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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My best imprint tuning advice would be to follow the directions, oddly enough. Set the gains on your component amp to 1/2, exactly 12 o'clock on the gain dial. Somehow imprint is designed to test the amplifiers gain sensitivity or something. I found cutting the sub amp gain to the lowest possible setting, while still producing sound works best.

The X-over settings you input on the deck are honored by imprint tuning (easy on slope), so it is best to set them according to your speakers High-front, Mid-rear, Low-sub. Turn down the High & Mid a few ticks on the deck's x-over (I dropped down the Sub a couple ticks also, but not as much as the comps). Turn the Sub volume to 15/15 to send a full signal to the sub.

On the comp amp, turn off the x-over. Set the sub amp x-over to just into the mid-bass area, just a little bit less than 10hz over where you would run your sub (89hz worked for me).

To tune with the microphone, it is best to use a camera tripod. I also slide my seat forward an inch an tilt my seat back 3-4" inches, so I can get the microphone directly where my head rests, and to avoid any sound reflection off the seat/headrest

Hook up all of the USB cables to the imprint unit, and plug in the Microphone. Turn your cars ignition and launch the Alpine Imprint application (Mine runs in 32bit Vista Pro). Either select the Driver's seating position (Front, Left) or front & center (Front).

I find the further away from the dash the better, in the location where the body normally relaxes into the seat is the line at which you should take your first measurement, directly in the middle of the drivers seat (middle of your head), or the middle of the car for the front seating position.


All measurements should be taken as close together as possible, while still in their proper location. For example the Drivers seat: The mic locations for the Driver seat should be in a small area that is about the size of the head, so figure no more than 7-10" inches apart, or as far apart as you can fit the tripod on ether side of the driver's seat (I may have extended the tripod's legs over the edge of the seat). It is important to take a measurement in the exact center of the front passenger seats, the exact center and the exact center of the back seat, though as close the the center mic position as possible, also the exact center of the passenger seat (same as driver's seat center measurement).

The top of the microphone's point is the actual mic. This tip of the microphone should be exactly at ear level, firing directly upwards.

You can set up the mic in the driver's seat (or center), from the passenger's seat, using your ear height as a reference mark. Make sure the mic is dead center (left to right) and at your normal head height (where you're head would normally be)

Close all windows and doors (wait for the door slam sound to resonate out of your car) and measure the position with your computer.

The first measurement sets the T/A and maybe the Sound Domain? This is a good thing to note, as imprint honors the T/A settings in the head unit, so you should always save the T/A setting as a preset after imprint tuning. Imprint sounds pretty bad with the T/A skewed.

Next measure the middle of the rear seats only as close to the middle of the front seats as possible, while still remaining on the seat (I had a tripod leg on the floor).
Next do the same thing you did for the driver's seat in the front passenger's seat position

Now the final two positions are taken on the driver's seat, about 3" inches closer to the dash than the center driver's seat measurement, put the mic all the way over towards the door while still being on the seat (one leg on the floor pan between the seat and door panel). Next, move the mic as close to the center console as possible while still remaining on the Driver's Seat (one leg on the center console, between the front seats).

Hopefully your tuning workspace was quiet during the sine-waves, the periods of silence seem to be related to the computing of the measurements. There is no need for the 6th measurement as it could overwhelm the sound processor.

Now is time to view the results and select the two Target Curves to be sent to the CDA-9887.

1) Reference - Bright

2) Reference with Midrange Compensation - Ref w/ bump in mids, good for bass-less-mp3s or low volume bass.

3) Linear - SQ Flat, but more of a live, processing built, musical landscape. Fake, but interesting.

You can choose only TWO, so choose wisely..

Now turn your gains back to normal for a 4 volt preamp and adjust to optimal clarity.

Trim the sub X-over down to where it blends with the mid-bass (ends up being a little bit higher than normal because of the active x-over's filtering. Set the comps x-over to the lowest they Hz range they can accept as the imprint actively filters manages the x-over for each speaker

Tweaking the crossover levels can remove/decrease distortion created by the voltage differences between Imprint multiEQ and manual tuning. CDs seem to be mixed much hotter than 320kbps mp3s via the full speed iPod source. Creating an appropriate x-over for each source and selecting one before enabling multiEQ is my current remedy. I do not believe the CDA-9887 allows you to set an independent x-over for each source.

As far as my system, I am running a 2-Way passive (Front, Rear, Sub) on a 5-Channel system amp. And I must say I am not in love with this head unit (Running the CDA-9887 since 2008)..
 
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