$60,000 Dedicated Home Theater Build - Requesting Advice - Page 26 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #751 of 1442 Old 04-27-2016, 10:07 PM
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I'm in a similar situation, targeting a $60k-ish dedicated theater, hiring out.

I'm really torn right now on going with the local dedicated HT design firm, or doing it piecemeal (contract the design from a design firm, hire a contractor to build to the plan, and buy all the equipment myself.)

You're doing it "piecemeal". Three months in, how do you feel about that?
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post #752 of 1442 Old 04-27-2016, 11:13 PM
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Originally Posted by ShoutingMan View Post
I'm in a similar situation, targeting a $60k-ish dedicated theater, hiring out.

I'm really torn right now on going with the local dedicated HT design firm, or doing it piecemeal (contract the design from a design firm, hire a contractor to build to the plan, and buy all the equipment myself.)

You're doing it "piecemeal". Three months in, how do you feel about that?
Only comment I'll make is one thing I've noticed is a home theater designer that also sells equipment will usually suggest equipment they are familiar with, which is good and expected because you want them to know the equipment they're working with. But when it isn't so good is when they push a piece of equipment because it has a higher margin for them as opposed to necessarily being the best solution in terms of performance and value. Obviously that is a generalization but I've seen it many times before and is something to watch out for when evaluating HT design firms. Of course, having a single point of contact for everything is a major convenience but you likely won't get the performance to value ratio of following Aareses route. Glad I'm subscribed to this thread as I'm interested in Aareses answer to that question now and revisiting that question when he finishes everything. Good question!
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post #753 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 12:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ShoutingMan View Post
I'm in a similar situation, targeting a $60k-ish dedicated theater, hiring out.

I'm really torn right now on going with the local dedicated HT design firm, or doing it piecemeal (contract the design from a design firm, hire a contractor to build to the plan, and buy all the equipment myself.)

You're doing it "piecemeal". Three months in, how do you feel about that?
First off, what David wrote directly above this reply is spot on.

When I first started this journey of building a theater, I did not have a current or extensive background in building a theater. I started my journey by knowing I wanted a theater and visited the closest theater store near me. I met the owner of that store and he was a nice guy. He was very opinionated and gave me recommendations of what I should do right away. Some of his suggestions were good, others did not seem quite right, but who was I to judge an "expert". To be fair, I did give him a much lower budget to start. However, even when I doubled my budget, his suggestions did not really match what I was looking to do. Not all of them seemed right, but again I did not really know for certain. When I asked questions about his choices, it almost felt like an argument. Like I was questioning his knowledge, integrity or something. I knew I could not really have a candid conversation with him, so I started researching some of what he told me. That's when I came across AVS Forums.

In my searches, AVS Forums kept popping up. I read a lot of information, but didn't find anything really quite pertinent to my situation and questions. So, I looked for what I thought was the correct discussion to post in and made that initial post you see here at the beginning of my thread. The first person to respond was Brian B. The first thing he said was I was going to get a lot of different opinions and oh man was he right! At first, that was good and bad. It was good because I was getting many opinions, but it was bad because I didn't really understand everyone and some were far apart. Based on those discussions, I was directed to more specific information, which I could read and learn. I quickly realized what I needed to do was to educate myself. I am not a rich man and $60,000 is a LOT of money to me! At the very least, I wanted to be able to understand the choices that were being given to me so I would feel good about the advice I was getting. Moreover, I really wanted to understand which choices were best for me and my theater. I did not want to make a $60,000 mistake. I asked many questions, sometimes dumb questions, but hopefully mostly half-way intelligent questions. I wanted to truly understand these things people were posting about. I wanted to understand why the dealer I spoke to was directing me toward certain equipment.

At first, I thought I would use a turnkey solution and just hire the theater store to build me a theater. The more I became educated on home theater, the more I realized the choices the theater store made for me were not the best choices for me. The more I learned, the more I realized the room that was being planned for me, wasn't the best room for my situation. It started to seem like I was being pigeon-holed into certain gear choices, which I did not agree with. The big turning point for me was when I was actually able to demo more than the system that was being recommended to me. I immediately realized WOW, I would have made a big mistake buying the gear that was first recommended to me. So, I tried to demo as much as possible. Unfortunately for me, I couldn't demo as much as many here can or that I would have liked to. However, I did start hearing big differences. I knew what I didn't like, what was OK, and what I liked. I realized I really liked compression drivers for theater (Procella and JBL). So now, more dealers and opinions are involved.

Each and every dealer has their own opinions, which is of course natural. They push stuff to a varying degree, but I did notice certain brands being pushed by certain dealers. I later learned that there are larger profit margins in certain brands. It made more sense. As I became more and more educated, I realized each dealer had strong and weak aspects of their solutions. The reason is, not everyone can sell everything. Each has their preference, whether that is best for my situation or not. I knew then, I had to be far more involved in picking the right gear. It was at this point I took the reins and started heavily researching different options, different opinions. Sometimes my research didn't quite align or was missing something, compared to user opinions. Other times, I was in left field. I found at times, opinions (and my research) did align. That's when I knew I was going the right direction. While AVS Forums has been a large part of this process, it hasn't been the only part. AVS members however, were involved in some way for every decision I have made. AVS members were responsible for putting me in touch with Nyal Mellor and David Gage. Both have been super good choices for me.

Before I hired Nyal to design my theater, I researched him and other designers. I spoke to all the dealers and each said they did not do that type of thing in-house for systems like what I wanted. They outsourced. The room is one of the biggest parts of having a good theater, so I wanted to get it right. I could tell a basic, what I would call uniformed design wasn't what I wanted. I wanted to be sure one of the most important pieces of my design was done by the right person, so the design would be right. Just about anyone, including me can design a theater. I did design it, but it was wrong. The problem is, not everyone can do it correctly. Even the dealers admitted that. Each and every one of them.

Once I started working with Nyal, I could see the difference. It was dramatic. Nyal has his stuff together and it is very apparent. He is very cool, flexible and intelligent. My room is completely different that what I thought and what the other dealers suggested. Since I am more educated, I can see that now. I wouldn't have been able to before.

The choices I have made in gear now are vastly different from the choices I was originally given for a $60,000 theater. I look back and think two major thoughts: 1) Boy, I'm glad I posted on AVS and listened to all these nice people that wanted to help me learn. 2) If I had gone with the original plan, my theater would suck in comparison to what it will be now. I am 100% positive, through education and user opinions I am making WAY better choices, like WAAAAY better choices than I would have by just hiring a dealer. That is however for me and my situation.

Keep in mind, many of the users posting on my thread are dealers. Just talking to them, I can tell some would be awesome to work with and provide a product (like David Gage) and/or a great turn-key theater right off the bat. It would be the easiest thing in the world, far easier than the route I have taken. Others, however are not. Just like anything in life, sometimes you get lucky with a good contractor/company, sometimes you don't. With my initial experience and $60,000 of my hard earned money on the line, I was not willing to take that chance. There are some awesome companies/dealers out there to work with. You will know when you talk with them, but I would still advise people to research and understand the choices presented.

My preference would definitely have been to find that dealer, get good recommendations and snap my fingers, POOF there is my awesome theater. I think anyone would. That was not my experience, so I evolved dramatically through this process. Some would describe how I did this as the hard way and they would be correct. It was not easy and took a lot more time. I know a lot more now and am still learning largely because of all the super cool people on AVS, specifically those large contributors on my thread. The biggest thing for me though, is for the same money, my theater is now SO much incredibly better than it would have been!

We are all different, so you have to ask yourself, what is right for you. For me, I definitely made the right choice and am super happy this is the route I took.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #754 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 11:43 AM
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It is a $2,200 difference to get a second amp and an additional $500 to get a Yamaha processor instead of an AVR. Total difference of $2,700 to get to a processor + 2 amp (4,800 watt) setup vs. an AVR + single amp.

AVR Setup (2,900 Total Watts)
Yamaha Aventage 3050 - $2k
Crown DCi 8|300 Amp - $2.2k
Total Price $4.2k

Processor + Amps Setup (4,800 Total Watts)
Yamaha CX-A5100 Processor - $2.5k
Crown DCi 8|300 x 2 - $4.4k
Total Price $6.9k

Hey, I was just wondering if the price of the Crown DCi 8|300 amp you are planning to purchase is quoted correctly? I just did a search to check out the specs on that amp and the prices listed were nearly double that. I have heard of people calling and getting like 10 to 20% off but that is like closeout pricing. I did catch a deal on some close out crown amps a year or so ago that were 60% off but haven't been able to find a deal like that lately.The Crown amp that I purchases is fairly quiet, I can't hear it from my seating position. I believe the XLi 800 is what replaced it, I haven't heard the DCi amps so I can't say for sure if they are as quiet.


I was reading about Emotiva coming out with a new revision to their XPA amps that are modular. I'm not sure if you have checked them out or not, but you can do anything from 2 to 7 channels per amp. You could do a 3 channel and then 2 five channel amps for $3,900, or you could do a 6 channel and a 7 channel for $3,600.
Here is the all channels driven power output for each configuration.
Two: 300 watts RMS per channel
Three: 275 watts RMS per channel
Four: 260 watts RMS per channel
Five: 250 watts RMS per channel
Six: 225 watts RMS per channel
Seven: 200 watts RMS per channel
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post #755 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 12:08 PM
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@ShoutingMan

I see you have been a member here for some time, but with few posts over that time frame. I am sure most of your usage has been spent soaking up information. I will at least chime in with my own personal experience and say that even after just a few months of reading around AVS, I basically became more knowledgeable than 9 out of 10 of the local installers near me. I knew more about the different projectors, speakers, amps, and treatments collectively than basically all of them. Heck, I had to even call out one shop for trying to sell me last year's model epson. And I quote, "Hey guy, that thing is a year old, and you are selling it for more than the new model MSRP's for!" Him: "No way bud. This is the newest one they have to offer, I'm tellin' you!" He had the epson 8350 on display and the 8700ub had been out for months.

It was at that point that I knew exactly the road I planned to trudge down. I had my very first car stereo installed back in high school that was terribly botched (two left channels and no right channels, so I wasn't even listening in stereo), and from that day installed, built and chose all my own components. Same thing rings true for HT, you gotta do your homework, and listen to unbiased knowledgeable folks like a lot of the guys around here. You'll be much better off just as Aareses is already!
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post #756 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 12:56 PM
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I had another thought, you could get 8 Crown XLi 800s for around $2,000 and run 3 of them bridged for the your LCR. I know some like to have a single amp driving each speaker to prevent any crosstalk between channels. You also have less channels pulling from the same power supply by running multiple amps. You could do this as well with 8 DCi 2|300s at a much greater cost. Another benefit to running multiple amps is that if one goes out for some reason, it is much cheaper to replace than a costly multichannel amplifier. If one of the DCi 8|300 goes out, you loose 8 channels and about $4,000, if a DCi 2|300 goes out you just loose 2 channels and about $1,000 (or whatever price you are able to get these at). The down side is that multiples take up more rack space.
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Epson Home Cinema 3010 Projector____Paradigm 9SE MK II Main LR
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Sony BDP-570 Blu Ray_______________DIY Sound Group Volt 10

Last edited by action_jackson; 04-28-2016 at 01:11 PM.
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post #757 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 01:19 PM
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I had another thought, you could get 8 Crown XLi 800s for around $2,000 and run 3 of them bridged for the your LCR. I know some like to have a single amp driving each speaker to prevent any crosstalk between channels. You also have less channels pulling from the same power supply by running multiple amps. You could do this as well with 8 DCi 2|300s at a much greater cost. Another benefit to running multiple amps is that if one goes out for some reason, it is much cheaper to replace than a costly multichannel amplifier. If one of the DCi 8|300 goes out, you loose 8 channels and about $4,000, if a DCi 2|300 goes out you just loose 2 channels and about $1,000 (or whatever price you are able to get these at). The down side is that multiples take up more rack space.
An amp going out in this price range, provided no intentional abuse is not a situation I would necessarily take into consideration at this point. All of these amps being discussed are very well built and should provide uninterrupted service for years (decades even).

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post #758 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 01:57 PM
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An amp going out in this price range, provided no intentional abuse is not a situation I would necessarily take into consideration at this point. All of these amps being discussed are very well built and should provide uninterrupted service for years (decades even).


This is true, the cooling fan is probably the weakest link. I'm sure they will shut down if the fan fails though. Just thought I would throw that out there as it was suggested to me at one point.

Epson Home Cinema 3010 Projector____Paradigm 9SE MK II Main LR
Yamaha RX-V667 AVR_______________Paradigm CC-270 V.3 Center
Emotiva UPA-5 Amplifier______________Dual Stereo Integrity 18" Infinite Baffle
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post #759 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 08:17 PM
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@ShoutingMan

I see you have been a member here for some time, but with few posts over that time frame. I am sure most of your usage has been spent soaking up information. I will at least chime in with my own personal experience and say that even after just a few months of reading around AVS, I basically became more knowledgeable than 9 out of 10 of the local installers near me. I knew more about the different projectors, speakers, amps, and treatments collectively than basically all of them. Heck, I had to even call out one shop for trying to sell me last year's model epson. And I quote, "Hey guy, that thing is a year old, and you are selling it for more than the new model MSRP's for!" Him: "No way bud. This is the newest one they have to offer, I'm tellin' you!" He had the epson 8350 on display and the 8700ub had been out for months.

It was at that point that I knew exactly the road I planned to trudge down. I had my very first car stereo installed back in high school that was terribly botched (two left channels and no right channels, so I wasn't even listening in stereo), and from that day installed, built and chose all my own components. Same thing rings true for HT, you gotta do your homework, and listen to unbiased knowledgeable folks like a lot of the guys around here. You'll be much better off just as Aareses is already!
There are installers who specialize in high performance HT and more knowledgeable than 99% of DIYers, but they are hard to find. Look for HAA, THX, ISF certifications, a portfolio of similar projects and maybe CEDIA membership.

Reality is that the bulk of the market that keeps "installers" in business is distributed audio, lighting control, networking, basic media room projects, etc.

There are not many people who want high performance spaces. It's great that AVS exists, but there is always a "non-DIY" option if you look properly, at least in the major urban areas.

In Salt Lake City there seems to be quite a few, at least 3, which is pretty amazing if you ask me.

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post #760 of 1442 Old 04-28-2016, 09:12 PM
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@ShoutingMan

I see you have been a member here for some time, but with few posts over that time frame. I am sure most of your usage has been spent soaking up information. I will at least chime in with my own personal experience and say that even after just a few months of reading around AVS, I basically became more knowledgeable than 9 out of 10 of the local installers near me. I knew more about the different projectors, speakers, amps, and treatments collectively than basically all of them. Heck, I had to even call out one shop for trying to sell me last year's model epson. And I quote, "Hey guy, that thing is a year old, and you are selling it for more than the new model MSRP's for!" Him: "No way bud. This is the newest one they have to offer, I'm tellin' you!" He had the epson 8350 on display and the 8700ub had been out for months.

It was at that point that I knew exactly the road I planned to trudge down. I had my very first car stereo installed back in high school that was terribly botched (two left channels and no right channels, so I wasn't even listening in stereo), and from that day installed, built and chose all my own components. Same thing rings true for HT, you gotta do your homework, and listen to unbiased knowledgeable folks like a lot of the guys around here. You'll be much better off just as Aareses is already!
Ive been a member for a while, but mostly lurk on AVS. I've been a member even longer on another similar forum where I'm more active discussing TV shows and gadgets but I've always enjoyed the hardware and stay somewhat current.

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There are installers who specialize in high performance HT and more knowledgeable than 99% of DIYers, but they are hard to find. Look for HAA, THX, ISF certifications, a portfolio of similar projects and maybe CEDIA membership.

Reality is that the bulk of the market that keeps "installers" in business is distributed audio, lighting control, networking, basic media room projects, etc.

There are not many people who want high performance spaces. It's great that AVS exists, but there is always a "non-DIY" option if you look properly, at least in the major urban areas.

In Salt Lake City there seems to be quite a few, at least 3, which is pretty amazing if you ask me.
I learned just this the past two months. Most "installers" are structured wiring / gadget integrators. (But from that I've found a GC who seems competent to build a third-party design)

But I've found an actual dedicated HT designer installer in my area. He's expensive and sells specific brands to make his core profit. But his brands are good (like Triad speakers). And unlike the bad experience Aareses had, I've found my local guy to be opinionated but listens and flexible in responding to my preferences in hardware or design concerns. But he's expensive.
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post #761 of 1442 Old 04-29-2016, 02:26 PM
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Cool

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Originally Posted by ShoutingMan View Post
I'm in a similar situation, targeting a $60k-ish dedicated theater, hiring out.

I'm really torn right now on going with the local dedicated HT design firm, or doing it piecemeal (contract the design from a design firm, hire a contractor to build to the plan, and buy all the equipment myself.)

No difference between a home movie theater or getting into buying a new boat, house, race car, or collecting coins. You can dig in and find out the real deal knowing model numbers and street prices to the penny or you can sit back and give all your money to someone to do it for you.


The digging in method causes wasted weekends, nights, days, and nightmares but you get the best equipment at the best price. Hiring it out wastes a lot of money and you end up paying over inflated prices for subpar or wrong equipment but your nights and weekends are free, your stress level is lower, you see sunlight most days, and the guy who screwed you over makes a living.


We all pick our poison.
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post #762 of 1442 Old 04-29-2016, 02:34 PM
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Pretty much
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post #763 of 1442 Old 04-29-2016, 02:58 PM
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No difference between a home movie theater or getting into buying a new boat, house, race car, or collecting coins. You can dig in and find out the real deal knowing model numbers and street prices to the penny or you can sit back and give all your money to someone to do it for you.


The digging in method causes wasted weekends, nights, days, and nightmares but you get the best equipment at the best price. Hiring it out wastes a lot of money and you end up paying over inflated prices for subpar or wrong equipment but your nights and weekends are free, your stress level is lower, you see sunlight most days, and the guy who screwed you over makes a living.


We all pick our poison.
Really?

If you pick the right company to work with that doesn't happen.
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post #764 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 06:02 AM
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Really?

If you pick the right company to work with that doesn't happen.
But the chances of picking that company is like "one in a minion".... Bwah, ha, ha!!!
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post #765 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 08:34 AM - Thread Starter
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I better PM you my address so the cleaning crew knows where to send one of those DS subs after you blow apart your theater from running four of them
And I'm kind of laughing at the electrical bid comment, the money your spending on this theater shouldn't be held hostage to an electrician's $150 bill for running 10 or 12 gauge wire to power the subs! I can't wait to see pics of this room coming together!!!
LOL. Nice! I make myself laugh a lot too. Thanks for continuing to bring in some levity, MinnesotaGreg!

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I am kind of laughing at the idea of 4 x 18 subs in a room his size needing 240v per amp so he can run them with 3,000w instead of 2,000w.

But the comment was to check and see what it would cost him to run the lines based on the specifics of his existing infrastructure and what he wanted to do. Then factor that cost into the price comparison between the 120 vs 240 volt amps.

I don't remember seeing anything about $150 other than that was the estimate he got.
David has told me that 3,000 watts per sub is optimal for his 18" Marianas, but 2,000 watts would be really good as well. I'm currently trying to get the cost difference from a contractor, but contractors around here are like pulling teeth to get answers from. It's crazy. I don't think the wiring will be a big cost difference, but then I have a different surge protection panel, which adds costs. There is slightly more complexity, which adds cost on the design. Basically, it's the total aggregate cost I need to obtain in order to determine if moving to that slightly more optimal wattage will be worth it or not.

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Phew! I've read all 25 pages and caught up! It's great to see the p ogress you're making!

My question was about his assertion that the Denon 7200 is a true 9-channel discrete amp: it can drive all 9 channels at 150W simultaneously. I didn't see him "retract" on that. I need to check the Denon thread on this.
Glad you're all caught up! It's a lot of information for sure. I've read through several times as well. Each time, I learn something different or I have a better understanding of something. As for your question, I am not aware of any AVR that will drive ALL channels at 150w simultaneously. This is why I choose to go with amps over an AVR.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #766 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 08:37 AM - Thread Starter
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I don't have much experience with Crown amps but everything I've heard about them is that they are quality amps and that is the lower end. At the level you're looking, the Crown amps look incredibly nice. The only thing I could say negatively is that pro audio amps such as those usually have loud fans but that won't matter since your equipment closet is away from the theater. Other amps I would recommend would be SpeakerPower with the class-D ICE modules, they can put together up to 10 modules and those are high quality with some of Brian's special sauce thrown in. I'm also a fan of D-Sonic class-D amps and you can get them configured in multiple ways so you could get more power for your LCRs and more nominal power for the rest of your channels though his cases are limited to 7 modules I believe.
David, are you saying you think the Crown are quality or on the lower end of quality? I believe SpeakerPower and D-Sonic would take the cost of the amplifiers I need way above what I can get the Crowns for. Correct me if I'm wrong.

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Aareses, if you want to speak to a DSS Mariana 18 owner, Madhuski here is the owner of the beautiful light brown one on the home page. He also has had or listened to some of the other ones you've mentioned in our emails.
Madhuski did give me his data on subs. He is one of the sources that has recommended DSS and one of the reasons I choose DSS.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #767 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 10:04 AM - Thread Starter
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@ShoutingMan

I see you have been a member here for some time, but with few posts over that time frame. I am sure most of your usage has been spent soaking up information. I will at least chime in with my own personal experience and say that even after just a few months of reading around AVS, I basically became more knowledgeable than 9 out of 10 of the local installers near me. I knew more about the different projectors, speakers, amps, and treatments collectively than basically all of them. Heck, I had to even call out one shop for trying to sell me last year's model epson. And I quote, "Hey guy, that thing is a year old, and you are selling it for more than the new model MSRP's for!" Him: "No way bud. This is the newest one they have to offer, I'm tellin' you!" He had the epson 8350 on display and the 8700ub had been out for months.

It was at that point that I knew exactly the road I planned to trudge down. I had my very first car stereo installed back in high school that was terribly botched (two left channels and no right channels, so I wasn't even listening in stereo), and from that day installed, built and chose all my own components. Same thing rings true for HT, you gotta do your homework, and listen to unbiased knowledgeable folks like a lot of the guys around here. You'll be much better off just as Aareses is already!
I too was hardcore into car audio in the late 80s and early 90s (dating myself). I found when I learned about it and did it myself (with the help of others), it turned out way better. In fact, I got an invite to the IASCA Finals and in 1992 at Tulsa, OK I won 2nd in my class out of 35 entries. Back then just getting an invite to Nationals was a big deal. That wouldn't have happened if I wasn't involved. Back then, there was no AVS or networks to join and get info. It was boots on the ground, talking to the right people, etc.

At this stage in my life, I don't have that kind of time anymore. I really wanted to hand the project to someone and just have my theater. That's what I tried to do, but it didn't work out too well. The thing that makes AVS so great is there is a LOT of experience here from passionate people. If you can sift the gold nuggets from the sand, you get the that wisdom. Having said that, sometimes you run into VERY good contractors/designers. It is these people you can get those turn-key solutions from and be good from the start. They are out there, I just don't know how to find them other than a bunch of recommendations on AVS. I will ask Nyal on another post here...maybe he can give us some insight. He is one such contractor. In fact, Shoutingman I would HIGHLY recommend you contact Nyal as an option.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #768 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 10:10 AM
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I grew up in Broken Arrow and lived in Tulsa for a while. I remember going to the finals in the early 90s to check out the systems everyone had. There was one guy that had 16 18 inch kickers in the back of his S10, that truck was insane!


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Epson Home Cinema 3010 Projector____Paradigm 9SE MK II Main LR
Yamaha RX-V667 AVR_______________Paradigm CC-270 V.3 Center
Emotiva UPA-5 Amplifier______________Dual Stereo Integrity 18" Infinite Baffle
Sony BDP-570 Blu Ray_______________DIY Sound Group Volt 10
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post #769 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 10:21 AM - Thread Starter
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There are installers who specialize in high performance HT and more knowledgeable than 99% of DIYers, but they are hard to find. Look for HAA, THX, ISF certifications, a portfolio of similar projects and maybe CEDIA membership.

Reality is that the bulk of the market that keeps "installers" in business is distributed audio, lighting control, networking, basic media room projects, etc.

There are not many people who want high performance spaces. It's great that AVS exists, but there is always a "non-DIY" option if you look properly, at least in the major urban areas.

In Salt Lake City there seems to be quite a few, at least 3, which is pretty amazing if you ask me.
Nyal. Knowing what I do now, if your business was near me, I would feel 100% confident to hire you for a full turn-key system. Have you do it all, go skiing and come back to a killer system without headaches. The problem is, people do not know good from bad. I totally agree that looking for high level certifications can help. The same is true in my industry. It helps distinguish people who are highly trained in certain areas vs. those who are not. While it does not preclude those who do NOT have high level certifications from being incredibly awesome, I believe it does help point people in the right direction.

When I started, I did not know there were high level certifications in the home theater industry. I learned about it later and did look for high level certifications in my area, but did not find anyone until one day I called a shop and just by sheer luck ran across a highly certified guy (Adam Pelz). Google did not work for me to find these people. Calling each store is a time-intensive process to find these people.

Nyal, can you briefly explain what these different certifications tell us about the person and which certs are hardest to achieve? Most importantly, can you give us all an easier way to find people, who are highly certified in our areas?

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #770 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 10:34 AM - Thread Starter
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I grew up in Broken Arrow and lived in Tulsa for a while. I remember going to the finals in the early 90s to check out the systems everyone had. There was one guy that had 16 18 inch kickers in the back of his S10, that truck was insane!


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I didn't have the luxury of all that air-space. I bet that pounded. I had a car, so getting 32 speakers all in fiberglass enclosures and all the associated equipment was a challenge. Still though, I scored very high on the sound quality portion, pretty good on the install and always maxed the SPL portion. For a car to hit to hit 145.7dB back then was pretty decent. You may have sat in my car. I was out in the parking lot before the show doing demos for the crowd.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #771 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 11:33 AM
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David, are you saying you think the Crown are quality or on the lower end of quality? I believe SpeakerPower and D-Sonic would take the cost of the amplifiers I need way above what I can get the Crowns for. Correct me if I'm wrong.
Poor wording on my part. I had to buy a cheap amp due to equipment problems and bought the Crown XLS-1000, partially due to quick availability and the Crown name. I'm pleased with it although I don't use it a bunch. Heard nothing but positive about the Crown amps. Only issue is one related to most pro amps used at home, which is the fan noise level but that doesn't apply to you and those with an equip closet.

SpeakerPower has a line of amps with class-D ICE modules (300w, 700w) and they can put up to 10 modules in one amp rack unit (2u/3u?). Their website is in transition but it would be worth reaching out to them to see what they can do. Same with DSonic as you never know what options they might have. I think these amps and many others are quality amps and I'm quite sure you would NOT be able to hear a difference between them or many of the other quality amps on the market.
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post #772 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 12:15 PM
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I am the kind of person who just likes to do research and know more about stuff even if I don't end up using the results. e.g. when going on vacation I'll research everything but when we reach there often all those detailed plans go out the window because others don't want to go along or there's something new...

I sometimes wish I hadn't found AVS, there's simply too much information and options for anyone to absorb, esp if you have an obsessive nature like me. Ignorance in this case can indeed be bliss
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post #773 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 01:37 PM
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I am the kind of person who just likes to do research and know more about stuff even if I don't end up using the results. e.g. when going on vacation I'll research everything but when we reach there often all those detailed plans go out the window because others don't want to go along or there's something new...

I sometimes wish I hadn't found AVS, there's simply too much information and options for anyone to absorb, esp if you have an obsessive nature like me. Ignorance in this case can indeed be bliss
The best advice, at least in my opinion, is for people to research what they came for on AVS because of the great and knowledgable people. Then promptly delete AVS from your memory banks, your wallet will thank you!
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post #774 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 02:16 PM
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The best advice, at least in my opinion, is for people to research what they came for on AVS because of the great and knowledgable people. Then promptly delete AVS from your memory banks, your wallet will thank you!
Agreed. And whatever you do, once you have some semblance of decent bass, don't visit the sub/diy forums, because that truly is a bottomless pit even among the normal overkill insanity here. You can only have a fixed number of display/speakers/amps, I've yet to see an upper limit on the number/size of subs here. David I hope you don't mind me saying that
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post #775 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 02:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Agreed. And whatever you do, once you have some semblance of decent bass, don't visit the sub/diy forums, because that truly is a bottomless pit even among the normal overkill insanity here. You can only have a fixed number of display/speakers/amps, I've yet to see an upper limit on the number/size of subs here. David I hope you don't mind me saying that
That's one of the big reason I choose Deep Sea Sound. David makes some of the best manufactured subs on the planet! I didn't want to fall into the bottomless DIY pit. I don't have the patience to get that in-depth and wasn't interested in spending years tweaking stuff. For me, I wanted a theater for an escape, not a hobby.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #776 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 03:06 PM
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Agreed. And whatever you do, once you have some semblance of decent bass, don't visit the sub/diy forums, because that truly is a bottomless pit even among the normal overkill insanity here. You can only have a fixed number of display/speakers/amps, I've yet to see an upper limit on the number/size of subs here. David I hope you don't mind me saying that
I'll give you one guess...what came first, the sub business or me falling into the abyss of the DIY sub crowd? @beastaudio , @popalock , @Archaea and many others have been horribly awesome influences. But I guess BeastAudio is the worst since his system taught me what a truly awesome sub system AND amazing speaker system could be. Better than any movie theater I'd ever visited...by far. And BeastAudio is also responsible for the GTG that introduced me to Nick of Stereo Integrity and the outstanding HS-24 24" subwoofer. @COACH2369 has also been a bad influence with all of his upgrades and whispering little devishly awesome product ideas in my ear. Starting Deep Sea Sound has been a wild and fun ride and I couldn't have done it without my friends and virtual friends I met on AVS.
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post #777 of 1442 Old 04-30-2016, 03:24 PM - Thread Starter
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I'll give you one guess...what came first, the sub business or me falling into the abyss of the DIY sub crowd? @beastaudio , @popalock , @Archaea and many others have been horribly awesome influences. But I guess BeastAudio is the worst since his system taught me what a truly awesome sub system AND amazing speaker system could be. Better than any movie theater I'd ever visited...by far. And BeastAudio is also responsible for the GTG that introduced me to Nick of Stereo Integrity and the outstanding HS-24 24" subwoofer. @COACH2369 has also been a bad influence with all of his upgrades and whispering little devishly awesome product ideas in my ear. Starting Deep Sea Sound has been a wild and fun ride and I couldn't have done it without my friends and virtual friends I met on AVS.
That's great! I almost...ALMOST took @beastaudio up on his offer to build me custom boxes and drive them to my house and install them. He's given me a lot of great advice as well. As many, many others have here. I agree, AVS is awesome...but can get you in trouble, lol.

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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post #778 of 1442 Old 05-01-2016, 09:29 AM - Thread Starter
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Just when I thought I had things pretty much locked down for gear, David through me a curve-ball with recommendations about D-Sonic and SpeakerPower. I reached out to both and received a response from Dennis at D-Sonic.

Dennis would recommend:
M3-2800-7, which is $3,075. 7x400w/8ohm, 700w/4ohm.
M3-2400-7, which is $2,875. 6x400w/8ohm, 700w/4ohm.
Total $5,950 - 5,200 watts total.

That's even more power I don't necessarily need overall at a higher cost. It takes down my LCR from 600wpc to 400wpc. It also increases my 10 surround/height speakers from 300wpc to 400wpc, which is way overkill for what I need. These are however Class-D, fanless amplifiers built like tanks. This D-Sonic solution is almost identical in cost to the Sunfire solution, but has about 1,000 more wpc, full class D. D-Sonic was also highly recommended by @beastaudio a while back.

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Yes, I currently have a 7 channel Dsonic and it won't be going anywhere for quite some time. It is the best amp I have owned thus far and runs incredibly efficiently (Barely ever any heat to speak of). Previous to that I ran Emotiva, Sherbourn, Sunfire.

Dennis is an absolute stand-up owner and will even work with you to build out the specific amp channel power options you might want. The amps are all modular, as in they are basically a bunch of monoblock amps built into one single chassis. They are interchangeable too so if at some point you do decide you need more power, it can be done.
My current selection is:
Crown DCi 8|300 x 2, which is close to $4,500 total. 16x300w/8ohm, 300w/8ohm. Bridgeable, so I would run 6 channels at 600wpc and 10 at 300wpc.

Nyal said I only need 200wpc for LCR and 150wpc at most for my surround/heights, so I thought while the Crowns were a bit more than I need, they would be a good solution. The price is certainly right!

I showed Dennis the Crowns that I was considering and let him know they were the same amps used in JBL Synthesis systems. Dennis said:

"I did notice one unusual specification on the Crown DCI/8/300 and on their other DCI models. The power halves into 4 ohms instead of almost doubling as almost all other amplifiers do. You might consider checking the impedance curves for the Procella speakers to see how much, if any, of their frequency range might get into less than 8 ohms of impedance. When impedance dips, you want current to increase proportionally as possible to handle any dynamic peaks that occur in this range. It appears that the Crown design is going in the opposite direction here."


Should I be concerned about the Procella speakers mixed with the Crown amps based on what Dennis is saying? I don't know how to check that.

Any thoughts on the D-Sonic amps vs the Crowns? Based on the "fan" comments in recent posts, is going fan-less worth another $1,500?

What would you do and why?

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.

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post #779 of 1442 Old 05-01-2016, 10:10 AM
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The P8 has a nominal impedance of 8 ohms, and according to its spec sheet, it is "above 12 ohms in working range." http://www.smart-av.ru/Procella_Tech_Sheets.pdf

The Crown DCi 8|300, when bridged, puts out 600 watts per channel into 8 or 16 ohms, all channels driven. I don't see a problem.
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post #780 of 1442 Old 05-01-2016, 11:11 AM - Thread Starter
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I think what Dennis is saying is that all speakers dip (like going to 2 Ohm) or peak (like going to 16 Ohm) during normal operation, depending on demand.

The Crown DCi amps have a spec sheet table. Click the link and scroll to the bottom of the page. Like Dennis said, the specs are interesting in that the power drops to half under certain loads.
http://www.crownaudio.com/en/products/dci-8-300

Crown DCi 8|300 in Dual Mode - All Channels Driven
150 wpc @ 2 Ohms
300 wpc @ 4 Ohms
300 wpc @ 8 Ohms
150 wpc @ 16 Ohms

Crown DCi 8|300 in Bridged Mono Mode - All Channels Driven
300 wpc @ 4 Ohms
600 wpc @ 8 Ohms
600 wpc @ 16 Ohms

Reading the Procella spec sheet, does that mean part of the time the amps are going to be working so hard, they will literally cut their power in half? Would that even matter in my setup if I were to go Crown amps?

Evolution of My Theater Build

Speakers: Procella P8 (LCR), P6V (2 Front Side), P5 (2 Rear Side, 2 Rear, 4 Ceiling). Subs: Deep Sea Sound Custom 18" Mariana (4). Amps: Crown DCi 8|300 (2), SpeakerPower SP2-12000-HT. Processors: Yamaha CX-A5100, Xilica XP-8080 (2). Video: JVC RS400, 2.37 Seymour AV 120" Enlightor 4K Screen, Kaleidescape Strato, Philips BDP7501. Control: iRule.
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