Bose 901 compatible recievers ? - AVS Forum

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lightguy's Avatar lightguy
06:41 PM Liked: 11
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I'm looking for an inexpensive Bose 901 compatible AVR reciever in 5.1 or 7.1.
901's are an old system originally set up for PreAmp - to a specialised 901 equaliser - to Amps. IE the equalizer is between the preamp and amp. Alternatively it can be connected as if the EQ were a tape recorder. However I would like a simple Tape monitor or Tape function external switch instead of having to go into menus to permanently set this up. I have been using a 2 channel Harmon Kardon HK25 reciever that had pre in/out ports to plug the equalizer into. The reciever normally functioned with by-pass pins that I removed for the 901 EQ set-up.
Its time to join the 21st century with a surround system in the living room.
I bought a Pioneer 819 and it is totally unfriendly in this manner.
Does anyone know of a AVR reciever with easy pre amp or tape loop ability.
My son says trash the 901's and get real speakers. Not going to happen.
diamonddelts's Avatar diamonddelts
09:13 PM Liked: 15
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You son is a very wise young man.
malovich's Avatar malovich
09:27 PM Liked: 10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diamonddelts View Post

You son is a very wise young man.

I agree, I think your son is very smart.

If you do stick with the 901's then I wish you great luck matching a surround sound system to them
Perfectionist2's Avatar Perfectionist2
09:29 PM Liked: 18
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thirty years ago when i was in college i traded for a set of 901s. At the time i thought they were fantastic! But everything sounded good in those days especially with chemical enhancement!
MichaelJHuman's Avatar MichaelJHuman
02:07 AM Liked: 125
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06-08-2010 | Posts: 18,999
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I don't know of any AVRs with a pre out/main in connector. Record out, when present, is analog only on every receiver I have seen.

What you could do, is to get a receiver with a pre out. Connect that to the EQ. Then connect the EQ to an external amplifier.

One of the more affordable amps is the UPA-2

http://emotiva.com/upa2.shtm

There are used amps, pro amps, and other amps cheaper yet.
MarkSmith's Avatar MarkSmith
07:29 AM Liked: 10
post #6 of 52
06-08-2010 | Posts: 360
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightguy View Post

I'm looking for an inexpensive Bose 901 compatible AVR reciever in 5.1 or 7.1.
901's are an old system originally set up for PreAmp - to a specialised 901 equaliser - to Amps. IE the equalizer is between the preamp and amp. Alternatively it can be connected as if the EQ were a tape recorder. However I would like a simple Tape monitor or Tape function external switch instead of having to go into menus to permanently set this up. I have been using a 2 channel Harmon Kardon HK25 reciever that had pre in/out ports to plug the equalizer into. The reciever normally functioned with by-pass pins that I removed for the 901 EQ set-up.
Its time to join the 21st century with a surround system in the living room.
I bought a Pioneer 819 and it is totally unfriendly in this manner.
Does anyone know of a AVR reciever with easy pre amp or tape loop ability.
My son says trash the 901's and get real speakers. Not going to happen.

You need an AVR with a tape monitor loop or record out switch from what I understand. No entry level receiver offers this. Perhaps look for a used amp. Don't listen to the BOSE bashers as they likely have never even heard the 901's and are just parroting others opinions.

Mark
petew's Avatar petew
07:36 AM Liked: 49
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Put the 901's in your workshop. They make great bar/shop speakers. You can really crank them without blasting your ears if you get close to them. Good if you're up and moving around the shop. They can drown out the noise from the dust collector too.

Are yours the early generation sealed cabinets? If so they need a TON of power. The ported type are very efficient - they have little jet engine nacelle ports on the center of each angled section facing the wall.
lightguy's Avatar lightguy
08:45 AM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petew View Post

The ported type are very efficient - they have little jet engine nacelle ports on the center of each angled section facing the wall.

Yes; Series 4. The modern ones

I used a big bucks Pioneer Elite reciever in the Bat Cave home theatre that has the MCAAC which set up the sound very nicely. Figured the cheapo Pio 819 would do the same even with 901's but didnt count on the set up hassle.

Going to go down to the High end Audio store today and pick their brains for a solution. They owe me.
JOHNnDENVER's Avatar JOHNnDENVER
08:53 AM Liked: 12
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Your son already gave you the solution.
steveklein's Avatar steveklein
09:01 AM Liked: 10
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I've never heard the 901s specifically, but if they sound like other Bose speakers I've heard, sell them, spend $500 on highly praised speakers, and you will be glad you did.

Seems pretty ridiculous that these 901s don't just work with any receiver. Clearly before my time.
kouack's Avatar kouack
09:17 AM Liked: 10
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oopppss deleted wrong thread
lightguy's Avatar lightguy
09:25 AM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perfectionist2 View Post

thirty years ago when i was in college i traded for a set of 901s. At the time i thought they were fantastic! But everything sounded good in those days especially with chemical enhancement!

Those were the daze.
I'm going to use these to fill a fairly large room and run some bookshelf speakers for surround. Have a decent second hand sub from a local speaker builder, Toby in Fort Worth, that has been hand building speakers since Woodstock.

Doing the Time Warp.
lightguy's Avatar lightguy
09:39 AM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveklein View Post

I've never heard the 901s specifically, but if they sound like other Bose speakers I've heard, sell them, spend $500 on highly praised speakers, and you will be glad you did.

Seems pretty ridiculous that these 901s don't just work with any receiver. Clearly before my time.

901's were the solution to the question that was never asked.
Actually they were the speaker that MADE Bose.
What the Klipsh-horn was to Klipsch. Klipsh still exists right or did I miss that memo as well ?

I do have new KEF's in the HT that sound awesome so know what thats about.
This system will be for watching TV in a large room. With surround and a sub not particularily for high fidelity.
MichaelJHuman's Avatar MichaelJHuman
09:40 AM Liked: 125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkSmith View Post

You need an AVR with a tape monitor loop or record out switch from what I understand. No entry level receiver offers this. Perhaps look for a used amp. Don't listen to the BOSE bashers as they likely have never even heard the 901's and are just parroting others opinions.

Mark

Tape monitor loops are not uncommon, but they only work with analog inputs. There might be receivers with tape loops that work with digital devices, but I have never heard of them.
MichaelJHuman's Avatar MichaelJHuman
09:41 AM Liked: 125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveklein View Post

I've never heard the 901s specifically, but if they sound like other Bose speakers I've heard, sell them, spend $500 on highly praised speakers, and you will be glad you did.

Seems pretty ridiculous that these 901s don't just work with any receiver. Clearly before my time.

Because they have an EQ box. Without it, the speakers won't work as designed. Back in the 70s/80s, tape loops were very common on receivers and worked for EQs and such. That was before the evil digital era
petew's Avatar petew
10:54 AM Liked: 49
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Back to your original question: The only way I see to do it would be to get a receiver with preamp outputs and use a separate two channel amp for the 901's. Put the Bose EQ between the pre-outs and power amp.

Old receivers had pre out -> main in jacks where you could insert the EQ. Nothing I've seen lately has that essential "main in" jack.

Really inexpensive amp here. More powerful solution here.

Keep in mind that those 901's are very efficient. Also they will not be fazed if you drive the amp to clipping - no tweeters to blow.

If you want to keep your Pioneer 819 receiver with no pre outs you could use one of these from the car audio world.

Don't let anyone diss your 901's. They are great for what they are.
lightguy's Avatar lightguy
07:07 AM Liked: 11
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First off thanks for all the replies.
I contacted BOSE Technical support and they were very helpful in sending to me not only detailed instructions and diagrams on how to do it but a also a list of current receivers and integrated amps that are compatible.
There are about 20 including a Pioneer Elite, and a few Harmons Cardons and Denons etc. Surprisingly my old HK AVR25 was not on the list but it worked.
The list goes from 2001 to 2009 so I can still use something "modern" with 5.1 and up and HDMI in/outs.
Exactly what I need.

Now off to Videogon to snatch that super deal when someone upgrades to the latest greatest in 4 dimensional sound to go with their 3D TV.
petew's Avatar petew
10:02 AM Liked: 49
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Are the receiver they suggested 5.1 or 7.1 units? Like old Mr Reagan used to say, "Trust but Verify". Seems unlikely to me that a typical HT receiver would have the proper hooks for the EQ.
MichaelJHuman's Avatar MichaelJHuman
10:10 AM Liked: 125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightguy View Post

First off thanks for all the replies.
I contacted BOSE Technical support and they were very helpful in sending to me not only detailed instructions and diagrams on how to do it but a also a list of current receivers and integrated amps that are compatible.
There are about 20 including a Pioneer Elite, and a few Harmons Cardons and Denons etc. Surprisingly my old HK AVR25 was not on the list but it worked.
The list goes from 2001 to 2009 so I can still use something "modern" with 5.1 and up and HDMI in/outs.
Exactly what I need.

Now off to Videogon to snatch that super deal when someone upgrades to the latest greatest in 4 dimensional sound to go with their 3D TV.

I would be interesting in their suggested connections for these receivers. If they are suggesting using the record loop, that will not work, in general.

FYI - Harmon Kardon, not Cardon
Plex's Avatar Plex
10:36 AM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkSmith View Post

You need an AVR with a tape monitor loop or record out switch from what I understand. No entry level receiver offers this. Perhaps look for a used amp. Don't listen to the BOSE bashers as they likely have never even heard the 901's and are just parroting others opinions.

Mark

Use to tell my friend that owned a set of 901's, all he really had was two boxes of car speaker
petew's Avatar petew
01:50 PM Liked: 49
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Heard any car speakers lately? How about a Ranger Supercab with eight speakers, a sub, tons of clean power and Audyssey MultEQ XT working black magic?
rdclark's Avatar rdclark
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The people posting knee-jerk Bose bashing need to step back. We all understand how Bose operates today, but they didn't start out as an expensive-junk marketing firm. There was some valid psychoacoustic research and innovative engineering behind the 901 series. These were speakers that set out to accomplish a specific thing -- provide full-range high-fidelity sound from a system that would use the room boundaries to replicate the effect of a concert hall, where the majority of the sound reaching the listener is reflected -- in a single pair of relatively compact enclosures.

That may not be anyone's goal today -- surround technology has supplanted this approach, for one thing -- but the premise was valid, the science was solid, and the speakers sounded very good in the right room. They weren't for playing rock music in a near-field situation, but playing acoustic music from classical to jazz in a medium or medium-large room that was itself fairly dry acoustically, they could be very impressive.

Bose has long since transformed into a different company with different values. But the 901 -- at least the originals that I remember from the late 70s -- was a desirable speaker for many people, and was well-respected among many audiophiles. I didn't buy them myself -- I was on a budget and bought Advents -- but I can't say I didn't covet them from time to time.

And yes, I don't remember ever even seeing a receiver or integrated amp that didn't have a tape loop at that time. It was as basic a feature as a volume control.
petew's Avatar petew
03:34 PM Liked: 49
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Anyone has to admire the brand recognition and loyalty that Bose has earned from their fans. The OP said he called Bose. Someone talked to him and tried to help solve a problem or find a solution. Try that with many of the more "respected" brands.

I bought my 901's used in 1977. In about 2000 or so they developed foam rot on the driver suspension. I was ready to chuck them into the dumpster but went ahead and wrote a letter to Bose. They offered to replace my 23 year old, dusty, worn out, abused series III speakers with a BRAND NEW set of series VI's with full warranty for $300. Yeah, three hundred bucks. Pretty good investment IMHO.

Would I buy Bose again? Nah. Recommend them to someone? Nope. Grab another set of 901's off the bay or craigslist? In a heartbeat.
MichaelJHuman's Avatar MichaelJHuman
04:54 PM Liked: 125
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Oh please, not another Bose bashing thread...

Anyone who wants to read such a thread can find one on google easily. Why can't people just answer Bose owners questions without attacking their ownership. Or a polite, "I would personally replace the 901s with something better, but that's just my opinion..." and then answer their question.

To me, it's rude to offer no help on the original question while at the same time trying to convince someone they own a bad product (which many people are quite happy with), which in my mind, implies the poster wants to feel better about themselves because they apparently know better.

Anyway, off my soapbox.
Perfectionist2's Avatar Perfectionist2
06:28 PM Liked: 18
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I loved my 901s and also recall that audiophiles spoke very highly of them. Remember, that was 35 years ago. Technology has changed but at the time they were great.
petew's Avatar petew
06:43 PM Liked: 49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelJHuman View Post

Oh please, not another Bose bashing thread...

Yeah let's not let this spin outta control. I'll chill....
lightguy's Avatar lightguy
09:56 PM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by petew View Post

Are the receiver they suggested 5.1 or 7.1 units? Like old Mr Reagan used to say, "Trust but Verify". Seems unlikely to me that a typical HT receiver would have the proper hooks for the EQ.

I'm going to print out the list and do some research this weekend.
I namely need pics of the back side for "Tape Monitor" (Not; Tape) or pre in/outs as instructed by Bose.
Not quite sure how that will mix with 5.1 or 7.1 if the signal in from the Bose equalizer modifies everything not just the front 901's which recognise that signal.

Worst case; I buy a year old Receiver as someone upgrades.
I've come to the conclusion to get a good or even great one not an cheapo.
The receivers recommended I would assume will be pretty substantial spec-wise if they went to the effort to build in Pre in/outs.
If the Bose 901's work; Killer !
If not then someone upstairs is telling me its time to let go
lightguy's Avatar lightguy
10:04 PM Liked: 11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdclark View Post

The people posting knee-jerk Bose bashing need to step back. We all understand how Bose operates today, but they didn't start out as an expensive-junk marketing firm. There was some valid psychoacoustic research and innovative engineering behind the 901 series. These were speakers that set out to accomplish a specific thing -- provide full-range high-fidelity sound from a system that would use the room boundaries to replicate the effect of a concert hall, where the majority of the sound reaching the listener is reflected -- in a single pair of relatively compact enclosures.

That may not be anyone's goal today -- surround technology has supplanted this approach, for one thing -- but the premise was valid, the science was solid, and the speakers sounded very good in the right room. They weren't for playing rock music in a near-field situation, but playing acoustic music from classical to jazz in a medium or medium-large room that was itself fairly dry acoustically, they could be very impressive.

Bose has long since transformed into a different company with different values. But the 901 -- at least the originals that I remember from the late 70s -- was a desirable speaker for many people, and was well-respected among many audiophiles. I didn't buy them myself -- I was on a budget and bought Advents -- but I can't say I didn't covet them from time to time.

And yes, I don't remember ever even seeing a receiver or integrated amp that didn't have a tape loop at that time. It was as basic a feature as a volume control.

I got chills reading that.

Look at it like driving a 63 Vette.
Sure there are better, faster, more economical cars.
I lost some of my high end hearing working on helicopters. So the very top of the audible spectrum is not really needed. With the sub I can feel and enjoy the bottom end.
I still get to "drive" with the 901's.
What could be better ?

Just so you know I went nuts in the Theatre room. Finished building sound absorbant panels last weekend to eliminate all echo/reverb in an already pretty good room. Kef speakers. Def Tech Trinity Sub. Pio Elite Receiver. Very proud of that build. And I'm fairly critical.
petew's Avatar petew
08:35 AM Liked: 49
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Check out the attached sketch. I linked to the Speaker to RCA converter and PE amp earlier.
LL
MichaelJHuman's Avatar MichaelJHuman
09:33 AM Liked: 125
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lightguy View Post

I'm going to print out the list and do some research this weekend.
I namely need pics of the back side for "Tape Monitor" (Not; Tape) or pre in/outs as instructed by Bose.
Not quite sure how that will mix with 5.1 or 7.1 if the signal in from the Bose equalizer modifies everything not just the front 901's which recognise that signal.

Worst case; I buy a year old Receiver as someone upgrades.
I've come to the conclusion to get a good or even great one not an cheapo.
The receivers recommended I would assume will be pretty substantial spec-wise if they went to the effort to build in Pre in/outs.
If the Bose 901's work; Killer !
If not then someone upstairs is telling me its time to let go

Did you note my posts about record out not working with digital sources? Receivers, as a general rule, can only provide a record out signal for source devices connected to an analog input.

I would be interested in some specific models, to see what they are thinking about.

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