Polk LSiM703 - harsh treble vs LSi9 or in general? How to fix?

2

Comments

  • heiney9heiney9 Posts: 24,072
    edited January 8
    Get rid of the horrid MP3's and using Apple streaming. The source is most likely the issue. These speakers are more revealing than the LSi9's.

    H9
    "Appreciation of audio is a completely subjective human experience. Measurements can provide a measure of insight, but are no substitute for human judgment. Why are we looking to reduce a subjective experience to objective criteria anyway? The subtleties of music and audio reproduction are for those who appreciate it. Differentiation by numbers is for those who do not".--Nelson Pass

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  • DaveHoDaveHo Posts: 2,296
    Are you sure you don't have a bad tweeter? The QC on my first set of 705's was terrible. One of the issues was a scratchy tweeter, most noticeable with piano. This sounds like what you are describing.
  • spongersponger Posts: 325
    marvda1 wrote: »
    i did not suggest going to the 225 watt option because of the power but to get away from the type of bi-amping being used.

    It's 225W bridged, so the bump in output does not occur by default when foregoing the bi-wiring option. I completely defer to the OP's right to self-determination. But what confuses me is why suddenly it is so taboo to allude to a wattage deficiency when time and again on this forum so many LSiM owners have said at least 200wpc is needed for this series to sound its best.

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  • K_MK_M Posts: 1,311
    The LsiM line simply has a boosted treble compared to the Lsi line.

    You either like that sound or like the flatter Lsi sound.
    Lsi15, Lsi9, LsiC,Rta11t,M5jr+,M4,SDA 3.1TL, SDA SRS 2.3TL, Rti6....Still listing stuff, a work in progress.
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  • K_MK_M Posts: 1,311
    WLDock wrote: »
    I've had the 703's and a friend had the LSi9's years earlier. The LSi are more laid back and easy to listen to speaker.

    LSi9 Measurements



    The goals Polk had for the LSiM ring radiator tweeter over the LSi was to improve the top end response, dispersion, and eliminated horn loading. The LSiM line is more revealing and the 703's have a 5dB rise on the top end. The sound and interaction with the room may create a totally different experience...good or bad.

    LSiM703 Measurements
    912Polkfig3.jpg


    Myself, I never found the tweeters harsh or distorted sounding. However, in some rooms maybe room treatments might be needed? or possibly a little 2-3dB padding on the tweeters like the switch that some vintage speakers have. Or maybe even a little EQ on the top end. Your TX-8050 receiver has treble control centered at 20KHz. Have you tried to reduce the level some?
    EXACTLY!!!
    Occam's Razor.....

    The most obvious answer is usually the reason.
    Nothing to do with power or cables.

    One speaker clearly has about 3.5-4 db more treble, so it will sound LIKE it has more treble.
    It is up to the listener if they prefer that sound.

    Lsi15, Lsi9, LsiC,Rta11t,M5jr+,M4,SDA 3.1TL, SDA SRS 2.3TL, Rti6....Still listing stuff, a work in progress.
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  • DSkipDSkip Posts: 15,768
    K_M wrote: »
    WLDock wrote: »
    I've had the 703's and a friend had the LSi9's years earlier. The LSi are more laid back and easy to listen to speaker.

    LSi9 Measurements



    The goals Polk had for the LSiM ring radiator tweeter over the LSi was to improve the top end response, dispersion, and eliminated horn loading. The LSiM line is more revealing and the 703's have a 5dB rise on the top end. The sound and interaction with the room may create a totally different experience...good or bad.

    LSiM703 Measurements
    912Polkfig3.jpg


    Myself, I never found the tweeters harsh or distorted sounding. However, in some rooms maybe room treatments might be needed? or possibly a little 2-3dB padding on the tweeters like the switch that some vintage speakers have. Or maybe even a little EQ on the top end. Your TX-8050 receiver has treble control centered at 20KHz. Have you tried to reduce the level some?
    EXACTLY!!!
    Occam's Razor.....

    The most obvious answer is usually the reason.
    Nothing to do with power or cables.

    One speaker clearly has about 3.5-4 db more treble, so it will sound LIKE it has more treble.
    It is up to the listener if they prefer that sound.

    The obvious issue is that the LSi has no real treble extension to speak of so these issues don't present themselves. The LSiM are not bright speakers by any means.

    Quit parading around like getting a few members hands slapped has somehow validated your extreme lack of understanding. Don't think your new profile picture hasn't gone unnoticed and should be reported for the obvious trolling that it is.
  • tonybtonyb Posts: 30,966
    While one speaker has more treble, it only becomes more exaggerated by the associated gear and source material being used.

    A more revealing speaker will reveal your other shortcomings, possibly not as audible on a lessor speaker. So you have 2 choices here.

    1- Start upgrading the other areas of your system. Doesn't have to be done all at once but you will notice better sound after every incremental change in things already suggested.

    2- go back to a lessor revealing speaker and keep everything as is, if you like that sound you had, then you've lost nothing and invested nothing.
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  • K_MK_M Posts: 1,311
    tonyb wrote: »
    While one speaker has more treble, it only becomes more exaggerated by the associated gear and source material being used.

    A more revealing speaker will reveal your other shortcomings, possibly not as audible on a lessor speaker. So you have 2 choices here.

    1- Start upgrading the other areas of your system. Doesn't have to be done all at once but you will notice better sound after every incremental change in things already suggested.

    2- go back to a lessor revealing speaker and keep everything as is, if you like that sound you had, then you've lost nothing and invested nothing.
    Good points!
    Hearing acuity factors in also. Between my husband and I, we notice I prefer a bit less treble than he does over the last several years.
    years back we had the exact same preference, and I would imagine over time, what is too much to one person would become just right perhaps.
    Lots of variables for sure.
    Lsi15, Lsi9, LsiC,Rta11t,M5jr+,M4,SDA 3.1TL, SDA SRS 2.3TL, Rti6....Still listing stuff, a work in progress.
    B+W-Sold
    Epos-Now gone
    Infinity-Sold
    Advent-Now gone
    Yamaha A-S801
    Yamaha RX-V377
    Yamaha RX-A860
    Yamaha RX-A3060
    Harman Kardon Hk-350i
    Harman Kardon Hk-........
    Harman Kardon PM-665
    Harman Kardon HK-775
    Pioneer.......Stereo Receiver

  • rooftop59rooftop59 Posts: 5,516
    Shameless plug:

    Your LSiMs would come to life and sound SO much better with this:
    https://forum.polkaudio.com/discussion/184812/peachtree-audio-nova-integrated-amplifier-dac#latest

    It does not offer a ton of power, but that is not your problem. The clinical and sterile power and preamp and lack of a good DAC (and of course, starting with MP3s) are the problems. This would fix everything but the source in one component...
    HT Rig:
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    ;
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  • PSOVLSKPSOVLSK Posts: 4,000
    rooftop59 wrote: »
    Shameless plug:

    Your LSiMs would come to life and sound SO much better with this:
    https://forum.polkaudio.com/discussion/184812/peachtree-audio-nova-integrated-amplifier-dac#latest

    It does not offer a ton of power, but that is not your problem. The clinical and sterile power and preamp and lack of a good DAC (and of course, starting with MP3s) are the problems. This would fix everything but the source in one component...

    I was going to post this, but decided to mind my own business ;)

    I enjoyed by 703 with the Peachtree. Sound was very good and I personally love the looks of the Nova. Even though I've moved on to better integrates, this is a piece that I sometimes wish I still had.
    Things work out best for those who make the best of the way things work out.-John Wooden
  • SIHABSIHAB Posts: 944
    edited January 8
    So I was playing my ole Alice Cooper redbook CD...
    My wife asked me if was live!
    703's -> wire world speaker cable ->class d SS amp

    Digging the 703's. Nice everyday speaker. Mrs. likes them.
  • ClipdatClipdat Posts: 6,607
    That doesn't help the OP's situation at all. But thanks for sharing your thoughts on your 703s and letting us know that your wife likes them.
    • "Electronic music is human sound adapting to indulge technology, and for some, it feels like the signature sound of energy. New and abstract sounds over hypnotic rhythms can conjure vast soundscapes for escape, pleasure, and transcendence."
  • SIHABSIHAB Posts: 944
    edited January 8
    Um, I was interrupted. Thanks for calling me out. You could just ignore my post
    @clipdat as it wasn't directed towards you. Wait a sec, ignore...

    The point is the OP might have to play with them to trying different things
    upstream to get them to where he/she is happy. (As mentioned)
    I wouldn't just give up on them.

    OTOH, if you don't like them you don't like them...
    Clipdat wrote: »
    That doesn't help the OP's situation at all. But thanks for sharing your thoughts on your 703s and letting us know that your wife likes them.
  • ClipdatClipdat Posts: 6,607
    edited January 8
    SIHAB wrote: »
    Um, I was interrupted. Thanks for calling me out. You could just ignore my post
    @clipdat as it wasn't directed towards you. Wait a sec, ignore...

    Why are you even using any Polk products? I thought you swore off anything to do with Polk Audio due to this forum which you detest, but yet for some reason still visit daily.
    • "Electronic music is human sound adapting to indulge technology, and for some, it feels like the signature sound of energy. New and abstract sounds over hypnotic rhythms can conjure vast soundscapes for escape, pleasure, and transcendence."
  • SIHABSIHAB Posts: 944
    edited January 8
    What are you going on about?
    How do your posts help the OP?
    Why don't you start your own thread?
    Why don't you mind your own business?
    Clipdat wrote: »
    SIHAB wrote: »
    Um, I was interrupted. Thanks for calling me out. You could just ignore my post
    @clipdat as it wasn't directed towards you. Wait a sec, ignore...

    Why are you even using any Polk products? I thought you swore off anything to do with Polk Audio due to this forum which you detest, but yet for some reason still visit daily.

  • WillowWillow Posts: 9,470
    Come on guys let's not start nothing
    2Ch- B&W 703, SVS PB10 NSD, Marantz NR1607, Parasound 1500a, Pro-Ject Debut Carbon (Yellow) with Acrylic platter, Pro-Ject phono pre, MIT AVT 2 speaker cables, MIT AVT 1 and AVT 2 ICs, XLO Jumpers, Signal Dig Coax, Signal Cable Magic Power Cables x3, Samsung 55JS7000, Harmony 1100, Sony BDP-S6200, Marantz DV-4200 (as Transport), Cambridge Audio DAC Magic100, Monster 3600MKII, Android Mi Box3 and Apple TV. - Pool /Gazebo Yamaha RX-A1010, Polk Patio 25x4, Rotel RDV 1045 (as CDP) MIT AVT3 ICs - Work - Spotify Premium or Neutron App to my FiiO Kunlun into my Grado SR125e

  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 13,358
    Clipdat wrote: »
    SIHAB wrote: »
    Um, I was interrupted. Thanks for calling me out. You could just ignore my post
    @clipdat as it wasn't directed towards you. Wait a sec, ignore...

    Why are you even using any Polk products? I thought you swore off anything to do with Polk Audio due to this forum which you detest, but yet for some reason still visit daily.

    rednedtugent only came here to troll
  • WLDockWLDock Posts: 2,482
    CottageChz wrote: »
    I appreciate all of the feedback here. If anyone has other ideas or has had a similar issue I'd love to hear them. In the meantime I am going to play around with some of the suggestions here and see if I can notice any differences.
    Tons of responses here but no report on what you've tried.

    1) Use the best source that you have, so pull out that CD player.
    2) Rule out a problem with a tweeter or crossover. Play music that causes the brightness, distortion, etc. and see if it is on one side or both. Switch the speakers if you have to or play one speaker at a time, etc. Also, listen to high frequency test tones and pan left right with the balance control.
    3) Are the speakers toed in? If so, you might prefer a less toed in high end response.
    4) Does a little treble adjustment help?

    I think the above is a good starting point. Report back what you find.

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  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,954
    More resolving speakers require better equipment and source music upstream.
    Source: Bluesound Node 2i | Preamp/DAC: PS Audio Stellar Gain Cell | Power Amp: Parasound Halo A21 | Speakers: PSB Imagine T2 | Cables: Signal Cable Analog 2 XLR; Kimber 8VS Bi-Wire; DH Labs D-75 Dig Coax | AC Power: Panamax M5300-PM
  • CottageChzCottageChz Posts: 41
    WLDock wrote: »
    CottageChz wrote: »
    I appreciate all of the feedback here. If anyone has other ideas or has had a similar issue I'd love to hear them. In the meantime I am going to play around with some of the suggestions here and see if I can notice any differences.
    Tons of responses here but no report on what you've tried.

    1) Use the best source that you have, so pull out that CD player.
    2) Rule out a problem with a tweeter or crossover. Play music that causes the brightness, distortion, etc. and see if it is on one side or both. Switch the speakers if you have to or play one speaker at a time, etc. Also, listen to high frequency test tones and pan left right with the balance control.
    3) Are the speakers toed in? If so, you might prefer a less toed in high end response.
    4) Does a little treble adjustment help?

    I think the above is a good starting point. Report back what you find.

    Yes, I know. Will be trying a lot of this stuff when I have time, possibly this weekend. I appreciate the number and variety of responses. I wanted to have a good idea of a bunch of things to try before I made any changes.
  • CottageChzCottageChz Posts: 41
    rooftop59 wrote: »
    Shameless plug:

    Your LSiMs would come to life and sound SO much better with this:
    https://forum.polkaudio.com/discussion/184812/peachtree-audio-nova-integrated-amplifier-dac#latest

    It does not offer a ton of power, but that is not your problem. The clinical and sterile power and preamp and lack of a good DAC (and of course, starting with MP3s) are the problems. This would fix everything but the source in one component...

    This is an interesting option. If I were to make some changes in my gear, I would really like to retain some optical digital inputs if possible, because I also run my TV audio through the speakers, and the connection is optical digital. And the price isn't too bad. Could probably sell my existing gear and add a little money on top and get one.
  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,954
    Think of highly resolving equipment like its a microscope on your system. Remember the last time you watched standard def TV on a HDTV? Awful, right? Grainy, fuzzy. Same with audio. The better your equipment is, the better it has to be.
    Source: Bluesound Node 2i | Preamp/DAC: PS Audio Stellar Gain Cell | Power Amp: Parasound Halo A21 | Speakers: PSB Imagine T2 | Cables: Signal Cable Analog 2 XLR; Kimber 8VS Bi-Wire; DH Labs D-75 Dig Coax | AC Power: Panamax M5300-PM
  • steveinaz wrote: »
    Think of highly resolving equipment like its a microscope on your system. Remember the last time you watched standard def TV on a HDTV? Awful, right? Grainy, fuzzy. Same with audio. The better your equipment is, the better it has to be.

    Gotcha. That seems to be the general consensus here. Still going to play around with my existing equipment, but most seem to think that some upgrades in equipment and music source would work wonders.
  • steveinazsteveinaz Posts: 18,954
    That's why they call the hi-fi hobby a "rabbit hole."
    Source: Bluesound Node 2i | Preamp/DAC: PS Audio Stellar Gain Cell | Power Amp: Parasound Halo A21 | Speakers: PSB Imagine T2 | Cables: Signal Cable Analog 2 XLR; Kimber 8VS Bi-Wire; DH Labs D-75 Dig Coax | AC Power: Panamax M5300-PM
  • CottageChzCottageChz Posts: 41
    Update: So I played around with some different sources and higher quality files (FLAC and CD) on my old equipment, changed up the way I had wired the speakers to using a single wire for each, and couldn't get away from the treble problems I described in my original post. I really appreciate the suggestions and feedback I received here, there were a lot of good things for me to try.

    I bit the bullet and made a big upgrade to a Parasound Halo Integrated (used from ebay), and WOW, now I see what I've been missing! The problems I was having with the harsh treble/distorted treble are totally gone, and everything sounds amazing! The difference the new integrated amplifier made is pretty incredible. I know it is a huge step up in terms of quality, but I was still amazed.

    The other thing that I'm really happy about is the sound of vinyl on the new amplifier. Through the Onkyo, records almost always sounded really flat, boring, muddy and kind of muted(?) maybe... best way I can describe it. I always preferred digital because my vinyl always sounded like crap through the Onkyo, which was very disappointing, because I do enjoy collecting and listening to vinyl. Must have been a pretty bad phono stage, in addition to the amplifier just being not as good in general. Now the vinyl sounds much clearer, more detailed, and dynamic.

    Thanks again for all of the input here! Looking forward to remaining on this forum and learning more, seeing everyone's systems, and sharing my own future upgrades.
  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 4,859
    edited March 25
    Good call on the Parasound Halo Integrated. Solid stuff! Congrats!
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  • K_MK_M Posts: 1,311
    @CottageChz Have to ask, but what age range are you?

    Obviously someone younger will have better high frequency acuity, and that combined with the Lsim being voiced with more treble than the Lsi series, could simply be a bit too hot sounding for you.
    Lsi15, Lsi9, LsiC,Rta11t,M5jr+,M4,SDA 3.1TL, SDA SRS 2.3TL, Rti6....Still listing stuff, a work in progress.
    B+W-Sold
    Epos-Now gone
    Infinity-Sold
    Advent-Now gone
    Yamaha A-S801
    Yamaha RX-V377
    Yamaha RX-A860
    Yamaha RX-A3060
    Harman Kardon Hk-350i
    Harman Kardon Hk-........
    Harman Kardon PM-665
    Harman Kardon HK-775
    Pioneer.......Stereo Receiver

  • nooshinjohnnooshinjohn Posts: 20,430
    K_M wrote: »
    @CottageChz Have to ask, but what age range are you?

    Obviously someone younger will have better high frequency acuity, and that combined with the Lsim being voiced with more treble than the Lsi series, could simply be a bit too hot sounding for you.

    So the guy solves his problems by taking the advice of experienced members and is now completely happy with his choices, and you come up with this?


    Be careful around K_M... the brilliance is just blinding.
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  • vavanvavan Posts: 18
    CottageChz wrote: »
    I bit the bullet and made a big upgrade to a Parasound Halo Integrated (used from ebay), and WOW, now I see what I've been missing! The problems I was having with the harsh treble/distorted treble are totally gone, and everything sounds amazing
    I have lsim 705 paired with parasound hint (and oppo-205) and sometimes also find highs (or mids?) somewhat harsh or hoarse/husky or something like that

    Parasound Halo Integrated, Pioneer SC-LX 901, Oppo-205, Polk Audio LSiM 705 + Heco Aurora Center 30 + Heco Victa Prime 202
  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 41,786
    vavan wrote: »
    CottageChz wrote: »
    I bit the bullet and made a big upgrade to a Parasound Halo Integrated (used from ebay), and WOW, now I see what I've been missing! The problems I was having with the harsh treble/distorted treble are totally gone, and everything sounds amazing
    I have lsim 705 paired with parasound hint (and oppo-205) and sometimes also find highs (or mids?) somewhat harsh or hoarse/husky or something like that

    It's not the speakers or the integrated
    Political Correctness'.........defined

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