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Regarding my Onkyo receiver listening modes. I have a 3.0 setup right now with 8060 towers and 8040 center. Might add a sub later but I'm frankly pretty impressed with the bass as-is despite it now going as low as a dedicated sub would.


In this setup, I'm trying to understand all the listening modes on my receiver (onkyo). I've read a bunch of stuff and totally confused as it relates to my full range towers. For 2-ch music, "pure direct" and stereo modes have been described as minimal processing (no audyssey eq) and not outputting LFE signal. However, since I have full range speakers it seems this are the two best modes. Correct?


What about for movies and TV shows? My receiver by default chooses the right mode to match the incoming signal. Eg. If the movie is DTS signal it'll be in DTS mode on receiver. I can change this to whatever I want but having trouble figuring out which I would choose I know this is usually personal preference but I'm seriously trying to understand how to choose between all the other modes (Dolby pro logic, THX, theatre sens, neo 6, ...). Any advice?
 

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You are really limited to 2-channel stereo at the present. That can be very good....but...:


The center speaker does not really come into play properly until you go to 5.1 or 5.0.


Spend $40 on a pair of the Dayton B652 speakers at Parts Express (which are amazingly good for a silly low price), and use those for 5.0.


Then you can use either stereo or other modes depending on the program material.
 

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Most recent AVRs will split and route the LFE channel to the front L/R speakers if they are setup as "Large", if you also configure the AVR to not have a subwoofer.


Under the speaker set-up for your Onkyo, set the front speakers to Large, and the center speaker to "Large" (you could experiment with center "Small", but since the 8040 is rated to 40Hz, you should be OK with "Large"). Also make sure to configure all other speakers (Subwoofer, Surround, High/Wide/Rear, etc. to "No" or "None".)


If your receiver has Audessy setup, you should run/re-run the configuration after you've configured your speakers, or whenever you make changes to your setup.


With this, you will have 3.0 speaker routing for surround material and it should sound quite good. You can then switch between the surround and stereo/direct/pure modes. Your center speaker will be used as needed by your source material and all LFE bass will be routed to your 8060 towers.


Educational reading:
The Misunderstood LFE Channel
Bass Management and LFE - Not the same thing!
 
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