Passive or Active Soundbar
Not sure what is the best option here for my setup. I have a 7.1 setup where I'm considering removing the back and side 4 speakers and then find something to replace the front 3 speakers. Currently the front left and right sit inside cabinets so i have to open them up when watching a movie, it would be nice to not have to do that at all. I like the idea of having a wireless subwoofer to put in a different spot in the room, but the wired one is OK right now I guess. There would be a better spot to put it if I had my way, The sound to me in the whole room isn't that great (mainly due to my lack of setup and configuration knowledge of the speakers and receiver), so reducing speakers I don't think would that big of an impact.
I have a multi zone setup from my Pioneer receiver (sc-1522-k) plus another Onkyo to power a 3rd and 4th zone. I use an iRule system to be able to control everything since I like to have as few remotes as possible. I'd like to continue to use the receiver based on that setup so I can continue to have one or more zones playing the same music for example.
So, active or passive? I'd like to get the best sound in the room as possible to still get close to a 5.1 or 7.1 experience.
I assume on my receiver I could still make changes to how inputs and outputs work to get the theater zone to work right with an active soudbar? Or maybe no changes at all if sounds it always going through hdmi?
And, how do you control the volume on a active unit? You have to use a separate remote? I assume with my iRule setup I can still get that to work too and get rid of the remote? My Samsung 60" does have room under it to put a soundbar, so that should not be an issue.
Just not sure what benefit you get from from the active unit, although you do get some new bluetooth features and the wireless sub.
Thoughts? I'd like to see if I could do something for $500-600 or less.
Attached you can see how the setup looks.