So as many here have helped my out on my decision of the components and with 3 weeks of research, after setting this system up, I can confidently say, that this setup is the best home theater setup for under $1000 IMO
I consider myself 50% audiophile, I just didn't justify spending too much on speaker system, was not happy with an Onkyo HTIB for about a year, was certainly lacking, satellite speakers suck, PERIOD.First: The Pioneer Speakers (FS51 Fronts, C21 Center, BS21 Surrounds)
I had the chance to listen to the 5 speaker setup with my old Onkyo receiver that came with the HTIB and with the Passive 8" sub.
I can't believe how Pioneer managed to build such high quality speakers at such low price, especially the fronts, very elegant design IMO, amazing solid build.
After swapping my satellites to these, I couldn't believe how much the sound quality was improved, changing the crossover on my old Onkyo to 80, and still using the old 8" sub, the system sounded 10 times better, even the terrible bass from the sub sounded better, the transition from the the fronts to the bass frequency is now perfectly smooth.
The speakers have one of the best distinguished stereo imaging I have ever listened to (not sure if this is the best to describe what I mean), the differences in voices are so clear that almost sometimes in every movie I literally two or 3 times at least, I get the feel of reality of few sounds, that I keep looking if it is really in my room or the sound is coming from the speakers.
Frequency response on the fronts is great, I didn't take any measurements, but they go down to sub 60Hz with tight nice bass, especially at high volume.
The 5 speakers fill my open space living room (19x10) with great head room for more volume, wasn't able to hear any distortion at high volumes, sound is just balanced, normal, neutral, natural and warm.BIC America F12 SubWoofer:
Coming from 8" Subwoofer was certainly huge improvement, VERY
powerful output, dial only at 3 and +1db on receiver and it is plenty, more than that and it will start sounding a bit boomy, so it is ok for music but it is an incredible deal for home theater and movies, which what I bought this system for, for $183, can't get better than this at this price.Pioneer VSX-1020 AVR:
Excellent receiver, plenty of power, super easy setup, tons of options and features, zero HDMI issues, zero setup issues, great design, nothing else to say.
Total system cost about $950.
In my opinion, for medium sized rooms, to get better sound quality for movies than what those speakers can deliver (Pioneer speakers is the real hero here), you certainly have to at least pay 3 times more to feel better sound quality.
I hope this mini review is helpful, for anyone who is looking for a setup at the $1000 budget, can't recommend this setup more than I have already done, it will sound excellent and IMO, it sounds better than any budget Polk or Klipsch speakers.