Wisdom Sage P20i Owner`s manual

Owner’s Manual
Sage P20, P20m, P20i
Biamplified
Planar Magnetic Hybrid
Loudspeakers
Table of Contents
Introduction.....................................................................................................4
About this manual...................................................................................................4
Please register your system.....................................................................................4
Description......................................................................................................5
Planar magnetic panels...........................................................................................5
Free from compression....................................................................................5
More reliable...................................................................................................5
Easy on amplifiers............................................................................................6
Dynamic woofers...................................................................................................6
Big bass in small boxes?...................................................................................6
Extraordinary drivers........................................................................................6
Designed for biamplification...................................................................................7
SC-1 System Controller.....................................................................................7
Unpacking & Setting Up the P20 ....................................................................8
Remote Setup via Modem.......................................................................................8
Making the P20 Connections...........................................................................9
Unpacking & Installing the P20m..................................................................10
Mounting the P20m on the wall . .........................................................................10
Unpacking & Installing the P20i....................................................................12
Installing the P20i in the wall ...............................................................................12
Room Acoustics & Placement.........................................................................14
Start With the Room.............................................................................................14
Rigid Walls.....................................................................................................14
Speaker Placement................................................................................................15
Left & Right Speakers.....................................................................................15
Center Channel..............................................................................................15
Surround Speakers.........................................................................................16
Subwoofer Placement...........................................................................................16
Room Treatment................................................................................................... 17
Professional Acoustic Design................................................................................ 17
References............................................................................................................18
Optimizing the System...................................................................................19
Care & Maintenance......................................................................................20
North American Warranty.............................................................................21
Twenty Year Warranty...........................................................................................21
Obtaining Service..........................................................................................22
Specifications.................................................................................................23
P20 Dimensions.............................................................................................24
P20m Dimensions..........................................................................................25
P20i Dimensions............................................................................................26
Notes..............................................................................................................27
Introduction
Congratulations on purchasing your Wisdom Audio system. It incorporates many
design features designed to give you decades of pleasure and performance.
Many of these design choices are uncommon among loudspeaker manufacturers, and bear some explanation. See the following section entitled “Description”
for more information.
Our unique driver designs and our emphasis on achieving real-world performance account for the “system” approach taken. These are not speakers that
are simply connected to speaker wires and promptly forgotten. We recognize
that setting up a Wisdom Audio system is a bit more involved than connecting
a common set of loudspeakers, which is why we insist that our dealers perform
the installation and calibration of the systems. We know that the extra effort
(particularly as regards setting up the SC-1 System Controller) yields vastly improved results.
About this manual
This manual focuses on the loudspeakers themselves. In order to fully understand the system, we recommend you also review the manual for the SC-1
System Controller, without which these speakers will not perform correctly.
While we expect your local Wisdom Audio dealer to take care of the setup and
calibration of the system, we still recommend that you at least briefly review this
and the other manuals (SC-1, SA-series amplifiers) to understand the system’s full
capabilities.
Your Sage P20 loudspeakers are specifically designed to avoid the compromises
inherent in conventional speaker designs. The active crossover and room correction circuitry in the SC-1 is essential to the speakers’ proper operation. In addition, the SA-series amplifiers are specifically designed to meet the needs of the
unique bass system of your Sage speakers. It is truly a “system” design, and not
merely a collection of loudspeaker drivers in a box.
Please register your system
To register your warranty, please complete the form at the following address on
the internet:
http://www.wisdomaudio.com/registration/
Doing so will ensure that there will be no delays should you ever require warranty service. If accessing the internet is inconvenient, you can send a copy of
the sales receipt (showing your name, address and the products purchased) to
the address shown in the North American Warranty section of this manual.
Wisdom Audio does not and will not ever share its mailing list with other companies. Nor do we expect to contact you frequently, since you are buying a
product that should last a lifetime. However, we would like to be in a position to
contact you should a software update become available for the system controller (as an example).
Lastly, please keep your sales receipt in a safe and easily found place. If you do
not register your purchase with the company, it is your only proof of warranty.
4
Description
Your Sage loudspeakers take advantage of several critical
technologies to deliver a level of performance that has
never been available in a loudspeaker that intruded so
modestly on your living space. In fact, this level of performance has rarely been attained, regardless of the space
and budget at one’s disposal.
Since most of these technologies cannot readily be found
elsewhere, we will take the time to describe them in more
detail than would be necessary for more conventional
designs.
Planar magnetic panels
Our planar magnetic drivers use an advanced, thin film
membrane to move the air. This film can respond instantly
to the smallest detail in the signal. It has vastly less inertia
than traditional “cone & dome” drivers, so the signal is
never blurred in any way.
The motive force is provided by a “voice
coil” that is printed on the film, which is
suspended in a strong magnetic field provided by neodymium magnets behind and
in front of the film. The ratio of available
force to the moving mass is huge, which
means that the diaphragm does exactly
what it is told; nothing more, nothing less.
Free from compression
One of the most remarkable things about the sound of well-designed planar
magnetic speakers is their lack of thermal or dynamic compression. There are
several reasons for this:
• The lightweight diaphragm responds quickly to even the smallest
signals, yet is robust enough to handle enormous ones.
• The fact that heat does not build up in the voice coil (as it does
in conventional dynamic drivers) means that the load seen by the
amplifier does not change at high power levels.
• The pleating of the diaphragm allows greater excursions than are
otherwise available to small planar magnetic devices, further enhancing the driver’s ability to respond to dynamic program material.
When you become accustomed to the sound of your new Sage P20 speakers,
conventional speakers sound a bit bland and lifeless.
More reliable
The “voice coil” in the planar magnetic driver is spread out over a large, flat area
that is exposed to the open air. As such, when a huge transient comes along,
any heat that is generated is immediately dissipated. This compares quite favorably to other designs in which the voice coil is buried inside a massive piece of
metal, where the heat has effectively no place to go.
5
The excellent heat dissipation of these drivers makes them remarkably reliable.
Planar magnetic speakers can handle a great deal of power without undue stress
or audible strain. In fact, for a given size, they can handle many times the power
of a traditional dynamic driver.
Easy on amplifiers
Because the conductor is essentially a long, thin wire, it presents a purely resistive load to the amplifier. This is comparable to the simple test loads that amplifier companies use when measuring their amplifiers to show how terrific they
are. As such, you can be assured that your amplifiers will sound and work their
best.
For more detailed information on the loudspeaker drivers in general, and planar
magnetic drivers in particular, please refer to the Planar Magnetic Technology
white paper that can be found on the Wisdom Audio web site, at
www.wisdomaudio.com.
Dynamic woofers
Authoritative, deep bass requires that you move a lot of air. We have chosen
to use dynamic woofers for the bass because they still provide the best performance at low frequencies as compared to any alternative technology.
In order to get comparable performance from a planar magnetic design, you
would need to have a huge speaker that would be impractical in most domestic
living spaces. It simply makes more sense to use the best transducer technology
in each area of the reproduced spectrum. One of Wisdom Audio’s strengths is
in seamlessly blending these technologies — particularly important given the
high standards set by our planar magnetic drivers.
Big bass in small boxes?
There is an old truism in loudspeaker design that goes something like this: “deep
bass, small enclosure, or high sensitivity — pick two out of the three.” No one
can cheat the laws of physics. If you want deep bass from a small box, you will
need to make up for the small size with equalization and extra power.
Fortunately, our system design comes to the rescue.
The system design includes both the SC-1 System Controller (which serves as an
active crossover, a system-specific equalizer, and a room correction system) and
the matching SA-series amplifiers. By dedicating high power amplifiers we can
give people what they want: great bass without huge, ugly boxes that are difficult to place.
Extraordinary drivers
Of course, the woofers themselves must be rather extraordinary in order to both
handle the power we deliver to them, and to “keep up” with the planar magnetic drivers right up to the crossover frequency.
Our woofers are different because they must be in order to do their job. Specifically, we need highly dynamic, uncompressed bass (to keep up with the planar
magnetic drivers) from an unusually small enclosure (so it will fit in the wall, or
on the wall, or in a tall, slim freestanding speaker). These two design goals require rather extraordinary attention to myriad details.
The magnetic structures employed in the Sage Series woofers are significantly
stronger than is commonly available — more than twice as powerful as typical
woofers, in fact. In addition, our voice coils are larger and capable of handling
6
more power than would be expected for a driver of similar size. Even the surrounds that attach the diaphragm to the woofer’s basket (the metal frame) have
to be unusually rugged. Everything about the woofers has been optimized for
their intended application, which involves reproducing powerful, dynamic bass
from an extremely small enclosure.
Designed for biamplification
People who have wanted to extract the highest performance from their systems
have known for a long time that driving each section of the speaker directly and
separately yields the finest results. Of course, this requires having a dedicated,
active crossover to divide the frequency range appropriately before the power
amplifiers, so that they can then drive the speakers directly. It also requires two
sets of speaker wires for each loudspeaker.
Biamplification makes use of two channels of amplification to drive different
portions of the audio spectrum. The most common instance of “bi-amping”
today is in home theater applications, wherein a dedicated subwoofer handles
the deepest bass, while the remaining audible range is handled by the various
front and surround speakers. But you can also biamplify a full range loudspeaker, driving the woofer separately from the drivers that handle the midrange and
treble frequencies. Your Sage P20 is such a speaker, designed to use separate
amplifiers for the woofer and the planar sections of each loudspeaker.
Since each channel of the amplifier is delivering current into its load only over
a limited range of frequencies, several forms of distortion are reduced as compared to each channel handling the full range of musical information. Moreover,
since each amplifier is “direct-connected” to the driver for which it is responsible, there are no passive component losses and the amplifier can control the
motion of its assigned transducer with far greater finesse and precision.
But perhaps most importantly, biamplification allows us to dedicate the amount
of high quality power required to deliver outsized bass from small enclosures. It
would not be practical or even possible to obtain bass performance on this level
without a dedicated amplifier driving the woofers solely and directly.
SC-1 System Controller
In order to realize these benefits, an active crossover must accurately divide the
signal into the low and high ranges. The Wisdom SC-1 System Controller serves
that purpose, while also providing both system-specific equalization (to compensate for the unusually small woofer enclosures) and sophisticated room correction to minimize distortions introduced by the room itself. The goal is simple:
to achieve consistently excellent results in the real world of the owner’s home.
After all, that’s all that really matters.
7
Unpacking & Setting Up the P20
The Wisdom Audio Sage P20 freestanding speaker is a substantial piece of
equipment. Please exercise caution when unpacking your P20 to ensure that
you do not strain yourself from its (perhaps unexpected) weight.
Caution!
Do not attempt to lift your P20 while bending or twisting from the
waist. Use your legs for lifting, not your back.
Always stand as straight as possible and keep the P20 close to your
body to reduce strain on your back.
The P20 is shipped in a “telescoping” box (two five-sided boxes, one of which
fits snugly inside the other). Gently roll the box over so that its bottom is facing
up. Then carefully cut the tape along the bottom of the box on all four sides.
Roll the box over again so the bottom is on the floor, and lift off the top. With
one person at each end, carefully lift the speaker out of the box and lay it on a
soft surface (carpet or similar).
We do not recommend removing the grille on your new loudspeakers. The
grille is an integral part of the design; moreover, the planar magnetic film should
never be touched, as it is tensioned precisely at the factory. The grille plays an
important protective role as well as an aesthetic one.
After unpacking your P20, keep all packing materials for future transport. In
the event that you need to ship your P20, only the original, purpose-designed
shipping carton is acceptable. Any other method of shipping this product runs
a significant risk of damage to the P20 —damage that would not be covered by
the warranty. (If you lose your packaging and need to ship your speakers, replacement packaging can be purchased from Wisdom Audio.)
8
Making the P20 Connections
As with any system, you should make changes to the connections only when
the power is turned off to avoid any chance of inadvertently causing a problem
(such as a short-circuit).
Two sets of speaker wires are required for each Sage P20 loudspeaker: one for
the woofer (low pass) section, and a separate one for the planar magnetic (high
pass) section that handles the midrange and treble.
We recommend using heavy-gauge speaker wire, particularly when the installation forces you to use longer wires than you might otherwise. A good rule of
thumb is to keep the “loop resistance” below 0.07 ohms.
The loop resistance can be easily measured with an inexpensive volt-ohm
meter. Simply twist the two conductors at one end of the cable together, and
then measure the DC resistance across the two conductors at the other end of
the speaker wire. Doing this measures the total resistance going down one side
and back the other, hence the term “loop resistance.” If this figure is at or below
0.07 ohms, you are in good shape.
For the purposes of this manual, we will assume that you have already connected the SC-1 System Controller as per the instructions found in its manual.
As such, you should have signal coming from your source component(s) to a
preamp/processor, and then on to the SC-1; following the SC-1, the signal is split
into low and high sections, with the low section going to one or more Wisdom
Audio SA-series amplifiers, and the high section going to another amplifier,
which will drive the planar magnetic panels.
We strongly recommend using spade, hook or ring lugs to terminate the speaker
wires whenever they are connected to the patented Cardas connectors, an example of which is shown below. Wisdom Audio uses these connectors on both
our power amplifiers and on our freestanding loudspeakers.
Connect the outputs of your Wisdom Audio SA-series amplifier to the appropriate woofer sections, taking care to get both the channel assignments and the
polarity correct. Connect the positive (+) terminals on the SA-series amplifier to
the positive (+) terminals for the woofer on the loudspeaker; likewise, connect
the negative (–) terminals on the amplifier and the speaker, respectively.
Next connect the outputs of your chosen amplifier for the midrange/treble to
the Sage P20 planar sections in a similar fashion, taking care with both channel
assignments and polarity.
9
Unpacking & Installing the P20m
The Wisdom Audio Sage P20m on-wall speaker is a substantial piece of equipment. Please exercise caution when unpacking your P20m to ensure that you do
not strain yourself from its (perhaps unexpected) weight.
Caution!
Do not attempt to lift your P20m by yourself. Unpacking these
speakers is easy for two people, but it is unwise for a single person to
attempt doing so.
Do not attempt to lift your P20m while bending or twisting from the
waist. Use your legs for lifting, not your back.
Always stand as straight as possible and keep the P20m close to your
body to reduce strain on your back.
The loudspeaker is packed in a “telescoping” box (two five-sided boxes, one of
which fits snugly inside the other). Gently roll the box over so that its bottom is
facing up. Then carefully cut the tape along the bottom of the box on all four
sides. Roll the box over again so the bottom is on the floor, and lift off the top.
With one person at each end, carefully lift the speaker out of the box and lay it
on a soft surface (carpet or similar).
Mounting the P20m on the wall
The mounting bracket that mounts to the wall is shipped attached to the back of
the loudspeaker. It is removed by pulling “down” on it relative to the end of the
speaker that will be “up” when installed on the wall. (Note that for horizontal
center channel speakers, this means the bracket is pulled across the narrow dimension of the speaker.)
Please note that this guide assumes the wall surface is flat. If not, shims must
be applied to the rear of the mounting bracket so that the mounting bracket is
uniformly secured to the wall and flat (not distorted). The mounting steps are as
follows:
1. Locate the area with the two sets of high- and low-pass speaker
cables coming out of the wall.
2. The inside face of the bracket assembly has arrows stamped into
it indicating which direction must be “up” when it is mounted on
the wall. Align the center screw hole in the mounting bracket next
to the speaker cables and attach somewhat loosely using a drywall screw (or similar), so you can adjust the bracket for plumb.
3. Using a bubble level to ensure that the mounting bracket is
plumb, mark screw holes for EZ-Toggle screws in end clips, using
the bracket itself as your template. You can use any opposing (diagonal) set of holes for mounting of the two EZ-Toggle screws in
each end clip.
4. Rotate the bracket out of the way and install two of the supplied
EZ-Toggle screws in each mounting bracket end clip as follows:
a. Using a #2 Phillips bit in your cordless drill, spin the E-Z Toggle
Anchor into the drywall until the head of the anchor is seated
flush and the arrows on the head of the anchor point up and
down. Repeat this process for each anchor location.
10
b. To “set” the clamp behind the drywall, place the mounting
screw into the anchor and push or tap firmly until approximately 1” (2.5 cm) of screw is protruding (do not rotate). Then
remove the screw. Repeat for each anchor location.
c. Rotate the mounting bracket back over the E-Z Toggles, insert
the screw and continue to turn until fastened tightly. The screw
stops when the toggle bar secures itself against the opposite
side of the drywall (inside the wall). Repeat for each anchor location.
5. Install screws suitable for the specific wall material (e.g., sheetrock, brick, concrete, etc.) in all of the remaining holes in the
mounting bracket to ensure secure attachment to wall and avoid
any resonance from mounting bracket. Snug down the center
screw at this time as well.
6.Using assistance, while holding the speaker away from the wall,
connect both high- and low-pass speaker cables to the rear
mounted connectors. Pay close attention to connect the correct
wires (high- and low-pass) to their respective speaker connectors
while attending to proper polarity.
7. Fix the speaker into the mounting bracket end clips and press
down until you hear the speaker lock into the mounting bracket
clips. When properly in place, it will snap into position and
remain held quite firmly.
8.Install the security set screw in the end cap, snugging down to the
mounting clip with the supplied Allen driver. This set screw prevents the speaker from coming loose by eliminating the vertical
movement required to free the speaker from the bracket.
If you need to remove the speaker from the bracket for any reason, first remove
the security screw using the supplied Allen wrench. A sharp upward rap with
the base of one hand or even a non-marring, dead blow hammer will help jar it
loose. (Make sure the speaker itself is being supported by an assistant so it does
not come free from the wall unexpectedly.)
(rear of P20m shown at right)
11
Unpacking & Installing the P20i
Your new Wisdom Audio Sage P20i in-wall speaker is a substantial piece of
equipment. Please exercise caution when unpacking your P20i to ensure that
you do not strain yourself from its (perhaps unexpected) weight.
Caution!
Do not attempt to lift your P20i by yourself. Unpacking these
speakers is easy for two people, but it is unwise for a single person to
attempt doing so.
Do not attempt to lift your P20i while bending or twisting from the
waist. Use your legs for lifting, not your back.
Always stand as straight as possible and keep the P20i close to your
body to reduce strain on your back.
The loudspeaker is in a “telescoping” box (two five-sided boxes, one of which
fits snugly inside the other). Gently roll the box over so that its bottom is facing
up. Then carefully cut the tape along the bottom of the box on all four sides.
Roll the box over again so the bottom is on the floor, and lift off the top. With
one person at each end, carefully lift the speaker components out of the box
and lay them on a soft surface (carpet or similar).
There are two major pieces involved in a single P20i loudspeaker:
• the Uni-Grip™ in-wall mounting system
• the speaker module itself
Installing the P20i in the wall
12
1. Determine the area for the speaker installation and locate the
cutout guide using push pins to secure it in place. Ensure that the
template is plumb using a bubble level or similar. Note: Make certain that there are no studs, plumbing or electrical conduit in the
intended area behind the wall before you begin marking and cutting!
2. Trace the outer perimeter of the cutout guide with a pencil or a
utility knife.
3. Remove the traced section of sheet rock using a keyhole saw, and
clear debris from the edge of the hole.
4. Push any insulation to the side.
5. Disassemble bezel/Uni-Grip™ and place the supplied Allen head
screws to the side. Place the bezel in the wall cutout and insert
the Uni-Grip clamping bar through the opening at an angle, working on one side first. Reinstall the Allen head screws with the
supplied 3/32” drill bit, securing both pieces to each other (sandwiching the wall between them), but do not tighten yet. Repeat on
the other side.
6.Using a level, adjust assembly in wall cutout to ensure that the
assembly is plumb. Tighten the Allen screws. Do not over torque
or strip these screws. The large clamping area of the Uni-Grip
system does not require unusually high torque on the screws to be
secure.
7. Paint the bezel and grill as necessary, being careful not to plug
up the holes in the grille. Note that the speaker modules are not
mounted in the bezel and grille assembly at this time. They can
be mounted later, after all the paint is dry.
8.Using assistance to hold the speaker modules away from the wall,
connect both high and low pass speaker cables to the two connectors at the end of the back box, paying attention to assign the
correct band-pass and polarity to their respective speaker connectors.
9. Insert the speaker/back box assembly into the Uni-Grip frame and
attach using the supplied Allen head screws and 3/32” drill bit.
Do not over torque or strip these screws.
13
Room Acoustics & Placement
Wisdom Audio believes in equalization. Assume for a moment that you had a
“perfect” loudspeaker: as soon as you place it in your room, its perfection is
gone. In fact, even good rooms often introduce deviations of 20 dB to the response of the system.
It seems strange to us to worry about tenths-of-a-decibel differences between
one component and another when there are 10-20 dB problems right there in
the room with you.
At the same time, room equalization is not a panacea. It does not solve all problems. In fact, and somewhat paradoxically, EQ works best when it has the least
to do. It is best used as the “finishing touch” on an otherwise good system. Unfortunately, most people do not understand that the most important component
in their system is their listening room.
This manual does not have the space for a full description of everything that
goes into creating excellent room acoustics; doing so would require a textbook
of several hundred pages. Instead, we will give you some ideas, and some references to pursue should you want to learn more.
Start With the Room
There are many myths floating around pertaining to what a “good room” should
be like. One of the most common is that it should have non-parallel walls. Without going into the details, we recommend staying with rectangular rooms whose
dimensions do not share common divisors.
Thus a room with dimensions of 8’ by 16’ by 20’ would be quite poor (since the
dimensions are all divisible by a length of 4’, and 16 is also multiple of 8). By
contrast, a room whose dimensions are 9’ by 16’ by 29’ would be much better,
since none of the dimensions are mathematically related to one another.
There are infinite variations on this idea. If you have the flexibility to choose (or
modify) your room dimensions to avoid such problems, do so. Either way, our
room correction will be a big help.
Rigid Walls
Another myth that should be dispelled is the notion that the walls (and ceiling
and floor) of the room should be extremely rigid in order to reproduce good
bass. Rigid, inflexible walls reflect energy extremely well; thus you will keep
more of the bass energy in the room. This much is true. However, those rigid
walls will only increase the amplitude of the standing waves that your room
naturally supports. In simple terms, you will have more bass, but it will also be
more irregular, with larger peaks and valleys in the response.
Walls that flex a bit (but do not rattle) are much better. Coincidentally, traditional American residential construction standards (sheet rock on wooden studs) are
not a bad place to start. You can do better still with professional help, but studs
and sheet rock are better than poured concrete. (If your listening room is in the
basement, a false wall can easily be built in front of the concrete. You probably
need something like this for insulation and aesthetics anyway.)
The ultimate in dedicated listening room construction involves the design and
construction of floating walls, ceiling and floor. This approach yields the added
14
benefit (when done properly) of providing outstanding acoustic isolation from
adjacent spaces as well as superb bass reproduction. This approach goes well
beyond the scope of an owner’s manual; if you are interested, you should contact a professional acoustician who has specialized in this sort of domestic room
design.
Speaker Placement
Within the room itself, placement of the speakers and the listener will have a
profound effect on the performance of the system, particularly below 300 Hz
or so. There is no “perfect” position that will solve all problems, but finding the
best compromise will make it easier to solve the remaining problems with the
SC-1.
Your Wisdom Audio dealer can help you with optimizing your speaker placement, which is never quite as simple as it seems it should be. The characteristics
you should listen for are several:
Left & Right Speakers
Goal #1: Stable, 3-dimensional stereo imaging
This usually requires reasonable symmetry within the room, and a bit of space
between the speakers and adjacent side walls (to minimize the adverse effects
of early first reflections). Mono (correlated) pink noise can help here, though it
does not replace listening to music. With pink noise playing in both speakers,
you should hear a tightly-defined little “ball” of pink noise floating in space exactly halfway between the speakers.
Goal #2: Smooth, consistent bass
Oft-cited rules of thumb for smoother bass reproduction include both “placing
the speakers at different distances from the side walls vs. the wall behind them,”
and “placing them at ‘odd fractions’ of the room’s dimensions” (e.g., fractions
in which the denominator is an odd number, like 1⁄ 3, 2⁄5, 2⁄ 7, etc.). But nothing
replaces your experience in your room, combined with your dealer’s experience in a variety of rooms. Playing pink noise through the woofer sections of
your Wisdom Audio speakers (with the microphone at the listening position, and
prior to doing any equalization) and watching the results on a Real Time Analyzer (RTA) will let you see the results of your labors.
Center Channel
Center channel height
Once you have a solid stereo image up front (when listening only to the Left and
the Right speakers), you need a center channel speaker for multichannel reproduction. It should be centered between the Left and Right, and centered on the
screen’s location, preferably at the same height as the Left and Right speakers.
This presents an obvious problem: you cannot place a speaker in front of your
television screen.
Ideally, a center channel speaker would be behind an acoustically transparent
front projection screen and would match the Left and Right speakers. Doing so
would ensure the best possible consistency of tonal balance, image height, and
dynamic capabilities for the critical center channel.
Another way to achieve similar results without relying on an acoustically transparent front projection screen is to use a total of four front speakers:
• two widely-spaced P20 speakers handle the Left and Right channels;
• two P20 speakers closely flanking the screen both play the (mono)
center channel signal.
15
This approach creates a stunningly convincing “phantom” center image that appears to emerge directly from the center of the picture, while allowing you to
use any display device you choose.
Failing an acoustically transparent screen or a phantom center channel approach, the important thing is to match the tonal and dynamic capabilities of the
Left and Right speakers while minimizing the change in image height as a sound
is panned across the front stage. Wisdom Audio has designed horizontallyoriented planar magnetic hybrid speakers that will match your P20 loudspeaker
superbly; place them as close to the edge of the screen as is practical.
Surround Speakers
Surround channel geometry
In a 5.x channel system, the surround should be placed either directly to the
sides of or slightly behind the listening area (90°–110° from the center channel,
as seen from above). In a 7.x system, the surround speakers should be closer to
90° from the center speaker, and the surround back speakers should be at approximately 135°–150° from the center speaker. This conforms to industry standards, and ensures that you hear what was intended from a spatial placement
point of view. (Too often, the surround speakers are all behind the listeners, creating a big “hole” in the soundfield between the front and the back.)
L
Sub 1
R
C
0°
22°
30°
Sub 2
90°
Ls
Rs
110°
135°
Lb
150°
Rb
a 7.2 channel system layout
One possible exception to these guidelines: if you have a THX®-certified processor and are using the THX Advanced Speaker Array™ circuitry, you should
follow the guidelines in your owner’s manual for the processor. Using this
technology, it can actually be more effective to have the rear speakers in a 7.x
system directly behind you and immediately adjacent to each other.
Subwoofer Placement
Subwoofers offer somewhat greater flexibility in placement, since the frequencies they reproduce are not readily localizable by the human ear. This is due to
the fact that the wavelengths they reproduce are more than ten feet (3 meters)
long, but our ears are located only about 6-7 inches (17 cm) apart. Thus these
extremely long waves do not contribute meaningfully to the imaging that the
main speakers create.
However, this fact does not mean that the placement of the subwoofers has no
effect on the sound quality in the room. Far from it. The subwoofers are the
16
most likely to suffer from the response irregularities introduced by the room
itself, operating as they do below approximately 80 Hz in most systems.
Recent research into the behavior of rooms as a function of speaker placement
has concluded that — if you have the freedom to do so — there are significant
advantages to placing several smaller subwoofers around the room, rather than
relying on a single large woofer. Moreover, the optimum placement is usually centered on each of the four walls. If you have the luxury of doing so, this
simple placement strategy can reduce the size of the room’s response irregularities from 20 decibels down to perhaps as little as 6-8 decibels—a tremendous
improvement.
Reducing the room’s inherent problems to this degree provides a huge advantage. It allows the SC-1 System Controller to put its considerable abilities to work
on perfecting your system’s response, rather than on trying to perform major
corrective surgery.
Room Treatment
Rectangular rooms have six reflecting surfaces (four walls, ceiling and floor)
that reflect sound to the listener, after various delays introduced by the indirect
routes the sound take on their way to the listener. These first reflections are particularly damaging to sound quality. Looking at the simplest case of stereo reproduction, you have a minimum of twelve first reflection points in your room that
deserve some attention.
Unfortunately, it is often difficult to do much about the ceiling and floor reflections, even though they are arguably the most destructive. (The minimization of
these reflections is one of the strongest arguments for the tall, line source loudspeakers that Wisdom Audio builds.) This leaves you with eight “first reflections”
that you should consider minimizing somehow. These points are easily found by
having an assistant slide a small mirror along the four walls of the room, while
you sit at the listening position. Any place on the wall where you can see a reflection of any speaker is a first reflection point. Concentrate on the first reflections for the Left and Right speakers first.
If you can, arrange to apply either absorption or diffusion at these eight points
(don’t forget the wall behind you). Absorption can be as simple as heavy, insulated drapes; diffusion can be provided by a well-stocked bookcase with books
of varied sizes. Alternatively, you can buy purpose-designed room treatments
(some sources listed under References, below).
The important things to remember are these: a good room should have a balance of absorption and diffusion; and if you are going to treat only a few areas
of the room, the first reflection points are the most important ones to treat.
Professional Acoustic Design
Does this all sound too complicated? For good reason. It is complicated.
The difference between the average listening room and one that is professionally
designed and implemented is huge. A great listening room will disappear to an
astonishing degree, letting the experiences captured in your recordings speak to
you directly. A well-designed room is also quieter and more comfortable. It can
easily become a favorite retreat for peace and rejuvenation.
If you decide to investigate the possibility of improving your room with the help
of a professional, it is important to find someone who focuses on residential
spaces. Most acousticians are trained to deal with large spaces — airports, au17
ditoriums, lobbies in commercial buildings, etc. The problems seen in “small”
rooms (residential spaces) are quite different, and outside the experience of most
acousticians. Find someone who specializes in and has a great deal of experience designing home studios, home theaters, and the like. Your Wisdom Audio
dealer may be such a person; failing that, he/she can help you find such a professional.
References
Books on Acoustics:
The Master Handbook of Acoustics, F. Alton Everest, TAB Books
Sound Reproduction: The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and
Rooms by Dr. Floyd Toole, Focal Press
Suppliers of Acoustic Treatments:
Acoustic Innovations, http://www.acousticinnovations.com/
Acoustic Sciences Corporation, http://www.acousticsciences.com/
Echo Busters, http://www.echobusters.com
MSR Acoustics, http://www.msr-inc.com/home_theater/hometheater.html
RPG Diffusor Systems, http://www.rpginc.com/
18
Optimizing the System
A Wisdom Audio loudspeaker system is just that: a system, designed to provide
the highest calibre of performance, in the widest variety of possible settings. As
such, simply connecting all the wires does not mean the system is optimized.
The SC-1 System Controller manual has the pertinent details on precisely how
to use it to optimize the performance of the system. For the purposes of this
manual, a quick overview of the process is sufficient.
1.
Tell the SC-1 which speakers are in the system
The software application that configures the SC-1 for your specific system
has a series of menus that allow your installer to designate which model of
Sage loudspeaker is used in each channel of the system. This allows you to
mix and match freely, based on the best speaker for a given location.
2.
Measure the room
Your installer will use a calibrated reference microphone to accurately
measure the performance of each speaker at multiple locations in the listening area. This process ensures that the entire listening area is optimized,
rather than optimizing only one location at the expense of others.
3.
Select an appropriate target
Large and small rooms have intrinsically different traits. The room correction software allows for these characteristics to be taken into account for
superior results.
4.
Calculate the necessary room correction
The software then uses the power of the PC to calculate the correction
filters your room requires, and downloads them into the SC-1 for you to
audition.
5.
Listen and save the result
You can listen to each set of correction filters prior to deciding whether
it meets your expectations. Once you are satisfied, you can permanently
save the results to the SC-1 (eliminating the need for the PC).
This process can be repeated if necessary, and a total of up to three independent setup memories can be saved for different needs. For example, you might
want different setup memories for different conditions such as drapes open vs.
closed, or perhaps different target curves for different content (music, movies,
gaming). Each of these setup memories can be saved to the SC-1 and then selected as needed, with from the SC-1’s front panel, or via RS-232 and a control
system your installer would create for you.
19
Care & Maintenance
To remove dust from the cabinet of your P20, use a feather duster or a lint-free
soft cloth. To remove stubborn dirt and fingerprints, we recommend isopropyl
alcohol and a soft cloth. Lightly dampen the cloth with alcohol first and then
clean the surface of the P20 with the cloth. Do not use excessive amounts of
alcohol—there is no need for the cloth to be wet; merely damp is better.
In the case of stubborn or grimy substances that do not come off the textured
surfaces easily, use a clean, plain, pink eraser (such as you might give your child
for school work) to remove the dirt. Then finish with a soft cloth lightly dampened with alcohol as outlined above.
Never attempt to clean the drivers themselves.
20
Caution!
Do not touch the surface of the planar magnetic drivers, under any
circumstances. The thin film has been carefully pre-tensioned at the
factory; any subsequent contact can only damage it.
North American Warranty
Normal Twenty Year Warranty
Harsh Condition Use
When purchased from and installed by an authorized Wisdom Audio dealer,
Wisdom Audio® loudspeakers are warranted to be free from defects in material
and workmanship under normal use for a period of twenty years from the original date of purchase.
The Sage Series loudspeakers are designed for installation and operation in
environmentally controlled conditions, such as are found in normal residential
environments. When used in harsh conditions such as outdoors or in marine applications, the warranty is three years from the original date of purchase.
During the warranty period, any Wisdom Audio loudspeaker exhibiting defects
in materials and/or workmanship will be repaired or replaced, at our option,
without charge for either parts or labor, at our factory. The warranty will not
apply to any Wisdom Audio loudspeaker that has been misused, abused, altered, or installed and calibrated by anyone other than an authorized Wisdom
Audio dealer.
Any Wisdom Audio loudspeaker not performing satisfactorily may be returned
to the factory for evaluation. Return authorization must first be obtained by
either calling or writing the factory prior to shipping the component. The factory will pay for return shipping charges only in the event that the loudspeaker is
found to be defective as mentioned above. There are other stipulations that may
apply to shipping charges.
There is no other express warranty on this loudspeaker. Neither this warranty
nor any other warranty, express or implied, including any implied warranties of
merchantability or fitness, shall extend beyond the warranty period. No responsibility is assumed for any incidental or consequential damages. Some states do
not allow limitations on how long an implied warranty lasts and other states do
not allow the exclusion or limitation of incidental or consequential damages, so
the above limitation or exclusion may not apply to you.
This warranty gives you specific legal rights, and you may also have other rights
which vary from state to state. This warranty is applicable in North America
only. Outside of North America, please contact your local, authorized Wisdom
Audio distributor for warranty and service information.
To register your warranty, please complete the form at the following address on
the internet at http://www.wisdomaudio.com/registration/. Doing so will ensure
that there will be no delays should you ever require warranty service.
If accessing the internet is inconvenient, you can send a copy of the sales receipt (showing your name, address and the products purchased) to:
Wisdom Audio
1572 College Parkway, Suite 164,
Carson City, NV 89706
For more information:
www.wisdomaudio.com or information@wisdomaudio.com
Ph: 775.887.8850 or Fax: 775.887.8820
21
Obtaining Service
We take great pride in our dealers. Experience, dedication, and integrity make
these professionals ideally suited to assist with our customers’ service needs.
If your Wisdom Audio loudspeaker must be serviced, please contact your
dealer. Your dealer will then decide whether the problem can be remedied locally, or whether to contact Wisdom Audio for further service information or
parts, or to obtain a Return Authorization. The Wisdom Audio Service Department works closely with your dealer to solve your service needs expediently.
Important!
Return authorization must be obtained from Wisdom Audio’s Service
Department BEFORE a unit is shipped for service.
It is extremely important that information about a problem be explicit and complete. A specific, comprehensive description of the problem helps your dealer
and the Wisdom Audio Service Department locate and repair the difficulty as
quickly as possible.
A copy of the original bill of sale will serve to verify warranty status. Please include it with the unit when it is brought in for warranty service.
Warning!
All returned units must be packaged in their original packaging,
and the proper return authorization numbers must be marked on
the outer carton for identification. Shipping the unit in improper
packaging may void the warranty, as Wisdom Audio cannot be
responsible for the resulting shipping damage.
Your dealer can order a new set of shipping materials for you if you need to
ship your loudspeaker and no longer have the original materials. There will be a
charge for this service. We strongly recommend saving all packing materials in
case you need to ship your unit some day.
If the packaging to protect the unit is, in our opinion or that of our dealer, inadequate to protect the unit, we reserve the right to repackage it for return shipment
at the owner’s expense. Neither Wisdom Audio nor your dealer can be responsible for shipping damage due to improper (that is, non-original) packaging.
22
Specifications
All specifications are subject to change at any time, in order to improve the
product.
■
■
■
■
■
■
■
■
■
Frequency response:
40Hz – 20 kHz ± 2dB relative to the target curve
Impedance, planar section:
3 ohms
Impedance, woofer section:
8 ohms nominal, 5 ohms minimum
Sensitivity, planar section:
90 dB/1w/1m
Power handling, peak:
>1000w
Dimensions
see appropriate Dimensions drawings on next several pages
Shipping weight, each P20 tower:
24 lbs. (11 kg)
Shipping weight, each P20m:
23 lbs. (10.5 kg)
Shipping weight, each P20i:
21 lbs. (9.5 kg)
For more information, see your Wisdom Audio dealer, or contact:
Wisdom Audio
1572 College Parkway, Suite 164
Carson City, NV 89706
www.wisdomaudio.com
information@wisdomaudio.com
Ph: 775.887.8850
Fax: 775.887.8820
23
P20 Dimensions
24
P20m Dimensions
25
P20i Dimensions
26
Notes
27
WISDOM and the stylized W are registered trademarks of Wisdom Audio.
Wisdom Audio
1572 College Parkway, Suite 164
Carson City, Nevada 89706 USA
Telephone: 775.887.8850
Fax: 775.887.8820
P20OM-1.01
28
© 10/2008 Wisdom Audio, Inc. All rights reserved.
Printed in U.S.A.