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post #1 of 11 Old 06-18-2009, 08:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Greetings all! First time posting here and a kinda a noobie at home theater systems so I apologize for the knowledge I have about the setups. I am in need of a new Home Theater experience I come here for your help.

I currently own a JVC dvd/surround sound combo system that's a 5.1 and i believe 1000watts. I bought a long time ago and it was great when I bought it but now it is time to replace it. I want a setup that will sound/look great for the things I want to use it for. I play tons of games mainly on Xbox 360 and I watch a lot of Blu-ray movies on my samsung player. Those are the 2 main reasons I want this new system for. Of course I'll be using it for music, tv, and whatever else you can use it for lol. And I would really like it to last for awhile, i have seen they have 7.1 and 7.2 systems out now so I would probably like to upgrade to that even though there might not be too much use for it now. That way I don't have to upgrade the next couple of years to stay current with the latest technology.

I have been looking at the Onkyo brands and heard great things about them so I'd probably like to stick with that brand if possible. I probably wouldnt spend over $1000 for it so anything under that price would be great. My currently Blu-ray player plays the new Dolby true HD and DTS HD so having a reciever that supports that feature would be great. Also with HDMI support which I use for my Bluray, xbox, and DVR.

So any good suggestions. Would it be better to by a reciever by itself and buy speakers or should i go with the full Home theater in a box. If buying reciever is suggested which brand/style speakers would you guys recommend?

Sorry for the massive typing but I would appreciate the help before putting money into a great set up. Thanks again for your time and appreciate all comments/inputs.
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post #2 of 11 Old 06-18-2009, 08:49 PM
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Welcome

If you have a grand to spend, I think you should spend it wisely. First off, are you sure you really need 7.1? How big is your room? Do you have enough space behind the seating position to put rear speakers? Is so small that your seats are positioned against the wall? Look at Dolby’s site to understand the best arrangement of speakers: http://www.dolby.com/consumer/home_e...ide/index.html

If your space is small I would stick with 5.1 as 7.1 could even be detrimental. I don’t care how much hype is built into why anyone should buy 7.1 speakers; it’s not worth it at all if you just don’t have the space. Besides, the more money you put into good, quality speakers, the better sound you’ll achieve. A good 5.1 system will sound a lot better than a 7.1 system with mediocre speakers.
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post #3 of 11 Old 06-18-2009, 09:05 PM - Thread Starter
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I believe 5.1 would best suit me for the room I am currently putting the surround sound system in. Like I mention before I would like this system to last me for a long time and to keep up with the new technology coming out. Would it be possible to buy a 7.1 reciever and only use 5.1 or does that make the sound quality bad if the 2 extra speakers are not hooked up? I understand there isnt anything really out that supports 7.1 but it would be nice to have a reciever that had that option to support it if it does come out.
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post #4 of 11 Old 06-18-2009, 09:33 PM
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That’s completely doable, most receivers available today are 7.1 and you don’t need to hook up all of the speakers. It makes no difference to connect 5.1 speakers to a 7.1 receiver.

The obvious HTiB choice is the Onkyo 9100. However, since you don't need the extra rear speakers right now (and Onkyo speakers aren't all that great) you can do a lot better buying 5.1 separate.

Can you live with floorstanding or bookshelf speakers or do you require something small?
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post #5 of 11 Old 06-18-2009, 09:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Oh the speakers are not good from onkyo? Well if thats the case do you recommend me buying a reciever by itself from onkyo and buying then buying the speakers? If so what would you suggest as a good stand alone reciever?

And to answer the speaker question: I wanted to go for floorstanding for the front and maybe wall mount the rear speakers.
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post #6 of 11 Old 06-18-2009, 10:08 PM
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Generally, no, Onkyo speakers aren’t very good. They are an electronics company and they do make good receivers though. You said you like Onkyo, so waiting for a good deal on an SR607 might be a good idea. Right now I think it goes for around $400. Check out other brands like Denon, Yamaha, Marantz, Harman Kardon, Pioneer... Besides, there aren’t any HTiB’s with floorstanding speakers so you’d have to buy separate if that’s really what you want. We can talk more about receivers if you want but it's usually best to get an idea of the speaker situation first, then pick the appropriate receiver to drive them.

By the way, your JVC receiver/DVD player is probably closer to 20 watts...or less. Don't get too hung up on power ratings, they're usually very misleading.

The two speaker lines to look at on a budget, if you want floorstanding speakers, are the Polk Monitor series and the Infinity Primus series.
Polk: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...n=polk+monitor
Infinity: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...al_5_1_4_.html

They both have surrounds you could mount on the wall.

The lower side of the Primus series, with floorstanding speakers, is like this:
P252: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...al_5_1_4_.html
and
P250: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...al_5_1_4_.html
and
P152: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...ay_5_1_4_.html
-or-
P142: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc..._2_Way_4_.html

I actually only had a brief experience with the Infinity Primus series and haven't heard the Polks, but I've read they're pretty good too for the price. The Primus stuff above would come to about $500 so I would consider just getting the speakers and buying a quality subwoofer later when you have the extra money (with either the polk, infinity, or whatever). A respectable sub is only about $250, a little more if you want something great - and it doesn't have to come from the same MFG as the speakers. If the receiver is about $400 you're about at your max with either...but it would still blow away any HTiB and last a lot longer.

If you have lots of patience you can check the Harman Audio store on eBay for great deals on refurbished Infinity and JBL: http://stores.shop.ebay.com/Harman-A...0Q2em14?_pgn=1
They don't have much at the moment but they update the availability quite often.


A Polk set up would look something like this:
Monitor 50: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290013
-or-
Monitor 60: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290017
And
CS1: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290022
-or-
CS2: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290024
And
Monitor 30: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290094

I believe you can get by cheaper with the Polk. As far as comparisons between Polk and Infinity…you’d have to figure that out yourself. I like Infinity but I’m biased.

It should be easy to find a store that carries either brand so you can look and listen, then compare the prices online. Either speaker is/has been popular so it *shouldn't* be a problem finding a pair to add in the future for 7.1 if you wanted, maybe.


If you want to get a little crazy and move up a level for just a bit more $ look at the KEF IQ series that has been on closeout for a while - good prices:
IQ5: http://www.accessories4less.com/make...ck-Pair/1.html
IQ1: http://www.accessories4less.com/make...air-NEW/1.html
IQ2C: http://www.accessories4less.com/make...ack-NEW/1.html

It's over your budget by a few hundred but, hey, it's not my money They are nicer (in other finishes too) and I can see them lasting good long time. The good news is that speakers don't obsolete like electronics. Think about it, read some of the reviews. If you actually decide to go that way there are other speakers in that price range to consider too, it never ends...


Really nice sounding, looking speaker - IMO: http://www.saturdayaudio.com/picturepages/kef_iq5.htm
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post #7 of 11 Old 06-19-2009, 12:51 AM
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Take this guy's advice. I've been in the a/v retail business for 30 years and he's telling you straight. Forget pre-packaged HTiB's...the long term value just isn't there and the speakers are almost always crap.
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post #8 of 11 Old 06-19-2009, 07:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Wow! Thank you very much ickysmits for having the patience to assist me with this set up. I will look over the links provided and read the reviews. So would each set be paired with different recievers to get the max out of them? Lets say I do go with the infinity set which reciever would be best for them?
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post #9 of 11 Old 06-19-2009, 01:53 PM
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No, receivers aren't that specific. I just meant that some of those little speaker packages that you buy in a box wouldn't need very much power at all and some higher end speakers need a more powerful receiver or the ability to connect an external amp to make them loud in a large room. The speakers I listed above should all be fine with a receiver like the Onkyo 606 or 607, or a comparable receiver at the same level. I'm not really that familiar with where the good deals are, but some comparable receivers are Denon - 1909 or 1910, Yamaha - V663 or V665, Pioneer - 1018 or 1019, Harman Kardon 254 or 354...

The 606, 1909, V663, and 1018 are last year's model and might be a good value if you can still find one.
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post #10 of 11 Old 06-19-2009, 09:19 PM
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I have a coworker who's looking for something in about the same price range and I'm looking around for him, giving him ideas. I came across a Warfdale set and I thought I'd let you know too: http://www.tsto.com/cgi-bin/TSTO.sto...duct/View/3105

It's a 5.1 set for $700 and comes with a 10 subwoofer. The surrounds are bipole, meaningI'll just quote a definition because it's easier:
Quote:


Bipole
A speaker design that uses two sets of drivers to generate equal amounts of sound both forward and backward, or side to side, with the two sounds being "in phase." In a home theater setup, bipole speakers are particularly effective at creating a full, diffuse soundfield when used as surround speakers placed behind the listening position.

In a nutshell it means that you should mount them on a wall behind your couch or chair, if that's how your room is laid out. I think you can put them on a side wall too, it says so in the manual, but they might be best on a back wall. Anyway, the idea is that the two speakers in each surround are positioned to create a diffuse, more ambient sound.

I have experience with Warfdale Diamond bookshelf speakers and I think they're nice. The picture on the website don't do them justice. Here's the brochure for the Diamond series: http://www.wharfedale.co.uk/images/r...brochure_3.pdf

I hate to recommend stuff that would be difficult to find locally and only available online but they might be your thing.

Check them out
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post #11 of 11 Old 06-21-2009, 06:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Thank you again for the information ickysmits, I'll give them a look.
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