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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. audiohobbit
    Generate a flat HPEQ. See the manual.
    I wrote this many times over the last days/weeks.
    And I also wrote why I recommend a flat HPEQ also as a starting point for all other headphones.
  2. Om ma Ni
    Yup.. i can deeply confirm it!:L3000:
    Richter Di likes this.
  3. phoenixdogfan
    I had an interest in the unit (the one referenced by J. Villain in Canadian Audio Mart) , so I inquired with James Smyth if a NIB unit would be covered under warranty. Unfortunately, no. Which is a shame since the original purchaser is now offering at $3500 USD.

    I won't be writing a check for it, I'm afraid.
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2019
  4. Dixter
    some one on a few pages back was asking about an HPEQ for the Audeze iSine inEars... I started a HPEQ on a set yesterday but ran out of time... I plan on completing the routine again today... My plan is to complete the manual method with manLoud...

    I want to get back to the routine because when I started the procedure yesterday I noticed a couple items that I want to explore some more and understand the items better... one of the items I saw and want to visit again and understand better is that the A16 has place holders for 4 headphone names...So I have those 4 filled already and I thought I could just start a new headphone by picking one and just renaming it... I did that and when I started the manLoud routine the prior data loaded into the frequency display and that surprised me.... I'm sure it was something I did but I plan on seeing if I can replicate that today... if I can replicate it again then that would be good news as it implies that we can go back to an existing manLoad and make post adjustments to the manLoad and fine tune/experiment with the initial manLoad data....and that would be fantastic news... will let you know how it goes...
  5. Dixter
    Just as an FYI - Yesterday I also wanted to see how the A16 handles Closed Back Headphones so I performed the AutoEQ and ManLoud on a set of Mr Speakers Alpha Dogs and completed both routines without issue... what was interesting with the A16 routines is you get to see and hear the very specific sound signatures of any headphone during the ManLoad routine... if you have a headphone that is pronounced at the bottom end of the frequency range or pronounced at the top or anywhere between the bottom and top frequency range you will see this signature and hear the signature as you work your way thru the frequency bands and fine tune the flatening of the headphone sound signature.... and at the end of the routine you get to see it all on a graph...
    so how did it do with a closed back headphone... the stage narrows compared to the HD800 but the impact of all frequencies is amazing... If you like to go to live concerts and you like the impact of a live concert and how they sound then thats what the MrSpeakers Alpha Dogs headphones replicates... the slam is amazing..

    one thing to remember is the fact that as of right now the A16 is being delivered with only one mode... that mode just happens to be Movie Mode... there is no Music Mode yet and so when you listen to the A16 there is echo introduced in Movie Mode... so for music listening you have to take that into consideration... some music is too echoy and some music gets better with a little echo.... just sayin...
    VandyMan likes this.
  6. audiohobbit
    I can already tell you that this doesn't work consistently. I thought so in the first place myself but unfortunately it doesn't.

    It sometimes shows the last frequency settings you made but they are not those of an HPEQ that has already manLOUD data when you load it, it's just the last ones you did. At least after turning off and on the unit the data could be gone.
    If I reload an older manLOUD HPEQ as a starting point for a new one I will see the totally flat settings, not the ones that are stored in the manLOUD I did earlier to this HPEQ.
    So basically the manLOUDs you did are a black box.
    This is why I recommend to keep notes of all the settings you made, or ot save a picture of every subband setting to the SD card (or take pictures of the display with your smartphone, which is what I did first, before I knew how to save screenshots to the SD card).

    I'm pretty sure that the Realiser doesn't introduce echo in a specific mode. If there would be a Music mode, you will hear the same. nearly 100% sure.
    If there's an echo then there is either something wrong with the PRIR, the room it was measured or the HPEQ you did.

    Doesn't make any sens at all for the Realiser adding some artificial echo to the sound like some strange sound processors may do.
  7. Richter Di
    Thank you. It might well be but I have to admit that it was hard to follow all the comments without having the A16 in front of me. I have to learn step by step.
  8. Richter Di
    Again, thanks. Found it in the manual and tried it out with the FiiO FH7. Now the noise floor of the A16 is quite considerable. So will try it with SPDIF Out to @Jan Meier ’s Soul. Hope it helps.
    Result is soundwise quite nice. Really like it (with the exception of the noisefloor). Did not try it out with the headtracker.
    Two strange things:
    A) Can not lower the volume below 27? Any ideas? Has this something to do with the manLoud?
    B) Still not able to play hires tracks beyond 44.1 16 bit or 24 bit. So no 88.2 or 96 Hz. Manual says “SPDIF inputs (coaxial and optical): 2ch LPCM (24bit@48/96/192kHz) and Dolby Digital bitstream”
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2019
  9. Richter Di
    Can I set the SPDIF outputs to fixed 100%?
    The manual says “optical and coaxial SPDIF outputs for User A and User B stereo headphone signals (variable level).”
    But it would be nice to not have to turn the volume up all the way when putting out digital.
  10. Richter Di
    I am planning to do a PRIR loudspeaker measurement in my Pilates Studio in Tönisvorst (25 km away from Duesseldorf) at Saturday afternoon the 23rd. The measurement room is acoustical quite neutral because my 6 leather Pilates mats 2 meter x 1 meter are hanging at the walls and I also have a lot of acoustic panels which could be used for all parts of the room. Also we have 11 plants in the room and a lot more which can be easily added. This is an old 360 degree picture of the so-called tower room: https://pilates-powers.de/studio-rundgang
    Mats are on the floor but I guess you get the picture.
    Loudspeakers will be Focal Aria 906 and/or Mordaunt-Short Performance.

    DB95A476-29B8-4897-A0BA-9B18F51EC440.jpeg 6A6AC30E-C9C8-4411-AE90-18BFAAE9D0B3.jpeg

    So in case someone who has either pre-ordered his A16 or got his A16 would like to join me, I would be delighted. I guess it is much easier to do this together. In case you like to join me please send a PM.
  11. arnaud Contributor
    I tried a dts-hd 7.1 soundtrack last week end and the A16 would not decode went sent as bitstream.
    More problematic, forcing pcm output on the Blu Ray player (a denon midrange unit) was resulted in a 2 channel recognized as pcm, no 7.1.

    Between these limitations on input streams, lack of easy 1 speaker setup, it makes for a rather frustrating experience unless one has a complete HT system running in parallel (which is no longer my case).

    Now, in regards to Atmos capability, my understanding is that it will be compressed audio (through dd+ stream) because the A16 won’t ever support eARC (it won’t support hdmi 2.1), am I right? Regardless of the player and tv supporting hdmi 2.1, there is no way to get the soundtrack transmitted in a full res carrier no? E.g., it all boils down to dolby digital + protocol because of these hdmi limitations. At the end of the day, it’s probably a moot point considering all the other processing ongoing in the A16 but still, it’s unfortunate these hdmi standards just can’t seem to ever settle for even say 5 years.

  12. audiohobbit

    Dolby True HD with or without Atmos is perfectly working!

    No audio return channel.
  13. audiohobbit
    Spdif out is variable.
    27 is the lowest volume setting as it seems.

    If using internal amps and highly sensitive hesdphones switch gain go mid or low. Better with unplugged headphones.
  14. arnaud Contributor
    Not saying it’s not working but, again correct me if I am wrong, it’s passed through a dolby digital + protocol (is that the right name even?) because of limited hdmi support (e.g no hdmi 2.1 / eARC). As a result of this, my understanding is that DD+ (also used by iOS aTV 4k and such) hence passes dolby soundtracks (perhaps object based and legacy ones) as a compressed stream. This is from checking dolby webpages about supported formats and hardware.
  15. sander99
    I am confused by your posts. Are you trying to input Dolby Atmos through ARC into the HDMI output of the A16 (from or via your display or something like that)? If that is possible at all then in that case indeed the absence of eARC would give limitations I guess. But that is not related to what is or isn't possible the normal way through an HDMI input.
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