building my 2.1 stereo setup - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 30 Old 05-22-2013, 02:18 AM - Thread Starter
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HELLO!
well the time has come,im building the stereo system iv always wanted,at the age of 31 smile.gif,better late then never.
now,rome didnt took only one day to build,and my system will have to compromise here and there cues im on a budget.
i all ready purchased a pair of kef xq20-manufacture refurbish,and will buy a rythmik subwoofer(d15se) in a few days.
so i want to go in the path of a separates stereo system,it all gota be used rolleyes.gif
i will want to upgrade to a home theatre also,but its gona take a year or so but i want to secure any options concerning that,im this coming purchases.



im planing to start a cd collection,too bad i gave away hundreds of cds long years ago,i thought it was an oldish way to play your music,i mean,hey its an hdmi world no?? ,it will be fun to go and find cds! i loved it in the late 90s,u get to know the performers much better,its more into music,like manual gearing is for those who got the bug for cares.
so what did i missed? what to i need to look for? preamp connections\amp watts\cd format etc..
any input will be very appreciated ,thanks in advance!

p.s
i got so much info from this and other forums,a big thanks to all the people who wrote and put out they're knowledge.
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post #2 of 30 Old 05-23-2013, 04:22 AM
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Being your plans are to expand to HT, you want to get a stereo or MC pre-amp that has Theater bypass. That way when you get an AVR, you can connect it all together. The pre-amp will be used for stereo sources (& 5.1 audio, if you get a MC) and when you watch movies via the AVR, the pre-amp will just send the sound straight to the power amp.
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post #3 of 30 Old 05-23-2013, 05:11 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 4DHD View Post

Being your plans are to expand to HT, you want to get a stereo or MC pre-amp that has Theater bypass. That way when you get an AVR, you can connect it all together. The pre-amp will be used for stereo sources (& 5.1 audio, if you get a MC) and when you watch movies via the AVR, the pre-amp will just send the sound straight to the power amp.

thanks 4 comment
this is exactly the reason i did this there'd ,i dont want to need to replace something just cues i miss a plug.
so this connection is called "theatre bypass" ? is it a general name for it or u can find it in other names..?

so i connect the fronts and the sub to the amp\pre and the centre and rears to the avr ..?

another thing-do a 60-80w amp wont be r risk of clipping for a 120w speakers? will i be much better with a more power full one,or i will mainly be at risk in high volumes? and ok in the low mid vol..

appreciate your input
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post #4 of 30 Old 05-23-2013, 07:22 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merto Eliasi View Post

thanks 4 comment
this is exactly the reason i did this there'd ,i dont want to need to replace something just cues i miss a plug.
so this connection is called "theatre bypass" ? is it a general name for it or u can find it in other names..?

so i connect the fronts and the sub to the amp\pre and the centre and rears to the avr ..?

another thing-do a 60-80w amp wont be r risk of clipping for a 120w speakers? will i be much better with a more power full one,or i will mainly be at risk in high volumes? and ok in the low mid vol..

appreciate your input
Yes, If you only have a stereo pre, then just the mains are connected. If you get a MC pre, then all the channels will connect to it. Unless you do/will not have any MC music discs, thus no use for MC pre.
A pre-amp w/theater bypass will have it listed as such.
Depends on the real amp rating and the speaker's sensitivity rating. Speakers rated ≥ 91db are much easier to drive than speakers only rated @ say, 86db.
More speakers are damaged by distortion created from over driving a small amp, than from too much power.
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post #5 of 30 Old 05-25-2013, 02:09 PM - Thread Starter
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hey 4dhd again,and any others of course.
i got this unclarity about something-i want to connect my speakers with bi amping,im looking at arcam diva p80 power amp and arcam diva a65 integrated,PLUS i want to connect a rythmik sub,so ill need two pre outs on the integrated right? can i split that pre out and use it for both sub and power amp ? will it be similar as having two pre outs? if someone can shin some light on that it will be great.
in the future i also want to upgrade to HT,can all i mention above be also combined with that ? HUGE THANKS to any comment,im on a time frame on the ebay sale ..
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post #6 of 30 Old 05-26-2013, 04:32 AM - Thread Starter
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i know I'm asking a bit of dumb questions and might be repeating myself,but things had change about what i want for my setup,cues i now i want to get and integrated amp instead of a pre,so i can use it to power the high levels on the main speakers.
i contact rythmik also but i guess they are off till monday and its hard to wait sometimes with these things.
so the main question is again about splitting a pre out,iv red a lot that its ok and will only might just lower the signal a bit but nothing noticeable,BUT-i want to hear that its ok for this exact setup,meaning to split a pre out for BI AMPING & SUBWOOFER.
i also red somewhere that i can take it to service to get a second pre out,doable with arcam diva a65 integrated?
peace
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post #7 of 30 Old 05-26-2013, 06:51 AM
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First of all...there is no benefit to bi-amping bookshelf speakers. A complete waste of time/money.
Second...you want a pre-amp or integrated amp that has a subout connection. Most do these days.
When I first started using subs ('79) the only choice was connecting with speaker wire...and of coarse you still can.
That requires using the sub's XO...but using a pre-amp's subout is even better, having the pre-amp doing the bass management.
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post #8 of 30 Old 05-26-2013, 11:45 AM - Thread Starter
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First of all...there is no benefit to bi-amping bookshelf speakers. A complete waste of time/money.

well i understand that the subject is in a debate,my logic says that if the speaker manufactures make the option to bi amp it wont be for nothing,id say that if it was a consensus,it was well known by now or at least was less in a debate,but thats just my logic ,i have no comparison yet,i guess ill have to check it myself.

Second...you want a pre-amp or integrated amp that has a subout connection. Most do these days.
When I first started using subs ('79) the only choice was connecting with speaker wire...and of coarse you still can.
That requires using the sub's XO...but using a pre-amp's subout is even better, having the pre-amp doing the bass management.[/quote]

ok i googled sub out vs pre out,i understand the deference between a subout & pre out is that the subout has a filter before it,to eliminate the mid & highs, so will it be the same if i have a filter on the sub it self(which i think the rythmik d15se has)? or is it consider to be better to send the signal already filtered to the sub..?

i understand that i cant use the bass management on the pre for controling the sub-so again,can i just adjust the bass on the sub itself ..? and same thing with the volume...so if I'm adjusting all these PROPERLY,will the preout basically be like a subout ...?

im on a budget so i can't get a new or up to date gear,my compromises have to be one the power gear,iv also got a dealer demo kef cq20 cues couldn't get them new,so im just guessing that if i want to get an integrated amp with subout,it will cost me quite a bit,i prefer to get a bit old used arcam for 400-500$,tell me if im wrong doing that.

btw,YES! i am planing to have a cd player,i think ill get a refurbish nad ,or the arcam c192-older,but iv red great reviews on this unit.

cheers 4dhd,dont feel obligated to reply ,ill exhaust you rolleyes.gif
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post #9 of 30 Old 05-27-2013, 02:28 PM
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I guess you have NEVER heard of marketing??? To place 4 binding posts on a bookshelf speaker is just that....marketing.
And unless one is going to disconnect the internal XOs and use an electronic active XO, its still a waste of time even on tower speakers.

And you still do not understand about a pre-amp with a sub out connection...which is BM. Its not just sending a limited signal to the subs, its also sending a limited signal to the mains. You do not want a full range signal going to bookshelf speakers.
If you use an amp that does not have BM then you are sending a full range signal to the small speakers.

Some subs do have a high pass out that can then be sent to the mains. Some don't. But depending on how you have the subs and mains placed in the room, it maybe more of a pain in wiring, that just using the pre-amp's BM.
And then there is the question, "Which is better?" the BM of the pre-amp/AVR or the one in the sub?

And just in case you are thinking along these lines.....KEF is a British company, they would not lie about their speakers....I say bull. There are very few, if any, electronic manufacturers that do not lie to at least to a certain extent about their products.
And to put 4 binding posts on a limited range bookshelf speaker, they are lying. Cos today, there are NO amps that are so weak that they can not drive a tweeter and midrange/mid-bass driver.
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post #10 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 01:30 AM - Thread Starter
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thanks mate,reading your comment made me go back to my original planing of pre+power ,i might add another power amp to connect it 2 mono,i just have to have that extra "something"! i reasserted more about bi amping after i red your comment,yep,sound complicated plust it is very much in a debate,there are those who "think it sound better" and those who swear it does nothing(at least nothing ower ears can hear),if ill have two amps.
now u made me really confused, i was positive that connecting a sub to a pre out is the best way u can connect a sub,the thing is,i was reading this review on nad preamp c165bee,it has a connection for a sub,but in the review it was written ---" There's also a subwoofer output which we don't imagine too many stereo folks using, but the rest of the facilities are very useful " ,maybe this is like LFE in a receiver? cues i know lfe is not suitable for stereo music, its for home theatre ..? ill contact rythmik (again!) and ask them about it.

4dhd maybe u have a pre+amp u can recommend ? i will be listening mostly to rock\hard rock music,budget is around 1k so it will have to be used i guess,thanks!
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post #11 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 08:57 AM
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I have 3 units;
HK 3390 stereo receiver. it has both pre outs and sub out. But the sub out is not filtered, so then the sub's XO has to be used.
HK AVR 3600, it has BM so the subs are set to LFE.
Parasound P7 pre-amp, it has analogue BM for stereo sources, so again, the subs are set for LFE.

The 3390/3490 make for a good pre-amp as they have the pre outs to connect a power amp...I think the 3390 can be had for about $300. So adding a power amp then would keep you < $1000. Maybe even the 3490/power combo for $1000.

But the P7 is superior in every way...and one of the best phono pre-amps in it. And its much simpler to use than the AVR.
But is also $2000. I have the P7 connected to the 3600 in HT bypass, and is used for all music sources.
The only time I use the AVR for music is when I want to access the DTS track on DVD-A discs.

So I do not know what pre/power combo can be had for $1000. You'll just have to do some searching on Audiogon and the like.
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post #12 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 12:46 PM - Thread Starter
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K, so my sub dose not have HPF,its kinda ridicules cues if i only would ask for it i would have it,who wouldnt want the option for it? i understand that high end folks dont use it cues it degrade the sound but even they would prefer to have that feature,then theyll decide if to usemy it or not...
i understad (from rythmik guy on the phone)that a lot of folks dont filter the signal of the mains,"its not like the speaker manufacture designed it" ,you made me be more aware of marketing and it might just be a marketing answer but what do you think about it? about sending a full rang signal to the mains but use the sub filter for the lows..?
i really wanted to experience with separate system or an integrated amp and avoid a receiver,it seems its THE way to go for stereo music,which is still not clear to me-if a receiver (stereo)is an power amp+preamp+tuner,why is the sound considered to be superior with the pre\amp ? i understand surround is less better to play music,but don't understand why a stereo receiver is also,basically the only deferent from an integrated amp and a receiver,is the tuner,dont understand it..
the guy from rythmik recommend emotive preamp,i looked it up a bit and found emotiva pre processor ,any experience with one?demoed maybe sometime..? is a processor preamp deferent then just a preamp?

i looked at the P7 ,yep,out of my budget,p3..?
so it seems that if i want a proper filtering ill need a receiver with lfe for sub,or pre with a power amp but those are a bit pricy ..? this is where im standing? will be better way to go..?
again,id be happy to hear your thoughts on full signal to the mains,and filtered signal on the sub..love ya man tongue.gif
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post #13 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 01:46 PM
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Well, some small speakers will self destruct if given a full range signal. In particular if they are ported.
I do have two sets of 3-ways that are made to be used with a sub. But I can and have run them full range. Being they are a closed box design w/8" mid-bass drivers, so they have an acoustical rolloff starting @70 htz for the older and 80 htz for the newer set.

But that means -15db @ 35 htz, so no real bass output w/o a sub.
But there can be problems if the mains and subs are playing the same frequencies. Its a totally system/room dependent situation.
It either will sound good or it will not.

I've never had or even auditioned EMO, and from what I've read, never will. They are cheap, is all I have to say about them.
Some of the pre/pros have had major problems....as in bugs or breaking down.

Parasound is coming out with a new pre-amp, the P5, a stereo unit with HT bypass for about $900.
The P3 have been discontinued.
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post #14 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 04:03 PM - Thread Starter
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quote
"The P5 also handles bass management by offering dedicated high- and low-pass crossover networks for both the main left and right channels, as well as both subwoofers. There are dials on the rear panel for manual fine-tuning of each crossover"
thats what im looking for right? its pretty obvious but then it was also obvious to me earlier that i just need a pre out so...

the price defences of the p7 & p5 is huge,the p5 is a bit over my budget but like any budget,its doomed to grow rolleyes.gif ,i read great reviews on the p5 and the p7 ,more on the7 but also the 5,maybe you want to mention the main differences between them..? u know what,its way out of my budget so maybe don't..but am i good to go with the p5 for my 2.1 "stereo" system? with this unit i will basically just need a power amp to power my mains right...? and of cures a good cd player ,the p5 has optical input (i think) so its basically also a dac..is it good ? do u use your p7 as your dac for lets say,a streamer..?
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post #15 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
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there is also the parasound 2100 pre..has bass management ant 600$ new on amazon..familiar with it maybe?
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post #16 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 07:38 PM
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The 2100 is quite good, a step down from the Halo series...I forgot to mention it though.
I've had a Parasound power amp for 11, or 12 years and the P7 for 3. They are just pure quality.
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post #17 of 30 Old 05-30-2013, 11:58 PM - Thread Starter
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well i am on a time frame,i have untill 6\28 to get packages to my brother,then everything will be sent to me with him,so its a LONG month and a half till i get it all,ill die till then! smile.gif what im saying is,i have about two weeks to buy things so ill try to hunt a used p7,but i cant find any at the moment so im pretty sure it will be the 2100 new,step down but for me,its all a step up,and i read also great reviews on it,and in general i read mostly good things about parasound,a big thanks to the person who introduced to me..
the 2100 has a voltage switch from 110\220 ,perfect! it looks like ill get it,ill give a week of a chance to a used p7(maybe you sick of yours? wink.gif ) or maybe p5 and if not,then its the 2100

i think im all set for now,means i know all i need to about the system im building,at least in the aspect of buying the gear
it wouldnt be parasound if it wasn't u helping me,thanks for your very helping help
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post #18 of 30 Old 05-31-2013, 09:57 AM
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You're welcome, its all about getting people to look in the right direction.
I'm assuming you are on 220v where you live. The P7 and I think all Parasound amps work on both voltages.
The last I heard, the P5 was not going to be available until July, so that would not work for your timeline.
You're not likely to see any used P7s, its one of very few HT bypass pre-amps with 7.1 inputs. Most are only 2.1.
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post #19 of 30 Old 06-01-2013, 01:53 AM - Thread Starter
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you know,i was pretty sure id need a step up transformer,and then came polly..for now,the few new amps i was looking at,has a dual voltage rating,so it looks like it smile.gif i e mailed parasound about it yesterday,probably get back to me after the week end,but i think u are right about it,perfect.

at first i thought ill get a used power amp,but its very hard to let a used unit get inside this system im after,plus id only save a few dollars,not that much so now im looking at a new para power amp..

what do u think of the 275 power amp,i worry just a bit that the 75wpc wont be sufficient enough for the kef xq-20,but then again,they are bookshelf speakers..i know that if the speakers are lets say 100 w,dosnt have to mean i need a 100w amp,i see some folks get even double wpc (then the speaker rating) so even the low volumes will be tight and solid,of cures there is the big brother,the 2125 amp which delivers 125wpc ,this one i really want but i could save the 200$ deference...i contact parasound to ask them this but they have an interest to sell me the "better" one so id love to hear your opinion about it,2125? or ill be ok with the 275? ok actually wont be enough,we are after high end sound after all.
cheers.


just getting people to the right direction can and is in this case ,an investment in time and energy,at least in the eyes of some..
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post #20 of 30 Old 06-01-2013, 04:57 AM
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Bookshelf speakers don't need a lot of power, all the heavy lifting is done by the sub(s).
And don't write off used power amps. 7 years ago I picked up a HK Citation 19 power amp, 100w.
Being its a HK, means that 100w is really quite a bit more. And its a fantastic sounding amp.
In fact, it doubles down on the output: 100w > 8Ω, 200w > 4Ω, 400w bridged mono.
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post #21 of 30 Old 06-01-2013, 07:19 AM
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You want to be careful as to where you buy Parasound.
I looked on Amazon, where you are thinking of buying.
I did not see where it stated that Super Electronic Warehouse is an authorized Parasound dealer.
To the best of my knowledge, ONLY AudioAdvisor is an authorized e-tailer for Parasound. That is where I bought my P7.
And the difference in price for the 2100 is only $29.

So IF something was ever to go wrong with the 2100, you would have no covered warranty IF SEW is not an authorized dealer.
This is what is on Parasound's website:
In order to insure maximum customer satisfaction, Authorized Parasound Dealers are prohibited from selling our current products by phone, mail, or over the internet. Parasound's sole authorized internet & mail order dealer is Audio Advisor.
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post #22 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
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wow man.thanks!!! ,i mean THANKS!!!
haven't got nothing yet as i want to try to get a mint used one,ill give it a few more days,and if not,ill get a new power with the new 2100.
there is one very good deal im looking on ebay,its the 275 power amp ,from the newer module i think,it has a 110\220 power like the other new para amps,its 250$ plus shipping,retail is about 450$,looks in a very good condition BUT its 75wpc ,now i know u told me i dont need much power for the fronts cues i got the powered sub,but its still hard for me to get it,i dont want to be on the borderline with the power,and i do like hearing high volumes, i thought maybe to get this one & another identical one(new if i wont find good used),and use them as mono blocks with 200(!) wpc ,the total will be like the cost of a new 2125 amp,which is 125wpc (all 8 ohms) ,OR tell me im crazy and 75wpc will be more then enough...but then if it won't,im coming after you! smile.gif ,you told me your opinion about it all ready ..

THENKS 4 THE AMAZON DEALER ! audio advisor it is.
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post #23 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 08:14 AM - Thread Starter
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ohh shut you know what,it dosnt really matter cues lets say something will get bad with the unit,ill need to ship it international + when theyll send it back to me,the israeli costume WILL take his also,so its kinda eliminate my warranty anyways so maybe ill go with the cheaper option available ... maybe even a new from e bay,what ever cheaper, no warranty frown.gif life is a bitch what can u do..

* i took what u said on a used power amp to my attention,the thing is that only the new series has the ac power switch,maybe not a parasound amp? i know people don't always match they're pre with power amps ,but i would prefer matching them..
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post #24 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 09:32 AM
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An amp does not have to have a switch for voltage. My P7 will work for either voltage and does not have a switch. If you see the pic of the back of an amp and it says 120~240 volts is good to go, even with no switch. Better yet, download the owner's manual of any amp you are thinking of buying to see what it says about voltage.

Yeah shipping costs can be a big hassle/cost, as I found out this year. Having to ship RT between Ecuador and SF.
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post #25 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 09:48 AM - Thread Starter
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yeah the 2100 pre is also a dual voltage with out a switch,which makes me wonder why some has it and some don't,maybe a switch is for units that pulls decent voltage..? ahh who knows(and why..)

tell me what would you choose from these :

1- a new parasound amp of 125wpc-the 2125.
2-one new 275 power amp (75wpc) + used 275 amp,and use them as monos.

assuming u have:

bookshelf speakers,2 way(rated 125w)
powered sub with 375w
cost same for both options-around the 650$-750$
and the 2100,but im not sure it is relevant for this question..
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post #26 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 12:42 PM
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It kinda depends on how much space you want to take up with amps as to using dual mono amps.
But the 2125 is still outputting more power than the 75w mono/channel.
Quality Stereo amps never have a problem supplying rated power...its the multi-channel amps that can be less w/all channels driven...compared when only 2 channels are driven by the same amp.
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post #27 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 02:24 PM - Thread Starter
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iv should have mentioned that the 75 is before bridging,when u bridge the 275 it is 200w mono,each channel..plus,as i understand it consider to be better to let each amp working only on one channel,not only from a watts perspective,but also the sound quality,other wise i see no reason to have 2 mono amps,there is plenty of really powerful stereo amps,im leaning more toward the 2 275, one of them will be the "ugly duck" in the system,but its just a cosmetic "issue".
if id find a used 2125 in a good deal as the 275 in a ratio aspect,ill take it right away,maybe ill get a better cdp then,a cd with optical INPUT,used or refurbish.
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post #28 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 03:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merto Eliasi View Post

iv should have mentioned that the 75 is before bridging,when u bridge the 275 it is 200w mono,each channel..plus,as i understand it consider to be better to let each amp working only on one channel,not only from a watts perspective,but also the sound quality,other wise i see no reason to have 2 mono amps,there is plenty of really powerful stereo amps,im leaning more toward the 2 275, one of them will be the "ugly duck" in the system,but its just a cosmetic "issue".
if id find a used 2125 in a good deal as the 275 in a ratio aspect,ill take it right away,maybe ill get a better cdp then,a cd with optical INPUT,used or refurbish.

when you bridge a two channel (stereo) amp, you end up with a one-channel (mono) amp with more power, not moe power from two separate channels.
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post #29 of 30 Old 06-02-2013, 04:02 PM - Thread Starter
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got the used one ,ill give a few more days for another to show up on ebay and if not,ill get a new one,it all going to sound great ! ill play the second song for u man 1st ones mine cool.gif
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post #30 of 30 Old 06-03-2013, 05:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merto Eliasi View Post

iv should have mentioned that the 75 is before bridging,when u bridge the 275 it is 200w mono,each channel..plus,as i understand it consider to be better to let each amp working only on one channel,not only from a watts perspective,but also the sound quality,other wise i see no reason to have 2 mono amps,there is plenty of really powerful stereo amps,im leaning more toward the 2 275, one of them will be the "ugly duck" in the system,but its just a cosmetic "issue".
if id find a used 2125 in a good deal as the 275 in a ratio aspect,ill take it right away,maybe ill get a better cdp then,a cd with optical INPUT,used or refurbish.

Yes, in theory, mono blocks are better. But most quality stereo amps are really two mono blocks in the same box. Each channel having its own power supply.
And then it depends on the speakers...with my PT800s and my custom212s neither is difficult to drive.
If I had a pair of Revel Salon2 (which are only 86.4db rated) I would want a pair of Parasound JC1 400w mono block amps.
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