This thread is exactly what I was looking for as well. I like the Onkyo but I'm all for getting better gear with a lesser price.
You suggest buying parts separately. Do you suggest getting a receiver and a speaker system separate or even more so separate such as receiver, speaker 1, speaker 2, speaker 3 etc.?
What kind of speakers do you suggest? JBL I hear are phenomenal but will quickly burn a hole in your pocket, same with Bose. What about Pioneer or Yamaha speakers etc?
When choosing should we rely on the receiver to power our speakers? Thus suggesting we find an appropriate receiver to our liking and base our speaker selection off of the outputted power and ohm ratings of the receiver.
Or is there another style with an amp we can wire into our home theater system?(suggest or suggest against?)
Do you suggest 7.1 over 5.1? I found a 5.1 priced the same as the Onkyo (probably due to the benefits of the receivers and maybe speakers in comparison?). Some say there isn't that big of a deal What's everyone's opinion on that.
For example this unit I found here has a VERY nice receiver and speakers but drops to a 5.1.(Yamaha doesn't seem to make a 7.1 HTiB neither does pioneer for that matter)
Priced at $750 as well.
(sum it up should we drop to a 5.1 for all the other benefits?)
What about Decoders? Are there specific decoders we should look for when choosing a receiver? I certainly don't want to buy one and find i was duped due to missing decoders that can make a system perform much better.(Dolby and DTS,Dolby Pro Logic IIz)
Sorry about all the questions I just can't find the answers I'm looking for when browsing the web. =/ Any help is EXTREMELY appreciated.