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bortus's picture
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New speakers + old equipment
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I picked up a pair of B&W 686 S2s over the weekend, and the matching center channel speaker (can't rememeber model number off hand) to finish off a home theater system that previously looked great but sounded like crap.   I'm driving the speakers with a 2007 Onkyo TX-SR605, and possibly adding an older Sony subwoofer to pick up any extra bass that the speakers don't handle.

Questions: 

- What should I be doing to optimize my sound quality?  Other than using Onkyo's built-in mic to locate the position of the speakers relative to the sitting area, I'm not enough of an audiophile to fine-tune the system by ear.  It certainly sounds WAY better than the theater-in-a-box that I used to have... but I wouldn't really know if I was only getting 50% performance out of them or something.  Any tips/tricks?

- What settings should I use for my subwoofer?  There's a normal/inverted switch... a frequency dial... and a volume dial.  (The volume I can do by ear.)

- Lastly, would it be a waste to use my old Kenwood theater-in-a-box speakers as surround speakers?  Will they just muddy the sound?

(BTW -- We won't be using the system for music much -- mainly Blu-Ray, streaming movies, videogames, etc.)

 

Glacialpath's picture
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RE: New speakers + old equipment

Hi there how are you?

I used to have use of one of those AV receivers at an old job of mine. We used to have a lot of trouble with it switching itself to Pure Audio when the display goes black and the power switch ligts up blue. Of course we just pres Direct on the remote and it would go back to the decoder in the amp.

No a bad sounding amp if I remember. If you set your speakers up in as symmetrical way as you can keeping the center the same distance away from the main viewing seat and with what ever amount of toe in you think they need (have a play around with some music). Measure the distane from each speaker to the head hight (roughly) of where you listen and put the center the same distance away. Try and get about 2m between the front left and right.

It's perfectly fine to use the Sony sattelites for the surrounds. Of course you can make it 7.1 too. I have some old JVC speakers for my surrounds also from an old all in one. Matching speakers will sound better but you can upgrade them as and when the budget allows.

As long as the subwoofer is active (has it's own amp) then it should be fine. Also it's not there to take the frequencies the speakers can't handel as such. It's for the .1 so movies will sound fuller and have weight to them if it's set up correctly.

Idealy you want it outside your fronts if room allows it with the cone facing into the room. Set the frequency to about 100 for the cross over so the Sony sattelites get a look in to as they will be just a Mid range driver. Put the volume at mid way and you should be fine leaving the phase switch on Normal. I think Inverted is if you had a second Subwoofer in the loop.

With the set up mic you want to put it on something that is higher than te back of your seating but as central as you can regards the fronts. The rears work better when just above head hight (this helps with sounds above you like a scene when someone is in an upstairs room but the shot is of the room below) If they can possibly be about the same distance from your listening spot as the fronts should give the best result. Mine are about half as close as my fronts. The amp will cmpensate for that if you are down on space.

Make sure the room is a queit as possible. Before setting the mic going ture the system up as loud as you feel comfortable and try to deal with any vibrations in the room. The mic will pick up any sound you make so I tend to leave the room trying to get the door shut before the set up starts (I've set it going with the remote first) wait for it to do its thing. Be careful. It may go quiet but it might not be finished as it will be mesuring then will make more noise. The amp will turn it's self up to 0 (reference level) so you definitely don't want to be in the room. No worries if it's open plan just try not to make any noise as I said.

There are some video's on how best to use the mic as I watched one then did mine and it sounded much better than before. I learnt about keeping the mic away from the back of the couch for instance.

I'm sure you'll get more responce from others on here so good luck and have fun. Also get the thikist speaker cable you can for the Sony speakers and good think speaker cable for your fronts too.

Let us know what ou deside. You might want to post your room size and shape so we know what you have to work with too. Wink

Hi-Fi: Campridge audio D500 SE, DACMagic 1, C500, P500.. Monitor Audio BR1 speakers.

H-T: Pioneer; Kuro LX5090, BDP LX71, SC LX73. CA P500. SKY+HD. Rel Q50. Mordaunt Short Avant.

bortus's picture
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RE: New speakers + old equipment

Thanks for this!  

 

Unfortunately the sub doesn't have its own amp -- it connects via a single RCA plug to the Onkyo.  No budget for extra components at the moment, so should I dump it from the setup?  The S2s seem to do a pretty good job with low frequencies...

bortus's picture
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Last seen: 2 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 07/07/2014 - 19:21
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RE: New speakers + old equipment

Thanks for this!  

 

Unfortunately the sub doesn't have its own amp -- it connects via a single RCA plug to the Onkyo.  No budget for extra components at the moment, so should I dump it from the setup?  The S2s seem to do a pretty good job with low frequencies...

Glacialpath's picture
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RE: New speakers + old equipment

bortus wrote:

Thanks for this!  

 

Unfortunately the sub doesn't have its own amp -- it connects via a single RCA plug to the Onkyo.  No budget for extra components at the moment, so should I dump it from the setup?  The S2s seem to do a pretty good job with low frequencies...

If it has an RCA connection for hooking it up to the AV receiver then it is Active (has it's own amp) It has the volume and frequency controls too which is the amp. Keep it.

Here we go I found the video I watched that helped me set mine up.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okyNlhJ3Hvo

Hope that helps.

Hi-Fi: Campridge audio D500 SE, DACMagic 1, C500, P500.. Monitor Audio BR1 speakers.

H-T: Pioneer; Kuro LX5090, BDP LX71, SC LX73. CA P500. SKY+HD. Rel Q50. Mordaunt Short Avant.

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