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Need help with 5.1 speaker selection. $2500 maximum budget - Page 2

post #31 of 54
If you can push your fronts just a tad bit further apart I would say the 700's would work. They are nice speakers.
post #32 of 54
Thread Starter 
I probably can't push it out much farther as it would get in the way. That's okay, I was kind of leaning towards 5 q300's anyways. However, price is high on them right now though, I remember seeing it a lot lower. I think I will wait.

The ascend sierra 1 for front lcr still interests me, but I would have to get the base model, not the NRT or RAAL tweeter based on my new budget. Biggest benefit I see is much better build quality.

Any other bookshelf to audition with neutral sound and decent bass punch/extension?
post #33 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by csgamer View Post

The ascend sierra 1 for front lcr still interests me, but I would have to get the base model, not the NRT or RAAL tweeter based on my new budget. Biggest benefit I see is much better build quality.

I believe that you can buy the NTR later and switch them out if you decide you want them. Not sure about the RAAL.
post #34 of 54
Thread Starter 
Buying NRT later, would that be more expensive than buying them at the start?
post #35 of 54
Thread Starter 
Alright, analysis paralysis. If they had better prices on the Kef q300's, then I probably would have ordered already. I have a readjusted to a $2500 absolutely maximum budget for my 5.1, I have my denon 1712 receiver already. Wife set budget and she is one stubborn cookie, said I can do whatever I want but that is max spending.

Now I'm leaning again towards towers since I'm seeing subwoofer prices being very expensive. I really don't think I want the budget klipsch subwoofer everybody is clamoring over, I don't want boomy bass.

I care about my music 2.0/2.1 a lot more than movies/gaming, but dialogue must be clear in the center.

Choices:
  • Ascend sierra tower w/ Nrt tweeter
  • Ascend sierra-1 w/Nrt tweeter center used vertically
  • Use old sony bookshelf for surround
  • No subwoofer

Or
  • Kef q900
  • Kef q300 as center
  • Kef q300 as surround
  • Low end rythmik, hsu, outlaw, or svs subwoofer

Or

Something else to consider? I absolutely need a vertical bookshelf for center I think, one that can at least be placed horizontal too if needed, but I think it will go vertical.
post #36 of 54
If it were me I would get some nice bookshelfs and a really good sub.

3 NHT Classic 3s (or similar) across the front. $1350. A pair of NHT Absolute wall speakers. $420. $1770 so far. Also there are other similar speakers that may be less or on sale. That leaves $730 for a sub.

The PSA XS15 is $750 including shipping. $20 over budget. I think that's close enough. smile.gif

The NHTs are just a suggestion of course.
post #37 of 54
Since your setup is primarily for movies and gaming, you absolutely need a good sub. Towers cannot produce the very low frequencies that a sub can, and there is lots of low frequency content in movies and games that can enhance the experience. In fact, below 50hz, a good sub is just going to do a better job than most towers that reach lower than that. I would recommend choosing from one of these three Internet direct subwoofers since there are three extensive reviews all by the same person (the reviewer is well-regarded on AVS) for you to read and compare:

http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/lfm-1-ex-review
http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/pb12-nsd
http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/xv-15-subwoofer

Each of these is rated by the reviewer as good in rooms up to 5,000 cubic feet, so anyone of them should have plenty of output. All three are highly regarded in the AVS subwoofer forum, so you really can't go wrong.
post #38 of 54
Thread Starter 
While I will be doing a lot of movies and gaming, I really want my music to sound great. I feel music is more important than movie performance. There are many who believe that 2channel is the best for music. I worry by going with bookshelf fronts then I might get disappointed.
post #39 of 54
Well, there are diminishing rates of return on spending more money on speakers. On the other hand, no sub to a good sub is big jump. And don't forget that when you buy a sub, you are (a) also buying an amp that takes the load off of your receiver and (b) taking the load off the speakers in the lower frequencies.
post #40 of 54
Thread Starter 
Good points on the sub. I think I will have to get a sub. That would leave me with cheaper towers or better quality bookshelf.
post #41 of 54
Thread Starter 
the nht factory showroom is 1.5 hours from me. The absolute towers look nice. Wonder how they compare to the kef q series. Build quality looks better.
post #42 of 54
You should go take a look. You might find that the NHT Classic Threes would do you right.

If you do walk out the door with speakers, be aware that while their B-12d is a nice sealed 12" sub, it does not have nearly the amount of max output of the ones I linked to above. Might not be enough for your room (hard to tell). Also, it does not dig as deep as the other subs I listed. Besides, the SVS PB12-NSD is likely very comparable and quite cheaper. Here's a review of it: http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/sb12-nsd-subwoofer
post #43 of 54
post #44 of 54
Thread Starter 
Yes, I'm close to pulling the trigger on q300's but I saw them for much cheaper previously when I wasn't in the market at the time. I definitely think I will pass on the q600c center. I'm going to stay with a vertical bookshelf for center, I have not heard one horizontal center speaker that I have liked yet. No matter which brand/speaker I go with, I think a vertical bookshelf is going in the center. I would go with a full tower in the center perhaps but I would not like my 50" plasma that high.

While I'm waiting for price drops on the kef q series, I'm trying to determine if I'm making the right choice. The kef q series are tempting, but I feel the build quality is a little lacking. When I went to listen and knocked on the side, it didn't sound so sturdy. However, overall the sound was very pleasing, maybe a slight harshness in the treble but not too bothersome.

The svs sb-1000 or pb-1000 is looking good for $500 and 5 year warranty. But I should check reviews on that.

I know q300 is going vertical for my center and surrounds if I go with kef q series.

Kef q900 or q300's for front????

Ascend sierra-1 for LCR?

I can't decide between this tower vs bookshelf thing
post #45 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

You should go take a look. You might find that the NHT Classic Threes would do you right.

If you do walk out the door with speakers, be aware that while their B-12d is a nice sealed 12" sub, it does not have nearly the amount of max output of the ones I linked to above. Might not be enough for your room (hard to tell). Also, it does not dig as deep as the other subs I listed. Besides, the SVS PB12-NSD is likely very comparable and quite cheaper. Here's a review of it: http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/subwoofers/sb12-nsd-subwoofer

I don't think I will mind if a sub doesn't dig as deep, quality matters more than extreme extension/output to me. I will need to check more reviews on NHT's classic 3 and absolute towers.
post #46 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by csgamer View Post

I don't think I will mind if a sub doesn't dig as deep, quality matters more than extreme extension/output to me. I will need to check more reviews on NHT's classic 3 and absolute towers.

I recommend you study up on subs more instead of throwing out speculation.

For instance, the SVS SB-1000 would be a poor choice for your space. It's meant for small rooms, like bedrooms.

And yes. There is a noticeable difference between a 12" sealed sub that is already -3db at 27hz and subs that go down below 20hz.

Meanwhile, I'm sure those subs listed above are far better than anything you've ever heard. You'd have to spend $1500 or more MSRP for a traditional speaker company sub to equal those in price/performance value. You can't even buy something at Best Buy like that.
post #47 of 54
Thread Starter 
Yes, my sub knowledge is lacking. But I do live in a townhouse, which is why my thought was extension and output may be not as important. Maybe I'm wrong.

But if that svs sb-1000 is indeed a very poor performer for my space, then I'll probably pass on it.
post #48 of 54
A subwoofer has to work hard to push air, so it sees the whole room, including any additional open areas. You have a lot of space. If you end up with a little too much sub, that won't matter because Audyssey on your Denon is going to calibrate the sub to integrate with the speakers. But too little, and the sub will be ineffective when you turn up your system.

How many cubic feet do you think you have when cubic feet (not sq ft) do you think you have between the living room, dining area, and kitchen?
post #49 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by csgamer View Post

Yes, I'm close to pulling the trigger on q300's but I saw them for much cheaper previously when I wasn't in the market at the time. I definitely think I will pass on the q600c center. I'm going to stay with a vertical bookshelf for center, I have not heard one horizontal center speaker that I have liked yet. No matter which brand/speaker I go with, I think a vertical bookshelf is going in the center. I would go with a full tower in the center perhaps but I would not like my 50" plasma that high.

While I'm waiting for price drops on the kef q series, I'm trying to determine if I'm making the right choice. The kef q series are tempting, but I feel the build quality is a little lacking. When I went to listen and knocked on the side, it didn't sound so sturdy. However, overall the sound was very pleasing, maybe a slight harshness in the treble but not too bothersome.

The svs sb-1000 or pb-1000 is looking good for $500 and 5 year warranty. But I should check reviews on that.

I know q300 is going vertical for my center and surrounds if I go with kef q series.

Kef q900 or q300's for front????

Ascend sierra-1 for LCR?

I can't decide between this tower vs bookshelf thing

If budget permits, I would get towers and not have to worry about speaker stands.

Also check out the $589 Rythmik LV12R sub.
post #50 of 54
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

A subwoofer has to work hard to push air, so it sees the whole room, including any additional open areas. You have a lot of space. If you end up with a little too much sub, that won't matter because Audyssey on your Denon is going to calibrate the sub to integrate with the speakers. But too little, and the sub will be ineffective when you turn up your system.

How many cubic feet do you think you have when cubic feet (not sq ft) do you think you have between the living room, dining area, and kitchen?

If including the high 20 foot ceiling over my living and dining room, kitchen is 10 foot ceiling, then it's actually pretty big.

Listening area (living room): 12 ft length x 10 ft width x 20 ft height

Actual Room (living,dining,kitchen): 12' length x 24' width x 20' height (living, dining). Also includes a 12' x 10' x 10' kitchen, half bath, and there is a small 4' x 6 ' cutout on 2nd floor hallway overlooking the 1st floor. I don't know if the cutout makes a difference.

So roughly around 7000 cubic feet if including the entire room.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AcuDefTechGuy View Post

If budget permits, I would get towers and not have to worry about speaker stands.

Also check out the $589 Rythmik LV12R sub.

For speaker stands, I was actually thinking about concrete blocks or something, lol. Well, i am leaning towards towers, I was just worried that my 8 foot listening position would be too close for a large tower like the kef q900. The ascend tower has its drivers all pretty close together, looks like the sound from the drivers would integrate better than the kef q900 at a closer listening position. But looks may not translate to what i hear, just a guess on what I'm seeing.

Yeah I think I will check out bigger subs like the rythmik lv12r or outlaw ex. It seems I will need it for my large room.

How come I don't hear much about passive subwoofers? Does amp matching make it difficult to get the bass right or something?
post #51 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by csgamer View Post

So roughly around 7000 cubic feet if including the entire room.

Those three subs I shared with you? Did you see at the end of the reviews they are rated "certified large?" That means Audioholics is recommending them to perform well in rooms up to 5,000 cubic feet. Even one of those may struggle in your space. I definitely would not go smaller, less powerful. Of those three, the XV15 has the most output with the EX running second.
post #52 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by csgamer View Post


How come I don't hear much about passive subwoofers? Does amp matching make it difficult to get the bass right or something?

I own a total of eight subwoofers in my house: Funk 18.0 x 2, RBH SX-1010N x 2, Velodyne SC600 x 4.

Everyone of them is unpowered or "passive".

Might want to call CHT and see if they have any of the $595 delivered 18" passive sub (no grill).

http://www.chasehometheater.com/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=586&category_id=29&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=143

If you already own a spare amp, passive sub is an option.

Even when I had $3,000 powered subs with EQ/ DSP, I always ended up turning the DSP/EQ off anyway. So that's why I don't even bother. OTOH, some people can't live w/o EQ/DSP. But they also make pro amps w/ EQ/DSP. biggrin.gif

The flagship $15K Focal Grande Utopia sub is passive. The flagship $9K Funk 18.2 sub is also passive and comes with an OUTBOARD DSP/EQ Amp.
Edited by AcuDefTechGuy - 5/5/13 at 6:52am
post #53 of 54
Subwoofer Performance
CEA Standard (THD </= 10%) 2 Meters SPL (dB) @ 32/40/50/63 Hz:

$1200 B&W ASW-610XP: 96.1/101.5/105.9/108.9
$700 Emotiva X-Ref 12: 99.1/103.5/107.6/108.5
$1600 Klipsch SW-311: 102.6/105.3/108.6/111.4
$769 SVS PB12-NSD: 105.9/106.5/107.3/108.0
$4000 Velodyne DD15+: 102.0/109.0/109.0/112.0
$900 Aperion Bravus II 12D: 105.3/109.8/112.6/112.2
$879 Velodyne EQ-MAX15: 104.2/110.0/114.2/114.8
$1,200 RBH SX-12: 108/111.1/113.7/112.7
$650 Outlaw LFM-1EX: 110.7/112.3/113.7/113.8
$800 Power Sound XV15: 109.6/113.7/116.6/114.7
$1200 SVS PB12+: 111.5/114.3/115.3/115.3
$800 Epik Empire: 109.7/113.2/116.4/119.2
$1700 Funk FW12X: 112.4/114.0/113.9/113.1
$9,000 Paradigm Sig Sub2: 109.9/113.2/116.9/120.2
$2200 JL Audio F112: 112.4/116.2/113.3/117.6
$900 Hsu VTF-15H: 113.0/115.7/115.7/115.6
$5,000 Velodyne DD18+: 113.0/115.8/116.8/115.3
$2,000 SVS PB13 Ultra: 115.5/117.5/117.8/116.6
$700 Chase HT VS18.1: 116.0/118.1/117.8/117.2
$1,200 Rythmik FV15HP: 117.0/119.5/119.1/118.8

I think the CHT VS18.1 sub may be best value for high output, especially if you already have an amp or can get a used amp for $100-$150.

http://www.chasehometheater.com/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage.tpl&product_id=668&category_id=29&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=135
Edited by AcuDefTechGuy - 5/5/13 at 7:07am
post #54 of 54
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help guys. I definitely need to research up on subs.

However, I got so impatient waiting for new speakers, I went out today and bought some old favorites I used to own but sold due to a move. Yes, I bought infinity primus p363 fronts, p163 center, p163 surrounds. Set it up, only tested for about an hour, I forgot how good the p363 sounds.

The p163 as center is so much better than the pc351 horizontal center, man I'm so glad went with vertical bookshelf center. Never going back to horizontal centers again.

These primus speakers are so dang cheap that I think I will keep them as a reference to judge other speakers by. If I pay big bucks for a speaker, then it better sound better than these primus. For me these already sound much better than the pioneer budget 2nd gen speakers. Infinity primus are still the king of bang for buck IMO.

If I find better speakers, then I'll just move these p363's into my office.
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