Deciding between two surround systems for DVDs and Gaming. Help?! [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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07-19-2006, 06:16 PM
Thanks in advance for your time, and kind assistance.

I am currently deciding between two 5.1 systems for my home. Be warned, I know very little about these things (that is why I am asking for your help ;)).

I have a modest HDTV (a high-quality 26" LCD panel), and a pretty modest living room. But, I love video games and DVDs (especially TV shows on DVD), and I am looking for a decent sound system to complete my setup.

I am deciding between the Spherex 5.1 Xbox system (, and the Yamaha 660 Watts Home Theatre System (YHT170S) (

Which one is better (particularly in terms of overall sound quality, and build quality)?


Here is my story:

I managed to get a nice deal, and pick-up the usually-more-expensive Spherex system for $350CDN (including tax, and a 3 year warranty). I have about 28 days remaining to return this thing for 100% money back.

Once I returned home, and setup the system, I was pleasantly surprised. I've never owned a surround sound system before, so I thought it was great (for Xbox 360, and DVDs). And, similarly, I noticed that the package had received some great reviews online.

But, after venturing onto some Forums, a bunch of people strongly suggested that I take back the Spherex system and get a HTiB set. I was told that the Spherex system, because it uses proprietary speaker plugs, is not expandable, and as such, that I should avoid it.

So, I am considering some other setups in my price range ($350CDN, max).

Some users recommended the Yamaha setup. They said that, because it has a 5-way binding post, it is far more expandable. And, they are telling me that the Yamaha will sound "on par or better". I can get the Yamaha HTiB set for $380CDN (including tax and warranty). I cannot go above this price. I am interested in the system, but I am worried about, for example, the fact that the subwoofer is passive.

Expandability is not particularly important to me (I don't see myself upgrading single components in the future), but if I can get an upgradeable system with sound quality that is *just as good* for the same price, then I might as well.

So, I am left with the question:

Should I stick with the deal that I got on the Spherex system, or should I go for the Yamaha HTiB set instead?

Please remember, because expandability is only partially important to me, I am mostly interested in pure sound quality and build quality.