SDA 2B options

Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
edited July 13 in Vintage Speakers
I am new to this Forum, and Polk speakers. Thus far I have really enjoyed reading about other folks experiences and recommendations. I have looked for answers to these questions but I have not found definitive answers, at least not that I understand.
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I have a set of SDA speakers that I believe to be the fourth gen 2B version. I would like to set them up in the living room as a 2.1 system with SVS SB13Ultra. My first question is, how can I be sure that they are infact the 2B version and is that even important?

My current set up is 3.1 from Bic America, 2x DV64 R/L and DV62CLR-S center. I am driving the Bic's with a Sony STR-DN850 and they sound good. Plenty of power. The SVS has no problem keeping up and overall I have been happy with this set up for 5 or more years. I also have a set matching bookshelf speakers that I dont bother setting up anymore.

I am not going to bother trying to find a way to keep the cener channel as that seems to add quite a bit of cost. My options are:

1. Hook up the SDA to the Sony integrated amplifier and hope for the best (doubtful, I don't think it would last long)
2. I have an old HK AVR-75 sitting in a closet somewhere, it has pre-out connections. I can use this with a crown XLR1000 available for my local Guitar Center for 289 + tax.
3. Use the HK with a CL sourced amplifier (2 x used Adcom GFA-555 available for 375ish)
4. Look for a preamp and amplifier on CL.

Obviously I am looking to maximize my cost/benefit for this whole setup. I would not be willing to put more than 400 in to the system right now, but over time I may upgrade if the need exists. I am leaning toward option 2 at this point because I like the added piece of mind that buying new would provide. I would hate to pick up one on those Adcoms just to find out they overheat after ten min....

I am not sure what other information would help you help me. Thanks for reading,

Looking forward to any and all input. What is right/wrong with my thought process?
«134

Comments

  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 43,140
    You have SDA 2B's.

    1. That's an AVR not an integrated amp and frankly it's a POS.
    2. Forget you ever had that idea.
    3. An AVR makes for a lousy pre-amp. You cannot use mono block, dual mono or a non-common ground amp with those speakers unless you use the original Polk AI-1 or the Dreadnought.
    4. Best idea, but you're not going to get anything worthwhile for $400.00.
    5. Research the 2BTL upgrade info here.
    Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a t-u-r-d by the clean end."


    President of Club Polk

  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    F1nut wrote: »
    You have SDA 2B's.

    1. That's an AVR not an integrated amp and frankly it's a POS.
    2. Forget you ever had that idea.
    3. An AVR makes for a lousy pre-amp. You cannot use mono block, dual mono or a non-common ground amp with those speakers unless you use the original Polk AI-1 or the Dreadnought.
    4. Best idea, but you're not going to get anything worthwhile for $400.00.
    5. Research the 2BTL upgrade info here.

    1. Understood
    2. Because of your responce to 3 and 4?
    3. I have read that and I think I will be able to check if I get used gear (measure continuity with a multimeter.
    4. How much do I need to increase my budget?
    5. I read through one of the TL upgrade threads already, I will have to read it again more carefully. I have a little bit of an electronics background so I might be able to do some modification.

    Thanks for the suggestions!
  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 43,140
    2. In part, the other part is a pro amp has no business in a home audio rig.
    4. IMO, between $1k to $2k for a decent pre-amp and power amp. Another good option which might save a bit of cash is look for a good integrated amp (not another AVR).

    One thing I should have asked, is this for music only or a dual purpose rig?
    Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a t-u-r-d by the clean end."


    President of Club Polk

  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    F1nut wrote: »
    2. In part, the other part is a pro amp has no business in a home audio rig.
    4. IMO, between $1k to $2k for a decent pre-amp and power amp. Another good option which might save a bit of cash is look for a good integrated amp (not another AVR).

    One thing I should have asked, is this for music only or a dual purpose rig?
    2. This just seems like the easy button.

    4. I can't spend that now, I could go that route over time. I just can't justify the expense, although I would be able to sell some old gear...

    They will be hooked to the tv, but this will be 2 channel. I haven't even hooked the rear channel of my 5.1 up for years. I figure these will image well enough I will not need a center channel. Thanks for the suggestions.

  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 43,140
    2. May seem easy to you, but it won't be easy on your ears.

    I used SDA's only for TV/movies years back and they did the job or so I thought. After setting up a proper HT rig I realized how important it is to have a proper center channel. YMMV.
    Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a t-u-r-d by the clean end."


    President of Club Polk

  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 12,303
    Good post.
    Bud - Silicon Valley

    Lumin X1
    Sony XA-5400ES SACD
    Pass XP-22 pre, X600.5 amps
    Magico S5 MKII Mcast Rose speakers, SPOD spikes

    Shunyata Triton v3/Typhon QR on preamp, Denali 2000 (2) on amps
    Shunyata Sigma XLR analog ICs, Sigma speaker cables
    Shunyata Sigma HC (2), Sigma Analog, Sigma Digital, Z Anaconda (3) power cables

    Mapleshade Samson V.3 four shelf solid maple rack, Micropoint brass footers
    Three 20 amp circuits.
  • teekay0007teekay0007 Posts: 2,156
    Welcome to Club Polk, @Navy_Goat.

    If you go with option 4, there’s lots of deals to be found on CL. I really liked this combo - Rotel RC-1070 Pre/RB-1080 Power Amp - with my SDA-2Bs when I had them (are you anywhere near Minneapolis/St. Paul?): https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/dak/ele/d/burnsville-power-amprotel-1080-pre-amp/6932430103.html
    (No affiliation)

    If you decide to go the center speaker route, the CS400 or CS400i (and others) work very nicely with any of the SDA or larger vintage Monitor series fronts. I use a 400 center with both SDA-1Cs and Monitor 10s as fronts with great results. You can sometimes find a minty 400 for less than $100.
    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/osseo-polk-audio-center-speakers-2-and/6915956953.html
    (No affiliation)
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    edited July 14
    teekay0007 wrote: »
    Welcome to Club Polk, @Navy_Goat.

    If you go with option 4, there’s lots of deals to be found on CL. I really liked this combo - Rotel RC-1070 Pre/RB-1080 Power Amp - with my SDA-2Bs when I had them (are you anywhere near Minneapolis/St. Paul?): https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/dak/ele/d/burnsville-power-amprotel-1080-pre-amp/6932430103.html
    (No affiliation)

    If you decide to go the center speaker route, the CS400 or CS400i (and others) work very nicely with any of the SDA or larger vintage Monitor series fronts. I use a 400 center with both SDA-1Cs and Monitor 10s as fronts with great results. You can sometimes find a minty 400 for less than $100.
    https://minneapolis.craigslist.org/hnp/ele/d/osseo-polk-audio-center-speakers-2-and/6915956953.html
    (No affiliation)
    Wow, those both look like great deals! unfortunately I am no where near the twin cities (although San Diego does have its good points). I have been looking for exactly that amp pre combo with no luck here so far. Thanks for both suggestions, I will keep my eyes peeled.

    I did find a CS400i for $125 FS in San Clement (1hr drive), so maybe I will catch one a little more local at some point.
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    krazypolk wrote: »
    I little close than Minneapolis, but still a long haul from Sandy Eggo. Thanks for the input!
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    edited July 14
    What about this soundstream DA-1?
    https://sandiego.craigslist.org/csd/for/d/san-diego-high-end-soundstream-200-wpc/6927518630.html
    Looks about right. I am also seeing a few rotel 1050s for less than 300, not sure it will provide enough power...
    Or this
    https://palmsprings.craigslist.org/ele/d/la-quinta-rotel-power-amplifier-5-ch-thx/6909924980.html
  • TennManTennMan Posts: 1,079
    Looks like my post got deleted. I wonder why?
    SDA 2BTL · Sonicaps · Mills resistors · RDO-198s · New gaskets · H-nuts · Erse inductors · BH5 · Dynamat · Crossover upgrades by westmassguy
    Marantz 1504 AVR (front speaker pre-outs to Adcom 555)
    Adcom GFA-555 amp · Upgrades & speaker protection added by OldmanSRS
    Pioneer DV-610AV DVD/CD player
    SDA CRS+ · Hidden away in the closet
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    TennMan wrote: »
    Looks like my post got deleted. I wonder why?

    I did get a notification a few hours ago that you posted, but the link in the email didnt work and I couldnt find the post?
  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 12,303
    TennMan wrote: »
    Looks like my post got deleted. I wonder why?

    Repost it. Let’s see what happens.
    Bud - Silicon Valley

    Lumin X1
    Sony XA-5400ES SACD
    Pass XP-22 pre, X600.5 amps
    Magico S5 MKII Mcast Rose speakers, SPOD spikes

    Shunyata Triton v3/Typhon QR on preamp, Denali 2000 (2) on amps
    Shunyata Sigma XLR analog ICs, Sigma speaker cables
    Shunyata Sigma HC (2), Sigma Analog, Sigma Digital, Z Anaconda (3) power cables

    Mapleshade Samson V.3 four shelf solid maple rack, Micropoint brass footers
    Three 20 amp circuits.
  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 43,140
    TennMan wrote: »
    Looks like my post got deleted. I wonder why?

    That's strange.
    Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a t-u-r-d by the clean end."


    President of Club Polk

  • pitdogg2pitdogg2 Posts: 14,948
    Navy_Goat wrote: »

    You will need to confirm it is common ground. It says "Dual Mono" now sometimes they are common ground and sometimes you can strap the negative binding post to achieve that. Some manufactures discourage tying the negative binding post other times it will raise the noise floor of the amp. Unless you plan on buying a dreadnought 800va or polk AI-1 interface cable (rare) then you must stick with common ground amps.

  • TennManTennMan Posts: 1,079
    I can't imagine why my post would have been deleted. It was there for a while and then BOOM it was gone.

    You need a power amp with lots of clean, high current, power to give the 2Bs the impact that you need for home theater. A cheap amp won't cut it even if it lists a lot of watts in the specs. All a cheap amp will do is give you lots of volume with very little dynamic range. Dynamic range is what makes movies come alive. You won't need a sub if you have a high current amp that provides enough power for the 2Bs unless you want to shake the pictures off the walls. In an average size room they do a good job of giving you a sense of being at the movies if you have them set up properly.

    You will need a good center channel speaker or the home theater system won't sound right unless you are sitting in the center position. Trying to set up a home theater system without a center speaker is an experiment in frustration. Been there, done that. That is why I use an AVR that can decode Dolby Digital as a preamp for my Adcom - and to power my center channel speaker. Dolby (as well as other decoding methods) separate the dialog from other sounds so you hear voices coming from the center speaker. It sounds more natural to hear voices coming from the center of the TV instead of from the sides of the TV when you are sitting off center.

    You will get lots of differing opinions but this is my 2 cents.
    SDA 2BTL · Sonicaps · Mills resistors · RDO-198s · New gaskets · H-nuts · Erse inductors · BH5 · Dynamat · Crossover upgrades by westmassguy
    Marantz 1504 AVR (front speaker pre-outs to Adcom 555)
    Adcom GFA-555 amp · Upgrades & speaker protection added by OldmanSRS
    Pioneer DV-610AV DVD/CD player
    SDA CRS+ · Hidden away in the closet
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    pitdogg2 wrote: »
    Navy_Goat wrote: »

    You will need to confirm it is common ground. It says "Dual Mono" now sometimes they are common ground and sometimes you can strap the negative binding post to achieve that. Some manufactures discourage tying the negative binding post other times it will raise the noise floor of the amp. Unless you plan on buying a dreadnought 800va or polk AI-1 interface cable (rare) then you must stick with common ground amps.

    Thanks for pointing that out, I didnt catch the words "Dual Mono". I will take a multimeter and measure for continuity between the two ground posts. A short (0 Ohms) would definitively tell me I will be good?
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    TennMan wrote: »
    I can't imagine why my post would have been deleted. It was there for a while and then BOOM it was gone.

    You need a power amp with lots of clean, high current, power to give the 2Bs the impact that you need for home theater. A cheap amp won't cut it even if it lists a lot of watts in the specs. All a cheap amp will do is give you lots of volume with very little dynamic range. Dynamic range is what makes movies come alive. You won't need a sub if you have a high current amp that provides enough power for the 2Bs unless you want to shake the pictures off the walls. In an average size room they do a good job of giving you a sense of being at the movies if you have them set up properly.

    You will need a good center channel speaker or the home theater system won't sound right unless you are sitting in the center position. Trying to set up a home theater system without a center speaker is an experiment in frustration. Been there, done that. That is why I use an AVR that can decode Dolby Digital as a preamp for my Adcom - and to power my center channel speaker. Dolby (as well as other decoding methods) separate the dialog from other sounds so you hear voices coming from the center speaker. It sounds more natural to hear voices coming from the center of the TV instead of from the sides of the TV when you are sitting off center.

    You will get lots of differing opinions but this is my 2 cents.

    Thanks for taking the time to type this all over again! I hear what you are saying and it all makes sense. Watts are easy enough to achieve if you are lust looking to post a statistic. In the voltage X current equation voltage is a lot easier to achieve. You all have convinced me to look for a good home theater amp to get started with. I will have to use my old HK as a preamp until I can find the right deal so there will be some compermise.

    I may also go pick up a CS400i that is for sale an hour north.
  • codycatalistcodycatalist Posts: 2,578
    edited July 14
    The GFA555 should be a stereo amp and not a mono block. It should work good but I don't see a reason to buy 2 of them.

    Yes you will not get the best performance without getting a better pre but you can piece it together along your journey. I say go for the Adcom and use the HK as a pre until you find something better.


    It WON'T overheat trust me.
    Just a dude doing dude-ly things

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  • TennManTennMan Posts: 1,079
    The GFA555 should be a stereo amp and not a mono block. It should work good but I don't see a reason to buy 2 of them.

    Yes you will not get the best performance without getting a better pre but you can piece it together along your journey. I say go for the Adcom and use the HK as a pre until you find something better.


    It WON'T overheat trust me.

    I agree. No need to get two Adcom 555 amps. One will supply plenty of power, (200 watts), to EACH main speaker.

    Remember... power amps like the Adcom are rated at watts per channel while AVRs may be rated at the total watts for all the channels combined. Big difference!

    With a $400 budget I think the HK used as a preamp for the Adcom and to power a good sized center speaker would be a the way to go. It would be a good compromise for a system that would be used for listening to home theater and stereo.

    SDA 2BTL · Sonicaps · Mills resistors · RDO-198s · New gaskets · H-nuts · Erse inductors · BH5 · Dynamat · Crossover upgrades by westmassguy
    Marantz 1504 AVR (front speaker pre-outs to Adcom 555)
    Adcom GFA-555 amp · Upgrades & speaker protection added by OldmanSRS
    Pioneer DV-610AV DVD/CD player
    SDA CRS+ · Hidden away in the closet
  • audioluvraudioluvr Posts: 1,480
    Welcome to Club Polk! Those are great speakers! My first set of speakers were the 2B's I bought new. They also have the potential to be superb. As @F1nut eluded to, take the time to do a full mod and convert them to the SDA 2BTL's. Then build your system around them.
    Home System:
    SDA 1C's - Full mod with the help by Dave...
    1000 Va Dreadnought- w/ WireWorld Mini-Eclipse cables
    WireWorld Mini-Eclipse 7 speaker cables
    WireWorld Silver Eclipse IC's
    Cambridge Audio Azur 851N - DAC/Streamer
    Parasound Halo C-2 Pre/pro
    B&K M200 Sonata Monoblocks
    BLE-Design 16mm Power Cables
    Denon DVD 2900

    Barn system:
    SDA SRS 2.3's Full mod done by myself
    Carver C-1 pre
    Carver M1.5t
    BluDenso - Bluetooth receiver/DAC
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    The GFA555 should be a stereo amp and not a mono block. It should work good but I don't see a reason to buy 2 of them.

    Yes you will not get the best performance without getting a better pre but you can piece it together along your journey. I say go for the Adcom and use the HK as a pre until you find something better.


    It WON'T overheat trust me.

    I think this will be my route.

    Now can I ask what I should do when looking at these maps. I plan to measure resistance between grounding posts? what else do I need to look at?
  • EmlynEmlyn Posts: 2,533
    A Parasound HCA1500 amp would be ideal for a pair of 2Bs with the original tweeters still in place. They can usually be found for under $500. An equivalent Rotel RB1080 is still going for around $600. A B&K 200.2 or even a 125.2 would also be good choices. I have owned all of those at one time or another, but I think the Parasound is the best of the bunch.

    I would not recommend hooking up an underpowered amp as it could do more damage to the speakers than a well suited amp would cost. Bear in mind that if a company tried to produce a set of 2B speakers these days they’d probably cost north of $4K a pair. They were not cheap speakers when they were originally made.

    Definitely a nice SVS subwoofer they’d be paired with. That’s a good to build a system around. May just be a good idea to mothball the speakers until a bit more money can be put into an equivalently performing amp.
    1. Polk LSiM707, 704C, 703; Dual SVS SB2000 subwoofers; Marantz SR7011 receiver; Parasound A23 amp; Oppo 205; Sony 65" 4K TV; FIOS; PS Audio Power Plant Premier; MIT S2 cables
    2. JM Labs Electra 920.1; Sonic Frontiers Line 3 Preamp; Classe Model 25 amp; Sony HAP-Z1ES; Oppo 105D; Music Hall MMF7 and Acoustech phono pre; PS Audio Power Director; MIT S1 Cables
    3. Polk LSiM703; Parasound JC2BP and A21; Sony 48" 4K TV; Wyred4Sound DAC 2; Oppo 203; Squeezebox Touch; MIT S3 cables
  • motorhead43026motorhead43026 Posts: 3,334
    There is a HCA-1500 for sale in the classifieds.
    2 channel: Anthem 225 Integrated amp; Parasound Ztuner; TechnicsTT SL1350; Vincent PHO-8 phono pre; Marantz CD6005 spinner; Polk SDA2BTL's; Cables ZU Mission IC's, SC and power cords, all into a PS Audio Dectet Power center.

    All TV's sound enhanced by Polk Magnfi Mini's.

    Other; S60'S, M10 series II, M7C's, Hafler XL600 amp, RB-980BX, Parasound HCA-1500 amp , P5 preamp, all in storage. All speakers have had crossover rebuilds, resulting in a small fortune invested in Sonicaps, and tweeter upgrades.

    Political memes posted as fact and accepted as fact, are sign language of the ignorant, for the ignorant

    tonyb said " but even socialists can do a good thing here and there

    Social media makes dumb people dumber and smart people dumb then dumber.
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    There is a HCA-1500 for sale in the classifieds.

    Wow, thanks for pointing that out! That does look like a great deal. I sent him a PM. Here's hoping its still for sale.
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    Emlyn wrote: »
    A Parasound HCA1500 amp would be ideal for a pair of 2Bs with the original tweeters still in place. They can usually be found for under $500. An equivalent Rotel RB1080 is still going for around $600. A B&K 200.2 or even a 125.2 would also be good choices. I have owned all of those at one time or another, but I think the Parasound is the best of the bunch.

    I would not recommend hooking up an underpowered amp as it could do more damage to the speakers than a well suited amp would cost. Bear in mind that if a company tried to produce a set of 2B speakers these days they’d probably cost north of $4K a pair. They were not cheap speakers when they were originally made.

    Definitely a nice SVS subwoofer they’d be paired with. That’s a good to build a system around. May just be a good idea to mothball the speakers until a bit more money can be put into an equivalently performing amp.

    PM'd @hochpt21 about that HCA 1500a. We will see if it is still available.

    I love that SVS sub. Sealed ad very musical, but with enough power to do HT. It doesnt really dig below 20hz very well, but music is more important for me and I rarely watch movies. I actually got the sub for the cost of and 85 dollar repair, but that is a story for another day.

    I need to concentrate on finding the right pre at some point sooner rather than later.
  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    F1nut wrote: »
    5. Research the 2BTL upgrade info here.

    Looks like the RD0194 is a direct drop in replacement. I find them FS for $55 Here. Do I need to keep looking, or is this about right for cost?
  • F1nutF1nut Posts: 43,140
    Navy_Goat wrote: »
    F1nut wrote: »
    5. Research the 2BTL upgrade info here.

    Looks like the RD0194 is a direct drop in replacement. I find them FS for $55 Here. Do I need to keep looking, or is this about right for cost?

    The TL upgrade uses the RD0198, which also requires the addition of a 5.8uF cap on the crossover. Worth every penny.
    Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a t-u-r-d by the clean end."


    President of Club Polk

  • Navy_GoatNavy_Goat Posts: 61
    Well, one Parasound HCA 1500a will be on its way to my house as soon as @hochpt21
    ships it, maybe tomorrow if I'm lucky.
    F1nut wrote: »
    The TL upgrade uses the RD0198, which also requires the addition of a 5.8uF cap on the crossover. Worth every penny.

    Okay, RD0194 is the replacement for the OEM tweeter and better as well. The RD0198 is another step better but requires another mod to the Xover. Since both tweeters cost the same the only difference would be the Cap. Off to find a place to source the cap, then I will get that stuff on order. I can do the soldering at work as we have a pretty nice lab for that sort of thing.

    Slippery slope indeed.....

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