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speaker guy thinks I should get 2.0/2.1 setup for my great room

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
have a large great room (20x25 feet with 16 foot high ceilings) where I watch TV/Movies (70-80%) and listen to music (20-30%), want to get it setup with speakers as my wife hates all the wires from logitech computer speakers i am currently using with 5.1 setup.

speaker guy who originally prewired my house for sound suggested that I think about a 2.0/2.1 setup rather than 5.1 setup. he states I should get 2 great sounding stereo speakers rather than spend the money on 5 speakers and subwoofer.

i have 10-12 k budget for speakers/sub/amp/receiver. i have a 3d tv and a denon 4311 receiver already. would like 2-3 zone functionality as I would like a second zone for the patio outside with 2 ceiling speakers as well as possibly for my master bedroon which has 2 ceiling speakers

the speakers have to be bookshelves. floorstanders are not an option

he suggested b&w 805s or something from sonus faber with amplifier. what do you think about the 2.0 or possible 2.1 setup as I would like some bass? if you agree with him, what speakers/amp/subwoofer do you recommend given my budget and room dimensions and limitations (i.e. speakers have to be bookshelves)?

thanks
post #2 of 32
Why only bookshelves with such a large room?

And I suggest 3.1. The center is helpful for movies, especially at night when you want it to be somewhat quiet. Just set your receiver to stereo when listening to music.
post #3 of 32
With a 10-12k budget I don't see any reason why you can't get a great 5.1 setup. Sure you could spend it on two higher end speakers, but which way you go I think depends most on what matters to you. If you really only listen to music then spend your money on the best 2.0/2.1 system you can get. If you want to use it for movies as well, then get the 5.1.

The Denon 4311 is a fine reciever, and if you need more power for your large room you can add a separate multichannel power amplifier from somebody like Emotiva, or Parasound. Then you just need to choose speakers and a sub. (I'm assuming you already have a source like Oppo BDP-83/93/95 or the like)
post #4 of 32
If bookshelves are the standard two Thiel SCS 4's w/a Thiel SS1 Smart sub would fill the bill. Add a Parasound P-7 multichannel pre amp and a Halo A-21 2 channel amp for power. This will also give you room to expand in the future. You could down the road add a SCS 4 for a center and add some larger 2.4's in the future. The P-7 even though it's all analogue will give you an option for 7.1 surround by adding a Parasound A-51. This will give you what you want now and what you may want in the future.
post #5 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by macmd View Post

have a large great room (20x25 feet with 16 foot high ceilings) where I watch TV/Movies (70-80%) and listen to music (20-30%), want to get it setup with speakers as my wife hates all the wires from logitech computer speakers i am currently using with 5.1 setup.

speaker guy who originally prewired my house for sound suggested that I think about a 2.0/2.1 setup rather than 5.1 setup. he states I should get 2 great sounding stereo speakers rather than spend the money on 5 speakers and subwoofer.

i have 10-12 k budget for speakers/sub/amp/receiver. i have a 3d tv and a denon 4311 receiver already. would like 2-3 zone functionality as I would like a second zone for the patio outside with 2 ceiling speakers as well as possibly for my master bedroon which has 2 ceiling speakers

the speakers have to be bookshelves. floorstanders are not an option

he suggested b&w 805s or something from sonus faber with amplifier. what do you think about the 2.0 or possible 2.1 setup as I would like some bass? if you agree with him, what speakers/amp/subwoofer do you recommend given my budget and room dimensions and limitations (i.e. speakers have to be bookshelves)?

thanks

Can you do any sort of in-wall/false-wall solution? I don't know about the 805's for a room that large; just a random thought - would the Klipsch THX Ultra 2 system be workable, space-wise? Or something similar to it (Like Hsu, other Klipsch, etc)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Class A View Post

If bookshelves are the standard two Thiel SCS 4's w/a Thiel SS1 Smart sub would fill the bill. Add a Parasound P-7 multichannel pre amp and a Halo A-21 2 channel amp for power. This will also give you room to expand in the future. You could down the road add a SCS 4 for a center and add some larger 2.4's in the future. The P-7 even though it's all analogue will give you an option for 7.1 surround by adding a Parasound A-51. This will give you what you want now and what you may want in the future.

Why are we spending so much on electronics; the 4311 is more than good enough and can be used as the preamplifier. Seriously, this just smacks of waste.
post #6 of 32
I don't understand 10K for a pair of bookshelf speakers, sub, and amp :-(
post #7 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by pistonengine View Post

I don't understand 10K for a pair of bookshelf speakers, sub, and amp :-(

I don't understand bookshelf speakers in a 20x25x16 room.
post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

I don't understand bookshelf speakers in a 20x25x16 room.

Could be a bad case of WAF.......... these things can be very disturbing.
post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by macmd View Post

have a large great room (20x25 feet with 16 foot high ceilings) where I watch TV/Movies (70-80%) and listen to music (20-30%), want to get it setup with speakers as my wife hates all the wires from logitech computer speakers i am currently using with 5.1 setup.

speaker guy who originally prewired my house for sound suggested that I think about a 2.0/2.1 setup rather than 5.1 setup. he states I should get 2 great sounding stereo speakers rather than spend the money on 5 speakers and subwoofer.

i have 10-12 k budget for speakers/sub/amp/receiver. i have a 3d tv and a denon 4311 receiver already. would like 2-3 zone functionality as I would like a second zone for the patio outside with 2 ceiling speakers as well as possibly for my master bedroon which has 2 ceiling speakers

the speakers have to be bookshelves. floorstanders are not an option

he suggested b&w 805s or something from sonus faber with amplifier. what do you think about the 2.0 or possible 2.1 setup as I would like some bass? if you agree with him, what speakers/amp/subwoofer do you recommend given my budget and room dimensions and limitations (i.e. speakers have to be bookshelves)?

thanks

Replied to your same post in the speaker forum stating agreement with your AV guy. FWIW, a friend has a 2.1 set-up in a similar sized room. Main speakers are Harbeth Monitor 40s and performance is exceptional, used for Music and TV/Movies.

Seems you don't trust your AV guy. If you are paying him, trust his advice or find a new AV guy.
post #10 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by par4 View Post

Could be a bad case of WAF.......... these things can be very disturbing.

You don't mean this is another chapter in the long running movie, "Whipped Man Walking" do you?
post #11 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by pistonengine View Post

I don't understand 10K for a pair of bookshelf speakers, sub, and amp :-(

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

I don't understand bookshelf speakers in a 20x25x16 room.

Quote:
Originally Posted by par4 View Post

Could be a bad case of WAF.......... these things can be very disturbing.

The thing is that "bookshelf" speakers really don't belong on bookshelves but on floor stands. Thus, they occupy the same real estate as a floor stander. In addition, my wife thinks that small speakers on stands look strange and unstable (even if they aren't) and I agree with her. So, I guess you could say that I have been influenced by WAF.
post #12 of 32
If you're influenced by WAF to buy towers instead of bookshelves, I don't think anyone will find you at fault. I'm interested in hearing what OP has to say about all this though.
post #13 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chu Gai View Post

You don't mean this is another chapter in the long running movie, "Whipped Man Walking" do you?

Yes. And a popular phrase in that movie is........ "talk to the hand"!
post #14 of 32
Thread Starter 
the reason it has to be bookshelves is WAF partly, but also the way my great room is setup, it does not allow for floorstanders.

the front wall is made up of builtins with shelves on top half but drawers on the bottom half. In the center, there is a stone fireplace floor to ceiling. My TV is housed in a cabinet on a stand that can be pulled out which is to the right of the fireplace. There is shelves on top of the TV and drawers on the bottom as I mentioned, so cannot put floorstanders as I would not be able to open the drawers.

the reason I posted this was that I had done alot of research on this site for 5.1 setup and came up with JTR speakers and JTR captivator with denon 4311 and Emotiva amp from all the reviews and recommendations. After talking to the speaker guy, he suggested the 2.0 setup strongly, so I was thrown a bit for a loop. He stated since I will be spending all this money possibly on the JTRs which I will not have listened to and which he is not familiar with, it would be risky. He stated he would be able to do 5.1 installation no problem but he suggested I consider the 2.0 setup. just wanted some more opinions.

thanks
post #15 of 32
Well if you care about the quality of your audio to the tune (pun intended) of $10K, it makes sense to rearrange your room and get your money's worth. If it's not worth that, stick to a couple hundred bucks.
post #16 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by macmd View Post

the reason it has to be bookshelves is WAF partly, but also the way my great room is setup, it does not allow for floorstanders.

the front wall is made up of builtins with shelves on top half but drawers on the bottom half. In the center, there is a stone fireplace floor to ceiling. My TV is housed in a cabinet on a stand that can be pulled out which is to the right of the fireplace. There is shelves on top of the TV and drawers on the bottom as I mentioned, so cannot put floorstanders as I would not be able to open the drawers.

So, you are putting the speakers into the cabinet? Have you considered in-wall speakers?
post #17 of 32
Thread Starter 
not in the cabinet but in the shelf above the TV and in the shelf to the left of the TV. the shelf is about 12 inches deep

can't do wall speakers as the whole front wall are built in drawers and shelves. i'll try to post a pic
post #18 of 32
Yeah post a few pictures of your room from different angles.
post #19 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by macmd View Post

not in the cabinet but in the shelf above the TV and in the shelf to the left of the TV. the shelf is about 12 inches deep

can't do wall speakers as the whole front wall are built in drawers and shelves. i'll try to post a pic

I hope you will take this as a constructive criticism but the arrangement, at least as I envision it, is such that any speaker you choose will be greatly constrained and differences among them will be hard to realize. It is like trying to choose between a BMW M3 and an Audi S4 when you are going to use them off-road.
post #20 of 32
That's a fairly big room to be using small speakers, but perhaps something to consider might be a pair of the Gallo Strada's and a TR3 subwoofer. It's a 2.1 system, effectively, but might have a large enough presence to fill a decent amount of your room.
post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimWilson View Post

That's a fairly big room to be using small speakers, but perhaps something to consider might be a pair of the Gallo Strada's and a TR3 subwoofer. It's a 2.1 system, effectively, but might have a large enough presence to fill a decent amount of your room.

In a bookshelf space?
post #22 of 32
Yup. The OP mentioned he has shelves about 12" deep, so the Strada's should work on the smaller stands.
post #23 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by JimWilson View Post

Yup. The OP mentioned he has shelves about 12" deep, so the Strada's should work on the smaller stands.

They may fit but I suspect they will not sound the same inside even a 12" niche.
post #24 of 32
I have a hard time imagining they sound good under any circumstances.
post #25 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

They may fit but I suspect they will not sound the same inside even a 12" niche.

No argument there. Given his requirements it seemed compromise would be implied. To me the Gallo's appeared to be a possible solution, but I concur that it's probably not ideal.
post #26 of 32
Someone mentioned in-walls earlier. And since you have an obvious WAF to contend with, you might look at BG Radia:

http://www.bgcorp.com/in%20wall%20speakers.html

They also make a well-reviewed in-wall subwoofer.
post #27 of 32
Here's a crazy idea. Since WAF is such a big constraint, and -- as Kal and others have pointed out -- even good speakers in your cabinet space are likely to sound like crap, why not convince your wife to let you dedicate another room to make into your HT?

Seriously, if you have even a pretty small room and it is dedicated solely to music and movies, you can build a pretty nice 2.1 setup for $10K. I just did it for less than $8K, and I started this room from scratch and bought all new stuff.
post #28 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by pistonengine View Post

I have a hard time imagining they sound good under any circumstances.

You obviously haven't heard them.
post #29 of 32
You're a keen one.
post #30 of 32
I have been there...speakers inside of shelves suck. What eventually won was taking the wife shopping with me for the speakers. You would be surprised what a nice looking set of speakers did for her. Yes big black boxes called speakers dont lend much to WAF but with your budget, you can get some nice speakers with a very nice furniture grade finish. Your friends friends will ohhhh and ahhhh over them lol.

Try that route. I ended up with a nice set of PSB Imagine T's in my budget which have a beautiful cherry finish and they are not square boxes. Close, but they are shapely lol.

Otherwise i would do it in another room.
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