Question Onkyo 818 use preouts

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by Dr. Robert, Jul 30, 2018.

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  1. Dr. Robert

    Dr. Robert
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    I want to use my 818 as a preamp. I want to be able to input analogue from my dac into the cd inputs then output the left and right into a poweramp. I can't find any way of doing it via the menu. Is it even possible?
     
  2. Rambles

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    Yes, just connect it up and it should work. On most AVR's the pre-outs are always live so you don't need to change any settings.
     
  3. Dr. Robert

    Dr. Robert
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    Got it working thanks for your help Rambles.
    but it sounds crap. I thought a pre only selected source and provided volume control. Compared to my meridian 501 the onkyo dulls the sound, its like i've a lost detail. ive got an audiolab dac coming into the 818 then going out to a Meridian 555 power amp then into B&W cm5 speakers. I think I'm gonna have to buy an old school pre like a Tag or a Meridian G68 or if I push the boat out a Meridian 861 and forget about Audyssey. Stereo for me is the most important while still needing a cinema processor
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2018
  4. Rambles

    Rambles
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    Yes, I am not surprised, the pre-amp makes a surprisingly large amount of difference to the overall sound quality. What some of us on the forum are doing is using a stereo amplifier with HT bypass for 2 channel music, as well as an AVR for home cinema.

    The front left and right pre-outs go into the HT bypass inputs of the stereo amp, which essentially means that the stereo amp is acting as a power amp with that input. You could attach a power amp to the stereo amp if you want to, and then the speakers to the power amp. When using the AVR, in that mode, the stereo amp will be doing nothing, except acting as a switch.

    But, when listening to music, you just use the stereo amp (or stereo amp and power amp) and the AVR is switched off and completely out of the chain, so can't mess up the sound for music.

    Although, as you already have an Audiolab DAC and the power amp, there my be some other options for you, although they are all a bit messy. You could connect the Audiolab DAC directly to the power amp, so about as pure a path as you can get, but assuming that your Audiolb DAC nor your power amp has a volume / gain control, you just need a volume control, such as this:

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mackie-BIG...coding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=1BE3TR1GGDZXPSGZ4AVW

    Then in order to share the same speakers with your power amp and the AVR, you need a speaker switch, such as this:

    BERESFORD ELECTRONICS

    I did say it was messy!

    So, a stereo integrated amp or pre-amp with HT bypass is a neater solution. And you get the benefit of the power amp when using your AVR.
     
  5. Dr. Robert

    Dr. Robert
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    Thanks for that. A lot to take in. The audiolab is a preamp as well but again compared to my meridian its dull. I get so much detail when using the 501 preamp its unbelievable. I don't really fancy the massive chain that you suggest although people have said the Arcam fmj C30 is a worthy buy. Are their any processors/receivers that can cope with music? I've thought of selling the meridian 501, onkyo and my projector then tossing up the extra to buy a NAD 758 v3 and a new dac, going dac into that then out into the power. Gets very good reviews. If not its meridian again but i wont have the latest codecs or hdmi. Music is the most important thing for me
     
  6. Rambles

    Rambles
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    There are some AVR's that are known to be more musical than others. The ones with the best reputation are Marantz and Arcam, I am not sure about NAD, you will probably have to listen and decide for yourself.

    However, if you really like the Meridian 501, I am going to guess that it will outperform an AVR in terms of music, so you might want to come up with a way of keeping it and either sharing the speakers with the AVR via a switch, or just keeping the two systems separate.
     

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