Thanks guys. Very encouraging Jason, in that I wasn't the only "experienced" one that had difficulty with something that ought to be very straightforward.
Now if I could only get the right setting for my sub... BR always overdrives it and distorts the poor little thing, and if I turn it down too much, well then I may as well unplug it from the wall. Frustrating. That said, I did relocate it yesterday from the front left corner of the room to the left side of the primary viewing couch so as to be that much closer and not need to put out so much SPL. That seems to have helped quite a bit. Still no magic bullet, but better.
Shame that ol' St. Nick didn't leave an EP500 under the tree for me.