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SLS - Q-Line Gold 650W Home Theater System

post #1 of 593
Thread Starter 
just saw this system listed at Best Buy. apparently they are the sole distributors. reading over the specs i'm pretty impressed and so is the price right. does ANYONE have personal experience w/ this system or can point me to a review somewhere? any opinions?

thanks in advance..

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage....cat93000050028
post #2 of 593
santie,

I have the Q-Line Silver system and like it a lot.

Here is a review (hope the link works):

http://www.soundandvisionmag.com/art...&page_number=1

The Gold system has a bigger amp and a dvd player and is black.

hth, Bob
post #3 of 593
Since I allready own SLS speakers I am very familar with the incredible sound you get from their ribbon driver technolgy. I gave the Q Line Gold system to a friend of mine and he replaced the 5 surround sound speakers he already had which he paid $500 each for (5 x $500 = $2,500). The improvement in the sound of his system was unbelievable with the SLS speakers. This system is easliy worth twice the price it is selling for. I would highly recommend it. Besides, would Quincy Jones put his name on a product unless it was outstanding!!
post #4 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dunn55 View Post

Besides, would Quincy Jones put his name on a product unless it was outstanding!!

Do you really believe that? Do you think he listens to one of these packaged $600 HT systems at his home?

Kal
post #5 of 593
I haven't been around the forum in a long time so I had to re-register. My screen name says it all about what I think of this product. As a road warrior consultant I had to equip a small house I was renting in another town. I had occasion to see some info on this product prior to its release. My need coincided with the Best Buy intro date and I bought one at full retail the day after they put it out.

As a former dealer of semi-higher end HT gear, I never thought I'd see the day where I'd buy an HTIB. But my circumstances combined with this speaker technology intrigued me because it was a unique application of the ribbon driver technology to a lower cost speaker. Everything I had read suggested that there were some original and effective characteristics to their sound. I still like to listen to 2 channel music a lot and since I needed something compact and didn't want to spend too much, I took the leap of faith.

While the receiver and DVD player aren't anything really special, they are decently featured and perform pretty well. I think they are Phillips OEMs. The receiver comes with the omni-directional mic and I thought that was a nice touch not found in too many systems at this price. It worked quite well too as when I balanced the system using it, there was no doubt that the sweet spot was right where I placed the mic for the calibration.

The sub is good sized, weighs like 33 lbs. and stands 20" tall. The spec is 100 watts and it has a downfiring 8" cone on the bottom which is exposed. You have to be careful not to puncture it when you move the sub around. Has all the expected adjustments for phase etc. and sounds pretty good. Not at all "boomy" like a lot of low cost subs.

This is really about the 5 speakers though. When I was a dealer I always was looking for products that stretched the price/performance/value limits. Something that performed beyond expectation for its price range. I have to say that these things define that ideal. It is flat unbelieveable that you can get this kind of advance in an HT speaker package that "comes with" all the other pieces necessary to have a set up. I have spent well in excess of $10k on an HT before and I'm really just amazed with these things at this price.

Everybody has their tastes and preferences in sound. Mine are accuracy and separation. I like speakers that give me really clear transitions and accurate separation of each instrument, vocal and sound effect. The biggest weakness IMO in most lower end speakers is their mid to highrange separation is always off or waaayy off. They put too much of the mid into the tweeters or too much high range into the mid/woofer. IMO this is where you get the muddy vocals and accuracy compromises. They send the wrong ranges to the wrong response drivers (or just crappy drivers) and everything bleeds into other sounds.

Well, these little guys have defeated that problem. The improvement in clarity and separation in the mid and upper ranges is easily heard. Detail comes out of both music and soundtracks that just isn't there with other speakers any where near this price range. And accuracy? You hear clear and recognizable effects and instruments that aren't "right there" when played on other systems. It's really pretty amazing. Really jumps right out at you.

My out of town gig ended recently and I'm looking forward to doing some more comparisons with these guys on more familiar movies and music. But wow, color me impressed with the ability of these speakers; as part of a moderately priced HTIB??? I never would have believed it.

If you're in the market anywhere near this price, buy this HTIB just for the speakers alone. Well worth the $$ IMO. I'm looking forward to finding a dealer around here somewhere who displays some of their higher end HT speakers. I can tell you exactly what's going into my main room next upgrade...
post #6 of 593
i'm very excited about the sls. the logical question concerns the reciever & dvd player...getting these speakers seems a no-brainer, but what about the receiver & dvd player?
post #7 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by sregis View Post

i'm very excited about the sls. the logical question concerns the reciever & dvd player...getting these speakers seems a no-brainer, but what about the receiver & dvd player?

The receiver is pretty full featured. I would compare it to anything Pioneer, Denon, Marantz in the $400-$600 range. Has everything you'd expect except for HDMI. It supports all the latest audio codecs: all the DTS's (Digital Surround, Extended Surround, Discrete 6.1, Matrix 6.1, Neo 6 surround, cinema and music, and DTS 96/24). All the Dolby Digitals: EX, Pro Logic II, IIx movie and music, virtual speaker, reference and wide and good old Pro Logic. It also does Dolby Headphone simulated surround. Has a Theater, Hall and Stadium setting with the usual result.

It supports a surround back/center for 6.1. It has upgraded binding posts which will support banana plugs and spades as well as bare wire. Has 6.1 channel analog audio in RCA jacks. 2 optical, 2 co-ax digital ins (all assignable), 1 optical out. Usual record out options, support for 3 s-video or composite connections. 2 component video in, 1 out. On screen display for most functions and plenty of setup options. Remote has macro capability and is universal and is programmable.

The DVD player is pretty standard. Single disc, progressive output, 1 optical, 1 co-ax, 1 component, 1 s-video, 1 composite video out, 1 pair analog audio out. Supports all the codecs. Plays DVD, CD, VCD, CD-R, CD-RW (with some caveats), supports MP3 and WMA. Shows JPEGs. Has normal pan and scan, letter box and wide for 16:9 TVs. Remote is simple or it can be controlled from the main receiver remote. I'd expect to pay $150-$200 for a player like this.

Even the speaker wire that comes with it is decent 16g compared to the 18 or 20 you usually get with cheaper HTIBs.

For components included with these speakers and compared to what I've seen in HTIBs from Sony and Panasonic, pretty good electronics...
post #8 of 593
i'm a noob- how does the lack of hdmi effect things?
post #9 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by sregis View Post

i'm a noob- how does the lack of hdmi effect things?

HDMI/HDCP is the all digital combined audio video signal in a single cable which can reduce your interconnects from multiple wires to two, one from a DVD to the receiver and one from the receiver to your TV. There is some content that won't play maximum HD resolution except through the HDMI connection. If you want to upconvert SD DVD to HD signal you have to have this on the DVD player and on the HDTV. The cables are still very pricey and there is an error in some manufacturers implementation of the HDMI spec which has caused some problems. There is an update to the spec now and to get the best 1080p HD you need this connection. My TV has the input and one of my Sat boxes has the output. I just run the Sat box HDMI directly to the TV and change inputs when I want to use it. At some point HDMI to HDMI will be the preferred interconnect for all AV gear. Not a real big deal right now but 2-4 years from now it will probably be commonplace.

Edit - BTW HDMI/HDCP: High Definition Media Interface/High Definition Content Protection.
post #10 of 593
i guess then, all the more reason to go for the silver, and supplement w/ a dvd player/recorder w/ hdmi. wish sds offered more variation- like selling the speakers separately or offering the silver package in black. how hard could that be?
post #11 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by sregis View Post

i guess then, all the more reason to go for the silver, and supplement w/ a dvd player/recorder w/ hdmi. wish sds offered more variation- like selling the speakers separately or offering the silver package in black. how hard could that be?

Double check, but I don't think the Silver is the same receiver and I don't think it comes with the setup mic.

If you can't get the Silver discounted from its regular price, the Gold at $100 more is worth it. I actually already had a DVD when I got the Gold.

I think SLS will offer more variation in the future. I think they are just trying to make inroads in the home market right now. They have been in the commercial speaker market (speakers in hall venues, churches and movie theaters) for many years. Only in the past few years have they ported the ribbon technology into home class systems. They also own a digital amplifier technology which is very interesting too. They are releasing noise cancelling headphones and earbuds later this year also based on this speaker technology. I have no doubt they will release a Q Line Platinum at some point too.

If you really want the speakers alone, go to their website or call them. You might be able to get the speakers only.

I think this stuff is great. Best advance since DTS audio and High Def video IMO.
post #12 of 593
doesn't appear that they're eager to sell their products in pieces, based on an exchange i just had w/ a sales guy. no s-video is a worry as well....pretty standard stuff!
post #13 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by sregis View Post

doesn't appear that they're eager to sell their products in pieces, based on an exchange i just had w/ a sales guy. no s-video is a worry as well....pretty standard stuff!

No S-Video on what? The Gold has S-Video. Are you saying the Silver doesn't?
post #14 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by SLSAdvocate View Post

No S-Video on what? The Gold has S-Video. Are you saying the Silver doesn't?

had just read that the silver didn't. the gold appears pretty perfect, but i'd probably trade out for a dvd player-recorder w/ hdmi.
post #15 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by sregis View Post

had just read that the silver didn't. the gold appears pretty perfect, but i'd probably trade out for a dvd player-recorder w/ hdmi.

Understandable on the HDMI. I don't have time to look it up, but I would be very surprised if the Silver had no S-Video. You might check again...
post #16 of 593
he's right the silver does not have s-video. Because of that I seem to be having trouble setting mine up. I got it for Father's day and want to get it set up but I have all these components: TIVO, HDTV and disc DVD. I can get the DVD to sound right but the TIVO & HDTV dont seem to sound right. Can anyone explain how to run all the wires so I can tell if I got them right.
post #17 of 593
tlsunshine1,

The Q-Silver Receiver is a rebranded Sherwood RD-6105 Receiver.

I have connected my Dish Receiver to the Q-Silver Receiver using the Optical Audio jack.

My Pioneer DVR-640H is connected to the Q-Silver Receiver using one to the two Coax Audio jacks.

These two are the only things connected to the Q-Silver Receiver other than the speakers which sound great.

hth, Bob
post #18 of 593
checked this unit out at bestbuy this eve, and thought the sound much better than a polk 5.1 i recently heard. warning tho- it's 100lbs, and comes in a very big box. doubtful it'd fit in my sedan, and bestbuy won't mail it. incidentally, spoke w/ a nice guy at sls today, asking if he foresaw them selling the speakers separately, and he thought that was a good possibility in the near future...also upgrades like hdmi w/ the dvd. seems they're also working out deals w/ dealers other than bb and walmart.
post #19 of 593
I just bought a Epson projector and I want to get an SLS gold speaker system, but I am worried about needing to put speakers near the screen and run cables 14 feet back to the reciever at the other end of the room (where the projector will be located). Do any of you know if it will sound OK if I just have all of my speakers and the sub towards the back of the room (behind me as I watch the screen)? Thanks
post #20 of 593
the q-gold is now freakin $495...glad i've waited!
post #21 of 593
I just picked up a q-gold last week for 450 with a rebate. I will be taking it back today or tomorrow. Not sure if I am going to exchange it yet or just work on getting seperates.
post #22 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoss27 View Post

I just picked up a q-gold last week for 450 with a rebate. I will be taking it back today or tomorrow. Not sure if I am going to exchange it yet or just work on getting seperates.


wait- why are you returning it? and noticing that the price is now 450!
post #23 of 593
Quote:


The Q-Silver Receiver is a rebranded Sherwood RD-6105 Receiver.

If this is true then its an upgraded 6105. The Sherwood version doesn't have component video ins/outs.

http://sherwoodusa.com/prod_rd6105.html
http://sherwoodusa.com/prod_hts6500.html
post #24 of 593
I am returning it because of a few things. Biggest reason is the receiver seems to screw up the satellite signal to the TV. Kind of strange because it only screws with the picture from the satellite box. To make sure it was the receiver I hooked the box up straight to the TV and all was well, run the signal through the receiver and out the components to the TV and it gets screwed up again. Then the center channel speaker is screwed up. When you put a DTS movie in, that particular speaker will sometimes pop or crack and all of a sudden get crystal clear. Then after a while it will get muddy and eventually pop or crack again and clear up. I thought it might just be the receiver so I switched places with one of the other speakers and the problem moved with the speaker.

As to why I am thinking of going seperates instead of giving this system another shot? I don't know if it's the speakers or the receiver but I am not all that impressed with the overall sound quality. The sub lacks punch when it comes to music, and is barely adequate for movies IMHO. The highs seem to be non-existant but I'm not sure if that is due to the ribbon driver technology that doesn't create any of its own noise, or if something is wrong with the system itself. Considering the other problems so far, I am hoping I just got a bad box. What does come out of the speakers is very clear and sounds good though, which is why I am still considering giving it another shot.
post #25 of 593
hoss- i'm assuming you've spoken w/ people at sls?
post #26 of 593
Quote:
Originally Posted by afrogt View Post

If this is true then its an upgraded 6105. The Sherwood version doesn't have component video ins/outs.

http://sherwoodusa.com/prod_rd6105.html
http://sherwoodusa.com/prod_hts6500.html


afrogt,

The Q-Line Silver receiver that I have is identical to the Sherwood 6105 (except for the color of course).

Bob
post #27 of 593
sregis,
What's there to talk to them about? I just figured I bought it at BB, I should take it back to BB. I was on the edge of exchanging it when the fiance said she was not impressed at all with the bass and she was more impressed with her cousins OLD (as in 10 or more years) Kenwood that sounded like absolute crap. I mean you could barely understand what people were saying through that thing. Personally I think she forgot how bad his sounded to try and make that comparison. LOL That being said I still find SLS very interesting and hope they manage to get things going. I'll be waiting for them to market the speakers seperately because they truly did sound very good, bare in mind I am no audiophile but the detail that came out of the speakers was amazing to me. It's just the highs weren't something I would call "brilliant" or "bright." Like I said though, I'm not sure if that was a function of the reciever, the speakers, or if that is how they are supposed to sound.

Anyhow with me not being convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that the problems would be solved with an exchange, and her input, we have decided to go with the Onkyo HT-S780 for 319 shipped and the Oppo 971 for 199.99 shipped. This will provide us with upscaling for our LCD and a 10" sub instead of the downfiring 8" in the SLS system, with all the same decoding features.

We haven't ordered this setup yet though so if you have some ideas of possible things I might have done wrong in the setup of the SLS, feel free. I would note the sub was set to -12 from the factory, I turned it up to 0 and +5 which made quite a bit of difference. However it still lacked the punch. I just don't think an 8 is going to cut it for the size room we have.
post #28 of 593
i guess it was the "popping & cracking", etc that caught my attention...p'haps a hookup/cable issue. new equipment typically doesn't perform like that. figured the sls peep would know their stuff the best.
post #29 of 593
Quote:


The Q-Line Silver receiver that I have is identical to the Sherwood 6105 (except for the color of course).

Okay, I was looking at the Gold on the Best Buy website.

I have a Sherwood Newcastle receiver from at least 5 years ago and I had trouble running video thru it also. Caused interference on the TV. Its now relagated to the guest room mainly used for CD listening. Great sounding unit though. Not user friendly but looks good and sounds good. Oh well.
post #30 of 593
If it was just the popping I would have definitely worked with it. Funny thing is it ONLY happened when playing a DTS film, and it moved with the speaker. Maybe the crossover inside? I dunno. I have to say though I have checked out several other HTiB setups and NONE of the speakers compare to the apparent build quality of the SLS system. I don't think I found a setup that didn't have paper cones, but the SLS has Kevlar. The SLS weigh 6.1lbs a piece with nice sturdy build, others are strictly MDF veneer that look acceptable until you bump them into something, or they are small satellites that look like computer speakers. No matter how loud I cranked it there was no noticeable distortion out of the speakers, the sub was a different matter altogether. I didn't play them very loud for very long though, I do live in an apartment after all. The only complaint I really had about the speakers themselves was the stands. It would be nice if they had some way of clipping in or offered some sort of taller stand.

For those wondering it seems the Q-Gold reciever is a Sherwood USA RD-8601 any experiences?
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