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Ticked off at my BB rep... Biamp question for center B&W CMC2 and Pioneer Elite 65

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
I got the Pioneer Elite 65 for my B&W CM9 fronts and CMC2 center. The speakers are bi-amped and the BB Magnolia guy swore that I can use the two fronts and center all in bi-amp configuration.

Well, shame on me for not checking the manual thoroughly before buying the thing but clearly this model doesn't but the 67 model does..

Before I go and return this thing, do you guys even think it'll be worth the upgrade so the I can have bi-amp in the center?

I would think the B&W should have good passive crossovers but I'm not sure how much better the active bi-amp from the receiver will be.

Thanks for any thoughts on this
post #2 of 29
The avr is not active bi-amp. For active Bi-amping you need external amps and another xo network. That is a great avr, why return it? It has more than enoungh power for your speakers. You can always add external amps to the SC 65 pre-outs if you think you need more power. Each extra gain in audio performance cost $$$ . To go from 98 to 99 may not even be audible. My Klipsch RF7's are 250-1000 watts and the Center is 200-800 watts and my Pioneer SC 35 handel them with no problem. If you need more power, get more effiecient speakers. You are correct that the passive xo are well design and getting an active one may not give you a better sound.
post #3 of 29
I don't think I've ever seen a AVR that has built in biamping for the center channel. One may exist but I've never seen it.

Not that it makes a difference anyway....
post #4 of 29
The pointless practice of using an AVR alone for bi-amping needs to be added to the AVR and amp FAQ!

My N803s are only driven by a pair of 175W mono amps (previously by a 150WPC stereo amp) and aren't even bi-amped: the manual only mentions bi-wiring as the preferred method. I'd be very surprised the CMs need bi-amping or it's recommended by B&W.
post #5 of 29
Although the SC-67 can be set up to have its' amps bi-amp either the center or side surround speakers with a 5.2 setup in the main zone, as already noted, there would likely be no real added benefit in either additional power nor improved audio fidelity. What the BB sales person was more likely referring to was that you could connect an external amp (eg. XPA-3) to the FL/C/FR pre-outs and bi-amp the speakers that way rather than using the AVR's own amps as you can with the SC-67.
post #6 of 29
Forget the biamp idea.
post #7 of 29
I personally have never heard a difference and have tried it on my Integra 10.5 along with bridging the main amps nada not one bit of difference.
post #8 of 29
Thread Starter 
ok, thanks. that's a relief.

The BB guy was specifically saying that I can connect both the fronts and the center using biamp wiring, etc.

He must have been thinking about the SC-67 version and not the 65, although he made a phone call to someone else in BB who confirmed it with it.

I'm assuming that the B&W centers have good enough cross over that even with the 67 biamp, I won't be able to tell any difference (I'm hoping). If people don't biamp the centers anyways, then maybe I'm worried about an issues that's not even there. At least I have the front bi-amped for whatever that's worth..
post #9 of 29
^^^

it's not "worth" anything... passively bi-amping any speaker (which is what you are doing) is pointless...
post #10 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by native View Post

The BB guy was specifically saying that I can connect both the fronts and the center using biamp wiring, etc.

There is no point in asking technical questions of anyone at BB, unless you are doing so strictly for entertainment's sake.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilian.ca View Post

The pointless practice of using an AVR alone for bi-amping needs to be added to the AVR and amp FAQ!

There is, sort of, but it's buried well within the Audyssey FAQ here: b)8. Why doesn't Audyssey work properly with my AVR's 'biamping mode'?
Quote:
True biamping requires an external, active crossover between the preamp and the power amp. If you do not have such an arrangement then you are simply wasting good wire and not actually biamping at all.

The form of 'biamping' in your AVR is often called 'audiophile biamping' or, less politely but possibly more accurately, 'fools' biamping'. … In other words, there is no scientifically sound reason at all why 'fools' biamping will make the slightest difference to your sound quality.
post #11 of 29
Keep in mind..
The guy @ BB worked @ BK the week before... biggrin.gif

Just my $0.02... wink.gif
post #12 of 29
Thread Starter 
OK, thanks. exactly what I was looking for. I guess Pioneer is FOS with their biamping support for the receiver. I mean, that's pretty crazy that they can claim true biamping, and charging the extra $$ for that...

I'm a little bit disgusted, some of it at myself for not knowing enough yet
post #13 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by native View Post

OK, thanks. exactly what I was looking for. I guess Pioneer is FOS with their biamping support for the receiver. I mean, that's pretty crazy that they can claim true biamping, and charging the extra $$ for that...
I'm a little bit disgusted, some of it at myself for not knowing enough yet
Get over it. Almost every brand of receiver has "passive bi-amping". Much more effective is a receiver with preamp outputs.
If you buy speakers that really need lots of power connect an external amplifier. Much more effective and much more expensive.
post #14 of 29
Thread Starter 
I had a call from the BB guys, saying that they can get me a deal, $200 more for SC-67.... I said I'll think about it.

SO, there's ABSOLUTELY nothing to be gained with their biamp set up and my biamp compatible center?
post #15 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by native View Post

SO, there's ABSOLUTELY nothing to be gained with their biamp set up and my biamp compatible center?

No.

Put that $200 towards an Outlaw amp if you're really hot to get more power to your speakers.
post #16 of 29
Thread Starter 
ok. only temptation was that it'll be $1200 for SC67. but I guess it's just money wasted i'll hold off. thanks

it's been a while, i need to educate myself on this stuff more
post #17 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by native View Post

ok. only temptation was that it'll be $1200 for SC67. but I guess it's just money wasted i'll hold off. thanks
it's been a while, i need to educate myself on this stuff more

The amp section in the 67 is stronger than the 65 and without A/Bing them in the same environment hard to say if you could hear the difference.
post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by native View Post

ok. only temptation was that it'll be $1200 for SC67. but I guess it's just money wasted i'll hold off. thanks
it's been a while, i need to educate myself on this stuff more

The 10W difference in power is moot. Choose the SC-67 only if you want a "feature" it offers that the SC-65 does not (eg. HDMI input to Zone 4).
post #19 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsmoothie View Post

The 10W difference in power is moot. Choose the SC-67 only if you want a "feature" it offers that the SC-65 does not (eg. HDMI input to Zone 4).

I will ask the rep when we see him I don't think he was referring to the mere 10w difference he did point out the draw difference of 330 vs 370 whether that was all do to the amps or other circuitry I will have to ask unless someone here knows the answer.
I also wonder if the amps are the same why does the 68 get the Ultra spec and the 67/65 get the Select spec since they are different in ohm load and room size vs volume output according to THX.
post #20 of 29
^^^

marketing... smile.gif

ever since the sc series came out, the sc-x5 and sc-x7 have benched very similar...

10 extra watts ain't squat... it wouldn't have an audible difference to you, no matter how hard you listened... the difference between 140 and 150 watts is tiny*... remember that you have to double the amount of power to get 3db more spl...

* heck, the difference between 140 and 280 watts falls into the "just noticeable" range in terms of spl...
post #21 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj View Post

^^^
marketing... smile.gif
ever since the sc series came out, the sc-x5 and sc-x7 have benched very similar...
10 extra watts ain't squat... it wouldn't have an audible difference to you, no matter how hard you listened... the difference between 140 and 150 watts is tiny*... remember that you have to double the amount of power to get 3db more spl...
* heck, the difference between 140 and 280 watts falls into the "just noticeable" range in terms of spl...

I know this from experience years ago when I noticed no difference adding an external amp that was only 100wpc more but I guess my question would the difference be in load ability since Ultra would be all speakers into a 3.2ohm and Select is 4ohm fronts and center while rears at 8ohm or at least thats the way I remember it correct me if wrong.
post #22 of 29
^^^

oh yea, the specs are different...

however, that's where the marketing from pio comes in... once the units have gotten on the bench (at least prior to this year, and i wouldn't expect it to be any different now), the results have pretty much shown that the x5 unit would have passed the higher spec had pio chosen to license/market it that way...

it's the same marketing theory that increases the wattage by 10w or so as you go up to the next to the next level in a cem's line... we "know" that 10 more watts really doesn't matter, but a bigger number enhances the perceived value... especially for the 99.999% of the world who aren't a/v geeks, and have no clue about how stuff works...
post #23 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj View Post

^^^
oh yea, the specs are different...
however, that's where the marketing from pio comes in... once the units have gotten on the bench (at least prior to this year, and i wouldn't expect it to be any different now), the results have pretty much shown that the x5 unit would have passed the higher spec had pio chosen to license/market it that way...
it's the same marketing theory that increases the wattage by 10w or so as you go up to the next to the next level in a cem's line... we "know" that 10 more watts really doesn't matter, but a bigger number enhances the perceived value... especially for the 99.999% of the world who aren't a/v geeks, and have no clue about how stuff works...

I figured as much but hated to assume.
I will say this the 57 we installed last year seems to handle anything load wise we threw at it and still sounds great using Kef towers all 5 channels that did impress me now they just need to add adjustable crossovers and bass correction.
post #24 of 29
Without malice and simply because it's one of those little things that bug me, there are two different if similar words:

"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death . . . " (sounds like "yay")

"She loves you, yeahh, yeah, yeah.

just sayin'

Entirely agree with the points being made, BTW
post #25 of 29
Of course, I type like crap. "yeahh?" uh, nope.
post #26 of 29
^^^

yeah, i'm a major offender there... redface.gif and i really should know better... redface.gif

especially since i have a few pet peeves along those lines as well... i dunno how many times i wish a poster would hit his internal mute button when a point is moot... wink.gif

says he, as he throws a "dunno" in there... tongue.gif

edit: lol... biggrin.gif the thing is, i'm a wicked good typist on a keyboard, and equally wicked bad on my ipad... redface.gif writing approximately 5 zillion lines of code will do that to a person... tongue.gif
post #27 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by oztech View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj View Post

^^^
oh yea, the specs are different...
however, that's where the marketing from pio comes in... once the units have gotten on the bench (at least prior to this year, and i wouldn't expect it to be any different now), the results have pretty much shown that the x5 unit would have passed the higher spec had pio chosen to license/market it that way...
it's the same marketing theory that increases the wattage by 10w or so as you go up to the next to the next level in a cem's line... we "know" that 10 more watts really doesn't matter, but a bigger number enhances the perceived value... especially for the 99.999% of the world who aren't a/v geeks, and have no clue about how stuff works...

I figured as much but hated to assume.
I will say this the 57 we installed last year seems to handle anything load wise we threw at it and still sounds great using Kef towers all 5 channels that did impress me now they just need to add adjustable crossovers and bass correction.

yup, good figuring...

and yes to all 3 of those things... the sc's have never been shy about handling a difficult load, and those 2 features are notably lacking..
post #28 of 29
Hey I know this is an older thread but I just got a SC-67, CM9's & CM Center 2 and was searching for the same answers you were. This is the responce from B&W on the subject.

Hello, hope you are well

depending on your receiver and how much power you are sending to the speaker we do like BI-amping the front left and right channels this will send more power to the speaker allowing you to push your receiver less to get the same output. when bi amping you are sending the same signal to the HF and the LF terminal but the signal is coming from separate channels on your receiver. For the CM9's I would set the crossover at 60HZ.

I also sent a simlar question to Pioneer I'm still awaiting their responce.
post #29 of 29
and here is Pioneer's responce

Thank you for contacting Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc.

I would suggest making the connection and see if you can hear the difference. Some people can hear the difference, while others can not.

The signal would be the same to both terminals, so you speaker would need to filter the signal.

Sincerely,


Rocky
Customer Service Representative
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