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Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

renabord, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Youngling Viestejä: 6 Liittymispäivä: 15.11.2020 Viimeisimmät viestit

Hi there!

I'm looking to create a great sounding listening(streaming) setup for our living room.

As you can see in the attached picture I have far from optimal speaker placements, but unfortunately thats where they have to sit. In the picture are also a pair of passive speakers which sounds great when placed correctly. But when placed like you see in the picture the result was not great. So I sent them back.

It then dawned on me: I need some kind of room correction.

Enter Genelecs: I really like the minimal setup of only having a streamer/DAC/pre-amp connected to a pair of active Genelecs.

 

So... the 8340 vs G-four, my pros and potential cons:

8340 I think the obvious plus is that they have SAM/GLM capability. But as I understand it they also "like it best" when fed with a digital signal, with their internal DAC taking care of the rest. And if I feed them from an external DAC/Pre-amp/streamer – they convert the analogue signal to digital and then once again back to analogue. I cant help feeling that something small inside of me dies a bit when thinking of the extra AD/DA conversion in the chain. Or am I overreacting?

The G-Four on the other hand doesn't have an internal DAC (as I understand it). And it would be a cleaner way for the analogue signal coming from my DAC/source just to be amplified by the speakers. But they can only be room corrected manually, correct?

One last note: As I'm listening at home I'm not necessarily after studio monitoring/pro-level of neutralness, just clean good sound.

 

What do I do? What would you do?

A. Go with the G-four and thereby skip the extra AD/DA conversion, but loose GLM? And try to tweak the room with the dip switches manually.

B. Go with the 8340 and enjoy the GLM/SAM features and correct for the room, and just forget about the extra AD/DA conversion because it doesn't matter?

C. Or the third not so favourite option: Try to find a source with digital volume control and inputs for streaming, that can deliver a digital signal to the 8340s, if that even exists in a tabletop box that looks kinda nice.

 

Sorry for the wall of text and thanks for reading the whole thing!

janne-koo, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Padawan Viestejä: 73 Liittymispäivä: 26.10.2015 Viimeisimmät viestit

Looking at that photo, it's likely you'd be happier with 8330's and a 7350 than a pair of 8340's, unless you really need the rather few extra dB SPL. ​​​​​​​

I guess I kind of leaked my other opinions as well with that statement.
​​​​​​
​​​​​​​83xx's are best fed at full blast with the volume controlled via GLM - the only good option, really. ​​​Do you really need to control the volume from "anywhere"? The GLM wired knob is really nice to use and you can extend its reach with a simple 3,5mm TRS extension cable without issues. There are wireless remotes too, of course.
​​​​​​​
​​​​​​​You could even feed 83xx's straight from the telly with S/PDIF, with an optical to coax converter between (if needed). There are also S/PDIF switches, even fully automatic, if you need multiple input sources. 8330 and 834x (and 73x0) have dual inputs, so they can take in an analog signals as well - preferably with a fixed, very high level, or your neigbours will also notice when the input switches to digital. On auto, the digital input has priority...

renabord, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Youngling Viestejä: 6 Liittymispäivä: 15.11.2020 Viimeisimmät viestit

Hi Janne, thanks for the reply!

I have actually been thinking of the 8330s as they also fit a bit better visually. It's just that I would have to convince the household of a sub, which could be hard to sell :). 

Regarding feeding the 83XX with either analogue or digital, it sound like you would really recommend going with digital, right? So going with an external dac isn't really a viable option or?

Nice Idea with a S/PDIF switch! So you could potentially have both the tv and a streamer connected(preferably digitally). The only thing missing is that I would like the convenience(laziness) of a remote for volume. But I'll give it some research! :)

 

Regarding the G-series (four/three) Do you have any experience with them, and the eq switches on the back, for room correction? 

Could you get decent result with just tuning the sound with them, or is GLM/SAM with smart monitors just a whole other level?

Thank you!

 

janne-koo, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Padawan Viestejä: 73 Liittymispäivä: 26.10.2015 Viimeisimmät viestit

Forgiveness is easier to obtain than permission, so sell the idea of a sub after the fact... :-)  A 7350 works really well even with very low listening volumes and it's physically tiny, easy to hide.

​​​​​​​Yes, I'd recommend a digital connection, but it's certainly still nice to have a dedicated input for both connection types (8330 and 8341 are OK - 8320 and 8331 are not). A DAC wouldn't be of much use, but a (DAC/)DDC might be, if you're connecting a computer - ie. an USB to S/PDIF (or AES) interface. The Topping D1 has served me well.

​​​​​​​My 8330+7350 set is in my "cave" (and where ever I go). I actually run old 8030B's and a 7050B in the living room - practically identical with the G3 of the same period. Some might get lucky, but for me the dip switches didn't cut it, not even close - I got a DSpeaker anti-mode dual-core 2.0 to do corrections there... The result is okay, but yes, SAM is certainly next level from it and another world compared to a few dip switches and a pot.

​​​​​​​Btw, here's one automatic S/PDIF switch which can convert optical to copper at the same time... Maybe not perfect (only scans inputs when the selected one goes down), but I've liked it:  https://www.tindie.com/products/beni_skate/automatic-spdif-opticalrca-audio-switch/

lukester, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Jedi Master Viestejä: 296 Liittymispäivä: 22.4.2010 Viimeisimmät viestit

On thing to interject:

If it's easy, I'd avoid spdif and go coax -> genelecs.
​​​​​​​genelecs really want AES, which is coax signal at specific impedance.
Should  you run into problems (unlikely), coax route is easier to troubleshoot.
If you're sitting less than 2m from speakers: get 8341

I have wired and wireless controllers. wired is really nice.
​​​​​​​wireless i never use, can't ever find it, using PC volume control in that room like a savage ;-)

 

janne-koo, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Padawan Viestejä: 73 Liittymispäivä: 26.10.2015 Viimeisimmät viestit

S/PDIF is media independent, TV's for example very rarely have a copper output. But yes, avoid optical when possible; As counter-intuitive as it may seem, copper has less problems. ​​​​​​​I didn't even bother with the impedance bit here, as Genelecs play along very well with raw S/PDIF fed direct to the AES/EBU input with short distances, but if one wants to do it right, just throw a Neutrik NADITBNC-M and a short, suitable cable (RCA-M to BNC-F) in between, going with 110 ohm XLR3 "digital" cable from there.

​​​​​​​The 8341 is in a wholly different price range, but yes they're nice. They also still need a sub, though, and a 7360 or 2 x 7350's are a better fit... So €€€€++.

​​​​​​​One minor point in favour of the classic range - 8330's are nearly indestructable, with their hardcore metal grilles etc. I sure wouldn't get Ones if there are cats or kids around. :-)

lukester, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Jedi Master Viestejä: 296 Liittymispäivä: 22.4.2010 Viimeisimmät viestit

Wholeheartedly agree with everything you said!

Except for the need for a sub with 8341. Lot's of people should be fine w/o one.
​​​​​​​On paper they reach down to 38Hz ;-)
I have 8351 and a 7370 sub that I never use. the stellar coax imaging is easily disturbed.

​​​​​​​Sidenote: anybody wanna swap 2x 7350 for 1x 7370?

renabord, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Youngling Viestejä: 6 Liittymispäivä: 15.11.2020 Viimeisimmät viestit

Thanks for all the great inputs!

I heat you. Seems like digital (coax) through AES is the way to go. So, I’ll forget about the dac.

My listening distance is about 4m btw. And yes I just got a kid so thats also why the ones are kinda scary to put up, the metal grills in the 8330/40 are a must for peace of mind :).

I rather not use the GLM box for more than the room setup since the device not the nicest to look at. GLM or computer volume isnt the only way to control the volume right?

I know I keep beating this dead dog but: The only thing holding me back from pulling the trigger on a white 8340/Sam bundle right now is the lack of something with the functionality of a preamp (but no amp and digital in this case). Something to plug a streamer an the tv into, and control the volume (with a remote). No computer will be hooked up to this setup. Does such a devices even exist?

(yes, looks are important! ;)

thanks again guys!

renabord, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Youngling Viestejä: 6 Liittymispäivä: 15.11.2020 Viimeisimmät viestit

I found something interesting! (I think)

https://www.minidsp.com/products/streaming-hd-series/shd-studio

looks like a streamer/audio interface/tabletop box with volume and digital out. Could something like that work?
 

But now I got two room correction systems, with both dirac live and GLM, dammit! :)
 

janne-koo, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Padawan Viestejä: 73 Liittymispäivä: 26.10.2015 Viimeisimmät viestit

Adjusting volume in the digital signal path is not simple to get right; Most just strive for bit-perfect audio and keep the level at 100% all the way, then control the output volume in the last analog stage - or with GLM. If you insist in doing digital volume control, the equipment has to be well designed... I'd get something which resamples everything coming in at some insane internal bitrate/depth, does the math (volume adjustment) and resamples output to 48 kHz/24 bit (the native 83x0 samplerate) or 96/24 (but no more). Something like the RME ADI-2 Pro FS R might do the trick; I've been considering one as I need a better A/D->USB interface anyway, but haven't quite pulled the trigger. I think it ticks all your boxes - the remote is a bit cheesy, though. :-)

On another note, considering the photo you posted, a 4m listening distance is insane - you lose most of the stereo imaging and much of the definition (due to reflections). Pity... If you like to play it loud then yes, go bigger, 8330's can only deliver about 90 dB that far. Without a sub (which would also need to be bigger, or two) I'd be considering the 8350A, but it's not exactly tiny.

On the other hand, if there are neighbours above, below or behind a wall, even the 8330 is easily loud enough to get an eviction underway. For lower listening levels, 2x8330+1x7350 would still be The way to go; More than often, after optimizing you get a flat response all the way down to 20 Hz (minus the most impossible room cancellation dips, perhaps); It does make a very real difference compared to 834x alone.

renabord, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Youngling Viestejä: 6 Liittymispäivä: 15.11.2020 Viimeisimmät viestit

Thanks again Janne! I wasnt aware that attenuating digital volume meant  changing/loosing bits, thats good to know. And that the hardware in charge of that has to be good. 
 

The RME unit seems really nice, just maybe a bit more features than I would ever need :). But its definitely on the list of possible solutions. If the miniDSP isnt up to snuff. Got to do a bit more reasearch on that. Just convenient with the streaming built in.
 

But the digital options are quite few, when not using a computer or glm to control the volume.

 

I’ve come across that a lot of people are using the analog input on their high-end genelecs, even units like 8351 etc. They connect em to a high end streamer/dac and are happy with that. I guess this is because they arent studio users and more used to feeding their active speakers with analog (like me).
 

The question is then: Are they hindering the potential of the speaker by not going digital or is the audible difference so small that it doesnt make that much of a difference? Even with the extra AD conversion. 

 

Atleast then you bypass the problem of potetially lowering the quality if the digital signal by attenuating it?


Damn it, I would like to AB-test digital vs analog inputs into a pair of 8330 and hear if I could pick out a difference. :S

 

lukester, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Jedi Master Viestejä: 296 Liittymispäivä: 22.4.2010 Viimeisimmät viestit

I have done everything you described in your last post ;-) Yes with 8351s.
​​​​​​​Used them with a forsell dac worth 4k € and it sounded a bit better, more colorful with the dac.
But absolutely not worth it for me, want more: by big main monitors.

Going digital vs analog lowers the noise floor of the speakers significantly.

You do want the GLM volume control, the wired knob is hands down the best volume controller you'll ever use.
​​​​​​​Perfect quality at any level, no hisses, no crackle for years and years of service.​​​​
​​​​​​​Every analog control has a dirty potentiometer somewhere, will die in time, sound bad before, d​​​​​​​​​​​igital GLM Volume will not .

renabord, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Youngling Viestejä: 6 Liittymispäivä: 15.11.2020 Viimeisimmät viestit

Thanks for your input lukester! 

I agree, from a pure audio stand point and if I was at my computer then I would absolutely go with the GLM box.

But in the living room it's a nogo ^^. 

My dream senario (listen up Genelec!) :

Genelec takes one step further into the home hi-fi market and bring their smart monitors(in addition to the simpler g-series).

They start by making a more stylish "home version" of their GLM hub. Put it in a nice minimalist aluminium box that you'd want to have on display (designed by Harri K of course :) ), add all the necessary digital inputs usb/coax/opt etc, hell why throw in an AD converter and some analog inputs as well. Add a physical volume knob and remote, that (of course) through GLM wizardry controls the volume IN the speaker. Bonus: they bring a version of the GLM software to an app so that you can do the room cali from your phone/tablet.

Wouldn't that be a clean minimalist setup, fit for a living room? :)

 

Since I wont be using GLM, nor a computer, and I want to have a clean music streaming setup. For now I think I'll just give up and go with a streamer/dac and analogue xlr out. Enjoy the benefits of GLM room correction and just forget about the additional AD/DA conversion. 

OR maybe (if the audible difference would be great enough) I'd go digital with the RME ADI-2 Pro FS R as janne-koo mentioned, it actually tics most of my boxes, (except for maybe the looks, which are a bit techy ;).

janne-koo, muokattu 1 Vuosi sitten.

RE: Home hifi use, 8340 vs G-Four, GLM/SAM vs External DAC

Padawan Viestejä: 73 Liittymispäivä: 26.10.2015 Viimeisimmät viestit

Oh really... There are no controls at all on the GLM hub, just one status LED in the back; There's no reason whatsoever to keep it within reach or visible. It's a tiny matt black box, just hide it away. Cabling length is not an issue.

​​​​​​​Other than that, not a bad vision, but unfortunately there's probably just not enough of a market...