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I have just acquired a LE40558 hdtv at home and i'd like to watch my content with some real sound rather than the default one it currently outputs. Below is a list of the sources i have, the content my various sources output and the characteristics of my room.


[a] tv cable box (hdmi/optical)

[a] htpc (hdmi/optical and/or hdmi/hdmi)

[a] gaming rig (hdmi/hdmi or hdmi/optical)

[a] laptop (vga/component)

[a] xbox 360 (hdmi/hdmi and/or hdmi/optical)

[o] Wii (component)

[o] ipod/itouch


[a]: all the time

[o]: occasional


- 20% video: 576p sound: 2.1

- 05% video: 720p/1080i sound: 5.1

- 15% video: 480p/576p sound: 5.1 DTS

- 15% video: 720p sound: 2.1

- 05% video: 720p sound: 5.1 DTS-HD

- 30% video: 1080p sound: 5.1 DTS-HD

- 10% video: 1080p sound: 7.1 DTS-HD

misc information:

- the room hosting the tv is 7 meters large per 5 meters long with 3.3 meters height

- the distance from the couch to the tv is ~ 3 to 3.5 meters

- the distance from the couch to the backwall is ~ 1.5 to 2 meters

- the room is occupied at 25% by the table/chairs we use for diners in a corner of the room

- i dont own the place, it's a rent (meaning i can't do much modifications with the room or make the room a dedicated place)

Before you ask, I have browsed the forums for a few days now yet i have to admit i'm a bit lost with all the available existing solutions nowadays.

I barely catch up with the technology and terminology though i'm doing my best.

My knowledge is somehow very limited in the audio area and i have never owned a receiver. Dad had one but never cared to explain me anything at all and 30 years later he has completely lost connection to the real world (he even wanted to give me his 30 years old Technics amp).

As of today i'm using a standard "1 sub/4 speakers" 5 years old pc system from creative for the stuff i output from my computer to my tv but it clearly not practical since i now have a brand new htpc (switching cables and moving speakers is a pain in the *ss). So i was thinking i'd buy myself a system for my birthday that would help me centralize everything around the tv but also enjoy some real audio experience.

I also went this weekend to a shop however the person in charge confused me so much i got home with a headache and no solutions at all. Plus he basicly wanted to sell me a 7.1 bose system of some kind which price was over the rooftop.

From my very own opinion i'd say a 5.1 system is plenty enough given the few 7.1 content i watch and the configuration of my room. I do have quite a quantity of sources so i believe i can't use just any HTIB system (remember my knowledge is very basic).

Money wise, my budget is not very high, i'd say $400 max.

I might get a hold of 2/4 speakers from a semi recent Bose system a relative is not using right now or maybe revamp the speakers i own (would have to check that out though since it's from a pc oriented system with sub/amp in one piece). In that very case, evolutive system might be the way since audio stuff has proven to be very durable (30 years old Technics amp my dad has). I could get the speakers from my relative and buy a receiver/central speaker/sub and then buy speakers later on. Or maybe i should just simply get myself a HTIB for my budget and change for something in a few years once i get to move to a house.

Well bottom line is i'm no expert at all, so here i am asking for your opinions, suggestions, critics and experiences.

Thank you in advance !

PS: english is not my native (?) language so please excuse me for any mispells/errors !
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