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help updating to subwoofer bi-amp set-up

Orbitall

Standard Member
I have been looking at updating my setup to biamp my floorstanders. I have recently been on here asking about adding subwoofers and created the diagram below of a possible setup.

'Steven Barnes' said along the lines of "it can help balance the load/improve sound quality if each power amp was powering each speaker(shown in diagram) rather than each channel power each speaker.

- If I were to do this, how would left channel go to left speaker and right go to right speaker if the highs and lows from one speaker came from one sterero amp?
 

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Orbitall

Standard Member
I was thinking of getting 2 subs and thought the outputs left and right channels could be crossed to the floorstanders like this new diagram. Would this effectivly solve this left and right issues previously mensioned? Is this an effcient method of biamping?
 

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Don Dadda

Distinguished Member
You will need a couple of RCA Y splitter cables a shown in the diagram below which i believe what 'Steven Barnes' meant

Bi-Amp2.jpg
 

Orbitall

Standard Member
Ahh ic...so i would need the RCA splitter cables if i had one sub-woofer/pre-amp Thanks for clarifying.

- Would that dual sub-woofer system work well as an alternative to this?

- How could I setup the subwoofers to only output left or right channels?
 
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BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
What equipment do you have now or are you thinking about getting? What speakers? What amps? Etc...?

There can be some benefit to Bi-Amping, but it is not night and day. If you are buying new equipment, rather than spend money on two amps to Bi-Amp, most feel - myself included - are better off just buying one better amp. Instead of two £500 amps, just buy one £1000 amp.

Now if you have equipment, and you are thinking of making a slight improvement, and you can get an excellent deal on the second amp, then .... maybe.

I tried Bi-Amping once with good results, but those good results only came by accident since I had two NOT similar amps that lent themselves well to the specific Task - Yamaha on Bass, and Onkyo on Mid/High.

But, if you are using identical amps, then expect them to sound identical. There is still some advantage to Bi-Amping, but it is very subtle, and probably not worth it, unless you have equipment and can find an excellent deal on the second amp.

In my opinion.

Steve/bluewizard
 
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Don Dadda

Distinguished Member
It looks visable but do you need 2 subs?
How big is the room that they will be in? 1 of the svs subs is more than enough for the average size room
 

Orbitall

Standard Member
What equipment do you have now or are you thinking about getting? What speakers? What amps?

I was looking at upgrading my audiolab 8200A to 2x 8200P...I managed to find a good deal on both of them for around £800. Can you suggest any other alteratives for a amp? Im looking for something crisp and neutral like audiolabs sound to accomadate my Kef R300s.
 

Orbitall

Standard Member
It looks visable but do you need 2 subs?
How big is the room that they will be in?

I dont have a subwoofer yet, but realy want to improve my low end bass, so was looking at adding a sub to the kef R300s.

After reading on forums a while it appears alot of peaople have mensioned about better SQ with 2x subs equally apart, so was trying to get a deal on two(SB2000s or SB13Us) . Was thinking about splitting the left and right channels to each sub.

My room is around 5mx5m.

Would this be overkill?
 

Don Dadda

Distinguished Member
For a room that size with those svs subs - Overkill. If you have a fairly large room then then 2 subs may be better. You could try with 1 and if needed, added a 2nd

Subs are meant to be omnidirectional, so if it's setup correctly, you shouldn't be able to tell which direction it's coming from and bass should feel as though it's everywhere.

The Pre outs on the amp, can they be used simultaneously?
 
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BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
I was looking at upgrading my audiolab 8200A to 2x 8200P...I managed to find a good deal on both of them for around £800. Can you suggest any other alternatives for a amp? Im looking for something crisp and neutral like audiolabs sound to accommodate my Kef R300s.

Why two 8200P? The 8200A has an amp in it. Use ONE 8200P for the Bass, and use the 8200A for the Mid/High. The 8200P is 100w/ch and the 8200A is 60w/ch.

That sounds like the perfect combinations. No need for massive power on the Mid/High; 60w/ch should be fine.

As to another brand amp, that is something of a crap shoot. As I said, it was not by intend, but rather by pure accident that the Yamaha/Onkyo combination worked out for me. The Yamaha was very warm on the bass, and the Onkyo was very crisp and detailed on the Mid/High. But, to recommend specific amps in the catagory of the Audiolab with a given characteristic might be difficult.

I think the economically wisest choice is to use the 60w/ch 8200A on the Mid/High and the 100w/ch 8200P on the Bass.

I'm finding the AudioLab 8200P at £600 new, so indeed you do have found a very good deal on a pair at £800.

For what it is worth, I found the AudioLab 8200A for £750 new.

Both from Audio Affair.

Rather that use one amps for one speaker, and the other for the other. Simply use one amp for Left/Right Mid/High, and the other amp for Left/Right Bass.

But then, that's just my opinion.

Steve/bluewizard
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
As to Subwoofers, that is a complex matter. Ideally you should have some kind of Bass Management for BOTH the Front and Sub.

Without Bass Management for the Front, you have two choices.

1.) You can overlap the Front and Sub in a manner you find appealing, but know that doing so is going to result in a peak in the bass output in the area where those speaker/Sub overlap. That is, you are not going to get a flat response.

For example, the R300 is rated at 50hz on the low end. If you set your Subwoofer to 80hs, then between 50hz and 80hz, both Front and Sub are playing and you get a considerable boost in that area. Below 50hz, you have only the Sub, and above 80hz you have only the Front speakers. So, functionally you are creating an artificial bump in the response between 50hz and 80hz. To some extent you can control how high that bump is by controlling the level of the Sub. But if you turn the Sub down too far, it sort of defeats the purpose of having one.

2.) You can cross the Sub over at the point where the Front speaker start to naturally roll off, and hope to blend them seamlessly. The Low Rating on the Kef R300 is 50hz at -3db. So, you need to ask yourself if the Subs in question can even be set as low as 50hz.

Method #1 provides over the top killer bass.

Method #2 provide a more seamless and balanced integration between Front and Sub.

Within a perspective, neither is right or wrong. It is down to what you prefer. Many people use the #1 overlap method because they like intense bass. But while intense, it will not be balanced. Though, they are not looking for balance.

With an AV Receiver, it has digital electronics Bass Management for BOTH Front and Sub, and you can control where they both crossover. In a case like this, it is no problem selecting 60hz or 80hz for both Front and Sub, and blending them perfectly.

It is possible to use Electronic Crossovers as used in PA systems. But the have to be placed between the Pre-Amp and Power Amps, and most have extremely sharp slopes on the crossover. Typically 18db/octave or 24db/octave. Most Stereo systems use 6db/octave or 12db/octave, with 12db being the most common.

There are Digital devices called Speaker Management Systems, that allow you to select the slope of the crossover. But, they convert the incoming analog signal to digital, apply the digital crossovers, then convert it back to analog to fed the Pre-Amps. Speaker Management Systems tend to be more expensive. You can find both types of Crossover and Management Systems at place that sell Musician Supplies - like Dolphin Music or StudioSpares and similar.

In the end, what suits you is best for you to decide. But you need to understand the ramification of adding Subwoofers without Bass Management for the Front Speakers.

Steve/bluewizard
 
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Orbitall

Standard Member
Thanks, you have some good points....
what im planning is to get a SVS - SB13U which has many in-out options. Then use these features as a bass management system. I believe it can lowpass filter (as low as 40hz) for the input and output only the high(all freq above the lowpass setting) to the stereo amp.

- Is this correct and could it blend / perform #method2 well?

#Option1:
I was considering 2 stereo amps (8200P) because they could be placed after the subwoofer and so not have any low input. I also heard the 8200Q has better pre intenrals and was going to trade in 8200A for a dedicated pre (which would then require two amps for bi-amp).

#Option2:
Although now you mensioned it are you suggesting this:
8200A > KEF(high)
8200A > SVS > 8200P > KEF(low)

- Because the high pass filter on the kefs would filter the full range so wouldnt need the sub to filter low out...yeah?

- I know there many modes the 8200A has, but could this intergrated be able to output to sub as a pre and perform the built in amp output at same time?

- Would it be benfical in sound quality to upgrade the 8200A->8200Q and buy 2x 8200P, this would only realy cost £400 (extra amp) over the previously suggested intergrated setup?
 
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BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
I think you could still use the 8200A for Mid/High and the 8200P for bass. The Sub Management is only going to effect the bass of the front speakers, it doesn't effect he Mid/High at all.

The 8200A has TWO pair of Pre-Amp outputs, though you would only need one. The speakers will have their own internal crossovers, so you can run the 8200A Amp out directly to the Mid/High of the speaker and only get Mid/High.

Take the Pre-Amp out of the 8200A and run it into the Subwoofer Bass Management, and run the Sub Out to the 8200P Power Amp.

DONE!

The Bass Management doesn't effect the passive crossover in the speaker. It simply cuts low-bass frequencies from the Front speakers.

While you are certainly free to use two Power Amps, you really don't need them.

Steve/bluewizard
 

Orbitall

Standard Member
Thanks BlueWizard, I think you pretty much answered what I need. Just clarifying a few things before I make these expensive purchases. I know you might not have expereince with these products, but im just getting it out there incase someone does.

The Bass Management doesn't effect the passive crossover in the speaker. It simply cuts low-bass frequencies from the Front speakers.

- Bass management or the sub managment... So I will be able to blend the bass and filter out low output to my Kefs Bass with this SVS-SB13U, thus negating the need for additional bass management system?

I think you could still use the 8200A for Mid/High and the 8200P for bass

- I know 2x amp is overkill coz highs will not need 100W amp, but the preamp internals in the two models are different. Will there be a major difference in quality (justifing the price fo extra amp) by upgrading the pre... intergrated 8200A to a dedicated 8200Q?
 

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