Need help with a HT setup wife approved a $2000 budget what would you get - Page 3 - AVS Forum
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post #61 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Djemil View Post

Hey Dan what do you think of the Arx A5 floorstanding for $750 a pr and an Arx A2c center for $209 and Arx A1b for $299 a pr for the surrounds

maybe if I buy it all they can give me a little break on price but any experience with ARX vs Ascend

thanks

Either the Arx or Ascends would give you good bang for the money. The Arx may be a bit more laid back in the treble range and throw a slightly wider sound stage with the ribbon tweeter than the Ascend non-Sierra models, though I wouldn't say the CMT's or HTM's are overly bright either. It all depends on the type of sound you like.

The Arx set up you listed would be pretty darn nice in this price range. Having the A5's up front would give you more frequency range reproduction from top to bottom than using monitor speakers. Better for music, though a decent sub will still help augment the low end (that most speakers can't handle well anyway unless they're big brutes) and take the stress off the receiver's amps.

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post #62 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 09:30 AM - Thread Starter
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I will be doing a DYI project for the subs and will make 2 12" rockford fosgate subs 500watt rms powered by something like a Behringer iNUKE NU3000DSP Power Amp so i think that will fill in the bass

if it was you and movies were your focus Ascend or ARX?
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post #63 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 09:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Djemil View Post

I will be doing a DYI project for the subs and will make 2 12" rockford fosgate subs 500watt rms powered by something like a Behringer iNUKE NU3000DSP Power Amp so i think that will fill in the bass

if it was you and movies were your focus Ascend or ARX?

If you stick with the Arx models you listed... I'd choose the Arx.

If you never intend to put in an acoustically transparent projection screen, then stay with their horizontal A2c center.

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post #64 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 10:45 AM
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The A5s as mains L/R is very nice for hometheater. Great midbass response and a nice wide soundstage. Running the A5s and the older A2 and its a seamless soundstage across the front. From experience the A5s as mains was a big improvement over the A1 bookshelf and the A2 LCRs. A5 as mains would definitely be a step up from the Ascend 340SE monitors which is more inline with the Arx A2c than A5.

I reached the limit on the A2 mains a few times watching Transformers 2 and the newest Batman the woofers was going crazy and made just a slight distress noise, that was crossed at 80hrz. After switching to the A5s and crossing them a 50hrz the 3 bottom woofers barely moved and made no strained noise at all. This was only for a quick second though and it was really pushing the limits of the speakers and perhaps receiver but majority of the time they all had good headroom but the A5 was just much more effortless.
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post #65 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 11:35 AM
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The 773 is 95 per channel, the pioneer is 130(35 WATT difference) which is noticeable. It also can go down to 4ohms which the 773 cant. They are both good receivers don't get me wrong. I prefer the pioneer for the money at this point.
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post #66 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 11:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Djemil View Post

if it was you and movies were your focus Ascend or ARX?


I have both the Ascend 170se and the Arx A1b. Both are nice speakers.

I intend to write up a little comparison review of them at some point (I promised some people in PMs that I would do it a couple weeks ago now, but my life has been crazy lately, and I just do not have time to sit down and do it).

But for what it is worth I can give you a few quick comparisons.

Arx A1b:
The sound is "dead". This is hard to describe. I do not mean "dead" in a bad way necessarily. Music sounds like it is a recording, not as if a live instrument is playing in your room. Compared to the 170se, I think you can pick out the different instruments from each other a smidge easier. The A1b has better bass than the 170se, but I think the mids are a little recessed. Despite that, I think dialog is a little more clear in the A1b than the 170se - I am not completely certain why, but I think it is due to that more black or dead sound. It is not the most efficient speaker though, and if you intend to play it loud, you will need a decent amp. The A1b is skinner than the boxy 170se, it may be easier to place as a surround.

170se:
The sound is more alive. It is like you hear more reverberations, as if you would in real life. But with this, I think it makes it a slightly harder to understand lyrics/dialog. This speaker is pretty efficient, it can get loud on a smaller amp, this can be important in action movies when there is spikes in dynamics and power needs. The bass is definitely there, but just not as much as the A1b. But this is for HT use, so a sub will be necessary. With a sub, and crossing the speakers over at 80hz, the bass advantage the A1b has over the 170se becomes much less relevant. This speaker is also probably a bit more neutral than the A1b.


Both are good choices. The differences I noticed are not big or drastic differences, but they are there (imo). Personally, in a 2.0 configuration (without a sub), I like the A1b better than the 170se. But with a sub, I am not so sure. I also have Ascend Sierra-1, and I like that better than both of these, with or without a sub - but they are $800 a pair. (going even further, I like the Philharmonitor speaker, which are $850 a pair, more than the sierra-1s)

I have not heard the A5 yet. But I imagine that dedicated midrange helps a lot (over the 2-way A1b).


Lastly, do not skimp out on a sub. The sub will likely have one of the biggest impacts on the movie experiance. For instance, I would rather than 5 A1bs (or 5 170se) @ $700-800, and spend $1250 on a Rythmik FV15HP sub, than 2 A5, 1 A2c, and 2 A1bs @ 1300 and a $700 sub. Both are about $2000, but I think the first would be better for strictly HT. Others may disagree. Just something to keep in mind.
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post #67 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lemonslush View Post

The 773 is 95 per channel, the pioneer is 130(35 WATT difference) which is noticeable. It also can go down to 4ohms which the 773 cant. They are both good receivers don't get me wrong. I prefer the pioneer for the money at this point.

its 130watts a channel @ 1khz. the 773 is rated at 110watts a channel @ 1khz...pay attention to the details. yes the pioneer is a better buy for the money.
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post #68 of 72 Old 04-26-2013, 09:50 PM
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20 or 30 extra watts don't mean a lot. At 100 watts, an extra 20 or 30 won't even add a single dB, which is the threshold of what humans can differentiate. At that point, it would be better to get the amp that is more reliable, not which is more powerful. If you want more power for your speakers, you need to get separate amps, and you are going to need well over 200 watts per channel to justify that difference, unless the issue is low impedance.
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post #69 of 72 Old 04-27-2013, 01:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goride View Post

I have both the Ascend 170se and the Arx A1b. Both are nice speakers.

I intend to write up a little comparison review of them at some point (I promised some people in PMs that I would do it a couple weeks ago now, but my life has been crazy lately, and I just do not have time to sit down and do it).

But for what it is worth I can give you a few quick comparisons.

Arx A1b:
The sound is "dead". This is hard to describe. I do not mean "dead" in a bad way necessarily. Music sounds like it is a recording, not as if a live instrument is playing in your room. Compared to the 170se, I think you can pick out the different instruments from each other a smidge easier. The A1b has better bass than the 170se, but I think the mids are a little recessed. Despite that, I think dialog is a little more clear in the A1b than the 170se - I am not completely certain why, but I think it is due to that more black or dead sound. It is not the most efficient speaker though, and if you intend to play it loud, you will need a decent amp. The A1b is skinner than the boxy 170se, it may be easier to place as a surround.

170se:
The sound is more alive. It is like you hear more reverberations, as if you would in real life. But with this, I think it makes it a slightly harder to understand lyrics/dialog. This speaker is pretty efficient, it can get loud on a smaller amp, this can be important in action movies when there is spikes in dynamics and power needs. The bass is definitely there, but just not as much as the A1b. But this is for HT use, so a sub will be necessary. With a sub, and crossing the speakers over at 80hz, the bass advantage the A1b has over the 170se becomes much less relevant. This speaker is also probably a bit more neutral than the A1b.


Both are good choices. The differences I noticed are not big or drastic differences, but they are there (imo). Personally, in a 2.0 configuration (without a sub), I like the A1b better than the 170se. But with a sub, I am not so sure. I also have Ascend Sierra-1, and I like that better than both of these, with or without a sub - but they are $800 a pair. (going even further, I like the Philharmonitor speaker, which are $850 a pair, more than the sierra-1s)

I have not heard the A5 yet. But I imagine that dedicated midrange helps a lot (over the 2-way A1b).


Lastly, do not skimp out on a sub. The sub will likely have one of the biggest impacts on the movie experiance. For instance, I would rather than 5 A1bs (or 5 170se) @ $700-800, and spend $1250 on a Rythmik FV15HP sub, than 2 A5, 1 A2c, and 2 A1bs @ 1300 and a $700 sub. Both are about $2000, but I think the first would be better for strictly HT. Others may disagree. Just something to keep in mind.



Excellent summary, Goride...........

Curious........what do you like about the Philharmonitors over the others?
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post #70 of 72 Old 04-27-2013, 03:11 AM
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Originally Posted by padgman1 View Post

Excellent summary, Goride...........

Curious........what do you like about the Philharmonitors over the others?


To me, the Sierra-1 (standard non-NRT version) and the Philharmonitor sounded a heck of a lot more alike than different. I imagine this is a good thing, as it is probably evidence that both Dave and Dennis know what they are doing wink.gif .

I only noticed two differences with the sound:
1) The Sierra-1 hit the high notes a little hotter than the Philharmonitor. Another way to put it is that the Philharmonitor was a little more laid back with the high notes than the Sierra-1.
2) The mids were a little more open on one of them. (I think it was more open on the Philharmonitor, but we were switching back and forth, and I got confused as to which one I was listening to).

Even with A/B testing back and forth, it took particular sections in certain pieces to get to these distinctions. Again, they sound a lot more alike than different.

Two other things to consider:
A) The Philharmonitor is little bigger. This is not really much of a concern, but there may be certain placement issues.
B) The Sierra-1 has more options. There are more finishes available to match your decor. There are driver upgrades (standard soft dome, NRT dome, raal ribbon, whatever the upcoming sierra-2 is).



Caveat: For what it is worth, due to a particular hearing sensitivity issue I have, I may be more partial to ribbon tweeters over domes. I am also far from being blessed with "golden ears."
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post #71 of 72 Old 04-27-2013, 08:57 AM
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^^^^^ Great post, thanks!
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post #72 of 72 Old 04-27-2013, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goride View Post

To me, the Sierra-1 (standard non-NRT version) and the Philharmonitor sounded a heck of a lot more alike than different. I imagine this is a good thing, as it is probably evidence that both Dave and Dennis know what they are doing wink.gif .

I only noticed two differences with the sound:
1) The Sierra-1 hit the high notes a little hotter than the Philharmonitor. Another way to put it is that the Philharmonitor was a little more laid back with the high notes than the Sierra-1.
2) The mids were a little more open on one of them. (I think it was more open on the Philharmonitor, but we were switching back and forth, and I got confused as to which one I was listening to).

Even with A/B testing back and forth, it took particular sections in certain pieces to get to these distinctions. Again, they sound a lot more alike than different.

Two other things to consider:
A) The Philharmonitor is little bigger. This is not really much of a concern, but there may be certain placement issues.
B) The Sierra-1 has more options. There are more finishes available to match your decor. There are driver upgrades (standard soft dome, NRT dome, raal ribbon, whatever the upcoming sierra-2 is).



Caveat: For what it is worth, due to a particular hearing sensitivity issue I have, I may be more partial to ribbon tweeters over domes. I am also far from being blessed with "golden ears."

Thanks, which has better bass between the philharmonitor and sierra-1?
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