Biamping vs 7.1 front high or rear side(polk monitor 60, monitor 30, CS1) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 01:29 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a pioneer 1020, jamo 200watt sub, 2 100watt jamo satellites, polk, monitor 60's monitor 30's and a CS1 center....My question is in a room 25' by 30' 15 ft ceiling...
should I:
biamp the 60's or
go front high surrounds with the 30's or
go surround back(satellites on sides, 30's rear)

Note: if I go 7.1 rear I will eventually get another pair of 30's
and replace the jamo satellites.

What's the best setup will biamping be better than a 7.1 setup?

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post #2 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 02:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarrison1 View Post
will biamping be better than a 7.1 setup?
Passive "bi-amping" is an utter waste of time and wire. There is NO benefit whatsoever. Pure BS/marketing hype.

Now, if you were talking "active bi-amping" with electronic crossover networks, it would be a different story!
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post #3 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 02:54 PM
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I don't think you Pioneer VSX-1020 has pre-outs. So, how are you planning to bi-amp exactly?
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post #4 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 02:59 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm leaning toward 7.1. My friend has a similar setup with the CS10, and monitor 40's in the rear with the 60's bi-amped to a pioneer 1021 and it sounds good but Im thinking 2 extra channels would be better than more power to the fronts.

In a average size room would front high surrounds be better than rear sides placed in the middle of the stage?

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post #5 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarrison1 View Post
better than more power to the fronts.
Passive bi-amping DOES NOT provide any additional "power to the fronts"!!
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post #6 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarrison1
I'm leaning toward 7.1. My friend has a similar setup with the CS10, and monitor 40's in the rear with the 60's bi-amped to a pioneer 1021 and it sounds good but Im thinking 2 extra channels would be better than more power to the fronts.

In a average size room would front high surrounds be better than rear sides placed in the middle of the stage?
I have an Onkyo that does 9.2, and my vote would be for the heights. I do not really have experience with standard 7.1, but I really like what heights bring to the table.

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post #7 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 04:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Besides, Im sure that full biamping with separation of all highs and lows on all speakers would sound better..but not worth it on 2 channels compromising wattage on the center and rear. Especially in the current setup with the CS10 center. It seems like satellite or surround speakers get lost in some areas..

One thing I like to do in calibration specifically surround speakers..

First pre-test

1) Turn on a movie encoded in the format that you want to adjust

In your current arrangement listen to an action scene or two at low, medium and high volumes, listening specifically for the surrounds, surround backs or front highs.

2) Now disconnect the front and center speakers

Set the sub for fairly moderate bass.

Set surround backs high and with strong mids and all the bass you can squeeze out.

this adds prominent surround presence at high and low volumes which is most important in these surround areas.

3) now with the fronts and center disconnected(leaving the sub on and surrounds on. First channel 6 and 7 only. Really extending the surround back loud in my opinion.

You would probably be best setting the surrounds high in treble and base with moderate mids. Not as loud as the surround back but good present volume with solid bass and treble on the surrounds.

4) The surround speakers ateast the ones that are closest to your ears can be used for max volume limits because of their placement.

In a 7.1 I recommend this especially on the surround backs or front high. The sub will help determine your max volume too.

You will hear what you are missing and gaining in ambiance, dialogue, and effects after this.

I recommend doing this with the all speakers off except the ones being tested first then incorporate the center and front speakers so they do not overwhelm the surround settings while maintaining overall balance.
With the sub set to a moderate base in the beginning this can now be adjusted up or down now to harmonize with the front and center speaker

You will hear the difference in the surround performance at low volumes especially.

You will hear things in games and movies you never heard before.

Hope this helps

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post #8 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 07:12 PM - Thread Starter
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read this earlier..

Quote:
Originally Posted by schan1269
Bi-amping with your 1020 has a couple of
possible outcomes...

Maybe it sends full 20hz-20khz through both sets of speaker cables. Maybe it splits it with the crossover. The only way to know will be to try it and see what happens...

Set the 1020 for bi-amp then hook up another completely different pair of speakers to the bi-amp and see what it sounds like. If it "sounds the same"(the only difference being a different speaker) then it passively bi-amps, which all that does is gives you "more power".

The "more power" comes at a cost to the other 3 channels. Your receiver does not produce its power all 7 channels being ran at once, it is rated 2 channels at once. So...try it and see if you like it. But 95 times out of 100, bi-amp doesn't do anything for your set-up cause you've watered down the available power too far.

Otherwise...7.1 or 5.1 with height is pure your preference...not ours.

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post #9 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 08:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarrison1 View Post

Im sure that full biamping with separation of all highs and lows on all speakers would sound better

You're "sure"?? Based on what?

I'll say it again: there is ZERO benefit to passive bi-amping an an AVR. None.

What exactly makes you so "sure"!?
Quote:


but not worth it on 2 channels compromising wattage on the center and rear.

Passive bi-amping does not contribute one milliwatt of extra power to the speakers. If you are passively bi-amping the L/R channels they will still have EXACTLY the same amount of power available to the drivers to the C and rear channels (assuming that all channels are identical to start with).

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post #10 of 25 Old 05-21-2011, 09:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok I get..sounds like 7.1 will be the better option.


Quote:
Originally Posted by cavu View Post

You're "sure"?? Based on what?

I'll say it again: there is ZERO benefit to passive bi-amping an an AVR. None.

What exactly makes you so "sure"!?Passive bi-amping does not contribute one milliwatt of extra power to the speakers. If you are passively bi-amping the L/R channels they will still have EXACTLY the same amount of power available to the drivers to the C and rear channels (assuming that all channels are identical to start with).


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post #11 of 25 Old 06-02-2011, 08:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok, sub came today..went with non biamp...even though it might make a slight difference in this 5.1 set up...V1220 came swaped th jamo200 and sold the CS1 replaced with jamo small center. Waiting for Monday's arrival of the CS2 and monitor 50 rear. Not enough space for the 7.1(prob could do it but I don't think the benefit would surpass the cost because of space) so I'm selling the 30 rears because I can get low cost surrounds at any time.

Sounds amazing a good sub will enhance everything. Jamo center presently gives voice and everything else is the upgrade I was looking for.

I am a home theater installer aka Mac and windows technician/ user/ telecommunications professional installer/ technician/ Gamer..20 years professional...39 year gamer..I'm 39 years old.

CS70's would make things crazy. Cost and space factors based on overall sound improvement makes sense to me not to upgrade...right now...but so far so good.

CS2 and monitor50's on the way.Ok, sub came today..went with non biamp...even though it might make a slight difference in this 5.1 set up...V1220 came swaped th jamo200 and sold the CS1 replaced with jamo small center. Waiting for Monday's arrival of the CS2 and monitor 50 rear. Not enough space for the 7.1(prob could do it but I don't think the benefit would surpass the cost because of space) so I'm selling the 30 rears because I can get low cost surrounds at any time.

Sounds amazing a good sub will enhance everything. Jamo center presently gives voice and everything else is the upgrade I was looking for.

I am a home theater installer aka Mac and windows technician/ user/ telecommunications professional installer/ technician/ Gamer..20 years professional...39 year gamer..I'm 39 years old.

CS70's would make things crazy. Cost and space factors based on overall sound improvement makes sense to me not to upgrade...right now...but so far so good.

CS2 and monitor50's on the way.

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post #12 of 25 Old 06-02-2011, 08:39 PM
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Yeah I have the Pioneer VSX-920K (just under yours) and I went with heights instead of rear 7.1 and I love it. Great with movies and games ( I don't notice TOO much difference in music in general )

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post #13 of 25 Old 06-12-2011, 11:24 AM - Thread Starter
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Setup the monitor 50 rears, CS2, 60 fronts, BIC V1220.
I broke the speakers in and listened to to sound in movie and music and there was an improvement upgrading the rears from the monitor 30's to the 50's and center from the CS1 to CS2.

As far as the bi-amp option I tried it a couple of days ago and there is a sound difference. There is more separation in effects, clearer dialogue and the surrounds sound better to.

I did the MCACC calibration and compared it to the previous setup with the same speakers and noticed a difference. When I used my personal settings I noticed a big difference in clarity, bass and fullness in both music and movies.

Not sure why an option to redirect you speakers to the so called "bi-amp" terminals would get such poor reviews but pioneer calls this option "high quality sound" You would think that this option would be tested in Pioneers laboratories before offered as a hardware enhancement on the VSX 1020 or any other receiver with this capability.

In the traditional 5.1 setup I would use the bi-amp option as I noticed an improvement in overall sound. Ireguardless of what some of the negative reviews say about the bi-amp option I tested it and based on my hearing, there is a difference.

As for 7.1 vs bi-ampimg if you have the room, the 7.1 configuration would fill more spaces and front high will give a higher spectrum for moving sound but may not offer the clarity that the bi-amp option provides. Felt like I had new speakers or something.

7.1 if there is space, bi-amp 5.1. My friend that has the Pioneer 1021 is looking into a Marantz that biamps the rears channels as well, alteast that's what it advertises.

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post #14 of 25 Old 06-12-2011, 11:45 AM
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Quote:


As far as the bi-amp option I tried it a couple of days ago and there is a sound difference. There is more separation in effects, clearer dialogue and the surrounds sound better to.

Why would the surrounds sound better since you biamped the fronts?

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^^^

You are much more subtle that I am tempted to be.

I wonder if he can even spell "placebo" ...

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can someone be a bit more clear on the "passive" bi-amp'ing?

I have a 7.1 Onkyo receiver that gives you the option to bi-amp the fronts and limit yourself to 5.1 (e.g. those 2 extra channels are now channeling front audio).

Is that of any benefit? It's not as if I'm dropping power from my other speakers as they all still get 135 watt/ch. I just opted to use the last two channels to power the fronts as it's an option in the configuration menu. Thanks!


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post #17 of 25 Old 06-12-2011, 10:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by afrogt

Why would the surrounds sound better since you biamped the fronts?
Probably because the front speakers sound more defined. As soundtrack volume raises the whole speaker does not raise in volume, rather the woofer or tweeter increase separately. Leaves out front ambience from the woofer that would otherwise be there.

Its not so much of an overall volume increase as the crossover separates the signals but doesn't attenuate or balance the amount of sound either driver is receiving.

The majority of sound is driven by the front speaker stage. If your front tires improve doesn't the overall ride get better...as the sound from the front speakers improved the overall experience got better. Alteast for me it did.

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post #18 of 25 Old 06-12-2011, 11:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarrison1 View Post
Probably because the front speakers sound more defined.
Quote:
As soundtrack volume raises the whole speaker does not raise in volume, rather the woofer or tweeter increase separately. Leaves out front ambience from the woofer that would otherwise be there.

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post #19 of 25 Old 06-13-2011, 05:41 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cavu View Post


Genius.

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post #20 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 01:10 AM - Thread Starter
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http://hometheater.about.com/od/hometheateraudiobasics/qt/5-1vs7-1diff.htm

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post #21 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 05:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nosferatu View Post

can someone be a bit more clear on the "passive" bi-amp'ing?


I have a 7.1 Onkyo receiver that gives you the option to bi-amp the fronts and limit yourself to 5.1 (e.g. those 2 extra channels are now channeling front audio).


Is that of any benefit?
No benefit at all. 'Passive bi-amping' is an oxymoron, like 'Army Intelligence'. By definition bi-amping splits the signal into high and low bands prior to being amplified, and there is no passive crossover in the speaker. So-called 'passive biamping' doesn't do that; like bi-wiring it's just a waste of wire.

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post #22 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 06:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post

No benefit at all. 'Passive bi-amping' is an oxymoron, like 'Army Intelligence'. By definition bi-amping splits the signal into high and low bands prior to being amplified, and there is no passive crossover in the speaker. So-called 'passive biamping' doesn't do that; like bi-wiring it's just a waste of wire.
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post #23 of 25 Old 03-14-2013, 07:30 PM
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mgarrison1,
I'm hoping that I can help by clarifying why the bi-amping feature in your Pioneer AV Receiver will more likely lead to reduced current available to the speaker and lower audio quality. That probably seems absurd when you consider that four amps are powering the speaker rather than two; and the widely available bi-amp option offered by receiver and speaker manufacturers. However, it shouldn't seem absurd when you consider two other points:

1) Receiver's inability to filter frequencies contained in the signal
2) a Receiver power supply may not supply as much power to four channels as two channels when driven to high volumes

First point - the Receiver doesn't have a crossover that filters the signal in accordance with the Speakers crossover. Therefore, signals with frequencies that should be rendered by the speaker's tweeters are sent to the mid/woofers as well, and vice versa.

For example, the Receiver doesn't filter frequencies above 2Khz which should be sent to the tweeter, therefore it sends frequencies above and below the speaker's crossover to the tweeter and the speaker high pass filter will dissipate any frequencies that the tweeter is not meant to render.

Second point - the Receiver's power supply and rail design limit the amount of power that each amp can output. Since the Receiver doesn't filter the frequencies, it requires that four amps provide current to the front speaker. Its very likely that the Pioneer cannot deliver as much current to four amps as it can to two amps. Therefore, a Receiver capable of 100 watts continuous power with two amps (channels), might only produce 80 watts continuous power when four amps are given the same signal. That is a pretty common rule of thumb with the exception of a few makes and models - THX certified and high dollar equipment being the exception.

Impedance differences could be considered as well, but probably meaningless for most speakers rated 8 ohms nominal (if not all speakers).
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post #24 of 25 Old 03-21-2013, 04:51 AM - Thread Starter
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Im going front height speakers now. Too much bi-amp bs lol. I have since upgraded to a denon 791 then pioneer 1022 that has been sitting in the box for 2 weeks. (Swapped monitor 30s for 50s and cs1 for cs2) Lookimg to sell the denon and maybe return the 1022 back to newegg and use the money on a denon with audessey xt and 7.1 for under $300. The Denon 1712 has those specs I think. Guy on CList has the 1912 for $250 no xt calibration but I might be able to get it for closer to $200 hopefully.
Im out the bi-amp game now, besides I read somewhere that application is mostly used in large venues which my living room is not nor do I have a separate amp and front heights seem like the way to go for those 2 extra terminals.

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post #25 of 25 Old 04-16-2013, 12:30 AM - Thread Starter
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I just returned a refurb Pioneer VSX-1022 to newegg for $223 and purchased an open box Pioneer VSX-822 from amazon for $156 incl s/h. Dont quite have the 7.1 speakers yet nor do I feel like mounting them so I figured what the heck these are just about identical aside from the 2 additional amps and I paid my light bill with the extra $70 bucks I saved. To my suprise when I opened the box the receiver was new and untouched not a scratch.
I actually like the sound of the Denon I had more so that the Pioneer but whatever I sold the Denon 791 for $170 (7.1, 90w, Arc, TrueHd -no net or airplay) and brought the Pioneer 822 for $156 and gained airplay and networking (lost 10w, 2 amps and Audessey) I'll probabally end up selling the 822 on Ebay in a few months and buy the Denon AVR-1913 when I can get it for a blockbuster price, but for now this will due.

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