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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Guys

Let me start by giving everyone and understanding of my current home theater knowledge - its pretty pretty low. With that being said, my setup is average at best from what I have been reading. It mostly consists of best buy level av equipment and a pretty good sub. To be be more specific I have a Pioneer Elite SC-67 Receiver, PS4, Martin Logan Vantage's as the RL, Logan Motion C Center Channel, SVS PB 13 and Definitive Bookshelf and In walls for the rears. Attaching some pictures to give an idea of the room setup and relative positioning. The room is a square box with an open floor plan. Overall I like the sound of the system, though the center channel is marginal. I really don't have the room to put anything bigger on the mantle and the floor isn't an option because of the fire place.

I was talking to a buddy about getting a Outlaw 5000 or Emotiva XPA 5 to add some additional power to the setup - not really sure if this makes a lick of sense. My question is the following - will getting the Outlaw to the Emotiva be a good addition to the system, will I notice an improvement to the overall sound of the system? How will the sound improve (louder, crisper, ...). Given the setup would you guys look at other components to augment the sound of the system that would provide a better experience.

Sorry for the vague questions - I have a few bucks to spend and figured I would put it into the home theater system.
 

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Unless you're playing your system loud enough to drive the AVR's amps into clipping, you probably won't hear any improvement by switching to an external amp.

Your electrostatic speakers may sound better if they were moved a little further away (~ 2') from the walls. The center channel speaker should be angled down a bit to point to your head.

After repositioning the speakers, rerun the MCAAC setup in your AVR. I would make the following post-MCAAC changes in the AVR:
- Ensure that the speakers are configured as "Small".
- Set all the crossovers to 80 Hz.
- Increase the center channel gain by 3 dB.
- Increase the subwoofer channel gain by 6 dB.
- Set the Dynamic Range Control (DRC) feature to Off.
- Set the Loudness Management (Loud Mgmt) feature to Off.

Listen to a variety of music & see how you like it. Tweak the settings as desired after that.

If you still can't dial the sound in to your satisfaction, you may want to pick up a microphone & REW or purchase an OmniMic. Measuring your system's response would show you what problems remain to be solved.
 

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The Vantage has 200W powered woofers, so there isn't any gain related to amplifier power by setting the mains to "small".

Whether or not the sound would be improved by eliminating the low end of the Vantage woofers and using only the subwoofer for that range would be a different issue.

Your frequency response is rated as 34–23,000 Hz ±3dB. For most music a subwoofer may not even be necessary.

I re-read now and see you are talking multichannel Home Theater, which I don't do, being a two channel kind of guy.

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I have old ML reQuests (1998), and moving them out from the wall behind them has always been something I ended up doing. Mine are right at 4 feet from the wall.

I have a wimpy subwoofer, but run the mains full-range. The woofers are passive in the reQuest.

It's difficult to estimate the toe-in you have. Hold a penlight right under your nose while seated at the listening position and look for the reflection in the panel.

The reflection should be at the 1/3 distance from the inside of the panel, so the centerline of the panels are aiming slightly to the left and right of your head, and the reflection should be seen at the same vertical height on the panels (rake angle). Careful positioning yields better results. Same distance, same angles, etc.

Mine are probably another two feet apart, left and right.

In my case, I have tilted the panels slightly forward of vertical to get the reflection in the center of the panel vertically.
 

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Whether or not the sound would be improved by eliminating the low end of the Vantage woofers and using only the subwoofer for that range would be a different issue.
One reason to do this is to implement the house curve that I recommended. Setting speakers to "Small" and crossovers to 80 Hz lets him give the low end a 6 dB lift. I find that tweak very desireable. I prefer running the frequencies below 80 Hz about 8 dB hot, but 6 dB is a good starting point before he gives it a listen & fine tunes the sub channel's gain to his preference.
 

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The receiver does not power the woofers which are crossed to the panel at 400hz.

The Vantage has internal 200W amplifiers for the woofers.

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PoweredForce™ Bass
Vantage's PoweredForce woofer section harnesses an advanced 8-inch aluminum-cone driver, a 200-watt high-resolution amplifier, and a precision acoustic-control cabinet design to deliver stunning bass, down to 34 Hz, from an enclosure not much bigger than a case of wine. A 35-Hz level control allows easy, precise optimization of low-frequency output to room acoustics.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Guys

Thank you for the input. I will try a few things out tonight to see if I can better dial in the system. I did setup the ML using a flashlight and angling the reflection off the panel. I want to move them further from the wall but the wife will have no part of that :(

I realize that both the fronts and the sub have internal amps and I can switch the fronts to small but Rays point is what I was told by ML way back when I had these first setup. My takeaway from this thread is to make some minor adjustments in overall setup but kick the idea of getting an external amp...

Thanks for the input guys!
 

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My question is how immersive the surround affect feels to you. The MLs are kind of tight to the fireplace, and the Definitive's a little close to the seating area. I would expect a wide variation in surround quality as one moves away from the centerline, with the surrounds dominating for anyone sitting at the end of the couch.

You can reduce the loudness variation by getting the speakers farther from the seats (top shelf?), but given how thight they are to the couch, you'd be better off turning them toward the ceiling or into the corners. Eiither would reduce loudness variation, as well as smearing the sonic image across the walls, reducing localization.

Conversely, it surround immersion isn't an issue...

As to the ML's, assign them as small, so the sub handles LFE duty, but keep them capable of running full range. The AVR may cross away from them at 80Hz, but they'll still be playing a little to 60Hz, and you may find you still like to listen in stereo on occassion.

Otherwise, you got the message!

HAve fun,
Frank
 
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