I am somewhat new at home audio and any help would be most appreciated. My current set up consists of TSI 500s, a Pioneer SX-737 receiver, and a Pro-ject Debut Carbon turntable. I use this set up almost exclusively for listening to records. I live in a small apartment currently (expecting to move relatively soon to a house), and do not need major loudness. The 500s are obviously rated at 20-275 Watts and my Pioneer puts out 35-40 WPC. It gets plenty loud and sounds great to me, but admittedly, I do not have trained ears. I know my receiver is somewhat weak for the speakers and I plan on getting a more powerful one eventually, but I'm trying to see how urgent this is.
My question is, would it sound better if I had a more powerful receiver? Am I doing a disservice to my speakers? I would like to stick to vintage for many reasons, (price, phono input, look, etc). Am I possibly damaging my speakers because they are "less powered"?
Would it make a huge difference in sound quality if I upgraded to say, 60-100 WPC?
What are some recommendations for more powerful receivers that are somewhat readily available used?
Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you all so much.
If you're not looking for a bigger sound, bass tightening, increased dynamics, or some tonal shaping, I'm sure your pioneer is more than adequate for the 500s. Are you looking to change something about the sound? For instance I was using a tube amp with my speakers and I realized I had a problem with the bass - it didn't hit hard enough or with enough heft; so I bought a solid state amp and the problem was instantly solved.
I think people try new amps for a couple of different reasons: 1) there's a problem that you want solved. 2) curiosity - what would something else sound like
I guess my biggest concern was underpowering to the point of damaging the speakers. However, I have tested them at fairly high volume, (higher than I would ever comfortably listen to) and I could not hear any clipping or other issues. Not hurting the speakers is number one for me
There is no immediate problem for me. Again, it sounds great to me...but I have little to compare to. Curiosity may be whats getting me. Because I know my Pioneer has lower wattage compared to what the speakers can handle, it makes me wonder what a big Marantz or similar might sound like.
Then again, I'd hate to spend a decent chunk of change on something only to realize it didn't make a huge difference. Especially considering I have a somewhat small listening area.
You can't really hurt the speakers by underpowering them. Adding a new AVR or amplifier with more power will give you more volume and will most likely be cleaner since you won't have to push your amp to the maximum to get more volume.
Welcome to polk.....i see you like vintage. Thats a nice receiver you have. There are alot of nice vintage ones out there. Find one you like. Listen to it if possible. Ask here or someone that may help you. Good luck. And enjoy that Pioneer
The more power you have,will make them sing.....you shouldnt go beyond 11oclock on the dial..
This eases my mind a bit. I never need to turn the volume dial past 10-11 on the clock. Even when it's at it's loudest, I have not noticed any distortion. I anticipate that I may need a bit more power when I move into a larger place.
If I were you, I wouldn't worry too much about rate power ratings,weather it is speakers, or reciever.
If you like the Pioneer match-up with the TSI's, take your time and find a better vintage Pioneer. You like what you currently have, and don't push it to hard, so you have time. Shop, test, and enjoy. You may even want to look at some of the newer integrated amps out there. You may be suprised, and find something you like. Just a suggestion, and many have phono inputs.
I read a post somewhere, I just dont remember where, that stated that. Having more power then the rated wattage on a speaker isnt a bad thing, It allows you to have a cleaner more dynamic sound at lower volumes.
Plus the risk of over driving a speaker to the point of damage is less likely than over driving an amp to clipping
Welcome to Club Polk!
The SX-737 is a pretty nice Pioneer, I have the next model up (SX-838) and at 50 watts it's VERY powerful, more so than any 50 watt receiver of current construction. So don't let those low watts fool you, I bet your unit can kick 65-70 watts @ 8 ohms out to the TSI-500s.
If you like the sound of the Pioneer and it has Stereo Pre-outs, you could just add power amp to it and let the receiver control everything. That's a cheap way of boosting the power to your towers. That series DOES like a lot of power. Opens them up more; but you won't hurt them driving them with the Pioneer unless you clip (get to the distortion level) the amp section.
Those early Pioneers sound very musical and warmish compared to what followed them.
Yea it's funny, even though it is rated 35 wpc at 8 ohms, it seems more powerful than that and puts out quite a bit a sound with the 500s.
I am unfamiliar with adding a power amp. I did a quick google search. Looks like that is a separate unit that adds additional wattage? How does this work?
Also, I do think the Pioneer gives out a great sound. Waiting patiently to come across a higher end Pioneer sounds like a decent bet as well
Thank you all very much!
Power amps will connect to a AVRs preouts. Thats how it gets its signal. It then amplifies that signal, and send it to the speakers which are wired to the amp. The AVR will still adjust volume, tone control, and any settings that you use. Its still where all your devices will connect. It filters the sound and sends only L/R to the power amp. Everything else is sent to the AVRs internal amp and to what ever speakers are connected to it.
Separate power amps will have a sound signature just like the pioneer does. IMO pioneer has a nice warm sound. The carver amp that I use also has a very warm sound.
When looking for an amp. listen to them if you can. If not reviews from people with similar brand and model line speakers can be a big help