Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!) - Home Theater Forum and Systems - HomeTheaterShack.com

 
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post #1 of 7 Old 06-14-15, 12:04 PM Thread Starter
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Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!)

Introductions:
I'm not very new to HT, been working on mine since the mid-90's.. But I tend to upgrade in spurts and live with it for years before going through another "growth spurt." At this point, I'm pretty happy with my setup, except the subwoofer amplifier. So it's time for another spurt of research and learning! I'm hoping some of you can help answer some questions.. I am an electrical engineer, so actually modding equipment doesn't phase me in the slightest. I've repaired several Audire Forte amps over the years and plenty of other electronics.. However, as a mid-to-late-30-something with a young family, my TIME to make complicated mods isn't what it used to be. So these days, I am wiling to spend a little more for the convenience of not having to mod in the first place.

What I have today:
I currently have a second-hand (truth be told, I think it's more like a fourth- or fifth-hand) Crate Audio SPA2000 used to drive two AV123 UFW-10 sealed 10" subs (converted to passive subs a few years back when their plate amps failed). The amp is powerful but loud, extremely heavy (60lbs?), and occasionally cuts out. It was bought second-hand a few years back for $100, so I was happy to put up with its peculiarities at the time, but now I'm just ready to move on.

What I've been looking at lately:
A few years back I started looking into the Behringer EP4000, but held off (life happens).. Later I saw there was what looked like a little more efficient EPX4000. The iNuke series had just been announced so I decided to wait again to see how it turned out.. So I'm just now picking back up where I left off. It seems to me that the iNuke series is a bit of a conundrum.. It seems that it offers a tremendous power-per-dollar bargain, and terribly efficient (low heat + low weight) but for those more particular installations they may require replacing fans and even modding the internal switch to accommodate the thump issue. Then there are the plethora of non-Pro amps out there that have quieter fans but also weigh a lot more and cost a lot more..

What I'm working with:
DVDO Edge (feeding TV and AVR)
Marantz SR7001 (AVR)
Behringer 1124P (BFD)
Crate Audio SPA2000 (sub amp -- needing replacement)
Mid-Atlantic RLM-1C (to switch BFD+SubAmp on/off from AVR's DC trigger output)
Dual sealed 10" subs driven from Crate SPA2000

What I'm asking:
  • I have read conflicting reports, but it seems that the iNuke6k (non-DSP) may NOT have a thump issue. Is that for certain at this point, or do non-DSP models still thump when swtiched externally?
  • Addtionally, I am currently running the subs through a BFD. The BFD has known thump issues, but I get around that today because the Crate amp has a mute-function that kicks in before the BFD thump comes through (both power-up and power-down mute) Both the crate amp and BFD are plugged into the RLM-1C.. My big question is will the iNuke6k (non-DSP) shut down quickly enough to also snuff out the BFD thump, or will the BFD thump come through even if the iNuke6k (non-DSP) doesn't add one itself?
  • I was interested in the inuke6k+DSP to replace both the Crate amp and the BFD, but with all the modding necessary, I'm not sure if another solution is easier.. My cost point is variable... if an iNuke6k+DSP costs $400 (amazon), then I could consider going up to $600 total if I could replace both BFD and Crate amp with a single unit that does NOT thump and is quiet.. Does something like that exist in the $600 range that I'm overlooking?
  • Alternatively if the inuke6k (non-DSP) has soft startup-shutdown mute, then I'll keep the BFD and be done with it.. but then I may still have fan issues to deal with..
  • Some claims on avsforum indicate that the fan mods introduce long term reliability issues.. I tend to keep equipment around for as long as possible, I'd like any solution to last at LEAST 5 years if not 10+yrs..
  • I am willing to replace the BFD also to fully snuff out the thump, but my total cost will still be in the $600 range.. (the Crate amp soft-mute has allowed me to kick that can down the road so far.)
  • What other options are out there for dual-subs (sealed) that I should consider?

What my priorities are:
1st-- no power on/off thumping. With a BFD in the chain causing its OWN thumps when switched on/off, the amp will need a fairly quick-acting mute function on power up/down; alternatively replace the sub amp and BFD BOTH with 1 or 2 new components that don't thump when triggered from an AVR (either directly or through a smart-switch, I don't care which; I only use the smart-switch because not everything has a trigger input).
2nd-- low noise. Fan mods don't scare me, but I'm also looking for options that don't need them.
3th-- cost. I am wiling to pay a little more for the 1st and 2nd priorities.. If an iNuke (with its issues) runs for $400, then I would have no problem pushing to $600 if priorities 1 & 2 were already resolved.
4th-- new-ness. I don't mind used equipment, and I certainly don't mind taking stuff apart and cleaning it out before putting it in service (e.g. if it's been sitting in an attic for five years).
Last-- efficiency / heat / weight / appearance / etc. I have a rack under the stairs that hides the equipment, so I don't really care what it looks like, how much it weighs, etc. Of course light-weight and efficient operation would be great, but there are much more important things to worry about! (The DVD Edge alone heats up the entire cabinet! So I have a smart-switch from the TV that turns off the DVDO Edge when the TV turns off..)

I am ALL ears to any suggestions, thoughts, ideas, or even challenges to my current thinking.. It's upgrade time, so I'm trying to ramp up as fast as I can on what's developed in the last five years!

cheers,
..dane
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post #2 of 7 Old 06-14-15, 01:17 PM
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Re: Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!)

Crown XTI ?

Simulation is no substitute for thought.
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post #3 of 7 Old 06-15-15, 03:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!)

Quote:
morca wrote: View Post
Crown XTI ?
Thanks for the suggestion.. A 10-minute check on here and AVSforum indicate the XTi series is actually not very well suited for sub duty as it falls apart in the bottom end.. Several links from several different forums tend to support this concept over many tests that have been run.. It seems the XLS line is better than the XTi line for sub-duty, but then (as I recall) the XLS line has loud fans.. Not a show stopper, I'll keep the XLS in my pocket, but I would like to keep looking..

Any other recommendations?
..dane
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post #4 of 7 Old 06-15-15, 03:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!)

I wonder if two iNuke3000DSP's, one for each sub, would be the best approach.. Still needs a fan mod, and I'll have to look into what's necessary (I know there are several well documented threads already).. maybe it's worth the time to do fan mods, and have an amp for each sub so power is not a problem..

As I understand it, the 3000DSP's don't pop like the 6kDSP's when power is pulled from the wall..

..dane
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post #5 of 7 Old 06-17-15, 08:50 PM
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Crown xls line has nearly silent fan operation. I have xls 2000 and have never heard it running.
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post #6 of 7 Old 06-18-15, 06:27 AM
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Re: Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!)

I would go with the Inuke because having more control over the subwoofer is always a good choice. I don't know if it would need a mod but doing the mod is so easy that shouldn't be an issue. http://www.hometheatershack.com/foru...ow-w-pics.html

Onkyo TX-NR809 HT receiver
HPS-4000,SR-70, John Allen, Klipsch Heresy, Speakers for L.C.R.
QSC GX-5 power amp for L+R mains
Chase Home Theater PRO-10's for surrounds
Behringer EP 4000 pro amp for the Danley DTS-10 tapped horn sub
Oppo BDP-93 universal BD player
Toshiba HD XA2 HD dvd player
Sony VW-VPLPRO1 1080p PJ
Cinema White 1.0 gain 106" fixed frame screen
Dish network with 2 Hoppers and 1 Joey

Last edited by tcarcio; 06-18-15 at 06:37 AM.
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post #7 of 7 Old 06-18-15, 06:34 AM
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Re: Wanting to upgrade sub amp, but ... (fan noise, thumps, and DSP, oh my!)

double post. deleted.

Onkyo TX-NR809 HT receiver
HPS-4000,SR-70, John Allen, Klipsch Heresy, Speakers for L.C.R.
QSC GX-5 power amp for L+R mains
Chase Home Theater PRO-10's for surrounds
Behringer EP 4000 pro amp for the Danley DTS-10 tapped horn sub
Oppo BDP-93 universal BD player
Toshiba HD XA2 HD dvd player
Sony VW-VPLPRO1 1080p PJ
Cinema White 1.0 gain 106" fixed frame screen
Dish network with 2 Hoppers and 1 Joey

Last edited by tcarcio; 06-18-15 at 06:36 AM. Reason: double post
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