View Full Version : SHL5 and what centre channel?

08-01-2011, 12:45 AM
Guys--I'm demoing a pair of SHL5s at home, running off our Mac MA6500 and they are drop-dead stunning. So much so, my wife want to wire them into the TV and go for a separate voice channel. Ugh! I don't think you can do this with an MA6500, which has only two channels.

Best advice I've gotten so far is to drive the SLH5s with a Rotel surround sound receiver, which would not sound as good as the McIntosh -- which defeats the purpose of the whole set up. Any thoughts on how to set it up so the Mc runs the SHL5s, and something else runs a voice channel and a pair of B+Ws? Am I living in a fool's paradise? Muchas gracias-- Verbs

08-01-2011, 10:46 AM
You'll need a surround sound preamp (outlaw, nad makes them). wire the main channel pre out to your mac power amp and harbeth. get another power amp (parasound makes affordable ones) for your other speakers and a mono power amp ( marantz makes affordable little ones) for your centre/ voice.

{Moderator's comment: you must be sure, especially if you are combining amps from different brands or different models from the same brand, that all amps are in the exact same phase otherwise the centre may be out of phase. You CANNOT assume that all amps are in>out in-phase. Some are in>out reverse phase. The only sure way is test equipment or use a 5.1 dedicated amp.}

08-01-2011, 01:17 PM
Potentially you are leading yourself up a very expensive path with an unknown outcome.

To do the job properly, you need another SHL5 for the centre channel, otherwise everything that comes from the centre will sound different to the left and right. Just plonking down any old speaker will give some very strange effects and you will need to be able to adjust the levels of LRC.

Furthermore, using a surround sound processor is very likely to ruin the sounds you are now enjoying.

If it were my system, I would settle down with a pair of SHL5 and use them to provide a 'phantom' centre channel. Far more satisfactory and free.

08-01-2011, 08:52 PM
Hi! Does your TV or cable box have an "audio out"?

I have my TV cable box audio sent to my preamp. To listen to TV we select the "Aux" source and we're listening via our fabulous 7-es2's! Will that work for you?


09-01-2011, 12:38 AM
Thanks guys. The multiple amp/preamp route sounds like a recipe for trouble. Am thinking of trading the MA6500 for an MHT200, which is designed for surround sound. Any thoughts on that route? Looks like it's about a 1:1 trade if I go used.

09-01-2011, 08:54 PM
Not familiar with that model but if it's a processor it will most likely spoil your 2-channel music, I've not heard one yet that doesn't.

Then you have the problem of a centre speaker that will sound different to your l & R speakers.

Personally, I'd stick to stereo.