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Old 9th April 2004, 03:55 PM   #1
MGG is offline MGG  Canada
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Smile SPL meter

I have 2 questions related to SPL meters.I am looking to buy an SPL meter and there seems to be 2 good choices: the Radio Shack digital SPL and Galaxy Audio CM-130. Is one a better choice than the other?

I have a Denon AVR-3805 which requires a mic for its auto EQ room setup. Denon is offering its own at $65. I was wondering if one of the above SPL meters can be used. The Radio Shack meter has an external jack for hooking up to a receiver - can this be used as the required mic?

Thanks,

M......
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Old 10th April 2004, 12:38 AM   #2
Ron E is offline Ron E  United States
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The RS SPL meter has a very non-flat response in the 3-20kHz range. You don't want to use it as a microphone.

You are better off making a measurement setup and using speaker workshop or buying a setup like the Behringer ECM8000 and UB802. This pair would set you back about $80 at Guitar Center.
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Old 10th April 2004, 01:52 AM   #3
fcel is offline fcel  United States
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Ron E
I was aslo curious about the RS SPL meter. I've read that the analog one is not accurate at the lower frequencies but what about their digital reading SPL meter? Is it accurate from 20Hz to 20Khz
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Old 10th April 2004, 05:03 AM   #4
Ron E is offline Ron E  United States
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THe digital one is not any more accurate as far as I know.

What do you want a SPL meter for? Back before cheap computers with decent soundcards, RS SPL meters were the only cheap way to set up your system. Now you can make accurate gated measurements for the cost of a couple simple circuits:
Do a search for "wallin preamp" and/or "wallin jig" and look at www.speakerworkshop.com

The SPL meter mods on the same pages are interesting, but a waste of time, IMO. Does repainting a 15 year old car with 200,000 miles make it better?
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Old 10th April 2004, 06:49 AM   #5
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The difference between analogue and digital is nothing to do with accuracy! They both have the same "correction factors" IIRC. They are all over the net, you have to compensate for the inaccuracy with these factors eg +7 db @ 20 Hz etc.
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Old 10th April 2004, 01:27 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ron E

The SPL meter mods on the same pages are interesting, but a waste of time, IMO. Does repainting a 15 year old car with 200,000 miles make it better?
if it's a 1979 450 SEL with the 6.0 litre engine, yes.

There are always handheld Genrad sound level meters for sale on the 'Bay. Oftentimes these will come with a calibrated microphone.
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Old 10th April 2004, 03:00 PM   #7
HDTVman is offline HDTVman  United States
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The basic accuracy for both models of the RS spl meter is the same. They use the same mic, amp and detector. The meter display is the only difference. The digital meter has more apparent resolution but how much good is .1 dB of read out if the meter is only +/- 1 dB with correction factor.

Later BZ

PS most of the mic/pc sound card setups are not as good in absoulte terms. The response may be flater but not accurate for level readings.
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Old 10th April 2004, 03:21 PM   #8
fcel is offline fcel  United States
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I posted my comments/questions simply because of an experience that I had once. I was using the RS SPL meter to help me determine the best location for my subwoofer. After countless hours of measuring and moving the heavy subwoofer around, I still could not get the subwoofer to sound right even though the meter indicates that I have fairly flat response from 20Hz to 200Hz ... which I know now that the meter is giving all the wrong reading! Later on, after some reading on the internet, I found out that the RS SPL is not accurate at the lower frequencies. So, I thought I share my experience to this forum - DON"T use RS SPL to determine best location for your subwoofer even though all major audio magazine suggested using RS SPL for that purpose.

What I want to find out from this thread is to see if there is another more accurate SPL meter that I can purchase that cost less than $80.
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Old 10th April 2004, 03:42 PM   #9
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You could build one with Panasonic cartridge (from DK). There was an article on Mitey Mike in Speaker Builder years ago.
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Old 10th April 2004, 03:51 PM   #10
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Default slightly OT, but

Quote:
Originally posted by Peter Daniel
You could build one with Panasonic cartridge (from DK). There was an article on Mitey Mike in Speaker Builder years ago.

Peter:

This brings up a good point -- everyone should send an email to Ed Dell suggesting that the back issues of Speaker Builder, Audio Amateur, Glass Audio be available as CD-ROMs -- they have started this with the recent volumes (2000), but there is some really good stuff like the original Linkwitz articles, Walt Jung's crossover articles (along those of Nelson Pass). I know exactly where the Mitey Mike article is, but I have been a subscriber almost since inception (and now all my kids are through college!) Unlike magazines like EDN or QST, most of the AudioXpress publications aren't available in libraries.

Of course, the other thing which this allows is to follow up on corrections and changes, modifications, further thoughts...
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