Stuff that sounds amazing with the Surround Master

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MidiMagic

1K Club - QQ Shooting Star
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I don't understand how Involve treats various encoded movies. I have movies encoded in DD, DTS, TrueHD and HD Master. Can the SMv2 decode these streams correctly?
SM (tell me if I am wrong) handles only matrixed surround sound.

SM does not know how to decode movies with discrete surround. DD, DTS, TrueHD and HD Master are discrete systems.

However, most movies have a 2-channel output (downmix) that is encoded in Dolby Surround.

Almost all DVDs have this, and now that the Dolby patents have expired, there is no reason to not provide Dolby Surround as the downmix.
 

Sonik Wiz

๐Ÿ‘‚ 500 MPH EARS ๐Ÿ‘‚
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May 30, 2005
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Safe to assume @Sonik Wiz that you use the center channel with movies?
I'm pretty flexible on the use of the center front ch. Sitting in the sweet spot enjoying movies or music, the phantom center front imaging is so good the dedicated center front ch is strictly optional. In ancient days (pre-pandemic) when friends actually came over I would always use the dedicated center front because we are all usually scattered about the room.

The real value of using a real (or derived) center front ch to me is in two ways. One is when listening to music where the vocalist is pretty much buried under the mix. Some Dandy Warhols & Lou Reed come to mind. A bump in the center front improves that situation, at least my ears. Secondly when watching a movie we all know how the (artificial) dynamic range can be insane. That is, adjust a good level for dialogue & the first explosion blasts out your windows. My Anthem has a "night" mode for this that isn't particularly effective. So again I just raise the center front levels to match the sound FX better and adjust over all volume to taste. This works with either 5.1 discrete or Surround Master.

Many newer high budget movies have excellent surround mixing & don't really need the SM for processing. But there's a gazillion mediocre soundtracks or even plain stereo that the SM any version will do wonders for.

Edit: New tag line
Surround Master. More than just music.
 

chucky3042

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
Joined
Apr 9, 2012
Messages
2,257
SM (tell me if I am wrong) handles only matrixed surround sound.

SM does not know how to decode movies with discrete surround. DD, DTS, TrueHD and HD Master are discrete systems.

However, most movies have a 2-channel output (downmix) that is encoded in Dolby Surround.

Almost all DVDs have this, and now that the Dolby patents have expired, there is no reason to not provide Dolby Surround as the downmix.
Would be way better if they used Involve encode instead!
 

TVB

300 Club - QQ All-Star
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Jul 21, 2008
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370
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Rocky Mountains
Just curious..if you play a cd and routt it through a surround decoder is it still stereo in the back channels or are they some type of mono mix
 

Sonik Wiz

๐Ÿ‘‚ 500 MPH EARS ๐Ÿ‘‚
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May 30, 2005
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Just curious..if you play a cd and routt it through a surround decoder is it still stereo in the back channels or are they some type of mono mix
Which flavor surround decoder? It would be a mono mix in the rear speakers if played through an old Dolby matrix surround decoder. All others have different outputs depend on proprietary technology. On my Anthem unit it has a mode called 4 ch stereo so it is what it sounds like. But it also has DPL II, NEO 6, Anthem Logic, etc to choose from.

There's something very nice about Sansui QS and the Surround Master. When decoding a sounds position is determined side to side depending on the amplitude difference between the 2 ch inputs. Where this sound is front / back is determined by the phase (or polarity) between the stereo chs. In phase it is up front. Opposite it is in the rear. Left only (right only) is center left (right) & is output as equal level between the sides speakers.

This phase / amplitude relationship is what makes the SM so good at producing surround from stereo.
 

Sonik Wiz

๐Ÿ‘‚ 500 MPH EARS ๐Ÿ‘‚
Joined
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Messages
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i use a marantz sq-2 and the best version of the wave matching full logic lafayette decoder
I've had quite a parade of SQ decoders over the decades. One of them was a Kenwood 9940 that also had SQ Full Logic with wave matching & vari-blend. I found it very frustrating with poor results playing stereo through it. I had to throw the balance almost all the way to the rear, and then raise the volume overall to compensate, to get any rear ch action from stereo. The problem being that 90 deg phase shifts used in SQ encoding simply don't happen in normal stereo recordings. Succesful stereo to surround can be variable & it depends on how close a stereo mix comes to the decoding format. Stereo mixes just happen to come closer to a QS type matrix than SQ.

There are some excellent examples of stereo to surround hardware out there using SQ. These are units like the Space & Image Composer, Fosgate Tate, etc. These units had special internal circuitry to create a wrap around effect with stereo. Full logic SQ does not.
 

chucky3042

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
Joined
Apr 9, 2012
Messages
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I've had quite a parade of SQ decoders over the decades. One of them was a Kenwood 9940 that also had SQ Full Logic with wave matching & vari-blend. I found it very frustrating with poor results playing stereo through it. I had to throw the balance almost all the way to the rear, and then raise the volume overall to compensate, to get any rear ch action from stereo. The problem being that 90 deg phase shifts used in SQ encoding simply don't happen in normal stereo recordings. Succesful stereo to surround can be variable & it depends on how close a stereo mix comes to the decoding format. Stereo mixes just happen to come closer to a QS type matrix than SQ.

There are some excellent examples of stereo to surround hardware out there using SQ. These are units like the Space & Image Composer, Fosgate Tate, etc. These units had special internal circuitry to create a wrap around effect with stereo. Full logic SQ does not.
Very observant Sonik! We had pure hell working out SQ, and Dave the Bitch has never been "normal" since. Every time you say SQ he rotates himself "back and to the left".
 
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Overture

Well-known Member
Joined
May 11, 2012
Messages
183
Very observant Sonik! We had pure hell working out SQ, and Dave the Bitch has never been "normal" since. Every time you say SQ he rotates himself "back and to the lift".
This is no joke - I got so turned around trying to get SQ working that I reached a point where I was hearing phantom pumping and surging - I was trying to engineer out a problem that literally wasn't there.

Charlie walked in about two weeks into that particular delusion and I explained the problem and he listened to it and said "I don't hear the problem, it sounds alright to me"

After reminding me that I was listening to SQ, I changed my brain a little and suddenly it made sense, and was already sounding way better than it had any right to be, considering the maths.

It was practically done at that point, save some tweaking and the update to help with tolerances in vinyl reproduction equipment.

Ahh, I almost miss that. The "BEFORE" times.
 

chucky3042

2K Club - QQ Super Nova
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Dave's brains are still screwed, he forgets that I concluded that was just how SQ sounded. I then told him to stick it into the Involve "pick n place" algorithm- then WOW it worked!! We deliberately were just listening to the raw SQ decode perfected as far as we could, Dave forgot to add our "secret herbs and spices" .

Poor deluded slob
 

Overture

Well-known Member
Joined
May 11, 2012
Messages
183
Dave's brains are still screwed, he forgets that I concluded that was just how SQ sounded. I then told him to stick it into the Involve "pick n place" algorithm- then WOW it worked!! We deliberately were just listening to the raw SQ decode perfected as far as we could, Dave forgot to add our "secret herbs and spices" .

Poor deluded slob
Me brain good
 
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