Connecting AV Receiver To Atom - Advice/Recommendations

OK so bear with me here while I try and explain my setup…

I have a Uniti Atom which I use only to Stream music from Roon.

I also have a Yamaha RX-A3070 Receiver which I use for everything else. In this I have my HTPC, Xbox One and Virgin TV Box Connected via HDMI.

I also have my Panasonic OLED connected to my Yamaha via an Optical Cable. This is the channel that is used for Netflix which we watch via the app within the TV.

I use an Nedis RCA Switcher to Switch the Sub Woofer (Rel T5i) Between the Yamaha Amp and the Naim.

I use a Dynavox speaker switcher to switch the Front Left and Right Speakers (Acoustic Energy AE500) between the Yamaha Amp and the Naim.

All of this is to achieve some sort of Wife Acceptance Factor because with everything switched to the Yamaha the wife can watch any source and control the volume with the Logitech Elite Remote. The Yamaha is also set to a default volume when powering on which means it’s always ready to go when she wants to watch TV or a movie. She does nothing but hit “Watch Netflix” or “Media Centre” on the remote.

When I want to listen to music (in quality) I use the RCA and Speaker switches to direct the F/L F/R and Sub to the Naim and the Yamaha is bypassed.

I realise I could have used the Pre-Out Front L/R and Sub from the Yamaha but I never managed to get this working (no sound at all) and of course we are then dealing with two volume controls - one of which (the Naim) cannot be controlled via infra Red.

The above does work fine, you just have to turn a few switches. But I would love to remove this switching altogether out of the process and have the Naim always processing the L/R and Sub.

Can anyone think of a better way of doing this?

For example can I use the ARC from the TV to the Yamaha and then use the second HDMI Out on the Yamaha to send this signal out to the Naim so it is always driving the Front L/R and Sub?

Would that then mean that the TV remote would turn everything up/down using the TV ARC including the Naim. Would that work?

If I leave the Naim on Permanently and on the HDMI input then it should always be on and working right?

I just have to remember to switch it back after Roon streaming or will that happen automatically when it detects a source from the HDMI?

Perhaps this is no better that using the Yamaha Pre-Out? Can the Naim be set to a specific volume for the RCA Inputs when Analog is selected as the source?

Does anyone have a similar setup involving an Atom (or other separate amp with HDMI ARC) and an AV Receiver and they have found a good solution to this?

I would like to hear how others have this set up.

I’m sure I can make this setup simpler and my hunch is I’ve just overcomplicated things.

I’ve just been trying to find a ‘proper’ manual on-line for the Atom. All I can seem to find is the almost useless for this purpose quickstart one. There isn’t even a picture of the rear connections of the Atom.

What I need to know is : does the atom have a connection on the back (DIN, or RCA, not HDMI) specified for AV unity gain? Then you would connect the front L/R preouts of the Yamaha to this input, and must switch the Atom to use this input when doing the TV thing.

If so, I would refer you to my FAQ on Stereo/AV integration on the old Naim forums. After connecting the pre-outs of the Yamaha to such an input on the Atom (if it exist!), then things will be simple. You would just have to add the appropriate commands to your Logitech Elite so that the Atom becomes part of the TV related activities.

It’s not difficult, but the Atom would have to be powered on when using the TV activities.

Ah, just found the What Hifi review of the Atom. No such input that I can see. As such, your only solution to make your other half happy may be to use an external speaker switching box. I used to use one of these many years ago to switch the front speakers between the AV2 I had at the time, and a Yamaha AV receiver. IIRC correctly the one I used was made by QED. It wasn’t remote controlled and involved getting out of my chair and pressing the appropriate button.

I’m going back to listen to Metallica S&M2 now …

There is an analogue input on the atom which even has a setting for “a/v fixed volume” so it’s definitely capable of driving my front two speakers I would have thought.
I have since had a bash at testing it as an external amp for the Yamaha but I just can’t get any sound at all through it.
Perhaps the two units are not compatible.

Cheers

Hi.
I’ve got an older yamaha (RX-V767) with pre outs connected to AV on my 202, using unitigain & it works wonderfully, probably a silly question, but thought I’d ask; have you got the settings correct for ‘speakers’ (Large on mine) & ‘power amp assign’ (7ch normal) on the yamaha amp? Hope that helps.
I don’t have the Atom, so maybe someone else can help you go through the settings for that.
Good luck with it, & let us know if you solve it :slight_smile:

Ah, then I assume the connection is not on the back. Is this input RCA, minijack or DIN?

Whichever it is, you will need to make sure that your lead is connecting correctly. e.g. if DIN, which pins are connected on the DIN plug? I use an RCA to DIN lead which I got from Fastback Cables to connect my NAC552 and Arcam AVR850.

Then make sure you choose the appropriate setting for that input on Atom’s manual, then you will not need to mess about making sure the Atom is set to the same volume level each time.

You may get a more sensible/comprehensible answer from Naim themselves. They are very helpful in my experience.

Yeah I had it set to 7.2.4[ext.front] which is what it should be as far as I can tell and the Atom connected via RCA from the Pre Out Front to the Analogue In.
I’ve raised a ticket with Yamaha as that should be all I need to do.
Front speakers are set as Large.
I tested the Analogue in from a laptop (3.5mm to RCA) and it does work.
Must be some rogue setting on the Amp.
Thanks for the ideas though guys.
I will pursue this method I think.

I can try Naim support of course but I think it might be an issue on the Yamaha side.

I think you are on the right track; I don’t have an A/V amp, but I read about the setup here more than once and having had an Atom (now: Nova), this should be the setup:

  • Connect pre-amp out from Yamaha to analog-in on Atom.
  • Set Atom input to “fixed volume”, hence it will work with max and rely on the Yamaha to set the volume level.
  • (I don’t know, how to best adjust “max” between the 2 units. If the Atom overall max-volume setting works for that, or if the Yamaha has a separate adjustment for the pre-outs.)

For the sub you will likely have to continue switching (unless the sub has 2 input):

  • When using it for stereo listening from the Atom, you need it directly connected. (It will get the full stereo system and extract the low frequencies from it.)
  • When watching 5.1 (or more channels) sources, you want the sub to be connected to the Yamaha, since the low-frequency effect channel (LFE/.1) is a separate channel, not part of the stereo mix for the 2 front-speakers.
    • (Unless the Yamaha could down-mix the 2.1 signal to 2.0 and then at the sub would get it via the Atom; but that’s surely not as it’s intended to be. My sub has a “stereo” and a “LFE” setting, the first with a filter active, on the LFE it expects the .1 channel and does limit the signal much less, since it’s specific to be used by a sub.)

Good luck with finding the right settings on the Yamaha to activate the pre-outs!

PS: The HDMI on Atom only accepts HDMI-ARC, not standard HDMI. This could come e.g. from the TV.
And it needs to be 2.0/PCM, hence the Yamaha (or the TV, if capable) would have to not down mix but extract the 2 front channels from the x.y.z signal an only pass them to the TV. So the Atom would see only the stereo signal. However it might be difficult to adjust the delay through the processing to have signal in synch this way.

Just did a quick search of the forums : look up “AV Fixed Volume custom level” and you’ll find the thread. That should solve your problem.

Thanks guys will do.
@PhilippVH Yes I was aware about that .1 aspect of the sub and the switch does work well. I use Jriver for most TV and Film watching and I’m sure I can downmix that .1 channel into the stereo from there. As you say the Atom will bring the bass out of the signal but it won’t quite be the same as a dedicated channel. Worth a go though and become switch free.

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I use my Atom for music and to drive the front of the 5.1 system. I feed my Arcam AVR preouts into the Atoms analogue in and on the input for this in the Naim app set to AV fixed volume this bypasses the pre and goes straight to Poweramp so your Yamaha will control the volume. If this is not working then something wrong with the preouts on your amp. You may need to disconnect speakers from the front two channels or activate it on your Yamaha, didn’t have to do anything on my Arcam though just plugged them in.

You will need to manually remember to switch input to analogue when watching via the TV and 5.1. I don’t use a sub anymore as I got rid of it as I have too much bass most of the time due to room resonance. But when I did I only used it for TV and film not music so it was only connected to the AV amp. Most subs tend to have more than one input.

Thanks CrystalGipsy

Yes that’s the last thing I tried as I still had the speakers connected to the speaker switch from the Yamaha but alas still no sound at all from the Atom.

I think I’ll need to wait until Yamaha respond as I have scanned the Yamaha Manual and there really isn’t much to it.

A little frustrating tbh

Cheers all

Have your tried the analogue inputs with a different source just to rule out it’s not the Atom at fault? When you do get it up and running. Make sure you calibrate it all again as it will be different levels and Lilley need eq to balance them in with the centre.

Yes indeed. Connected my laptop with a 3.5mm to Stereo RCA.
Worked fine.

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That’s good at least. Good luck working it out.

Fixed it by setting the Unity to Fixed Volume and Input Sensitivity Auto.
I was reluctant to use that as I knew it set it to some ridiculous volume so worried it would blow the speakers when switching aources. Left it off for testing.
Seems fine and keeps same default volume of 30 when streaming from Roon.
All I need to do is ensure that I switch it back to Analogue when I’m finished streaming and of course leave the Naim on 24/7.
Cheers for the input (no pun intended) guys

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I should add without that setting I hear absolutely nothing from the front two speakers even at pretty much full volume hence my post.
Anyone know how I turn the Lights off as I have it permanently on now?
I mean the Naim logo at the bottom. Can’t seem to find a setting in the app, only to turn the display off when playing which works fine.
Cheers

No, sadly there does not seem to be a way to have a all-lights-out.
I dimmed to the lowest level via the physical remote, but that’s all you can do, as far as I know.

Maybe ask for a feature request towards Naim?
For very dark (movie) rooms, I’d like to have this feature as well.