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I bought these Monitor Audio speakers on Craigslist...

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hey there everybody,

I am very excited to let you know that I have finally purchased a set of audiophile quality surround speakers. I had the chance to listen to a pair of Monitor Audio speakers at a local audio shop and I was blown away. I started looking around online for someone selling them second hand, hoping for a good deal. I came across a set on Craigslist which appeared to be in brand new condition. I contacted the seller and arranged a meeting, needless to say I purchased them and have not looked back.

I will post a few questions at the bottom of this thread, but please keep in mind that I am just entering into the world of high end audio and may need some more detailed answers than others.

They are a cherry wood finish and the set consists of
4x R90HD Mini Monitors
1x R180HD Center Channel
1x R360HD Subwoofer

The package was listed at $650, and I was able to haggle with the seller down to $550. Everywhere that I have seen these speakers for sale online they are priced between $2400-3000.

I have them hooked up to a Yamaha RX-V861 receiver and my computer as the source via my an onboard Optical cable connection.

I have a few questions:

How much better, if any, would they sound if I were to purchase an aftermarket sound card, but still connect them via Optical?

I feel like the bass is lacking even when the bass setting on the receiver is maxed out as well as the knob on the subwoofer itself. Would a soundcard improve this or what can I do to improve the bass level?

Did I get a good deal? (haha)

What can I do to improve the sound quality, if anything, such as purchasing an amplifier or a DAC?
post #2 of 9
Thread Starter 
anyone
post #3 of 9
Addressing the bass only, I would not expect much. What is the room size?
post #4 of 9
you should double check the crossover settings in the receiver for the speakers, that determine what signal is sent to the sub and what to the speaker. most likely problem IMO.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
The crossover setting on the receiver was at 100hz, I have lowered it.to 80hz and I will report back on the difference tomorrow.
post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by lysdexik View Post

The crossover setting on the receiver was at 100hz, I have lowered it.to 80hz and I will report back on the difference tomorrow.

well, you don't want to lower it. 100 or 120 sounds about right for speakers that size. then make sure they are all set to small. and that all the other sub settings are right.
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Yeah, lowering the crossover did not make much of a difference. When I hooked up my ipod directly to the subwoofer, bypassing the receiver I was able to get ALOT more bass. I used a 3.5mm to RCA for testing purposes.

Like I said, I am using the onboard optical SPDIF connector on the motherboard, and am debating purchasing an aftermarket soundcard.

Can anyone offer more insight? I had read in a few different topics that some people were complaining about weak bass with Yamaha receivers, and if this is the case I can always purchase an amplifier.
post #8 of 9
Does your soundcard have 7 output connections?

When you go to Control Panel and click Sounds and Audio Devices does your computer say your codec is AC97 or Intel High Definition?

If you are setting the bass crossover with your receiver software, the crossover on the subwoofer itself should be set to 160 Hz, or its highest f setting, or you will get weak bass...lol. The receiver is not the problem.

You must keep in mind, however that you DO NOT have a SUBwoofer! A SUBWOOFER usually has to have a minimum of 300 watts RMS and a 12-inch driver to produce enough bass to be adequate in most average-sized rooms. What you have is 100 watts and an 8-inch driver. That is not going to give you significant bass below 40 Hz.

That is a small woofer, not a SUBWOOFER!! You have about one-fifth of what you need for serious bass. Real subwoofers start at $300-600 and go up to $2000. Don't expect a puppy to sound like the big dogs. Check out the Rythmic Audio webpage for some actual subwoofers.

If you go to a soundcard with Intel High Definition Audio, you need 7 input connections on the receiver to connect to the 7 outputs on the sound card (actually, the sub output of the soundcard can go direct to the subwoofer).

If you can use a PCI sound card the Creative Sound Blaster Audigy SE 7.1 Sound card should only be about $30 or so. It has 7 outputs to connect to your receiver.

The optical digital connection sux. The way to go is connect seven cables direct from your sound card to the receiver unless you have an HDMI connection to use.





Quote:
Originally Posted by lysdexik View Post

Yeah, lowering the crossover did not make much of a difference. When I hooked up my ipod directly to the subwoofer, bypassing the receiver I was able to get ALOT more bass. I used a 3.5mm to RCA for testing purposes.

Like I said, I am using the onboard optical SPDIF connector on the motherboard, and am debating purchasing an aftermarket soundcard.

Can anyone offer more insight? I had read in a few different topics that some people were complaining about weak bass with Yamaha receivers, and if this is the case I can always purchase an amplifier.
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by lysdexik View Post

Yeah, lowering the crossover did not make much of a difference. When I hooked up my ipod directly to the subwoofer, bypassing the receiver I was able to get ALOT more bass. I used a 3.5mm to RCA for testing purposes.

Like I said, I am using the onboard optical SPDIF connector on the motherboard, and am debating purchasing an aftermarket soundcard.

Can anyone offer more insight? I had read in a few different topics that some people were complaining about weak bass with Yamaha receivers, and if this is the case I can always purchase an amplifier.

Unless the receiver is faulty, it's not the receiver. Yamaha knows a lot more about making receivers than chuckleheads on the internet do. Yamaha has been making receivers since their parents were kids. And, the subwoofer is self-powered, so that makes no sense anyway.

The test you did doesn't mean much, except that the sub is working, because you haven't adjusted the levels going into the subwoofer.

The problem is either - the signal going to the sub isn't right, which means check the settings; or the signal going into the receiver isn't right, which you can find out by trying different sources.

Here's a test that would be useful: try plugging your ipod (and anything else you can find - cd player?) in as the source to the receiver, then you'll know whether the source going in is the problem. If that makes things sound better, double and triple check the settings on your computer.

Otherwise, go to the receiver section of this forum and get someone to go over all the receiver settings for you. Or just figure out if there's a way to reset them all to factory settings, as a place to start.

If you'e already using the optical in, a different sound card is not going to give you dramatically different results. Try other stuff first.
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