Stop me before I buy Bose Cinemate II GS - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 11:43 AM - Thread Starter
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This is for a living room, not a home theater. What really sucks is the TV is in the corner of the room (fireplace in the center of the wall). I'm looking for something better than my awful TV speakers. Fuller range, a little bass - that's it. Don't need much volume.

It must be small - bookshelf size or smaller (except for a modest sized sub). I think I need a 2.1 system or a speakerbar+sub setup.

It must also be self-powered. I can supply HDMI or optical 5.1 input. I have no A/V receiver and frankly don't want another box on the shelf.

It must be < $600-700 MSRP.


What should I get? I think Bose Cinemate II GS fits the bill. Don't know what else is out there that would be any good.
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post #2 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 11:58 AM - Thread Starter
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One 2nd thought....I just remembered that I already have a pair of Bose 101 speakers that I've never hooked up. They came free with the house :-)

I also have an old, currently unused Yamaha 5.1 A/V receiver. Its large and heavy. :-( Are there universal remotes out there with IR repeaters such that I could put this clunky thing inside a cabinet and never have to look at it?

Then maybe all I would need is that universal remote/IR repeater solution and some cheap powered sub. Heck, that might cost me less than $150 or so.

Thoughts? Especially on concealing this giant Yamaha receiver that I already have.
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post #3 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 01:15 PM
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If you only want something that will sound better than the TV speakers, will be small and unobtrusive, and is easy to set up/requires no AVR...the cinemate is a decent choice.
For music, this speaker system is so bad you that I could not listen to it...(I only had this thing set up for two days before I dismantled it and boxed it up).

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post #4 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

One 2nd thought....I just remembered that I already have a pair of Bose 101 speakers that I've never hooked up. They came free with the house :-)

The 101 is better than TV speakers - other than that, they are lifeless.

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post #5 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 02:17 PM
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ZVOX- pretty nice for their intended purpose and meets all your requirements.

http://www.zvoxaudio.com/

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post #6 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 02:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Cool. I've never seen a soundbar before. Just read about ZVOX. Can you explain this from ZVOX:

Quote:


In about one minute you can follow a simple routine that will "teach" the ZVOX 580 to respond to the commands of your TV or cable/satellite remote control. So you can adjust control volume, mute, input and power with your remote, not ours.

OK, it responds to my TV remote. Cool. But won't my TV speakers also respond to my TV remote? I wouldn't want that.
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post #7 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

Cool. I've never seen a soundbar before. Just read about ZVOX. Can you explain this from ZVOX:



OK, it responds to my TV remote. Cool. But won't my TV speakers also respond to my TV remote? I wouldn't want that.

Get a universal remote, mute the TV speakers and use the ZBOX to control the volume.
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post #8 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 02:51 PM
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Several other brands of Soundbar to consider:
Vizio 510; JVC BA1; Sony CT ?
All reasonably priced (under 500 dollars), all easy to set up and all will likely outperform the Bose Cinemate system.

Set up #1: EMP e5ti, e5Ci, and SLS Q line Audio surrounds, EMP 10i10i sub
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post #9 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 03:11 PM
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Dayton Audio 50 watt/channel digital integrated amplifier - $89, about the size of a thick paperback book + speakers. No remote, but if TV offers a variable output audio jack, that won't be a problem.

FYI: get ready for feature-shock, or rather, lack of features. Because like many audiophile components, this amp only provides what is needed to provide sound. Oh man I wish there were some A/V receivers built like that!
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post #10 of 25 Old 05-21-2012, 03:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by donutfan View Post

Dayton Audio 50 watt/channel digital integrated amplifier - $89, about the size of a thick paperback book + your choice of speakers. No remote, but if TV offers a variable output audio jack, that won't be a problem.

FYI: get ready for feature-shock, or rather, lack of features. Because like many audiophile components, this amp only provides what is needed to provide sound. Oh man I wish there were some A/V receivers built like that!

I would add a pair of Pioneer SP BS21's to that and you'd have a very nice budget system for little money ..

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post #11 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 11:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

What should I get? I think Bose Cinemate II GS fits the bill. Don't know what else is out there that would be any good.

If you want a prepackaged set, then I bet that the Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 sounds just as good or better for a small fraction of the price.

Combine your old Yamaha AVR with the $80/pair Pioneer SP-BS21-LR (mentioned earlier) if you prefer a warmer sound or the $99/pair Polk Audio Monitor 30 (on sale today--don't wait!) if you prefer a brighter sound, and the $119 (shipped) Dayton Audio SUB-1000 or the $144 (shipped) SUB-1200, and you'd have a pretty nice 2.1 system for a paltry $199-243--easily a better system and a better deal than the prepackaged computer speakers.

Of course, if you'd rather that we spend your entire budget on the highest-quality options we can find, then obviously that can be arranged. For example, a pair of the Ascend Acoustics CBM-170 SE plus the Energy S10.3 would make for a fantastic 2.1 system for only $676 (shipped). It would not only sound much better than the other systems I described (neutral and balanced in tone, and very tight and accurate), it would also be quite dynamic--worthy of a full-on home theater in a medium-sized room (minus the center and surrounds, of course).

Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

One 2nd thought....I just remembered that I already have a pair of Bose 101 speakers that I've never hooked up. They came free with the house :-)

Well, the price is right--there's no arguing with that. Any of the systems that I and others have mentioned would definitely sound better, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

I also have an old, currently unused Yamaha 5.1 A/V receiver. Its large and heavy. :-( Are there universal remotes out there with IR repeaters such that I could put this clunky thing inside a cabinet and never have to look at it?

If your TV has a variable audio output or at least a headphone jack, then you could hide the receiver (be sure to let it have some air for cooling, though) and simply use the TV's volume control.
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post #12 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 12:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the advice so far.

A soundbar appears out of the question due to space constraints.

I'm going to have to go 2.1. Is there a self-contained system (like Cinemate) which is self-powered and also simulates surround sound with 2.1? My spare Yamaha 5.1 receiver wouldn't simulate surround in a 2.1 setup.

I've seen simulated 2.1 sound from a big A/V receiver before and I was actually kind of impressed for what it was. Not real surround, but a heck of a lot better than just stereo sound plus a sub.
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post #13 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 02:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

Thanks for all the advice so far.

A soundbar appears out of the question due to space constraints.

Is your TV on a stand or wall mounted?

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post #14 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 02:57 PM - Thread Starter
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On a stand on top of a cabinet squeezed underneath a shelf. TV is also tilted at an angle not lined up with the front of the cabinet.
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post #15 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 03:01 PM
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I don't think a 2.1 speaker system can simulate surround sound very well. Soundbars use some tricks, like angled drivers and mostly reflection (so it only works in certain rooms with the right wall).
I have a soundbar in my basement set up and I have never thought the sound was coming from behind me. The surround mode gives the sound a wider stage, but never sounds like someone is behind me...

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post #16 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 03:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Its less the speakers being used and more of phase tricks from the sound processor.
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post #17 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 03:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

Its less the speakers being used and more of phase tricks from the sound processor.

Do you have some room to the left and right of your TV? If so,
I would look at some of these Artison speakers on Ebay - they
have built in center channels. Then get a small sub, and amp
with a sub output.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Artison-Sket...item1e6e34d7d7
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Artison-Port...item20c5a10665

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_trks...akers&_sacat=0

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post #18 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 03:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Not really. Just space for little bookshelf sized speakers.
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post #19 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 04:14 PM
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Here's a 2.1 Onkyo system with a full on receiver built into the sub, with virtual surround for 2 channels.

http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-HTX-22HD...724382&sr=1-41

It's only $250, so you can afford some higher quality wall mount speakers

http://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-Mul...7724569&sr=1-1
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post #20 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 04:25 PM
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NHT SuperZero 2.0, are some nice speakers
http://www.nhthifi.com/Bookshelf-spe...&category=3772

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post #21 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 04:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Maybe I could get a wall mount attachment for the TV to create space for a soundbar. The walmount would have to allow the TV to extend out from the wall and tilt at an angle away from the wall (because the TV is in the corner and needs to face the center of the room).
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post #22 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 07:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanec View Post

On a stand on top of a cabinet squeezed underneath a shelf. TV is also tilted at an angle not lined up with the front of the cabinet.

So, no room to place a Zvox underneath then? You only need about 4 inches.

Seems like a really tight location. Good luck with it.

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post #23 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 08:12 PM
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For about the price of the Bose setup you were thinking about you can get a pair of Emotiva Airmotiv 6's. With a very good ribbon tweeter and a woofer that plays down to 43hz you may not even need a sub. $699 per pair and a 5 year warranty.

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post #24 of 25 Old 05-22-2012, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kini62 View Post

So, no room to place a Zvox underneath then? You only need about 4 inches.

Seems like a really tight location. Good luck with it.

I would second a Zvox for your situation. They are made to be placed under your display. Get the one that will fit under your TV's stand, set it up (set your tv's internal speakers to 'off', you can do this in your menu). Then set up the ZVOX to work with your TV remote and only the ZVOX speakers will be working. this would be the easiest setup (although I think a 2.1 system with a real sub would sound better). All in all though, for TV watching, the ZVOX systems work pretty well and are hassle free.

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post #25 of 25 Old 05-23-2012, 07:50 AM
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http://www.amazon.com/Onkyo-HTX-22HD...7780932&sr=8-9

Good system, has hdmi and does Dolby TrueHD and DTS MA all from a subwoofer/receiver combo with two speakers. All your connections go directly into the subwoofer which also acts as a receiver.
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