I don’t understand the volume in my Yamaha RXV-530

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by LowellG, Mar 27, 2002.

  1. LowellG

    LowellG Stunt Coordinator

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    I just purchased the new RXV-530, it’s my first receiver. I have seen allot of talk about dB level. Mine seems to be reversed or maybe that is normal. My receiver goes from mute to –99dB being the lowest to –0dB being the loudest. Actually I have not went above –0db now that I think about it. I listen to music at –60dB and -30dB is plenty loud for movies. Anyway, is that normal or the way the volume is supposed to work?

    Thanks, Lowell
     
  2. Jim A. Banville

    Jim A. Banville Supporting Actor

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    Short answer... yes. Long answer... I think the idea is that "0db" on the volume control should correlate to what is either "reference" level (a 75db or 85db sound pressure level from dialogue on your average DVD) in your room, although such an attempt is pretty inaccurate since the size of your room and the sensitivity of your speakers will play a LARGE part in the final measurement. It may also mean that at "0db" on your receiver's volume control, you may be at what is known as "unity gain", which means that your receiver is outputing the signal as it is being received from the source without any attenuation or
    amplification PRIOIR to the amplifier stage (imagine a CD player's fixed audio outputs being plugged directly into an amplifier with no pre-amp, or volume control between them)
    For example, under both possibilites, if the volume control on your receiver is a "-50db", then you are either listening at something around 50db less than "reference", or the pre-amp in the receiver is attentuating the incoming signal by 50db pior to the signal going to the amplification stage. Either way, any volume under "0db" would have a "-" in front of it. Understand?
     
  3. DougO

    DougO Stunt Coordinator

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    Volume level indicators (e.g., -30) are relative to the unit coupled with the output capability of the source unit mated with the speaker sensitivity rating. Some units use 0dB as reference sound level after their system is calibrated to reference level, but Yamaha does not readjust their volume level indicator (to indicate 0dB as "reference") after such a calibration on many, if not all, of their receivers. Denon receivers do do this (at least the 3802 did).

    OdB level on the Yamaha would probably result in your severely damaging your hearing (I'm guessing it would be much much higher than "reference" level). I just use the number setting as a relative indicator for scenarios: -54 won't be so loud as to wake up the people sleeping upstairs, -40 is perfect level for most TV sources, I am jamming bigtime at -25, etc.

    Even if we had identical Yamaha receivers, very likely that my -40 setting would be different than your -40 setting due to differences in rooms and equipment.
     
  4. Keith Mickunas

    Keith Mickunas Cinematographer

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    I've got an RX-V1 and these guys are pretty much dead on. Jim's comment about unity gain is how I believe it to work. Essentially you are listening at 30 or 60 decibels below the maximum your receiver can output. Reference will likely be somewhere down where you're listening now. Possibly around -35dB, but that's just a guess. It really will depend on your speakers and room.
     
  5. jeff lam

    jeff lam Screenwriter

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    My reference with my Yamaha RXV620 and bookshelf monitors is -16. I watch at usually -35, I would like to watch at -25 or -30 but I can't crank it up(apt). I believe the unity gain theory is correct, but who knows. I actually like the digital volume like the yamaha.
     
  6. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    Lowell: So how do you like your new Yammi?
     
  7. David John

    David John Stunt Coordinator

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    it's like a fader on an audio board, except you can't go above 0db.

    At 0 db, you are sending the max signal to the amp stage, or to the pre-amp outs.

    -99db = volume at 0

    0db = volume at 10

    just a different way of setting the scale.

    signal attenuation, not volume, and it should be exponential not linear.
     
  8. LowellG

    LowellG Stunt Coordinator

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    John, I like my new 530 fine. It's my first receiver, but I listened to Marantz, Onkyo, Denon all in the same price class. Truthfully I really couldn't tell a whole lot of sound difference so it came down to the best deal with the speakers I liked.

    The most current decoding chip was one of my concerns with buying a new receiver. I had read allot about the audio dropouts in movies like Pearl Harbor, JP3 and Atlantis. I watched Atlantis last week with no problems. It seemed fairly simple to set up, or at least I think so, and I never set up a receiver before. I did know what to look for from all the research I have done, so that may have helped with setup.

    Volume is far more than I need. I have it paired with Def Tech SM350's as mains running in phantom mode, a little 8" sub, and surrounds from my old Aiwa that I will upgrade this weekend. The imaging in phantom is great, I don't know for sure whether or not I will get a Center Channel. I also don't know whether to give credit to the receiver, speakers or Dolby for that for the imaging. The auto detect for DTS and Dolby 6.1 matrix worked perfect with both Shrek and Atlantis (Auto also worked well with everthing else). The remote is simple, but I reprogrammed it for my TV and VCR no problem. DPL2 work fine with movies on TV. It seem to run fairly cool as well, or at least for my expectations in a closed cabinet.

    Thinks I don't like, are no A/B speaker out. (However, they gave me a form to fill out and they will send me a free external one). No A/V inputs on the front, but pleanty on the back for my needs. I am 50/50 on all the DSP modes.

    I don't know what else to say about it. Is there anything particular you wanted to know?

    Lowell
     
  9. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    That's some good info, thanks! One of my main concerns was if 75x5 watts would be enough to fill my living room which is 15'x20' with a 12' vaulted ceiling. OK here's my questions: What size room is your system in? When you crank it up does it sound like you've got plenty of "headroom" or is it straining to drive your speakers? I've heard that Yamaha is known for conservatively rating their amps. Also, how do like DPL II?
     
  10. LowellG

    LowellG Stunt Coordinator

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    John, It's hard to describe my room, I have a very open floor plan. My setup is in my family room 14'x17'x8’. However, the whole right side of the room opens up into the breakfast eating area and behind that is the kitchen. An area equally as large as the family room. Directly behind the sound system it opens up to a 4' wide staircase that goes upstairs, and the staircase is in between the Dining/living room and the family room. So again another open space.

    _ _ _ _ _ _

    Stair Case

    _______________ _ _ _ _ _ _ ________________________

    | LM TV RM

    |

    |

    |

    | | Breakfast Kitchen

    | Table

    |

    |_____________COUCH_______ _ _ _ _ _ _____________________

    Sliding Glass

    Door

    Hope the diagram helps. Anyway, loud is subjective, but at the –30dB, it is way to loud. I can’t imagine what –0dB would be like. I have no need to push it that far.

    As for DPL 2. It basically depends on the TV broadcast and the DSP you select. Comedies had laughter coming out of the surrounds. Action movies had a little of everything. It does more than 5-channel stereo, it’s hard to describe, it has to be heard. Again DSP selection is critical. When if first tried it without selecting a DSP, I was very unimpressed. Once I started experimenting, I liked it.
     
  11. LowellG

    LowellG Stunt Coordinator

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    John, It's hard to describe my room, I have a very open floor plan. My setup is in my family room 14'x17'x8’. However, the whole right side of the room opens up into the breakfast eating area and behind that is the kitchen. An area equally as large as the family room. Directly behind the sound system it opens up to a 4' wide staircase that goes upstairs, and the staircase is in between the Dining/living room and the family room. So again another open space.

    _ _ _ _ _ _

    Stair Case

    ___________ _ _ _ _ _ _ ________________

    | LM TV RM

    |

    |

    |

    | | Breakfast Kitchen

    | Table

    |

    |_________COUCH_______ _ _ _ _ _ __________

    Sliding Glass

    Door

    Hope the diagram helps. Anyway, loud is subjective, but at the –30dB, it is way to loud. I can’t imagine what –0dB would be like. I have no need to push it that far.

    As for DPL 2. It basically depends on the TV broadcast and the DSP you select. Comedies had laughter coming out of the surrounds. Action movies had a little of everything. It does more than 5-channel stereo, it’s hard to describe, it has to be heard. Again DSP selection is critical. When if first tried it without selecting a DSP, I was very unimpressed. Once I started experimenting, I liked it.
     
  12. LowellG

    LowellG Stunt Coordinator

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    Sorry, the drawing just won't come out.
     
  13. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    Lowell, sounds like with the "open setup" of your living room our rooms are similar in dimension, with the exception of the ceiling. HiFi Buys offers a "30 day unconditional guarantee" return policy, so I think I'm going to pick up a V530 this weekend. I'll post my impressions as well. Thanks for the extra effort, I appreciate it! [​IMG]
     
  14. Lee Weiss

    Lee Weiss Stunt Coordinator

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    John,

    I just got my RX-V530 two weeks ago. It replaces an old low-end Onkyo Pro Logic receiver. I think the receiver is a great value.

    My room is slightly smaller. 12' x 18' with 8 foot ceilings. The room opens to my kitchen, and a hallway to other rooms. I also have half-walls.

    As for performance, I usually watch movies at around -33 when I want it fairly loud. -50 for normal watching and it is has plenty to go.

    My system is so much nicer with all the new DSP stuff. I do not need any front A/V connections. I am mixed on some of the DSP modes, but stick to only a couple that work for me. I cannot compare it to high-end stuff, but I am happy so why bother.
     
  15. LowellG

    LowellG Stunt Coordinator

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    Good luck on buying your receiver John. I'd like to hear your thoughts so make sure to post them here.
     
  16. John Pine

    John Pine Supporting Actor

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    Lowell: I picked it up on Sunday. I don't think I stated before that mine would be almost exclusively used for music(CD's)and concert DVD's. I very rarely sit down and watch a movie, but my wife will on occasion. If I had to guess I'd say about an 80/20 ratio between music and movies. The V530 is as close to "neutral" as I have heard in this price range. It's a BIG change for me, coming from a “colored” mid-level Kenwood. My (DPL I) Kenwood was rated at 65x3(frt)and 25x2(rear)so I didn't expect a huge difference with my front three speakers. WOW, was I wrong! The clarity and added depth is stunning! There's such a big difference that I have to wonder about all the Kenwood fanatics on this board. Sorry guys, I'm a Yammi convert now! I expected there would be a huge difference with my rear speakers and I was not disappointed. Actually my rears are only rated at 55 watts, but they sound so clean now. I think that's also due to DPL II. I like to listen at or near concert level and this unit appears to be up to challenge. Yamaha must rate their amps conservatively. I did notice I had to crank up the volume slightly higher when playing back in DPL II, as opposed to DTS or DD. I found I had set the volume up to -25db for DPL II but only -30db for DTS or DD. You and others have already mentioned these levels as favorites. I have to agree with an earlier post that I also find myself using only about 4 or 5 of the DSP modes so far. Halo and MX 2002 on "Game" mode are awesome! I'm going to have to start over with my current Halo character just to hear what I've been missing. I'm lucky, I will not miss the A/B switch that you mentioned. But, I did go ahead and send in my card. You never know when it may come in handy. I am glad I went with the V530 instead of the V430. The number of connections the V430 has is few, to say the least. But, the V430 will be a good value for some as it has the same great power as the V530 plus DD, DTS and DPL II! Hope you enjoyed my ranting and thanks again for the information! [​IMG]
     

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