Question Active subwoofer on system with no line out.

miffy93

Standard Member
I have an Eltax 16029 active subwoofer that I have previously used on a system with a dedicated sub/pre output.

My current receiver is an Onkyo HT390, which doesn’t have a line out, just speaker terminals, including ones for the sub, which is currently attached to the passive sub it came with.

Can I use my active sub with this setup instead of the passive one, if so how would it be connected, would it need power as well?

More importantly, would using the active sub give me any additional audio benefit?

Back panel pics attached.

Thanks.
 

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ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
As neither are meant to work together so to speak, you can use one of the subwoofer line-out from the Onkyo and simply connect (with speaker cable) that to the Line-in (either left or right hand channel). As for control, you'll need to dig your manual out as to whether the subwoofer allows the level and crossover to be used via the speaker terminations. The connection is known as a passive connection and works like your speakers. So if the controls don't work on the subwoofer, I expect that you would have some basic controls in the amp

Now do you still use the speakers that came with the sub? If you do, the sub will need to be wired via the front left and right speaker outputs on the Onkyo to the line-in on the subwoofer and then output the signal path to the speakers via the Line-out on the subwoofer. You must ignore the subwoofer output as the product isn't designed to work that way. If you have dedicated speakers though, then you can follow my earlier instructions
 

Leelo

Active Member
Yes you can connect speaker cable from the output for the front speakers on the receiver to the speaker inputs (hi level) on the sub connect your normal speaker cables to the speaker output on the sub. Then play around with the subs cross over filter setting until the transition of sound from the main speakers to the sub is smooth I.e. no obvious points where you can hear where the sound moves from the speakers to the sub. Then play around with the subs level control so again the subs output is consistent with the speakers or to your own tastes

Will it be better only you can tell but it’s certainly an option worth trying considering it won’t cost much.
 

miffy93

Standard Member
So it’s not just a case of connecting the sub output on the onkyo (speaker terminals) to the input speaker terminals on the sub?
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
Depends on whether you still using the old speakers as they will have been designed to work with that subwoofer. Connecting them directly to one of the front left or rights speaker outputs on the amp could cause some damage to that speaker if not wired via the sub
 

miffy93

Standard Member
Ah I see, for the fronts I replaced the originals with a pair of Gale Gold Monitors Mk2 that I had on an older system originally.
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
You'll be fine to connect the sub via the passive subwoofer line-out from the Onkyo to the Line-in on the Subwoofer with a bit of speaker cable in that case. Remember if you cannot control the woofer by its own dials, you may find that the amp has its own setting as the internal amp from the Onkyo is controlling that part even though the Sub is of an Active nature (which will mean you will still need to use it as power cable on the woofer and remember to switch it one :))
 

miffy93

Standard Member
So basically just swap the passive sub that’s already connected to the sub out on the amp with the active sub. No need to replace/remove any wires at the amp end, just plug the speaker wire I take out of the passive sub into the high level input on the active sub (don’t suppose it matters whether it’s the left or right speaker terminals). Then connect the active sub to the mains and power on.

That it?
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
Just connect the speaker cable from the amp to the sub via the subwoofer channel on the Onkyo. It shouldn't matter which channel on the woofer you use. The Sub will still be active as you cannot take that part away from the product you are using. What will happen is the active sub will interpret the passive signal from the Onkyo and do the rest itself
 

miffy93

Standard Member
That’s great, thanks for your help, just need to get round to trying it at some point. Do you think I’ll hear an improvement?
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
If you haven't got a subwoofer connected (which I'm guessing you haven't), then the simple answer is yes. How much is down to your toys though :)
 

miffy93

Standard Member
I have got a sub connected (see my first post) it’s the passive one that came with the Onkyo originally, I was just wondering if my active one could replace it and whether there would be any benefit.
 

ShanePJ

Well-known Member
AVForums Sponsor
If the active sub allows you to control it by its own dials then yes over the original one, if not, it'll be as I said above
 

miffy93

Standard Member
If the active sub allows you to control it by its own dials then yes over the original one, if not, it'll be as I said above

Finally got round to doing this and it does sound a lot better.

The sub also allows me to control it via its own dials.

With this in mind is there an ideal setting for the crossover frequency knob, or is it a case of trial and error?
 

Leelo

Active Member
Finally got round to doing this and it does sound a lot better.

The sub also allows me to control it via its own dials.

With this in mind is there an ideal setting for the crossover frequency knob, or is it a case of trial and error?
Trial and error basically play around with it till you like the way it sounds. Nothing beats the way you are happy with it
 

miffy93

Standard Member
Further to this, now that I have a spare passive sub from the onkyo system I am looking to utilise it elsewhere.

I have a Lepy 2024A+ (this one - https://www.amazon.co.uk/LEPY-2024A...coding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=GRN9QHCTRAG32EXV8BYC )

At the moment it’s just set up with a couple of speakers and a Bluetooth receiver as a cheap music player in another room.

Could I attach the onkyo passive sub to it via either the left or right speaker terminals on the Lepy, the sticker on the sub says it has an impedance of 8ohms?
 

miffy93

Standard Member
Found this video on YouTube, which shows you can connect one wire to +right and one to -left:


However some comments say you can damage the amp and/or sub.

Any advice?
 

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