Setting Up a Pioneer VSX-1130-K Receiver
We recently had a challenging experience with a customer who bought a Pioneer VSX-1130-K receiver. Our customer is like many others out there. Being very intelligent, they had configured their previous system and were reasonably confident that they could set their new AV receiver up themselves. They purchased the new receiver in order to convert from analog inputs to HDMI and also use the second zone for their outside speakers. After two days of trying to get the new AV Receiver to work, they cried “uncle” and called us. We were happy to help them set up and configure their system to run speakers in two zones. However, before we could set up the second zone, there was another issue that we needed to address.
Getting a Picture from the Pioneer VSX-1130-K Receiver
After our customer connected all of the cables and speakers, they powered everything up. The sound came right on, but they didn’t have a picture. They checked the connections and confirmed everything was connected as it should be. They concluded that there must be a soft setting that was wrong. This is where the issues began for our customer.
Pioneer only supplies an on-disk manual with the VSX-1130-K. This means that in order to read the friendly manual (RTFM) you need to fire up a computer or laptop and scroll through the PDF file you'll find on the included CD. There are positives and negatives to this system. The positives include being able to bounce around the file with hot links to various pages. Negatives include not being able to bounce back to the previous page unless you remember to jot down the page #. While there is a ton of information in Pioneer’s “friendly manual”, finding it has a lot in common with an Easter egg hunt. I couldn’t blame our customer one little bit for asking for help.
To solve the video out issue, I went into the video out settings and set the output to HDMI-1. The process is outlined below.
- Push the MAIN button (top left of the remote), to tell the receiver to change the setting for the main output zone
- Then push the OUT P. button to get to the video out screen
- Select HDMI-1
- Exit the screen
We now have a picture! First issue solved.
Setting the Second Zone on the Pioneer VSX-1130-K Receiver
The factory setting for the Pioneeer VSX-1130-K Receiver is for a 7.2 output. To configure the VSX-1130-K for a second zone, there is another soft setting that needs to change.
- Press HOME MENU
- Select MANUAL SP. SETUP and press enter
- Select SPEAKER B, press enter
- When “Change Setting?” Is displayed, select YES
- The Receiver now knows that the speakers connected to the ZONE B terminals are for a second zone and not for additional surround speakers
- Once the setting has been changed to a two zone system, the OUT P. button will change the speakers that are playing. Repeatedly pressing this button will scroll through A, B, A/B and SP OFF. The AUDIO P. button does the same thing
- Now that the receiver is set up to send audio to a second zone, we need to tell it what source (input) to send to that second zone
- Press MULTI-ZONE ON/OFF on the front panel of the receiver. The zone switches between on and off with each press of this button. MULTI-ZONE illuminates when the setting is ON
- Press MULTI-ZONE CONTROL on the front panel. The zone being controlled switches between the main zone and sub-zone with each button press. Press until SUB-ZONE is selected
- Use the input selector dial (or push the corresponding button on the remote control) to select the input source for the second zone. If you want the second zone speakers to play what is on the cable box, select SAT/CBL. If you want the second zone to play another source, select it
- Use the volume dial to adjust the volume of the second zone
- Press MULTI-ZONE CONTROL on the front panel to send the control back to the main zone
Zone B is now configured to play the source you selected when the OUT P. or AUDIO P. buttons are used to select the second zone.
New AV Receivers have capabilities that we only dreamed of a few years ago. The added features come at a price though. That price is in the form of increasingly complex set-up procedures. Some manufacturers have figured out how to make these set-up procedures relatively user friendly. Pioneer still has some work to do in this area. Understanding that their manual is not a printed booklet that promotes flipping back and forth between pages would be a terrific start. Supplying an E-manual that flows more intuitively would be even better.
We aren’t complaining though. The situation did get us a new customer, and we were able to make them happy. The process just shouldn’t have been as painful as it was for the end user.
About Brian Hill
Brian Hill is a home theater enthusiast who has an extensive background in sales. His interests include music & movies, F1 & NASCAR auto racing, hot rods (he has a '56 Nomad) and hockey — Go Sharks!
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