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"Synthesizer" mode for the Surround Master?

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Sonik Wiz

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I used to enjoy the synthesizer mode on my Audionics Space and Image Composer. Then it started malfunctioning. So, I started playing the stereo records in the SQ mode. I got to where I liked the SQ mode better than the stereo enhance mode. The stereo enhance mode had started working again later. So when I get my Involve decoder, I will try the stereo records in SQ and QS mode and see which I like better. I could see that it might even depend on the material being presented to the decoder. We will see how it does.
When I was using my Fosgate Tate 101A daily I don't think (or can't remember) ever checking out stereo in the SQ mode. My prior SQ decoder was a Kenwood 9940 receiver that had Full Logic with Wave Matching SQ. I do clearly remember trying to play stereo through SQ on that. I had to turn the F/B balance almost all the way to the back, and then turn the main volume up to compensate, just to get some kind of surround out of it. Later I learned that's because the way stereo recording/mixes are made simply do not approximate the SQ encoding at all.

Sansui products were not very popular where I live back in quad's golden years. So I actually had to build a QS/SQ decoder from a kit. This is the Photolume decoder Ken & I have talked about. Playing stereo through QS Synth and even just the QS mode was a jaw dropping revelation to me.

Most looking forward to your impressions of the SM v2 when you get it!
 

par4ken

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The Stereo enhance mode of the S&IC is variable, with the pot all the way down it output is basically just an SQ decode. As such you get stereo in the front and a bit of ambience in the rear. This is similar to QS Hall mode and Dolby Surround. With the enhance pot all the way clockwise the output is SQ with the front and rear channels reversed, phase altered so that the center is in phase up front. This is similar to QS Surround. With the pot midway the outputs are actually a mix of front and rear SQ outputs. A hard left images equally from both left front and left back channels, same for a hard right, images from the right side. That setting is similar to QS decode. I say that they are similar, but they are not exactly the same. I usually used the enhance mode with the pot turned all the way up. I used to describe it as listening to stereo through a magnifying glass. The only drawback was that a panned sound would move (lets say} from left back diagonally to center front and then diagonally back to right back. Decoding the same thing via QS surround mode the pan will go left back to left front across to right front and then to left back. So for stereo enhancement QS is actually better but both are similar.
 

chucky3042

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I used to enjoy the synthesizer mode on my Audionics Space and Image Composer. Then it started malfunctioning. So, I started playing the stereo records in the SQ mode. I got to where I liked the SQ mode better than the stereo enhance mode. The stereo enhance mode had started working again later. So when I get my Involve decoder, I will try the stereo records in SQ and QS mode and see which I like better. I could see that it might even depend on the material being presented to the decoder. We will see how it does.
Typically with a few rare exceptions SQ does a lousy job of decoding stereo
 

jsrstereo

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Yes that seems exactly correct. If the synth mode moves more direct sounds into the rear, then it will be louder than before. Drop the rear chs a bit & all falls into place.

The Sansui Hall mode put undecoded stereo in the front chs & mixed in phase blending into the rear chs. This made for sometimes a front balanced soundfield ideal for concerts & such. I would push the level up a few dB in the rear & again it melded into a very nice soundfield.
As you have explained, the Hall mode puts undecoded stereo in the front channels. One question I've sometimes pondered: is VarioMatrix logic action in play in creating and presenting the Hall rear channels, or is just a simple non-logic means employed?

Thanks, John R
 

Sonik Wiz

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As you have explained, the Hall mode puts undecoded stereo in the front channels. One question I've sometimes pondered: is VarioMatrix logic action in play in creating and presenting the Hall rear channels, or is just a simple non-logic means employed?

Thanks, John R
Yes, Variomatrix was applied to the rear chs.
The most practical way I can describe the soundfield using the Hall mode is this: Lets say you have a jazz band close mic'ed & recorded in stereo. Panned to the left is a saxophone. In basic Sansui QS Variomatrix or Involve that sax will emanate mostly from center left or Left front output equals left back. In the Hall mode in-phase blending between the stereo input chs keeps direct sounds up front. The Variomatrix enhanced rears keeps a very high ratio of front to back seperation so only ambient/reverb/hall acoustics gets reproduced. The Hall mode I used less than any others but it did seem to be the best for certain orchestral or live rock recordings.
 

jsrstereo

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Yes, Variomatrix was applied to the rear chs.
The most practical way I can describe the soundfield using the Hall mode is this: Lets say you have a jazz band close mic'ed & recorded in stereo. Panned to the left is a saxophone. In basic Sansui QS Variomatrix or Involve that sax will emanate mostly from center left or Left front output equals left back. In the Hall mode in-phase blending between the stereo input chs keeps direct sounds up front. The Variomatrix enhanced rears keeps a very high ratio of front to back seperation so only ambient/reverb/hall acoustics gets reproduced. The Hall mode I used less than any others but it did seem to be the best for certain orchestral or live rock recordings.
Dear Mr. Wix: Thanks for your reply. After many years of living with the Synthesizer mode, I'm finding that the Hall mode is also quite enjoyable, but with the rears cranked up quite a bit. Try it - you'll like it.
 

Sonik Wiz

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Dear Mr. Wix: Thanks for your reply. After many years of living with the Synthesizer mode, I'm finding that the Hall mode is also quite enjoyable, but with the rears cranked up quite a bit. Try it - you'll like it.
Just to be clear, I don't have any Sansui QS stuff hooked up at present. Just the SM v2. So no Hall mode. In the days of yore when I did have Sansui QS going my basic 1st audition mode of a record was in QS. From there I could usually predict if it would benefit from being played in Hall or Synth, usually the latter. I agree about the levels; if switching to Synth I usualy nudged the balance forward a bit. And if playing Hall I did just as you said & moved the balance a bit to rear.
 

jsrstereo

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Since 2002/2003
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oklahoma city
Just to be clear, I don't have any Sansui QS stuff hooked up at present. Just the SM v2. So no Hall mode. In the days of yore when I did have Sansui QS going my basic 1st audition mode of a record was in QS. From there I could usually predict if it would benefit from being played in Hall or Synth, usually the latter. I agree about the levels; if switching to Synth I usualy nudged the balance forward a bit. And if playing Hall I did just as you said & moved the balance a bit to rear.
I still have my QS-D1000 in my set-up, along with my SMv2 and EVX-4, all routed thru a Zektor HDS4.1 switcher - really enjoy them all for stereo synthesis.
 
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