I have large bass-capable tower speakers with multiple 8” or 10” woofers. What are the best AV receiver bass management settings for this type of speaker?
If the A/V receiver can only assign one (1) global speaker/subwoofer crossover frequency for all speaker channels, then bass-capable tower speakers should always be set to Large (i.e., full-range / full-band). The LFE+Mains (aka Double Bass or Plus) subwoofer option should be avoided with this type of A/V receiver, as it will often result in too much overlap between the mains and the subwoofer.
If the A/V receiver has the capability to assign an individual crossover frequency to each speaker channel, there are three (3) bass management options for bass-capable tower speakers:
- Option 1: Set the mains to Small (i.e., not full-range / full-band) with a 40 Hz speaker/subwoofer crossover. This will allow the tower to play quite deep and takes good advantage of its extension and output capabilities while routing only the deepest front channel bass to the subwoofer. This is an excellent choice for most floor standing speakers, many of which naturally roll-off below 40 Hz.
- Option 2: Set the mains to Large (i.e., full-range / full-band) and the subwoofer mode to LFE. This will send a full-range signal to the tower speakers and will not re-route any front-channel bass to the subwoofer. This option should only be used if the tower speakers are truly full-range with usable extension and output into the mid-low 20 Hz range.
- Option 3: Set the mains to Large (i.e., full-range / full-band), set the subwoofer mode to LFE+Mains, and set the mains 'crossover' (which in this case is actually a low pass filter) to 40 Hz. This bass management option will send a full-range signal to the tower speakers and will also send a duplicate front-channel signal to the subwoofer, but only <40 Hz. This option can be an excellent choice if the tower speakers have usable extension and output into the mid-low 30 Hz range.