Random Stuff About Surround Sound

Help Support QuadraphonicQuad:

Sonik Wiz

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
QQ Supporter
Joined
May 30, 2005
Messages
2,783
Location
Kansas City
Absolutely need to keep SQ. I thought these units were made for only Quad folks. Although, one could see a lot of upside for the stereo to surround crowd - if they would or do buy these units. My recommendation would be to add modes, not take anything away as general thought.

Wasn’t there two different modes for SQ in an earlier model? Regular SQ and another mode for SQ records?
To OQG et al. I obviously failed to communicate that my comment on dropping SQ & TSS was in context to Chucky's comment on the current "universality' of the Surround Master. And his noting that he doesn't have to get out of his sweet spot, I guess, to switch decoding modes. So let me repeat myself, I love having the SQ decoding mode just like you do.

But the real value to more than us dedicated quaddies is the ability to produce high quality surround sound from regular 2 ch stereo sources. The Involve/QS is an excellent basis for this, SQ not so much & again I say nobody purchased a Surround Master for TSS.

I don't think there is enough advancement in the SM v3 to entice any owner of the current v2. But for those that don't have a SM at all or an older v1, this would be a great little black box to buy.

What would be a major improvement in the next design? Much has been said about window dressing such as meters, 'scopes. But function wise more inputs, master output volume control, input L/R balance control and yes, a classic 270 deg wrap around effect. Best of all it be profoundly simple to implement what I call a phase balance variable control on the front that adjusts the relative balance between in phase/ opposite phase of the input signal. Once upon a time I had an APT Holman preamplifier that was largely purchased because it had a "mode" balance control that did this:

APT HOLMAN.jpg


I think Phase Linear & Carver had something similar to this but it was called a "Panorama" control. Whatever the name it makes a huge difference in controlling the decoded output from stereo. Yes the effect is very different from simply changing the front or back output levels after decoding.

And then there is the HDMI, or lack there of. Although I don't need it, I think this will be a necessity to integrate the SM into more modern mainstream HT set ups. Isn't it possible to buy an OEM HDMI board from a MFG'er that has already paid the licensing fees & jumped through the hoops? Thanks to @gene_stl for that last idea.
 

J. PUPSTER

QQ Lifetime Supporter
QQ Lifetime Supporter
QQ Supporter
Joined
May 30, 2017
Messages
9,225
Location
CALIFORNIA (CENTRAL)
To OQG et al. I obviously failed to communicate that my comment on dropping SQ & TSS was in context to Chucky's comment on the current "universality' of the Surround Master. And his noting that he doesn't have to get out of his sweet spot, I guess, to switch decoding modes. So let me repeat myself, I love having the SQ decoding mode just like you do.

But the real value to more than us dedicated quaddies is the ability to produce high quality surround sound from regular 2 ch stereo sources. The Involve/QS is an excellent basis for this, SQ not so much & again I say nobody purchased a Surround Master for TSS.

I don't think there is enough advancement in the SM v3 to entice any owner of the current v2. But for those that don't have a SM at all or an older v1, this would be a great little black box to buy.

What would be a major improvement in the next design? Much has been said about window dressing such as meters, 'scopes. But function wise more inputs, master output volume control, input L/R balance control and yes, a classic 270 deg wrap around effect. Best of all it be profoundly simple to implement what I call a phase balance variable control on the front that adjusts the relative balance between in phase/ opposite phase of the input signal. Once upon a time I had an APT Holman preamplifier that was largely purchased because it had a "mode" balance control that did this:

View attachment 68640

I think Phase Linear & Carver had something similar to this but it was called a "Panorama" control. Whatever the name it makes a huge difference in controlling the decoded output from stereo. Yes the effect is very different from simply changing the front or back output levels after decoding.

And then there is the HDMI, or lack there of. Although I don't need it, I think this will be a necessity to integrate the SM into more modern mainstream HT set ups. Isn't it possible to buy an OEM HDMI board from a MFG'er that has already paid the licensing fees & jumped through the hoops? Thanks to @gene_stl for that last idea.
In that other thread, Dave said he’d like to implement DisplayPort; I believe a simple conversion connector could be used to HDMI. The thing I’m wondering @chucky3042; are there any high dollar licensing fees associated for DisplayPort?
And SW, how would you have used that phase balance variable control, just listen for maximum separation in the music?
 

Sonik Wiz

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
QQ Supporter
Joined
May 30, 2005
Messages
2,783
Location
Kansas City
And SW, how would you have used that phase balance variable control, just listen for maximum separation in the music?
Alltho the control does affect the stereo seperation to the decoders input, you would actually use it achevie a sweet spot balance between front & rear.

If you look at the pic of the APT preamp you'll see L+R marked at CCW extreme. Turn it that way & you'll have exactly what sounds like, L+R or a mono signal. All the decoded output would be in the front, no action from the rear chs. Rotate it to CW extreme & you have L-R output similar to the good 'ol cheap & cheerful Dynaco rear channel. In this case front chs would be silent & only decoded output from rear chs.

The usefulness comes from a more moderate setting. Most stereo recordings have a slight forward presence when decoded through a properly set up Involve/QS decoder. Many will just raise the rear ch level but that is not the same as controlling the phase balance at the input.

You could get a little fancy. Send a left only signal to the SM (say, by simply pulling the right ch input) and adjust the control towards L-R. At some point maybe around 2:00 you'l find the spot that represents a left back signal to the decoder & you will hear sound only from left back. Advance the control towards L+R & at some point you will hear only left front. These are now reference points and when actually listening to music twiddle your knob & when it sounds right, it is right.
 

Soundfield

1K Club - QQ Shooting Star
Joined
Dec 29, 2011
Messages
1,476
Location
Essex, UK
Alltho the control does affect the stereo seperation to the decoders input, you would actually use it achevie a sweet spot balance between front & rear.

If you look at the pic of the APT preamp you'll see L+R marked at CCW extreme. Turn it that way & you'll have exactly what sounds like, L+R or a mono signal. All the decoded output would be in the front, no action from the rear chs. Rotate it to CW extreme & you have L-R output similar to the good 'ol cheap & cheerful Dynaco rear channel. In this case front chs would be silent & only decoded output from rear chs.

The usefulness comes from a more moderate setting. Most stereo recordings have a slight forward presence when decoded through a properly set up Involve/QS decoder. Many will just raise the rear ch level but that is not the same as controlling the phase balance at the input.

You could get a little fancy. Send a left only signal to the SM (say, by simply pulling the right ch input) and adjust the control towards L-R. At some point maybe around 2:00 you'l find the spot that represents a left back signal to the decoder & you will hear sound only from left back. Advance the control towards L+R & at some point you will hear only left front. These are now reference points and when actually listening to music twiddle your knob & when it sounds right, it is right.
"Stereo Width Controllers" were a popular DIY project back in the day - they were always appearing in the electronics mags. Easy enough to do with op amps of course. I half wondered if someone still made a module or a kit for such a thing but a quick look at the usual suspects didn't turn anything up.
 

gene_stl

500 Club - QQ All-Star
QQ Supporter
Joined
Nov 3, 2019
Messages
534
Location
St.Louis

gene_stl

500 Club - QQ All-Star
QQ Supporter
Joined
Nov 3, 2019
Messages
534
Location
St.Louis
discrete components? Showing your age. :love: :geek:
we didn't get that particular magazine here in the colonies.
I am sure there were similar projects in Radio Electronics or Popular Electronics.
Later UK electronic mags started appearing at my newstand. After the great contraction had already begun.:rolleyes::oops:
 

Sonik Wiz

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
QQ Supporter
Joined
May 30, 2005
Messages
2,783
Location
Kansas City
I am working on replacing an earlier project using a Chase RLC-1 as a front end to my Surround Master. I will use Fig 2 from the ESP page for the phase control. They didn't offer kit for it but it's so simple that will be no prob. I ordered 2, motor driven ALPS pots to be used by remote control for input L/R balance & phase balance.

I however did order a very nifty ESP RIAA phono preamp kit to build into the box. I am using an Adcom 555 preamp but I could eliminate a box & some wires by putting a high quality phono preamp into the new project. The PCB is very high quality with epoxy board & plated through holes. ESP also supplies all parts & matches critical EQ components. I haven't even built it yet & I'm very happy!
 

Soundfield

1K Club - QQ Shooting Star
Joined
Dec 29, 2011
Messages
1,476
Location
Essex, UK
I am working on replacing an earlier project using a Chase RLC-1 as a front end to my Surround Master. I will use Fig 2 from the ESP page for the phase control. They didn't offer kit for it but it's so simple that will be no prob. I ordered 2, motor driven ALPS pots to be used by remote control for input L/R balance & phase balance.

I however did order a very nifty ESP RIAA phono preamp kit to build into the box. I am using an Adcom 555 preamp but I could eliminate a box & some wires by putting a high quality phono preamp into the new project. The PCB is very high quality with epoxy board & plated through holes. ESP also supplies all parts & matches critical EQ components. I haven't even built it yet & I'm very happy!
Yes the ESP circuits are very good, I've built several of them. That's the one I'd really build now if I ever got around to it (so many other things on the to do list!). As you say his PCB's are very high quality. Didn't know he supplied any complete kits though.
 

par4ken

1K Club - QQ Shooting Star
QQ Supporter
Joined
May 28, 2011
Messages
1,609
Location
NW Ontario
discrete components? Showing your age. :love: :geek:
we didn't get that particular magazine here in the colonies.
I am sure there were similar projects in Radio Electronics or Popular Electronics.
Later UK electronic mags started appearing at my newstand. After the great contraction had already begun.:rolleyes::oops:
There was a Canadian version starting in 1977.
 

Sonik Wiz

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
QQ Supporter
Joined
May 30, 2005
Messages
2,783
Location
Kansas City
Yes the numbers don't add up. I always find it curious that the front speakers are always shown placed so close together with modern 5.1 systems. With the centre speaker you could place them a bit farther apart. I like the rears a bit more forward off to the sides.
I think Involve uses Celsius degrees. And being from Down Under they don't always add up.
 

Owen Smith

600 Club - QQ All-Star
Joined
Apr 6, 2012
Messages
604
Location
UK
As you've said before Chucky - it all depends on the shape of your head! Mine also prevents me from enjoying stereo over headphones and binaural is even worse - just sounds like a phasey mess inside my skull!
I thought I was the only one that thinks binaural sounds awful, glad to hear it's not just me.

And stereo over headphones is just plain weird to me. Having the soundstage sat entirely inside my head panned between my ears is very disconcerting. Maybe you have to have grown up as part of the iPod generation to get used to that.
 

Soundfield

1K Club - QQ Shooting Star
Joined
Dec 29, 2011
Messages
1,476
Location
Essex, UK
I thought I was the only one that thinks binaural sounds awful, glad to hear it's not just me.

And stereo over headphones is just plain weird to me. Having the soundstage sat entirely inside my head panned between my ears is very disconcerting. Maybe you have to have grown up as part of the iPod generation to get used to that.
There's a lot of us about. I like to think we are the ones with the more acute sense of hearing! We refined and sensitive types are not fooled by the cheap trickery of headphones! I've tried all kinds of headphone processors and adaptors over the years that promise amazingly realistic 'out of head' surround sound results. Rubbish! None of them work- they are all completely useless. I am however (and I guess these things must be related) extremely sensitive (enjoyably so) to stereo imagery from speakers. Image precision is one of the most important things I look for in a loudspeaker - and a lot of well regarded speakers actually massively disappoint me in that regard.
 
Top