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Smyth Research Realiser A16

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by jgazal, May 7, 2016.
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  1. phoenixdogfan
    I'm going to call there and get some information tomorrow. Just as they had AIX studios, I think Smyth ought to look into Blackbird. Not everyone wants to travel from the Eastern United States to California just to get a PRIR. I think if someone like Lorr Kramer wants to negotiate a partnership with standard rates with Blackbird or some other studio in Nashville, that would be a real selling point for the A16 going forward. If anyone has his email, I'd be more than happy to shoot him something after I talk to the Blackbird people tomorrow.
    esimms86 likes this.
  2. SergioPOE
    Would the difference between a studio like the one you guys are considering and a home theater room in your local hi-fi store with a 7.1.4 or even 9.1.6 set-up be big enough to justify all the additional hassle (and expense) of traveling out of town to get a measurement? In my case, I know of at least one store here in Madrid that has not one, but two screening rooms, each with a 7.2.4 set-up, and I'd imagine they want their set-up to be as good as possible so they can sell home theater systems. I would think that most major cities have at least one such hi-fi store, so I'm a little bit surprised of all this talk of traveling hours by plane to get a measurement done.
    How much better do you think a studio would be?
  3. phoenixdogfan
    I think the resistance of the owner to having the sonic signature of the room copied would be less b/c they're not selling the multi kilobuck merchandise in studio, and they are in the hifi store. However, if you find a store that will allow PRIRs of its speakers (especially its ultra high end speakers) by all means let everyone know, b/c it might merit a pilgrimage to your town, esp for someone on the Iberian peninsula in your case.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  4. Got the Shakes
    I actually tried contacting a few home theater stores and installers to see if they had an Atmos setup that I could pay them to sample. Not a single one has returned my calls or responded to my emails. Based on how good the 5.1 PRIR sounds that I made, if I could get one legit Atmos room captured I feel like I’d be all set for some time.
  5. sander99
    If you look at Dolby's own speaker placement recommendations you see that the 9 ear level speakers are basicly a standard 7.1 set up (speakers 2, 3, 6, 7 in the picture) extended with the front wide speakers (speakers 5 in the picture). I can not see exactly how they placed the speakers in the Blackbird, on the picture from the Blackbird it seems like the "side surrounds" are placed a little bit behind 90°, maybe a compromise for 5.1? I think that would be the only thing that may not be 100% to your liking, and the only thing that might need a little adjustment if it is a real problem for you (adjustment in 2 directions: one for your ideal 7.1 and one for your ideal 5.1 layout).

  6. Eich1eeF
    Check the photos of the studio in Nashville https://www.blackbirdstudio.com/studio-c - the amount of acoustic treatment they have installed there would be a clear detriment to selling any home theater equipment to most consumers. The studios take great pain to get the reverberation just right and the speakers as clean and as close to linear as possible, investing time and money that few dealers could afford. The dealer on the other hand might tune his demo room to be more flashy than accurate; some certainly do, others don't. However, getting a personal PRIR from a dealer's setup may be way better than a generic one from even the best room in the world, depending on how different your head is from the one used to record that PRIR.
  7. Eich1eeF
    Could someone who already has an A16 do me a favor and download any of the Dolby Atmos trailers (e.g. from https://www.dolby.com/us/en/guide/dolby-atmos-trailers.html, but I think the audiosphere trailer might be the best to check localization), run them through the A16 set up with the BBC room with head tracking disabled, and record and publish or PM me that recording? I suspect that the result won't work very well at all for me, just like any other artificial head recording (e.g. the Chesky binaural series) that I've gotten my hands on so far. Thanks.
  8. esimms86
    Several months ago I had contacted Gramophone, a boutique hifi chain with stores in Maryland, about having a PRIR made in one of their stores. The background is that they were one of the places identified by Smyth as being PRIR-friendly during the days when Smyth was selling the A8. I was hoping to have a PRIR made during a visit to my brother in Maryland. Bottom line, they said no as they no longer sold the A8 and, further, they had no one on staff who knew anything about the Smyth Realiser or how to make a PRIR. Their store had been previously very valuable to A8 users as they used to have people in their employ who were experienced and comfortable with making PRIRs. There’s only one Lorr Kramer(based in California) but there potentially could be a dozen or so folks in various stores/studios with the developed expertise to make quality PRIRs. This is what I am eventually hoping for, not just for myself but for all of us.

    Incidentally, it’s not in the least bit rare in the US for people to have friends and family scattered across the country. My wife has cousins in the Los Angeles area and, the next time we visit them, I am hopeful that I can link up with Darin Fong(OOYH) and have 2-3 PRIRs made at the home/homes of audiophiles with ridiculously high end systems between San Diego and LA. Darin does a side business of offering such a service / he’s developed a lot of experience of making PRIRs, even a couple of speakers at s time, and he has a number of contacts that he’s collected who have crazy expensive and well calibrated systems(according to him)and who are willing to folks like us model their systems for a fee; the downside is that Darin is currently limited to 7.1 or below; the upsides are that A8 compatible PRIRs work with the A16, plus, for an additional fee, Darin could use your PRIR to make a personalized preset for you for OOYH. Imagine having an optimized facsimile of the A8 experience on your laptop.

    My interest is mostly in music in 5.1 and quad(I’ve built up a sizable collection of both), so I have a larger interest in 5.1 and, of course, stereo listening through virtual modeled world class systems that I could never afford or accommodate in my home.

    Anyway, traveling from one part of the country to another is not such a crazy idea once you factor in having PRIRs made during well planned and coordinated family visits, vacations and, for some, business travel.

    - It would be wonderful if Lorr Kramer had a presence on a HeadFi thread devoted to information for A16 users.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  9. phoenixdogfan
    I have a slightly different philosophy. To me, there is one single optimum position to place a transducer in any room to get it to properly couple with that room. Once you've found it, it makes perfect sense to capture the various look angles and build your room speaker emulation that way. Especially true if some of the positions of the speakers are absolutely horrible and room is incompatible with the proper placement for the desired format. By using one position, standing waves are minimized and the speaker can be placed far into the room and captured in the near field so as to minimize first reflections which I think would immensely add to the clarity given that the PRIR will be capturing first reflections from 16 different sources.
  10. blenheim
    My interest is also mainly for music. If you get to make contact with Darin Fong and there is the option for the measurement of high-end 2 channel or 5.1 systems arises I wouldn't mind participating in that (and paying).
  11. esimms86
    I have no immediate plans to make the trip as it all depends on when
    PM sent.
  12. sander99
    This could certainly be true in environments that are not really suited for audio reproduction, because of reflections and reverberation [Edit: and of course standing waves]. But in a place like the Blackbird that won't be an issue. Capturing the complete 9.?.6 system in one go should not have a single disadvantage there, and it is the easiest and fastest. And I think it is an advantage that you can measure speakers from greater distance (I actually mean the real distance that they are at in that room instead of extra close) there without reflections and reverberation deteriorating the result. Although I did not specifically try this, but just judging on my experience at the Munich demo, and other people's experiences I expect that the Realiser can render a virtual speaker so lifelike that if you measure a speaker at 1 meter distance it will sound like a speaker at 1 meter distance in the emulation. Is that what you want? I think maybe not. I am not sure but I assume that if all individual speakers sound like they are at 1 meter distance the total soundstage would become smaller compared to the situation with greater distances.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  13. J.Villain
    I may be way off here. But if your speaker is measured at a distance on one meter and your playing an atmos track that has say a gun firing at a mile distance, won't it add delay as well as some attenuation (and possibly other witch craft) to that object through the speakers it is playing through in order to make it sound like it is a mile away? My understanding is that is how object based sound works. You tell the computer where the object is in virtual space and it does all the hard work of placing it in the soundscape. No more adding presence and other changes manually. I could be completely wrong however.
  14. phoenixdogfan
    Obviously you have to be far enough away from any speaker to allow it to develop its image. That being said, near field does more to address room and speaker directivity issues more effectively and economically than anything else I know. My speakers simply image better in near field or mid field. Sitting ten to fifteen feet away is a prescription to hear the room, not the speakers. Especially in a living room which is where most of us listen to our music and cinema.
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2019
  15. Fox1977
    Can you pinpoint each speaker that you captured when you are playing a soundtrack on the PRIR that you made ? you can clearly distinguish the direction of the sounds coming to your ears ? I believe with BRIR, the most complicated is to feel sounds coming from the front speakers, not the rear speakers.
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