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AVRant #41: Bipolar Music Disorder

by February 13, 2008
AV Rant - Youre One-stop Home Theater Podcast

AV Rant - You're One-stop Home Theater Podcast

Today, Tom and Clint tackle listener questions including one on room acoustics and what to do with bipolar music speakers. Tom psychoanalyzes a $6 million dollar home theater system and they tackle the age old question of whether to spend more money on a receiver or get a dedicated amplifier instead - they’ll tell you what they think and why. Wiring up your house? Terminated cables or roll your own? Sooner or later everyone has to make this decision - and sometimes you’ll do a little of both. Planet Waves has a nice little kit that might be the home theater enthusiast’s dream come true. We’ll try to do these special AVRant Q&A podcasts more often from here on out. Thanks for listening.

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About the author:
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Clint Deboer was terminated from Audioholics for misconduct on April 4th, 2014. He no longer represents Audioholics in any fashion.

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Recent Forum Posts:

Thaedium posts on February 15, 2008 16:25
Clint DeBoer, post: 375929
Is that the final room? Or did all that gear move somewhere else? Cause if that's the final room then all the acoustics in the world don't matter. He should have spent $2 milion on a new home, and the other $4m on the room.

IF that is the final room, sans room acoustics, then… words cannot express.

No, according to Jeremy this was an early picture of the room before he was finished with it. Even still the final product does not look too much different.



The room was specially designed, and I would guess it was done long before he went overboard with amps and whatnot. It's a vaulted room at 8 feet in the rear and 16 feet at the screen end. Measuring 26.5 feet wide and 33 feet long. To quote them,

2250 Sq/Ft. Custom Designed, Two-Story Concert Hall with Vaulted Ceiling & Balcony - 1“ Solid Maple Flooring on 4” tall Pine studs - 12“ spacing, sitting on a solid 16” reinforced concrete foundation, itself isolated on 4 - 156' solid steel girders all the way down to bedrock. Features non-parallel walls, ceiling, and floor, with dedicated installed noise isolation system, and acoustic treatments designed to supersede ANSI, SMPTE, AMPAS and AES/EBU noise specifications for professional movie theaters, mixing stages, and anechoic test chambers.

So I'm guessing that even despite how it looks, it performs well.
Haoleb posts on February 15, 2008 12:50
Clint DeBoer, post: 375877
My reading was: Tuner 1 (525 MHz): -4 dBmV
FDC: 0 dBmV
RDC: 52dBmV (687 uSec)

I guess that's pretty good.


The readings change with each channel you go to, It will change to orange at -9dbmv which Im guessing is the point when its below ideal. I found a couple of cable amplifiers that go to 1ghz laying around and stuck them on the two systems I have that use digital cable and HD and so far they have been fine, Although I havent watched much tv, only time will tell. But at least now none of my levels are too low. Some of them are too high I think so maybe i'll throw a splitter on there too to reduce them some. The amplifiers were +15db.

So perhaps a simple fix to this is to get an amplifier and boost the signal back up, Although if it is I dont know why the tech didnt just give me one of them. Maybe he is trying to push management to replace the bigger amplifiers in the system instead of just band-aid ones.
Clint DeBoer posts on February 15, 2008 09:54
Is that the final room? Or did all that gear move somewhere else? Cause if that's the final room then all the acoustics in the world don't matter. He should have spent $2 milion on a new home, and the other $4m on the room.

IF that is the final room, sans room acoustics, then… words cannot express.
Thaedium posts on February 15, 2008 09:39
Tom Andry, post: 375881
Dogs? Banshees? Fish? Ya got me. I think he just ran out of things to spend money on.

One thing that freaks me out though… where are the wires? It just looks like all the gear is in the room but not hooked up to anything. What's the deal with that? With all that money you'd think he'd have wires as thick as a baby's arm up on elevators all over that place. Even the gear on the rack looks strangely devoid of wires.

The wires were all removed for the photo shoot.

Here's a photo of the early incarnation of his system,


Quite the mess, hah.
Tom Andry posts on February 15, 2008 09:03
Thaedium, post: 375758
who the hell needs to have 100khz frequencies ?

Dogs? Banshees? Fish? Ya got me. I think he just ran out of things to spend money on.

One thing that freaks me out though… where are the wires? It just looks like all the gear is in the room but not hooked up to anything. What's the deal with that? With all that money you'd think he'd have wires as thick as a baby's arm up on elevators all over that place. Even the gear on the rack looks strangely devoid of wires.
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