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[Novice] Upgrade from Sony HT7100DH Intro System


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#1 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 01 2014 - 11:43 AM

Hi all, and thanks in advance for any help you're able to lend this novice.

 

About 6-7 years ago, I purchased a Intro Sony HT7100DH Intro System, with the following components:

- STR-K7100 Receiver (900w Max; 140w per Channel; 10% THD)

- SS-CNP900 Center Channel Speaker

- SS-MSP7000 Front Channel Speakers

- SS-SRP7000 Rear Channel Speakers

- SA-WP780 Subwoofer (8" Speaker @ 200w)

 

I have no idea what the size of the speakers are for the front, center & rear speakers, only that they are relatively small bookshelfs

 

I have the surrounds ceiling mounted, and directed appropriately, but I've found that I can't seem to get much sound out of the rear speakers while watching movies / TV in 5.1

 

Do I not have enough power going to the rear speakers?  (140w not enough?)

 

Is there an EQ or other setting that I can better distribute the sound toward the rear? (I've looked through the manual, and found nothing)

 

Do I need larger speakers?

 

Much appreciated!


Edited by RajCaj, April 01 2014 - 01:05 PM.


#2 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 01 2014 - 01:07 PM

Few additional details...

  • Receiver hooked up to TV via HDMI (video) & Digital Optical (audio)
  • All media periphials are attached to my TV (Chromecast, Roku 3, Apple TV, PS3), and utilize the single HDMI & Digital Optical connection to the receiver
  • Most of the movie / tv show watching is through Netflix / Hulu via a set-top box


#3 of 12 ArmSC

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Posted April 01 2014 - 01:31 PM

Are you looking for more volume or do mean that the speakers aren't getting signals at all?

I had an older sony AVR that I recently replaced and I think you mean the second more than the first. However I just looked at the manual and you can adjust the surrounds level through the setup. This will make them louder when they do play. I'm assuming you did the auto calibration on initial setup. I know larger speakers will help but not too much if the issue is option two.

If you're not getting sound out of them often then check your sound field. I know on my Sony the AFD setting would go into a 2.1 often when watching TV. I ended up running in a PLII mode for almost everything but DVD input for simplicity sake. Once in PLII I could adjust the levels to suit my tastes.

What happens if you actually run all the devices into the receiver instead of using the tv as the receiver? I would bet your sound would be so much better if you tried it. I would give that a shot and see what happens to be honest.

#4 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 01 2014 - 01:47 PM

@ArmSC

 

Thanks for the quick reply!

 

I'm actually looking for more volume.  The rear speakers are getting a signal, but you have to stand up, walk over to one of them in the corner of the room and listen for it.  (very faint sound)

 

The front speakers, on the other hand, can be heard very easily, from any point in the room.

 

Thanks for the heads up on the surrounds setup.  I must have missed it in the manual.  I'll take another look at it and see if that helps.

 

As for the HDMI config, with my TV & periphials....I initially had my TV & PS3 hooked up to different HDMI inputs on the Sony AVR, but didn't really notice a quality difference & required me to switch the input on both the AVR & the TV when I wanted to use the PS3, or regular Cable on the TV.

 

And I'm a little limited on available HDMI inputs on my AVR, now that I've added a few new media devices to the mix.

 

I guess that would be one benefit of upgrading my AVR to something more current....as I've noticed a lot of them now have 5+ HDMI ports.

 

Thanks again for the advice!!!



#5 of 12 ArmSC

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Posted April 01 2014 - 02:05 PM

No problem glad to help.  Your system is very similar to the one that bought several years ago.  The only difference is that you have a better receiver and the speakers are slightly better quality.  Here is the link to the manual Sony in case you want to just look it up on the computer.  I had my surrounds up quite high so that I could hear them so I understand your issue.



#6 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 02 2014 - 04:32 AM

No problem glad to help.  Your system is very similar to the one that bought several years ago.  The only difference is that you have a better receiver and the speakers are slightly better quality.  Here is the link to the manual Sony in case you want to just look it up on the computer.  I had my surrounds up quite high so that I could hear them so I understand your issue.

 

I was able to adjust my Rear Left & Right speakers yesterday, and I have noticed more sound coming out of them...thx again!

 

I still think something may be off, as I had to max the sound levels going to the rear speakers to achieve better side / rear sound fx....but I'm pleased with it for now.

 

Also, I was looking at the Infinity Primus line, for a speaker upgrade.  They seem relatively inexpensive and was wondering if those would be an upgrade to my HTiB Sony speakers listed above.

 

Will the ohm rating have an effect, if they are different than my current speakers? (Sonys are rated at 6ohm, and the Infinity Primus are at 8ohm)



#7 of 12 Robert_J

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Posted April 02 2014 - 06:27 AM

I was able to adjust my Rear Left & Right speakers yesterday, and I have noticed more sound coming out of them...thx again!

Did you use the receiver's test tones or a calibration disc like Avia, Video Essentials, etc.?  Were these random adjustments or did you use an SPL meter?

 

Will the ohm rating have an effect, if they are different than my current speakers? (Sonys are rated at 6ohm, and the Infinity Primus are at 8ohm)

As long as the impedance is higher, you are not putting your receiver in danger.



#8 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 02 2014 - 09:10 AM

Did you use the receiver's test tones or a calibration disc like Avia, Video Essentials, etc.?  Were these random adjustments or did you use an SPL meter?

 

Unfortunately, I think my SPL meter may have been lost in my last move.  Instead, I just turned up the levels on the rear speakers (while a BR movie main menu music track was looping) until I felt like I was hearing more sound fx from those speakers.

 

After reading through the manual more yesterday, I understand that you can't use SPL meters from other receivers.....so I might have some trouble finding one, given the receiver is 6-7 years old....but I'll check ebay, etc. for it.

 

As long as the impedance is higher, you are not putting your receiver in danger.

 

This is where my knowledge around all things AV gets limited.  I looked up "impedance" after reading your comment, and as I understand....the ohm rating of the speakers could put undue stress on the receiver...given the resistance of the speakers & the power coming from the amplifier.

 

I dug through the user manual for my receiver and the only reference to "impedance" I could find is:

 

Surround Mode (reference)

(6 ohms 1kHz, THD 10%)

 

RMS Output

- Front: 140W / ch

- Center: 140W / ch

- Surround:  140W / ch

 

Measured under the following conditions:

120V AC, 60 Hz

 

Inputs

- Analog: Sensitivity - 800 mV / 50 kohms

- Digital:  Impedance:  75 ohms

 

Outputs

- Audio Out:  Voltage 800 mV / 10 kohms

- Subwoofer:  Voltage 2 V / 1 kohms

 

All that said, I'm not sure how I would be able to tell if my impedance is higher than what would be required by changing out all of the factory 6ohm speakers with aftermarket 8 ohm speakers.

 

Does that information provide any insite?

 

Greatly appreciated!



#9 of 12 ArmSC

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Posted April 02 2014 - 10:49 AM

If you're using all 6 ohm speakers going to 8ohm will reduce the load on the amp because the will be drawing less current. As a flip you will not be getting 140 watts but a lesser number. FYI your sub is separate because it's a powered unit. I have seen many HTIB upgrades to better 8 ohm speaker with very good results. I upgraded my speakers with my sony and was pleasantly surprised.

Glad to hear that you were able to adjust the settings to get a better level. Have you tried to change the modes at all? I'm wondering if you tried PLII what if any would be the difference? What about when you put it in the hall sound field? Does the volume still lack? Is this a new problem that you've come across?

#10 of 12 Robert_J

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Posted April 02 2014 - 10:57 AM

Download an SPL app for your smart phone.  I use a $15 mic and a free app with my 'droid phone for simple setups.  I have a Radio Shack SPL meter for more accurate setups that don't have any type of auto calibration.



#11 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 02 2014 - 11:52 AM

If you're using all 6 ohm speakers going to 8ohm will reduce the load on the amp because the will be drawing less current. As a flip you will not be getting 140 watts but a lesser number. FYI your sub is separate because it's a powered unit. I have seen many HTIB upgrades to better 8 ohm speaker with very good results. I upgraded my speakers with my sony and was pleasantly surprised.

Glad to hear that you were able to adjust the settings to get a better level. Have you tried to change the modes at all? I'm wondering if you tried PLII what if any would be the difference? What about when you put it in the hall sound field? Does the volume still lack? Is this a new problem that you've come across?

 

Yes, I played it in PLII...specifically when playing bluray discs in my PS3.  I popped in the TinTin movie, where the opening menu music features a plane buzzing around the screen....which sends some propeller sounds to the rear speakers.  I had this on loop while bumping up the rear speaker levels, to the point where I could hear a more pronounced audio transition from the front speakers, to the rear as the plane flew around.

 

I haven't messed around much with the Hall & other settings, as I never really liked the effects, but I could try those and see how they sound.  I've always noticed that my surround sound fx seemed weaker than what I've experienced at other friend's houses w/ home theatere systems....but have just recently decided to do something about it. ha-ha



#12 of 12 RajCaj

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Posted April 02 2014 - 11:55 AM

Download an SPL app for your smart phone.  I use a $15 mic and a free app with my 'droid phone for simple setups.  I have a Radio Shack SPL meter for more accurate setups that don't have any type of auto calibration.

 

So i can pick up a replacement SPL meter from Radio Shack, that will work with the automated sound balancing function from my AVR?

 

Otherwise, how would the phone app work?  Will it indicate to me what corrections are needed, where I will have to manually go in and adjust them? 

 

I'd like to have the AVR automate this process if I can, but the phone app would atleast work better than the "ear test".

 

Thanks again for all the help!






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