Budget of $1500 for a 2.0 (LR) or 3.0 (LCR) setup for HT only. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 05-07-2014, 10:21 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a budget of around $1500 for a 2.0 or 3.0 system for an apartment. I want TV shows and movies to sound clear, and I don't want to have to turn the volume way up to hear dialogue clearly.
I was looking at the following:

1. Ascend Acoustics - 2x Sierra-2 (LR)
or
2. Ascend Acoustics - 2x CMT-340 SE (LR) + CMT-340 SE CENTER
or
3. 2x KEF LS50 (LR)
or
4. 2x Goldenear Triton 7 (LR)

Should I be looking at some other brand for Home Theater?
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post #2 of 17 Old 05-08-2014, 01:04 AM
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Some bookshelf speakers I heard recently which really impressed me were the Wharfedale Jade 1 speakers. Another 2 channel set which is just about in your budget is the soundfield audio monitor 2s. I would really try to make the stretch for those if you can, they will seriously rock you.
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post #3 of 17 Old 05-08-2014, 04:35 AM
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I would go for a 2.0 setup to start, and get the best bookshelves you can. Those Sierra-2 are impressive and would be my choice at that price range.

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post #4 of 17 Old 05-08-2014, 07:15 AM
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Do a nice 2.0 system.. Golden ear Aon 3s and a nice sub of your choice
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post #5 of 17 Old 05-08-2014, 07:15 AM
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Crystal clear sound/performance and within your budget
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post #6 of 17 Old 05-08-2014, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post

I would go for a 2.0 setup to start, and get the best bookshelves you can. Those Sierra-2 are impressive and would be my choice at that price range.

+2; but don't forget the Sierra 1s are no slouch either and you could do a LCR for $1250. Both Sierras have a good punch to them as well. I have a nice setup including a SVS sub and since I bought the Sierras I find myself listening to a lot of 2 channel music with the receiver set to Pure Direct - so no sub. A sub would be nice for HT, but in an apartment you may find it results in issues with the neighbors even at low levels. The great thing about the 1s is that you can upgrade them later to 2s. Upgrade is easy to do and don't forget that you have a 30 day trial period with Ascend as well.

P.S. I have a Sierra 1 center (natural) boxed up since I just bought a Horizon; if you go with 1s let me know and I can save you some $ on a center that is in perfect condition. My plan for the future is 2 more Horizons and the Sierra 2s moving to surround duty, but it will be a few years down the road unless I find a money tree before then smile.gif There is also someone on Audiogon selling Sierra 1's with the NrT upgrade (LCR) for around $1200 if I remember correctly.
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post #7 of 17 Old 05-08-2014, 07:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Is the Sierra-2 good for only Home Theater?
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post #8 of 17 Old 05-09-2014, 04:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mysteriouskk View Post

Is the Sierra-2 good for only Home Theater?

Yes! Absolutely! Now granted, if your room is huge, and if you set really far away from the speakers, ie: a 20ft by 30ft room with the listening position at 15ft away.,they probably won't get all that loud, but, the Sierra-2's are some of the best sounding bookshelf speakers on the market regardless of any price! They are exceptional for music and do a really nice job at theater!
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post #9 of 17 Old 05-09-2014, 05:46 AM
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I don't doubt the Sierra 2s are great speakers, but let's be honest, with 6" woofers and 86 dB sensitivity, they have only so much dynamic range. A very good speaker that might have a bit more punch is the Mackie HR824. They are THX pm3 certified studio monitors, $700 each. Then again, in an apartment, anything beefier than Sierra 2s will probably just incur complaints from neighbors.
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post #10 of 17 Old 05-09-2014, 05:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mysteriouskk View Post

I have a budget of around $1500 for a 2.0 or 3.0 system for an apartment. I want TV shows and movies to sound clear, and I don't want to have to turn the volume way up to hear dialogue clearly.
I was looking at the following:

1. Ascend Acoustics - 2x Sierra-2 (LR)
or
2. Ascend Acoustics - 2x CMT-340 SE (LR) + CMT-340 SE CENTER
or
3. 2x KEF LS50 (LR)
or
4. 2x Goldenear Triton 7 (LR)

Should I be looking at some other brand for Home Theater?

I recommend the Focal Chorus 807V and the 800CC center speaker.

They are excellent speakers.

Check Music Direct for details.

Around $1200.
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post #11 of 17 Old 05-09-2014, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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What about the Sierra-2 vs Aperion Audio Verus Grand Towers vs MartinLogan EM-ESL?
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post #12 of 17 Old 05-10-2014, 05:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mysteriouskk View Post

What about the Sierra-2 vs Aperion Audio Verus Grand Towers vs MartinLogan EM-ESL?

The Sierra-2 will have a more clear & detailed top end and mid-range, as well as being more accurate and having the best imaging and soundstage. Heck, you could say that about the Sierra-2 versus any other big box type bookshelf speaker period. I have personally compared my RAAL equipped Sierra-1's to the B&W 805D2's and the Klipsch Palladium bookshelf speakers which cost almost triple the price and my Sierra-1's win by country mile.
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post #13 of 17 Old 05-10-2014, 06:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mysteriouskk View Post

I have a budget of around $1500 for a 2.0 or 3.0 system for an apartment. I want TV shows and movies to sound clear, and I don't want to have to turn the volume way up to hear dialogue clearly.

Then go for a 3.0 setup since a good matching center channel can improve dialogue clarity.

Also, a Denon receiver with Audyssey Dynamic EQ and Dynamic Volume can help with using the setup at lower volumes.

Is a receiver part of your budget? Are you considering adding a sub? How big is your room in your apartment?

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post #14 of 17 Old 05-10-2014, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mysteriouskk View Post

I have a budget of around $1500 for a 2.0 or 3.0 system for an apartment. I want TV shows and movies to sound clear, and I don't want to have to turn the volume way up to hear dialogue clearly.
I was looking at the following:

1. Ascend Acoustics - 2x Sierra-2 (LR)
or
2. Ascend Acoustics - 2x CMT-340 SE (LR) + CMT-340 SE CENTER
or
3. 2x KEF LS50 (LR)
or
4. 2x Goldenear Triton 7 (LR)

Should I be looking at some other brand for Home Theater?

For mainly HT use, I would recommend the Chane Theater Tens for $350 each.

They are pro style speakers that will play loud without distorting. I would then get a sub from an ID brand like SVS, HSU, Outlaw etc.

I also mostly watch movies in my 7.1 HT and just purchased 3 Theater Tens to replace my 8" Monoprice in walls.

Looked at many different bookshelf's including the ones on your list. These will be easier to drive then your typical speakers which was important to me because Im not using an external amp.
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post #15 of 17 Old 05-10-2014, 11:03 AM
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Yamaha receivers have a feature called:" Dialogue Lift and Dialogue Level Adjustment for Natural Dialogue and Vocals"

Dialogue Lift raises the sound of dialogue from the center speaker to a position in the center of the screen. Newly developed virtual dialogue lift achieves dialogue lift function even without the need for Presence speakers. Dialogue Level Adjustment lets you control the volume of the vocal sound, so you hear movie dialogue and music vocals at the ideal level for clear, comfortable listening.


I'm sure some Yamaha owners can weigh in on the effectiveness of this feature.

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post #16 of 17 Old 05-10-2014, 01:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Which should I get for 100% home theater?

Ascend Sierra 2
Aperion Verus Grand Towers
Definitive Technology BP-8060ST
Martin Logan EM-ESL
PSB Image T6
Goldenear Triton 7
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post #17 of 17 Old 06-16-2014, 10:20 AM
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I'm trying to figure this out for myself. I live in an apartment and have 2 swan diva 6.1's, and the c3 center running through a sherwood r972, with an emotiva upa 5. this sounds really really good, and every time I fire them up I ask myself why I am even considering looking for better speakers. The only problem is the highs get a little shrill on these old ears, and was thinking raal's might remedy that. The diva's go down to 35 hz, and there are only a few hours in mid morning that I open them even half way. I am thinking about lcr sierra 2, with the LV12R and getting rid of the r972, and getting the dennon x4000 because it looks like you can control the sub for night time listening which will pretty much be all of my listening, and I am reading the sierra two's sound great at low volumes. I sit as close to my tv as possible just before pixels are visible so the sierra two's would be midfield monitors. I am concerned that unless the x4000 can seriously tame the 19 hz of the lv12r I probably shouldn't even consider it, but sierra 2's without a sub may not alone be enough for movies. I'd be ok at lower volumes with two sierra tower's/raal bass, but wouldn't be able to afford a horizon raal center, and don't really want to do a fantom center if I don't have to. Looking for a 70/30 theater/music setup.

I want to feel like I'm at the cinema as much as possible in an apartment. Of course I could also consider some really high end headphones, and an amp so I don't have to worry about neighbor's, like the audeze lcd-3, and a Schiit Mjolnir amp. That would be about the same price as the sierra 2 lcr, with lv12r... decisions, decisions.

Feedback?

Last edited by cranster; 06-16-2014 at 10:28 AM.
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