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Thread: Good songs for stereo tuning
01-05-2010, 10:58 AM #1
Good songs for stereo tuning
So what are some good songs to use to tune a stereo system with? Something with a wide range of sounds including some good bass segments. FYI, I gravitate towards classic rock but also like some "newer" artists like coldplay, collective soul, pearl jam, dave matthews, death cab for cutie, etc. but am open to using other knds of music to tune with.
Thx for any suggestions.
2006 Mobius LSV
01-05-2010, 03:16 PM #2
Believe it not, "What a Feeling" from the Flashdance soundtrack has a wide range of highs and some super low bass (most people don't even realize it until you have a quality system that can reproduce it without distortion). In the late 80's to early 90's that song was used as decibel measurement in car stereo competitions. I always play that song when tweaking a system. Can't go wrong with some old school songs off Def Leppard Hysteria.
01-05-2010, 03:25 PM #3
Don't laugh, the year of MJ
I used this in my car days back in the late 80's earlier 90's
The Way You Make Me Feel by Michael JacksonA Day at the Lake...Priceless
A Day in Powder...Endless
2012 Möbius XLV~ Loaded & Exiled
2007 Outback V ~ sold
01-05-2010, 03:35 PM #4
Sounds like we need to put together that Moomba Jam at the Exile warehouse and use Cab's boat for a tuning session! Mandley called me the other day (sorry i haven't called back yet) about putting something together.
The biggest thing about tuning is using media that has a wide dynamic range and high bit rate (for your ipod users). And even having the very best media ultimately will expose the limits of even the best stereo systems.
Where I'm going with all of this is that often times trying to tune a stereo brings up a host of other issues such as charging, batteries, noise, complimentary --- they all affect performance
The real art is making YOUR boat sound the best it can with what it has to offer system / crossover wise.
01-05-2010, 03:53 PM #5
01-05-2010, 03:55 PM #6
Phil's opinion, (and somewhat lengthy explanation):
They have some of the most energy-dense recordings out there right now. The compression they have used in their recording is pretty musical, but when you look at the music visually as a waveform, you realize how full and dense the signal is; good highs and good lows, with a good spectral balance. You can use any of their higher-energy tracks to really exercise your system and find out where it starts to "let go". It is very similar to using pink noise, only a lot less irritating...
Gain Setting: You can use Nickleback tracks to set maxed-out, non-clipped gains for your system, and you will likely not clip the system with any other material, except for those nutty "bass-heavy" tracks similar to those that used to be all the rage at the car stereo contests. You may find that lots of your other music now sound a lot quieter, since it has a less-compressed signal. That is okay. Hang tight for the reasoning...
What you want to try to achieve is to get all your gain stages set to unity gain; the place where every piece of electronics including the head unit, signal processors, amplifiers all clip at or very near the exact same volume level. Unity gain gives you the best total control of your system and the best signal to noise ratio and best headroom.
With your amp gains set too low, the radio will start to clip prior to the amp's clean non-clipped full-power output. Similarly, if you have the amp gains set too high, your amps will start clipping prior to the radio reaching its peak non-clipped output. You want all components to clip at the same time; that statement sounds funny by itself, but makes sense in light of the other two statements. With unity gain, you get all the non-clipped range of the volume control on your head unit, and your amp gains are usually set low enough to not cause engine noise, solenoid pops, and other problems associated with the gains set too high.
I have found that for my gain tuning needs, music from Nickleback has it all, good highs, good lows, good vocals, (i.e. midrange information) all at the same time and in a really dense sonic package that makes it much easier to set all your controls at pretty much the same time.
This is not my only choice of music I use when setting things up. I like to listen to a variety of things, including some recordings I engineered, (I know, or think I still know what they sounded like live) acoustic instruments, (acoustic guitar from Torcuato Mariano) female vocals, (such as Diana Krall) etc. These things give you additional insight into phase, crossover points, tweeter crossover pad settings, (if you have them).
A quick note in closing... When setting up your system, take the time to set your head unit tone controls to ZERO, i.e. no cut and no boost, with loudness controls, (if you have them) set to off. You want to work with the flattest signal as possible coming from your head unit and through your electronics.
I loook forward to hearing what others think!
Have fun with it!
01-05-2010, 07:00 PM #7
totally agree with this. good bass line, but not boomy. great vocals...
my .02, there are 2 ways to tune a system. hook it up to a spectrum analyzer and get the "competition" curve, or tune it to what sounds good to you. I have always played around with my systems to get the best sound for me. I really don't care what others think, as it's my system and my ears. I could have brian from exile and phil from kicker tune my system. both will tune it slightly differently, and I may or may not like either one.
the system that I just put in plays loud, clean and does not clip. would others think it needs tweaked? maybe, but sounds killer to me, so I'm good...'06 Supra Launch 20SSV-gone but never forgotten
01-05-2010, 07:10 PM #8
Brian yea i figured you were busy and would get back with me later. No sweat man. We can work something out for the Tech Tune i wanted to get with you on some dates and then do another posting to see if people are more available in Feb now that the holidays are over.
As for Tuning i agree Nickleback is insane music. They are by far one of my favs and i crank all there song up, so tuning to there stuff really works for me. I also like to tune it to some heavy bass songs for my sub so even after i have my Rock stuff dialed in i know if i hit the big bass stuff i know how fare to turn my sub dial down.
I also like to use Bod Seagar stuff as he has a realy clean sounding music, great guitar sounds and a solid heavy bass note. Realy nice vocals as well.Malo <--- Means--Evil or Mean One. This explains a lot.
2013 Mojo 2.5 Skylon Tower. Bestia < Beast >
01-05-2010, 08:10 PM #9
one of the songs we used when building conpition sterios in the day were (The box) i still remember it is a great song to
01-05-2010, 08:16 PM #10
I like anything off the Vegi-Tales CD's such as "Hairbrush Song", "The Pirates who don't do Anything" and a few others. Great range and man can Larry the Cucumber hit the low notes.