Mac REW EQ Processor?

Jimmy9

Member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
11
My AV System  
Main Amp
EL34 Valves
Additional Amp
Yamaha CA1000
Front Speakers
Yamaha NS1000XW
Other Speakers or Equipment
Turntables, Valves, Solid States and a Mac
All of my digital music for my 2ch system is played via a new Mac Mini.

I'd like to be able to apply the REW EQ to all audio from the mac, via software.

Is there a software audio processing tool available. Something like Amarra SQ? This one lets you run Dirac Files, if you have Dirac. I'd rather use REW EQ.

many thanks
 

dc2bluelight

Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2018
Messages
63
All of my digital music for my 2ch system is played via a new Mac Mini.

I'd like to be able to apply the REW EQ to all audio from the mac, via software.

Is there a software audio processing tool available. Something like Amarra SQ? This one lets you run Dirac Files, if you have Dirac. I'd rather use REW EQ.

many thanks
I didn't see where Amarra SQ could "run Dirac files", but didn't dig very deeply. But where do you get that Dirac File in the first place? You need to perform measurements, and that would be true of REW (which is not an equalizer at all, it's a measurement system), or anything else. Otherwise you're adjusting by ear.

REW, Dirac, Audyssey, all of them require measurements of your speakers and room to develop their EQ curves. Then the measured curve is inverted and adjusted to hit a target curve, EQ filters calculated, then loaded into something that can perform the actual EQ. How the data is collected varies, but all involve taking several measurements with a mic in several positions. REW can calculate EQ and load to a whole list of hardware devices, the others are pretty specific and proprietary, but I'm not finding much software-based EQ for the Mac for any of it.

IK Media has their ARC System 2.5, essentially Audyssey MultEQ XT32 in software with a measurement mic. Equalizes all audio through the Mac, and is targeted at studios and professionals, not that you couldn't use it at home.

However, miniDSP has a very inexpensive 2-channel EQ box, if you add a mic and required software plugin, it's under $200. It sits between your Mac Mini and amplifier/powered speakers. Frankly, having used exactly that device for equalizing a commercial sound system, it's pretty great, and the best deal on earth. It also means you could plug in an iPod or other device and get the same EQ. With miniDSP and REW you get much more control over your EQ than you get with 1K Media/Audyssey, and ultimately I think its a better solution. REW is not exactly a simple application, and there is a learning curve, where Audyssey is very self-inclusive and leads you by the hand. But learning is what you want to do, ultimately, and there's lots of help, including REW's developer in person, here.

BTW, I assumed speakers, but if you're using headphones you have a different EQ issue entirely. Still doable with REW/miniDSP, but very different, and measurements become a significant problem. Fortunately there are measurements online for many headphones.
 

Jimmy9

Member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
11
My AV System  
Main Amp
EL34 Valves
Additional Amp
Yamaha CA1000
Front Speakers
Yamaha NS1000XW
Other Speakers or Equipment
Turntables, Valves, Solid States and a Mac
Amarra SQ runs dirac files via IRC. I created a Dirac file using a free trial of Dirac Live. I have since loaded my REW EQ into Jriver trial...none of these trials convince me to buy their software.

I have measured my room extensively and i have used REW to generate a Parabolic EQ Filter. I used this filter as a convolution file in Jriver. I was hoping there was a system wide software i could use the EQ filters to affect all audio from the mac mini.

I have considered buying a dedicated MiniDSP to handle this, but i wanted to prove it had a positive effect via software before i invest in hardware.
 

dc2bluelight

Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2018
Messages
63
Room EQ and room tuning in general can be quite challenging. It can be very interactive, iterative, and a good deal of "technique" is involved in getting good measurements as well as generating a resulting EQ filter set.

What I'm hearing here is that you've tried two of the premier measurement and EQ systems and didn't like the results. I certainly understand your reservations in buying hardware when your software-only efforts have fallen short. I can't think of a good reason why dedicated hardware DSP would be radically different from your software implementation either.

After years of calibrating rooms for people I've found three general reasons why the results are not perceived as an improvement:

1. Measurements not properly taken, so the resulting EQ is not correct
2. Auto EQ system fails because required correction is "out of range" (I've found this with both Audyssey and REW-generated filters, but at least with REW you can make changes that get better results, with Audyssey you're kind of stuck with it).
3. The pre-EQ sound quality has become "accepted" as normal, so even if the post-EQ version is technically improved, it's different, and therefore not viewed as an improvement.

I'm a little concerned that you generated a "Parabolic EQ Filter", when you should have generated a set of parametric filters (it's almost never just one), but I don't know what you've done or how you've done it, and I'm not about to coach here. Suffice it to say that many people trying Room EQ make similar errors, like using a single mic position, the wrong mic position, using an uncalibrated mic, not verifying the results (other than listening), and a host of others. I'm not saying you've done any of this, just that there are many common user errors to consider. Measurement quality is where most of the variables are.

Most of the work in getting room EQ to function optimally is on the measurement side, followed closely in the case of REW by interacting with the Filter Tasks settings, iteratively, to optimize the resulting curve. In the case of Audyssey MultEQ XT 32 with the Pro kit, there are also some optimization tasks to work with once good measurements are collected. Then, verify the result regardless of what system is used, again, using the proper measurement techniques. It's not at all unusual to find the result is other than what is expected or desired.

Don't be too quick to give up. Professionals who equalize commercial cinemas and dubbing stages with Dolby equipment have to make several attempts at manual EQ before it all settles in. And yes, they verify too!
 

Jimmy9

Member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
11
My AV System  
Main Amp
EL34 Valves
Additional Amp
Yamaha CA1000
Front Speakers
Yamaha NS1000XW
Other Speakers or Equipment
Turntables, Valves, Solid States and a Mac
Hi there, thank for the reply. What i am saying is, i dont want to run all my music through Jriver, i would prefer a system wide way of using the convolution file. So far the only system wide method i can find is minidsp HW. Amarra SQ lets you use the output of Dirac Live...but the cost of Dirac Live, esp when only experimenting is way too expensive (which i find crazy, surely selling lots and lots of units is important for new products.)

When i used Dirac, i just followed the instructions and did the 9 measurement routine. But since Dirac cannot playback/use the filter files on Mac at the moment i have to find another way of using the Dirac Live Filters - eg Amarra.

So i put more effort into REW and generated a Filter from REW, i used in JRiver, but using JRiver is not ideal...hence my question...how can i use the the REW filters on my mac mini, regardless of the playback software?
 

dc2bluelight

Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2018
Messages
63
Try menuBUS. It's a free Audio Units system wide host (there'a paid version also) and will apply an AU plugin to everything passing through system audio. You can select Apple's NbandEQ and get as many bands of parametric EQ as you want. You won't be able to directly import your REW filter results, but you can enter the data manually as Frequency, Width and Gain. When you generate your REW filter set use the TMREQ equalizer so when you read your filter data it can be entered into NbandEQ using the correct Width figures.
 

Jimmy9

Member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
11
My AV System  
Main Amp
EL34 Valves
Additional Amp
Yamaha CA1000
Front Speakers
Yamaha NS1000XW
Other Speakers or Equipment
Turntables, Valves, Solid States and a Mac
any other ideas? so far looks like jriver/roon type software is the only way.
 

ddude003

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 13, 2017
Messages
319
Location
Somewhere Northeast of Kansas City Missouri
My AV System  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
PrimaLuna Dialogue Premium TubePre (2 channel+sub)
Main Amp
McIntosh MC152 SS Amp (2 channel)
Additional Amp
Yamaha RX-A850 Pro (the other 5 channels lol)
Other Amp
LuminU1 Mini Streamer/Transport & ChordQutest DAC
Universal / Blu-ray / CD Player
LG Blue-Ray
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
Sony TV KDL50W700B
Remote Control
Roon, Audirvana+, QoBuzStudioP & Lumin iApp...
Other Equipment
ThrowRug, SaddleBlankets, WideBand & BaseTraps...
Hi Jimmy9, Have a look at Audirvana Plus... I run it on my MacBook Pro and like it a lot... It has AudioUnits that will let you filter and Eq until your hearts content... dc2bluelight has done a nice job of covering REW how to and AudioUnits...

Are you running straight out of your Mac into your Yamaha Integrated Amp or do you have a Pre/Pro/DAC your driving somewhere along the line?
 
Last edited:

Jimmy9

Member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
11
My AV System  
Main Amp
EL34 Valves
Additional Amp
Yamaha CA1000
Front Speakers
Yamaha NS1000XW
Other Speakers or Equipment
Turntables, Valves, Solid States and a Mac
I messaged menubus they havent even heard of REW and didint know if i could import the REW EQ filters.
 

dc2bluelight

Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2018
Messages
63
I messaged menubus they havent even heard of REW and didint know if i could import the REW EQ filters.
Of course, I'm sorry if what I wrote inplied otherwise. You make your REW measurements, generate the filters, read and manually enter the filter parameters. See my post above beginning "Try menuBUS".
 

Jimmy9

Member
Thread Starter
Joined
Apr 20, 2018
Messages
11
My AV System  
Main Amp
EL34 Valves
Additional Amp
Yamaha CA1000
Front Speakers
Yamaha NS1000XW
Other Speakers or Equipment
Turntables, Valves, Solid States and a Mac
No need to apologise, i appreciate you comments. I am trying to get it to work. the routing is not straight fwd and there is no doco. I manually create the filters, but still trying to work it out. thanks
 

arnold

New Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2018
Messages
2
My AV System  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
denon
No need to apologise, i appreciate you comments. I am trying to get it to work. the routing is not straight fwd and there is no doco. I manually create the filters, but still trying to work it out. thanks
Hello,

Wondering any update on mac system wide menubus?
 

arnold

New Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2018
Messages
2
My AV System  
Preamp, Processor or Receiver
denon
Try menuBUS. It's a free Audio Units system wide host (there'a paid version also) and will apply an AU plugin to everything passing through system audio. You can select Apple's NbandEQ and get as many bands of parametric EQ as you want. You won't be able to directly import your REW filter results, but you can enter the data manually as Frequency, Width and Gain. When you generate your REW filter set use the TMREQ equalizer so when you read your filter data it can be entered into NbandEQ using the correct Width figures.
Hello,

Using as per your instruction with uimik-1 and sound very bright from HDMI MacBook pro 2011 to denon avr-x540bt. Sounds great but very bright highs like my audio technical open backs headsets ad-900. Do you have or suggest a demo video? Thanks!
 
Top Bottom