Need help to upgrade my system - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 09-16-2013, 07:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi everyone, I need your help to upgrade my current system to a new one. I will include data about my room, usage, taste, and budget to make you have the full view.
My current system is an old one which is :
- Harman Kardon AVR3000 (5.1, 40W per channel for 5 channels and 50W per channel for 2 channels all at 0.07%THD, response 20hZ - 20kHz)
- A set of JBL 5.1 system SCS 178 (four satellites 25-100W, 88db, 8 ohm, 90Hz-22kHz) + (center 25-100W, 88db, 8 ohm, 100Hz-22kHz) + (ported active sub 8``down firing, 100W, 35Hz-160Hz).

My room dimensions are:- (W: 4m - L: 4m - H: 3m) so it is around 1700 cubic foot with no wall at all at the right side of the listening point (however, this wall can be built to get use of the room gain by having a completely sealed room with the named dimensions).

My usage to the system is (30% HT, 40%TV, and 30% Music of all types except electronic). I usually listen to a moderate vol. level (-30 to -20 db on my current system). My listening peripheral for the coming system is to be neutral, clean, accurate, detailed, and best possible imaging. I am also interest to having a full extended, detailed tight base. Listening to the system will never be at reference levels so as long as these characteristics are achieved in 10 to 2 o'clock area I will be satisfied.

One more thing, adding a separate amp is not an option at least for the coming year.

I am now in the process of upgrading the whole system in two steps:

1- Within this month I will get:
Two fronts (either LSA-2.1 - PSB T6 - Polk RTI-A7 or Paradigm monitor 11 (but it is the last option due to about 400 $ above the budget)
A corresponding matched center speaker.
The proper SVS sub (PC12-NSD or SB12-NDS).
(Total budget for this step is around 2000USD)

2- The second step will be within 6 months as follows:
A nice pioneer elite 7.2 channels.
Two front surrounds same brand as the fronts(I am not sure if I will need these speakers for this room size).
Two rear surrounds mostly will be Pioneer SP-FS 52 (or the same brand as the fronts).
(Total budget for this step is around 2000USD).

Now my problem is I live in Egypt and I have completely no access to try any of the mentioned speakers and if I do not like any of them I will probably pay it`s cost on two way shipping. So I am in need to have your personal opinion based on your listening experience about my choice and to help me select considering that I am leaning to LSA and PSP more than the Polk (which is said to be brighter) and mostly to LSA since LSA1 is having excellent reviews. I know I should listen to them my self but all I can do i listening though you.

Thanks for the help.
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post #2 of 6 Old 09-17-2013, 04:32 AM
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Hard to buy speakers without hearing them, but the PSB T6 towers are very well reviewed around here, and I don't think you could go wrong with that choice.

I would probably go with a receiver that has Audyssey, I think it is a more capable room EQ than MCACC. Something like a X2000 would be a good option. I think you are trying to squeeze too much into that little space. 5.1 would be the most I woud go with in there. Additionally, using those Pioneer towers as surrounds will not work well as they are supposed to be place about 2' above ear level and sightly behind you. They are also going to be crossed over around 80Hz most likely so having towers there is a waste. A pair of bookshelf speakers mounted on the wall or stands would be a better plan in my opinion.

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post #3 of 6 Old 09-17-2013, 11:22 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for reply. I know it is hard to buy without listening but I have no option other than reviews and opinions.
I agree with you 5.1 is enough for this room size and agree that towers in the surround will be over used and will be considered to be replaced by suitable book shelves. For the receiver I did not make my mind yet but since all these issues will be addressed in the second step I am not so worried. What really concerns me now is the mains as they are in the first step so I appreciate if we discuss more about them.

From the readings I can conclude that:
PSB T6: Musical, has good soundstage, good high/med presentation, neutral with warm trend, low end is a little boomy, easy to drive.
Polk A7: Dry in music, little bright, moderate on soundstage and transparency, hard to drive
LSA-2: Very musical, transparent, excellent soundstage, transparent, detailed, neutral, lack the punchy low end.

This was the sum of almost a month of reading in different places including AVS what I need now is your experienced opinion based on your listening and my mentioned taste where should I go. If some of you had the chance to own/listen to any of these models please confirm these results and the comparison between them will be mostly helpful.
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post #4 of 6 Old 09-18-2013, 04:22 AM
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I would probably go with the PSB T6, or another option is the PSB Imagine B since you will be getting a sub also. The low extension of towers becomes redundant when you add a good sub to the mix, so you could get a better speaker and have improved overall sound by going with a bookshelf speaker.

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Denon AVR-1713 | EMP E55Ti | EMP E56Ci | EMP E5Bi | BIC F-12

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post #5 of 6 Old 09-18-2013, 08:16 PM
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Tamer1971, I got your PM enquiry. I'll respond to it amongst the rest of this.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

Hard to buy speakers without hearing them, but the PSB T6 towers are very well reviewed around here, and I don't think you could go wrong with that choice.

I would probably go with a receiver that has Audyssey, I think it is a more capable room EQ than MCACC. Something like a X2000 would be a good option. I think you are trying to squeeze too much into that little space. 5.1 would be the most I woud go with in there. Additionally, using those Pioneer towers as surrounds will not work well as they are supposed to be place about 2' above ear level and sightly behind you. They are also going to be crossed over around 80Hz most likely so having towers there is a waste. A pair of bookshelf speakers mounted on the wall or stands would be a better plan in my opinion.

Again, I find myself in agreement with Transmaniacon! All good stuff there.

Step 1: Many who have heard the PSB Image T6's remark on how high performing they are for the price. Here's a recent post of mine about PSB Image. I have the Image B5/C5 combo (not T5). I've never heard the other speakers you mention, so I can't make direct comparisons. (I've never even heard of LSA.) However, your descriptions of the Image sound are generally in accordance with my experience, except for: "low end is a little boomy". This is almost certainly a reflection on speaker placement as frequency response below about 200Hz - 300Hz is dominated by the room. I describe my B5's as "so musical...". When set up properly with moderate toe-in they throw an nice, accurate stereo image.

Also, I recommend you consider the Image T5 and put the cost difference towards dual subs. At your listening distance (~3m?) and preferred moderate volume levels, there would be very little difference, if any in sound quality when run with subs. In addition, it has exactly the same driver complement as the C5. Where the T6 comes into it's own is higher power handling and maintaining composure at very loud levels at distances of over 4m in larger room. Suggested subs: Dual SVS SB-1000's.

Step 2: I wouldn't buy an AVR that doesn't run Audyssey. Get yourself as far up the Audyssey MultEQ food chain as your budget will comfortably allow. (This also gets you up amongst reasonably powerful AVR's.) Denon is ahead in regards to MultEQ implementation at the moment. If you're only ever going to run one sub, or you will have two that are symetrically placed, MultEQ XT32 is not critical, but it does have a higher resolution on the satellite filters than XT.

I hope that helps you.
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post #6 of 6 Old 09-19-2013, 02:56 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the helpful reply. It seems no one is familiar with the LSA (which is disappointing). OK, now I have another option the Triton seven 1500/per or maybe rising the budget to the triton 2 or the SVS ultra. Will the difference be worthy compared to the PSB-T6
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