Small compact 5.1 system for under $500 - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 05-17-2009, 04:29 PM - Thread Starter
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I am building a system for a family friend. Currently they have two large, ancient Bose towers. They recently redid their living room and they don't want the huge towers any more. They want a good sounding 5.1 system, that will fit in conveniently placed bookshelves. Their budget is about $500 dollars. I am looking at the Polk RM20 or RM85, plus PSW10 or the RM705 system. Which of these would you choose, or any new suggestions? Thanks
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post #2 of 9 Old 05-17-2009, 04:45 PM
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Energy Take Classic 5.1 is a popular system in that price range.
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post #3 of 9 Old 05-18-2009, 07:57 AM
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an EMP set recently added to the "on sale" column
http://store.audioholics.com/product...ab8edba3aaaa82
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post #4 of 9 Old 05-18-2009, 08:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by m_vanmeter View Post

an EMP set recently added to the "on sale" column
http://store.audioholics.com/product...ab8edba3aaaa82

I think this is an amazing deal for the money. EMP is the sister company of RBH Sound which makes higher end speakers that are not sold to the public unless through a dealer (typically a higher end HT installer). The speakers referenced here are clones to the RBH 5TK bookshelf speaker which is a very nice sounding speaker. I would definitely consider these speakers over the Polk speakers mentioned, but I have not heard the Energy Take speakers so cannot comment.
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post #5 of 9 Old 05-19-2009, 01:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MLKstudios View Post

Energy Take Classic 5.1 is a popular system in that price range.

Agree, Vann's has the Energy Take Classic 5.1 + a free pair of OmniMount 24" speaker stands. Well below budget.
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post #6 of 9 Old 05-22-2009, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

I think this is an amazing deal for the money. EMP is the sister company of RBH Sound which makes higher end speakers that are not sold to the public unless through a dealer (typically a higher end HT installer). The speakers referenced here are clones to the RBH 5TK bookshelf speaker which is a very nice sounding speaker. I would definitely consider these speakers over the Polk speakers mentioned, but I have not heard the Energy Take speakers so cannot comment.

I am looking for a similar 5.1 speaker/sub setup in a 18x10 living room around the same $500 price point (+/- $200) which maintains flexibility for future 7.1 expansion in a larger room. Which option (or others) would folks recommend given that I will be pairing with the following

New Panasonic G10 series plasma
Xbox 360
Probably a Panasonic DMP-BD60 Bluray
Comcast HD box

40% TV watching, 25% gaming, 20% movies, 15% music; really want to get the best HT experience possible out of this setup, ergonomically need to not have towers or very large boxes


My current thoughts:

1. Energy Take Classic 5.1 ($400)
2. EMP HTP-351 5.1 ($489)
3. 2 Energy C-100s as fronts ($110), 2 Energy C-50 as rears ($100), 1 Energy C-C50 center ($80), Energy S8.3 subwoofer ($180); Total $470
4. Others?

Thanks in advance for everyone's help! Please feel free to throw in your AV receiver ($200-$400 range, refurbed from quality source is fine) thoughts to pair with this kind of setup too, although I will post in that forum for specific advice.
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post #7 of 9 Old 05-22-2009, 03:17 PM
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the bigger the better. The Takes are fine for a tiny sub/sat setup but if you have room to fit the larger C-100 / C-C50 setup across the front, definitely go for it.

another popular option (to minimize the size of the surrounds) is to get the Take Classic 5.0 speaker pack (no sub) for $199 shipped, use four of the sats as surround for 7.1, and then upgrade the front end with larger C-Series speakers.

Try and get a slightly larger sub, 18x10 is a little big for an 8-inch sub to have real HT impact.

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post #8 of 9 Old 05-22-2009, 03:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by i40hawk View Post

I am building a system for a family friend. Currently they have two large, ancient Bose towers. They recently redid their living room and they don't want the huge towers any more. They want a good sounding 5.1 system, that will fit in conveniently placed bookshelves. Their budget is about $500 dollars. I am looking at the Polk RM20 or RM85, plus PSW10 or the RM705 system. Which of these would you choose, or any new suggestions? Thanks

I'd go with the Energy Take Classic 5.1 system - I think it's definitely one of the most popular 5.1 systems in that price range. According to Audioholics, it was very musical for such a petite system. How big is the room, though? If the room is big, then you might want to go for the 5.0 system and opt for a larger sub.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jigri View Post

I am looking for a similar 5.1 speaker/sub setup in a 18x10 living room around the same $500 price point (+/- $200) which maintains flexibility for future 7.1 expansion in a larger room. Which option (or others) would folks recommend given that I will be pairing with the following

New Panasonic G10 series plasma
Xbox 360
Probably a Panasonic DMP-BD60 Bluray
Comcast HD box

40% TV watching, 25% gaming, 20% movies, 15% music; really want to get the best HT experience possible out of this setup, ergonomically need to not have towers or very large boxes


My current thoughts:

1. Energy Take Classic 5.1 ($400)
2. EMP HTP-351 5.1 ($489)
3. 2 Energy C-100s as fronts ($110), 2 Energy C-50 as rears ($100), 1 Energy C-C50 center ($80), Energy S8.3 subwoofer ($180); Total $470
4. Others?

Thanks in advance for everyone's help! Please feel free to throw in your AV receiver ($200-$400 range, refurbed from quality source is fine) thoughts to pair with this kind of setup too, although I will post in that forum for specific advice.

All the options that you listed are very good right now. If you're certain that you're going to upgrade to 7.1, I'd go for the Take Classic 5.0 system for now, and get a larger sub such as a TSC T250 ($250) or something similar. Later on, you can get larger towers and a center, and move the satellites to surround duty.

For a receiver in that price range, I recommend the Onkyo TX-SR576 for $300, or a refurbished Harman Kardon AVR-254 (around $250 from the Harman Audio outlet on ebay).
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post #9 of 9 Old 05-24-2009, 04:18 PM - Thread Starter
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I purchased the Take Classic along with a Yamaha RX-V663. However the receiver was out of stock. They wanted to upgrade to the RX-V665 but it doesn't have enough component inputs, so Electronic Expo (the best customer service ever), upgraded me to the Denon AVR-1909, almost twice as much. They will arrive on Wednesday so I will post again, with a review or setup questions. Thanks.
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