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Question on HT upgrades
#361878 12/26/11 04:15 PM
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sedimin Offline OP
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After sifting throught the mess that is HT combinations, I want to upgrade from my Energy C-500 towers, C-100 center, and C-R100 rears (all powered by a Yamaha HTR-6160 receiver). My TV is a 40" Sony Bravia 40V3000. My sub is an SVS PB12-NSD.

I want Axioms, let's get this straight. I had the opportunity to audition them at Axiom's headquarters and was impressed with what I heard (not to mention all the good feedback I've read).

I was wondering the following: if upgraded to M80's and a VP180, would acquiring an Emotiva XPA-3 allow for enough power for the above speakers? Or should I splurge for a XPA-2 and a separate XPA-1 for the center? My receiver would drive the rears.

Or should I get a 4-ohm receiver, for now (looking at the Harmon/Kardon 3600 as it does 4-ohm)? The room my ht will be in (once renos are complete) will be 20'w x 15'd with a sloping ceiling (15' to 6').

Any help with regards to this would be greatly appreciated. I'm leaning towards an Emotiva Amp, but I've seen people here run M80's on a receiver.

Thanks in advance!

Re: Question on HT upgrades
sedimin #361879 12/26/11 04:22 PM
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Welcome aboard!

I would buy the speakers you have chosen and run them with your Yamaha, it has more than enough power to drive the M80s and VP180 to very loud levels, maybe not for long periods but it will work without the added expense of the separate amps. Once you know whether or not the Yamaha works the way you desire, you can then decide on that amp purchase for which the XPA 3 has more than enough power to drive the front 3, that extra couple hundred watts available in the XPA2 amounts to about 1-2 db higher output, not really noticeable at those high output levels.


Jason
M80 v2
VP160 v3
QS8 v2
PB13 Ultra
Denon 3808
Samsung 85" Q70
Re: Question on HT upgrades
sedimin #361880 12/26/11 04:37 PM
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Jc Offline
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Originally Posted By: sedimin
. . . I was wondering the following: if upgraded to M80's and a VP180, would acquiring an Emotiva XPA-3 allow for enough power for the above speakers? Or should I splurge for a XPA-2 and a separate XPA-1 for the center? My receiver would drive the rears. . .

Hi Sedimin, I would definitely and without hesitation opt for the Emotiva XPA-3 for the front array of your Axiom speakers. Even if it does not take much power to power the Axiom speakers they love power and they will more than reward you for it. Excessive power is never a waste !


jc
Re: Question on HT upgrades
Jc #361891 12/26/11 08:30 PM
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that is correct, but unused is just that, unused. With that said, I do love my 7700 Outlaw.


M80s VP180 4xM22ow 4xM3ic EP600 2xEP350
AnthemAVM60 Outlaw7700 EmoA500 Epson5040UB SonyUBPX800


Re: Question on HT upgrades
SirQuack #361895 12/26/11 10:22 PM
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"unused is just that, unused".
to this i would say: how do you know it will be unused all the time?
even if it's used rarely, it would prevent you from getting distorted sound or compression or unnaturalness.

this is the very reason i updated my audio system; once in a while, i did not have quite enough power; the distortion was bad, there was compression, danger of blowing tweeters, and low-fi sound.
now i got M80's that can take the power without distortion, and enough power that i will always have some spare, thus, no distortion, clean sound at any level.
i always listen to movies at reference level and to music at realistic level. only the dishes in the cupboard produce distortion once in a while, but i don't hear it, it's overwhelmed by the speakers sound level.

don't forget that not enough power is more dangerous to speakers than too much power.
take a 50 watt amp and use it at maximum volume in speakers rated at double or triple that many watts, and you'll get speakers that smoke.

Re: Question on HT upgrades
J. B. #361898 12/26/11 10:48 PM
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sedimin Offline OP
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Thanks for the quick responses, guys. I had a feeling I could run the M80's with my Yamaha (it does allow 2 speakers at 4 ohms), but doubt I could run the VP180 as well.

As well, I don't listen to my music, movies, and games at loud or extreme levels. My Yamaha is usually around -40 to -23 db for movies with the Energy's (which I find lack clarity/muddy).

So, if I understand this correctly, I can run all 4ohm speakers on my Yamaha with no chance of damage unless I crank them to high volumes (something I rarely do). However, a XPA-3 would have more than enough power to pump out the wattage and make these puppies sing. Correct?

Thanks, again!

Re: Question on HT upgrades
sedimin #361900 12/26/11 10:57 PM
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As an added piece of information, upon scouring the manual a bit more, I can run front speakers at 4ohm, but the center, surrounds, surround backs must be 6ohm. Does that imply I can use M80's, yet no VP180 for the center? The QS8's are 8ohms, so I'm good there.

Thanks again for any clarity you good folks can provide.

Re: Question on HT upgrades
sedimin #361901 12/26/11 11:07 PM
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if i was playing something at -40 to -23 or so dBSPL, i too would find the level so low that i would have some difficulty hearing clearly; unless it's the Energy's that have a problem.
the levels i was talking about for movies is the same level at which they play movies in the cinema.

i had Energy 22 Ref. for about 25 years, and with some program material, they would distort heavily for some seconds, taking in some 500 Watts each. the rest of the time, they were great,only lacking in deep bass, below about 32 Hz.

in room fr. resp. was about +2 to -3 dB 22Hz-18kHz.

if your yamaha is rated for operating at 4 Ohms, then it should work ok, but you may not have enough power.
why don't you start with the Yamaha and see?
it you hear any distortion while playing music of movies, then you should go for high power amps; not forgetting that doubling the Watts gives you only 3 dB more SPL.
i can't see how you would not be satisfied using the XPA-3 amps.

Re: Question on HT upgrades
J. B. #361907 12/27/11 01:17 AM
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third line from the bottom should have read: ...while playing music OR movies...

Re: Question on HT upgrades
sedimin #361913 12/27/11 03:13 AM
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Sed, welcome. Your initial question seems to be based on an assumption that the Axioms would require more power than the Energys you use now. If anything, the contrary is the case. The C-500 and M80 both have a 91dB sensitivity spec for 1 watt input, but Energy bases their numbers on two speakers operating, which boosts the figure by 3dB. So, on a equal basis the M80 is more sensitive and requires less power for a given sound level. The same point applies to an even greater extent to the center speakers; the little C-100 is significantly less sensitive than the big VP180 and requires more power. Bigger speaker doesn't necessarily mean bigger amplifier: the bigger speaker is often more efficient and uses less power.

Your 6160 should have more than enough headroom for the Axioms. Once you have enough headroom for the levels involved, any more is simply unused and is meaningless. Speakers don't acquire human traits and it isn't helpful in what should be a serious discussion of audio technology to casually throw in an anthropomorphic comment about how they "love" higher power ratings.

As to the impedance setting, under no circumstances follow the direction in the manual to use the lower setting. This is a legally required warning to help prevent overheating, but it does this by reducing the voltage output of the amplifier power supply section. Obeying the law(Ohm's Law), this results in lower current and lower power capabilities. Tests show this cuts maximum power roughly in half. Your Axioms will do fine by staying at the default 8 ohm setting.


-----------------------------------

Enjoy the music, not the equipment.


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