Need Advice Upgrading Speakers On Budget - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 08-16-2013, 08:00 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a HK AVR 3550HD 7.1 receiver with old HKS series speakers. The center works fine but the surrounds need replacing and I want towers for fronts. I want to replace the center but it is possible to keep it. I am not sure on budget but would say probably $1200 absolute max and less would be better. I have to buy from Best Buy so that is a major restriction. The room is 15x15 with hard wood floors and 10' ceiling. I have 12 AWG wire and banana plugs. The main use will be gaming, TV and some movies. I love DTS over Dolby and coaxial cable over fiber optic.

Salesman at Best Buy showed me Klipsch and Polk and I did not like the Klipsch but like how clear the Polk were (the fronts were TSX330T and are $70 off for $189 in store until Sun.). He did not show me the Pioneer but I have been thinking about the FS52, C22, BS22 and maybe a Klipsch SW350. The Polk DSWPRO440WI sub is on sale for $325 but I don't know if its better. My 12" HKS sub stopped working and I thought it might be the fuse and took the fuse multiple times to Radio Shack but they were out of them every time and I eventually lost it. I got some on ebay but they look too small and can't find a larger size anywhere.

Since someone on the forum said all FS52s should be used in a system I even thought about getting 7 of them, a sub, and a Repose Bone Rattler gaming chair and putting it in the center of the room and making the ultimate gaming room... but that would be crazy right? I welcome all your suggestions.
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post #2 of 25 Old 08-16-2013, 11:05 PM
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:-/ That is really unfortunate that you have to limit yourself to Best Buy. Magnolia has Energy Connoisseur Speakers that you could consider.

Seems like a nice HSU set would be perfect for you if BB was not the only possibility.

Can you get the speakers there and the subwoofer from an internet direct company; or does everything have to be at Best Buy?

I think with what you're spending you could do a lot but you're limiting a lot.
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post #3 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 07:08 AM
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If you could swing getting the sub from somewhere else, for a good sub for HT usage and gaming, look into the Klipsch RW-12d, often on sale at Newegg for <$300. Probably best value sub in that $300 or so price range, and it would destroy that little 8" Polk DSW PRO 440wi. See this discussion thread: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1442829/klipsch-rw-12d-on-sale-for-299-at-newegg-com-again-today

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post #4 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 09:52 AM - Thread Starter
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If its that important then I will consider getting the RW-12D because I have read how good it is but that will be the only piece I don't get from BB. From what I have read I am pretty locked in on the BS22 for the side and rears because of quality with value and leaves more money for other speakers. The question is should I go with the Pioneer towers and center or something else like Polk and if so which ones. I could keep my center and dump everything into getting RTi7 towers but the center does most of the work. If someone could tell me where to get that damn fuse (3.15A, 250V but 5x20mm is all I can find and is too small for the holder) I could also try to salvage my sub, at least for a while and try to get a better sub on a black friday or xmas sale.
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post #5 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 01:03 PM
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You won't get a better sub for HT and gaming usage than the Klipsch RW-12d at under $300. So you could wait, but Black Friday isn't going to matter.

And you are right. The center will be equally important as the left/right. Best to get the front three that you can afford. I would do that, get the sub, and wait on the surrounds if that would help with your spending.

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post #6 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 02:36 PM - Thread Starter
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I will get the RW-12D but what are the best towers and center I can get at BB for a total of $1000-1200 at the maximum and would they be significantly better than the Pioneer?
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post #7 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 02:56 PM
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post #8 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:10 PM
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I'd stay with the Pioneer floor standers, unless you were really willing to stretch your budget.
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post #9 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by afrogt View Post

Does your Best Buy have a Magnolia inside?

No and store choices are limited in my area. I could go to a smaller store that might have more or better choices but I would pay more, get no rewards points, and not have 60 days to return (I am a Premier Silver member). The speakers I was shown were in a seperate room not in an isle but still not good listening area. If I could listen to all the setups it would be very easy to decide what to do but having to choose blind means I need to rely on the experience of others and figure even IF its not what I would choose it will still be quality and close enough since the people here know their stuff and have heard or used the speakers.
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post #10 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:32 PM
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Is it possible to have Magnolia items ordered, and shipped to your local store for pick up?
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post #11 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by crn3371 View Post

Is it possible to have Magnolia items ordered, and shipped to your local store for pick up?

I have got to imagine this is possible. You should check out the B&W 684. In your price range, and I imagine they sound better than the pioneers (which I think sound great for the price, but only for the price) and the polks.
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post #12 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:36 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by crn3371 View Post

Is it possible to have Magnolia items ordered, and shipped to your local store for pick up?

Not only that but I get free priority shipping so I can have them shipped to my house.
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post #13 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Purpose View Post

I have got to imagine this is possible. You should check out the B&W 684. In your price range, and I imagine they sound better than the pioneers (which I think sound great for the price, but only for the price) and the polks.
Exactly what I was thinking. I have a 3.1 system with the 684's, htm62 center, and rw-12d sub. You should be able to negotiate about 15% off (I did). I'm a big fan of the 684's, and although often maligned, the htm62 center sounds great too me.
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post #14 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by crn3371 View Post

Exactly what I was thinking. I have a 3.1 system with the 684's, htm62 center, and rw-12d sub. You should be able to negotiate about 15% off (I did). I'm a big fan of the 684's, and although often maligned, the htm62 center sounds great too me.

Unfortunately it says all the B&W are in store only, its appears to be the only brand that is.
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post #15 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 03:55 PM
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You should go to your local store and ask, and call the closest store with magnolia and ask.

Got to imagine that they want to make the sale.
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post #16 of 25 Old 08-17-2013, 05:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Purpose View Post

You should go to your local store and ask, and call the closest store with magnolia and ask.

Got to imagine that they want to make the sale.

I will check but I doubt they will be allowed to do that. I don't have a Magnolia within 75 miles of me and that is the largest distance it will let you check. Doing the math though that setup after the BS22s and the sub would cost $2,089 plus tax. I also expect some people would suggest some very different setups if the budget was increased that much. Really I should be looking at $350 floor speakers and $300 center, or if its worth it try to do $500 floor speakers, or just stick to the Pioneer because the quality difference isn't enough. The floor speakers in the $500 range are Energy CF-70, Polk RTIA7, Polk TSX550T, MartinLogan SLM, and I am skipping the Klipsch. In the $300 range there is Polk TSX440T, and Energy CF-30 but I suspect I might as well go with the Pioneer over those.
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post #17 of 25 Old 09-11-2013, 07:03 AM - Thread Starter
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I went to BB and a guy checked and they can order the B&W 684 for me. While I was there though I listened to the Definitive Technology BP8040ST and absolutely loved them even though they were only setup for stereo. He said they were $800 each but you don't need a sub with them cause they have a powered sub built in. The BP8020ST are $600 but half as powerful and they didn't have them to listen to. So how do the B&W compare to the Definitive? I wish I could hear them to compare because its hard to imagine choosing something else right now.
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post #18 of 25 Old 09-11-2013, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by BLYNDSiGHT View Post

I went to BB and a guy checked and they can order the B&W 684 for me. While I was there though I listened to the Definitive Technology BP8040ST and absolutely loved them even though they were only setup for stereo. He said they were $800 each but you don't need a sub with them cause they have a powered sub built in. The BP8020ST are $600 but half as powerful and they didn't have them to listen to. So how do the B&W compare to the Definitive? I wish I could hear them to compare because its hard to imagine choosing something else right now.

Nice. Cant say I have any experience with the Def Techs though.
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post #19 of 25 Old 09-12-2013, 06:46 AM
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Originally Posted by BLYNDSiGHT View Post

I went to BB and a guy checked and they can order the B&W 684 for me. While I was there though I listened to the Definitive Technology BP8040ST and absolutely loved them even though they were only setup for stereo. He said they were $800 each but you don't need a sub with them cause they have a powered sub built in. The BP8020ST are $600 but half as powerful and they didn't have them to listen to. So how do the B&W compare to the Definitive? I wish I could hear them to compare because its hard to imagine choosing something else right now.

Def Techs and B&W have very different sound characteristics. The BP series from DT tend to be more forward sounding with a slight push in the treble (around 5-10khz IIRC), some would describe them as being a little bit bright. The B&W's on the other hand tend to be warmer sounding with a slight dip in the same region. They tend to be more laid back. With the def techs, they are also bi-polar speakers, meaning they produce sound forward and backward. This can make finding the right placement and toe-in angle more challenging depending on your room.

As far as the built-in sub, the salesman is wrong. While the built-in subs that DT uses will likely go lower than many speakers, they are definitely not a viable replacement for a real sub. If you like the sound of the DT's, I would consider waiting until black-friday is within your return window. Magnolia typically has pretty good audio deals for black friday (half off entry pioneer-elite receivers, free surround speaker for DT, etc) and many times run their black friday deals the entire week and don't bother waiting until friday
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post #20 of 25 Old 09-12-2013, 06:53 AM
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You should audition all the available speakers they have for a few times. One time isn't enough. At least 3 times. biggrin.gif
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post #21 of 25 Old 09-12-2013, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

You should audition all the available speakers they have for a few times. One time isn't enough. At least 3 times. biggrin.gif

Or he could just come to your house several times (looking at your sig) and audition lots of speakers. LOL smile.gif

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post #22 of 25 Old 09-12-2013, 05:21 PM - Thread Starter
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Def Techs and B&W have very different sound characteristics. The BP series from DT tend to be more forward sounding with a slight push in the treble (around 5-10khz IIRC), some would describe them as being a little bit bright. The B&W's on the other hand tend to be warmer sounding with a slight dip in the same region. They tend to be more laid back. With the def techs, they are also bi-polar speakers, meaning they produce sound forward and backward. This can make finding the right placement and toe-in angle more challenging depending on your room.

As far as the built-in sub, the salesman is wrong. While the built-in subs that DT uses will likely go lower than many speakers, they are definitely not a viable replacement for a real sub. If you like the sound of the DT's, I would consider waiting until black-friday is within your return window. Magnolia typically has pretty good audio deals for black friday (half off entry pioneer-elite receivers, free surround speaker for DT, etc) and many times run their black friday deals the entire week and don't bother waiting until friday

Thanks for the info. I think I would prefer the brighter sound. I have read about others using the them without a sub and liking it and I was thinking about trying it and if I want I can always add the Klipsch later. As I said the room is 15x15 with 10' ceilings and hard wood floors so I don't know how that would change things. One reviewer said he placed the speakers 2' from the wall but I would be more comfortable at 1.5'. I am also considering the BP8020ST which would save $400. Do you know how they sound compared to the BP8040ST?

Thanks for telling me about Black Friday. I don't know how much it would help because these are the ONLY DT's they have in stock, no center or other speakers of any kind. I was pleasantly surprised they had them to listen to and they are the only ones from Magnolia they have. I could ask them if they will be getting the rest of the set or if they don't know then just wait until Black Friday and hope they get them.
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post #23 of 25 Old 09-13-2013, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by BLYNDSiGHT View Post

Thanks for the info. I think I would prefer the brighter sound. I have read about others using the them without a sub and liking it and I was thinking about trying it and if I want I can always add the Klipsch later. As I said the room is 15x15 with 10' ceilings and hard wood floors so I don't know how that would change things. One reviewer said he placed the speakers 2' from the wall but I would be more comfortable at 1.5'. I am also considering the BP8020ST which would save $400. Do you know how they sound compared to the BP8040ST?

Thanks for telling me about Black Friday. I don't know how much it would help because these are the ONLY DT's they have in stock, no center or other speakers of any kind. I was pleasantly surprised they had them to listen to and they are the only ones from Magnolia they have. I could ask them if they will be getting the rest of the set or if they don't know then just wait until Black Friday and hope they get them.

The 8020 and 8040 will sound very similar to each other since they use the same drivers in both. There are really two differences, the 8040 uses a mid-range and tweeter on the backside while the 8020 only had a midrange, and the 8040 uses 2 passive radiators with an 8" bass driver while the 8020 uses a slot port with an 8" bass driver. The 8040 might have a slightly "larger" sound stage and the bass will go lower and with a little more authority. If you plan on adding a sub later on, I would recommend the 8020. The midrange and highs will be extremely similar and once you integrate a good sub with your towers, the need for low-bass from your fronts is negated.

Any Best Buy store should be able to order any of the DT speakers even if they don't have them on display, and all the DT speakers can be ordered online through the best buy website. this was definitely true when I worked for best buy (i've been gone for about a year but I see no reason why that would change). When I said wait for black friday, what I meant was if you wait about another week and a half, you can decide what you want, buy it, and then when black friday comes around if there is a better deal you can do a return/exchange with no penalty.
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post #24 of 25 Old 09-15-2013, 07:03 PM
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You could Magnepan MMGs shipped directly to your house from the factory for $599+shipping.
If that's too much, go for the MMG-W pair for $325, though you'll probably need a subwoofer.
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post #25 of 25 Old 09-16-2013, 10:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Polk TSX550 series is on sale at BB, floor $430 and TSX250 center is $260 so I could get them for about $1100 and the Pioneer SP-BS22 are on sale for $90 a pair so this would be a much cheaper option. Yet again my BB doesn't have them so I can't listen to them beside the DT's. Any opinions on going with this setup compared to either the DT's or B&W?
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