Help EQing the subwoofer

Marcus Aseth

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it's almost 2 years now (I think ) that I attempt to EQ my subwoofer properly and the results have not been satisfactory so far, I've asked suggestion already in the past on this forum but the situation is still pretty much the same, so I'll try something different this time:
given I have an SVS SB-1000 pro, a umik mk-1 and a pair of Kali LP6-v2, using REW how do I proceed to time align the subwoofer to the speakers?

This below by the way is a measurement after my latest EQ (20 filters), I share it in case someone see something wrong I might be currently doing:
Capture.PNG
 
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Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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Twenty filters? That might be part of the problem. No curve needs that many filters.

A bass-only graph would be more helpful – 10-300 Hz.

What is your device for equalizing?

Regards,
Wayne
 

ddude003

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I noticed in another thread on another AV forum you use Equalizer APO... It might be nice for you to give us the full rundown on all the hardware and software us are using, how your sub is integrated into your system and the dimensions of the room...

If you have the time and want to try something a little different, grab yourself the newest version of REW and try this method by one of our members here at AVNirvana, Serkan Gür...
The step by step guide is at: https://drive.google.com/file/d/17BwTGv933w4id3B3PFHy2zjyijtgZLDX/view and the video, REW (Room EQ Wizard) tricks: Convolution with Inversion (no EQ filters) at:
 

Marcus Aseth

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Twenty filters? That might be part of the problem. No curve needs that many filters.

A bass-only graph would be more helpful – 10-300 Hz.

What is your device for equalizing?

Regards,
Wayne

14 filters are automatically calculated by REW EQ tool, the others are added by me to remove small peaks of 3db above the curve still present after the automatic EQ.
I'm not sure I understand the request, the range 20-300 (my sub goes down only to 20) is already visible in the image above, are you requesting an image of the graph without equalization?
I don't use devices, the filters are applied through Equalizer APO.

I noticed in another thread on another AV forum you use Equalizer APO... It might be nice for you to give us the full rundown on all the hardware and software us are using, how your sub is integrated into your system and the dimensions of the room...

If you have the time and want to try something a little different, grab yourself the newest version of REW and try this method by one of our members here at AVNirvana, Serkan Gür...
The step by step guide is at: https://drive.google.com/file/d/17BwTGv933w4id3B3PFHy2zjyijtgZLDX/view and the video, REW (Room EQ Wizard) tricks: Convolution with Inversion (no EQ filters) at:

The premise is always the same, I'm just some random guy who wants to listen to music while liking what I hear, so I have 0 technical audio knowledge.
My listening position is primarily a gaming PC setup, so I have my desk centered on the room with the pc monitor on top and the two speakers to the sides, the subwoofer is placed on the floor behind the desk roughly 2m away in front of me, centered.
The gear I'm using is:
・A pair of studio monitors Kali LP6-v2
・Subwoofer SVS SB-1000 Pro
・an interface to control the volume Behringer UMC-22
・for measuring, REW with umik-1
・for applying the EQ, Equalizer APO

The interface is connected to my PC through USB and it's output goes to the input ports of the subwoofer, while the output ports of the subwoofer go to the Kalis.

I can follow clear instructions and video tutorials even if I don't understand what I'm doing or why, so if I have your help, I think this can be solved.
Below is a top view image of my room. In yellow are shown 5 homemade absorption panel hanged to the wall, they are 120 cm x 60 cm x 18cm filled with rockwool, so more treatment is out of the question because I have no more money for it :\
Finally, I've watched that video tutorial you linked and I would like to try it, the problem is that it doesn't mention anything about subwoofers so even if I do that for the speakers alone then I don't know how to properly integrate the sub in it and I would mess everything up.
If I am to follow a tutorial, I kind of need one that has a 2.1 setup in mind.
I really need to stress the fact not only I have 0 technical audio knowledge, but I don't think I'm smart enough to understand 90% of it even if you where to explain to me everything, so I can't simply take what's shown in the tutorial and go from there filling the gaps to make it all work, I really need a tutorial that has the subwoofer in mind as well.

Capture.PNG
 
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JStewart

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it's almost 2 years now (I think ) that I attempt to EQ my subwoofer properly and the results have not been satisfactory so far,

What is it about the results that you find unsatisfactory?

using REW how do I proceed to time align the subwoofer to the speakers?

To align with REW’s alignment tool it’s necessary to:
use a Timing Reference in REW for the measurements.
measure the mains without the sub.
measure the sub without the mains.
apply delays to either the sub or the mains depending upon the measurement timing.

Applying delays is going to be limited in this setup. In this setup delay can only be applied to the subwoofer using the phase control. The amount of delay available in the subwoofer phase control is itself quite limited.

Challenge 1 - a Umik usb mic can only be used with REW “acoustic” timing reference method. Can this be done with this setup? I think the answer is no because in this setup the timing reference speaker itself will be included in the measurement.
(Note that with the Behringer “loop back” timing is likely available but will require a different mic. Not having used this method, someone else will need to help with questions about it. )

Challenge 2 - will the delay available on the sub’s phase control be sufficient? This question assumes that delay of the sub is needed vs delay of the mains. With the present relative locations of the mains and sub to each other, this should be the case. Also the amount of delay available on the sub via it’s phase control should be sufficient with the sub being 2 meters further away. I’m assuming the phase control is based on 80hz and therefore 180degrees will equate to just over 2 meters.
To confirm, SVS should be able to provide the amount of delay in milliseconds and meters for you.
(one must also assume the delays on both the svs and kali’s DSP electronics are approximately equal or ask each to provide the data.)

With this setup it may be best to forego the above alignment process and just take measurements with different phase settings on the sub and see what measures best. Perhaps starting with 0, 45, 90, 135, and 180 phase settings. My guess is the best result will be between 90 and 180 based on my assumption above for the phase control.
 

Marcus Aseth

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What is it about the results that you find unsatisfactory?

I believe mostly is me noticing something on a subconscious level, meaning most of the times I am not aware of what is wrong with it and what's bothering me, but still something is not right and needs fixing, that's why I am randomly investigating into alignment.
I've attempted to equalize it dozen and dozen of times, often there is the feeling that I am "outside of the music" (which I don't like at all) and that corresponds with me equalizing to a flat curve, instead when I bump the bass region 3db I feel "enveloped by the music" which sounds A LOT better but often brings other problems like too much bass in the room, or some other problem to which I cannot even point my finger, because as soon I am done equalizing I listen to it, then I listen again without EQ and often I'm like "it sounded better before...what the hʻell!" despite the crazy peaks and dips in the non-equalized setup... so I won't doubt anyone that tells me something like "you're ruining the sound with those filters" or "is not all about the SPL graph"

With this setup it may be best to forego the above alignment process and just take measurements with different phase settings on the sub and see what measures best. Perhaps starting with 0, 45, 90, 135, and 180 phase settings. My guess is the best result will be between 90 and 180 based on my assumption above for the phase control.

I've actually did some experimentation with this recently, the SVS subwoofer has a low pass filter with a slope you can change, and in my test 12db slope goes best with 90° phase while 24db slope goes best with 0° phase, does this make sense and are those related somehow or is just me misunderstanding measurement and jumping to the wrong conclusions?
You're suggesting to measure the sub alone, correct? (since you only mention the sub, I assume that's the case)
The thing is if I measure the full system I might have a huge and wide dip at 90Hz with the sub set to a certain phase, and it get magically filled in by changing the phase, so I doubt it would help to measure it in a vacuum ignoring the speakers and the way it interacts with them.
You say to "see what measures best", what tab sould I look for that and what should I be looking for?
I should point out this is pretty much "leaving me to my own devices" which only failed so far...
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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14 filters are automatically calculated by REW EQ tool...
The Target Curve should be situated about halfway between the worse peaks and troughs (excluding nulls) before running the auto EQ function. If you had it too low or too high, that could account for the excessive number of recommended filters.

Aside from that:

...the others are added by me to remove small peaks of 3db above the curve still present after the automatic EQ.
Filters with gain values that small in a subwoofer will not be audible with program material, so there’s no point in using them. Likewise, filters with ultra-tight Q values, especially if they are only a few dB in gain. As such, any filters like that REW auto-generated could be eliminated with no audible penalty.

Really, all that’s needed for an audible improvement is to eliminate the worse peaks and troughs in a curve. If that requires more than 3-5 filters, you probably have placement issues, or the Target is not properly aligned. An audible improvement is the goal, but people seem to automatically equate that with a pretty graph. Might want to look up my article on minimal EQ.

I'm not sure I understand the request, the range 20-300 (my sub goes down only to 20) is already visible in the image above, are you requesting an image of the graph without equalization?
It’s easier for us to evaluate a “zoomed” graph, such as the examples below, than one that’s a tiny corner of a larger one. A baseline graph along with an equalized one that shows filter placement would be helpful. Vertical scaling of ~45-105 dB is best for this.


eq3_original_positions-jpg.jpg

fr-compare-jpg.jpg


Just based on the graph and room layout pictures you posted, I expect that moving the sub to the left corner may well eliminate the deep null you have between 40-50 Hz. Plus, it looks like you could use a house curve. I have an article on that, too. :)

Regards,
Wayne
 

Anatoliy Gavrilov

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это измерение после моего последнего эквалайзера (20 фильтров), я делюсь им на случай, если кто-то увидит что-то не так, что я сейчас делаю:
[/ЦИТИРОВАТЬ]


Это измерение в логарифмической шкале?
 

Marcus Aseth

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Filters with gain values that small in a subwoofer will not be audible with program material
actually, those where on the speakers, around 300Hz

Also I've did one better, attached below 8 measurement without any EQ .
5 are from the current setup while the last 3 have the subwoofer moved to the left corner, but that didn't produced any change in the 45Hz range.
 

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  • measurements.mdat
    11.5 MB · Views: 15

serko70

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it's almost 2 years now (I think ) that I attempt to EQ my subwoofer properly and the results have not been satisfactory so far, I've asked suggestion already in the past on this forum but the situation is still pretty much the same, so I'll try something different this time:
given I have an SVS SB-1000 pro, a umik mk-1 and a pair of Kali LP6-v2, using REW how do I proceed to time align the subwoofer to the speakers?

This below by the way is a measurement after my latest EQ (20 filters), I share it in case someone see something wrong I might be currently doing:
View attachment 55228
You can easily optimize your setup with MSO (multi sub optimizer). It's a free tool and will work with a single sub and fronts as well.
 
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Marcus Aseth

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If you have the time and want to try something a little different, grab yourself the newest version of REW and try this method by one of our members here at AVNirvana, Serkan Gür...
I've just finished following that video tutorial and I must say, I'm quite disappointed (although this is a recurring scenario lol)
After applying the convolution file to Equalizer APO and measuring again in REW, there was virtually no change, it did nothing.
Here's all the measurement got following that tutorial plus the final measurement with the convolution applied:
 

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  • measurements.mdat
    17.2 MB · Views: 15

ddude003

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According to the above picture of the room, and thank you for this additional information, your main listening position is in the dead center of the room with your left and right speakers somewhere along side of you? And your sub dead center against the front wall? If this is all true, is there some reason you don't try a more traditional approach with your left and right speakers near the front wall, like 1/3rd from the left corner and 1/3 from the right corner... Of course having a computer monitor a few feet from your face will impact how your perceive the sound... I used to cover my flat screen tv with a wide band absorber when not using the tv... I might also take a absorber from each side and place them in the corners... You can place old rags, clothes, towels, etc wadded up behind them to fill the space... Bass absorber need to be several inches, 6 inches or more, thick.

Additionally, it seems your sub is run from the left and right stereo channels not from a separate 3rd channel or LFE channel... If this is the case, then you should be able to sample left + sub and right + sub like any two speaker setup once you get the subs crossover, gain and phase dialed in... This is how I run my 2 channel plus sub... Or, try MSO as Serkan suggested above...

As @Wayne A. Pflughaupt points out above "The Target Curve should be situated about halfway between the worse peaks and troughs (excluding nulls)"...

I'll allow Serkan (@serko70) to comment on your latest EQ test posted above, as this is his method... His method worked wonders with my system/room/ears/brain...
 
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Marcus Aseth

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Apologize to Serkan, is not his method that failed, as I've just realized somewhere inbetween following steps I've completely destroyed Equalizer APO. I've tryied to uninstall it, reinstall it, restart, nothing, the filters are not being applied anymore.
This software is simply not reliable.
There is a better free alternative to Equalizer APO?
 

Marcus Aseth

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UPDATE: : now I belive is not Equalizer APO fault, is the new version of REW I've installed which is ignoring EQ APO modifications somehow, how do I tell REW to not bypass it?
 

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Very sorry @Marcus Aseth, I use Macs for all my music processing needs... And I only use my windoz pc for av content storage and delivery and other data intensive business needs (financial time series)... I don't play music directly there... So, I don't know all the ins and outs of Equalizer APO or much about how REW interfaces with other windoz system sound processing...
 

JStewart

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UPDATE: : now I belive is not Equalizer APO fault, is the new version of REW I've installed which is ignoring EQ APO modifications somehow, how do I tell REW to not bypass it?

In REW is the output device the same device equalizer apo has the filters for AND is this output device explicitly selected in REW even if it’s the default device?
 
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it's almost 2 years now (I think ) that I attempt to EQ my subwoofer properly and the results have not been satisfactory so far, I've asked suggestion already in the past on this forum but the situation is still pretty much the same, so I'll try something different this time:
given I have an SVS SB-1000 pro, a umik mk-1 and a pair of Kali LP6-v2, using REW how do I proceed to time align the subwoofer to the speakers?

This below by the way is a measurement after my latest EQ (20 filters), I share it in case someone see something wrong I might be currently doing:
View attachment 55228
Here is a link to our tech blog which may help you out: https://deercreekaudio.com/tech-blog/f/stereo-21-22-subwoofer-optimization
Deer Creek Audio is and Authorized miniDSP dealer: https://deercreekaudio.com/about
 

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ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & Bass Traps...
The OP is using a Behringer UMC-22 as a usb interface for the mic in and stereo out to sub and sub to LR speakers... I wonder how it sounds with headphones?
 

JStewart

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I believe mostly is me noticing something on a subconscious level, meaning most of the times I am not aware of what is wrong with it and what's bothering me, but still something is not right and needs fixing, that's why I am randomly investigating into alignment.
I've attempted to equalize it dozen and dozen of times, often there is the feeling that I am "outside of the music" (which I don't like at all) and that corresponds with me equalizing to a flat curve, instead when I bump the bass region 3db I feel "enveloped by the music" which sounds A LOT better but often brings other problems like too much bass in the room, or some other problem to which I cannot even point my finger, because as soon I am done equalizing I listen to it, then I listen again without EQ and often I'm like "it sounded better before...what the hʻell!" despite the crazy peaks and dips in the non-equalized setup... so I won't doubt anyone that tells me something like "you're ruining the sound with those filters" or "is not all about the SPL graph"

You are describing, in part, the results of what Dr. Floyd Toole calls the Circle of Confusion which can’t be fixed with EQ. Read about it in this article if you wish.


Dr. Toole also rightly pointed out we can mitigate the circle of confusion effects with bass and treble controls which are mostly lacking in today’s equipment. With Eq APO you can use shelf filters which are what bass and treble controls are. For example try a low shelf, 105Hz, Q=1, gain=+2 if the track sounds a little bass shy and gain=-2 if it’s a little bass heavy. Actually you can adjust the gain to taste.
 

Marcus Aseth

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In REW is the output device the same device equalizer apo has the filters for AND is this output device explicitly selected in REW even if it’s the default device?

it wasn't, thanks, I guess all the settings I had adjusted ages ago following some tutorial got lost now (despite the fact I have updated REW rather than uninstalling and re-installing) x_x
is the EXCL choice correct? There is another below with the same name but without EXCL, not sure which one I'm supposed to use or what the difference is
Capture.PNG


The OP is using a Behringer UMC-22 as a usb interface for the mic in and stereo out to sub and sub to LR speakers... I wonder how it sounds with headphones?

I cannot say, my headphones are usb as well so they cannot attach there
Also I'm not using the mic port. The umik is usb and goes to the pc
 

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Yamaha RX-A850 Pro (the other 5 channels lol)
Computer Audio
MacBook Pro, Custom i7 7700k De-lid 2xAsus1080ti GFX Audirvana Studio, Hang Loose Convolver, Pulsar Massive & 8200, LiquidSonics, SoX
DAC
Chord Electronics Ltd. Qutest
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
Sony UBP-X700 /M Ultra HD 4K HDR & PS5
Front Speakers
Martin Logan ElectroMotion ESL
Center Channel Speaker
Martin Logan Motion C2
Surround Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4
Surround Back Speakers
Martin Logan Motion 4 (yes, another set of these)
Subwoofers
Martin Logan Dynamo 700
Other Speakers or Equipment
Cifte 12AU7 NOS & Genalex Gold Lion Tubes in Pre
Video Display Device
Samsung The Premiere LSP7T UST Laser Projector
Screen
Elite Screens Aeon CLR3 0.8 Gain 103-inch
Remote Control
PrimaLuna, Lumin iApp, Samsung & Yamaha
Streaming Equipment
Netgear Nighthawk S8000 Streaming Switch, Lumin U1 Mini Streamer Transport
Streaming Subscriptions
QoBuz Studio Premier, Amazon Prime & Netflix
Other Equipment
ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & Bass Traps...
Maybe this is a dumb question... And... Do you have an NVDIA graphics card/device in your system? And if you do, why aren't you using that instead of the Behringer UMC-22 for high quality stereo output?
 

JStewart

Senior AV Addict
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Dec 5, 2017
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it wasn't, thanks, I guess all the settings I had adjusted ages ago following some tutorial got lost now (despite the fact I have updated REW rather than uninstalling and re-installing) x_x
is the EXCL choice correct? There is another below with the same name but without EXCL, not sure which one I'm supposed to use or what the difference is
View attachment 55391

The output device should be the Bheringer, or whatever the usb driver name for the bheringer is, should it not?
 

Marcus Aseth

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Apr 22, 2022
Messages
49
The OP is using a Behringer UMC-22 as a usb interface for the mic in and stereo out to sub and sub to LR speakers... I wonder how it sounds with headphones?
For misterious reasons the PC detects it as "USB Audio CODEC", therefore my choice is between vanilla CODEC or EXCL CODEC :)
 

JStewart

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Joined
Dec 5, 2017
Messages
2,069
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Central FL
Maybe this is a dumb question... And... Do you have an NVDIA graphics card/device in your system? And if you do, why aren't you using that instead of the Behringer UMC-22 for high quality stereo output?

OP said Bheringer used as a volume control. I’m with you though. If I had a sound card with a separate sub channel that’s the way I’d try to go. Makes it much easier to Eq and time align.
 
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