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Frequently Asked Questions - Rotel

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Internet Radio Tuners & Receivers


RADIO FUNCTIONS

What is Internet Radio?

It can be music, comedy, sports, or any kind of radio broadcasts that are streamed over the Internet in various bit rate forms, from low to very high quality. Internet radio may also be referred to as web radio, streaming radio, net radio, or e-radio. The ability to stream these signals over the Internet allows people to hear radio broadcasts from virtually every corner of the planet, a feat that is just not possible by using traditional radio transmitters. As of the writing of this FAQ list, there are nearly 20,000 Internet radio stations.

How Do I Access Internet Radio?

You will need a specialized tuner such as the Rotel RDG-1520 or RT-09 (connected to a preamp and amplifier or integrated amplifier) or an RCX-1500 receiver. These streaming media units are equipped with the appropriate circuits and wired or wireless connections to access the Internet (via Wi-Fi or Ethernet connections.)

Note: You must already have high speed Internet access.

Do I need to be connected to the internet to use this product?

It is not necessary to have an internet connection to use the built in CD player or FM tuner of the RCX-1500, as well as the Aux 1 or Aux 2 inputs. However, all other inputs do require a working internet connection. Do note that while the FM tuner does not draw its signal from the internet, it is a part of the internet radio module therefore will not start if one of the USB dongles is not physically connected to the unit.

How Do I Find And Select Radio Stations?

Register your RDG-1520/RT-09 tuner or RCX-1500 receiver at www.rotelradio.com. Once you have registered with the code number from your tuner or receiver (see instructions in the owners' manuals), you may begin putting together favorite stations from almost anywhere in the world.

The rotelradio website lets you quickly search and organize stations by locations, genre, or even artists. You can also search and organize stations right on the Rotel unit itself.

See also the Step-By-Step guides available on www.rotelradio.com

How Do I Access Sirius Radio Stations?

You must have the "Premium CD quality internet radio" upgrade on a Sirius account for it to work with the RDG-1520 or RCX-1500.

This guide is intended for users who cannot connect their Internet Radio to Sirius. The common error is the radio will display "change password or username" after the user types in their Sirius user name and password in the Internet radio. Please use the following as a guide to assist in trouble shooting your connection to the Sirius premium internet radio service:

  1. Verify your Internet radio is connected to your broadband internet network.
  2. Verify that you can listen to other internet radio stations i.e. Non Sirius radio stations.
    If you cannot listen to other radio stations or you cannot connect to your broadband internet network then you will need to first resolve those issues BEFORE trouble shooting your Sirius connection.
  3. Verify that you currently have Sirius "Premium" internet radio service. The Internet radio will not connect to the standard Sirius Internet radio service. You must upgrade to "Premium" Internet radio service (also known as CD-quality internet radio Sirius package) before attempting to enter in your Sirius user name and number in your radio.
    To Verify you have Sirius "Premium" Internet radio service you can call Sirius or log on to the Sirius media player on your computer and verify that you have both standard and premium internet radio service. You can check by going to this link: https://www.siriusxm.com/player/.
    When the media player launches there will be two icons: a standard icon and a premium icon. If you are able to toggle back and forth between the standard and premium icons on the Sirius media player on your computer and play music on your computer when the Premium icon is chosen then you have premium CD quality service. If the media player does not play music when you press the premium icon you will need to upgrade to the service which is $2.99 per month (as of July 2009 - price is subject to change). You can update your Sirius package at https://www.siriusxm.com/addSIR.
    The package is "Upgrade to CD quality sound". Simply press the "Upgrade now" button.
  4. Verify that your Sirius User name or Password is typed in correctly. Please ensure you do not have a blank (an empty space) in the front of your user name or password. Your Sirius password is UPPER and lower case sensitive. When you enter your Sirius user name and password on the radio please note that the 1st set of letters displayed on the radio are all UPPER case letters. Please scroll to the right until you see the 2nd set of letters on the display. These letters will be lower case. Choose the lower case letters when required (Your Sirius user name and password may have a mixture of lower and UPPER case so you will have to scroll between the two different sets of letters on the radio).
    After you enter in your user name then choose "end" which is to the left of the list of the upper case letters, or press the "Reply" key on the remote or front panel. Then enter in your password and choose "end" or hit "Reply" again. You should now see the Sirius station line up.

Note: Sirius Premium Internet radio service is not available outside the continental US.

An internet radio station that I have used for weeks does not connect anymore - the display just says 'Connecting'.

Internet radio stations sometimes just disappear, or change URL which is the address that your Rotel obtains the streaming signal from. Log on to your account at www.rotelradio.com and check the that the wanted station is still available by reloading it. If the site reports that the station fails the streaming test, then the service has been discontinued.

The Internet radio station has stopped playing and the device appears to be "locked up".

Should the Rotel unit lose its internet connection it will automatically try to re-connect but there may be exceptional circumstances when it will be necessary to re-boot the product. To make a complete clean re-boot disconnect the product from the AC and plug it back in again.

I have set up internet radio, but when I switch on it takes over a minute for the sound of the station to be heard.

This is normal - the time taken to find and listen to an internet radio station can vary and can take over a minute. This is dependent on lots of different related factors - from issues involving your network to how good the radio service is. In practice the time taken can be as small as 2 seconds.

Switching from FM or DAB radio to Internet radio takes 15-20 seconds for the station to be received.

This is normal - you will find that the product re-acquires your network before being able to select the station that you want, which can take several seconds.

I have selected some extra stations in 'My Stations' on the www.rotelradio.com website, but I cannot see them in the display of my Rotel.

You need to reinitialize the update by reloading 'My Stuff'. Navigate to 'My Stuff' and key select to reload your choices.

Will the RDG-1520, RT-09 and RCX-1500 receive HD Radio?

No, we do not support this feature. However, most HD Radio stations are also available on Internet radio.

Can I save stations selected on www.rotelradio.com to presets on the RDG-1520/RT-09 tuner or RCX-1500?

Yes, select the station in 'My Stations' to make it active then store it to an open preset of your choice.

Will the RDG-1520, RT-09 and RCX-1500 receive standard analog FM broadcasts?

Yes, these models do include a FM tuner. Do note that while the FM tuner does not draw its signal from the internet, it is a part of the internet radio module therefore will not start if one of the USB dongles is not physically connected to the unit.

Will the RDG-1520, RT-09 and RCX-1500 receive AM radio stations?

No. Many AM stations broadcast via the internet, however.

How do I listen to DAB radio?

A dedicated DAB antenna is required for Europe only. DAB broadcasts are not available in USA.

MEDIA PLAYER

Why do you only offer Windows Media Player as a UPnP server?

At the time of writing, Windows Media Player 11 or 12 offer the user a straight-forward way of listing, selecting and playing your music tracks. There are many others that you may wish to use, however they may not offer the same functionality. We are not in a position to advise you on anything other than the use of Window Media Player.

Note that WMP can be set up easily to monitor your iTunes music library such that you may continue to use iTunes as your music management program and WMP as the UPnP server. After initial configuration of WMP's UPnP functionality, it can run in the background.

How does iTunes work with streaming?

The Rotel radios require a UPnP server to stream music from a computer to the system. Unfortunately iTunes is not a UPnP server so if using a Windows PC, Windows Media Player should be configured to monitor your iTunes music library.

  • Windows Media Player 11

    Open Windows Media Player and select Tools>Options from the menu bar. Select the Library Tab, then click the Monitor Folders button. Add the folders you want WMP to monitor, including your iTunes Music folder. This will keep WMP in sync with changes in your iTunes library automatically.

    You will also need to set up WMP to share your media with the RDG/RCX unit. Go to Library tab>Media Sharing and Allow the Rotel Gateway. See the Owner's Manual for more information.

  • Windows Media Player 12

    Open Windows Media Player and select Organize>Manage Libraries>Music from the menu bar. From the Library Locations window select Add to add the folders you want WMP to monitor, including your iTunes Music folder. This will keep WMP in sync with changes in your iTunes library automatically.

    You will also need to set up WMP to share your media with the RDG/RCX unit. Go to Stream>More streaming options... and Allow the Rotel Gateway. See the Owner's Manual for more information.

If using a Mac, you will need a UPnP program such as EyeConnect to use the Mac as a UPnP server with the Rotel system. Other UPnP servers may work but have not been tested.

Note the Rotel models are optimized for Windows Media Player 11 and 12.

Can I use another software program to manage my music instead of Windows Media Player?

The RDG-1520, RCX-1500 and RT-09 will recognize third party UPnP program however we cannot offer support for these programs.

Why can't I see all the albums that I want to be selected for Windows Media Player?

Windows Media Player cannot see all file types. If you rip your CDs to a file/codec tyupe which is not supported buy Windows Media Player - for example FLAC - you will not be able to play it. WMP11 does not support AAC/AAC+ natively; WMP12 added AAC/AAC+ support. WAV (uncompressed) and MP3 are the most universal formats.

CAPABILITIES

What audio file types will play on the RDG-1520, RT-09 and RCX-1500?

The RDG-1520 and RCX-1500 will play a wide variety of popular audio file formats. Depending upon the type of connection being used, and also the software involved if streaming the audio from a UPnP server will determine which files can be played. The list below details what files will play with each connection type:

  • Front Panel USB Input (w/ iPod or iPhone): AAC, AAC+, AIFF, Apple Lossless, MP3, WAV
  • Front Panel USB Input (w/ USB Flash Drive): AAC, AAC+, MP3, WAV, WMA
  • UPnP Streaming (Windows Media Player 11): MP3, WAV, WMA
  • UPnP Streaming (Windows Media Player 12): AAC, AAC+, FLAC*, MP3, WAV, WMA
  • Internet Radio: AAC, AAC+, MP3, Ogg Vorbis, WAV, WMA

TVersity, EyeConnect and other third-party UPnP software programs that support additional file types will be recognized by RDG-1520, RCX-1500 and RT-09 but we do not offer support for these programs.

*FLAC files can be streamed via the UPnP server connection, but to do so requires that they be playable on Windows Media Player 12 and this may require a third party program to make them visible to WM12. Only 16-bit FLAC files are supported.

What Are The Differences Between These Formats?

The specific differences between these formats are too vast to go into detail here in an FAQ. The short answer is that MP3, AAC, and WMA are lossy formats in which bits of the digital code are removed in varying degrees (i.e. - 128Kb, 256Kb, 320Kb) with the smaller bit rates being able to pack more music tracks on to available memory. FLAC and WAV are lossless formats, which pack the digital information more efficiently to make the music files smaller. The difference in sound between them can be substantial, especially if you are using a higher quality playback speaker system or premium headphones.

Internet radio mostly uses MP3 format which can range from poor to very good depending upon the station broadcasters choice. There are a few exceptional stations that broadcast in the lossless formats. For more details on the differences between lossy and lossless formats please visit Stereophile magazine for an excellent article at: www.stereophile.com/features/308mp3cd/.

Can I play FLAC files?

16-bit FLAC files can be streamed via the UPnP server connection, but to do so requires that they be playable on Windows Media Player 12 and this may require a third party program to make them visible to WM12. FLAC files will not play on systems running Windows Media Player 11.

Some alternative UPnP server programs such as TVersity may also detect and stream FLAC files but we cannot offer support for UPnP programs beyond Windows Media Player.

Please note that 192/24 FLAC files are not Windows Media Player compatible and will not stream.

Streaming large files recorded in FLAC or WAV may be slow via a wireless connection, and particularly slow if the signal strength of the radio is less than 50%. Check your wireless strength by going to Network>Settings>Wi-Fi Strength.

24-Bit FLAC files can only be played using the Aux inputs on the back panel of the unit. Not all computer soundcards will stream 24-bit audio so please confirm that the soundcard on your computer will support this resolution before trying this.

Can I play AAC files?

AAC files are compatible with Windows Media Player 12, but Windows Media Player 11 may require a third party program for them to be playable in Windows Media Player. If Windows Media player can play the file then it will stream via the UPnP connection.

Can I play Apple Lossless files?

Apple lossless files stored on an iPad/iPhone/iPod can be played but only from the front panel USB input of the unit.

What premium radio services are available on this unit?

As of this writing, Pandora, Sirius, Aupeo, and Live 365 are supported. Additional services may be offered in the future.

These premium radio services are available but not all services are available in all parts of the world due to licensing restrictions. Go to www.rotelradio.com and see which premium services can be accessed where you live. Premium services not listed cannot be added at this time however new services are being added regularly so check the site to see new offers.

Can I use Windows Media Player on my PC to stream to my Rotel tuner?

Yes, Windows Media Player works as a UPnP (Universal Plug & Play) server for the RDG-1520, RT-09 and RCX-1500 units. Turn on your computer, launch the Windows Media Player application, select "LIBRARY", followed by "Media Sharing" and select "Share My Media" to the Rotel Gateway. Consult the UPnP instructions in the Rotel owner's manual for the RDG1520 or RCX-1500 for further details.

With the RCX-1500 can I copy CDs to an iPod or MP3 player or to by server?

This kind of feature is not part of the design.

GENERAL

What does the "REPLY" button do?

Use the Reply Key to "END" a texted entry in place of finding "END" in the list and pressing Enter. The Reply Key will automatically send the End command and Enter command.

I need to put the unit closer to a wall - is there any way to use a smaller wireless dongle?

We do not recommend using a different wireless dongle, but if you do need to reduce the amount of space in the rear of the unit, you can use a short USB extension cable to move the radio closer to the wall. Do not use a cable over 20cm or 8".

What is the 'power option' in the settings menu?

If you select <Quick> from the menu when you then turn the product to standby the last item that you were listening is retained. Accordingly, when you press standby again the product will start up at the last item that you were listening to. Keep in mind that this means you will continue to consume broadband usage when the product is configured in this mode. Although pre-selected, you will have to restart music files being played by the Media Player or from CD; this is normal.

When I try to select menu items using the Back or Reply keys of the remote handset, they do not work.

You should use the Up/Down (Next/Previous) keys instead. This is intended to avoid inadvertent changes to settings and other adjustments.

TROUBLESHOOTING

The display just says "Starting..." and never changes.

The unit requires a solid connection to the internet to start up any inputs besides the CD player and Aux inputs. If the screen says "Starting..." for more than a minute or two, please confirm that a USB dongle, either the supplied Wireless or Wired version, is plugged into the USB input on the back panel of the unit.

Please do be aware the RJ45 socket on the back panel of the unit is not an Ethernet connection, this is used for serial control only, so make sure to use the supplied USB dongle for the internet connection. If you are not sure how to connect to your LAN please refer to our Step-by-Step guides available on www.rotelradio.com.

I cannot obtain the registration code via the 'settings' menu.

You need to be connected to the internet via your local network to be able to download the registration code. Once you have configured the Rotel to access your network, the code will appear in the display.

When listening to streaming content, the display will says "Buffering..." and the audio drops out.

This can occur when the radio loses the stream from the internet radio station. This is a condition of the internet signal and the strength of the radio stations stream, and not something wrong the radio. Some stations will buffer more than others and this condition will vary depending upon the load on the internet stream.

The RCX-1500 produces a whirring noise on startup - is this normal?

This is normal - this is simply the CD mechanism resetting itself.

The display just says "Wireless Driver Error" and never changes.

If this message appears then power off the unit, unplug the wireless dongle and plug it back in, then power the unit back on. If the message reappears it may mean there is a fault with the Wireless dongle so please contact your dealer for a replacement.

The characters in the display on the front panel seem to flicker.

This is normal and of no consequence.

FRONT PANEL USB INPUT

Will the front panel USB input charge my iPod/iPhone/iPad?

The Rotel model will charge iPods and iPhone models, but will not charge an iPad if it is connected via the USB port.

What other devices besides iPods can be used on the front panel USB input?

The USB Front panel input can be used for playing MP3 files stored on any class 2 memory device. Thumb drives, SD cards and other class 2 memory storage devices are compatible however those with less than 1 Gig of memory will function better.

Before unplugging a device from the front USB we recommend pressing the Stop button on the remote control or the front of the product for a couple of seconds and then select "Yes" when it says "Safe to Remove".

How do I disconnect an iPod or iPhone from the USB input?

A long press of the Stop key on the front panel of the unit or via the remote will "Eject" the iPod/iPhone so it can be safely disconnected from the USB input of the RCX-1500/RDG-1520.

A/V Receivers & Processors


HDMI

How do I get the benefits of Dolby True HD and DTS- HD?

Most Rotel systems will allow you to enjoy the benefits of these new audio formats, but the exact method to go about this does vary depending on the model you own. Please refer below for details on how to best connect your system to play back these HD formats.

  • RSX-1550, RSX-1560, RSP-1570: The 15 series processors and receivers feature HDMI 1.3 hardware and can decode Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio signals via the HDMI connection from a Blu-Ray player. Just connect an HDMI cable from the output of the Blu-Ray player to one of the HDMI inputs on the processor. Then using the INPUT SETUP menu of the Rotel make sure that the Rotel processor is set to the appropriate HDMI input and the audio input should be set to "HDMI Audio". Be sure that the Blu-Ray player has been configured to output the HDMI audio as bitstream and any secondary audio options should be disabled in the player to ensure the HD audio content is streamed to the Rotel processor.
  • RSP-1068, RSP-1098, RSX-1057, RSX-1067: To decode Dolby True HD and DTS-HD you will need to connect the multi-channel analog outputs from your Blu-Ray player to the multi-channel inputs on your Rotel product. This will utilize the internal decoding capabilities of your player allowing you the audible benefits of the lossless codecs. This requires purchasing a Blu-Ray player that provides onboard HD audio decoding and provides multichannel analog outputs.
  • RSP-1069, RSX-1058: In addition to the multi channel analog connection method mentioned above, you may also use the HDMI audio input to get high definition audio from your Blu-Ray player. Many Blu-Ray players offer onboard decoding of Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD and can stream the decoded high definition audio signal as a multichannel linear PCM (LPCM) signal via the HDMI output. The Rotel processor can then decode and process the high definition audio from this LPCM audio signal. For more detailed information on this method, please refer to our "HDMI: What You Need to Know" article under the section "Audio Formats and HDMI 1.3".

When I play a Blu-Ray disc, the display says Dolby HD +XS or Dolby HD +EX, or Dolby HD +PLIIx M/C. Is the unit playing the HD audio correctly, and what does the XS/EX/PLIIx mean?

Yes, the unit is decoding and playing a Dolby TrueHD signal when the display reads "Dolby HD +XS", etc. Many of the HD soundtracks available today are recorded in 5.1, not 7.1. However, if you have a 7.1 audio system you likely will want all 7 speakers (and subwoofer) playing when you listen to a Blu-Ray disc. When this is the case, the Rotel processor can apply additional processing to the 5.1 HD signal to matrix out additional channels for the 6th & 7th channels in the system. You have a choice of 3 or 4 distinct methods to do this:

  • Dolby Digital EX (Available for Dolby 5.1 modes only)
  • Dolby Pro Logic IIx Music
  • Dolby Pro Logic IIx Cinema
  • Rotel XS (Extended Surround)

Using these additional processing modes does not compromise the original HD content for the 5.1 channels; it simply allows you to add the extra back channels when playing these 5.1 soundtracks.

For more detailed information on these different modes, refer to the owner's manual for your product.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc, the display just says MULTI CHANNEL, but does not say Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. Why?

If the display reads "MULTI CHANNEL" when playing a Blu-Ray disc, rest assured the Rotel processor is still receiving an HD audio signal from the Blu-Ray player, it is just being received in the form of a multichannel Linear PCM signal instead of the raw Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD bitstream. All HD signals, whether it be Dolby or DTS, first come off the disc as an HD bitstream which must be decoded and uncompressed into raw digital audio (Linear PCM). This first step of decoding and uncompressing the audio can be handled either in the Blu-Ray player or inside the processor and there should not be a noticeable performance difference based on where this occurs. With HDMI 1.1 devices the decoding must occur in the Blu-Ray player, but starting with HDMI 1.3 the raw bitstream audio can be sent to the processor.

Check the settings in the Blu-Ray player's setup menu for an option to set the HDMI audio from LPCM to Bitstream to let the Rotel processor do the HD decoding. This option will only work with HDMI 1.3 and higher devices so RSX-1058 and RSP-1069 must use LPCM only.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc and select the HD audio soundtrack, the display just says Dolby Digital or DTS, but does not say Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. Why?

In addition to the HD audio soundtracks, many Blu-Ray titles also offer additional audio content in the form of secondary audio, which may include directors' commentaries for example. The secondary audio tracks are usually not encoded in HD but rather in standard Dolby Digital or DTS. Most Blu-Ray players will have a menu option in their setup menu to either enable or disable secondary audio playback. The tradeoff is that when secondary audio is ENABLED, most blu-ray players will not output the HD audio bitstream from discs but instead will play the standard non-HD audio instead. So, to ensure you are getting the full HD audio content from the disc check the setup menu of the Blu-Ray player and ensure the secondary audio option is disabled.

Can I upgrade the software on my surround receiver or processor to HDMI 1.4?

Rotel models that originally supported HDMI 1.3 such as the RSX-1550, RSX-1560 and RSP-1570 can now be upgraded to the latest software to support 3D video passthrough, thus making them HDMI 1.4 compliant.
Unfortunately, the hardware and software on older HDMI 1.1 models such as the RSX-1057, RSX-1058 and RSP-1069 cannot be updated to support HDMI 1.3 or 1.4.

SYSTEM SETUP

How do I calibrate my system with on-screen menus?

We have produced a step-by-step video for "On-Screen Programming" on Rotel's web site at www.rotel.com/NA/Support/ProgrammingOSD.htm. Alternatively, please consult the owner's manual for your unit on system calibration, or contact your local Rotel dealer for assistance with system setup.

Why do I need to balance the output levels on all channels for surround sound?

To get proper audio levels from all speakers and the best entertainment experience from your home theater system you must use the built in test tone generator under the Rotel Menu (On Screen Display). The best method to set the speaker balance is to use a sound pressure meter available from Radio Shack (around $45) or at many other electronics stores. You can set up the speaker balance with the use of your own ears, but it is not likely to be accurate. For complete speaker balancing procedures see your owner's manual.

The RSX-1560 has seven channels. What do I do with the other two if my system only has five speakers?

They need not sit idle! If your front speakers can be bi-amplified you can direct more power to the front left and right speakers. *You speakers must have two sets of speaker binding posts that can allow the bass section to be separated from the midrange/tweeters. Alternatively, you can use these two channels in a multizone configuration to drive speakers in another room.

Can I connect both the component and HDMI monitor out connections?

Please refer below to the answers depending on the model you own:

  • RSP-1098 HDMI, RSX-1057: As these models do not offer scaling or upconversion from analog video to the HDMI outputs, you can connect both HDMI and Component video monitor outputs to the TV.
  • RSP-1069, RSP-1570, RSX-1058, RSX-1550, RSX-1560: It is not recommended to connect component video and HDMI video outputs to a monitor simultaneously as the two video image signals may affect each other. These Rotel products will scale all analog video inputs to the HDMI output so both connections would not be necessary to view both HDMI and analog video sources.

TROUBLESHOOTING

I have connected the component video monitor out to my TV but I can't see the on-screen menu.

Please refer below to the answers depending on the model you own:

  • RSP-1066, RSP-976, RSX-1055, RSX-1065, RSX-972: These models offered component video switching but did not provide an on-screen menu on the component video output. A composite video connection is recommended to view the on-screen menu for setup purposes.
  • All other Rotel AV Processors and Receivers: First, it may be helpful to verify that the physical connections between the Rotel component and the monitor are correct and that the monitor is on the correct input. If the component cables are in the right place and you are sure you are on the correct input of the TV, simply power cycle the Rotel component off and on. When the unit first powers up, a "System Status" screen should appear on the TV for a few seconds, then disappear. If this screen appears, the connections are correct. If it does appear, this confirms the connections are correct and you should be able to access the menu by verifying the remote is in the AUD mode by pressing the "AUD" button, followed by pressing the Menu/OSD button on the remote.

I have connected the component video monitor out to my TV and I can see the on-screen menu, but it appears stretched and distorted.

The on-screen menu for the RSP-1068, RSP-1098, RSX-1056, RSX-1057 and RSX-1067 used a 480i video signal to transmit the menu to the monitor. However, many component video sources such as DVD, HD cable and Satellite provide a higher output resolution such as 480p, 720p or 1080i. If the Rotel on-screen menu attempts to overlay the menu on top of these higher video resolutions, it can either distort the video, or may not display at all depending upon the monitor. The solution to this is to enable the 'Progressive' setting for each component video source that uses a 480p or higher resolution. To allow the menu to be viewable, change the input on the Rotel component to a non-video source such as Tape, or turn off the source component so that the on-screen menu is now displaying on a blank background rather than trying to overlay the menu on top of the video source.

The 'Progressive' setting is located in the 'Other Options' menu of the RSP-1068, RSX-1056, RSX-1057 and RSX-1067, or in the 'Display' menu of the RSP-1098. From this menu, the Progressive setting can be enabled for each component video input on the unit. Once the progressive setting has been enabled, the on-screen menu will appear on a black backdrop.

I have connected a composite / S-video out to my TV but I can't see the receiver's on-screen setup menu.

The On-Screen menu is available only on the composite and S-video outputs that are labeled "Monitor Out" (or "Mon Out"). Please verify that the composite or S-video cable is connected to the appropriate monitor output connection on the rear panel of the Rotel component. Also verify that the TV is on the correct input as well. Make sure the Rotel remote control is in the AUD mode by pressing the "AUD" button. Then press the Menu/OSD button to activate the on screen menu.

A simple test to verify that the physical connections from the Rotel component to the TV are correct would be to power cycle the Rotel component. When the unit first powers up, a "System Status" screen should appear on the TV for a few seconds, then disappear. If this screen appears, the connections are correct.

How do I switch video inputs on my Rotel product using the RR-1050, RR-1060 or RR-1061 remote?

You need to press and hold the input you wish to change to for approximately 4 seconds.

The Rotel remote supplied with my surround receiver or processor doesn't have built in codes for my cable / satellite box. How can I operate them so I don't have to use two remotes?

It is difficult to keep up with the many changes of components and IR codes. Therefore, the remotes supplied with our surround receivers and processors feature a learning system that can be taught the proper codes to work with your other electronics if the codes are not available in the built in code library of the remote.

How do I reset my Rotel receiver?

Please refer to our reset procedures for Rotel products for 10 & 15 Series models or 900 Series models to determine how to reset your product to its factory default settings.

MULTI ZONE

How do I use zone 2 on my Rotel product?

The second zone feature requires either an external amplifier to power the speakers in this zone, or if your Rotel receiver offers an amplifier redirect feature, the redirected amplifiers can be used instead. The second zone can only be used with analog signal sources.

There are several different ways to control the remote zone on your Rotel product - from the front panel of the unit, via the remote control, using an external IR remote system, or using an RS-232 based control system such as Crestron. An overview of the various options is provided below, but your authorized dealer would be the best contact for detailed information on this topic to help determine which method would work best for your application.

The zone can be controlled from the front panel of most Rotel products by pressing the ZONE button followed by adjusting the volume or input source. In the case of the RSP1098, press the PATH button until Zone 2 status information appears on the OSD or TFT. Rotating the RSP1098 function knob while this is displayed will allow the Zone 2 source to be changed.

The second zone can also be controlled by using the using the ZONE button on the RR 1050, RR 1060 or RR-1061 remote controls.

The third method of controlling the remote zone would involve using the rear 3.5mm IR input labeled ZONE REMOTE IN. This requires the use of an IR repeater system such as those manufactured by Xantech, Niles, and other custom installation manufacturers. This system will allow control of the second zone using a remote in the second zone or an IR-based keypad in the zone.

The final method used for control of the zone is an RS232-based control system such as Crestron. These systems offer full system automation and often can be programmed to provide detailed feedback such as what the current volume and input the zone is in. This type of control system does require extensive programming, and once again, your authorized Rotel dealer would be the best resource for more information.

Why do I have to connect analog cables from my source components to get sound in the other zones?

Digital audio signals and analog audio signals are kept separate from each other. The multizone circuitry in Rotel surround receivers and preamp/processor is analog. If you have digital connections from your CD player or DVD player to your home theater receiver or preamp/processor, you must also use analog connections (RCA connecting cables) from your source components to the CD or DVD player input on the receiver or preamp/processor.

What do I need to run additional zone speakers off the RSX-1550, RSX-1560, or RSP-1570?

If you are only running a 5.1 speaker system with the RSX-1560, the additional 2 channels of the built in amplifiers on this model can be redirected to power one of the additional zones in the system. Otherwise, you will need an additional multizone amplifier such as RMB-1506 or RMB-1512 to power the additional zones.

Why can't I get any audio from zone 2/3/4?

The zone outputs are only available when an analog input is being used. If you currently have only a digital cable connected from a source, a separate stereo analog cable should be connected to the same input to allow the source to be heard in the remote zones.

GENERAL

When assembling a home audio or theater system what route should I go - separates or a receiver?

The first question you will face when assembling a home audio or theater system is whether to go the route of separates or a receiver. Years ago, this question was easily answered based on budget. But thanks to Rotel's "balanced design" philosophy, breaking up is no longer hard to do. Of course, if you do not have the space for several pieces of equipment, then a receiver may be your only option. You will also need to take the power requirements of your speakers into consideration.

Theoretically, separates provide better sound. Consider that a receiver has three components all in one box: a tuner (radio), a power amplifier (several if it is a home theatre receiver), and a preamplifier (for volume, tone controls, etc). That's a lot of noise-generating circuitry going on in one box. By having separate components, each one is designed to handle one task, with their own dedicated power supplies, and without interference from the other.

This also makes it easier to upgrade or repair a component. Ordinarily, receivers cannot be upgraded, and if the tuner section breaks, you must bring the entire unit in for repair, creating system down time. Yet if you have a separate tuner which breaks, it can be sent for service but you can still enjoy the remainder of your system while you await its return. And if you find a better tuner that strikes your fancy, changing to the new model is easy, as opposed to living with whatever is built-in to your receiver. Your power will also be limited to your receiver's rated amplification, unless you add an outboard amplifier.

Having said all of that, receivers have come a long way. It could be argued that if you invest in a very high quality receiver, such as Rotel's RSX-1560, you could approach (but not match) the level of separates. A receiver will also require less interconnects and may prove easier to use and faster to set up. In general, if you have the money and the space, seriously consider separates. Otherwise, buy the best receiver within your budget.

Why does Rotel not support THX?

When it was initially introduced THX released a set of tight standards that helped promote better theater sound. Manufacturers that wanted to have this logo on their product had to submit it to THX for testing and certification. Today, it is not under the same ownership and the standards have evolved to include different levels of performance. While it was a genuine "Good Housekeeping" symbol for theater components in the early days, it does not have the same status today and many manufactures, including Rotel, do not believe it adds anything but an additional licensing fee to the equipment.

Why do Rotel receivers seem to have less power (watts) for the money than other manufacturers?

In order to compare power (in watts) between surround receivers we have to assume that everyone is measuring the power of their amplifier section the same way - which they currently are not. As of the writing of this FAQ, the FTC has not mandated a standard power rating for multichannel receivers and amplifiers, like they did with stereo receivers and amplifiers years ago. The old standard was that a manufacturer must publish its power rating with all channels driven, from 20Hz to 20kHz, into a standard load (8 ohms usually.) This is not happening today, and what we at Rotel would specify as 75 watts per channel, another manufacturer might specify as 120 watts. It depends on how it is measured. Many companies today are rating the power amplifier output by driving only one channel, and often into a lower impedance to show a higher rating. Is this fair? No, but it is being done all the time.

For more details on power ratings see our Rotel Home Theater & Hifi Encyclopedia, available for download in the reference material section of this site.

Why does Rotel not have Autoeq?

At Rotel, we have been asked many times why our audio/video receivers don't feature an Auto-Eq set up. The short answer is that while these devices do change the sonic characteristics, we don't believe that they provide a real sonic improvement at this level of product manufacturing. Further, that the cost of including this feature comes at the expense of overall audio performance. For the more complete answer, please read on.

The electronics industry continues to evolve at a remarkable pace and surround-sound electronics along with big screen TVs have brought the cinema experience home. However, not every new feature should be taken at face value as a real benefit. Auto EQ is the latest feature touted to add more value to home theater receivers. The premise of Auto EQ is that it takes the guesswork out of smoothing acoustic room variables through the use of a microphone and some digital signal processing. However, you don't need to look much further than the comprehensive article from Keith Howard - "Anti-Node: Active Room-Acoustics Correction" in Stereophile - January 2008 to understand how difficult this is to do well, even with far more expensive dedicated EQ systems. While it might be construed that we are denigrating Auto-Eq because we don't include it in any of our models, we stand behind our belief that this feature adds a cost factor that is far better off spent on higher performance parts, which can result in true sonic improvements.

As an analogy, it is a bit like purchasing a Yugo automobile with heated leather seats, a powered sunroof, and 20" chrome wheels. The Yugo is then a little fancier than a basic Honda, but it still drives like a Yugo. In fact, in some instances, auto-correction equalization can do more harm than good. This is due to the fact that digital EQ processing at this level is nowhere near as sophisticated, as it needs to be. A manufacturer's home theater receiver BOM (Bill Of Materials), will quickly show that they simply can't afford to add the processing horsepower (cost of the chip) required to get the job done properly and still be competitive. The end result is that a value engineered Auto-EQ chip makes a guess about the worst offending frequencies, but by dramatically altering those sound waves, they also end up changing others that can affect the sound negatively.

If you are really concerned about getting the very best sound out of your home theater, or stereo system, you should consult a Rotel audio/video specialist. They know how it all goes together: how to position speakers in a room properly and how to set up your system's software for bass management and speaker levels to get the best sound. If you are looking to achieve the absolute best in performance, they can also consult with you regarding room mode correction treatment materials, or on designing a proper acoustic environment from the ground up.

At Rotel, we have not ignored the importance of having some flexibility in controlling room modes. Did you know that the new 15 series components have very flexible bass management options? They can provide independent speaker configurations and crossover settings for each channel and surround mode. You can even create basic "notch filters" for troublesome frequencies. As an example, if you had a room node at 90Hz, you could set the speaker mains to roll off at 100 Hz and the subwoofer at 80Hz. For even more flexibility, there are contour adjustments at 10kHz and 100Hz that can be set independently for each channel. These are acoustic adjustments that can subtly improve the performance of your system without creating wider problems. However, there is simply no substitute for a home theater system that is designed and installed by knowledgeable experts.

What is video transcoding and why do I need it?

Video transcoding provides the option to take a signal such as component and change it to HDMI. This feature is desired if you have multiple video source components with different outputs. You can transcode to one HDMI output to send to the video display. Depending on the HDMI version of your system though, you may not be able to send audio over the HDMI cable and will require a separate connection for that.

What is a DSP?

Found in most home theatre receivers/processors, Digital Signal Processing attempt to recreate particular surroundings such as a jazz club, stadium, or church, to name a few. Some manufacturers load up their equipment with a bunch of these sound fields. Rotel, however, prefers to keep them to a minimum, for those who wish to experiment. We believe music should be reproduced faithfully to the original performance. When a musician records an album, it is usually done in good ol' fashioned two-channel stereo, not in an electronically reproduced sound mode. Moreover, it is not realistic to think someone can transform their living room into the same acoustical characteristics as an intimate jazz club or a large outdoor stadium. Multi-channel DVD concert discs, DTS music discs, and DVD-Audio will provide a much more realistic atmosphere over even the most sophisticated DSP modes.

FEATURES

What surround sound formats do Rotel receivers and processors support?

Rotel supports all of the current surround formats including Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus and dts-HD Master Audio, dts HD Hi-Resolution.

Can the Rotel RSX-1058 and RSP-1069 support high resolution audio from Blu-ray discs?

Rotel's technical support department has received numerous questions about decoding the high definition audio formats, i.e. Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master HD, that are available on some Blu-ray discs. (Not all Blu-ray discs feature Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. It is up to the director to decide which format will be used. Some discs have both formats, but some have only one or the other. In addition, some HD players do not decode both formats.)

There seems to be plenty of misunderstanding about Rotel's ability to handle these new audio codecs due to the employment of HDMI 1.1 chipsets in our RSX-1058 surround receiver and RSP-1069 pre/processor. It is important to note that both Dolby and DTS recommend that the HD audio decoding be done in the HD disc player, which also provides access to other options such as additional Internet-streamed content for the movie being played. Once decoded by the player, the audio signal is output via multi-channel LPCM to HDMI input provided on the RSX-1058 and RSP-1069. Not all players support internal decoding, so you should confirm this on your particular unit.

You should also know that a great many Blu-ray discs do not use either of these new codecs, offering instead a completely uncompressed LCPM as the high resolution option, which is of course accepted by our these units.

How do I connect my iPod?

You need a special cable which converts the mini-connector output of the iPod to a standard stereo RCA connector which can then be connected to any available analog input on your Rotel product. Alternatively, there are many different iPod docks available that will provide a stereo RCA output that can be used to connect to the Rotel product. Many iPod docks also offer remote control capability to the iPod - check with your local dealer for more information on these products.

How can I use my headphones with the surround receivers or preamp processor?

You can use headphones with your surround processor or receiver by purchasing an optional headphone amplifier. They are readily available and come in a range of prices from several suppliers. To use these devices it will require that you connect the headphone amplifier using the Left and Right analog outputs to either the "Zone Out" or "Tape Out" connection on the receiver. The Zone Output is recommended to allow you to use the internal Volume Control for that zone. If your Headphones or Headphone Preamp has a volume control the "Tape Out" jacks would work fine.

Please note that for sources to be available for the headphones the sources must be connected with analog audio connections. As an example: If you have a Cable or Satellite Box connected to the "Video 1" input using a Digital Coaxial or Optical cable you would ALSO have to connect the Left and Right Analog Outputs from the Cable or Satellite Box to the "Video 1" Left and Right analog inputs for the source to be available to the headphones.

Can I connect my computer audio output to the computer input (I/O) on the back of the Rotel?

No. The computer I/O input on your Rotel product is only used for external control using third-party developed RS-232 control software such as Crestron or AMX. This input is also used in the case that a software upgrade is needed for your Rotel equipment.

If your computer has analog or digital audio outputs you could connect your computer to a Rotel receiver or surround processor using one of the analog or digital inputs as you would connect any other source component such as a DVD player or CD player.

What are assignable triggers?

Assignable 12-volt triggers allow you the option to tell the receiver or preamplifier what other components to turn on depending upon the source selection chosen.

Amplifiers


GENERAL

How do class D amplifiers work?

A Class D amp works by taking the analog input signal and creating a PWM (pulse width modulation) replica of it-essentially a train of pulses, which correspond to the amplitude and frequency of the input signal. In its most basic form, a comparator circuit is used to match the input signal with the PWM signal. The PWM signal is then amplified by an output stage operating in switch mode, which is to say there are two states, on or off, at very high speed, corresponding to the PWM pulses. A linear amplifier's output stages, by comparison, see a continuous waveform and, to avoid distortion, are on for more than half the waveform (Class A/B) or for the complete waveform (Class A), thus greatly reducing efficiency and generating heat.

The amplified PWM waveform is low pass filtered to recover the audio waveform and eliminate spurious ultrasonic noise before outputting it to the speakers. This process seems digital but is in fact analog in nature. The signal is not "digitized", i.e., assigned a numerical value; the PWM pulse train is an "analog" of the input audio signal. What distinguishes Rotel Class D amps from other designs on the market are innovations in the area of generating a highly accurate PWM signal (COM, which stands for Controlled Oscillation Modulation) and in the feedback circuits (MECC, Multivariable Enhanced Cascade Control) to provide a stable filter characteristic in spite of variable loudspeaker impedances. In simple terms, this means that our Class D amps offer full bandwidth performance at very low distortion in "real world" applications-just like our linear amps, but with the benefits of being smaller, cooler and much more energy efficient.

Why aren't there more Class D amps on the market? For starters, creating stable, full bandwidth Class D circuits while controlling RF/EMI byproducts isn't easy. Few companies have the technological know-how to do it. It also requires extensive use of Surface Mount Devices (SMDs), again putting it out of technological grasp of most audio manufacturers. We have invested with a technology partner to realize these designs.

Here's another key detail that often causes confusion. The Switch Mode Power Supply (SMPS) is not what makes these "switching" amplifiers. As just described, the amplification stage is a high speed switching circuit and what defines this design as Class D. A Class D amp could, in fact, use a conventional power supply; and a linear amp could use a SMPS. A traditional power supply stores large amounts of energy, but wastes "excess" energy not demanded by the load in the process. An SMPS matches output to real-time requirements, supplying only the power required by the load, as a result operating very efficiently. The analogy is a water tank (linear supply), which is always being refilled and spills over if demand is insufficient; compared to an endless series of buckets (SMPS), which can be slowed down or sped up as required. The SMPS in our Class D amps reflects the fact that the Class D amplification circuit does not require the massive energy storage of a linear power amp, so the more efficient/compact SMPS is a better choice.

To sum up, our Class D designs offer:

  1. Excellent audio performance, testified to by numerous critical reviews and awards. Rotel Class D designs are the most advanced in the world.
  2. High energy efficiency (90%+, compared to 50-60% for Class A/B amps). In our increasingly "green" world, this is an important point.
  3. Compact size relative to power output.
  4. Cool running as little energy is wasted as heat.
  5. Low output impedance translates to high damping factor, or control over the loudspeaker.
  6. Low impedance load tolerant.

Why does Rotel use both Class A/B and Class D amplifiers?

Rotel has been designing, manufacturing, and refining class A/B amplifiers for over four decades now. Our analog designs have proven to be extremely reliable and have won many significant awards for their sonic excellence. Part of our reputation is due to the extraordinary amount of attention we devote to the power supply, especially the single most expensive component, the transformer. In order to ensure that this critical element meets or exceeds all of our specifications, we custom build and test all power transformers in-house. For some audio enthusiasts, analog power amplifiers remain the preferred choice because of their proven performance over several decades. Many of today's home theater and multi-room audio applications however, require components that not only perform to the highest sonic expectations, but also fit into smaller enclosed spaces, such as custom cabinetry or equipment racks built into walls and closets. Electronic components in these close quarters generate a large amount of potentially harmful heat, most of which is generated by traditional analog amplifiers. In this situation, Class D amplifiers make the most sense. Whether or not you choose traditional analog or the new Class D amplifiers, you can be assured that all Rotel amplifiers will provide you with great sound and reliability for all your audio video needs.

Why do the protection LEDs come on when I turn my system on or off?

The red protection LEDs for Rotel amplifiers can behave slightly differently depending upon the design of the amplifier in question.

On class AB models such as RB-1582, RB-1552 and RMB-1506, as well as the RB-1562 the protection LEDs will click on briefly then turn off whenever the power amplifier is powered up or powering down into standby mode. For example, when using the 12V trigger to power the amp on or off, the LEDs will briefly turn on to signify the amp is now on. When the system is turned off the protection LEDs will again turn on briefly when the amp shuts down.

On class D models such as RB-1572, RB-1510, RMB-1565, RMB-1575 or RMB-1512 the red protection LEDs will remain lit whenever the amplifier is powered down into standby mode. This is the case when using the 12V trigger to power the amplifiers on or off; the red protection LED will remain lit whenever the system is off, and will go out when the amplifiers are powered up. Note that in either case if the power amplifiers are turned off via the front panel power button all of the front panel LEDs will be off. The above circumstances refer to using either 12V trigger or signal sense modes to control power to the amplifiers.

The protection LEDs for Rotel amplifiers will also of course light up if the unit has experienced a fault and is in fact in protection mode. In this case the LED should remain lit at all times.

Why are there four binding posts on each amplifier channel output?

Some Rotel amplifiers are designed with 4 sets of binding posts to facilitate bi-wiring your loudspeakers. Both sets of binding posts are connected in parallel so if only one pair of posts is required it does not matter which posts are connected.

What is damping factor?

Damping factor (DF) refers to the ratio of internal impedance of the amplifier to the speaker system. Simply stated the DF is the ability of the amplifier to allow the speaker cone to return to its mean static state as soon as possible, from the momentum generated from a singular pulse. So, if the amplifiers damping factor was very low, the speaker cone would oscillate about its mean static position before it came to a standstill. This then adds coloration to the sound field, which is undesirable. On the other hand, if the amplifier's internal impedance is high, the speaker cone would encounter resistance on rebound and then continue to bounce about its static mean position until it finally comes to rest. The amplifier then acts like a trampoline for the speaker cone... perhaps desirable for those who like boomy bass, but less desirable for those who want precision. An amplifier with a high damping factor (greater than 20 DF), is able to absorb the energy generated by the cone rebound, and thereby allows the speaker to return to its mean static position as quickly as the speaker design will allow.

What is bi-amping and bi-wiring?

These two terms are often confused as they both utilize two pairs of speaker cables that are connected to one speaker. Bi-amping involves the use of two separate amplifiers however, which deliver separate voltage and current to the bass drivers and midrange/tweeters. To do this, the speakers must have two pairs of binding posts that can be physically separated, usually by removing connecting wires or a metal bridge. This will separate the bass section from the midrange / tweeter section. There are definite sonic advantages to bi-amping that we can't go into great detail here, but damping factor increases and intermodulation distortion goes down. Bi-wiring requires the same physical separation of the bass and midrange / tweeter circuitry as bi-amping, however, you are only using one amplifier, so both pairs of cables are attached to the positive and negative binding posts on the receiver or power amplifier. In some cases manufacturers have supplied additional binding posts on the receiver or amplifier to help simplify this type of hook up. Bi-wiring has more subtle performance advantages than bi-amping, but it is also less expensive to do than bi-amping.

What is a buffered input?

A buffered input allows voltage transfer from one circuit with high output impedance to a second circuit with low input impedance without interfering with its desired operation. For example, a connection from a preamplifier output to a power amplifier input is usually via a buffered input.

What is Input bussing?

Input bussing allows the signal from one input to be bussed across to other inputs without requiring multiple input connections. This feature is often used in multichannel custom installation amplifiers. It reduces the cost of multiple cables and time during installation.

What is signal sensing?

Signal sensing is most often a circuit that turns on the main power when a electrical signal is applied. An example is the auto-on function in a subwoofer. When the receiver or preamp is turned on and a low frequency audio signal is present the subwoofer turns on.

What is sum-to-mono?

Sum-to-mono combines the left and right audio input signals to provide a mono signal. This is desired when there is no real need for a stereo pair of speakers such as in a narrow hallway, or in very a large open area such as a hall.

What do I need to run additional zone speakers off the RSX-1550, RSX-1560, or RSP-1570?

You will need an additional multizone amplifier such as RMB-1506 or RMB-1512. If you are only running a 5.1 speaker system with the RSX-1560, the additional 2 channels of the built in amplifiers on this model can be redirected to power one of the additional zones in the system.

Tuners


GENERAL

What type of antenna should I use?

As with other components, specifications are only one indicator of performance. In the case of tuners, including those built into receivers, they are at the mercy of the antenna they are connected to. In fact, most tuners will not even output a signal (such as hiss) unless connected to an antenna. If you find the stock antenna provided with your component yields poor reception, here are some alternatives:

The best possible antenna is the outdoor rooftop variety. Most standard outside television antennas will double as excellent FM antennas. A signal booster may be required if there is a very long run of cable between your roof antenna and the tuner.

A more attractive and effective option over the ubiquitous wall hanging dipole antenna is the indoor antenna, some of which use small amplifiers to boost the signal. You can experiment with placement, but you will probably find best results placing the antenna near a window or outside wall. Keep in mind an amplified antenna will need to be plugged into an electrical outlet. If you have the option of using a 75 ohm coaxial connection over a 300 ohm flat lead, the 75 ohm is the better of the two.

What is RDS?

Some tuners/receivers come equipped to display RDS (sometimes called RBDS or Radio Broadcast Data System), which is a text display, usually in the form of a song title, artist name, station call letters, or format. More adventurous information might include a scrolling message saying "be caller number 10 now and win $100!". RDS is widely used in Europe, where it was introduced in 1987 (It didn't debut in the U.S. until 1993). Not all stations use RDS, and those that do may not offer full RDS service. In addition, the functions may not work properly during poor reception. RDS features ordinarily include RDS search, format search (PTY), traffic announcement search (TA), emergency program reception, alternate frequency (AF), and automatic clock adjustment (CT).

What is DAB? (Digital Audio Broadcasting)

DAB is a digital radio technology used for broadcasting radio stations. It is used in several countries, mostly in Europe. The transmission uses the MPEG-1 Audio Layer 2 (MP2) audio codec to encode the audio for transmission. Most stations broadcast at 128kbps bit rate, although higher rates are possible such as 192kbps.

A newer format, DAB+, was announced in 2006 and went into effect in 2007. DAB+ uses a more efficient audio codec (HE-AAC v2), which means stations broadcasting in DAB+ can get better sound quality with a smaller bit rate, as low as 64kbps. DAB+ is not backwards-compatible with older DAB radios, so new hardware is required in order to receive DAB+ transmissions.

What is HD Radio?

HD Radio technology allows participating broadcasters to provide you with a higher fidelity digital AM and FM signal. Additionally, HD Radio stations often offer additional channels of content that is not available on the standard FM broadcast.

The digital signal is broadcast using a proprietary audio compression codec called HDC (High-Definition Coding). Current FCC rules also require stations to simulcast the same audio signal in analog as well, so if the primary digital signal is lost, the HD Radio receiver will revert to the analog signal, thereby proving seamless operation.

For HD AM broadcasts, the stations can choose broadcast rates between 40-60kbps, with most stations using the 40kbps as this method is more robust and less likely to cause dropouts due to signal strength issues. In theory the increased bandwidth on the AM band allows for AM radio at FM radio quality.

The FM HD broadcasts allow options to carry 100, 112, 125 or 150kbps of data when simulcasting with an analog signal. The system also has the capability of several pure digital modes up to 300kbps, however at the moment this would require a change to the current FCC ruling requiring the station to simulcast the signal in analog before stations can broadcast in pure digital.

FM stations also have the option to subdivide the digital audio streams into sub-channels (i.e. 87.5 HD1, HD2, etc.), which is often done to allow for more variety from one station. Each individual sub-channel can have its own audio quality from CD-quality (100kbps), FM-quality (25-50kbps), AM-quality (12kbps), or Talk-quality (5kbps).

For full information and to find stations in your area with HD please visit http://www.hdradio.com

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What is Internet Radio?

It can be music, comedy, sports, or any kind of radio broadcasts that are streamed over the Internet in various bit rate forms, from low to very high quality. Internet radio may also be referred to as web radio, streaming radio, net radio, or e-radio. The ability to stream these signals over the Internet allows people to hear radio broadcasts from virtually every corner of the planet, a feat that is just not possible by using traditional radio transmitters. As of the writing of this FAQ list, there are nearly 20,000 Internet radio stations.

How Do I Access Internet Radio?

You will need a specialized tuner such as the Rotel RDG-1520 (connected to a preamp and amplifier or integrated amplifier) or an RCX-1500 receiver. These streaming media units are equipped with the appropriate circuits and wired or wireless connections to access the Internet (via WiFi or Ethernet connections.) Note: You must already have high speed Internet access.

How do I get Sirius radio on my RT-1084?

To receive Sirius satellite radio signals on the RT-1084 tuner you will need to purchase an optional Sirius plug-in module. Up to four Sirius modules may be added to the RT-1084 for personal music selection in other listening areas with a multizone audio system. The Sirius module that is used with the RT-1084 is the SiriusConnect Home, model SC-H1. This module can be purchased directly from Sirius' online shop at http://shop.sirius.com, and is also stocked at many electronics retailers as well.

Additional compatible tuner modules are the SC-H2P and SC-HDOC1.

Blu-Ray


GENERAL

How do I get the benefits of Dolby True HD and DTS- HD?

Most Rotel systems will allow you to enjoy the benefits of these new audio formats, but the exact method to go about this does vary depending on the model you own. Please refer below for details on how to best connect your system to play back these HD formats.

  • RSX-1550, RSX-1560, RSP-1570: The 15 series processors and receivers feature HDMI 1.3 hardware and can decode Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio signals via the HDMI connection from a Blu-Ray player. Just connect an HDMI cable from the output of the Blu-Ray player to one of the HDMI inputs on the processor. Then using the INPUT SETUP menu of the Rotel make sure that the Rotel processor is set to the appropriate HDMI input and the audio input should be set to "HDMI Audio". Be sure that the Blu-Ray player has been configured to output the HDMI audio as bitstream and any secondary audio options should be disabled in the player to ensure the HD audio content is streamed to the Rotel processor.
  • RSP-1068, RSP-1098, RSX-1057, RSX-1067: To decode Dolby True HD and DTS-HD you will need to connect the multi-channel analog outputs from your Blu-Ray player to the multi-channel inputs on your Rotel product. This will utilize the internal decoding capabilities of your player allowing you the audible benefits of the lossless codecs. This requires purchasing a Blu-Ray player that provides onboard HD audio decoding and provides multichannel analog outputs.
  • RSP-1069, RSX-1058: In addition to the multi channel analog connection method mentioned above, you may also use the HDMI audio input to get high definition audio from your Blu-Ray player. Many Blu-Ray players offer onboard decoding of Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD and can stream the decoded high definition audio signal as a multichannel linear PCM (LPCM) signal via the HDMI output. The Rotel processor can then decode and process the high definition audio from this LPCM audio signal. For more detailed information on this method, please refer to our "HDMI: What You Need to Know" article under the section "Audio Formats and HDMI 1.3".

When I play a Blu-Ray disc, the display says Dolby HD +XS or Dolby HD +EX, or Dolby HD +PLIIx M/C. Is the unit playing the HD audio correctly, and what does the XS/EX/PLIIx mean?

Yes, the unit is decoding and playing a Dolby TrueHD signal when the display reads "Dolby HD +XS", etc. Many of the HD soundtracks available today are recorded in 5.1, not 7.1. However, if you have a 7.1 audio system you likely will want all 7 speakers (and subwoofer) playing when you listen to a Blu-Ray disc. When this is the case, the Rotel processor can apply additional processing to the 5.1 HD signal to matrix out additional channels for the 6th & 7th channels in the system. You have a choice of 3 or 4 distinct methods to do this:

  • Dolby Digital EX (Available for Dolby 5.1 modes only)
  • Dolby Pro Logic IIx Music
  • Dolby Pro Logic IIx Cinema
  • Rotel XS (Extended Surround)

Using these additional processing modes does not compromise the original HD content for the 5.1 channels; it simply allows you to add the extra back channels when playing these 5.1 soundtracks.

For more detailed information on these different modes, refer to the owner's manual for your product.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc, the display just says MULTI CHANNEL, but does not say Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. Why?

If the display reads "MULTI CHANNEL" when playing a Blu-Ray disc, rest assured the Rotel processor is still receiving an HD audio signal from the Blu-Ray player, it is just being received in the form of a multichannel Linear PCM signal instead of the raw Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD bitstream. All HD signals, whether it be Dolby or DTS, first come off the disc as an HD bitstream which must be decoded and uncompressed into raw digital audio (Linear PCM). This first step of decoding and uncompressing the audio can be handled either in the Blu-Ray player or inside the processor and there should not be a noticeable performance difference based on where this occurs. With HDMI 1.1 devices the decoding must occur in the Blu-Ray player, but starting with HDMI 1.3 the raw bitstream audio can be sent to the processor.

Check the settings in the Blu-Ray player's setup menu for an option to set the HDMI audio from LPCM to Bitstream to let the Rotel processor do the HD decoding. This option will only work with HDMI 1.3 and higher devices so RSX-1058 and RSP-1069 must use LPCM only.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc and select the HD audio soundtrack, the display just says Dolby Digital or DTS, but does not say Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. Why?

In addition to the HD audio soundtracks, many Blu-Ray titles also offer additional audio content in the form of secondary audio, which may include directors' commentaries for example. The secondary audio tracks are usually not encoded in HD but rather in standard Dolby Digital or DTS. Most Blu-Ray players will have a menu option in their setup menu to either enable or disable secondary audio playback. The tradeoff is that when secondary audio is ENABLED, most blu-ray players will not output the HD audio bitstream from discs but instead will play the standard non-HD audio instead. So, to ensure you are getting the full HD audio content from the disc check the setup menu of the Blu-Ray player and ensure the secondary audio option is disabled.

DVD Players


TROUBLESHOOTING

When I start some DVD movies on the RDV-1092 or RDV-1093, I can hear the sound but the picture goes blank.

If your Rotel DVD player is connected via component video, the output resolution must be set to either 480i (Interlaced) or 480p (Progressive). While the DVD player can output up to 1080i via component video, many DVDs contain a Macrovision copy protection "flag" that will disable the video output of the player at any resolution higher than 480p. If you wish to view DVDs at higher resolutions than 480p, an HDMI connection must be used.

When I play some DVD movies, I hear some sound but it doesn't sound right, for example I do not hear any of the dialogue from the movie only the background noise.

If your Rotel DVD player is connected via analog audio cables for audio, this issue is usually the result of improper downmix settings for the connection. If the DVD player offers 6 analog audio connections this means each speaker channel of audio has its own dedicated audio output on the DVD player, thus your front, center, surround and subwoofer channels each are decoded and sent on the respective outputs of the player. Usually the 6 analog outputs of the DVD player would be connected to an analog multichannel input of a surround receiver or processor, such as the Multi Input on a Rotel receiver.

If you are only using a stereo pair of analog cables to connect to a stereo input, however, this means that only the audio from the front 2 speakers is being sent to the receiver. The DVD player must be configured to downmix the audio from the center channel, subwoofer, and surrounds into the front channel outputs so it can be heard in the system.

To configure the downmix setting for your DVD player, refer below:

  • RDV-1092/1093: From the Speaker Setup menu, select Speaker Size and set this to NO for the Subwoofer, Surround, and Center speakers.
  • RDV-1050: From the Audio setup menu, select Analog Output and set this to either 2-CH DOLBY SURROUND (if connecting to a surround receiver or processor) or 2-CH STEREO (if connecting to a stereo receiver or TV).
  • RDV-1060: From the Speaker Setup menu, select Output Mode and set this to 2CH STEREO.

I'm not getting sound from my center or rear channel speakers when watching a DVD. Why?

The player is supplied from the factory set in PCM two channel mode. To change the mode to Dolby Digital, stop the disc and remove it from the DVD player, then follow the instructions below depending on your DVD player:

  • RDV 985 / RDV 1080: Push "On-Screen" on the remote control and select the Preference 2 tab. Then change the output from PCM Only to Stream/PCM.
  • RDV 995: Press and hold the "shift" button and press the "choice" button to access the on-screen display. Select the Audio tab, and change the output from PCM Only to Stream/PCM. Please note that you need a Dolby Digital/DTS processor and amplifier or receiver to enjoy 5.1 surround sound.

I'm getting sound from Dolby Digital DVDs, but not dts. Why?

The digital audio output of your DVD player is not configured to output dts. Please refer to the previous question for how to change the audio output from Dolby Digital / PCM to Stream / PCM, which is the required setting for the DVD player to output dts.

GENERAL

Will my DVD player play HD DVD or Blu Ray discs?

No. Blu-Ray and HD-DVD are different formats that require a different type of laser to read and therefore require special players. Your Rotel player is a standard DVD player and therefore will not support these high resolution discs.

Can I play CDRs in my DVD player?

CDR discs are not created in the same way as officially manufactured pressed CDs. Rather than using a system of pits and lands to create the audio stream, CDRs use a special reflective dye that is "burned" to different reflectivity to simulate the same effect as a CDs pits and lands. However for this dye to be properly reflected requires a laser with a wavelength of 780nm. DVD uses a visible red 635nm or 650nm laser, which will not reflect off the dye used in CDRs, making them unreadable when using the DVD laser and making them unreadable on many DVD players. Thus in order for a DVD player to be capable of reading CDRs, it must have a dual-laser system in its design, using one laser for reading DVDs and CDs, and a second laser to read CDR media. Most Rotel DVD players are capable of reading most CDRs, with the exception of the RDV-985 and RDV-1080 models which did not feature dual lasers and therefore cannot read CDRs.

What are DVD-Audio discs?

DVD-Audio (also abbreviated as DVD-A) is a digital format designed to provide high-resolution audio on a DVD disc. DVD-Audio is not the same as a standard DVD-Video disc and generally DVD-Audio discs have very limited video content.

DVD-Audio discs can support from mono up to 6 channels of audio. Mono and Stereo audio tracks are supported up to 24-bit/192kHz, and 5.1 surround tracks are supported up to 24-bit/96kHz. Discs can have multiple tracks, so for example a DVD-A disc can contain both a 24-bit/192kHz stereo audio track as well as a 24-bit/96kHz 5.1 surround audio track.

The high-resolution audio on DVD-A discs is stored on the disc in Linear PCM format. The audio may be stored on the disc either in an uncompressed format, or compressed using Meridian Lossless Packing (MLP). Depending on the amount of audio tracks on the disc, compression may be necessary.

While a DVD-Audio player is required in order to access and play the high-resolution audio on a DVD-A disc, most DVD-A discs are also backwards compatible and will play on a standard DVD-Video player as well. Most DVD-A discs contain DVD-Video compatible data with a standard Dolby Digital 5.1 or Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack that can be played on a standard DVD player. Some DVD-A discs even contained DTS 96/24 audio tracks.

The most typical connection to an audio system for a DVD-A player is via 6-channel analog connections, thus allowing the DVD-A player to decode the high resolution audio in the player and stream it to the audio system in an analog format. All current Rotel surround receivers and processors provide an analog multichannel input that would allow connection of a DVD-Audio player.

Due to the large bandwidth required to transmit HD audio, the only digital cable with sufficient bandwidth to allow digital streaming of the high-resolution audio tracks on a DVD-A disc is HDMI. As DVD-A discs use Linear PCM for the audio format any HDMI device that supports audio over HDMI should be able to play back audio from a DVD-A disc via HDMI.

What is an SACD disc?

SACD is a high-resolution audio disc format that was developed by Sony and Philips Electronics. SACD is designed to provide high-resolution audio in both stereo and surround sound modes up to 5.1 channels. Not all discs will contain both stereo and surround tracks as this is dependent on the disc itself.

The SACD format uses a process known as Direct Stream Digital (DSD) to encode audio. DSD has a sampling rate of 2822.4kHz and the resolution is 1 bit. SACD recordings can have a wider frequency and dynamic range than conventional CDs.

SACD discs can be one of three types:

  • Hybrid - This type of SACD contains an SACD layer compatible with SACD players, as well as a CD layer which is compatible with most standard Red Book CD players.
  • Single-layer - This type of SACD contains only one SACD layer compatible with SACD players, and does not contain a CD layer. This type of SACD will not play in a standard CD player.
  • Dual-layer - This type of SACD contains two SACD layers for additional data, and no CD layer. This type of SACD will also not play in a standard CD player.

The most typical connection to an audio system for an SACD player is via 6-channel analog connections, thus allowing the SACD player to decode the high resolution audio in the player and stream it to the audio system in an analog format. All current Rotel surround receivers and processors provide an analog multichannel input that would allow connection of an SACD player.

Due to the large bandwidth required to transmit HD audio, the only digital cable with sufficient bandwidth to allow digital streaming of SACD audio is HDMI. However, most HDMI devices will not decode SACD as decoding a DSD signal requires a dedicated circuit solely for the purpose of SACD audio decoding. However, several players that do allow digital streaming of SACD discs will provide an option to convert the digital audio into a more standard PCM digital format, which is a standard digital audio signal that is compatible with most devices.

Will any Rotel DVD players play DVD-Audio discs or Sony Super Audio discs (SACD)?

The RDV-1093, RDV-1092, RDV-1080, RDV-1060, RDV-1050, and RDV-1045 will play high-resolution audio from any DVD-Audio discs; however they will not play any SACD high-resolution audio tracks. DVD-Audio discs are also compatible with non-DVD-Audio players such as RDV-995 and RDV-985, however when playing a DVD-Audio disc on these player without DVD-Audio decoding capabilities there will only be a standard Dolby Digital or dts 5.1 audio output, not the high-resolution stereo or multichannel audio.

Will Rotel DVD players play foreign DVDs?

No. US models will only play Region One (US and Canadian) releases.

Why won't my RDV-1092 or RDV-1093 DVD player upscale component video to 1080p?

Component video can support a maximum resolution of 1080i. An HDMI connection is required to display a 1080p video signal. Additionally, many DVD movies are copy-protected which limits the maximum allowable analog video resolution to 480p for copy-protected discs unless an HDMI connection is used.

How can I be sure I am getting the best picture possible?

First, start with your TV. If the TV's picture isn't very good, DVD software won't look very good either. There are a couple of instructional DVDs that show you how to properly calibrate your TV to look its best. Among other tips, these usually involve turning down the brightness and sharpness controls, as set manufacturers tend to increase both at the factory to maximize visual impact on the sales floor. Now that your TV is good to go, you'll want to use the best output from the DVD player to your TV. Most DVD players offer HDMI, composite, S-Video, and component video outputs. If your TV has an HDMI or component input, use it. S-Video, which separates color from black and white signals, can provide up to a 60% sharper picture over composite. The film-like quality of both component video and HDMI is the best of all. Most A/V receivers/processors allow you to route your video signal through the receiver to the TV. This provides the added convenience of on screen graphics and video switching, but at the risk of slightly reduced video quality. To obtain the purist picture, many videophiles connect their video sources directly to their TV after they've used the on screen graphics to do their initial set-up.

What are those black bars on the top and bottom of the screen?

DVD movies come either pan and scan (4:3) or letterbox (widescreen) (16:9). Although pan and scan movies fill the entire TV screen, you're actually missing some of the picture. This is because pan and scan presentations are "cropped", meaning either side is cut out in order to fill the screen. Whenever you watch a videotape or TV movie that says "this film has been edited to fit your television", that's a nice way of saying they've chopped off the sides of the picture. Widescreen films, on the other hand, show the entire picture with nothing cropped. Doing so requires black bars at the top and bottom of the film. Some viewers find these black bars too distracting, but they mean you're seeing the whole film as it was originally shown in movie theatres. Thanks to the capacity of the DVD, many discs contain BOTH pan and scan and letterbox versions, so you can choose which format you prefer. With most television manufacturers producing widescreen 16:9 sets, some DVDs are being released in anamorphic widescreen. This format provides the full frame without any black bars, insuring all available lines of resolution are used on the picture. However, you must have a 16:9 set to take advantage of this. If you have a standard 4:3 screen and you want to play an anamorphic disc, you'll need to be sure your DVD player's menu is set to 4:3, otherwise, the picture won't look right.

What is a Video CD (VCD) or SVCD?

These are formats that are popular in Asia and you may find them at some stores in the US. The picture detail and sound quality are oftentimes poorer than DVD.

What is VSS Virtual Surround Sound?

Sometimes known as 3-D Phonic, VSS offers two channel users of DVDs a simulated surround effect from two speakers.

CD Players


GENERAL

What formats will my Rotel CD player handle?

The RCD-06SE, RCD-1072, RCD-1070, RCC-1055 V01 can read Red Book audio CDs, or CDRs that are burned with standard CD audio tracks. However, we cannot guarantee 100% compatibility with every CDR due to the large differences in media and CD writers available.

The RCD-1520 and the RCC-1055 V02, in addition to the discs listed above, can also read CDRs that contain MP3 files as well.

Only the RCD-1520 can read CD-RW and WMA discs.

What is HDCD?

HDCD (High Definition Compatible Digital) is an audio format that, by using a special method of encoding and decoding, allows for more audio information to be stored on a disc than is available on a standard CD, while still remaining compatible with a standard CD player as well. In order to gain the sonic benefits of HDCD either the CD player or the receiver the CD player is connected to must be able to decode HDCD.

Why does Rotel no longer have HDCD decoding?

Since the purchase of HDCD by Microsoft in 2000, there have been very few new releases with this technology.

Multizone Audio


TROUBLESHOOTING

Why can't I get any audio from zone 2/3/4?

The zone outputs are only available when an analog input is being used. If you currently have only a digital cable connected from a source, a separate stereo analog cable should be connected to the same input to allow the source to be heard in the remote zones.

GENERAL

How do I use zone 2 on my Rotel product?

The second zone feature requires either an external amplifier to power the speakers in this zone, or if your Rotel receiver offers an amplifier redirect feature, the redirected amplifiers can be used instead. The second zone can only be used with analog signal sources.

There are several different ways to control the remote zone on your Rotel product - from the front panel of the unit, via the remote control, using an external IR remote system, or using an RS-232 based control system such as Crestron. An overview of the various options is provided below, but your authorized dealer would be the best contact for detailed information on this topic to help determine which method would work best for your application.

The zone can be controlled from the front panel of most Rotel products by pressing the ZONE button followed by adjusting the volume or input source. In the case of the RSP1098, press the PATH button until Zone 2 status information appears on the OSD or TFT. Rotating the RSP1098 function knob while this is displayed will allow the Zone 2 source to be changed.

The second zone can also be controlled by using the using the ZONE button on the RR 1050, RR 1060 or RR-1061 remote controls.

The third method of controlling the remote zone would involve using the rear 3.5mm IR input labeled ZONE REMOTE IN. This requires the use of an IR repeater system such as those manufactured by Xantech, Niles, and other custom installation manufacturers. This system will allow control of the second zone using a remote in the second zone or an IR-based keypad in the zone.

The final method used for control of the zone is an RS232-based control system such as Crestron. These systems offer full system automation and often can be programmed to provide detailed feedback such as what the current volume and input the zone is in. This type of control system does require extensive programming, and once again, your authorized Rotel dealer would be the best resource for more information.

What do I need to run additional zone speakers off the RSX-1550, RSX-1560, or RSP-1570?

If you are only running a 5.1 speaker system with the RSX-1560, the additional 2 channels of the built in amplifiers on this model can be redirected to power one of the additional zones in the system. Otherwise, you will need an additional multizone amplifier such as RMB-1506 or RMB-1512 to power the additional zones.

Why do I have to connect analog cables from my source components to get sound in the other zones?

Digital audio signals and analog audio signals are kept separate from each other. The multizone circuitry in Rotel surround receivers and preamp/processor is analog. If you have digital connections from your CD player or DVD player to your home theater receiver or preamp/processor, you must also use analog connections (RCA connecting cables) from your source components to the CD or DVD player input on the receiver or preamp/processor.

Can Rotel be controlled by third party remote controls?

Absolutely, Rotel works with many different types of remotes and control systems such as Crestron, Universal Remote, Logitech, RTI, and others. It may be best to work with a professional programmer through your retailer however, as the more components you add, the more complex the programming becomes.

Stereo Systems


GENERAL

What is a "Theater Processor Pass-through?"

The pass-through feature allows the audio signal from a Surround Receiver or Processor to pass through a separate stereo preamplifier without any signal modification. This is useful if you have a high-end two-channel system but want to watch video with surround sound on occasion.

What is a "Media Player Input?"

It is a USB port on the front panel that provides for connection to an iPod or other MP3 type player.

Why does Rotel use both Class A/B and Class D amplifiers?

Rotel has been designing, manufacturing, and refining class A/B amplifiers for over four decades now. Our analog designs have proven to be extremely reliable and have won many significant awards for their sonic excellence. Part of our reputation is due to the extraordinary amount of attention we devote to the power supply, especially the single most expensive component, the transformer. In order to ensure that this critical element meets or exceeds all of our specifications, we custom build and test all power transformers in-house. For some audio enthusiasts, analog power amplifiers remain the preferred choice because of their proven performance over several decades. Many of today's home theater and multi-room audio applications however, require components that not only perform to the highest sonic expectations, but also fit into smaller enclosed spaces, such as custom cabinetry or equipment racks built into walls and closets. Electronic components in these close quarters generate a large amount of potentially harmful heat, most of which is generated by traditional analog amplifiers. In this situation, Class D amplifiers make the most sense. Whether or not you choose traditional analog or the new Class D amplifiers, you can be assured that all Rotel amplifiers will provide you with great sound and reliability for all your audio video needs.

Why are there four binding posts on each amplifier channel output?

Some Rotel amplifiers are designed with 4 sets of binding posts to facilitate bi-wiring your loudspeakers. Both sets of binding posts are connected in parallel so if only one pair of posts is required it does not matter which posts are connected.

When assembling a home audio or theater system what route should I go - separates or a receiver?

The first question you will face when assembling a home audio or theater system is whether to go the route of separates or a receiver. Years ago, this question was easily answered based on budget. But thanks to Rotel's "balanced design" philosophy, breaking up is no longer hard to do. Of course, if you do not have the space for several pieces of equipment, then a receiver may be your only option. You will also need to take the power requirements of your speakers into consideration.

Theoretically, separates provide better sound. Consider that a receiver has three components all in one box: a tuner (radio), a power amplifier (several if it is a home theatre receiver), and a preamplifier (for volume, tone controls, etc). That's a lot of noise-generating circuitry going on in one box. By having separate components, each one is designed to handle one task, with their own dedicated power supplies, and without interference from the other.

This also makes it easier to upgrade or repair a component. Ordinarily, receivers cannot be upgraded, and if the tuner section breaks, you must bring the entire unit in for repair, creating system down time. Yet if you have a separate tuner which breaks, it can be sent for service but you can still enjoy the remainder of your system while you await its return. And if you find a better tuner that strikes your fancy, changing to the new model is easy, as opposed to living with whatever is built-in to your receiver. Your power will also be limited to your receiver's rated amplification, unless you add an outboard amplifier.

Having said all of that, receivers have come a long way. It could be argued that if you invest in a very high quality receiver, such as Rotel's RSX-1560, you could approach (but not match) the level of separates. A receiver will also require less interconnects and may prove easier to use and faster to set up.

In general, if you have the money and the space, seriously consider separates. Otherwise, buy the best receiver within your budget. There is a half way solution to the above dilemma...an integrated amplifier. An integrated amplifier, such as Rotel's RA-1520 combines the amplifier and preamplifier in one chassis (the user may add on a separate tuner if desired).

TROUBLESHOOTING

My RX-1052 has stopped responding to the remote control

One of the features of the RX-1052 was the ability to switch between two completely different sets of IR codes. The purpose of this alternative IR code set was to allow systems to utilize the RX-1052 as a multizone controller in a system that also contains a Rotel surround processor without conflicting IR codes causing problems. However, on occasion it is possible to accidentally set the RX-1052 to this code set which results in the unit no longer responding to the original remote.

To restore the unit to its original IR code set, simply do the following:

  • To revert the IR code library from the alternative code set to the original IR library, first press and release the "Tuner" button, then press and hold the "1" button on the remote control for 5 seconds. The front panel of the RX-1052 will display "RMC : 2->1" to indicate the change.

How do I reset my Rotel product?

Please refer to our reset procedures for Rotel products for 10 & 15 Series models or 900 Series models to determine how to reset your product to its factory default settings.

Rack Mounting


GENERAL

Can I put Rotel components into a rack for custom installation?

Absolutely, Rotel has its own rack system. Talk to your authorized dealer for details on this system.

Notable exceptions are the RA-05SE Stereo Integrated Amplifier, RCD-06SE CD player and RCX-1500 Stereo Receiver. The RSX-1550 may be rack mounted but is not a standard U height.

What do you mean by 1U, 2U, 3U etc. in the product specifications?

The "U" stands for "Unit Height" and is a standard 1.75 inches throughout the industry. Therefore a 2 U component would have a height of 3.5 inches and so on. By having these standards it allows a custom installer to quickly predict what combination of U height electronics will fit efficiently into a standard rack.

Software Updates


GENERAL

My computer doesn't have a serial port how can I update the Rotel software?

You will need a USB to Serial Port Adapter. There are many different adapters on the market today that plug into a USB port on the computer and will function as a serial port for connecting to a Rotel component for updating.

It is important when selecting an adapter to make sure you install the latest available drivers for the adapter to ensure that the upgrades go smoothly. This is particularly important when using the adapters on newer operating systems such as Windows 7. We recommend ideally checking the website of the manufacturer for the latest drivers before connecting and installing the adapter.

Can I use my Mac computer to update the software on my Rotel?

Yes, but only if you install Windows OS on the Mac with software programs such as "Boot Camp." You should ask your authorized dealer however, to perform any software upgrades unless you are very experienced with doing this type of work.

What is the pin configuration for the RJ45 to DB9 cable used for the upgrade process?

A PDF of the pin diagram for this cable can be downloaded via the link below:

RJ45 to DB9 Pin Configuration Diagram

Can I upgrade the software on my surround receiver or processor to HDMI 1.4?

Unfortunately no. The change to HDMI 1.4 requires both hardware and software, so a software update alone would not make an older HDMI device 1.4 compliant.

Can I connect my computer audio output to the computer input (I/O) on the back of the Rotel?

No. The computer I/O input on your Rotel product is only used for external control using third-party developed RS-232 control software such as Crestron or AMX. This input is also used in the case that a software upgrade is needed for your Rotel equipment. If your computer has analog or digital audio outputs you could connect your computer to a Rotel receiver or surround processor using one of the analog or digital inputs as you would connect any other source component such as a DVD player or CD player.

Remote Controls


GENERAL

Can Rotel be controlled by third party remote controls?

Absolutely, Rotel works with many different types of remotes and control systems such as Crestron, Universal Remote, Logitech, RTI, and others. It may be best to work with a professional programmer through your retailer however, as the more components you add, the more complex the programming becomes.

The Rotel remote supplied with my surround receiver or processor doesn't have built in codes for my cable / satellite box. How can I operate them so I don't have to use two remotes?

It is difficult to keep up with the many changes of components and IR codes. Therefore, the remotes supplied with our surround receivers and processors feature a learning system that can be taught the proper codes to work with your other electronics if the codes are not available in the built in code library of the remote.

How do I switch video inputs on my Rotel product using the RR-1050, RR-1060 or RR-1061 remote?

You need to press and hold the input you wish to change to for approximately 4 seconds.

TROUBLESHOOTING

My RX-1052 has stopped responding to the remote control

One of the features of the RX-1052 was the ability to switch between two completely different sets of IR codes. The purpose of this alternative IR code set was to allow systems to utilize the RX-1052 as a multizone controller in a system that also contains a Rotel surround processor without conflicting IR codes causing problems. However, on occasion it is possible to accidentally set the RX-1052 to this code set which results in the unit no longer responding to the original remote.

To restore the unit to its original IR code set, simply do the following:

  • To revert the IR code library from the alternative code set to the original IR library, first press and release the "Tuner" button, then press and hold the "1" button on the remote control for 5 seconds. The front panel of the RX-1052 will display "RMC : 2->1" to indicate the change.

Accessories


POWER CONDITIONERS

What is the warranty on the RLC-1040 and RLC-1080 power conditioners and how do I make a claim?

Rotel warrants this product to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for a period of two years from the date of purchase. Rotel's obligation under this warranty is limited to repairing or replacing, at its own sole option, any such defective products. To obtain service under warranty contact your authorized Rotel dealer or Rotel Technical Support at 800-370-3741. The product warranty is separate from the Equipment Protection Policy (EPP) that is offered by APC. As long as the equipment is properly connected to the RLC and is being used properly, the EPP coverage is in place for the lifetime of the product. For more information on the EPP and the conditions, please refer to APC's website at the link below:

http://apc.com/support/service/equipment_protection_policy.cfm

What is the difference between the RLC-1040 and RLC-1080 line conditioner models?

The RLC1080 has all of the features of the RLC-1040, but also comes with a back-up power supply in the form of an internal battery. Further, up to two additional batteries can be connected to the RLC-1080, which will allow uninterrupted enjoyment of your electronics for some time during a black out.

Which outlets can be triggered?

The two outlets marked "Delayed" can be switched on and off via the 12V DC trigger input if a mini cable is plugged into the DC trigger input of the product.

How To Connect


GENERAL

How do I get Sirius radio on my RT-1084?

To receive Sirius satellite radio signals on the RT-1084 tuner you will need to purchase an optional Sirius plug-in module. Up to four Sirius modules may be added to the RT-1084 for personal music selection in other listening areas with a multizone audio system. The Sirius module that is used with the RT-1084 is the SiriusConnect Home, model SC-H1. This module can be purchased directly from Sirius' online shop at http://shop.sirius.com, and is also stocked at many electronics retailers as well.

Additional compatible tuner modules are the SC-H2P and SC-HDOC1.

Can I connect my computer audio output to the computer input (I/O) on the back of the Rotel?

No. The computer I/O input on your Rotel product is only used for external control using third-party developed RS-232 control software such as Crestron or AMX. This input is also used in the case that a software upgrade is needed for your Rotel equipment. If your computer has analog or digital audio outputs you could connect your computer to a Rotel receiver or surround processor using one of the analog or digital inputs as you would connect any other source component such as a DVD player or CD player.

How do I connect my iPod?

You need a special cable which converts the mini-connector output of the iPod to a standard stereo RCA connector which can then be connected to any available analog input on your Rotel product. Alternatively, there are many different iPod docks available that will provide a stereo RCA output that can be used to connect to the Rotel product. Many iPod docks also offer remote control capability to the iPod - check with your local dealer for more information on these products.

How can I use my headphones with the surround receivers or preamp processor?

You can use headphones with your surround processor or receiver by purchasing an optional headphone amplifier. They are readily available and come in a range of prices from several suppliers. To use these devices it will require that you connect the headphone amplifier using the Left and Right analog outputs to either the "Zone Out" or "Tape Out" connection on the receiver. Zone Output is recommended to allow you to use the internal Volume Control for that zone. If your Headphones or Headphone Preamp has a volume control the "Tape Out" jacks would work fine.

Please note that for sources to be available for the headphones the sources must be connected with analog audio connections. As an example: If you have a Cable or Satellite Box connected to the "Video 1" input using a Digital Coaxial or Optical cable you would ALSO have to connect the Left and Right Analog Outputs from the Cable or Satellite Box to the "Video 1" Left and Right analog inputs for the source to be available to the headphones.

Can I connect both the component and HDMI monitor out connections on my surround receiver or processor?

Please refer below to the answers depending on the model you own:

  • RSP-1098 HDMI, RSX-1057: As these models do not offer scaling or upconversion from analog video to the HDMI outputs, you can connect both HDMI and Component video monitor outputs to the TV.
  • RSP-1069, RSP-1570, RSX-1058, RSX-1550, RSX-1560: It is not recommended to connect component video and HDMI video outputs to a monitor simultaneously as the two video image signals may affect each other. These Rotel products will scale all analog video inputs to the HDMI output so both connections would not be necessary to view both HDMI and analog video sources.

Troubleshooting


RECEIVERS

I have connected the component video monitor out to my TV but I can't see the on-screen menu.

Please refer below to the answers depending on the model you own:

  • RSP-1066, RSP-976, RSX-1055, RSX-1065, RSX-972: These models offered component video switching but did not provide an on-screen menu on the component video output. A composite video connection is recommended to view the on-screen menu for setup purposes.
  • All other Rotel AV Processors and Receivers: First, it may be helpful to verify that the physical connections between the Rotel component and the monitor are correct and that the monitor is on the correct input. If the component cables are in the right place and you are sure you are on the correct input of the TV, simply power cycle the Rotel component off and on. When the unit first powers up, a "System Status" screen should appear on the TV for a few seconds, then disappear. If this screen appears, the connections are correct. If it does appear, this confirms the connections are correct and you should be able to access the menu by verifying the remote is in the AUD mode by pressing the "AUD" button, followed by pressing the Menu/OSD button on the remote.

How do I reset my Rotel product?

Please refer to our reset procedures for Rotel products for 10 & 15 Series models or 900 Series models to determine how to reset your product to its factory default settings.

I have connected the component video monitor out to my TV and I can see the on-screen menu, but it appears stretched and distorted.

The on-screen menu for the RSP-1068, RSP-1098, RSX-1056, RSX-1057 and RSX-1067 used a 480i video signal to transmit the menu to the monitor. However, many component video sources such as DVD, HD cable and Satellite provide a higher output resolution such as 480p, 720p or 1080i. If the Rotel on-screen menu attempts to overlay the menu on top of these higher video resolutions, it can either distort the video, or may not display at all depending upon the monitor. The solution to this is to enable the 'Progressive' setting for each component video source that uses a 480p or higher resolution. To allow the menu to be viewable, change the input on the Rotel component to a non-video source such as Tape, or turn off the source component so that the on-screen menu is now displaying on a blank background rather than trying to overlay the menu on top of the video source.

The 'Progressive' setting is located in the 'Other Options' menu of the RSP-1068, RSX-1056, RSX-1057 and RSX-1067, or in the 'Display' menu of the RSP-1098. From this menu, the Progressive setting can be enabled for each component video input on the unit. Once the progressive setting has been enabled, the on-screen menu will appear on a black backdrop.

I have connected a composite / S-video out to my TV but I can't see the receiver's on-screen setup menu.

The On-Screen menu is available only on the composite and S-video outputs that are labeled "Monitor Out" (or "Mon Out"). Please verify that the composite or S-video cable is connected to the appropriate monitor output connection on the rear panel of the Rotel component. Also verify that the TV is on the correct input as well. Make sure the Rotel remote control is in the AUD mode by pressing the "AUD" button. Then press the Menu/OSD button to activate the on screen menu.

A simple test to verify that the physical connections from the Rotel component to the TV are correct would be to power cycle the Rotel component. When the unit first powers up, a "System Status" screen should appear on the TV for a few seconds, then disappear. If this screen appears, the connections are correct.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc, the display says Dolby HD +XS or Dolby HD +EX, or Dolby HD +PLIIx M/C. Is the unit playing the HD audio correctly, and what does the XS/EX/PLIIx mean?

Yes, the unit is decoding and playing a Dolby TrueHD signal when the display reads "Dolby HD +XS", etc. Many of the HD soundtracks available today are recorded in 5.1, not 7.1. However, if you have a 7.1 audio system you likely will want all 7 speakers (and subwoofer) playing when you listen to a Blu-Ray disc. When this is the case, the Rotel processor can apply additional processing to the 5.1 HD signal to matrix out additional channels for the 6th & 7th channels in the system. You have a choice of 3 or 4 distinct methods to do this:

  • Dolby Digital EX (Available for Dolby 5.1 modes only)
  • Dolby Pro Logic IIx Music
  • Dolby Pro Logic IIx Cinema
  • Rotel XS (Extended Surround)

Using these additional processing modes does not compromise the original HD content for the 5.1 channels; it simply allows you to add the extra back channels when playing these 5.1 soundtracks.

For more detailed information on these different modes, refer to the owner's manual for your product.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc, the display just says MULTI CHANNEL, but does not say Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. Why?

If the display reads "MULTI CHANNEL" when playing a Blu-Ray disc, rest assured the Rotel processor is still receiving an HD audio signal from the Blu-Ray player, it is just being received in the form of a multichannel Linear PCM signal instead of the raw Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD bitstream. All HD signals, whether it be Dolby or DTS, first come off the disc as an HD bitstream which must be decoded and uncompressed into raw digital audio (Linear PCM). This first step of decoding and uncompressing the audio can be handled either in the Blu-Ray player or inside the processor and there should not be a noticeable performance difference based on where this occurs. With HDMI 1.1 devices the decoding must occur in the Blu-Ray player, but starting with HDMI 1.3 the raw bitstream audio can be sent to the processor.

Check the settings in the Blu-Ray player's setup menu for an option to set the HDMI audio from LPCM to Bitstream to let the Rotel processor do the HD decoding. This option will only work with HDMI 1.3 and higher devices so RSX-1058 and RSP-1069 must use LPCM only.

When I play a Blu-Ray disc and select the HD audio soundtrack, the display just says Dolby Digital or DTS, but does not say Dolby TrueHD or DTS HD. Why?

In addition to the HD audio soundtracks, many Blu-Ray titles also offer additional audio content in the form of secondary audio, which may include directors' commentaries for example. The secondary audio tracks are usually not encoded in HD but rather in standard Dolby Digital or DTS. Most Blu-Ray players will have a menu option in their setup menu to either enable or disable secondary audio playback. The tradeoff is that when secondary audio is ENABLED, most blu-ray players will not output the HD audio bitstream from discs but instead will play the standard non-HD audio instead. So, to ensure you are getting the full HD audio content from the disc check the setup menu of the Blu-Ray player and ensure the secondary audio option is disabled.

How do I switch video inputs on my Rotel product using the RR-1050, RR-1060 or RR-1061 remote?

You need to press and hold the input you wish to change to for approximately 4 seconds.

The Rotel remote supplied with my surround receiver or processor doesn't have built in codes for my cable / satellite box. How can I operate them so I don't have to use two remotes?

It is difficult to keep up with the many changes of components and IR codes. Therefore, the remotes supplied with our surround receivers and processors feature a learning system that can be taught the proper codes to work with your other electronics if the codes are not available in the built in code library of the remote.

My RX-1052 has stopped responding to the remote control

One of the features of the RX-1052 was the ability to switch between two completely different sets of IR codes. The purpose of this alternative IR code set was to allow systems to utilize the RX-1052 as a multizone controller in a system that also contains a Rotel surround processor without conflicting IR codes causing problems. However, on occasion it is possible to accidentally set the RX-1052 to this code set which results in the unit no longer responding to the original remote.

To restore the unit to its original IR code set, simply do the following:

  • To revert the IR code library from the alternative code set to the original IR library, first press and release the "Tuner" button, then press and hold the "1" button on the remote control for 5 seconds. The front panel of the RX-1052 will display "RMC : 2->1" to indicate the change.

Why can't I get any audio from zone 2/3/4?

The zone outputs are only available when an analog input is being used. If you currently have only a digital cable connected from a source, a separate stereo analog cable should be connected to the same input to allow the source to be heard in the remote zones.

DVD Players

When I start some DVD movies on the RDV-1092 or RDV-1093, I can hear the sound but the picture goes blank.

If your Rotel DVD player is connected via component video, the output resolution must be set to either 480i (Interlaced) or 480p (Progressive). While the DVD player can output up to 1080i via component video, many DVDs contain a Macrovision copy protection "flag" that will disable the video output of the player at any resolution higher than 480p. If you wish to view DVDs at higher resolutions than 480p, an HDMI connection must be used.

When I play some DVD movies, I hear some sound but it doesn't sound right, for example I do not hear any of the dialogue from the movie only the background noise.

If your Rotel DVD player is connected via analog audio cables for audio, this issue is usually the result of improper downmix settings for the connection. If the DVD player offers 6 analog audio connections this means each speaker channel of audio has its own dedicated audio output on the DVD player, thus your front, center, surround and subwoofer channels each are decoded and sent on the respective outputs of the player. Usually the 6 analog outputs of the DVD player would be connected to an analog multichannel input of a surround receiver or processor, such as the Multi Input on a Rotel receiver.

If you are only using a stereo pair of analog cables to connect to a stereo input, however, this means that only the audio from the front 2 speakers is being sent to the receiver. The DVD player must be configured to downmix the audio from the center channel, subwoofer, and surrounds into the front channel outputs so it can be heard in the system.

To configure the downmix setting for your DVD player, refer below:

  • RDV-1092/1093: From the Speaker Setup menu, select Speaker Size and set this to NO for the Subwoofer, Surround, and Center speakers.
  • RDV-1050: From the Audio setup menu, select Analog Output and set this to either 2-CH DOLBY SURROUND (if connecting to a surround receiver or processor) or 2-CH STEREO (if connecting to a stereo receiver or TV).
  • RDV-1060: From the Speaker Setup menu, select Output Mode and set this to 2CH STEREO.

I'm not getting sound from my center or rear channel speakers when watching a DVD. Why?

The player is supplied from the factory set in PCM two channel mode. To change the mode to Dolby Digital, stop the disc and remove it from the DVD player, then follow the instructions below depending on your DVD player:

  • RDV 985 / RDV 1080: Push "On-Screen" on the remote control and select the Preference 2 tab. Then change the output from PCM Only to Stream/PCM.
  • RDV 995: Press and hold the "shift" button and press the "choice" button to access the on-screen display. Select the Audio tab, and change the output from PCM Only to Stream/PCM. Please note that you need a Dolby Digital/DTS processor and amplifier or receiver to enjoy 5.1 surround sound.

I'm getting sound from Dolby Digital DVDs, but not dts. Why?

The digital audio output of your DVD player is not configured to output dts. Please refer to the previous question for how to change the audio output from Dolby Digital / PCM to Stream / PCM, which is the required setting for the DVD player to output dts.