What's the simple way to power speakers?

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RoadKill666

Audiophyte
New here, so hello everyone!
So I've been saving up from each paycheck and as long as I continue I'll be able to have the funds for everything I want when the time is right. The plan is to buy everything when it's at its lowest price (Black Friday) but for now, I am trying to learn so I don't waste any money. I've picked out a 7.2.4 setup with all speakers and subs coming from SVS. But there is one thing that is confusing me very much.

I chose my Receiver (Denon AVR-X6700H) because it's 11 channels but I know I need to send more power to the 2 tower speakers and the center channel. So I'm like ok, I need an amplifier but I didn't see any that were 3 channel but I saw a ton that was 1 channel and 2 channel. I don't have room for an AV rack and this is my living room so I want to be as minimalistic as possible. Do I need to buy 2 amplifiers and just run 1 to the center and the other for the towers or is there another way I can go about this? I've read stuff online about sending more power to speakers only gives you +3 disables and then I read something about surround sound preamps make everything sound better? Can anyone simplify things and tell me what I need and don't need because Although I am spending a lot to move to the next level of home audio, I'm still not at that level of by spending thousands on just powering things alone.

My goal is to get this all mapped out and set in stone so I know what I need to plan accordingly so that I can get everything and then after the Holidays, look for getting it all installed.
 
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Leemix

Audioholic Chief
Just get the AVR, speakers and subs. You most likly dont need additional amps for the front 2 or 3. The x6700 is very capable unless you play really really loud a lot or sit very very far from the speakers. AVRs are made to handle things just fine on their own but if you for some reason find you need extra power for the front 2 or 3 later thats easy to add then.(unlikly you will need it anyway so no need to worry)

Remember to set all speakers to small when the time comes.


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V

viorelc

Enthusiast
To address your question first - the simplest way to power the speakers is directly from the AVR. And most of the time, that is enough, I expect manufacturers to know what normal home spaces look like.

If you want to learn about the power you need (or want), I suggest taking a look at an online SPL calculator and play with a few numbers (from actual specs of the speakers and AVR you are looking to get) matching the room and listening distance from speakers. From all of my calculations (my room, my couch, my speakers) I learned that there’s plenty of power in pretty much all current AVRs for my space. Your situation is different, so it’s only you can make that determination. That said, it is often a good idea to not plan using a system up to its upper limits, but you will see from calculations how far or close to the limits you are. Make sure you familiarize yourself with the units used (SPL, dB) and try to have realistic expectations. Most of all, read on what are considered normal vs dangerous levels of SPL to help your understanding.


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Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
If you want to learn about the power you need (or want), I suggest taking a look at an online SPL calculator and play with a few numbers (from actual specs of the speakers and AVR you are looking to get) matching the room and listening distance from speakers.

Personally I think the 6700 is overkill, but a pretty awesome receiver. If you think you might want a separate amp for your main speakers I'd suggest dropping down to the 3700 and pick up a couple of Outlaw 2220 monoblocks with the money saved. You'll still be getting a great avr and be set on power.

 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Warlord
I agree with Leemix and viorelc. That Denon receiver, at 140 wpc (driving 2 channels with 8 ohm loads, 20 Hz to 20 kHz, at 0.05% distortion) is one of the most powerful AVRs around. It's also very expensive, with a retail price of $2,600.

You seem to be focusing on choosing an AVR and possibly external amps. But you never mentioned what speakers you have in mind. The sensitivity and impedance load of speakers can vary widely. Choose your speakers first, and then worry about having enough power to drive them. Choosing speakers is a matter of learning your personal preferences, and how much you want to spend. However, once you have some speakers in mind, we can help you decide how much power is enough.

Most commercially available speakers, with some notable exceptions, can be easily driven by AVRs rated at an honest 100 wpc. You just might find that the Denon AVR-X6700H is much more than you really need.
 
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BMXTRIX

BMXTRIX

Audioholic Warlord
While I completely agree with the others that your Denon is a solid monster of a tool to have in your arsenal, it is worth noting that I'm a bit of a Emotiva fan, and they do have 3-channel specific amplifiers which are available. They do a solid job of taking load of the main amplifier.
 
-Jim-

-Jim-

Senior Audioholic
Welcome RoadKill666.

I'm on board with the Team here. I doubt you'd need a separate Amp for your setup. If you are concerned about that, just make certain the HT Receiver you purchase has "pre-outs" in case you want to add separate amplification later. Of course the Denon AVR-X6700H does that but so do many other models they make. You should specify what SVS Speaker system and Subs you are looking at. It would also be helpful what room dimensions (LxWxH) you are going to install this in, and where you expect seating to be.

Welcome to a fun hobby.
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Another vote for start with the avr and see if you actually need more amplification or not. The 3700 is another very good avr (or the 4700) but if you want the most powerful amplifiers it will be external anyways as the most powerful amps simply aren't in avrs. As to the pre-pro (surround pre-amp) sounding better, unlikely it will sound any different and the usual pre-pros tend to measure about the same as avrs (look at Audiosciencreview.com's various reviews/measurments of both avrs and pre-pros). The advantage of a pre-pro is generally you can just keep using whatever amplifiers you have and just change pre-pro as tech changes....but pre-pros tend to cost quite a bit more and measure little differently from an avr with pre-outs.

Hard to know what your requirements are without knowing basics like your distance from the speakers, your particular listening levels and what the speakers' sensitivity/impedance are....and yes, it takes a doubling of power to gain 3 dB (deciBels) in spl. The speakers are more important than the electronics....knowing they're SVS brand only doesn't help particularly, but generally an avr alone can do quite well with their lineup. Try that spl calculator Pogre linked.

There are 3ch amps out there from Emotiva and others, or you can use three monoblocks as suggested (the Outlaw 2220)....or a pair of two ch amps for that matter. If you need them.
 
R

RoadKill666

Audiophyte
I agree with Leemix and viorelc. That Denon receiver, at 140 wpc (driving 2 channels with 8 ohm loads, 20 Hz to 20 kHz, at 0.05% distortion) is one of the most powerful AVRs around. It's also very expensive, with a retail price of $2,600.

You seem to be focusing on choosing an AVR and possibly external amps. But you never mentioned what speakers you have in mind. The sensitivity and impedance load of speakers can vary widely. Choose your speakers first, and then worry about having enough power to drive them. Choosing speakers is a matter of learning your personal preferences, and how much you want to spend. However, once you have some speakers in mind, we can help you decide how much power is enough.

Most commercially available speakers, with some notable exceptions, can be easily driven by AVRs rated at an honest 100 wpc. You just might find that the Denon AVR-X6700H is much more than you really need.
Thanks for the reply, the speakers are all going to be from SVS.
Ultra Center: ($700), Prime Pinnacle Towers (2)($1600), Ultra Surrounds (2)($1000), Elevation Speakers (4)($1000), Prime Bookshelf for rears (2)($500), and for the 1 subs i'm still torn between 1000 Pro or 2000 Pro and sealed or ported.
 
R

RoadKill666

Audiophyte
Welcome RoadKill666.

I'm on board with the Team here. I doubt you'd need a separate Amp for your setup. If you are concerned about that, just make certain the HT Receiver you purchase has "pre-outs" in case you want to add separate amplification later. Of course the Denon AVR-X6700H does that but so do many other models they make. You should specify what SVS Speaker system and Subs you are looking at. It would also be helpful what room dimensions (LxWxH) you are going to install this in, and where you expect seating to be.

Welcome to a fun hobby.
My living room and kitchen are in pretty much one huge area so its 9ft tall, by 17.5ft wide, and the living room before you get to the kitchen is about 20ft wide. If it helps I can take some pictures of the living room to help explain the set up I want to go with.
 
Swerd

Swerd

Audioholic Warlord
Thanks for the reply, the speakers are all going to be from SVS.
Ultra Center: ($700), Prime Pinnacle Towers (2)($1600), Ultra Surrounds (2)($1000), Elevation Speakers (4)($1000), Prime Bookshelf for rears (2)($500), and for the 1 subs i'm still torn between 1000 Pro or 2000 Pro and sealed or ported.
Those speakers can be easily driven by the Denon AVR-X6700H, or by the less expensive Denon AVR-X4700H.

I wouldn't consider an external amp until you give your speakers at least a month's trial driven by the AVR alone.

The only other recommendation I could suggest, is to buy the less expensive Denon AVR-X4700H, and with the money you save, buy two SVS Ultra Tower speakers instead of the Prime Pinnacle Towers. I think you'll be happier with those speakers in the long run :).
 
MalVeauX

MalVeauX

Full Audioholic
My goal is to get this all mapped out and set in stone so I know what I need to plan accordingly so that I can get everything and then after the Holidays, look for getting it all installed.
Hi,

Your power needs will be based on the sensitivity of your speaker(s) and the distance from them to your listening position(s). It can be calculated pretty simply without any room influence to know what the base starting point would be for power requirement to achieve a specific SPL at listening position. So if you provide those dimensions and the speakers in question so we know what sensitivity they are, we could make it very clear what power needs you would have and put that to rest. If you're listening at 10~12 feet or less from your speakers, and they're 88~92db sensitivity, odds are, you won't need an amplifier. From there, the room size and distance from speaker to listening position will matter a lot for your subwoofers. Put more effort into your subs than a discreet amplifier. Your AVR will most probably power your speakers with room to spare.

Very best,
 
lovinthehd

lovinthehd

Audioholic Jedi
Thanks for the reply, the speakers are all going to be from SVS.
Ultra Center: ($700), Prime Pinnacle Towers (2)($1600), Ultra Surrounds (2)($1000), Elevation Speakers (4)($1000), Prime Bookshelf for rears (2)($500), and for the 1 subs i'm still torn between 1000 Pro or 2000 Pro and sealed or ported.
Why consider sealed subs? You have need for smaller boxes?
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
I vote PB2000. Don't be torn over sealed vs ported unless you're really pinched for space. I will always choose ported over sealed. There just isn't any reason not to. There is a very pervasive myth about sealed being better for music and that's just not true. Not with moderns subwoofers designed by competent manufacturers, of which SVS are at the top of the hill. The PB2000 Pro is an awesome subwoofer and worth the extra cash.

I like Swerd's suggestion to step down the receiver up your speaker game. I had Ultra towers and loved them, but they were hard to dial in, in my room. I had to do a lot of experimenting with positioning, but once I got them dialed in they were pretty awesome. Another consideration would be a pair of subs instead of a single. How big is your room? The whole space, including any doorless openings into other rooms.
 
-Jim-

-Jim-

Senior Audioholic
I'm with the Team here again. If there is no WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) in play, and you can handle a little bigger box, go for the ported Subs. I know Porge advises to go to the PB2000 Pro, but with the room layout info you provided (Thanks ;) ) I think two of them may be overkill. You have 3150 cubic feet in both rooms combined. A single PB1000 Pro has a Bassaholic certified rating for a Large Room 3,000 =>5,000 Cubic Feet.

Check it out: Audioholics Bassaholic Spreadsheet 4-18-21

However, if you can afford it, I'd still put in two PB1000 Pro Subs. That will save you some $$. Moving from a Denon AVR-X6700H to a Denon AVR-X4700H will also save $$. (Make certain you can return whatever receiver you buy if you are unhappy with in in the first 30 days or so. Make certain to buy the Receiver so you have it when the 45 Day SVS Speaker trial starts. ), To save a bit more $, instead of Ultra's for the Surrounds go with Prime Bookshelf like your Rears. Going with the Ultra towers up front is a definitely a good move. Getting the best soundstage in your Fronts should be your focus.

We could also assist if you provide a marked up photo or sketch of your proposed layout as you mentioned above.

I hope this is helpful.
 
}Fear_Inoculum{

}Fear_Inoculum{

Full Audioholic
Lots of good advice here, but most of you missed the point of the OP:

He wants to power a 7.2.4 system. Which means he'll need to have an external amp because the AVR he's selected can only power 9 channels internally.

@RoadKill666 : all you need is one 2 channel amplifier to power your L/R speakers.
 
-Jim-

-Jim-

Senior Audioholic
Hi Fear,

Thanks for the observation. You are partially correct. A Denon AVR-X6700H has 11 channels of amplification to drive an 7.2.4 system. I assumed a Denon AVR-X4700H suggested above was 11 channels as well by now, but it only has 9 channels of amplification (like my old Denon AVR-X4400H), but provides processing and pre-amp level outputs for 2 more, so an external Amp would be required if one wanted to drive an 7.2.4 system. However, you could use this for say the rear surrounds, or Atmos or...what ever pair you choose. Not necessarily the L&R.

We have a Denon AVR-X4400H in our Atmos setup, and the room is 16.5' W x 20' L x 8' H. I set it up for a 7.2.4 system but never have gotten around to powering up the Rear Surrounds other than when I tried it (once) as a 7.2.2. I typically leave it as a 5.2.4 The Rear Speakers are there, but just remain unused. I am still uncertain as to the real benefit of driving all 13 speakers in our "small" room. (But off and on I do look at a small amplifier for it)

I wonder how big Roadkill's living room portion is? I made a mistake calculating his cubic feet. I re-read his post and it's not 9 x 17.5ft wide x 20ft long. It must jog out and goes to 20ft wide at the Kitchen. I don't see a Length. So we really need that before commenting on the equipment further.

Sorry for my mistakes.
 
Pogre

Pogre

Audioholic Overlord
I'm with the Team here again. If there is no WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) in play, and you can handle a little bigger box, go for the ported Subs. I know Porge advises to go to the PB2000 Pro, but with the room layout info you provided (Thanks ;) ) I think two of them may be overkill. You have 3150 cubic feet in both rooms combined. A single PB1000 Pro has a Bassaholic certified rating for a Large Room 3,000 =>5,000 Cubic Feet.

Check it out: Audioholics Bassaholic Spreadsheet 4-18-21

However, if you can afford it, I'd still put in two PB1000 Pro Subs. That will save you some $$. Moving from a Denon AVR-X6700H to a Denon AVR-X4700H will also save $$. (Make certain you can return whatever receiver you buy if you are unhappy with in in the first 30 days or so. Make certain to buy the Receiver so you have it when the 45 Day SVS Speaker trial starts. ), To save a bit more $, instead of Ultra's for the Surrounds go with Prime Bookshelf like your Rears. Going with the Ultra towers up front is a definitely a good move. Getting the best soundstage in your Fronts should be your focus.

We could also assist if you provide a marked up photo or sketch of your proposed layout as you mentioned above.

I hope this is helpful.
I do agree with you about a pair of 2000s being overkill for the space Jim. I didn't see where op had posted room dims. I think a pair of PB1000 Pros will offer more for than a single PB2000 Pro.
 
R

RoadKill666

Audiophyte
I appreciate all the feedback I really do!!!
OK, so I was gonna go dual PB-1000 Pros because Although I want some really good base, I want it to fill the room but not to the point where it's making everything rattle. Right now the living room has an Audio Engine S8 sub and it's barely doing anything. There is no WAF to consider but I have alcohol all over the living room and no real way to secure them so I don't want them to vibrate off and fall. With the S8 they don't even budge at all so I was thinking the PS-2000 Pros would be too much. Right now I crank my old set up pretty loud and nothing rattles or moves but I have some expensive bottles I don't want to have, fall. So I'm all about as much bass as I can get but not too overboard.

Because of the bookshelf on the right, I can't really pull off the Ultra's as they push out bass from the bottom and need a lot more area around them than I have so I'm set on the Prime Pinnacle powers. Having 2 towers and 2 subs will take up all the room I have on said wall.

I am partially debating on doing a .2 instead of a .4 for the atmos but I think having 4 elevation speakers will be worth getting an 11 channel receiver over a 9 channel.

I'll post some pics of the living room so you can get a feel for the situation..... Gimme one sec....

Ok so this is my living room it's not finished so please don't judge it yet! LoL

And yeah I threw in the last 2 pics just because I love how it looks as the colors change :)
 

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Trebdp83

Audioholic Field Marshall
Hello and welcome. Those lit shelves are very cool.
 

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