Originally Posted by cHinds78
So what you're saying is spend the budget money on a nice 2.1 system now and save up for more speakers? That's not a bad idea, I will suggest it to my friend.
I like this strategy as long as one would be willing to spend more over the long run, of course, and wait for it. It's worth suggesting to your friend, in any case. As with so many things it would be good to have an upgrade plan, though (e.g. will additional matching components be available and affordable?).
If your friend would rather not spend more, total, then the Andrew Jones Pioneer system can't be beat as a bargain when it goes on sale for like half price, as it occasionally does (it's a great value at the regular price, as it is--pass on the subwoofer, though, and get a different one instead). Otherwise, on a limited budget often one can get better value/quality out of bookshelf speakers, if this would be acceptable, since they'll be used with a subwoofer anyway.
Here is one sample system:
Front LR: 2 X Ascend Acoustics CBM-170 SE
- $330 (on sale now for $298 + $32 shipping)
Subwoofer: 1 X Dayton Audio SUB-1200
- $129 (on sale occasionally for $99)
Receiver: Denon AVR-E300
- $200 (probably a bit less depending on the actual shipping cost)
Stands: 2 X Sanus BF24B
- $42 (if needed)
You could go with the Wave Crest Audio HVL-1
(currently on sale with free shipping) for the front LR instead to save $142, or buy all three front speakers while shaving $44 off the total price. It's a step down from the CBM-170 SE but a step up from the Pioneers.
For another option, you could go with the Denon AVR-X1000
for the receiver for not that much more because it has free shipping. It's probably overkill for a budget-conscious system, but I thought I'd point it out.
Oh, and although I'm personally a proponent of using matched surrounds, these are, for the vast majority of movie soundtrack content, nevertheless the least critical speakers in terms of performance and quality. So if surround sound is desired at a minimal cost your friend could consider something like the Insignia NS-SP213
for only $70 (for a pair). It goes on sale for $50/pair sometimes, and I think that you just missed a sale, actually. I believe (although you'd have to verify this) that it has a built-in keyhole slot, so it can very easily be mounted on a wall (the room layout allowing) for practically no cost.