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Dolby Digital is a big step up vs Pro Logic in terms of performance of the center and surrounds.

I started before Pro Logic in the mid 80s with Shure's proprietary surround system in their, at that time, leading edge HTS 5000 processor and the processor in my current mid level Denon is miles ahead as it is of my old Pro Logic Denon.
I did not response, but believe me, I am thinking about this on and off after I posted here. Yeh, I was using Pro Logic only at the time.

OK, I don't want to buy any receiver or AV amps, I have so many power amps they're coming out of my ears already!!! So I definite don't want anything with power amp. What kind of 5.1 processor I need to buy? I am still old school, I mainly use RCA connections for my system. My DVD player is just a Toshiba DVD recorder with HDMI output. Can you make a suggestion what receiver/processor I need? This I need to have hifi quality as I'll be using it as preamp for 2.1 for music also.

Also, I am looking at wireless connection to the rear speakers. I am going to use my little Monitor Audio Silver bookshelf for rear, any suggestion what to buy? I went on Amazon and some actually comes with little amplifier. Are those good enough for rear speakers? Or I better use my own amps? The reason I ask is I would like to make the footprint of the rear speakers as small as possible, my amps are of good size and is hard to hide away.

I just want to get enough information so I can have a clear understanding what I am getting into. I am changing my system, just bought a 82" Samsung tv, still looking for a tv stand and all. Going to hang the tv on the wall, put all the amps and stuffs on the stand under the tv.

Alan
 

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I did not response, but believe me, I am thinking about this on and off after I posted here. Yeh, I was using Pro Logic only at the time.

OK, I don't want to buy any receiver or AV amps, I have so many power amps they're coming out of my ears already!!! So I definite don't want anything with power amp. What kind of 5.1 processor I need to buy? I am still old school, I mainly use RCA connections for my system. My DVD player is just a Toshiba DVD recorder with HDMI output. Can you make a suggestion what receiver/processor I need? This I need to have hifi quality as I'll be using it as preamp for 2.1 for music also.

Also, I am looking at wireless connection to the rear speakers. I am going to use my little Monitor Audio Silver bookshelf for rear, any suggestion what to buy? I went on Amazon and some actually comes with little amplifier. Are those good enough for rear speakers? Or I better use my own amps? The reason I ask is I would like to make the footprint of the rear speakers as small as possible, my amps are of good size and is hard to hide away.

I just want to get enough information so I can have a clear understanding what I am getting into. I am changing my system, just bought a 82" Samsung tv, still looking for a tv stand and all. Going to hang the tv on the wall, put all the amps and stuffs on the stand under the tv.

Alan
This is about the least expensive standalone processor out there that I'm aware of.

https://emotiva.com/collections/home-theater/products/mc-700

Wireless speaker kit.

https://www.svsound.com/products/soundpath-wireless-audio-adapter?variant&wiz_medium=cpc&wiz_source=google&wiz_campaign=7983543014&gclid=CjwKCAjw5Ij2BRBdEiwA0Frc9Y7DNpOLEp8qskUvR8tXLZuYTREOQfxGMiNZkpb-gZt_NynQ0I8rXhoCp0oQAvD_BwE
 

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How about 5.1 processor, I have no intention doing a 7.1. I don't necessary have to have the cheapest as the sound quality of the front, center are important.
 

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Transformers, Revenge of the Fallen on Amazon Prime.
For music, try The Beatles: Abbey Road (either the Atmos mix or the DTS-HD MA mix). Make sure your AVR is processing the mix correctly. Atmos will be Atmos, DTS-HD MA processed as DTS-X:Neutral.

For a movie, try Doctor Sleep, it has one of the best Atmos mixes out there.
 

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Transformers, Revenge of the Fallen on Amazon Prime.
Keep in mind that not all movie audio are mixed equally. Some are absolutely incredible, while others are complete garbage and won't sound good no matter how expensive your setup is. Try blu-ray movies if possible. They sound worlds better than streaming audio quality.
 

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First and foremost, stick with phantom as your center channel...

Second, use a blu ray and not a streaming service. I don't care what anyone says, streaming audio, while good, is not blu ray good.

And finally, for your rears, since space is an issue and quality sound is still highly desired, I strongly recommend the Martin Logan SLM line.

https://www.martinlogan.com/en/product/motion-slm
 
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Discussion Starter #28
Nice, but the price is prohibitive :(

First and foremost, stick with phantom as your center channel...

Second, use a blu ray and not a streaming service. I don't care what anyone says, streaming audio, while good, is not blu ray good.

And finally, for your rears, since space is an issue and quality sound is still highly desired, I strongly recommend the Martin Logan SLM line.

https://www.martinlogan.com/en/product/motion-slm
 

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Thanks

I watched Extraction earlier, not ATMOS, but I did get a lot of sound in the back, smiling a bit better now
People immediately went to technical issues but never asked what you were expecting. A lot of movies simply don't have a lot going on in the rears and some have so much that it's a muddled mess. Typically, you're not going to have constant engagement from the rear speakers.

I don't have any particular suggestions off the top of my head but you can google a list of good movies for testing surround sound. I find scenes with rain really make guests turn their heads if they're not used to surround. Movies with a lot of music also perform well. The opening of Baby Driver might be a good one. It's not very long but I really like the introduction to the bridge of the Enterprise in the 2009 Star Trek. It feels very alive.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
I think I was expecting too much for what I have spent vs an upgrade in a different area, Cost of new AVR is more that what I spent vs my DIY 18 inch subwoofer, but I was giggling when tested my 18 inch subwoofer.

People immediately went to technical issues but never asked what you were expecting. .
 

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How about 5.1 processor, I have no intention doing a 7.1. I don't necessary have to have the cheapest as the sound quality of the front, center are important.
The Emotiva is very good.

Here's another choice; I bought some speakers from this vendor and they are a good vendor.

https://hifiheaven.net/shop/NuForce-AVP18-Audiophile-Digital-AV-Preamp?language=en&currency=USD&gclid=CjwKCAjwh472BRAGEiwAvHVfGqVvDVfXY-dg65e77SctSCNwTbbN5lyYlp9lzU69Owg6vlclsfoPwBoCDKcQAvD_BwE

As you can see, if you want, you can spend a fortune.

https://www.soundandvision.com/category/surround-processor-reviews
 

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As usual, I am looking at used on ebay. I really don't need state of the arts stuff, just high quality stuffs. I looked at some on ebay, https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_nkw=surround sound processor&_sacat=32852&LH_ItemCondition=3000&_oaa=1&_dcat=14970&rt=nc&_udlo=300


Few hundred dollars can get me Anthem, Krell etc.


Like I said, I am at the stage of weighing everything before I decide to go for it.
 

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My initial thoughts/opinions after reading OP have already been stated by others, so just to reiterate with a +1 to all of the following:



Get something with at least 5.25" woofer (6.5" is better), 8 ohms impedance, and as close to 90db sensitivity as you can find because your Marantz is not particularly robust. About $150-300/pr is all it takes.

Size matters. I've never used super-expensive high end speakers as rears/surroudn speakers... never seemed like the best use of money to me. If I had more money I could spend on rear speakers (beyond a certain baseline point), I'd rather put that money into bigger/better Front 3 speakers or a bigger/better sub or a better Receiver. But that's only true up to a point. The point that Zorba outlined above ($150-$300 for a pair of (at-least) 10ish lb passive speakers with 5.25" drivers, and hopefully something closer to 90 dB sensitivity rather than 86ish. There are just some undeniable laws-of-physics that come into play when you're talking about sound and speakers, and it is just awfully difficult (impossible?) to get big, impressive, exciting sound to come out of small things (speakers or other).


Dolby Digital is a big step up vs Pro Logic in terms of performance of the center and surrounds.
Try blu-ray movies if possible. They sound worlds better than streaming audio quality.

To piggy-back off this, not all "dolby digital" playback is equal the same way not all MP3 playback is equal. Some streaming services serve up dolby digital at particularly-low-bitrates, unlike the dolby-digital versions found on DVDs (which i believe always used 640 kbps). You can remove the question/concern altogether, at least for the purposes of A-B testing and configuring, by going with a lossless audio track on a blu ray disc (Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD-MA). This way you remove that variable from the equation and you know you're being (un)impressed by your speakers+room and not your source material.
 

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To piggy-back off this, not all "dolby digital" playback is equal the same way not all MP3 playback is equal. Some streaming services serve up dolby digital at particularly-low-bitrates, unlike the dolby-digital versions found on DVDs (which i believe always used 640 kbps). You can remove the question/concern altogether, at least for the purposes of A-B testing and configuring, by going with a lossless audio track on a blu ray disc (Dolby TrueHD or DTS-HD-MA). This way you remove that variable from the equation and you know you're being (un)impressed by your speakers+room and not your source material.
All Dolby Digital, BluRay, Roku, Comcast Cable etc. running through my hardly cutting edge Denon AVR1912 from a few years back is head and shoulder over Pro Logic with my system.

Not even close as indeed some content is STILL only in Pro Logic based surround and even there the newer decoders for that analog content are improved.
 

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I think I was expecting too much for what I have spent vs an upgrade in a different area, Cost of new AVR is more that what I spent vs my DIY 18 inch subwoofer, but I was giggling when tested my 18 inch subwoofer.
I would venture to say you will be giggling like a mirthful child if you watch Ford v Ferrari in Dolby Atmos! :cool:
 
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