Bass management for stereo receivers with no crossover control - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 20 Old 07-14-2013, 04:42 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a 2.1 setup with a Harman/Kardon HK 3485 stereo receiver. Ultimately, I want to have everything below 80Hz to be handled strictly by the subwoofer and everything >80Hz to be sent to the speakers. Right now i'm getting cascading frequencies, i.e. both the sub and speakers are producing sound below 80Hz, which is what I don't want.

Here's how the subwoofer plate amp looks:

Ncwj3yy.jpg

I have the crossover knob on the subwoofer set at 80Hz. I've tried connecting speaker cables to the red+black terminals on the left ('from receiver' and 'out to speakers') and I assumed this would separate the frequencies so that everything below 80Hz is handled only by the subwoofer. This doesn't work and it seems to be the exact same thing as using the 'subwoofer in' RCA input. I'm guessing it doesn't work because the terminals on the subwoofer amp are probably line-level.

What would be the most efficient/economical solution?
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post #2 of 20 Old 07-14-2013, 05:59 PM
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I have a 2.1 setup with a Harman/Kardon HK 3485 stereo receiver. Ultimately, I want to have everything below 80Hz to be handled strictly by the subwoofer and everything >80Hz to be sent to the speakers. ... What would be the most efficient/economical solution?
Sell the HK receiver and put the money toward a nice entry-level AVR, such as...
- the Yamaha RX-V375; or
- the Pioneer VSX-523-K,
...for $249 (shipped) at Amazon.com.
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post #3 of 20 Old 07-14-2013, 06:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by eljaycanuck View Post

Sell the HK receiver and put the money toward a nice entry-level AVR, such as...
- the Yamaha RX-V375; or
- the Pioneer VSX-523-K,
...for $249 (shipped) at Amazon.com.

Thanks, but not really looking to sell my HK in exchange for a multi-channel AVR.

Also, it looks like the only 2-channel integrated amp with analog bass management is $700+. I find it surprising that there're virtually no other options for 2 channel amps that have this feature. Running my bookshelf speakers full range is not desirable as a lot of what I listen to is bass-centric and sounds lifeless without a sub.

Would a MiniDSP work with my set-up?
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post #4 of 20 Old 07-14-2013, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I've tried connecting speaker cables to the red+black terminals on the left ('from receiver' and 'out to speakers') and I assumed this would separate the frequencies so that everything below 80Hz is handled only by the subwoofer. This doesn't work
It does, but poorly, as the filtering of the mains is only first order via series capacitors, which is better than nothing, but barely. You need to use an electronic crossover, which requires the receiver have a tape in/out to insert it in the signal chain.

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post #5 of 20 Old 07-14-2013, 09:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post

It does, but poorly, as the filtering of the mains is only first order via series capacitors, which is better than nothing, but barely.

Interesting. I figured it didn't work at all as I tested a series of sine tones from 30-80Hz and I still receive considerable output from the speakers' woofers. I also get a crazy amount of excursion with certain music. The filtering must be indeed very poor.
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post #6 of 20 Old 07-15-2013, 05:27 AM
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Thanks, but not really looking to sell my HK in exchange for a multi-channel AVR.
OK. That wasn't clear in your initial post. (Not that there's anything wrong with using an AVR for 2.1 audio.)

An alternative option might be to add an Emotiva USP-1 (on sale for $389, shipped; reg. $449, shipped) to your HK: The former handles inputs and crossover; the latter handles amplification.
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post #7 of 20 Old 07-15-2013, 10:30 PM
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Before the OP is done he may well spend over the price of a new avr/amp. And, he will not have has good of a bass management system. Another option is to buy larger speakers?
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post #8 of 20 Old 07-15-2013, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by derrickdj1 View Post

Before the OP is done he may well spend over the price of a new avr/amp. And, he will not have has good of a bass management system.
Yup, a good AVR will allow multiple crossover choices, independent level adjustments, delaying subwoofer relative to speakers, room correction, and a whole host of features that can be just as useful for 2.1 set-ups as surround layouts. Even unused channels can be sometimes be re-assigned for bi-amping. Shame that people with stereo set-ups dismiss such a useful option.

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post #9 of 20 Old 07-15-2013, 11:30 PM
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you could put bass blockers on the mains.

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/cat_i451_bass-blockers.html

Getting Started with REW: A Step by Step Guide --> http://www.mediafire.com/view/aolmz2..._101_v3.92.pdf

Mini DSP Tutorial by Neutro --> http://www.avsforum.com/forum/113-su...g-minidsp.html
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post #10 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 01:59 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm well aware of the advantages and features of multi-channel AVRs, have 3 of them around the house in different setups. I should of made it clearer that I was searching for a feasible solution that didn't require buying an entirely new amp. A little surprised at the lack of options as integrated stereo amps hold quite a market out there, but I guess subs are mostly desired for HT purposes or are many times used in setups with an AVR in the signal chain. This would be for my computer desk so I have no room for bigger speakers. In any case, there are much larger floorstanders in another room that have an F3 of 31Hz and I still find that they sound better with a sub for a lot of music. Important to me because I listen to all types of music. 2 SubMersives handle the job very gracefully.

From what i've read, I think a MiniDSP should work which is relatively inexpensive option. I'm planning on ordering one for a sub that i'll be building but i'll be sure to tinker with it beforehand.
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Originally Posted by basshead81 View Post

you could put bass blockers on the mains.

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/cat_i451_bass-blockers.html

Had no idea these existed, i'll have to look further into them. Very interesting, thanks!
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post #11 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 02:58 AM
 
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I'm well aware of the advantages and features of multi-channel AVRs, have 3 of them around the house in different setups. I should of made it clearer that I was searching for a feasible solution that didn't require buying an entirely new amp. A little surprised at the lack of options as integrated stereo amps hold quite a market out there, but I guess subs are mostly desired for HT purposes or are many times used in setups with an AVR in the signal chain. This would be for my computer desk so I have no room for bigger speakers. In any case, there are much larger floorstanders in another room that have an F3 of 31Hz and I still find that they sound better with a sub for a lot of music. Important to me because I listen to all types of music. 2 SubMersives handle the job very gracefully.

From what i've read, I think a MiniDSP should work which is relatively inexpensive option. I'm planning on ordering one for a sub that i'll be building but i'll be sure to tinker with it beforehand.

How does the MiniDSP pricing compare to a low-end AVR with full bass management? I think you can get one of these from Accesories4less or eCost for about $130.
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post #12 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 03:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by arnyk View Post

How does the MiniDSP pricing compare to a low-end AVR with full bass management? I think you can get one of these from Accesories4less or eCost for about $130.

From what i'm skimming, you didn't account for shipping and these are refurbished amps (which I don't really mind.) I can find a used MiniDSP for around half the price.

Anyways, like I already expressed, i'm just investigating options other than replacing my existing receiver.

On another note, this thread really beckons the question: why would anyone purchase any stereo receiver/integrated over a cheap AVR?
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post #13 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 11:59 AM
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I found the manual - since you have pre-out / amp-in you can add a crossover for bass management that isn’t built in:

http://manuals.harman.com/HK/Owner's%20Manual/HK%203485%20OM.pdf

"Main-Amp Inputs and Preamp Outputs: These jacks are normally connected directly to each other with an included jumper. Some devices, such as equalizers and some loudspeaker systems, require connection between the Preamp Outputs and Main-Amp Inputs, in which case the jumpers should be removed"

Since the HK doesn't have any bass management, add your own by inserting a crossover in the pre-out / amp-in loop. You could use any crossover - maybe a used Paradigm X-30 or Outlaw ICBM from eBay. Feed the HK pre-out to the crossover input, run the high pass outputs back to your amp-in and the low pass output directly to your sub. Or you could use something cheaper like passive RCA in-line bass blockers to block the bass BEFORE it is amplified, then use the full range HK sub output to your sub and the powered sub's crossover to blend the two:

http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=266-272

By adding a crossover to the preamp, your HK won't be amplifying the low bass frequencies just to have a speaker level passive crossover (in your sub or another speaker level bass blocker) absorbing all that power to block the bass from your smaller speakers.
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

On another note, this thread really beckons the question: why would anyone purchase any stereo receiver/integrated over a cheap AVR?

Wow – you are asking for it with that question! There are 100's of threads on every audio forum that discuss this question. The argument is always whether or not you can hear the difference - I stay out of those arguments.

This is just my personal opinion (disclaimer to avoid rebuttals / replies):

One answer is the original question itself and why you don’t want to sell the HK in favor of an AVR: can a $100 or even a $400 AVR be configured with an external crossover if you want to use it that way? Most cannot. The fact that your HK has pre-out / amp-in makes it more configurable and able to do more of the things tha a HOBBYIST may want to do with it. I own a similar component with 4 built-in amplifier channels and have used it as my primary amplifier, to amplify only the rear channels of a HT and a stereo amp to run speakers for a 2nd room, just the pre-amp as an input switcher, and many other things. It is satisfying to me that I chose a component that wasn’t a throw away that needed to be replaced the first time that it didn’t have a built-in feature.

Are there $100 AVRs that sound the same as your HK? Maybe. Do they have lots of fancy bells and whistles and built-in bass management - absolutely. But like you, I prefer to own quality components that the masses don’t own and like you am interested in configuring them to do what I want. I also have a crossover downstream from my preamp that feeds my main amp (high pass) and my subs (low pass) - and I love the way that it sounds.

It is either a luxury or a hobbyist's interest in owning an exceptional, unique or configurable product . An enthusiast selects a different kind of product than the standard consumer - not because they can prove that it sounds better, but because they are interested in the possibilities and options that it gives them.

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post #14 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post


I have the crossover knob on the subwoofer set at 80Hz. I've tried connecting speaker cables to the red+black terminals on the left ('from receiver' and 'out to speakers') and I assumed this would separate the frequencies so that everything below 80Hz is handled only by the subwoofer. This doesn't work and it seems to be the exact same thing as using the 'subwoofer in' RCA input. I'm guessing it doesn't work because the terminals on the subwoofer amp are probably line-level.

What would be the most efficient/economical solution?

 

It looks to me like there's something wrong with the sub. The terminals are line-level, and the crossover is supposed to work with them (you don't need a crossover with a dedicated sub input). You might want to take the sub apart before you buy anything.

Downloadable FREE demo discs:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1475769/de...ently-authored 

Did you really need to quote that entire post in your reply?
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post #15 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I have a 2.1 setup.............

Just for clarification, you don't really have a "2.1 setup". You have a 2-channel (2.0) setup and are using a subwoofer to supplement the low-end.

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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I have the crossover knob on the subwoofer set at 80Hz. I've tried connecting speaker cables to the red+black terminals on the left ('from receiver' and 'out to speakers') and I assumed this would separate the frequencies so that everything below 80Hz is handled only by the subwoofer. This doesn't work and it seems to be the exact same thing as using the 'subwoofer in' RCA input. I'm guessing it doesn't work because the terminals on the subwoofer amp are probably line-level.

That knob is not really a "crossover knob" but a variable low-pass filter. Its setting only applies to what is sent to the subwoofer's own speaker, not to your connected speakers.

Do you know whether your subwoofer's speaker-level outputs are high-pass filtered or not? On some subs, they ARE, and on some subs, they ARE NOT. If they ARE high-passed, it is usually at a FIXED frequency somewhere in the neighborhood of 80-120Hz.

You have 2 options with the equipment you currently have:

1.) If your sub's speaker-level outputs are high-pass filtered, and you DO wish to high-pass filter your speakers at whatever FIXED frequency the sub imposes, then you would want to connect the speakers to the sub and adjust the sub's own variable low-pass filter setting (either to taste or with measuring equipment) to the speakers' in-room performance while being high-passed. The frequency setting you use for the sub's variable low-pass may or may not match the supposed high-pass frequency being imposed by the sub. The speakers low-end performance characteristics will be affected by the room. And those frequency markings on the back of the sub may not be entirely accurate. No worries. All that is important is that you can reconcile the sub's variable low-pass filter setting with your personal preferences and/or measurements.

2.) But if the sub's speaker-level outputs are NOT high-pass filtered, though, and instead simply represent full-range, pass-through outputs, there is really no reason to connect the speakers to the sub unless it facilitates easier or tidier wiring options. But if the speakers are NOT being high-pass filtered, you would still want to similarly adjust the subwoofer's variable low-pass filter setting to the speakers' low-end performance, in-room, when running full-range (as opposed to when high-pass filtered). And similarly to above, the variable low-pass filter setting used here may or may not correspond to the supposed natural low-end roll-off of your speakers. Again, all that is important is that you can reconcile the sub's variable low-pass filter setting with your personal preferences and/or measurements.


What speakers do you have? Although there are some good reasons to high-pass speakers, it is not entirely necessary, especially with a 2-channel + sub setup. Your speakers may perform just fine when allowed to run fiull-range, rolling off naturally, as designed. Others will probably disagree, but I do not think it is absolutely necessary to high-pass your speakers, especially if you do not have the capability, currently.

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post #16 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 07:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mtn-tech View Post

Wow – you are asking for it with that question! There are 100's of threads on every audio forum that discuss this question. The argument is always whether or not you can hear the difference - I stay out of those arguments.

This is just my personal opinion (disclaimer to avoid rebuttals / replies):

One answer is the original question itself and why you don’t want to sell the HK in favor of an AVR: can a $100 or even a $400 AVR be configured with an external crossover if you want to use it that way? Most cannot. The fact that your HK has pre-out / amp-in makes it more configurable and able to do more of the things tha a HOBBYIST may want to do with it. I own a similar component with 4 built-in amplifier channels and have used it as my primary amplifier, to amplify only the rear channels of a HT and a stereo amp to run speakers for a 2nd room, just the pre-amp as an input switcher, and many other things. It is satisfying to me that I chose a component that wasn’t a throw away that needed to be replaced the first time that it didn’t have a built-in feature.

Are there $100 AVRs that sound the same as your HK? Maybe. Do they have lots of fancy bells and whistles and built-in bass management - absolutely. But like you, I prefer to own quality components that the masses don’t own and like you am interested in configuring them to do what I want. I also have a crossover downstream from my preamp that feeds my main amp (high pass) and my subs (low pass) - and I love the way that it sounds.

It is either a luxury or a hobbyist's interest in owning an exceptional, unique or configurable product . An enthusiast selects a different kind of product than the standard consumer - not because they can prove that it sounds better, but because they are interested in the possibilities and options that it gives them.

Well said, and I fully agree with you.
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Originally Posted by LastButNotLeast View Post

It looks to me like there's something wrong with the sub.The terminals are line-level, and the crossover is supposed to work with them (you don't need a crossover with a dedicated sub input).You might want to take the sub apart before you buy anything.

If there is something wrong with the sub, I don't really mind as i'll be giving it away soon and will be replacing it with a much more capable sub. The replacement has high level terminals and i'm hoping it will fare better with filtering the frequencies.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

Just for clarification, you don't really have a "2.1 setup". You have a 2-channel (2.0) setup and are using a subwoofer to supplement the low-end.
That knob is not really a "crossover knob" but a variable low-pass filter. Its setting only applies to what is sent to the subwoofer's own speaker, not to your connected speakers.

Well yeah, understood. Don't see how the description about my setup was incorrect though, the clarification feels more like a tautology.
Quote:
Do you know whether your subwoofer's speaker-level outputs are high-pass filtered or not? On some subs, they ARE, and on some subs, they ARE NOT. If they ARE high-passed, it is usually at a FIXED frequency somewhere in the neighborhood of 80-120Hz.

You have 2 options with the equipment you currently have:

1.) If your sub's speaker-level outputs are high-pass filtered, and you DO wish to high-pass filter your speakers at whatever FIXED frequency the sub imposes, then you would want to connect the speakers to the sub and adjust the sub's own variable low-pass filter setting (either to taste or with measuring equipment) to the speakers' in-room performance while being high-passed. The frequency setting you use for the sub's variable low-pass may or may not match the supposed high-pass frequency being imposed by the sub. The speakers low-end performance characteristics will be affected by the room. And those frequency markings on the back of the sub may not be entirely accurate. No worries. All that is important is that you can reconcile the sub's variable low-pass filter setting with your personal preferences and/or measurements.

2.) But if the sub's speaker-level outputs are NOT high-pass filtered, though, and instead simply represent full-range, pass-through outputs, there is really no reason to connect the speakers to the sub unless it facilitates easier or tidier wiring options. But if the speakers are NOT being high-pass filtered, you would still want to similarly adjust the subwoofer's variable low-pass filter setting to the speakers' low-end performance, in-room, when running full-range (as opposed to when high-pass filtered). And similarly to above, the variable low-pass filter setting used here may or may not correspond to the supposed natural low-end roll-off of your speakers. Again, all that is important is that you can reconcile the sub's variable low-pass filter setting with your personal preferences and/or measurements.

I assumed they aren't high pass filtered and just pass-throughs. I cut 4 pairs of speaker wire to utilize these terminals just to find out that i'm getting the same output as when using a single cable from my receiver to the subwoofer's RCA input.
Quote:
What speakers do you have? Although there are some good reasons to high-pass speakers, it is not entirely necessary, especially with a 2-channel + 1 sub setup. Your speakers may perform just fine when allowed to run fiull-range, rolling off naturally, as designed. Others will probably disagree, but I do not think it is absolutely necessary to high-pass your speakers, especially if you do not have the capability, currently.

Besides the cascading frequencies issue, I also wanted to free the stress of lower frequencies from the speaker's woofers, even if the technical advantages that it provides might not be directly perceivable. I have pondered the idea mentioned above about matching the subwoofer's crossover filter to the speaker's low-end. I still find the general low-end response of my speakers and pretty much all bookshelf speakers in general to be meek. My boxes are no slouches with bass either, it's just a personal preference of mine. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy natural and accurate sound but i've always had an inclination towards low-end attainable only through large woofers/cabinets. Again, I listen to all types of music, including electronic material with significant output below <60Hz, and even much bigger towers that i've heard don't cut it for me.

For reference, my speakers are bookshelf DIY's designed by Paul Carmody, The Hitmakers: https://sites.google.com/site/undefinition/hitmakers

Appreciate the input from everybody in any case.
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post #17 of 20 Old 07-16-2013, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post

Just for clarification, you don't really have a "2.1 setup". You have a 2-channel (2.0) setup and are using a subwoofer to supplement the low-end.

That knob is not really a "crossover knob" but a variable low-pass filter. Its setting only applies to what is sent to the subwoofer's own speaker, not to your connected speakers.
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

Well yeah, understood. Don't see how the description about my setup was incorrect though, the clarification feels more like a tautology.

"2.0 as opposed to 2.1" is relevant a discussion of the utility or usefulness of a multiichannel AVR, external filter or crossover, whatever, etc.in a strictly 2-channel setup. I may have missed it if you said it earlier, but until your current post no one knew what your sub or speakers were. No one knows what your listening habits are. Mostly 2-channel music? Mostly movies? How loudly do you like/need to listen? What is the listening environment? A small setup in a dorm room, a den setup, or a dedicated home theater system in the basement? If you do use your setup for movies, how is your current DVD/BD source device connected? If analog, the LFE channel is being dropped altogether by the player.

Everyone was quick to recommend an AVR (or more) without asking any of these pertinent questions.


That it is only a variable low-pass filter, as opposed to a "crossover", was relevant to the discussion of your current bass management possibilities with your existing system.


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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I assumed they aren't high pass filtered and just pass-throughs. I cut 4 pairs of speaker wire to utilize these terminals just to find out that i'm getting the same output as when using a single cable from my receiver to the subwoofer's RCA input.

Sometimes the subwoofer's instruction manual's specifications will contain information about any high-pass filter that is present. But sometimes, they won't say a thing about it, even when it's there. But be aware that trying to assess this by ear can be difficult. I don't know anything about YOUR particular speakers' low-end performance and roll-off, but it is very possible (depending upon their specs, of course) that a speaker's natural low-end roll-off would behave similarly to the way that same speaker behaves when connected to a subwoofer's 80Hz high-pass filter. Additionally, the room's interaction with frequencies in the 40 - 120Hz-ish range can mask or obscure comparisons made by ear.


Quote:
Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

Besides the cascading frequencies issue.............
What cascading frequency issue? If you adjust the subwoofer's variable low-pass filter to the speakers' natural in-room roll-off and performance there is nothing that is "cascading". You have to have identical filters to have cascading. Two overlapping high-pass filters or two overlapping low-pass filters creates cascading. In your setup the speakers' natural roll-off behaves similarly to a high-pass filter and the sub has a variable low-pass filter. Together, those high and low pass filter components create a quasi-crossover. Properly adjusted there should not be anything cascading. The two filters overlap, yes, but that is desirable.


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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I also wanted to free the stress of lower frequencies from the speaker's woofers, even if the technical advantages that it provides might not be directly perceivable. I have pondered the idea mentioned above about matching the subwoofer's crossover filter to the speaker's low-end. I still find the general low-end response of my speakers and pretty much all bookshelf speakers in general to be meek. My boxes are no slouches with bass either, it's just a personal preference of mine. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy natural and accurate sound but i've always had an inclination towards low-end attainable only through large woofers/cabinets. Again, I listen to all types of music, including electronic material with significant output below <60Hz, and even much bigger towers that i've heard don't cut it for me.

High-passing the speakers (prior to amplificaction) also relieves the amplifiers from having to amplify the difficult low frequency information which will also (potentially!) contribute to cleaner reproduction. And reproducing the lower frequencies at a speaker designed strictly for just that has benefits.

But, without knowing more about your setup, listening environment, listening habits, connection scheme, etc., and a consideration of all that, it would be hard for me to say that you definitely need an AVR. Or external crossover. Or external high-pass filter. Or whatever.

You only "pondered the idea"? What is hard about running the speakers full-range and adjusting the subwoofer's variable low-pass filter (It's not a crossover! tongue.gif ) to their natural roll-off, their in-room performance, and your preference? That is how it is supposed to be implemented.

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post #18 of 20 Old 07-17-2013, 12:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sivadselim View Post


"2.0 as opposed to 2.1" is relevant a discussion of the utility or usefulness of a multiichannel AVR, external filter or crossover, whatever, etc.in a strictly 2-channel setup. I may have missed it if you said it earlier, but until your current post no one knew what your sub or speakers were. No one knows what your listening habits are. Mostly 2-channel music? Mostly movies? How loudly do you like/need to listen? What is the listening environment? A small setup in a dorm room, a den setup, or a dedicated home theater system in the basement? If you do use your setup for movies, how is your current DVD/BD source device connected? If analog, the LFE channel is being dropped altogether by the player.

Everyone was quick to recommend an AVR (or more) without asking any of these pertinent questions.


That it is only a variable low-pass filter, as opposed to a "crossover", was relevant to the discussion of your current bass management possibilities with your existing system.
Sometimes the subwoofer's instruction manual's specifications will contain information about any high-pass filter that is present. But sometimes, they won't say a thing about it, even when it's there. But be aware that trying to assess this by ear can be difficult. I don't know anything about YOUR particular speakers' low-end performance and roll-off, but it is very possible (depending upon their specs, of course) that a speaker's natural low-end roll-off would behave similarly to the way that same speaker behaves when connected to a subwoofer's 80Hz high-pass filter. Additionally, the room's interaction with frequencies in the 40 - 120Hz-ish range can mask or obscure comparisons made by ear.
What cascading frequency issue? If you adjust the subwoofer's variable low-pass filter to the speakers' natural in-room roll-off and performance there is nothing that is "cascading". You have to have identical filters to have cascading. Two overlapping high-pass filters or two overlapping low-pass filters creates cascading. In your setup the speakers' natural roll-off behaves similarly to a high-pass filter and the sub has a variable low-pass filter. Together, those high and low pass filter components create a quasi-crossover. Properly adjusted there should not be anything cascading. The two filters overlap, yes, but that is desirable.
High-passing the speakers (prior to amplificaction) also relieves the amplifiers from having to amplify the difficult low frequency information which will also (potentially!) contribute to cleaner reproduction. And reproducing the lower frequencies at a speaker designed strictly for just that has benefits.

But, without knowing more about your setup, listening environment, listening habits, connection scheme, etc., and a consideration of all that, it would be hard for me to say that you definitely need an AVR. Or external crossover. Or external high-pass filter. Or whatever.

You only "pondered the idea"? What is hard about running the speakers full-range and adjusting the subwoofer's variable low-pass filter (It's not a crossover! tongue.gif ) to their natural roll-off, their in-room performance, and your preference? That is how it is supposed to be implemented.

All i'm trying to do is have only the sub take care of everything below 80Hz and have the speakers solely handle everything above 80Hz. That's my goal.

I know what a crossover is and the fact that the sub is applying a low-pass, I only called it a crossover knob to refer to it as it's shown on the subwoofer's plate amp, as in it says "crossover frequency" next to that knob so I just called it the "crossover knob." As simple as that (didn't think my post was gonna get picked apart for semantics.)

I mentioned above that this is for my computer desk for 2-channel use with a sub, so strictly 2.1. The speakers are used near-field in a small room for listening to my music collection in lossless quality stored on my computer. I have 3 different multi-channel AVR's/surround sound setups around the house, which I use for movies, television, music. But the discussion on deck is about my 2-channel music, computer setup.

Cascading wasn't the right word I suppose, I meant overlapping (the range of frequencies overlapping by having my speakers run full-range while the LPF on my sub is set at 80Hz.)

To re-iterate, the whole purpose of this thread is that I don't want to run the speakers full-range. Mainly, I want to take the load off the speakers' woofers and my receiver when it comes to low frequencies as sometimes I do like to listen loud. I've also found that I like the performance of my sub below 80Hz for a good portion of my music collection, so that's the magic number for me. When I set the LPF lower, which would probably better match the speakers' natural low-end roll-off, I begin to sense the fullness of the sound deteriorates. Just my preference.
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post #19 of 20 Old 07-17-2013, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I know what a crossover is and the fact that the sub is applying a low-pass, I only called it a crossover knob to refer to it as it's shown on the subwoofer's plate amp, as in it says "crossover frequency" next to that knob so I just called it the "crossover knob." As simple as that (didn't think my post was gonna get picked apart for semantics.)
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Originally Posted by loopaddiction View Post

I have the crossover knob on the subwoofer set at 80Hz. I've tried connecting speaker cables to the red+black terminals on the left ('from receiver' and 'out to speakers') and I assumed this would separate the frequencies so that everything below 80Hz is handled only by the subwoofer.

Maybe I read it wrong, but that seems to imply that the variable low-pass filter adjustment knob affects what is sent to the speaker-level outputs. And it doesn't. That's not just semantics.


Do you know what the "RECEIVER TYPE" switch on the back of the sub does, exactly? Which setting do you currently use, there? You wouldn't happen to have a link to your sub's manual, would you? I can't find it.


Your HK receiver is a pretty nice receiver. I wouldn't rush out and replace it just yet. It has pre-out outputs and main-in inputs. There should be jumpers connecting these, now, but you could/should take advantage of these to loop-in a line-level high-pass filter for your speakers. Consider something like FMODs, maybe.

But whether you use a line-level high-pass (or not) or whether the sub applies a high-pass to the speaker-level outputs (or not), you would still use the sub's variable low-pass knob to adjust the subwoofer's output to the speaker's in-room performance. And, additionally, you have the adjustment for the sub's volume. The best settings for the low-pass and the volume can only be determined empirically and adjusted to taste and/or with the guidance of measurements. Even if the speakers were high-passed at exactly 80Hz with a high-pass filter with the same exact slope as the sub's variable low-pass filter's slope, 80Hz would not necessarily be the best place to set the sub's variable low-pass knob.


BTW, your receiver also has line-level subwoofer outputs. They both output an identical full-range mono signal. You should consider using one of them to connect to your subwoofer's line-level input instead of using a speaker-level connection. If the sub really has no high-pass on its speaker-level outputs, there is no reason to pass the signal for your speakers through the sub.

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post #20 of 20 Old 07-24-2013, 04:36 AM - Thread Starter
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Yeah, I previously tried to search for a .pdf of the sub manual but there doesn't seem to be one available to download.

The manual says when the receiver type is set to Dolby Digital on the sub amp and i'm using a DD type receiver, the sub's LPF control will be disabled. Either setting doesn't seem to make a difference with my setup however.

I did mention that I was previously using the receiver's dedicated sub out and then later switched to the speaker terminals as I figured it would make a difference. I do really like this receiver, which is partially why i'm averse to selling it. It's certainly served me well over the years.

Anyways, I will be swapping this sub with a much better one that also happens to have high level inputs and outputs. Hopefully this'll give me smoother integration with my speakers.
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