Connect Bose 901 speakers to Yamaha RX A3010 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 01:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Hello, I have just purchased some additional components for my home stereo.
These are Bose 901 speakers with Active Equalizer and a Yamaha RX A3010 Surround Amplifier.
How do I connect the Bose Active Equalizer to the RX A3010 Surround Amplifier.
In the instructions for the Bose Active Equalizer it states to connect them to either:
1) Tape monitor in & out
2) Main amp in & out

I have had my original set up since 1994 which included:
Yamaha RX 460 170Watt Stereo Receiver
Yamaha DSP E1000 270Watt Digital Sound Processor / Amplifier
With Yamaha tape deck and 5 disc CD player
These power Bose 301 speakers as fronts with Yamaha centre and rear surrounds.
I know the Yamaha RX A3010 Surround Amplifier combines the Yamaha RX 460 170Watt Stereo Receiver with a newer version of what the DSP E1000 270Watt Digital Sound Processor / Amplifier did, thus making these two components redundant.

In the instructions for the Bose Active Equalizer it states to connect them to either:
1) Tape monitor in & out, (# This is currently how I have the 901’s set up on my Yamaha RX 460 170Watt Stereo Receiver #)
2) Main amp in & out
Fix Ya online help suggested:
Use Pre Amp out to Equalizer in

# There is one, (Single left & right, not a double), Pre Amp out
# There are no Tape play / monitor input outputs and no Mains Amp or Equalizer input outputs

The bloke at the Yamaha store suggested using a single to double cable going from the single Pre out into the Bose 901 Active Equalizer, but he admitted he did not really know.

Thanks for any help


PS I would like to do this without purchasing an additional Amp.
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post #2 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 08:25 AM
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I think it's time to upgrade your ancient BOSE speakers.

Nope, these speakers won't work at all with your receiver as you have no record loop monitor switch or even a record out switch. You also lack the main in, power amp inputs also. I think the last Home Theater receiver to offer these was my previous Yamaha RX-V2095. You actually need main speaker preamp ouputs, main speaker power amp inputs, as there is no main speaker power amp ouputs as the power amp is using that signal wink.gif . You'll need different speakers.

Using an inconvenient work around, you can use with a Denon AV receiver though, but I would recommend against it because of the inconvenience, incompatibility with some surround modes, and poor sound quality.

The reason is that these speakers only have 4" full range drivers that have terrible frequency response. They need the active EQ to compensate for that. To use this active equalizer, you need a tape monitor built into the receiver. They don't make Home Theater Receivers with this anymore. Denon and some other receivers have a Record out selector but not a true tape monitor. You must select the input which the active equalizer is playing into. So leave the receiver on that input always, and change the record out manual switch to change the inputs you want to listen to. So it can be done, but that Denon Record out selector switch may fail prematurely as I don't think it was intended or designed for that much constant use. Plus your remote will do little good with this manual switch.

OHHH, you can't use these speakers for DPL (2 or X or Z) as equalizers mess with the phase angle of the signals which mess up any matrix decoding. You can get by with discrete surround formats though, just select these speakers as small.

The biggest question is why do you want to use these speakers?? My friend, years and years ago, had some given to him that would had been thrown out otherwise. I've heard these in a demo room and can't think why you'd want to use them on such a good receiver. There's so many choices for great sound from other makers.

I've had my Bose when I was young and quickly upgraded to Infinity speakers. They weren't the most expensive Bose model but had the deepest bass, more accurate sound than the reflecting models that Bose is mainly known for except their mid bass modules with their 2.5" full range speaker cubes.

I would not recommend the 901s for any system, they just are not what I consider good speakers but if you like them, good luck. Maybe you can get some more life out of them with the inconvient use I outlined above.

OHH, don't use Audyssey sound correction (on Onkyo and Denon Receivers) as that will conflict with the active EQ of the 901s. You'll have 2 EQs fighting each other.
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post #3 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 09:01 AM
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Sorry, but the best option is to buy a used 2 channel amp on ebay or craigslist. Then use the preouts on your receiver to the EQ to the amp to the speakers. That is your only option to use the EQ and the full features of your AVR.

A used amp can be anywhere from $100 to $300 depending on how many watts.

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post #4 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 09:04 AM
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901s are excellent speakers. I have a pair of Series V but they are put away until I decide to put them in a simple two channel system with an equally cool, older receive with a tape loop.

I suggest you do the same because once you've done this those 901s will bring new life to the most important records of all. The memories of good times listening to them with friends and family.

Have fun with it.
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post #5 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 09:12 AM
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OP, the active EQ on the 901's is a pain, but yes, you can hook one source up to the active eq, as long as you can get it to the RCA form factor - it goes like:

Source (ex: CD player) --> RCA input of active EQ --> RCA in of your Yamaha receiver

If you keep your original setup, you can just use your new Yamaha as the "signal processor", put the active EQ in between, then reuse your old amp - all the functionality you'd like:

Source (ex: CD player) --> New Yamaha Receiver --> RCA input of active EQ --> RCA in of your Yamaha amp

This is definitely not ideal, should get you what you want. I also have the V2095 as OldSchooleMETAL mentioned, and it does have the necessary inputs. Also, if you call Bose, they will give you a list of all compatible receivers (the list is very long!). They will also answer your questions about hooking them up. If your audio dealer led you astray, I'm sure you can exchange the receiver for one of those models.

As for OSM, let me address some of your statements:

Paragraph 1: Wrong - I just gave two examples of how the OP can hook this system up.

Paragraph 2:
The reason is that these speakers only have 4" full range drivers that have terrible frequency response.

--> Wrong, they are 5.25" and have some of the highest sensitivities of any drivers on the market. Also, there are 9 of them, which equates to a huge amount of volume displacement. As for frequency response, also completely false. I won't get into a debate about that though, because frankly there is no ideal frequency response. (I have EQ'd many speakers "flat", and they sound terrible for musical reproduction).


They need the active EQ to compensate for that. To use this active equalizer, you need a tape monitor built into the receiver. They don't make Home Theater Receivers with this anymore. Denon and some other receivers have a Record out selector but not a true tape monitor. You must select the input which the active equalizer is playing into. So leave the receiver on that input always, and change the record out manual switch to change the inputs you want to listen to. So it can be done, but that Denon Record out selector switch may fail prematurely as I don't think it was intended or designed for that much constant use. Plus your remote will do little good with this manual switch.

--> The first sentence is absolutely correct, EQ improves the sound of the speakers. Pretty much all the rest of this is wrong though. Call Bose, they will help you.

OHHH, you can't use these speakers for DPL (2 or X or Z) as equalizers mess with the phase angle of the signals which mess up any matrix decoding. You can get by with discrete surround formats though, just select these speakers as small.

--> OK, I giggled a bit at this one. I will file this under "equalizers are evil". It is absolutely true that equalizers mess with the phase angle of the signals. It is untrue that this will "mess up any matrix decoding". Very funny stuff OSM.

The biggest question is why do you want to use these speakers?? My friend, years and years ago, had some given to him that would had been thrown out otherwise. I've heard these in a demo room and can't think why you'd want to use them on such a good receiver. There's so many choices for great sound from other makers.

--> That's like, your opinion, dude. These speakers sound great, as do many, many other speakers. Bose design for spacious sound trades of many things, such as imaging, because many people prefer the sound.

OHH, don't use Audyssey sound correction (on Onkyo and Denon Receivers) as that will conflict with the active EQ of the 901s. You'll have 2 EQs fighting each other.

--> Also totally false.

So in summary, good luck with your system, but be careful who you listen to. OSM clearly has something against Bose and is not above giving you some bad advice to steer you away.

As for OSM, bad troll, bad!
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post #6 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 10:22 AM - Thread Starter
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Cheers for that mate, I had thought of intergrating my old amp, mainly to increase overall system watts but as it does have the tape monitor inputs / outputs, this may be my best answer.
Ive been given the contact details for Bose Tech Support but they do not open till monday, and its saturday here in Australia, they supposedly have wiring diagrams for many amp setups to the 901's "including the Yamahas... I hope they do.

I have set it up as a 7 channel set up at the moment "without the active equilizer" and its bloody nice, fills my whole house with increadibly clear and load sound so Im happy, any set up that improves this is a bonus
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post #7 of 11 Old 06-16-2012, 11:35 AM
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Nope, these speaker absolutely will not work with the Yamaha RX-A3010 UNLESS you add more equipment, that being an additional amp. So why bother with the RX-A3010 in the first place, just get a RX-A810 or RX-A1010 if you're not going to use the receivers amps or just get a preamp and avoid getting a receiver at all. These speakers will not work with the Yamaha RX-A3010 alone.

They do not have 5.25" speakers, they have 4.5" speakers and there are 9 of them.

I've heard these speakers without the active EQ and they have no top end or low end. They are full range drivers, not a woofer or tweeter. You have to EQ the crap out of them to get lower bass, but with distortion, and the extreme highs can't even be acheived because the size of the driver. They sound alright once EQed but then you're listening to the EQ, not the speakers.

Hum call Bose?? tongue.gif Of course they'll say, these are the greatest. Bose is a dirty word in the world of audiophiles and even enthusiasts, but they do some pretty cool things within their design parameter as using bass tuning in their cabinets to make a small speaker sound much much larger even if it's very inaccurate with terrible imaging. They also get you that live sound of room reflections which is great if you wanted reflected, distorted sound to make things sound live, even when their not. Most speaker makers and electronics try to correct and alleviate room reflections to get a more accurate sound.

EQs destroy the phasing of the signals that matrix decoding uses. That's why all HOME THEATER RECEIVERS state not to use them and actually deleted their tape monitor loop. If you want that feature, stick to a stereo receiver. wink.gif

I have nothing against Bose when used within their design. They are a stereo speaker only catering to the crowd that doensn't want distortion free, accurate frequency response with accurate imaging. They are for the crowd who wants little tiny speakers to sound BIG or they are for the customer who loves LIVE music and wants all of the audio to sound LIVE. That's their market.

For musical reproduction and home theater surround, there are many more speakers that sound better for a lot less money UNLESS you are one who wants little tiny speakers or reflective speakers.

I had direct radiating Bose and in fact my parents still use them and they are close to 15 years old. They are not reflecting and have a 10" woofer and a 2.5" or 3" tweeter. They sound OK and produce true 40Hz tones that most Bose will not, but the tweeter is strained since they do not use dome tweeters. The large woofer also doesn't not produce some upper frequencies very accurate as there's a hole.

I upgraded to Infinity speakers to get a more accurate sound and boy did I. I did have to buy a subwoofer though.

So while I'm not a Bose fan, let's be real. There is so many better speakers out there than these 901s. I couldn't even believe they're still being made. They're such an old design but then again Bose doesn't have any new designs in the last couple of decades.

As for a troll, the poster with a 1 count is usually the troll who is just trying to find that perfect forum and thread. wink.gif
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post #8 of 11 Old 06-17-2012, 04:13 AM
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had 901s and a pioneer no tape loop i just ran mcacc and it sounded great,if u are getting yamaha run ypoa i think that is what is called,with the advancements in room eq these days,i think it will help eq ur 901s just fine, why complicate things so much that is just my opinion.
Good luck.
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post #9 of 11 Old 06-19-2012, 08:30 AM - Thread Starter
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What Ive done is connect the pre outs to the Bose Active Equalizer, and from there to my old Yamaha RX 460, (volumn turned up to max. "as someone on here sugested"), after the ypoa sets up the surround, while listening you can hear it is now much different to what it was the other night.

Bloody awsume to be frank. I was worried about how it was going to sound through my old reciever and was planning to spend another 2 grand on some mono-valve amps to get the 901's going loud while still remaining clear, but thats deffinately not a problem. smile.gif

Now I need to finish it off with a sub, I have been shown two Krix sub woofers, one for $2000 and one for $1000, has anyone had much to do with them ?
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post #10 of 11 Old 06-19-2012, 01:47 PM
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Considering they are rated only down to 27hz and 25hz, they really wouldn't be SUBwoofers. Also, if you are driving your 901 with just a receiver's amp, they would never keep up with the Krix subs with such a high sensitivity.

If I were you, I would look at HSU's VTF-15H or duals or dual Epik Empire Subwoofers

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post #11 of 11 Old 06-22-2012, 04:15 PM
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OSM, you got me on the size of the speakers, I was wrong.

You pretty much contorted the rest of my post so badly I'm not really going to go through it line by line again. But basically, I told to OP to contact Bose support to help with wiring and have him some suggestions.

glad the OP is enjoying his 901s!!!

David, feel free to PM me if you have any other questions with your audio setup; you Aussie's seem to take great care in your audio.

OSM, feel free to do the same - I like talking audio. Bose are not my choice for "single person listening", but they have their merits, and we can all be very clever when it comes to wiring up a nice system - that's all i'm getting at.

-DCDC
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