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 Robert Harrison's Tunable System

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Michael Green
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSun Oct 21, 2012 9:20 am

At one time you were saying you were getting sound rolling around in a bigger sense, meaning off to the sides and even a little behind you. How is that doing? I'm glad to hear the potential detail but definitely want space with the detail.

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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeMon Oct 22, 2012 3:39 pm

Hey, Mr. Green,

I installed the remainder of the ceiling panels yesterday.
Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 8113624777_ea8fd30aa6
new ceiling panels front left by ozonerman, on Flickr
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new ceiling panels front center by ozonerman, on Flickr

I had more warm up time last night as I watched an episode of "Dr. Who" and a fave rave movie from the 1980s, "Top Secret," one of the most bizarre comedies of all time from the former Kentucky Fried Theater team of Jim Abrahams, Jerry Zucker and David Zucker, their first film after their sleeper hit "Airplane."

After those, my first listen was to one of the "Elements" series of New Age collections. With the one, two punch of the new ceiling panels and the removal of that FS behind the TV, space has returned to my room. Not beyond the walls, but a definite improvement. On to "Pure Moods" and the Sacred Spirits, Oryema and Isham tunes all exhibited that sense of space and emotional involvement that had hooked me originally.

What is it about big old drums, be they kettle drums or those vertically mounted Japanese monsters, that are so popular with many new age artists? I have a few tunes with one or the other of those banging away in the background. I heard a couple last night, including "Adiemus" on "Pure Moods." I noticed not only the initial bang but the after-echo also, sort of washing across the room. Some of these might be enhanced with reverb, but still, I hadn't really picked up on that before. And that whatever it is that BOOMs away on "The Last Emperor" was crawling along the floor towards me in a wave of deep bass.

Again, I had the volume at 2 notches instead of a notch and half, so the extra volume helped, as did the cables and transfer stands, of course. Once all this settles down, I will have to figure out why I get that damnable leaning to the left as far as center images are concerned. I have my chair slightly off center to the right to compensate some. Also, I still notice more obvious ambience in the right rear, where all the doors are, as opposed to the left rear, where its all wall.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Oct 23, 2012 12:20 am

Fantastic!! That is what I was hoping to hear. Question, if you push up on the frame of the ceiling a little do you get the sense of weight or does the ceiling still have a ton of give to it?

Have you covered the window with cardboard yet and listened? Cardboard isn't the sound I want but it will tell me some stuff.

Left room drift

Try a floorstander 2' from the front wall 1' from the side wall almost but not quite facing you.

Have you put wood shims under the rear doors yet? You might also want to shim the top.

I love those big airy drums. Also love big airy bamboo or other native flutes in use with those drums.

There's a trick to making the panels flush if they don't settle from the weight but lets see how they do on their own first.

nice look! really changed the room

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Oct 23, 2012 12:25 pm


Hi Robert

What do you use to wedge your doors? Are your doors double ones like Sonic's?

Sonic
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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeWed Oct 24, 2012 9:15 pm

Hey, Mr. Green,

We had a thunderstorm go through every few hours on Monday, so I didn't do any listening that night, preferring to stay upstairs with my mother in case we had a another tornado warning, which we had just the week before. (Thankfully, we got passed over on that one.) Yesterday, I put up the cardboard and shimmed the closet doors, but no listening as I went to a friend's house for the evening. So, tonight (hopefully) I can listen to what other changes there are to hear, including the FS placed where you suggested on the left front side of the room. As to weight on the ceiling tracks, they still have some give, but I wouldn't say a ton. I can't really compare them to the rest of the basement because all the other areas have those 2' x 4' panels, as in my prevoius media room.

Hey, Sonic,
I use whatever is handy to shim doors, not having any appropriate size wood at the moment. In this case, since there is over an inch between the bottom of the doors and the floor, I am using some round ended brass plated knobs jammed into the space between the doors and one more that just fits over the right pair. In the space between the wall and the left-most door, I jammed in a wooden clothespin. You won't see these items in this older photo, but just a reminder of what the closet doors look like. There are two pairs, opening out from the middle, folding into a closed V shape when fully opened on both sides.
Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 7985840833_c019ed90bc
media room 9 14 2012 007 by ozonerman, on Flickr

P.S.
Another of my fave rave movies from the 1980s is "The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai: Across the 8th Dimension." There is a scene where the lead character suddenly realizes something that should have been obvious to him and he proclaims, "If it was a snake, it would have bit me!" That's how I feel now that I realize that Mr. Green sent me a bag of wood peices of various shapes. I need to give some of those a try as shims.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Oct 25, 2012 4:03 am

Hey, Mr. Green,

I just finished tonight's session. As usual, no more than a couple of hours and fighting The Doze most of the time. I began with one my New Age mix CDs. Nice listening, but aside from filling the room, I couldn't really pinpoint any changes.

So, I put on "Pure Moods" again and skipped the first track and went to Enya's "Orinoco Flow." That left drift, which I hadn't noticed on the mix CD, was back. Despite that, there was a nice hall effect, moreso than previously, and I mean that in a good way, not the fakey sound processor kind.

I listened to a little bit of the next few tracks. When I got to "The Last Emperor," that BOOM I had been speaking of I am now convinced must be a stand-up bass, because I could hear for the first time the string resonating after being plucked before it gets buried by the addition of more instruments as the tune continues.

On "Twin Peaks," I got more of a sense of the brushes on the cymbals.

"Makambo" was really filling the back corners tonight. The strings on "My Wife With Champagne Shoulders" were more "civilized" and appeared closer to me. For many moons, I had thought I had grown immune to these 2 tracks which I once loved so much, to where I thought I was getting tired of them, but tonight I was really connecting with them both.

That piano on "The Promise" exhibited, dare I say, more harmonics and appeared less wooly than before.

I didn't try to see if any of your wood pieces would fit as shims yet. I'm "over loading my donkey" as it is with all of these changes in regards to taking it all in. But progress is being made. Thank you.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Oct 25, 2012 5:47 am

So, settling is starting to take place, nice Smile . When I get my baffles to break in a little I'll try to make some drifts left and right and see how I get rid of them. It's probably going to be something simple you do, but have to find it.

Hey BTW have you tried the RT Pillow on the ceiling yet?

I would think by the weekend the sound will gel a bit more as the cables (oh, got to remember those Grounds) should just be starting to open up.

Do me a favor just for the heck of it. Take your tray outside and see if this changes the drift. Also put a FS back where the table was and see if the drift changes. You know you can put a RT pillow on the back side of your FS. This will give you directional burning.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Oct 25, 2012 1:07 pm

Hey, Mr. Green,

That left side drift was happening in the other room and may be an anolomy caused by the Pioneer. Every other week since I moved to the smaller room, as it did last evening which I failed to mention, the Pioneer takes a spell where the left channel cuts in and out for awhile, usually while playing a deep bass signal. It is an old unit, after all. Remember, the volume control would cause a crackle when turned until I blew some compressed air on it. It doesn't crackle now, but I still think it tends to "catch" a bit. I bring this up because in that other room, I always had 2 tables flanking my chair for symmetry, yet the left drift persisted.

Regarding the RT Square on the ceiling, are you referring to the same position above my head, angled down, touching ceiling and wall? I used a safety pin to fasten the RT to the old ceiling tile (and the push pins to the wall). For these wooden ones, I might have to get some of that fancy 3M tape. Currently, I have no RTs on the rear or side walls. I still have one FS on the floor behind my chair, laying on its side, angled up. The other (only 2) is in the front left of the room.

I haven't trimmed the speaker cables yet. I don't want to make them too short, as I presume I will need some height off the floor to hook up to your speakers on a stand. The Magnepan connections are at the bottom of the panels, so require less length. I want to leave room to move things around, too, so I will mull over how much to trim. Maybe start with 8 or 10 feet length?

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Oct 25, 2012 1:25 pm

Hi Robert

On the ceiling I was talking about the area where I said optional.

Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Rhr5

I'm getting old cause I could have swore that I posted this before, but can't find it on your thread. Just to clarify (where did I post that?) I'm not saying put up the rear tunes again but try the above you slightly infront of your ears. See if you can put it up to try without getting sticky stuff on my pretty ceiling Laughing .

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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Oct 25, 2012 6:35 pm


Hey, Mr. Green,

You did post those images way back on page 8. There has been so much going on that my thread is really piling on the posts.



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Oct 26, 2012 12:08 pm


Hi Robert

How do you wedge your doors? What do you use? I tried doing this once on the door panels that were not opening but the wedges kept coming loose. The sound appeared to be better when the wedges were solidly in place.

Sonic
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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Oct 26, 2012 11:30 pm


Hey, Sonic,

I answered your question in the last post of the previous page, although I have yet to try the pieces Mr. Green sent to use as feet as wedges/shims.

Concerning adding a table to the room, let's remember I DON'T have a 10 foot ceiling and most of the floor space is already taken up in my 12 foot by 9 and half foot room. Mr. Green was prodding me to get rid of furniture as it was in the 22 foot by 12 and half foot room. And I suppose all those fiberglass ceiling tiles were eating up the sound waves. I got to thinking, why am I sitting in this big, empty room? The smaller room is starting to come into its own. Lots of changes to sort through, though, and more to come.

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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSat Oct 27, 2012 4:42 am

Hey, Mr. Green,

My legs were begging for the comfort of a recliner yesterday, so I didn't even go into my media room after work. Tonight, though, I listened to "The Rain Forest," one of the multiple CDs in the "Pure New Age Moods" collection. This particular CD mixes sounds of insects, rain and water falls with the music. I had discussed one track last year when I was back in the other room (with the Marantz pre-amp and Outlaw mono amps) which begins with what I had at one time thought was water dripping onto large stones, but after some work discovered was water dripping onto foilage.

After listening to the whole CD, I decided to tape an RT Square onto one of the tracks on the ceiling, avoiding touching the panels. You had specified nearer my listening position, but the beginning of a sudden migraine headache distracted me and I wound up putting it room center, between the speakers. Usually, if I take some pain relievers within the first 20 minutes, the pain will subside, otherwise I suffer for hours. I'm glad the pain went away because I was hearing a change in this second listen. I suspect this particular recording has a jacked up high end which can make the nature sounds a bit brittle, although they may have sounded nice on inert monitors in a damped studio. The RT tamed this and added some dimension as well.

I figured I had to put on "Pure Moods" again to see what the result was. Unfortunately, I had the furnace off during the "Rain Forest" session and had to put it back on because it's cold again in Chicagoland. Still, Enya's track exhibited a little more of that hall effect I noticed before and perhaps more delineation on the lyrics.

I believe I heard a little tune within the tune at the beginning of "Oygene Part IV."

On "The Last Emperor," the "plinks" on the xylophone (or whatever that is) sounded more like "plinks" than "glinks," if that makes any sense. The violin now had some air around it.

On "Makambo," the voice and the guitar are in the left front area of the room, with the echoes and the haunting whistle everywhere else. A little less boom on the low notes of the guitar tonight.

The Isham tune still seems intimate in that the strings sound as if they are near me. But then the next tune begins, Michael Nyman's "The Promise," and the piano is further away near the front of the room, centered. Previously, I never noticed that much difference in distance between these two tracks. I guess I'm starting to get some depth.

The left drift is still evident, however. I didn't remove the tray tonight but I guess I will sometime soon. You think maybe the transformer on the receiver is tipping the weight on the left side and causing this anolomy, making the energy drain faster there? Short of taking the transformer out, which I am reticent to do, should I try to counterweight the other end of the receiver?

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSat Oct 27, 2012 10:58 am


Hi Robert

Saw your reply. Thank you -- I must have missed it last time. Will try small wedges of MW between my doors and the upper frame and see what happens.

Sonic
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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: More on the left drift thing   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeMon Oct 29, 2012 4:03 pm

Hey, Mr. Green,

The FS was doing nothing to that left drift. Last night, I listened to a mix CD of songs and the vocals were left of center. I tried the FS on the right side to no avail. Finally, I pushed in the MONO switch and moved the BALANCE control to around the 4 o'clock position to have a centered image. The unit did the same thing in the other room when I first received it, but I just lived with it. As I have said, it doesn't seem to do that when I turn the volume control higher for DVDs. So, I reckon I will just go with that for now.

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Robert Harrison



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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Oct 30, 2012 11:07 am


Hey, Mr. Green,

Watched a movie on DVD with a mono soundtrack last night. I had to turn the balance control back to 12 o'clock or everything would image in the right corner. With all the other changes lately, I figured I might as well move the chair back closer to the rear wall and move the ceiling mounted RT Square over to just above my head, still taped to a rail and not touching the panels.

I tend to go 'round in circles. No doubt I did the same thing with the balance control last winter and just decided to leave it at 12 o'clock for everything. I tend to be Mr. Short-Term Memory and do things a certain way and then question myself months later only to come 'round to the original conclusion, a.k.a. "tail chasing." I found my spray can of contact cleaner, but I'm not sure if I should use it. You had some negative comments on doing so, if I remember correctly.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeTue Oct 30, 2012 8:38 pm

Hi Robert

When you have the left room drift happening, flip your DVD cables (left to right and right to left) and see if the drift jumps to the other side. If it is still drifting to the left put it back to correct. Flip the leads on your speakers (left to right and right to left) and see if it jumps to the right. If the left room drift is still happening without shifting sides we have to look deeper. Can a transformer do this? Yes. Can a speaker have less output than another? Yes. But try the other stuff first. With your mono on and you turning it to 4, you either have a big blockage in your right channel or a weird accoustical setup. Did your old system ever drift?

The Chair

Yep, my chair has to do both. I have to have good sound but I also need to relax. In my case, in comes the foot stool.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeWed Nov 07, 2012 2:45 pm

OK, what's the latest?

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Nov 08, 2012 12:47 am


Hey, Mr. Green,

As I have stated, the left drift only occurs at lower volume levels, typically where I set the volume control for most CD playback, and then not all the time.

Watching some older movies lately, I found that I had to move closer to the back wall to get a focussed center image, especially evident on mono film soundtracks. Also evident is that now that my room is virtually 100% hard surfaces, what with the new ceiling panels and cardboard over the window area, I needed more burn. Thus, up went 2 RT Squares on the rear corners, facing in toward me instead of toward the front of the room, plus 2 Tuning Strips on the front wall under the corresponding RT Squares there, facing forward, not straddling the corners as in the typical set-up. This brought things more into the center of the room, out from the front wall.

I'm not sure about those older film soundtracks, though. I believe they used more on the set sound back then, instead of re-doing the dialog later in a recording booth, so I may be hearing the accompanying room tone of the sets. The other night, I noticed the difference when a scene was set outdoors on a beach, how that dialog barrel sound was missing in that instance. There's always something to study and evaluate, and that is what I have been doing lately.

Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 8167256966_126f09b878
RT Square and Tuning Strip combo in front left corner by ozonerman, on Flickr
Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 8167226435_650a336844
front left corner with view of cardboard over window area by ozonerman, on Flickr
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Tuning Strip in front right corner by ozonerman, on Flickr
Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 8167228061_cd7710ca3e
RT Square and Tuning Strip combo in front right corner with side of speaker in shot by ozonerman, on Flickr
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RT Square in rear left ceiling corner by ozonerman, on Flickr
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RT Square on ceiling above listening chair by ozonerman, on Flickr
Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 8167229223_8e18a960d6
RT Squares on ceiling above chair and rear left ceiling corner by ozonerman, on Flickr
Don't be concerned with that apparent circular stain by the ceiling RT Square (held on with masking tape to the rail). That is merely a reflection on the camera lens.
Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 8167229881_d9d57e83c6
view through entrance door of chair, snack tray and lamp stand by ozonerman, on Flickr


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Michael Green
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeThu Nov 08, 2012 7:11 pm

I'm looking very forward to some listening feedback. Do the Crickets and other parts of abbey when you get a chance.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeFri Nov 09, 2012 12:27 pm


Hi Robert

Looking at your system, you are the Tuning Machine not Sonic!

Wondering why you have mounted your TuneStrips and Tuning Squares beside the corners rather than across them.

This weekend I'll be removing more of the Space Cones from my room -- possibly those on my doors and replacing them with some special wood from Michael. I won't blame the Space Cones but my adopting them may have taken me away from the deep, big tune-sound instead of closer. Did the Space Cones give a midrange emphasis that gave more detail in some ways? Possibly. But for now wood is good and more solid wood furniture in my room (within reason) is better.

Been also wondering about your swivel chair. Do you find the rollers and the swivel distracting? I tried something like this once and gave up in under an hour. I found a rigid chair that neither slides or rotates the best.

Sonic
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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSat Nov 10, 2012 1:46 am

Thanks for taking it easy on my Space Cones, they were feeling sad after your comments. One of them came up to me with tears (brass tears Crying or Very sad ) in it's eyes and said "why doesn't uncle Sonic love us". It was very sad indeed. Poor little cone.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeMon Nov 12, 2012 3:36 pm

Hey, Sonic,

I believe you asked Mr. Green once about his recommended spots to put up RT Squares as opposed to Corner Tunes. His answer was that it was a matter of amount of burn, if I recall correctly. At any rate, those were his recommendations for my system for the Squares, so that is why, on my own, I decided to go along with that for the position for the Tuning Strips. As for the chair, you may remember from a previous episode that it was a quick fix to replace the fabric recliner and I have been procrastinating on a permanent replacement. I could do without the casters and the swivel.

Mr. Green,
If your Space Cones are starting to talk to you, I recommend you lay off the hashish! Laughing I'm currently in the midst of learning how to use digital cinema equipment while simultaneously showing several films in various other formats (35mm film, DVD and Blu-ray) as part of a Polish Film Festival where I work, so I haven't even been in my media room lately to hear crickets or anything else, literally working, as The Beatles say, "8 days a week."

Prior to this, I did go off in a tangent where I thought I needed something on the floor, so I put a piece of cardboard (same size as the one covering the window area, roughly the size of a movie poster) directly in front of the equipment platform. Instead of just laying it flat on the floor, I supported it with 6 of the wooden cubes you sent me. I hadn't mentioned this before, but it was a factor in the depth I was beginning to hear. Not being able to leave things alone, though, I took it out of the room and replaced it with one of those little wooden kiddie benches I had been using in the bigger room, along with another RT Square where the left wall meets the ceiling, by the left speaker. This shut down the depth and brought about a closed-in sound, so I did what Sonic does and went to my last "system reset point" with the Square and bench removed and the cardboard and cubes back where they were. And that's where I left off...

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSun Nov 18, 2012 12:27 am

What did I get in the mail yesterday?

That's right, part of it is bigger than a bread box.

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PostSubject: Re: Robert Harrison's Tunable System   Robert Harrison's Tunable System - Page 8 Icon_minitimeSun Nov 18, 2012 10:36 am


cheers

Now you can do that voodoo that you do so well.

For the rest of you folks out there, what we are talking about is this: I decided to give the much talked about Sherwood receiver a try. But first, the unit is making a pit stop at Mr. Green's place for some of his tender loving tweaking.

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