Hey guys & gals,
First, thanks for all the great help over the years. AVS forum is the place where I come to get the right answers. So, here's come background. I have quite a bit of existing equipment already. Out of it all, I think only the receiver will be useful in our new place. Still, here's the list:
- NAD T 747 a\v receiver
- Infinity Primus 2 x 362s, 1 x 351 and 2 x 151s
- Generic Sony subwoofer, 10", 120w
The receiver is my latest purchase from a couple of years ago and I'm completely happy with it. The sound quality is terrific and it's got plenty of power. Plus, that exotic thing, wife approved. ;-) However, in our new place we'd both like to get rid of the tower speakers, large center channel and rear surrounds. They just don't really fit in that well in this place. Plus, I'd like to create a much more integrated look and I've decided to give inwalls some close attention.
Perhaps a few comments about sound quality would be in order. First, we watch a ton of movies and sports. Secondly, we'll watch concert blu-rays or listen to some 2 channel music. So, that's my order of priority. With the existing setup, I can play a movie like Master and Commander and revel in the small details of sound (at reference levels) and then enjoy the most dynamic, couch shaking sound when those fantastic cannons go off. Dialog is nicely weighty and centered, panning between all the channels is pretty seamless. I'm happy with the sound quality, honestly, just not the looks. Now, since I'm buying new gear, I've got the chance to step up in both quality and looks.
My sound goals for this are pretty straightforward, If a movie with a great dynamic range is playing, like Master & Commander, I'd like to be able to keep those great details and still have the headroom to shake the couch properly and make people duck when the bullets go by. ;-) But then, most of the time I neither want nor need that kind of room shaking sound. 90% of our watching\listening is done in the evening or night and it's at a very moderate level. So, keeping the detail and having a relaxed, non-fatiguing sound is key. An accurate, yet smooth sound would be a nice upgrade. So, if I put on a Norah Jones concert we can kick back with some scotch and chill out. Maybe I can sum it up this way by quoting the ever relevant Usher "we want a lady in the street but a freak in the bed".
My budget for speakers + sub is around $2000. I'd like to get inwalls with builtin enclosures so I can enjoy a fully engineered sound. There's some pretty significant room challenges that I'm trying to overcome which are a little frustrating. Right now I've got to live with a pretty lousy fireplace setup (at least for home theater purposes. I'm told it helps my resell value). You'll see what I'm talking about in the attached diagram. It's not to scale but the proportions should be accurate. Regarding the fireplace setup, for now let's just assume there's a blank wall above it. The TV and LCR are are properly mounted to that wall.
I've looked at Axiom, Triad, RBH and a few others. But, without being able to demo them in my place, it's hard to gauge how they will sound compared to what I've got now. Frankly, the Axiom home theater setups are pretty tempting since they come in a package. But, that's just my lazy side talking. I'd really like to hear from you all what you like in that price range. I know I can get that laid back, Norah Jonesy sound from inwalls but I'm wondering if I can still shake the couch with them? Is there a system in my budge that will do both? Does anyone have local dealers in Atlanta that I can go listen to these inwall setups?
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