Newbie needs to ask some dumb questions



I am a newbie to home theatre and need to ask some really basic questions that the FAQs and other basic advice documents don't seem to answer.

I will mostly listen to music, but I am not an audiophile by any means. My spouse is looking forward to some classic progressive rock albums being released in 5.1 format and that is why we went to surround sound. We will watch movies occasionally on either the VCR or the DVD player.

1) I have just purchased a Yamaha RX-V750 receiver (too much power for me but I needed phono inputs and wanted a Yamaha). It says I should give it 30cm of space above it, and 30cm of space to either side. I was planning to put in into my entertainment centre, but there is no way there will be 30 cm of space on either side (I can probably swing the 30cm above). The centre is vented at the back, although with fairly small holes. If I keep the door open when I use the receiver, will this be okay or will it overheat because of the lack of space to either side?

2) The instructions imply I should run component video cables from my DVD player (Hitachi DV-C605U) to the receiver (as well as a coaxial or optical audio line), and then run component video cables from the receiver to my television (Sony WEGA KV-27FS17). Right now my DVD player is directly connected to my TV via component video cables (rat shack gold). What are the advantages/disadvantages to this two segment connection over directly connecting?

3) For some TV programs, my spouse would like to get the full effect of surround sound, even though my basic cable set-up does not transmit in that format. The receiver's manual implies it can take simple stereo sound and parse it out to the speaker system (Paradigm Titans, CC-170, PDR-10 and Atoms for surround). I cannot determine how to connect it though, so that for most programs I just use the TV speakers, but for those special programs it would go through the receiver and out through the speaker system. Can this be done easily, or would it take re-connecting each time I wanted to switch?



Audioholic Overlord
I'll take a stab at your questions but don't come asking for your money back if you don't like 'em.

1) The heat issue. It's hard to say for sure that protection will kick in or not, but Yamaha puts out a pretty solid piece of gear. Give it as much air as you can and see what happens. If worse comes to worse a small muffin fan back there might help circulate air.

2) The component cable routing issue. What you have will work fine. You're simply using the TV itself to select what video source you want.
Yamaha is offering you the option of using the receiver to select the inputs to your TV. No need to kerfutz with wacha got goin' now as it seems to work fine. *It might even come in handy later.

What you must do, however, is run either an optical cable or a coaxial cable (I vote for coax) from the DVD player to the receiver's DVD audio inputs. This is the audio feed between them. RTFM to ascertain how to "select" the proper input characteristics for this input so you can avail yourself of all the digital niceties that modern HT has to offer.

Additionally, you might want to tun a pair of basic red/white analog RCA interconnects from the DVD to the receiver to allow you to use it as a plain old CD player as well as a DVD player. Double your pleasure, double your fun.

3) The TV sound issue. The best you can get out of a TV is two channels sound. Now, these can be "transmorgified" by modern receivers into more than two channels (how satisfying it is is another issue entirely) quite readily. Simply run another red/white analog interconnect from a line level output on the back of the TV to any spare analog input on the receiver. Again, RTFM on your TV to allow you to mute the TV's internal speakers wnen doing this. Sound from the good system and the TV can combine into a confusing mass o' garbage.

* FWIW, some two channel audio on VHS Hi-Fi tapes sounds fairly decent through DPL and DPL 2. If you still have a VHS deck (I do), you might want to run it's outputs (red/white audio and yellow composite video) to another input on the TV and feed the sound to the Yamaha exactly as you would by pushing the TV audio to the main system.
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Thanks for the advice

Thanks for the advice.

I will try the receiver in my limited space entertainment centre and hope for the best -- I need to keep my electronics (when not in use) enclosed in my entertainment centre because my house is dusty and furry (cats).

I do still have a VHS deck (although it is dying I think) and since I have many VHS videos, some of which might sound good with DPL, I'll try your suggested set-up.

Thanks again,


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