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      09-16-2012, 09:28 PM   #45
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Bet you're wishing you never got the ms-8 now Awbimmer!

Anyways this is a post by Andy Wehmeyer, the product manager of the MS-8, answering a question similar to this thread. Apologies for the length but its worth reading. He explains the whole input sensitivity/calibration nicely with some background info too:

Original Question:
Maybe I've been reading too much, but I've confused myself. I've set my gains to about 25%, HU volume at 35/40. MS-8 volume at -40. Now I've run the acoustic calibration, and the listening volume is too low. I want maximum clean gain for each set of speakers, and a high sound level from the system.

How do I increase my gains now to get the output voltage I'm looking for? I'm planning on using a multimeter per JL's instructions on how to verify gains, but I need to know I'm hitting the inputs on the amps with the high end of the limits in order to get an accurate gain output reading. What should the MS-8 level hitting my amp input be? -40? -20?

Thanks for the help, I've read through most of this thread and haven't seen any detail about verifying amp gain with accuracy, just some quotes about "turn it up from there". I'm sure there is a fairly simple answer.


Andy's answer:

Too much has been made over the years about gain and level setting. Some years ago, systems were made up of a head unit, an EQ, separate electronic crossovers and then amps. Setting levels in these kinds of systems was important, but we no longer use so many analog components in a lengthy signal chain. In a system like that, each component should be driven with the highest level possible before the outputs OR the inputs are clipped. and the signal sent over the wire should be maximized to maximize the signal to noise ratio. The reason for all of this was noise. Too much INPUT sensitivity and too little output voltage would result in system hiss and would boost the level of engine noise, which would be amplified by every component in the chain.

We no longer have to be so concerned with all of that because systems now are often a head unit, a signal processor of some kind and some amplifiers. Additionally, components now often have differential inputs, which are designed to eliminate the possibility of engine noise.

So, with MS-8, the analog signal from the source is converted into a digital signal in the unit before anything else happens and we've designed the unit to make setting this level as easy as it can be. The RCAs are fixed input sensitivity and are designed to work with all aftermarket head units without any user intervention. Just plug them in and go. The unit, without EQ, is designed to provide unity gain up to 2.8V, which is plenty. That means if you put 1V in, you get 1V out. If you put 2V in, you get 2V out. If you put 9V in, you'll get 2.8V out but it'll be seriously distorted. When you turn the output of your radio down so that you send 2.8V, you'll get 2.8V that isn't clipped.

Now, one of the reasons that all of this input sensitivity setting procedure was developed and that many of us suggest things like 10dB of gain "overlap" is because a system that can't clip doesn't sound very loud, especially with recordings that have a high crest factor and little dynamic range compression added to the final mixdown. You want your system to clip, but you want to balance that with the amount of noise (hiss) you allow the system to produce. You don't want much of this clipping to be digital distortion, because that sounds bad.

If you're using a 4V head unit with MS-8, that provides 3dB of gain overlap. You won't hear much distortion unless you listen to sine waves recorded at 0dB with the volume control turned all the way up. With normal music and the head unit's volume control all the way up, only the transients that are recorded at 0dB will be distorted, but only by 3dB. You won't hear that and if you do, simply backing the volume control of the head unit off by a couple of notches will take care of it.

Since the MS-8 is designed to provide unity gain, it's sufficient to set the input sensitivity of the amplifiers to the same setting as the output of your head unit for 0dB of gain overlap between MS-8 and your amps). This will ensure no input clipping of your amplifiers and will ensure the least noise possible. Double the input sensitivity will result in an additional 6dB of gain. So, if your head unit is a 4V unit, you can set the input sensitivity of the amps to about 1V, which will give you a total of about 9dB of "overlap". Precision isn't required.

Because MS-8 also has a volume control, you'll have to manage how you use it. You don't have to use the MS-8 control if you'd prefer to use the one on your radio. If you choose to do this, then you'll need to set the MS-8 volume control at some level that allows the right amount of "input sensitivity" but also allows enough digital headroom for the EQ inside of the MS-8 to operate without running out of bits (that causes digital distortion). I suggest setting the MS-8 control at -6dB to -9dB during listening, unless you boost the bass in MS-8. If you boost, then you should set it lower by about the same amount as you boost and then use your head unit's volume control.

If this in't enough "gain" for you, then turn the amplifiers up after calibration by the same amount to maintain MS-8's "tune".


You can determine the point at which your radio outputs about 2.8V by putting the setup disc in your aftermarket radio and running input setup. The point at which you get OK OK OK is the point at which your radio outputs about 2.8V. You can continue to run input setup and MS-8 will Un-EQ and remove any channel delay. If you're using an aftermarlet radio, none of that should be necessary so all of the EQ filters will be set to unity. That means what comes in goes out. If you choose "skip input setup", all of the filters will be set to unity.

When you run acoustic calibration, MS-8 will set all of the output levels according to the acoustic response in the car. This takes into account the sensitivity of the drivers and their frequency responses. Some outputs will be increased in level and some may be decreased. So long as there's no hiss, the output level and the input sensitivity control of your amps don't matter. Let MS-8 do what it does.

When you run acoustic calibration, the output of the system can't clip the mic, or things will be ugly. If the mic is clipped during the first set of sweeps, the unit won't be able to locate the initial peak in the response and it won't set time alignment correctly. You'll know this is the case, because there won't be a center image. This is all the volume control setting for acoustic calibration is doing--making sure the system doesn't clip the mics. To ensure this, turn MS-8's volume control DOWN. If you use MS-8's internal amps, -20dB is the highest setting you'll need. If you're using additional amps, you'll have to turn it down MORE. -40, maybe. This setting doesn't matter too much in terms of the final outcome, but the level does change the way MS-8 will boost and cut, because everything has to fit in a "window". The window is big, though.

This is no different than tuning with a regular EQ. If you boost all the bands to fix holes, you'll have a super loud car and you'll probably have lots of clipping and noise. You'll also probably boost in the interest of filling holes cause by acoustic cancellation, which may overdrive your speakers and cause additional distortion. MS-8 tries NOT to do this, but it can't know for sure. If your response has big holes because you're using an 8" midbass and a 1" tweeter and the wrong crossover point, you may hear distortion because MS-8 is boosting as much as it can to fill a hole that can't be filled. Fix the speaker system. MS-8 can't make gold out of crap.

If, when you're tuning with a manual EQ, you cut all the bands to remove peaks, then you'll reduce the output voltage of the EQ at frequencies where you've cut and you'll probably want to readjust the input sensitivity of all of the amps to increase the level of the whole system to make up for it. If you think about it, this is how we all tune systems anyway. So long as you don't introduce a bunch of system hiss, this is fine. Cutting a lot and boosting a little is the best method. This is how MS-8's algorithm is designed to work. It works well, but GIGO still applies.

Once acoustic calibration is complete, if you want to use your head unit's volume control, set MS-8's volume control to -6 and go crazy. If you boost a bunch with MS-8's EQ or sub level control, you may have to turn MS-8's volume control down to leave more digital headroom for the boost. This isn't a defect. This is how digital EQ works. Some digital EQs normalize the response. That would result in everything else being reduced in level as you boost the bass (or the EQ). We didn't do this because it adds complexity to the system and the result of boosting with these systems when you reach the level at which there are no more bits available is counterintuitive.

If you want to use MS-8's control, do this: Put in a music disc, turn MS-8's volume control DOWN to something like -40 or -50 (so you know you're not clipping the outputs of MS-8 or your amps) and turn up the head unit's volume control. When you hear distortion, you'll know you're either clipping the output of the radio or the inputs of MS-8. Turn the head unit's volume control down until you don't hear any more distortion. This is the maximum usable output of the head unit for MUSIC and for that particular disc. If you listen to another disc with more or less dynamic range compression in the recording, you may find a different volume control setting produces audible distortion. This is related to our ability to hear distortion on transients, the length of the transients and how often those transients are repeated. The idea here is that you have control over the amount of clipping you allow. It is what it is and balancing the two volume controls will help you get the most from your system. I think the vast majority of systems will be fine.

The bass can't clip the mics during sweeps 2-4 either, because the EQ doesn't know what to do. Be sure that the level of the bass is LOW during the sweeps. If you have twelve 15" woofers and you want to wake the neighbors, turn the amp gain WAY down during calibration. The bass should be heard during the sweeps, but you shouldn't feel it. Then, after calibration, turn the gain of the amp up until you're happy. You can't wake the neighbors and have 40dB more bass than mids and highs and maintain the illusion that the bass is in the front of the car, which is what MS-8 is designed to do. You'll have to adjust the gain of the amp to get what you want, because MS-8 tries to eliminate what you want. Let MS-8 do what it does, and then make your adjustment afterward.

Finally, if the system doesn't play loudly enough, adjust the amplifier input sensitivity control to increase the overall system level. There's no need to use a meter or a scope. Just adjust them all up or down by the same amount to maintain MS-8's EQ and relative level settings. The VMM method won't work because there's a bunch of EQ applied to the signal, which increases and decreases the output voltage at different frequencies. BTW, the VMM method is only slightly more accurate than just setting by ear.

Don't be confused by all of the "this has to be precisely set to get the most from your system" garbage. If there's no noise (or the noise is low enough that you're not annoyed by it) and your system plays loudly enough, then things are set appropriately.
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      09-17-2012, 04:03 PM   #46
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Thanks for this Mo -I've not yet had a chance to read through but will do so shortly. Can I just say I have spoken to SO many people in the last week re: audio and have had an almost different response from everyone LOL.

Some say, why did I bother getting the MS8, get a cleansweep, some have said don't bother with the morels or rainbows they won't fit in the door unless mods have been done to make them fit (added labour charges), some have said get BSW components, whilst others have said get what fits, i.e. Focal K2 (100KRS) or similar sized speakers.

I won't even get on to the amps...

I am LITERALLY OVERFLOODED with info tha'ts coming out my ears! It has been an overwhelming inflow of info this last week to the point of giving up LOL.

I don't remember it being this hard the last time I upgraded with SWS, Bit One, Focal K2 and JL JX amp.. Job Done!

I am told the MS-8 is no good for me.. why is this? It's REALLY had me thinking whether I did the right thing buying it (albeit used) or not and now I'm starting to think.. "what if I ebay it now"..

I am Really and Truly stuck now - and rather than going down the Morel / Rainbow route, then getting someone to cut tabs to make them fit in the given space (I've seen it done on the Forum before) or ship from the US or even wait until December / January to have family bring stuff over from the US on request, to just go ahead with the good old Focal K2 100KRS which will fit as I know.

So what the tweeters are harsh.. does it really matter so much - I can always turn them down slightly... I'm not entering any competitions so what the heck does it matter.

Picked up the Jehnert 8" today + spacers, got the MS-8, need Technic's harness (he has a PM) and need the focals + 4 chn amp.. JOB DONE and then next stage is the boot install. The build and Sub is there, now need me a decent Amp and I will be done.

None of this back and forth bs anymore LOL. My problem was I knw Focals tweeters are bright but the door mids were superb! I can turn the tweeters down a little to make for better SQ / Blending but I think I was getting too dragged into this SQ stuff and wanting the best money can buy ... effectively, whatever I do will be fairly decent and whatever I get will also be decent - not cheap stuff but good quality stuff. ANYTHING will sound better once fitted.

Who agrees and who disagrees? If someone categorically can say that Hybrid Ovations or Dotech Ovations WILL fit the E92 NO DOUBT and doesn't require that much work that my installer can't handle or won't charge a huge amount, then I may consider them.

But Focal K2s at £190, how can anyone go wrong?!?! Granted Morels are less harsh - but will it be THAT noticeable.. I won't be blaring the music all the time - only during shows (non audio shows) so that's when the tweeters high's can attract listeners from far away and the 10w7 bass will keep them interested ;-)

What do "y'all" think?
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      09-17-2012, 04:23 PM   #47
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Also guys, what option do I have of connecting my iPod to the set up? What is th best way? I don't have a problem I I have to control the iPod but really interested to know how to connect it to the new set up.

When I have tried the aux in inside the arm rest, only ONE SIDE (usually left) speakers work, unless I fiddle about with the jack that goes into the aux in... this was the same case in my E90 too..

Any words of wisdom??
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      09-17-2012, 04:29 PM   #48
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You did not make a mistake with the ms8, unless you listen to nothing but techno. Look up the definitions of tonality, imaging and staging, and ask yourself if those things are important to you. To most people they are.

Regarding door speakers, just get the Focals. The price is right. Those cost over $600 over here! Like I said you can change the tweeters later on if you don't like them.

Don't be stressed out, it'll all be worth it in the end.
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      09-17-2012, 04:40 PM   #49
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What I was going to say, is already up there.

You have not done any mistake by purchasing MS-8.

My car is without MS-8 and I have listened music in a car with MS-8 and certainly SQ is far better in that car.

If you bought it, go for it.

And as Kaigoss said, go for Focals, and you can turn the treble down if you wish to do so.

Rest up to you S1. If at any stage, you plan to dispense MS-8, give me a shout and I will check my finance situation and may take it from you.

There you go, you have a cusomer + some good advice from kaigoss.
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      09-17-2012, 04:56 PM   #50
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Like i said during our call earlier on, the best way to research is to get loads of opinions, as nobody knows everything and will have different opinions, rightly or wrongly, and then ultimately you decide on what you want, which you have. So you've done the right thing by taking the time to research!

I remember when i was planning, constantly changing my plans ALL the time. Just ask B33M3R. Hope you've decided now, you'll be relieved when its over!
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      09-17-2012, 05:18 PM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaigoss69 View Post
You did not make a mistake with the ms8, unless you listen to nothing but techno. Look up the definitions of tonality, imaging and staging, and ask yourself if those things are important to you. To most people they are.

Regarding door speakers, just get the Focals. The price is right. Those cost over $600 over here! Like I said you can change the tweeters later on if you don't like them.

Don't be stressed out, it'll all be worth it in the end.
Thanks buddy - relieved to hear that! I am told however that the MS-8 althought is an excellent kit, does have it's shortcomings in that there is a lot of echo-ing when on phone calls?

Is this true? If yes is there any way around it? Have any of you guys experienced this?

Quote:
Originally Posted by makkan00 View Post
What I was going to say, is already up there.

You have not done any mistake by purchasing MS-8.

My car is without MS-8 and I have listened music in a car with MS-8 and certainly SQ is far better in that car.

If you bought it, go for it.

And as Kaigoss said, go for Focals, and you can turn the treble down if you wish to do so.

Rest up to you S1. If at any stage, you plan to dispense MS-8, give me a shout and I will check my finance situation and may take it from you.

There you go, you have a cusomer + some good advice from kaigoss.
Will let you know dude :-) cheers s2

Quote:
Originally Posted by mob17 View Post
Like i said during our call earlier on, the best way to research is to get loads of opinions, as nobody knows everything and will have different opinions, rightly or wrongly, and then ultimately you decide on what you want, which you have. So you've done the right thing by taking the time to research!

I remember when i was planning, constantly changing my plans ALL the time. Just ask B33M3R. Hope you've decided now, you'll be relieved when its over!
Yeah spoke to many people now. Afsar mentions the Morel Hyrbid Ovations are available and has given an excellent price (£260ish), however, agani brings me back to square 1 - fitment issues in an e92.. if it's done and CAN be done without mad modding, I'll go witht hem even though £70 more than the focals, but if there's quite some work involved and then after modding the installer realises they still wont' fit, that's a big problem..

Anyone know if Morel Hybrid fit the E92? I believe E92 depth is 40mm...?

Last time I ask - promise lol.
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      09-17-2012, 05:37 PM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AWBimmer View Post


Anyone know if Morel Hybrid fit the E92? I believe E92 depth is 40mm...?

Last time I ask - promise lol.

See how Technic modified and fitted Morels in E93.

It is possible and you need to do bit of modification.
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      09-17-2012, 05:42 PM   #53
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That's just the thread I was referring to as well when I said I have seen this done elsewhere - thanks! In your opinion, is it worth the hassle of doing that mod on the spkr grill / cutting tabs etc and paying an extra £70 for the hybrid ovations over focal k2s?

Also, does every upgrade speaker require those 'adapters'/spacers to fit them into the OEM holes??

Lastly, can you guys with the MS8 please comment on the echo-ing issues, if any, experienced when making / receiving telephone calls in the car via the car's BT?
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      09-17-2012, 05:48 PM   #54
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^^^^^

&

Quote:
Originally Posted by AWBimmer View Post
Last time I ask - promise lol.
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      09-17-2012, 06:05 PM   #55
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That doesn't count...I already asked but it wasn't answered so a prompt or a Nudge doesn't count LOLL
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      09-18-2012, 01:36 AM   #56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AWBimmer View Post
That's just the thread I was referring to as well when I said I have seen this done elsewhere - thanks! In your opinion, is it worth the hassle of doing that mod on the spkr grill / cutting tabs etc and paying an extra £70 for the hybrid ovations over focal k2s?

Also, does every upgrade speaker require those 'adapters'/spacers to fit them into the OEM holes??

Lastly, can you guys with the MS8 please comment on the echo-ing issues, if any, experienced when making / receiving telephone calls in the car via the car's BT?

As B33MER and mob17 already suggested to go for it, I would follow what they have said.

About cutting those things, I cannot comment on that, but surely if you are getting installed by B33MER or myself, we will try to follow technics' pathyway here with minimal distruction.

However if you are going to get it installed by audio installers, its upto you mate.


About adaptors, mob17 has made his own which is a very good step forward.
I bought aftermarkets and modified them to fit in Rudz car.
I would rather go and do as mob17 done it.

About echo-ing, I am not aware of that. But surely there will be a solution for that.
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      09-18-2012, 03:30 AM   #57
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Most of my callers complains about echo issue. This happens due to delay inserted in playing music due to processing by MS-8 and car's own echo cancellation alog gets messed up.

I heard there is a new firmware for MS-8 in which by pressing mute button it stops all processing (just passthru) hence getting rid of echo issue.

There are other installers who claim they have used MS-8 and there are no echo issue, wonder what is special they have done.
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      09-18-2012, 11:14 AM   #58
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Guys,

Re: fitment of speakers greater than 40mm depth (i.e. morels etc).. are there any ready made adaptors available in the UK? If so, I'll go with Morel Hybrids for c. £260 ish, otherwise I'm gonna purchase the Focals very soon as that'll be another headache out the way LOL. Oh and what are the key differences between the VRS / KRS series?

Thanks all.
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      09-20-2012, 02:37 AM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by makkan00 View Post
taibanl,
Thanks a lot for taking time and writing that in detail.

It cerntainly answers many questions which I had in my mind.
Alpine pdx v9 seem very reasonably priced and very well spec'd.


redo mended to quiksr20 to run ms-8 with efficient front speakers (dls r4) and no extra power, except for midbass and sub....his install is still in the works but I expect the final result to be great


Looking forward to results of this.
Where can I find thread on this?


Thanks Taibanl
Hello Makkan00,

Everyone on this forum has helped me a ton going with the MS8 and configuring it.

You can see my whole build thread here -
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=713405

The MS8 can be a bit overwhelming at first but im slowly getting with alot of help from the forums esp from Taibanl

I also wondered if I wasted money and should of just added a JL 600/6 as it now has not much rear sound ( not needed ) at all.

Sometimes it sounds mono from the center channel at times yet some songs sound amazing.. Something im still working with doesnt seem to sound great on all music or songs almost as if the tracks are recorded in diff ways.

All in all its getting better and better and im confident it will be worth it in the end.

Amping the underseats made a huge difference in sound.

PS..

As far as the echoing I have been told its due to the Logic 7 processing.
I have tested by calling my girlfriend and with it off there is no echo. With L7 on the echo is present.
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      09-20-2012, 05:18 AM   #60
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Wow, this is going round the houses just to get a decent sound in your car mate

Just listen to Jeremys and get the same system as his in your car, you'll love it, he does
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      09-20-2012, 06:02 AM   #61
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Kleis Car Audio View Post
Wow, this is going round the houses just to get a decent sound in your car mate

Just listen to Jeremys and get the same system as his in your car, you'll love it, he does
Hey Connor,
Haha, yeh just about ;-) I've bought some pretty decent mids and tweets + the Jehnerts as you already know. Just waiting for them to be sent from the US next month so things are underway now. Bought them off a forum member infact and got myself the Morel Hybrid Ovations + a special Harness to connect up everything without splicing into OEM wires for a pretty pretty good price!

May attempt to configure and install myself too just so I can learn these things but more on that later.

Gutted I couldnít hear Jeremyís in action but Iím sure it was an immense upgrade!

Good to have met you and Iím sure Iíll be keeping in touch.

Sam
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      09-22-2012, 06:38 PM   #62
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Though I have Logic 7 speakers all round and soon will be replacing front ones to the Morel Hybrid Ovation, I have been told centre L7 (with alpine tweet mod as given here) will work fine (at the moment centre isn't amped but soon they will be to keep up with newly installed morels). I was thinking would it be nice idea to have MOREL MAXIMO COAX 4" 4C as rest of the speakers instead of stock L7, so Maximo will replace centre and rear speakers, good idea or just waste of time and money?
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      09-22-2012, 06:42 PM   #63
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Quote:
Originally Posted by afsar
Though I have Logic 7 speakers all round and soon will be replacing front ones to the Morel Hybrid Ovation, I have been told centre L7 (with alpine tweet mod as given here) will work fine (at the moment centre isn't amped but soon they will be to keep up with newly installed morels). I was thinking would it be nice idea to have MOREL MAXIMO COAX 4" 4C as rest of the speakers instead of stock L7, so Maximo will replace centre and rear speakers, good idea or just waste of time and money?
According to Andy W. the center is the most important speaker in L7. So yeah, don't go cheap!
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      09-22-2012, 06:49 PM   #64
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When I was choosing a centre speaker I did consider the Tempo and Maximo. But they aren't in the same league as the Integra Ovation/Hybrid Integra.

Since you will be installing those very nice Hybrids, it would be sensible to install a centre speaker of the same level of quality, or even better, of your Hybrids. The Maximo/Tempos would be fine for the rears. Or even keep them as L7.
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      09-28-2012, 01:36 AM   #65
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Looking into front stage amplifier, I'm not sure as to what RMS/rating I should be looking for. To start with the Morels, they are 100w @ 4 ohms.. Then I need to factor the jehnert xe200s.

So what rating / power amps should I be looking for?
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      09-28-2012, 09:15 AM   #66
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Sup folks,

Re: front stage amp to power the Morel HO and Jehnert HE200s, I've managed to find a retailer selling a Hertz HDP4 (4 chn) Amp for £250.. usually retails at £450-£500. I've seen these in flesh and they are what you call bloody good and tiny! LOL. Just wondering if I can get anything else but not as expensive?

This Hertz HDP4 is 150w @ 4 ohms.. and the Morels need 100w @ 4 ohms.. is this the sort of amp I'd need to be looking at??

If not, could you folks recommend other decent, IDEALLY < £200 mark Amps? Happy to consider decent 2nd hand ones too.

Sam
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