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James Welch Jan 29, 2006, 03:34pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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I am using a msi neo4 platinum sli mobo with the onboard soundblaster live 24 bit audio. My speakers are the Klipsch promedia 2.1. I have the creative EAX console and speaker settings installed from their website. In the speaker settings there is a bass boost control. I have this turned on because it seems to sound better turned on then just turning the bass up more. MY question is what is a good value to have the cutoff frequency set to. It ranges from 10hz to 200hz. I am in a dorm room and my sub is under my desk near the wall so the bass is already big without turning the bass on the speaker control up much. I don't really know what the cutoff frequency is so any help would be great. Thanks


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jake Jan 29, 2006, 04:27pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
technically cuttoff frequency determines the -3dB point of a filter
so in this case i can safly assume that it referes to the cut off frequency of the audio filters which controll where the audio goes, i.e. either the sub or the sattilite speakers.
a good value would be determined by your speakers and how well they perform in the region of 10hz to 200hz.

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ken Fraleigh Feb 04, 2006, 01:30pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 04, 2006, 01:31pm EST

 
>> Re: Cutoff frequency
The cutoff frequency is used when no subwoofer is used, to filter low frequencies out.

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jake Feb 04, 2006, 01:44pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
that cant be right because then you wouldnt hear and bass in the audio at all.
if a speaker system does not include a dedicated sub woofer then the speakers are designed to be full range speakers so you do get low frequiencies out of the same speaker.

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G. G. Feb 04, 2006, 03:28pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
Jake,

How many connections do you have going to your sound system from your motherboard ?

The slider for the bass frequency cuttoff between 10hz ~ 200mhz is design so as the sound card or in this case the onboard sound system to send any frequency above that slider point to the main speakers (L/R front and rears) and any frequency below that slider point to the sub.

If your connection is one cable because you have a 2.1... meaning that you have a cable that is caring L/R channels to the sub and then it travels to the sats..... you need to slide that slider down as far as it will go. in this way... all the frequency will travel to the speaker system and then it will have a crossover to deavy up the frequency. If you have two cables... one L/R channel and other is sub... then slide the slider where it sounds best. usually it will be the point where you the loudest point your sat speaker can go and except the most bass without distorting. the smaller the sats... the less bass it can produce. I would guess it will be around the 150hz mark. 150hz and above will go to the sats and 149hz and down will go to the sub (only if you are using the two cable connection).

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jake Feb 04, 2006, 03:53pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
G. G. if you read my first post then you'll see that i said, and i qoute:
"so in this case i can safly assume that it referes to the cut off frequency of the audio filters which controll where the audio goes, i.e. either the sub or the sattilite speakers."
also i'd like to point out that people can not hear audio above 20kHz, so mentioning 200mhz is redundant(a typo i'm sure;))
and i have one cable on my system! but wait i get full 5.1 surround!!! thats because its digital and i have a digital receiver for all sort of digital signals, but thats beside the point

in my second post i refering to ken Fraleigh's reply who said that the cut-off frequency setting is used when no sub-wooker is present which clearly is incorrect

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Rory Witham Feb 04, 2006, 04:01pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
20Hz is the quick and simple answer that people are avoiding


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James Welch Feb 04, 2006, 04:45pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
Ive got a onboard soundblaster live 24-bit on my msi mobo.
I have a cable going from soundcard to the control pod. Then there is speaker wire going from each sat. to the subwoofer. Then a preamp that goes from contorl pod to the subwoofer.
This is what the back of my sub looks like.

http://www.laaudiofile.com/images/pm21a.jpg

If im describing it wrong they are the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 system. Its pretty well known.

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G. G. Feb 05, 2006, 01:06am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
Jake...

I got to make a correction.... actually when I submitted my post.... I meant it to be directed to James but for the life of me i dont know why I put your name in it.... lolololol sorry.... my post wouldnt apply to you but to James.

JAMES....

Im little confused on your hardware and connection type. You say that you have a onboard soundblaster live 24 but then you say you have a sound card.... which one is it ? typically "onboard" means the audio that is built onto the motherboard and sound card is a add-in card. And for the cable ... is it an analog type or is it the digital coax or fibre cable? Thanks for the picture of the back on the pro media sub.

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James Welch Feb 05, 2006, 01:45am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
it is onboard on the msi neo4 platinum sli, which is considered a hardware onboard audio since its dedicated. And also the cable is analog I assume. It is basically a soundblaster live soundcard but its built into the motherboard and is dope.

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Gerritt Feb 05, 2006, 02:40am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
First the Neo 4 uses a Realtek ALC850, not SoundBlaster chipset, but that is beside the point of the original question.

The implementation that you have uses the digital out (SPDIF) connection so I believe that the actual cutoff frequency is controlled by the Klipsch Bass/Control module, not necessarily software, but by using software you may be preventing the signals necessary for proper bass and sub-bass reproduction.

In a audiophile configuration the cutoffs are usually set based upon the driver or speaker size and there is a differential between a woofer and a sub-woofer, in your case there is no differentiation.
The "old school" cutoffs would be midrange-bass at about 200Hz and an additional cutoff at 20-40Hz for the Sub-woofer.

Due to the very small cone sizes of the satellite speakers these days 200Hz for a bass cut off is probably best.

Once again, due to your using the SPDIF connection, I believe that you shouldn't be setting this in software at all, and allow the internal electronics on your speaker system to take charge.
Using the "bass boost" capability actually modifies the signal sent by the Realtek chipset (or Soundblaster if you prefer) and gives a higher base response without modifying the crossover configuration (something I'm not sure you can actually do using the SPDIF interface).

Gerritt

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Gerritt Feb 05, 2006, 02:45am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
P.S. Sander could probably give a much better factual explanation, and maybe if we ask he'll devote an article to it!

Gerritt

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Adam L Feb 05, 2006, 03:09am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 05, 2006, 03:10am EST

 
>> Re: Cutoff frequency
Just like we can feel subsonic bass (20hz and below), we can feel upper harmonics. This is why sampling rates have kept going up in the years, up to 192KHz. These numbers aren't pulled from a hat but through years of psychoacoustics--*real blind testing*. Otherwise we'd stop at 20KHz and be done with it.

G. G. Feb 05, 2006, 03:27am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
Gerritt,

He cant be using the SPDIF because the ProMedia 2.1 is strictly an analog system, taking stereo mini-jack inputs. So the source will be coming from the L/R front channel jack (usually the green connector) on the motherboard. So as it stands.... he should be sending all the frequency from the motherboard to the speaker system because the frequency cuttoffs will be handled by the sub box... There where the frequency will be sent to the correct speakers by the built in crossover network inside the sub. If he is messing with the frequency slider in software... then I think it should be set to as low as possible so as the front channels will get all the frequency and the sub box will take care of handling the frequency cutoffs to the sats.

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jake Feb 05, 2006, 03:28am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
personally i cant hear the difference between 44.1Khz sampling and 96Khz and i believe that my audigy samples at 48K for default.
does it really make such a huge difference?
anyway most audio on the computer is sampled at 44.1Khz so resampling at a higher frequency such as 192Khz is a waste since the information is just interpolated and does not have much to do with what was actually going on when the recording was made.

oh and G.G. you are forgiven for your blatant insolence ;)

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Gerritt Feb 05, 2006, 03:33am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
G. G.

I was basing my observations and suggestions off of the following link that he provided:

http://www.laaudiofile.com/images/pm21a.jpg

If this is incorrect then the cutoff frequency of 200Hz would probably still be true.

Gerritt

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We all know what we know, and everyone else knows we are wrong.
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Adam L Feb 05, 2006, 04:55am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 05, 2006, 04:59am EST

 
>> Re: Cutoff frequency
I'd agree 192 may be an excessive use of space, but 48 is a bit low. It's not uncommon in HT for people to have speakers flat to 40KHz and a gradual rolloff after that. 96 is probably the sweetspot given what's already out there--and most DVD audio is at 96KHz, except 2-channel DVD audio, which usually uses the extra space for 192KHz output sampling, I suppose, *just for the heck of it.*

The difference isn't *huge*, but things in audio rarely are. Pychoacoustic testing just led to some of the results which the industry uses for output standards.

And...you don't want to mess with bass-redirect on a multimedia speaker setup because there is a hardwired crossover on the subwoofer. Whatever you do to bass redirect thus only affects the subwoofer and not the speakers. This is more of a nifty feature for people on a component system.

jake Feb 05, 2006, 06:43am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
well surly since the range of a peferct ear is 20hz to 20khz the audio should be sampled at 40khz. i can understand why its sampled at 44.1k but 96K is silly because humans do not hear anything at a frequency of 48Khz let alone 96K (at 192khz sample rate)
also speaker systems are made for the range of 20hz to 20khz, some lower quality speakers have a range of 40hz to 18Khz, so trying to output a signal of 48Khz or above would not get though the speaker system at all because it would be significantly attenuated

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Adam L Feb 05, 2006, 07:29am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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Edited: Feb 05, 2006, 07:36am EST

 
>> Re: Cutoff frequency
Well Jake, you have illustrated my point. The gist of it is, people with the proper equipment look for higher quality sources. People with lower quality equipment don't really need to concern themselves with a higher quality source because their output is veiled.

I wouldn't say its silly to sample at 96KHz, it's kind of like saying we don't need more than 16.7 billion colors for picture perfect images. We are certainly at a steep slope of the diminishing returns curve, but more is never worse. *Pointless* is a value judgement based on how much you care.

While my speakers are flat to around 27KHz (-6db), I have heard systems with supertweeters before that extend far between that. It gives an "airy" feeling, just like subsonic (<20hz) bass kicks you in the chest while being nearly in audible.

And our normal hearing range is 20-20KHz, yes, that's true. It doesn't mean what's beyond and below that is *inaudible*, it means our perception of it (our in-ear response curve) drops off significantly after that, rather than being completely cut off from those frequencies. If someone plays a 6hz frequency at 110db, you WILL hear it. You don't even need an electronic device for that, there's the pipe organ. If someone played a 25KHz test tone at 120db. You'd hear that too. Your in-ear response curve is a dropping slope, it's not a brick wall filter.

It's the same thing with speakers. Yes, like you said, some speakers are listed at 40hz to 18KHz, perhaps +/-3db. There's no brickwall filter. If you played a 30hz test tone on it, you'd still hear it, it would just be much lower in volume because the speaker cone can't play that frequency linearly. You'd hear a 20KHz test tone too if you turned it up loud enough. Here's a challenge--go download Audacity, it's a free test tone generator. And play some extreme high and extreme low frequency sounds. Turn your speakers up. I guarantee you will hear them. Just because it says "40-18KHz" does not mean it will not play at all outside that range, nor does it mean just because the "average weighted hearing curve" is 20-20KHz mean you cannot hear an outside frequency if loud enough. Of course if you have some really low quality speakers, you won't be able to test your hearing that well since the ability of the loudspeaker to reproduce those sounds would be poor.

jake Feb 05, 2006, 07:59am EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
interesting,
i always thought that the 20khz mark was the -3db point of an average ear, i know as we get older this value decreases but thats a different topic
and i always thought that it had a very steep roll off rate

i downloaded the programe and generated some tones and yes your right, thing is i do wonder if i am hearing harmonics due to digital sampling or if these are pure tones, unfortunatly i do not have the equipement to test for this. perhaps i can test it when i get into work on tuesday

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Gerritt Feb 05, 2006, 11:47pm EST Reply - Quote - Report Abuse
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>> Re: Cutoff frequency
The hearing range of 20Hz-20kHz is NORMAL, not absolute.
The SAMPLE RATE has little to do with the Frequencies represented, but "smooths" the digital to analog transistion of the source. A 1Hz sample rate would only be able to represent a single Tone in 1 second, it does not represent the total harmonic range, but a higher sample rate can increase the dynamic DB range of the playback.

Gerritt

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(A rough road leads to the Stars)
We all know what we know, and everyone else knows we are wrong.
System Specifications in BIO

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