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The Low Frequency Content Thread (films, games, music, etc)


maxmercy
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Watched the TDKR yesterday. Liked the movie but the sound design I thought was just ok. Bane's voice was difficult to understand despite being mixed really loud. Found it annoying. I assume they did that on purpose since he has a mask over his mouth but I really didn't like the effect. Also thought I heard some clipping in parts much like others reported. Bass was loud but had a boomy one recycled rumble sort of feel to me.

 

Also watched Brave. Not a bass monster but I felt the sound design was pretty good and far from anemic. There were some very loud bass sections particularly a couple of sharp upper bass transients that were really concussive. One in particular.

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Just watched Brave last night, superb sound in general, just superb. Not suprising, as the Skywalker Sound players involved are the finest. Also, 7.1 release btw, with well executed fly-over type effects. Best rental I've seen in some time. I believe Brave is the first release availed/optimized and mixed for Dolby Atmos.

 

I've become more and more sensitive to overall mix quality recently, and this relese just seems flawlessly executed. IMO, it's that good. It's also got the "Maximizer" tool in the menu, for many things, including channel to channel balance.

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TDKR is indeed a fairly average sound mix that's been ramp up in the loudness department. Very dynamic sounding but fatiguing after a while. To my ears it sound muddled and congested. I kept thinking of a 3 hour long movie trailer. Even though I really like the Nolan trilogy, they really dropped the ball on this mix. I truly hope that this isn't the start of a new trend in BD audio.

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TDKR is indeed a fairly average sound mix that's been ramp up in the loudness department. Very dynamic sounding but fatiguing after a while. To my ears it sound muddled and congested. I kept thinking of a 3 hour long movie trailer. Even though I really like the Nolan trilogy, they really dropped the ball on this mix. I truly hope that this isn't the start of a new trend in BD audio.

Perfect analogy to a film trailer, I agree.

 

Brave will be added to the queue, and Dredd is in the queue.

 

 

Max,

I have a dumb question: was this for BD version of Looper?

I was going to rent at my local video, but all copies were out and while I was at Target yesterday, I picked up a copy on BD.

While watching it, the level was somewhat quiet and really had to turn it up. Plus, the LFE was weak for me.

 

I am thinking I may have gotten a bad copy.

Anyone else have problems?

What audio track did you listen to? I had DTSHDMA 5.1

 

JSS

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Just finished watching Dredd. Wwwwooowwwwweeeeee! The bass (and the entire surround mix) was extremely good! The whole soundtrack had a pounding bass score and it hit deep. There was also quite a few scenes with sustained deep bass. It's hard to tell or not if it had bass below 10hz and how much but I can't see this one being any lower than a solid 4.25-4.5 but I would even go so far as to say it should be a 5. If the surround mix was included and this were a review site that included that, it would be. For sure. Max, you have got to get 7.1 or higher now. These mixes are soo expansive, aggressive and immersive.

 

On a related note, I just started using 'wides' this week starting with Looper. I'm totally sold on wides and I have a narrow room, even. It really works and makes the front stage huge and the pans to the sides even smoother.

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I know, I know....

 

7.1 is in the plans. Maybe closer to the end of this year, with a new subwoofer system to get me down just below 10Hz.

 

Strange you mention pans on Audyssey DSX. DSX is not a matrix system made to 'fill in' extra speakers. It mainly adds early reflections to seem as if you are in a room much larger than the one you are in. HD video essentials has some slow pans with pink noise between speakers, check it out for yourself. Chris Kyriakis of Audyssey himself said it is not a matrixing system, as the 'high' speakers simply do the same thing, add reflections. Some people like it, others don't. If you took the time to really damp a room just to add reflections with added speakers, well......I just think it is a gimmick, and likely very room dependent. Btw, how is your system coming along? Still planning the wall of sound?

 

Good to hear about Dredd! Maybe a measurement in the next few days.

 

JSS

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Here's a flash comparison of Looper to WOTW. Watch the weight shift:

 

763ee4099d2baec7d50163220c3d595c.gifgif make

 

 

I'm not saying ULF dictates the rating or my own personal opinions about the matter. But, extension is one of the weights that determine if a ST gets 5 stars OA and WOTW obviously is a much more demanding ST requiring a subwoofer with an unthinkable bandwidth, displacement and power. That also makes it a much more gripping scene than the ultimate scene from Looper.

 

Most every person who has said that ULF is a non-event has most certainly never experienced it. When the scene from WOTW plays, you freak the hell out. For me, it's fear for my coveted subwoofer system but for every other listener (who is just watching the scene and doesn't know or care about the mechanics) it's truly an eyes-wide-open, shout-obscenities moment.

 

If it's the rented BR vs some other version of BR, then I have to say that the industry needs to be flogged over that nonsense. They should spend less time warning me of the penalties against criminal behavior and more time getting the soundtrack on the disc properly.

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Good points Bosso. And thanks for running those.   

 

In those images, looks to me like there's some filtering onset at aproximently 13hz on down. Now that's just from a cursory view of those uploads Bosso submitted, but looks that way. It makes me curious what the remaining effects measure,...I'd suspect they may appear HP'd @~13hz too. There's a measure of uniformity in the graphs, whereby nothing plunges any deeper ... who knows.

 

I'd say those graphs coincide roughly with my subjective feel of the release. No way does it compare to the big, reference LF/ULF monsters. Certainly not every scene, but I like a light touch wrt how often the big/deep effects occur. What effects were there I thought was fine. The deep stuff was sparse, but "nicely extended and stout" were my notes. You're right Bosso, WotW and HTTYD, not even close.

 

I think there's some filtration for whatever reason/in whatever form. Thoughts? 

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Bosso,

 

Thanks for the Looper graphs!

 

I agree about the weight that tracks such as HTTYD and WotW have in the <10Hz department. When I created the ranking system, I didn't think ANY film would ever get 5 stars, and FOTP and WotW did. But any rating system has its loopholes (no pun intended) and Looper cashes in on them to get 5 Stars. Without the upper bass content, it would not have made 5 Stars on Level. If the cutoff for extension was -3dB, no 5-Star extension. It still gets 5-Star dynamics, and 4 or 5 Execution, but now the film is a 4.25 to 4.5 Star film overall......

 

That is pretty crazy that I mentioned it looked a little like U:A in the PvA graph, and lo and behold, same Re-Recording Mixer!

 

I can put together a list of the most demanding under 10Hz and under 20Hz films for the true ULF fiends....

 

Got the films in the mail today, but I will watch them prior to graphing, so you guys will have to wait a bit....

 

FOH,

 

You ever get to see TDKR? And yes, the [Looper] film takes a dive in the teens and the PvA graph shows it, but has a tiny uptick under 4Hz, just enough to fall in the -10dB range to just get the 5-Star Extension....

 

JSS

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Bosso and others:

 

If you think that Looper needs a Star taken away for Execution to keep it out of 5-Star territory, let me know and we'll put it to a vote.

 

JSS

I would agree it needs to be out of 5 star territory. After watching it, I wasn't too impressed and was shocked to see it ranked as a 5 star with the other greats.  

 

I really enjoyed Total Recall though. I thought it was great from ULF standpoint. 

 

Thanks to you and all others that contribute to this forum. Awesome stuff!

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I know, I know....

 

7.1 is in the plans. Maybe closer to the end of this year, with a new subwoofer system to get me down just below 10Hz.

 

Strange you mention pans on Audyssey DSX. DSX is not a matrix system made to 'fill in' extra speakers. It mainly adds early reflections to seem as if you are in a room much larger than the one you are in. HD video essentials has some slow pans with pink noise between speakers, check it out for yourself. Chris Kyriakis of Audyssey himself said it is not a matrixing system, as the 'high' speakers simply do the same thing, add reflections. Some people like it, others don't. If you took the time to really damp a room just to add reflections with added speakers, well......I just think it is a gimmick, and likely very room dependent. Btw, how is your system coming along? Still planning the wall of sound?

 

Good to hear about Dredd! Maybe a measurement in the next few days.

 

JSS

Trust me. I know all these things about DSX expansion. I even argued about it with a fellow AVS member here at CES just yesterday. :P I'm only going off what I heard and with what little experience I've had using DSX wides. So far I've only watched two movies: Looper and Dredd. Dredd just so happens to be 'optimized for NEO-X 11.1' which I understand is not the same thing. However I feel that either that or just being a really nice 7.1 mix gave some edge using the wides. Obviously this is new and I'll have to try more movies before I can form a more concrete opinion on it but so far, the effect is winning. I'm all for the end user experience and I get that a lot of people hate the idea of post processing and/or DSP effects. Imho, if the effect works then it works and that's that. I have a very small room (~2,000cuft) and it's quite narrow. If I can get the effect of a larger acoustic experience without it sound awful in some way, I'm going for it.

 

Soo... for now, that's that. I'll continue to test out the effect with some older titles as long as I have the time for it. Lol, I'll try not to gunk up this thread about it though. If you or any others are curious about it, feel free to PM me.

 

The mega speaker project is still a go. Only a couple things are holding me from installing it immediately. As far as getting all the gear, I basically have it all. I just have to wrap up a couple things.

 

Bosso and others:

 

If you think that Looper needs a Star taken away for Execution to keep it out of 5-Star territory, let me know and we'll put it to a vote.

 

JSS

 

I don't think a star should be taken away in that area. Imo, the 'exectution' was terrific. If there is a place where the star should be taken away might be in level or something. Honestly, I thought all the areas were hit properly. It's certainly no WotW but it is a rather excellent bass flick. The bass just isn't around often enough and maybe that's the real fault.

 

Dredd on the other hand..... whew!

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Yes, Dredd was low, loud and had plenty.  I liked the fact that they stayed very close to the comic.  Only film I wish I would have seen in 3D, as it seems the main 3D effects were in slo-mo, where your mind has time to properly integrate the parallax illusion.  Graphs soon, definitely by Sunday for it and the other ones I have here.

 

I'll link up Looper soon.  Maybe get to watch Bourne Legacy tonight, we'll see.

 

JSS

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If the metric utilized dictates it should get the max 5 star rating, and there are subjectively better ... and most importantly measurably stronger performers, then the rating system may need to reflect this in some way. 

 

I like the War of the Worlds for the weighted, spectrally bottom heavy LF/ULF effect. It's really well executed and properly conveys  the sense of impending doom. Now, WoTW is well executed throughout in my opinion,...as the accompanying effects plunge down into the room pressure, underwater, fluttering like sensation in my room.

 

Conversely, there's few if anything as taxing as the the big finale of How to Train Your Dragon. Again, like WotW, the entire release possesses these superbly executed effects, that seemingly plunge down to single digits quite often throughout the film. This is something Bosso has touched upon before iirc. Both well recorded, and properly generated special effects, oftentimes have deeply extended waveform components easily down to 10hz or below. This is how we would encounter these sounds in life, likewise, experiencing these effects full stop in our HTs, is most apt to elicit the intended effect of the film-making team. 

 

Way off on a tangent there, ...I know, I'm preaching to the choir. My point I intended when I began typing, it would appear to me that Looper, as enjoyable as it was and as well as it graphed, is not the demanding monster that the above two examples are.

 

----------      

 

 

Anyone familiar with a forum community, etc., of theater enthusiasts, whereby some reviews of overall faciliy quality, especially sound system, operation practices and the like? I know IMAX houses are typically a safe bet, and some non IMAX theaters can offer up a solid experience as well. However, I'm looking for some good info on presentation, operation practices, etc.

 

Anybody aware of such a community?

 

I'd like to go see Zero Dark Thirty. The filmaking team should collectively allow this thing to have some fine sound, nice deep LF/ULF effect. It appears director, Kathryn Bigelow, has re-assembled much of her Hurt Locker team for this effort, .. and that's cool as Hurt Locker has some fine sound. The sound design, and re-recording mixer Ottoson, did Battle LA, and Hurt Locker. The sound effects editor Gilmore, did Amazing Spiderman, Underworld Awakening, Terminator Salvation.

 

So, all said, it appears as if it may have all the ingredients ..... let's cross our fingers.

 

 

Thanks

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