• 01-24-2011, 07:23 PM
    atomicAdam
    How to choose - stereo vs multi channel
    So if a friend asked you - should I get a two channel stereo system vs a multi channel home theater audio system?

    What would be your responses, or reasons for one over the other.
  • 01-24-2011, 07:34 PM
    recoveryone
    I would question their intent on use as I do with people who ask me about computers.
    I then go into the biggest question: How much do you expect to spend, cause there is no need to go into some big old spill about high end gear and they only want to spend on Wal Mart prices.

    When that is clear, I explain what they should expect to get. I explain if cost is a major hurdle, then used gear could be an option.
  • 01-24-2011, 08:22 PM
    blackraven
    A 2ch system generally will give you better sound depending upon the equipment you buy. With a 2ch system you will have more money dedicated to the amp, speakers and source vs having to spend money on several speakers for surround sound. With that being said, you still can get excellent sound from a multichannel system when used for music. It's all about the money and how much you want to spend.
  • 01-25-2011, 04:18 AM
    kexodusc
    Comes down to money. Systems designed for multi-channel music playback (not talking inexpensive home theater crap here) should sound better, but it won't be cheaper, or even equivalent in cost. I don't think you can make a multi-channel system sound as good as a stereo system with equal budgets. It won't necessarily be 2.5 times the price but it'll cost significantly more. Throw in the disparity in the available selections of multi-channel vs stereo recordings and it certainly makes you think twice.

    If money was unlimited, multi channel.
  • 01-25-2011, 07:22 AM
    JohnMichael
    For the same dollars, thinking sane budget, I would rather have a higher quality 2 channel system.
  • 01-25-2011, 07:43 AM
    Ajani
    I think the deciding factor is whatever your friend is more interested in...

    If his priority is music, then a 2 channel system is the best option...

    If he cares more for movies (or multichannel music) then a MC system would be the right choice...

    I haven't owned a MC system in 12 years (because I could care less about movies or MC music)... However if I was into movies more than music then I would own a MC system...
  • 01-25-2011, 09:04 AM
    GMichael
    I would start by asking questions.

    What is most important to you? Music or HT? Percentages? Budget? Room size?

    You can't really give a good answer before knowing these answers. Otherwise, you're just telling your friend what you want instead of helping them with what they want.
  • 01-25-2011, 09:41 AM
    woofersus
    Agreed on questions about listening priority. If they don't care about HT or if they only want it for HT should be pretty well decided in their mind already.

    However, if they really kinda want both and clearly aren't going to buy two separate systems to start with, then they should focus on the MC system just because it can be used for both. If they can't afford to do the whole thing right away, then I would generally encourage them to start with an AVR and the front speakers, then save up and add a center, then surrounds, then subwoofer.

    While high end shows are all about 2-channel, I believe that most of the growth in hifi gear sales over the next few years will be in HT systems. All those people who now have large screen tv's are all prime candidates, and their desire for better sound is driven by movies. (the high cost of going out to the movies is helping drive this too) They will absolutely use their system for music, but it's secondary, and the key will really be that it's a living room system that the whole family uses and it's the only system they have. Creating gear that functions well for both will be more important than ever.
  • 01-25-2011, 11:21 AM
    E-Stat
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by atomicAdam
    So if a friend asked you - should I get a two channel stereo system vs a multi channel home theater audio system?

    I think the most important factor has already been determined. Which format best describes your music library? If only 1% of your collection is multi-channel (like me), it doesn't make sense to lower the overall quality by diluting your budget to provide the additional channels. If, on the other hand, your collection of MC content is much higher, then it would make sense to optimize the system to accommodate those recordings instead. The overwhelming majority of new music releases (save classical), however, remains stereo.

    I have separate systems for that reason. Two channel for music and MC for movies. I enjoy the surround effects that are part of most movie soundtracks.

    rw
  • 01-25-2011, 02:24 PM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    just ask if you really need multichannel, especially for music. NEVER been a fan of
    multichannel music. If used for ambiance, then sure. An accurate sound stage is what I AM ABOUT.
    so after asking what their preference is, then concentrate on that.
    I have found that a "hybrid" system, where the front two channels are a high q audio system,
    which plugs into a multichannel system, the best of both worlds, and that is usually what I
    advise for moderate audio enthusiasts. But if you really love audio then concentrating on that
    might be the thing.
    For real audio crazies a high end audio system, and a separate HTIB . The high end system
    being two channel , of course. MULTICHANNEL audio is just strange, like baloney topped
    off with chocolate cake.:1:
  • 01-25-2011, 02:54 PM
    JoeE SP9
    Really nice post "pixie"! :thumbsup: I went with a "hybrid" system because I already had a 2 channel music system and lack of space for separate rooms. My system is optimized for 2 channel music listening. For surround/MC sources the processor, rear speakers and amps are added.
  • 01-25-2011, 03:40 PM
    blackraven
    Pix, I didnt know that you had such an nice Butt!
  • 01-26-2011, 07:47 AM
    Mingus
    My friend had to make this decision last year and I recommended a HT system because his family is always watching movies. They purchased the Onyko top of the line HT receiver and Monitor Audio speakers. Now he said he is enjoying 2 channel stereo and multichannel for movies. For me I prefer a hybrid setup.
  • 01-26-2011, 07:51 AM
    GMichael
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blackraven
    Pix, I didnt know that you had such an nice Butt!

    And now my mind's eye has gone dark.:nono:
  • 02-06-2011, 07:34 AM
    luckydoggoldminer
    The best answer here is to save and buy the best pair of speakers one could afford. Then what ever you do is likely to sound good either way. Buy used wherever possible. A two year old higher end home theater receiver would be smart or EMOTIVA seperates to begin with. A decent Sony es dvd player to play music. Not the best solution but a start.
  • 02-06-2011, 12:49 PM
    pixelthis
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blackraven
    Pix, I didnt know that you had such an nice Butt!

    I did, but the girlfriend took it with her when she left.:1:
  • 02-06-2011, 06:07 PM
    (O0o*o0O)
    Q&a
    That would be a question I would love out of a customer. Most don't know the difference and have no idea what a 2-channel is. I love 2-channel customers, because I know they are into music. A lot of the time if people come over and see no Playstation they see no equipment.

    Music or Movies?

    The only question to ask in my opinion. I know for myself just getting my first 2-channel stereo in years the difference it has from my HT receiver.
  • 02-07-2011, 07:02 PM
    Mash
    I feel most people are oriented toward those 5.1 and 7.1 systems they see advertised by hhgregg or BB. So I have found that it is a waste of time to talk upmarket to them. My brother comes to mind. But if they later decided they really wanted something better.......

    And this would be funky....

    I would have them hear our "standard" TV system in our bedroom: Audio courtesy of Mackie HR824's with a 15" Velodyne. Then we could switch the audio to the CJ10B/Jolida/MMG/15" Velodyne setup. One or the other will get 'em. Either is quite good for Phantom of the Opera. Those 15" V-dynes belt out an organ's pedal notes the way no commercial 5.1 or 7.1 ever could. The 15" V-d would really get their undivided attention............ But seating is a bit limited.
  • 02-09-2011, 11:44 AM
    hifitommy
    even though i have the equipment for full 5.1, i use a stereo/dynaquad setup for ambience recovery which works surprisingly well for video except when a center channel is dominantly embedded into the program that cannot be defeated. its rare but there.

    i have stated before that dolby pro-logic can be effectively used for ambience retrieval if adjusted so the rears are just subtly detected by the listener just as i do with the dynaquad. you can easily just go back to stereo if preferred but you may find ambience recovery to be preferable for all sources. i run my pre/pro through my stereo preamp so my main audio sources are more direct. all the video sources are switched through the nuforce pre/pro.

    and YES congrats to you pixi for a lucid, useful post. keep up the good work.
  • 02-09-2011, 12:06 PM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hifitommy
    even though i have the equipment for full 5.1, i use a stereo/dynaquad setup for ambience recovery which works surprisingly well for video except when a center channel is dominantly embedded into the program that cannot be defeated. its rare but there.

    i have stated before that dolby pro-logic can be effectively used for ambience retrieval if adjusted so the rears are just subtly detected by the listener just as i do with the dynaquad. you can easily just go back to stereo if preferred but you may find ambience recovery to be preferable for all sources. i run my pre/pro through my stereo preamp so my main audio sources are more direct. all the video sources are switched through the nuforce pre/pro.

    and YES congrats to you pixi for a lucid, useful post. keep up the good work.

    THE ONLY reason you would need a basically obsolete tool like pro logic is if
    PRO LOGIC II is not available. Pro-logic is basically obsolete.
    Talk about deriving "ambience", that is pro-logic II's stock in trade.
    It can make a movie with a stereo soundtrack sound like DD 5.1. THATS PRO-LOGIC MOVIE.
    Pro-logic music is for stereo to multichannel music.
    DTS neo is basically the same thing, but DTS.
    THE OLD PROLOGIC basically just gets the difference info from the front and shoots it to the back two channels, which get the same info. Its basically obsolete.
    A 200$ receiver with pro-logic II can blow its doors off. It belongs in the attic next to
    buggy whips and eight track tape players.:1:
  • 02-09-2011, 12:12 PM
    hifitommy
    i didnt see the need to list all the formats that can give you ambience recovery. and yes, people DO use outmoded systems, what do you suppose dynaquad is? you cant buy one new anymore unless its nos.

    btw, pro-logic and its successors are based on the dynaquad circuit devised by david hafler.
  • 02-09-2011, 12:32 PM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hifitommy
    i didnt see the need to list all the formats that can give you ambience recovery. and yes, people DO use outmoded systems, what do you suppose dynaquad is? you cant buy one new anymore unless its nos.

    btw, pro-logic and its successors are based on the dynaquad circuit devised by david hafler.

    Learn something everyday. But it doesn't matter if it was created by a thousand monkeys
    throwing stuff around in a parts house, still obsolete.
    Sorry.
    You do know that using the new codec would sound loads better, right?
    Not that I HAVE anything against others using "obsolete" systems. HELPED us
    win a lot of wars.:1:
  • 02-09-2011, 12:37 PM
    hifitommy
    pixie,

    you should throw out the " technics antique direct drive TT" ASAP. its obsolete.
  • 02-09-2011, 12:55 PM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hifitommy
    pixie,

    you should throw out the " technics antique direct drive TT" ASAP. its obsolete.

    CAN you figure out another way to play a LP record? Tried using a pocketknife once,
    didn't work that well.
    As long as I have to listen to the pretenders "learning to crawl" or Gill Scott HERON
    it will not be "obsolete". Just snap, crackle, poppy.:1:
  • 02-09-2011, 12:58 PM
    hifitommy
    why bother with obsolete technology? i am just trying to follow your "philosophy".
  • 02-09-2011, 01:02 PM
    GMichael
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hifitommy
    why bother with obsolete technology? i am just trying to follow your "philosophy".

    It's called, 'shoot from the hip'.
  • 02-09-2011, 01:15 PM
    pixelthis
    1 Attachment(s)
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by hifitommy
    why bother with obsolete technology? i am just trying to follow your "philosophy".

    I went without a TT for years. My point is that there is NO use for prologic. You only get
    four channels(the rears are the same). There is no use for it. There is other stuff that does a better job. Nothing plays my records better than my free TT.
    Just about anything can render a multichannel image out of a stereo sound field than
    prologic.
    Prologic was good in its day, but that day has passed. Prologic II plays my prologic
    stuff better. What plays my records better?:1: