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TOPIC: Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how?

Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #41998

  • plus5volt
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thank you Skol303, valuable experiment
Skol303 wrote:
So I can only assume that the side/rear wall reflections in my room are indeed sufficiently dampened
It is dampened, but I don't think that based on this you can say that it is sufficiently / correctly dampened, (depends what you wanted to achieve :) )
to tell this, you should use linear and calibrated source / compare this with your speakers measured in anechoic chamber, but I think it was your idea to create your own anechoic chamber :)
This can be proof that in your room mirophone orientation does not matter and microphone is calibrated enough.
Interesting experiment could be do not use calibration file at all :)
Last Edit: 5 months 2 weeks ago by plus5volt.
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #41999

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bugeyed wrote:
Great info. You always did suspect that mic orientation wouldn't make a difference in your room. Nice to see the measurements tho.

Thanks Kev. It now seems like a long discussion thread, only to arrive at the conclusion mentioned by Flavio from Dirac (above): “…it’s not such a big deal”. But I felt the need to test and prove it for myself anyway ;)

In my case, there’s literally no point in using the 90-degree calibrated Dirac filter, because it’s identical to the one I’m already using (calibrated at 0-degrees). So I’m just going to leave my set up as is.

Looking at my test measurements, I think I’d be surprised to see any significant difference between 0/90-degree mic use in any room: with or without acoustic treatment. But I also think the advice from Dirac still stands - i.e. it does seem most logical to point the mic vertically, based on what I understand of how the software works (and also what acousticians generally recommend). Even though the difference may be imperceptible, as we’ve seen here.

PS: I heartily recommend using a ‘ceiling cloud’ to help dampen reflections above your listening position. Made an audible difference in my case. I’d also recommend re-calibrating Dirac once you have that extra acoustic treatment installed (in fact after any significant addition of acoustic treatment). A tip I’ve read on other forums is also to angle the mic downwards at 90-degree if you have carpet but no ceiling cloud (basically point the mic towards whichever surface - ceiling or floor - is most acoustically absorbent).
bugeyed wrote:
I am keeping my fingers crossed that when the standalone Dirac Live 2.0 is finally released, it won't go up in price because I don't think I can go back.

Haha, me too! I pretty much “sold my soul” to Dirac some time ago. Makes too much of a difference in my room do be doing without it! :laugh:
Last Edit: 5 months 2 weeks ago by Skol303.
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42001

  • Skol303
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plus5volt wrote:
thank you Skol303, valuable experiment
You're welcome! Glad it's proved useful :)
plus5volt wrote:
It is dampened, but I don't think that based on this you can say that it is sufficiently / correctly dampened, (depends what you wanted to achieve
Good point. To clarify: I mean "sufficiently dampened" in that the extra/stronger reflections picked up by angling the mic at 90-degrees appear to have no influence on how Dirac calculates the correction filters - i.e. the result is the same as angling the mic at 0-degrees.
plus5volt wrote:
to tell this, you should use linear and calibrated source / compare this with your speakers measured in anechoic chamber, but I think it was your idea to create your own anechoic chamber
Haha, yeah my room is very "dry" with short reverb times... not quite anechoic, of course, but very different to a typical home listening room. I have something like 60% of the room surface area covered with acoustic treatment of one type or other (porous absorbers, some diffusers and pressure-based traps for very low frequencies). It's like a "padded cell" :side:
plus5volt wrote:
Interesting experiment could be do not use calibration file at all
In the past I've taken the same set of measurements with Dirac switched off - pointing the mic at 0/90-degrees - and the results follow the exact same pattern as my experiment above: no change in frequency response, decay times, impulse response, etc... just slightly stronger reflections when angling the mic upwards.

Honestly... I spend waaay too much time messing around with acoustic measurements and should probably just get on with making/listening to music! :)
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42019

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Apparently MiniDSP has read through this thread & emailed me with their perspective regarding their caring about finding a resolution.

"Hello Kev
We understand that sometimes we all find things frustrating.. In the future, we’d certainly appreciate if you would please be mindful before spreading comments on forum that we don’t care as you did… To our team who is working tirelessly to make our customers happy, it’s actually quite hurtful to receive that kind of comments to be honest… :-( Thanks for your understanding.

Once we receive comments back from Dirac, we’ll advise to the community as we always do.
Best Regards

DevTeam

miniDSP Ltd

It's encouraging to see that they read this forum & are actually in touch with Dirac about this. I am sorry that they got their feelings hurt & that was not really my intent. My statement was intended to show my frustration with MiniDSP stating that they are right & we should look to Dirac for clarification or experiment on our own. Anyway, It started as a simple question & stimulated a technically rich conversation. I learned a lot about the subject & made some new forum friends along the way. Hopefully we will get the answer soon.
Kev
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42030

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bugeyed wrote:
Apparently MiniDSP has read through this thread & emailed me with their perspective regarding their caring about finding a resolution... My statement was intended to show my frustration with MiniDSP stating that they are right & we should look to Dirac for clarification or experiment on our own.

I'm with you on this Kev. And I don't think your comments in this thread towards miniDSP are "hurtful"... but that is of course something for them to judge, not me.

From a users' perspective, it is indeed frustrating that:
  1. The advice given by miniDSP on mic position contradicts the advice given by Dirac; and
  2. Surely this is something that miniDSp could clarify very quickly via a phone call or email to their own contacts at Dirac!?
Instead, we've been told to work it out for ourselves; or reminded that miniDSP have been selling Dirac products for many years and so "know a bit about" the subject. None of which answers the question that was raised at the very start of this thread.

My take on it is this: with no disrespect intended, the people who staff miniDSP support are not specialists in Dirac software . Their job is to answer enquiries about miniDSP products. Hence their responses which simply repeat what is written in the miniDSP user manuals. Again, this is not a criticism intended to hurt anyone's feelings. It's simply an observation. We all have our jobs to do.

By contrast, the support team at Dirac obviously have a better technical understanding of the software and the mathematics behind it (I know for certain that the person I contacted, Flavio, is very knowledgeable about DRC software and acoustics in general). This is evident in their responses, which give a clear explanation as to why one mic position is recommended over another.

For example - since my previous post above, I've had further discussion with Flavio on the topic, during which we compared ETC plots taken with the mic angled at 0/90-degrees. Here's his response:

"Looking at those plots we can see what you describe; the 90 degree plot has more high frequency information that is the result from reflections in the room. Depending on the arrival time of these reflections they may well significantly affect how we perceive the tonality of the system. So even tho they cannot be compensated for, as reflection, they need to be taken into account somehow. This is not really possible, or at least not as reliable, using a 0 degree orientation, as we can clearly see in your plots."

Based on my discussion with Flavio, I've now recalibrated my system using the mic at 90-degrees and will continue to use this method from now on. It makes good sense, acoustically-speaking, and I've seen the same advice given by other acousticians when talking about setting up Digital Room Correction for studio control rooms (running 2-channel stereo).

So that's me now fully converted to the '90-degree club'!
bugeyed wrote:
Anyway, It started as a simple question & stimulated a technically rich conversation. I learned a lot about the subject & made some new forum friends along the way. Hopefully we will get the answer soon.
Kev
Absolutely this. If we don't prod and poke and ask questions... we don't learn. It's all good in my opinion.

I certainly found the answer I was looking for. I learnt some new things about using REW software. And it's always good to make new forum friends and share experiences/knowledge.

Hopefully the miniDSP team will forgive our transgressions, pick up the phone to their friends at Dirac and confirm their own findings very soon :)
Last Edit: 5 months 2 weeks ago by Skol303.
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42032

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In my opinion some criticism towards miniDSP is ungenerous, the measurements have shown that the differences between 0° and 90° orientation, when the cal file is used, are small.
Even more important they proved that miniDSP's 90° calibration file is accurate in compensating for the deviation because of orientation.
It's worth noting that, as far as I know, miniDSP has been the first company in the world to make available a measurement mic with both cal files at such a competitive cost... nice job :)

Cooperation between miniDSP and Dirac Research is very close and we both try to provide the best possible support to our common customers.
Thanks for your understanding, Flavio
Last Edit: 5 months 2 weeks ago by flak.
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42033

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Hi Flavio,
Thanks for responding. I don’t have a problem with MiniDSP as a company. What we are discussing is the fact that you (Flavio via Dirac support) indicated that, in order to properly correct room response, Dirac recommends the 90 deg mic orientation while Mini DSP recommends 0 deg. Are you now saying it really doesn’t matter in a 2 channel, untreated room?
Thanks,
kev
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42034

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Hi Kev, nice to see your interest in these aspects :)
What I'm saying has been very finely detailed in the previous posts but I see no reason for criticizing miniDSP for suggesting a horizontal orientation is a stereo set-up... it does provide valid results even if it's subject to debate as in some circumstances a vertical orientation might be preferable, as mentioned already it's not "such a big deal" and listening /comparing is (relatively) easy.
In my opinion of course, needless to say you can draw your own conclusions.

All the best, Flavio
Last Edit: 5 months 2 weeks ago by flak.
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 5 months 2 weeks ago #42036

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flak wrote:
...the measurements have shown that the differences between 0° and 90° orientation, when the cal file is used, are small.

Even more important they proved that miniDSP's 90° calibration file is accurate in compensating for the deviation because of orientation.

It's worth noting that, as far as I know, miniDSP has been the first company in the world to make available a measurement mic with both cal files at such a competitive cost

Indeed! My own measurements, included in this thread, show that the results of 0/90-degree calibration are almost identical. Proof that the UMIK-1 calibration files perform very well.

In fact, a friend of mine has compared the UMIK-1 against a far more expensive Bruel & Kjaer mic and found the results to be very close. So the UMIK is excellent value for money.

PS: thanks for joining in the discussion Flavio. And certainly no hard feelings here for the team at miniDSP. What you have all created together through collaboration should be applauded :)
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Dirac Live set up for nearfield monitoring - how? 1 month 5 days ago #43962

  • flaviowolff
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I've read this entire thread and I want to congratulate everyone that got involved into this. It may not be a "big deal", but we hobbysts and professionals are anal about this stuff. If we were not, we wouldn't be acquiring this kind of equipment.
I'm sort of a layman on DRC, and this issue regarding the correct angle for mic placement bugged me as soon as I read the minidsp and dirac's contraditory recommendations.
I also suggest that this gets better cleared up on the MiniDSP manuals.
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