• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required. There are many reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

2.1 amplifier that plays nice with a sub

japesinjapan

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2023
Messages
33
Likes
8
Greetings!

Tldr; Please recommend an amp that will work well with a sub in a 2.1 desk setup.

Full version:
I have a 5.1.4 Dali system in the living room, and a Denon 4500h amp there but when it comes to music I find it leaves something to be desired. It's setup for home theatre after all. So, I'd like to make a setup in my bedroom with office-den that is setup for music, but also can handle TV audio before bed. The bed is behind the desk, heads on pillows would be about 5m from the speakers. Not small, not huge, but since I work from home and sleep there I spend 20 hours a day in this room and care to do things right.

Speakers:
Very interested in the Kef ls50 metas. Also the R3 metas look great but I question them in the near field. Want to pair speakers with a sub, if I go kef then it would be the kube 10b. I have a dac already connected to the PC so all I need is an amp, right? I'm open to options though.

Problem:
Every amp I look at (Yamaha 801, Cambridge cxa81, marantz 8006, marantz 40n gets close but I can't verify the mains getting only above the crossover), they seem to have a sub out at best. But that doesn't set the crossover. Or if it can, it doesn't take the frequencies out from the mains. "Get a mini dsp" they say. But, I want simple and without software (I do my EQ on the PC). My Denon AVR just works in this regard, and I'd like that, but for 2.1 if possible.

Have something in mind? Awesome. Here's what I'm working with. Budget of $5k max for the system. I like bass that hits but not extra. Quality over quantity. I like details in my music and love discovering sounds I haven't heard before. Clarity and musicality perhaps you'd call it. This is going on a desk 1.8m by 0.8m, so it isn't small but space is something worth considering. I want this to be a "wow" thing for family and friends, and to enjoy it for years to come so please send any and all recommendations, not only to the amp if you'd so like.

Appreciate your time, thanks in advance.
 

Killingbeans

Major Contributor
Joined
Oct 23, 2018
Messages
4,105
Likes
7,618
Location
Bjerringbro, Denmark.
Want to pair speakers with a sub, if I go kef then it would be the kube 10b.

Go with the KC62 or KF92 instead? Then you get an adjustable crossover in the sub with line level output, and you can use any amp you want for the mains.

You could even get the LS50 Wireless II instead of the Metas and use wheatever sub. Meta material and built in amps, DAC and crossover. Maximum free desk space :)
 
Last edited:

staticV3

Master Contributor
Joined
Aug 29, 2019
Messages
8,379
Likes
13,552
For the LS50 Meta + Kube10b, take a look at the Sabaj A30a.

It can properly low-pass the sub and high-pass the mains:
20220930114315121512 (1).jpg
 
OP
japesinjapan

japesinjapan

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2023
Messages
33
Likes
8
Go with the KC62 or KF92 instead? Then you get an adjustable crossover in the sub with line level output, and you can use any amp you want for the mains.

You could even get the LS50 Wireless II instead of the Metas and use wheatever sub. Meta material and built in amps, DAC and crossover. Maximum free desk space :)
Thanks for the reply!

So I was thinking about this. But since I have 2 sources I just can't figure out how to make it work. Tv is either HDMI or optical, but PC can be USB, optical, or rca from dac. Either way I have two sources that need to go to the sub then... I thought maybe the JBS labs El dac could do it but with the yen being so bad right now that's a $800 solution...

As for the wireless... Well... I just don't trust the app. So many complaints online. And if it needs an app, I don't feel like they will last me 20 years... Hmmm
 

Veganfloyd

Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2020
Messages
22
Likes
5
Slightly off-topic, but "Dali" can mean a lot of things in terms of the sound quality depending on the series. If you have a decent pair of front speakers in your Atmos setup, there is no reason why you shouldn't be able to get a good stereo sound out of your current system. Also, there is the whole world of fantastic surround mixes out there which you are in a relatively unique position to be able to listen to.

I am sporting a 5.0.4 myself using Dali Mentors (6s for the fronts, 1s and LCRs for the heights) and Denon 3600 with Nord One MP NC502 (fronts) and Myryad MA360 (center and surrounds). I found the Denon alone without external power amplification to be subjectively lacking in stereo performance, particularly in terms of the so-called 3D imaging. Literally, no perceived soundstage depth. Add a decent power amp, and boom, everything comes back to life.

I appreciate the need for a separate bedroom setup, but just a thought for improving your living room music experience.
 
OP
japesinjapan

japesinjapan

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2023
Messages
33
Likes
8
Slightly off-topic, but "Dali" can mean a lot of things in terms of the sound quality depending on the series. If you have a decent pair of front speakers in your Atmos setup, there is no reason why you shouldn't be able to get a good stereo sound out of your current system. Also, there is the whole world of fantastic surround mixes out there which you are in a relatively unique position to be able to listen to.

I am sporting a 5.0.4 myself using Dali Mentors (6s for the fronts, 1s and LCRs for the heights) and Denon 3600 with Nord One MP NC502 (fronts) and Myryad MA360 (center and surrounds). I found the Denon alone without external power amplification to be subjectively lacking in stereo performance, particularly in terms of the so-called 3D imaging. Literally, no perceived soundstage depth. Add a decent power amp, and boom, everything comes back to life.As

I appreciate the need for a separate bedroom setup, but just a thought for improving your living room music experience.
Thanks for the reply. I have Dali Oberon 7 for the mains, oberon center speaker, and then alteco wall mounted up high for hieghts. The back line is Denon speakers, so i try not to play music through it all since it doesn't match. The rear hieghts are nothing special, the surrons are some floor standers that are Japanese vintage around year 2000. I plan to replace the surrounds with Oberon 5 and the heights with alteco as well, but since I wasn't pursuing music there, I wasn't in a rush.

As for why not upgrade the music setup there, well, because my wife always says it is too loud and my kid always wants to watch the tv. We are in Japan so the home theatre is in our main living space, living room kitcheb dining room is one big room. Also makes it hard to dial in with the toys and room treatment for example.

At least if I make a new space in my office I could have a lot more control and usability
 
OP
japesinjapan

japesinjapan

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2023
Messages
33
Likes
8
Ended up getting a marantz 40n on sale. Could have used more power but features and price were great. Easy on the eyes as well.
 

waynel

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 14, 2019
Messages
1,041
Likes
1,302
Ended up getting a marantz 40n on sale. Could have used more power but features and price were great. Easy on the eyes as well.
Just checked the manual and I don’t see any high pass filter option for the main speakers
 

Gary_G

Active Member
Joined
Mar 16, 2022
Messages
193
Likes
333
Location
SW Virginia, USA
Just checked the manual and I don’t see any high pass filter option for the main speakers
I'm still learning, but I thought you could control that here, with the Main Output turned on and set the crossover.

1692876467109.png
 
OP
japesinjapan

japesinjapan

Member
Joined
Aug 11, 2023
Messages
33
Likes
8
Just checked the manual and I don’t see any high pass filter option for the main speakers
There isn't, but the KC62 or a minidsp does, so I went for it anyways. Just work around it. turns out it is almost exclusively an AVR thing, and since I came from that, I didn't know.

I'm still learning, but I thought you could control that here, with the Main Output turned on and set the crossover.

View attachment 307618
Where did you get this from??

Edit: Nevermind, he's talking about the P6. https://parasound.com/p6.php
 

waynel

Major Contributor
Forum Donor
Joined
Nov 14, 2019
Messages
1,041
Likes
1,302
Top Bottom