View Full Version : Do's and Don'ts Running SB Direct to Amp?

2006-08-15, 18:42
I'm no audiophile but I love experimenting with what I've got and trying different things. I currently have a Harmon Kardon 3820 2 channel receiver that I am using as a pre-amp for an ATI 1502 stereo amplifier.

So I am running the audio outs from the SB3 (with Elpac power supply) into the HK CD inputs and then from the HK pre-outs into the ATI's RCA inputs.

I would like to experiment with running the SB3 direct into the ATI but am a bit freaked out about the unknowns.

I've read of passive attenuators that can be used when bypassing a pre-amp but don't know much more than that.

Is it dangerous for my speakers? The SB3? Can I just hook up the audio outs from the SB3 to the amp and adjust volume from the SB3, or is that asking for trouble?

Thanks in advance


2006-08-15, 19:08
Just be careful, using the lowest volume setting to begin with. Ideally, for best fidelity, you want the SB volume setting to end up in the 35-40 range. If you need to attenuate the RCA output, you can use the Slimserver Pre Amp Volume Control (at least temporarily). If you like what you hear, Sean advocates using Rothwell or Endler attenuators. Of course, the upcoming Transporter can be safely fed direct to amp!

2006-08-15, 21:00
Thanks Sleepy, I'll give it a try and post whatever results I may be able to perceive.

Matt B
2006-08-16, 01:44
If you're using the Slimserver pre amp volume control be careful when switching to SqueezeNetwork. SqueezeNetwork will not be aware of your pre amp volume control, which can give you (and your speakers) a bit of a shock !

2006-08-16, 17:16
Just gave it a try and I think there is a reason I am not posting in the audiophile forum. I THINK I could discern a difference in the sound. Seemed more focused and the base seemed to be a bit punchier even without the subbie run from the receiver.

I have a pair of Axiom M22's which are light on bass to say the least but they seemed to reproduce base better than the signal going through the HK 3280. Pretty hard to truly A/B and there was no problem with the levels going into the AT 1502. 40 was about max listening level and 22 - 25 comfortable.

Not a very technical or objective review and am not convinced I want live with the single source (SB3) going to the amp (only eliminates the TV for now as I dobn't run an HT) but for now I'll listen as is for a while.

Thanks for the help.