How would I connect everything?

Hello, I have these audio monitors currently paired with this Audio Interface. And, I am thinking about buying this subwoofer. But, I don't know how to connect my subwoofer to my current setup. Would I connect my subwoofer to my Audio Interface and then connect my Audio Monitors from my subwoofer? And, which cables would I need to do so?

Thanks a lot.

Bump, I really need to order the necessary cables soon.

Easiest way would be to connect the subwoofer to the interface, then the monitors to the subwoofer. You'd need something like an RCA to XLR or RCA to 1/4" TRS cable.
So 1/4" TRS from interface to RCA for sub, RCA from sub to 1/4" TRS or XLR for monitors. Although doing this would completely waste the balanced interface, potentially diminishing audio quality.

ALTERNATIVELY:
If the interface supports output from the headphone jack and the rear TRS jacks at the back, you could get away with connecting the monitors using the regular connectors you're using and then a 3.5mm to RCA cable for the subwoofer out the headphone jack. But this method depends entirely on whether or not the interface supports simultaneous outputs, which I don't know about.

So, how many cables would I need? 4? I already have 2 1/4 cables, not RCA to 1/4 though.

The Interface does support multiple outputs, but the headphone jack isn't 3.5mm it's also 1/4.

And, what do you mean it would waste the balanced interface? Doesn't the subwoofer also have left and right inputs and outputs?

Thanks.

If it supports multiple simultaneous outputs, you should be safe using your two 1/4" for the monitors out the back of the interface and a 1/4" to RCA for the subwoofer connected to the headphone jack, if you didn't mind unplugging the subwoofer anytime you wanted to use the interface for headphones of course.

Properly balanced cables, amps, and whatnot have three conductors, "positive", "negative", and ground. The idea is that an amp will put out the exact same noise on both "positive" and "negative", and whatever it is on the other end will compare the two signals and reject the noise. Since things like RCA have two conductors per connector it can't actually carry a balanced signal since one conductor has to be ground, leaving the other to carry the signal.

Hmm, I don't really feel like using the headphone jack is most optimal, here is a picture of the rear of my speakers. I am currently using the 1/4 jack but the other XLR jack is free. So, could I run from my Audio Interface with 1/4 to my monitors and then XLR to RCA to the subwoofer. Or 1/4 from Audio Interface to RCA to sub and then RCA to XLR to monitors? Or, would this not be good for sound quality? And, this would mean that I would have to buy 4 cables. Hmm?

Are these connected to your computer? or what is it you are receiving the audio signals from?

Yes, my Audio Interface is connected to my computer. But the speakers and amp will of course go from my Audio Interface.

Actually never mind about the previous question, since your sub doesn't have a sub in port.

Your sub is designed to take unbalanced left and right channel inputs, use a certain frequency range (whatever is below the crossover dial), and then send the rest to the speakers. You would then need cables which took an unbalanced signal from the subwoofer outputs, and sent the signal to your amp.

I looked up the frequency response of your monitors, and they do surprisingly well on frequencies below 100 hz. Normally smaller speakers like that will quit doing well around 100-120hz. http://noaudiophile.com/JBL_LSR305/JBL_LSR_305_Flater.jpg

You can set the crossover frequency on the sub anywhere from 45hz to the max of 85hz to what you like (45hz is where your monitors drop off). Crossing over at a higher frequency will take a lot of the power load off of your amplifier though.

However that being said: that subwoofer only goes down to about 35 hz, so you are only gaining sound from the 35-45hz range. 35hz on the low end is actually not great performance from a sub. Generally going down to 30hz is ok, and for a good home theatre experience would be down to 22hz or so (yes that is a home theatre benchmark, but included it just for a reference).

Anyway, the relatively small gain you would get from the subwoofer, may be undone by having longer runs of unbalance connections before connecting to the balanced connection. If you go this route would would want to avoid long wire runs to your speaker, especially going over other cables, or other scenarios where they would pick up noise.

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Thanks a lot for that response, it's extremely helpful.

So, do you have a solution? Are there other subs that would be better suited for me within the same price range? And, I'm just using this sub for bedroom listening, nothing too loud. But I just want good solid, textured bass, which I don't really get from my speakers. So, if I were to buy this sub, what could I expect?

And, how exactly would I set everything up? Would I go from my AI to the sub and then sub to speakers? And, what cables would I use? 1/4 to RCA and then RCA to XLR or 1/4?

Thanks.

Sorry I forgot one detail:

you would run your computer signal to your sub, then the line level out to your amp

So how would I connect my sub to my computer? Optical or USB? And, what would I use to connect my sub to my Audio Interface?

If this worked, doesn't this mean that the sub would be playing the low end aswell as the speakers? Instead of the speakers just playing the mids and highs?

I am unsure of the price. I see something mention it might be $450, but that seems high for a sub, especially without a dedicated sub in port. Unfortunately I haven't done any research of subwoofers to give you any recommendations. I got an all in one package for my computer and can only have research into what specs to look for.

If you were to buy it, you would notice some difference in the bass. I can't really say how much without having heard your speakers (or the sub).

To connect you would go:

-single3.5mm male (or whatever plugs into your source i.e. sound card) to 2 RCA male (left and right channel) into that sub.

-2 male rca from the sub to whichever connector you are using to go intp your amp (I haven't been able to see what this is...1/4inch male?)

-then plug your speakers to your amp as normal.

*I kinda screwed up the description before originally writing for one solution, then switching to another. I will edit this.

The sub only takes analog connections, so it would be the 3.5mm connection on your sound card (or RCA if you have a studio level card). I don't know of a USB to analogue adapter, and optical out is usually a digital signal so that is harder to convert. Here is an adapter http://www.shop.ca/c/hyfai-digital-coax-optical-toslink-to-analog-audio-converter-B005F207CE-23372062?gclid=CKa53ObVi8gCFUxufgodp3ELfg&gclsrc=aw.ds

Hmm, using a 3.5mm jack to a sub seems really weird.

Couldn't I do this?:

  1. USB to Audio Interface
  2. 1/4 to RCA (left and right) to sub
  3. RCA to 1/4 (left and right) to speakers

The only problem with this that I see is the fact that I have to buy 4 cables, is this viable?

Could you clarify the USB to audio interface? What is connecting to what, and then what would be connecting 1/4 rca to sub?

I'm connecting my computer to my Audio Interface via USB (USB from my motherboard to the Audio Interface). And then I would connect the 1/4 into the Audio Interface and the RCA into the sub.

Ah I see. Well Im not sure how well it would work, but it is theoretically doable.

The 1/4 output on your amp is a balance connection.. So you would be going balance to unbalanced to the sub, then unbalanced to balanced again to the speakers.

There is also a headphone out jack, but I am not sure what the standards are on signal strength there. I am not sure if it would be a weaker or stronger signal that line level, and it could cause problems.

*This scenario is where you would want to watch long runs of cable to your speakers, since it would now be an unbalanced connection. The cables can pick up noise, especially if running across other cables. I don't know your setup, but If it is just a setup on your desktop, it shouldn't be much of a problem.

Anyway for this setup here are the cables you would need:

"1/4 TRS balanced male" to two RCA male. ******(the "TSR balanced" is extremely important here since this would be no ordinary 1/4 connector!)

then 2 male RCA to (whatever cable you are currently using to connect your amp to speakers).

Thanks a lot for all of the help. I think I'll go to a music store nearby and ask what they think, I'll explain my whole setup etc. But now I actually have an idea of how this could be done. But from what you've seen, such as how my speakers respond to low end etc, would you think I should spend £150 on this subwoofer? Would it be much of an improvement for quiet-ish music listening?

Thanks.

Yeah input from the music store about the experience of going balanced to unbalance and back again would be worth a lot. I have never tried it, so I can't say if there are any unforeseen downsides.

As for the experience, 'quietish' listening is not really a fitting statement for anything in the 30hz (or lower range) These frequencies easily travel through structures, so your neighbours and roomates may hear them.

Other than that I can't really say how well it will improve your experience without knowing what your speakers sound like on their own. To put it another way here is my experience:

I went from a 7.1 logitec PC system (http://www.tomsguide.com/us/high,review-212-12.html), to a 5.1 av receiver and all in one 5.1 unpowered speaker system (Monoprice 10565). The logitec sub had a response down to 35hz and it was an under-powered system, and the bass was mediocre. The Monoprice goes down to 30hz and is a world of difference. It is either the lower range, better quality sub, or both.

Anyway, I went from shitty speakers, to a much better pair. Your monitors are higher end (should be way better speakers than the ones I have now), so the change in experience you have I would think shouldn't be as drastic as mine.

I know that doesn't really answer your question, but hopefully it helps.