Help on improving Home entertainment

S

SJM

Enthusiast
Let me make his short: Any advice would be appreciated.
Current: Denon AVR 2809ci, B&W bookshelf LCR and surrounds. Not so great 58" Samsung 4k TV. An infinity sub, of some sort???
Future: Denon 3700h, Focal 826 left and right, keep B&W center, and use other B&W for surround, etc. Perhaps 4 ceiling speaker (TBD), and a LG C2 OLED. Ported SVS 1000 sub, perhaps 2.

Mixed use- lots of TV shows and movies and music (70/30?)

I find all the B&W speakers bright, hot, etc, but also very clear. Hear things I wouldn't otherwise, but they are not floor speakers. Do sound better after I put them on a pedestal. Obviously, I'm considering these as upgrades and within the amount I plan to spend.
 
Verdinut

Verdinut

Audioholic Ninja
Let me make his short: Any advice would be appreciated.
Current: Denon AVR 2809ci, B&W bookshelf LCR and surrounds. Not so great 58" Samsung 4k TV. An infinity sub, of some sort???
Future: Denon 3700h, Focal 826 left and right, keep B&W center, and use other B&W for surround, etc. Perhaps 4 ceiling speaker (TBD), and a LG C2 OLED. Ported SVS 1000 sub, perhaps 2.

Mixed use- lots of TV shows and movies and music (70/30?)

I find all the B&W speakers bright, hot, etc, but also very clear. Hear things I wouldn't otherwise, but they are not floor speakers. Do sound better after I put them on a pedestal. Obviously, I'm considering these as upgrades and within the amount I plan to spend.
I suggest that you also get a Focal speaker for your center channel. That would improve sound character matching over the B & W one. The three front speakers need to be matched while the matching is not that critical for surround speakers.

With regard to the subwoofer supplementation, I would recommend two. That would help obtaining a smoother LF performance.

The Denon X3700H is a recommended receiver. I am using one and it performs rather well. I operate it in the Preamp mode to feed 10 external amplifiers.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Sounds like a reasonable plan. Personally wasn't impressed by the B&Ws I've run into myself, but which models do you have? If I were speaker shopping I might more lean towards Philharmonic BMR towers or JBL HDI or a few others but speakers are a personal choice. I'd also agree plan on the dual subs. I do have a different center than my L/R in more than one system, it can work fine altho generally I'd prefer to have the same speaker all around, or from the same series. Good luck!
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
I am trying out the Focal 826's and they do provide a much needed fullness over the B&W 601 S3 bookshelves. They run audio from my Apple TV music, but that's a whole other matter. I do agree with getting the focal center speaker, and this series has been deeply discounted. I do think these are more than plenty for my 26x16 room. (Main issue would be listening at a much louder level, but I think its the acoustics in the room itself.). Which makes me wonder...Do I really need dual SVS ported subs? I think the single SVS SB-1000 non-ported would do just fine. I also wanted to put 4 ceiling speakers in with the Denon 3700h for ATMOS, for a 5.2.4 set up. Is this just plain overkill? As of now I have my Denon 2809 with optical audio out only and think I am missing much just from it not being connected via HDMI 2.1.
I obviously just like hooking stuff up and cutting holes in my ceiling for fun, but I would appreciate one of you guy's opinion here. (My first concern was that people weren't very impressed with the Focal 826's because the price has been slashed in half! They have been an improvement for me and certainly don't lack clarity, with adequate bass.). I'll get into the acoustic tiles for the ceiling next post. Actually, does anyone know of a good, white, decorative ceiling tile?
 
W

Wardog555

Audioholic
Optical doesn't support atmos. Hdmi is the only option to receive atmos and Dolby digital plus. Waste of time using optical as it's ancient technology from 20 years ago and has serious limitations on audio formats. Only basic lossy 5.1.

Enjoy!
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
Yes. I discovered that the natural way. I can't run HDMI through my ancient 2809 and still get 4k, which also makes the onscreen menu not work. I need a new AVR anyway, which is my I plan on going with the 3700h. After looking into ARCAM, its just too much moolah. However, still not off the table unless this ceiling speaker idea is just plain silly. (I had to pull the optical cable out from a box-o-million cords, but never planned on using it as long as I have.) I have still much to do.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
What is the model number of the Samsung TV?
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
Its a 7-series, 58 inch 4k Samsung. Not the best, but also not so bad for the price. Getting the LG C1 OLED was how this whole entertainment upgrade started, but they sold out within 2 weeks. It was a great buy then.
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
OMG. I blink my eyes and Denon 3800 is out? I forget how short lived these things are. I'm sold on the idea of dual subs. Going with sealed svs-1000. Mainly cost, but they also say sealed it better for music, I guess I understand that.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
So, optical going from TV to receiver to get audio from Apple TV connected directly to TV? Is Apple TV set to output Dolby Digital 5.1? Is TV HDMI port set for bitstream and not PCM?
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
Yes. Apple TV to TV to Denon 2809ci via optical. Is this a little unusual? Yes. Didn't have much choice. I cannot answer the PCM/bitstream, yet. It currently plays 5.1 through Apple audio options and all speakers play no matter how I configure the Denon. I did lose the visual setup and the other methods aren't very user friendly.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
It's not unusual as many have new TVs and streaming devices connected to older receivers. The Samsung will have two settings to check to make sure Dolby Digital 5.1 is getting to the receiver.In the TV's Sound Expert Settings, check that the HDMI Input Audio Format is set at Bitstream and not PCM for all of the ports or the signal will be converted to PCM 2.0 for output. Then, check the Digital Audio Output Format and make sure it is set to Dolby Digital and not PCM. Connect the Denon's HDMI Monitor output to one of the TV's other HDMI inputs to get your onscreen display back for adjustments. It means switching between devices when making adjustments to the receiver.
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
Thanks. I did check the TV audio and it was Bitstream, but DTS Neo 2:5. I do have Dolby Digital also. I think I am just missing too much in the sound processing with this older AVR. I've been reading about DAC or whatever its called and I don't have the ability to do any of that. I can't even update the software as this AVR was before that was an option without knowing how to download the updates on another computer and then doing more steps that I can't even being to explain, much less perform. The new Denon 3800 has a room adjustment software package (they say available in 2023) which people seem to be excited about.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
OMG. I blink my eyes and Denon 3800 is out? I forget how short lived these things are. I'm sold on the idea of dual subs. Going with sealed svs-1000. Mainly cost, but they also say sealed it better for music, I guess I understand that.
Generally somewhat an old wives tale about sealed being better for music....I'd go for the PB1000 Pros over the SB version myself.

Thanks. I did check the TV audio and it was Bitstream, but DTS Neo 2:5. I do have Dolby Digital also. I think I am just missing too much in the sound processing with this older AVR. I've been reading about DAC or whatever its called and I don't have the ability to do any of that. I can't even update the software as this AVR was before that was an option without knowing how to download the updates on another computer and then doing more steps that I can't even being to explain, much less perform. The new Denon 3800 has a room adjustment software package (they say available in 2023) which people seem to be excited about.
Your avr has a DAC, as will any future avr, not sure what your concern there is. I doubt there's anything to update on your older Denon. With my older Denon I tend to turn off auto updates until I know what's being addressed (altho the newer ones seem to need updates more), and if you do use an update hardwire it to your network rather than use wifi to avoid problems during the update. The 3800 in time will have an option for you to buy a Dirac license, but the on-board Audyssey XT32 will do a very nice job, especially in conjunction with either of the two apps to help (Audyssey Editor app and the more detailed and more expensive MultEQ-X app).
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
Thanks. I did check the TV audio and it was Bitstream, but DTS Neo 2:5. I do have Dolby Digital also. I think I am just missing too much in the sound processing with this older AVR. I've been reading about DAC or whatever its called and I don't have the ability to do any of that. I can't even update the software as this AVR was before that was an option without knowing how to download the updates on another computer and then doing more steps that I can't even being to explain, much less perform. The new Denon 3800 has a room adjustment software package (they say available in 2023) which people seem to be excited about.
If the Digital Audio Output Format is set to DTS Neo 2:5, everything will be output as DTS 5.1. The receiver’s DTS input signal icon should light up. Some like it as even PCM 2.0 signals are converted to 5.1 for output. I used it on my Samsung TV. But, Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks can suffer in the conversion and play back at low volume. Try setting it to Dolby Digital. Just to double check, in the Apple TV 4K audio settings, you did set “Change Format” to ON and selected Dolby Digital 5.1, yes?
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Warlord
Agree with HD about the pb over the SB. Especially for HT use.
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
I did set as Dolby Digital, but no change that I can tell. As the the DTS light coming on, I think it depends on what I'm watching. As for the subs, I guess people universally prefer PB subs over SB. Which makes me wonder how on earth would someone use 4 subs if they had the new Denon 3800. I thought 2 is probably WAY beyond what I need, but should sound amazing. In the next few months I plan on having a better understanding of what Im trying to accomplish here and hope to hear the difference. (BTW, the B&W anniversary edition speakers went on sale too now. If I wait, will the SVS subs ALSO go on sale, or just after I decide to buy them??? The Focal were on sale, but got discounted even more.)
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Warlord
The main thing about multiple subs is to smooth the FR across all seats. You still have to start with appropriately sized subs for the space, and your room is just WAY too big to be supported by a single sb1000. You can normally expect around 3-4db per addition sub, so you will also gain headroom and that will mean less distortion and therefore better bass. But one of the problems with sealed subs is that from about 30-35h and lower, they lose output compared to a ported one. For example, it would normally take about four sb2000 to equal the same output at 20hz that a single PB2000 can produce. Sealed subs only advantage is that being smaller, you can usually have more placement options, and better WAF, if that’s a concern.
 
T

Trebdp83

Audioholic Ninja
I did set as Dolby Digital, but no change that I can tell. As the the DTS light coming on, I think it depends on what I'm watching. As for the subs, I guess people universally prefer PB subs over SB. Which makes me wonder how on earth would someone use 4 subs if they had the new Denon 3800. I thought 2 is probably WAY beyond what I need, but should sound amazing. In the next few months I plan on having a better understanding of what Im trying to accomplish here and hope to hear the difference. (BTW, the B&W anniversary edition speakers went on sale too now. If I wait, will the SVS subs ALSO go on sale, or just after I decide to buy them??? The Focal were on sale, but got discounted even more.)
With the Apple TV 4K and Samsung TV set to output Dolby Digital, it will depend on content. The Apple TV 4K will output Dolby digital 5.1 in place of DD+ 7.1/Atmos for those tracks but PCM 2.0 tracks will be output as such. If the Apple TV 4K audio output is left at Best Available and the format is not changed to Dolby Digital 5.1, it will output everything in a multichannel PCM container using Dolby MAT for Atmos tracks. That uses too much bandwidth for that TV using ARC or an optical cable and the TV will convert the incoming signal to PCM 2.0 even if bitstream is selected. Then, if DTS Neo 2:5 is selected for output from the TV, that PCM 2.0 signal gets converted to DTS 5.1 for output to the receiver. Multiple conversions can reduce volume output of some content so matching Dolby Digital input/output might be preferable to the various conversions. Anyway, get at least two ported subs.;)
 
S

SJM

Enthusiast
Slow going, but making progress. Denon 3800h coming soon, so no need to wait for in ceiling speakers for ATMOS. Q: Does anyone recommend a ceiling speaker for this purpose or just an all around good speaker? Best Buy had some "deeply discounted" sonance, but looked at Polk and Def Tec. I really think my absolute ceiling on cost is $250/ea, and I think a round white grill is a must to make the better half more ok with this. Dual SVS pb1000 in the works hopefully soon. How I went from a new TV to all audio is baffling.
 
newsletter

  • RBHsound.com
  • BlueJeansCable.com
  • SVS Sound Subwoofers
  • Experience the Martin Logan Montis
Top