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The magic DEQ2496
on 14 March 2012
After some research I purchased a Behringer DEQ2496 and calibration microphone from Amazon as a "last resort" attempt to solve a problem with my (expensive) hi-fi - a noticeable and distracting bass boom. Previously I had spent many months repositioning my speakers (PMC OB1i's), experimenting with different listening positions, and trying foam bass traps and lots of extra soft furnishings as it was obvious that the boom was a problem with my room acoustics, not the equipment.
The Behringer unit was connected between the digital output of my Cyrus CD player and DAC as it seemed to me that any additional analogue conversion in the signal path would be detrimental. As the CD player has 2 digital outputs I was able to easily compare results by switching inputs on the DAC.
To cut a very long and tedious story short what the DEQ2496 did for me was to identify and allow me to correct a very significant 80hz spike. Brilliant. The musical magic of my Cyrus/PMC system is now fully restored.
Advice for users who are trying to solve a similar problem to mine;
Take time and trouble to get to grips with how to operate this unit (it's not easy), experiment with different EQ/PEQ settings, and use the memory functions to store results so you can compare.
Whilst it's tempting to play around with equalisation over the full frequency range, the overall effect can destroy the sonic "signature" of the hi-fi system - so only use the DEQ2496 to target very specific bands.
Let your ears be the judge of how much correction to apply - in my experience much less than the RTA/Auto EQ functions would indicate.
If you have to boost any frequencies make sure you compensate by reducing the EQ gain setting in the Utility menu to avoid any clipping.
With patience, perseverance and a lot of critical listening I've solved my room acoustics problem and whilst the DEQ2496 might not be accepted by some as a true "audiophile" solution, I can wholeheartedly recommend it.