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TOPIC: SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads

SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 1 week ago #49044

  • miket
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FeathersMcGraw wrote:
I'm in agreement with Ultrasonic on both counts.

It's possible that there is a bit of pyschoacoustic phenomena going on
when conducting this test.

If you're going to take REW measurements for the mains and subwoofers,
perhaps you can share the resultant FRD files with us? I"d like to import
into MSO and see what it predicts.

A link to AndyC's reference page for gathering REW measurements is
below. It'd be good to get measurements with the high/low pass filters
and PEQ defeated. One of the mains will need to be used as an acoustic
timing reference. Start with the master volume of the SHD set low, check
the playback level in REW and ease up the volume until at a useful but
safe level.

www.andyc.diy-audio-engineering.org/mso/html/measuring.html

That's very kind of you to offer to run MSO. I'll get some measurements done (probably tomorrow).
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 4 days ago #49122

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Hi Mike,

I replied to your private message moments ago. In case you don't get my
reply, I'm also providing a reply here. Again, sorry about my slow response.
I only just noticed the PM when I checked my email inbox minutes ago and
saw a notification of a PM from this forum. I'll endeavor to be more attentive.

On the question of whether to measure the left and right main speakers
separately or together as a stereo pair, I don't know. I too am pretty new
to this process, having gone before only by a few months.

I have performed the measurements of the mains both ways and have
not noticed any advantage one way or the other. AndyC's reference
material doesn't seem to lean substantially one way or the other. I think
I'll revisit his documentation to refresh my memory.

If measured separately, it appears that MSO sums them together
mathematically in the complex frequency domain. So, basically generating
a predicted combined response for the mains, rather than a measured
combined response. Not sure if that distinction practically matters in
the context of MSO's realm of applicability.

The acoustic timing reference needs to be the same left or right main
speaker throughout a set of measurements (all speakers and all
measurement positions). Pick one for the timing reference and stick
with it for that whole set of measurements.

Performing the sweeps from 10 Hz to 400 Hz sounds perfect to me.
Though, the stereo mains need not go that low but should include
a generous amount of the bottom freqencies below their natural roll
off. I see no reason not to measure the mains down to 20 Hz unless
you think there's a risk of equipment damage.

Similarly, there's probably little if any reason to sweep the subwoofers
above 300 Hz but is harmless if included. If there's a low pass filter
built into the subwoofers, be certain to either defeat it or adjust its
frequency to be as high as it allows. We're probably realistically only
interested in about 160 Hz on down for the subs, but would still
include up to 300 Hz in their measurment.

I don't think MSO will include in its calculations anything above 400 Hz.
Similarly, if memory serves, the MSO optimizer has an upper limit for the
range of frequencies it includes in its optimization, a 300 Hz or 200 Hz
upper bound if I remember correctly. So, going all the way up to 400 Hz
for the mains measurement becomes more about matching gain levels
between subwoofers and mains. And there's no reason to go above
300 Hz for the subwoofers, but is harmless.

Number of positions measured should be at least three with one being
the main listening postion (MLP). You can do more positions but shouldn't
go crazy. If you don't have confidence in the current subwoofer locations
being their final location, then you might want to limit the number of
positions to three or five, to reduce your labor. Moving the subwoofers or
mains later by more than a small distance would invalidate the measurements
and necessitate the performance of new measurments and optimization.

Sorry again for my slow response. I'll be looking more carefully for private
messages. Stay safe and have fun.
Last Edit: 11 months 4 days ago by FeathersMcGraw.
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 3 days ago #49128

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FeathersMcGraw wrote:
Hi Mike,

I replied to your private message moments ago. In case you don't get my
reply, I'm also providing a reply here. Again, sorry about my slow response.
I only just noticed the PM when I checked my email inbox minutes ago and
saw a notification of a PM from this forum. I'll endeavor to be more attentive.

On the question of whether to measure the left and right main speakers
separately or together as a stereo pair, I don't know. I too am pretty new
to this process, having gone before only by a few months.

I have performed the measurements of the mains both ways and have
not noticed any advantage one way or the other. AndyC's reference
material doesn't seem to lean substantially one way or the other. I think
I'll revisit his documentation to refresh my memory.

If measured separately, it appears that MSO sums them together
mathematically in the complex frequency domain. So, basically generating
a predicted combined response for the mains, rather than a measured
combined response. Not sure if that distinction practically matters in
the context of MSO's realm of applicability.

The acoustic timing reference needs to be the same left or right main
speaker throughout a set of measurements (all speakers and all
measurement positions). Pick one for the timing reference and stick
with it for that whole set of measurements.

Performing the sweeps from 10 Hz to 400 Hz sounds perfect to me.
Though, the stereo mains need not go that low but should include
a generous amount of the bottom freqencies below their natural roll
off. I see no reason not to measure the mains down to 20 Hz unless
you think there's a risk of equipment damage.

Similarly, there's probably little if any reason to sweep the subwoofers
above 300 Hz but is harmless if included. If there's a low pass filter
built into the subwoofers, be certain to either defeat it or adjust its
frequency to be as high as it allows. We're probably realistically only
interested in about 160 Hz on down for the subs, but would still
include up to 300 Hz in their measurment.

I don't think MSO will include in its calculations anything above 400 Hz.
Similarly, if memory serves, the MSO optimizer has an upper limit for the
range of frequencies it includes in its optimization, a 300 Hz or 200 Hz
upper bound if I remember correctly. So, going all the way up to 400 Hz
for the mains measurement becomes more about matching gain levels
between subwoofers and mains. And there's no reason to go above
300 Hz for the subwoofers, but is harmless.

Number of positions measured should be at least three with one being
the main listening postion (MLP). You can do more positions but shouldn't
go crazy. If you don't have confidence in the current subwoofer locations
being their final location, then you might want to limit the number of
positions to three or five, to reduce your labor. Moving the subwoofers or
mains later by more than a small distance would invalidate the measurements
and necessitate the performance of new measurments and optimization.

Sorry again for my slow response. I'll be looking more carefully for private
messages. Stay safe and have fun.

Thanks for the feedback. Glad that you posted it here - can't see you reply in my PM inbox.

I'm intrigued that the timing reference stays with one speaker (say the left one) all the way through. Wouldn't this mean that when you measure the L subwoofer that the output is of the subwoofer and main combined?

Does MSO take that into account i.e. does it subtract L (Main Only) from L (Main + SW) to get L (SW Only) response?

Alternatively would it be sensible - when measuring the subwoofer - to put a high pass filter (1KHz maybe) on the L main so that it only outputs the timing signal?
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 3 days ago #49144

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Hi Mike,

The audio signal used for the acoustic timing reference is up in a fairly
high frequency range, something like a couple of kilohertz or higher.
So, if you had to, you could crossover somewhere comfortably above
400 Hz. But, instead, I think it better to use the second SHD input
channel to send the REW test signal to the other main speaker and
the subwoofers.

What I've been doing is using the matrix switcher, accessed via the
Routing selection tab of the SHD plugin. If the left main is to be used
as the acoustic timing reference, I configure the Dirac 1 input channel
to only play through the Output1 output channel. Output channels
2, 3 and 4 are "Off" for the Dirac 1 row in the Routing selection tab.

Then I use the Dirac 2 input channel to, one at a time, play the REW
test signals through each of output channels 2, 3 and 4. That way,
there need not be any high or low pass filters enabled for any of the
speakers or subwoofers.

When measuring the right main speaker, the Dirac 2 row of the matrix
mixer is set to "Off", "On", "Off" and "Off". Similarly, when measuring
the subwoofer connected to the Output3 channel, the Dirac 2 row is
set to "Off", "Off", "On" and "Off". Then "Off", "Off", "Off" and "On"
when measuring the other subwoofer connected to Output4. While
measuring each of these three, the Dirac 1 row remains at "On", "Off",
"Off" and "Off".

While running these measurements, I've been leaving all of the settings
in the Outputs tab at their factory defaults. Gains at zero, no delays,
no PEQ, all Xover filters bypassed.

From within the REW "Make a measurement" window, you'll set "Timing:"
to "Use acoustic timing reference". Then set the "Ref output:" to "L".
"Output" will be set to "R" when measuring the right speaker and the
subwoofers. "Output" will be set to "L" when measuring the left speaker.

For the speakers, "Start Freq" and "End Freq" would likely be 20 and
400. For the subwoofers, you might drop the Start Freq to 10 Hz and
optionally drop the End Freq to 300 Hz. Begin with the master volume
of the SHD set to a low volume and use the "Check levels" button of
the "Make a measurement" window. Then bring up the master volume
as per the guidance of REW.

I hope this helps and has properly answered your questions? I'm going
to catch a little sleep now but will check back here in a few hours. Looking
forward to chatting with you later.
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 3 days ago #49153

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FeathersMcGraw wrote:
Hi Mike,

The audio signal used for the acoustic timing reference is up in a fairly
high frequency range, something like a couple of kilohertz or higher.
So, if you had to, you could crossover somewhere comfortably above
400 Hz. But, instead, I think it better to use the second SHD input
channel to send the REW test signal to the other main speaker and
the subwoofers.

What I've been doing is using the matrix switcher, accessed via the
Routing selection tab of the SHD plugin. If the left main is to be used
as the acoustic timing reference, I configure the Dirac 1 input channel
to only play through the Output1 output channel. Output channels
2, 3 and 4 are "Off" for the Dirac 1 row in the Routing selection tab.

Then I use the Dirac 2 input channel to, one at a time, play the REW
test signals through each of output channels 2, 3 and 4. That way,
there need not be any high or low pass filters enabled for any of the
speakers or subwoofers.

When measuring the right main speaker, the Dirac 2 row of the matrix
mixer is set to "Off", "On", "Off" and "Off". Similarly, when measuring
the subwoofer connected to the Output3 channel, the Dirac 2 row is
set to "Off", "Off", "On" and "Off". Then "Off", "Off", "Off" and "On"
when measuring the other subwoofer connected to Output4. While
measuring each of these three, the Dirac 1 row remains at "On", "Off",
"Off" and "Off".

While running these measurements, I've been leaving all of the settings
in the Outputs tab at their factory defaults. Gains at zero, no delays,
no PEQ, all Xover filters bypassed.

From within the REW "Make a measurement" window, you'll set "Timing:"
to "Use acoustic timing reference". Then set the "Ref output:" to "L".
"Output" will be set to "R" when measuring the right speaker and the
subwoofers. "Output" will be set to "L" when measuring the left speaker.

For the speakers, "Start Freq" and "End Freq" would likely be 20 and
400. For the subwoofers, you might drop the Start Freq to 10 Hz and
optionally drop the End Freq to 300 Hz. Begin with the master volume
of the SHD set to a low volume and use the "Check levels" button of
the "Make a measurement" window. Then bring up the master volume
as per the guidance of REW.

I hope this helps and has properly answered your questions? I'm going
to catch a little sleep now but will check back here in a few hours. Looking
forward to chatting with you later.

Thanks! That was very helpful - and pretty stupid of me not to realise that I could use the SHD routing to get the correct measurements.

I've just done the measurements - did 10Hz to 400Hz for both mains and subs.

Shall I send you (via PM) the REW .mdat file - or would it be better if I exported the measurements as individual .txt files an zipped them into one file?
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 3 days ago #49158

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I think the .mdat file would work well. Thanks
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 3 days ago #49172

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Hi Mike,

I responded to your second PM. You might try adding the .mdat file as
an attachment to a reply to this forum topic. If that doesn't work, my
PM reply included an email address.

Thanks
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 3 days ago #49173

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The files are usually pretty large, putting it on Dropbox (or Google drive etc) and posting a link is usually easiest.
I am not miniDSP support.

"You must ask the right questions." - Dr. Alfred Lanning's hologram.
-> Have you read the User Manual??
-> Have you drawn and posted a diagram?
-> Have you posted a screenshot?
-> Have you posted your config file?
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 2 days ago #49181

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FeathersMcGraw wrote:
I think the .mdat file would work well. Thanks

Have emailed mdat file.
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 2 days ago #49193

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Hi Mike,

Before getting some sleep, I imported the .mdat into REW, exported the
FRD files, imported them into MSO, set up configurations and graphs,
and ran some optimization. I was a little perplexed by what I was seeing
so decided to take a fresh look after some sleep.

I just finished looking again at just the .mdat measurements with REW.
Attached here are some graphs. They are SPL averages across the five
measurement positions with some 1/6 octave smoothing. One graph
is the left and right mains, one the subwoofers, one all speakers and
subwoofers, and the final is just the left main at the LP5 position.

I understand that such a summation is not entirely valid but is none the
less somewhat revealing in this circumstance. I did look at most of the
measurement traces individually to see if they more or less fit a pattern.

I could easily be making the wrong interpretations but here's my
novice opinion. There are strong room reinforcement resonances at
about 27 Hz and 56 Hz. All of the measurement traces show these.
At and around 40 Hz, there is some kind of "suck out". Sometimes broad,
sometimes narrow, and with the center frequency moving around a bit.

There's also some suck out happening around 68 Hz (and to a lesser
extent some at 90 Hz). The one at 68 Hz is not present substantially
in all measurement traces but is none the less common to most. The
left speaker at LP5 seems fairly immune.

You stated that you believe that your main speakers have a natural
roll off of 12 dB/octave starting at about 115 Hz. Is that view based on
your REW measurements or instead based on the bass driver size,
published manufacturer specifications, etc.? What size are the low
freqency drivers in you main speakers?

One of our AV rooms has a GoldenEar 3D Array XL and definitely does
begin to roll off at roughly 120 Hz. But the 3D Array XL only has four
inch mid/bass drivers, so is to be expected. Like yourself, this setup has
a left/right subwoofer below the 3D Array XL sound bar. The subwoofers
are fed a summed left, right and LFE signal from a Marantz SR6010 AV
receiver and are low passed at 120 Hz.

I'm asking because its not clear from the REW measurments that your
stereo mains really do roll off that high. Difficult to tell because the room
interaction masks and lies. The room makes it look like they are capable
down to 56 Hz, but may be an exaggeration due to the substantial room
reinforcement at 56 Hz.

In an opposite way, it might look like they roll off relatively high but
because of negative reinforcement caused by an approximate 68 Hz
suck out. Your left main measurement at the LP5 position suggests
that your stereo mains might be perfectly capable on down to at least
65 Hz. Maybe even 10 Hz lower but is difficult to tell because they
run into the room's 56 Hz exaggeration.

Are the subwoofer positions non-negotiable? The left and right
subwoofer room interaction looks too similar to be able to compensate
for each other's positional short comings. If your stereo mains really
can go lower that 115 Hz with authority, then one of the subs could
be liberated in favor of a position that couples with the room in a
substantially different manner. One hopefully that fills in some of
that suck out at approximately 40 Hz and perhaps too the 68 Hz
region.

I have two recommendations. 1) Experiment with subwoofer locations,
looking for better diversity in their coupling with the room. 2) Optimize
the stereo main speaker positions and angles. Focusing on a) good
imaging and b) smooth response down to 100 Hz or even 80 Hz if
possible. Don't worry about the performance of the stereo mains
below where you'd like to put their high pass filter.

I really don't think MSO can do much here. In their current positions,
the subwoofers cannot do much to compensate for each other's
positional short comings. Their in room response is just too similar.

For 68 Hz and below and at each measurement position, their
measured in room response is nearly identical to each other.
Somewhat analagous to stacking two subwoofers, one on top of
the other, essentially producing the equivalent of one bigger sub.

My earlier attempts at optimizing with MSO bears this out. It
was able to help a little bit was struggling to fill in the sonic voids.
Understandable given that it is substantially true that all four
filter channels and their respective transducers substantially
suffer the same low frequency voids. Diversity among the
room couplings is likely the way out of this conundrum.

Again, I'm only a novice at best. I hope some of this helps and
am sorry if my opinions lead you astray and waste your time.
I'm definitely willing to pursue this further if you are willing to
try some different subwoofer positions. I'll stay tuned. Thanks.







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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 2 days ago #49200

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FeathersMcGraw wrote:
Hi Mike,

Before getting some sleep, I imported the .mdat into REW, exported the
FRD files, imported them into MSO, set up configurations and graphs,
and ran some optimization. I was a little perplexed by what I was seeing
so decided to take a fresh look after some sleep.

I just finished looking again at just the .mdat measurements with REW.
Attached here are some graphs. They are SPL averages across the five
measurement positions with some 1/6 octave smoothing. One graph
is the left and right mains, one the subwoofers, one all speakers and
subwoofers, and the final is just the left main at the LP5 position.

I understand that such a summation is not entirely valid but is none the
less somewhat revealing in this circumstance. I did look at most of the
measurement traces individually to see if they more or less fit a pattern.

I could easily be making the wrong interpretations but here's my
novice opinion. There are strong room reinforcement resonances at
about 27 Hz and 56 Hz. All of the measurement traces show these.
At and around 40 Hz, there is some kind of "suck out". Sometimes broad,
sometimes narrow, and with the center frequency moving around a bit.

There's also some suck out happening around 68 Hz (and to a lesser
extent some at 90 Hz). The one at 68 Hz is not present substantially
in all measurement traces but is none the less common to most. The
left speaker at LP5 seems fairly immune.

You stated that you believe that your main speakers have a natural
roll off of 12 dB/octave starting at about 115 Hz. Is that view based on
your REW measurements or instead based on the bass driver size,
published manufacturer specifications, etc.? What size are the low
freqency drivers in you main speakers?

One of our AV rooms has a GoldenEar 3D Array XL and definitely does
begin to roll off at roughly 120 Hz. But the 3D Array XL only has four
inch mid/bass drivers, so is to be expected. Like yourself, this setup has
a left/right subwoofer below the 3D Array XL sound bar. The subwoofers
are fed a summed left, right and LFE signal from a Marantz SR6010 AV
receiver and are low passed at 120 Hz.

I'm asking because its not clear from the REW measurments that your
stereo mains really do roll off that high. Difficult to tell because the room
interaction masks and lies. The room makes it look like they are capable
down to 56 Hz, but may be an exaggeration due to the substantial room
reinforcement at 56 Hz.

In an opposite way, it might look like they roll off relatively high but
because of negative reinforcement caused by an approximate 68 Hz
suck out. Your left main measurement at the LP5 position suggests
that your stereo mains might be perfectly capable on down to at least
65 Hz. Maybe even 10 Hz lower but is difficult to tell because they
run into the room's 56 Hz exaggeration.

Are the subwoofer positions non-negotiable? The left and right
subwoofer room interaction looks too similar to be able to compensate
for each other's positional short comings. If your stereo mains really
can go lower that 115 Hz with authority, then one of the subs could
be liberated in favor of a position that couples with the room in a
substantially different manner. One hopefully that fills in some of
that suck out at approximately 40 Hz and perhaps too the 68 Hz
region.

I have two recommendations. 1) Experiment with subwoofer locations,
looking for better diversity in their coupling with the room. 2) Optimize
the stereo main speaker positions and angles. Focusing on a) good
imaging and b) smooth response down to 100 Hz or even 80 Hz if
possible. Don't worry about the performance of the stereo mains
below where you'd like to put their high pass filter.

I really don't think MSO can do much here. In their current positions,
the subwoofers cannot do much to compensate for each other's
positional short comings. Their in room response is just too similar.

For 68 Hz and below and at each measurement position, their
measured in room response is nearly identical to each other.
Somewhat analagous to stacking two subwoofers, one on top of
the other, essentially producing the equivalent of one bigger sub.

My earlier attempts at optimizing with MSO bears this out. It
was able to help a little bit was struggling to fill in the sonic voids.
Understandable given that it is substantially true that all four
filter channels and their respective transducers substantially
suffer the same low frequency voids. Diversity among the
room couplings is likely the way out of this conundrum.

Again, I'm only a novice at best. I hope some of this helps and
am sorry if my opinions lead you astray and waste your time.
I'm definitely willing to pursue this further if you are willing to
try some different subwoofer positions. I'll stay tuned. Thanks.








Thanks for the very detailed feedback.

The main speakers use 4 Jordan Eikona drivers each. The drivers are full range but, because of the alignment I am using (4 drivers in 16 litre enclosure) the expected roll-off is 12dB/Octave at 115Hz.

The design – Jordan Aurora – is unusual. Provides very good stereo image, height and depth. Mine have been modified from the original design which used 2 drivers in a ported enclosure – I have 4 drivers and have sealed the ports.

Measured response with speakers not on the wall and at 1m on-axis confirms the theory – so what you are seeing in terms of bass response is combination of room modes and bass reinforcement – the Auroras are mounted close to corners (50cm in from the side) on a 3.3 metre wide wall. The room is 6 metres by 3.3 metres and the main listening position (LP1 in my measurements) is 5 metres from the speakers.

The thinking behind using 120Hz crossover was (a) relieve the mains of having to produce any deep bass and (b) reduce the impact of room modes and reinforcement from wall / near corner mounting.

So, there’s no real leeway for changing the positioning of the main speakers. I played around with REW’s Room Sim and this shows that the 27Hz peak is a function of listening position – moving the subs around doesn’t change that. Having one sub between the mains and the other sub at the rear corner of the room does look like it would smooth out things in the 50Hz to 100Hz region.

I’ll need to make up a long cable to try this but will give it a go at some point in the next week or two.

I’ve attached measurements taken at LP1 (which is used for 80% of listening). C3 is with PEQ applied separately to each main and subwoofer to modify the measured response to fit as closely as possible to 120Hz / 24dB crossover). C4 is with Dirac applied on top of PEQ i.e. Dirac calibration is done with PEQ in place.

Sitting at LP1 it sounds very good. I use the Chesky CD (Ultimate Demonstration Disc). Spanish Harlem is particularly good for assessing bass. My partner – who has not the slightest interest in the technology and measurements but does have good ears – confirms that my conclusions are not based on expectation bias. At other positions bass is more uneven – but substantially better than without PEQ.

. Current arrangement – which measures and sounds well at LP1 – allows me to use subs either in stereo mode or as dual mono. Moving subs might make things better at other positions.

So, lots of room for further experimentation – and thanks again for your help!







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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 2 days ago #49201

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Just realised that the charts are not labelled.

They are - in order from top down - all measured at LP1

Left PEQ
Left PEQ + Dirac
Right PEQ
Right PEQ + Dirac

The blue line is my target response.
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SHD PEQ Programming with Biquads 11 months 1 day ago #49213

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Your measured responses with both PEQ and Dirac applied look good.
Perhaps you are done?

Let us know if you want to experiment further with subwoofer positions
and MSO. In case you do, I'll check back here occassionally. Thanks.
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