Receiver crosses over at 100 HZ, will tower speakers be useless?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by elMalloc, Jan 22, 2002.

  1. elMalloc

    elMalloc Supporting Actor

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    I just realized something, I'm shopping for tower speakers for my HK AVR 120 receiver but it crosses over at 100 HZ. Since everyone says to not set your speakers to large (even though I can send the LFE signal to both my speakers and subwoofer) because it could damage them, I'd have to set the towers to small. In this case they would receive only 100HZ and higher, does it defeat the purpose of a tower (or the bass towers should bring over bookshelves, which I guess doesn't matter if I have a sub though).

    Would I be better off with bookshelves or a tower, with a receiver that is crossing over at 100 HZ (and I can't do anything about that cross over can I?).

    Thanks,

    ELmO
     
  2. Norm Strong

    Norm Strong Stunt Coordinator

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    You can run the full range signal into your towers. They will roll off anyhow simply because they reach the bottom of their range.

    Now connect your subwoofer in the usual manner, but set the upper rolloff frequency of the subw to blend with the natural rolloff of the towers. (Yes, a little bit of experimentation is called for.)

    This scheme works a bit more smoothly if the towers are sealed instead of reflex loaded, but it works in either case.
     
  3. David X

    David X Stunt Coordinator

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    There's lots of ways to make this work.

    You can also use the crossover in the subwoofer, instead of the one in the receiver. You didn't mention what type of sub you have or are considering, but usually they all have a variable crossover circuit which is intended for this type of wiring.

    I don't know much about your receiver, but in this case, you usually set the mains to large, set the center and surrounds to small, set the receiver to "no subwoofer". This should make the receiver direct all low bass + LFE to the mains. Then, wire the receiver main speaker outputs to the l+r subwoofer inputs, and l+r subwoofer outputs to the mains.

    Once you have this set up properly for your receiver and sub, the subwoofers variable crossover control can be used to fine tune the exact rolloff point you want. Of course, you would need to use an SPL meter and some low frequency sweeps to get it all adjusted properly.

    -David
     
  4. John Chow

    John Chow Second Unit

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    I'm not familiar with exactly how the HK receivers work, but if I assume they work like most receivers, then I do not believe what Norm suggested will work.

    By setting your speakers to large, this means that your speakers will get the full range of frequencies that are sent to those channels, and the sub will only get the information on the LFE channel. This means that frequencies under 100Hz will not go to the subwoofer, which is something you would definitely want, since most mains do not extend to 20Hz.

    The main question would be what exactly the LFE setting on your receiver means. If setting it to both simply sends the LFE signal to the mains in addition to the sub, then that will not help you.

    Another note, if you are buying speakers for the long term, then it may still be a good idea to get towers, since in the future if you upgrade your receiver, this would give you more options.

    Your other option is if you wire your subwoofer through your mains(through the speaker level inputs, rather than coax), and send all of the information to the mains, then this would effectively eliminate your receiver's crossover. Then you could use the crossover on your subwoofer to tune it to where the rolloff is smooth.
     
  5. elMalloc

    elMalloc Supporting Actor

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    OK thanks for the replies.

    When I set the speakers to large, the manual says it means the speakers can handle under 100 HZ. You can still have a subwoofer in your setup if you have large speakers, it says something like L/R + SUB LFE for a sub setting. I think you can also set the center speaker to large but I haven't tested any of this. Now I do see the variable crossover (not a good subwoofer but it has a dial that goes from 45hz to 150 hz). I can just wire the speakers directly into the sub, set the sub lower (or get a new sub and set it even lower) to the correct hz that hte towers can go down to, and then wire the sub to the receiver.

    Thanks,

    ELmO
     
  6. Kevin. W

    Kevin. W Screenwriter

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    ElMalloc,

    I asked the same question when I was considering buying a Marantz AV560U to replace my Denon 1801. Most people suggested you won't notice much of a difference and they are right. Once everything was calibrated(Speakers set to small, sub yes), it sounded great to me.

    If anyone can tell me though what will be missed between the 80-100hz that is now sent to the sub instead of the mains I would appreciate it.

    Kevin
     
  7. elMalloc

    elMalloc Supporting Actor

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    Cool thanks Kevin, do you have tower speakers?
    I'm stuck in a decision right now.
    Use my tax check to buy some front tower speakers (or good front speakers if I have to go bookshelf) - or get the panasonic 47" HDTV. I have a 27" non HDTV right now and I love the picture though.
    -ELmO[​IMG]
     
  8. John Chow

    John Chow Second Unit

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    Kevin,

    The only real issue is with having the sub reproduce notes from 80Hz to 100Hz is directionality. Some people claim to/some actually can detect where the sound is coming from at that frequency range. It is generally accepted that you can't detect where sounds 80Hz & under are coming from.
     
  9. Kevin. W

    Kevin. W Screenwriter

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    Thanks John for the info. I don't think I've heard any directionality with the sub as of yet. Though it could be the fact that I am still in awe at home my system sounds now that I have seperates.

    elMalloc, I currently use Paradigm Mini Monitor bookshelf speakers. As I had planned on getting a sub I figured there was no need for towers.

    Kevin
     
  10. elMalloc

    elMalloc Supporting Actor

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    This guy told me if I wire my speakers through the sub, cross over with the sub and go back to the receiver, I'll lose "some LFE signal". Is this true?

    -ELmO
     
  11. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    You gotta keep the LFE connection hooked up at the same time.

    Run them large, speaker wires in and out of the sub, along with the LFE connection.

    Set-up for the sub option should be "LFE". Set-up option for the mains should be "Large".

    This way the sub will filter the bass away from the mains AND read the LFE.

    - CM
     
  12. elMalloc

    elMalloc Supporting Actor

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    OK Great Colin thanks for the help. When I do get towers I will be doing this. Yet I think I may be going HDTV for now..(which I'm now considering 4:3 HDTV or 16:9 HDTV, is my question).

    -ELMO
     
  13. Mal P

    Mal P Stunt Coordinator

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    Howdy,

    I just bought a HSU Vtf-2, and my Sony DA555ES receiver has a fixed cross-over of 100hz.

    I cannot, in any shape or form, localise the subwoofer. It blends seamlessly with my front speakers (which are flat to 35hz and then some). Perhaps some have a greater tolerance for localisation, but I consider myself to have very good ears, and the bass is fluent. In fact, if I switch between running the mains full-range and then filtering the bass off into the sub, the only difference I hear is the changed character of the bass the Vtf-2 puts out. Someone hearing it would think the bass was actually coming from the mains.

    I doubt you'll have a problem, especially if you have a standard rectangular room like myself.

    Cheers,

    Mal
     
  14. Mal P

    Mal P Stunt Coordinator

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    elMalloc - It is true to a certain extent. When running the LFE through your speaker wires, you'll lose about 6dB of bass headroom.

    Cheers,

    Mal
     
  15. Lewis Besze

    Lewis Besze Producer

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  16. Mal P

    Mal P Stunt Coordinator

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    Lewis,

    Simple. I tested it, using a Radioshack SPL meter. I had to turn up my subwoofer by an extra 6dB to calibrate it. Except then, the bass from the centre and rears (which are set to small) is also increased by 6dB, and out of proportion.

    You should try it for yourself.

    Cheers,

    Mal
     
  17. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    Lewis -

    The .1 LFE is NOT a seperate channel?

    Seems to me it is a recorded track of info that is seperate from the others. Where do you get your info?

    Also, what sub makers say not to do both RCA and speaker level inputs? Sounds a bit dangerous, yes, but I've owned 3 diff powered subs and haven't heard that. Done it, too, with no repercussions.

    Please be specific.

    - CM
     
  18. ColinM

    ColinM Cinematographer

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    And it's 3-120, all the time. (Sans filter)
     
  19. Jason Wolters

    Jason Wolters Stunt Coordinator

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    I have read a lot of posts on various forums, debating the use of tower speakers vs. bookshelf. The one thing that they all have in common is that none of them have ever given a good answer.

    I will tell you from my experience, that it took me a long time to get over my tower speakers. IOW, I kept thinking well I have large fronts so I should set them to large. If I don't I will be wasting them. All I had to do was try it both ways. Setting my fronts to small is the ONLY way to go. The sub is much more capable of giving me the bass I want.

    A friend of mine has a $2000/pair of Klipsh fronts (can't rememember model) and a Paradigm PS1000 sub. His sounded better with them set to small as well.

    I don't know what speakers you currently have. (did you say?) If they are decent I think it would be a no brainer to upgrade the TV. When I shop I am alway looking for the biggest bang for the buck. IOW, what will produce the biggest difference for the same amount of money? I bet the HDTV will win big time in this decision.

     
  20. elMalloc

    elMalloc Supporting Actor

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    It doesn't?

    Then what do they mean on my receiver:

    SUB L/R + LFE:

    A "complete" feed is setnt to the front left/right speakers and the subwoofer receives bass frequencies below 100hz.

    And I have really bad speakers, philips brand came from a package. They are good for movies, but music I don't think there are any worse speakers out there. I have a 27" non hdtv and I think I'm going 50" 4:3 HDTV soon..I will have to buy new speakers later because for games/dvds I'm satisfied with them.

    -ELmO
     

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