Help getting sound to "zone 2" on Denon 890 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 07:36 AM - Thread Starter
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I know this is probably simple but I am struggling getting sound to my auxilliary pairs of speakers, from my 890 "properly", I think.

My setup is:
- 5.1 main room
- 3 pair of speakers throughout the rest of the house, connected through impedance matching vol controls (home-runs, not daisy-chained) and then connected to an inpedance controlling speaker switcher. (probably overkill on the double impedance controlling, I know...but I can always turn it off on the vol controls)

So - if all I want is the same audio that would be on the main 5.1 setup to come through the speaker switcher to go to the speakers throughout the house - how do I do that simply?

My first attempt was to set the Bi-Amp setting to Front B Bi-Amp, and then connecting the speaker selector to the Surr-Back/Amp Assign terminals. I got no sound from this setup. My theory here was to take the extra amps I don't use and send their power to the Surr-Back/Amp Assign terminals.

My second attempt was to move the wires down to Speaker B terminals (still in Front B Bi-amp mode). Now I do get sound. My theory here was maybe I am sending the extra 2 amps power to the Speaker B terminals. I thought this was good-to-go until reading the manual again today, which has me thinking that my Front B Bi-amp setting is doing NOTHING to the Front B terminals, and it's actually just sharing the same main 5 amps to power both Front A (part of my 5.1) and Front B, which I know is bad for the receiver, since I'm not just running one pair of auxilliary speakers (although, as noted, they are impedance controlled). Can anyone clarify around what this current setup is ACTUALLY doing, and if it's what I want or not?

My new thought is to change the Amp Assign mode to Zone 2, and go back to using the Surr Back/Amp-Assign terminals to connect the speaker switch. My understanding of the manual is that this will then use the 2 extra amps in the receiver to power those terminals, and therefore my speaker selector. I believe I can still use digital audio sources if I do that, and control the volume through the receiver easily. I NEED to use digital audio source, since 99% of what I want to listen to through the house speakers is from my computer, which uses an Apple Airport, outputting through Optical.

Related to the zone 2 option, I realize it's an option to use Zone 2 setting and hook an external amp up to the pre-outs, however, then I know I CAN'T use my Apple Airport optical digital connection, basically making all this useless for me.

So...I know there's a few questions here:

1 - Why didn't my Front B Bi-amp setting with selector connected to Surr Back/Amp assign terminals work?

2 - What is actually happening in my current Front B Bi-amp setup with selector connected to Speaker B terminals?

3 - Is the Zone 2 using Surr Back/Amp Assign terminals a better choice and will it work with my digital audio signal?

4 - Confirming there's no reason to even consider the external amp zone 2 pre-out method (which probably stresses the receiver the least), since it can't play anything coming on from the Apple Airport digital optical?

Thanks!
Jeff
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 09:39 AM
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1. This configuration should work. Did you have the Speakers setting to A+B or B?

2. With speakers connected to the Front B speaker posts, they are actually sharing the same amp as the Front A speakers, so impedance is effectively cut in half across all 4 speaker posts. When connected to the Surr Back/Amp Assign posts they are using a dedicated amp.

3. No. Zone 2 output whether from the speaker posts or preouts can only be from "analog" sources.

4. Correct.

For more information on your 890, join us in the Denon 890 Owner's thread.

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post #3 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 09:49 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks JD.

So, basically, it sounds like #1 SHOULD work and would actually be the way to go for me?

When I had it hooked up this way, I tried A+B and just B...no sound from any of the whole house speakers. So, I am thinking of this correctly that, in theory, setting the 890 to Speaker B Bi-Amp should make the speakers (or speaker selector in this case) attached to the Surr Back/Amp Assign posts react the same as if I had them connected to the Speaker B terminals (like I have them now), but in a healthier manner, due to using dedicated amps rather than splitting the front speaker amps between A and B. If that's the case...I wonder what the heck is going on that it didn't work for me?

I can try it again this evening, but, not much variability to mess with... The 890 is still in Speaker B Bi-amp mode, so I'll just switch the speaker selector to the Surr Back/Amp Assign posts again, and give it another shot. Frustrating!!

Worst case, I can send pics of the connections and setup, but it's probably clear to you already what I am describing.

Thanks
Jeff


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Originally Posted by jdsmoothie View Post

1. This configuration should work. Did you have the Speakers setting to A+B or B?

2. With speakers connected to the Front B speaker posts, they are actually sharing the same amp as the Front A speakers, so impedance is effectively cut in half across all 4 speaker posts. When connected to the Surr Back/Amp Assign posts they are using a dedicated amp.

3. No. Zone 2 output whether from the speaker posts or preouts can only be from "analog" sources.

4. Correct.

For more information on your 890, join us in the Denon 890 Owner's thread.

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post #4 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 09:53 AM
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Yes, it is clear, no pics required, and yes, the Bi-amp Front B with speaker selector connected to the Surr Back posts is the healthier configuration to be sure. If still no joy, I would try resetting the microprocessor (p. 68).

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post #5 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 11:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks JD. I will put the wires to the surround back amp assign posts again, press SPEAKER til I'm on "B" and give er a go again.

If I try resetting the processor, does that erase all my settings, audyssey, etc?

I'll report back.

Thanks
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post #6 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 01:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, I don't know what was wrong last night, but I have one guess. All is working fine now with the wires in the Surr Back/Amp Assign terminals, and the 890 set to Bi Amp Speaker B setting.
I think the thing last night was that, sound still comes out of the center channel and subs on my 5.1 system, even with the receiver ONLY on "SPEAKERS B", which is odd and annoying. I probably could only hear that, and not the whole house speakers, especially given that they are quite quiet. I have to crank the volume knobs all the way up for them to be even somewhat audible over the main room's speakers (since they play all the time whether on SPEAKERS A+B or just SPEAKERS B). That may be my double impedance controlling though...time to mess with the vol controls and see if disabling the imp control on there helps get them louder.

Thanks again
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post #7 of 7 Old 05-31-2011, 01:31 PM
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Unless you change the Front Speaker Setup (STEREO) setting (p. 29) to "B", and then set the surround mode to STEREO, the AVR is acting as is should .. ie. sending audio to all speakers in your setup.

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