Anyone know how to set up Rythmik subwoofers on an ARCAM AVE550 receiver?


I am thinking about buying 2 Rythmik F12 Signature subwoofers.  I have an ARCAM AVR550 receiver and I need to find out how to set up these subwoofers without using DIRAC.  Rythmik has a 30 day return policy and I want to find out if I like them before I pay $600 to have someone calibrate my system using DIRAC.
C8ae46d2 13a8 4a9e 9672 691de36f1fddlarry5729
Call Rythmik and talk to designer/owner Brian Ding. If you want to connect the subs to the speaker output terminals (binding posts) on the receiver, when you order the subs ask for the PEQ or PEQ3 plate amp. Both include binding posts for high-level (speaker) connections.
I have talked to both Brian Ding and Enrico.  They both told me to use the LFE hook up with my ARCAM and let the ARCAM DIRAC room correction handle it.  They also told me to set my ARCAM speakers as small.  Seems to me if I set them as small it might eliminate the two woofers in my towers and have them act as monitors.  This to me would defeat the reason for buying my towers.  Jim Salk, who I greatly admire, told me to use an SPL meter.  By the time he finished I thought I need to be an electrical engineer to set my subwoofers up this way.  

I visted Listen Up in Denver who sells REL.  They believe in REL as being a truly seamless subwoofer by the way the speak on connect hooks up.  They also told me if I buy the Rythmik and hook them up using the LFE connection they may not play at all when playing 2 channel because the LFE connection is designed to sense and produce low bass special effects frequencies.  I wonder if he said this in order for me to only consider REL.  I heard a slight difference when he played both the T/9i and the S3 REL with a pair of 704 B&W's, but not an enormous difference.  Not a huge gain in bass.  Perhaps a larger space.  When he disconnected the REL's it seamed like the front speakers pulled back.

If you were in my shoes would you go with a pair of conventional subwoofers like the Rythmik or would go with REL?
I have been looking at the F12 G (the G has the paper cone material).  The lighter weight material supposedly makes the texture of the bass more lifelike and dynamic for music with a very fast response and decay.  
Regardless these seem to be special subwoofers compared to the rest of the pack.  
As for connecting to your receiver definitely connect to the speaker terminals of the amp (parallel with your main speakers).  Connecting to your amplifier will allow the best possible integration with the main speakers because they are each receiving the same signal and sound signature.  
If you make sure that the subwoofers are positioned reasonably - along the main wall, about 6" or so from the wall and not in the corners of the room I don't believe room correction is necessary.  I have measured the respinse of many subwoofers and positioning them reasonably flattens the response which avoids peaks that require correction.  
If this sounds like a good starting point we can walk you through how to adjust the crossover, phase, level, etc. for best possible integration.  

Wait, what? Larry, you consider the Rythmik a "conventional" subwoofer and the REL not? You really don’t understand, do you?!

How many times are you going to come on here and ask everyone whether you should get a Rythmik or a REL? If you’re having this much trouble deciding, and still don’t understand the Rythmik design, I would just forget about the whole thing and be happy with your sub-less speakers. You’re over-thinking this, and still not understanding. I’ll bet whichever you got, you would be consumed with the nagging fear of having chosen wrong.

LFE out? did you mean preamp out? LFE out is exclusively for home theater if I am not mistaken (low frequency effects). If you don't use the high level inputs via the speaker cable, then I would either use the extra set of preamp outs on the preamp/receiver, or if only one set, just buy a splitter and run an extra interconnect over to the Rythmiks left or right channel RCA input.

Then on the rythmik you can best set what frequency sounds best to blend with your mains (don't have to touch the mains)
I talked to an ARCAM dealer and he said there is a setting on the ARCAM.  If I select stereo direct, it will not play the subs.  If I just select stereo it will.

Jim Salk and Brian Ding told me the way to hook things up is by using the LFE connections and let the ARCAM manage everything.  One person told me my ARCAM does not have a bass management system.  If so, I bought a piece of junk.  Maybe, I can control some of this by using some adjustments on the Rythmik subs.  I most likely will set the gain at halfway.

Maybe Rythmik would be wise to sell their subs through dealers so customers can at least hear them before you purchase them and the dealer could set everything up.  Problem is there are few ARCAM dealers.  

Right now I think I better go back to school and get a degree in electrical engineering like so many people who belong to Audiogon do.
Sorry bdpd,  I didn't mean to upset you.

I talked to a really good speaker manufacturer and he told me to set things up with an SPL meter.  This is pretty complicated for someone who does not have a degree in electrical engineering or for someone who is not a dealer.

I really think the Rythmik direct servo technology is the way to go.  Just wish they had a speak on connection and design as what REL has.  I do thing the Rythmik F12 Signature will play down a lot lower than REL.  If I can find someone who could set things up it would be a lot easier.

The problem is ARCAM has horrible customer support.  They do not provide phone support and I think this is a horrible way to support their customers.  They also do not respond to emails.  I wish I had purchase the Anthem 5 channel amp and their HT processor.  Life would have been much easier.  The Paradigm district sales manager is fantastic and he has been so helpful.

I'm trying to help you Larry, but you're not making it easy ;-) .If Rythmik didn’t sell direct-to-consumer, the price of their subs would be at least twice what they are now. It is not the only hi-fi company doing that, ya know. So does HSU, and most of SVS’ sales are direct.

Larry, you say you heard the REL and wasn’t that impressed, right? So buy a Rythmik already! You’ll never know what it sounds like until you listen to one. If you like it, keep it. If you don’t, send it back. Damn, you’re making this WAAAY too hard. It’s only a sub, not a fatal disease ;-) .

A week or two back all you could talk about was Brian Ding’s PHD, how brilliant he is, and how Jim Salk told you a Rythmik was the way to go. What happened to that Larry? It sounded like you were ready to put in an order for a Rythmik or two. Has something changed your mind? If you heard a REL and wasn’t impressed, why are you still considering one?

Since RELs are so highly regarded amongst audiophiles, try and find a used one you can get into your system. If you don’t like it, it should be easy to resell with no loss of $. I don’t know what it is you’re looking for, but lots of pretty-picky audiophiles are very happy with their RELs. And so are Rythmik owners. The ultimate solution is to get one of each in your listening room, and compare them for yourself. No one can tell you which one you will prefer---you have to do that for yourself, just like everyone else. Grow a pair, fer cryin’ out loud!

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bcp24,

What subwoofers do you own.  Just curious.  I think some of the problem lies with knowing how many audiophiles consider REL to be the best.  What I am afraid of is buying the Rythmik's and finding out they are too boomy.  One of the biggest concerns is being able to find anyone good in Denver that knows how to set up a system both with Master Set and to calibrate my ARCAM using DIRAC.

This decision would be easy if the dealer I like you presently only carries REL and carried the Rythmik and ARCAM so he could calibrate my ARCAM using DIRAC.  He believes only in REL and Master Setting speakers and dialing even HT in by ear.  He has heard systems calibrated with DIRAC and he told me he just doesn't like the way they sound.

Sorry for driving you nuts.  Wish I had your knowledge because it sounds like you know how to set any kind of system up.

So have Brian Ding send you one Rythmik, and see if it's boomy. But here's something you need to be told: if you hear boomy sound from a sub in your room, the boom is more likely to be a result of the interaction of the room and the bass frequencies you're pumping into it, not the sub itself. How are you going to know what is the cause of the boom?

I think you need to buy a sub from a dealer who can help you with placement and other integration issues. Subs are tricky, and it sounds like you don't have the experience to do it yourself, whether the sub is a REL, a Rythmik, an HSU, an SVS, or any other make. No offense, Larry!

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Just buy a pair of these and you will be happy. VTF-3 MK5 HP Subwoofer
They are easy to set up and sound great for 2 channel or HT listening.
@larry5729

I have KEF R3 L/R and dual Rythmik F12SE's integrated with my Yamaha A2080 AVR.

I connect the Rythmiks to the subwoofer (LFE) outs (front, back).

They are in use for movies and music if I am in any mode except Yamaha's "Pure Direct."  I'm pretty sure Arcam would have similar selections as you mentioned. 

They are excellent subs.The bass blends in perfectly with music with my R3's. I set then up with the basic AVR settings from their quick set up guide which is easy to follow.  But they have many options for connectivity including speaker line in, etc.  :) 
 
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Ataraxia,

I am glad to hear from someone who owns a pair of Rythmik F12 SE's.  It sounds like they might not be as difficult to set up as I have been told.  How did you decide to buy the Rythmik's?  I personally think their Direct Servo technology is quite advanced.  Good to know they do not sound boomy.  I would imagine they can dig deep down when needed.

Could you call me at 720-298-9232?
I feel like I am watching a soap opera, AS the Subwoofer Turns.

Larry, once again you are getting your best advice from @bdp24 

You say you are primarily interested in music but you are building a HT system. A great HT system will be decent at 2 channel audio but not great, as well as vice versa.

I believe you also mentioned that your main speakers cycle down to 30hz. If this is the case and you are looking for a subwoofer to just reproduce 30hz on down you are wasting your money. From a musical perspective there just isn't that much material that cycles down that low.

Do yourself a huge favor before you buy any sub and purchase the soundoctor test CD. It will set you back $18.00
http://www.soundoctor.com/testcd/
It contains among other things a series of test signals from 20hz to 120hz in ten cycle increments. Listen to the signals so you know what 30, 40 and 50hz really sound like.

Subs can be a wonderful addition to any HT or 2 channel system IF you know how to implement them. Unfortunately most people including most dealers do not. Specially for a music system.

If I was you Larry I would buy a good ported sub (Rythmik or SVS) and connect it to the LFE output of your ARCAM for the HT experience and let your main speakers run solo when your are in music mode.
I have a pair of Paradigm Prestige 85F towers that play down to 40 Hz.  Paradigm includes another spec number 28 DIM.  I think that number is possibly room gain or what they can play down to based on any given room.  Maybe buying just one ported sub for HT makes sense.  However, I purchased my system to be used for both 2 channel and HT.  I listen to music 60% of the time and thought it might be nice to hear frequencies below what my speakers play down to.  Thanks for your thoughts.
Hi Larry,

I guess it all depends on what kind of music you listen to. I listen to many different styles of music but mostly rock of various forms. I also like it loud with thumpin' bass and I have literally thousands of recordings but I would say only a handful that actually reach 40 cycles and maybe one or two that might go lower. If you listen to a lot of electronic music you may have a higher percentage of songs that get down to 40hz. This is why I suggest starting with this http://www.soundoctor.com/testcd/ test cd. Get a feel for what your current speakers can do and what 40hz and lower really sounds like.

 You should also decide what kind of audiophile you are. Are your ears good enough that you only want the minimal amount of electronics in the signal path because you can hear the degradation that the electronics cause or do you have more average ears and don't mind an extra piece of gear in the chain as long as it helps you achieve the sound you like.