Settings:Small/Large Speakers??


What does this setting do? I flipped back and forth between them with my bookshelf speakers and it seems I like the large setting better. If set to large will this disable my sub or will it still send material below 80 to sub(I have receiver and sub set at 80) exclusively or will material below 80 still go to main speakers too in large mode? Dumb questions I know..

Not dumb questions at all. The answers depend on your receiver and how it's base management system works. In general if you set your fronts to small the sub will be active all the time.

Generally, if speakers are set to large it handles all frequencies sent to it and nothing to the sub. The sub will only receive frequencies from speakers set to small or in a 5.1 takes on the .1 frequencies. Listening to music in stereo mode, if speakers are set to large the sub is inactive unless you have a feature on your receiver that allows bass out from "both". I know my old Yamaha receiver had this but my NAD does not. Only receives signal from small settings. I personally like the sound with the fronts and center set to large and satellites set to small but it is all a personal preference and it also depends on the speakers you have.

Hi pete, may i ask what kind of speakers do you have? I thought it was recommended that centers should be set at small since very liitle Bass goes into them. Also is your Volume on the Center and the Fronts set to same level? Thank you.

Also Anon, my front speakers are bookshelf and they like to be at LARGE. This setting sounds the best for them. I set them to small but did not like the way they sounded.

I have my setup like this:

Fronts = Large Volume level at +4
Center = Small Volume level at +5
Surrounds = small Volume level at +6

Subs cross over is set at 80 with volume +3. My room is 24' x 14' Hope this helps.

Fronts are Paradigm Studio 60 set to large
Center is Polk CS400 set to large (as per recommended in manual)
Surrounds are Polk FX 300 set to small
Sub Paradigm PDR10

I tried a whole host of different settings and found this settup to sound the best. Rich, full sound from center channel whereas when i had it set to small it sounded a bit distant and muted. The center is supposed to handle down to about 30 Hz so it recommended a large setting in the manual.

Sorry, forgot second part to question. Center volume set to +2 because i like to very clearly hear dialogue, surrounds set to 0db.

Paul T
Great discussion, things I wondered also. I have my T752 fronts set at small(paradigm Studio 20v3), sub set at 80Hz but unlike you guys I have the fronts set at +10 and center at +11. Is this wrong? While setting up I thought the louder I set the fronts (+10 vs. +2) the less strain it would be on my amp, seems with my present setup to play Cd's loud I'm going as high as -15 on volume which to me seems high, I would guess past noon on if it was the old amp style.. hope that made sense.. are you guys finding this to be true too, especially since your setting your speaker levels much lower then me..

Ilker A.
Hi paul,

Is there a reason you have your Paradigm studios set at SMALL? Those speakers should handle some Bass you throw at it am i right?

I also found on my Denon AVR1804 if i set the Volume level for my speakers around +4 it made more clear sound then when i had them at +11. At higher volume levels like -20 my speakers didn't sound as good. Actually my receiver got warmer when i had the Volume settings at +11's. Now i have them at +0 it runs cooler and i get better sound out of my speakers.

I would be very interested though on other people's settings.

Paul T
Hi Ilker A,
My NAD does not run hot at all, I have my Paradigm Studio 20's set at small to allow the sub to handle the lows, my thinking is this takes some of the strain off the studios allowing it to work strictly on 80Hz and up. As far as speaker level settings the sound doesn't change other then just getting stronger and clearer the higher up I go with speaker setting level, the only reason I stopped at +10 is I needed to get the Center speaker up +2 from mains(Center is at +12), my center is a Polk Audio and just isn't as clear as the Studios so I have to jack it up a bit to equal out with the Studios. I listen to 90% music so it isn't a big deal. If I set the speaker levels at say +4 then I have to really crank up the volume to get it where I like it (not that I listen at extremely high levels but I do enjoy good music on the louder side when alone and listening). But even after listening for a while at louder then usual levels the NAD just gets on the warm side never hot.. What do others think about channel levels, large or small and what are your settings and findings, I've only had the NAD for a week so I would be interested in others tweaks and findings!!

It is interesting that the heat issue differs from receiver to receiver. I wonder If other NAD users have the same settings as Paul.

Is there any other NAD users with similar settings to Paul?

Well from all the research i have done on this Volume settings, the fronts are recomended to stay at LARGE unless you have small speakers like ENERGY TAKE 5.1's. If you have Bookshelf speakers that can't produce any bass below 80 then set them at SMALL, but i find these days the front bookshelf speakers produce good BASS and when set to LARGE they do fine.

CENTER speakers should be set at SMALL, watching movies you really don't hear tooo much Bass out of these speakers. They should be set at same level as your fronts or a little higher by +1 or +2 compared with your front's.

SURROUNDS i think everyone leaves at SMALL.

SUB should be set at 0 and should be adjusted from the rear nob at about pass half way a little.

It still all becomes to personal taste in music and movies. Some people i know have everything set at LARGE with volume level to each channel at +11 or +12. And some people i know have everything set at SMALL with volume level around 0 to +2 so go figure.

I guess there is no perfect way, just your preference.

For elitefan or anyone else very familiar with the Pioneer Elite 53TX:

If you're listening to a CD in two channel mode (stereo or direct), do the surround settings have any effect? The manual hints that the surround settings might matter, but it's not ultra clear to me. Under Listening Modes/Stereo Modes (p. 45) the manual says "When a source is played in this mode, it plays through just the front left and right speakers (and possibly your subwoofer depending on your speaker settings)."

In my case, I have only front speakers hooked up. This evening, I plan to run a low frequency test using the bass optimization CD that came with my speakers.


I have a 53TX and the SMALL/LARGE settings will turn the sub on and off when listening to music.

I have fronts, surround, center, sub. The different surround settings do change how they all sound but I am not sure the Fronts change. The changes from setting to setting are really noticeable in the other speakers.
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