file Looking for Advice on How Much Power to Feed T7s

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HuskyDog Posted 6 years 8 months ago
#7380
Hi all,

Several months ago I bought a 7.0 GE setup
2 T7s
1 SuperCenter XL
4 SS3Cs (went with the center channel since they looked nicer on the wall)

I watch TV with them about 50%, movies 30%, and music 20%.
Movies and TV I watch in 5.1. The other two rear channels are when I play multichannel stereo when we have people over.

The man cave is less than ideal, but it is what it is. It is about 14' wide x 40' long x ~7.5' tall. The flooring is concrete with rugs. The walls are all finished and insulated, as is the ceiling. Only about 1/3 of it is the TV viewing area. The rest is game room / bar area. I mention this because my room may be playing more of a factor with the sound than my AVR.

I currently have a Marantz SR5005 which is a good receiver, but doesn't seem to be doing the T7s justice. When I first heard the T7s at the retailer, they sounded great. There was a lot of detail in the music the sales person was playing. I'm not certain what AVR he was using, but I think is was a higher end Sony or Anthem.

When I got my T7s home, they just seemed flat at first. There wasn't the level of detail that I heard in the store. I've played with Audyssey a few times and they are sounding better, but they don't have that WOW factor I felt in the store. Personally I feel that part of the problem is lack of power from my 5005.

What I would like to do is save my pennies and get the Emotiva XPR-5, which I admit is overkill for the 2 rear channels. But I think 400 watts across the front will really liven up front stage. Personally, I'd be happy if Emotiva had an XPR-3, since I don't think the XPA-3 has enough power.

A buddy of mine has the Marantz 5005 with the T7s as well. He thinks his setup sounds great. Grant it, his set up is in his family room, which probably has a lot better acoustics than my finished basement.

He thinks I should save my money and maybe go with a newer AVR. But I don't think think a few more watts per 5 channels is going to make that big of a difference.

I love my GE setup. I just want it to sound as good as the speakers I fell in love with at the store. And I feel my AVR is the weak link.

Thank you for your help.
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anthem Posted 6 years 8 months ago
#7383
This caught my eye...a review by C/Net on the Marantz SR5005. "Switching to music and we found that the receiver was competent though not outstanding. Comparing the on-board sound to our outboard Arcam rDAC , the Marantz lacked the dynamic punch of the DAC, though it was better at reigning in the bassline from Nick Cave's "Red Right Hand".

With the Arcam, the vocals were easily identifiable as their own instrument in Jonsi's "Animal Logic", but when the Marantz was left to decode the file, the vocals got lost in the hash surrounding them. But when fed a decent source like the Arcam, the Marantz is able to deliver the sonic results without making any embellishments of its own"...

Maybe all you need is a better dac. With the use of an additional amplifer, you're really just amplifying less than stellar sound (now the bad sounds louder...booo). You would be much better off with an Emotiva XMC-1 & XPA-3 or XPA-5.
D-Sonic m3a-600m Mono > Decware Zen Torii mk4 > McIntosh MC152 > Primaluna ProLogue Premium Preamp > Cambridge Audio Azur 840C > Decware ZLC > Triton Reference > Isoacoustics Gaia 2 > Clarity Precision Speaker Cables > Anticable & Shunyata Venom PC's

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HuskyDog Posted 6 years 8 months ago
#7385
Anthem,

Thanks for that review. I think I've seen that one before, but probably didn't read it that closely. Maybe the DAC is lacking.

At the risk of hijacking my own thread, if you feel that it isn't power that I need, then what should I look for in an AVR to ensure that it has a better DAC? I'll admit, I've not really concerned myself with the DAC before.

This also raises another question I have. The same buddy of mine borrowed someone's two channel amp. I forget the brand, but it was a nice one. ~220 watts by 2 channels. He said he didn't really hear a difference compared to the 5005. I thought it might have been the voltage from the pre-outs of the 5005, but I couldn't confirm that.

I thought about using the 5005 as a pre. But if the DAC is the problem, I could see where an external amp wouldn't help.

As far as a PRE/PRO goes, I'm not ready to pull the trigger on something like an XMC-1. I'd rather get a nicer AVR with 7.1 or 7.2 pre outs and then an external amp.

If I could be convinced that 200 WPC is enough, then I would probably just get the XPA-5 since for $200 you get 5 channels over 3.
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T Cobe Posted 6 years 8 months ago
#7386
HuskyDog,

I think the fact that that the T7s sounded better on a receiver at your GET dealer is you best indication that it's not a power issue that you're having. This supports what anthem pointed out above. An upgrade to a better receiver or a pre/pro and an amp will have your towers singing. If you go with separates, I highly doubt you need more than 200 wpc. The XPR is way more than you need and likely more than your speakers could handle (SSATs). The XPA amps would be more than enough.

Besides the Emotiva XMC, an Anthem reciever would be a good place to start. If you find that you needed additional amplification, an MRX would serve you well as a pre/pro. Just my 2 cents. Good luck and please let us know how it goes. Happy hunting!

Cheers,

T Cobe
Speakers: Triton One L/R, SCXL, Aon 3 Surr/Back, HTR-7000 Height
Pre/Pro/AVR: Anthem AVM 60, Emotiva XSP-1
Amps: Emotiva XPA-5(2), Emotiva XPA-1L (2)
Sources: Oppo BDP-103D, Emotiva ERC-3, PS4, Pioneer PLX-1000 w/Ortofon 2M Bronze
Display: Epson 6030 UB, Elite Screens 110" Sable
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anthem Posted 6 years 8 months ago
#7387
Huskydog...if you liked the sound at the time of purchase, do yourself a favor and give your retailer a call and ask them what they used for your demonstration. If it's out of your price range, let us know what your budget is and we'll see what this nice big world has to offer.

Don't get caught up in the watts game...you don't need as many as you think.
D-Sonic m3a-600m Mono > Decware Zen Torii mk4 > McIntosh MC152 > Primaluna ProLogue Premium Preamp > Cambridge Audio Azur 840C > Decware ZLC > Triton Reference > Isoacoustics Gaia 2 > Clarity Precision Speaker Cables > Anticable & Shunyata Venom PC's

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Moderator Posted 6 years 8 months ago
#7459
Great and accurate advice from everyone, thanks to all. One question, and my apologies if I missed it, are you using a powered sub? If so, and the sub is handling all frequencies below 80 Hz (for example, and the probable default), power should not be an issue. Quality over quantity for sure. If you are trying to drive the system full range, in multi-channel, then power may well be the issue here.
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