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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 6:39 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 2:00 pm
Posts: 498
Location: Rio Rancho, NM, US
Just wondering if anyone here has gotten good results from using the Cardas speaker setup formula.

http://www.cardas.com/room_setup_calculators.php

My room is smallish at 14 x 10; generally I always use my tried and true method of placing my stand-mounted monitors at least 36-inches from the front wall, several feet from the side walls and then making additional adjustments in small increments as well as making sure that the speakers and listening position form an equilateral triangle.

According to the Cardas calculator, my speakers will have to be moved at least another 12 inches away from the front wall and moved quite a bit closer to each other than the manufacturer recommends but I'm going to try it anyway. I'll report my findings sometime next week.

To be continued....

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 8:42 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jun 23, 2012 9:12 am
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Location: Windsor, CO, US
Steve, I have used the Cardas method many times. I was a Cardas dealer and George even showed me how to do his method of setup. I found it works very well most of the time. Sure there are exceptions, but I've had great success.

Here is another setup method from a guy I know very well. He owns Soundings in Denver. It works so well that even Sumiko has adopted it as there preferred method.

http://www.soundingshifi.com/masterset/
http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=60819.0

Each method has pros and cons. I have found where one works well, the other does not and vice versa. Try each one and see which one works the best. These are the best that I have found.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 3:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 2:00 pm
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Location: Rio Rancho, NM, US
OK thanks Brad...much obliged.

I'll try the Cardas first because it's less labor intensive and if I'm dissatisfied I'll give the Master Set a whirl. But before I even move 1 speaker, it's time for 3 consecutive nights of treatment with this:
Attachment:
MDT01041.jpg
MDT01041.jpg [ 42.19 KiB | Viewed 413 times ]



An audiophool's best friend and an indispensable therapy that I revisit about 4 or 5 times a year. Highly recommended.

Just FYI: if you don't think you have an issue with earwax build-up, you're in denial. Not you, Brad...I'm speaking to the USAM community as a whole. Just do it!

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:27 pm 
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Posts: 141
Location: Windsor, CO, US
"An audiophool's best friend and an indispensable therapy that I revisit about 4 or 5 times a year. Highly recommended."

Completely agree. I use the same Debrox in my ears a couple of times a year. It's amazing how much better my hearing is following each application. I also highly recommend it!

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-Rob Gordon-


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 6:44 am 
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Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2012 5:48 pm
Posts: 6
Location: Cary, NC, US
I use the Cardas planar setup calculator. It works very well and I get good measured results. It places the speakers in a location where there is minimal excitation of room modes, so in my case there is one major room mode, but the rest of the response is pretty good. There are locations that will reinforce a particular frequency range, but this one seems to offer the most neutral low frequencies. I also found that having the speakers a bit closer together improved imaging for my Maggies. YMMV as always :)


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:18 pm 
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Well I consider my experiment with the Cardas calculator to be a success but one with a few caveats.

My room is a work-in-progress; the only absorptive surfaces are the carpeting and my listening chair...everything else in the room is reflective. I may hang a 4' x 6' Navaho rug on the rear wall and see if it improves the overall room acoustic response.

I started off with the speakers being 48-inches from the front wall (measured from the wall to the front baffle) and 18-inches from the side wall (measured from the wall to the center of the woofer). Each speaker was toed-in slightly so that the tweeter was on-axis with the listening position.

JM Reynaud recommends that as a starting point all their speakers (stand-mount and floorstanding) be placed at least 6 to 10 feet apart; my Bliss Silvers were 80-inches from woofer-center to woofer-center but I suspected that with this configuration that each speaker was too close to their corresponding side wall. The soundstage was as wide as the speaker footprint with a very stable center image but not much was music was emanating from outside of the speaker boundaries. So I was planning on moving the speakers away from the side walls and closer together anyway but not as much as the Cardas calculator recommended.

With my room width at 116-inches, the calculator recommended a distance of 52-inches from the front wall to the front baffle and 32-inches from the side walls to the woofer-center. So the speakers ended up being just 4-feet from woofer-center to woofer-center; 2-feet less than the minimum recommended by Reynaud. I decided to orient the speakers without any toe-in at all to see how they’d sound even though this would be an apples to oranges comparison since the speakers were toed-in with my initial setup. When I was done making the necessary changes my brain was telling me no way this is going to sound good; they are simply too close together. But nothing ventured nothing gained as they say.

I warmed up the system with a Holly Cole CD and left the room for about 20 minutes. When I returned I replayed several cuts and turned up the volume a bit. Everything sounded OK but certainly nothing revelatory was happening. So I put on one of my reference CDs’: Joni Mitchell’s Night Ride Home. This CD does not have a lot of dynamic range but I’ve heard it many times so to say that I’m overly familiar with it is an understatement.

And it sounded OK but not great so I decided to adjust the speakers with an equal amount of toe-in as there was before I moved the speakers. And BAM! Now we’re getting somewhere! Joni’s voice was rock-solid in the center of the soundstage and the sparse instrumentation just fell into place into an arc around her: I would have to describe the soundstage as being a vertical oval extending 6 to 7 feet above the floor. But overall the width of the soundstage was definitely compromised with the speakers being so close together and there was not much musical information happening outside of the speaker boundaries as well. But this really didn’t concern me because what I was hearing sounded sooo damn good. The presentation was tight, focused, coherent and it just sounded...right.

So when Night Ride Home was over I played another reference CD: Alison Krauss and the Cox Family ~ I Know Who Holds Tomorrow. This disc is an absolute stunner; I’m not a big Gospel fan but the singing, playing, recording and production are about as good as it gets for Redbook. I listened to the entire CD and I have to say it sounded better than I’ve ever heard it before. Positively mesmerizing. Other than the width of the imaging and soundstaging being somewhat diminished, there was an unequivocal improvement in the overall sq and very little to complain about.

So yes, sports fans, this Cardas calculator is the real-deal. Can I improve upon these results with a little more customizing and experimentation? Maybe. Even though I might move each speaker a little closer to the side wall, I could easily live with this setup as is. I plan on listening to more of my reference CDs’ for the next few days/weeks before I decide to make any additional changes. We shall see…

Associated equipment:

Amplification: Lavardin IT
Source: Linn Ikemi
Speakers: JM Reynaud Bliss Silver w/ Magic II stands

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