Q: Using PreAmp XLR ouput to drive PSW350 Subwoofer

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My preamp has both XLR and RCA outputs, and use the RCA out to drive my Conrad-Johnson amp. I would like to use the preamp's XLR output to drive a PSW350 sub going into the sub's line level inputs, which are RCA jacks. Would an XLR cable with the appropriate XLR-to-RCA adapter work in this case?

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  • F1nut
    F1nut Posts: 50,081
    edited December 2019
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    Use speaker cable from the amp to the sub speaker level in.
    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

  • DoneandGone
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    I read that Paul from PS Audio recommends connecting the sub directly from the pre-amp. That is XLR to the power amp and RCA L&R to L and R subs (if you have 2). I am waiting to buy XLR interconnects somI can try that method. The PS Audio Perfectwave DAC has both RCA and XLR outputs that are designed to be used simultaneously.
    Hope to feedback soon, it it makes a noticeable improvement.
    Audio Room
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  • F1nut
    F1nut Posts: 50,081
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    I read that Paul from PS Audio recommends connecting the sub directly from the pre-amp. That is XLR to the power amp and RCA L&R to L and R subs (if you have 2). I am waiting to buy XLR interconnects somI can try that method. The PS Audio Perfectwave DAC has both RCA and XLR outputs that are designed to be used simultaneously.
    Hope to feedback soon, it it makes a noticeable improvement.

    Nope, his preference and mine is the high (speaker) level connection. Listen for yourself.....

    https://youtu.be/c055XvuffXU
    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

  • DoneandGone
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    Ha! I am corrected. Thanks F1. You have saved me some experimental money. I’ll stick with my RCAs and focus onto other stuff as part of my tweak journey.
    Audio Room
    PS Audio Perfectwave DAC MK2, Bridge 1 streaming perfectly now B)
    Marantz SM-11S1
    Foundation Research LC2
    Kef XQ1 bookshelves
    Dual Goldenear Forcefield 3 Subs
    PS Audio receptacle
    3 PS Audio Noise Harvesters
    PS Audio power, interconnects and speaker cables
    Homemade sound absorption
    Lots of blocks for weight and a red single listening chair
  • proteusmaximus
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    F1nut wrote: »
    Use speaker cable from the amp to the sub speaker level in.

    That's what I'm using now (and have been since I bought the 350). Works, but lots of speaker cables going back and forth. I had thought to remove some of this extra speaker cable with a direct preamp to sub connection.
  • proteusmaximus
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    That video's interesting since what prompted me to ask this question was one of Paul's more recent videos where (and I swear this is what he said) he said that the preamp to sub was his preferred method. I must have misunderstood it, but...

    In any case, I am happy with the performance of the 350 connected via speaker cables, and will give this method major consideration as I move forward.

    Thank you to all who responded.

    Bob
  • proteusmaximus
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    One final question: Beyond reducing the number of speaker cables, I also wanted to ensure the best connections possible in these speaker cable terminations. The PSW350 uses spring-loaded speaker wire connections. Currently, my 12 gauge wire ends are simply twisted and clamped in place on the sub. While not entirely elegant, this seems to work, albeit I have no direct comparisons with other methods, so who knows?

    I will replace the current wires with better grade cable, and wondered about what you guys consider the 'best' method of treating the wire ends inserted into the subwoofer's connectors? I was thinking of silver soldering the ends to ensure good contact and conductivity. What's your approach?
  • pitdogg2
    pitdogg2 Posts: 24,919
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    In the past I was still able to use banana plugs in stuff I had that had spring connections. There are also gold plated pins one could also use.

    https://douglasconnection.com/products/diy-and-save-do-it-yourself/diy-cable-kits-2/speaker-cable-connectors/pin-speaker-cable-connectors/

    https://www.google.com/search?ie=UTF-8&source=android-browser&q=speaker+cable+pins#imgrc=EmnDddqM0yvZuM:

    I've always used some sort of shrink tubing if the pins didn't come with something to insulate them. Bare connectors can and do short as they are very close to each other.

    Hope this helps for options
  • GlennDog
    GlennDog Posts: 3,110
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    F1nut wrote: »
    Use speaker cable from the amp to the sub speaker level in.

    I don’t recall the other preferred option, if speaker cable connections are not available, like on most Rythmiks
    AC Regenerator PS Audio PerfectWave Power Plant 10
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  • F1nut
    F1nut Posts: 50,081
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    F1nut wrote: »
    Use speaker cable from the amp to the sub speaker level in.

    That's what I'm using now (and have been since I bought the 350). Works, but lots of speaker cables going back and forth. I had thought to remove some of this extra speaker cable with a direct preamp to sub connection.

    So, you're using the speaker level out now? That's not what I'm talking about, this is.

    Source(s) to pre amp
    Pre amp to amp
    Amp to speakers and sub.
    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

  • F1nut
    F1nut Posts: 50,081
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    GlennDog wrote: »
    F1nut wrote: »
    Use speaker cable from the amp to the sub speaker level in.

    I don’t recall the other preferred option, if speaker cable connections are not available, like on most Rythmiks

    Looks like Rythmic subs have speaker level connections.

    l2xhyghkowm6.jpg
    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

  • proteusmaximus
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    F1nut wrote: »
    F1nut wrote: »
    Use speaker cable from the amp to the sub speaker level in.
    So, you're using the speaker level out now? That's not what I'm talking about, this is.

    Source(s) to pre amp
    Pre amp to amp
    Amp to speakers and sub.

    Yes, that's my hookup: source to preamp; preamp to amp; amp to sub; sub to speakers. That's the exact setup described in the PSW350 manual as default.
    ao5lisvbytcf.png

    My original post asked about the alternative: preamp to sub and (separately) preamp to amp to speakers, with the idea to avoid the extra speaker cables.
    4jovxa8ylonm.png



  • F1nut
    F1nut Posts: 50,081
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    Source to preamp
    Preamp to amp
    Amp to speakers
    Amp to sub

    In that you run 2 sets of speaker cables from the amp, one set to speakers and one set to sub. This way the sub receives the exact same timing and sound signature as the speakers and avoids the signal passing through the sub. If you run a connection off the pre amp the timing and sound signature are not quite the same as what is coming out of the amp.
    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

  • DoneandGone
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    I have question within this thread. Has anyone experienced changing the sound from the subs using different speaker cables?
    This is based on F1’s ‘sound’ advice.
    Therefore, what’s a recommended sub-speaker cable?
    Audio Room
    PS Audio Perfectwave DAC MK2, Bridge 1 streaming perfectly now B)
    Marantz SM-11S1
    Foundation Research LC2
    Kef XQ1 bookshelves
    Dual Goldenear Forcefield 3 Subs
    PS Audio receptacle
    3 PS Audio Noise Harvesters
    PS Audio power, interconnects and speaker cables
    Homemade sound absorption
    Lots of blocks for weight and a red single listening chair
  • F1nut
    F1nut Posts: 50,081
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    I'd recommend using the same type cable as you use for your speakers.
    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

  • proteusmaximus
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    F1nut: Great advice, and thank you. I am in the process of making new and improved cables, and will wire up my system as you suggest. I appreciate your help! - Bob