$800 Home Theater Audio Budget. Help Please!! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 35 Old 09-03-2014, 02:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Thumbs up $2k Home Theater Audio Budget. Help Please!! (Canada)

Hello all,

I'm turning to you pros for advice, the AVS community hasn't let me down in the past.

I am looking to compliment my projector with as clear and accurate audio as possible. Teeth-shattering bass is not required and I'm willing to upgrade the sub later on. I'm fine with "decent" bass (if possible) for the time being.



Budget has been changed to $2k~


Quick Points:

- Located in Canada (don't want to deal with international shipping/duty/import fees unless needed)
- Movies are #1 priority
- Any and all media played will be from my HTPC only, to the receiver and projector
- 7.1 > 5.1
- It's an open area, see attached image for measurements, viewing distance is 12'

Unfortunately, websites like a4l do not ship most receivers/speakers outside the US and those who do, the shipping+duty+import fees are insane.

I have seen a lot of websites on the Canadian side who are either severely limited or have large markups. Take a look at websites like amazon.ca to get an idea of what's available on the Canadian side.

Any good Canadian websites out there with a good selection or pricing on decent speakers?

Visions.ca
Amazon.ca
Newegg.ca
Bestbuy.ca (not great but clearance can be "ok" sometimes)
Futureshop.ca (not great but clearance can be "ok" sometimes)




Thank you in advance,
~Kylie


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post #2 of 35 Old 09-03-2014, 02:58 PM
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Honestly if you are at $800 I would spend all of that on a pair of book shelves and keep adding as you go. Just my .02. You will hear a better pair of speakers and realize you should have spent some more.

I would get a pair of Sierra CMT-340's now and stretch a little more into a decent sub on your next paycheck or whatever.
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post #3 of 35 Old 09-03-2014, 03:22 PM
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If you prefer to just do the whole thing at once:

DENON AVR-E400 from accessories4less - $239 or from rakutan - $260
two pair of the fluance avbp2 - $240
fluance LCRs $280
BIC F12 sub from provantage $150

7.1 for $939

OR

same denon
three of the BIC Formula FH-65B from amazon or anywhere else - $300
one pair of BIC Acoustech PL-66 Surround Speakers from amazon or anywhere else $220
BIC F12 sub from provantage $150

5.1 for for $909 <- I would much prefer the BIC horns for movies (you can add another pair of surrounds now or later)


May also want to consider the Dayton Audio SUB-1500 if you can catch it on sale (normally around $190 regular price).
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post #4 of 35 Old 09-03-2014, 09:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davecraze View Post
If you prefer to just do the whole thing at once:

DENON AVR-E400 from accessories4less - $239 or from rakutan - $260
two pair of the fluance avbp2 - $240
fluance LCRs $280
BIC F12 sub from provantage $150

7.1 for $939

OR

same denon
three of the BIC Formula FH-65B from amazon or anywhere else - $300
one pair of BIC Acoustech PL-66 Surround Speakers from amazon or anywhere else $220
BIC F12 sub from provantage $150

5.1 for for $909 <- I would much prefer the BIC horns for movies (you can add another pair of surrounds now or later)


May also want to consider the Dayton Audio SUB-1500 if you can catch it on sale (normally around $190 regular price).

Thanks so much for the replies, I'll definitely check these out. Unfortunately, accessories4less and rakutan both do not ship to Canada and the BIC F12 sub from provantage would cost $120 shipping + duty and import fees when it crosses the border.

I'll see if I can find any of these at a Canadian retailer though.

Awesome prices though for those in the US.

Any opinion on the Sony STR-HD740 or Sony STR-HD750?


Thanks again,
~K

Last edited by KChor; 09-03-2014 at 10:05 PM.
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post #5 of 35 Old 09-04-2014, 05:23 AM
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With your limited budget, I'd shop for good-quality, gently-used speakers from canuckaudiomart.com or local used-goods sites such as used[yourcity].com or [yourcity].kijiji.ca.

Paradigm speakers are always a good buy, IMO.
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post #6 of 35 Old 09-04-2014, 06:56 AM
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I think Ascend Acoutics has Canadian distrubtion and the above mentioned CMT340 is outstanding. Get a decent AV reciever, a pair of those and then upgrade later is my advice.

Set up #1: EMP e5ti, e5Ci, and SLS Q line Audio surrounds, EMP 10i10i sub
Set up #2: Def Tech SM450, CLR2002, SLS Qline surrounds and Klipsch 12wD sub
Set up #3: JBL130, JBL120C and Klipsch synergy sub
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post #7 of 35 Old 09-04-2014, 10:27 AM
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Behringer Eurolive B215XL 15" 2-Way as L/R Mains

Pick up the B215XL or go B212XL to save some money, best speakers you can get. Get your stage LCR first. Does your budget include your receiver?
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post #8 of 35 Old 09-04-2014, 03:39 PM
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First - The Room

Is that a large 27ft x 17ft in which you have set aside 12ft z 17 ft space for home theater? Does that represent a large open floor plan, or is that two separate room?

Second - Budget -

CA$800 for just the speakers, or is that Amp and Speakers? Generally I don't recommend any amps below about $500, which means you have set a near impossible budget.

However, if that is just $800 for speakers EXCLUDING a Subwoofer, their might be some hope.

Likely that budget forbids decent floorstanding of any kind, but the fact that you want to start without a Subwoofer, pretty much demands floorstanding speakers. Though there are a few Bookshelf that might do. Now the budget doesn't forbid Floorstanding Towers, just decent floorstanding towers.

On the low end, these are probably tolerable, and you should have no problem finding them in Canada, though I don't specifically have a source -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_108P363...63.html?tp=185

That consumes $400 of your $800 budget. The Center Consumes another $200 -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_108PC35...51.html?tp=189

Though there is a lower cost Center -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_108PC25...1.html?tp=189+

Here are potential bookshelf Side/Rear speakers ($150/pr & $172/pr) -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_108P153...53.html?tp=186

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_108P163...63.html?tp=186

Infinity in general makes very good speakers, but these are their bottom Entry Level Speaker line.

That takes you close to the limit of your budget.

The very basic Polk Audio TSX330 run £250 each, eating most of your budget.

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_107TX33...ry.html?tp=185

Decent bass, but not rock the house bass.

Though it eats your entire budget for just the Front two speakers, the Klipsch RF-62 have a lot of clarity because of the Horn Tweeter, and they have very deep bass response. But, again, the eat your entire budget -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_714RF62...ry.html?tp=185

The Polk Audio TSi has been replaced by the newer TSx series, which means you might find some deals on the older TSi series speakers -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_107TSI4...ck.html?tp=185

In all honesty to get the quality you seem to be implying you want, you really need to spend the entire budget on just the front speakers.

Sorry for using links to a USA website, but the speaker listed are very common, and you should find sources for them in Canada.

In Bookshelf speakers, to do the job right, you need bookshelf that are at least responsive down to 40hz at -6dB. So at -3db, that is about 45hz to 48hz. It is rare to find a good bookshelf that goes much below 40hz.

The low cost Infinity Primus 163 are rated at 49hz at -3db, so best guess between 41hz and 44hz at -6dB.

The one speaker that I can think of that is solidly flat down to 40hz would be the Wharfedale Diamond 10.2, but they are about $449/pr.

http://www.musicdirect.com/p-15479-w...eakers-pr.aspx

These sound very good, and for now there is a matching Center Speaker available -

http://www.musicdirect.com/p-15500-w...peaker-ea.aspx

But between the two, that eats the bulk of your budget.

A common alternative to the Diamond 10.2 is the Monitor Audio BX2, the presentation is a bit more crisp, but the bass is just a bit deeper.

https://www.google.com/shopping/prod...d=0CPUDEMQVMAA

To some extent, you either have to temper your expectations, or raise your budget -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_107TX22...ry.html?tp=186

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_779SX60...ut.html?tp=186

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_714RB61...ry.html?tp=186

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_107RTIA...ry.html?tp=186

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_714RB81...sh.html?tp=186

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_779AERO...ut.html?tp=186

Steve/bluewizard
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post #9 of 35 Old 09-04-2014, 05:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KChor View Post
Hello all,

I'm turning to you pros for advice, the AVS community hasn't let me down in the past.

I am looking to compliment my projector with as clear and accurate audio as possible. Teeth-shattering bass is not required and I'm willing to upgrade the sub later on. I'm fine with "decent" bass (if possible) for the time being.

A receiver will be needed in this budget.



Quick Points:

- Located in Canada (don't want to deal with border/duty/import fees)
- $800 Budget (Preferably after shipping/taxes) <- Budget does not have to include stands, mounts or extra cords, this can be extra
- Movies are #1 priority
- Any and all media played will be from my HTPC only
- I much prefer the sound of 7.1 > 5.1

- Area size: 17' x 12' x 7.5' (included pic)
**the one 17' side is open to the rest of the basement (total size: 27' x 17', the projector image is projected on the 17' wall, pj throw/sitting is from 12'


This isn't required but I would prefer having at least two bipolar surrounds as I've heard great things and seen good reviews of Fluance AVBP2 (Any opinions?)

I have been recommended Polk Audio RM6750 5.1 + 2x Fluance AVBP2 + Receiver (partly because they're all 8ohm) Any opinions on this?


I have been looking around these websites but am unsure of the sought-after finer details of speakers (frequency response, crossover point, sensitivity, etc.):

Amazon.ca
Bestbuy.ca
Futureshop.ca
Newegg.ca



Thank you in advance,
~Kylie




Attachment 244409

How soon do you need want the gear? Gonna be a least a couple great BF speaker deals........
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post #10 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 12:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by eljaycanuck View Post
With your limited budget, I'd shop for good-quality, gently-used speakers from canuckaudiomart.com or local used-goods sites such as used[yourcity].com or [yourcity].kijiji.ca.

Paradigm speakers are always a good buy, IMO.
Awesome, thanks for the idea and links.

Any opinion on the Paradigm Atom Monitor Series 7 or Paradigm Mini Monitor from the same series?



Quote:
Originally Posted by Elihawk View Post
I think Ascend Acoutics has Canadian distrubtion and the above mentioned CMT340 is outstanding. Get a decent AV reciever, a pair of those and then upgrade later is my advice.
I did a lengthy search and was able to find some random Ascend speakers on classifieds but couldn't find any sold by a retailer, I'll take another look though. I can't even begin to imagine how much it would cost in shipping and duty + import fees to import over 1k+ but those speakers are spoken highly of so I'll definitely continue looking for them on the Canadian side.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bluewizard View Post
First - The Room

Is that a large 27ft x 17ft in which you have set aside 12ft z 17 ft space for home theater? Does that represent a large open floor plan, or is that two separate room?

Second - Budget -

CA$800 for just the speakers, or is that Amp and Speakers? Generally I don't recommend any amps below about $500, which means you have set a near impossible budget.

However, if that is just $800 for speakers EXCLUDING a Subwoofer, their might be some hope.

Likely that budget forbids decent floorstanding of any kind, but the fact that you want to start without a Subwoofer, pretty much demands floorstanding speakers. Though there are a few Bookshelf that might do. Now the budget doesn't forbid Floorstanding Towers, just decent floorstanding towers.
Steve/bluewizard

+

Thank so much for all the links and information. I will definitely try to find some of the higher-end units you listed, here in Canada.

I would never mind paying the currency difference as the prices in the US are so much lower, but either the prices are amazing and they don't ship to Canada, or the price of shipping + duty/import fees is insane. Canadian retailers have a markup on these items so it kind of makes it difficult, unless I resort to only going through classifieds for those items specifically.

The Klipsch Reference RB-61 II you linked @ $399/pr - Canadian standard from what I've seen: Klipsch Reference RB-61 II @ $650 CAD

Check amazon.ca to see the selection and pricing on just amazon alone we have. The BIC 12 would be between $370-380 with taxes.

Once I have an idea of what I'm going after I can raise my budget and spread it out over a few weeks, that's not a big deal. I would just prefer not to spend a few thousand in the end.

Preferably including a receiver, would around the $2k~ mark budget-wise make much of a difference? I changed the OP to reflect the higher budget.

I'm guessing to start it would be best to narrow down exactly what I'm looking for based on my needs. Would one typically start with the receiver first, at least, so as speakers are bought, they can be tested properly?

-Receiver capable of 7.2+ (future proofing)
-Setup is for movies 99.9%, looking for clean audio
-All movies will be fed from my HTPC setup (not sure if this matters) through to the receiver and my projector
-I wouldn't mind a good clean bass capable sub but I don't require it to be so powerful my friends and I'll be thrown from the couch out the window during a heavy bass scene in a movie

The subwoofer I'm willing to go more "budget" on for the time being and I've read a decent amount of good recommendations throughout these forums on the Dayton Audio Sub-1200~1500's. Any thoughts?

I would still prefer to spend less overall and if there are two speakers with minor differences I'd much rather the less expensive one. Overall, I'm really just looking for a "non-tinny" or "non-muffled" clean sound.

Two questions:
- Aside from 5.1/7.1, does the receiver care what codecs of a video were used for both sound/video or is this handled entirely by the PC?
- Some of the newer $450-$700 7.1+ receivers I view specify 3/6 ohm capable but don't mention 8, are these unable to handle speakers powered @ 8 ohm?

Lol, I'm so sorry bluewizard, somehow my questions were all directed to you, I'm willing to listen to any opinions though!

To answer your question about the room size/layout, I figured an image would be easier than attempting to explain:

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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Murderousone View Post
How soon do you need want the gear? Gonna be a least a couple great BF speaker deals........
I can be patient, I don't mind waiting. Sorry, what is BF?




Thank you again for all the information everyone!!
~K

Last edited by KChor; 09-05-2014 at 01:09 AM.
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post #11 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 12:59 AM
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There is no existing standard for rating power on AV Reciever, however there is a legal standard for HiFi Amp. Consequently, rating an AV Receiver at 6 ohms is simply a means of inflating the seeming rated power. Take 3/4 of the rated 6 ohm power to get a fair approximation of the 8 ohm power. So, an amp rated at 100w/ch to 6 ohms is really only 75w/ch to 8 ohms. Like I said, it is simply a means of inflating the seeming power rating of the amp.

Next, amp power is RATED at 8 ohms, but that does not make it an 8 ohm amp. Most amps are functional cross a range of 4 ohms to 16 ohms. But, so that all amps are rated to a common standard, HiFi amps are all rated to 8 ohms.

They are working on a standard for AV Receivers, and likely it will be to 8 ohms. The question and the delay hinges on how many channels should be simultaneously driven for that common power standard. Myself, I think the power rating should be to 8 ohms with THREE channels driven. The amp channels are not used evenly in an AV Receiver, so I think 3 channels is a fair test.

Paradigm is a Canadian company, perhaps they have speakers that would suit you at a fair price.

Also, PSB is a Canadian company, though I suspect everything is made in China.

It is odd that there would be so much difference in price. The US and CA dollar are about 1 for 1 (US$1:CA$1.09).

Steve/bluewizard
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post #12 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 01:15 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluewizard View Post
There is no existing standard for rating power on AV Reciever, however there is a legal standard for HiFi Amp. Consequently, rating an AV Receiver at 6 ohms is simply a means of inflating the seeming rated power. Take 3/4 of the rated 6 ohm power to get a fair approximation of the 8 ohm power. So, an amp rated at 100w/ch to 6 ohms is really only 75w/ch to 8 ohms. Like I said, it is simply a means of inflating the seeming power rating of the amp.

Next, amp power is RATED at 8 ohms, but that does not make it an 8 ohm amp. Most amps are functional cross a range of 4 ohms to 16 ohms. But, so that all amps are rated to a common standard, HiFi amps are all rated to 8 ohms.

They are working on a standard for AV Receivers, and likely it will be to 8 ohms. The question and the delay hinges on how many channels should be simultaneously driven for that common power standard. Myself, I think the power rating should be to 8 ohms with THREE channels driven. The amp channels are not used evenly in an AV Receiver, so I think 3 channels is a fair test.

Paradigm is a Canadian company, perhaps they have speakers that would suit you at a fair price.

Also, PSB is a Canadian company, though I suspect everything is made in China.

It is odd that there would be so much difference in price. The US and CA dollar are about 1 for 1 (US$1:CA$1.09).

Steve/bluewizard
Thank you for clarifying that, I do understand what you're saying.

In regards to the price difference, I don't believe it's only due to currency conversion but it's a possibility, and is likely, that businesses here also have to pay some type of duty or importing for retail, then the markup on the unit as well to make profit. Almost like a double markup.



~K
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post #13 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 01:19 AM
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First let me say, I would expect both Candian and UK companies to be favored in Canada. One would guess you would get the best price on them.

Next, let's set some parameters.

1.) If you get Floorstanding/Towers for the front, the bass response should be minimum about 40hz at -3dB and approaching 30hz at -6dB. Typically, the -6dB is about 5hz to 8hz less than the -3dB frequency response rating.

-3dB is virtually flat. -6dB is down just a bit but still very usable. These are the two most common ratings.

2.) If you get Bookshelf/Stand_Mount speakers, then the bass response needs to be 50hz or below at -3dB. That will bring it close to 40hz at -3dB. The closer to and below 40hz you can get, so much the better.

The above two assume you are starting out WITHOUT a Subwoofer. If you do have a Sub, then the bass response on the Front speakers is not quite as critical, you can add 10hz to the bass response. So, Bookshelf = 60hz at -3dB, and Floortanding/Towers can be 50hz at -6dB. These are not target to shoot for, rather they are a minimum standard to get functional bass in a non-Subwoofer system.

3.) Typically the size of the room dictates the size of the speakers. If that were all one large open room, then that would strongly point to Floorstanding/Towers. If that were a closed space of 12ft x 17ft, and especially so if they system is placed on the 17ft wall, that pushes toward Bookshelf speaker or modest sized floorstanding

4.) As far as AV Receivers, a $500 AV Receivers is a nice common functional receiver. But, the more the better. As you approach $1000, Receivers start to get very good, and whey you start to approach $1500, the become even better. $2000 and above are about all you could ever hope for.

Again, I'm offering perspective. You have to decide where in that range you can functionally be. But if you can be up closer to $750, so much the better. On the other and the typical $500 AV Receiver is very common, and is something of the standard amp for people on a budget.

Also keep an eye out for bargains. Frequently you can find last years model on deep discounts, and you might get a $1000 AV Receiver for $600 to $700.

One feature you do want to get, even if you don't plan to use it, is Network Streaming, which allows you to stream music and Internet Radio. Though that doesn't seem to be a high priority for you, and it is becoming virtually standard on modern AV Receivers are all price points.

Just a few additional thoughts.

Steve/Bluewizard
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post #14 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 01:27 AM
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According to your first post, your priorities are, clear audio and movie watching. With this in mind, you need, I think, a "good" center channel, and, a good sub woofer. You're putting your priorities on the wrong speakers.

With music listening, the priorities change. Spend most of your budget on your speakers, is the general consensus, though. I'm not familiar with any of the speakers (I've had mine for years), so can't help you there. Sorry. Good luck in your hunt.:-)

Frank, "Still the one"
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post #15 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 01:59 AM - Thread Starter
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One thing I keep forgetting to mention is that it is infact an open area.


~K
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post #16 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 06:38 AM
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With a $2000 budget, here is what I would go with:

PSB Image B5, Image C5, Image B4

SVS PB-1000

Denon AVR-X1000 (If you don't plan on 7 channels)
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Denon AVR-1713 | EMP E55Ti | EMP E56Ci | EMP E5Bi | BIC F-12
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post #17 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 12:59 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluewizard View Post
Next, let's set some parameters.

...

4.) As far as AV Receivers, a $500 AV Receivers is a nice common functional receiver. But, the more the better. As you approach $1000, Receivers start to get very good, and whey you start to approach $1500, the become even better. $2000 and above are about all you could ever hope for.

Again, I'm offering perspective. You have to decide where in that range you can functionally be. But if you can be up closer to $750, so much the better. On the other and the typical $500 AV Receiver is very common, and is something of the standard amp for people on a budget.

Also keep an eye out for bargains. Frequently you can find last years model on deep discounts, and you might get a $1000 AV Receiver for $600 to $700.

One feature you do want to get, even if you don't plan to use it, is Network Streaming, which allows you to stream music and Internet Radio. Though that doesn't seem to be a high priority for you, and it is becoming virtually standard on modern AV Receivers are all price points.
Steve/Bluewizard

I really appreciate all the information, you're really helping me here, thanks again!

I've been curious regarding the price differences between receivers. Besides brand, country of origin, addon features (apple / bluetooth / wireless / streaming), multi-channel support and wattage, what would be the reason to spend $600+ on a receiver, when there are some ~$400 that sometimes have more wattage but the same features?

An example would be:

Sony STR-DH740 - $400 (in Canada)
Denon AVR-X2000 - $700 (Canada)

I have no need and absolute zero interest in:
-multi-room support
-anything related to apple (I'm more linux/android, open-source user)
-usb/bluetooth/streaming/network/wireless - although I don't mind if it supports it, I'm prohibited from using anything wireless (security, work-related)
-headphone support
-am/fm tuner
-phono input

Is there a difference that I'm not seeing? I fully admit I don't know much in regards to audio so it wouldn't surprise me if it's right infront of me and I'm just missing it.




Quote:
Originally Posted by gimpy View Post
According to your first post, your priorities are, clear audio and movie watching. With this in mind, you need, I think, a "good" center channel, and, a good sub woofer. You're putting your priorities on the wrong speakers.

With music listening, the priorities change. Spend most of your budget on your speakers, is the general consensus, though. I'm not familiar with any of the speakers (I've had mine for years), so can't help you there. Sorry. Good luck in your hunt.:-)

I'll definitely keep this in mind, thank you!




Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post
With a $2000 budget, here is what I would go with:

PSB Image B5, Image C5, Image B4

SVS PB-1000

Denon AVR-X1000 (If you don't plan on 7 channels)

Thank you for the links, I actually forgot about crutchfield.ca!

I have heard good things about PSB speakers and will keep these in mind.

Would you have an opinion on my question directed to bluewizard?




Thanks again everyone,
~K

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post #18 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 01:12 PM
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Well that Sony is a discontinued model, so that accounts for part of its lower price.

That Denon has Audyssey XT, which is a superior room correction technology and Denons generally deliver closer to their rated power vs a lower end Sony - I'd try to find it for less money though.
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With a receiver, you buy the features you need. The power differences among receivers is in most cases inaudible, since it takes double the power to gain 3dB of SPL, and a change of less than one dB is inaudible. So for example, that Denon I linked is measured to put out 70 watts per channel with 5 channels driven, you would need something that puts out 140 watts per channel to have even a small difference in volume. I would not put much stake in power ratings for receivers, most mid-range units from Yamaha/Denon/Onkyo/Pioneer are all comparable in that regard.

Buy the features you need, I recommend the X1000 for it's Audyssey MultEQ XT room correction, this is a very important tool and lets you get the most out of your system. The only reason you should spend more money on a receiver is if you need a certain feature. If you need a second zone, or perhaps legacy device support, or pre-outs, then buy what you need. The new crop of receivers adds HDMI 2.0 for 4K video, so if this is something you need then you may want to look into this years crop of receivers. If not, then you can save some money buying a 2013 model.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davecraze View Post
Well that Sony is a discontinued model, so that accounts for part of its lower price.

That Denon has Audyssey XT, which is a superior room correction technology and Denons generally deliver closer to their rated power vs a lower end Sony - I'd try to find it for less money though.
Oh, that's true, it is discontinued.

I have seen others that aren't discontinued though:

Denon AVRS700W $450
Pioneer VSX-1023-K (7.1) $330
Pioneer VSX-1023-K $450
Sony STRDN850 $399

I sincerely want to learn, not trying to be argumentative. Other than bonus features, I really don't understand what the differences would be. Would Audyssey justify an extra +$300?




Thanks!
~K
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post
With a receiver, you buy the features you need. The power differences among receivers is in most cases inaudible, since it takes double the power to gain 3dB of SPL, and a change of less than one dB is inaudible. So for example, that Denon I linked is measured to put out 70 watts per channel with 5 channels driven, you would need something that puts out 140 watts per channel to have even a small difference in volume. I would not put much stake in power ratings for receivers, most mid-range units from Yamaha/Denon/Onkyo/Pioneer are all comparable in that regard.

Buy the features you need, I recommend the X1000 for it's Audyssey MultEQ XT room correction, this is a very important tool and lets you get the most out of your system. The only reason you should spend more money on a receiver is if you need a certain feature. If you need a second zone, or perhaps legacy device support, or pre-outs, then buy what you need. The new crop of receivers adds HDMI 2.0 for 4K video, so if this is something you need then you may want to look into this years crop of receivers. If not, then you can save some money buying a 2013 model.
Awesome, thank you for the response!

I'm looking for 7.2, is Denon the only brand that features the Audyssey room correction? Are there other good alternatives or would you suggest Audyssey MultEQ XT specifically?






Appreciate it,
~K
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post #22 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 02:00 PM
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First, I agree with everything Trans stated.

Second, the 7.2 nomenclature is a bit misleading. One would think they have two individual sub preamp out ports, when in reality most have a "Y" connection internally and one could take any 7.1 receiver and just add a $10 "Y" cable. So if the manufacturer doesn't go into detail about their sub preamp outs, then assume it's just an internal "Y" connection.

I just purchased a 7.1 AVR and am in the midst of auditioning it now. I was debating with myself on what I may need or want in the near future, and while I liked the idea of WiFi on the Denon's SxxxW series, I decided that I'd rather have a higher grade Audyssey that was on the discontinued X2000. As Trans stated, figure out what you want or may need for the near future, then make your decision. Just realize all these AVRs get plenty hot, even driving the front 2 channels only. I guess that was my biggest disappointment when auditioning the Marantz and Denon (Onkyo is the same, as I'm sure is Yamaha). I'm use to my stereo amplifier running cool no matter how hard and how long I push it.
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post #23 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 03:24 PM
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Referring to Post #17 above -

Asking why you should pay more for one amp vs another is like asking why should you pay $60,000 for a BMW when you can get a Ford for $20,000. The both accomplish the same thing?

The difference is the quality of the product. Look at each manufacturer's line of products. They make $200 AV amps and they make amp up to $3000. Can we assume there is a difference? If you look at the power, most AV Receiver, even lost cost ones seem to have high power, typically substantially higher power than similar Stereo amps.

And there in lies the problem. If you are able to deliver SEVEN 100w channels for $200, what is each channel worth? Actually the lowest SEVEN channel amp I found on a quick search, was $350, but the underlying point remains the same -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_033AVRE...00.html?tp=179

And this is the most expensive Denon I could find from the same source -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_033AV45...CI.html?tp=179

Now the second amp is 9 channel, but the per channel cost is still considerably more.

Lowest cost Yamaha -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXV3...77.html?tp=179

Most expensive Yamaha AV Receiver -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXA3...40.html?tp=179

Using my typical method of calcuation, the first Yamaha has $42 amps inside. The second Yamaha has $200 amps inside. If you had to make a guess, which do you think would sound better, a $42 amp or a $200 amp?

Continuing to use Yamaha as an example, this is probably the most common and most popular Yamaha Receiver. For the average consumer it is a fair mid-range blend of price and quality. I would not recommend anything less than this unless it happened to be a better model on deep discount -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXV6...77.html?tp=179

But better quality models, and more preferred models would be these -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXA7...40.html?tp=179

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXV7...BT.html?tp=179

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXA8...40.html?tp=179

This is probably the more preferred, but the price is getting up there pretty substantially now -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_022RXA1...40.html?tp=179

Again, I'm simply using Yamaha as an illustration. What you get in a better amp is not more power, though you may get some of that. What you do get is better quality components and a more precision build, and in some cases additional feature. Amps universally come with a Calibration Program/Setup, however many new amps are also coming with Room EQ, which can be handy assuming your room acoustics are not a total disaster.

On your sample price for the Denon 2000 amps, that does seem extremely high when the Denon 3000 is only $599 in the US -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_033AVX3...nd.html?tp=179

I would actually check into the Tax and Import costs of shipping one from the USA. They may not be as high as you think.

You might want to compare brands like NAD and Cambridge Audio, which are UK Brands, and see if the prices are better in Canada -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_745T748...V2.html?tp=179

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_779351R...1R.html?tp=179

The Cambridge are said to have very good sound quality, but they are not loaded down with unnecessary features. Still neither are they cheap -

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_745T748...V2.html?tp=179

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_779351R...1R.html?tp=179

Continuing Post #17 -

Undoubtedly you need a good quality Center, but you typically can't choose a Center at random. It is relatively important that the Front and Center be tonally matched, which means that they are from the same Brand and Series of speakers. Alternately, though uncertain, they should be from the same brand.

Here is how I illustrate good tonally matching Front and Center against a poor tonal match in the Front and Center.

Let's assume in a given movie a motorcycle is going to race across the screen from Left to Right, and the Audio track is going to move from Left to Center to Right with the motorcycle.

This is good tonal matching -

Motorcycle - Motorcycle - Motorcycle

This is bad tonal matching -

Motorcycle - Moped - Motorcycle

The Subwoofer is not critical at all; any quality Sub will do.

Surrounds are less critical. Ideally they should be brand and series matched to the front, but circumstance don't always allow that. For example, you may simply not have any place to put bookshelf Surround speakers, so instead you may opt for some small easy to wall or ceiling mount Satellite/Lifestyle speakers. Pretty much every system compromises something in favor of something else.

In other case, with a very large room, a person might decide to put floorstanding/towers in place for the Surround speakers.

The trick is not to seek out the best there is, but rather the best their is for your room and circumstances.

Also, I didn't realize there was a CRUTCHFIELD-Canada. Oddly they don't seem to have Yamaha. The Denon AVR-X1000 is considered entry level. The Denon AVR-X2000 is consider mid consumer level. This is about as low as I would recommend. The Denon AVR-X3000 is up on the higher end.

Though for you the latest Denon 3100 is starting to get excessively expensive -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Denon_AVR_...033avx3100.htm

There is also a newer Denon 2100 model -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Denon_AVR_...033avx2100.htm

Which means the older Denon 2000 model is about $100 cheaper. Also, and especially true if you buy an entire system, there is frequently room to bargain. On a system, they may give you some additional discount.

The PSB T5 are out of stock at Crutchfield-CA, but the price seem pretty fair, in fact all the speaker prices seem pretty fair -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/PSB_Image_.../760imgt5c.htm

But check these Polk Audio Prices -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/PSB_Image_.../760imgt5c.htm

The Polk Rti are one line better than the Polk TSx, and should be pretty good speakers, especially when you consider they were originally $700 each.

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio.../107rtia7c.htm

Also available in black.

In the Polk Audio TSx line, again the prices are still pretty good -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio...107tx440tc.htm

The Polk TSx440 is probably all you really need in your space, and at CA$270 each, they are not that expensive.

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio.../107rtia5c.htm

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio...107tx550tc.htm

The new Polk TSx550 are some monster speakers, and should really bring the thunder and lightening to your space. Though realistically, they may be overkill.

Probably more light and less thunder, even the Polk RTi-A5 should do very well in your space. Remember the RTi is one model line above the TSx.

Trying to stay at something even moderately close to your budget, the Polk TSx440 and the Polk RTi-A5 are worthy considerations.

I would say that generally speaking the PSB are more highly rated than the Polk, but they are also considerably more expensive. Given that the PSB T5 are out of stock, this may be your only choice -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/PSB_Imagin.../760imnx1t.htm

Actually, I just looked again, the PSB T5 in Cherry are out of stock. They still have them in Black, which I think you said you preferred.

http://www.crutchfield.ca/PSB_Image_.../760imgt5b.htm

Still with a $2000 budget for amp and speakers, you are going to have a hard time paying $1000 for just the Front speakers.

If we assume the Denon 2000 at $700, that leaves you about $1300 for a complete speakers system. So, we need to be looking at something that works out in that range.

Let me see how close I can come to putting together a system for roughly $1300 -

NOTE: In a Subwoofer, you want at LEAST a 10" bass driver. 8" Sub are going to be weak. You may find a 8" Sub that has the depth, but it will not have the weight and impact you would hope for.

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio...107psw110b.htm

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio...107psw125b.htm

These Subs are going to add weight, but neither goes especially deep. Ideally you want Sub-30hz response, which mean in the area of 25hz or less. Which is difficult in your price range.

Though crazy expensive, this is closer to the kind of response you want from a Sub -

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio...107dswp660.htm

Also, notice whether the Sub is rated at -3dB or -6dB, remember you can substract 5hz to 8hz from the 3dB rating to get an estimate of the -6dB rating. So, a Sub rated at 30hz at -3db, can probably go down into the roughly 22hz to 25hz range.

Scaling it back to something a bit more realistic ($485)-

http://www.crutchfield.ca/Polk_Audio...107psw125b.htm

So, let's work this out -

$560/pr = Polk TSx440
$230/ea = Polk TSx150C (alt: TSx250C = £292)
$485/ea = Polk PSW125 Sub
------------------------------------
$1275 = Total

Leaving you short on Surround speakers.

$245/pr = Polk TSx110 bookshelf

New Total = $1520

Plus the Denon 200

Final Total = $2220

That's not bad relative to your stated $2000 budget.

While the Polk are pretty good bargains in Subs, I think some careful shopping might let you find a better bargain. Again, ideally you would like response well below 30hz at -6dB. The Polk 125 will give you very good impact. But most Sub obssessed people would prefer to be down around 25hz or less on the low end. Again, careful shopping could find a better Sub, though specifically what brand and model, I can't say.

A quick check on Amazon-CA indicates the compact 12" SVS SB1000 is $579, which is a very good sub. In the SVS models PB means Ported Bass, and typically means a bigger Cabinet. Where as SB means sealed box and a slightly smaller cabinet.

http://www.svsound.com/subwoofers/sealed-box

The SB-1000 is rated down to 24hz at -3dB. That would certainly do the job for you.

That Sub add about another $95 to your existing budget for a new total of -


Net Total = $2315

Hopefully that helps lend some perspective to the realistic possibilities in your budget range.

Steve/bluewizard
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post #24 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 03:43 PM
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While I undertstand what bluewizard is saying...however, if I had a 2000 dollar budget/ I wouldn't spend 1/3 of it on a AV rec. Your choice of course, but most people can hear no difference between a cheap AVR and a more expensive one with a better Amp, unless you need it to play very LOUD, then a better amp will be a distinct advantage!
With 2000 dollars, I would try to budget more like this
AVR-300 dollars
Subwoofer- 500 dollars
5.0 speakers 1000-1200 dollars
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post #25 of 35 Old 09-05-2014, 03:52 PM
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That was a long post, let me summarize -

$700.ea = Denon AXR-X2000
$560/pr = Polk TSx440 Front Floorstanding
$230/ea = Polk TSx150C (alt: TSx250C = £292) Center
$245/pr = Polk TSx110 bookshelf Surrounds
$580/ea = SVS SB1000 Subwoofer
--------------------------------
$2315 = Total

These were the first prices I found, not the best. Careful shopping could improve the final price.

Of course, there are a lot of Miscellaneous in the form of Wires, Cables, Stands, Brackets, etc....

Regarding the Center speakers -

Polk TSx250C uses 6.5" bass drivers ($292)

Polk TSx150C uses 5" bass drivers. ($230)

The Polk TSX440 floorstanding/tower use 6.5" bass drivers.

The difference in price between the Centers is $62.

If you add the largest Center, then the Total now becomes ..... $2377. Which is pushing above your budget, but not by a crazy amount.

For what it is worth.

Steve/bluewizard
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post #26 of 35 Old 09-08-2014, 06:46 AM
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Again, I want to stress to you, with a receiver, buy the features you need. You can't just scale the price up and say this amp has X dollar components and this one has Y. Trying to equate price with quality in the audio world is not a good tactic. Given your budget, $700 is way too much for a receiver. Put your money in better speakers, where you have a change in sound quality.

I would advise against those Polk speakers, there are much better options in my opinion, those PSB speakers are a better choice.

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post #27 of 35 Old 09-08-2014, 07:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DocOrange88 View Post
Behringer Eurolive B215XL 15" 2-Way as L/R Mains

Pick up the B215XL or go B212XL to save some money, best speakers you can get. Get your stage LCR first. Does your budget include your receiver?
I would not change my advice on the budget change. I would still strongly look into these speakers. Only way I'd change anything is if your budget went high enough to afford JBL 3677s. I would look at JBL 8340A's for surrounds.
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post #28 of 35 Old 09-09-2014, 01:14 AM
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I based my recommendation on what I feel is a minimum standard of quality, plus trying to fit a complete system in the stated budget. Indeed I fell short of that, but not much short.

I also offerred a range of options in every catagory both above and below the suggested price range. The Orgininal Poster can make adjustments as he sees fit.

But, I think this would indeed be a very nice system at very close to his stated budget -

$700.ea = Denon AXR-X2000
$560/pr = Polk TSx440 Front Floorstanding
$230/ea = Polk TSx150C (alt: TSx250C = £292) Center
$245/pr = Polk TSx110 bookshelf Surrounds
$580/ea = SVS SB1000 Subwoofer
--------------------------------
$2315 = Total

Adding the larger Center speakers, again that's up to the Original Poster, would bring the new total up to - $2377

To those saying ... don't do this, don't do that ... then my challenge to them is to put together a complete system that fits the OP's needs. Not just a speaker or just an amp, but put together a complete system.

Lastly, these prices I quoted were simply the easiest prices for me to find. Shopping around can probably yield much better prices. I know, because the Denon 2100 is out, you might be able to find some nice discounts on the Denon 2000 models.

Or knowing the Denon 2100 is out might give you some bargaining room. When the system is fully spec'd out, especially from a single source, there is definitely room to bargain on the price.

But at close to the original budget, the system I spec out is pretty good.

Steve/bluewizard

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post #29 of 35 Old 09-09-2014, 02:04 AM
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I spent 6 months putting all my system together. I waited for sales on the gear I wanted. I got some amazing 2 for 1 deals on speakers, and solid discounts on other gear. My Oppo was the only thing I paid retail, and that is bcause they never go on sale.

But I tell you, its ability to upscale regular DVDs into near blu ray quality was worth every penny I spent for her.

The bottom line is patience, and devoting an hour of each day to researching and bargain hunting.
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post #30 of 35 Old 09-09-2014, 02:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr_jitsu View Post
... My Oppo was the only thing I paid retail, and that is because they never go on sale.

...
Sorry for the distraction, but can I ask which OPPO you have?

Steve/bluewizard
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