Headphones with PJ; have you/would you? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 07:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Recently we decided to NOT spend bigtime $$ on a house remodel or new house, and moved our H/T to the living room all but on other side of wall from my 11 year old daughters bedroom, and gave our other kid the H/T room as a bedroom. I gutted the living room wall, installed acoustic insulation, and put heavy sheetrock up but its a 101 year old house so sound still leaks in from another wall (that I have NO desire to tear down/insulate/redo, that sucked)

We currently have a 50" HDTV plasma but prior to this I was hoping to buy a >130" screen and a PJ for movies. The new location has us sit perhaps 10' away, that would be a nice immersive experience.

Thing is, the odds of us being able to play the surround sound at anything less than shade-below-normal are low.

I'm happy that we decided not to remodel or move, but I am sad about potentially not having that bigscreen experience @home as I now HATE spending $$ at the movies, its $70/pop. I'm wondering if one or two people could watch movies on headphones but still use the PJ.

Have you, or would you consider watching movies on headphones if using the surround sound system wasn't an option? Or would you say "eff it, i'll just watch on the 50" HDTV"?

Thx.

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post #2 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 09:20 AM
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We regularly use headphones in our home setup. Ours is a lot more extensive and the headphones can be used independently or together, but it does include the option for viewing on a 161" screen while wearing headphones. With new construction and open architecture audio flows as bad or likely worse than what you may be dealing with... So, after the kids are in bed, you listen at a whisper or you throw on the headphones and get volume that matches what you enjoy exactly.

I am using pretty cheap analog wireless headphones...
http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-RS120-Over-Ear-Wireless-Headphones/dp/B0001FTVEK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1375028223&sr=8-1&keywords=sennheiser+wireless+headphones

They allow up to 3 channels of operation and allow for RCA inputs so you can plug them into the RCA outputs of any device you want to listen to (other options are available as well).

I'm not recommending these specifically as there are a ton of options, but at some point I want to pair up some bass shakers to my home theater along with the headphones and I would expect an impact that is very good when the kids are asleep.

Before buying a 130" screen with a 10' viewing distance, you may want to try it out first to ensure it makes you happy. That's a fair bit larger than 'center of the theater' by THX standards.
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post #3 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 11:49 AM
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My buddy gave me some wireless headphones that are stereo surround, and they sound awesome, its still very immersive and you won't wake anyone. Ive been through the whole "keeping the volume down bit" and it really sucks and ruins the movie experience, because no matter how you put the volume, you can't get it perfect, either the voices are too low or the sounds effects are to high, even with compression and the features that are supposed to keep the volume all level. you can still crank it up when shes not home and use the headphones when she is. My headphones don't require a receiver and have volume right on them so I can easily adjust them and the different sound fields. With two sets, it might be nice as both of you could adjust the sound to your own personal needs. I'd also invest in some buttkickers or some other bass shaker for the couch. I have some of these on my couches and they are perfect and very strong. http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-861 they are kind of expensive right now, might want to wait for a sale if you go this route, I paid 70 for each just under a year ago. They make a huge difference, and won't wake her up, and you'll still feel the action and get the bass experience. I always use my subs with them, but without subs on, the experience is still the same-, I've switched them off and people didn't even know it because the bass shakers do work well. The Clarks I think do put out some audible volume, so might have to go with some that don't if they in fact do. Anyway just get a nice set and I think you'll be happy.
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post #4 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 11:53 AM
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I use headphones occasionally at night when everyone's asleep, and the sound is excellent. I hear subtle things that you can't hear without them. You cannot run 2 headphones though with most receivers. You need a headphone amp to plug into. Check out Head-fi.org for info about headphones and amps.
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post #5 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim McC View Post

I use headphones occasionally at night when everyone's asleep, and the sound is excellent. I hear subtle things that you can't hear without them. You cannot run 2 headphones though with most receivers. You need a headphone amp to plug into. Check out Head-fi.org for info about headphones and amps.
I feel the same with the subtle things you can hear as well. What about a splitter, don't they make any for two headphones, or splitting the signal from the RCA plugs?
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post #6 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 02:06 PM
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I think he's talking about off a headphone output - wired headphones.

With RCA jacks and wireless headphones you can often pair multiple units up to one transmitter on digital units and most are advertised as supporting this. Since I'm using analog headphones I just need to tune my headphones to the same channel that the other headphones are using. They aren't as good as digital headphones, but I think the design of them is one of the best on the market. Great location for volume, good charging, good on/off switch, etc. Oh, and at under $100 they are a great deal on something of a budget.

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post #7 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks all. FYI, i'm not talking specifically out of a headphone jack, i'm trying to determine what receiver to upgrade to, so content to use RCA outputs or any other mechanism. Sounds like the concept of using headphones with a PJ isn't a stupid stupid idea, which is what I wanted to know. Cost is less relevant, not that I'm Mr Money Bags, but given that we opted to surrender the dedicated H/T room to one kid for use as a bedroom I figure I can spend a small amount of $$ to make ourselves feel better. The house is in a semi-urban area of Oakland, its a badly laid out 1650 sqft so 3 small BR plus 2 other small rooms. 40 years ago that would have been considered normal, all my friends have big houses (but out in the 'burbs) so this'll make me feel a little better about having a tiny modicum of financial discipline.

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post #8 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 05:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d james View Post

I'd also invest in some buttkickers or some other bass shaker for the couch. I have some of these on my couches and they are perfect and very strong. http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-861 they are kind of expensive right now, might want to wait for a sale if you go this route, I paid 70 for each just under a year ago. They make a huge difference, and won't wake her up, and you'll still feel the action and get the bass experience. I always use my subs with them, but without subs on, the experience is still the same-, I've switched them off and people didn't even know it because the bass shakers do work well. The Clarks I think do put out some audible volume, so might have to go with some that don't if they in fact do. Anyway just get a nice set and I think you'll be happy.

Do you put one under each couch cushion for each location? Meaning 2-3 per couch? Thx for the link, off to do some research on this type of product.

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post #9 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 06:10 PM
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I am in a situation where I can't run the A/V receiver all the time so I have to use head phones.
If you do go the head phones route then get a good wireless set.
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post #10 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 10:48 PM
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I'm the only one who uses my projector so I don't even have any speakers hooked up at all.

If you have a Realtek or ASUS Xonar sound card, enable Headphone Virtualization/Dolby Headphone. It adds a surround effect so convincing that I can pinpoint the exact location something's coming from with a regular pair of stereo headphones. Who needs a 5.1 system when you have that?
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post #11 of 13 Old 07-28-2013, 10:58 PM - Thread Starter
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The options for headphones are dizzying. I can't rationalize $500/each for this, I might be able to go to $200-$250. Not asking for help (yet), still in learning mode, but I think that'll be the first step. Then when I demonstrate viability of that room for movies after kids go to bed I'll see if I can get approval for $3K or so for a projector plus motorized screen. And $1K for a dual HDMI output receiver so I can use either PJ or plasma.

All prompted by me purchasing a $35 Chromecast (that I got a $24 credit on Netflix, so an $11 purchase) ;-)

Thx all.

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post #12 of 13 Old 07-29-2013, 03:52 PM
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I know nothing about wireless headphones, but generally, with electronics, wired is better. The headphones I use sound great, and cost about $15 at Amazon. The Koss KSC75. I removed the ear clips, and put on a headband from a cheap headphone from Parts Express. There are threads about this mod at Head-fi.org. They are very lightweight and very comfortable.
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post #13 of 13 Old 07-29-2013, 05:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IVB View Post

Do you put one under each couch cushion for each location? Meaning 2-3 per couch? Thx for the link, off to do some research on this type of product.
Nope that would be a lot of bass, I have one of those shakers under each couch, and they vibrate like crazy. Everybody trips out the first time when they sit down, seems like everything is intensified, puts you right in the action. I thought it might be gimmicky, or I would get sick of it, but so far they are the one purchase that stands above everything else I spent money on. Its akin to feeling the bass in your body when you ride in a car with a big powerful subwoofer, if you've ever felt that. Of course a car sub is usually a bit stronger. I imagine two of those things in a couch would be even better, but I'd just get one and see how you like it. if you really want it strong get the buttkicker. This guy turned his up a bit too much, but it demonstrates the power they produce. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ady5fjbbMgI I've got my clarks powered through a 12 year old Sony 100 watt receiver, which has worked beautifully for me
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