakers have 50% more radiating area than Paul's... and yet his bass is fuller, more tuneful, and quite frankly way more realistic than mine. On my system, a double bass sounds as though it's made of cardboard, in comparison to his.

Maybe his room is a contributing factor... I dunno. What I do know is that my bass is not 'right'. And I am determined to get to the bottom of this...

As a starter, a question for Bert and Peter. Apart from the obvious size difference, what, if any, are the differences between the bass drivers used in the Orelo vs. the Orelino? Are the 12" drivers more 'compliant' in any way, shape or form?

Mani.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2014, 08:42:19 am by PeterSt » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2014, 08:44:13 pm »


Maybe his room is a contributing factor...



The ROOM is the thing, always!!!! 75% of the SQ is the room!!!!


Joachim
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« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2014, 10:20:06 pm »

Especially for the bass, the room is king.  You can tinker at the edges with tweaks for the speakers (DSP, drivers etc.) but in the end the room is by far the major dominating influence below 100Hz, maybe 200Hz in some rooms.
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« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2014, 07:49:27 am »


Hi Mani - I guess the question for Peter is how did these Orelino's sound compared with the MkII's in his room?

Paul
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« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2014, 08:04:42 am »

The ROOM is the thing, always!!!! 75% of the SQ is the room!!!!

Especially for the bass, the room is king.

I hear you guys. But you know, I've owned a whole bunch of different speakers these past 5 years or so, and the bass has sounded totally different from all of them... in the same room. My Wilson-Benesch Chimera speakers were 'boom, boom, boom' - way too much unfocused bass from their 4x 10" bass drivers and two downward-firing ports. The Quad 2905s had a beautifully balanced sound, but just not enough dynamics to sound real. I could go on...

Yes, the room may be a contributing factor. But I'm convinced that Paul's Orelinos would sound as good in my room as they do in his.

My Orelos should sound at least as good. I have two hypotheses as to why they currently don't:

1) My Orelo 15" bass drivers are simply not burned-in/loosened up yet. This really could be the main problem. Even at fairly high volumes, they are hardly moving. So how long would it take for them to loosen up under normal usage?

2) The Orelino 12" drivers are simply 'better'. I'll leave defining 'better' for now.

In any event, I'm determined to get the sound I want... in my room.

Mani.
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« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2014, 08:09:57 am »

I guess the question for Peter is how did these Orelino's sound compared with the MkII's in his room?

Yep I suppose. Nick heard them in Peter's room and said they sounded amazing. I especially asked about their bass performance, and he said it was outstanding. Again, I strongly suspect they sounded as good at Peter's place as they now do at yours, Paul.

Also, when I was at your place Paul, I made a point of listening to them 'near field' too, to try to eliminate the room as much as possible. And it was clear to me that their overall character was very much still there.

Mani.
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« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2014, 09:36:31 am »

Hi there Mani,

I hope this isn't going to be too confusing because you turned this into a "Mani's MKII's" subject right from the start, with misleading title. So I changed that title. Hope it's OK.

[ at first I had a way vague story here, but 2 pages further I thought it all was irrelevant, so I scratched that ]

At this moment all I can say - and should say - is : let's work this out. I have a few ideas which very very far relates to my own experience (with the both speakers), but it is difficult to make that concrete because of the different (DSP) filters applied. It will take some time, knowing that I myself am actually still working on it, which goes in slow steps. But for example, with the new BNC cable appliance all is already so much different that it needs a sort of start all over. I mean, the bass is so delicate (is so much under influence of the smallest changes) that it really takes "nothing" to require that complete overhaul.

A note in a quite other direction, and Paul actually refers to it a couple of times in his "review" (Re: In anticipation of my "nearly" new Orelino Speakers WOW WOW) is how the speaker is dominant over the room. This really is so and is intended to be. However, what Paul also clearly describes is how his "poor behaving" room, makes it a mixture of that dominancy and his room after all; you won't have that (and say now for the worse). So if no mixture is there from "paper moving" and feedback from the room, you're left with hearing the paper only. So, not much of a real surprise. But also not bad if only that "paper" as you describe it can be turned into a sufficient amount of warmth.
Still I recognize what you are saying about this and it is only that I do not suffer from this myself. Not sure, but I guess my room applies enough "loading" to overrule the effect. About this (too) I have some ideas and this for sure will require some time to work out.

Most important (I hope) is that I am with you. Crucial was and is such descriptions from the comparisons you made. So, a good thing to start off with.

Peter
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« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2014, 12:09:41 pm »

The ROOM is the thing, always!!!! 75% of the SQ is the room!!!!

Especially for the bass, the room is king.

I hear you guys. But you know, I've owned a whole bunch of different speakers these past 5 years or so, and the bass has sounded totally different from all of them... in the same room. My Wilson-Benesch Chimera speakers were 'boom, boom, boom' - way too much unfocused bass from their 4x 10" bass drivers and two downward-firing ports. The Quad 2905s had a beautifully balanced sound, but just not enough dynamics to sound real. I could go on...

Yes, the room may be a contributing factor. But I'm convinced that Paul's Orelinos would sound as good in my room as they do in his.

My Orelos should sound at least as good. I have two hypotheses as to why they currently don't:

1) My Orelo 15" bass drivers are simply not burned-in/loosened up yet. This really could be the main problem. Even at fairly high volumes, they are hardly moving. So how long would it take for them to loosen up under normal usage?

2) The Orelino 12" drivers are simply 'better'. I'll leave defining 'better' for now.

In any event, I'm determined to get the sound I want... in my room.

Mani.

Hi Mani,

The rooms that I have heard that sound 'great' have all been measured and meticulously setup to get the bass as right as possible.  I have no doubt that each speaker system you have had in your room has caused a different room reaction and now you are using front loaded open baffle bass which is likely a different topology again. 

I think it likely that one of the reasons that Paul's Orelinos have good bass is that they are effectively a gazilion miles into the room because the OB's shoot back into a generally round conservatory.  The wings and midrange horn are quite directional and would probably let you get the speaker close to the wall without too many impacts, but that OB firing into all that space is in my eyes where Paul's magic is coming from.

If the room is the big problem, then playing with the Orelo MKII DSP is unlikely to yield much improvement because although it will change things it is unlikely to fix the problem.  However, measuring the bass in the room and getting some advice about room treatment and speaker position will likely give the biggest improvements.

Regards,

Anthony
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« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2014, 01:05:31 pm »

Quote
each speaker system you have had in your room has caused a different room reaction

Agree with that statement. Various speakers in this room have failed miserably. I remember trying a pair PMC transmission lines - they were dreadful. The Audio Notes AN/E took me ages to get a decent sound and I had to resort to positioning them within 8cm of the rear wall to get any decent bass at all.

The real surprise was the IPL transmission line speakers. The little S2 I made for my brother sounded fantastic. Then the S4's I made for a friend also sounded superb (although I have to say they sound much better with better controlled bass in the much smaller room they are currently in). The S5's sounded great in this room but they are big speakers and need a lot of room behind which my room could provide with the conservatory. The IPL speakers are the biggest bargain in sound quality terms of any hifi product I have come across.

So I totally agree it is not that a room inherently sounds good it is how it sounds with particular speakers and how they are positioned and how the room is treated etc etc.

Paul

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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2014, 01:19:20 pm »

Hi Anthony,

your Reply #7 hits the nail …….. .

In my previous listening room the distance from the speaker plan to the rear wall was appr. 2,10m and with some room treatments I had a “concert hall”. Now, due to room limitations, I have to place the speakers very near (appr. 0,7m) to the rear wall and all the magic of the concert hall is history.

Every speaker design (brand) needs a different care for the best sound, some likes to be nearer to the rear wall others not.

A distant friend bought the Dynaudio Evidence Platinum (http://blog.avstore.ro/dynaudio-evidence-platinum-4908/) six weeks ago, and he moved the speakers “around” his room to get the position where the sound “snapped in” until yesterday” (with the professional assistance of a HiFi friend)

To get the best performance out of a speaker is sometimes a demanding challenge, and sometimes it is not a "good idea" to visit friends with new audio equipment or very good listening rooms. (This happened to me when I left Peter and it took me a week for recovery)

Joachim
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« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2014, 08:42:08 pm »

Hi Mani,

a couple of years ago a speakers manuf. gave me the following rules for the speaker placement, and that works quite well.

Important is the distance (air) to the rear wall. The distance to the sides walls has to be adjusted by listening.

The distant “Dynaudio” friend had to go with his speakers very near to the side walls due to his relative small room and the SQ is now phenomenal.

----------------
The general rule for speaker placement involves the rule of 7ths and 5ths.  Basically what I do is measure the length and the width of the room.  You then find out what 1/7 of the length is and what 1/5 of the length is, and then find out what 1/7 of the width is and 1/5 of the width is.  For example, lets say your room is 8M long x 5M wide.  The chart would look like this:

Length of room = 8 meters = 800 centimeters
800 : 7 = 114.29 cm                         2/7 of room length = 228.57 cm
800 : 5 = 160 cm                               2/5 of room length = 320 cm

Width of room = 5 meters = 500 centimeters
500 : 7 = 71.43  cm                          2/7 of room width = 142.86 cm
500 : 5 = 100 cm                               2/5 of room width = 200 cm

The calculation for the length of the room tells you how far out into the room you should place the front center of the speaker from the wall behind it.  Choose one of the numbers from the length chart that would work with your room.  2/7ths has been our favorite in most rooms (but they are all good ratios).

The calculation for the width of the room tells you how far you should place the front center of the speaker from the nearest side wall (for each speaker).

-----------------------
For a first attempt check it out , and happy moving, which is easy you wrote some weeks ago.

Joachim


EDIT I: as a test signal I'm using a "pink noise". When you hear a ball in the middle between the speakers the placement is perfect.

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« Reply #11 on: October 05, 2014, 05:18:09 pm »


Maybe his room is a contributing factor... I dunno. What I do know is that my bass is not 'right'. And I am determined to get to the bottom of this...

Mani.

Hi Mani,

In the latest German paper "hifi & records" the content of an article is about room modes. In general - with freqencies up to appr. 300Hz "The room is in control" and above "The loudspeaker is in control".

You will find more informations under the keyword "Schroeder frequency equation" in the net.

Paul has a very special room. good

Joachim

***see also
http://www.amazon.com/Sound-Reproduction-Acoustics-Psychoacoustics-Loudspeakers/dp/0240520092
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« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2014, 07:59:01 pm »

Hey Joachim, thanks for your last two posts - I really appreciate how you're so willing to share knowledge.

In the past, I've tried following various 'golden ratio' suggestions with, I think, very good results. However, in all cases this was with infinite baffle speakers. The Orelos are open baffle, with a lot of bass energy being directed behind the speakers. The front wings obviously provide a barrier to this rear energy mixing and cancelling with the front energy. But as you kind of suggest, Paul's room seems to actually help harness this rear energy and use it in an extremely pleasing way.

Mani.
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« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2014, 09:21:23 pm »

Maybe I should do some room sweeps to investigate what is going on. Certainly the picture is not straightforward. All the IPL's I have tried in this room (S5, S4 and S2) sounded fantastic - really those speakers are just amazing regardless of price (and the pain of building them) - they also sound amazing in other rooms I have tried them in. The Audio Note AN/E's sounded good but they had to be set up in an extreme way to achieve a half decent result  -in truth the bass was never right with the an/e's. Before there have been PMC (transmission line) they sounded beyond awful. Then there were Quad ELS they also were dreadful in this room (in our previous house they sounded good). And way back when there were a pair of transmission lines I built mmm not good - that was before the equations / modelling was around to get the design right and too much was down to trial and error.

So I would not say that this room is a panacea for all speakers - not at all but just now with these Orelino's I am a very happy bunny and I shall post separately about latest experiences.

Just to say last night I was listening to some Latin music I have not heard for some time and I was astonished to hear sounds coming from all over the place. Really I have not heard anything like it on any other speakers (I used to listen to this album regularly on the AN/E's and IPL's). Sounds were coming from way outside the normal listening area - I was beginning to wonder if I had fallen asleep and was imagining it. Or just woken up in the middle of a street Fiesta - just sensational sound. But really it had to be down to a particular frequency being reflected off the side walls and creating an odd effect. Very impressive though.

Cheers

Paul
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621 Xeon 6120 LPS PC  -> Xeon Scalable 16/32 core with Hyperthreading On (all cores active) @~660MHz, 48GB, Windows 10 Pro 64 bit build 14393.0 from RAM, music on LAN / Engine#4 Adaptive Mode / Q1/-/3/4/5 = 14/-/1/1/1/ Q1Factor = 10 / Dev.Buffer = 4096 / ClockRes = 15ms / Memory = Straight Contiguous / Include Garbage Collect / SFS = 0.69  (max 140.19) / not Invert / Phase Alignment Off / Playerprio = Low / ThreadPrio = Realtime / Scheme = Core 3-5 / Not Switch Processors during Playback = Off/ Playback Drive none (see OS from RAM) / UnAttended (Just Start) / Always Copy to XX Drive (see OS from RAM) / Stop Desktop, Remaining, WASAPI and W10 services / Use Remote Desktop / Keep LAN - Off / WallPaper Off/ OSD Off (!) / Running Time Off / Minimize OS / XTweaks : Balanced Load = 35 / Nervous Rate = 10 / Cool when Idle = n.a / Provide Stable Power = 0 / Utilize Cores always = 1 / Time Performance Index = Optimal / Time Stability = Stable / *Arc Prediction Filtering (16x)* / Always Clear Proxy before Playback = On -> USB3 from MoBo -> Lush^2*A:B-W-Y-R, B:B-W-R* USB 1m00 -> Phisolator 24/768 Phasure NOS1a/G3 75B (BNC Out) async USB DAC, Driver v1.0.4b (16ms) -> B'ASS Current Amplifier -> *Blaxius^2 A:B-R, B:B-R* Interlink -> Orelino Active Open Baffle Horn Speakers.
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