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Panasonic SA-XR55S + Ascend 340SE + Realtek ALC882D a mistake?

2134 Views 7 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  kaberf
Hello! This is my first post here, but I've been reading these forums for weeks now and I always come away amazed and confused.

I'm trying to find a high quality audio setup with room for expansion and a budget ceiling of $999. I am looking to buy a pair of monitors, possibly a sub, and a receiver and run it all with my current linux media center (ie the audio output is from my a S/PDIF optical connector to a ALC882D chipset on my EVGA 122-M2-NF59-TR motherboard.

This is what I'm looking at so far:

1) Ascend Acoustics CMT-340 SE mains (seem ideal for the quality I'm looking for)

2) Panasonic SA-XR55S Receiver with Digital Amplifier and Built-In DTS 96/24, DTS-ES, Dolby Digital EX Decoder ($299ish)

3) My EVGA motherboard!: EVGA 122-M2-NF59-TR Socket AM2 motherboard with an integrated Realtek ALC882D, 8 channels and optical S/PDIF out.

Will this kind of ssetup work, or if not, can somebody please point out why this may not be a good idea. And what alternatives would you recommend in that narrow budget range of $900-$1k? I'd be incredibly grateful for some tips for an amatuer looking for great sound on a shoe-string budget. Thanks!!

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Anyone have any of these components?
I am confused as to what you need to achieve?


For a grand or so...

I'd try to work in an Onkyo 605 AVR, JBL Stage Venue series floor standing speakers maybe for me I'd probably just get 3 pair of the JBL Arena venue for the full 6.1, a Parts Express 15" Sub, and an Oppo DVD player for audio / video.

So in summary:

Onkyo AVR605

3 pair of JBL Arena Venue speakers - full 6.1

Parts Express 15' Sub

Oppo DVD / DVD-A / SACD / Redbook CD player
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 Panasonic SA-XR55S Receiver

Digital Amplifier and Built-In DTS® 96/24, DTS-ES, and Dolby Digital® EX Decoders Stereo mode (I plan on running it for audio mainly) 100W per channel (20Hz - 20kHz, 6 ohms, 0.09% THD)

And the motherboard: EVGA EVGA 122-M2-NF59-TR Realtek ALC882D 8 Channels optical S/PDIF out:

And the intended speakers: CMT-340 SE mini-tower monitor mains (pair.) Link here for CMT-340 SE specs
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Thanks for responding JOHNnDENVER.

I'm trying to determine if the setup listed above is good or not, if it's going to not work, and if there's a cheaper/better solution to high quality sound. In particular I hope somebody can tell me if the monitors and the receiver are decently paired, and if running audio through my motherboard through that configuration will be a mistake (ie sound horrible.) Lastly, I'm wondering if anybody has tried such a setup, and if they'd recommend something different as a result.

I'm checking out the JBL's and like what i see so far, thanks again for your reply.
I won't give up my original JBL S38's unless they are pry'd from my cold dead hands. They have satisfied me through several AVR and external amp changes now.

Speakers are tough, they are soo subjective. I like the Panasonic AVR's Ok enough.

Do you like to listen loud? A lot? If so, the Panasonic may not be your best bet is all.
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I own the Panny XR55 and the Ascend 340SE. I love them. Instead of using the Realtek motherboard audio, I bought a Creative X-Fi for my computer. I would suggest doing what I did as it helped prevent background interference noise from other PC components. However, if you don't have the extra $80 or so laying around right now to buy that X-Fi there is no problem using the onboard audio. Make sure you hook it all up digitally!
Thanks guys for the tips!

JOHNnDenver, I do plan on playing them pretty loud about 50% of the time. But the rest of the time I'd use them as computer speakers and have them fairly close (a meter away on either side, like monitors.) I'm having a hard time finding a place to demo them in Utah so I may just have to do the 30-day trial thing.

Smitty2k1, Can you please give me more information on the Panny XR55 + Ascend 340SE setup of yours? What you use them for (AV, Music, etc) and what kind of room are they in, how they compare to other's you've audited, what kind of music you play, and what are your likes and dislikes about the setup? I'm very curious because your setup is very similar to the one putting together. By the way, thanks for the tip on the X-Fi card, I'm considering working that into my budget if the on-board audio is messy.

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