Integrate EQ in Surround Sound system

PDShadowstone

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Does anyone manufacture a surround sound receiver that either has preamp out/direct in, or still has a tape monitor loop? I hate the pre-set EQ settings on receivers and there is no easy way to incorporate an EQ into a system without. I have found receivers (w/o surround processing) that do this...... but between the receiver and the outboard surround processing, it is just too expensive for a basic setup. While in the analog world, I was able to do this, but now having finally upgraded to 16:9, it would require replacing all my composite switching gear. Any guidance would be appreciated.
 

thee_prisoner

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PDS, can you link or copy the entire system you currently have, amps, receivers, speaker the whole thing. I have a lot of old equipment that I incorporate to newer. When I mean a lot, I have tons of older stuff. hehe

I agree most less inexpensive receivers do have average at best EQs. A parametric EQ are best if you need that, depends on how much tweaking you like. Are you looking to incorporate an EQ/pre amp to your system and what is the EQ?

In terms of finding a cheap solution with most surround receivers unless maybe you go mid end to high end, low cost receivers don't have the flexibility and lower quality amps.

You may have to find used receivers that have pre amp outs. I use pre amp surround processors which have plenty of connections.

Send more info on what your current system and we can see what we can do.

be seeing you, the Prisoner...
 

PDShadowstone

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Yeah, I have not found a surround sound receiver with pre-outs. Any such receiver that I did find with pre-out/direct-in was a higher end system and would require outboard surround sound processing. Just trying to keep it simple, but I like being able to tweek my sources differently with a graphic EQ!

So, I have the following equipment in my system....... (Model numbers escape me): Sony Surround sound receiver, Technics turntable, ADC 15 band EQ, CD/DVD, Technics Cassette deck, Akai Reel to Reel, My cable box, a flat screen TV and a computer system where I have a bunch of digital music files. The receiver does not have a tape monitor loop, so I use the tape ins/outs for the EQ and I have a matrix switcher where I have my tape deck sources switched upstream of the EQ. I have a separate matrix switcher for my video (and associated audio) as well. This was all fine while I still was using an old CRT and composite video. If I was to attempt the same thing with my new TV, I would have to invest in analog component matrix switching for HD video and audio associated with video sources.

Look forward to your feedback.

PD
 

thee_prisoner

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PD, I really need the model numbers of your ADC(they made great EQs!), TV model, cable box, outputs and/or model of the computer and the model of the Sony surround receiver. I can suggest pre amp surround stuff but they will require having some amps. Depending on the receiver, you may not need additional amps. You won't find any inexpensive receivers any more with those kind of inputs unless you go used or mid to high end, like you said.

be seeing you, the Prisoner...
 
There are surround receivers with preamp outs for all channels but I don't know of any with amplifier inputs which you would need to add EQ. You only have a 2 channel EQ so you can't EQ each channel anyway.
Since all your sources except the cable box are analog 2 channel audio only then you just need an audio switcher to connect these directly to the EQ and the EQ to the receiver. The cable box should connect to your TV with HDMI for video and to the receiver with digital audio out (and or analog audio) for sound.
 

PDShadowstone

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May 28, 2014
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Wow...... can't believe it has been 6 months!

Anyway...... finally getting back to this with the info you had requested:

OK, here's what I currently have in the system:

- Sony STRDE597 receiver (what I would like to replace)
- Technics SL1500 turntable with an outboard phono preamp
- Pioneer CTF2121 cassette deck (If I have to lose this, so be it..... but would like to keep it in the system)
- Samsung DVDP231 DVD Player
- Motorola DCT6412 Cable Box/DVR (I am getting this upgraded soon)
- Akai GX4000D Reel to Reel (now this..... I refuse to give up!)
- A PC which I use as a "jukebox"with a Sound Blaster Audigy XFi audio card
- ADC SS-2 Mark 1 12 band EQ
- Sharp LC60LE640U 60" TV (still have yet to install!)
- Pair of CV Speakers up front (A)
- Pair of JBL Speakers in rear (B)
- Pair of Audiosource speakers (Surround)
- JBL Center speaker
- Old Sherwood 100W sub

Still hoping to figure out a way to do this once I upgrade the receiver and install the TV. CurrentlyI have my analog tape sources going through an old Realistic tape switcher into the EQ. EQ has dual I/O's as well, so I can currently EQ all sources except for the PC. For that, I just use a software EQ.

As before...... I welcome the feedback.

PD
 

thee_prisoner

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You may just have to bite the bullet. I did it in 1989 with this:http://www.thevintageknob.org/sony-TA-E1000ESD.html which was one of the first pre-amp digital surround processor with a very good parametric EQ.

Currently I use this:http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/975.html which has 5 analog inputs to hook up your legacy devices. I also have very good analog devices (NAK MR2 tape deck, TEAC Reel to Reel, various turntables and a bunch of other stuff!) I prefer pre-amps do the flexibility and the fact it can be software upgraded.

I guess if you had to go with a reasonably priced receiver this model has 2 analog inputs and 1 output.http://www.amazon.com/Harman-Kardon-AVR-1710-Network-Connected/dp/B00CMNZFU8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1416932170&sr=8-1&keywords=avr+1710&pebp=1416932183171

Happy listening, the Prisoner...
 

thee_prisoner

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Wiring diagrams like a schematic diagram or just the hooking up inputs/outputs, did you check the PDF manual? It pretty much explains all but basically at this point the receiver would be just used for an amp. Although, the receiver could also be used as a separate unit but still connected to the Outlaw.

Outlaw Audio is an online only company(sells direct to consumer), fairly small but makes some high quality stuff. To get this kind of quality from a big name company it would cost you at the very least 2 to 4 times as much. Plus the fact that it can be software upgraded gives you more longevity as surround sound formats and other innovations in the future.

The Onkyo looks decent. I have never been a big fan of receivers just because I like flexibility of being able to mix components, like amps since amplifiers in most receivers just aren't very good (especially considering it could be driving 5 or more speakers) compared to separate components. Now I do applaud the fact that at least Onkyo clearly states that it's 95 watts in just 2 channels, some manufacturers you have to dig for information.

Also for fun and giggles, what are the exact model numbers of your speakers?

Happy surround, the Prisoner...
 

PDShadowstone

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May 28, 2014
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I could not find the PDF manual, or any other such info, on their web site! I'm curious as to how the outboard processor is integrated with the receiver/amp. Never used an outboard processor like this and want to see how I would integrate all my components, most importantly the EQ, into the system. I read some reviews on the Outlaw piece and it looks pretty good. And, I agree that the price point is pretty reasonable. Also came across a similar processor from Emotiva. Are you familiar with it?

If you have a link for the Outlaw piece for a manual or wiring guide, I'd really appreciate it if you could share. I couldn't find anything on their site.

As for my speakers....... at ONE time, I'm sure I could have rattled off the model numbers, but that was a long time ago. I'd have to check when I am home. They are good components...... but nothing that would be considered "high end" by any means. But they have served me well for many years. I have a small space, a condo, so I never got anything crazy.
 

thee_prisoner

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I was just curious, I have quite a bit of vintage electronics and speakers so I was just curious about which models you had.

The Emotiva is fine also. A few reasons why I didn't buy the Emotiva is, the Outlaw's analog channels sounded better to me, the ability for the Outlaw's software to be upgraded (it increases the longevity due to new sound formats etc.) and more legacy inputs.

Here is a link for the pdf. The pdf link is under the little black Friday banner. http://pdf.outlawaudio.com/outlaw/docs/Model 975_OM_Single.pdf

 

PDShadowstone

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May 28, 2014
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OK...... I found the manual. Don't know how I missed it before. Now it makes perfect sense to me. I think this is exactly what I need. What do you use for an amp? Do you just use a 7 channel amplifier or a receiver with multi channel in?
 

thee_prisoner

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I don't really use receivers, although I have some vintage HH Scott, Fisher, Marantz and etc laying around. I do a lot buying, selling, trading and find stuff cheap at an estate sales/thirft stores.

Is your sub passive or active(no amp in sub or amp in the sub)? If it's powered that makes things easier.

Amp wise, I usually have plenty around but for your case unless you want to start collecting more hi-fi components(since you have a good start anyways!). A 5 or 7 channel amp for simplicity is a good choice. Depending on the size of your room 5.1 might be plenty if you still want to go 7.1 you could use the Sony receiver to power 2 speakers. Possibly more depending on the receiver if it can pass through the a signal w/o the receiver doing any processing.

A lot of the 5 and 7 channel amps nowadays assume you are using a powered sub but once again you could use the Sony receiver to power that.
Also, Outlaw Audio is doing a combo package with the 975 Pre-amp processor and 7075 amp 7 channel for 948.00 US.

Depending on what speaker models you are using, it's hard recommend a specific amp for your setup but the rear and side speakers don't need much power. The front mains, sub and arguably the most important speaker in Home Theatre, the center channel need some decent power, but not a whole lot if the room is small to medium size.

Amp wise, you can look into the used market or have a stereo shop in your area that sell new and used, especially if they offer trade in options.
 

PDShadowstone

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It's a powered sub....... 100W Model SP212W. The fronts are Cerwin Vega AT-8's. I have a pair of JBL J2050's that I have always used as my "B" speakers. Bought those all LONG before surround sound was an option! My surround speakers are a pair of Audio Source LS-300's. They were a cheap buy when I first set up a home theater system a long time ago. As I said....... nothing spectacular, but the modest sets of speakers have served me well!

I did see the combo price on Outlaw's web site. I was also checking out the Emotiva UPA-700 7-channel amp. Slightly more powerful than the Outlaw (80 watts per channel as compared to 75). Read some really good reviews on it (on the 7075 as well, BTW). But the Emotiva seems like a hell of a buy at only 359.00! I was also checking out their surround processor as well. I was kind of leaning toward a combo of the Outlaw processor and the Emotiva amp. I was curious what you thought about using an AV receiver only because my current Sony unit has multi channel inputs. I really do not want to use it anymore...... It seems as though the power level has dropped over the past couple of years. I can literally turn it up to MAX and do not get a satisfactory level of volume any more. You literally hear nothing until you pass level 35. 75 is the last numerical indication before it just displays MAX. But as I have done more and more research, I am finding nothing in the way of an AV receiver that has multi ins. I asked that question before I discovered this. So I had already decided a 7 channel power amp was the way to go.

Now, the only thing I need to figure out is how, exactly, do I wire the EQ into the system. Once I figure this out, I can pull the trigger on a purchase. As I mentioned early on........ I'd kill for a component that simply has an old fashioned "tape monitor" loop.

This has been an interesting little research project so far, and I just wanted to say thanks for all your advice and guidance thus far. Really do appreciate it.
 

PDShadowstone

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BTW....... Also on the Outlaw page........ That "Retro" receiver. Love that thing! Wish that was a 5.1 receiver. It has EVERYTING else I was looking for and I'll bet it rocks.
 

thee_prisoner

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Emotiva isn't a bad buy, but the build quality of the Outlaw is better. I recommend the Outlaw for the pre-amp but if you dig into some reviews about the Emotiva amp, you'll find out the Outlaw is better built but that would still be a fine combo. It depends on if you need 5 more watts for less quality for 50.00 US less. With the speakers you have either amp should be fine. Although customer service wise it would help to buy from one place.

In terms of your Sony receiver not putting out enough power, I'm guessing it has to with speaker protection relays. Contacts get dirty and etc, Sometimes a good "punch" to the receiver can temporarily fix it. Depending on the problem it's something you might be able to fix.

Integrating the EQ would be through the audio in and through the audio but really the digital EQs(in the Outlaw) are so much better and don't introduce the noise from the (most likely dirty switches of ADC EQ). Your choice on whether you want to add it but not needed.

The Outlaw retro receiver is pretty cool!

Happy surround, the Prisoner...

 
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