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Hello,


I am a newbie, and I'm not an expert about HT stuff, but it's something that always want to get into. I had been reading about this forum for about couple months now and I'd learn a lot, thanks to all people who come before me and contributed here.


I need some suggestion on Speakers and Receiver.


Should I put more money on speakers or receiver? Which one is more important? And what would you recommend.


1) Receiver must be able to decode DTS-ES / DD-EX 6.1 Surround

2) $1,500 (US)


If you willing, please help.


Thanks


Baja
 

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Plow as much money as you can into your speakers first. This will be the biggest difference in sound you will get. The right receiver will make a difference, but the right speaker will *really* make a difference.


You can get a quality 5.1 system and a good receiver for your $1500 budget.
 

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I agree with the above posts,,,,


As an example, I recently acquired a bad case of the upgrade bug. I upgraded my speakers from a good quality 5.1 set up, to a better quality 5.1 set up. I'm not going to get into brands here, (all very opinionated decisions) however, all of my previous speakers (except the sub of course) were matching brand and matching timbre. (They all actually had the same exact cones/tweeters as one another)


I then upgraded all 6 to a different brand. (better IMO, more $) I stayed with the same theory of matching brand and timbre. (again all have the same exact cone/tweeter combo as one another, with the exception of the sub.)


I noticed a BIG difference in performance. The new speakers were harder to drive, however, when driven to the same spl, they sounded better to me. (bigger, more detailed, smoother sound representation/steering)


The speaker upgrade instigated an upgrade from a quality AV receiver to a quality separate amp pre/pro set up. (I'm certain this is a common thing.?)


I then recently upgraded (about 4 months after the speaker upgrade) my good quality AVR to a good quality separates package. After tuning everything to my room environment I noticed a difference here as well, but the difference (increase in quality) was not nearly as obvious.


I know that every option in equipment, room characteristics, and individual perception is going to present different possible variables, soooo this is just one person's experience and opinion.


I personally found more "improvement" or difference in the speaker upgrade. YMMV!


Hope this helps.
 

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I am more inclined to say that they are both nearly equally important.


Feed great speakers a bad signal from cheap electronics and guess how the great speakers will sound.....not so great!


The same is true if you buy top quality seperates (or receiver) and match it with poor speakers....guess how the receiver will sound....not so great!


Personally, I believe in purchasing items only ONCE. This saves money in the long run. Buy the best you can afford of each.
 

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You are absolutely correct Rob, they are equally important, to a degree.


It's kinda like asking which is MORE important in a car, the engine or the transmission.??:) Both are important and neither one will get you there without the other.


Obviously if one was to spend $10k on a pair of separates, that individual is probably not going to match them up with a $500 set of speakers for 5.1.? Likewise, one would not place a $299 AVR on a nice $13K set of HT speakers. If you did (for some reason) put a $299 AVR on a $13K set of speakers, upgrading that $299 AVR to a $500 AVR will still (more than likely) not showcase the $13k set of speakers potential.


However, the budget that Baja describes does not allow for more than one or two changes in grade/quality.


With a relatively small budget like $1500 or $2000, a few hundred bucks one way or the other can make a significant difference.


My point is this.


I believe one will be able to hear a bigger difference (performance gains) in a variety of speaker manufacturers and grades from one price point to the next as opposed to different AVR manufacturers from one price point to the next.


ex.


Let's say your HT budget is $2000, and you are interested in grades A, B, and C of speakers and AVR's. $1K for the AVR will get you a grade B. $1K for the speakers will also get you grade B.


1. One might spend $1k on the AVR (grade B), and $1k on the speakers (grade B),


2. Another might spend $500 on the speakers (grade C) and $1500 on the AVR, (grade A)


3. Yet another might opt to spend the $1500 on speakers (grade A) and $500 on the AVR, (grade C)


(I personally would choose option #3 YMMV.)


Assuming you are looking at well known (mass market) manufacturers, (which Baja's budget pretty much dictates) I believe (from personal experience) that one would get more advantage out of spending more than half of the budget on a nice(r) set of speakers. I think there is a larger (recognizable) performance gain by increasing ones speakers by a grade or two, than by increasing ones AVR by a grade or two.


Just my $0.02 :)
 

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One option for the receiver that will save you LOTS of money is the new Panasonic series of receivers XR10, XR25 and XR45. They use Equibit amplifier technology made by TI (which TI acquired when it bought Toccata, makers of TacT audio gear). I haven't heard the Panasonic receivers, yet, but they've received positive reviews from a number of people. See the August review on the the Newform Research site. http://www.newformresearch.com/ under 'Expert Advice' select 'What's New' and 'August 2003 Update'. The XR45 can be had for about $350, leaving lots o' cash for the speakers. Regardless of your choice of receivers, you should plan to spend more on your speakers.
 

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1st the room

2nd the speakers
 

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Wireless beat me to it...I agree..Also when looking for electronics IMO look into companys that produce reliable products.IMO Outside of dsp modes a room will have the greatest effect on how your system will sound...
 

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Definitely the speakers. Unless you're going with low impedance inefficient or otherwise difficult-to-drive speakers, the choice in receiver will give you subtle differences, whereas the differences between speakers are very obvious. And for my money, you invest in the obvious improvements first before you go tweaking with subtlely incremental changes.
 

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Absolutely the speakers are the most important. Then the room. Then the rest. The differences in speakers are FAR greater than the differences in electronics. Not to say that any crappy source or receiver will do, but Woochifer is right, unless you have very difficult speakers to drive, if you put great speakers with any old receiver, they will sound great. They may sound a little better with a better receiver, but if you put radioshack or bose speakers on mark levinson gear, it's still gonna sound like ****.
 

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Again, speakers my friend!


And I don't think the answer would have been different if you would have asked in the Receivers forum.


Speaker technology doesn't change at the rate receiver technology does, so you can keep your good speakers for a long time. (Just ask some of the Klipsch fanboys here that have the old school klipschorns, etc).


One thing is for certain, receiver's specs are going to continue to change. There is going to be "trickle down" technology for stuff like DVI switching and whatnot in the future and DTS-ES / DD-EX 6.1 Surround going more mainstream. I bet in 18 months, you'll find it difficult to find receivers that don't have those.
 

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Speakers!!! (unless your speakers are very ineffcient and the amp is underpowered, then, for you a better (amp) receiver would be in order).


However, at high, reference volumes the may be equal in importance as cheaper speakers may strain or an underpowered amp may fail.


For you, spend $200-$400 on the receiver and since you want ES or EX capability and will be purchasing 6 (or 7) speakers plus possibly a subwoofer, you are going to run out of dough fast. I would buy a less expensive receiver (skip the ES / EX & DTS capability) and buy the best speakers you can. For what you are spending, my experience is that the audible improvement DTS brings won't pe audibly picked up with the equipment you are considering, and, thus, not worth the extra investment. DD is all you need. A sub will be out of the question, too, given your budget constraints.


But you gotta start somewhere. Good Luck!
 
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