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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After 6+ weeks of research, I finally have my new Home Theater installed and playing!!!


I ended up with KEF Q7 mains, Q1s for surrounds, Q9 center, all in the dark apple finish, a SVS 25-31PCi sub tuned to 22Hz by SVS, and a Denon 2802. I went with A/R Pro interconnects and Studio Tech 36" SP stands for the surrounds.


I bought EVERYTHING from Online resellers and I am happy to report that every reseller (4 in all) came through with FLYING COLORS. And while I bought my KEFs and Denon from an unauthorized reseller, the prices were fantastic, I got the 2802 for $469.


I received all my cabling yesterday, and worked last night and this morning getting everything setup.


The system fired right up, no problems---I did download the SVS and Denon manuals 2 weeks ago and read them thoroughly



I sampled a few scenes from Armageddon and Pearl Harbor, and as expected, it was awesome. The SVS filled my 20x15 room fabulously (even though I have 20ft+ ceilings). What an awesome sub!


On the more critical music listening, the KEFs are amazing. Very clear vocals on the Phantom of the Opera CD and some Christmas music.


I do believe that I could use a higher power receiver with the KEFs, but considering I blew my $2K budget out of the water ($3,011 for EVERYTHING), I am very, very happy with the results. Some time next year I'll buy an Denon 3803 (or better) and sell my 2802 on eBay.


Thanks again to EVERYONE who gave me advice, ideas, etc. I had to go from ZERO HT/Stereo knowledge to educated consumer in a very short timeframe. And now that I have a bit of HT knowledge, I realize that it's only the tip of the iceberg. It's way more interesting than the IP security products I sell!


I have posted some digital pics in the gallery. Here's a sample:

Regards,


Sean in Nor Cal
 

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I looked at your HT pics, very nice and clean setup Sean, those sofas look real comfortable.
 

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Another satisfied KEF user -- way to go. Sean, it's a nice set-up, so enjoy, and make sure to post your experiences.


Before you upgrade the receiver, get to know your system. While amps are important, there may be other thing to do that can have a big impact on the sound. Room treatments can produce big improvements. A bigger tv might improve the theatre experience. A dvd player with sacd/dvd-a also expands the potential of the system. Sigh -- so many ways to spend one's money.


Michael
 

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Very nice.Now you won't have time to hang out on the forum.You'll be too busy watching movies.


Btw,I really like the look of those KEF's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
mbpg....thanks for the tips. I am planning on installing hardwood floors in place of the carpeting early, early next year.


Also, I do recognize the my low end Sony DVD player isn't all that, so it's probably worth upgrading it before changing the receiver.


I paid $2100 delivered for the KEFs and Denon 2802. The KEFs match my leather sofas perfectly, and as a result got a very high WAF!


Regards,

Sean

San Ramon, CA
 

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Congratulations, that looks awesome. My Kefs still amaze me with their clarity and presence. It's nice to have another person with the Q Series, too -- pretty soon you'd need more than a small hatchback to fit all of us.


I'm really jealous of your sub, too -- that's my next purchase, as the price of a pair of Q2ds would buy my a SVS 16-46PCi.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Quote:
where did you get the KEF's if I could ask?
*****************.com


They are also known as Uncle Stereo. Everything was well packed and brand spankin' new.


M Robertson, I couldn't decide between the 25-31PCi or the 20-39PCi, so after discussing my requirements with SVS, they suggested I split the difference, so they tuned my 25-31 down to 22Hz. And that worked out great because the "somewhat larger than the avg sub" 25-31 didn't receive a very high WAF at first. As you can see from the pics, I've got it tucked in the corner somewhat behind the right Q7. She would have had a cow if I bought the 16-46! But after listening to it, I believe she digs it now.


I have heard alot of my friends' subs, several of whom have Velodynes, and I don't think any of them hit as hard and as clean as the SVS. Last night I watched the Normandy Beach Landing scene from Saving Pvt Ryan, and it was intense. For the price ($589 delivered), the SVS 22-31 sub was a fantastic bang for the buck, I very satisfied with it so far. And I was worried that my room was too big...it's not a problem, as the SVS rocks the entire house, let alone my HT!


-Sean
 

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I was planning on doing a bit of mental judo to try to get my sub by pointing out that it's "just a little taller than the Q5" (the Q5 is 34", so it's less than a foot taller) and "the diameter is just a little bigger than the PSW2000" (12.5" cube) and hope that 1+1=1.4. I figure I might as well go for the 16-46, because a giant black tube sock isn't that much worse WAF-wise than a very large black tube sock, *if* I can argue that the giant one is the "best".


Amazingly, the factors that made the KEF PSW2000 a good choice for my room (small footprint, discrete appearance, modest SPL requirements, won't annoy the neighbours, very pretty) are the *exact* same ones that make the SVS a good choice, too (small footprint). My wife's talking about wanting a loft to replace our townhouse, so maybe it could be disguised as a support collumn.


...and, getting back on the subject, how are the Kefs in your large, open room? Mine are in a very confined space, and don't seem to suffer from bad off-axis reflections, but I can't get very far off-axis. I'm especially interested in the sound from the top of your stairs (with an eye to making my Q5 the audio feature of a loft) since I have noticed a decrease in the bass response when I'm above the Q5s. If you can't bring yourself to turn off your 22-31 to check, I understand.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Quote:
because a giant black tube sock isn't that much worse WAF-wise than a very large black tube sock
True, and if my 25-31 was taller than the Q7 I know she would not have been happy.....

Quote:
and, getting back on the subject, how are the Kefs in your large, open room?
M Robertson (got a first name?),


My wife is out of town for the next two days, so you can BET that I'm going to be exercising my new system. I even have the Radio Shack analog SPL meter on hand to calibrate with.


But to answer your first question, the Q7s sound really nice in STEREO mode.


I will do a few exercises tonight regarding your questions, I'll get back to you....


-Sean
 

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While, Elegant audio has some good prices on the Kef's, I know someone who can do even better. Anyone interested can email me.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Sean L
M Robertson (got a first name?),


My wife is out of town for the next two days, so you can BET that I'm going to be exercising my new system. I even have the Radio Shack analog SPL meter on hand to calibrate with.


But to answer your first question, the Q7s sound really nice in STEREO mode.


I will do a few exercises tonight regarding your questions, I'll get back to you....


-Sean
Sorry, it's Matthew. I've been meaning to change where I'm described as "Member" to my first name. It's nice to meet you.


Now I really am jealous. My wife's not adverse to letting the speakers run a bit, but she's often the first one to remember that we live in a townhouse. (She's also the one who fell asleep while I was playing the SW:TPM's 'Pod Race' scene at 90dB in 6.1 channels.) When I have the house to myself, I go wild and balance the speakers at 85dB, or adjust the TV's convergence.


Let me know how it sounds. I'd also love to hear what you think of the Q7's low end extension before you get spoiled by your subwoofer. The Q7 is rated to about the same extension as my PSW2000, and I'm planning on using it with the Q1s for a full-range rear surround setup. This might avoid the off-altitude bass response variation that I noticed with the Q5 w/o subwoofer, and become a decent (secondary) stereo audio setup.


My dream setup (currently) would be a 7.1 layout with the Q5 and an SVSub at the front, and the Q1 with the PSW2000 for rear surround duty on opposite ends of a 25-30' long room, with the Q2ds for side surrounds; and the whole thing set up with an A/B option to allow either the Q5 or Q1 to work as a stereo pair for music. All I need is another $3000 (Canadian, 1800 USD) and a new house. How's that for expanding a three-month-old system? :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Matthew-


Last night I ran the Q7s without the sub....I used a Sopranos season two CD, where the opening music is very bassy. I am really surprised that the Q7s make as much bass as they do, I guess I expected less. I even had to put my hand on the SVS to be sure it was off. It was. The Q7s were very punchy, clear but strong bass.


Since I live in a house, I am not that concerned about the volume with regard to neighbors.


I also took someone's advice and angled the center speaker up in the rear so it points down to the sofas a bit more. It made a noticeable difference with dialogue.


I rented "Reign of Fire" last night (again, wife out of town) and it was awesome. I watched it in DTS instead of Dolby D. At the end of the day, I'm not sure if there is a big difference between the two...


The SVS is one impressive subwoofer. I paid $589 delivered too, that's the best part.


Yeah, I'm pretty damn pleased with my new HT. The only thing I really need now is a decent CD player, my 4 year old Sony isn't very sophisticated.


Regards,

Sean
 

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Sean

I have 5 KEF Q75s it really brings the soundstage together. I had the recommended Center Speaker for a while and it was ok. When I found another Q75 for the Center and switched them, my wife couldn't believe how much better it sounded.

Anyways, have fun

Grant
 

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Hi Sean,


Thanks for posting your comments on your setup---it is always good to hear from new SVS customers like this. Always feel free to email me if you have any SVS questions about calibrations/placement,ect.


Tom V.

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
After having the new HT up and running for a few days, it was time to do some fine tuning...


Before I could do that, I had to replace my ailing Sony DVP-S360 dvd player. It's on the way out, only playing DVDs when it wants to, otherwise flashing the well documented 13:00:00 error message. I replaced the Sony with the highly recommended Panasonic CP-72 in black. The PQ improvement was dramatic, sound quality not as noticeable. Not a bad player for $210 delivered.


On Tuesday, a friend of mine in town for the holidays stopped by, he used to be professional HT installer for Tweeters....and thus knows infinitely more about HT systems and tuning than I do. He brought his reference material and we spent 2 hours+ tweaking and tuning the system. The results actually surprised me quite a bit!


We ended up moving the SVS and right main KEF Q7, basically swapping them so that the sub now sits between the TV and the right KEF. Reason being that the KEFs were just too close together, so we moved them apart another 22" for a total of just over 7' apart (inside to inside measurement).


We also plugged the rear bass ports on the Q7s since they are fairly close to the wall. The bass seemed to be a bit localized to the right front corner. The changes seemed to definitely bring the bass more to the center.


All this tweaking did make a noticeable improvement in sound quality. FWIW, all tuning was done in 2-channel DIRECT mode w/ jazz and vocal music. Moving the KEFs further apart really opened up the soundstage. We also gave them some toe-in to help with the non-optimized seating arrangement.


The SVS was moved from the corner, not too far, and it seems to be just as strong, maybe a tad less 'boomy', but I am not finished calibrating/fine tuning, I still want to use the Avia CD for final tuning. Nevertheless, it hits very hard given the size and volume of my room. I watched the final scenes of Saving Pvt Ryan last night and the sub was very impressive in it's new location!



Here's a few pics to better explain the changes...


BEFORE:
http://web.tampabay.rr.com/slewis/ht/ht-1a.jpg


AFTER:
http://web.tampabay.rr.com/slewis/ht/ht-1d.JPG


*If the pics don't come up just hit REFRESH and they should*


So I have gone from very happy with my new HT to *extremely* happy. I watched Minority Report last night, it was excellent (from an A/V perspective). Tonight I'm going to power through the Fellowship of the Ring.


Thanks again everyone for all your excellent suggestions.


Regards,


Sean in Nor Cal
 

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Thanks for including the pictures, they look great. I'm wondering, did you try moving the Q7s away from the wall before plugging the rear ports? I ask because my Q5s are set forward of the TV so that I can get the left speaker away from the closet that sticks out of the rear HT wall. There's about a foot behind the LF, and three feet behind the RF speakers. I haven't tried using the plugs, but I probably should.


I'm getting to be really jealous of your nice big room. My Q5 are about 60" apart, and only about 18" from the side walls. Over the holidays, I'll try them out in the open "media loft" area of my house. I'll tell my wife that I'm practicing for her dream loft...
 

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Very nice system. I recently spent about the same amount on an Onkyo / Polk Audio System. I like how your room is set up. I have almost the exact same room in my house, (entryway to stairs, stairs behind the TV). I don't have an open bacony above and no wall to the right of the right speaker. It seems so simple to put the couch at an angle I really want to try that. I currently have a couch aginst the back wall and a love seat on the wall with the door/entryway. It maximizes the space in the room but the surround speakers are stuck on the back wall in line with the couch. Thanks for the ideas.
 
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