Speakers Small with Crossover vs Speakers Large with LFE+Main/Extra Bass/Double Bass - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-30-2018, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Speakers Small with Crossover vs Speakers Large with LFE+Main/Extra Bass/Double Bass

We all know the coveted HT rule: Set your speakers as small/limited range with a 80-100Hz crossover, even if you have tower speakers, spare your amp and speakers the extra work, and let your sub take care of the lows.

Here's my thing...what do you tell the person who's a "purist" and only runs 2.0 audio? That he HAS to get a subwoofer? Likewise, what do you tell someone who has a stereo amp with a sub pre-out? No stereo amps, if not very few, have an internal crossover for the mains. Do you tell him he HAS to get an AVR so he can set a crossover for his mains?

I do agree that most times deciding not to run your mains full-range is best. But honestly, for those who don't have the space or money to have a second subwoofer, that may be the best way, the ONLY way, to get even bass distribution.

When are these rules applicable? Music, games, movies, all of the above? Or are we just blindly following rules?

Last but not least, isn't .1 discreet info ONLY sent to the sub in 5.1 content? Is it correct to say LFE+Main or not, your mains are never going to get that content when you're using the LFE line out connection?
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-31-2018, 11:34 AM
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You tell him nothing. A purist surely knows what he’s doing, or think he/she does.

This has been discussed thoroughly on the forums, not sure what your “new” question might be.

“Extra bass” settings are for doofuses, certainly not someone who understands how ULF works.

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post #3 of 8 Old 05-31-2018, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cstutts1808 View Post
Last but not least, isn't .1 discreet info ONLY sent to the sub in 5.1 content? Is it correct to say LFE+Main or not, your mains are never going to get that content when you're using the LFE line out connection?
Correct. The LFE channel is still not sent to the fronts when the double bass (LFE+Main) setting is used. LFE always goes to the sub out unless the AVR is configured as having NO SUB. The double bass (LFE+Main) setting duplicates the front channel bass (below a certain low-pass) at the sub.

A better way to look at the double bass (LFE+Main) setting, IMO, is that (essentially; see below) the same exact thing is sent to the sub as would be were the speakers set to SMALL. The only difference is in what is sent to the front speakers. They still get a full-range signal.

Now, depending upon the AVR, the low-pass on the front channel bass that is duplicated at the sub with that setting can vary. I believe that nowadays, with most AVRs, the front channel crossover setting is still available when the double bass (LFE+Main) setting is used and that setting dictates the low-pass that is used to determine what front channel bass is sent to the sub (just as it would be were the speakers set to SMALL). On some AVRs that low-pass may be fixed at something like 80Hz with the front channel crossover setting no longer being available.
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-31-2018, 12:24 PM
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A STEREO Purist would only have TWO Speakers...with LARGE Woofers [i.e. 12-15+ in] that do the WORK of TWO separate Sub-Woofers....and would only listen to Discrete or Down-Mixed Stereo. Which I gave up doing a couple Decades ago....when I repurposed my Large, Antique 15-in Altec Voice Of The Theater Speakers as my two Sub-Woofers (for better Transient Response I changed from Bass Reflex to Sealed Box....with 1/3-Octave Band Equalizer for flatter Room Response).

But back to your Original Question: If you listen to a signal recorded in SURROUND that is Down-Mixed in an AVR to STEREO, it usually will NOT include the Down-Mixed Sub-Woofer Track....so your SW Channel is silent and the STEREO Low Freqs sound quite thin.

Which is where LFE+MAIN aka EXTRA BASS aka DOUBLE BASS selection in AVR can TRY to come to the rescue, redirecting SW Channel into the L/R Channels....where the STEREO may STILL sound quite thin if they CAN'T reproduce Lowest Freqs without audible Distortion. Unfortunately, you might want to remember to turn it OFF if you decide you want to listen to a Surround Track, including the SW Channel....cuz the (perhaps wimpy, wimpy) L/R Speakers will STILL try to pump out Distorted Low Freqs.

And as always....IT'S YOUR CHOICE....whether you want to enable the BASS Redirection to L/R....and also if you want to spend $$$'s on a pair of Large L/R Speakers rather than one (or two) Sub-Woofers.....

Last edited by holl_ands; 05-31-2018 at 01:08 PM.
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post #5 of 8 Old 05-31-2018, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post
But back to your Original Question: If you listen to a signal recorded in SURROUND that is Down-Mixed in an AVR to STEREO, it usually will NOT include the Down-Mixed Sub-Woofer Track....so your SW Channel is silent and the STEREO Low Freqs sound quite thin.
Incorrect. Almost all (if not all) AVRs are capable of redirecting the LFE channel to the front channels if configured as having NO SUB connected.

DVD and Blu-Ray players often DO drop the LFE channel altogether from a 2-channel downmix. But not AVRs.



Quote:
Originally Posted by holl_ands View Post
Which is where LFE+MAIN aka EXTRA BASS aka DOUBLE BASS selection in AVR can TRY to come to the rescue, redirecting SW Channel into the L/R Channels....
This is incorrect, too. That is not how the double bass (LFE+Main, Plus, LFE+, etc.) setting works. As I stated in my post above, the SW channel (the LFE channel would be the correct way to say it) is NOT redirected into the L/R channels with the double bass (LFE+Main, Plus, LFE+, etc.) setting. The only way to get an AVR to send the LFE channel to the front channels is to configure the AVR as having NO SUB connected.
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post #6 of 8 Old 05-31-2018, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cstutts1808 View Post
We all know the coveted HT rule: Set your speakers as small/limited range with a 80-100Hz crossover, even if you have tower speakers, spare your amp and speakers the extra work, and let your sub take care of the lows.

Here's my thing...what do you tell the person who's a "purist" and only runs 2.0 audio? That he HAS to get a subwoofer? Likewise, what do you tell someone who has a stereo amp with a sub pre-out? No stereo amps, if not very few, have an internal crossover for the mains. Do you tell him he HAS to get an AVR so he can set a crossover for his mains?

I do agree that most times deciding not to run your mains full-range is best. But honestly, for those who don't have the space or money to have a second subwoofer, that may be the best way, the ONLY way, to get even bass distribution.

When are these rules applicable? Music, games, movies, all of the above? Or are we just blindly following rules?

Last but not least, isn't .1 discreet info ONLY sent to the sub in 5.1 content? Is it correct to say LFE+Main or not, your mains are never going to get that content when you're using the LFE line out connection?
So, what's the point of this thread? Are you a "purist" wanna-be, or just making light of that market segment? Why would you even care what others think? Just set it up in whatever configuration is best for your system, room, and taste. If you are not sure, then try out all the options and keep your favorite. What others do with their systems is completely irrelevant, and their personal decision, as it is yours.

It's a VIRTUAL channel unless stated otherwise.

Last edited by RayGuy; 05-31-2018 at 04:45 PM.
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post #7 of 8 Old 06-01-2018, 01:44 PM
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SORRY.....I remembered it back-***-wards....

When Selecting DOUBLE-BASS (Onkyo), SW-PLUS (Pioneer, aka PLUS), EXTRA-BASS (Yamaha) or LFE+MAIN (Denon/Marantz), Bass Freqs from L/C/R are ALSO output via SW, see my earlier more detailed post...and subsequent supplemental posts:
https://www.avsforum.com/forum/89-spe...l#post55258498

So this ensures that SW contributes to reproduction when JUST playing a 2-Channel STEREO program....but in and of itself, does NOT Re-Direct Low Freqs AWAY from L/C/R in order to reduce Low Freq Distortion from those speakers....for that you need to set speakers to "Small" and let Bass Re-Direction do it's job. PS: Off-hand, I don't remember how BOTH features interact, incl. Room Equalization....some experimentation may be required...and may be different in different AVRs...

A 2-Channel STEREO program does NOT have any signals on the SW Channel and will sound "thin" compared to Surround Programs if "Large" is set for L/C/R, since the SW is silent [no Bass Re-Direction]. When the LFE+MAIN (et.al.) function is enabled, STEREO program material finally comes ALIVE.

BTW: As I recall, I THINK that some of my Pioneer Synthetic Surround Modes MIGHT also activate the SW when playing back STEREO programs....but I'm unsure, so do your own investigation.....

Last edited by holl_ands; 06-01-2018 at 01:59 PM.
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post #8 of 8 Old 06-01-2018, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cstutts1808 View Post
We all know the coveted HT rule: Set your speakers as small/limited range with a 80-100Hz crossover, even if you have tower speakers, spare your amp and speakers the extra work, and let your sub take care of the lows.

Here's my thing...what do you tell the person who's a "purist" and only runs 2.0 audio? That he HAS to get a subwoofer? Likewise, what do you tell someone who has a stereo amp with a sub pre-out? No stereo amps, if not very few, have an internal crossover for the mains. Do you tell him he HAS to get an AVR so he can set a crossover for his mains?

I do agree that most times deciding not to run your mains full-range is best. But honestly, for those who don't have the space or money to have a second subwoofer, that may be the best way, the ONLY way, to get even bass distribution.

When are these rules applicable? Music, games, movies, all of the above? Or are we just blindly following rules?

Last but not least, isn't .1 discreet info ONLY sent to the sub in 5.1 content? Is it correct to say LFE+Main or not, your mains are never going to get that content when you're using the LFE line out connection?

Hi,

I think that it is perfectly fine to listen to music, or anything else, without subwoofers--if that's what someone wants to do. But, in my opinion, it is important to be well-informed about the basic principles of bass-management. You have already gotten some good explanations. If you want more detail, you can find it in the direct link to an article on the subject here:

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/113-su...erences.html#D

Regards,
Mike
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GUIDE TO SUBWOOFER CALIBRATION AND BASS PREFERENCES

* The Guide linked above is a comprehensive guide to Audio & HT systems, including:
Speaker placements & Room treatments; HT calibration & Room EQ; Room gain; Bass
Preferences; Subwoofer Buyer's Guide: Sealed/ported; ID subs; Subwoofer placement.
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