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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: San Diego
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@ rec head -- The manual has a typo about the "Front Speaker Setup" being available for the 7ch/2ch mode.
But if you think about it, it makes sense that it's not. The "Front Speaker Setup" menu is there to tell the receiver which of the A/B speakers are active in 2ch vs. multich mode. However, the entire point of the 7ch/2ch mode is to preset the amp such that it "knows" you have a separate pair of 2ch speakers for stereo content. The amp AUTOMATICALLY switches in this mode, so the "Front Speaker Setup" menu is redundant. The automatic switching enables you to run a full 7ch setup with all 7 amps, and then switch the amps to the alternate 2ch speakers when you use Stereo modes. In the standard "5.1+B" mode two of the amps are dedicated to the "B" speakers, so it is possible to run 5ch with A+B speakers running simultaneously.
However, you CAN still use the 2ch Playback menu to customize the levels, distances and bass management for the dedicated 2ch speakers.
Regardless, you can't ever run a separate Audyssey EQ for the "B" speakers. There's also no longer any simple A/B speaker switch, the way it works is to have it automatically switch based on surround mode.
So all that said, it makes A/B comparison of two pairs of speakers a bit less straightforward than the old days. I've played with this and figure out how to make it happen on my X4000. The key is to take advantage of (1) the automatic switching by surround mode and (2) the fact that Multich Stereo just copies the exact same stereo signal to all speakers.
So to do this, set AMP ASSIGN mode to 7ch/2ch mode. That means your "A" pair hooked up to the FR/FL binding posts and the second "2ch" speakers hooked up to the F.Wide bindings posts. Then go into Speaker Config and deactivate ALL speakers (sub, center, surrounds) except for the two stereo pairs that you are comparing. Now you only have four "active" speakers, the "A" pair and the "B" pair. Now the A/B switching part.... to change between the two, all you have to do is select MULTICH STEREO to hear the "A" speakers and STEREO to hear the "B" speakers! Easy to do with a Harmony remote or by using the Movie/Music/Game buttons (memorizing multich stereo on one button and stereo on another).
The signal that gets sent to the FR/FL speakers is identical in MultichSt mode as it is in regular Stereo mode. But because there aren't any other speakers active, you are essentially "tricking" the receiver into giving you stereo playback for the "multi channel speakers". And you can use the "2ch Playback" menu to tweak the levels on the "B" speakers to correct for any sensitivity difference between the two.