• WANTED: Happy members who like to discuss audio and other topics related to our interest. Desire to learn and share knowledge of science required as is 20 years of participation in forums (not all true). There are daily reviews of audio hardware and expert members to help answer your questions. Click here to have your audio equipment measured for free!

Advise: Best way to integrate my components

pimogo

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2022
Messages
18
Likes
4
Hello - Longtime lurker, first time poster here...

In all my time, been mostly a headphone guy, now i'm stepping into the world of speakers and so with that come some questions. Bear with me, please, as I'm having a difficult time strategizing how to integrate all my 'modes' of listening, which are, in order of importance:
  • 2 channel audio via turntable
  • 2 channel audio via network streamer -> dac
  • 2 channel movie/tv watching
Equipment at my disposal:
  • Yamaha A- S1200 - integrated amp
  • Yamaha RX- A1000 - AVR
  • Schiit - DAC
  • Clearaudio Concept - with external phono
  • Ohm Walsh 2000 - speaker
Possible future purchases if warranted:
  • MiniDSP for dirac/dsp
  • subwoofer
The AVR used to power 5.1, now its been demoted to 2 channel (for now). Perhaps i dont need this anymore, but it does take in all the hdmi inputs such as Apple TV/Chromecast/etc and routes it to the TV via HDMI. Planning on connecting this to the Main In (HT Bypass) input on the A-S1200 integrated.

Turntable via external phono amp will be connected to the line in of the integrated.

Questions:
  1. Streamer via external DAC - Would this be connected to one of the Line in inputs on the integrated?
  2. With the Main In input already in use by the AVR, how would i connect MiniDSP to this system? is this even possible?
  3. And if so, How would i be able to use the MiniDSP for both phono and dac?
  4. How would a subwoofer hook up to this system?
  5. And lastly, a bonus, how can i have Alexa change these inputs via voice?
To the many experts on this forum, i'm sure this is child's play, but i'm having a hard time imagining how this will work as i scale up to things such as dirac, subwoofer etc.

Any advise would be GRATEFULLY received.
Thanks!
 

RickSanchez

Major Contributor
Cartographer
Joined
Sep 4, 2019
Messages
1,167
Likes
2,449
Location
Austin, TX
Here's my take, for what it's worth: build your system around your AVR for now. See how well that works, and if for some reason it doesn't then upgrade from there. So in your case ...

  • All of your sources: Apple TV, Chromecast, CD player, your Clearaudio turntable (your AVR has a phone pre input) are plugged into ...
    • ↳ Yamaha RX-A1000
      • ↳ Yamaha A-S1200
        • ↳ Ohm Walsh 2000 speakers (mains)
      • ↳ [future] subwoofer
      • ↳ [future] center?
With that setup you could give your Schiit DAC a new home: either use it for desktop listening somewhere else or sell it. There's an assumption that all AVR DACs are pretty bad, when in reality it's likely that the DAC inside your Yahama RX-1000 -- while not state of the art -- is good enough. And the Yamaha A-S1200 isn't even 100% necessary depending on your listening levels.

Some benefits:
  1. Easy setup.
  2. Your Yamaha RX-1000 acts as a pre with volume control for all of your inputs. Having one remote is nice.
  3. Incredibly simple to add a subwoofer: just plug it into the sub out. (The "add" part is easy; the integration part is more involved. See #4.)
  4. I believe this AVR comes with YPAO, correct? Try using that for room EQ with your Ohm Walsh 2000 speakers. If/when you purchase and add a subwoofer, run YPAO again so that your AVR manages the handoff between the mains and the sub.
  5. If you decide later to add a center channel (for TV/movie watching) again, pretty easy: add the center to the AVR and then re-run YPAO.
If down the road you feel like YPAO isn't doing a great job managing the integration of your speakers + room EQ, then the upgrade path for you might be a new AVR that comes with Audyssey or Dirac (and has a phono pre for your turntable). That's not cheap, but that may be the best -- or at least easiest -- way for you to manage all of your sources and components.
 
OP
P

pimogo

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2022
Messages
18
Likes
4
Hey Rick -

Thanks for the response--this is food for thought indeed! I was essentially prepared to phase out the AVR in favor of the Integrated, now that 2 channel stereo is my primary concern.

In your suggested setup you have the turntable routed through the AVR's preamp, can i conclude then there is no loss in sound quality when doing this? I have it plugged directly into the integrated via its external preamp thinking that this ensured the best sound quality achievable. Analog -> Analog.

As for digital sources, you suggest using the AVR' dac. I will try this but if i find it preferable to hook up an external dac, would that complicate your setup much? At present i have a Rasp Pi feeding a Schiit Bifrost and out the integrated line-in.

Yes i have YPAO. If i want dirac, then i would have to buy a new avr? no possbility for a miniDSP? I may not need it, but trying to consider choices now so as to not overspend.

Many thanks for taking the time to walk me through this--truly appreciate it.!
 

RickSanchez

Major Contributor
Cartographer
Joined
Sep 4, 2019
Messages
1,167
Likes
2,449
Location
Austin, TX
I was essentially prepared to phase out the AVR in favor of the Integrated, now that 2 channel stereo is my primary concern.
Fair enough, and your Yamaha A-S1200 has several inputs. My concern there was:
  • Your ability to potentially add a sub (or 2) down the road.
  • How will you manage video sources? Are you planning to, for example, split an HDMI feed: video --> TV and then audio to the A-S1200?
As for your other questions:
  1. In your suggested setup you have the turntable routed through the AVR's preamp, can i conclude then there is no loss in sound quality when doing this?
    • Ha ha, no. I'm not aware of any measurements of the Yamaha RX-1000's phono pre so impossible for me to say. I would guess the phono pre in your amp is better than the one in your AVR but that's just a guess. Would you be able to hear the difference, considering the known limitations of vinyl sound quality? No idea. (I'm not knocking vinyl; I have a Rega RP1 and a modest record collection myself. But I run it through a vintage Harman Kardon hk-670 feeding a pair of KLH Model 6's from the 1960's, so the last thing I'm worried about is maximizing SQ.)
  2. I will try this but if i find it preferable to hook up an external dac, would that complicate your setup much?
    • Yep, but I'll leave to others to give you ideas on how to design/implement that. Not something I've done. The DAC in my AVR is good enough for me.
  3. If i want dirac, then i would have to buy a new avr? no possbility for a miniDSP?
    • No, you could go down a path of adding a miniDSP device into the signal chain. Again, I'll let others who have done this comment about how to do it.
    • It just seems, IMO, to be adding some complexity that may not be desired. Your AVR is a little older, so upgrading your AVR could get you:
      • The lastest video enhancements like 4K, HDR, etc.
      • The lastest audio processing enhancements like Dolby Atmos
      • The ability to easily add speakers (sub1, sub2, center, surrounds) if you wanted to.
      • Onboard Dirac means you're not fussing with REW. REW is great but takes some time to learn it and do it correctly.
 
OP
P

pimogo

Member
Joined
Mar 4, 2022
Messages
18
Likes
4
Fair enough. I have several options to test and retest to see what works best for me. Again, many thanks for your help!
 

Jackob2545

New Member
Joined
Aug 1, 2022
Messages
3
Likes
0
I'm in a similar situation as I'm looking to upgrade my system but need it to be very versatile with all the sources being that its both our main TV/Movie area and music listening space in one. I'm a 2(.1/2)channel guy as well and want to keep to this setup. I originally was running an Emotiva TA-100 with my Revel M16's and an SVS Micro 3000. Great little setup but the amp was lacking features I wanted to experience (HiRes streaming, Room Correction etc.). I purchased the Arcam SA30 to test an all in one box containing the features I wanted while taking a step up in quality over the Emotiva. Its been a great amp and has a very impressive sound. The only downside is I was limited with some the features I was chasing do to it being all baked into one device. This has led me to looking into separates to really tailor the system to my needs.

The first big decision I had to make is whether I need AVR processing capabilities for my TV and movie (Plex Server) watching. After digging quite a bit I found I would have to integrate an AVR to get this. As I lean more towards music listening this seemed like a large expense for the system just to integrate processing. I came to the conclusion that being a 2 channel system I can live with the TV/Movie experience without modern processing. This pushed me towards separates where I can integrate all my specific needs (and wants) as I need them.

Although I haven't picked specifics yet, my plan is to go with a class D stereo dual mono power amp, a MiniDSP device for room correction/Dirac and utilize my TA-100 as a preamp with a connected streamer (Node). Down the line I will look to integrated new pieces or step up items as I please. May even later consider an AVR for processing but being that its not a necessity I can save that money and use it elsewhere or stash for future investments.

This involves a little more legwork and less of a plug and play setup but I feel based on my research and all the great info here, this is a route that will provide me with all my needs and plenty of future proof pathways down line.

Just some food for thought! Hope you find all your looking for with your system!

Cheers
 
Top Bottom