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post #1 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 02:48 AM - Thread Starter
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Budget HT speaker advice

Hello,

I recently purchased W1070 projector and fixed 110" Elite Screen (CineWhite) for my 13x19x9 living room. My knowledge is very limited when it comes to speakers and receivers. I spent about a week reading Speakers forum before creating this thread. I know you are tired of those type of threads but I need your advice before I pull the trigger. Here is the link to the most recommended budget setups (except Polk, they just fit my budget). I know it's a subjective opinion, but it would be really helpful if you can answer my questions.

  • Which setup is the best for watching movies (90% movies)? Ignore the sub. There is a separate question for it.
  • Will BIC F12 be a decent sub for any of the setup if I decide not to get SVS? I will try to stretch my budget to get an SVS sub.
  • Is it smart to get a $500 sub for $500 speaker setup?
  • Is there anything else I should know about 6ohm speakers besides cranking more volume?
  • Will Denon AVR X2000 be good for both 6 and 8 ohm speakers?
  • Is it safe to buy refurbished receiver?
  • What is the difference between Denon E and X series? (E400 vs X2000)
  • Any other speaker recommendations within my budget?

Thank you.
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post #2 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 06:24 AM
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Heres some advice from my experience...

First the AVR- I would not buy ANY more than you need, this is the soft spot of HT, they seem to break down more than any other component, they are outdated annually, ect. If you dont need networking and or 3 d dont buy one with it, in my experience the more bells and whistles the harder it is to use, more expensive it is, and the more likely it is to break down. When I first started I spent $2700 on an avr, the remote had so many buttons I used to hit 4-5 at the same time everytime I tried to use it, it broke 3 times in 2 years, and the worse part is I only used the 5 channels, sub output and hdmi switching, I didn't use the networking, preouts, zones 2, 3 and 4, 3d, 9.2 outputs, ect ect ect.. the KISS method works for AVR's believe me "Keep It Simple Stupid"....
It will cost you less, last longer, be easier to use, and easier to replace when it is outdated in 3 years... They are very bad investments, a $2000 avr is worth $1000 brand new the next year when the new version comes out, then if its used its worth $300, as you can tell I am anti-avr, lol... But they are the necessary evil of HT...

Next- Refurbed, I will only buy refurbed marantz and denon, both I have heard great things and had great luck myself with for some reason onkyo and yammy have a less than stellar track record in refurbs and CS.. Denons CS is A#1 in my book, they have been easy to deal with and great all around products...

That being said if you need networking http://www.accessories4less.com/make...airplay/1.html if not save your money and just get the 1513 for $109, either one will run 6ohm speakers....


Next Speakers and subs-
Spend as much as you can on a sub, this is where the system can be impressive for a little more money.... I own HSU and SVS subs {multiple of each}, and I would say the best subs are the HSU Research units, rite now the vtf2 is on sale {I thought it would have ended by now but its still there} http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-2mk4.html and for the money that is an awesome sub, I have 2 of them and have compared them to a lot of others.... Thats the sub to buy if that is too expensive the stf2 is a good choice too... But you will get more with hsu, more sq, more output, and IMO having dealt with both companies better CS {both have great cs, but I feel hsu went above and beyond when one of my subs came scratched, they refunded me $80 and sent me a new sub!!! I had an issue with an svs amp and it seemed like I was the enemy when dealing with the warranty, they made good but I felt I was getting the third degree.... Still svs is a great company and makes nice stuff, I love their smaller sealed subs for music, no other companies making $500 sealed subs rite now...

Speakers- this is a tough area to not spend a good amount of money, BUT I am kind of picky... First tip--- go small but not too small, so bookshelfs NOT towers, your avr is giong to cross the lows out of the speakers and send them to the sub so you dont need towers which are made larger for better lows {bookshelfs have better sound}, and stay away from sats, I am just not a fan, non existant midrange, tinny highs, just all around trouble...
Next-direct internet purchasing, there are some decent speakers out there, maybe not giant killers for the low end of the price range, but some nice hand tuned stuff for low money...

That being said if you can afford something like the Wave crest hvl1's, then go for it, them speakers have a great sound for their price... http://www.wavecrestaudio.com/produc...udspeaker-pair not huge and they have 5 1/4" driver but that is all you need, keep in mind your bass is going to your sub. And they have a nice soft tweeter that seems to be very easy on the ears, so no long movie fatigue and no fatigue with long music sessions either... I own a pair they work well...

Next is surrounds, these are simple effect speakers, a door closing, a cars exhaust, helicopter paddling, ect all background on and off effects, dont spend much on them.. You can get a nice set of surround bookshelfs for $50-$75, micca books, or the Pioneer BS-21's would work fine...

So if you went with a hvl1 front end, a VTF2 sub, 1513 denon, and bs21 surrounds you would spend around $1100 and have a really nice setup...

good luck I hope this helps...

PS use coupon code Jman and save 15% on the hvl1's... heres jims review, IMO for the money you wont find a better speaker, I have looked and listened..
http://www.hometheatershack.com/foru...er-review.html
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Bedroom music-jolida 202 integrated & Tekton Lores
Formal parlor music- XPA2 & XDA2, Wharfedale Evo2-40's, dual WD sw subs, pure i20
Guest parlor-Parasound 2100 outlaw 2200 monos, csb1 bookshelfs, dual SVS sb12nsd subs

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post #3 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 08:51 AM
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I agree. SVS is much better than BIC F12. The BIC F12 is an excellent value sub for its price, but you would definitely appreciate the difference.

X2000 at $270 is a heck of a deal if you can swing it. Accessories4less is a good vendor for refurbed receivers. I have two family members who have bought from them. That being said, I would go with a lesser model if it means spending much less on speakers and sub.

I have not heard the HLV-1s, but they are designed by Dave F. over at Ascend Acoustics. He makes great audio equipment

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post #4 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 09:53 AM - Thread Starter
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I did notice that everyone suggests to get all bookshelf speakers. But that 10% (or a bit more) I use for music. Spotify or Pandora while I'm doing something in the living or making food in the kitchen, or a birthday party Will I get more rich sound (mids) listening to music with towers? Does it hurt sound experience to have towers while watching movies?
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post #5 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 09:58 AM
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There are two main advantages of towers:

1) Low end bass extension. But if you buy a good sub, then the sub makes up for this. A good sub is the better tool for the job for the low end

2) Better dynamics at louder volumes. Now this is true if comparing bookshelves to towers in the same speaker series. The additional drivers often help with better dynamics at high volumes. However, if comparing a good pair of bookshelves at price X with towers from another speaker line at price X, the bookshelves should/can be better quality and this difference is negated. Plus the bookshelves can typically have better SQ.

So no. It doesn't hurt to use towers with movies. They just might not offer any advantage.

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post #6 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 11:16 AM
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@cel4145 , are these speakers are good for budget speakers? they are on sale now at newegg. planning to buy 2 pairs. but dont know which center speakers are fro timbre match. Pioneer SP-BS21-LR Bookshelf Loudspeakers

Energy RC 70 fronts
Energy RC LCR center
Energy RC LCR surrounds
Rythmik LV12R and Mirage Omni 12 subwoofers
Denon 2112CI
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post #7 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 11:18 AM
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Wow, you've been given some really good and detailed help. Is this a great website or what? I'll add only what I feel I can contribute (I've only auditioned a handful of bookshelf speakers and don't own an AVR). So let's talk about room size and subs. You have a room volume of a little over 2,200 cu. ft., placing it into the "medium size" room category (I will assume it is not open to other rooms). You'll need a pretty decent sub to fill the space.

BIC F12: BIC makes pretty decent subs and would be considered the price/performance leader if it were not for Dayton. Those that have this model are usually happy, and certainly as a low-budget starter sub. That being said, there are obviously better subs available up to your $500 budget mark.

Going up on capability:

a. BIC's most popular sub and (as far as I know) its best is the PL-200. It also has the best warranty in the BIC lineup (8 years on driver / 5 years on amp).
b. NXG's NX-BAS-500 is one of the most recommended subs around here for those who are on a budget.

Those at around the $500 price point:

c. Hsu VTF-1 MK2 (variable tuning). A solid choice, especially since it's on sale right now for $459 (but you will pay shipping charges if you don't live near Anaheim). If you can swing it, the VTF-2 MK4 @ $519 would be an excellent choice. Note that Dr. Hsu has helped on the design of several competing sub makers, including BIC (and I think Outlaw, but don't quote me on this one).
d. SVS PB-1000: An excellent choice for your room size. SVS has one of the best warranties (5 years) that come with a lot of perks (see their customer bill of rights). Also has free shipping both to your home and back to the facility within the trial period.
c. Reaction Audio BPS-212: Yes, this is a sealed design, but it has two 12-inch opposing drivers and should work well in your size environment. Has the standard warranty (5/2), but does offer free shipping to your home.
d. Outlaw LFM-1 Plus (variable tuning): At their sale price, it's simply a steal. You'll need to call them about shipping and warranty (I only did a quick check on their website).

Oh yeah, your question on, is it smart to get a $500 sub for $500 speaker setup? Very smart. Nothing can change your home theater experience like a good subwoofer can.
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post #8 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 11:32 AM
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I have bought a number of refurbished products from Accessories4less but, unfortunately, the last purchase (Denon receiver) has been a nightmare. Long story short, the refurbished receiver came to me broken (would shutdown every hour or so for overheating). I spent days troubleshooting on the phone with Denon and confirmed with Denon that it had to go in for service. Called Accessories3less (keeping in mind that I had owned this receiver for less than a week) and inquired about returning to them for a replacement and they said "nope, you gotta ship it back to Denon for repair yourself, here is the number to call"..

My brand new receiver was gone for almost a month getting repaired at Denon then came back "repaired". Well it worked for about two months and then started shutting down again every 45 minutes.. Sigh.. Sent it back to Denon. Gone another month.. Came back, and yep you guessed it, within another 2 months it started shutting down within an hour of operation...

Keep in mind this is in an open rack in my basement in Minnesota where the average temperature in my basement is under 70 degrees year round. I had been using another Denon receiver in the same rack for years with no issue.

The solution was attaching a small fan to the top of the receiver and now it will run fine. I suspect there is an issue with the whole board on this receiver and Denon was too cheap to deal with it.

Anyway, lesson learned for me. Spend a little more and buy from an authorized dealer who has an actual return/replacement policy.

Accessories4less stated they had a replacement policy, but good luck getting them to honor it... And their customer service consists of one guy who rarely responds and is impossible to deal with...
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post #9 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 12:03 PM
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My work around a refurb receiver is this - and I replaced my Denon receiver with it. Also, I do like it better.
From a good Ebay seller - you can buy a 3 yr SquareTrade warranty. Tascam PA-R200 receiver 7.2 channel
Brand new - 7.2 pre-outs > plus zone 2 and zone 3
http://www.ebay.com/itm/TASCAM-PAR20...item1e8eddb36b


http://tascam.com/product/pa-r200/

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Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30

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post #10 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zieglj01 View Post
My work around a refurb receiver is this - and I replaced my Denon receiver with it. Also, I do like it better.
From a good Ebay seller - you can buy a 3 yr SquareTrade warranty. Tascam PA-R200 receiver 7.2 channel
http://www.ebay.com/itm/TASCAM-PAR20...item3ce4ccbb34

http://tascam.com/product/pa-r200/
That's a heck of a deal. They are using some very nice components too. Interesting... Thanks for posting..
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This is really helpful. I'm 99% sure I will get SVS PB-1000. However, mixed opinions about Accessories4less worries me a bit. Maybe I should go with a new X1000 since the price is the same as refurbished X2000. Let's say I convince my wife and stretch my budget to $1k for 5 speakers. I have no plans to upgrade my setup any time soon.

Ascend Acoustics
CMT-340 SE mains
CMT-340 SE center
CBM-170 SE pair
Puts me at $1,251.44 shipped

I spend a lot of time doing research on budget setups and skipped 1k ones (it's still a budget price tag for some of you). Any other brands and models fall into this price range?
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post #12 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2BIG4U View Post
This is really helpful. I'm 99% sure I will get SVS PB-1000. However, mixed opinions about Accessories4less worries me a bit. Maybe I should go with a new X1000 since the price is the same as refurbished X2000. Let's say I convince my wife and stretch my budget to $1k for 5 speakers. I have no plans to upgrade my setup any time soon.

Ascend Acoustics
CMT-340 SE mains
CMT-340 SE center
CBM-170 SE pair
Puts me at $1,251.44 shipped

I spend a lot of time doing research on budget setups and skipped 1k ones (it's still a budget price tag for some of you). Any other brands and models fall into this price range?
That's a great plan. Should be a nice setup.
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post #13 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2BIG4U View Post
This is really helpful. I'm 99% sure I will get SVS PB-1000. However, mixed opinions about Accessories4less worries me a bit. Maybe I should go with a new X1000 since the price is the same as refurbished X2000. Let's say I convince my wife and stretch my budget to $1k for 5 speakers. I have no plans to upgrade my setup any time soon.

Ascend Acoustics
CMT-340 SE mains
CMT-340 SE center
CBM-170 SE pair
Puts me at $1,251.44 shipped

I spend a lot of time doing research on budget setups and skipped 1k ones (it's still a budget price tag for some of you). Any other brands and models fall into this price range?
Excellent speaker set.

Instead of the PB-1000, you should get the Outlaw LFM-1 Plus while it is still on sale for $499 shipped. It is undboutedly the better sub. And if you could swing it, the LFM-1 EX for $599 shipped. It is very similar in class to the SVS PB-2000.
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post #14 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post
Excellent speaker set.

Instead of the PB-1000, you should get the Outlaw LFM-1 Plus while it is still on sale for $499 shipped. It is undboutedly the better sub. And if you could swing it, the LFM-1 EX for $599 shipped. It is very similar in class to the SVS PB-2000.
What he said. That is a crazy good deal on those subs.

Based on my experience with sub, I would recommend getting the LFM-1 EX so you don't have regrets (meaning with subs, it is better to have the overhead than not).
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post #15 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 02:02 PM
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One consideration I have not seen mentioned is that if you do go bookshelves you will have the added expense of stands. That could negate a bit of the savings for going that route.
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post #16 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 02:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warner2Bruce View Post
One consideration I have not seen mentioned is that if you do go bookshelves you will have the added expense of stands. That could negate a bit of the savings for going that route.
For good bookshelf speakers - stands are worth it, over some cheap resonant/boomy towers.

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Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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post #17 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 03:28 PM - Thread Starter
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What's the best pick for Ascend speakers since the price range is identical?

AVR-E400 ref
RX-V575-R ref
AVR-X1000 new
AVR-X2000 ref
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post #18 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zieglj01 View Post
For good bookshelf speakers - stands are worth it, over some cheap resonant/boomy towers.
I can see that. Do you consider the Pioneer 52's and the Infinity 363's cheap resonant/boomy towers?
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post #19 of 19 Old 07-18-2014, 04:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Warner2Bruce View Post
I can see that. Do you consider the Pioneer 52's and the Infinity 363's cheap resonant/boomy towers?
I consider them somewhat that way - however, they are 2 of the better budget friendly tower speakers.

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Speakers > MB Quart VS05, Boston VS260, Snell K7
Subwoofer > Mordaunt Short Aviano 7
Receiver > Tascam PAR-200, Pioneer VSX-30
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