Power amp newbie

scott88m14

Active Member
Hi guys,
Sorry if this has been asked before or something similar.

I currently have Monolith THX 365t L&R 365c center, 265t rears and 4x Monitor Audio c180 ceiling speakers for Atmos paired with a 2000pb pro sub.

My receiver I'm using is a pioneer vsx-lx504.

Do you think I will notice much difference if I was to run a power amp for said speakers, if so what kind of difference would I notice?

Also what would people recommend and how many channels to amplify?

Clearly I'm new to this side of amplification so please be nice. Lol

Many thanks
 

AmericanAudio

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
So, the simple answer is YES.

Seperating the processing from the amplification generally give you a better, cleaner and possibly wider sound stage.

Generally you would look at doing the Fronts or the whole ground level first and leave you heights/ceilings either on your AVR, if it can be set up that way.

The less simple answer is maybe. Whilst the tech will give an imporvement it will also depend on your ears, room and listening volumes.

Hope that helps, in a way.
 

scott88m14

Active Member
Yeah that's pretty much what I was thinking, I'm happy with how it sounds at the moment but I'm always wondering if there is still more to come from the system with a few tweaks / added components.

I know my system is nothing special compared to most on here but so far so good.
 

rccarguy2

Well-known Member
I would recommend at least the front three that will help the AVR out as those channels are the most demanding.

I'm using 7 channels of ATI power (2000 series)

Your amp.


Something funny with that power output, 33W...yikes.

So I'd look into powering all speakers with dedicated amplifers
 

AmericanAudio

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
A quick read of a few reviews and it seems that the power output of the Pioneers is certainly doing something funny and clipping power.

I would certainly look at running 5Ch Power amp and maybe keep the 4 Atmos's on the AVR. Then there is away the option of adding another 4Ch's latter.

Or go the whole hog, and run a 3Ch front stage and a then a 7CH (6 used) for the Surrounds and Atmos's
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
Not wanting to be Mr Unpopular here sorry but, after you've bought external amps, you'd then probably be looking at a new AVR given the results RCcarguy posted?

As 2nd values are going mad, maybe see what you can get on a well known bidding site for the Pioneer and start again with an AVR that doesn't have the power issue?

Do you have any mates with an AVR you could borrow and compare? Maybe the audiosciencereview got the runt of the litter?
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
Another idea, if the power override with temperature is an issue, what about this:
 

scott88m14

Active Member
Thanks for all the replies,
That review was a very interesting read.
I've personally never had any kind of issue with mine as of yet, I'm just wanting to know if a power amp would improve the quality of my system. I'm going to have a look at potentially getting a 3ch power amp for the fronts and then a 7ch for surrounds and rears.

Another question, on the review it was an "elite" model, is there much if any difference to the standard model?

Many thanks.
 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
Pioneers Elite brand was mainly for the U.S. market from what I remember. I used to live their back in the 1995-2000 years and most of their models other than the lower end were called Elite.

TBH your Monolith THX speakers would run well enough off a Denon 4500/4700 for all the speakers unless you have a large room or want to listen at high levels of say -10db and higher.

I have the same speakers (other than the MA ceiling speakers) as you run off a Denon X4500 and in my 24ft x 16ft lounge a plenty loud enough.

I do have my main system though with PA if I want to "blow the bloody doors off" :D
 

scott88m14

Active Member
Pioneers Elite brand was mainly for the U.S. market from what I remember. I used to live their back in the 1995-2000 years and most of their models other than the lower end were called Elite.

TBH your Monolith THX speakers would run well enough off a Denon 4500/4700 for all the speakers unless you have a large room or want to listen at high levels of say -10db and higher.

I have the same speakers (other than the MA ceiling speakers) as you run off a Denon X4500 and in my 24ft x 16ft lounge a plenty loud enough.

I do have my main system though with PA if I want to "blow the bloody doors off" :D
Do you think I would notice much of a difference between the Pioneer vsxlx 504 and the Denon x 4500 or the 4700?
I know the price of the pioneer was similar to the denons when it first came out.

Wondering if I should change amplifier totally or just go for a power amp.

Hmm, you've got me thinking.

Nice, have you put the monoliths in the dedicated room to get a comparison yet?
 

rccarguy2

Well-known Member
Do you think I would notice much of a difference between the Pioneer vsxlx 504 and the Denon x 4500 or the 4700?
I know the price of the pioneer was similar to the denons when it first came out.

Wondering if I should change amplifier totally or just go for a power amp.

Hmm, you've got me thinking.

Nice, have you put the monoliths in the dedicated room to get a comparison yet?

If you do add poweramp check your pioneer has full set of preouts and whether it can output sufficient voltage to pre out typically you want 1-2v though some are higher I think some class d amps.ie 2.4v

Most Avr.wont be able to output 2.4v

There's also if can provide that at low thd/low noise etc
 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
Nice, have you put the monoliths in the dedicated room to get a comparison yet?
No as I have hardly used the dedicated room in the last few months since getting the Mono's. On the 2-3 occasions that I have fired up the cinema room setup you can obviously hear a difference but that is due to a few things.

First the system has a Marantz 7010 with Rotel 5 channel PA running the LCR and surrounds with the 7010 running the rest. I also have Dual 15" subs in that room so again this brings a new level to the party.

The things is when running the Mono system that's in my lounge and at -10db is plenty good enough with just the X4500 and can go louder if I want when the neighbors are out. If I want to go louder and not worry about the neighbors I just pop into the other room but like I said that is only very occasionally.

Possibly your best option if you are happy with your Pio is get a 5 channel PA used for around £300-500 and that will be cheapest way to try a PA. There is a 1075 here for £300 that's a steal and I love mine driving the XTZ Cinemas and the Mono's would love it too.

 

rccarguy2

Well-known Member
That rotel is old so I'd want it recapped and serviced that's about 15 years old along with the 1095

Closer to 20

 

kbfern

Distinguished Member
Now't wrong with being 15 years old mine is a similar age and it still works fine.

Sure you could have it serviced but that price allows for that if you need it.
 

scott88m14

Active Member
I've never had any issues with the pioneer and it has the capabilities of reading / outputting everything I need it to do so I'm swaying towards getting a PA.
I may start with getting a 5ch one then potentially one for the 4 Atmos speakers.
The room isn't that big so I'm not in any need for masses and masses of power.
 

rccarguy2

Well-known Member
 

scott88m14

Active Member
That's definitely an Interesting read and reading through the comments gives a different perspective too.

I'll have a look to see what the difference is between the standard and elite models too as I have a standard one.

As the avr does all the processing I need it to do at the moment I will go for a PA, can always upgrade the avr at a later date when needed and still use the PA with a newer avr.
 

Dobbyisfree

Well-known Member
That rotel is old so I'd want it recapped and serviced that's about 15 years old along with the 1095

Closer to 20


Interesting, haven't seen that review before.

So the RB-985Mkii has the same 20x 15A transistors but a 1.2kVa power supply instead of the 1075 with the 1.5kVa. Yet, the 985 has more caps on board at 96,000µF vs 1075 with 80,000µF.

Suggests to me that, unlike the quoted figures, the individual channel peaks probably differ very little between the two but the 1075 can be quoted as higher because its bigger PSU means it can drive all channels higher at the same time.
 

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