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Need help setting up a full 5.1/7.1 system for an open floor plan $1k-$1.5k

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I worked on this a little over a year ago when I purchased my new TV in the room, but got overwhelmed and frustrated trying to research it and realizing with the room setup and budget I couldn't get something really great. I was hoping there might be some good deals this time of year and decided to have a fresh look at it.

This is for my open floor plan living room. I have a separate home theater room with projector that has great light and acoustic control and nice 5.1 sound system that delivers an amazing theater experience. But, being real I use it 1-2 times a month for when we have guests or watch that really great action movie and want the home theater experience. The other 90%+ of our Television and movie watching is done in the living room. So here's the current room setup, and what I'm using it for.

-Room is 22x18 with 10' ceilings that vault to 14ft. However it's an open floor plan including the kitchen and dining area bringing total dimensions to around 28x31 give or take. There is a 2ft drop down between the kitchen and living room that I could mount the 2 or 4 rear/surrounds on.
-Room is not pre-wired, but I can do it myself with a bit of sweat and swearing smile.gif
-Display is a 65" Panasonic VT50 Plasma
-Inputs would be a DirecTV HR24 and a PS4
-Usage is about 80% HDTV through the satellite receiver and 15% Blu-Ray movies through PS4 and 5% Games on PS4
-Budget is about $1,000-1,500 and I need a Receiver, Sub, and all speakers and accessories.

I come in understanding I can't for any reasonable price get a really great home theater experience in this room. I want something that is hands down better than my current setup which is just the built-in speakers on the monitor.

My questions are:

1) Should I be looking towards 5.1 or 7.1? Less is more as far as the wife is concerned since this is the living room
2) What speakers/receivers should I be seriously considering and will the sound be far superior to what I have now?
3) I know price can't specifically be discussed, but are there any really good opportunities for the holidays for any of the recommended setups?

Thanks for your help, it's hard for me to settle on a 'good enough' setup, but I wanted to come at this again with a fresh set of eyes and get something done.
post #2 of 11
1) Given your large room and budget a 5.1 is the best way to start.

2) What is your current surround speaker system, model number, and brand. What is the brand and model number of your receiver?
Without knowing what speakers and receiver you have I can't comment on whether you can get something better for $1,500.

3) There are deals available but need to know if you like floorstanders, or bookshelves. The Polk Monitor 60 Series II are on sale for $90 each right now
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
I have no system in the living room at all right now. I need the receiver, sub, and all speakers so I'm starting from scratch. I'd prefer floorstanders, but can do bookshelves on a stand as well.
post #4 of 11
how far from tv do you sit. that's a very big room so for strictly movies and gaming a good portion of your budget "should" go for a sub ( (maybe rhythmic lv12r $589). I would not put to much of budget on the electronics (avr) I would look at the mid budget avrs at accessories4less.( maybe a denon avr 1713 on sale for black Friday $245 free ship.) and for speakers maybe some htd level3 bookshelves and center for you front lcr and a pair of level2 for rears $700


http://www.rythmikaudio.com/LV12R.html

http://www.accessories4less.com/make-a-store/item/DENAVR1713/DENON-AVR-1713-5.1ch-Networking-Receiver-w/AirPlay-3D-Ready/1.html

http://www.htd.com/Products/level-three-speakers
http://www.htd.com/Products/level-two-speakers/Level-TWO-Bookshelf-Speakers just some suggestions
post #5 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by adam61 View Post

I have no system in the living room at all right now. I need the receiver, sub, and all speakers so I'm starting from scratch. I'd prefer floorstanders, but can do bookshelves on a stand as well.

You said you wanted speakers that "will the sound be far superior to what I have now?" So what do you currently have in your theater room? If you want something that is superior to just the TV speakers it won't be hard to improve on.

Something for your budget I can think of off the top of my head
-4x Polk Monitor 60's Series II, $360
-Polk CS2 Monitor Series II center, $90
-$400-$500 AVR Receiver (Not sure what features you want in your receiver) I like brands like Denon and Onkyo, but the top of the line Sony from this year got a great review.
-Outlaw Audio LFM-1 Plus Subwoofer, $549
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Yes sorry for the confusion. My living room is just the tv speakers, easy to replace. My theater system is a couple years old but is a SVS PB-12 Plus sub and 5 of their ultra speakers with an onkyo receiver. That systems sub is very large for a living room setup though!!
post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by adam61 View Post

That systems sub is very large for a living room setup though!!
true but your room is around 4000+ cu. ft. which is quite large and requires a large subwoofer to properly pressurize the room
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
I didn't mean it's too big from a sound perspective, more that my wife might kill me for having something that big. I purchased the CS2 center, and am trying to find a good deal on the 60s, but the newegg deal seems to constantly be out of stock.

Are the 70s worth the extra price for the fronts possibly? I may start with 3.1 and add the 2 rears once my wife is used to everything.

What sub would be a good deal that wouldn't have a gigantic footprint? I know SVS has those cylinder subs, but not sure what the quality level is.

What am I looking for in the receiver if I have 60 or 70s front with the cs2 middle? Like I said I just need it to be able to drive my equipment and have at least 3 HDMI inputs. I don't have a big need for other features unless I'm missing something.

Thanks!!
post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by adam61 View Post

I didn't mean it's too big from a sound perspective, more that my wife might kill me for having something that big.
A big screen deserves big sound. Big sound does not come from small speakers. wink.gif
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
I think I got the ok for the monitor 60s or 70s in the front (still not sure if the 70s would be worth it in the front??), it's just the giant box of a subwoofer doesn't have a good place to sit and looks pretty conspicuous so I'm looking for other options. On a side note after some research does a Denon AVR-2113CI look like a decent refurb option? Seems very reasonably priced for the features.
post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by adam61 View Post

it's just the giant box of a subwoofer doesn't have a good place to sit
You need more than one sub anyway for even response, so get two or more smaller subs rather than one large one. Just be sure that the -3dB low frequency is the same.
Going back a bit, don't get floorstanders, get bookshelves. The only advantage to floorstanders is below 80Hz, and with the subs doing all the work down there anyway that advantage is nullified. If you want to do Polk the Monitor 40 will work at least as well above 80Hz. But if your listening distance is more than 8 feet away you should look at something with two 6.5 inch woofers.
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