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  1. #1
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
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    Question Best 5.1 set of speaks for <$1200usd?

    I'm helping a friend build an inexpensive HT for her husband for his Xmas present and wanted to get your advice because fitting 5 speakers and a sub under this price cap is new territory for me. Unfortunately, my friend's priorities are a little skewed as she like Bose sattelites because "they're cute." Lord, give me strength...

    Here's the deal, this is more for HT impact as they do no critical listening. The room is one big open space as it opens up into another room on every side but one (which is all windows) so set-up is a nightmare. Appearance is paramount as they currently have their mains located, get this...behind the couch and behind the armoire! My first thought was Paradigm Energy standmounts or possibly Mirage Omnisats (Never heard 'em, but their omnidirectional pattern could work best in this room. Have any of you heard them?) and if all else fails, ceiling/wall mounts at which point who really cares what you put in?!

    I know you guys/gals will steer me in the right direction. Ideas?

  2. #2
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by topspeed
    My first thought was Paradigm OR Energy standmounts

    Sorry, forgot the "or"

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by topspeed
    ....... Unfortunately, my friend's priorities are a little skewed as she like Bose sattelites because "they're cute." Lord, give me strength...
    ......
    Appearance is paramount ............ if all else fails, ceiling/wall mounts at which point who really cares what you put in?!
    I don't normally recommend 5.1 set speaker but this JMLab Sib & Cub may fit the bill.
    http://www.focal.tm.fr/bancs/export/...bcub/gam_9.pdf
    http://www.focal-jmlab.fr/gb/home/si...load/index.htm
    Good luck.

  4. #4
    Forum Regular psonic's Avatar
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    this setup looks like a steal...er, giant killer

    http://www.ascendacoustics.com/Main/HT/2000.asp

    the best part is you have fantastic fronts for music to boot...
    look at the reviews for the cbm-170, they are all over the net including this site...

  5. #5
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    Acoustic Research AR HC6 is your answer. You don't have to believe me. Please look at the review in this website. I have couple like for you to read and make a decision too. I say this because I have this set set up in my living room and I challenge ANY (Yes ANY) sud/sat system under $1200 to compare with my AR and I confident that my AR HC6 will sond better period.

    http://www.angelfire.com/empire2/rosarin1978/AR.pdf
    http://www.hometheatersound.com/equi...search_hc6.htm

  6. #6
    DIY Dude Registered Member poneal's Avatar
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    Another idea would be to get infinity or harman kardon home theater speaker package. They are selling on e-bay for really good prices. They come with the original factory warranty (most are new but some are remanufactured) direct from Harman Audio. I know the infinities sound good cause I own them. They're not audiophile quality but sound is good. And they sure beat the pants off of Bose. Not sure about the Harman HT package speakers. Also looks like Harman Audio is selling JBL HT speaker packages. Not sure about them either. Harman Kardon own Infinity and JBL and some others. Hope this helps. Paul

  7. #7
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
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    Thanks guys!

    I new I could count on you! One bad thing about this new forum is it's very difficult to remember who chimed in when writing a reply.

    I had no idea Focal sold HTIB although I'm a bit put off by the 6 ohm impedence. That's not really a big deal and it is offset by the 90dB sensitivity.

    Didn't AR go out of business? I thought I'd read that fairly recently and that would have an impact on the buying decision due to customer support and warranty issues. Anyone know about this?

    I have never heard Ascend (any of them) so I have no idea how they sound. How would you describe their character?

    Finally, I have no idea why I didn't think of Infinity so I'll definitely take a look at them too.

    Again, thanks for the ideas!

  8. #8
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by topspeed
    Didn't AR go out of business? I thought I'd read that fairly recently and that would have an impact on the buying decision due to customer support and warranty issues. Anyone know about this?
    When Recoton (which owned AR, NHT, Jensen, and Advent, among others) declared bankruptcy, they put all of their brand subsidiaries up for sale. NHT got split off first, and now operate as an independent company once again. AR and some of the other brands got scooped up by Audiovox. Now, the Recoton website has gone down as has AR's website. No idea how or if the AR brand will get resurrected. Considering tha Audiovox is a mostly a low end player, I'm not sure AR will reemerge in any form worthy of its great history.

    As for the main topic, the choices would depend on how decor conscious the system needs to be. Most of the high end stores around here decided to combat Bose's cubes with the Gallo Acoustics Micro satellite system. I believe that Good Guys has now picked up the line as well. A set of five satellite units will cost $750, while the matching stands cost $150 a pair. The matching subwoofer costs $750 for the powered version or $350 for the passive version. Of course, with subs, you don't have to get the matching unit since Gallo claims that their satellite units can extend down to 90 Hz, which is well within the range of most subwoofers and considerably lower than what the Bose cubes can reach.

    http://www.roundsound.com

    If slightly larger speakers are acceptable, then for $1,200, some of the better options include the Energy Encore and Boston Micro systems. Those come with the bass units.

    A more ideal setup would go with a set of larger bookshelf speakers like the Paradigm Titan or Mini Monitor or the B&W DM303, and add a subwoofer. With this type of setup, you don't have as large a frequency gap between where the satellite units leave off and the subwoofer picks up.

  9. #9
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
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    Thanks Wooch,

    Man, that is a seriously wierd looking speaker. With its stand, it reminds me of the War of the Worlds, dunno why. I'll run it by her and see if what she thinks.

    I've got the Energy system on the shortlist and am considering the B&W's (I'm a fan as you know) but I have a feeling they're going to be too big for her. We'll see...

    Thanks again for the input.

  10. #10
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    Dear topspeed and other

    I have talked to AR technical support in Florida. Acoustic Research website is under construction. AR is going to reborn again!!!.Audiovox will launch new line of AR speakers next year. Right now, they have only AR HC4, 5, and 6, which AR HC6 is top of the line. I believe AR is going to come back and be great again. NHT is with Rockford and they still launch Super Audio line which heritage legacy of super zero series. I believe that AR is going to be the same like NHT. AR has been around since 1952 even though they were under Wreck-co-ton (Recoton); they still produced a lot of great speakers like Hi-Res series. I believe that this series sound can compare with many speakers that are twice their price. Some people even say the Hi-Res is ultimate HT if set up together. Anyway, this is my opinion. I believe in AR, so I am going to keep buy it and many people are also think the same way. If you worry about warranty, AR speakers are back by AB Tech. You don't have too worry because they service even vintage AR. Tom Mirror said ďAR HC6 is a gift." You better believe it and I believe him.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular Registered Member 46minaudio's Avatar
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    Topspeed are they planning on placing these behind the armoire.If so Id go cheap..If not here are some Ideas for real wood veneer speakers that will not break the bank. Acoustic Energy AE 300c.These can be bought on Ebay through a dealer for $199 a pair.3 pair plus an HSU VTF 2 or Adire Rava will com in at $1000 to$1100.
    http://www.acoustic-energy.co.uk/pro...dspeakers.html

    Here is an internet direct company that sells a package.Real wood and a sub...$899
    http://www.av123.com/products_produc...s&product=31.1

  12. #12
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by topspeed
    Thanks Wooch,

    Man, that is a seriously wierd looking speaker. With its stand, it reminds me of the War of the Worlds, dunno why. I'll run it by her and see if what she thinks.
    I actually like the look of the Gallos. Plus, they're available in eight colors. The high end stores around here stock the Gallo systems because they got tired of losing sales from customers coming into their stores looking for something "cute" or unintrusive as the Bose cubes. The prices are a bit higher than the Acoustimass systems, but the performance is supposedly much better. The sales reps at those stores recommend going with larger bookshelf speakers, but if decor or space are concerns, then the Gallos are a good compromise.

    If you want weird looking or something that looks like an advance team for an alien invasion, check out the O'heochas!


  13. #13
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
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    Omigod!



    uke:
    That is the worst piece of industrial crap since the Aztek! They look like weapons from Starship Troopers (speaking of crap). I wouldn't care if they sounded better than WP7's, I'd never have those in my house.

    Thanks for the laughs tho.

  14. #14
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    Paradigm + Hsu

    I would go with an entry level Paradigm setup. Whatever Paradigm's faults are, price and HT performance are not among them.

    2 pairs Paradigm Atoms (less than $200 per pair) and reasonably small
    matching Paradigm center (approx $200)
    Get a good sub. The Paradigm entry level subs offer good bang for the buck, but better to go with a Hsu VTF-2. http://www.hsuresearch.com/

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