Am I risking damage to my new speakers (low power)? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 27 Old 07-07-2019, 05:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Am I risking damage to my new speakers (low power)?

So, I finally got a chance to do something I have wanted to for a decade, thanks to some lucky thrifty shopping, and have started a nice home theater setup. And just as I am starting to get in the process of building it, I am now worried I may damage it right off the bat. In short, what I have is:
2x Polk RTI A9 (Black)
2x Polk RTI A5 (Cherry)
MartinLogan Motion 8
Yamaha RX-A710 Receiver
It will be connected with 16g OCC wire (as short a run as I can).

So, in my complete noobish haste (the speakers were an amazing deal - the A9's were $170 each, the A5s were $120 each), I figured the receiver would be good enough, and something I can upgrade later. So imagine my surprise when I read that a LACK of power can damage speakers... I am at a complete loss now, and im afraid to setup the system at this point. I really don't have amp budget (heck, I didn't have budget for these, but the deal could not be passed up on..), nor is my receiver one that can even support one (I don't believe it has a pre-amp output).

So, if I run these speakers from the receiver, at moderate volume (I am in a condo, so I cant blast it), and I going to damage them (clipping I guess)?
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post #2 of 27 Old 07-07-2019, 06:08 PM
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just don't run your amp to clipping and you'll be fine. A doubling in power is only 3db.
Not familiar with your particular receiver but some can claim wild numbers that in reality are at levels where they produce intolerable noise, so I think that's also where the myth comes from, coupled with clipping amps bottoming out speakers because the filter can't always filter out DC power. The clipping point is where the amp reaches maximum voltage and just flatlines on that voltage until it again comes down and reverses polarity and then it flatlines on the max opposite voltage for a while then it comes back, etc. Most receivers will sound intolerable long before clipping though.
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post #3 of 27 Old 07-08-2019, 02:40 AM
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You will know something is seriously wrong very quickly when the clipping level is reached. If you aren't going to be cranking it up, you should be ok. I ended up having to add an external 2 Ch amp to run my Polk LSiM 703's, as my receiver was straining to run 4 of them and 706 center, and the heat was intolerable for it to have a decent lifespan. I added an InfinityAC T8 to the top of my Yamaha TRS-7810 to keep it cool, and another one to the amp, an old recapped Onkyo M508. If I want to, I can blast it now, but my neighbors upstairs wouldn't be too happy about it. The Yamaha is being replaced with a Denon X4500H, not that I expect it to be able to run the Polks by itself, I had the urge to upgrade and the cash. The 7810 is going to backup status, with my 11+ year old RX-V659 sitting lonely in my closet. The 659 could run the Polks without cooking itself.
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post #4 of 27 Old 07-09-2019, 04:03 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you both for the feedback and reassurance. Given never having had speakers of this caliber, I am a little gun shy on not wanting to do this wrong. I had kinda figured you would hear the clipping before it got out of whack, but I wasn't sure.

Since I can't really spring alot of budget for an amp, do you think running the A9's bi-amped would give any extra headroom, or would it be a waste in my case? I'm planning on 5.1, so would have the bi-amp outs available to use.
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post #5 of 27 Old 07-09-2019, 06:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Divine_Madcat View Post
Thank you both for the feedback and reassurance. Given never having had speakers of this caliber, I am a little gun shy on not wanting to do this wrong. I had kinda figured you would hear the clipping before it got out of whack, but I wasn't sure.
Yep, forget about the myth of under-powering. It's not true. Your Polk RTi A9's are genuine 90dB/1W/1m sensitivity speakers. The Yamaha will have no issues driving them to quite loud levels at typical listening distances, particularly when low bass is being offloaded to a sub.

Quote:
Since I can't really spring alot of budget for an amp,
A power amp? Can't readily be done with the Yamaha RX-A710 as it lacks the requisite main zone pre-outs to hook up a power amp.

Quote:
do you think running the A9's bi-amped would give any extra headroom, or would it be a waste in my case? I'm planning on 5.1, so would have the bi-amp outs available to use.
Passive bi-amping is a waste of time (and speaker wire) in everybody's case!

No more power is generated with passive bi-amping. It's consumer audio marketing gimmickry that makes no net electrical difference. When an AVR's bi-amp channel reassignment is invoked, a full range copy of the mains content is sent (in the digital domain) to the re-assigned channels for processing and pre-amplification. The same voltage is swung by the power amps to track the incoming pre-amp signal, the same current is drawn by the load (speakers) to support the voltage and therefore the same power is dissipated (P = V x I).

Here's a good technical explanation if you're interested: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-sp...l#post42643874.
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post #6 of 27 Old 07-09-2019, 01:51 PM
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Speakers “blow” more often with lower powered amps when the amp clips or can’t produce enough output for transient peaks.
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post #7 of 27 Old 07-09-2019, 02:55 PM
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Originally Posted by Divine_Madcat View Post
Thank you both for the feedback and reassurance. Given never having had speakers of this caliber, I am a little gun shy on not wanting to do this wrong. I had kinda figured you would hear the clipping before it got out of whack, but I wasn't sure.

Since I can't really spring alot of budget for an amp, do you think running the A9's bi-amped would give any extra headroom, or would it be a waste in my case? I'm planning on 5.1, so would have the bi-amp outs available to use.
At moderate levels, your AVR will just be loafing along since your speakers are reasonably efficient. You may run into trouble if you crank it up running the speakers full range. Adding a decent sub would take a big load off the AVR and would increase headroom. As mentioned above, your AVR won't support an external amp which I don't really think you'd need in a condo setting. A sub would be very beneficial though.
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post #8 of 27 Old 07-09-2019, 05:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by GIEGAR View Post
Yep, forget about the myth of under-powering. It's not true. Your Polk RTi A9's are genuine 90dB/1W/1m sensitivity speakers. The Yamaha will have no issues driving them to quite loud levels at typical listening distances, particularly when low bass is being offloaded to a sub.


A power amp? Can't readily be done with the Yamaha RX-A710 as it lacks the requisite main zone pre-outs to hook up a power amp.


Passive bi-amping is a waste of time (and speaker wire) in everybody's case!

No more power is generated with passive bi-amping. It's consumer audio marketing gimmickry that makes no net electrical difference. When an AVR's bi-amp channel reassignment is invoked, a full range copy of the mains content is sent (in the digital domain) to the re-assigned channels for processing and pre-amplification. The same voltage is swung by the power amps to track the incoming pre-amp signal, the same current is drawn by the load (speakers) to support the voltage and therefore the same power is dissipated (P = V x I).

Here's a good technical explanation if you're interested: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-sp...l#post42643874.

I appreciate all the info - from what you said, and the additional reading, I won't bother with the bi-amp. I did more listening, and the system felt plenty loud for the condo at the Yamaha reported -30db, and it sure sounded pretty (and that was just with my phone hooked up to aux).

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Originally Posted by pase22 View Post
At moderate levels, your AVR will just be loafing along since your speakers are reasonably efficient. You may run into trouble if you crank it up running the speakers full range. Adding a decent sub would take a big load off the AVR and would increase headroom. As mentioned above, your AVR won't support an external amp which I don't really think you'd need in a condo setting. A sub would be very beneficial though.
I have been looking for a sub, but haven't found a good candidate yet (at least in terms of deal hunting).

That said, coming back to the AVR - If I am not planning on using most of the features of the amp (not planning on HDMI pass through, don't use spotify, alexa, or even Chromecast), should I look at upgrading? I really don't have a huge budget, but... if it would do the speakers a HUGE favor, I might be able to swing $150-250 (though it is pushing it). In that range, I have seen some options... I could grab a Denon -980H ($259), 780H ($208), or X2200W ($200 or less). If I got even more expensive, I might be able to get a Yamaha RX-A870 for $260, or A880 ($320). But, as much as I can say I WANT a "better" AVR, I cant even tell if I NEED a better AVR...
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post #9 of 27 Old 07-09-2019, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Divine_Madcat View Post
I appreciate all the info - from what you said, and the additional reading, I won't bother with the bi-amp. I did more listening, and the system felt plenty loud for the condo at the Yamaha reported -30db, and it sure sounded pretty (and that was just with my phone hooked up to aux).



I have been looking for a sub, but haven't found a good candidate yet (at least in terms of deal hunting).

That said, coming back to the AVR - If I am not planning on using most of the features of the amp (not planning on HDMI pass through, don't use spotify, alexa, or even Chromecast), should I look at upgrading? I really don't have a huge budget, but... if it would do the speakers a HUGE favor, I might be able to swing $150-250 (though it is pushing it). In that range, I have seen some options... I could grab a Denon -980H ($259), 780H ($208), or X2200W ($200 or less). If I got even more expensive, I might be able to get a Yamaha RX-A870 for $260, or A880 ($320). But, as much as I can say I WANT a "better" AVR, I cant even tell if I NEED a better AVR...
As you move up the AVR price range, You get better room correction, more channel processing, more features, pre-outs, better power supplies and output capabilities. If you're getting the speakers to your desired levels and you're happy with the sound, spend the money on a sub instead.
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post #10 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Divine_Madcat View Post
I did more listening, and the system felt plenty loud for the condo at the Yamaha reported -30db, and it sure sounded pretty (and that was just with my phone hooked up to aux).
At -30 dB, you still have a ton of room to spare. I mean, a TON. You could easily go up to -10 dB, and most likely still be perfectly fine. Depending on source signal strength, even 0 dB might be fine. Again, let your ears be the judge. If you hear distortion - lower the volume.

Your Polks are 8 ohm speakers so they should be easy to drive. The ML center is 4 ohm rated, but even then, from what I've gathered with a quick google search, your current receiver is capable of driving 4 ohm speakers, so I don't see a problem.

Is it possible your speakers may sound better with a more powerful amp? Maybe. Will you be able to play them louder with a more powerful amp? Sure. But do you need to play them that loud?

Enjoy your new speakers.

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post #11 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 08:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Appreciate the feedback. Regarding the output- given that I have yet to wire my rear A5s (tested them as fronts, but haven't used in conjunction with), is there any feeling that the output might change? I know the output is rated at 90 for two channel, but with the system driving all 5, I dont want to tax it.

And yes, I know I am being too paranoid. The Joy's of first time system ownership.
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post #12 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 08:57 AM
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but with the system driving all 5, I dont want to tax it.
Is this system going to be used to listen to loud music in 5 channel stereo mode? If so, that may cause the receiver to work harder. If it's just for watching movies, the rear two channels don't get used all that much, so it's a non issue, IMO.

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post #13 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 09:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Is this system going to be used to listen to loud music in 5 channel stereo mode? If so, that may cause the receiver to work harder. If it's just for watching movies, the rear two channels don't get used all that much, so it's a non issue, IMO.
Likely a 75/25 movie/music mix. Ironically, for my music, i would likely hook up my mp3 player (AR m2 DAP), hit the pure direct button (at least as i have been told it would be optimal for music) and just use my A9's for music. Otherwise my use is pure streaming, including my plex library (moved all my BD's to digital), so i will have a good amount of 5.1/7.1 content.


BTW: i found the thread that originally made me worry about damage:
https://forum.polkaudio.com/discussi...e-60-vs-rti-a9
https://forum.polkaudio.com/discussi...rtia9-receiver

The people in that thread sound so dire about it too...

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post #14 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 11:55 AM
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Relax!

At a level of -30dB, you most likely will never see one watt let alone overloading the reciever and clipping it. Let us go with the worse possible case, that you live in a huge room (think high school gym or larger) so the receiver will clip at -10dB. If the AVR is calibrated that 0dB is reference (105dB peaks at the location where you listen) that is "0dB". -10dB uses 10 times less power than 0dB, -20dB uses 10 times less power than -10dB and so on. Basically, -30dB uses 1,000 times less power than 0dB.
You are good, I don't see ever clipping an AVR in a condo--you would vastly overload your little 8" sub before your Polks ever needed more power. Your "weak link" for SPL is your subwoofer so if it never does anything weird, you are golden!

As far as speaker power ratings go, they don't "need" those power ratings, those are the maximum power they are rated to handle within their bandwidth using whatever signal they were rated. Think of it along the lines of a redline for engines (speakers are just brushless electric motors that move air or an air pump) You don't need to shift your car at redline for every shift and it is generally not a good idea to go down the highway in second gear to keep the RPMs up. Those ratings in no way, shape or form tell you what you "need", just a very rough guide in maximum unclipped signal with traditional music or whatever that standard is specified. Just because a speaker is rated for 250 watts RMS, this does not mean you should put an 8 KHz test tone through it at 250 watts--kiss the dome tweeter goodbye if you do!

If you ever looked at speaker parts, dome tweeters at the very maximum can handle 40 watts short term--very large and expensive dome tweeters. Most consumer speakers do not have that level of mega dome tweeters in them so be aware that the RMS rating does not apply to the tweeters--or the mids for that matter. Generally speking, those numbers are baed on the woofer as it can handle the most power and for general music--it gets hit with the most power. Generally speaking a tweeter will be hit with less than 10% of the power going ino a consumer speaker--generally.

Does clipping amlifiers autmatically destroy speakers? Does square wavs destroy speakers? Well, I used an audio test disc for yeers called "Autosound 2000" and it had a series of square wave test tones for speaker testing--you ccolld pick square wave or sine waves and I used both. A rough point is that a square wave has about twice as much "average" power than a sine way--why they are used for testing speakers. QSC manufactures professional sound equipment used in actual movie theaters, areana sound and PA systems and has information abouu clipping amplifiers and their effects on speaker drivers. Clipping does not destroy speakers, not by itself it don't. The thing that destoys speakers are too much power which burns up the voice coils or too much power at a frequency it is not designed to do. Running 8 Hz cannon fire through a speaker which can drive the woofer cone too far and slam the voice coil into the back of the magnet, it can also tear the spyder, rip the suspension or collapse the cone. This is the most extreme damage you can do to a speaker--too much power at ultra-low frequencies.

Too much power destroys speakers, not too little. Another truth about speakers is the more power applied to them, the farther they move and they become more non-linear the farther the parts move. Basically, the more power you put into a speaker the more distortion in created. If a person states that a speaker "sounds better" at maximum power, does that make sense? Considering you have very high distortion, maybe a person likes that but more power = decreased accuracy. It will be louder with more power but it won't "sound better" with more power--the opposite is true. To humans, generally speaking louder "sounds better" but that is part of psycho-acoustics--the oddity of being human. This reaches a natural limit of course but just something researchers figured out long before any of us were born.

To wind things up, as long as you are not clipping your amplifier excessively for long periods of time--you willl be fine with what you have now. In the future, say you move and live in an area that alllows very high SPL--then you need to re-evaluate how much power you need, if you need speakers that are more efficient and can actually deliver higher SPL capability or both! The standard answer applies--if you are not clipping whatever amplifier you are using, then all is well. For folks that have pre-amp outs on their receivers, they can always rent a PA amplifier that has power output meters or software that will give you power readings on a laptop. You can do that with (for example) a Crown XTi series amplifier and look at the input and output waveforms to get your answer in real litme. Very interesting to see actual power output in typical use. Another fun way to do that is get a basic chip amp--those $25 little boxes and run your speakers at a screaming 8 or 10 watts max. If you don't hear any clipping (or the amp don't mute from excessive overloading) then you know roughly how much power you are using. I let people use my little Lepai 2020+ chip amp that will thunder out around 8 watts or so into 8 ohms, depending how efficient your speakers are--it is surpising how little power is required. I use speakers that are between 96 and 99dB one watt/one meter and depending on distance from the speaker, it can get uncofmortablly lood up close.

Enjoy your system and use that money to get another sub, more movies, popcorn or take your wife out to dinner. If you decide on a second sub (for sound quality reasons, not SPL) it would be best to take your wife out now as most wives really don't think subwoofers are sexy. Tractors are sexier than subwoofers....
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post #15 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Divine_Madcat View Post
I appreciate all the info - from what you said, and the additional reading, I won't bother with the bi-amp. I did more listening, and the system felt plenty loud for the condo at the Yamaha reported -30db, and it sure sounded pretty (and that was just with my phone hooked up to aux).



I have been looking for a sub, but haven't found a good candidate yet (at least in terms of deal hunting).

That said, coming back to the AVR - If I am not planning on using most of the features of the amp (not planning on HDMI pass through, don't use spotify, alexa, or even Chromecast), should I look at upgrading? I really don't have a huge budget, but... if it would do the speakers a HUGE favor, I might be able to swing $150-250 (though it is pushing it). In that range, I have seen some options... I could grab a Denon -980H ($259), 780H ($208), or X2200W ($200 or less). If I got even more expensive, I might be able to get a Yamaha RX-A870 for $260, or A880 ($320). But, as much as I can say I WANT a "better" AVR, I cant even tell if I NEED a better AVR...
Your AVR is fine, the only reason to upgrade is if you need some new features or more channels which is not your situation. I would save the money and drop it on a quality sub. Depending on your need for bass a good 10" or 12" sub should be fine in a smallish room. Running your AVR at -30 it isn't even breaking a sweat so your fine with it.
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post #16 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 05:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by 18Hurts View Post
Relax!

At a level of -30dB, you most likely will never see one watt let alone overloading the reciever and clipping it. Let us go with the worse possible case, that you live in a huge room (think high school gym or larger) so the receiver will clip at -10dB. If the AVR is calibrated that 0dB is reference (105dB peaks at the location where you listen) that is "0dB". -10dB uses 10 times less power than 0dB, -20dB uses 10 times less power than -10dB and so on. Basically, -30dB uses 1,000 times less power than 0dB.
You are good, I don't see ever clipping an AVR in a condo--you would vastly overload your little 8" sub before your Polks ever needed more power. Your "weak link" for SPL is your subwoofer so if it never does anything weird, you are golden!


Enjoy your system and use that money to get another sub, more movies, popcorn or take your wife out to dinner. If you decide on a second sub (for sound quality reasons, not SPL) it would be best to take your wife out now as most wives really don't think subwoofers are sexy. Tractors are sexier than subwoofers....
Holy cow, thank you for all the info, I appreciate you taking the time. I am a bit confused however, as you mention a subwoofer. I realize my signature or info, but my current setup has no sub at all. Just the Polks front and side, and the ML center. I am considering a sub, but haven't found one yet. Does that change any of your opinion?

Also, the reason I can now have a living room full of speakers... well, no more wife.. So I am currently on the hunt for A sub, or matching center.
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Originally Posted by liffie420 View Post
Your AVR is fine, the only reason to upgrade is if you need some new features or more channels which is not your situation. I would save the money and drop it on a quality sub. Depending on your need for bass a good 10" or 12" sub should be fine in a smallish room. Running your AVR at -30 it isn't even breaking a sweat so your fine with it.
The irony - I just picked up a RX-730 for $30; and should be able to return my 710 for $50.. cant complain about a 2 year upgrade for $20 return. I also like the 1.4 pass through and ARC, so assuming this AVR holds up, I wont change it until I NEED more features (or find an awesome receiver mispriced for $50...

On a related note.. should I consider a b&w asw 1000 subwoofer for around $100
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post #17 of 27 Old 07-10-2019, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by 18Hurts View Post
Relax!

At a level of -30dB, you most likely will never see one watt let alone overloading the reciever and clipping it. Let us go with the worse possible case, that you live in a huge room (think high school gym or larger) so the receiver will clip at -10dB. If the AVR is calibrated that 0dB is reference (105dB peaks at the location where you listen) that is "0dB". -10dB uses 10 times less power than 0dB, -20dB uses 10 times less power than -10dB and so on. Basically, -30dB uses 1,000 times less power than 0dB.
You are good, I don't see ever clipping an AVR in a condo--you would vastly overload your little 8" sub before your Polks ever needed more power. Your "weak link" for SPL is your subwoofer so if it never does anything weird, you are golden!
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Enjoy your system and use that money to get another sub, more movies, popcorn or take your wife out to dinner. If you decide on a second sub (for sound quality reasons, not SPL) it would be best to take your wife out now as most wives really don't think subwoofers are sexy. Tractors are sexier than subwoofers.... [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/IMG]
Holy cow, thank you for all the info, I appreciate you taking the time. I am a bit confused however, as you mention a subwoofer. I realize my signature or info, but my current setup has no sub at all. Just the Polks front and side, and the ML center. I am considering a sub, but haven't found one yet. Does that change any of your opinion?

Also, the reason I can now have a living room full of speakers... well, no more wife.. [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/IMG] So I am currently on the hunt for A sub, or matching center.
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Your AVR is fine, the only reason to upgrade is if you need some new features or more channels which is not your situation. I would save the money and drop it on a quality sub. Depending on your need for bass a good 10" or 12" sub should be fine in a smallish room. Running your AVR at -30 it isn't even breaking a sweat so your fine with it.
The irony - I just picked up a RX-730 for $30; and should be able to return my 710 for $50.. cant complain about a 2 year upgrade for $20 return. I also like the 1.4 pass through and ARC, so assuming this AVR holds up, I wont change it until I NEED more features (or find an awesome receiver mispriced for $50... [IMG class=inlineimg]/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif[/IMG]

On a related note.. should I consider a b&w asw 1000 subwoofer for around $100
Editing to correct, evidentally replying from my phone did the above garbage. Look for something like the Emotiva BasX line or even the Dayton Audio subs. For $100 your options are very limited. I would look at something like the Dayton Sub1000 a 10" sub for just a bit over $100. you could also check craigslist and the classifieds here.

Last edited by liffie420; 07-11-2019 at 08:22 AM.
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post #18 of 27 Old 07-11-2019, 04:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Well, for now the subwoofer hunt is over (unless it dies..). I managed to trade some other equipment for a "Sonance The Sub" Thx Subwoofer " - https://www.cnet.com/products/sonanc...sub-subwoofer/
I know it's an older unit, and not as powerful as others. But given my living location, i am hoping it will be useful at least. And if it takes load off my A9s, even better..
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post #19 of 27 Old 07-11-2019, 06:10 PM
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Well, for now the subwoofer hunt is over (unless it dies..). I managed to trade some other equipment for a "Sonance The Sub" Thx Subwoofer " - https://www.cnet.com/products/sonanc...sub-subwoofer/
I know it's an older unit, and not as powerful as others. But given my living location, i am hoping it will be useful at least. And if it takes load off my A9s, even better..
I can't find any info on that model other than the CNET link, which neglects to include one of THE most essential specs for any sub: the weight. (The heavier a sub, usually the better due to larger magnets, better amp, stronger cabinet construction, etc.) This seems a bit ominous.

Sounds like that's a done deal in any case so it's a moot point. Just put it in a corner for maximum room reinforcement, to get the most out of it.

During movies, be sure to set your fronts on "small" in your receiver, if you wish to be 100% sure of not having enough power, but it sounds like you're fine at present.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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I can't find any info on that model other than the CNET link, which neglects to include one of THE most essential specs for any sub: the weight. (The heavier a sub, usually the better due to larger magnets, better amp, stronger cabinet construction, etc.) This seems a bit ominous.

Sounds like that's a done deal in any case so it's a moot point. Just put it in a corner for maximum room reinforcement, to get the most out of it.

During movies, be sure to set your fronts on "small" in your receiver, if you wish to be 100% sure of not having enough power, but it sounds like you're fine at present.
Well, I don't have a scale I can lob it on, but make no mistake, it is NOT lite.

For my fronts, I think I will leave them as large but set the x-over to something like 60-80, so I can still get something out of them. Would rather not reduce my A9's to A5s out of paranoia..
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post #21 of 27 Old 07-11-2019, 07:14 PM
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For my fronts, I think I will leave them as large but set the x-over to something like 60-80, so I can still get something out of them.
Does your receiver actualy work that way?

On most receivers, if you designate speakers as "large", the crossover will be switched off completely.

If you want to take advantage of the crossover, you need to set them to "small."
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Does your receiver actualy work that way?

On most receivers, if you designate speakers as "large", the crossover will be switched off completely.

If you want to take advantage of the crossover, you need to set them to "small."
You are right, I misread the manual.

So I guess I can set them to small, set cross over higher 60-80, and see how it goes. It just feels like such a waste of the speakers at that point to limit 3/6 drivers.....
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So I guess I can set them to small, set cross over higher 60-80, and see how it goes. It just feels like such a waste of the speakers at that point to limit 3/6 drivers.....
Don't get hung up on this. Play around with different settings and then choose what sounds best to your ears. That is all that matters at the end of the day.

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It just feels like such a waste of the speakers at that point to limit 3/6 drivers.....
Don't look at it that way. Look at it as a system and letting each speaker best reproduce the ranges they were designed for. You can experiment with crossover points and set it lower if need be. Even at 80 Hz, they will still have some output down low, assuming the typical 2nd order high pass.

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You are right, I misread the manual.

So I guess I can set them to small, set cross over higher 60-80, and see how it goes. It just feels like such a waste of the speakers at that point to limit 3/6 drivers.....
your avr has a reserve power, if you turn it to -0 it's still has some head room left, you could turn it +10 which will probably cause clipping.
your avr doesn't calibrate 0 to reference, that is just full amp less the reserve.

your avr should be able to take two configurations one where you listen to music and set the fronts to large and either have the sub off or let it do double bass.
the other config would be movies where the front is set to small and the crossover is set to where it sounds best.

I can drive my polk lsim 705 as large with my yammy rx-a720 and they are less efficient then your A9

Also people tell you to use pure direct for music, but they are wrong. there is no holy 2ch thing. set the avr to 2 channel/stereo and your fine with all the calibration making it sound good. Listen to music on straight and is crap because you setup the speakers for surround sound not 2 channel listening, best sound is probably one of the music settings you can flip through on the remote that uses the center channel more
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post #26 of 27 Old 07-13-2019, 06:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Good to know on the power - that said, ill never take it over 0 either way.

That said (I am sure people will roll their eyes), I think I settled on my long term receiver. I found a refurb RX-A880 being sold locally for $330, and figured it had to take a chance. Specifically, while the slight bump in power is nice (100w vs 90w), I am happy to have all the latest features (Atmos, 4k, etc) as well as a complete set of pre-outs; now I can add on a separate amp down the line should I need (or be able to).

I am planning on moving my 730 to another room, and use it to drive a set of Klipsch SB3s I have; I am thinking either in the master bedroom, or even the sunroom. Its overkill obviously, but makes no sense not to use it.

After setting it up last night, I felt like my system had more headroom, even with my side A5s wired up. Now I just need to bring over all my media (and TV...) to really enjoy the system as it stands..
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post #27 of 27 Old 07-13-2019, 08:18 AM
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That said (I am sure people will roll their eyes), I think I settled on my long term receiver. I found a refurb RX-A880 being sold locally for $330, and figured it had to take a chance. Specifically, while the slight bump in power is nice (100w vs 90w), I am happy to have all the latest features (Atmos, 4k, etc) as well as a complete set of pre-outs; now I can add on a separate amp down the line should I need (or be able to).

.
You did well!

I tend to be "that guy" in that my systems tend to be rather odd and unique that people remember them ss I get questions abut audio be it PA systems, car audio, HT systems and (rarely) 2 channel systems. To assist them, I usually tell them to find a THX certified theater and listen to a action film to give them an idea of what "loud" is--and they can install a SPL app on their phone to get an idea of what the numbers mean. Once they tell me what dB level they prefer, then I can make a rough calculation depending on their listening distance and room size. This also tells me what efficiency a speaker needs to be depending on the power required (or how many breakers they can provide for the full system)

Most of the time, my numbers and calculations are just a bunch of jibber-jabber geek speak--so I default to the most eefficient speakers available depending on the size of the speakers they can stand. Generally, if they use efficient speakers, an AVR will give them more power than they need at that specific moment in time. However, some people might want more eventually--the way human nature works. For this reason, I tend to advise them to get around 100 watts per channel AVR (nice round number) with pre-amp outputs in case they "need" more power in the future both real power or imagined power. There is nothing worse than getting your new system setup and a few month later demand more from it and have to replace everything. Always nice that the system can scale to your needs or new locations over the years. The speaker might be capable of 120dB at 300 watts at one meter (for instance) but the person may never need that--they might "need" 100 or 110dB at one meter so if 110dB, that would be 30 watts instead of 300 watts. Heck, if they only "need" 100dB at one meter, that is 3 watts so the difference is huge when it comes down to power requirements. Very hard to make one size fits all when it comes down to power. For this reason, I tend to advise very efficient speakers (92dB 1 watt/1 meter) or better and a typical 100 watt per channel AVR with pre-amp outs to start. "Rock star" mode tends to be 2 or 2.1 channels for a party so having a powerful outboard amplifier (with power and clip lights preferred) that really helps when the HT turns into a night club with consumption of alcohol all around.

I tend to focus on speaker design, not the brand which some folks find confusing. Once the correct speaker design is implemented--power becomes a very small factor in the scheme of things. The biggest problem quite literally is subwoofers, how many, how big, where to put them and so on. Found 2 of how much power yet again! I default to what is the biggest box you can handle, get those that go down to at least 20Hz then keep buying more until you get the SPL, distortion, smoothness across the seat(s) or until you start blowing breakers. Use a minimum of two subs to start which allows decent smoothness of bass response across the seats--if you want/need more, add more subs and use a 4 channel mini-DSP off the sub out channel of the AVR to get your multiple subs to work well together and with the room.

If the person has some really low impedance speakers or ones with very low impedance dips--then an AVR won't work for you. It is not the AVR's "fault", it is just the price you pay for purchasing/owning those types of speakers. This could mean electrostatic panel speakers or even--because why not?--B&C iPal 1.2 ohm pro sound subwoofers which require ultra-high current amplifiers which are not available at audio stores. You might laugh and think what kind of idiot would need a professional subwoofer that is used in stadiums? Well, this is AVS and overkill is our mantra On the "dark side" of AVS is the DIY guys, they tend to build full custom systems and use racks of stadium amplifiers with 100 to 200 amp feeds just for the system. Once you start pushing thousands or tens of thousands of watts into multiple subwoofer arrays made with arena sound drivers--then there is no "standard" answe. At that point you better really know what you are doing, everything from how do speakers work, amplifier loading and full electrical system design to prevent burning out your ears or burning down your house. One AVS'er built his system and forgot about the HVAC system capabilities, the heat from the rack of amplifiers overloaded his AC system so he had to redesign with more subwoofer efficiency (more subs!) and very high efficiency stadium amplifiers to prevent thousands of watts of heat from cooking the room. The rabbit hole runs deep!

My HT system uses very high efficiency speakers (98dB or higher at one watt/one meter) for the mains. No speaker requires more than 40 watts peak to go past reference levels (105dB at 10 feet) Generally speaking, I rarely go past -10dB or less than 4 watts per channel so an AVR works very well and has more power than I need. Nothing wrong with that, no worries about the equipment getting hot, no issues with clipping and equipment shutting down. However, I won't be in this room for life so I do have pre-amp outputs in case I end up in a full basement with three rows of seats and require more power. I sleep better at night knowing my system can scale with increased SPL needs in the future by plugging in a 300 watt per channel amplifier for my LCR front stage when/if required. The AVR would only push the surrounds which being much closer to my cranium require much less power than the main LCR speakers. I"m content with having the capability to expand if/when required by throwing an amp at it and not starting over.

My favorite overkill system on AVS is a guy built some theater speakers (called 1099s) he used Crown XLS 2002 PA amps that could hit them at around 400 watts per channel that would push thm to 125dB each. He lived in a New Your City apartment so in reality needed about one watt per speaker as he could not crank the system up. Any AVR has the power to get him thown out of the apartment but he just liked the look of complete overkill. There is nothing wrong with overkill, as long as you know it is overkilll and why--and you don't "recommend" overkilll as a minimum standard. This is a hobby after all, overkill is way more entertaining and educational so have fun with it.

Your system you have now should work well in the game "meet the neighbors" Crank it up and they will come visit you right at your door--or you can also meet the members of local law enforcement. Glad you are at a point that gives you what you need and has more capabilities for you to explore with Atmos etc. It's the weekend, have a good time and hopefully your neighbors are understanding while you learn your new system.
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