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I've got the home theater bug now, and it all started with the ps3 earlier this year.

I'm looking for three speakers to audition- two front bookshelves, and a center - "LCR" or "LR and Center" - both ways are ok.


All three speakers should add up to around 1500-1600 max.

I'll add surrounds and then rears eventually but I don't have the budget or the room yet.


My apt is a 16 by 12 studio that opens left side into a loooong narrow kitchen. Hard wood floors. I've attached an mspaint of my room layout. Don't laugh!



Here is the other gear:

AVR: pioneer vsx94

SUB: SVS 16-46 PCi


So far I've got orders in for the following to audition in home:


Axiom 2x M3 + VP150 = 740.00

Aperion 2x 6B + 6C = 1,280.00

Outlaw 3x LCR = 1,647.00 + 114.11 shipping


The outlaws are expensive and have two 5.24" instead of one 6.5"... I'm worried I might be comparing apples to oranges on that one. I guess they represent the absolute budget busting upper range.


First:


Are there other Internet Direct vendors that allow in-home audition?


-SVS MBS-01 is not shipping until late in the summer

-av123 is also not shipping the rocket bookshelves right now

-HSU speakers, ascend CBM-170 SE, elemental design?


Let me know if I'm missing something important in this price range!


Second:


I will hang comforters over the front wall window, and over the back wall. Any other ideas to help improve the acoustics of the room?



Thanks for any input!



Threads I'm reading on auditions:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=798583
http://av123forum.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=18263 - I'm going to have to try the ascend CBM-170 SE after reading this thread!
 

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Sounds like you are well on your way with speaker choices, electronics, and even thinking about room treatments.


Some good choices from my experience in that range are era D5's and D4's, Paradigm Studio 20's, Totem Rainmakers, and Triad Bronze LCR's. A few of these might be pushing your budget, especially with the associated center channels but with a good dealer discount, you should be able to squeeze them into budget and 3 identical bookshelves is also a good option and usually cheaper as well.
 

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They're plain black boxes, but the new Emotiva speakers are inexpensive and look well designed. They're also flexible with placement.


When you do your in-home comparisons, be sure to post your thoughts for us.


Also, GIK Acoustics has acoustic treatments that are a little more living room friendly.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the recommendations. There are several home theater shops spread around the Sacramento area, hopefully I can listen to some of these. I'll look into the ascend sierra-1's, Emotiva speakers, and some B&M lines like era, usher, triad, paradigm.


The outlaws are not shipping for 2-3 weeks. I guess that will give me time to work through any speakers that arrive earlier and make some room.


@dftkell - Thanks for the mention of GIK Acoustics. I hadn't read much on room treatment. Here is their discussion on blankets:

" * Blankets


Blankets, curtains and mattresses are (once again) not very good products to use for room treatments. They will suck the high and high mid frequencies out of your room - leaving it lifeless and muddy sounding with the problems remaining in the low mid and low frequencies.


You are much better off either purchasing products to deal with your room issues - or getting into a DIY mode and making some treatments with either rigid fiberglass or rockwool.


In closing, once you have finally treated and fixed the modal (and non-modal) issues in your room - you will finally be able to do what it is you want to do most, make music and have fun. I hope you enjoy."
 

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I just briefly listened to some Tannoy Definition DC6i in LCR arrangement at a HT shop close to my work. These are officially the first HT speakers I've heard. We watched the "beans thrown at drums" scene in House of Flying Daggers. Wow, it was cool. The highs were clear - like the feeling you get when you unplug your ears after getting water in them in the shower. I guess it wasn't a real audition - I didn't bring my own material or compare to anything else.


The Bean Scene is now a benchmark comparison for me though. From high clicks and bells, to the low impact of the drums.
 
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