Av query

Apologies for the Newby question but can I connect my AVR (an old demon AVR 1700) to my nac202 AV inputs, seems obvious but I can’t get definitive answer, some suggest the AV pre outs are for a power amp rather than pre… if I can plug in does the avr act as pre amp and controls volume or does it send a low signal and the nac becomes the controlling pre amp? Thanks

Yes, and both options using av bypass. When “on” it skips the preamp and goes direct to the power amp.

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You’ll need to configure your AV amplifier for “preamp output” to output specific channels (likely Front Left/Right) and connect those channels (likely using RCA or possibly XLR) to the AV input on the NAC 202. You’ll then need to configure the input on the NAC 202 for AV Bypass, such that the volume control is handled by the source AV amplifier.

The preamp guide outlines this: https://www.naimaudio.com/sites/default/files/products/downloads/files/Premplifiers%20Reference%20English%20Issue%201i.pdf

Screenshot 2022-05-30 at 17.21.39

The Denon AVR-1700 appears to have a RCA L/R preamp output, so you would need to configure the Denon AV amp to output the front L/R channels via its RCA “PRE OUT/FRONT” and act as only a preamp for those channels then connect that output RCA → 5 Pin DIN to the NAC 202, configuring that input on the NAC 202 for AV bypass such that it will pass the incoming signal directly to the NAP output and whatever NAP you have connected to your NAC 202.

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Thanks - so I can set it up for the nac to control the volume OR the avr to control the volume?

The NAC needs to be configured for AV bypass which means that input disables the preamp for that input on the NAC and the volume is only controlled from the source AV amp.

I was thinking or hoping I could have the avr run the surround speakers including left and right front then if I want stereo higher fidelity -watching music dvds for example- I can turn the avr volume to zero and use the nac volume- is that do-able?

You’ll be using both power amps concurrently with AV bypass enabled.

The NAC will pass its AV input from your Denon AV amp to your NAP and the Denon will use its power amp to output to any other speakers connected to it on Center and rear channels as well as the subwoofer if connected.

If your Denon amp is outputting only a 2 channel stereo signal that will be handled by the Denon preamp and passed through the NAC to your NAP.

If you have other sources connected directly to your NAC they will be handled normally and controlled by both your NAC and NAP as usual.

You could of course remove the Denon from the equation completely and connect your AV source devices directly to the NAC, such as an optical disc player like Bluray or DVD assuming those devices have an analogue output.

If they only have an optical or digital output, you could put a DAC between those AV sources and your NAC as an alternative.

If you want to maintain the surround sound decoding you’ll need to keep the Denon AV amp in the signal path as that’s the only device that can process and output the multiple audio channels.

If you can live with only 2 channel stereo you can then remove the Denon amp entirely and either connect the sources from their analogue audio outputs directly to your NAC or put a DAC between the AV source devices and your NAC for digital signal path of 2 channel stereo.

Option 1: DVD/Bluray → analogue audio output → NAC source input
Option 2: DVD/Bluray → digital audio output (optical/coaxial) → DAC → analogue audio output → NAC source input

Looking at your bio, it appears you have a Naim DAC already, in which case that could be the DAC in the signal path of Option 2.

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Thanks- I want to access the tv sound through my big speakers but it only has one digital out which I need to go to avr for surround sound- pretty sure it doesn’t have analogue sound outs but I will check, otherwise I will try the pre amp outs from avr to 202 - the avr is old and I don’t think I can program the pre outs on/off, presume they will give signal from front left and right but it may cut its power amp supply to fr left and right if the pre outs are utilised

I’d expect you’d have to program the Denon AV amp to enable L/R Pre Output via the front panel or Remote Control, same as you need to on the NAC basically.
I used to have a very similar 5.1 setup with an Arcam AVR and a NAC 202 / NAP 200.
If you want the Front L/R channels to output via your NAC → NAP, you’ll need to enable the pre out on the Denon and AV bypass on the NAC AV input.
It’s a shame the Denon amp doesn’t have a digital output otherwise you could have connected that to your nDAC.

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