Subwoofer Connection Debate - Help

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Steve Chomicz, Mar 18, 2004.

  1. Steve Chomicz

    Steve Chomicz Auditioning

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    I never thought connecting a subwoofer would be so difficult. I just purchased the following:

    Harman Kardon H/K AVR330
    Polk Audio RM6700 Sat speakers (5)
    Volydne CHT-8 powered subwoofer

    The manual from both Polk & Voldyne recomend connecting the receiver speaker level outputs to the subwoofer speaker level inputs then from there to the Front R/L speakers.

    The H/K manual disagrees and suggests connecting the speakers directly to the receiver while running an RCA jack line to the subwoofer input.

    I went to Polk and they say:

    "Connect the subwoofer to the Front Left & Right speaker level or preamp level outputs, set the Fronts to "Large" and Sub to "Off." Resist all temptation to use the subwoofer output jack--please."

    Note the "RESIST ALL TEMPTATION."

    I emailed H/K for help and they said their directions are correct. H/K's response to this is:

    "While this connection (Polk's) will provide a signal for your subwoofer, this will not allow you to take advantage of the LFE (bass) signals present in today's digital soundtracks.

    This connection will not allow you to utilize the ".1" signal in these soundtracks.

    The only way to get this signal would be using the receiver's dedicated subwoofer RCA output, while connecting your speakers to their respective terminals on the receiver."


    So, being a very confused newbie, I need some help here. Who do I believe? Harmon Kardon (receiver mfr) or Polk & Voldyne (speaker mfr)? How should I connect the system

    Thanks.
     
  2. MikeTC

    MikeTC Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with H/K's response. You do want to take advantage of the LFE of the receiver. This should provide a cleaner signals to the speakers. Make sure the LCR and surrounds are set to 'small' and the sub to 'on'.
     
  3. Daman

    Daman Second Unit

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    i have a set of polkrm6700 which im using with a yamaha reciever and Polk PSW303 Sub,ive set the subwoofer to Off and set the main speakers to large... the reciver DOES send all the LFE signal to the main fronts and when you run the main front via the subwoofer the sub will extract the LFE signal from it and pass on the rest to the front speakers. I am getting very good bass output as a result. I think you should try this setting out.
     
  4. Kendall T

    Kendall T Extra

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    I also have a Polk system and it confused me too at first, but the their recomendations are correct. Also, like already stated, if you set the receiver's sub option to "no", and the fronts to large, the reciever's bass redirection circuitry will send the bass (LFE) signal to the sub via the front speaker wires.
     
  5. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

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    Hi Steve.

    Both connection types work. You receiver takes care of the ".1" track by:

    - looking for a subwoofer
    - looking for the nearest LARGE speaker

    I prefer the RCA cable to the sub hookup. It's simpler, keeps the receiver in charge of the crossover, etc.

    Despite the mfg claims to "RESIST ALL TEMPTATION" - it works fine.
     
  6. Roman Ortega

    Roman Ortega Extra

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    Hi Steve, like Bob said, both connections will work, (maybe you want to try both of them for a while and decide which one you prefer), just remember two things:

    If you connect your subwoofer by the rca input, configure your receiver to subwoofer on, set a crossover frequency that you like and try your main speakers as large or as small (again decide which one you prefer). If you set your speakers as small, the receiver will send all the frequencies above the crossover value to the main speakers and the ones beyond to the subwoofer (which will also reproduce the .1 track). If you choose large, then all the bass from the left and right channels will be send to your main speakers and the subwoofer will only play the .1 track.

    If you connect the subwoofer by the line levels then make sure to set the subwoofer off on your receiver and your main speakers to large, or you will lost some information. With this configuration you are not using your receiver’s crossover so you’ll need to adjust it with the crossover of your sub (if you connect by the RCA set this crossover to it’s maximum value or use the “unfiltered” input if you have one).

    I hope this doesn’t sound too complicated for you, once again just try all the configurations and play with the setups (It’s part of the fun), read the FAQ of the forum, and just enjoy configuring your equipment, it may take a little work but it’s worth it.
     
  7. Steve Chomicz

    Steve Chomicz Auditioning

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    Thanks everyone for the input.

    I am going to try the receiver line amp first becasue it is an easier wiring job. Its a bit of work to wire them each way and decide which sounds best. They don't make this easy[​IMG]

    -steve
     

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