Multiple subwoofer questions
October 24, 2007
I have some questions regarding my 7.1 A/V system and hope
that you can kindly reply.
(1) I'm thinking of upgrading my powered subwoofer. I have
in mind one of these three subs: Paradigm Servo-15 v.2, Sunfire 12 True Subwoofer
Signature or M&K MX350 Mk 2. I have only ever auditioned the Paradigm Servo-15 v.2,
which really impressed me with its fast, very controlled, solid "moving
air"-type low bass, which is free from the resonances of its enclosure. I wonder if
the M&K and the Sunfire could give the same quality of bass. Which of those would you
(2) Do I still need to set the L/R and C speakers
crossover frequency to 80Hz although they are floorstanders which can produce lower bass?
My L/Rs are Mordaunt-Short Avant 908 (with a 10 driver each) and centers are two
Klipsch RF 25s running in parallel, with Denon AVR-3806 as receiver.
(3) What are the differences between setting speakers to
"large" and "small"? Is it safe to set my Quad 12L or KEF IQ3
surrounds and surrounds backs (both two-way bookshelf models) to "large"?
(1) I would choose the subwoofer you have already heard
and like versus either of the two that you have not heard and are only speculating that
you might like. Go with what you have been impressed with and youll likely stay
impressed when you get the product home. Second, Paradigm makes really good products and
they are a solid company. Its therefore easy to recommend them across the board. On
the other hand: I think M&K is out of business, and I have never heard a Sunfire
subwoofer that greatly impressed me. So if I were buying for myself, the Paradigm would be
the no-brainer choice.
(2) Your main speakers might be capable of producing
fairly deep bass, but you always have to ask yourself whether they are more capable than
your subwoofer is. In most cases the answer will be no. Having the subwoofer
set to handle all the low-frequency-effects duties will also free-up the mains from having
to reproduce low frequencies at playback levels theyd probably rather not attempt.
This gives the added benefit of freeing-up their dynamic range for the upper-bass and
midrange frequencies. The 80Hz figure is correct because that is what is typically used
for the LFE channel: the sounds in that channel will be from 80Hz down and that is what
youll be sending your sub.
(3) For the same reason discussed above, set your
surrounds and backs to small as well. This is even more critical with the smaller speakers
youre using there because of their limited frequency response, so keeping them set
to "small" will make your surround system sing that much more cleanly.
October 17, 2007
Please recommend what interconnects to use between an NAD
universal player and NAD receiver, plus what cables to run from the receiver to KEF iQ7
speakers (biamping). Will be great if you can detail what change in sound will be produced
from the specified cables.
It sounds as if this might be your first foray into
upgrading the cables in your audio system. There are a few pieces of required reading that
I think will answer most of your questions. The first is What You Need to Know About Loudspeaker Cables. This article
will give you all the basics on loudspeaker cable design and some practical considerations
to think about. The second is a review: Analysis Plus
Oval One Interconnects and Clear Oval Speaker Cables. This article will give you
a good idea of the type of performance improvements you can expect from upgrading your
cables and also the amount of money that would be required for such an upgrade. Please let
me know if these two resources help you, and good luck.
Replacing a Linn Classik
October 15, 2007
I really enjoy reading your articles. Now I have a problem.
I have a six-year-old Linn Classik system with Epos M-12 speakers. I've not been overly
happy with this over the years, but I blame it on my small room (15 by 10 with
only 8 ceilings). But the problem is that lately the receiver tries to reset itself,
going on and off, flicking to standby, etc., and finally settles on 11C. I usually can get
it going for a couple of days by resetting everything, but after a couple of days, there
it is again. While I have your attention, can I do something to get better sound? I
usually listen to classical music: Bach, but then into the loud 19th-century choral and
Terence J. Ollerhead
My first thought would be to get the Linn fixed. Im
not sure you could buy something as a replacement that would be both affordable and
better-sounding. Youd likely have to step up to some separates, which would mean an
amplifier and preamplifier. They could easily cost a couple thousand dollars. Maybe the
more prudent decision would be to get the Linn fixed and address your room issues. Perhaps
treating the first-reflection points or buying some bass traps for the corners might be
the wisest expenditure you could make. There are companies -- www.echobusters.com comes to mind
-- that offer packages for specific room types. Id look into that first, and then
decide whether the Linn makes the cut.