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Jun 15 2013
By: Degirmentas First Son 1 posts
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How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

28 replies 5010 views Edited Jun 15, 2013

My sound system supports all audio formats and was curious which mix is the best quality/experience. When watching movies, I typically run DTS-HD MA.

 

- Default vs Dolby Digital 5.1 vs DTS Surround vs PCM 5.1. My reciever works with all these formats, but I am curious which mix is the best experience if you have a high end home theater speaker system.

 

- As for range, what is the difference between Default and Maximum. Is default the ideal range set by Naughty Dog? Or is it just a mid point between Maximum and Midnight?

 

- Center Speaker: What technically determines Small vs Large. For example, I set my center channel frequency to 120Hz if that means anything in this case.

 

I know audio can be subjective, but I prefer to use the highest possible quality settings and wanted to know what Naughty Dog recommends. Is default settings the best possible quality? Or is it an average setting that covers the average household speaker.

 

Thanks,

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Survivor
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

Jun 15, 2013

I have a 7.1 system.  I find that DTS 5.1, Small Center, and Default Dynamic Range are best.  In terms of Dynamic Range, it is best to turn it off if you want the full range of sound from any particular audio encode.

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First Son
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

Jun 15, 2013
What size speakers are you using? What type?
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Survivor
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

[ Edited ]
Jun 16, 2013

Cambridge SoundWorks Ensemble II with both the Powered and Slave 12" sub-woofers.  Center Channel is the Center Channel Plus.  The surround and surround back speakers are the Surround 5.1 speakers from Cambridge SoundWorks as well.  I got them all in 1997 or so, but they sound the same as the day I got them.  The only speaker set to Large in our set up are the Front speakers.

 

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Big Daddy
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

Jun 16, 2013

Using a 13 year old SONY 5.1 Out of a Box system, which has DTS.  Sounds just great.

 

You should trust ther sound designers to have their audio tuned to be quite good on most systems at default settings.  I do tend to turn up my subwoofer for scare based games.   But there doesn't seem to be a need to change anything.   There isn't a lot of "real world" noise.   But you can find you may need to tweak voices/ambient.  for example, old people like me have a haerd time hearing voices against rain/water, so in those early scenes I had to turn on subtitles...

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Sackboy
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

Jun 16, 2013
Can you even see what you are watching/playing from that far away? TV too small for that room.
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Survivor
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

[ Edited ]
Jun 16, 2013

Looks further away than it is.  Any I have good eye sight :smileywink:

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Monster Hunter
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

[ Edited ]
Jun 16, 2013

Center speaker size. Large usually means it can handle below 80hz on the low end. Look up your speaker model to check. The dynamic range should not be default for best quality. You want full which might sound a bit more quiet but that means there is a bigger range between the softest sound and the loudest sound. Default might be like this. On scale of 1 to 10 with one being softest sound you might hear 4 through 10. Using anything other than full dynamic range is using an audio compressor to bring up the softer sounds. This is a slight dent in sound quality if you have good gear.

 

Sound format.

 

Very simple here. Dolby Digital and DTS are compressed audio formats meaning they are in a way like mp3 but multichannel. PCM is the sound unaltered and uncompressed and is the best quailtiy of the surround formats. Dts would be second and Dolby Digtal last as it has the lowest bitrate of the three.

 

Wiki about dynamic range compression.

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_range_compression

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Monster Hunter
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

Jun 16, 2013
I had no issues hearing dialog. I have used a db meter to make sure all speakers are the same. Check your receiver to see if there is any audio compression or dynamic range stuff active. Not hearing dialog in a 5.1 setup can also mean the rears are too loud. A lot people like the rears loud because it sounds better to them but it can also mess with the spatial quality of surround sound. The title screen has flys buzzing around. When they are in the rears it should not sound like they are coming from a certain speaker. I can hear the fly buzz sound like it is directly behind me despite my rears being 6 feet apart. If I have them too loud compared to the rest of the speakers it will just sound like it is coming from both rears equally instead of sounding like it is in between the two. The speakers ability to image is very important too. I do recording and mixing as part of my living and play music. I have been an audio snob for 30 years so I read way too much about it. It is an obsession for me.
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Treasure Hunter
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Re: How to Achieve the Best Audio Experience

Jun 16, 2013
I'm using my TV.
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