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post #1 of 21 Old 09-22-2019, 09:53 PM - Thread Starter
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Speaker/sub upgrade options for 5k budget HT/gaming

Hi,

First time poster, long time lurker.

I am looking to upgrade. Budget $5k. Can you recommend me speakers and sub?

Current setup is 4.1 with Denon x4500h, 4x Elac Debut 6.2 bookshelves, and 1x Hsu vtf 3 mk 5 hp subwoofer (behind the couch).

Looking for a 4.2 setup, TV stand won't fit a center. Maybe further upgrade to 7.2 in future. No acoustical treatment currently in room. Listen to about 45% HT, 45% gaming, 10% music. I listen at both low and high volumes depending on the time of day, so setup needs to sound good at all volumes. I also don't want to get separates in the future, prefer easier to power speakers that sound good with my Denon.

I have a HT/office room that is 12x15x8 ft. Listening space in room with TV and speakers is 10x12x8 ft (other part of room has an office desk) and MLP is 6.5 ft from front speakers and 3 ft from side speakers. I don't want speakers or subs to over power the room, and not much floor space, so 2 massive subs won't fit. Not sure if floorstanders are good options or stick to bookshelf.

Measuring things I can maybe fit 15x15 inch sub max behind each front speaker, but will be close to the walls. Also gives me more placement options for sub crawls around the room, such as beside the couch or but office desk, the Hsu only has really 1 place it can go. If subs sound good up front or elsewhere I could move couch back at most 6 inches, giving me 7 ft from front speakers, there is a closet behind the couch opposite of the Hsu. If large subs are necessary could experiment with putting front speakers on top of them. But really want to fit 2 good subs in room with placement options for even bass.

Speakers currently considering:

Klipsch rp600m
Klipsch rp8000f (FYI large footprint puts this close to walls)
Svs ultra bookshelves
Svs prime pinnacle
Psa mt110
Chane a2.4
Ascend Sierra 1
Ascend Cmt 340 se
Kef ls50

Subwoofers currently considering:

Svs sb2000
Svs sb3000

Thanks for your time and suggestions!
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post #2 of 21 Old 09-23-2019, 06:41 AM
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I would get the PSA and a second VTF3. You could use them both as speaker stands up front or just use one as a stand and leave the 2nd behind the couch.

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post #3 of 21 Old 09-23-2019, 12:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
Hi,

First time poster, long time lurker.

I am looking to upgrade. Budget $5k. Can you recommend me speakers and sub?

Current setup is 4.1 with Denon x4500h, 4x Elac Debut 6.2 bookshelves, and 1x Hsu vtf 3 mk 5 hp subwoofer (behind the couch).

Looking for a 4.2 setup, TV stand won't fit a center. Maybe further upgrade to 7.2 in future. No acoustical treatment currently in room. Listen to about 45% HT, 45% gaming, 10% music. I listen at both low and high volumes depending on the time of day, so setup needs to sound good at all volumes. I also don't want to get separates in the future, prefer easier to power speakers that sound good with my Denon.

I have a HT/office room that is 12x15x8 ft. Listening space in room with TV and speakers is 10x12x8 ft (other part of room has an office desk) and MLP is 6.5 ft from front speakers and 3 ft from side speakers. I don't want speakers or subs to over power the room, and not much floor space, so 2 massive subs won't fit. Not sure if floorstanders are good options or stick to bookshelf.

Measuring things I can maybe fit 15x15 inch sub max behind each front speaker, but will be close to the walls. Also gives me more placement options for sub crawls around the room, such as beside the couch or but office desk, the Hsu only has really 1 place it can go. If subs sound good up front or elsewhere I could move couch back at most 6 inches, giving me 7 ft from front speakers, there is a closet behind the couch opposite of the Hsu. If large subs are necessary could experiment with putting front speakers on top of them. But really want to fit 2 good subs in room with placement options for even bass.

Speakers currently considering:

Klipsch rp600m
Klipsch rp8000f (FYI large footprint puts this close to walls)
Svs ultra bookshelves
Svs prime pinnacle
Psa mt110
Chane a2.4
Ascend Sierra 1
Ascend Cmt 340 se
Kef ls50

Subwoofers currently considering:

Svs sb2000
Svs sb3000

Thanks for your time and suggestions!
That is an excellent sub and I realize you can only fit it in one place in that tiny space but what is the issue with it?

Also what aren't the Elacs giving you that you want in your new speakers?

Why can't a center be used; a TV can be placed on top of a center if large enough.

Geoff A. J., California
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post #4 of 21 Old 09-23-2019, 07:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Should I not be concerned with speakers shaking while sitting on a subwoofer?

No issue with the sub. But there's a 15db diff between the high and low end after measuring. Can't really move it to another location due to size. Was thinking 2x smaller sub would help level the measurements while giving me similar output.

Elacs are most expensive speakers I have listened to. Can't say what is missing, haven't heard other speakers other than JBL 230 which gave me ear fatigue and sounded too harsh. My room I think is a bit on bright side, probably need treatment.

I guess I just have the itch to upgrade thinking something could be better. Am I wrong?
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post #5 of 21 Old 09-23-2019, 08:09 PM
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Speakers do a whole lotta shaking when they are playing, vibration is the name of their game. You could add some isolation pads under them if it's a concern. I placed bookshelf speakers on subs for a year, never used isolation pads, and never had a problem. Subs are the perfect speaker stands for bookshelves, IMO.

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post #6 of 21 Old 09-24-2019, 08:21 AM
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I would try to add a center if possible. Just mount it above the TV on a shelf on the wall.

And if you like the speakers sorry to help you save money as i know the feeling of getting new speakers us fun, but just keep them. Adding a better sub will make your system wake up and is always the easiest upgrade to quantify. If you need a small sub try the RSL speedwoofer or whatever its called. They are like 350-400 for the wireless one and sound great. They play decently loud and are small to fit two around most rooms.

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post #7 of 21 Old 09-24-2019, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
Hi,

First time poster, long time lurker.

I am looking to upgrade. Budget $5k. Can you recommend me speakers and sub?

Current setup is 4.1 with Denon x4500h, 4x Elac Debut 6.2 bookshelves, and 1x Hsu vtf 3 mk 5 hp subwoofer (behind the couch).

Looking for a 4.2 setup, TV stand won't fit a center. Maybe further upgrade to 7.2 in future. No acoustical treatment currently in room. Listen to about 45% HT, 45% gaming, 10% music. I listen at both low and high volumes depending on the time of day, so setup needs to sound good at all volumes. I also don't want to get separates in the future, prefer easier to power speakers that sound good with my Denon.

I have a HT/office room that is 12x15x8 ft. Listening space in room with TV and speakers is 10x12x8 ft (other part of room has an office desk) and MLP is 6.5 ft from front speakers and 3 ft from side speakers. I don't want speakers or subs to over power the room, and not much floor space, so 2 massive subs won't fit. Not sure if floorstanders are good options or stick to bookshelf.

Measuring things I can maybe fit 15x15 inch sub max behind each front speaker, but will be close to the walls. Also gives me more placement options for sub crawls around the room, such as beside the couch or but office desk, the Hsu only has really 1 place it can go. If subs sound good up front or elsewhere I could move couch back at most 6 inches, giving me 7 ft from front speakers, there is a closet behind the couch opposite of the Hsu. If large subs are necessary could experiment with putting front speakers on top of them. But really want to fit 2 good subs in room with placement options for even bass.

Speakers currently considering:

Klipsch rp600m
Klipsch rp8000f (FYI large footprint puts this close to walls)
Svs ultra bookshelves
Svs prime pinnacle
Psa mt110
Chane a2.4
Ascend Sierra 1
Ascend Cmt 340 se
Kef ls50

Subwoofers currently considering:

Svs sb2000
Svs sb3000

Thanks for your time and suggestions!
Room treatments would be a good place to start. Going with two smaller sealed subs would even out response throughout the room, but you'd have less low end impact than a 15" ported. Dual Rhythmik L22's would be pretty darn close though.

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post #8 of 21 Old 09-24-2019, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
Should I not be concerned with speakers shaking while sitting on a subwoofer?

No issue with the sub. But there's a 15db diff between the high and low end after measuring. Can't really move it to another location due to size. Was thinking 2x smaller sub would help level the measurements while giving me similar output.

Elacs are most expensive speakers I have listened to. Can't say what is missing, haven't heard other speakers other than JBL 230 which gave me ear fatigue and sounded too harsh. My room I think is a bit on bright side, probably need treatment.

I guess I just have the itch to upgrade thinking something could be better. Am I wrong?
A center would make a big difference; there has to be a way to implement one.

And yes, the Rhythmik L22 is the "sleeper" in their lineup.

Driver Two 12" high excursion with custom sensing coil
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post #9 of 21 Old 09-24-2019, 09:30 PM
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OP if you are a gamer you really owe it to yourself to do a 7.1 setup that includes rear surrounds. That will give you 360 degrees of immersion in many modern action games, so you'll hear the bad guy behind you, etc. Otherwise your X4500H's potential is way underutilized.

Side note: Current gen games don't really implement Atmos enough to make it worth the expense solely for gaming (AFAIK only a few XB1 2017 titles and the newest Gears of War). But for HT there are ever increasing numbers of streaming titles that carry Atmos soundtracks, so you might want to think about getting 2 front height speakers for a 7.1.2 with your X4500H, or even going all the way for 7.1.4 if you add a external amp (or use old AVR, like I did) while you're on the upgrade path. Your budget seems generous enough.

If you become convinced you need more sub(s) but the footprint needs to be small, the 16" diameter PC-2000 might also work for you.

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post #10 of 21 Old 09-24-2019, 11:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Interesting, I thought 2 sealed svs sb3000 would be a good replacement for the Hsu, ratings on SVS site seemed to match low end of the Hsu, and I am in a small room, so output doesn't need to be insane. Even with these details, are you telling me I need 4x sealed (2x L22) to match 1x 15 inch ported?

There is a window behind the TV. Removes any mounting options. I can fit a center in the TV stand but it points at my feet. Looking for new TV stands I can get speaker higher, but as I'm 6.5 feet from a 65" TV I would then be looking up at the TV. Right now the TV is perfect eye level, not a fan of raising it 10". I did play with 5.1 vs 4.1. Honestly phantom center seems ok to me.
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post #11 of 21 Old 09-25-2019, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
Interesting, I thought 2 sealed svs sb3000 would be a good replacement for the Hsu, ratings on SVS site seemed to match low end of the Hsu, and I am in a small room, so output doesn't need to be insane. Even with these details, are you telling me I need 4x sealed (2x L22) to match 1x 15 inch ported?

There is a window behind the TV. Removes any mounting options. I can fit a center in the TV stand but it points at my feet. Looking for new TV stands I can get speaker higher, but as I'm 6.5 feet from a 65" TV I would then be looking up at the TV. Right now the TV is perfect eye level, not a fan of raising it 10". I did play with 5.1 vs 4.1. Honestly phantom center seems ok to me.
Something like this?

https://www.amazon.com/Atlantic-Tech.../dp/B00AM9WET4

Using HSU's own numbers their ULS15 compared to the VTF3 you'd need two of the sealed ULS15s to achieve the same maximum loudness at 20hz of a single ported VTF3.

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post #12 of 21 Old 09-25-2019, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Didn't know those shelves existed. I will take a look. Thanks!
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post #13 of 21 Old 09-25-2019, 07:52 PM
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GoldenEar Triton 2+ at $3,500 will give you 2 “adequate” subs and tower floor standing speakers.

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post #14 of 21 Old 09-28-2019, 01:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for subwoofer suggestions. I like the ideas of pc2k and L22. More so pc2k it weighs less, easier to move by myself. How does it compare with svs sb3k?

For speakers, are folks thinking I should not upgrade? Understand Elac are good price performance ratio, but I am interested in best sound period at around 1k per pair. Would like to hear more thoughts on speakers if anyone has any.

Appreciate the suggestions, good stuff.
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post #15 of 21 Old 09-28-2019, 01:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
Thanks everyone for subwoofer suggestions. I like the ideas of pc2k and L22. More so pc2k it weighs less, easier to move by myself. How does it compare with svs sb3k?

For speakers, are folks thinking I should not upgrade? Understand Elac are good price performance ratio, but I am interested in best sound period at around 1k per pair. Would like to hear more thoughts on speakers if anyone has any.

Appreciate the suggestions, good stuff.
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post #16 of 21 Old 10-15-2019, 03:39 PM - Thread Starter
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I started to buy speakers for auditioning. Have SVS ultra bookshelf on the way. Going to get KEF LS50, Revel, and Ascend. Question, though. For home theater and gaming:

Is Ascend 2EX worth it over Ascend 1 at twice the cost?

Is Revel performa3 105 or 106 worth it over concerta2 m16 at 50-100% (twice) the cost? If so which?

If there is not a significant difference obviously would prefer the money savings going this amount, over the budget I was thinking of spending.
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post #17 of 21 Old 10-15-2019, 05:37 PM
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At only 6.5' from the speakers, you don't need high sensitivity home theater speakers. I'd focus on speakers that specialize in extremely accurate, very wide dispersion. Revel M16's would be my vote for your situation. Wide dispersion with neutral off axis response..I think it will help the speakers disappear.

If you currently have a Hsu VTF3.5...I'd add another, it is *the* value leader for a sub at or near its price. Add another and use REW to set them up properly. You can run this sub in sealed, 1 port, 2 port, adjust Q for tighter or more rumbly bass. Rythmik makes good subs but you will give up a ton of output down low with the L22's.

I wouldn't spend a premium on speakers that try to play to 40 Hz with 5" woofers or whatever....as long as they play to below 80 Hz you are crossing to subs and don't need the unecessary low extension. This is a compromise in design geared towards people who don't realize using subs is better.
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post #18 of 21 Old 10-15-2019, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
I started to buy speakers for auditioning. Have SVS ultra bookshelf on the way. Going to get KEF LS50, Revel, and Ascend. Question, though. For home theater and gaming:

Is Ascend 2EX worth it over Ascend 1 at twice the cost?

Is Revel performa3 105 or 106 worth it over concerta2 m16 at 50-100% (twice) the cost? If so which?

If there is not a significant difference obviously would prefer the money savings going this amount, over the budget I was thinking of spending.
Hope to hear your impressions. I think you're going about it right by upgrading your speakers although those ELACS are very well regarded. I would like to hear the Ascend S2ex myself, or possibly get them in addition to my R3's for another system. Your AVR is great IMO. I tried the Denon X4400H and although I went with a Yamaha in the end the Denon really packed a punch especially with Audessey. Great movie AVR.

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post #19 of 21 Old 10-15-2019, 11:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dan2crazy View Post
I started to buy speakers for auditioning. Have SVS ultra bookshelf on the way. Going to get KEF LS50, Revel, and Ascend. Question, though. For home theater and gaming:

Is Ascend 2EX worth it over Ascend 1 at twice the cost?

Is Revel performa3 105 or 106 worth it over concerta2 m16 at 50-100% (twice) the cost? If so which?

If there is not a significant difference obviously would prefer the money savings going this amount, over the budget I was thinking of spending.
90% gaming/HT use, 10% music use in a 12 x 15 x 8' room? Holy bejeezus, $5K is 2-3 times more than what you really need to spend! All of all of the speakers above are way overkill, that's like buying a Porsche just to crawl along on the freeway at 10-35 mph in rush hour gridlock.

If you just like pissing away money for the joy of pissing away money, by all means have at it...but if you want my advice, either the Ascend 340SE or Chane A2.4 would be PLENTY for your needs...in fact, you could do 7 x Ascend 170SE or 7 x Chane A1.5 for a seamlessly identical soundfield for maybe $1200 shipped all in, and be totally happy with its performance.

As for the subs, a pair of Hsu VTF-2 at most, hell I would start with just one and put it in a corner for maximum room reinforcement, there's at least a 50/50 chance you'll be satisfied enough with it. Zero need for any sealed subs when you're only doing 10% music, and one good ported 12" sub like the VTF-2 would probably give you more output than two SB-2000.

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #20 of 21 Old 10-15-2019, 11:41 PM
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For mainly HT -- I would take the Revel Concerta2 M16 over the Performa3 M105

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post #21 of 21 Old 10-16-2019, 01:42 PM
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The LS50's work great as nearfield surround speakers. Coaxial driver arrangement and compact footprint gives you more flexibility on placement. I don't know if I would recommend them for mains though.

For subs, I would not go any bigger than 12" sealed. It's easy to overestimate how much space and placement flexibility you will have after setting everything up. Something like the Rythmik F12 will work great.

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