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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my first HT setup and am having some initial concerns.


Pioneer 1120-k receiver

Monitor 70s as fronts

CS2 center

PSW505 sub


I purchased all of this recently around the same time so I have no previous reference for how this hardware would/should sound. Everything is wired with 12awg + banana plugs. My concern is that after powering the receiver on and running the initial MCACC calibration, the speakers sound a little off or empty. It's hard to explain but I thought they would sound bigger and fuller. I'm certain that I need to make some other adjustments to get better sound but I'm a little puzzled. What are the general steps one should do to tweak things? The calibration has all speakers set as small, but I haven't found where to set the crossover for the sub. I'm guessing this will improves things significantly. Should I also be setting the frequency range of the left right and center individually?


I fired up avatar on bluray and the bass was sounding pretty good but the dialog/sfx seemed a little bright and high pitched. I tried some music from my iphone and it sounded the same way. Break-in period maybe?


Also I noticed that on the back of the PSW505 there are speaker In and Outs. Are these for bi-amping? Currently I just have everything running straight to the receiver.


I'm sure everything is okay, I just need to spend some more time setting it up. Any input is greatly appreciated!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I think this may have something to do with it...


The PSW505 sub's "recommended" diagram from it's manual has the front speakers connected to the back of the sub and then from the sub to the receiver seen below (pics are horrible)



The PSW505 manual also has a "Parallel wire hookup" diagram



Both of these setups are recommend for satellite systems. What's confusing is that the diagram from the receivers manual has the fronts just going straight to the receiver as well as the bi-amping option seen below



The way I currently have it is the Monitor 70's just have one wire going from the top post(high) directly to there inputs on the receiver. Should I bi-amp them to the receiver? (last diagram) Or do I run them to the sub then from sub to the receiver? (first diagram)
 

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Do NOT connect any speakers through the sub, and forget about passive bi-amping -- it does nothing. Completely ignore the recommendations in the subwoofer manual.


For the crossover, go into the menu, then:


System Setup -> Manual SP Setup -> Speaker Setting -> X.OVER


Set that to 80Hz. On that same screen, make sure the SW setting is set to YES, and that all your other speakers really are set to SMALL.
 

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+1 ^

bi-amping without true separate external amps is a total waste of resources. Leave the brass jumpers in-place on the polk speaker binding posts and use a single speaker cable to each speaker from the back of the receiver. Feed the subwoofer using an RCA to RCA audio cable or digital audio coaxial cable from the receiver's subwoofer "out" RCA connection
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the all the responses!


What should I set the low pass dial at on the back of the sub? (It ranges from 60-120) Or do I disregard this as it's being bypassed since I'm running LFE IN(unfiltered) to the receiver which is setting the crossover? As for the volume knob I assume this is preference or do I need to turn it up to max and then do all controls/tweaks from the receiver?
 

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^^^


120... if you can defeat it entirely, so much the better...


the knob on the sub isn't a "volume control", it's a "gain control"... DEFINITELY not max... start at around 1/4, run mcacc, see what you get for trim...


btw, +a bunch on the whole passive bi-amping thing...
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mttt /forum/post/0


Thanks for the all the responses!


What should I set the low pass dial at on the back of the sub? (It ranges from 60-120) Or do I disregard this as it's being bypassed since I'm running LFE IN(unfiltered) to the receiver which is setting the crossover? As for the volume knob I assume this is preference or do I need to turn it up to max and then do all controls/tweaks from the receiver?

As ccotenj said, run MCACC with the sub's gain set to about 25%. Review the final results in the CHANNEL LEVEL section of the settings. Ideally, you want the SW channel to be somewhere between -5 and +5 -- or as close to 0db as possible. If the channel level is something higher (ie. +10), then you may wish to turn the sub up to around 40-50% and re-run MCACC. Repeat this until it sets it closer to 0db.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mttt
Thanks for the all the responses!


What should I set the low pass dial at on the back of the sub? (It ranges from 60-120) Or do I disregard this as it's being bypassed since I'm running LFE IN(unfiltered) to the receiver which is setting the crossover? As for the volume knob I assume this is preference or do I need to turn it up to max and then do all controls/tweaks from the receiver?
Set the dial at about 80-90 and then run the MCAC. If the sub is too high, the MCAC will let you know to turn down. You can always adjust after that as well. I have a 1018 with 70's/50's and a PSW505, and ran into that as well. You can always fine tune after the fact, and then test you sub out with some movies that will see how your sub acts...like War of the World, or Master and Commander
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lizrussspike
Set the dial at about 80-90 and then run the MCAC. If the sub is too high, the MCAC will let you know to turn down. You can always adjust after that as well. I have a 1018 with 70's/50's and a PSW505, and ran into that as well. You can always fine tune after the fact, and then test you sub out with some movies that will see how your sub acts...like War of the World, or Master and Commander
Are you talking about the gain knob, or the crossover knob?


The crossover knob should always be set at max (in this case, that's 120), while you should first run MCACC with the Gain knob set somewhere below 50% -- closer to 25%, actually.


The goal is to see MCACC tune the SW Channel Level as close to 0db as possible. Results somewhere between -5 and +5 are optimal. Any higher or lower than that, you should raise/lower the gain knob and re-run MCACC until the SW Channel Level falls in that optimal range.


Make sense?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the calibration suggestions everyone!


I've had the speakers for a week now playing a variety of material when I can (cable tv, music, bluray's) 10-15 hours estimate. I think it's starting to sound better... I assume it's not just going to sound completely different/better one day from the next but in a more gradual process. How does one know when the speakers are done breaking in? Will they just sound so much more substantial that it's very noticeable? One question is that since the M70's are crossed over at 80hz and everything below that is sent to the sub, will the lower end of M70's not be broken in? Since LF is handled by the sub, the M70's low end drivers are not being utilized... Am I over thinking this?

CS2 Center

I've noticed dialog to sometimes be a little light, lacking depth and fullness. I know it's just the center but is it supposed to get some LF help from the sub? Or do centers generally try to handle the entire frequency range of dialog? It may have just been the source material, or that its not broken in yet.


I think as a test I'm going to switch the M70's to large and not use the sub to see what they sound like in full range.
 
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