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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,
I recently made the change from a surround sound system to a 2-channel system.
I invested in a new pair of speakers.....Focals, and an 80W NAD int amp.
I'm still rather new to all this and had some help hooking up my components.
I guess it could be described as a hybrid as I still have my 7.1 receiver, but when it comes to music, everything goes through the NAD.

My question is, while I love the sound of my system, it seems like 'what I hear is what I get', in the sense that the only corrections I can make are the bass/treble/balance controls on the NAD?
I'm really missing a Loudness button, or anything else to give me a little 'oomph'.
I suppose that's the limitation of a 2-channel system? Are there any other options??

Dan
 

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A loudness button is boosted treble and bass. If you have separate bass and treble controls, can't you turn them up to do the same?
 

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Maybe add an equalizer to your setup if you don't like what the bass/treble alone do. Or find 2ch electronics that incorporate an equal loudness contour if that's what you really want. Why did you choose the NAD piece?
 

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Hey all,
I recently made the change from a surround sound system to a 2-channel system.
I invested in a new pair of speakers.....Focals, and an 80W NAD int amp.
I'm still rather new to all this and had some help hooking up my components.
I guess it could be described as a hybrid as I still have my 7.1 receiver, but when it comes to music, everything goes through the NAD.

My question is, while I love the sound of my system, it seems like 'what I hear is what I get', in the sense that the only corrections I can make are the bass/treble/balance controls on the NAD?
I'm really missing a Loudness button, or anything else to give me a little 'oomph'.
I suppose that's the limitation of a 2-channel system? Are there any other options??

Dan

Which Focal speakers do you have; what model?

What type of source components are you using (CD player, streaming, etc.) and what make and model are they?

Is your amplifier the C356BEE?
 

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bass +4 and treble -2 might be worth a try. does that integrated have a gain knob on the back? maybe check what level its at and increase a bit...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Which Focal speakers do you have; what model?

What type of source components are you using (CD player, streaming, etc.) and what make and model are they?

Is your amplifier the C356BEE?
I have the ARIA 936 speakers along with the NAD C356BEE.
At this point I'm just streaming from Tidal, waiting for MQA to be available.

I bought the NAD when I was speaker shopping and it was suggested that I look at getting more power.
I'm not complaining, just looking for suggestions.

Dan
 

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depending on the type of music you listen to, adding a sub is always an option. lots of variables, so the more info the better.
 
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Adding a sub woofer to your system offers the possibility of extending the frequency response in addition to boosting the volume of the low end you have now. I you want to add more power to what you have don't settle for a jump to only 100 wpc. You'll probably want to upgrade to about 150 or 160 wpc by my reckoning, of course I could be wrong. I just recall a rule of thumb that one has to double wpc to get a significant increase in performance.

Your speakers are rated at a nominal 8 ohms with a minimum 2.8 (?) ohm resistance or maybe that's a reactance. But who wants to delve into imaginary numbers and such. If you really want to add a power amp to your two channel system, that is use your integrated as a pre amp and by connecting the power amp to your pre out 2 outputs, and you have the money, and you want to stay with NAD, the M22 stereo power amp should work with your speakers, provided you are judicious with the volume nob.

But, should you lay out the $$$$$$ for the M22 your system will still only go down to, let's say,
35 Hz in room. If you add a subwoofer and your room can handle it, you could hear 27.5 Hz if
you do things correctly. What's the big deal about 27.5 Hz? It's the lowest note on a grand piano.

There are less expensive power amps out there. When I see an 8 ohm nominal coupled with 2.8 ohm minimum I think of Pulse Width Modulation or "Digital" amplification. My speakers are Fluance XL7fs. These speakers have an 8 ohm nominal impedance and a low minimum impedance also and I can drive them very well with a CDA 250C produced by Class D Audio. It cost about $500 and is rated at 125 wpc into 8 ohms and 250 wpc into 4 ohms. For anther $50 or $60 Class D Audio offers an amp that doubles those specs. However, they are not yet offering an amp with a 12 volt trigger.

As far as tone control goes you may want to look into the miniDSP DDR22d or DDR22a . These device provide DIRAC Room Correction for stereo systems. It's an either or for you. But, it may be a challenge to set-up without a tech savvy buddy. Set involves a personal computer of some sort (PC, Mac, desktop or laptop) and the supplied microphone. You may want to google minidsp and read more about it to see if you're interested.

To sum-up, adding a sub extends your low end as well as increasing its volume. Adding power most likely won't do that.
If want to add more power, I suggest finding a reasonably priced digital amp (just because I like them). But, all said, adding a sub gives you the most for your money.
 

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If you want a loudness button, most of Yamaha's lower end amps still have a loudness button. The high end Luxman L-505 ux has a loudness button (on the remote). Using an AVR is another option as Audessy with dynamic eq is the ultimate 21st century loudness button.
 
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Hi Snoop, i have the same speakers. I had the same issue as you do. I solved it by moving my couch 3 feet closer to the speakers. If you can, try moving your furniture or speakers first. The 936s give ample bass, it was my room configuration that killed the bass. I use an 80 watts class A amp and at 50% volume it is very loud. I havent tried class D amps so no idea on how it would perform. As for treble/bass/loudness knobs my amp doesnt have any of those and i dont miss them. On my previous amp i tried them and found that it killed the width of the soundstage. EQ in software also but to a lesser degree. IMHO 936s dont need a sub for music listening unless you are into deep heavy bass. If you are craving accuracy (and this doesnt mean lean bass at all) the Arias can shake a room easily.
 
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My towers also play down to 39hz and while I have a sub that plays down to 9hz I rarely use it when listening to 2 channel music or even concert DVD's.

But my room is not huge and I sit about 12 feet away from the speakers.

I listen in direct so no tone controls or EQ in the signal path.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Maybe add an equalizer to your setup if you don't like what the bass/treble alone do. Or find 2ch electronics that incorporate an equal loudness contour if that's what you really want. Why did you choose the NAD piece?
Do they still sell equalizers? Haven't seen one in ages.
 

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Do they still sell equalizers? Haven't seen one in ages.

Yes you can still buy new equalizers. I would bet that the problem the OP is having is more with the room acoustics than with the equipment. Moving the speakers / furniture around will probably correct most of what he is experiencing. Room acoustics can be a real ***** figuring out sometimes. Hard floors, bare walls, windows, odd shaped rooms and even ceiling height can all raise hell on the acoustics making it a difficult problem to solve. Before spending money on more equipment I would work with what the OP has to see what he can fix with tweaks to his listening room.
 
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I heard the older Focal 836, and because they play so clear and effortless, they can fool you.

The first way the fooled me was in how effortless they played. I didn't think they were that loud until I tried to talk to the sales person and realized I had to shout to make myself heard.

The second way they fooled me is the absolute clarity of the bass. When I initially listened with my with my ears, I was disappointed in the bass. Then my focus shifted to my body, and I realized I could feel the bass physically slamming into me.

The bass specs aren't great, but they traded that bit of bass for greater clarity in the Mids and Highs.

Frequency response (+/- 3dB): 39Hz - 28kHz
Low frequency point (- 6 dB): 32Hz

That's actually pretty good. Sure there are many speakers that go lower, but to have the clarity of the Focal, they are going to cost a pretty penny.

However, I found the speakers, not to be bright, but to be crisp and forward, meaning a room with poor acoustics is not going to do them any favors.

On the Subject of an Equalizer, the problem is, unless you can test the room with something like Room Equalization Wizard (REW), you don't really know what needs to be equalized. AV Receiver with built-in Room EQ test and equalize the room base on the results of the test.

Also, with Room EQ or a manual Equalizer, while you can make a good room better, you simply can't make a bad room good. There is a limit to how much you can alter physical reality.

For anything to work, the room has to reach a reasonable standard of good acoustics.

Steve/bluewizard
 

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I heard the older Focal 836, and because they play so clear and effortless, they can fool you.

The first way the fooled me was in how effortless they played. I didn't think they were that loud until I tried to talk to the sales person and realized I had to shout to make myself heard.

The second way they fooled me is the absolute clarity of the bass. When I initially listened with my with my ears, I was disappointed in the bass. Then my focus shifted to my body, and I realized I could feel the bass physically slamming into me.

The bass specs aren't great, but they traded that bit of bass for greater clarity in the Mids and Highs.

Frequency response (+/- 3dB): 39Hz - 28kHz
Low frequency point (- 6 dB): 32Hz

That's actually pretty good. Sure there are many speakers that go lower, but to have the clarity of the Focal, they are going to cost a pretty penny.

However, I found the speakers, not to be bright, but to be crisp and forward, meaning a room with poor acoustics is not going to do them any favors.

On the Subject of an Equalizer, the problem is, unless you can test the room with something like Room Equalization Wizard (REW), you don't really know what needs to be equalized. AV Receiver with built-in Room EQ test and equalize the room base on the results of the test.

Also, with Room EQ or a manual Equalizer, while you can make a good room better, you simply can't make a bad room good. There is a limit to how much you can alter physical reality.

For anything to work, the room has to reach a reasonable standard of good acoustics.

Steve/bluewizard

Aria line is very different from 800 series, much softer. I havent heard 836s but my previous speakers were 816. And by the way you dont need to buy an EQ, all good software (players) have one imbedded.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I heard the older Focal 836, and because they play so clear and effortless, they can fool you.

The first way the fooled me was in how effortless they played. I didn't think they were that loud until I tried to talk to the sales person and realized I had to shout to make myself heard.

The second way they fooled me is the absolute clarity of the bass. When I initially listened with my with my ears, I was disappointed in the bass. Then my focus shifted to my body, and I realized I could feel the bass physically slamming into me.

The bass specs aren't great, but they traded that bit of bass for greater clarity in the Mids and Highs.

Frequency response (+/- 3dB): 39Hz - 28kHz
Low frequency point (- 6 dB): 32Hz

That's actually pretty good. Sure there are many speakers that go lower, but to have the clarity of the Focal, they are going to cost a pretty penny.

However, I found the speakers, not to be bright, but to be crisp and forward, meaning a room with poor acoustics is not going to do them any favors.

On the Subject of an Equalizer, the problem is, unless you can test the room with something like Room Equalization Wizard (REW), you don't really know what needs to be equalized. AV Receiver with built-in Room EQ test and equalize the room base on the results of the test.

Also, with Room EQ or a manual Equalizer, while you can make a good room better, you simply can't make a bad room good. There is a limit to how much you can alter physical reality.

For anything to work, the room has to reach a reasonable standard of good acoustics.

Steve/bluewizard
Wouldn't it be awesome if there was some app that could give you feedback when moving speakers/furniture around?
Why hasn't someone created this yet??
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I have the ARIA 936 speakers along with the NAD C356BEE.
At this point I'm just streaming from Tidal, waiting for MQA to be available.

I bought the NAD when I was speaker shopping and it was suggested that I look at getting more power.
I'm not complaining, just looking for suggestions.

Dan
Can I hook up an equalizer to this NAD that we have??
 

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