I have a panasonic G20 with a PS3 and ATV2 plugged in. The G20 features ARC, optical and RCA outs, all fixed volume. I want to upgrade the G20 speakers, mostly for music needs as the TV speakers suck enough as not to listen to music at all. And I am not talking lossless, just some lossy itunes songs. Budget is 300€-400€.
I don't know about you, but since this is going to be plugged to the TV I cannot just ignore all the potential features I could benefit from. This puts me on a hard decision of sticking to the budget or making a bigger investment in name of these potential benefits. At the end I just want two speakers, but since I cant find the perfect product to solve my problem, I have to jump in the investment area. And for me how complicated the things get in the end (I measure complexity by number total meter count of wire layout) is just as important as budget. So those are two big issues against investing on more pieces for me.
Two speakers, fine, easy enough. I need volume control. At this point I would need to handle an extra remote, buy me a harmony (from budget), or jump into HDMI with CEC control. I would greatly value not having to handle multiple remotes, switching inputs and manually muting the TV. But as a checkpoint, what would you recommend as simple as it gets 2 speakers that amp a 2 channel signal with remote volume support?
When we throw HDMI into the mix, we start talking digital signals. And with digital signals, unavoidably comes surround.
Stop it right there. I dont want surround. For the life of me I wont lay down wires. I will go to the theatre. But I cannot say for certain that not having rear speakers means that it is completely discarded putting multichannel audio signals to good use. Perhaps there is something useful a receiver can do with this signal in regards to virtual surround,center channel, sub low frequencies, crossover or whatever. The thing is: if the equipment brings some feature in this regard, I might want to use it. If not, I prefer not paying for it.
Speaking of surround, I checked the Vizio 510. Wireless sub to which rear speakers connect. Now, that is something I would take but I dont like the soundbar. It blocks the IR receiver of the TV and I dont want to get into IR repeaters or raise the tv or anything. Thats a reason I dont like any soundbar. I also like the concepts behing the yamaha S401 (integrated receiver & sub) and the sony CT550 (receiver, wireless sub). I looked for all similar concepts but with speakers in the same price and feature range but found nothing. Any recommendations on this area?
And trying to avoid surround concepts, any simple HDMI enabled system that just deals with 2 channel signal and CEC support?
At some point in this whole story you just start looking at plain receivers. If I go out to get a reciever, even if it is cheap, I want some added value coming from it in exchange of the added wires and extra piece. I want to take care that the receiver does the basic stuff decently, downmixings, scalings, sub handling or whatever. I am also looking for features I might use, like airplay. Well, you have to pay for this. And not only this, you have to pay for other handful of stuff and connections your never gonna use because it comes in the same pack. I liked the Pioneer VSX921, 400€ by itself.
Then of course you add the sub because it's stupid not considering it at this point. You could say I could wait and buy it later. My budget is not a problem of money, it's just what I conceptually wanted to spend on this which is almost half the price the TV, ATV2 and PS3 cost me together.
So, any 2.1 systems with HDMI receiver, not soundbar, wireless sub apreciated, that I can consider?
Currently I am looking at the Panasonic SC-HTB15, 2 speaker and sub. I dont like the way the sub acts as receiver since requires longer HDMI cables but if i save an extra piece it's good enough for me (although I like better the yamaha s401 concept of sub integrated receiver, or even better any receiver with 2 speakers good enough to not sport a sub). Also there some complaints of not detecting multichannel input of ripped content on amazon review which I dont quite get the basis of.
I understand most of this is just rant, it's just that i didn't expect it to be so complicated. Any thoughs are welcome.