Subwoofer volume control... Sub knob vs Receiver - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 19 Old 11-29-2009, 01:01 PM - Thread Starter
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I just bought a Energy Take Classic 5.1 setup and it's my first setup with a subwoofer. The sub itself has a volume knob on it, and the receiver also has a setting for subwoofer volume with a range of 0-20. I'm wondering how I should use both of these? I'm thinking it would be easier to control the volume using the receiver, but I would need to know what level to put the physical knob on the sub itself.

Unfortunately I don't know much about calibrating home theater setups, so any technical answer is probably going to go way over my head.
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post #2 of 19 Old 11-29-2009, 01:42 PM
 
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Will,volume will be different in other homes. but you'll want to have the sub woofer "gain" around 9 or 10 o clock position. on the receiver controller,either default or just adjust it were ever how it sounds. but,it be better if u have sound pressure meter
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post #3 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AvGeek07 View Post

Will,volume will be different in other homes. but you'll want to have the sub woofer "gain" around 9 or 10 o clock position. on the receiver controller,either default or just adjust it were ever how it sounds. but,it be better if u have sound pressure meter

That's different than what I just read yesterday on the SVS site. They recommend not using the receiver gain past one quarter of it's maximum to provide the cleanest possible signal to the sub. In this example, that would mean leaving the receiver gain at 5, then adjusting the sub gain to the appropriate level. Previously, I have always run my sub gain at 12 o'clock and adjusted the receiver gain, which resulted in a level of +3.5dB on a -15 to +15 dB scale (Onkyo TX-SR876).

After readjusting my receiver to -7.5 dB, and increasing my sub gain to approximately 2 o'clock, my sub is noticeable cleaner and 'punchier'.
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post #4 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 04:59 PM
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Every subwoofer amp is different. What works with SVS subs won't necessarily work with an Energy sub. The *best* way to set the volume control on the sub is to set the subwoofer "trim" setting in the receiver to "0", and then adjust the subwoofer's gain/volume control until an SPL meter at the primary listening position reads 75 dB. (In the OP's case, he says his receiver goes from 0 to 20. In that case, he should set it to 10 and then adjust the subwoofer gain control to 75 dB.)

Then calibrate the rest of the speakers to 75 dB using their respective trims settings.

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post #5 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by craig john View Post

Every subwoofer amp is different. What works with SVS subs won't necessarily work with an Energy sub. The *best* way to set the volume control on the sub is to set the subwoofer "trim" setting in the receiver to "0", and then adjust the subwoofer's gain/volume control until an SPL meter at the primary listening position reads 75 dB. (In the OP's case, he says his receiver goes from 0 to 20. In that case, he should set it to 10 and then adjust the subwoofer gain control to 75 dB.)

Then calibrate the rest of the speakers to 75 dB using their respective trims settings.

You are correct about different subs and amps. The subwoofer gain on some amps need to be at 10 to 1:00 in order for the amp to be at its best for output. HSU says to set the sub gain at 9 and adjust the reciever sub db to 75, ED says to set the reciever sb db to -5 and then set the sub gain to 75. So I suppose that there is no correct way to do it. I would contact the sub manufactuer and ask for their recommendation for setting the sub up. I have had HSU, ED, and now Epik and AV123 subs and they are all different as far as amp sensitivity and how to set them for the most output.

Bill
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post #6 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 06:22 PM
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I've always just set the sub gain half way and let the prepro do the rest. More often than not, the setting on the prepro turns out to be 0 or close to it.
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post #7 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

So I suppose that there is no correct way to do it.

I don't know if it is "correct", but there IS a best way to do it and that is what craig john described. Ideally the sub level trim in the receiver should be at it's default or flat setting. On an AVR that has a sub level trim that goes from, for example -10 to +10, that setting would be 0.0. With the OP's AVR it is a bit hard to ascertain but I think that it is safe to assume that the 10 setting would be the equivalent. The correct setting for the sub's gain that provides that result can be determined empirically.


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Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

I would contact the sub manufactuer and ask for their recommendation for setting the sub up.

Why? It's a pretty simple concept, no?

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post #8 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

I don't know if it is "correct", but there IS a best way to do it and that is what craig john described. Ideally the sub level trim in the receiver should be at it's default or flat setting. On an AVR that has a sub level trim that goes from, for example -10 to +10, that setting would be 0.0. With the OP's AVR it is a bit hard to ascertain but I think that it is safe to assume that the 10 setting would be the equivalent. The correct setting for the sub's gain that provides that result can be determined empirically.


Why? It's a pretty simple concept, no?

Not really. If the sub gain is best at 12 and the reciever ends up at -6 then starting with the reciever at 0 won't work. Ed's amp on the 450 doesn't come alive with any reciever setting util the gain is at 10 to 1. Now and experinced person will know how to set up a sub properly but a newbie won't. Half the subs sold now don't come with directions on how to set them up. Not all amps are the same as far as sensitivity. That is why I found such a difference between the sub amps that I have had. So for a newbie, the sub manufacturer is the best person to ask about the sub gain setting for the amp.

Bill
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post #9 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 07:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

If the sub gain is best at 12 and the reciever ends up at -6 then starting with the reciever at 0 won't work.

So you turn the sub's gain down. "Sub gain is best at 12" is meaningless.


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Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

Ed's amp on the 450 doesn't come alive with any reciever setting util the gain is at 10 to 1.

I don't know what that means but it doesn't make much sense.

Sometimes setting the sub level trim in an receiver higher than 0.0 can help the sub's Auto-On function work better, but raising the AVR's sub level trim would also result in a concomitant lowering of the sub's own gain setting.


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Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

Now and experinced person will know how to set up a sub properly but a newbie won't. Half the subs sold now don't come with directions on how to set them up. Not all amps are the same as far as sensitivity. That is why I found such a difference between the sub amps that I have had. So for a newbie, the sub manufacturer is the best person to ask about the sub gain setting for the amp.

I'm not trying to be an ass, but it is a pretty simple concept. How would you adjust a sub's volume if AVR's didn't have a sub channel level trim setting? You would simply use the sub's gain setting. The amp's input sensitivity is irrelevant. You adjust the amp's gain setting to whatever setting is necessary to provide the proper output.

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post #10 of 19 Old 12-02-2009, 08:15 PM
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Siv - I'm just going by what Ed told me about the 450. They said with the LT1300 amp in the 450, that it never really comes alive until it is turned up on the gain to around 10 - 1. And that some customers were running it all the way up to 1:30 on the gain. I had it at 9 and it was lifeless even when I upped the receiver db. The amp was better at 11 or so with the reciever db (pink tone) turned down to -5 or -6. Why, how would I know all I know. The SQ got better with this setting even though the spl meter was telling me the same db setting. Thius is one reason that ED says to run the reciever at -5 db and the sub gain at 10 or higher for better SQ. This all was some months ago when I had dual 450's. Now, HSU in their manual has the sub gain set at 9 and then tune the receiver db until youi get to 75 db. So there are defferent methods.

Bill

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post #11 of 19 Old 12-03-2009, 01:03 AM
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In general you should never set your subwoofer trim in your AVR much above 0 dB. The reason is you can clip your subwoofer output jack on the avr if the setting is too high. I used to use about -5 dB when I hooked up my subwoofer to the subwoofer output jack on the AVR.

As far as clipping the input of your subwoofer amplifier, that's kind of hard to do if you are running within the limits of the system. If you use a pro amplifier for a subwoofer amplifier, then all bets are off. You can easily get a voltage mismatch between the AVR output and the pro amplifier input.

I don't use the subwoofer output jack on my AVR these days due to my alternate subwoofer hookeup. I just use the subwoofer amplifier volume control to calibrate the subwoofer volume, and I have never had a problem with any "o'clock" volume setting on the subwoofer amplifier/crossover. That being said, if you clip the subwoofer amplifier then perhaps you need to use multiple subwoofers.
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post #12 of 19 Old 12-03-2009, 01:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

Siv - I'm just going by what Ed told me about the 450. They said with the LT1300 amp in the 450, that it never really comes alive until it is turned up on the gain to around 10 - 1. And that some customers were running it all the way up to 1:30 on the gain. I had it at 9 and it was lifeless even when I upped the receiver db. The amp was better at 11 or so with the reciever db (pink tone) turned down to -5 or -6. Why, how would I know all I know. The SQ got better with this setting even though the spl meter was telling me the same db setting. Thius is one reason that ED says to run the reciever at -5 db and the sub gain at 10 or higher for better SQ. This all was some months ago when I had dual 450's. Now, HSU in their manual has the sub gain set at 9 and then tune the receiver db until youi get to 75 db. So there are defferent methods.

Bill



The speedometer on your car will say 50 MPH when you are going 50 mph. Now if you the transmission in first gear or in overdrive the engine will tell you a different story.

When you redirect bass added to LFE you can at times get a lot of voltage out of your subwoofer output jack. It is easy to clip the AVR's subwoofer output jack when the trim is set "too high" (AKA above 0 dB).
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post #13 of 19 Old 12-03-2009, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by bsoko2 View Post

The amp was better at 11............


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post #14 of 19 Old 12-03-2009, 10:07 AM
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Using the face of a clock!
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post #15 of 19 Old 12-06-2009, 12:26 PM
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I have the same issue x2! I have an Athena AS-P400 (not the 4000) which has two dials. One seems like a crossover setting (range is 40 - 120) and the other is a volume control. The "crossover" dial has the models of Athena fronts on it. (the AS-F2 setting is at the 40-45 area on the dial).

I will be receiving my new Yamaha RX-V765 this week and I was wondering where to set the dials when I do the auto-calibration with the microphone.
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post #16 of 19 Old 12-06-2009, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Viventis View Post

I have the same issue x2! I have an Athena AS-P400 (not the 4000) which has two dials. One seems like a crossover setting (range is 40 - 120) and the other is a volume control. The "crossover" dial has the models of Athena fronts on it. (the AS-F2 setting is at the 40-45 area on the dial).

I will be receiving my new Yamaha RX-V765 this week and I was wondering where to set the dials when I do the auto-calibration with the microphone.

EZ. Set the "volume control" in the middle of its range and leave it there. Set the crossover to bypass or, if that's not possible, all the way up to 120Hz+.

The AVR will handle it all.

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post #17 of 19 Old 12-06-2009, 12:35 PM
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Thanks for the advice. Does it matter that my fronts have a Frequency Response: 35 Hz — 20 kHz (±3 dB)? This is what the Athena website says:

The controls have been conveniently located on the front of the sub. Easily reached and easily adjusted. The Frequency control utilizes athena's exclusive SCT or System Creation Technology by having specific settings for all of the AUDITION series models, as well as the Point 5 bookshelf. So set up couldn't be any more accurate, or simple. Just match the model number of your athena speakers to the settings on the dial, and plug the subwoofer in - that's it.

With this in mind, maybe I'll try the dial at both ends and see how it comes out.
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post #18 of 19 Old 12-06-2009, 01:46 PM
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No. All that is irrelevant. If you use a crossover in the sub and one in the AVR, the performance (phase and FR) will be corrupted. Ideally, all the controls/filters in the sub should be removed or disabled.

Let the AVR handle it all.

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post #19 of 19 Old 12-09-2009, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

No. All that is irrelevant. If you use a crossover in the sub and one in the AVR, the performance (phase and FR) will be corrupted. Ideally, all the controls/filters in the sub should be removed or disabled.

Let the AVR handle it all.

Spot on advice, Kal! Hooked up the receiver last night. The Users Manual said to put the crossover knob to max and the volume to just below half. After the auto calibration was complete, neither knob has any effect. Looks like it's completely handled through the AVR now.

I can't believe how much smoother the sub is after the auto calibration. Previously, I could easily hear everything that came out of the sub. I watched part of "The Day The Earth Stood Still" last night and I could not differentiate the sub from the front floor standing speakers (Athena AS-F2). However, the sub was obvioulsy doing it's job because I had to turn the volume down when the wall started to shake!
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