Subwoofer hookup

GarySI

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In my original M&K system, years ago, I used the speaker level inputs on the sub for 2 channel. Now I have been into multi chaannel for about five years and have been using the line level from the LFE output(B&W speakers,Titanic sub)to the sub. DD and DTS sound great, as does SACD and DVD-A, yet I am not getting any output from the sub when playing 2 channel SACD's. If I go back to using the speaker level inputs and the sub's crossover, I know the bass from the 2 channel SACD's will go to the sub, but will I still get the LFE output when watching movies? ANy thoughts?
 

Brian Fellmeth

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The reciever will take the LFE content and send copies to the R and L mains if they are set to large and the subwoofer setting is "none" or "off". The sub will then pick it up off of the R/L speaker lines.
 

ScottCHI

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what player do you have, btw, garySI?
 

GarySI

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I have the Pioneer DV-45A feeding a Marantz SR5300.B&W 602's,601's and CC6 with a Titanic sub.
 

ScottCHI

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how do you have the player's bass management setup (to what size are your speakers set)?
 

DarrenHo

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there should be an option in the speaker set up of the receiver to have the sub work when the main speakers are set to large. my pioneer calls it "plus". sub can be set for off, on or plus.
 

ScottCHI

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if his marantz is like most receivers, except for the volume levels, the bass and time management settings aren't applied to his multichannel analog inputs. and based upon his description, i think (not certain) he runs his sub directly from his player, bypassing his receiver, anyway.

unless that player has a "bass channel creating" function for when the front speakers are set to large, the only way to get that bass information routed out the player's sub out is to set the player up with your speakers as SMALL. SMALL is the setting you would want to use with those speakers, anyway.

however, if you do want to run them as LARGE, there are some other ways to get your sub to work "properly" with 2-channel input sources without resorting to using the speaker-level connections.
 

GarySI

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With the 2 channel SACD's there is no seperate analog output for the bass. Everything is 2-channel. You are right in that the bass management and time settings don't work in Hi-Res playback, but what I want to do is probably only going to work if I use the speaker level inputs of the sub and set the surrounds and center to small and the mains to large. What I really wanted to know is, if I use this configuration will I still get the low frequency effects when I watch my DVD's. If the answer is yes then I will use the speaker level inputs to the sub and utilize the subs crossover for the mains.
 

ScottCHI

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if you tell the receiver or the player that you have NO sub, then, yes, the LFE signal is rerouted into the mains at both speaker-level AND AT THE PRE-OUTS (hint, hint).

however, if you set your front speakers to SMALL in the player, then it WILL generate a sub signal for you when you play back 2-channel sacds. unless that player has a specific bass management problem.

again, how do you have the speakers setup in the player?
 

GarySI

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I have them set as Mains-large, Center-small, surrounds-small, in the player and in the reciever(is that ok?). I listen to music much more than I watch movies, which is why I'm concerned about the music playback, but don't want to lose the BOOMs when I watch movies. Oh yeah, I run the sub from the reciever's sub pre-out.
 

ScottCHI

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WHY?!?!?!?!?!?!? firstly, you said run them as LARGE, right now. and secondly, if you DO want to cross them, why use the sub's crossover, when you can use the player's/receiver's?

if i were you, i'd run all those speakers as SMALL, as they probably should be run, anyway. problem solved. why do you run the 602s as LARGE?

now, you CAN definitely still run them as LARGE, if that's your preference. with the "NO sub setting", YES, the LFE signal will be rerouted and mixed into the fronts' signal, BUT YOU DO NOT HAVE TO USE A SPEAKER LEVEL CONNECTION TO THE SUB because, as i said, the signal is also rerouted at the pre-outs of the player and receiver when you set it up with NO sub. so, you'd connect the sub to your receiver's front pre-outs (provided it has them) in the "NO sub setup", and use the sub's crossover to tweak it, leaving your speakers connected to the receiver just as they are now. mind you, the LFE channel and the signal of speakers set to SMALL will also be produced by your front speakers with the "NO sub setup".

btw, how do you playback your redbook (standard) CDs? because you should have the same problem (no sub signal) with standard 2 channel cds, as well, if you use your player's analog connection and the settings you listed above.

(sorry for all the edits)
 

GarySI

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Actually, for redbook I'm using the optical inputs. Should I switch to the analog inputs? You've been a great help. I'll try those ideas. The 602's do sound better as small, thanks for the tip.
 

ScottCHI

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that's up to you. but, unless you change something (which you just did when you switched the fronts to SMALL), or unless your receiver will bass manage the multichannel inputs, you're not going to get a sub signal from redbook cds, through your multichannel analog connection. if you used a pair of the receiver's other standard 2 channel analog inputs (CD), then you can probably bass manage, although it would add an additional A/D>D/A conversion.

generally, you want to decode where the "best" DACs are, but, ultimately, you should use what sounds best to you. that you use the digi connection to play standard cds explains why your sub works fine for you in that setup for redbook cds; you're bass managing in that instance. if your receiver has a "direct" or "pure" mode setting, i suspect that your sub would receive no signal when playing standard cds via the digi connection and that direct/pure setting. with the fronts set to LARGE, and the way you're playing standard cds (with an optical connection), you actually probably have undesirable redundancy or overlap in the frequencies below your receiver's crossover setting, as the speakers are playing "full-range" in that situation and the sub is being sent everything below the receiver's xover. perhaps you have been using the sub's xover, also, to tweak this sort of setup further, i don't know.

if you have no need for anything beyond 5.1 sound, then you really don't have to do ANY of your hirez player's decoding/bass management/time management at your receiver (of course, you still would need the receiver for cable, dsp sound modes, etc.). it's your personal preference. i use my analog multichannel connections for EVERYTHING i do with my player; dd/dts dvd-v movies, redbook, sacd, and dvd-a. with all the decoding being done at the player, this allows me to run my receiver in it's "pure" mode, with no processing done there, at all. i know, though, that a lot of people with hirez players, for whatever reasons, do still prefer to do their movies via their digi connection.

of course, now that you've changed your front speakers to SMALL, the picture changes completely, and all this discussion flies right out the window as it becomes moot.

(heh, i used the word "moot")
 

GarySI

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I like the idea that you're using, all analog inputs for everything, and large speakers in front. I think I'll give it a try. I thought that having management in both the player and the reciever was a bit of overkill. I'll post the outcome. Thanks Scott
 

ScottCHI

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well, if your receiver is like most, it won't allow you to bass/time manage the multichannel input (that's already been managed at the player). and the player's processing is not applied to it's digital output, either; only to the analog outs.

now, if you mean that having processing capabilities at both places is redundant, i agree, but it's understandable. in the near future, i suspect this will not be the case, and all the processing is going to be done by one or the other (which one, i don't know; i'd think it'd be at the player).
 

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