Question Marantz M-CR611 : Best speaker configuration? (bi-amp or subwoofer)

max88

Member
Hello everyone, this is my first post. I have found helpful info on several audio forums in the last few years but couldn't find a detailed discussion about the M-CR611 and its Bi-Amp connection + subwoofer.

When I was at university 10 years ago, I was given some Mission 700 Series speakers for free and used them together with a second hand Rotel RA 820A I bought for £40. Back then I really enjoyed the warm enveloping sound of the Mission 700s and thought the Rotel probably was a big help in reproducing a sound that made me feel emotions and exhilaration!

A few years ago, I sadly had to sell the whole thing due to lack of space and because I was considering moving abroad etc. It was a sad thing to do but I thought I could always get something similar again one day.

When I finally had the space again 3 years ago, I bought a pair of Mission LX-2, together with the Marantz M-CR611. I still like to play CDs and am eventually planing to get a turntable to play my collection of vinyls (used to have one but that was sold too). The M-CR611 was on offer and seemed like a versatile option! (I currently have it connected to network and via optical cable to my computer. It's also connected via optical to the TV. It really offers a lot of connections and options).

I then bought the LX-1 on sale and am currently using the Bi-amp A+B together for stereo listening.

I am aware the LX-C is an option as a subwoofer but if I purchase it, I would not be able to use A+B as far as I understand.

My main question I guess is: should I stick to A+B or use A only with a subwoofer? Which configuration would provide the best audio experience?

I have read somewhere that when I use A+B they share power and it probably reduces the overall power somehow? Are there damaging consequences to that for the audio listening experience and does it mean I should never have had an A+B configuration? Or is the Marantz powerful enough to support the LX-2 and LX-1 pairs together?

If going with A+Sub, would I be able to turn off the subwoofer with the remote when I don't want to play music too loud? Would A (LX-2s) gain in power despite the Sub? Or would the same principle of sharing power apply?

And finally, I would be happy to hear suggestions about turntables. I've seen the Sony PS-HX500 being mentioned as affordable and performant. My budget is below £200 for a turntable.

Thank you for reading my little audio journey/story and can't wait to see some of the answers and to learn more about my setup and how to make it better/get the most out of it!
 

gibbsy

Moderator
You cannot bi-amp the Mission LX1 or LX2 both of these speakers have just one pair of binding posts. Just use the A connections on your amp as using both A and B is having no effect at all on the audio quality. A and B are to use two pair of speakers. To bi-amp, or bi-wire the speakers need to have two pair of binding posts. One amp would power the low level and a second amp the high frequencies.

A sub woofer would be a good option as neither speaker go very low. If you get a sub woofer with a high level input then you connect to two of three binding posts that are also connected to the speakers, they have to be on the same A circuit. BK sub woofer have this ability as do REL. Both are supplied with Neutrik connectors.

REL-Neutrik.jpg
 

max88

Member
I have the LX-2 connected to A and LX-1 connected to B. And maybe I am using the wrong wording, both pairs are connected to separate amp connections Left and Right connections. My understanding is that yes, they reproduce the same sound. I just find the sound is more ample and "intense" when both A+B are activated. I've added the instruction manual page from the M-CR611 where it mentions bi-amp.

I have to admit it is confusing me quite a bit :p
 

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gibbsy

Moderator
What the amp is doing is passive bi-amping in that attached file. To correctly bi-amp then two separate amps have to be connected and that is to use one amp for the high frequencies and the second amp for the high frequencies. Now that you have cleared up your wording you are using the A + B as it is designed to do to drive two pair of speakers although they are just receiving half of the stated power.

With the bi-amping you are still just getting those 60 watts into the speakers but the signal is being crossed in the amp instead of the speakers. There is no increase in power. True bi-amping would be to double that 60 watts into 120 watts. Hence the term passive bi-amping although manufacturers like to play fast and loose with their terminology. Passive bi-amping is just transferring the crossover point from the speakers to the amp itself. The low frequencies that the speakers can't handle will still be lost to the ether.

You are gaining nothing in the bass department as the internal crossover of the speakers will simply discard any low frequencies that they cannot handle. That is why, if you feel bass is lacking, you should think about a sub woofer with a good high level input.
 

max88

Member
Thanks gibes for the explanation! It's starting to get clearer now :)
So if I get rid of the Mission LX-1, keep the LX-2 pair only, and add the LX-C, I would have an improved sound experience? Would LX-2 receive half the power and LX-C receive the other half? So the main advantage would be a richer bass spectrum?

I'm still a bit confused by this "If you get a sub woofer with a high level input then you connect to two of three binding posts that are also connected to the speakers, they have to be on the same A circuit. BK sub woofer have this ability as do REL. Both are supplied with Neutrik connectors."

Can my Marantz handle these audio standards?
 

gibbsy

Moderator
Your amp is a stereo amp. Just connect the two LX-2 speakers. You cannot add the LX-C that is a speaker designed to be used in a 5.1 configuration with an AVR. If you want to run what is basically a 3.1 then you will need a receiver. Stereo amps do what stereo amps to......stereo.

Your amp does have an pre-out for a single RCA connection to a sub. For convenience and ease of use then use that as the Neutrik high level connection is difficult to get perfect even though it's considered better for music.

So stick to the basic. A pure stereo connection with single wiring to binding posts A. A single RCA from the amp to a powered subwoofer. Keep it simple, simple is often best.
 

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