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My new KEF Q1 Home Theatre

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Speakers' started by naturally, Jun 30, 2002.

  1. naturally

    naturally
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    Hi,

    This is a follow-up to the many threads that were discussing the KEF Q1 HT setup.

    This is my first HT setup. Prior to this I had a 29 inch TV running with a HK stereo amp and a pair of JBL speakers.

    My new setup is:
    Denon 2802 AV Receiver
    6 KEF Q1's
    KEF PSW 1000 Sub
    Pioneer DVD 533 DVD player
    Panasonic LT712E Projector
    Da-Lite 120" screen

    All this in a dedicated HT room 5.3 X 4.2 (meters)

    I live in the middle east and the post services are terrible. So getting it from the net is not a good idea. We do not have a local KEF agent in Oman, so I had to make the purchase during a trip to Dubai, this is the nearest KEF dealer.

    In Oman, I demoed the Energy Encore, Energy Athena, Some Mirages, JBL's, Yamaha's ... etc. In Dubai I demoed the Eggs, and the Eggs with a REL sub, and a pair of Q1's as fronts. The shop refused to open up two more pairs of Q1's for a 6.1 demo. With the Q1's as surrond fronts and a Q9 center and KHT2001 surrond backs, the system sounded terrible. I could not make out the dialogue. My guess was that these speakers were not matched.

    To cut a long story short, I demoed one pair Q1's only with some of my music CD's and the sound was unblievable. So I went ahead and bought three pairs of Q1's. I could not get a REL subwoofer, the demo piece was pre-sold, so I had to settle for a KEF PSW 1000 sub. I also bought some black speaker stands.

    I paid GBP 188 per Q1 pair, and GBP 150 for the Sub.

    Last Tuesday, I connected all together with some low quality speaker cables (could not get good qualit stuff). And switched on the system, first thing was to setup the 2802. I had no previous exposure to an AV reciever, but the whole think took 15 minutes. All the background reading I did here and in other places paid off. I initially set the Sub crossover at 100. I then played "Eric Clapton's unplugged" and was not blown away as I expected. The sound was good, but not that good. So I went through the Denon setup screens and setup the crossover at 120. I also played all the test tones and found that all the speakers functioned except the sub. It was connected and powered, but the ON switch was turned off. I turned the sub on and adjusted the volume so I can hear a little rumble. The played the same DVD and I WAS blown away. The sound that comes out of the KEF's was very sweet. I have owned this DVD for some time and it was one of the Demo discs that I took to various demonstrations. But I never heard the sound coming so sweet.

    Then I played "The Mummy - Special Edition" Using the DTS track, and the sound was brilliant. Since then I played over 28 hours of projector time (I had a week off work), and I still admire the speakers. During last nights session, I think that the speakers improved then the first day. I know somethings about run-in time, and I think that the improvements are due to the system bieng run-in. I cannot wait for it to be properly run-in.

    The second learning point that I want to share to all fellow newbies, is that the Denon 2802 is VERY powerful. I initially wanted to go for the 3802, but could not find anyone locally that stocked it. I found only one dealer with 2802. So I settled for it, but I was cursing my luck "ONLY 90 watts !". Now I cannot put the volume nob half-way without causing serious damage to my ears. 90 Watts as Denon calculates is is VERY loud. It fills my room and can be heard from outside the house at half-way, I did not dare put it all the way yet, I know the Q1's would take it, but I am not sure I can.

    The third learning point is that the Sub is very important. The KEF sub I got is not very nice. I should have listened to all the recommendations and waited for a REL. I will probably get a REL in November, on my next business trip to Dubai. Or I might go for a local Yamaha Sub, the specs seems identical.


    In summary, this setup is very highly recommended, except the sub. I am very HAPPY with my first Home Theatre. Thanks to all the people in this forum for helping me and others to make the right decisions. And thanks to Uncle ERIC for being the first to point out the Q1's as a possiblity for a HT. The recommendation was well-made.

    I will try to answer any questions regarding the new setup. Please note the time difference.
     
  2. planbeta

    planbeta
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    you say that you tried the Q1, Q9 and Eggs... I assume it was the eggs that made the sound 'terrible'?
     
  3. uncle eric

    uncle eric
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    You're welcome. Another recommendation is to pick up a good sub such as one of the REL ST Series (Stay away from the 150-200 range). Also, your crossover point with the Q1's should be set around the 50Hz mark and not 100-120Hz.

    Eric
     
  4. planbeta

    planbeta
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    Eric just curious why not the 150-200 range...
     
  5. Ian J

    Ian J
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    100-120Hz is mid range and not sub bass and the sound is directional at those high frequencies.

    THX recommend a crossover of 80Hz which means that the speakers handle the frequencies that they do best whilst the sub woofer just handles the bass.

    Eric is not a fan of the 150-200 range of REL subs and for his thoughts on the range do a search for posts by uncle eric on the 150 as he has explained he his reasons at great length.
     
  6. CodeThief

    CodeThief
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    Didnt he mean the REL 150-200 range of subs??

    Dave
     
  7. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Having painted the bathroom ceiling this morning I was hot & bothered and came here for a rest but due to sheer exhaustion from my physical exertion I managed to muddle up the two parts of the answer that I meant to put.

    Since corrected but thanks for pointing it out. :)
     
  8. naturally

    naturally
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    My Receiver gives me three ranges for crossover only 80 / 100 / 120. I will try it at 80 with my existing sub and see the effect, although not very hopeful as I am getting the solid impression that the sub I have is not a good sub.

    Any impressions on the Yamah YST series of subs ?
     
  9. naturally

    naturally
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    Probably. But because of the not-so good dialogue in saving private Ryan demo, I also thought the the centre speaker was not so good. It did not sound good to MY ears.
     
  10. naturally

    naturally
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    Just a small question to all the experts.

    I tried a crossover of 80hz and the sound was better. Then I set all the speakers to large and setup the LFE signal to mains + Sub. This gave me a very good sound (to my unexperienced ear).

    Will sending LFE to the Q1's damage them ?

    My theory was that the Q1's will go as low as they like and will simply ignore anything lower. Is this correct ?
     
  11. Lowrider

    Lowrider
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    I would say that going as low as they can will mean more speaker excursion, more distorsion...

    They should play better with the active crossover limiting the bass they get... and 80hz is my choice, less directional...
     
  12. naturally

    naturally
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    Thanks for the reply.

    I am not worried about sound distortion. I want to experiment and come up with what feels good to my ears.

    I gather from the reply that the speakers will not be damaged. I will continue experimenting, and see what happens.


    Thanks
     
  13. Reiner

    Reiner
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    I am not worried about sound distortion.

    You should be as this is audible distortion. As well running the fronts full range with the LFE increases the stress to the receiver (amplification stage) and the speakers of course.
    An active sub will help to prevent this. You could run the fronts as LARGE and send the LFE only to the subwoofer as I prefer in my setup.

    I want to experiment and come up with what feels good to my ears.

    Of course. ;)
     
  14. naturally

    naturally
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    OK now I am worried :blush: . The temperature is very high where I live, more than 50 degrees celsius outside. So I am worried about anything that will increase the heat that my equipment produces.

    I have an active sub. I will do as you suggest and check what it sounds like. Since I began experimenting I noticed that dialouge is becoming clearer and DTS sounds better. Maybe DTS uses more LF therefore requires it to be properly setup :confused: ?.

    I have a Q1 setup all-round. I will try setting the front two as large, the whole front stage, and the whole setup as large and see what I get.

    Have you tried setting ALL your speakers to large ?
     
  15. Lowrider

    Lowrider
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    While I had a receiver, I would use direct for music, using the high level connection of my subs, 80hz crossover is good for movies, but sometimes not so good with music.

    With the TAG I set the crossover to 50hz and all speakers small all the time...

    If you set your front speakers to large, you should use the high level connection as well as the low level LFE...
     
  16. Reiner

    Reiner
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    Have you tried setting ALL your speakers to large ?

    Yes, all my speakers run as large and the (active) subwoofer takes only care of the LFE.
    That's the way I prefer it though occassionally I set the fronts to SMALL when I want some more bass while listening to music (or to annoy my neighbours). ;)
     
  17. naturally

    naturally
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    :D Nice one. I will try this when I get the REL sub. I am not worried about the neighbours. I am worried about my wife though :blush: .


    Good luck with your Q1 audition. Do let us know how that went on.
     
  18. Jase

    Jase
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    Hi

    When you get the Rel if you connect it via both the high level and low level connections you can leave all the speakers set to small and all bass to sub and for music listen in DIRECT mode as this ignores the speaker settings and sends full range signals to the front pair. You´ll get the best of both worlds.

    Use either mode 2 or 4 on the sub as this ignores its crossover at low level (crossover will be set by the amp). You then adjust the subs crossover for the high level connection to fine tune the bass for when its in DIRECT mode. You´ll also have to go into the channel level settings, MODE SELECT, CHANNEL LEVEL and turn down the SW channel to -12db and then OFF. This will stop any bass doubling as it turns off the sub output from the amp at low level.

    Basically Rel subs can be bi-wired in line with your front speakers enabling you to get the most out of their performance for both movies and music.

    Hope this helps.

    Cheers
     

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