Need help setting up Denon 3801

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by Bob_F, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. Bob_F

    Bob_F Stunt Coordinator

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    I bought a Denon 3801 as part of my first surround sound system and I have some questions.

    1) Currently, I run all my sources directly to my TV, a Sony KV-36XBR400, and I connect the TV's audio out to the Denon 3801 via RCA cables. Will that signal routing still allow the surround sound information to make it to the receiver?

    2) For a 5.1 surround system should I connect the rear surround speakers to the "Surround A" speaker connections? There are also "Surround B" and "Surround Back/Multi-Zone" options. It appears that the "Surround Back" connections are for a 6.1/7.1 rear channel speakers but the user manual is not very well written.

    3) I have an AVIA calibration DVD and a Radio Shack analog sound pressure meter for calibration. Will I need to use the receiver's built-in tone generator for this process? Or does AVIA provide that directly. (I've never calibrated a system before.)

    4) Any other tips on calibration or general advice on the 3801 in general?

    Thanks!

    Bob
     
  2. JasonMC

    JasonMC Stunt Coordinator

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    Bob,
    I've recently upgraded from a 3801.

    1) If you have the audio connected to the 3801 via RCA cables from your tv, you will not get Dolby digital. At most, you will get stereo/pro-logic. The 3801 has a DTS Neo:6 mode that will simulate surround sound. I highly recommend connecting your set top box/DVD player directly to the 3801 via an optical/digital coax cable (if your box has one)

    2) For 5.1, connect your surrounds to Surround A. The surround back connections are indeed for a 6.1/7.1 system.

    3) Avia provides you with all of the audio tones necessary to calibrate your system. No need to use the 3801's test tones.

    Enjoy your 3801. I've enjoyed mine.

    Jason
     
  3. Bob_F

    Bob_F Stunt Coordinator

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    Jason,

    Thanks for the super helpful reply.

    I'll have to check my DVD player to see if it has a optical/digital coaxial cable output. If not, it looks like it's time for a new DVD player. [​IMG]

    I was hoping to route the DVD audio output through the TV so that I wouldn't have to fire up the receiver for every DVD. Perhaps I could run the DVD player's RCA cables to the TV and run the DVD's optical/digital cable to the 3801?

    On the speaker hookups, I had incorrectly wired the rear surrounds to the "6.1/7.1" outputs. After re-reading the manual last night, I moved those to the "Surround A" outputs and all is well. I was thrown off by the layout of the speaker connections on the back of the receiver.

    I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed your 3801. This is a class of receiver that I probably would never have bought new because of the cost. But, for future purchases, I'll now be willing to pay much more. I'm very impressed with the sound and build quality of this receiver.

    Bob
     
  4. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    You CAN run the audio to the TV as well as the receiver, except that you will still hear the TV unless you turn it down or mute it when listening through the receiver.
     
  5. Bob_F

    Bob_F Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks John,

    That's good to know.

    Bob
     

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