Surround Sound without subwoofer?

Discussion in 'Home Theater & Video' started by RoldGold, Jan 2, 2011.

  1. RoldGold

    RoldGold Listening to it now

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    I am planning on buying the Onkyo TX-SR308 5.1 Channel Surround Sound Receiver. If I do not connect a Subwoofer and set it so the receiver knows there is no subwoofer, would it send the bass to front&surround speakers (assuming they are set to large speakers)? If not, what would happen?
     

     

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  2. botrytis

    botrytis Trying not to be a Small Speaker Hoarder Subscriber

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    You would have the set the system to no sub as well as the speakers set to large.
     
  3. whoaru99

    whoaru99 Epic Member

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    Usually that's what happens, but the Onk manual isn't very clear in this regard. I'd be careful about using "Large" for all speakers unless they have very good low frequency response.
     
  4. RoldGold

    RoldGold Listening to it now

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    Well the speakers I would run have 18in & 10in woofers, so I think low freq response isn't an issue.

    Can anyone recommend a good 5.1 channel receiver? Price is a very big issue.
     
  5. jt45

    jt45 AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    There are alot of good budget AVRs to choose from. If your other components have HDMI connections you might take a look at the Pioneer line, I have a VSX-920 7.1 AVR that I picked up for close to what your looking to spend and so far its done a fine job.
    If you plan on adding an amp later you will have to look further up the line in price as most if not all of the new AVRs in the low to midrange price dont include pre-outs.
    One thing to keep in mind is the new lineups will be coming out early this year and prices may (and usually do) drop on last years line. Good luck with your hunt.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2011
  6. gkimeng

    gkimeng Forum Mod, ClassicSpeakerPages.net Subscriber

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    I don't know specifically about the Onkyo, but in most HT units, what determines the distribution of bass in normal audio to the main and surround speakers is the small/large setting for those speakers, and what the subwoofer yes/no setting controls is what happens to the LFE signal (low frequency effects, which carries the rumble from passing starships and exploding deathstars). With subwoofer set to no, the LFE is mixed into the sound that goes to all the speakers that are set to large; set to yes, and the LFE is directed to the .1 channel whether there's a sub connected to it or not and not to the other speakers,
     

     

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  7. whoaru99

    whoaru99 Epic Member

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    Big woofers don't automatically guarantee good low frequency response.

    I'm not really familar with the lower priced HT receivers, but some time ago I recall seeing that the Onkyos seemed to fare a bit better in their delivered power vs rated power. You really need to define more what things you need in a HT receiver because "recommend me one that doesn't cost much" really isn't much to go on.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2011
  8. RoldGold

    RoldGold Listening to it now

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    Sorry for being so vague.

    I am looking for one that is inexpensive. It needs to be at least 5.1 and hopefully can run without the subwoofer (with the fronts set to large). HDMI is not a big issue because I don't have any HDMI. Regular SD inputs aren't a problem either because I switch inputs using the TV and run audio from TV to receiver. There needs to be at least 1 coaxial audio input. And last, the max watts to each speaker cannot exceed 120.
     
  9. whoaru99

    whoaru99 Epic Member

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    You have a problem in methodology. If you use the TV for a source switcher you're not likely to be getting discrete surround sound. The majority of TVs do not passthough the surround sound from external inputs, instead downmixing them to 2-ch PCM. So, the best one typically gets in that scheme is Dolby Pro Logic II matrixed surround applied by the receiver, not true Dolby Digital as perhaps output by the source and not any DTS passthough either. The exception being the TV's internal tuner will output Dolby Digital if you're using that instead of a cable box and if the cable company is passing it on to you.
     
  10. michiganpat

    michiganpat Super Member

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    go used, watch for the good brands on craigslist, denon, onkyo, marantz, etc...lots of guys are dumping their older receivers cheap because they don't have HDMI inputs...I missed out on a silver faced marantz SR4600 for $80 here before christmas....
     
  11. 89grand

    89grand Addicted Member

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    I recommend getting a receiver with HDMI inputs even if you don't need any today. I think the Pioneer VSX line is a great buy, I'm probably going to pick up a VSX-1020-K myself, but if you truly don't care about HDMI, video switching or up scaling, and have no subwoofer, you may as well buy a used older AV receiver for dirt cheap that won't even have HDMI or upscaling or anything. You can find nice older receivers for cheap if you don't care about that stuff.

    I bought a Denon AVR-2802 for $40 that was $800 when it was new. But I only use it for 2 channel.
     

     

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  12. RoldGold

    RoldGold Listening to it now

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    Again I was not clear. For devices that only output 2 channel PCM (Playstation2, Nintendo64, etc...) I switch with the TV. But the DVD player would run directly into the receiver, bypassing the TV. Thus the receiver would have the full surround sound audio track.

    I actually just started bidding with ebay on a Pioneer AV 5.1 receiver w/o HDMI.
     
  13. 89grand

    89grand Addicted Member

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    It was clear what you were asking for, but I still think it's wise to get a receiver with HDMI as it's now the standard for everything. I know you don't need it today, but tomorrow you might and then you won't have to post another thread asking what's a good receiver with HDMI.

    Seriously, they've gotten so cheap, I see no reason to specifically look for a receiver that is NOT ready for 2011 and beyond.

    But, if you must get an outdated receiver, I'd buy a higher level older used model. It won't have the HDMI which you specifically don't want, but the audio section would be quite better.
     
  14. RoldGold

    RoldGold Listening to it now

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    Ok, that's good advice. Thanks for your time!!
     
  15. tiga

    tiga Super Member

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    Is this true in all cases? (not sure which is why I'm asking). I was under the impression that some soundtracks carry a separete .1 channel for effects like you mention but it gets tossed away if a sub is not connected - regardless of how you set up your main speakers. I didn't think all of it was matrixed. Again I could be wrong. THanks!


     
  16. gkimeng

    gkimeng Forum Mod, ClassicSpeakerPages.net Subscriber

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    Couldn't say, but it seemed to be pretty common when I was shopping last. I'd check with the manufacturer of whatever you're looking at to be sure.
     

     

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  17. Bozzmonster

    Bozzmonster Sabrina Says 'Feed Me!'

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    I run an Onkyo TX-SR507 and run 5.0 sound (two front, two rear and a center, but no sub). I get plenty of bass in the system and don't seem to be missing anything. Yes, I did select 'large' for speaker type. My two mains are Klipsch Kg4s with a Klipsch center channel speaker to match the timbre of the sound across the fronts. The rears are a couple of cheapies I bought from Parts Express that do a good job. I also agree with the group and say if you are purchasing an AV receiver that you should select one with HDMI inputs.
     
  18. ironhead17

    ironhead17 Ironhead - #3 lives

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    I just found a Sony KV850p for $35. I'm not using a sub either. I have a rather big solo CS-706 Pioneer that use as a center, set to small. I've got RS9s as fronts and AT8s as surrounds both set as large and I get good sound for a multi purpose system. The Wii sounds awesome (we enjoy FPS games, COD etc.) and the kids like to play Rockband. We watched the movie Salt which had a lot of action and my wife didn't notice the new setup :screwy::dunno:
     
  19. RoldGold

    RoldGold Listening to it now

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    Well I actually just won an auction on ebay for a Pioneer 5.1 VSX-D606S receiver. It was only $75 and I couldn't pass up the opportunity. Btw, it does not have HDMI.

    If I need HDMI, I'll buy a new receiver when my TV breaks. That is usually my philosophy, I never buy something new unless the old one breaks. Unless its really really cheap or really really cool, then sometimes I'll crack.
     
  20. Copa1934

    Copa1934 My ears are bleeding

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    Not bad logic. I only recently switched to HDMI, but mostly to free up other connections. When you don't have high end you have limited number of inputs and outputs.

    As for Subs I gave up on them. I went from 15" mains to subs when the surrounds on the mains went bad (and before I knew about refoaming, which would have saved me money in the long haul, but again I learned some new tricks). Used a 10" sub till the amp went, then changed to a 12" sub (still have, but retired) then went back to 15" driven mains then found bliss, or pretty bloody close in JBL's with R.S. rears, which will be in a separate post. I've found happiness with out a sub. No more futzing with crossover points, volume settings, etc. It just works, every time now.
     

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