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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I own a 50 inch Pioneer elite pro plasma tv and my surround sound components are way outdated and need major upgrading.


I have 4 (2 front and 2 rear) SpeakerCraft speakers built into the wall that produce 125 Watts each. That I would prefer not to mess with.


I do need a new Receiver - what works the best under $650? What components are definitely required that I must have when I compare specs between brands? I see Best Buy has a Yamaha 7.1 channel 665 watt, 2 HDMI inputs, 1080p connectivity, 1 HDMI output for $499 and a Sony 7.1 channel, 735 watt, 1080p connectivity, with 3 HDMI inputs and 1 output for $299. Circuit City has a Denon 7.1 channel, 85 watts per channel, xm satellite ready, ipod playback, hdmi switching, 1080 passthrough for $399 a sale of $150 off. As you can see I dont have a clue what to look out for.


My subwoofer & center speaker (Sony) is very old. Do I need a new subwoofer then and also a new center speaker? If so, what models and prices would I be looking at?
 

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Comparing power specs is mostly pointless. See my comments in the AR FAQ, for why. There may be some other useful explanations in the FAQ as well.


You should definitely consider your inputs, current and expected. If I was personally buying a new receiver, I would want three HDMI inputs. Other people choose to augment their lack of HDMI inputs with an HDMI switcher.


If you plan on keeping this for a few years, you will want to consider Blu-ray audio compatibility. For maximum future flexibility, you will want to consider a receiver with TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio decoding.


Another useful feature, at least I think it's useful, is HDMI upconversion. What that means, is that the receiver can upconvert video signals to HDMI. Then you can run an HDMI cable from your receiver to your TV, connect your video sources to your receiver and then switch all audio video with the receiver.


1080 passthrough may be important if you have a 1080p TV, or plan to buy one. There are actually two kinds of 1080 passthrough. One kind allows 1080 at 60fps. The other, which is becoming more standard allows for 24fps. 24fps is a bit tricky, so I don't want to get into a long explanation on it in this post.


I am not sure about the sub. Do you have one now? People will say to match your center to your left/right speakers. If that's not possible, I suggest any quality center. Ideally it would go down to 80hz or so, because that's a typical crossover setting to your sub.
 

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the 1st thing you must do is decide on a buget..don't mortage the farm for surround sound. If you ask for suggestions at a certain price range half of suggestions will suggest you spend more cash..

I went bare bones entry level and spent over 1K

I think I have the same yammaha.. I paid $360
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
thanks for all the tips on the receiver.

My sub has a reproduction frequency range of 28 hz -200 hz and a high frequency cut off frequencey of 200 hz. Being that you suggested 80 hz, does this mean I should replace that?


My center is 120 watts and my left and right speakers are 125 so based on your advice, thats pretty close so it sounds like I dont need a new center which is good.
 

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The 80hz is for all your speakers except the sub, this re-directs bass below that frequency to the sub since alot can't do deep bass.
 
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