Home audio catch-all

It's here. I'm here. Fiddling.

19hz is rumbly. Like some pictures on the wall in the hallway rattle hard enough to be heard through the wall, which is not a thing I've had to worry about before.

Also have a weird null in the 30hz range where I didn't with my old sub in the same place, probably because of the rear port vs front in the SVS. The bummer of this is I'm not sure if I can really relocate the thing. I might be able to if I squirrel it away under my bed or something. Will require a pretty extensive sub crawl I think

*More fiddling. Actually, I think the null was always there, and I think Audyssey is smart enough an algorithm to know it. I set my speaker crossovers up at 80hz to match the LPF setting I put on the sub and almost all of the mid bass just disappears. Weeeeeeeeeeird.

I think I need a longer sub cable.

*Found a spot that makes it sound really even and powerful throughout a bass signal test. Problem: Sub won't fit standing up. Might have to lay it down on its side, then it's probably going to "walk" on the carpet from vibration.

Conundrum.

Are you saying you're setting the crossover on the sub at 80hz? Or the sub crossover within the AVR? The lpf dial on the sub itself should be set to the max.

Audyssey is smart enough an algorithm to know it.

My general rule: don't override Audyssey. It knows a lot more about the room than I do. If it sets speakers as Large or whatever, I stay the hell out of the way, and let it do its thing.

Chairman_Mao wrote:

Are you saying you're setting the crossover on the sub at 80hz? Or the sub crossover within the AVR? The lpf dial on the sub itself should be set to the max.

Receiver. Sub crossover is maxed. Even has a little mark at the end labeled LFE. After re-running audyssey with the new one it set LPF at 80, but then still sets the crossovers on my fronts and center down at 40Hz.

Malor wrote:
Audyssey is smart enough an algorithm to know it.

My general rule: don't override Audyssey. It knows a lot more about the room than I do. If it sets speakers as Large or whatever, I stay the hell out of the way, and let it do its thing.

A little reading led me to multiple people with spl meters that found multiple channels off by multiple db after running audyssey on their various receivers. Not sure I'd just trust it quite so blindly, particularly if the primary listener doesn't like the resulting change in sound...

Audyssey is definitely doing something weird with the new sub. Even with the volume set barely to a quarter on the dial it still sets the level at like -12db and movies have almost zero bass.

*Yeeeeah... setting speaker distances with measurements from a tape measure and then setting levels by ear, then, with the sub at 50% volume, tweaking it's level while actually listening to something produced a much better result than Audyssey has with the new sub. It worked fine with the old one, helped with the old sub's deficiencies in some ways, but with the new one it leaves the whole system sounding hollow and empty.

My pioneer VSX-1021 died. UE22.
Factory reset multiple times.
Update via USB multiple fails then success.
Pencil eraser check for loose parts.

No sound.
HDMI from TiVo to TV has picture.

No sound to speakers for HDMI or tuner.

Bleh. I hate receiver shopping.

I don't know if it's still true, but back when I was last shopping (2010, I think), the base Pioneer brand wasn't well thought of in receivers, but Pioneer Elites were supposed to be pretty good, if you want to stay with that company.

My only brand rule is I don't buy Sony.

Denon/Yamaha are my go to recommends.

Previous gen Denons have a quirk with Dolby Digital + on Netflix that can be an issue (and has been discussed much on the previous pages), but otherwise are excellent and I would assume their newest lineup is free of said quirk.

Yamaha's just good. Generally.

I guess I should take inventory of my sources to make sure there's enough plugs, and maybe then see if my usage causes recommendations to lean one way or another.

Chairman_Mao wrote:

Receiver
$299 Onkyo: HT-RC560
$249 Denon: AVR-E300
$249 Yamaha: RX-V377

That Denon doesn't appear to have (composite/component?) inputs, whatever it is that my Wii has - or am I just missing it?
The Onkyo isn't available from amazon any more, only 3rd parties, and isn't $300 any longer.

I have the following input things:
- XBox 360(HDMI)
- TiVo(HDMI)
- Wii(I never can keep component vs composite straight)

I have the following output things:
- 32" 720p TV(which I plan to upgrade "soonish" but not now)
- a 5 - 10 year old Infinity speaker set which I'm only using part of
-- subwoofer, center speaker, L+R floor speakers
-- unused in the garage/attic/closet are L+R bookshelf speaker

I need a Receiver that is not expensive that will do the HDMI & Analog ins to HDMI out to my TV.

Bonus points if there's some way to not have to strip speaker wire and try to jam it into the little connector hole.

I like the $250-300 price range of those links, and I wonder if the Yamaha will cut the mustard for my needs.
Any thoughts?

Yamaha makes quality receivers. They're well regarded pretty much everywhere. If it has all the input combinations you need, and it sounds like it does, it should work perfectly.

Denon, when you get into their more budget receivers, is trending toward sacrificing old tech that a lot of people are abandoning (composite, component, etc) and getting a little more high end with the newer features they do end up including. You'll see more of their receivers without component and the like than other brands at the lower end. The upside is they tend to include higher end versions of Audyssey and other features at the same pricepoint.

It's a question of priorities.

For the Wii, there are a bunch of little boxes out there that convert it to being able to use HDMI but I *think* they're all third party. A few of them seem to have far more positive reviews than negative so they may work, but YMMV as always with things like that.

Personally, for the simplest route, I'd probably just get the Yamaha.

Thanks for the update Ducki, I've changed the AVRs to reflect Onkyo's updated line. I also changed the Denon to what Thin_J is using, as it seems to be a bit better value.

Another option, Ducki, would be dropping back a model year or two if you want a Denon. That's what I did with the last ones I bought... ended up with outstanding hardware for about, um, I guess about a third of the original price.

The reason I did that was because Denon had stopped doing multichannel analog in, which is a real important feature for me (as I can't run my monitor over HDMI). I had to go to prior years to get that at a reasonable price. They've both been superb.

One was still new (and heavily discounted to move it out), and one was used, but both have been awesome.

edit: actually, this was in 2010. I bought a 2009 model new-in-box, but on closeout, and a 2008 model, used. The 2008 one was originally something like $1500 or $2000, and I'm pretty sure I got it for about $450. Both are still working beautifully.

What about SquareTrade? Worth it on the $250 Yamaha or just another upsell to squeak another $20(for 3 years) out of my pocket?

Also, are these the things I need to not have to contort myself into strange positions to connect my speakers to a receiver? http://www.amazon.com/Soundsoul-Conn...

Whether it's an annoyance to plug speakers in depends very much on which style of terminals you get on the back. Have you settled on which receiver you're buying? Are you going with the Yamaha?

The Yamaha, if you look at the back, only has the bigger style connections for the front left and right channels. The banana plugs you linked would work only for those. The other channels (center/surround) are the super simple type where you just press on the little tab, stick the wire in the hole that opens up, and then release the tab. They're extremely easy. The Denon E300 also looks to have terminals that are not compatible with banana plugs, in that case all of them. If you look they're not hollowed out, they're capped. Those might be removable, after a fashion, to allow you to use plugs, but I don't know that for sure. Of the receivers that have been linked only the Onkyo and the Denon X1000 look to have banana plug compatible terminals for all speaker channels.

For the banana plugs themselves, if you have/are using speaker wires with the nice convenient little ends all soldered together you'll end up having to cut those ends off, strip down a section of the sheathing, and then go from there to correctly install them because they require you to fan all the individual wire strands inside the cable out and fold them over the collar on the bottom half of the banana plug. If I'm doing a bad job describing that I'm sure you can find a detailed video on youtube or a guide elsewhere online.

If you have to do a full set of them it's not actually the least time consuming thing, but it definitely does make for easy hardware changes in the future. So some time spent now for time saved multiple times in the future, if you expect to be moving your hardware around or changing hardware on occasion.

I re-did all my speaker wiring a while back after I accidentally put the foot for a couch on top of both surround channel wires and the little brass toes on the bottom of the couch feet eventually cut the speaker wiring. Rather than breaking out the soldering iron and splicing them back together I decided to just replace them. The right surround was about 30ft and the left was about 23, so I went looking for wire. I found a great deal on a 150ft roll of 12 gauge speaker wire and already had an old box of correctly sized banana plugs on hand so I figured... why not. 12 gauge wire is overkill and not even remotely necessary for those relatively short distances... but there's no detriment according to everything I read and it was literally cheaper than smaller rolls of 16 or 14 gauge, so I bought it, because why not.

Then I just made a full set of 5.1 cables, banana plugs all around. When I bought the Denon, I admit, it was super convenient being able to just unplug them all and plug'em right back in to the new receiver after.

Thin_J wrote:

Whether it's an annoyance to plug speakers in depends very much on which style of terminals you get on the back. Have you settled on which receiver you're buying? Are you going with the Yamaha?

Yeah, I'm going with just ordered the Yamaha.

The Yamaha, if you look at the back, only has the bigger style connections for the front left and right channels. The banana plugs you linked would work only for those. The other channels (center/surround) are the super simple type where you just press on the little tab, stick the wire in the hole that opens up, and then release the tab. They're extremely easy. The Denon E300 also looks to have terminals that are not compatible with banana plugs, in that case all of them. If you look they're not hollowed out, they're capped. Those might be removable, after a fashion, to allow you to use plugs, but I don't know that for sure. Of the receivers that have been linked only the Onkyo and the Denon X1000 look to have banana plug compatible terminals for all speaker channels.

I didn't notice that. My old receiver had the screw type with (I think) open ends, so I just assumed...

For the banana plugs themselves, if you have/are using speaker wires with the nice convenient little ends all soldered together you'll end up having to cut those ends off, strip down a section of the sheathing, and then go from there to correctly install them because they require you to fan all the individual wire strands inside the cable out and fold them over the collar on the bottom half of the banana plug. If I'm doing a bad job describing that I'm sure you can find a detailed video on youtube or a guide elsewhere online.

I just had/have a spool of speaker wire. Probably somewhere between 12 and 16 gauge. It's a pain to get the wire in that little side-hole. I guess I could find my soldering iron and tin all my wires but... meh.

If you have to do a full set of them it's not actually the least time consuming thing, but it definitely does make for easy hardware changes in the future. So some time spent now for time saved multiple times in the future, if you expect to be moving your hardware around or changing hardware on occasion.

Well, all my speakers (I think) will allow banana plugs, and it seems like I'd be better able to guarantee a "good" connection, better than the screw hole thingy anyways.
And yeah, we might move stuff around. I know I'd be more willing to try moving/reconfiguring where things are if disconnecting/reconnecting was a bit "easier".

duckilama wrote:

I just had/have a spool of speaker wire. Probably somewhere between 12 and 16 gauge. It's a pain to get the wire in that little side-hole. I guess I could find my soldering iron and tin all my wires but... meh.

I get that. Completely.

And yeah, we might move stuff around. I know I'd be more willing to try moving/reconfiguring where things are if disconnecting/reconnecting was a bit "easier".

Well go ahead and throw banana plugs on wherever they'll work then. I did it and certainly don't regret it.

I got a Yamaha RX-V377! My really old Sony wouldn't do audio over HDMI and that's the only 5.1 option for the Wii U. I got a refurb off Amazon for $180. I wanted a budget model because my speakers and sub aren't great. I have a Yamaha A-S500 integrated amplifier for music and my nice speakers and really like it, so that's why I went Yamaha. Also, the reviews were good. I didn't actually check here but see it's been discussed.

As far as getting a refurb goes, it's plenty new for me. There's a weird small scratch on the remote which isn't a big deal. It saved me $60-$70 which is awesome. It's so nice to have a modern receiver and route all the HDMI through it. The sound is good. The bass was all boomy and out of control with my Sony. The sub is now way more in control and tighter for whatever reason on the Yamaha.

No complaints. It's a nice budget unit.

I'm looking to replace the two separate audio systems in my place with one single system. My TV currently has a soundbar + wireless sub, while the bookshelf has an Onkyo received with a pair of speaker + sub shelf units attached. I figure both of these can be merged into one system since the place isn't that big (and these two systems are in the same room anyway).

I'm looking at the Yamaha RX-V377 and one thing isn't clear to me: Does the received require a sub? What I'd like to do is try out the Yamaha plus the two shelf units I already have, and see if that sounds good enough to me. I'd hate to buy the received, then find out later I have to alter my plans to include a sub. I'd rather plan for that from the get-go if I know it's needed.

ahrezmendi wrote:

I'm looking to replace the two separate audio systems in my place with one single system. My TV currently has a soundbar + wireless sub, while the bookshelf has an Onkyo received with a pair of speaker + sub shelf units attached. I figure both of these can be merged into one system since the place isn't that big (and these two systems are in the same room anyway).

I'm looking at the Yamaha RX-V377 and one thing isn't clear to me: Does the received require a sub? What I'd like to do is try out the Yamaha plus the two shelf units I already have, and see if that sounds good enough to me. I'd hate to buy the received, then find out later I have to alter my plans to include a sub. I'd rather plan for that from the get-go if I know it's needed.

Na. A sub isn't required. It does have a sub pre-out, though, so you can use a subwoofer if you'd like to.

After a couple weeks with the RX-377, the only annoying thing is that my Samsung TV forces it to the TV input every time I turn it on using the ARC. So, I have to turn it back to HDMI 1 each time I turn everything on. It's not a huge deal and my research turned up no alternatives.

All that said, if you have an Onkyo receiver, I'm curious why you want to replace that.

Edit: In case you were wavering on Yamaha. I took a picture of my amp today. It's so pretty.

IMAGE(http://i.imgur.com/HVUYrF5l.jpg)

The Onkyo I have is old and only supports stereo in plugs. I need something that supports HDMI at a minimum, preferably HDMI and Optical. Plus the Onkyo I have doesn't have outputs besides speaker wires.

Good to know I can try it out with just these speakers. I'm going to go ahead with that, then judge if I need a sub.

The Onkyo I have is old and only supports stereo in plugs. I need something that supports HDMI at a minimum, preferably HDMI and Optical. Plus the Onkyo I have doesn't have outputs besides speaker wires.

Good to know I can try it out with just these speakers. I'm going to go ahead with that, then judge if I need a sub.

I am glad this popped up. I have been wanting to start/find a thread on here for a/v nerds. Bingo!

Lots of observations and comments, bear with me.

My stuffs:
TV Samsung 55”, several years old and may get replaced soon just to get new stuffs.
Receiver - Yamaha Rx-V867 7.2
Fronts - Elusive 1099 (www.diysoundgroup.com)
Center - none, 1099 sounds great using a phantom center
Surround, Rear - Klipsch KG-1
Sub - Parts Express 15" Ultimax w/ knock down cabinet and a Behringer iNuke 3000DSP

This is all in my living room and is 16’ x 23’ with a big opening into my kitchen area.

I recently upgraded my sub and fronts. I was previously running a Sunfire Architectural 10" and a Klipsch KSW-12 for subs with a pair of Klipsch Heresy I as my mains. Last summer I had a horrible experience with blown speakers at a theater when watching Godzilla and decided I was going to upgrade my system in time for the dvd release. After researching the ease and feasibility of refreshing my Heresy’s I decided to purchase new fronts. I looked at numerous brands and after visiting several a/v forums decided I was interested in building them from either a complete kit or a proven plan where I sourced all of the parts from a list. I decided that for my first DIY build I would go with a kit. The cabinetry was not an issue but the crossovers were way beyond my ability. Luckily I have a friend who does electronic work for a living. I love them. It took a couple of weeks for the drivers to break in and now they sound awesome.

I intend to add a second sub to help balance the nulls and room. I also plan to swap out my surrounds for Volt 10’s from DIY Sound Group and add them as side surrounds as well.

I love my Yamaha receiver and would buy another. If I were to change brands it would likely be to Onkyo or Denon to get Audyssey instead of the YPAO that Yamaha uses. I run bulk 12ga cable from Monoprice for all of my speaker cables and currently don’t have banana plugs but will soon. All of my HDMI cables came from Blue Jeans Cable and I have zero issues with them. I let my receiver process everything including Roku and Xbox.

Falling off my speaker box now.

TV Samsung 55”, several years old and may get replaced soon just to get new stuffs.

If that's a plasma, you might want to keep it. The Samsungs typically weren't quite as good as the Pannys in any given year, but I suspect any of the older Samsung plasmas will be better than a new LCD, as long as you have reasonable light control in the room.

Malor wrote:

The Samsungs typically weren't quite as good as the Pannys in any given year, but I suspect any of the older Samsung plasmas will be better than a new LCD, as long as you have reasonable light control in the room.

There was one year where they generally actually rated better for picture quality and only slightly higher on input lag on the higher end sets. I *think* it was 2011. It was the one year where Panasonic sets had a bunch of weird issues like fluctuating brightness and some other oddities. It only lasted through one particular set of models for that year, but that was why I ended up with a Samsung D7000. Because the only Panasonic without a bunch of weird quirky picture quality stuff cost like three times the price.

It is not plasma. I got it as a end of technology buy when the new 120hz came out. It has been a great screen but the 60hz refresh is really showing pixels on black backgrounds and xbox games.

In other words, cheap excuse for a new tv! Looking at a Sammy 75". Not ready to get 4k and don't want 3d.

Got a second sub built last night and plugged it in. No sound at all. The only change was the fans on the amp went into overdrive. It was late and I did not feel like messing with it any longer. I plan to check all the wiring tonight. Hopefully I missed something that came loose.

Now to decide what the first movie will be now that I have both subs.

fishdude wrote:

Got a second sub built last night and plugged it in. No sound at all. The only change was the fans on the amp went into overdrive. It was late and I did not feel like messing with it any longer. I plan to check all the wiring tonight. Hopefully I missed something that came loose.

Now to decide what the first movie will be now that I have both subs.

Fellowship of the Ring! That battle in the beginning has such awesome sound design. If I had a great system with no noise-complaint concerns, that's what I would test it with.

Master and Commander on a really big sub is unbelievable. Watching it on a projector with a monster sub wasn't like watching a movie, it was like being fired at by actual cannon.

Malor wrote:

Master and Commander on a really big sub is unbelievable. Watching it on a projector with a monster sub wasn't like watching a movie, it was like being fired at by actual cannon.

Yeah those cannons are great. The go-to movie scene for most DIY and other sub enthusiasts though is Black Hawk Down's "f*cking Irene" scene, when they get out of the helicopter. Apparently there is a huge amount of subsonic bass going on there from the rotor sweeps. Never watched it myself, and my sub wouldn't get that low anyway. But if you've got something that hits in the 16-10hz range, that's the scene to test with.