AV Bypass; reason I bought a Nait.

Yes, I know “dedicated power amplifiers fullfill this function just as well/“better”.!”

but I feel I might have bought one up the ladder more than I needed.
I am still breaking in, so am happy leaving the Naim amp in the den setup (plus, ‘access to the better speakers and sub’, and the better DAC etc)…

shortly this wee beastie will be ‘used as a power amp’.
I have read a lot around the net that suggests the sound improvement is huge (makes sense, as akin to a power supply upgrade, it is now is doing the same function/running in the same way)

Based on Santana Abraxas delivering 66-74dB with the volume dial at around 9:15,… and then a smidge more volume (still less than 10 o’clock) giving 74-85dB dB into my tower speakers, at the listening position (3-4meters) in a 6m x 7m room.
This is a dynamic recording, but relatively soft vs the loud/compressed stuff.
(akin to when you put Cat Stevens on or Reservoir Dogs (soundtrack) and have to turn it Up! soft, dynamic recordings)

Sure the speakers are 90dB sensitivity.
I feel I could easily get away with a Nait 5si for AV Bypass mode given the family listens to movies at ‘low to moderate’ levels.

eg Anthem MRX720 is at -32 to -28dB for comfortable listening, and by -25dB to -23dB we are on the verge of suffering from ‘overly loud’ sound.
probably more a function of the Anthem being bested by outboard amps, ie if we use a Marantz SR9200 as a poweramp, we drive, happily, the Anthem to -25dB to -23dB territory

Now I have always found processors sound best when they don’t have to swing the individual channels to much to ‘match’.
Often I will perform a calibration, then look at the individual amp channel adjustments, and then go to the power amp and put those adjustments in place and then rerun the auto config.
On the second pass it will only be swinging the channels by generally less than a dB or two, with the total maximum difference between all channels less than a 3dB swing.
Going back to mid 2000s Denons (and Yamahas, and Sony and Onkyo/Integras etc) this improves the quality of the sound output from the ‘preamp’/‘processor’ [b]so much[/b] that I always do this ‘trick’.
it allows the soundtracks to sound closer to musical, and in some ways, get closer to what the stereo or ‘den setup’ (hifi) will achieve.

When I DO NOT do this, and leave the preamp/processor to swing the channels by 8dB to 11dB (etc) difference,… the output sound can get ‘quite forced’ and sounds strained, ‘loses dynamic’ freeflow and ‘gets thin’ etc.

I feel, based on the volume capabilities of this wee lil Nait I am using,… (glad I didn’t go for a Supernait) that I have ‘too much power on tap’.
Qualifier: again; my family do not watch movies super loud. Getting up above 90dB is NOT our wish when watching movies.

I know the (Anthem) MRX720 has reasonable power onboard… in the past I haven’t really used it for anything more than maybe a centre speaker or maybe some Atmos speakers…
I plan on having it now do ALL channels except main left and right, being handed over to the Nait integrated in AV Bypass mode.

Anyone played with such a pairing,… or have any feedback as to how much they had to swing their respective home theatre receivers channels in order to match with the Naim ‘integrateds’ (in AV BYPASS mode)?

I will post my numbers at some point in the next week or so, when I finally integrate it.
but ‘fair to say’ that it is going to be overkill power and I will probably have to ‘trim’ it somewhat to integrate with the onboard ‘power(ed) amp’ channels.

Appreciate any screen shots of speaker levels in this thread.
cheers/ “thanks in advance”

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Small update: haven’t gotten around to moving the Naim integrated into the home theatre as it just keeps getting better (break in) , and am enjoying listening to it now it is more stabilised, with the better kit that the den setup has…

Keen to install it in the theatre and perform the measurements… (it will confirm the notion of Naim watts to me- a ‘lowly 70w’ doing mains duties and how much I have to downvolume the main amp, which is my prediction, to have it match level with the ‘smaller amp’)

I’m not sure it’s all to do with watts but more likely gain. Until you use the nait for av bypass you won’t truly know, but I believe the anthem, like any quality av receiver, will allow you to fully adjust and level match the channels as necessary.
In my experience , in a 5.1 system, the important channel is the centre one, and the others work mostly in a supporting role.

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