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  1. #1

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    Default Elementary questions about amplifiers

    I'm one hundred percent confused about RMS watts/channel with Surround recievers ... I have a Yamaha RX V473 which is rated at "105 x 5 channels". I've read other places that when playing through just two channels it is much more. When listening to music I set it to 2 channels only, for movies I like to turn on the center channel so I can hear what characters are saying :-). Is this nonsense or my reciever push much more power to two channels than it would with 5? How does this crap work?! There is so much conflicting info on the net. Is there a good idiot book for this stuff?

    I'm driving a pair of Polk TSI-500's with it and although it sounds great when cranked up a it, when played at low volumes softer parts of the music are nearly inaudible (mainly a problem with classical recordings). I did not ever have that issue with my Monitor 5 Jr's - but needless to say the TSI-500's sound a million times better. People say this is because my speakers are "under driven" with this reciever.

    If I were to hook up a quality 2 channel amp/preamp to these speakers, with a powerful amp, say 200 watts/channel, what difference would I hear? I don't neccessarily want it louder - the Yamaha can get them VERY loud with no clipping - louder than what I can reasonably play with the other tenant downstairs. I would like in any case a surround system (just for the center channel) if only because I frequently watch TV shows or films on the same setup.

  2. #2

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    Almost all AVR's are rated at two channels driven into 8 ohms. As you add more speakers to it the power starts to drop off, do a search lots of comments on this. Adding a two channel amp to the fronts will let the AVR drive the center and surrounds with usually plenty of power. You would need pre-outs from your AVR to be able to connect an external amplifier for the fronts, not sure if yours does or not.
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  3. #3

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    Your unit is rated at:

    115W per channel (8 ohms, 1 kHz, 0.9 % THD, 1 ch driven)
    80W per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.09 % THD, 2 ch driven)

    The model above yours tested at:

    Yamaha RX-V573 A/V Receiver
    Five channels driven continuously into 8-ohm loads:
    0.1% distortion at 20.8 watts
    1% distortion at 24.9 watts
    http://www.soundandvision.com/conten...-labs-measures

    A quality 2 channel amp will give you more dynamic headroom that will add more life to the music. Your unit does have a set of Analog Audio RCA Outputs. Here are two good reads:

    HOW TO BUY A RECEIVER
    http://www.axiomaudio.com/how_to_buy_receiver

    AV Receiver and Amplifier Power Ratings Trends: How and Why Wattage Ratings are Manipulated
    http://www.audioholics.com/audio-amp...-power-ratings
    Last edited by WLDock; 11-03-2013 at 11:29 AM.
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  4. #4

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    Your AVR does not have pre-amp outputs for adding an external amplifier. Also, according to the specs on this it is 115 watts with only one channel driven so with all 5 speakers hooked up you will be getting a lot. Less than 115 watts to the speakers.
    Last edited by zane77; 11-03-2013 at 11:29 AM.
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  5. #5

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    WLDock beat me to it
    Home Theater
    Onkyo PR-SC5508 Sharp LC-70LE847U
    Emotiva XPA-5 Emotiva XPA-2 Emotiva UPA-2
    Front RTi-A9 Wide RTi-A7 Center CSi-A6 Surround FXi-A6 Rear RTi-A3 Sub 2x PSW505
    Sony BDP-S790 Dishnetwork Hopper/Joey Logitech Harmony One Apple TV
    Two Channel
    Oppo 105D BAT VK-500 w/BatPack SDA SRS 2.3 Dreadnought Squeezebox Touch Apple TV

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    Thanks those were very helpful articles!

    Also, I play most of my music in this room from my PC. I have tended to use the software volume control and leave the amp set pretty high. I think I'm noticing a difference leaving the software around 90% (still unamplified) and using strictly the reciever's volume control. There's definitely no hiss this way ... this may have been part of my problem all along.
    Last edited by timk65; 11-03-2013 at 12:06 PM.

  7. #7

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    Yes you always want the signal as strong as possible so all the signal is there to be amplified.
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  8. #8

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    Yes, low source volume will take the life out of music and hiss goes up as you crank the AVR to deal with it. Good find and I was wrong, your unit only has audio out jacks and not pre-amp outputs so no amps options with this unit.
    Last edited by WLDock; 11-03-2013 at 02:27 PM.
    FAMILY ROOM
    TV - Mitsubishi WD-73734 73" DLP 1080P | AVR - Pioneer Elite SC-65 | Source - Sony PS3 Slim 320GB | Front - PolkAudio RT3000p | Center -PolkAudio CS400i | Surround - PolkAudio F/X1000 | Sub - DIY Stereo Integrity HT 15 | Sub Amp - Behringer EUROPOWER EP2500

    2 Ch Dreaming...hoping to purchase, build someday
    OPPO 105 | Squeezbox Touch | Odyssey, or HALO A21 amp | DIY Statements towers

  9. #9

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    The receiver also has various settings to consider and any inputs being used need to have been set-up from the get-go. Did you do any of that ? What source are you using for music ? What cables or interconnects ?

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    I'm using a Calro Halo sound card connected to the receiver with RCA plugs (never got the optical outs to work, think that's a driver problem with the linux driver). It's set up for two channel (no sub or side/rear). I did install a center channel which turns on when I put it in surround mode.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by timk65 View Post
    I'm using a Calro Halo sound card connected to the receiver with RCA plugs (never got the optical outs to work, think that's a driver problem with the linux driver). It's set up for two channel (no sub or side/rear). I did install a center channel which turns on when I put it in surround mode.
    Having the sound card do all the conversion may or may not be your problem too. Not exactly the best option anyway. Dig around the digital section here on the forum, see what others are doing for getting good audio out of a computer.

    As far as your surround mode, did you tell the receiver you don't have side or rear surrounds ? If not, then all that info is lost. If you do, then the receiver will re-route that info to the fronts and center. Did you set up your speaker levels in the setup menu on the receiver ? Did you read the manual ?

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyb View Post
    Having the sound card do all the conversion may or may not be your problem too. Not exactly the best option anyway. Dig around the digital section here on the forum, see what others are doing for getting good audio out of a computer.

    As far as your surround mode, did you tell the receiver you don't have side or rear surrounds ? If not, then all that info is lost. If you do, then the receiver will re-route that info to the fronts and center. Did you set up your speaker levels in the setup menu on the receiver ? Did you read the manual ?
    Oh the reciever is set up correctly. You could tell the difference night and day if I left the sides/rear on. In any case, when I set it to two channel, it just goes through the fronts as I want. I do need to get the optical out working.

  13. #13

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    Default

    Good thread here.
    I am debating also about the
    Tsi400 or M/60/70 and maybe getting the Pioneer 1222 avr.
    But in my case I have the tsi100 are my mains lol(temporary).

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by timk65 View Post
    Oh the reciever is set up correctly. You could tell the difference night and day if I left the sides/rear on.
    You don't have side or rear speakers.....why on earth would you turn that on ? The receiver has more settings to concern yourself with than just small or large or how many you have.

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    I run 2-channel for music and movies, and have no interest in 5+ channel. A well planned 2-channel system is a fantastic thing!

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    Quote Originally Posted by zingo View Post
    I run 2-channel for music and movies, and have no interest in 5+ channel. A well planned 2-channel system is a fantastic thing!
    Well, I find 2 channel is fine for older mono (pre-1990's films) - which is almost my whole collection. More modern surround stuff I can never hear what anyone is saying and the music is 100x louder than everything else. Just adding the center channel fixed that.

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    I'm just curious, but wondering where I can find an AVR that pushes 150-200 watts to these. I don't see anything until you get into big amp/preamp setups. What do you all think is the best AVR to drive the TSi-500's under or around $1000?

  18. #18

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    Pioneer Elite SC receivers

  19. #19

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    You'll get close with the bigger Pioneers, Marantz, Onkyos, and Denons but will have to spend a bunch to get there. An inexpensive receiver w/ preouts and a 200wpc amp is a much easier route if you're on a budget.
    Display: LG 47" LCD | AVR: Marantz SR5005 | BD: Panasonic BDT-210 | CD/SACD: Oppo 980 |
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    Does your PC have a HDMI output? I would transfer the PC to the receiver through a digital connection using the HDMI, or optical and let the receiver convert the signal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by timk65 View Post
    I'm just curious, but wondering where I can find an AVR that pushes 150-200 watts to these. I don't see anything until you get into big amp/preamp setups. What do you all think is the best AVR to drive the TSi-500's under or around $1000?
    Mainly you don't see them because they don't exist. Anything usually over 120 watts means your buying a separate amplifier. Still, for those speakers, you don't need it.

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    Do you all think an HK 3490 would be good with the TSi-500's? (http://www.harmankardon.com/estore/h...K%203490_HK_US) At some point I'll retire the Yamaha to the home theater where it belongs and get rid of the old Sony that's there.

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    Yes, that would be fine to drive those speakers.

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    I run a HK 3490 with a pair of RTi A7 towers, more than adequate. IF wired a little differently :)
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    Quote Originally Posted by timk65 View Post
    I'm just curious, but wondering where I can find an AVR that pushes 150-200 watts to these. I don't see anything until you get into big amp/preamp setups. What do you all think is the best AVR to drive the TSi-500's under or around $1000?
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Denon-AVR-57...item33872304ef


    I have one and was impressed with it's power. Granted there's no HDMI but it's a very nice receiver and awesome for HT.

    OTOH, since you are contemplating another receiver, there are many used preamps and amps (separates) avail and you could take your time and search for those and very likely be more rewarded in the end.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gmcman View Post
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Denon-AVR-57...item33872304ef


    I have one and was impressed with it's power. Granted there's no HDMI but it's a very nice receiver and awesome for HT.

    OTOH, since you are contemplating another receiver, there are many used preamps and amps (separates) avail and you could take your time and search for those and very likely be more rewarded in the end.
    Actually I'm kind of torn between surround / 2 channel. I do like the DSP's modern AVR's have and would like the capability to play SACD's that were recorded in 5/7 channel. That said, I wish there were better music settings - all the music settings on my Yamaha (and probably all the other AVR's in its class) are mostly varying degrees of reverb, usually WAY too much. Most of my recordings are classical and already recorded in the type of hall the DSP tries to emulate. They really need some presets that add little or no reverb, or better let the user create custom sound fields.

    Is reverb the new loudness button?
    Last edited by timk65; 11-12-2013 at 05:38 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by timk65 View Post
    I do like the DSP's modern AVR's have...
    Really? I hate every DSP in my Yamaha, all they do is make it sound like you're in a cave.
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    Heh, I agree. Was still editing when you replied ... every time I play with it even though I might like what the effect does spatially it's always accompanied by too much reverb

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    All modern surround receivers enable you to use some form of 2 channel mode or pure direct with none of those weird reverbish settings engaged.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tonyb View Post
    All modern surround receivers enable you to use some form of 2 channel mode or pure direct with none of those weird reverbish settings engaged.
    Yeah, I know. My complaint is why so much reverb? WTF? The DSP's are capable of some very interesting things. I hate reverb. It can work for pop music - sometimes - but always sucks for classical. I can enjoy the way they modify the soundstage, but the reverb is ridiculous. What I'm saying is basically the implementation is disappointing.
    Last edited by timk65; 11-12-2013 at 09:01 AM.

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