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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking to setup a system for music here soon and need some advice.


The room it will be going in is 10x18x8, for the long term it will be for music, but may use it as a HT later on in a year or so.

I already have the receiver, a hand-me-down from my brother.


Debating on whether I should get rears or not since its going to be just music for a while.

Also since it will have a subwoofer, should I not worry about floorstanding speakers and just get bookshelves, but if i do that will it still sound as good?


This is what I'm looking at so far:
Budget is ~$1000

BUILD #1
Receiver: Onkyo TR-NX709
Front:Cambridge S70 Floorstanding
Center:Cambridge S50
Rear:Cambridge S30
Sub:Dayton SUB-1200
Total: ~$920

BUILD #2
Receiver: Onkyo TR-NX709
Front:Cambridge S30
Center:Cambridge S50
Rear:Cambridge S30
Sub:JBL ES250PBK
Total: ~$950

BUILD #3
Receiver: Onkyo TR-NX709
Front:Cambridge S70 Floorstanding
Center:Cambridge S50
Sub:SVS-SB1000
Total: ~$1,090

BUILD #4
Receiver: Onkyo TR-NX709
Front:Cambridge S30
Center:Cambridge S50
Sub:SVS-SB1000
Total: ~$970

BUILD #5
Receiver: Onkyo TR-NX709
Front:Infinity Primus PK163BK
Center:Infinity Primus PC351
Sub:SVS-SB1000
Total: ~$1070


Those are my current ones I've looked at and read good reviews about so far.
 

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If it's just going to be music for now then why get a center channel? Put as much money as you can into the mains alone and get everything else later. Getting more than you need right now will just get you lesser of a product in the long run. Try out a few different speakers and get the ones that sound best to you...just make sure they'll be easy (and within a projected budget in the future,) to have a matching center channel and surrounds. Not as important to match the surrounds unless you'll listen to a lot of 5+ channel music.


IF you'll be building a full HT later on than bookshelves are fine as long as you plan on getting a sub later on. There are plenty of bookshelves that will dig down low for music without a sub. If I were in your situation and building a HT over time, I'd put as much money into a good pair of bookshelf speakers now, and add pieces on as is right for you - aka, time and money permit.


There are plenty of threads that cater to bookshelves in and under this price range to give you some more options. http://www.avsforum.com/t/1515713/svs-ultra-bookshelf-or-other http://www.avsforum.com/t/1521678/bookshelf-speakers-under-a-grand#post_24476205


If you want a sub now you'll get way less sub and speaker but it's still doable. I'd try and get at least an SVS SB2000 for that room. The SB1000 might leave you wanting more. But, the good thing is that you can upgrade it later on.


Some speakers that get lots of praise are the Ascend 340-SE at around $500 a pair. This would give you the $500 for the sub.


Personally, I'd just go all out with front L/R and get everything else later. My opinion though.
 

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If this is mainly for music, I would stick to 2.1 for now. Music is mixed in stereo, so having a center and surrounds is useless unless you listen to multi-channel content like DVDA/SACD. I would definitely recommend a sub and bookshelves, you get the most bang for your buck that way and generally means being able to step up to a better speaker.


I would recommend a Rythmik LV12R sub, this is a very accurate sub and will be excellent for music. It has plenty of output to fill your room and you can tune it to your liking. I would add a pair of Monitor Audio RX-1 speakers. These are currently on closeout to make way for the newer versions, and they sound very good. In my opinion Monitor Audio is a couple tiers above the speakers you are looking at now, and this 2.1 system will be fantastic for music.


Some other good bookshelf options are the Wharfedale 10.2, PSB Image B6, and KEF Q300.
 

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I think you will find the sound quality of Onkyo receivers tinny and hard on the ears. That's what my friends who have owned them tell me, and I have heard it in their systems.


I strongly urge you to get a NAD T748 receiver. NAD and Cambridge Audio AVRs have far better sound quality IMO.


You will get much better sound quality IMO.


Published power ratings are absolutely worthless, so don't even look at them. They are derived from a load test using an 8 ohm resistor for a load. This does not tell you anything about what the distortion levels will be when driving the complex and demanding load of real speaker systems.


Better-designed AVRs and amplifiers have MUCH more robust power supplies, that will drive let the amplifiers drive 5 or 7 SPEAKERS with relatively low distortion, and of course SOUND much better.


Crap like Onkyo, Anthem, Yamaha, and Pioneer have mickey-mouse inadequate power supplies that just don't cut it.


NAD and Cambridge Audio are the only ones I will recommend.


Build #1 is the speaker setup I would go with. Floor speakers end up costing almost the same by the time you buy good-quality steel stands, which are essential to get proper performance from smaller speakers, and the floor speakers usually perform better all around.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24501789


If this is mainly for music, I would stick to 2.1 for now. Music is mixed in stereo, so having a center and surrounds is useless unless you listen to multi-channel content like DVDA/SACD. I would definitely recommend a sub and bookshelves, you get the most bang for your buck that way and generally means being able to step up to a better speaker.


I would recommend a Rythmik LV12R sub, this is a very accurate sub and will be excellent for music. It has plenty of output to fill your room and you can tune it to your liking. I would add a pair of Monitor Audio RX-1 speakers. These are currently on closeout to make way for the newer versions, and they sound very good. In my opinion Monitor Audio is a couple tiers above the speakers you are looking at now, and this 2.1 system will be fantastic for music.


Some other good bookshelf options are the Wharfedale 10.2, PSB Image B6, and KEF Q300.
 

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OP you may want to look at an Ascend Acoustics Speaker and Rythmik Audio Subwoofer package.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24502056


+1




Crap like Onkyo, Anthem, Yamaha, and Pioneer have mickey-mouse inadequate power supplies that just don't cut it.
 



This coming from the guy who thinks a center channel sould be frequency limited cuz you think its only job is dialog??? I just don't buy a whole lot of what you say. Sorry.


OP I wouldn't worry about the Onkyo, yes its not the most powerful thing in the world but not bad either. Now if you get big floorstanders that are very power hungry and are NOT going to use a sub then maybe you should consider an amp.


I have an Onkyo 808 receiver and I have never had an issue with it and it will drive my 7.2 setup to past reference levels no problem.
 

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Well, I think that it makes no sense to expect or desire a center channel to produce any bass. Its location is usually not optimal for bass in any case.


If you have good main speakers and a subwoofer to produce the system bass, why do you need bass from the center channel? Makes very little sense to me.


Also, it has been my experience that smaller drivers (4 inch or so) in the center speaker, tend to produce clearer dialogue, and other midrange sound, than larger drivers, so that is what I think works best.


If you have a different opinion, so be it, but that doesn't mean I am wrong.


Amplifier/receiver Power is not the issue. no one seems to get it.


40 or 50 watts is plenty to drive almost any speakers as loud as anyone wants. Comparing power specs is foolish and counterproductive. More power seldom makes for a sound quality improvement.


The question is DISTORTION, and I hear the distortion the Onkyo stuff puts out when driving speaker systems. It isn't just me, either; I have 3 friends who have gone from Onkyo to better stuff because they disliked Onkyo's sound quality.


If you can't hear it, maybe it is because your speakers are a much easier load to drive than most; that is certainly possible. The differences between speaker designs are considerable.


Design Engineers do power tests with a simulated speaker load connected, including inductance, capacitance, and low resistance, while monitoring DISTORTION with a $40k distortion analyzer.


But those kinds of MEANINGFUL results are never published, because the amounts of distortion would horrify the average consumer, who wouldn't understand what it all means anyway.




Quote:
Originally Posted by flickhtguru  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24502106

Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24502056


+1




Crap like Onkyo, Anthem, Yamaha, and Pioneer have mickey-mouse inadequate power supplies that just don't cut it.
 



This coming from the guy who thinks a center channel sould be frequency limited cuz you think its only job is dialog??? I just don't buy a whole lot of what you say. Sorry.


OP I wouldn't worry about the Onkyo, yes its not the most powerful thing in the world but not bad either. Now if you get big floorstanders that are very power hungry and are NOT going to use a sub then maybe you should consider an amp.


I have an Onkyo 808 receiver and I have never had an issue with it and it will drive my 7.2 setup to past reference levels no problem.
 

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Agreed with some of the above, skip the center channel for now and get a better sub. Just use bookshelf speakers for the front left/right. Quality over quantity. I would go for a Ascend/Rythmik package or a Hsu package. A pair of very good and inexpensive bookshelf speakers are the Behringer 2031p , you can get a pair for $260. Add to that a decent subwoofer like a VTF3 , altogether $1029 shipped, and your sound system will have so much more authority than any of your listed systems so very good for music, and a lot more dynamic range so much more fun for movies as well.
 

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The Onkyo TX-NR709 is a great receiver and a great starting place.


The set-ups you gave are all 5.1 setups. For a music focused system though out of your choices I like BUILD #3 but I wouldn't get the center channel and put the money saved to a higher level subwoofer like the Rhythmik
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Will probably be going with the Cambridge speakers unless there's something better close in price. The monitor audio speakers are really nice but way more expensive.


Still debating on tower vs bookshelf speakers. How are towers vs bookshelf speakers at doing mids and highs. The reason I was looking at a center is because from what I've heard they seem to do highs fairly well.


Also how is the SVS-SB1000 vs the Rhythmic LV12R?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by OsiViper  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24503607


Will probably be going with the Cambridge speakers unless there's something better close in price. The monitor audio speakers are really nice but way more expensive.


Still debating on tower vs bookshelf speakers. How are towers vs bookshelf speakers at doing mids and highs. The reason I was looking at a center is because from what I've heard they seem to do highs fairly well.


Also how is the SVS-SB1000 vs the Rhythmic LV12R?

You have a budget of $1000. I am advocating spending $499 on speakers, and you can go with a SVS PB-1000 for $499, or the Rythmik LV12R for a little more. The RX-1 speakers and PB-1000 sub put you at $1000 and will sound better than the Cambridge speakers in my opinion. The LV12R and PB-1000 both have similar extension, and are accurate subs, but the Rythmik has a bigger driver and will have a higher output. Either will work great, but I would strongly advise starting off with a better 2.1 system.


Receiver's set crossovers, which send the frequencies below that point to your sub, and above to your speakers. Generally this is somewhere between 60 and 100Hz. The only real benefit of towers over bookshelves is deeper extension, and slightly higher output. Since subs are better at bass than towers, you want to have a crossover, and doing so means the main benefit of towers is negated. The end result between crossed over towers and bookshelves is very similar. You can get a lot nicer bookshelf than you can tower speaker for the same money, so going this route lets you make the jump to a nicer audio tier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24503650


You have a budget of $1000. I am advocating spending $499 on speakers, and you can go with a SVS PB-1000 for $499, or the Rythmik LV12R for a little more. The RX-1 speakers and PB-1000 sub put you at $1000 and will sound better than the Cambridge speakers in my opinion. The LV12R and PB-1000 both have similar extension, and are accurate subs, but the Rythmik has a bigger driver and will have a higher output. Either will work great, but I would strongly advise starting off with a better 2.1 system.


Receiver's set crossovers, which send the frequencies below that point to your sub, and above to your speakers. Generally this is somewhere between 60 and 100Hz. The only real benefit of towers over bookshelves is deeper extension, and slightly higher output. Since subs are better at bass than towers, you want to have a crossover, and doing so means the main benefit of towers is negated. The end result between crossed over towers and bookshelves is very similar. You can get a lot nicer bookshelf than you can tower speaker for the same money, so going this route lets you make the jump to a nicer audio tier.

I can't seem to find any place that had the RX-1 speakers in Stock that are black oak or the flat black. And also since they're being phased out for a newer model will it be hard to match a center and surrounds with them later on?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24502056


I think you will find the sound quality of Onkyo receivers tinny and hard on the ears. That's what my friends who have owned them tell me, and I have heard it in their systems.


I strongly urge you to get a NAD T748 receiver. NAD and Cambridge Audio AVRs have far better sound quality IMO.


You will get much better sound quality IMO.


Published power ratings are absolutely worthless, so don't even look at them. They are derived from a load test using an 8 ohm resistor for a load. This does not tell you anything about what the distortion levels will be when driving the complex and demanding load of real speaker systems.


Better-designed AVRs and amplifiers have MUCH more robust power supplies, that will drive let the amplifiers drive 5 or 7 SPEAKERS with relatively low distortion, and of course SOUND much better.


Crap like Onkyo, Anthem, Yamaha, and Pioneer have mickey-mouse inadequate power supplies that just don't cut it.


NAD and Cambridge Audio are the only ones I will recommend.


Build #1 is the speaker setup I would go with. Floor speakers end up costing almost the same by the time you buy good-quality steel stands, which are essential to get proper performance from smaller speakers, and the floor speakers usually perform better all around.

Again? Jeez give it a rest.


And if you are capable of reading you would know that the OP was GIVEN the AVR.
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OsiViper  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24503928


I can't seem to find any place that had the RX-1 speakers in Stock that are black oak or the flat black. And also since they're being phased out for a newer model will it be hard to match a center and surrounds with them later on?
http://saturdayaudio.com/


Click on the RX closeout ad, they have black oak, rosenut, and walnut in stock for $499.99


The new upgraded "Silver" series is very similar and would be a good match, but if you aren't comfortable with that, you might want to look at a different speaker.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24504248

http://saturdayaudio.com/


Click on the RX closeout ad, they have black oak, rosenut, and walnut in stock for $499.99


The new upgraded "Silver" series is very similar and would be a good match, but if you aren't comfortable with that, you might want to look at a different speaker.

Sadly both the black oak and glossy black are sold out on that site if you try to order.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24504248

http://saturdayaudio.com/


Click on the RX closeout ad, they have black oak, rosenut, and walnut in stock for $499.99


The new upgraded "Silver" series is very similar and would be a good match, but if you aren't comfortable with that, you might want to look at a different speaker.

This looks like a pretty good deal. Too bad the center channel is sold out. The towers are really attractive too..but too big for my room unfortunately.
 

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I've owned receivers from kenwood, Onkyo, Yamaha and denon and they all sound identical! Onkyo is a respected electronics maker and no review I have read talks about unusual distortion!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by OsiViper  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24504454


Sadly both the black oak and glossy black are sold out on that site if you try to order.

Oh that is unfortunate. I would take a look at the KEF Q300, you can get them openbox from www.accessories4less.com and they would be a nice choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by Transmaniacon  /t/1523228/setup-for-music-maybe-ht-later-on#post_24504915


Oh that is unfortunate. I would take a look at the KEF Q300, you can get them openbox from www.accessories4less.com and they would be a nice choice.

Yea sucks though that they're the same price as the rx-1 nut every review I read said the rx1 sounds better.

Shame I don't like the walnut or maple finishes.
 
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