Logitech Z5500 upgrade=>Bose or alternative? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 01-26-2012, 01:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Guys,

I currently own a Logitech Z5500 with which I was quite happy for the last 6 years. With the age of blueray, HDTV and HDMI (trueDolby etc) coming, I'm looking for an upgrade to my Home Theatre system.

My budget is about 2-2,5K, so I went looking on the internet for options
Like most people I guess, I also came across Bose. For this price I could afford a Lifestyle T20 system, which suits my needs quite well:
No difficult setup, plenty of HDMI inputs, trueDolby and HDMI 1.4 support, small speakers, nice looking setup, ...

Then when I did a little research on the net and I started to find these posts about bose being totaly overpriced and not even worthy of being called a high end system (bad crossover, very bad frequency range and response +-10DB?, and even dialogue coming from the subwoofer???). When I invest 2,5K I expect a good improvement over my current Logitech Z5500 set, which only set me back about 400.

My audio guy also sells B&W so I went looking for a different setup. I came up with the following:

Receiverenon AVR1912
Sattelites:B&W M1
Center:B&W HTM 62
Sub: B&W ASW 610

This would cost me about 2,4K with my current audio dealer.
Would this be a better setup or is there any problem with it to your opinion?
Are there any good other alternatives?

I'm looking for a rather easy setup (I'm a civil engineer so I have basic knowledge about electronics but my domain of expertise is IT), smallish speakers, I already have a blueray player (PS3), at least 3 HDMI inputs, trueDolby support for blueray viewing, 3D enabled HDMI. Not interested in specific WIFI, or other technology...
I would use the system mostly for watching movies/TV, occasional gaming and music listening. My room is about 20 ft by 30 ft , which consists of 2 parts with a wall about half the width of the room in the middle (open kitchen), so the real living room is about 20 foot by 15ft (I hope this makes some sense :-).)
I problaby do not have the possibility to buy the same range of speakers which are available to you guys in the USA, because I live in Europe...

As I browsed through the different post on the forum, there seem to be guys around which have huge experience with different audio setups and home theatre systems, so please, if you can find the time... enlighten me with your audio knowledge :-)
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post #2 of 17 Old 01-26-2012, 08:38 AM
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Removed. Missed that you lived in Europe, and my recommendation is not available.

Your questions are answered: Speaker FAQ
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post #3 of 17 Old 01-26-2012, 08:52 AM
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SVS sells in Europe. I'm not sure what prices are like over there, but one of their 5.0 systems plus, say, the PB12-NSD subwoofer would make a nice system and a significant upgrade over your Z5500.

BTW, the Z5500 is actually a decent little system. My buddy in Switzerland has one in his apartment, and it sounds pretty good!
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post #4 of 17 Old 01-26-2012, 09:48 AM
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I will first say that I have never heard the speakers you are talking about. The Denon AVR 1912 is a receiver I would recommend to a friend; very good choice IMO.

I have heard a lot of B & W speakers in audio stores and friends' houses however and have formed some general opinions. In general, I do not find them to be the best-sounding for the money. There are 3 other manufacturers that I would advise a friend to look to for better sound in your price range; PSB, KEF, and Monitor Audio. I think they are all available in most of Europe.

Are you talking about using four of the M1 speakers? You do not specifically mention front speakers. I assume that was an oversight, since the M1 is inappropriate for a front speaker.

You want main speakers that go down to 50 HZ so that you do not just have monaural sound in the 50-90 HZ region from the sub. It creates a severe sound quality problem when small main speakers that don't go low enough are used. It's very bad to have 5 speakers yet have only one speaker reproducing all of that mid-bass information. It also makes no sense.

In PSB speakers I would recommend the PSB Image B6 speakers for front speakers, which in the US cost $550 per pair, and the Image B5 speakers for satellite speakers ($450) and the PSB C5 center ($400).

In the Monitor Audio range I would suggest four of the Bronze BX-2 speakers for front and satellite speakers and the Bronze BX Center, which is about $1300 US total.

For that rather large room I suggest that you are probably going to need two fairly powerful subwoofers. You should allocate about half of your budget, perhaps $1000-$1500, for the subwoofers. Without knowing the subwoofers available in Europe it is impossible for me to make a recommendation, but Velodyne and KEF might be a good place to start, although they are not cheap.

In any case you should get two subwoofers that have a MINIMUM driver size of 12 inches/ 30 cm, and a MINIMUM RMS amplfier power of 350 watts. Perhaps you can get some help with this by going to the subwoofer forum here and posting your requirements there. You will get a lot of feedback there, some of which will probably be helpful.



[quote=smokedogs;21550328]Guys,

I currently own a Logitech Z5500 with which I was quite happy for the last 6 years. With the age of blueray, HDTV and HDMI (trueDolby etc) coming, I'm looking for an upgrade to my Home Theatre system.

My budget is about 2-2,5K,

Receiverenon AVR1912
Sattelites:B&W M1
Center:B&W HTM 62
Sub: B&W ASW 610

I'm looking for a rather easy setup (I'm a civil engineer so I have basic knowledge about electronics but my domain of expertise is IT), smallish speakers, I already have a blueray player (PS3), at least 3 HDMI inputs, trueDolby support for blueray viewing, 3D enabled HDMI. Not interested in specific WIFI, or other technology...
I would use the system mostly for watching movies/TV, occasional gaming and music listening. My room is about 20 ft by 30 ft , which consists of 2 parts with a wall about half the width of the room in the middle (open kitchen), so the real living room is about 20 foot by 15ft (I hope this makes some sense :-).)
I problaby do not have the possibility to buy the same range of speakers which are available to you guys in the USA, because I live in Europe...
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post #5 of 17 Old 01-27-2012, 12:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback guys...

Do i really need main speakers that go as low as 50hz?
Are you saying that you would limit the sub at 50hz and for any higer frequency let the main speakers do the work?
I read some post that state that 80-90hz would be a good crossover freqency for the sub?

I WAS thinking about getting 4 smaller speakers, so also 2 small main or front speakers.
With a decent center and a good sub to handle the lows, wouldn't this be sufficient?

After some more more research I'm now looking into the following:
(it seems I can lay my hands on KEF and Canton (German brand) as well...)

Receiver: Denon AVR1912 or AVR-2312
Sattelites:B&W CM1 or CM5
Center:B&W CM C
Sub: B&W ASW 610 XP

OR

Receiver: Denon AVR1912 or AVR-2312
Sattelites:Canton Chrono SL 520
Center:Chrono SL 555
Sub: Canton Sub 1200R


Both would cost me about 3500 euros.

What would you guys prefer, or change in this setup...

Do I REALLY need the mains and would the sound quality really suffer if I chose to use the same front and rear speakers?

In terms of receiver what output wattage should I need with the speakers listed here?

Do you think the these subs will not be sufficient, do I really need 2 subs for a room of 30 to 20 ft?
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post #6 of 17 Old 01-27-2012, 09:14 AM
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Let me ask you a question; don't you think it is kind of silly to have MONAURAL sound from 80 or 90 Hz on down? That is what you get of you don't have front speakers that will go lower (and keep in mind that a speaker that claims to roll off at 80 Hz starts to have reduced output at around 100 Hz).

I certainly do. It ruins the overall sound quality, in my opinion.

With speakers that will go down to 50 Hz, you would probably set your subwoofer to roll off at 60-70 Hz. Keep in mind that it STARTS to roll off at that frequency; it does not just cut off abruptly at that frequency.

The same is true of the main speakers. If their -3db point is 50 Hz, they START to roll off at a higher frequency than that.

Their frequency curves need to overlap, so there is no "hole" in the overall frequency response.

Front speakers that are too small suck big-time. They have poor bass and also have poor output capability and distort easily on loud peaks.

The B & W CM1 is 3 db down at 55 Hz; that is not bad at all. You must have at least 250 watts per channel with that speaker however. Its sensitivity is 84db per watt, which is incredibly poor. You would need 200 watts just to get a peak sound level of 107dbA. Those are no good at all for a multi-channel home theater system. They are suitable only for a 2-channel system with a very large power amplifier.

The Canton SL520 speaker is rated for an 85 db per watt sensitivity, which creates the same problem; not suitable at all! If someone is advising you that those speakers are suitable for home theater, you are getting some VERY bad advice!

With a home theater receiver, you should be looking for speakers that have a sensitivity of AT LEAST 89db per watt or higher. Each 3 db less on the speaker sensitivity rating DOUBLES the power needed for the same sound level!! Home theater receivers will NOT drive those B & W or Canton speakers to an appropriate sound level!


The PSB Image B5 compares favorably to the CM1 in every way and has the correct sensitivity. So does the KEF iQ30. They could be used as both front and rear speakers and work well. Have you looked at the iQ30 yet?

Because of the divided room layout I would advise you to get one good sub and try it out. It may be enough. You can always add another one if you decide you need it. I have nothing against the B & W sub except that it seems way overpriced for its performance. There is no reason at all to buy a subwoofer of the same brand as the other speakers, so feel free to look at all brands.




Quote:
Originally Posted by smokedogs View Post

Thanks for the feedback guys...

Do i really need main speakers that go as low as 50hz?
Are you saying that you would limit the sub at 50hz and for any higer frequency let the main speakers do the work?
I read some post that state that 80-90hz would be a good crossover freqency for the sub?

I WAS thinking about getting 4 smaller speakers, so also 2 small main or front speakers.
With a decent center and a good sub to handle the lows, wouldn't this be sufficient?

After some more more research I'm now looking into the following:
(it seems I can lay my hands on KEF and Canton (German brand) as well...)

Receiver: Denon AVR1912 or AVR-2312
Sattelites:B&W CM1 or CM5
Center:B&W CM C
Sub: B&W ASW 610 XP

OR

Receiver: Denon AVR1912 or AVR-2312
Sattelites:Canton Chrono SL 520
Center:Chrono SL 555
Sub: Canton Sub 1200R


Both would cost me about 3500 euros.

What would you guys prefer, or change in this setup...

Do I REALLY need the mains and would the sound quality really suffer if I chose to use the same front and rear speakers?

In terms of receiver what output wattage should I need with the speakers listed here?

Do you think the these subs will not be sufficient, do I really need 2 subs for a room of 30 to 20 ft?

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post #7 of 17 Old 01-27-2012, 09:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smokedogs View Post

Thanks for the feedback guys...

Do i really need main speakers that go as low as 50hz?

No. Most AVS members are going to tell you that's a much more minor concern than commsysman makes it out to be. Many people crossover their speakers at 80hz and are very happy with their systems.

If you find speakers that you like the sound of that have a -3db lower frequency of say 70hz and you can cross at 80hz, then go for them. Why would you buy speakers that sound worse to you just because there might be sounds in that small 60-80hz range that would be a little better in stereo crossed at 60hz? That is such a tiny part of the listening experience. Maybe, all other things being equal between two speakers and you are having trouble deciding, then use that 50hz goal as a consideration.

Your questions are answered: Speaker FAQ
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post #8 of 17 Old 01-27-2012, 10:19 AM
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In my opinion, and from my listening experience, you are completely mistaken about that.

Several people have backed me up with posts on this based on their own impressions, so I am not a voice speaking out alone on this.

There are many many speakers that go down to 50-60 Hz, so why not choose from them?

**********************************************************
quote:

If you find speakers that you like the sound of that have a -3db lower frequency of say 70hz and you can cross at 80hz, then go for them. Why would you buy speakers that sound worse to you just because there might be sounds in that small 60-80hz range that would be a little better in stereo crossed at 60hz? That is such a tiny part of the listening experience. Maybe, all other things being equal between two speakers and you are having trouble deciding, then use that 50hz goal as a consideration.[/quote]
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post #9 of 17 Old 01-27-2012, 10:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

In my opinion, and from my listening experience, you are completely mistaken about that.

Several people have backed me up with posts on this based on their own impressions, so I am not a voice speaking out alone on this.

NO.

Some people said that they can hear a difference when crossed at 60hz instead of 80hz when using a sub. That's not the same thing as flat out disregarding speakers based on this 50hz rule that you have chosen for yourself. That's your fetish. One should make more of a holistic evaluation during speaker selection.

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post #10 of 17 Old 01-28-2012, 01:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback guys.

today I went to a different audio dealer and he suggested the following...

Fronts B&W CM8
Rears: B&W CM8 (CM5 with standards are only 150 euro cheaper)
Center: B&W CM CMC2
Sub: B&W ASW CM10
Av: Marantz SR7005

This would me set me back about 6800...
For me this is A LOT of money...

Would this be a REALLY good Home Theatre system, which would provide me with hardware that would last for years?

Any modifications neccessary?
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post #11 of 17 Old 01-28-2012, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smokedogs View Post

Do i really need main speakers that go as low as 50hz?

IMO, no, you don't. What you do need is to ensure that the mains blend well with the subs.

Example: A buddy of mine runs a pair of well-broken-in ChaseHomeTheater SHO-10s (72 Hz–18 kHz +/-3dB) crossed over at 90Hz to his CHT CS-18.1 subs. The combination sounds incredible, both for HT and for music, at all volume levels.

Quote:


Are you saying that you would limit the sub at 50hz and for any higer frequency let the main speakers do the work?

My Studio 60s are rated 46Hz–20kHz +/-2dB. Audyssey sets my crossover to 60Hz. I bump it to 80Hz, because I find that that works best. YMMV.

IMO, the only advantage to having speakers that dig deeper is that I can run them in "Pure Direct" mode (no subs, no processing whatsoever) and they will sound VERY good with music, whereas smaller speakers would likely sound somewhat anemic. If running in "Pure Direct" mode is not important to you, having speakers than dig down to 50Hz or 40Hz is unnecessary.
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post #12 of 17 Old 01-28-2012, 02:10 PM
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I recently upgraded myself from an old (1993) Denon PMA980R stereo, and wanted to go to at least 5.1 system that does very well on stereo listening as well (I do 50/50 music/tv).
Having looked at Bose briefly, I went for the Denon AVR1912, mainly for Audyssey MultiEQ XT and networking features, and because of my experience with the old PMA 980, which still plays strong after 18 years. Apart from that, the Bose system with the features I was looking for was around 4.5K Euros. Too much for me.

As Speakers, I went for Monitor Audio Silver RX series - RX2 front, RX centre and RXFX for surround. Didn't like the MA sub, so have not decided on the sub as yet.
I am however quite happy with the bass the RX2's produce so not too much in a rush. Took me about 2 weeks of normal usage to break them in, and after re-running the audyssey setup the sound is great. (and they look the part as well).

I got a good price on the speakers, all in all this combo set me back just under €2000.
I would recommend this combination anytime.
The Amp is great and has no problem driving the MA speakers (which are reasonably easy to driver @89db).
I am looking to spend a max of €800 euro for a sub this year, but have yet to find something that fits.
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post #13 of 17 Old 01-28-2012, 02:13 PM
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I recently upgraded from some older B&W 601s for my HT setup, and they were great. I understand the CM series is even better

However, that sub may or may not be a good choice. A sub's ability to perform in a room for HT is very much dependent on the size of the room. For instance, this SVS PB12-NSD sub (available in Europe through that retailer) is one of the top recommended 12" subs on the AVS subwoofer forum for HT, and works well in rooms (or open floor plans) up to around 6,000 cubic feet. However, it will wake the neighbors if you live in an apartment because of the solid output down to 20hz. The CM10 is rated down that low, but will only perform well in a much smaller room/open floor plan (a guess would be maybe 2,000 cubic feet).

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post #14 of 17 Old 02-25-2012, 02:33 PM
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I don't know why your dealer is pushing CM series speakers to you. B&W makes 600 series speakers that would be more appropriate to you. I would go for 685 fronts, 686 surrounds and HTM61 or HTM62 center channel. This combo would give you decent bass without a sub. 685 frequency response is 49Hz - 22kHz ±3dB and sensitivity is rated at 88 ohm. They are much cheaper than CM1 and would be more suitable to your situation. If you decide to get a sub there are plenty of options. B&W subs are quite pricey. You can find cheaper options like for example mentioned before SVS.
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post #15 of 17 Old 02-25-2012, 03:46 PM
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+1 on B&W 685, ASW608 and Denon 2311..Great for HT, this is what i run in my HT room (use M1 as rears). Also, if i shopped again, I would consider a PSB HT system.

Either of B&W or PSB will be a HUGE upgrade from the Logitech system and lightyears ahead of BOSE..

Good luck
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post #16 of 17 Old 02-25-2012, 07:40 PM
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I think I might be one of the few people to suggest this, but again they are amazing and kill bose in every way as well as being small speakers. try to look for a Anthony Gallo Nucleus 5.1 Micro Ti. easy setup, and comes with a real sub and its a well known brand in England as well so it might be easy for you to get a set.

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This is a horrible hobby!!  My wallet hates me, takes up to much space, neighbors want me to move, but man my house sounds amazing!  

 

 
 

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post #17 of 17 Old 06-09-2012, 03:21 PM
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At the end, what was the system that you bought?
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