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  1. #1

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    Default MicroPro 2000 - Lack of Power?

    I purchased a refurbished MicroPro 2000 from Polk's store on Ebay recently. I am an audio beginner and this is my first sub.

    I realize that this is an 8" sub so will not have a ton of power, but despite that I'm pretty underwhelmed so far and wonder if I've received a defective unit. Perhaps I have a setting wrong or there's a setup issue.

    Note, I have the volume turned all the way up to 40 and have tried volumes between 30 and 40 without any significant improvement. I am connecting my sub to the receiver with a single RCA cable between the receiver's "Subwoofer PREOUT" and the sub's "LFE IN". I tried a 2nd RCA cable to see if that was the issue, but there was no difference. LFE attenuate on the receiver is set to 0dB. My fronts are set to Small with crossover currently set to 80 MHz.

    Here are the issues:
    - For both music and HT, sound coming from the sub is quite weak (about 1/3-1/2 of what I'd expect); sounds like I've wrapped blankets around it. Very low frequencies are getting through, but still lack power. Frequencies at the higher end of the sub's range seem to be non-existent.
    - When I raise the cutoff frequency on the Pioneer, the overall system's performance sounds worse. The Monitor 40's don't play the lower frequencies, but it doesn't seem like the sub is filling in the void. I have tried different setting's on the sub's low pass dial (40 Mhz to 120 MHz) and don't hear much difference between any setting.
    - I have left the sub's Power switch to ON because when I put it on "audio sense" the power light glows yellow (not detecting any audio) until I raise the volume to about -35 to -30dB (then it turns green).
    - When I ran the Pioneer's MACC calibration it correctly judged the distance of my front speakers at about 10 ft away and my center at about 9 ft away, but it says my sub is 32 ft away (though it is really <10 ft away - located between my TV and front right speaker).
    - Another issue is that the power button on the sub's remote seems to be defective. I've only got it to work once out of about 60 attempts, while the other buttons seem to work fine.

    Thanks for any help in advance. I love my Monitor 40's and can't wait to bring out the Monitor 70's and 30's that I've also purchased once I move out of my small apartment into a house.
    -------------------------------------------
    Receiver: Pioneer VSX-919AH
    Fronts: Monitor 40's (Monitor 70's and 30's in storage waiting for me to buy a house)
    Center: CS2

  2. #2

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    Remember it's sealed in a small enclosure with a 8" woofer. It's a very quick sub that blends very well but, it will not knock the pictures off the wall. If you're looking for more SPL move on to a different sub, or add another one.

  3. #3

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    I too want to say maybe your expectations were too high for this sub. But there are a couple things that make me say maybe not. The fact that you are having trouble with the auto sense turning on, and your cal. giving you a sub distance of 32 feet. I am not familiar with the MP 2000, so I'm shooting in the dark, but those 2 things together may indicate a problem. But it is not that uncommon for an auto cal to get things wrong, and for LFE outs to not trigger auto on features on subs. After you ran the MACC did you go in and make corrections to the distance? Try setting the subs low pass to the highest setting on the sub, and control the XO point with the bass management in the AVR (start out at 80, maybe a little lower). Set the distance to the correct point, at the sub set the gain to 1/2 or a little higher, then run the test tones, and adjust the sub volume in the AVR to see if it sounds anywhere close. It may just be your room will require a lot of work locating and tweaking, or it could be something is defective. Call Polk CS and see what they say.

    From your post, it sounds like you are dealing with a fairly small room, but you did not mention the room size, or if it opens to any other rooms. Give those details and maybe some with first hand knowledge of the MP 2000 can tell you if it is asking too much of the sub.

  4. #4

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    Thanks, apphd. I'm very curious to see how this turns out. My expectations could indeed have been too high, though I am surprised just how off my expectations are from reality on this one. The subwoofer is outputting only very faint power at my regular listening levels (-50 db to -40db on my receiver).

    My room size is 18' x 11.5', but so far I've been less concerned about how the room fills with sound and instead how little I can hear coming out of the sub with my ears 5" from it. I did go back into the avr's menu and change the sub distance to 9' but this didn't impact the output of the sub at all. I am wondering if my receiver is essentially confirming what I thought - that the sub is playing much softer than it should be - by believing that it is 32ft away from my listening position instead of 9ft.

    Thanks for your advice in the other areas. I tried them but hear very little difference. Perhaps it's because I'm working with such soft sound coming out from the sub to begin with that these changes are tough to notice.

    I'm going to call Polk tomorrow and see what they think. Thanks again for your help!
    -------------------------------------------
    Receiver: Pioneer VSX-919AH
    Fronts: Monitor 40's (Monitor 70's and 30's in storage waiting for me to buy a house)
    Center: CS2

  5. #5

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    Just an addendum to my room's dimensions: The wall I have my system on is only 8' - opens up to another room on one side and a hallway on the other. My console stretches most of the entire length of the 8' wall with a 58" TV in the center, 2 Monitor 40's on either side and the sub between the TV and right Monitor 40.
    -------------------------------------------
    Receiver: Pioneer VSX-919AH
    Fronts: Monitor 40's (Monitor 70's and 30's in storage waiting for me to buy a house)
    Center: CS2

  6. #6

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    This doesn't sound like a case of expectations being too high. You shouldn't have to have your ear 5" away from a sub to simply hear it's output.

    There's either something wrong with your setup, or something wrong with the sub itself.
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  7. #7

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    Did a little more tinkering and I think I solved my problem for anyone that's curious. I had run Pioneer's MACC calibration with the sub's volume at 35-40 (out of 40) the other day. I backed this down to 20 then reran the cal and things have improved quite a bit (pays to re-read the manual).

    The sub's output is now much closer to what I was expecting and the sub's "audio sense" power now triggers at my normal listening levels instead of having to crank the volume up really loud before it does.

    I also set the Monitor 40's to Large and the MicroPro to PLUS (not sure if this is advisable, but it sounds decent to me).
    -------------------------------------------
    Receiver: Pioneer VSX-919AH
    Fronts: Monitor 40's (Monitor 70's and 30's in storage waiting for me to buy a house)
    Center: CS2

  8. #8

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    Glad to hear you got it figured out audio b. No matter how much we hate to do it, reading the manual always pays.;) Todays AVRs can be kind of hard to wing it on. Sometimes it apears they never read what they print with some, because evan reading it doesn't get you much better results.:D
    Enjoy

  9. #9

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    Thumbs down Pioneer seems to output the sub signal too low

    I had to deal with a very similar issue with an older Pioneer receiver I am using (VSX-517, so only has manual calibration) and I have to conclude that Pioneer may be outputting the sub signal too low for the automatic signal detection on these Polk subs at low volumes that should still have some subwoofer presence.

    Chance are good that if the sub power light remains Yellow until the volume is turned up to about 40 or so, is the subwoofer channel level set to 0.0 dB?

    If so, I'd say to forget about the automatic calibration for the subwoofer channel volume and distance, then get that receiver subwoofer channel level up to about +5.0 dB as a starting point, with the gain dial on the subwoofer set just a bit above the Min. indicator. Now, set the subwoofer gain dial to the desired bass level for music first (not movies), then afterward make fine adjustments to either the subwoofer channel volume or the main channel volume for movies (increase or decrease based on how much LFE is wanted in movies). This also means the subwoofer should be connected to the LFE connection with the Low Pass dial set to LFE.

    Depending on the room acoustics, the subwoofer channel volume may be decreased below the +5.0 dB starting reference volume, but don't go below a subwoofer channel volume of +3 dB in order to allow the subwoofer to still activate around -65 dB +/- 2 dB for music and around -57 dB +/- 4 dB for TV/movies. (Note: the volume scale for the receiver I am using goes from -94 dB to -8 dB.)

    Finally, here are the settings I am using for a smaller room, copied and pasted from the document I created after finally adjusting all the settings to balance for music and movies and not disturbing the neighbors, although your settings may vary:

    Speaker Distance settings:
    * Front Left: 9.0 feet.
    * Center: 8.0 feet
    * Front Right: 9.5 feet.
    * Right Surround: 3.0 feet.
    * Left Surround: 3.0 feet.
    * Subwoofer: 6.5 feet.

    Channel levels:
    * Front Left: -3.5 dB.
    * Center: -5.0 dB.
    * Front Right: -4.0 dB.
    * Right Surround: -6.0 dB.
    * Left Surround: -5.0 dB.
    * Subwoofer: +3.0 dB.

    Crossover Setting:
    * X.Over: 80 Hz.

    Dolby Pro Logic II Music mode Settings:
    * Center Width: 6.
    * Dimension: +3.
    * Panorama: Off.

    Other Settings:
    * Phase Control: On.
    * Dynamic Range Control: Off.
    * Low Frequency Effects Channel Attenuation (LFE ATT): 0. (0 equals no LFE attenuation.)

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by Mon40CSMM10; 04-27-2010 at 04:12 AM.
    Main room speakers setup, 5.1 surround sound setup: Pioneer VSX-517K AV receiver, Polk Audio Monitor 40 Front speakers, Polk Audio CSM Center speaker, Polk Audio M10 Surround speakers, Polk Audio PSW110 Subwoofer.

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    Technics SA-GX170, KLH TW-09B.

    Computer, 2 channel stereo setup: Nata SL-200 Integrated Amplifier and Speaker System connected to a Soundblaster X-fi Xtreme Audio Soundcard.

  10. #10

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    Just curious where did you place your sub in your room, that can make a dramatic effect also. Its best In the corner in your room if at all possible.

  11. #11

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    Get yourself an SVS sub and be done with it. If your room opens up to another room then you have to also take that room into consideration as well. I would just buy a bigger sub to be honest with you, that micro just isn't going to do it.
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  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by audiobeginner View Post
    Did a little more tinkering and I think I solved my problem for anyone that's curious. I had run Pioneer's MACC calibration with the sub's volume at 35-40 (out of 40) the other day. I backed this down to 20 then reran the cal and things have improved quite a bit (pays to re-read the manual).

    The sub's output is now much closer to what I was expecting and the sub's "audio sense" power now triggers at my normal listening levels instead of having to crank the volume up really loud before it does.

    I also set the Monitor 40's to Large and the MicroPro to PLUS (not sure if this is advisable, but it sounds decent to me).
    I believe I have the same problem you had and will appreciate your assistance as I see you solved your issues.
    I have the micropro 4000 and experiencing similar issues:
    - The audio sense does not trigger the unit unless I raise the volume to -15 or so (pioneer vsx 1019)
    - To hear the sub I need to be around 5” from it. I hear far more bass coming from my LSi15 and the LSiC.

    I tried to run the MCACC with the sub volume set to 20 but no change.
    I tried to run the sub’s auto calibration with the volume set to 20, and then run the MCACC when the sub is disconnected, and after, manually enable the sub – again no change.
    When I run the sub’s auto calibration and then run the MCACC, the pioneer jacks the sub’s gain to +7db (out of possible 10) and detect the sub to be 35ft away.

    I too selected the “PLUS” in the pioneer setup, when I choose “YES” I feel the sub moving only on EXT. stereo.

    Let me know it it make sense to you and if you can explain in detail the steps you took to fix it.

    Thanks,
    Roei.

  13. #13

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    I'll defer to the more technically literate members here at Club Polk to provide you with recommendations on how to better dial in your sub.

    However, I too purchased a MicroPro 2000 from Polk's eBay store. When I ran the it through the AUTOpro Room Resonance Correction, it shook every window in my home.

    I am using the MircoPro 2000 for 2 channel purposes only. I am currently playing with a pair of Klipsch Heresy III and they needed assistance in the lower end. I have the sub set in a corner. Therefore, I have the room optimizer set at "corner". The phase control appears to do I nice job blending the base in with the speakers.

    I have the Low Pass set at about 100Hz and I have the volume set at 27. This seems to be perfect for my situation. The base is quite tight. It is not over whelming, and I didn't want it to be

    I really like this sub, all it's features and it's small footprint. Then again, my goal was not to be rattled with low end.

    Andy

  14. #14

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    I have a MPro 2000, and struggled with it until yesterday.

    My issue wasn't lack of output, it was I had to really drive it hard to get decent volume which would cause it to be over driven during loud sounds listening to movies.

    First of all, I had it sitting on some fairly deep carpet with a very soft and thick pad. I looked around the basement yesterday morning and found an old mirror (just the glass, not frame) that is about an inch bigger than the sub. Cleaned it up and put it under the sub, putting the subs feet at max extension.

    The improvement was dramatic. I went from a volume setting of 30 on the sub to 18, and on my Denen amp from +1 db to -3 db. I hadn't realized just how much output was being lost from the passive speaker being buried in the carpet.

    After listening to both music and blue ray's for about 20 minutes it was obvious that the lower end of the sub's output was boomy...on certain bass runs a single low note would really boom, the rest sounding "normal".

    I hit the reset button on the remote. (The sub's room learning program had boosted the very lowest frequencies in an effort to flatten the output.) Now the 2000 was finally working as it should.

    Huge difference! Its a small sub, but it is finally sounding impressive with tight musical lows while still shaking the floor watching movies.

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  15. #15

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    Default Thanks GTB

    I have my sub also on a soft carpet and pad. I'll try your suggestion as soon as I get home today. Hope it'll work. Thanks again.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by audiobeginner View Post
    I purchased a refurbished MicroPro 2000 from Polk's store on Ebay recently. I am an audio beginner and this is my first sub.

    I realize that this is an 8" sub so will not have a ton of power, but despite that I'm pretty underwhelmed so far and wonder if I've received a defective unit. Perhaps I have a setting wrong or there's a setup issue.

    Note, I have the volume turned all the way up to 40 and have tried volumes between 30 and 40 without any significant improvement. I am connecting my sub to the receiver with a single RCA cable between the receiver's "Subwoofer PREOUT" and the sub's "LFE IN". I tried a 2nd RCA cable to see if that was the issue, but there was no difference. LFE attenuate on the receiver is set to 0dB. My fronts are set to Small with crossover currently set to 80 MHz.

    Here are the issues:
    - For both music and HT, sound coming from the sub is quite weak (about 1/3-1/2 of what I'd expect); sounds like I've wrapped blankets around it. Very low frequencies are getting through, but still lack power. Frequencies at the higher end of the sub's range seem to be non-existent.
    - When I raise the cutoff frequency on the Pioneer, the overall system's performance sounds worse. The Monitor 40's don't play the lower frequencies, but it doesn't seem like the sub is filling in the void. I have tried different setting's on the sub's low pass dial (40 Mhz to 120 MHz) and don't hear much difference between any setting.
    - I have left the sub's Power switch to ON because when I put it on "audio sense" the power light glows yellow (not detecting any audio) until I raise the volume to about -35 to -30dB (then it turns green).
    - When I ran the Pioneer's MACC calibration it correctly judged the distance of my front speakers at about 10 ft away and my center at about 9 ft away, but it says my sub is 32 ft away (though it is really <10 ft away - located between my TV and front right speaker).
    - Another issue is that the power button on the sub's remote seems to be defective. I've only got it to work once out of about 60 attempts, while the other buttons seem to work fine.

    Thanks for any help in advance. I love my Monitor 40's and can't wait to bring out the Monitor 70's and 30's that I've also purchased once I move out of my small apartment into a house.
    I'm glad to find out that I'm not the only one who experienced problems with my auto calibration feature not recognizing the location of my sub. Read my post titled DSW MicroPRO 4000. My sub was placed at 10 ft away and the Audyssey set up detected as being 30 ft away as well. Not only that, but that sub also lacked in the upper bass range and to quote you, sounded like it had a blanket wrapped around it as well.
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  17. #17

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    As I read the problem it really perplexed me. My DSM Pro2000 has performed beyond my expectation's. My room is a 15X20 and has two open doorway's. Right now the sub is sitting in the bottom center of my entertainment center. I hope to move it in a corner soon. The specifications say that the power handling is 1200 watts continuous, 2400 peak. I don't know if Polk fudged on those rating's or not but that's Velodyne territory (sorry Velodyne). My volume level is set at the minimum, other wise the entertainment center go's to vibrating. I cut tennis balls in half and placed them under the sub and it helped. It's a tight, quick and non-boomy sub. Perfect for music and home theatre. If I could wish for anything more it would only be that it went a little deeper in the Hz. I'm sorry if I've turned this into a mini-review but no mud slinging on this one. A great sub and I give it 4 and a half out of 5 stars.

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