• 12-12-2010, 06:06 AM
    Kiwi_Chan
    Advice needed on improving my JAMO D590
    Hi Everyone,

    Can anyone please help give me some advice on how to improve my current sound system?
    My current sound system is as follows:

    Amplifier YAMAHA 1900
    Speakers JAMO D590 (7.7)
    Subwoofer JAMO 650
    Center Speaker JAMO C80
    Surround Speakers C60
    BDP SONY S360 (no CD player)
    *Sound area: around 30 square meters, not including the open kitchen/dining*
    **Intended use : AV 70%, HIFI 30%.
    I was never a big fan of listening to music at home while lying around the couch, but the original idea of getting a new sound system was to develop such a habit. The current set up is fine now for watching movies but once I started to listen to music, the shortcomings were strikingly obvious.

    The problem is, I only found out afterwards that my JAMO D590 is an incredibly "heavy" set of speakers and so now I have serious doubts about my amp of choice.
    **JAMO 200W~280W, YAMAHA 130W x 7.

    Some people have suggested :
    1. Using my current YAMAHA as a pre-amp and buy another 5.1 multiple channel power amp, in any situation whether watching movies or listening to HIFI music.
    2. Keep my current YAMAHA and buy another HIFI stereo amp. Use the YAMAHA as a pre amp and the HIFI amp as a power amp to supply the D590 speakers when watching movies. Use the HIFI amp alone when listening to HIFI music.

    OR, I'm now considering just getting a new amp, which sounds like a good idea in theory but would be a tremendous strain on my finances considering I just spent a bunch getting the system last month. So preferably, this would be the very very last option. I'm hoping to keep my budget for this fix, whatever the solution is, at around 2K quid (USD 3,000).

    Of course price is only partially the factor here. Point is, which solution will get me the best result in maximizing my AV & HIFI experience?

    So if anyone can give me some advice about my current dilemma, that would be great!
    I'm new at all this so any feedback would be helpful! Thanks!
  • 12-12-2010, 07:33 AM
    Mr Peabody
    I have found with Yamaha when listening to music using the "direct" mode, the one that bypasses all the internal processing helps tremendously with sound quality.

    You could try an external DAC (digital to analog converter) to use between the BDP and receiver for music playback. Arcam has recently come out with a good one for under $500.00 and there are other options for DAC's. The idea being the external DAC would provide superior sound quality to either the BDP or receiver. One thing you can try immediately is to use the analog output red/white (L/R) to see if the BDP internal DAC sounds better than the receiver. My guess is probably not. I'm talking about comparing the digital connection to the analog between the Sony and Yamaha to see which gives better results. You could also just consider a dedicated CD player.

    Another very popular upgrade is to add an external power amp to help drive the speakers. You could add a stereo just to drive the fronts or get a multi channel power amp to help with as many as you wish. Adcom is a good option used as well as brands like Parasound or B&K. You could also look at www.emotiva.com for value prices on good gear. With this being said your receiver would HAVE to have preamp outputs. Many people use the receiver as a processor to drive external power amps.

    Welcome to the forum
  • 12-12-2010, 07:47 AM
    JoeE SP9
    Welcome to AR!!!!

    Describing speakers as "heavy" when not referring to their actual weight is something I'm not familiar with. Could you please elaborate? Also, exactly what "shortcomings" are you referring to?

    Dissatisfaction when listening to two channel music can usually be traced back to the AV receiver. In many cases while they do just fine for surround/MC sources they are lacking when it comes to 2ch music only reproduction.
  • 12-12-2010, 08:45 AM
    Kiwi_Chan
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JoeE SP9
    Welcome to AR!!!!

    Describing speakers as "heavy" when not referring to their actual weight is something I'm not familiar with. Could you please elaborate? Also, exactly what "shortcomings" are you referring to?

    Dissatisfaction when listening to two channel music can usually be traced back to the AV receiver. In many cases while they do just fine for surround/MC sources they are lacking when it comes to 2ch music only reproduction.

    Hi JoeE,

    Thanks for the welcome!
    Sorry I wasn't being very elaborate before. What I meant with my Jamo 590 being "heavy" is that the sound seems to not be played at it's optimum, the sound gives off a sluggish feeling or sounds "wimpy" when listening to hifi. In other words, my guess is that my amp isn't powerful enough to sufficiently drive my Jamo 590s. This is also what I mean by the shortcomings when listening to music.
    So what I'm hoping for is a solution which would help improve my hifi experience as well as my moving viewing experience simultaneously. What can I do to drive my Jamo 590 to perform at it's optimum? Would you suggest getting a multichannel power amp and use the yamaha as a pre amp? Get a hifi stereo amp for music and watch movies using it for a power amp? Or just get a new amp altogether?
    Hope this is a clearer description!
  • 12-12-2010, 04:48 PM
    JoeE SP9
    Power ratings for many AV receivers are "generous" to put it mildly.

    When playing music I suggest using only 2 channels and run your receiver in pure direct mode. Unless your music sources are multichannel, surround modes do nothing to enhance the sound.

    Generally when there are many amplifiers in one box there is some compromising of power and sound quality. A stereo (2 channel) amplifier driving only your front speakers may provide the power and sound quality you feel is lacking. This would free up the internal power supply on your receiver from driving the front channels.

    I'm not a big fan of multiple channels of amplification in one box. I run my Crowns in bridged mono mode and my tube amps are mono blocks.
  • 12-12-2010, 07:07 PM
    harley .guy07
    In my system the biggest improvement I have made in electronics has been my dac but also I would recommend a separate power amp for at least your main speakers but with you running your theater quite a bit I would think a multichannel amp would give you better results all around. They are quite right that with yamaha receivers using the pure direct mode for music will give you the best results and receivers power ratings are way overrated. If you want to know how much go to a book store and pick up one of the home theater publications that tests receivers and see what they say the power rating the manufacturer gives in the specs and what they actually measure on the test equipment and you will be quite shocked at the difference.