Adding subs to Stellar DAC/S300 combo with HT receiver and use on S300

Hi, First I have been getting help from Duncan at PS Audio (great responses!) but I was searching on this forum and thought if I get told on here then maybe it will help someone else. So here is my email to Duncan and hopefully I can have it explained to me.

I have one more question please on this Duncan, and yes I ordered the set with balanced interconnects between Stellar DAC and S300 per your suggestion. Also I am excited to get these Stellar DAC/S300 combo. I am a normal person and as much as I like the higher end equipment you have, they are just unobtainable for me. I am not sure if it was Paul that came up with these “entry level” PS Audio units or someone else, but excellent!!

One my Onkyo home theater receiver I have 2 SVS 2000 subs that are coming from the 2 sub outs using LFE. I know I am replacing the “fronts” speaker amp out to now use the Onkyo “front pre-outs” to the DAC as a pass through to use the S300 amp now for the front speakers.

How can I set up for the subs to be used for both the HT setup and then when I want to use my TT or the PC feeding the DAC/S300? I don’t want to have to switch my SUB inputs, that won’t work. On the subs I have my input from my Onkyo to the LFE input and attached is a picture of the back of the subs. I have LFE and direct input jacks on the back of the SVS 2000’s.

I was looking at the rear of the Stellar DAC and if I use the balanced to drive the S300 and the unbalanced to the subs I figure I would lose the LFE feature of the Onkyo Sub outs? This is where I get confused.

Thanks again for helping me out here.



SVS 2000 subwoofer rear panel

Just to mirror my answer in email here for those also wondering about this, there are two subs with two inputs each – one LFE and two RCA if two are plugged in.

My advice to Scott is to run one RCA from a Stelllar pre output to one sub input, and an RCA from the Onkyo LFE output to the other input. Then do the same for the other sub.

With LFE, the receiver is determining where the crossover point will be, which is why the SVS manual suggests that you set the sub’s crossover to “LFE” when using the LFE input.

Many receivers allow for adjustment of the LFE crossover frequency, albeit in large steps, like 30Hz at a time. I.e. there could be options for crossover at 50Hz, 80Hz, 110, etc. This will be accessible through the audio setup in the receiver.

As long as the LFE frequency and the one you choose on the back of the sub are the same or the sub crossover is higher, you won’t lose any movie subwoofer sound when using your home theater. If the LFE crossover frequency is higher than the sub crossover frequency, the sub’s crossover will roll off some of the LFE signal. Keep them the same or have the LFE lower and you’ll be in great shape.

And there’s no problem with both signals going to the sub at once – the sub will process those down to one mono signal anyway, and you’re not doubling up the bass or presenting delay issues in most cases.

Unless you want the subs up higher for movies, I don’t understand why you wouldn’t just hook them all up to the preamp, all outputs will pass through when in theater mode? Then use the settings on the subs, telling your receiver that it 5.0, so the .1 EFE channel blends with the front two channels. Are you running your front speakers full range? I don’t see a high pass on the subs, I imagine that your receiver has a high pass, but the the Stellar doesn’t.

What speakers are you using? Trust Duncan, but I find the double inputs a bit odd. It would be ok, with the receiver off, but with both inputs on, I have never heard of it being done like that.

Hi Jeff and others helping me with this, My fronts are a pair of Tannoy’s Revolution XT 8F speakers and I also run wides off of them which are Tannoy XT 6’s. Here is a picture BEFORE I moved my subs to the side wall and separated out the fronts by 12" on each side. Front Speakers I will be driving from Stellar DAC/S300 with I have an Onkyo 2 channel amp I use for the wide XT 6’s.

I was thinking of either moving XT6’s to the ( I have pre outs to Onkyo 2 channel amp now) Onkyo receiver speaker amp out, once I pre-out the fronts to the S300 for movies or put in a Y cable and go to the Onkyo 2 channel amp off the S300 and have them on all the time whether watching a movie or music from DAC/S300 combo. If you have any suggestions I would appreciate them.

I kind of wanted a solid plan when the Stellar Combo arrives and any help would be appreciated by me!



Well, I sure wouldn’t run the little two ways for stereo listening. You could try it, but I think it will just mess up your soundstage.

Go back, and look at my questions, about full range, and how you run the subs.

If you don’t crank up the sub levels for movies, I would take the signal for the subs and two fronts from the Steller.

Hey Jeff, Scott:

Jeff’s proposed method certainly sounds like it will work too. I hear my advised approach works because my colleague Kevin has his home theater set up this way and was the chief source for this answer. Jeff’s method may sound better, as the signal isn’t being filtered by the receiver as much on its way to the sub’s own filter, if I’m understanding correctly. I’ll ask Kevin what he thinks in the morning.

I must admit my own personal experience lacking in this department, as I’m a DIY nut and have a correspondingly unique if not peculiar personal 2.1 home system. My sub is a Ripole I hacked together and the xover for it performed by a miniDSP.

Hi, I got my Stellar DAC S300 Combo yesterday and started hooking it all up. So I did hook it up like Duncan and Taylor (Gold Print Audio) suggested and it works great! I get full LFE when watching a movie from my Onkyo and then when I use my TT or the DAC the sub works nice and low key like it should. So thanks Duncan and Taylor!!

I do have a suggestion, but I know the Beta side is over with. This would be a Trigger IN on the DAC/Pre-Amp. I want to use this on my Home Theater and now I have to use both my Harmony Remote and the PS Audio Remote. Not hard for me but confuses the wife. I am still investigating Harmony Elite PS Audio code to use.

One thing I can’t seem to get to work is I put a “Y” cable off he RCA out of the Stellar DAC and one side went to the subwoofer and that is fine. BUT the side that went to my Onkyo so I could have “All Stereo” when playing some music off my PC (I have some in ceiling speakers and it is good when cooking dinner to hear better) the RCA out is too low for my Onkyo to notice in order to be at the same level as the S300. The fronts are way too loud just to have output on the other speakers driven off the Onkyo. I am not sure who is at fault, but I didn’t have the issue on my inputs before coming off my OPPO when playing CD’s or my phono (using EAR834 preamp) coming into the Onkyo RCA. Is this a known issue or is it me?



I am not sure it’s an issue if I am understanding correctly. You’re suggesting that the Onkyo is too low on its output relative to the S300 as fed from a Y connector out of the GCD? Are you sure there’s no attenuator or some means to control the Onkyo’s sensitivity? Or am I missing the point?

Because I replied before, I will attempt to understand,and maybe sort this out.

If I understand correctly, you are now running a y-connector from the Stellar pre outs to one of the Onkyo’s analog inputs? That is considered a fixed input, and won’t control the Onkyo’s volume. If you want to play the Oppo through the Stellar combo, and the ceiling speakers using the Onkyo, you would be better off using either one of the digital outs or a pair of the analog outputs from the Oppo. For CDs I imagine you are using one of the Oppo’s digital outs to the Stellar DAC, and also running a pair of analog outs from the Oppo for SACDs to the Stellar. Are you running the HDMI output from the Oppo to the Onkyo’s for movies and music?

So to play music through the main stereo, and the ceiling speakers, it would probably be best to send a signal from the source to both the Onkyo and the Stellar. Then control volume for the ceiling speakers with the Onkyo volume control, and the main system with the Stellar.

If that makes sense, we are all set. If not, post the model number and/or a link to the back of the Onkyo.

As to needing two remotes, if all your wife needs to do is use the PSA remote to turn the power on, assuming you already have the Stellar set to HT mode, as all a trigger does is turn on. The simple solution is leave the Stellar components on all the time, other than vacations. Except for switching things around, my system is on 24/7. I do put the tube preamp in standby, but that just removes power from the tubes. The Stellar gear uses very little electricity, just sitting there powered up. In fact, a lot of solid state audio gear is designed to be on or in standby, only shutting the main power off during long absences, or thunderstorms. That is why the main power switch is on the back.

Hi Jeff,

I wanted to update you on what is happening right now and what I have gotten around. I have put the splitter back in coming off the PS Audio DAC RCA out, one side going to the subs and the other going to my Onkyo. The output volume from my Onkyo was way to low, I found a place in the setup where I could take that RCA in and push the incoming DB up from 0 to +12. This took care of the incoming volume in and out being too low.

Thanks so much