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College kid looking for a low-end receiver/speaker combo.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I am brand new to the forum, although I have been reading various threads here throughout the past few months. Anyways, a little over a month ago I bought a panasonic HTiB. At the time it looked like a good deal, but I have come to regret it. It has a 3D blu-ray player, which is useless to me and the wattage is greatly exaggerated.

I'm going to sell it, but first I need to get my next purchase lined up. I live in an apartment and will be in one for the next 3-4 years. So I don't need ground-shattering sound. I'll worry about that when I have a house. I would like at least 5.1 surround support, 50 Watts RMS per channel, and 1.3 or higher HDMI support. My GPU on my PC supports all video and audio formats, so an HDMI input is all I really need. For most of you guys this would probably be an easy thing to decide on, but you all are more educated on this subject than I, and that's why I'm here.

My budget is under $600 dollars for the receiver AND the 5.1 speakers. I know this is a very low-end setup, but it will be better than my HTiB. I read the rule about only discussing MSRPs, so hopefully that doesn't prevent you guys from helping me out. I'd prefer to buy new and on amazon if possible.
Thanks for any future replies! =)
post #2 of 14
Thread Starter 
My current choices are the Harmon Kardon AVR-1600 paired with Onkyo SKS-HT870. I have read on the HK 1600 owners forum here about numerous quirks that might be bothersome. And I'd rather have a higher quality 5.1 speaker setup than worry about 7.1.
post #3 of 14
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the suggestions. I'm seeing rave reviews on those Fluance speakers, but some reliability issues with the pioneer. My sound system in my car is all pioneer and has been very reliable, but I'm sure it's a different game with receivers.
I was thinking of a higher up brand for the receiver, such as HK, Denon, or Onkyo. Those Fluances are definitely my current speaker choice now though.
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
I just saw the shipping price on those Fluances, Ouch... That brings them up to $260, plus I would still need to get a sub.
post #6 of 14
I am also in college so I will make a suggestion which I do realize is contrary to what you are asking. Perhaps grab a decent receiver, and set up a 2.0 or 2.1 system and run stereo. As budget permits add speakers until you complete a full 5.1.

I never knew there were so many internet direct speakers for a great price until joining this site.

If not, this is ridiculously cheap for a system I believe is manufactured by Onkyo for Best Buy's house brand.
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Insignia...05.1&cp=1&lp=3

Not all Insignia is Onkyo, but I heard this one is.
post #7 of 14
If I was in college, and I wanted a cheap setup, that would crank out some tunes, I would find a used, but adequately working receiver. I would ensure it has some sort of pre outs.

I would then go find a deal on a 200 watt / channel pro amp.

Why you ask? Because it would have some reasonable power, and could be driven with any receiver. Heck, you can drive it directly from an iPod, but I like a big volume knob with a remote control if possible.

I would probably look for some used, but quality speakers online. Or just get some base Klipsch bookshelf speakers, as they are pretty decent, and efficient.

I would use some sort of MP3 player as a source.
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Well I think I found my receiver, The Denon 1611. Looks pretty solid and it's only a year old model. I am thinking about doing a 2/2.1 setup for the time being. I would definitely get less grief from my fiance and save me some money.
Funny that you mention the insignia as I was just looking at it yesterday at best buy. I did not know that onkyo made some of their sound systems. It is such a circus trying to figure out who actually makes house brands like that.
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by y2kbug77 View Post

I am brand new to the forum, although I have been reading various threads here throughout the past few months. Anyways, a little over a month ago I bought a panasonic HTiB. At the time it looked like a good deal, but I have come to regret it. It has a 3D blu-ray player, which is useless to me and the wattage is greatly exaggerated.

I'm going to sell it, but first I need to get my next purchase lined up. I live in an apartment and will be in one for the next 3-4 years. So I don't need ground-shattering sound. I'll worry about that when I have a house. I would like at least 5.1 surround support, 50 Watts RMS per channel, and 1.3 or higher HDMI support. My GPU on my PC supports all video and audio formats, so an HDMI input is all I really need. For most of you guys this would probably be an easy thing to decide on, but you all are more educated on this subject than I, and that's why I'm here.

My budget is under $600 dollars for the receiver AND the 5.1 speakers. I know this is a very low-end setup, but it will be better than my HTiB. I read the rule about only discussing MSRPs, so hopefully that doesn't prevent you guys from helping me out. I'd prefer to buy new and on amazon if possible.
Thanks for any future replies! =)

You need to decide about quality or quantity..
Music versus game versus cinema sound tracks..

IMHO...
The $600 budget is too low to get a good sounding 5.1, so why not get a good, quality 2-channel receiver and (1) pair of accurate loud speakers..
Then as more $ become available, move up in the direction you want to go..

Just my $0.02..
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelJHuman View Post

If I was in college, and I wanted a cheap setup, that would crank out some tunes, I would find a used, but adequately working receiver. I would ensure it has some sort of pre outs.

I would then go find a deal on a 200 watt / channel pro amp.

Why you ask? Because it would have some reasonable power, and could be driven with any receiver. Heck, you can drive it directly from an iPod, but I like a big volume knob with a remote control if possible.

I would probably look for some used, but quality speakers online. Or just get some base Klipsch bookshelf speakers, as they are pretty decent, and efficient.

I would use some sort of MP3 player as a source.

My bad, I should have mentioned that while 60% of my time on the computer I'm listening to music, I do also game alot and watch blu-rays.
I've had many electronics give out on me over the years and that's why I'd like to stick to higher up brands and avoid buying used. Just too much of a risk IMO. Plus I don't trust myself enough to spot a good or bad receiver/amp.
Also, I do like to keep my MP3s at high bit-rates, and FLAC when I deem it necessary. So I'd like a setup to do justice to the music.
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by M Code View Post

You need to decide about quality or quantity..
Music versus game versus cinema sound tracks..

IMHO...
The $600 budget is too low to get a good sounding 5.1, so why not get a good, quality 2-channel receiver and (1) pair of accurate loud speakers..
Then as more $ become available, move up in the direction you want to go..

Just my $0.02..

I am thinking about just getting a pair of nice front speakers for the time being. But I would still get a 5.1/7.1 receiver. Just seems silly to buy a receiver and not have it support surround sound. Then I would only have to buy more speakers as the time comes.
post #12 of 14
Pick up 3 sets of these: http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=300-652 That would give you the basis of a 6.1 system. Don't let the price fool you. I've seen speakers at 8-10 times the price that don't sound as good. A great bargan. I gave my nephew 3 pair for his college apartment last fall.

Maybe one of these for a subwoofer: http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=300-633

You'll need a subwoofer cable too; 12 foot should be enough: http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=240-186

And here's a great little Pioneer receiver with the power rated at 110w x 5 : http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=250-621

All of the above brings you to a total of $501.00 plus shipping.

Throw in a 100 foot spool of 16 AWG OFC wire for $36.00 and your good to go: http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=100-017
post #13 of 14
receiver and speaker combo

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...323&CatId=4586

sub

http://www.amazon.com/BIC-America-F1...0953939&sr=8-2

this is a pretty good setup if you want everything right now. plus you can put this in your second room or bedroom later on down the road when you want a better system.

Or like Mcode said, you can buy a good receiver and pair of good towers or bookshelves and piece the rest later when you get the money. If your main use is for music then you only really need the front 2 for now.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290209
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by kushum View Post

receiver and speaker combo

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...323&CatId=4586

sub

http://www.amazon.com/BIC-America-F1...0953939&sr=8-2

this is a pretty good setup if you want everything right now. plus you can put this in your second room or bedroom later on down the road when you want a better system.

Or like Mcode said, you can buy a good receiver and pair of good towers or bookshelves and piece the rest later when you get the money. If your main use is for music then you only really need the front 2 for now.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16882290209

I never would have thought to look at Tiger for a Home Theater system. That is awesome, and is why I came to these forums. If they still have that combo going on in three weeks when I get money, I'm buying it. Thank you so much for that find. You sir, are awesome.
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AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Receivers, Amps, and Processors › College kid looking for a low-end receiver/speaker combo.