CarAudioForum.com

Go Back   CarAudioForum.com > Discussion Forums > Car Audio: General

Reply
Old 10-14-2015, 10:57 PM   #1
JHutch420

Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 33
JHutch420 is on a distinguished road



S. Rtrv, is it good or bad? To me it sounds better when its off

Okay so I have a Pioneer DEH-X271OUI. Costed 64$ at WalMart. Im also running 2 5.25 sony xplods in front and 2 6x9 xplods in back. I recently posted on the forum about how this HU sounded terrible at high volumes compared to my 5 year old JVC that only had a 2 band EQ and less options, and everyone recommends I get a amp. Which isnt a bad idea at all, only problem is, even wit an amp, the stereo is just bad sounding.

Well I was playing in the settings and seen something called S. Rtrv was on. I guess this re-produces "highs/transients" lost with MP3 files from the lower quality. Well I turned it off, and everything sounds a little better, not alot, but somewhat. This was one of my biggest complaints about this HU, was that the highs sounds wayyy too "sizzly" even when lowering treble it still kept that "sizzle" and now I know why. The bass even sounded more "boxy", and the mids sounded like a 10$ boombox.

But my question here is, how could something thats supposed to make it sound better, make it sound worse?? Or maybe its just my ear and it just sounds bad to ME, and maybe sounds good to someone else. Or maybe the S. Rtrv function in this HU is just made poorly and doesnt output a great sound, either way, it sounds better with it off, why would this be? I mean the effect sounds only decent, at best, at a lower volume, but at high volume allllll you hear is transients breaking through the bass and vocal, when enabled.

Last edited by JHutch420; 10-14-2015 at 11:11 PM.
JHutch420 is offline   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links
Help Syrian Refugees Survive. Donate Now!
Or text REFUGEES to 50555 to give $10 to USA for UNHCR
Old 10-15-2015, 12:09 AM   #2
MOSFET

Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Camano Island, WA
Posts: 1,611
MOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond repute



You are indeed discovering that all HU's DO NOT sound the same. Today's HU makers know most consumers will play compressed media of some sort. Because some brands of HU's are said to "sound better" than others, or salespeople will repeat this, folks will play they'er media files and/or CD's in the showrooms and "compare". So by employing these EQ and phasing tricks, to some people, certain decks WILL INDEED sound better than others.

I ran into this myself recently. I had always used Alpine in the past but I found my CDA-105, with almost no "sound shaping" other than bass and treble, made my MP3's sound very constricted to me.

So I went and actually LISTENED to different Hu's with my MP3's and found I REALLY loved the sound of Kenwood's newer decks. Better sounding than Alpine and Pioneer TO ME. Now I'm 48 and I recall when buying Hu's in the 90's, they REALLY DID pretty much all sound the same. Everyone played CD's so making CD's sound best usually meant NOT ADDING A WHOLE BUNCH OF PROCESSING.

But compressed media CHANGED everything. Makers of HU's know they have ONE SHOT at the showroom to put their "best foot forward" so assume it will be MP3's consumers bring in and to MOST people, some DSP enhancements will to most people SEEM to make their music sound better, or to the consumer, brand X HU sounds "better" than brand Y.

Anyway, I ended up buying a Kenwoood Excellon deck and I couldn't be happier. To me, it is TRULY like I suddenly have "remastered" copies of all my MP3's. Honestly, where as I was skipping songs that sounded particularly poor on the ALpines, I am now listening to ALL my files. My wife, on the other hand, IMMEDIATELY noticed a lack of detail in some CD's and some of our loss-less files. I don't notice.

You are discovering the fact that we ALL hear music differently and place greater value on certain traits vs. others.

It sounds like you may simply not like the Pioneer "sound". I understand this. You may want to give Alpine and Kenwood decks a listen as these companies build good quality decks and are generally ranked among the best sounding, JVC is usually right up there as well.

Good luck,
MOSFET
MOSFET is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 12:30 AM   #3
MOSFET

Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Camano Island, WA
Posts: 1,611
MOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond reputeMOSFET has a reputation beyond repute



You asked about used or new in another thread. Like I said, it might be a really good idea to go LISTEN to different HU's at a showroom, FIRST.

However, I built my last systme entirely from Craig's List. This included 4 amps, HU's, three sets of speakers, subwoofers and cables. Everything worked PERFECTLY and I spent a total of $370. I is ALWAYS better to test first if possible, but GENERALLY, most folks on CL are just regular folks hoping to get a few bucks for things gathering dust in their garage. On Ebay and Amazon, people do it for a living.

This is a good time to buy (not to sell). Summer is over and almost always this turns into a "buyers" market (Spring is a good time to sell).

But obviously you have to know WHAT you want, and be comfortable with your installation skills as you cannot take anyhting back. But it is INCREDIBLE the prices you can get. My amps were all about $20-$35. Two sets of speakers I bought were actually brand new, bought but never installed. Here it is, note I have not yet taken new pictures of my dash with the Kenwood HU as my "good" camera is at my work.
http://www.cardomain.com/ride/408322...mazda-protege/

There are no moving parts in amps AND in a HU that only plays MP3's, there will be no moving parts either, meaning they can last DECADES if not abused.

Good luck!!!
MOSFET
MOSFET is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 02:24 PM   #4
JHutch420

Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 33
JHutch420 is on a distinguished road



Quote:
Originally Posted by MOSFET View Post
You are indeed discovering that all HU's DO NOT sound the same. Today's HU makers know most consumers will play compressed media of some sort. Because some brands of HU's are said to "sound better" than others, or salespeople will repeat this, folks will play they'er media files and/or CD's in the showrooms and "compare". So by employing these EQ and phasing tricks, to some people, certain decks WILL INDEED sound better than others.

I ran into this myself recently. I had always used Alpine in the past but I found my CDA-105, with almost no "sound shaping" other than bass and treble, made my MP3's sound very constricted to me.

So I went and actually LISTENED to different Hu's with my MP3's and found I REALLY loved the sound of Kenwood's newer decks. Better sounding than Alpine and Pioneer TO ME. Now I'm 48 and I recall when buying Hu's in the 90's, they REALLY DID pretty much all sound the same. Everyone played CD's so making CD's sound best usually meant NOT ADDING A WHOLE BUNCH OF PROCESSING.

But compressed media CHANGED everything. Makers of HU's know they have ONE SHOT at the showroom to put their "best foot forward" so assume it will be MP3's consumers bring in and to MOST people, some DSP enhancements will to most people SEEM to make their music sound better, or to the consumer, brand X HU sounds "better" than brand Y.

Anyway, I ended up buying a Kenwoood Excellon deck and I couldn't be happier. To me, it is TRULY like I suddenly have "remastered" copies of all my MP3's. Honestly, where as I was skipping songs that sounded particularly poor on the ALpines, I am now listening to ALL my files. My wife, on the other hand, IMMEDIATELY noticed a lack of detail in some CD's and some of our loss-less files. I don't notice.

You are discovering the fact that we ALL hear music differently and place greater value on certain traits vs. others.

It sounds like you may simply not like the Pioneer "sound". I understand this. You may want to give Alpine and Kenwood decks a listen as these companies build good quality decks and are generally ranked among the best sounding, JVC is usually right up there as well.

Good luck,
MOSFET
Thanks for all that info man! And believe me Im a audio engineer for music, I know how things sound different from others but bro, when I tell ya this HU sounds like trash, it just does, and it sounded even worse with the S. Rtrv setting on, than without it. Even though that setting is supposed to make the MP3s sound better lol
JHutch420 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 03:26 PM   #5
basicxj

Registered Spam Offender
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: north of the 49th
Posts: 19,366
basicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond reputebasicxj has a reputation beyond repute



Part of the problem is the file type you are using itself.

.mp3 is considered a "lossy" format in that in order to encode from the mother file and make a compact file suitable for playback in .mp3 format so it takes less space on your media, the encoding software must discard and compress portions of the file. Most encoders make an effort to discard and compress what the software programmer feels is redundant or inaudible audio information and they don't always get that "right," but depending on several factors (software type used, bitrate, dowloaded files of unknown origin and quality) to name a couple this doesn't always translate into a file that sounds as good as a CD, as good as a .wav, .flac or Apple Lossless file made from the same original mother file. Some encoders are better than others, and sometimes even when using even the best encoding software (like EAC + LAME), you get artefacts in the encoded .mp3 that don't sound very good- this can be heard as crackling, voids in frequency response, poor bass response, instruments or voices that don't sound right, or odd peaks between 20khz and 20hz that aren't present in uncorrupted versions of the mother file. What it amounts to is garbage into the head unit = garbage out of the amplifier, speakers, subwoofers etc.

Audio files downloaded from the internet may appear for all intents and purposes to be of good quality based on the bitrate shown, but that isn't always a true indication of how nice the file will sound when played back. A user can take a highly degraded 128kbps album or file ripped from a CD or other media and upconvert it during the ripping process so it appears for all the world to be a higher quality 320kbps constant bitrate file and then make that file available online via torrent or other file sharing schemes, but the upconversion from a low bitrate and higher degree of compression does not restore the compression, loss of audio information or other degradation and artefacts that took place in the original encoding process- the damage has already been done, and even though the file you download may be indistinguishable from others available there are files that do sound much better.

Sound retrieval features intended to put these degraded .mp3 files "right" when you play them back in the car vary from one head unit manufacturer to the next, but most of them tend to be a loudness circuit designed to boost what normally gets cut when encoding files to .mp3...this doesn't always make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. The more revealing the audio system you play .mp3 files back on, the more obvious something is sounding wrong when you critically listen to these compressed files on equipment that is good enough to reveal the file type's shortcomings. The reason that the .mp3 format is so popular with the masses is that not everyone can detect the losses intrinsic to using a lossy file type or cares about how things sound to the same extent the average audiophile might. If accuracy and optimal sound quality is important, stepping up to a better file type (Lossless FTW) will usually offer more improvements than any equipment upgrades or swapping you might spend money on. That means what sounds OK on an OEM sound system may not sound as good when you play the files through upgraded head units, amplifiers, speakers/subwoofers.

The best approach? If you care about sound quality, build the best system you can afford, and run the best quality files through it to give that equipment a fighting chance. I re-did most of my audio library (over 116gb) about a decade ago and abandoned .mp3 format by re-ripping hundreds of CDs into Apple Lossless and then playing those files back on a higher capacity device capable of much better SQ through my audio system- this yielded huge improvements even when played back on a $1200 head unit with most of the bells and whistles. Some things like higher capacity media and players have gotten much cheaper in the last decade or so that the requirement for tiny files at the expense of quality is not such a pressing need. One test you can do right now that may prove the point is to play a well recorded store-bought audio CD and critically listen to the system. An A/B back to back listen on the equipment you already have between the CD and an .mp3 may show the sound quality of one to be superior to the other. You can also "roll your own" .mp3 files by ripping a great sounding CD at 320 kbps constant bitrate using a known-good encoder and do another A/B comparison:

http://www.exactaudiocopy.de

http://lame.sourceforge.net/download.php

^^ these two pieces of software work together to make some of the best sounding, least degraded .mp3 files available if you are stuck on staying with the lossy format

A how-to:

http://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php?title=EAC_and_Lame
basicxj is online now   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 04:21 PM   #6
JHutch420

Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 33
JHutch420 is on a distinguished road



Quote:
Originally Posted by basicxj View Post
Part of the problem is the file type you are using itself.

.mp3 is considered a "lossy" format in that in order to encode from the mother file and make a compact file suitable for playback in .mp3 format so it takes less space on your media, the encoding software must discard and compress portions of the file. Most encoders make an effort to discard and compress what the software programmer feels is redundant or inaudible audio information and they don't always get that "right," but depending on several factors (software type used, bitrate, dowloaded files of unknown origin and quality) to name a couple this doesn't always translate into a file that sounds as good as a CD, as good as a .wav, .flac or Apple Lossless file made from the same original mother file. Some encoders are better than others, and sometimes even when using even the best encoding software (like EAC + LAME), you get artefacts in the encoded .mp3 that don't sound very good- this can be heard as crackling, voids in frequency response, poor bass response, instruments or voices that don't sound right, or odd peaks between 20khz and 20hz that aren't present in uncorrupted versions of the mother file. What it amounts to is garbage into the head unit = garbage out of the amplifier, speakers, subwoofers etc.

Audio files downloaded from the internet may appear for all intents and purposes to be of good quality based on the bitrate shown, but that isn't always a true indication of how nice the file will sound when played back. A user can take a highly degraded 128kbps album or file ripped from a CD or other media and upconvert it during the ripping process so it appears for all the world to be a higher quality 320kbps constant bitrate file and then make that file available online via torrent or other file sharing schemes, but the upconversion from a low bitrate and higher degree of compression does not restore the compression, loss of audio information or other degradation and artefacts that took place in the original encoding process- the damage has already been done, and even though the file you download may be indistinguishable from others available there are files that do sound much better.

Sound retrieval features intended to put these degraded .mp3 files "right" when you play them back in the car vary from one head unit manufacturer to the next, but most of them tend to be a loudness circuit designed to boost what normally gets cut when encoding files to .mp3...this doesn't always make a silk purse out of a sow's ear. The more revealing the audio system you play .mp3 files back on, the more obvious something is sounding wrong when you critically listen to these compressed files on equipment that is good enough to reveal the file type's shortcomings. The reason that the .mp3 format is so popular with the masses is that not everyone can detect the losses intrinsic to using a lossy file type or cares about how things sound to the same extent the average audiophile might. If accuracy and optimal sound quality is important, stepping up to a better file type (Lossless FTW) will usually offer more improvements than any equipment upgrades or swapping you might spend money on. That means what sounds OK on an OEM sound system may not sound as good when you play the files through upgraded head units, amplifiers, speakers/subwoofers.

The best approach? If you care about sound quality, build the best system you can afford, and run the best quality files through it to give that equipment a fighting chance. I re-did most of my audio library (over 116gb) about a decade ago and abandoned .mp3 format by re-ripping hundreds of CDs into Apple Lossless and then playing those files back on a higher capacity device capable of much better SQ through my audio system- this yielded huge improvements even when played back on a $1200 head unit with most of the bells and whistles. Some things like higher capacity media and players have gotten much cheaper in the last decade or so that the requirement for tiny files at the expense of quality is not such a pressing need. One test you can do right now that may prove the point is to play a well recorded store-bought audio CD and critically listen to the system. An A/B back to back listen on the equipment you already have between the CD and an .mp3 may show the sound quality of one to be superior to the other. You can also "roll your own" .mp3 files by ripping a great sounding CD at 320 kbps constant bitrate using a known-good encoder and do another A/B comparison:

http://www.exactaudiocopy.de

http://lame.sourceforge.net/download.php

^^ these two pieces of software work together to make some of the best sounding, least degraded .mp3 files available if you are stuck on staying with the lossy format

A how-to:

http://wiki.hydrogenaud.io/index.php?title=EAC_and_Lame
Thank you very much for all that info, yea this effect is off now n everything sounds cleaner than with it on. And believe me as I said to the other guy, Im a audio engineer for music, I know the differance between MP3s and WAV files. I would love to have all wav files but they cannot be downloaded from youtube and thats where I get all my music. The music I engineer on the other hand are allll WAV files, even when uploaded to youtube or soundcliud I still upload them as a wav, even though when downloaded by a user, automatically gets switched to mp3. I know my way around audio, and audio files, and recording, this is just my first time messing around with car audio setups and HUs and all that so some of these settings in the HU that claim to make the MP3s sound better due to lossy audio, are useless. Unless constructed better, this was a budget HU so I can only imagine the quality its lacking within all its processing settings. The S. Rtrv setting that claims to "hi-fi" MP3 files, makes them sound overly "trebleized". Maybe its just my ear but when its off, everything sounds cleaner.

Last edited by JHutch420; 10-15-2015 at 04:25 PM.
JHutch420 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 06:31 PM   #7
JHutch420

Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 33
JHutch420 is on a distinguished road



Quote:
Originally Posted by MOSFET View Post
You asked about used or new in another thread. Like I said, it might be a really good idea to go LISTEN to different HU's at a showroom, FIRST.

However, I built my last systme entirely from Craig's List. This included 4 amps, HU's, three sets of speakers, subwoofers and cables. Everything worked PERFECTLY and I spent a total of $370. I is ALWAYS better to test first if possible, but GENERALLY, most folks on CL are just regular folks hoping to get a few bucks for things gathering dust in their garage. On Ebay and Amazon, people do it for a living.

This is a good time to buy (not to sell). Summer is over and almost always this turns into a "buyers" market (Spring is a good time to sell).

But obviously you have to know WHAT you want, and be comfortable with your installation skills as you cannot take anyhting back. But it is INCREDIBLE the prices you can get. My amps were all about $20-$35. Two sets of speakers I bought were actually brand new, bought but never installed. Here it is, note I have not yet taken new pictures of my dash with the Kenwood HU as my "good" camera is at my work.
http://www.cardomain.com/ride/408322...mazda-protege/

There are no moving parts in amps AND in a HU that only plays MP3's, there will be no moving parts either, meaning they can last DECADES if not abused.

Good luck!!!
MOSFET
Just wanted to say thanks for all the help, I got the HU to sound much better by disabling that S. Rtrv option, now next step would be more power, how much would a 4 channel amp be? Nothing tooo over the top for my speakrrs I dont wanna blow anything lol
JHutch420 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 06:53 PM   #8
Mordrid1

Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,335
Mordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond repute



Cheapest I would go would be this amp http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_...-BA1000.4.html . It's a solid amp with more power than you need. Set the gains properly, and you will have plenty of head room.
Mordrid1 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 08:23 PM   #9
JHutch420

Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 33
JHutch420 is on a distinguished road



Quote:
Originally Posted by Mordrid1 View Post
Cheapest I would go would be this amp http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_...-BA1000.4.html . It's a solid amp with more power than you need. Set the gains properly, and you will have plenty of head room.
How do I hook that up? The back of my stereo only has 2 plugs, a L and a R. There isnt 4 outputs. I dont believe, u can check if u want, its the Pioneer DEH-X2710UI
JHutch420 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old 10-15-2015, 11:03 PM   #10
Mordrid1

Registered User
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,335
Mordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond reputeMordrid1 has a reputation beyond repute



You could just use a simple rca Y adapter at the amplifier.
Mordrid1 is offline   Reply With Quote

Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 11:55 PM.
Powered by vBulletin® - Copyright © 2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright 1996 - 2011 by CarAudioForum.com - all rights reserved.