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Bose Acoustimass 10 Series IV -- no surround sound

This is a discussion on Bose Acoustimass 10 Series IV -- no surround sound within the Home Theater forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. So my parents move into a new house and purchase components for their home theater system and ask me to

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Old 05-01-2014, 01:53 PM   #1
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So my parents move into a new house and purchase components for their home theater system and ask me to install everything. No big deal, right? Except they selected a finicky Bose surround system. Here's the equipment being used, all of which is new:

- Denon AVR-E400 receiver
- Bose Acoustimass 10 Series IV speakers
- DirecTv Genie
- Samsung 60" 3D LCD
- Sony BluRay player (actually, this is not new, but works fine)

All of the other components work. Picture looks great, DirecTV works, BluRay works. I even have good audio on the TV if I switch the Denon's output to TV instead of AVR.

But the Bose speakers are not cooperating. I can actually get good bass out of the module, but nothing from the center channel, front, or surround speakers. Here are the things I've tried:

- verified that the Acoutimass bass module has AC power.
- checked/double-checked the wiring connections from the receiver to the bass module.
- checked/double-checked the wiring connections from the bass module to the other speakers.
- verified that the Denon speaker settings are on for each of the speakers being used, including the sub.
- tested WITHOUT the sub speaker setting being 'on' (a suggestion I found online).
- tested audio output using different input sources (sat/tuner/bluray/pandora, etc). None of them result in sound from the speakers, but all of them will generate audio to the TV speakers once the HDMI audio setting is switched to TV from AVR.
- unplugged all the speakers from the module and tested them each independently. Nothing.

So I'm kinda stuck. I understand the Acoustimass system ignores the processed audio signal from the Denon. It just takes the raw audio and re-processes it itself. But it seems like it's just ignoring it altogether. Not sure how to fix that.

A couple of things worth mentioning...

The sub is laying on its side in a cabinet. The owners manual says this is okay. Even if it's not okay, I had it sitting upright on the floor outside that cabinet during troubleshooting. It made no difference.

Bose provides their own speaker wires for the system with RCA plugs on the sub module side, and soldered wire ends on the speaker side. Since my parents' place has the room pre-wired for surround sound, I used the existing wires in the walls and connected the Bose ends to them. It's a simple pos/neg braided wire connection. I used wire nuts to connect them and wrapped in electrical tape for protection. I also tested all four of them for connectivity -- they passed. The center channel uses the Bose-supplied cable, uncut.

I know that's a lot of information. But I figure if someone's going to be able to help me, they're going to need all of that. I'm just about out of ideas. I appreciate any input someone may have.


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Old 05-01-2014, 02:31 PM   #2
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Sounds like a bad unit.

Personally, I'd return it and get a standard speaker set. All you need is a 5.1 system, you/they already have an AVR to drive the speakers. No reason to have a Bose type system to "process" the audio when the AVR can do the same thing.

The weak link with a system like the Bose is that when the main control unit dies, the whole system is dead. Unlike a normal speaker setup where IF there is ever a failure, it's just a single speaker.

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Old 05-02-2014, 02:32 PM   #3
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Thanks, Dogg.

I was hoping that wasn't the case, as I anticipate having a hard time returning it since I cut the wires. We'll see.

But you're right, another set of speakers would be far better.

Thanks again,

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