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So I did it this weekend. Hooked up my Denon 2805 outputs for my surround L/R and my surround backs (6th and 7th channel) to the external 5 channel input for my old Sony STR-K502.


>Can't believe I just admitted I own technics.


Well, I own a Sony. Anyway, hooked up the Surround L/R as "Front L/R" and the 6th/7th rear channels as "surround L/R" because it's only a 5.1 input. So now the Denon is only powering my main Yamaha ns-a200xt towers and Polk Csi3 center, and the Sony is powering my 4 rear crappy cubes.


Could be a placebo effect, but I found the results to be satisfying. ESPECIALLY on DVD content. It seems to have increased the clarity on all three front speakers. For example, the tinkle of breaking glass was always "good" but not as lifelike as I wished for, and now it is much more distinct and real-life sounding. I tested using "Friday night lights" on DTV (Starz) dolby 5.1 channel and immediately noticed the difference, as I was watching the movie with my old "all Denon" set-up before I made the change.


I then went to DVD. Saving Private Ryan and the opening carnage is a tremendous scene for multi-channel effects bombarding you, and all the sourround stuff I picked up was almost overwhelming. I'm still trying to figure out the optimal place for the Sony volume, as it seems to vary a bit by source (DVD, DTV, etc). But anyway, the satisfying clank of machine gun shells hitting the floor of the gunner's nest was noticeably enhanced. I went to the opening of the Mummy, and heard "slight" improvement over my old set-up, but then tried various scenes from X-Men, and saw improvement somewhere between the Private Ryan and Mummy results. 7 channel music now sounds much better than before, more smooth transition between all speakers, so it's more of a unified sound. Before it sounded a bit overwhelming, and not really split up properly. Sorry, best description I can offer. Also, no increase in heat from either receiver. Both seem just where they always have been (using my scientifically calibrated hand)


I do have two questions for the wise masses out there:


1) I have my Sony power cord plugged into the outlet on the back of my Denon so they turn on simultaneously. Will this affect the Denon's performance at all by sapping current? Bad idea?

2) The Denon supposedly has a separate amp for the 6/7 channel. Does that mean that channel can actually come right from the Denon without stealing power from the fronts? Or if have the 6th and 7th coming from the pre-outs, does the Denon apply that dedicated AMP power to the fronts as well?


If I have power just sitting there in the Denon, may as well have that power the 6/7, and let the sony only power the rear L/R.


Thanks,
 

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I would NOT plug one amp into another, like you have done. Most receivers with that feature are made to handle relatively low powered devices (CD player, for example) that do not have large fluctuations in power consumption.


The limiting factor for your Denon (and any receiver/MCH amp) is the power supply. If you have 7 amps on board but a small, relatively weak, power supply, then each channel, when driven simultaneously, will not have full power on tap. However, they are RARELY driven simultaneously and even when they are, it has to be pretty loud (or a pretty large room) before any real world limitations are met (people in fora like this one are more likely to reach those limits than the average consumer, so keep that in mind when receiving feedback ;) ). Your Denon is a typical mid-fi receiver (like my Integra) and having your surrounds run off another amp will leave more reserve in your power supply for the front channels. However, you're only likely to notice improvements if you play things loudly and/or are a critical listener of music with great dynamic range (typically classical or jazz recordings--pop/rock has, particularly if it's recent, a very small dynamic range so the difference there will be less noticeable).


Hope this helps. I'm sure other, more knowledgeable posters will chime in with more details on the whys and hows.
 
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