Great 2-channel sound and how to get it...?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Smith, Oct 29, 2001.

  1. David Smith

    David Smith Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1998
    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    0
    OK, here goes…
    I would like to add a better pre-amp and DAC to my current receiver (Yamaha RX-V800) for 2-channel only, and I need some help on how to achive this. I am currently very happy with my system for home theater, but I would really like to add to my 2-channel listening experience. I do plan on getting some room treatments also, including some bass traps for the corners and some panels for the walls, if my wife allows!
    Now, I had Monitor 5 v.2 fronts, Mini-Monitor v.2 rears, an LCR-350 center, and a Sunfire MKII Sub. Like I said before, my HT experience is as good as I could hope for. I have just recently decided to try to make this system into an excellent double duty, 50/50 HT / Music system (I know some say this can’t be done!) and here is the start of my plan:
    I just traded my Monitor 5’s in (with Paradigms excellent 100% trade in policy) on my dream speakers, Studio 40’s. Now, this is one upgrade that I am likely to stick with for a long, long time, so that is one reason I went ahead and did this. It’s the rest of my system that I’m not as sure about what to do.
    Let me also say that I’m not a real bass freak when it comes to music (now home theater, that’s a different story!), so I run the 40’s full range and turn my subwoofer off for music. Although this is the case, I still do love good tight clean bass (who doesn’t?).
    OK, the 40’s alone added great improvement to my 2-channel system, so my plan has definitely started off on the right foot. They sound absolutely great. The only problem now is, my LCR-350 suddenly sucks! Anyway, the rest of my dilemma is where I get a bit confused and need some help.
    I just bought a Carver AV-505 amp (80X5) used online and I should receive it within a week or so. My plan is to split the main pre-outs on my receiver and bi-amp the studio 40’s with 4 channels of the Carver (I’ll just leave the 5th channel unused). I thought that this would be a good start to see what extra amplification can do for my 2-channel setup.
    At the same time, I wonder if the pre-amp and DAC in my Yamaha will be holding me back to the point where the amp won’t make as much difference.
    So, I was reading some on the net about 2-channel performance, and I found a few interesting ideas, but don’t know exactly how they are implemented.
    Can I add any 2-channel pre-amp to my existing 5.1 system and share my main speakers between the 2? I saw something about a theater bypass, etc. Is this what the pre-amp needs? Will my Yamaha receiver allow me to send the correct signal to a pre-amp to achive this? My Yammy has a processor direct button that bypasses bass and treble. Does this need to be on for it to work correctly?
    Is an $800-$1000 budget to add an external DAC and a 2-channel pre-amp even possible? Are there better alternatives? I have done a little research, and I saw a little Creek passive pre-amp for like $400 and a MSB Link III DAC for about the same I think over at audio advisor. Would this pair do what I want?
    I know this is a lot, but if someone could help me out a little, I would owe you big time!
    One more thing...as far as the hookup, I’ll take a stab at it, and if someone could correct me, that would be great also:
    OK, I would go with a digital out from my CD player into the external DAC...
    From the DAC into the pre-amp with a stereo pair of RCA cables...
    Errrrrrrrr....I think I’ve gone crosseyed.......
     
  2. Andrew Pratt

    Andrew Pratt Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 1998
    Messages:
    3,806
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'd also run your centre off the carver while you're at it...won't affect 2 channel since it won't be "on" but it should improve the sound in HT mode.
    Anyway for 2 channel the two biggest improvements I did in my system which in some ways is similar to yours were the addition on a decent external DAC (MSB Link DAC) and the addition of the silver catcables to connect the pre amp and power amp. right now I'm sure the limited factor in my system is the transport and the pre amp in the Denon 3300. If I were you I'd start with the external Dac's and don't skimp on the cables. From there depending on what source you are using I'd either upgrade the source transport or look at the pre amp. If you want to incorporate the pre amp into the HT you'll need one that allows you to bypass it and allow the Yammie to control the volume etc...
    ------------------
    http://www.mts.net/~glendap/
     
  3. David Smith

    David Smith Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1998
    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    0
    Andrew,
    Thanks for the help! As far as a transport, right now I use a 400 disc Sony megachanger. Will this be a weak link in my system even though it is only being used as a transport? I don't know if I could live without my megachanger and my Pronto remote with the supernudelist program. I change CD's so often!
    Anyway, thanks again for the help!
     
  4. Saurav

    Saurav Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2001
    Messages:
    2,174
    Likes Received:
    0
    Some random thoughts:
    I think you'd be better off buying used, your money will go much further. Try http://www.audiogon.com
     

Share This Page