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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys,

I recently upgraded my 5.1 system to a beefier one with NHT Threes, 3C and Absolute Zero for the rears, together with an Epik Legend subwoofer. The speakers are powered by my Onkyo 707 and I watch mainly Blu-Rays or series. My problem is that the dialogues in movies are sometimes are to understand even if I crank up the level of the center channel. Now I am thinking of adding a power amp to drive my speakers better/clarify the sound etc etc.

Considering the actual sale on Emotiva power amps, which one should I get to improve my sound? Is the XPA-3 the one to get to amp my LCR and let the Onkyo drive the surrounds, or an UPA-5 should get the job done and save me 100$ in addition?

I don't want to listen to insanely loud volumes, so it's nothing about power, more about quality of the sound...


Thanks for your input!
 

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Neither will improve your dialog, IMO. If the problem was due to lack of power, maybe. But I have my suspicions that is not the case? In other words, your dialog at all volume levels is problematical?


Some suggestions -

* Reduce dynamic range (your receiver may be able to do this with settings, especially for Dolby Digital audio); High dynamic range of movies can be a problem because you turn up the volume to hear the dialog, than it's too loud

* A poorly positions center channel speaker could cause issues (some say to try aiming it more towards your ears, even if you have to tilt it - this could improve things a bit)

* A poor center channel speaker could perhaps be improved by a better one

* Raising center channel level in the receiver's settings could help


I am with you, I don't have great hearing, so sometimes I do struggle to hear dialog in some movies. I just turn it up, then turn it down if I have to. Receiver's with sophisticated loudness control like Dolby Volume may be the best solution.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for your suggestions, I am a little puzzled though.

The NHT 3 Center considered as poor kinds of hurt me a bit. It's a 3 way center with 2 x 6.5" woofers, a 2.5" midrange and a 0.75" tweeter. I chose this one because it's a 3 way design and it is supposed to be better for movies. Now maybe it is not well positioned as it is in my AV shelf/cabinet, below the TV and below ear level. I might try to tilt the center a bit so it aims toward our ears.

My hearing is fine, it's just that I am not a native speaker ans sometimes I struggle to understand what the actors say if dialog is not super clear.

Too bad you didn't help me choose an amp though!


Thanks
 

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It was a suggestion I made without even paying attention to what center speaker you have. Your center speaker is probably completely competent.


As for choosing an amp, think both are good choices. I own the XPA-3, and so far it's been fine (if you ignore the first one "blew up" when I first powered it on



I also did not mention accoustics. Rooms can cause issues with audio, such as reflection as such which could maybe make dialog harder to hear.


I think it's mostly dynamics though. Reduce dynamics if possible via a receiver setting(s), and see if that improves things.
 
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