Given 5K to spend on a 7.1 dedicated theater room.. how would you do it? - AVS | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 05:42 PM - Thread Starter
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I've got most aspects of what I intend to do in my theater nailed down. When it comes to sound-- well, I've got some ideas, but am finding it difficult sifting through the wealth of info here. So I thought if I asked really nicely and gave enough info about my room-- i just might have MORE of a clue.

Room dimensions are roughly 21 ft x 15 ft ... My LCRs and Subs will be behind an AT screen.

I already mentioned that I'm looking to go 7.1.

I originally started out thinking
Denon AVR-2313
3 Klipsch RF-62s up front
Dual-PB12-NSD
4 RS-52's in the back.

I was talking to another gentleman who recently had a chance to visit my room and his recommendation was to choose something other than klipsch (.. recommended B&W speakers and a NAD receiver).

I know very little about B&W, though it seems people either love or hate 'em (not sure specifically why), and I've always heard really good things about NAD. So I started lurking around the speaker/receiver forums and the Emotiva UMC-200 looks pretty nice... would I normally pair that with UPA-700? Seems like this combo can be had for a little over $1100 which would leave another 3-3.5k for speakers?

Is this overkill for a 21' x 15' room? I really don't need all the bells/whistles that come with the other combo receivers. My theater will serve a single purpose: Movies. I won't be switching sources (i intend to purchase an oppo player... that will be the only source feeding the room). I will be going with an A-lens setup and thus likely to consider an lumagen later down the road-- not sure if that impacts my purchasing options either.

Also, once the whole room is completed and equipment is installed I plan on having a professional calibrator fine-tune the video as well as the audio. Though, i'm not sure what the cost of an audio calibrator even is at this point.
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post #2 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 06:37 PM
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A few things...

I had the exact same budget...

Have you heard the Klipsch...they are pretty polarizing speakers....most people either love them or hate them. Tons of other options if you are not sold on Klipsch..if you are...dont let anyone talk you out of it.

1) Look at the Onkyo 818 ...I think it is better than the Denon 2313 and has better room correction

2) Three towers as L/C/R?

3) I would probably go with something like the FV15HP from Rythmik and see about getting a second later.. but your sub choice isn't bad.

4) Oppo is a good choice...but only if Oppo has something for you truly compelling.

Don't forget at least bass traps for the room...
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post #3 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 06:50 PM
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How much room do you have behind the screen?

See the recent Iowa Get Together Thread in this subforum, it seems like folks were really impressed with the JTR single 8 for the money:
http://jtrspeakers.com/home-audio/single-8ht/

$899 apiece but I believe there is a 10% off discount if you order multiples.

For surrounds, to keep your cost down, go with four of these:
http://hsuresearch.com/products/hb-1.html

About $736 shipped.

About $3450 so far.

For a sub I would get one of these:
http://hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-15h.html

For about $1020 shipped with plans to add a second down the road. I would also consider the PSA XV-15. $799 shipped, and a second one down the road.

If you can up the budget $500 more dollars consider the Rythmik FV-15HP

$44700.

This leaves you about $530 for a receiver which is doable. Check out the Denon receivers at Accessories4less:
http://www.accessories4less.com/make-a-store/item/DENAVR3312CI/DENON-AVR-3312CI-7.2-Integrated-Network-A/V-Surround-Receiver-w/AirPlay/1.html

$599 puts you in that model and it has pre-outs if you want to add an external amp down the road, and it has lots of goodies.
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post #4 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 06:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newbie01 View Post

1) Look at the Onkyo 818 ...I think it is better than the Denon 2313 and has better room correction

2) Three towers as L/C/R?

3) I would probably go with something like the FV15HP from Rythmik and see about getting a second later.. but your sub choice isn't bad.

4) Oppo is a good choice...but only if Oppo has something for you truly compelling.

Don't forget at least bass traps for the room...

1. Definitely not opposed to Onkyo-- I realize that the Denon 2313 is perhaps a bit underpowered for my room.

2. 3 towers, that's correct smile.gif

3. The SVS came as a recommendation from Mike here at AVS... I'm really not sold on anything relating to audio just yet. I just want a solid configuration that is room appropriate.
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post #5 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:19 PM
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You have several options.

This is just one of the many options:

AVR: Pioneer 1522k (new at costco) or Marantz 5007 (refurbished at accessories4less.com). Both are much nicer than the Denon you listed. They give you room correction, pre-outs, and a better amp. Personally, I bought the 1522k, but it was a hard choice to make over the 5007. The 5007 has audyssey room correction eqing and will eq the sub. The 1522k uses MCACC for room correction eqing and will not auto eq the sub. But the 1522k gives you a lot of ability to manually adjust your eq settings, Audyssey does not. Also, the 1522k gives you other options like running 9.2 instead of just 7.2. They are both $599.

Speakers: Ascend 340se as L/C/R, and Ascend 170se as surrounds. The 340se is $568 a pair, $298 for the center, and the 170se is $348 a pair. This comes to $1562 total (for 3 340se and 4 170se).

Subs: Rythmik FV15HP. These are very highly recommended around here and have a lot of output for the price. They are $1274 each.


With the above products you are at $3435 in a 7.1 configuration. If you add a second FV15HP you are at $4709 for a 7.2 configuation. If you decide to up it to a 9.1 configuration it would be $3783. If you went with a 9.2 configuration it would be $5057 (which would bust your budget a bit).

The 1522k has a fairly beefy amp for an AVR, and the Ascends are fairly efficient. I would bet you could get away without a seperate amp. Probably the 5007 would be fine too. If you are worried though, depending on which configuration you went with, you would have plenty of money left over for an amp.

Also, on all of the configurations (except the 9.2) you have plenty of money left over for cables, acoustic treatments for the room, unexpected expenses, etc.

Note: There will be shipping on these. However, if you order them all from Ascend, they give you a discount for buying multiple, which will likely compensate for shipping.



Also, going with the Ascends/Rythmik is just one way to go. There are plenty of other speakers out there. I just picked the Ascends because a lot of people like them, they are pretty efficient (so they can get loud on lesser power), and they are fairly cheap which left room for a VERY nice sub (or two). I would not bother with floorstanders if this is only for movies - your money will go a lot further with bookshelves + sub.
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post #6 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:26 PM
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I have to second Ack bk's recommendations, I think you could do a lot better for the money.

First of all I like Klipsch, but their specs for their Reference line is not accurate at all; they badly over state their sensitivity specs. If I was going for high sensitivity speakers for behind the screen on that budget, I would go straight for the JTR single 8. It is a true high sensitivity speaker and is meant for rear AT screen placement. I would wager those would spank some RF-62s all day and all night. By the way, you might be able to just pick them up from JTR, they are in Chicago.

Also, I would definitely not go for bipole speakers for a 7 channel system. That kind of defeats the purpose of discrete surround channels. Your surround soundstage would be a messy blur with four bipole speakers. I would just go for some nice beefy bookshelf speakers like some Klispch RB-51s or Hsu HB-1s. They will perform better and they will cost less. Use these Videosecu mounts to mount them, you can not get better mounts for the money. Go with Dolby's recommended speaker layout for 7.1, and try to angle the tweeter to face the listening positions.

As for the subs, you can do much better. I would go for either dual Hsu VTF3s or dual PSA XV15s. Dual Hsu VTF15hs would be more appropriate for those speakers but puts some real pressure on your budget. Those would sound great. A single powerful sub will get you more output but at the cost of a more even bass sound. For that, you might check out the aforementioned Rythmik FV15HP. The PSA XV30 would also be good for that. You could add another one later to even out the bass.

As for the receiver, I would go for the same one that Ack recommended, however the last time I bought a refurbished Denon it only lasted a month. Anyway, the speakers Ack and I suggested are so sensitive it doesn't take a beefy amplifier to make them blaze, so don't worry about underpowering.

Remember not to get your cables from Bestbuy or Radio Shack. For HDMI, order them online. For speaker cable, just get a 100 ft roll of 14 AWG from monoprice.com or Home Depot. By the way, Fry's has some good deals on receivers and bookshelf speakers at the moment, and you have one not too far from you, if you didn't already know. I would recommend taking a look at their Yamaha and Pioneer receivers right now. A great deal on bookshelf speakers they have is the Infinity Primus p163 for $60 each. These are fairly heavy duty for bookshelf speakers and could be used for surround speakers very easily.
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post #7 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I have to second Ack bk's recommendations, I think you could do a lot better for the money.

First of all I like Klipsch, but their specs for their Reference line is not accurate at all; they badly over state their sensitivity specs. If I was going for high sensitivity speakers for behind the screen on that budget, I would go straight for the JTR single 8. It is a true high sensitivity speaker and is meant for rear AT screen placement. I would wager those would spank some RF-62s all day and all night. By the way, you might be able to just pick them up from JTR, they are in Chicago.

Also, I would definitely not go for bipole speakers for a 7 channel system. That kind of defeats the purpose of discrete surround channels. Your surround soundstage would be a messy blur with four bipole speakers. I would just go for some nice beefy bookshelf speakers like some Klispch RB-51s or Hsu HB-1s. They will perform better and they will cost less. Use these Videosecu mounts to mount them, you can not get better mounts for the money. Go with Dolby's recommended speaker layout for 7.1, and try to angle the tweeter to face the listening positions.

As for the subs, you can do much better. I would go for either dual Hsu VTF3s or dual PSA XV15s. Dual Hsu VTF15hs would be more appropriate for those speakers but puts some real pressure on your budget. Those would sound great. A single powerful sub will get you more output but at the cost of a more even bass sound. For that, you might check out the aforementioned Rythmik FV15HP. The PSA XV30 would also be good for that. You could add another one later to even out the bass.

As for the receiver, I would go for the same one that Ack recommended, however the last time I bought a refurbished Denon it only lasted a month. Anyway, the speakers Ack and I suggested are so sensitive it doesn't take a beefy amplifier to make them blaze, so don't worry about underpowering.

Remember not to get your cables from Bestbuy or Radio Shack. For HDMI, order them online. For speaker cable, just get a 100 ft roll of 14 AWG from monoprice.com or Home Depot. By the way, Fry's has some good deals on receivers and bookshelf speakers at the moment, and you have one not too far from you, if you didn't already know. I would recommend taking a look at their Yamaha and Pioneer receivers right now. A great deal on bookshelf speakers they have is the Infinity Primus p163 for $60 each. These are fairly heavy duty for bookshelf speakers and could be used for surround speakers very easily.

I have had nothing but luck with Accessories4less receivers. I have personally bought 3 of them, and probably recommended them to about 10 people I know and no issues.

Until now smile.gif I purchased a Denon from them in late February and within a month it went into protect mode twice. Worked with customer service and it is getting repaired as I speak for free at a local service center. That said, I got such a good deal from it that it is worth the hassle and I talked them into an extended warranty for free for the hassle.
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post #8 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:41 PM
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Definitely get a receiver with amplifier pre-outs since you have a pretty big room to fill with sound. Onkyo TX-NR818, Denon AVR-3312ci/3313ci, or Marantz if you like that style better than Denon. Accessories4less had good deals on refurbished units for all these brands. Just get the additional warranty to go with your receiver. Seems that Yamaha and H/K receivers are even more under-powered than Denon/Marantz and Onkyo. Onkyo seems to have the "largest" power supplies but you pay for it in increased heat output. Onkyo AVRs are known to get pretty hot and really need good ventilation.

I have an older Denon AVR that doesn't have the streaming options that modern AVRs have, so an Oppo BDP-103 IS the backbone for streaming content and playing encoded video in my setup. I have the Oppo net-connected and can play content from my PC, connect bare hard drives ( using Thermaltake BlacX ), and play video/music DVD-RW/BD-RW using various codecs. If you need a disc player, then the Oppo BDP-103 is a good choice if you have a NetFlix account or want to stream from YouTube, Vudu, Pandora, Picassa, etc.

The Emotiva UMC-200 is OK for a compact, simple system base but it has no video processing or robust room correction, like Audyssey. You'll get much more by getting a receiver. You'd still need a 7-channel amp, which pushes the cost to $1400. Something like the Onkyo TX-NR818 would get you the top room correction which allows 8 points of sampling and EQ of two subwoofers. You are probably good for 80 watts x 7 on the Onkyo and maybe 75 watts on the Denon but you'd give up the top Audyssey room correction. Adding an Emotiva XPA-5 would take care of the anemic power of these receivers. The receiver can handle the light load of the two back speakers at their 2-channel rated power.

The new Denon AVR-X4000 will be the replacement for the 3313ci and WILL have Audyssey MultEQ XT32 room correction but these probably won't make it into the refurbished supply until year's end.

HD-DVD = 94
Blu-Ray = 120 ( 24 Warner red2blu )
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post #9 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:45 PM
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One other thing to consider.. Since this stuff is going behind the screen wall, you can get some great SEOS waveguide kits that would put many speakers to shame for about $400 each. Example:
http://www.diysoundgroup.com/waveguide-speaker-kits/fusion-series-kits/fusion15-kit.html

You could also use the flatpack boxes to build a pair of 18" subs using the Dayton HO driver and these flat packs:
http://www.diysoundgroup.com/subwoofer-flatpacks-2/4-sub-flat-pack.html
http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=295-472

The driver is about $249 each. So two boxes, two drivers would be about $880 and then you would need an amp like a Behringer EU4K that runs about $275. You are looking at $3K in commercial sub performance for about $1K. Nobody would even see it, but boy would they hear it smile.gif

Tons of threads in the DIY section. Just an option. You could save a pile of money and have a better sounding system.
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post #10 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:48 PM
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For AVR, I would get the Denon 3312 or 3313. Another member just bought a 3313 from B&H Photo for $780 delivered. Call Onecall, Vanns, & Electronics Expo and see if they can even beat that price.

From HTM, the Denon 3312:
http://www.hometheater.com/content/denon-avr-3312ci-av-receiver-ht-labs-measures

Two channels driven continuously into 8-ohm loads:
0.1% distortion at 122.9 watts
1% distortion at 143.3 watts

Five channels driven continuously into 8-ohm loads:
0.1% distortion at 82.9 watts
1% distortion at 103.0 watts

Seven channels driven continuously into 8-ohm loads:
0.1% distortion at 79.5 watts
1% distortion at 96.8 watts

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post #11 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 07:53 PM
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For subs, I would get two $650 Outlaw LFM-1EX: 110.7/112.3/113.7/113.8 dB from 2 meters @ 32/40/50/63 Hz w/ < 10% THD, so total is $1300 for subs, and about $2K for far for dual subs + Denon AVR, which now leaves you $3K for 7 speakers.

http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/lfmEX.html

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post #12 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 08:00 PM
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post #13 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonichart View Post

I've got most aspects of what I intend to do in my theater nailed down. When it comes to sound-- well, I've got some ideas, but am finding it difficult sifting through the wealth of info here. So I thought if I asked really nicely and gave enough info about my room-- i just might have MORE of a clue.

Room dimensions are roughly 21 ft x 15 ft ... My LCRs and Subs will be behind an AT screen.

I already mentioned that I'm looking to go 7.1.

I originally started out thinking
Denon AVR-2313
3 Klipsch RF-62s up front
Dual-PB12-NSD
4 RS-52's in the back.

I was talking to another gentleman who recently had a chance to visit my room and his recommendation was to choose something other than klipsch (.. recommended B&W speakers and a NAD receiver).

I know very little about B&W, though it seems people either love or hate 'em (not sure specifically why), and I've always heard really good things about NAD. So I started lurking around the speaker/receiver forums and the Emotiva UMC-200 looks pretty nice... would I normally pair that with UPA-700? Seems like this combo can be had for a little over $1100 which would leave another 3-3.5k for speakers?

Is this overkill for a 21' x 15' room? I really don't need all the bells/whistles that come with the other combo receivers. My theater will serve a single purpose: Movies. I won't be switching sources (i intend to purchase an oppo player... that will be the only source feeding the room). I will be going with an A-lens setup and thus likely to consider an lumagen later down the road-- not sure if that impacts my purchasing options either.

Also, once the whole room is completed and equipment is installed I plan on having a professional calibrator fine-tune the video as well as the audio. Though, i'm not sure what the cost of an audio calibrator even is at this point.
It's hard to do a complete HT system with a total budget of $5K. Compromises need to be made. I'm just sayin'... Here are the compromises I would make:

* Forget about tower speakers. Get good bookshelf speakers and spend the savings on better/more subwoofers. ANY HT receiver you get will have Bass Management and BM will re-direct the bass to the subs anyway. You don't need deep bass response from the speakers when using sub(s).

* Forget B&W. At this price point, there are MANY speakers that offer better value than B&W, (IMO.)

* Forget the Emotiva pre-amp. Emotiva is a small company without the resources to develop a robust Room Correction system. They've had many issues with their previous products, and the problems seem to continue with the newer products: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1449489/anyone-here-using-an-emotiva-umc-200-what-are-your-thoughts/150 An Audyssey-based Room Correction system will outperform most any small-company, (and most all "large-company") Room Correction systems. In addition, if you get a "pre-amp" you'll need to also get "amps". The combination will dominate the majority of your budget. You would be far better off spending the largest percentage of your budget on speakers and subs. A receiver will be a far more efficient use of your limited $$$ than a pre-amp and separate amps.

* If your system is only for HT, and you're using an AT screen, (excellent choice, BTW), you could consider a THX certified system, especially for speakers and receiver. Your room is about 2,500 cubic feet. At your pricepoint, you could easily get away with a THX Select speaker system and receiver. THX certification will ensure you can achieve full Reference Level in your room. You can see all the THX certified speakers and receivers on the THX website: http://www.thx.com/consumer/home-entertainment/thx-certified-products/?manufacturer=&productType=&category= (Obviously, you don't "need" THX certification to achieve a similar level of performance. However, if you use THX-certified components *together*, you can be assured they'll work synergistically to achieve the same goal... full RL output.) If you don't go THX, be sure to include high-sensitivity, controlled directivity designs in your speaker choices.

* If you get THX certified products and a receiver with Audyssey Room Correction, you may not need a professional audio calibrator. Still, some ability to measure and tweak your own results will be beneficial. I suggest you include measurement capability in your budget.

Good luck and have fun with the design process. smile.gif

Craig

Lombardi said it:
Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence."

My System

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post #14 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 08:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

One other thing to consider.. Since this stuff is going behind the screen wall, you can get some great SEOS waveguide kits that would put many speakers to shame for about $400 each. Example:
http://www.diysoundgroup.com/waveguide-speaker-kits/fusion-series-kits/fusion15-kit.html

You could also use the flatpack boxes to build a pair of 18" subs using the Dayton HO driver and these flat packs:
http://www.diysoundgroup.com/subwoofer-flatpacks-2/4-sub-flat-pack.html
http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=295-472

The driver is about $249 each. So two boxes, two drivers would be about $880 and then you would need an amp like a Behringer EU4K that runs about $275. You are looking at $3K in commercial sub performance for about $1K. Nobody would even see it, but boy would they hear it smile.gif

Tons of threads in the DIY section. Just an option. You could save a pile of money and have a better sounding system.

I have to wonder how these Pi Four kits would compare in performance. You don't get any cabinet parts with those, but I think the upgraded drivers on those could be a very real upgrade over even the SEOS kits. I would love to compare them.
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post #15 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

For subs, I would get two $650 Outlaw LFM-1EX: 110.7/112.3/113.7/113.8 dB from 2 meters @ 32/40/50/63 Hz w/ < 10% THD, so total is $1300 for subs, and about $2K for far for dual subs + Denon AVR, which now leaves you $3K for 7 speakers.

http://www.outlawaudio.com/products/lfmEX.html

The Outlaw's have something like a $100 shipping charge on each one. At the moment the VTF3 mk4 has a small discount which makes it nearly the same price, so there is no reason not to go with the VTF3 instead, as it's like the Outlaw but better because it has much larger ports and a Q control. Those Outlaws EXs were modeled after the VTF3 mk2, so they are couple generations behind.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

For speakers, get the Made-in-France Focal 814V towers x 6 for $2550 and CC814V x 1 for $350
It would be a shame to hide such nice looking speakers behind a screen.
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post #16 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I have to wonder how these Pi Four kits would compare in performance. You don't get any cabinet parts with those, but I think the upgraded drivers on those could be a very real upgrade over even the SEOS kits. I would love to compare them.

I have heard good things about the Pi 4. Seos vs these would be a good comparison.
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post #17 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:05 PM
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Problem being, they're actually only the 716v's, not the 814's... look at the pictures provided. The 800 series towers have slotted ports at the bottom.

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post #18 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Dan Hitchman View Post

Problem being, they're actually only the 716v's, not the 814's... look at the pictures provided. The 800 series towers have slotted ports at the bottom.

Perhaps they just used he wrong picture?
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post #19 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:25 PM
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$5,000 for everything for that size of room is really pushing a point IMHO.

However, I will give it a shot (or at least try to get close):

This is a wiz-bang, cost effective 9.2 channel system, consisting of:

Speakers/Sub

Ascend Acoustics CMT-340 SE main monitors (front screen): 5

Ascend Acoustics HTM-200 SE (surrounds): 4

Rythmik FV15HP subwoofers: 2

[must call to get one identical vertical main as a center rather than the horizontal center version (which is EQ'd on the circuit board differently) at the package price... this is critical for AT screens, especially]

Subtotal: $4,129 + shipping

Receiver

Pioneer 1522k with DTS: NeoX 9.2 decoding @ random Costco locations: $599 + tax (these go quickly, so act fast!)

Player

Oppo BDP-103 Blu-ray: $499* + shipping

---
Total: $5227 + tax and shipping

*Add $50 to the price of the Oppo if you want the add-on Roku streamer stick

Optional Upgrade

Add Emotiva or Outlaw Audio power amps later on for higher obtainable volumes with less distortion.
----

Build your own sand-filled MDF stands to place the CMT-340's at the correct height you need, and save some money.

Listen up, studios! Just say "NO" to DNR and EE!!
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post #20 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:27 PM
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Ack_bk:

The price point also gives them away... the retail prices listed are for the 716v and for the asking price as NEW. Not a bad speaker at all, but the 800 series is normally costlier.

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post #21 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:31 PM
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The 814V on accessories4less is a special edition of the Chorus 716V with a piano black gloss finish. Accessories4less is very upfront about this to help avoid confusion - they didn't name them wink.gif The 716V line is recently discontinued.

Either way - that is a very good deal on a very good speaker. (If you call accessories4less directly they may sell you a single tower. I know someone else who was able to do that - A4L had a return where one speaker was damaged and they gave him a good price on the single.)
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post #22 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdg4vfx View Post

The 814V on accessories4less is a special edition of the Chorus 716V with a piano black gloss finish. Accessories4less is very upfront about this to help avoid confusion - they didn't name them wink.gif The 716V line is recently discontinued.

Either way - that is a very good deal on a very good speaker. (If you call accessories4less directly they may sell you a single tower. I know someone else who was able to do that - A4L had a return where one speaker was damaged and they gave him a good price on the single.)

Whoever named them is making the distinction hard to decipher given that the normal 800 series has a slightly different and upgraded enclosure design, not just an extra layer of lacquer.

And given the OP's choice of an AT screen... gloss black is not what you want. biggrin.gif

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post #23 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 09:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Hitchman View Post

Whoever named them is making the distinction hard to decipher given that the normal 800 series has a slightly different enclosure design, not just an extra layer of lacquer.

And given the OP's choice of an AT screen... gloss black is not what you want. biggrin.gif

+1 Excellent points wink.gif

FWIW, I also +1 ...
- craig john's suggestion of skipping a pre-amp/amp scenario and putting more money into speakers/subs.
- craig john's suggestion of skipping towers (since you'll be using sub's anyway very good bookshelves might be a better use of budget).
- the Ascend 340's speakers recommended by a couple of posters. They sound great and are very efficient (which helps eliminate the pre-amp/amp expenses).

I'll stay out of the sub-woofer fray! There are lots of excellent subs available now for $500-$1k range - hard to go wrong with SVS, Outlaw, HSU, Rythmik or PSA subs.

BTW, the sub manufacturers are listed in no particular order wink.gif
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post #24 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 10:28 PM
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I would say that normal speakers like the Focals and Ascends are nice, but they are not built for heavy duty dedicated theater work. They can not hit THX Reference levels. The JTRs and kits like the SEOS are meant for exactly the kind of application the OP is going for. If you want your theater to sound like the IMAX, you are going to need compression drivers and high sensitivity woofers. Normal dome tweeters can not handle commercial cinema sound levels, they begin to sound nasty if you try to turn them up that loud because they will distort badly. Speakers like JTRs will laugh past 105 dB but conventional designs will be choking at that point.
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post #25 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

I would say that normal speakers like the Focals and Ascends are nice, but they are not built for heavy duty dedicated theater work. They can not hit THX Reference levels. The JTRs and kits like the SEOS are meant for exactly the kind of application the OP is going for. If you want your theater to sound like the IMAX, you are going to need compression drivers and high sensitivity woofers. Normal dome tweeters can not handle commercial cinema sound levels, they begin to sound nasty if you try to turn them up that loud because they will distort badly. Speakers like JTRs will laugh past 105 dB but conventional designs will be choking at that point.

The OP could absolutely go for JTR's, but to get a whole set plus the subs plus the receiver plus the player... that's going to blow past his budget. You need good amps to drive these JTR's loudly and cleanly, not just a basic receiver.

And I don't know if you'd want IMAX type or even reference level sound in that enclosed a place (in a larger room or auditorium, yes, definitely). Are you trying to make him go deaf? biggrin.gif Your ears would give out before the Ascends did given a 15 x 21 foot room (they're pretty punchy). Plus, I've added two excellent 15" subwoofers... to create a full 9.2 surround array and the receiver and the Oppo... close to his stated goal.

Granted, there are other speakers that could work too within that budget.

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post #26 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 11:06 PM
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A basic receiver will drive them just fine, in fact It will actually do a lot better driving them then the Ascends or Focals. The Ascends are 90 dB sensitive, the JTRs 95 dB. The JTR's need much less than half the energy to reach the same volume levels as the Ascends. Consequently, the receiver will not reach clipping levels nearly as soon, and so it will have a lot more headroom. It will also not generate as much heat, which is better for the life span and reliability of the receiver. Speaking of heat, true high sensitivity speakers like JTRs are much less affected by thermal compression, so they won't be losing as much output for the same amount of current to the extant of regular speakers. Yeah they cost more, but they are made for exactly the kind of setup the OP is planning.
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post #27 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 11:16 PM
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Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

A basic receiver will drive them just fine, in fact It will actually do a lot better driving them then the Ascends or Focals. The Ascends are 90 dB sensitive, the JTRs 95 dB. The JTR's need much less than half the energy to reach the same volume levels as the Ascends. Consequently, the receiver will not reach clipping levels nearly as soon, and so it will have a lot more headroom. It will also not generate as much heat, which is better for the life span and reliability of the receiver. Speaking of heat, true high sensitivity speakers like JTRs are much less affected by thermal compression, so they won't be losing as much output for the same amount of current to the extant of regular speakers. Yeah they cost more, but they are made for exactly the kind of setup the OP is planning.

If he's willing to increase his speaker budget and that's the kind of powerful sound he's looking for, then the JTR's or Seaton's or even Triad's (the latter brand is excellent with music sources too!) should be considered, absolutely. It's up to his needs and his wallet, after all. smile.gif

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post #28 of 112 Old 04-23-2013, 11:39 PM
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He doesn't need to increase his budget, he can easily have them as a front stage within a $5k budget.
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post #29 of 112 Old 04-24-2013, 01:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadyJ View Post

He doesn't need to increase his budget, he can easily have them as a front stage within a $5k budget.


Not really.


If he goes with JTR for front stage, two things happen:
1) He will not be able to afford JTR surrounds, so whatever he gets for surrounds will not be voiced the same; nor will they be able to keep up and play as loud as the JTR will, so he could not blast them anyway.

2) Due to the extra cost of the JTR on the fronts, he won't have as much for subs. Arguably, the subs are much more important, especially since this is for movies.
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post #30 of 112 Old 04-24-2013, 02:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Goride View Post

1) He will not be able to afford JTR surrounds, so whatever he gets for surrounds will not be voiced the same; nor will they be able to keep up and play as loud as the JTR will, so he could not blast them anyway.

I don't agree. Since the surrounds have a very light burden compared to the fronts, yes, he could still blast them, as long as the surrounds aren't terrible. I don't think surrounds get used even a tenth as much as the front stage. The aforementioned Infinity or Hsu speaker could keep up with the JTR's in a surround role. To overspend on the surrounds would be a mistake on that budget.
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2) Due to the extra cost of the JTR on the fronts, he won't have as much for subs. Arguably, the subs are much more important, especially since this is for movies.

I agree with this to a point. However, I certainly wouldn't say subs are more important than front stage speakers; the front stage is the heart of the system. One way around this is to get a powerful $1.5k sub, and add another one later when the budget allows. He could buy two good subs like the XV15 or VTF3, and although the upgrade path on these is a bit more unwieldily, it is still tenable. Two VTF3s or XV15s is still a formidable bass system. If it were me, I would go for the JTR speakers, because the upgrade path for subs is easy; you just add more of whatever you have.

As for the speakers, I think OP would be a lot less likely to feel any need to upgrade beyond something like the JTR speakers. But if you compromised there and went with something like Ascend CMT340s and wanted to upgrade after that, now you are stuck with some extra speakers. Not only that, but if you insist on the front stage being voiced the same as the surrounds, now you are stuck with a lot of extra speakers. On the OP's budget, either the subs get compromised or the speakers do, and I think it makes a lot more sense to compromise on the subs for now, both for ease of upgradability and to reduce loss on investment.
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