AVS Forum banner
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys


I'm an absolute noob when it comes to speakers and amps. I'm in the market for a decent amp + 5.1 setup to replace the Samsung HTIB HD-BD2 setup that I'm currently using. It's not a bad setup (got it for free, long story) but there's been a disk jammed in it since I got it (and because I got it for free, there's no warranty support) so I can't adjust any of the settings. And I'm sure for AU$1000 I can get a much better sound in my home theatre.


The rest of my theatre gear:

1.) Sanyo PLV-Z2000 projector with

2.) PS3 for Blu-ray duties

3.) Xbox 360 for gaming and media extender from my Windows PC

4.) Cheapo upscaling Samsung DVD player for region free DVD playback

5.) Foxtel IQ2 Satellite TV PVR (Australian cable TV box)

6.) Powered HDMI switch box (360, PS3, DVD, Cable TV in; 1 x 15 foot HDMI out to projector)

7.) Manual Optical S/PDIF switch box (360, PS3, DVD, Cable TV in; 1 x 3 foot optical cable out to Samsung HD-BD2)



My theatre room is a converted second bedroom, approximately 3 metres wide by 4.5 metres long. It's light proofed with black-out curtains, but that's it. Please note that I can't make any changes to the room (speaker mounts on walls, etc) as this is a rental property.


I'm about to get a nice little payout from work, and have AU$1000 to spare. I use my theatre equally for gaming, movies and cable TV, and I'd like a receiver/amp (what's the diff?) that can handle all my inputs and outputs if possible. I'd also prefer speakers with stands, as I can't drill mounts on the walls.


Let the suggestions commence!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,923 Posts
For US posters, which I know are quite common, the current rate of exchange is -


1.00 AUD = 0.834276 USD


I would guess though, that people pay more in Australia than US people. Maybe the poster knows what approximate US value equates to $1000 AUD? $500 US MSRP?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Based on PC components, for AU$1000, we'd get about US$700 worth of gear, provided it's not cutting edge, brand new. We're usually at least a few months behind you guys.


And thanks in advance for anybody who can point me in the direction of components - I've been doing quite a bit of reading but can't find any good starting points.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,754 Posts
TechNovice...


as i've been starting my own such start-from-scratch search to replace and update, here's what i've learned so far:


1. you need to know what you want in order to narrow your search and define your price point(s)


2. you need to know your price point(s) in order to know what you you can get.


this cat-chasing-its-tail dilemma got me here after undergoing a similar process for an hdtv purchase. simply slogging through threads and posts starts to help flesh-out and define the 2 pre-requirements above.


also of much help in getting a handle on this has been www.audioholics.com . specifically their different buying guides, e.g.

their Recommended Systems Buying Guides
http://www.audioholics.com/buying-gu...buying-guides/


and their HowToShop guides and articles
http://www.audioholics.com/buying-guides/how-to-shop/


e.g. their 3 (so far) current receiver comparison guides
http://www.audioholics.com/buying-gu...mparison-guide

http://www.audioholics.com/buying-gu...mparison-guide

http://www.audioholics.com/buying-gu...mparison-guide



anyway that ought to be a start, and along with the advice you get here, it ought to get you started in defining what you want and what you can afford. at least that's the hope for me



TVbc
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Wow, looking at the link above, you guys get the entry level Onkyo TX-SR307 for US $299. Same unit in Australia is AU$795. That's an astonishing mark up, far greater than what I'm used to with PC components. Sigh.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,923 Posts
I think the 461 lacks HDMI, which would be annoying as you have a PS3. It's missing some video conversion features I would find useful.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
Technovice,


Mate, you can take a look at the pioneer clearance centre. I cannot post URLs since I don't have 3 posts. they have some good deals
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
RockDJ, great site there mate, thanks - half the price of store prices! I've narrowed my search down to these two, but can't really tell the difference between them. Note they're both "dented and scratched", and as a result have been discounted to AU$599 (down from AU$1999!):

Option 1: VSXAX2ASS-SD

Option 2: VSXAX2AVS-SD


I've got a credit card burning a hole in my wallet, so it'd be awesome if I could get your advice on whether either of these is suitable/not-suitable for my needs. Looking at the specs, all appears to be fantastic.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
42 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
My ears are in heaven!


Installation went relatively smoothly. I had one hitch; the speaker wire that Eastwood HiFi gave me with the speakers was too thick to run inside the cheapo ($99 a pair) stands that I also bought from them. There's a hole at the top of the stand where the wire comes back out of the cavity, so you can plug it into the speaker. It was way too small to fit all by the thinnest wire. I ended up buying another 30m of wire from a local store, and drilling out the holes a bit. Once that was done, it only took another hour or so to get the room set up.


I've used the automatic speaker calibration feature of the Pioneer receiver, although I did have to manually adjust the speakers back to small after it had run. I'm still playing around with the subwoofer settings – at first it was too light, then I made it too boomy. Having to determine subwoofer crossover is new to me, but I'm getting there.


So, how do they sound?


First, bear in mind that I haven't used speakers at this price point before. I also don't have the best hearing – too many years of raving as a teenager has left me with a slight case of tinnitus.


The differerence between this set up and the old HTIB is a lot more subtle than say, going from Standard Def to High Def. My other half reckons she can't tell the difference. However, after watching a few favourite scenes from movies, and playing a few 360 games, I could never go back...


I've got a standard scene from Behind Enemy Lines that I use to demo my HT to friends (the bit where they get shot down). On the new system I could hear an array of detail that I'd never noticed before. The sub was much subtler instead of an overwhelming mess. I could hear individual shards of metal hitting the ground after each explosion. The same is true of games – the crispness and detail of the sounds are what really stand out. Eventually I began to realise that these new speakers sound totally different, adding so many more elements to the audioscape than I'm accustomed to. And the amp looks so impressive at the front of my cinema =P


To summarise, I'm over the moon – while initially I wasn't blown away, I'm now very impressed with the new setup, and look forward to many hours of tweaking, calibration,viewing and gaming. I can't recommend Eastwood Hi-Fi enough – Steve replied to every email I sent, and they were not pushy whatsoever. The Pioneer Clearance Centre is equally recommended – I ordered on Thursday, and the receiver arrived on Monday. It looks brand new, without a single mark, although the box was a little beat up. And finally, I love the Paradigms. I'm no speaker expert but I'm amazed at how much sound comes out of such a little box, without a hint of loss of quality.


If you've got any questions, fire away. Thank you all for your help, without which I could have ended up with a system that I'm not happy with.
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top