Beresford TC-7220; My experience.

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by Dazzor, Nov 14, 2010.

  1. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    I’ve been using the Beresford TC-7220 for quite a while now and so I thought I’d post my findings and thoughts for others to glean.


    Build-quality and Appearance:

    It’s essentially a metal box with four buttons on the front and a total of 16 binding posts on the back. (4x 2 for two amps and 4 x 2 for 2 two sets of speakers)

    The metal used appears to be decent, thick sheet metal. The box is only small but feels weighty enough for its size. (250mm x 110mm x 40mm)

    The Buttons are mock-metal plastic but fairly substantial. To me they are a bit retro looking but functional nonetheless. The action of the buttons is both sure and definite, with a reassuring “clunk” noise and feel when depressing them. The buttons are physically connecting to the internals and when pushing a button it’s all very confidence inspiring….You don’t ever want your beloved speakers getting feeds from two amps at the same time!

    Binding posts are gold-plated and also take 4mm Banana plugs (Almost a must..I’ll get to this in a bit)


    Installing:

    There are only two (Minor-ish) issues that I have found with the TC-7220, and they are..

    1) Binding posts are sooo close together that I cannot imagine using this device without taking the Banana plug option. In other words….Good luck trying to screw bare speaker-wire into neighbouring posts..There’s almost zero room to manoeuvre (Unless you have hands the size of a toddler)

    2) As the box is fairly small it can create issues in terms of keeping the unit planted on all it’s little rubber feet. You see once you’ve connected all those potentially thick speakers cables you can be left with a springy little black box that doesn’t want to stay grounded…..It’s nowhere near as bad as say the Antimode 8033 for this as the TC-7220 is a fair bit bigger and heavier but you get the gist.

    In the TC-7220’s defence these 2 issues are little more than by-products of its very convenient size, enough said I think. I am using Banana plugs so no bother there and a bit of sensible cable-management/placement soon has the little fella stable and planted.

    Here’s the beast, perched on top of my AVR…At least it gives you a sense of its size.

    [​IMG]




    Ease of use:

    Once installed it’s just a little black box with four buttons, not sure what else to say really? If you want amp A, push the “Amp A” button and so on..

    The unit is capable of crossing-over two amps and two sets of speakers…I’m only using it for two-amps to share one set of speakers (See my sig).

    In a nutshell it’s very simple to use, so much so I can relax knowing anyone in the household can work it. It’s pretty much fool-proof is what I’m saying.

    Sound Quality with the TC-7220 in the Signal-Path:

    I feel I cannot bang-on about this too much, even though it’s potentially one of the most important factors; I’ll explain why..

    I’m currently using Fisual Super Pearl 2.5mm speaker-cable and in all honesty I personally couldn’t tell the difference using this against some Chord Rumour I was using before on very short lengths. I’ll say no more except I do not, under any circumstances what to get embroiled in an imbroglio on the contentious subject that is speaker-cable.

    My only point being that if I cannot distinguish an audible difference on speaker-cable mentioned above then I consider myself wholly unqualified to critique the TC-7220 on this factor.

    So for what little it’s worth, I am unable to detect any drop in SQ using the TC-7220….Other’s mileage may vary.


    Benefits in my case: (Over and above using the pre-outs from my AVR to my Stereo Amp)

    In short this little box has meant I can stop worrying about a number of factors in my particular set-up without any notable drop in SQ…For me anyway.



    1) I wanted to be able to use my sub with both amps
    2) I don't want the Stereo-amp working overtime
    3) It makes the harmony one-button activity thing a lot easier.
    4) No risk of playing Stereo amp too loud from volume control being left at 12 O’Clock


    Summary:

    The Beresford TC-7220 is a nice, simple, well made box that does a job very well, IMHO. I think it’s priced reasonably too.

    I hope this basic run-down on my findings helps anyone out there wanting to integrate their kit for a HT/Hifi fusion.

    For a real review, check this one out. This review also talks at some length about SQ, which of course is important.

    Thanks for reading
    Darren
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2011
  2. Gixer1970

    Gixer1970
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    Must sort out getting one of these before christmas.

    Thanks for your views.
     
  3. scrufftyguy

    scrufftyguy
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    Good review! Cheers for that! :smashin:
     
  4. Gixer1970

    Gixer1970
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    Can you also expand on "3) It makes the harmony one-button activity thing a lot easier."

    Many thanks
     
  5. trailer

    trailer
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    Great review. Well done!
     
  6. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    No worries.....

    Basically I use a Harmony One and so when using my Stereo amp to drive my front-2 permanently via the pre-outs from my AVR it caused the following issues (Not insurmountable but a pain nonetheless)


    • My stereo amp (Roksan Caspian) does not have a HT-bypass/Unity-gain/Power-amp, whatever you want to call it. This meant issues with volume when toggling from stereo to HT.
    • I like leaving my Roksan off from the power switch at the back of the unit
    These two factors really negated the use of the Harmony’s “Activity Button” as a hit one-button and all is working in terms of my HT set-up.

    Of course the bonus here generally for the masses going forward is it means one can literally choose any stereo amp their heart desires and not have to concern themselves with a limited number of stereo-amps that have the unity-gain function.

    As far as my integrated stereo system is concerned; I’m the only one who uses this and I am happy to get up and hit the necessary switches to use it….TC-7220 and the Roksan.

    My main concern here was keeping the 5.1 HT set-up as automated as possible in order to circumvent my darling Wifey from reducing my ears to a bloody-pulp.:rolleyes:

    Cheers
    Darren
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2010
  7. KoThreads

    KoThreads
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    Thanks for the review. I'm still dithering over one since I asked for a device like this a while ago and someone here told me about this. One day I might get around to buying it.
     
  8. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    Excellent review Dazzor. The 1st i've seen. :thumbsup::thumbsup:

    I have been thinking about this on and off for a little while as i have spare cables and plugs.

    When you say springy, do you mean the weight of the cable/and plugs makes its a little light at the front making it tip up slightly?

    (Unfortunatley, I cannot view your pics as i am at work and for some strange security reasons i cannot see embedded pictures only on this site, but i can view anything and everything everywhere else, and i mean everything - go figure :rolleyes:)

    To your ears, when watching films, did the front had more grunt with pre-out route, using the 7220 or both about the same?

    Not that it matters, just curious :D.
     
  9. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    Hi Don,

    The picture is just of the Beresford (from the front) perched on top of my AVR to give an idea/perspective on size.

    As far as “springy” goes….What I was trying to convey, albeit rather ineptly was simply that once you plug lots of thick cables into it they can take over the modest weight of the unit….causing it to be too light on it's feet to remain planted properly..This really is a minor gripe IMO.

    Check out the link to the full review I provided in my original post, it's talked about in there too.

    Sound quality….My history

    As you may recall, I was initially concerned about loosing bi-amp'ing from my Z7 when I embarked upon introducing a stereo-amp into my main system.

    You may also recall I had a bit of email-tennis with Stan (Top bloke) about the possibility of modifying a TC-7220 to cater for at least one amp to be connected in a bi-amp configuration…This was always unlikely as I soon suspected this would of meant adding another 4 binding posts to the TC-7220 and the 16 it already has are a tight fit.

    So I ended up forsaking the bi-amping from my Z7 the moment I started using the Roksan via the pre-outs.

    Sound quality with HT when using Stereo amp via AVR pre-outs..

    I never really noticed much change in terms of more presence from the front-2 TBH, Don.

    I was also concerned that because my stereo amp was just seeing the signal/s from my AVR as just another line-in (As the Roksan does not have a power-amp mode..without internal alterations that are semi-permanent) and that the pre-amp from the Roksan was adding it's own house sound, making the front-2 sound a little “different” from centre (3 x XTZ 99.25's across the front)
    Hope this makes sense.

    Sound quality for HT now, using Beresford and speakers driven by AVR.

    I'm much happier now to put it simply. The SQ is as good as it's ever been to my ears for HT duties. The Yamaha Z7 is no slouch and I prefer letting my AVR do what it was designed to do and frankly it does it bloomin well!

    Was HT sound-quality better back in the day when I was bi-amping the front-2?…Possibly, I honestly can't recall…Which tells me it can't have been a vast chasm of difference anyway. TBH, I only ever bothered with bi-amping via the AVR because I wanted to improve SQ for music when I didn't have stereo-amp….The Caspian in a basic config knocks the socks of the Z7 in a bi-amp config for music…As you would hope/expect.

    Also, I noticed that when recalibrating (For AVR to do all channels) using the on-board YPAO on the Z7 that all the levels were much closer together on all speakers. When using the Stereo-amp there was worryingly big differences between the levels from the front-2 and the other speakers. This was probably down to the fact that “12 O'Clock” on the volume was not enough on the Roksan and needed to be alerted/boosted and then the AVR recalibrated once more. Of course if I was using a stereo-amp that had a HT-bypass mode on it I would not have encountered this issue.

    To summarise..

    Bottom-line on all this is simple…..It's all about the music!...That's why I've done what I've done really. I was never really left wanting in terms of HT performance.

    Hope this answers your questions and clarifies things a little.

    Cheers
    Darren
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2010
  10. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    Perfect sense to me.

    It been a long time since i had my 763 directly connected to the fronts, so i'm not 100% sure, but from what i can remember, it was much the same for me when it came to films. Not much of a difference if any.
    I can see where the front 2 would sound slightly different to the centre on your setup. Fortunately for me i have the gain mode on my amp so the front 3 sounds equal
    My only gripe is, the switch for this is at the back, not well positioned situated under the speaker bindings and can be a nightmare to get to, especially for the 'lovely wife' if i forget to switch it off as you cannot see it to get to it. In fact, she doesn't bother and uses the 2nd setup instead. Hmmm.. maybe not such a bad thing after all :D.

    The 7220 will make this alot more wife friendly.

    BTW, I can view the pics now that i'm home :smashin:

    Does it not get warm sitting on top the vents? My 763 can blow out some heat when used for long periods.
     
  11. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    Marginally yes. Thing is the Z7 has got so much room to breath in my set-up and the 7220 sits right at the front...So only the back half sits on a vented area.

    Put it this way, I've seen much imagery on here of AVR's with a lot less ventilation than mine and all appears to be well. Also, the Yamaha doesn't get as warm/hot as some brands.

    It's very conveninet having it there too; it would look a bit silly sat on top of my hifi kit..See pic below




    [​IMG]




    Ignore the Arcam and the speaker-cable running in the middle, I was doing a comparison against my Roksan when I first bought an A85 for a second system in my conservatory...This is the only photo I could find in my Photobucket account.

    Sorry, Don, guess you'll have to wait until you get home to see it. :oops:
     
  12. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    LOL yes, look like it :laugh:

    Yes, you have plenty of room there, Looking very nice btw :smashin:

    I ( i should say helped) built a cabinet with doors to house my kit in so it can get pretty warm in there but not overly hot where i need fans. I may one day put pictures up in the gallery if i evere get round to it but i never felt the need to show it off, also i forget all about it as soon as i sit down :laugh:
     
  13. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    Thanks mate:smashin:

    Funny you should mention the cabinet thing....All being well I should be a Dad in early March :clap:......and of course it won't be long before I will most likely have to change my open-glass shelf arrangement for something more cabinet-esque to circumvent little fingers doing their thing:rolleyes:.

    When you get home and can view that last picture, tell me what you think about this idea....

    Loosing the two floating glass shelves and placing some sort of black-glass cabinet on the base of my cantilever-stand to hold the seperates with my centre resting on top....It could work, couldn't it? :confused:

    Any ideas are most welcome;)
     
  14. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    Ah little fingers - Congrats :thumbsup:

    One of the main reasons why i had the thing built.
    If it were a crime scene, My little hifi terrorist finger prints would show up everywhere.

    I check it out when i get home.

    I 'borrowed' an existing idea and made it higher, add additional shelf and doors.
    Extremely pleased with the out come. Look like i'm going to have to post a pic of it now :D
     
  15. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    Thanks, Don, look forward to your post later tonight:smashin:
     
  16. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    Hi Dazzor

    The base is bit of a odd shape and the cabinet will need to be secured to the base for the whole lot to to be properly stable but with right cabinet, i reckon your idea will work out very well indeed. You could still channel the cables through the TV stand into the back of the cabinet to continue the nice clean effect you have.

    I see why you want glass but also consider a high/piano gloss coated unit as that will give the same or very similar effect, maybe cheaper and can be secured to the base.

    The problem with either is finding the one you want. I actually bought mine which was This Alphason stand, had new sides built taller to 750mm, added a new bottom shelf, perspex doors and stained in the colour i wanted. I Also changed the height of the internal shelves to suit/

    I am using the original sides to make another cabinet for a TT to sit on and to house tsome vinyl and the PS3 which has no home at the mo so still in its box :(.

    Forgive the PQ as they are not the best.

    As you can see, its a bit busy in there but it houses everything and yes, that is a VCR in the middle. The missus, not mine.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  17. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    Nice ideas there Don, thanks very much for some quality suggestions:smashin:

    The more I think about it, the more I think I'll end up changing the whole stand, rather than trying to adapt what I already have. As it happens the top shelf is faulty on my current stand (Studs attached to column coming away on top shelf) and it's less than a year old. The specs state each floating shelf can hold 10kg.....A XTZ 99.25 weighs 10kg. I shall be digging out the email/invoice on the morrow and seeing what can be done in terms of a replacement.

    I like what you've done there mate, so practical internally and once the doors are shut it's nice and streamlined looking:thumbsup:
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2010
  18. nsherin

    nsherin
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    Excellent review - thanks for putting the time in to write that up!

    This solves a problem for me that I've been trying to find a solution to for a while. Iv'e searched high and low and before reading this, have not been able to find any decently priced 1 speaker to 2 amp switching devices.

    Being very pleased with the Onkyo I use for HT duties (which has no preouts), but wanting to improve on stereo perofrmance for music, this looks like it'll do the job. I'm going to audition some stereo amps when I've got a bit of time off over Christmas and hopefully buy in the New Year!

    A quick question - would it harm my subwoofer if I connected it to both amps at the same time? It has both high level and line level inputs.

    Cheers,
    Neil
     
  19. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    Cheers mate,

    It looks bigger that it actually is but it does the job and i like it ;). The curved sides is what sold me on the design, just needed to adjust it to my needs

    When i 1st started to look around for one, the prices that were coming back were astronomical - over £1k:eek::eek:. Was never going to pay that and most would lack internal shelf height, no 3rd shelf which i need or just too dam wide. There was always something not to my liking. Yes I'm fussy, especially if i have to look at it every day

    Total cost for my unit is around £450, which includes buying the unit for £239 ( now selling between £300-350 in some places). Some may call me mad for doing what i did but works and i get another smaller unit at no extra cost. Well almost, i still have to buy a custom made glass top, but thats only £50

    As you know, there are a few dedicated sites like StandandDeliver, Big.AV , etc, but also look in Ikea. They have some decent units which can be ultilise for a AV kit and may have more of a chance of flowing with the room and its contents. Better If you can get to a branch as it hold a lot more than what is shown on their website :thumbsup:.
     
  20. GlennC

    GlennC
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    Excellent review was interested in one of those but as my HT amp is 250W decided against it and instead purchased a Niles -SPK1 from the USA which has a higher power rating and can be switched by a 12v trigger. Do not have my Stereo amp yet so have not set it up but will report back when it is up and running if there is any interest.

    Glenn
     
  21. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    No worries and thanks for the positive feedback...makes it worthwhile:smashin:

    Before I attempt to answer your main question….

    One of the reasons I opted for the Beresford over the pre-out route was that I wanted to run a low-level line from my stereo amp's pre-outs (Left or Right channels only, no dedicated sub-out) to my sub, in addition to my AVR's connection.

    Now as I was using the stereo amp to drive my front-2 as part of my 5.1 HT I couldn't very well have both my AVR and my stereo amp sending a signal to my sub. Of course all was fine with this configuration when using just the stereo amp for music but this was not a viable option (for me anyway) going forward as part of a “fused system”…if that makes sense?

    As you don't have pre-outs on your particular AVR the Beresford really is, IMO, the best option for you….IMO I think it's a good option even if you did have pre-outs…but that's just my view.

    Of course I could of bought a simple RCA Y-splitter switch and plugged this into one of low-level line-in's on my sub and carried on with the pre-out route…But this would of meant always having to reach-round the back of my sub to toggle between the two amps….Not ideal, and anyway, I had other reasons for wanting to use the Beresford.

    Two amps, one sub and the Beresford TC-7220:

    Ok, this is quite simple I think. The Beresford at the end of the day is a glorified amp/speaker switch and unless you're planning on running a high-level line to your sub it cannot have anything to do with an independent low-level connection from an amp to your sub. (A high-level connection is another story for another thread I think)

    However, using the Beresford TC-7220 means (for me anyway) that I'm only using one amp at a time, even for 5.1 HT duties.

    By only needing one amp at a time this means I can run two sub-cables, one from each amp….In my situation/listening room I can't/won't listen to two things at once so it's sort of self-policing.

    Of course there is the unlikely possibility that I could be watching TV or a film and decide to turn on my stereo amp and CDP on and start pumping up the jam at the same time.:suicide: Will this happen, I doubt it very much.

    This option means I can just hit the relevant amp button on the Beresford and it's job done...

    Thinking about it, if I wanted to watch the telly silently whist playing music I could either..

    1) use the pass-though in standy mode on my AVR
    2) set-up a saved setting on my AVR that bypassed the sub altogether ( I think my Z7 can do this?:confused:)

    Anyway, I hope this helps clarify things for you in terms of your requirement.

    Darren
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010
  22. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    I'll check these out, again, thanks Don....You're a star:smashin:
     
  23. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    I think i can answer that.

    I have a BK XLS200 sub and i'm using both High Level and low level inputs.

    If your av has bass management and if your sub has a Filter Bypass Switch then you can switch that to the 'Out' position, your av will manage the bass frequencies on the low level and the sub will manage the bass frequencies on the High Level Input (stereo). So no harm should come to it using it in this way
     
  24. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    No probs Dazzor :thumbsup:
     
  25. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    :eek::rolleyes::suicide:

    You've thrown a spanner in my Audio-Nirvana works...

    I spied the max capacity of the 7220 was 200watts....Foolishly I assumed this was per-channel. I guess I need to contact Stan and confirm this as my Z7 is 140wpc and so potentially I could be loading the 7220 up with 280watts

    Having said all this, I never listen at anything near reference level, never-mind beyond and of course the max WPC rating is just a top-end, infrequent "spike" figure...isn't it :confused:

    Of course I suspect that even though the specs on Watts per channel are much lower for my stereo-amp...a modest 85WPC the peak-current output (Power supply) is much stiffer on my Roksan than that of my Z7...Not sure about this, just an ill-informed thought really :blush:

    Thanks for the post though, GlennC, it's got me thinking and so I really should get this confirmed with Stan Beresford ;)

    Cheers
    Darren
     
  26. GlennC

    GlennC
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    Darren

    i am sure the rating is per channel so the Z7 should be fine, I have a rotel 1575 power amp (250w per channel) that is fantastic for HT but find it way to bright for music.

    Glenn
     
  27. Dazzor

    Dazzor
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    I hope so but on the site it simply states..."200 Watt Maximum Power Capacity" (under features)

    It's a bit ambiguous IMO.

    So which stereo amp do you fancy?
     
  28. nsherin

    nsherin
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    Thanks for the advice re: the TC-7220 with 2 amps and a sub/

    My amp has bass management in the sense that you can tweak subwoofer levels. Calibration was done using Audessy.

    The sub has no Filter Bypass switch either - only a 'phase' switch.

    Could I simply connect the high lwvel connections to the speaker terminals on the new stereo amp and then use the line level from the Onkyo? Obviously the Beresford would be used for switching amps with the Diamond 10.3s.

    Thanks,
    Neil
     
  29. Don Dadda

    Don Dadda
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    You could and that is the way it should be connected.

    I don't know if having no filter bypass switch will cause you problems iwith the way you want to use it, but i some what doubt it.
    My only concern is if both are on at the same time you may have sound coming from both. I belive it will be ok as they shouldn't interfere with each other, connection wise, causing damage, just have a confused bass sound, but consult the manual about that to give confirmation as i'm no expert on this and i'm playing with my own settings. I suppose make sure only one is on when it is being used
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010
  30. GlennC

    GlennC
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    Am sure a quick email to Stan will result in the answer, as for a stereo amp am not sure which way forward would prefer a small amp as i have space restrictions so a 2nd hand cyrus is on the list need to see how they sound with my PMC FB1+s

    Glenn
     

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