Set center to small or large when mains have built in subwoofers??

A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#1
Should I set center channel speaker to small when main speakers have built in subs? I have all Difinitive Technology speakers in a 5.1 system. My mains are the bp2004s - the center is the CLR 2500. The bp2004 s have built-in subwoofers as does the CLR 2500 center.
 
Pandaman617

Pandaman617

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
18
#2
Honestly I ran a CLR-2500 for about a month and found the best results were with it set to small crossed over at 40hz. It’s only a 150 watt RMS amp running a weird 60 ohm (yes 6-0 I called Def Tech to ask them about a replacement amplifier and the guy I spoke to was pretty knowledgeable) 8” subwoofer. Really IMO the 8” subwoofer in the CLR is meant to add low frequency response like for gunshots, male voice dialogue or mid bass explosions. I am a big Def Tech fan but I firmly believe they exaggerate the frequency response of their speakers as every pair of Def Tech speakers I’ve ever had have measured via REW a much higher low frequency extension than quoted in the spec sheet on their website. But regardless, the BP2004’s you have are quite capable full range speakers with their 125 watt 10” subwoofers. I mean that’s my opinion, there are people in this forum who have light years more knowledge than myself. If you have a decent subwoofer or subwoofer(s) you’re always going to be better off letting them handle the low end stuff as it’s literally the only purpose of their existence and their typically powerful amplifiers. By doing this you also take a substantial bit of stress off your AVR as it takes exponentially more power for a speaker to reproduce 30hz than 5,000hz. However you have internal amplifiers which solves that problem so honestly I would spend a few days with all 3 set as small and crossed over at 40hz and than a few days with them as large? Your listening space and the numerous variables that come into play with low end frequency response also play a significant factor. Once again, I’m not trying to give you a definitive “if you don’t do this you’re wrong” type of answer, this is just based on my limited knowledge and continual trial and error. Anyways let me know how it goes!
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
1,279 2 1
#3
For some of the same reasons I’m sure you like the powered woofers, real powered subs will add a lot to this system for home theater.
 
William Lemmerhirt

William Lemmerhirt

Audioholic Ninja
Ratings
2,708 6 1
#4
Assuming you using an external sub, yes. Set them to small. The “subs” in those speakers aren’t really suited for subwoofer duty(unless you’re in a closet)so I would set them to small, and experiment with XO settings until you find exactly what you like.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
2,057 4
#5
I would not call those powered "subs" either. You would benefit greatly from a true subwoofer. One thread I saw on that other site, from 2010, referenced a likely FR in the low 30s or upper 20's "if you are lucky."
I would cross them beginning at 60, and listen carefully in 2-channel music to see what your towers sound best at. (My speakers, rated for 34Hz, sounded better at 80 than 60, for example.) Once you know how your Towers perform, then set your Center XO probably another step up. This you might need to experiment with in a dialog heavy movie.
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#6
Honestly I ran a CLR-2500 for about a month and found the best results were with it set to small crossed over at 40hz. It’s only a 150 watt RMS amp running a weird 60 ohm (yes 6-0 I called Def Tech to ask them about a replacement amplifier and the guy I spoke to was pretty knowledgeable) 8” subwoofer. Really IMO the 8” subwoofer in the CLR is meant to add low frequency response like for gunshots, male voice dialogue or mid bass explosions. I am a big Def Tech fan but I firmly believe they exaggerate the frequency response of their speakers as every pair of Def Tech speakers I’ve ever had have measured via REW a much higher low frequency extension than quoted in the spec sheet on their website. But regardless, the BP2004’s you have are quite capable full range speakers with their 125 watt 10” subwoofers. I mean that’s my opinion, there are people in this forum who have light years more knowledge than myself. If you have a decent subwoofer or subwoofer(s) you’re always going to be better off letting them handle the low end stuff as it’s literally the only purpose of their existence and their typically powerful amplifiers. By doing this you also take a substantial bit of stress off your AVR as it takes exponentially more power for a speaker to reproduce 30hz than 5,000hz. However you have internal amplifiers which solves that problem so honestly I would spend a few days with all 3 set as small and crossed over at 40hz and than a few days with them as large? Your listening space and the numerous variables that come into play with low end frequency response also play a significant factor. Once again, I’m not trying to give you a definitive “if you don’t do this you’re wrong” type of answer, this is just based on my limited knowledge and continual trial and error. Anyways let me know how it goes!
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#7
Thank you all for your replies! :) For what it's worth - and I'm not sure it's worth a whole lot - I actually have the BP2004TL's, which have 250 watt built-in subs, not 125. I believe, however, that the TL version has the same 10" sub. If you know of any other differences, please enlighten me. Also, any of you have a link for the manual and advertising brochure for both the BP2004 and BP2004T's? I Googled liked a madman and came up empty.

If I do NOT use a separate sub, and I connect the BP2004TL's via the Speaker Level Inputs and I set the Center (C/L/R 2500) to "Small", and the Center's crossover to, say, 60 or 80hz, will the lower frequencies filtered from the Center pass onto the BP2004TL's built-in subs?

I know it works that way if I have a separate / external sub, but not sure if it will work the same for main speakers having built-in subs.

Further, if I DO use my external sub - I have Def Tech's PF 15TL+ - any recommendations on placement? With my BP10 mains, I had this sub off to the side of my Left-Front speaker, and it sounded fine. If I do incorporate it with the BP2004TL's, however, I am considering placing it behind my seating position, a few feet behind my Rear/Side Surrounds.

Open to any and all thoughts, and very much appreciate it!
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
1,279 2 1
#8
Thank you all for your replies! :) For what it's worth - and I'm not sure it's worth a whole lot - I actually have the BP2004TL's, which have 250 watt built-in subs, not 125. I believe, however, that the TL version has the same 10" sub. If you know of any other differences, please enlighten me. Also, any of you have a link for the manual and advertising brochure for both the BP2004 and BP2004T's? I Googled liked a madman and came up empty.

If I do NOT use a separate sub, and I connect the BP2004TL's via the Speaker Level Inputs and I set the Center (C/L/R 2500) to "Small", and the Center's crossover to, say, 60 or 80hz, will the lower frequencies filtered from the Center pass onto the BP2004TL's built-in subs?

I know it works that way if I have a separate / external sub, but not sure if it will work the same for main speakers having built-in subs.

Further, if I DO use my external sub - I have Def Tech's PF 15TL+ - any recommendations on placement? With my BP10 mains, I had this sub off to the side of my Left-Front speaker, and it sounded fine. If I do incorporate it with the BP2004TL's, however, I am considering placing it behind my seating position, a few feet behind my Rear/Side Surrounds.

Open to any and all thoughts, and very much appreciate it!
Think you would want dual subs to take those out of full range. The center should go to 80hz probably and single sub on left or right of towers.

Possibly try 40hz crossover for towers though.
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#9
Snakeeyes - Thanks, but not 100% clear on what you are saying. Are you recommending that if I set the BP2004TL's to "Small", then I should use teo (2) external subs? Also, ".....and single sub on left or right of towers." I do not know what you are saying there. Sorry
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
2,057 4
#10
I agree with Snake. You will not get true full range from those powered woofers. If you try, you will be leaving some FR on the table.
If possible, using dual subs will even out the bass response around the room. You will be able to dial in better bass for multiple seats, whereas with only one sub, you might only be able to dial it in for your main LP.
Perhaps the only thing different I like to do is get the subs off the front wall. To me, that is not usually the best place for them. I always recommend doing the Subwoofer Crawl to find the best places in your room.
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#11
I agree with Snake. You will not get true full range from those powered woofers. If you try, you will be leaving some FR on the table.
If possible, using dual subs will even out the bass response around the room. You will be able to dial in better bass for multiple seats, whereas with only one sub, you might only be able to dial it in for your main LP.
Perhaps the only thing different I like to do is get the subs off the front wall. To me, that is not usually the best place for them. I always recommend doing the Subwoofer Crawl to find the best places in your room.
Thanks Ryanosaur!
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#12
A separate question, please. Since the BP2004TL's are my new main speakers, replacing my BP10's, I can now use the BP10's as a surround pair. I currently have Def Tech's BP1.2X ( https://www.crutchfield.com/S-w1T90UFcKGF/p_735BP12X/Definitive-Technology-BP1-2X.html ) as my Surround-Sides (Slightly behind the main listening position, and 2' above ear level). Would you leave the BP1.2X's on the side, and use the BP10's as the Surround-Back, or would you make the BP10's the Surround-Sides and relegate the BP1.2X's to Surround-Back duty?
 
S

snakeeyes

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
1,279 2 1
#13
A separate question, please. Since the BP2004TL's are my new main speakers, replacing my BP10's, I can now use the BP10's as a surround pair. I currently have Def Tech's BP1.2X ( https://www.crutchfield.com/S-w1T90UFcKGF/p_735BP12X/Definitive-Technology-BP1-2X.html ) as my Surround-Sides (Slightly behind the main listening position, and 2' above ear level). Would you leave the BP1.2X's on the side, and use the BP10's as the Surround-Back, or would you make the BP10's the Surround-Sides and relegate the BP1.2X's to Surround-Back duty?
I would move the BP1.2x to surround back or find another used pair of BP1.2x.
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#15
Hey Folks - I really appreciate all of the help & input. However, there are a few questions that no one answered. (Please forgive me in advance if I just missed it).

Any of you have a link for the manual and advertising brochure for both the BP2004 and BP2004T's?

If I do NOT use a separate sub, and I connect the BP2004TL's via the Speaker Level Inputs and I set the Center (C/L/R 2500) to "Small", and the Center's crossover to, say, 60 or 80hz, will the lower frequencies filtered from the Center pass onto the BP2004TL's built-in subs?
I know it works that way if I have a separate / external sub, but not sure if it will work the same for main speakers having built-in subs.
 
ryanosaur

ryanosaur

Audioholic Samurai
Ratings
2,057 4
#16
Hey Folks - I really appreciate all of the help & input. However, there are a few questions that no one answered. (Please forgive me in advance if I just missed it).

Any of you have a link for the manual and advertising brochure for both the BP2004 and BP2004T's?

If I do NOT use a separate sub, and I connect the BP2004TL's via the Speaker Level Inputs and I set the Center (C/L/R 2500) to "Small", and the Center's crossover to, say, 60 or 80hz, will the lower frequencies filtered from the Center pass onto the BP2004TL's built-in subs?
I know it works that way if I have a separate / external sub, but not sure if it will work the same for main speakers having built-in subs.
Forgive, but the more you insist on thinking of those as subwoofers, the more disappointed you will be in the long run. They simply are not capable of the extension and output of a real subwoofer. The cabinets alone are not physically large enough to do what they claim. DefTech advertises that 2500 as reaching 21Hz. The smallest of Hsu's Subwoofers has a volume roughly around 75 liters and is good to between 18 and 22Hz. That 2500 is about 19 liters: basically 1/4 the size!
So why do you not see more "Subwoofers" that size, today, almost 17 years later?

At the end of the day, its your system, I do not want to detract from that. Cool? We are giving you the advice we know to be real. Use the powered woofer all you want. Experiment with running test tones CAUTIOUSLY through your system (that means starting at low volume, and seeing where it can perform too). If you can get that center channel on its own, to produce a 21Hz tone at volume without overexcursing or any other damage, kudos.

That said, in our collective experience, you should run real subwoofers with your speakers set to small. The XO should be set somewhere between 1/2- and a full- octave above a realistic bottom FR for your individual speakers. For your Towers, I would recommend 40-60. For that Center, I would recommend 60-80. (I'm a little more conservative than some, because blowing drivers for me can be very expensive, and I have good quality Subwoofers that I can offload that work to.)

Best,
R
 
A

AudioBuffCO

Audioholic Intern
Ratings
11
#18
Forgive, but the more you insist on thinking of those as subwoofers, the more disappointed you will be in the long run. They simply are not capable of the extension and output of a real subwoofer. The cabinets alone are not physically large enough to do what they claim. DefTech advertises that 2500 as reaching 21Hz. The smallest of Hsu's Subwoofers has a volume roughly around 75 liters and is good to between 18 and 22Hz. That 2500 is about 19 liters: basically 1/4 the size!
So why do you not see more "Subwoofers" that size, today, almost 17 years later?

At the end of the day, its your system, I do not want to detract from that. Cool? We are giving you the advice we know to be real. Use the powered woofer all you want. Experiment with running test tones CAUTIOUSLY through your system (that means starting at low volume, and seeing where it can perform too). If you can get that center channel on its own, to produce a 21Hz tone at volume without overexcursing or any other damage, kudos.

That said, in our collective experience, you should run real subwoofers with your speakers set to small. The XO should be set somewhere between 1/2- and a full- octave above a realistic bottom FR for your individual speakers. For your Towers, I would recommend 40-60. For that Center, I would recommend 60-80. (I'm a little more conservative than some, because blowing drivers for me can be very expensive, and I have good quality Subwoofers that I can offload that work to.)

Best,
R
Cool, R - I hear what you're saying and will connect as you described, and check it out. Thanks!
 
Pedro Alvarado

Pedro Alvarado

Audioholic
Ratings
34 3 1
#20
Should I set center channel speaker to small when main speakers have built in subs? I have all Difinitive Technology speakers in a 5.1 system. My mains are the bp2004s - the center is the CLR 2500. The bp2004 s have built-in subwoofers as does the CLR 2500 center.
i'm curious how your testing resulted.

did you find the manual? send def tech an email, i'm sure they have the manual.
 

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