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Subwoofer wired together with speakers

  • High-End Audio
  • Speakers
  • Home Theatre
  • Audio
Last response: in Home Audio
August 24, 2011 7:07:06 AM


I have a professionally installed high end built in home theater speaker system which is 15 years old. I am upgrading my AV receiver and television only and keeping the speakers. My subwoofer has it's own power cord and the wires from it are identical to the wires coming from my 7 speakers (red, black, green, white). With the old receiver, the subwoofer wires were combined with the speaker wires, twisted together, and wired together...that is, one red from the speaker, one red from the subwoofer were installed in one black from speaker, one black from subwoofer, etc. I drew a diagram before disconnecting my wiring and marked all the wires, so I know exactly how it was wired.

My question is can I duplicate this wiring scheme with my new receiver or will it damage it? The new receiver has subwoofer inputs but they use a plug and I have bare wire. Is there a way to equip my bare wires with a connector to go into the subwoofer input?

I'm not an expert, so please pardon me if I've not used the correct terminology. I hope I've been clear and would appreciate any help.

More about : subwoofer wired speakers

August 24, 2011 6:41:11 PM

Can you please upload a picture of the diagram so I can get a better understanding of what you mean.

If I understand your question correctly, then let me explain. Current receivers have either 5 or 7 channels mainly for 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound systems. Each channel has a positive and negative terminal from each speaker. Subwoofers are mostly powered these days and are connected to the receiver using a simple RCA-type cable to the subwoofer pre-out connection. The power wires run separatley for each speaker.

However, I don't think I completely grasped what you trying to ask, 15 years ago systems may have been entirely different, I know the hookup of modern systems so maybe I don't understand.
August 24, 2011 9:28:53 PM

what is too hard about replacing the receiver with another one that outputs the same amount of power at the speaker resistance load?

i dont think anybody is going to care much if you simply change the receiver for another one of the same power, but with better sound quality.

hooking up the subwoofer to the LFE output isnt our question to be answering.
nobody knows how or why the subwoofer is connected the way it is.
perhaps it is a perfect match with a woofer/midrange/tweeter and shouldnt be touched.

perhaps you start taking things apart and ruin frequency responses because the crossover has been shuffled around with disconnections.

i dont see why we are answering such stupid questions.
these questions are like 2 + 2 = 4

dont cross-mix yourself with multiplication or division if you are not going to read through one of my seriously long posts and take the information to good use.
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Best solution

August 25, 2011 7:10:27 PM

You can leave the wiring the same. When you go into the setup menu of the new receiver you will set the front speakers as large and subwoofer as none. All other speakers that you actually have will be set as small. This sends all the bass to the front speaker terminals where the sub is connected as well as the left and right front speakers.
You cannot feed the speaker wire inputs of the sub with the line level output of the subwoofer out. If you put RCA plugs at both ends of 2 of the wires that go to the sub and change the connection at the sub to the RCA input and the sub out at the receiver this may also work. Then you would set the speaker set up differently; sub yes, front small or large depending on size and bass output.
August 26, 2011 5:37:39 AM

Best answer selected by Dkagay.
August 26, 2011 5:45:49 AM

Thanks to blackhawk1928 and americanaudiophile for helping. I really do appreciate your efforts.

As for anwaypasible, I guess I was under the mistaken impression that the purpose of this forum was to ask for help. Calling my question stupid is not helpful. I'll find a group with friendlier people. I won't be back here.
August 26, 2011 7:45:08 PM

of course you wont be back here..
when you come here asking us how to stick the electrical plug into the electrical outlet, and it only fits one way, you get the information you want and leave.

the problem isnt with getting the information and leaving..
that is what the forum is for.

the problem IS with how childish/innocent the questions are.

when you over-think the situation to the point of such 'innocence'
you wont be back here to read all of the advanced terms and situations that can really show a difference.

i think it is OUR problem.. and YOUR fault.
we want you to have a better time.. that is why we are here.
we cannot help people who are too troubled to make the most simple of choices.
this is quite the same as POTTY TRAINING an infant.
we cant go anywhere or do anything if the baby is making a mess by not using the toilet.

instead of never leaving the house..
we put a diaper on the baby and go to the park or visit a friend (go shopping for food or whatever)

your brain is not missing the chemicals needed to calculate the situation.
maybe you are having trouble the first day.. but you can always come back to the situation and attack it with your brain a second time.

simply because we have 'PATCHES' that work much like the diaper..
it does not mean the world is going to provide said patches for you over and over again - especially with free will.
people get paid for such baby talk.
people program robots to answer such baby questions.

care for yourself by thinking other people have ALREADY WRITTEN an article that talks about the very basic steps.

it is extremely rude of you to come here and harass us with your inferiority complex when there are hundreds of people who have written an article to satisfy such thirst.
not only do you disrespect us forum regulars.. it disrespects the many people who have written and posted an article.

dont go throwing electricity about because you feel you are too poor or too lazy to grab a magazine subscription that answers these baby questions.
dont think people want to wipe your lazyness and splash it with a dash of powder.
we have constraints within the issue of TIME too.

no need to flame your cologne over here.
i know what it is like to DEMAND an answer from both connection methods.
the only way to know is to try them both.
it is lack of parental care at home when you were young that brings us to such a huge HALT .. and some would even say embarassment.

i dont want to be here if the same question is repeated over and over again.
and to top it all off, those questions are 'how do you stick the cord inside the thingy'
as if you are FIVE years old.

did you come here asking us if you should hook up the subwoofer to the LFE output and set the speakers to small?
you did not say such a thing.
i am not one to use my wisdom of implications towards such immaturity.
you would be under a mistaken impression to think anybody wants to use their intelligence with such a low level of appreciation / self-accredited worth.

unfortunately for you..
people are ready and willing to GRADE your questions and put them towards your credit score.

i dont believe you were asking for help.
i think you were telling everyone 'i do not deserve to make a mistake this early in the setup process.. and i am showing this to be true by asking the question i am asking'

but.. you lack the confidence/stamina to find articles that are FREE and already written.
if you dont believe one article.. see if you can find TEN articles that say the same.

i believe i see your parents telling you to walk.. and instead of getting up to feel the burn in your legs (doesnt happen until 5 more city blocks) you sit there on the ground crying and whining about how you are incapable of walking.

you want love.. it is out there in text format for the BABY ANSWERS only.
the rest of us have to beg for more important answers.

if you were a hobo catching a train..
i'd say you were running and couldnt get a grip with the train moving at 8mph
the rest of the group has to catch the train when it is doing 30mph

what does that say about us when we answer your questions and wonder if you are too stupid to do what we said correctly?
how dare you say, feel, or think we go on about our day and dont wish we could be there to make certain you connect everything together correctly.

you claim we dont have you in our thoughts..
but you would be the one getting sued for negligence and health risks, as we are seeing our energy levels sucked out of us because we are worried some childish leech couldnt put the wires in correctly.

then you throw the 'you didnt get the best answer' in our face.
the biggest detail of events came from my posts.. thus making it the best answer.

if you were to read THE MANUAL ...
you would know the subwoofer output is not amplified.
i wouldnt hesistate to see you sued again for those manuals being printed, because the rest of us get those manuals and cherish them close to our bodies as if they are the most innocent thing that comes in the box.

the product you buy is a machine and it will do whatever you tell it to do (or whatever you DONT tell it to do)
that is how the instruction manual is very innocent.
since it provides all of the ways to keep the machine from doing something bad.
and it teaches you what the machine can and cannot do.
that way if something 'new' is happening ... you know it is broken because the manual doesnt say anything about it happening, thus the new situation must be of error (or to say it better - unintended operation).

now that there is a guide put up in the sticky section.. there is nothing stopping you from reading it.
we dont have to answer questions about red goes to red and black goes to black, because those instructions are in the user manual that comes with the amplifier.

but i suppose it is better to 'shutup' and let people like this come in and completely wipe the first 2 pages of the forum with questions we really shouldnt be answering??!