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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm hard of hearing but love watching movies in the best quality possible. My main hearing issue when watching films is understading the dialog. SO, I'm wanting to hook up my center channel speaker to my existing 2 speaker setup. I'd hook em all up (5 Paradigm Studio 40's) but the surrounds would be on a shared wall with neighbors who have kids, so that wont fly.

I have a new Pioneer VSX-919AH-k AV receiver. Is there a way to do this with this AVR? I know that the receiver can detect how many speakers are connected to it and thus allows certain features to be used, like 5.1 sound and various 5.1 and 7.1 codecs, but I only want a 3 speaker system.

Is this possible with this receiver? Would I need to trick it in some way into allowing the use of the codecs that send sound to more than 2 speakers? And what about sound quality? I'm assuming that if I have 5.1 sound working but simply lack the 2 rear speakers I would still get decent quality sound from the remaining 3, but I really don't know.

I could sure use some help.


· Registered
1,025 Posts
First, you need to read your manual. Here's a link to the .pdf file, which is sometimes easier to browse than the printed version:

Only the front main speakers are required connections. Read pages 15-16, then skip to page 53 and keep reading. Note that on page 55, your receiver has a way to simulate surround with just two speakers.

Your idea to add a center speaker to improve dialog intelligiblity is very good.

For maximum intelligibility where you sit, point and angle the center speaker directly at your head.

After MCACC finishes, you may find manually adjusting the center speaker volume up a little bit improves intelligibility.

It's very important that you go through your MCACC auto setup -- just tell it what speakers you have and don't have, and it will improve the sound significantly.

You have many sound fields to choose from -- experiment to find which works best for you.

Hope this helps!

PS: You probably can hang and use the surrounds without bothering your neighbor -- remember that the surround soundtracks are much softer that the fronts (and you can manually adjust their volume down to whatever you want after MCACC finishes -- a little surround effect is a lot nicer than none)

plus remember all the low bass is going to your sub (set ALL your speakers to 'small') -- it's the sub you don't want to put up against a shared wall.

EDIT: ptaylor, I just realized you may not have a sub. In that case, you'll want to keep the bass out of the center speaker to improve dialog intelligibility, and bass out of the surrounds (if you use them) to avoid bothering the neighbor -- so you'll want to direct all the bass to your main left and right front speakers. Do this by setting your front main speakers to 'Large' and any other speakers to 'Small'. You'll need to read the manual more than I have to see if you can pre-set "Large" and "Small" before running MCACC, or whether you have to go in and set that the way you want it after it finishes.
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