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post #1 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 11:07 AM - Thread Starter
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polk rtia5 or rtia9 with pioneer 921

I currently have a pioneer 921 7.1 receiver with front rtia5 towers. I have 30 days to decide on them. On sale I can replace with rtia9 for about $450 more. Is there any benefit to do this?. I am fine with the extra $$. My room is about 12 x 20 with 8 ft ceiling. I have the pioneer 921 which output is only about 80 watts I believe. I have Cambridge s50 centre. S70 surround. S30 in back. I do have a subwoofer also. Any input is appreciated. Thanks
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post #2 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 11:14 AM - Thread Starter
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The subwoofer is NXG NX-BAS-500.
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post #3 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 11:15 AM
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What's the make and model of the sub?

How much did you pay for the RTiA5?

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #4 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 11:44 AM - Thread Starter
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The subwoofer is NRG NX-bas-500. I recently bought the rtia5 for $500 for the pair. The rtia9 are on sale for $900 a pair. These prices include tax and I am in Canada
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post #5 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 11:44 AM
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There lots of better options available. What is your total budget?

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post #6 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 11:55 AM - Thread Starter
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I was not looking at replacing the whole system only the front towers but am ooen to suggestions. I could justify spending about $3000 but only if I am much better off than current setup. I really don't want to discard everything. But ooen to all ideas and opinions.
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post #7 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 01:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
The subwoofer is NRG NX-bas-500. I recently bought the rtia5 for $500 for the pair. The rtia9 are on sale for $900 a pair. These prices include tax and I am in Canada
Are you still within the return period for the RTiA5?

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #8 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
I currently have a pioneer 921 7.1 receiver with front rtia5 towers. I have 30 days to decide on them. On sale I can replace with rtia9 for about $450 more. Is there any benefit to do this?. I am fine with the extra $$. My room is about 12 x 20 with 8 ft ceiling. I have the pioneer 921 which output is only about 80 watts I believe. I have Cambridge s50 centre. S70 surround. S30 in back. I do have a subwoofer also. Any input is appreciated. Thanks
Since you have a sub save your money on the towers and get one more sub.

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post #9 of 43 Old 07-18-2017, 02:00 PM - Thread Starter
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The polk RTIA5 that I currently have setup at home. They sound much better than the Cambridge S70 fronts that I previously had but am wondering if I should return and purchase the RTIA9 on sale or something else. I have about a week left on my return time.
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post #10 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 07:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post
Since you have a sub save your money on the towers and get one more sub.
Are you suggesting to keep the polk RTIA5 and add another subwoofer or return the RTIA5.
Thanks
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post #11 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 07:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by pase22 View Post
There lots of better options available. What is your total budget?
What are your other suggestions? Are you suggesting other fronts or whole new system? For fronts up to 1k. If more than fronts up to 3k but would need to be big improvement
Thanks
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post #12 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 07:57 AM - Thread Starter
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My main question is any benefit to change the polk RTIA5 to RTIA9? The RTIA9 are only on sale until tomorrow. My opinion is that my system won't drive them but I am no expert so looking for opinions
Thanks
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post #13 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
Are you suggesting to keep the polk RTIA5 and add another subwoofer or return the RTIA5.
Thanks
If you like the RTI-A5's you should keep them. The only advantage to getting the RTI-A9's is deeper bass extension and a little more volume. By crossing over to sub at 80hz that advantage is irrelevant. I think you'd be better served getting an HSU VTF-3MKS sub. You'd have all the bass you need with this sub and will easily crush your current sub. Of you can always go with 2 of the smaller VTF-2 MK5 subs which give smoother even bass across the whole room.
http://www.hsuresearch.com/subwoofers.html
The RBH I-12 would be comparable to the VTF-2 and can play down to 20hz.
https://rbhsound.com/bstock-i12.php

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post #14 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 09:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
Are you suggesting to keep the polk RTIA5 and add another subwoofer or return the RTIA5.
Thanks
Keep the RTiA5s if you like how they sound and add another sub. Another sub will make a much greater difference than going to a larger tower.

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post #15 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
The subwoofer is NRG NX-bas-500. I recently bought the rtia5 for $500 for the pair. The rtia9 are on sale for $900 a pair. These prices include tax and I am in Canada
You can get the Rtia9's for $799 new from Gibby's Electronics (I believe there's a low flat rate shipping fee).

FWIW I had the Rtia9's and LOVED them, even with my dual (at the time) SVS PC12's. The crossover point isn't a closed door, there will still be plenty of sound below your crossover being played by your woofers. With the towers, you also have the benefit of either doing 'double bass' (sub + mains) if you like the sound, or a great option for 2.0 music with the towers running full range. The only reason I returned mine is because they're HUUGGGEE speakers, and just didn't work in my space.

Last edited by Sean Spamilton; 07-19-2017 at 09:23 AM.
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post #16 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 10:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Sean Spamilton View Post
You can get the Rtia9's for $799 new from Gibby's Electronics (I believe there's a low flat rate shipping fee).

FWIW I had the Rtia9's and LOVED them, even with my dual (at the time) SVS PC12's. The crossover point isn't a closed door, there will still be plenty of sound below your crossover being played by your woofers. With the towers, you also have the benefit of either doing 'double bass' (sub + mains) if you like the sound, or a great option for 2.0 music with the towers running full range. The only reason I returned mine is because they're HUUGGGEE speakers, and just didn't work in my space.
Thanks for your comments. I am in Canada & $800 for both is currently the sale price at bestbuy.ca With our 13% tax rate it pushes them to just over 900.
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post #17 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 10:42 AM
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Consider looking at the DIYSG 1099s. You can probably find them already build in the classifieds. They will be far superior to the RTI line and a lot easier to drive using your receiver. They are 99db sensitive vs the polks which are 89-90db sensitive. That means require less than an 1/8th of the power the polks require.

My theater had all polk speakers (A9s, A5s) before I upgraded:


Quote:
Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
Thanks for your comments. I am in Canada & $800 for both is currently the sale price at bestbuy.ca With our 13% tax rate it pushes them to just over 900.

My home theater
Speakers: 3 JTR 212HTR (LCR), 2 Jtr Single 8LP (S), 2 JTR Triple 12LF (SB)) , 4 Volt 10LX (Atmos)
Subwoofers: 10 Sealed UXL-18, 5 Crowson Shadow 8 transducers, 3 Buttkicker LFE
Display: JVC RS400
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post #18 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 11:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Consider looking at the DIYSG 1099s. You can probably find them already build in the classifieds. They will be far superior to the RTI line and a lot easier to drive using your receiver. They are 99db sensitive vs the polks which are 89-90db sensitive. That means require less than an 1/8th of the power the polks require.

My theater had all polk speakers (A9s, A5s) before I upgraded:
I am intrigued by your former polk setup. You mentioned that you had both the A9 & A5. What did you have in that setup? Where were the A9 & A5 used. What else did you have? How was the sound? I am now thinking that maybe I could keep the 5's with the 9's. I did get a decent price on the 5's. I do still have a few days to return the 5's also.
Thanks
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post #19 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 11:22 AM
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I had four of the A5s as surrounds. The system sounded decent until I listened to high sensitivity speakers. I am trying to save you the upgrade path Especially that you are just using a receiver to drive them.


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Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
I am intrigued by your former polk setup. You mentioned that you had both the A9 & A5. What did you have in that setup? Where were the A9 & A5 used. What else did you have? How was the sound? I am now thinking that maybe I could keep the 5's with the 9's. I did get a decent price on the 5's. I do still have a few days to return the 5's also.
Thanks

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Speakers: 3 JTR 212HTR (LCR), 2 Jtr Single 8LP (S), 2 JTR Triple 12LF (SB)) , 4 Volt 10LX (Atmos)
Subwoofers: 10 Sealed UXL-18, 5 Crowson Shadow 8 transducers, 3 Buttkicker LFE
Display: JVC RS400
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post #20 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
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I had four of the A5s as surrounds. The system sounded decent until I listened to high sensitivity speakers. I am trying to save you the upgrade path Especially that you are just using a receiver to drive them.
I really have no idea where I would find these in central Canada.
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post #21 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 01:46 PM
 
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Also have a full RTIA setup, driving them w/ ATON of power though (275watts/tower and 265watts/center and surrounds). Even though I have 2 very, very large subs, I still think the RTIA towers are way more dynamic than a smaller tower or even a bookshelf. I am crossing the towers over at 60hz and the center at 80hz. These things will push your hair back

Do not try to push the RTIa9 w/ a receiver, you would be wasting your money upgrading to them. I would recommend at least 200 per tower before you start opening them up and getting the characteristics of how they are meant to sound. I have heard these on a straight receiver, and I was not impressed with them.
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post #22 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 02:22 PM
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Thanks for your comments. I am in Canada & $800 for both is currently the sale price at bestbuy.ca With our 13% tax rate it pushes them to just over 900.
Unless you plan on doing a lot of critical music listening in 2.0 mode, I'd skip towers of any kind and just get a second more powerful subwoofer and good bookshelf speakers for your LCR that don't require any special high powered amp to sound their best.

In Canada, your speaker choices are usually slim and grossly overpriced compared to the US... HOWEVER, there is currently *one* option which is shockingly less LESS expensive in Canada than in the US, for some excellent speakers:
https://www.amazon.ca/NHT-Audio-Supe...s=nht+superone

I have no idea how Amazon.ca does it, but if I were you I'd grab 3 of those for your fronts (having the center be identical to the L/R is actually the acoustic ideal). NHTs are known for their accuracy and neutrality, so they will do music and HT equally well. Extra bonus is that these are sealed cabinet speakers so they don't need any rear clearance unlike a traditional rear-ported speaker. They also have a beautiful glossy finish which the photos don't do any justice to. If I were in Canada these would be my first choice.

For the sub, I'd get this:
https://www.electronicsforless.ca/sv...ofer-3884.html

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #23 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 03:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Zorba922 View Post
In Canada, your speaker choices are usually slim and grossly overpriced compared to the US... HOWEVER, there is currently *one* option which is shockingly less LESS expensive in Canada than in the US, for some excellent speakers:
https://www.amazon.ca/NHT-Audio-Supe...s=nht+superone
With a poor sensitivity rating of 86db I'd steer clear of those especially given OP's output needs with the size of his space.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LFE Junkie View Post
Also have a full RTIA setup, driving them w/ ATON of power though (275watts/tower and 265watts/center and surrounds). Even though I have 2 very, very large subs, I still think the RTIA towers are way more dynamic than a smaller tower or even a bookshelf. I am crossing the towers over at 60hz and the center at 80hz. These things will push your hair back

Do not try to push the RTIa9 w/ a receiver, you would be wasting your money upgrading to them. I would recommend at least 200 per tower before you start opening them up and getting the characteristics of how they are meant to sound. I have heard these on a straight receiver, and I was not impressed with them.
The difference between 275 watts and 100 watts is only ~4db of output. Given that the RTiA9's are fairly sensitive at 90db (independently measured) OP will still do pretty good with what he's got IMO. He could always get them, push it to about -10db from reference, and if that's not blowing his eardrums then he could consider an external amp.

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post #24 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 03:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Unless you plan on doing a lot of critical music listening in 2.0 mode, I'd skip towers of any kind and just get a second more powerful subwoofer and good bookshelf speakers for your LCR that don't require any special high powered amp to sound their best.

In Canada, your speaker choices are usually slim and grossly overpriced compared to the US... HOWEVER, there is currently *one* option which is shockingly less LESS expensive in Canada than in the US, for some excellent speakers:
https://www.amazon.ca/NHT-Audio-Supe...s=nht+superone

I have no idea how Amazon.ca does it, but if I were you I'd grab 3 of those for your fronts (having the center be identical to the L/R is actually the acoustic ideal). NHTs are known for their accuracy and neutrality, so they will do music and HT equally well. Extra bonus is that these are sealed cabinet speakers so they don't need any rear clearance unlike a traditional rear-ported speaker. They also have a beautiful glossy finish which the photos don't do any justice to. If I were in Canada these would be my first choice.

For the sub, I'd get this:
https://www.electronicsforless.ca/sv...ofer-3884.html
I do listen to a lot of 2.0 music. Excuse my ignorance but can I connect an amp to my pioneer 921? I am thinking no. How do I connect an amp? Do I need a new receiver plus amp?
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post #25 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 03:25 PM
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I do listen to a lot of 2.0 music. Excuse my ignorance but can I connect an amp to my pioneer 921? I am thinking no. How do I connect an amp? Do I need a new receiver plus amp?
Your Pio 921 doesn't have amplifier pre-outs, unfortunately, so you'd have to use its onboard amps. You'd need to get a receiver with pre-outs if you wanted to use an external amp, but that is a very expensive path.

Since you do do 2.0 music then I guess you might as well keep the RTiA5, $500CAD = $400USD so that IS a good price. Plus Sean has a good point about the sensitivity issue.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #26 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 03:37 PM
 
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I do listen to a lot of 2.0 music. Excuse my ignorance but can I connect an amp to my pioneer 921? I am thinking no. How do I connect an amp? Do I need a new receiver plus amp?
If you do mostly 2.0 music, then absolutely i would go w/ a 2-channel dedicated amp since you will be running them large at all freq. range. An 80 watt receiver will not even come close to doing a pair of RTIa9 justice no matter what the sensitivity is. An 80 watt receiver is not fully rated, you are talking more about 40 watts per channel.

Its not just how loud they are able to play, it is the dynamic and headroom along w/ preventing clipping from the amp source. Also, if you push your receiver too hard, distortion comes in the picture and will completely damage a speaker.

Either 2 of these: https://www.outlawaudio.com/products/2200.html
Or 1 of these: https://emotiva.com/products/amplifiers/xpa-gen3 (2-channel configuration)

Last edited by LFE Junkie; 07-19-2017 at 03:54 PM.
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post #27 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 03:50 PM
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Your Pio 921 doesn't have amplifier pre-outs, unfortunately, so you'd have to use its onboard amps. You'd need to get a receiver with pre-outs if you wanted to use an external amp, but that is a very expensive path.

Since you do do 2.0 music then I guess you might as well keep the RTiA5, $500CAD = $400USD so that IS a good price. Plus Sean has a good point about the sensitivity issue.
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Originally Posted by LFE Junkie View Post
If you do mostly 2.0 music, then absolutely i would go w/ a 2-channel dedicated amp since you will be running them large at all freq. range. An 80 watt receiver will not even come close to doing a pair of RTIa9 justice no matter what the sensitivity is. Its not just how loud they are able to play, it is the dynamic and headroom along w/ preventing clipping from the amp source. Also, if you push to hard and not hear it, distortion comes in the picture and will completely damage a speaker.

Either 2 of these: https://www.outlawaudio.com/products/2200.html
Or 1 of these: https://emotiva.com/products/amplifiers/xpa-gen3 (2-channel configuration)
So it looks like (unbelievably) we've come to some kind of consensus here with regards to the Polks anyways - but I disagree with LFE Junkie to some extent about the need for an external amp depending on your required listening levels. Your Polk RTi5's have a similar sensitivity rating; play them at about -10 to -5 db or so from reference (0), and see if they're loud enough. If they fill your space nicely, then so will the RTi9s. Most people usually only use about 20 watts or so of power in a typical listening session anyways. 900 CDN all in for the RTi9s is a great price. If you find they're not absolutely ruining you with their output with your current amp you can look into something else down the road. That being said, I think you'll be fine.
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post #28 of 43 Old 07-19-2017, 03:57 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Sean Spamilton View Post
So it looks like (unbelievably) we've come to some kind of consensus here with regards to the Polks anyways - but I disagree with LFE Junkie to some extent about the need for an external amp depending on your required listening levels. Your Polk RTi5's have a similar sensitivity rating; play them at about -10 to -5 db or so from reference (0), and see if they're loud enough. If they fill your space nicely, then so will the RTi9s. Most people usually only use about 20 watts or so of power in a typical listening session anyways. 900 CDN all in for the RTi9s is a great price. If you find they're not absolutely ruining you with their output with your current amp you can look into something else down the road. That being said, I think you'll be fine.
If he is content pushing his Rti5 w/ the receiver, than jumping to the RTIa9 is a complete waste of time and money without an amp. Keep in mind, his receiver is only rated for roughly half of what it says, not a true rating. So if he pushes his volume to -5db, then he needs to watch out for clipping at the receiver/internal amp and distortion out of his speakers.

If he is comparing the Rti5 vs Rtia9 for 2.0 music. If he runs the rtia9 on an external amp, it will completely annihilate the rti5 receiver-equipped tower.

I had ran mine at 2.0 w/ large setting and no subs. I have also heard these same towers demoed off of a receiver. The difference is quite staggering to say the least and it had nothing to do w/ just volume.

Last edited by LFE Junkie; 07-19-2017 at 04:07 PM.
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post #29 of 43 Old 07-20-2017, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by LFE Junkie View Post
If he is content pushing his Rti5 w/ the receiver, than jumping to the RTIa9 is a complete waste of time and money without an amp. Keep in mind, his receiver is only rated for roughly half of what it says, not a true rating. So if he pushes his volume to -5db, then he needs to watch out for clipping at the receiver/internal amp and distortion out of his speakers.

If he is comparing the Rti5 vs Rtia9 for 2.0 music. If he runs the rtia9 on an external amp, it will completely annihilate the rti5 receiver-equipped tower.

I had ran mine at 2.0 w/ large setting and no subs. I have also heard these same towers demoed off of a receiver. The difference is quite staggering to say the least and it had nothing to do w/ just volume.
Once again excuse my ignorance but if I had a receiver which allowed an amp to be connected and I purchased the rtia9 speakers would the speakers work with my HT & for 2.0 music? Or do the speakers need to be connected to only one? I don't want to buy a new receiver if they don't work thru both. If it's only one then no sense buying a new receiver that allows an amp to be connected. My final question is my pioneer 921 has zone 2 connection. Can an amp be ran off zone 2? Then to rtia9 speakers? I realize the Rtia9's won't work in that setup for HT.
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post #30 of 43 Old 07-20-2017, 08:06 AM
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Originally Posted by wadennis View Post
Once again excuse my ignorance but if I had a receiver which allowed an amp to be connected and I purchased the rtia9 speakers would the speakers work with my HT & for 2.0 music?
Yes. I was doing this for a while many years ago, using an external NAD amp with a Marantz AVR that had pre-outs.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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