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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. sphynxxx
    329 checking in. In a small way, it will be nice to receive it after a lot of the worst bugs will have already been alleviated throughout the long shipping period.
    LajostheHun likes this.
  2. You Gene
    Do you know of any audio creation/production studio, auditoriums who already received their order, if they ordered any?

    They cannot even order it. Either a limited supply with Smyth UK, out of stock with Heavenly Sound https://heavenly-sound.com/shop/, in final phase of development with "Audi Note India, Mumbai" https://www.realiser.in/pre-order, and yet Smyth met certainly all the professionals at the conventions and even Heavenly Sound invested in the project.

    We are the only ones to receive it any time soon. And I deduce therefore that we are (all of us) still in beta phase whether we like it or not. Once the beta phase over, I presume production will start full blast with Heavenly Sound now "heavenly" or rather heavily invested in the Smyth company.

    This being said , I would rather face facts than believe naively in a benevolent company interested only in the wellbeing of audio-oriented good people.

    It is not said in a negative way, and I apologize if I hurt anybody's feelings, but like I said "be realistic" and face the obvious!

    You Gene
  3. esimms86
    You can get one within days if you are willing to give Smyth Research 4000 USD.
  4. You Gene
    To tell you the truth I bought mine last October 2018 at full price and I still believe it was the right thing to do. The machine is worth it. I am not denying it.
    But like a lot of people say, I would very much like the bugs be gone before receiving it. And I sure am not in a hurry.

    Still, it is and remains a beta version at USD 1 or at USD 4000. The point I was raising is : no professional is going to touch it at this point of time if it were available immediately.

    It is not negative, it is not positive, it is only beta. It is a fact and you can deny it all you want but all the remarks prove the point all too well :

    Sorry to be so heavy-handed.

    I guess I am frustrated as well...!
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
  5. phoenixdogfan
    You are absolutely right. This thing is definitely in the early beta stage. It could be another 3-4 years before it is a finished product, if ever.
    You Gene likes this.
  6. Got the Shakes
    I paid the difference from my preorder price to retail in August so I could expedite my unit. These two things for me are both true:

    1. For me it was worth spending the money to get my unit sooner. I love the sound I get out of it and I have been consuming so much more media now that I have the A16

    2. The A16 is very much still a beta and there are things missing that still really frustrate me.

    Even for as much as I have enjoyed the A16, and I do think it’s one of my favorite pieces of tech I’ve purchased in the last 25 years, it would be hard for me to tell someone it’s worth spending the money to jump in right now. At the very minimum I think I would tell people to hold off until easier capture methods are implemented and maybe wait until the Exchange is brought online.
  7. Rene Lou
    Yes, absolutely, it can be plug and play after setup. This was exactly how I used my A8 for many years. I once made a 7.0 PRIR, was blown away about it's performance and used it from that day on more or less as you plan to do so: just power it on and use it - as simple as that (a single PRIR and a single HPEQ for all sources - be it music (stereo) or movies).
    After setup (eg: making a PRIR of a good pair of speakers and use them as front, center, rear, side, high etc. speakers during PRIR creation - and create a HPEQ), load the PRIR and HPEQ into a preset and forget about all the settings.

    From that point in time, the A16 will work exactly as a copy of a real speaker system (means: sound played through the A16 and your headphone will exactly sound as if you would have installed all those speakers in the room you made the PRIR).

    Eg: Create a 9.1.6 system (with virtual 16 speakers) - whatever signal you will feed into the A16, it will behave as if you would have 16 real loudspeakers:
    - play a stereo source: just the virtual left and right speakers will play music - other virtual speakers will be on mute
    - play a Dolby 5.1 source: just virtual front, center and surrounds will play the signal - other virtual speakers will be on mute

    In short: as if you would have all those virtual speakers as real speakers. If you have a real 9.1.6 system installed and play a stereo source, just the front speakers will play music as well.
    This is true as long as you do not switch on any upmixer of course - exactly as a real speaker system behaves. Complexity in the real world (after a correct setup has been done): near zero - just switch it on and enjoy.

    If however (and this forum is mostly about that - and what the best working options are at the moment) you plan to improve the virtual system, get all you can out of the Realiser, create a virtual system that sounds even better then a real system ever can - than complexity will be higher (in the 'create a perfect PRIR and setup' phase). The A16 is an incredible piece of equipment already today and gets better with every new firmware. I'm not aware of any single product on the market which allows you doing things the A16 can do already today.

    As an example: I made a PRIR of a good pair of speakers (incl. amplifiers) - this stereo pair had a cost of approx. 50k USD. I made a virtual copy of it as 7.0 system and are enjoining this over headphones since then (you would have to spend 175k USD just in speakers and amplifiers in the real world to create a similar experience - but would have to deal with an unhappy wife about the clutter, neighbours about the noise etc. etc) - with the A16: problems solved - and it costs less than 5% :)
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
    esimms86 likes this.
  8. Rene Lou
    Yes, it seems that there are several ways. Since I do not have a Harmony, someone would have to test the options. After a quick search I found this:
    - http://members.harmonyremote.com/EasyZapper/Infrared/ManualInfrared.asp?ReturnUrl=ShowInfrared.asp
    --> as I understand it, this will provide you with a simple method to learn your Harmony a single 'custom code' (pronto) - with the not very nice side effect that the Harmony will learn just this single command and will delete all other codes learned before. To be able to use this method practically, you would need to have two Harmony remotes (one Harmony where you load a single Pronto code and a second Harmony to learn from the first remote, adding up several commands to the second one.

    Yes, I have all IR codes for the A8 as well as the A16 stored in my pronto and will upload it as a ccf file to google drive as soon as I have a chance to make it better readable for others. When done, I will let you know. In the mean time, I added some modified commands to be able to move quicker through the menus and still be able to just move by one line - I will add those as well to the file.

    No, I do not think so. SMYTH would have a hard time to try to get it working correctly. No matter which key you hold down for a longer period of time, the repetitive IR code being sent by the current A16 remote control is always the same (just the Lead In + Lead Out signal without any information which key was pressed initially). So SMYTH would have to catch the first initial IR command (sent out just once, eg: lower Vol A) and then - if there is the repeating 'empty' signal - decrease the volume further. If you would have pressed the 'Up' cursor key and hold it for a longer period of time, SMYTH again would have to catch this "Up" key and - if the 'empty' signal is been sent afterwards - move the cursor further up. Challenge would be: what happens if you press a key, press another key shortly after and the initial second IR command gets lost (eg: due to IR noise, bad reception etc.). In this situation, the A16 would repeat the first command instead of the second, unless SMYTH would implement a 'timing threshold' for repeating 'empty' repetitive signals received to make sure to repeat the correct command only, eg. if there is not even a very short loss of IR signal in between.

    Maybe SMYTH will order a new remote control later with repeating IR commands, replacing the current IR remote model. I think this would be a much easier and cheaper solution to implement. And maybe they will offer it as an upgrade to us for a reasonable price. But at the moment I think there are more important things to implement then a better remote control - and there ist the option to use a learning remote for the time being.
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2019
  9. Rene Lou
    I just implemented my old 'remote camera view' for the A16 display (as I did before for the A8). Since the A16 display offers much more information compared to the A8, I added a zoom function to the pronto to be able to see the actual items (there is quite a lag in display time on the pronto at the moment). I ordered a new camera module with a shorter focus lens (fish eye type) to be able to move the camera closer to the display in the future. My current camera module has a focus lens of 4mm (initially I used a 2.8mm lens). You asked for a cheap camera: just search on ebay for 'ip camera module' and sort by price - I used the H.265 ip module with a 4mm lens and a LAN cable for the A8 and just ordered the 1.7mm module (the lenses are interchangeable). Cost is approx. 20 USD and you will need a power supply (DC 12V). The camera module includes a web server and you can just enter the camera ip address on any web browser in the same network (eg: iPad, iPhone, PC, ...) and get a live video stream.

    My current setup (until the A16 web server functionality will replace the camera):


    The camera picture on an iPhone looks like this:

    and on the pronto like this:
    A16 display1_320.gif

    A16 display2_320_5.gif

    A16 display3_320_5.gif
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2019
    You Gene and jgazal like this.
  10. phoenixdogfan
    You drilled holes in your $4,000 A16 Realizer? [​IMG]
    Richter Di likes this.
  11. phoenixdogfan
    Couldn't this be implemented on your own remote? Logitech Harmony or Phillips Pronto? There has to be a home brewed work around for this one.
  12. sander99
    Those are existing holes, that also can be used to screw the rack mount ears or the wooden side panels on.
    Richter Di likes this.
  13. esimms86
    Thanks @Rene Lou, that sounds excellent! My plan is to use my “adequate “ CanJam PRIR initially and then later just for Atmos(Abbey Road and just a literal handful of others) and also get access to an uber expensive set of speakers to capture my eventual go to PRIR to use for stereo through 7.1. My laptop also does 4K so there is also a handful of movies that might also try out(Gravity, Mad Max Thunder Road...).
  14. Rene Lou
    Yes, exactly what I did with the Phillips Pronto (self made repeating keys). Have a look at the small movies in the post just following the one you replied to. Eg: the fast volume change with a simple pressed button, the fast movements through the menus or the fast adjustments of items.

    The question was how to reuse A16 pronto hex codes with a Harmony remote.
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2019
  15. Om ma Ni
    Hi everyone, superb to see some of you guys testing their A16 already! I have preordered my A16 in July 2017 so,....
    Did some of you tested the accuracy of this unique device for capturing the exact acoustic signature of any high end audiophile speaker systems yet? Specifically the distorsion and dynamic range etc?
    My dream once receive my A16 will be to capture fully a system like La Sphere from Cabasse for instance....
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