Onkyo HT-S7409 or HT-S9400THX for future buildout - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 12-28-2011, 12:50 PM - Thread Starter
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When I graduated college and got my first real job last December the first thing I bought was a new 46" Toshiba LCD LED and this Sony HTIB. http://www.amazon.com/Sony-HT-SS370-...5101335&sr=8-1

I knew it probably wouldn't be a great system but it was my first ever 5.1 setup and first nice tv of my own. I basically just wanted to experience surround sound from my PS3, Xbox 360, and my Dish HD receiver. The problem is that I have started to watch more and more 3D bluray and 3D PS3 games. This receiver is not 3D compatible so I recently started connecting my HDMI cables directly to the TV and using optical for my 5.1 sound.

Now I have some money and I'm am looking at new setups because I want to add the ability to listen to the Dolby and DTS True HD tracks on my bluray movies. I know the basics of surround sound but I am no audiophile and I wouldn't even know where to begin buying my receiver and speakers separately.

Sorry for the long explanation. Here are my real questions. Right now I can afford the Onkyo HT-S7409 5.1 setup for $477.97 here http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-HT-S7409...=19FS4A30D5Q37 or the HT-S9400THX 7.1 system for $899.00 here http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-HT-S9400...=19FS4A30D5Q37 I could also forget about the HD lossless sound and just stick with the setup I have now if you guys don't think I will notice enough difference from buying these systems. These are basically my 3 options right now.

If I get either of the Onkyo systems I plan to upgrade my speakers and sub with nicer ones piece by piece in the future as I can afford them. Either set would just be a starting point for me to build out the best setup I can afford. In about a year I thought I would start by replacing my front left, right, and center speakers and then move to a new sub eventually. I may or may not replace the rear speakers depending on the advice of the forum members. Knowing my obsession with technology I'm sure I will eventually.

According to the Amazon customer reviews, the cheaper 5.1 set actually has a 7.1 receiver but it only comes with 5 speakers. In the end I want a 7.1 setup for my blurays but I am ok with starting with a 5.1 setup.

My question to you guys is how much difference is their in these 2 receivers. The receiver is really the most important part of this to me because as far as I'm concerned everything else is temporary. There is a $422 price difference between these to setups. I'm sure some of that is due to the 2 extra speakers and the fact that the more expensive setup has wooden speakers. I want to eventually build a solid 7.1 setup. Is the S7409 enough of a receiver to accomplish this or will I regret not going with the S9400THX in a couple years. The 9400 is obviously a better system but is it really worth $422 more?

Again I am sorry for this ridiculously long post. It's just that I don't know much about receivers or speakers. I am a just a recent college grad tech geek who finally has some money to play with. I appreciate any help you guys can give me.
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post #2 of 12 Old 12-28-2011, 01:46 PM
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I can try to give you some advise as I would "take it with a grain of salt" per say, as its up to you to decide whats best for you. Just going through your post I can suggest a few option for you. Since you mentioned you would replace the speakers within a year there would be no reason to go with the 9400 set up. I have had a chance to hear the set up in person as it is quite a good set up for a HTIB but IMHO you can do much better for just a little more money.

About the receiver(s), I would bet money you will want to replace those within a year or two as well... trust me, it happens to ALL of us (... once you get the bug that is). Its not that they are a "bad" receiver its just you can get a better receiver for yourself that you wont need to upgrade as soon, but then again you never know?? Onkyo does offer a good HTIB, much better than any Sony, PAnny, Sammy, LG and such, as thats why they are most reccomended for someone just starting out. Cant say much about Dennon HTIB as I have never herd them but they are a good company.

IF you want something that would surfice for a year that has a decent sound I would reccomend something maybe on this page:
http://www.accessories4less.com/make...Systems/1.html They are Onkyo Factory referbs but still retain the warranty so why not say a few dollars?? With in a year you can sell it on Craigs list or such and at least get more than half you $ back.... if you deceide to go that route that is.

What I would truley reccomend would be to look into a good receiver that has all that you need at the present as well as what you may need/loke in the future (... being within 2 yrs that is). You dont have to go all out and spend big buck by no means, just something within your budget that you want. Onkyo, Dennon, Yamaha & Pioneer offer some very good equipment for a very decent dollar. As technology changes then you may have to replace your receiver to more "fit" to what you need/want but with speakers they dont chance.... so in essance spending more money on speakers is by far your best bet!

Heres just a suggetion is all:
http://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-RX-V667...108454&sr=1-11
http://www.accessories4less.com/make...r-System/1.htm

I'm just using these as refernace only but I think you may get the just of it.

Hope some of this helps??

Godd luck... Jeff
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post #3 of 12 Old 12-28-2011, 02:39 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skally View Post

I can try to give you some advise as I would "take it with a grain of salt" per say, as its up to you to decide whats best for you. Just going through your post I can suggest a few option for you. Since you mentioned you would replace the speakers within a year there would be no reason to go with the 9400 set up. I have had a chance to hear the set up in person as it is quite a good set up for a HTIB but IMHO you can do much better for just a little more money.

About the receiver(s), I would bet money you will want to replace those within a year or two as well... trust me, it happens to ALL of us (... once you get the bug that is). Its not that they are a "bad" receiver its just you can get a better receiver for yourself that you wont need to upgrade as soon, but then again you never know?? Onkyo does offer a good HTIB, much better than any Sony, PAnny, Sammy, LG and such, as thats why they are most reccomended for someone just starting out. Cant say much about Dennon HTIB as I have never herd them but they are a good company.

IF you want something that would surfice for a year that has a decent sound I would reccomend something maybe on this page:
http://www.accessories4less.com/make...Systems/1.html They are Onkyo Factory referbs but still retain the warranty so why not say a few dollars?? With in a year you can sell it on Craigs list or such and at least get more than half you $ back.... if you deceide to go that route that is.

What I would truley reccomend would be to look into a good receiver that has all that you need at the present as well as what you may need/loke in the future (... being within 2 yrs that is). You dont have to go all out and spend big buck by no means, just something within your budget that you want. Onkyo, Dennon, Yamaha & Pioneer offer some very good equipment for a very decent dollar. As technology changes then you may have to replace your receiver to more "fit" to what you need/want but with speakers they dont chance.... so in essance spending more money on speakers is by far your best bet!

Heres just a suggetion is all:
http://www.amazon.com/Yamaha-RX-V667...108454&sr=1-11
http://www.accessories4less.com/make...r-System/1.htm

I'm just using these as refernace only but I think you may get the just of it.

Hope some of this helps??

Godd luck... Jeff

Thank you for your help. I clicked through all the links except for the last one because it didn't work, and both the refurbished systems and the Yamaha receiver could be options.

The problem is I don't even know where to begin with speakers and the sub yet if I tried to build my own system. That's why I was thinking an entire boxed set would be a good way to start until I know a little more about what I'm doing.

I figured as long as the receivers in the systems I mentioned were good enough for the future I could start there and build around them. Of course I would rather just buy a top of the line receiver now and get the best possible speakers and sub too. All of this stuff just costs to much money for me to do it all at once.

I'm sure you're right. Once I get into this stuff and start replacing my speakers I'm sure I will want to replace my receiver as well.

Is the S7409 a powerful enough receiver that I can build a solid 7.1 system around it or do I need something more like the Yamaha you mentioned? When I replace the stock speakers and sub with better quality ones will I be able to get the full benefit out of them with the S7409 or do I need something better?
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post #4 of 12 Old 12-28-2011, 04:09 PM - Thread Starter
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I did a little more searching through Amazon. I can get the Onkyo TX-NR609 7.2 receiver for $379 here http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-TX-NR609...5115962&sr=1-1 along with the Klipsch HD1000 5.1 speaker system for $399 here http://www.amazon.com/Klipsch-HD1000...hu-rd_add_1_dp

Would this be a better setup than the HTIB systems I mentioned earlier? I don't know anything about speakers but the Klipsch speaker set is on sale from $999 and it has good reviews on Amazon. They certainly look much more attractive to me than the plastic speakers in the S7409 HTIB.

Again I would probably replace the fronts in a year or so with higher quality speakers and use the Klipsch speakers for rear and to fill out my system to 7.1. I would maybe upgrade the sub eventually too.
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post #5 of 12 Old 12-29-2011, 04:06 PM
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Hello again King3pj, sorry I havent been on AVS for a few days. THe Onkyo 609 looks to be at a very good price at $379 so that would be a good investment. As far as the other AV in the 7409 I think it would surfice enough as if you were keep it for a few years and replace the speakers, of corse the 609 would more than likley be a better AV, just depend on your prefernace is all. From now until about April or so most MFG will have good prices on there AV's as they can dump them for the newer product line that usally comes out sometime in May or June.

As far as speakers go its pretty much a "subjective" issue as they all will have a slightly differnt sound to everyone. I would reccomend if you can to go have a listen to a few brands, that way you can get a better feel of what suits you. Even thou I am a Klipsch fan some dont like them as they can tend to be a bit harsh for there ears. If you were to comapre apples to apples I would say Klipsch would be a green apple as others would fall into a red apples area.... if that makes sence?? I can only assume you are looking for smaller speakers as the post's you have listed are that way? To be honest you will get more of a better sound stage by going towers ( for L & R that is) but that may not always be the case as some cant or dont want them. Just a thought for you to take in is all.
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post #6 of 12 Old 12-29-2011, 04:35 PM - Thread Starter
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It wasn't really that I wanted small speakers. I just didn't know how to go about picking my speakers and sub. The only reason I picked the Klipsch set was because it was an entire set for $399 on sale from $999. I am trying to stay under $1000.00 for my initial setup and then upgrade from there if I feel the need.
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post #7 of 12 Old 12-30-2011, 06:34 AM
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No problem. If you have room and or the ability to have towers for your mains ( L&R ) then I would suggest that, you will get a much fuller sound. Its not that smaller or bookshelfs are bad it just towers bring more to the table to speak. Of corse thats not always possible to have towers as some are limeted to space and such, then bookshelfs are the way to go.

B.T.W., what is the room size you plan on using the set up in??

As far as the Klipsch set you linked, the MSRP of $1000 is a joke... to be honest. I do believe its just a market stragity is all. At $400 I do believe they are ok thou. A 7.1 system is nice to have but not always needed. A good 5.1 will sound better than an average 7.1. In 7.1 there are not to many movies that produce that but the newer AV's will reproduce or convert the sound to a 7.1 or so. It does help with some depth within the room thou, as I tend to like it.

I have not herd these but quite a few people like these ... http://www.vanns.com/shop/servlet/it.../jamo-s606hcs3 Its a 5.0 set as you would have to get a sub thou.

The enrty line to look into seems to be:
Polk
Bic Accousteh ( I have some of these as they sound very good)
Energy
Jamos
Infinty
*THese are just a few is all
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post #8 of 12 Old 12-30-2011, 08:17 AM - Thread Starter
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I don't think I want to go as big as towers, at least not yet.

Right now I'm leaning towards the BIC FH6-LCR center speaker, two pairs of BIC FH-65B bookshelf speakers, and the BIC F12 sub to go with the Onkyo TX-NR609. If I went that route I could get a 5.1 system for about $915 which is pretty much my target price exactly.

I also looked at the Energy CC-5 center and the Energy CB-5 bookshelves to go with the same BIC sub and same Onkyo receiver. I liked the look of the Energy speakers and the reviews on Amazon but that same $915 would only buy me a 3.1 setup instead of the 5.1 with the BIC speakers.

Do you have any experience with either of these speaker sets? Would an average non-audiophile hobbyist notice a significant improvement in quality by going with the Energy speakers over the BIC?

I would probably look at getting two quality towers for my fronts and moving to a 7.1 setup sometime in the future. Right now I basically just want to be able to listen to the Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD lossless sound on my Bluray movies and be able to easily hear the difference in quality over my cheap Sony HTiB that could only get the lossy Dolby and DTS 5.1 soundtracks. Basically I just want my $1000 to actually be a significant upgrade. If it wont be I guess I can live with what I have now until I can afford a better setup.
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post #9 of 12 Old 12-30-2011, 12:33 PM
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I do have the Bic Ac line in my system which is pretty much in the area of the BIC FH6-LCR you mentioned. In stead of using towers you could just use the FH6-LCR for all 3 fronts as they would more or less on the lines of "mini towers". At the presnt time I have the Bic Pl-28 center speaker, Bic Pl-76 towers as surrounds as they sound VERY good for both HT & music. The clarity & detail are what sold me on them, not to mention they are a very attractive speaker (.. but thats just a bonus is all).

Heres a link as it might help you out a bit....
www.acousticsounddesign.com/

This is where I bought most of my Items as Mike will give a pretty good price! If you click on the "best offer" button he will give you his best price with shipping. They dont have the Bic F-12 as you mentioned but they do have the Bic Pl-200 sub in which is an excellent HT sub. I use to have two of them (... kinda wish I kept them now) as they were very good in HT and with music not to bad.

I have listened to the Energy line at the local shop, they are a good speaker as well. IMHO I still preferr the Bic Ac line over them thou... even thou the Bic may have a crisp sound, its a little less mellow than my Klipsch KG 5.5's. I do plan on getting newer cross overs & teeters for them in the near future so in essance they sound match the Bic AC line a bit better... but thats a differnt story .

I would check out the web link provided to see what they can do for a price for you. Until next time... have fun!!
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post #10 of 12 Old 12-31-2011, 09:20 AM
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Even thou the Onkyo 609 is a very good deal at $378 I just ran across this at New Egg deals.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882117395

THe Pioneer 1021 for $300 w/ promo code.... not a bad deal, you may want to look into that but I see the sale ends 1/1/12 (tomarrow)

Anyway... I thought I would let you know.
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post #11 of 12 Old 01-03-2012, 05:57 PM
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I have the 9400thx and love it. No plans to upgrade any of the speakers or sub, all are plenty powerful and give great sound.
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post #12 of 12 Old 01-14-2012, 08:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the help. I spent a few weeks reading this forum as much as possible before pulling the trigger on any purchases. I have to say, this is by far the most helpful forum I have ever been a part of.

In the end I completed my task of coming up with a solid system for about $1000. Its solid for me anyways and blows away anything any of my friends or family have.

I ended up buying the Onkyo TX-NR609, the Bic F12 sub, Bic FH6-LCR center, 2 Bic FH-65B fronts, and a pair of Bic DV62si bookshelves for surrounds. I originally wanted a 7.1 setup but after looking through my collection of Blu-rays I found that most of them are only 5.1 so I decided it wasn't worth the money right now. I'm sure one day I will add those too.

I got everything and started to put it together after work last night. It took me a couple hours to strip the wire and run it through my walls and ceiling. I'm sure I could do it much faster now but I had never stripped speaker wire before and I had trouble with the first couple attempts.

The first movie we watched was Despicable Me because my girlfriend had never watched anything in 3D on a home theater and wanted to see it. It sounded pretty good but I wasn't impressed with my F12 sub. I know it isn't the most action packed movie but I thought It would be more involved than it was. This was an improvement over my old system but it was making us both question whether I should have spent the $1000. It was clearly better but it didn't have that wow factor I was hoping for.

Next it was my turn to pick a movie and I wanted something that could really test my new system. I picked The Dark Knight and all I can say is wow! The Dolby TrueHD soundtrack through my new system completely blew us away. The very first scene where the joker was robing the bank erased all doubt from my mind about both the F12 and the system as a whole. The truck driving scene later in the movie was just incredible!

Needless to say we are both really happy with our new setup even if the girlfriend originally thought it was stupid to spend that much money. I think anyone considering buying a HTIB because they don't know how to pick all the components individually would be happy with this setup. It does cost a little more than most HTiB sets but I was considering one that was almost the same price as this.

Thanks to everyone on this forum. You guys have made me a member for a long time to come.
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