5.1 amp and speakers for $1000? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 34 Old 09-11-2013, 04:29 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey guys,

I'm looking to spend up to $1000 on a 5.1 amp and speakers. It will be mainly used for watching movies.

I don't need anything too fancy. Just something that sounds high quality and looks good. Speakers need to be small and the rear 2 speakers will be mounted on the walls.

Please let me know your thoughts. My room is approximately 16'x13' and I have a 46" Sony LCD TV - that I'm very happy with.

I will be connecting a Roku to it (streaming from my PC, as well as Netflix, etc) my Blu ray player, Comcast cable HDVR and Xbox 360 all using HDMI.

Thoughts please - and links to a good deal, if known, would be much appreciated.

Things I've considered:

Denon or Yamaha amplifier. Nothing too fancy ~$300-$400.
Speakers I'm struggling with. I like Polk Audio -Blackstone TL1600 ($400) and KEF KHT2005.3K1 - ($499)
Any recommendations on cabling? No more than $150 ~40ft
I have HDMI cables
I will need rear speaker mounts for the wall.

Any help is really appreciated.
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post #2 of 34 Old 09-11-2013, 09:30 PM
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Someone will mention these eventually, so I'll do it first. smile.gif

Pioneer Andrew Jones speakers. See this review: http://www.audioholics.com/tower-speaker-reviews/pioneer-sp-pk52fs

Here is a discussion thread: http://www.avsforum.com/t/1278774/pioneers-speaker-genius-hits-low-price-point

Get a different sub than the Pioneer SW-8MK2. BIC F12 or Polk PSW505 (whichever is cheaper). Although if you can swing a little more on your budget, buying a better sub will give you an even better HT experience smile.gif

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post #3 of 34 Old 09-11-2013, 09:37 PM
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New Egg had a Harmon Kardon deal running for a 5.1 receiver for under $200 recently.

5 NHT Super Zeros

Whatever sub the guys on the sub forum currently say is the best for under $300. I don't think the Klipsch R12 is still available.
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post #4 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 04:31 AM
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The Pioneer or the Super Zero's both are good suggestions.

For a sub, an NXG could be a good choice.

See the review here and buy it here.

Speaker wire can be bought at a the hardware store or from Monoprice for the amount you want to spend.
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post #5 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 04:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bladerunner6 View Post

The Pioneer or the Super Zero's both are good suggestions.

For a sub, an NXG could be a good choice.

See the review here and buy it here.

Speaker wire can be bought at a the hardware store or from Monoprice for the amount you want to spend.

+1 The NXG is probably the best sub-$300 sub now that the RW-12D is out of stock, and I like the SuperZero 2.0s better than the Pioneers.

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post #6 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 04:48 AM
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post #7 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 04:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

+1 The NXG is probably the best sub-$300 sub now that the RW-12D is out of stock, and I like the SuperZero 2.0s better than the Pioneers.
+1 The Super Zeros were just $60/piece. If you can find them for that theyre a steal.
http://www.amazon.com/NHT-SuperZero-Bookshelf-Speaker-Single/dp/B00001ZWSY/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1378986903&sr=1-1&keywords=nht+super+zero

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post #8 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 06:52 AM
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It was the SuperZero 2.0s that NHT had on closeout because they have a new SuperZero 2.1. Apparently all gone now. Still, the SuperZero 2.1s are a good speaker. smile.gif

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post #9 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 06:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you all so much. All are wonderful suggestions.

Here is what I'm thinking so far... (with so many choices, it's very tough and a little overwhelming to choose!)

AMP:

Denon AVR 1713

http://www.amazon.com/Denon-AVR-1713-Networking-Receiver-Outputs/dp/B007R8U5W6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1379032856&sr=8-1&keywords=denon+avr+1713

Or

Yamaha RX-V375BL

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/575W+5.1-Ch.+A/V+Home+Theater+Receiver/8043157.p?id=1218863726971&skuId=8043157&st=receiver%205.1&cp=1&lp=2

Or

Yamaha RX-V475BL

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/575W+5.1-Ch.+A/V+Home+Theater+Receiver/8043157.p?id=1218863726971&skuId=8043157&st=receiver%205.1&cp=1&lp=2

Speakers

I love the look of the NX-BAS-500 sub and reviews are solid. I will probably purchase this.

The other speakers I am struggling with. I don't have much room, so flooring standing speakers are probably out of the question, unless they are very thin, and not too tall.

I've looked at all of your suggestions.

Pioneer Andrew Jones speakers - Reviews are solid, but I don't like the look of them. They look too much like 1980/90's speakers in the black ash cabinets. A deal breaker for me. Silly I know, to dismiss them based upon looks only, but they will be in a prime location in my house, so I want them to look good as well as have amazing sound quality.

NHT Super Zeros - Hard to find stock. All are 2.1's now and they are also hard to find (for me). I don't think that I want 5 box type speakers all looking the same. I would rather a proper looking center speaker and 2 mains.

I like the look of these - Fluance XLBP Wide Dispersion Bipolar Surround Sound Speakers - http://www.amazon.com/Fluance-XLBP-Dispersion-Surround-Speakers/dp/B00CRMKJTQ. I've used bipolar speakers before with great results. The reviews look good.

Can you please let me know if the NX-BAS-500 and the Fluance XLBP will compliment each other when using any of the amps above? Also, any suggestions on the center and main speakers to go with these?

I really appreciate and value your suggestions.

Thanks guys.
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post #10 of 34 Old 09-12-2013, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikiek View Post

NHT Super Zeros - Hard to find stock. All are 2.1's now and they are also hard to find (for me). I don't think that I want 5 box type speakers all looking the same. I would rather a proper looking center speaker and 2 mains.

Buy them direct from NHT
http://www.nhthifi.com/Bookshelf-speaker-SuperZero-2-1?sc=12&category=3772

Here is the horizontal center you can use with them: http://www.nhthifi.com/Absolute-Center?sc=12&category=3774

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post #11 of 34 Old 09-13-2013, 04:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikiek View Post

Thank you all so much. All are wonderful suggestions.

Here is what I'm thinking so far... (with so many choices, it's very tough and a little overwhelming to choose!)

AMP:

Denon AVR 1713

http://www.amazon.com/Denon-AVR-1713-Networking-Receiver-Outputs/dp/B007R8U5W6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1379032856&sr=8-1&keywords=denon+avr+1713

Or

Yamaha RX-V375BL

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/575W+5.1-Ch.+A/V+Home+Theater+Receiver/8043157.p?id=1218863726971&skuId=8043157&st=receiver%205.1&cp=1&lp=2

Or

Yamaha RX-V475BL

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/575W+5.1-Ch.+A/V+Home+Theater+Receiver/8043157.p?id=1218863726971&skuId=8043157&st=receiver%205.1&cp=1&lp=2

Speakers

I love the look of the NX-BAS-500 sub and reviews are solid. I will probably purchase this.

The other speakers I am struggling with. I don't have much room, so flooring standing speakers are probably out of the question, unless they are very thin, and not too tall.

I've looked at all of your suggestions.

Pioneer Andrew Jones speakers - Reviews are solid, but I don't like the look of them. They look too much like 1980/90's speakers in the black ash cabinets. A deal breaker for me. Silly I know, to dismiss them based upon looks only, but they will be in a prime location in my house, so I want them to look good as well as have amazing sound quality.

NHT Super Zeros - Hard to find stock. All are 2.1's now and they are also hard to find (for me). I don't think that I want 5 box type speakers all looking the same. I would rather a proper looking center speaker and 2 mains.

I like the look of these - Fluance XLBP Wide Dispersion Bipolar Surround Sound Speakers - http://www.amazon.com/Fluance-XLBP-Dispersion-Surround-Speakers/dp/B00CRMKJTQ. I've used bipolar speakers before with great results. The reviews look good.

Can you please let me know if the NX-BAS-500 and the Fluance XLBP will compliment each other when using any of the amps above? Also, any suggestions on the center and main speakers to go with these?

I really appreciate and value your suggestions.

Thanks guys.

I would go with the Denon receiver since it has Audyssey MultEQ XT, much better for calibration than Yamaha's YPAO (I made the switch from Yamaha to Denon). I think that NXG is a good choice. Something you could consider if you want good looking speakers, is EMP. Now the towers are out of your budget, but their E5Bi bookshelves are great! You could get a pair of them and the center now, and then use something inexpensive for the surrounds as they don't need to match. The E5Bi + E5Ci would be $420 shipped, and I don't think you can find a better looking speaker for the money, they really are impressive. The sound is similar to the Pioneers in that it is more neutral, but their midrange is better in my opinion (I compared the BS22 and E5Bi).

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post #12 of 34 Old 09-13-2013, 07:03 AM
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Quote:
NHT Super Zeros - Hard to find stock. All are 2.1's now and they are also hard to find (for me).

http://www.nhthifi.com/s.nl?sc=21&category=&search=superzero+2.0

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post #13 of 34 Old 09-13-2013, 07:32 AM
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Wow, yeah, the b-stock SZ are $55. Five would be $275.

Then $200-$300 for AVR.

Then get the $589 Rythmik LV12 or $500 for the SVS sub or $424 for a Premier Acoustic PA-150 sub.

CEA Standard (THD <10%, 2 Meters) SPL @ 20/32/40/50/63 Hz:
$424 Premier Acoustic PA-150: 93.6/105.4/109.3/114.4/118 (Acoustic Design code: TV15)
$769 SVS PB12-NSD: 103.2/105.9/106.5/107.3/108.0
$4000 Velodyne DD15+: 97.0/102.0/109.0/109.0/112.0


The $424 PA-150 looks amazing to me for the price. Most of the bass we hear and feel are from 30Hz - 120Hz. If you compare the PA-150 vs. SVS PB12NSD & Velodyne DD15+ from 32Hz & up, the PA-150 really shines.
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post #14 of 34 Old 09-13-2013, 07:53 PM
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Thats a great deal.

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post #15 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 03:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi Everyone,

Thanks again for all of your suggestions. They are very helpful.

I purchased the Denon AVR - E200 for $199 shipped today. WWStereo.com. This will fit all my immediate amp needs - I will probably upgrade the amp in 12 months or so, but it will do everything I need for now.

I'm thinking about purchasing 5 x NHT Super Zero's 2.1's. $499.95 delivered. I've looked for discounts but cannot find them any cheaper. Does anyone have 5 of these? I'm a little nervous about using them for all 5 channels. I may end up with 4 and purchase a center speaker - any suggestions for less than $250 that will be better than the NHT SZ 2.1's?

For the sub, I will be ordering the NXG Technology NX-BAS-500 12" 500-watt Powered Subwoofer from Amazon (AV House) for $269.99 (cannot locate it cheaper) and although this is 25% of my total budget, I don't think that I will need to replace this any time soon.

What speaker cable should I use? I have no idea what to order for these. The cable runs will be short - 5' for the front 3 speakers and about 15' each for the rears. Any suggestions would be very much appreciated. Under $100 please.
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post #16 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 03:23 PM
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The 3 speakers for front stage should sound identical.


so the best and optimal option is 3 identical speakers for front stage.

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post #17 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 03:35 PM
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post #18 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 05:01 PM
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The NXG sub may not be a great choice for the SuperZeros or other small satellites. They probably need a 140/150hz crossover, and the NXG rolls off a lot above 80hz. Here is the graph from the S&V review:


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post #19 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 06:19 PM
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I think you can cross the NHT SuperZero over at 100hz. So it might not be bad with the NXG sub.

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post #20 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 06:34 PM - Thread Starter
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Hmmm.... I thought that the Sub and NHT would work as others suggested this above?

If not, what suggestions does anyone have for smaller speakers that will work with the NXG sub?

I've cancelled the Denon amp order and decided to go with the Yamaha RX-V375BL as this has YPAO and that will be helpful to me setting this all up, as I don't have lots of experience with this.

I'll research until Monday to find alternatives to the NHT SZ2.1's, but I really like how small they are. I'm not sure if I'll find something small and in the similar price range.

Worst case, I can return the NXG Sub. Anyone have any suggestions for a sub that will compliment the NHT's?

Thanks for helping me.
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post #21 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 07:32 PM
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The NHTs are the best you will find in that size. You can X them at 100 HZ fine, but I would not X at 80 Hz (see http://www.stereophile.com/content/nht-superzero-loudspeaker-sw2-subwoofer-measurements)
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post #22 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 07:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by afrogt View Post

I think you can cross the NHT SuperZero over at 100hz. So it might not be bad with the NXG sub.

Probably not a good idea. From this review of the 2.0



140/150 hz definitely seems better.

It's always possible the 2.1s are better, but the earlier version of the SuperZero was reviewed by Stereophile back in 1994 and the measurements look similar.

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post #23 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 07:59 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm starting to think that I should buy a package system, so I know that everything will play nicely together smile.gif

Polk T1900 has some good reviews and I can pickup tomorrow smile.gif

Polk TL350 is another option (a little more expensive, so I would hope better quality)

Definitive Technology ProCinema 600

Klipsch HD Theater 600

Energy 5.1 Take Classic

Or finally Fluance SXHTB+ 5 Speaker Surround Sound Home Theater System

Thoughts on the best of these?
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post #24 of 34 Old 09-14-2013, 11:57 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm thinking of ordering the Polk Blackstone TL350. Perhaps I can use the NXG sub with these? If not, I'll return the sub as I really like the size and style of the Polks.

Any final thoughts before I go ahead and purchase (tomorrow)?

Thanks everyone smile.gif
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post #25 of 34 Old 09-15-2013, 04:37 AM
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Youre making a mistake getting a package system imo. The TL350 system is nice and shiny and pretty but a waste of money.

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post #26 of 34 Old 09-15-2013, 05:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikiek View Post

I'm thinking of ordering the Polk Blackstone TL350. Perhaps I can use the NXG sub with these? If not, I'll return the sub as I really like the size and style of the Polks.

Any final thoughts before I go ahead and purchase (tomorrow)?

Thanks everyone smile.gif

The tl350 speakers have less low end than the SZs and don't sound as good and cost more.

I run 5 if the SZ 2.0. I lay the center speaker on its side and notice no difference across a four seat sofa from 9-10 ft away.

They sound great for both movies and music being driven with only a 50 watt reciever.

I crossed them over at 100 hz when I had my super cube sub (rolled off at about 90-100 hz) with no issues. I'm currently trying 120hz with my SVS sub. Can't really tell any difference.

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post #27 of 34 Old 09-15-2013, 07:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikiek View Post

I'm thinking of ordering the Polk Blackstone TL350. Perhaps I can use the NXG sub with these? If not, I'll return the sub as I really like the size and style of the Polks.

Any final thoughts before I go ahead and purchase (tomorrow)?

Thanks everyone smile.gif

I wouldn't think the TL350s would be a good match with the NXG for the same reason:

http://www.soundandvisionmag.com/article/review-polk-audio-blackstone-tl350?page=0,2

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post #28 of 34 Old 09-15-2013, 08:44 AM - Thread Starter
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You guys are right and awesome. Thanks again.

I've decided to return the NXG and purchase the NHT SZ2.1's. I'm thinking of ordering the NHT Super Surround 5.1 as this comes with the Super 8 subwoofer. The package is $799 link

Is this the best sub for these speakers within $300 price range?

I will also order Audioquest X2 speaker cable link

Thanks again, everyone. Please let me know if you think I'm better off purchasing another sub. I plan on ordering later today.
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post #29 of 34 Old 09-15-2013, 08:58 AM
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If you already have the NXG in your possession, you should get the SuperZeros and see what you think. If it sounds good to you, then might not be worth spending the money to ship a subwoofer back.

Buy some 12 gauge Monoprice speaker wire instead. There's no advantage in getting the Audioquest other than it costs more wink.gif

The Super 8 is a small 8" sub with a poor low end frequency response -3dB 37Hz - 210Hz, -10dB 30Hz. It would be fine in a smaller room for music listening, but could easily be pushed to its limits in your space, and for HT usage, better to have more low end.

I would go for the PA-150 that AcuDefTechGuy recommended instead. It can be had for $350 if you make Acoustic Sound Design an offer.

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post #30 of 34 Old 09-15-2013, 09:02 AM
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