Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

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2pauluzz2
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Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by 2pauluzz2 » Sun Dec 09, 2012 10:02 pm

I'm going to buy new monitor speakers in about a month and these require burning in. Let's leave the discussion about whether burning in speakers is useful/ludicrous for a bit.

Like many, I'm in a residential area where I cannot blast my speakers full throttle all the time. Now I've read about flipping the polarity/phase of one monitor, and then placing the monitors faceing each other. This should give the speakers plenty of energy moving through the cones, but the sound would be cancelled out for a large part.

Would the following setup work in the sense that it would output a signal that, if the monitors are placed facing eachother, will send enough energy through the cones while the speakers cancel out each others udio?

- an audio track with a utility device set to mono;
- a Left audio track with monitor set to in, panned hard left while picking up the audio of the track
- a Right audio track with monitor set to in, panned hard right while picking up the audio of the track and setting a utility device to Phz-R.

I'm wondering if this logic makes sense; it would be the same as changing the polarity in an XLR plug, correct?
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crumhorn
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by crumhorn » Mon Dec 10, 2012 12:37 pm

You only need one utility device with width set to zero and phase invert button active on one channel.

How well it works out in practice can only be discovered by trying, but I think it would sound odd and bass light. definitely not a setup for mixing down but probably OK for some purposes.

A good pair of headphones would probably be a better solution.
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trevox
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by trevox » Mon Dec 10, 2012 4:09 pm

crumhorn wrote:You only need one utility device with width set to zero and phase invert button active on one channel.

How well it works out in practice can only be discovered by trying, but I think it would sound odd and bass light. definitely not a setup for mixing down but probably OK for some purposes.
I think the OP was only asking about turning up loud to bed the speakers in rather than using this scenario for mixing all the time :) But I agree with what you are saying - you won't know until you try and the setup in Live should be exactly as you have suggested.

crumhorn
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by crumhorn » Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:31 pm

trevox wrote:
crumhorn wrote:You only need one utility device with width set to zero and phase invert button active on one channel.

How well it works out in practice can only be discovered by trying, but I think it would sound odd and bass light. definitely not a setup for mixing down but probably OK for some purposes.
I think the OP was only asking about turning up loud to bed the speakers in rather than using this scenario for mixing all the time :) But I agree with what you are saying - you won't know until you try and the setup in Live should be exactly as you have suggested.
I Should learn to read more carefully!

In which case it seems like a pretty good idea - even better if you could seal the connection via some kind of tunnel made from cardboard or carpet or something to prevent too much treble from leaking. Also probably a good idea to place them on a cushion to prevent cabinet wall vibrations from coupling to the floor.
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Tone Deft
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by Tone Deft » Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:53 pm

someone loaded the OP with some completely half baked advice. whoever told you that, don't listen to them.

breaking in speakers, more bullshit.
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vitalispopoff
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by vitalispopoff » Mon Dec 10, 2012 7:05 pm

If I get the point You want the speakers to excite each other with their sound waves. Well You should probably set pure sinewave and set it according to the monitors distance, so when the wave from one speaker reaches the other it is exactly in the phase with it.
I think that if You set the frequency-distance ratio right You would even leave both speakers in phase.
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2pauluzz2
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by 2pauluzz2 » Mon Dec 10, 2012 9:14 pm

Thanks for the input guys.

There's actually quite a lot of discussion on the topic and I'm still in the middle about it. I'm well aware of the fact that I might be an arse for spending this much though on the topic.

Regardless of what's right or wrong, I reached the conclusion this morning that it's simply not worth figuring out any other break-in situation than simply playing them in my space.
100 hours would be a lenghty break-in period. I work 40 hours per week so that gives me at least 3 hours per working day to play them. On the weekend I'll at least be able to play 12 hours (but probably a lot more). That's 27 hours of playing time per week, most likely more.

I'll be over my 100 hours after one month; not worth fussing about it.
Fyi - I tested them yesterday facing each other the way I described in my op. Some stuff got cancelled out, mainly the lows, but there was still quite some sound in the space.
"Paul" is fine too.

Tarekith
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Re: Reverse polarity/phase question: has anyone tried this?

Post by Tarekith » Tue Dec 11, 2012 1:00 am

Yeah, the flipping the polarity thing isn't going to work so well once you get out of the digital realm. You might get some phase cancellation like you say, but like you heard there's still going to be plenty of music that gets heard with that method.

Personally, I believe that all speakers do slightly change once they've been played for awhile. It's not a huge difference, but I've found it's something I can hear the difference in a few weeks after getting new monitors or speakers.

I don't think you need to do an elaborate break in scedule though. Just use them day to day like you normally would, and maybe try and hold off on making any major mixdown decisions those first few weeks. Typically I spend that time listening to older songs that I know well just trying to learn the new monitors anyway, so that alone will help break them in a little bit.
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