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  1. #1
    AR Newbie Registered Member
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    Home Theatre Audio Help

    Hello. Let's begin with I know nothing about Home Theater A/V. This listing is in this forum because I don't know where to start. My tube TV is hooked up to a 2-channel system that's 20-30 years old: Kenwood 100w/ch receiver, Bose 201s. System use is 50% TV, 40% music/NPR and 10% DVD. I'm happy with what I have now. But time marches on and the home entertainment center that currently occupies the corner of my living room is making way for a direct-vent gas fireplace and masonry hearth which will have to do double duty housing new home entertainment equipment including a 42" flat-screen and audio system. I'm on a budget of $1,500 for the works (just the TV/AV, not the fireplace). If I watch the occasional DVD and get a reasonable facsimile of a home theater experience, that will be fine. But if I put on Miles Davis or Steely Dan and it sounds like "Terminator," that's a deal breaker. Music audio quality is #1 for me. The room is a 26' x 18' great room with a cathedral ceiling that goes to 22'. My current system is capable of disturbing the neighbors and is quite clean at that volume level, at which is rarely plays. This is the only space I have for home entertainment. I don't/won't have a separate home theater room. Bluetooth speakers only qualify if they can produce the best sound. Otherwise, I have no problem running cable. If you're an audiophile, please don't answer. I know I can't meet your high standards on my budget. I'm very interested in hearing from music lovers who think they found the best compromise. Many thanks for your help, PW

  2. #2
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    1 option would be to get an inexpensive 5.1 Receiver, a Center, rears and a sub, and use the Pre Outs on the HT unit to go into your current Kenwood.

    When watching a movie, you will need to set the volume knob on the Kenwood at same location each time to match volume. With my setup, I put the volume on my Stereo Pre at 1 o'clock and then run the Audasy setup from there.

    When listening to music, just use your existing setup if you like it's sound.

  3. #3
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Jun 2003
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    What Hyfi posted IMO makes a lot of sense. It's actually quite close to what I do with my system.
    ARC SP9 MKIII, VPI HW19, Rega RB300
    Marcof PPA1, Shure, Sumiko, Ortofon carts
    Marantz CD63SE, Yamaha DVD-S1800
    DAC's: MSB Link, Behringer UCA222, Emotiva XDA-2, HiFimeDIY, Accuphase T101 tuner, Teac V-7010
    Emotiva UMC-200 processor, 2 Adcom GFA-545, 2 modified Dynaco MK3's, 2 bridged Crown XLS-402, Behringer CX2310, DBX223sx, Behringer DSP1124P,2 12" Transmission Line Subs (PASS DIY El-Pipe-O), Magnepan 1.7 (fronts), Acoustat Model 1 ESL's/SPW-1 Woofer (rears)

  4. #4
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    I use a Marantz home theater receiver and was impressed by the improved sound quality over the Onkyo it replaced, I think you'd be happy with the sound for music. In TV's Samsung or LG are pretty much the leaders. The Marantz receivers also have a more sleek and attractive look but the performance backs them up.

  5. #5
    Oldest join date recoveryone's Avatar
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    Thinking of your budget of $1500, I suggest you make a priority list of must haves and what I can live with and without. To start with a AVR you may need to go with a used or last year model (cost being the main factor) You can get a higher end model at 40%-70% savings. Speakers are in the same boat, Find some used or clearance ones that you like. For a room, the size you given I would go with a 5.1/7.1 to give you the best surround effect. To keep that good 2ch music sound I would go with Floor towers as your front L/R that can handle solid tight bass. I say this, as it is a hard find to find a sub that works well with movies and music within this budget range.

    Go ahead and upgrade to a Blu ray player, the cost has dropped under $150 from major brands and if you want more bells and whistle get a used one online. The only thing I would go for retail cost is the TV, and to stay in your budget range you should focus on a Vizio E series for a 42" size, there are better panals out there but they will bust your budget. Vizio are good for everyday TV watching and do a very good job with HD/Blu ray content. Here is a list of brands that you can find online easy (ebay/amazom) in good used condition.

    Pioneer Elite
    Sony
    Polk Audio
    Fluance
    Pamamax (power conditioner) A real plus to get the most out of your setup

    To give you a idea of a basic setup I use in my master bedroom

    Vizio 39" E series (Reconditioned, Wal Mart) $210
    Pioneer 522 AVR (Used, Ebay) $90
    Pioneer BD player 330 Netflix streaming, wireless (Used, Ebay) $75
    Fronts Speakers, Polk audio Monitor 40's (Used, Ebay)$70
    Center Speaker, Jensen Champion (New, Ebay) $50
    Rears Spekaers, Optimus Pro LX 5's (Used, Ebay) $50
    Sub Audio Source 10" 100 watt (New, Ebay) $80
    Pamamax 5100 (used, Ebay) $50

    Total $670
    HT
    Pioneer EliteVSX-32
    Logitech Touch
    Pioneer EliteDV47Ai
    Pioneer EliteCD-M53

    Pioneer Cassette CTM66R,
    Pioneer Elite BDP 95FD

    Vizio VF550M 1080p
    Panamax 5300 EX

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