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KEF Q900 driving issues

post #1 of 117
Thread Starter 
Hello,

Can anyone provide feed back on the KEF Q900's. I have them hooked up to an Pioneer Elite SC67 and I am not really amazed by the sound of them... I know they are a way better speaker than what I am hearing. Any suggestions of setup, placement, or any other insight you can give me would be fantastic.
post #2 of 117
What exactly do you think you should be hearing instead? Is the bass thin or something? You could experiment with placement, try moving them farther apart or closer, toeing them in more or less, moving them away from back and side walls. If you have a lot of hard surfaces in your room, you coud be hearing reflections, try putting a rug down or blankets on the rear wall to see if you can diagnose an issue. And as always, check your wiring and polarity.
post #3 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

What exactly do you think you should be hearing instead? Is the bass thin or something? You could experiment with placement, try moving them farther apart or closer, toeing them in more or less, moving them away from back and side walls. If you have a lot of hard surfaces in your room, you coud be hearing reflections, try putting a rug down or blankets on the rear wall to see if you can diagnose an issue. And as always, check your wiring and polarity.


Yes the bass is fairly thin. I expected to feel more low end and mid's with those speakers. I want to be able to have clearly separated and full sounding "tom's" during a Neil Peart drum solo!!! They sounded great in store...

Thanks for the tips, I will play around with placement and whatnot. I have triple check the polarity and everything looks good. Single wired, knob turning as such and wired into LF.
post #4 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

What exactly do you think you should be hearing instead? Is the bass thin or something? You could experiment with placement, try moving them farther apart or closer, toeing them in more or less, moving them away from back and side walls. If you have a lot of hard surfaces in your room, you coud be hearing reflections, try putting a rug down or blankets on the rear wall to see if you can diagnose an issue. And as always, check your wiring and polarity.

If I go up and listen to them and touch them, most of the sound is coming from the top end. Bottom speakers are barley vibrating....
post #5 of 117
In your reciever, are they set as "Small" or "Large"? If you are just running them in stereo make sure they are set to "Large" so they play full range.
post #6 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

In your reciever, are they set as "Small" or "Large"? If you are just running them in stereo make sure they are set to "Large" so they play full range.

Every other thread I posted in people keep telling me to run them as small. I currently just have the 2 speakers hooked up and a 85W old pioneer sub. Won't switching to large take all the bass out of the sub and make it not work?

Do you only switch to small speakers if you have a 5.1 or more? As to my understanding the small vs large is just a bass management feature.
post #7 of 117
It all depends on how capable that sub is. My guess is that Pioneer sub probably can't keep up with the KEFs hence the thin bass. You could try setting a lower crossover to engage the KEF woofers more, but I would probably unplug the sub and run the towers full range.

Small versus large just tells the receiver to either send the full range signal to the speakers, or apply a crossover. If/when you upgrade your sub, you will probably want to change them to small and set a crossover, or just run MCACC on your Pioneer.
post #8 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

It all depends on how capable that sub is. My guess is that Pioneer sub probably can't keep up with the KEFs hence the thin bass. You could try setting a lower crossover to engage the KEF woofers more, but I would probably unplug the sub and run the towers full range.

Small versus large just tells the receiver to either send the full range signal to the speakers, or apply a crossover. If/when you upgrade your sub, you will probably want to change them to small and set a crossover, or just run MCACC on your Pioneer.


Even if I take the sub out of the equation, shouldn't I have more low end with those speakers? what good is having all those speakers if they barely do anything. Any idea of whatcross over I should set it at, I think its at 80 right now.

Thanks for the info, I hope it will help.
post #9 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Even if I take the sub out of the equation, shouldn't I have more low end with those speakers? what good is having all those speakers if they barely do anything. Any idea of whatcross over I should set it at, I think its at 80 right now.

Thanks for the info, I hope it will help.

Lose the sub. Your Kefs should easily outperform that tiny sub. Set the AVR to no sub and your speakers will automatically be set to large/full range and then see how it sounds.
post #10 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post

Lose the sub. Your Kefs should easily outperform that tiny sub. Set the AVR to no sub and your speakers will automatically be set to large/full range and then see how it sounds.

Seem's like everyone is giving a different opinion on this matter. I will try, won't hurt. Also I am going to try bi-wiring/amping with my SC-67. Many people on this site swear it does nothing, but everyone on a dedicated KEF Forum on another site say's it makes a world of difference, due to the fact that the switch for single blows donkey balls.


At this point I am open to all and every suggestion. Thanks and keep em coming.
post #11 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Even if I take the sub out of the equation, shouldn't I have more low end with those speakers?
Only if you send them bass content, which you do not if the AVR is set to small.
Quote:
what good is having all those speakers if they barely do anything.
None, if you're using subs for the lows. If everything below 80Hz is going to the subs then all you need from the mains is response down to 80Hz or so, ie., bookshelves.
Quote:
Also I am going to try bi-wiring/amping with my SC-67. Many people on this site swear it does nothing,
They are correct. The only value to passive bi-amping is as a marketing tool, so that potential buyers who don't know that it doesn't do anything won't buy something else instead if it's not offered.
post #12 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post

Lose the sub. Your Kefs should easily outperform that tiny sub. Set the AVR to no sub and your speakers will automatically be set to large/full range and then see how it sounds.

Do you think I will have to re-run the MCACC setting again?
post #13 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Do you think I will have to re-run the MCACC setting again?

I wouldn't. At least not right away. Put in direct or pure direct or whatever Pioneer calls it so it bypasses all EQ and see how they sound unmolested by someone else's idea of what your speakers should sound like in a room they never have been in. wink.gif

Seriously, it shouldn't be difficult. It's two speakers in a room. Either going to work or it's not. I'm sure you don't have endless placement options so just go for it and see what happens.
post #14 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Seem's like everyone is giving a different opinion on this matter. I will try, won't hurt. Also I am going to try bi-wiring/amping with my SC-67. Many people on this site swear it does nothing, but everyone on a dedicated KEF Forum on another site say's it makes a world of difference, due to the fact that the switch for single blows donkey balls.


At this point I am open to all and every suggestion. Thanks and keep em coming.

Just unplug the sub and set the speakers to large. As has been mentioned, just try it in direct mode now and see if things sound better. Don't bother bi-amping, that is not the issue hear. The Pioneer sub is holding you back because as Bill mentioned with a crossover, you negate much of the benefit of having towers.
post #15 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

Just unplug the sub and set the speakers to large. As has been mentioned, just try it in direct mode now and see if things sound better. Don't bother bi-amping, that is not the issue hear. The Pioneer sub is holding you back because as Bill mentioned with a crossover, you negate much of the benefit of having towers.

When I first hooked them up they were set to large and no sub and still no low end at all. Sure its not that cross over switch having them singled wired? Many people on the AV Forum site under the KEF forum have said they have switch to single wire to bi-wiring/bi-amping and seen great improvements.
post #16 of 117
http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/kef2/1.html

See the image there, you want to turn the dials counterclockwise all the way so that they operate in single wire mode. Bi-wiring and bi-amping are not the same thing.
post #17 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

When I first hooked them up they were set to large and no sub and still no low end at all. Sure its not that cross over switch having them singled wired? Many people on the AV Forum site under the KEF forum have said they have switch to single wire to bi-wiring/bi-amping and seen great improvements.

I am not familiar with the Pioneer speaker setup, but is there a bass option? IIRC my old Yamaha had an option to send bass to a subwoofer or to the mains, in addition to the small/large setting. You also could try running MCACC and see what it does for you. Leave the sub unplugged and see what it sets the speakers at, I have a feeling it has to be a setting somewhere.
post #18 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/kef2/1.html

See the image there, you want to turn the dials counterclockwise all the way so that they operate in single wire mode. Bi-wiring and bi-amping are not the same thing.

Yes that is what I have done. Single wired and no yellow showing. But because I have some many used terminals on my SC-67, wouldn't the bi-amping be worth a try at least and see if it makes any difference? Unless I don't have the knob turned enough to that one side, but it is finger tight.
post #19 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Yes that is what I have done. Single wired and no yellow showing. But because I have some many used terminals on my SC-67, wouldn't the bi-amping be worth a try at least and see if it makes any difference? Unless I don't have the knob turned enough to that one side, but it is finger tight.
Bypass the switch with jumpers connecting the top to the bottom connectors. That's what the switch does anyway. And no matter what the schlockmeisters call it your rig is not capable of bi-amping. What it is capable of is paralleling power amps, which doesn't do anything worthwhile.
post #20 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post

Bypass the switch with jumpers connecting the top to the bottom connectors. That's what the switch does anyway. And no matter what the schlockmeisters call it your rig is not capable of bi-amping. What it is capable of is paralleling power amps, which doesn't do anything worthwhile.

how do I go about doing that?( connect speaker wire from the top to the bottom?) So you are saying that I can't bi-amp with all my extra unused amp's on my SC-67?
post #21 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

how do I go about doing that?( connect speaker wire from the top to the bottom?)
That's right.
Quote:
So you are saying that I can't bi-amp with all my extra unused amp's on my SC-67?
Does it have a built in electronic crossover that sends lows to one set of amps and highs to another, with adjustable frequency to match that which your speakers require? Only then is it bi-amping. Otherwise it's just running amps in parallel, which does nothing.
post #22 of 117

I will play around with placement and whatnot.

post #23 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post

That's right.

Does it have a built in electronic crossover that sends lows to one set of amps and highs to another, with adjustable frequency to match that which your speakers require? Only then is it bi-amping. Otherwise it's just running amps in parallel, which does nothing.

Not a clue if it has that or not....
post #24 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Not a clue if it has that or not....
If it does it would be in the owners manual. Even if it does the advantages would be totally realized only if the passive crossovers in the speaker were bypassed or removed. The claimed advantage of passive bi-amping is more power, therefore higher output. The problem is that more power does not allow speakers to go louder, more voltage swing does. Voltage swing using parallel amps is the same as that of one. The added power of using parallel amps allows a bit more current headroom, but not enough to be audible.
post #25 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Fitzmaurice View Post

If it does it would be in the owners manual. Even if it does the advantages would be totally realized only if the passive crossovers in the speaker were bypassed or removed. The claimed advantage of passive bi-amping is more power, therefore higher output. The problem is that more power does not allow speakers to go louder, more voltage swing does. Voltage swing using parallel amps is the same as that of one. The added power of using parallel amps allows a bit more current headroom, but not enough to be audible.

Isn't that the reason the KEF Q900 has a switch in the back. Don't you just unsrew it and that is the same as removing the cross over? It seems though everyone I have talked to that has these speakers has bi-amped them and said it made a huge audible difference. I know I can get more out of these speakers..... Tell me how to do that then.
post #26 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Isn't that the reason the KEF Q900 has a switch in the back. Don't you just unsrew it and that is the same as removing the cross over? .
No. All the switch does is to take the place of the jumpers that everyone else uses.
Quote:
It seems though everyone I have talked to that has these speakers has bi-amped them and said it made a huge audible difference.
If there was no such thing as Placebo Effect there wouldn't be a name for it. rolleyes.gif
post #27 of 117
I would question your amplification, but being a Pioneer Elite receiver, that should not be an issue at all. Did you try running MCACC without the sub plugged in?
post #28 of 117
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

I would question your amplification, but being a Pioneer Elite receiver, that should not be an issue at all. Did you try running MCACC without the sub plugged in?

Yes that is how I first had to hooked up.
post #29 of 117
Quote:
Originally Posted by jer181 View Post

Yes that is how I first had to hooked up.

I'm not sure if there is an issue or perhaps your expectations are too high? You might as well try bi-amping them, nothing else to lose I suppose.
post #30 of 117
Maybe you are having too much expectactions from those triple 8's woofers. I hope you know two of those are actually passive radiators.
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