new to home theater systems..

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Awp666, May 29, 2010.

  1. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Well i figured before i make my purchase i would come here and get opinions from you guys. i was gonna go with one of those all in one systems but figured i could make a better system if i bought a reciever and speaker myself.


    anyways this is what i was thinking of going with.


    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Sony+-+665W+7.1-Ch.+A/V+Home+Theater+Receiver/9775774.p?id=1218171550446&skuId=9775774



    for the reciever



    and then for the speakers i was thinking these


    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/JBL+-+6-Piece+Home+Theater+Speaker+Package/8605226.p?id=1192232566708&skuId=8605226




    they seem pretty decent for the price the only thing that kinda makes my want to explore other options is that you cant get it in the stores and the shipping cost on it is like 48 dollars.



    Anyways what are your guys thoughts and opinions? would you change anything? this system will be going in my bedroom for now until i eventually move out and get an apartment.



    Ill mainly be using it for my tv, ps3 and xbox360, and the occasional times i want to have my pc running through it


    thanks for the help in advance i look forward to reading your responses. ~Kevin~
     
  2. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Anyone?
     
  3. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    Hi Kevin, and welcome to the Forum. Please read the FAQ for new members, and understand that it can take more than an hour or two to get a reply to a post. Don't "bump" a thread by adding a new post of your own while waiting. When someone has something useful to contribute, they will.


    Regarding your post: Very good idea to avoid the "integrated DVD/receiver" home theater in a box (HTiB) systems. They always lack connectivity options, limit your ability to add or upgrade components and leave you stuck if the receiver or disc player needs repair while the rest of the system is OK.


    As for the items you're looking at - it is hard for anyone who doesn't own those particular components to comment on them. Is this basically your budget - around $500. If so, it may be that members can suggest some other alternatives. If you can go a little higher, the range opens up. I would lean towards spending more on the speakers than the receiver. They will have far more to do with how the system sounds than the receiver. I've had the same set of speakers for nearly a dozen years now, and I've been through three receivers in that same period.


    I would also be leery about buying speakers that I haven't listened to yet. Even if you get a better deal on line, you should try to audition any speakers you're interested in "live" at a store.

    Regards,


    Joe
     
  4. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    well i wouldnt say i have a budget but dont want to spend 1500 dollars either lol. id say 800 dollars would be the max
     
  5. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    OK, $800 gives us an upper limit to work with. Is that just for the audio system, or do you need to include other components? What other stuff do you already have? (TV? DVD/Blu Ray player? Game system? Cable or satellite box? 3rd party DVR like TiVo? We'll need the make and model of each in order to figure out how many inputs of and what type you'll need.)


    Regards,


    Joe
     
  6. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    i have a 42 inch HDTV A CableBox with built in DVR Xbox 360, wii, and PS3 that would be hooking up to it.


    4 HDMI ports would be nice even though my xbox and wii dont have HDMI cables it would be nice to switch to them in the future if i wanted to.


    800 is just for speakers and Reciever i might even go to 1,000 dollars if needed


    Also the PS3 doubles as a Blu Ray player and the 360 a DVD player
     
  7. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    To repeat, "We'll need the make and model of each [component] in order to figure out how many inputs of and what type you'll need."




    Is it the cables they're lacking, or HDMI outputs? Most HDMI devices don't come with HDMI cables, just like most printers don't come with cables. But that's not a big deal since HDMI cables are cheap if you don't fall for the hype machine of certain brands. (You can get an HDMI cable on line for $10 that is at least as good as the ones some retailers will be happy to charge you $50 to $100 for.)

    If you're looking at $1,000 for receiver and speakers you should be able come up with a quite decent system. I would split that about $200 receiver $800 speakers. That will probably involve some compromises, but you can always upgrade or add later. (For instance, no speaker set under $1,000 is going to include a really serious subwoofer, but you can get something decent to start and replace it or add a second sub to the system when you have the cash.)


    Once we have the make and model of your TV and cable box, and clarify the HDMI status of the systems (sorry, not a gamer myself, so I have no idea) the system will come into better focus and folks will be able to make specific recommendations.

    Regards,


    Joe
     
  8. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Dont know the model of the tv but its a 42 inch vizio supporting 1080P i dont really know how i can give you the model number for my cable box as its just the one my cable provider gives out. but the letters and numbers on the box say this. Motorola DCT6416 III

    the wii has no capabilities for HDMI and i do not have the hd component cables for it just the regular red white and yellow and as for my 360 its an older model so it does not have the option for the HDMI cable so im forced to use the HD Component Cables for it
     
  9. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    Motorola is the brand and DCT6416 is the model number of your cable box. See how easy that was? Cable companies don't make cable boxes or DVRs, they buy the from companies like Motorola or Scientific Atlanta. The same cable company may user Motorloa boxes in one city and SAs in another, and each of those companies makes several cable boxes and DVRs, with different capabilities. So it is always important for us to know what we're dealing with. Since I'm not familiar with the Motorola DVRs, I'm going to have to research yours.


    The model of your Vizio TV should be on a label somewhere on the back, along with the serial number UL labs approval info, FCC compliance and a bunch of other stuff. The fact that it is a Vizio might mean you have more audio connection options than most TVs offer - but I can't know for sure without the model number.


    Regards,


    Joe
     
  10. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    ok found it the model number for the tv is VL420M



    here is the link to it on their website just in case you might need it http://www.vizio.com/vl420m.html
     
  11. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Well ive been doing some looking around while waiting for your replies which i thank you for youve been very helpful so far :)


    anyways i found these set of KLIPSCH speakers http://www.klipsch.com/na-en/products/hd-theater-500-reviews/


    the only bad thing is they dont come with speaker wires, so what would i need if i did decide to go with this set? as for gauge of the wire? subwoofer wire? like i said i have no clue. also my bestbuy dosent have it in stock but hoping they have a demo unit setup for it so i can see what it sounds like. but from all the sites ive read this speaker set seems to have really good reviews.


    Also under specs for the speaker system it says up to 100w per channel would it be bad to have a reciever that could put out exactly 100w per channel or over 100w per channel?


    there is a nice sony reciever a 665w one that puts out like 95w per channel would that work for these speakers? http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Sony+-+665W+7.1-Ch.+A/V+Home+Theater+Receiver/9775774.p?id=1218171550446&skuId=9775774


    from what ive been looking at Sony seems to have the most inputs and outputs then the other recievers like denon and onkyo so correct me if im wrong.


    if you dont see any problems with that system i may just go ahead and pull the trigger on it, but would need to know what wires and stuff i would need


    thanks :)
     
  12. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Well after more looking around and another bump in budget ive decided to go with the RB-10 Home theater system from KLIPSCH.


    http://www.klipsch.com/na-en/products/rb-10-home-theater-system-overview/



    i found a mom and pop store near me so ima go check it out hopefully tuesday or wednesday.


    now the only thing i will need help with is what type of reciever will power these speakers? i noticed each speaker in the set had different wattage ratings so that kinda threw me for a loop if ya know what i mean.


    i would still like th e reciver to have as many inputs and outputs as possible and to have the most HDMI ports as possible 3-4 would be ideal.


    the specs on the speakers are as follows.



    RB-10 Bookshelf Speakers POWER HANDLING 50 w max continuous (200 w peak) < i assume thats for one speaker so x that by 2.


    RC-10 Center Speaker POWER HANDLING 75 w (300 w peak)


    RPW-10 Subwoofer AMPLIFIER POWER FTC Rated Power: 200 watts continuous @
     
  13. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    The watts "ratings" for both receivers and speakers are mostly marketing tools that tell you next to nothing about performance. Under real world conditions any of the receivers you're looking at is going to be more than enough to drive those Klipsch speakers. Because you're never going to run them cranked up to full volume. In fact, you're unlikely to run them at much more than half volume unless your HT space is simply immense and filled with materials that are highly sound-absorbing. A receiver is an amp, it is just an amp that also includes other things like a radio tuner and video circuitry added to it. You certainly would not need to add an external amp to power the perfectly ordinary speakers you are looking at.

    Klipsch are certainly very highly regarded speakers here at the HTF. I've never owned a set, so I can't comment on them directly. Do make sure you audition them carefully, and listen to some other brands as well. Spec sheets aren't ears, and it is your ears that need to like the sound. You may find you prefer the tone of some other line of speakers in the same price range. For HT Audio Video receivers I've owed and liked Denon and Onkyo. (The last time I upgraded Onkyo had an edge on price for the feature set I was looking for.)


    I looked at the spec sheet on your Vizio and can't find the answer to my question, so I'll lay out both possible scenarios:


    1) Your Vizio is exactly like 99% of all HDTVs. Its digital audio output (optical or coax) is only there for its own internal tuners, the digital cable tuner and the Over-the-Air antenna tuner. It will not pass multichannel digital audio from other components connected via HDMI or digital audio connections. At best it will downconvert these inputs to 2-channel, at worst it won't send any audio at all. This is not a huge deal, it just changes your connection and switching options.


    2) Your Vizio is one of their newer models that will pass multichannel digital audio from any of its digital inputs via the digital inputs. This gives you the option of connecting your components to the TV and then sending the digital audio to your receiver, thus using the TV as the switching device rather than the AVR. This can simplify connections and cabling requirements. But the only way to test it on your system will be trial and error.


    This could be important, because at your budget point you may have trouble finding one that does video and audio over HDMI. Believe it or not, some AV receivers only use HMDI to pass video to the TV to make switching easier. In order to get digital audio, you need to connect your components with both and HDMI cable for video and a digital audio cable (optical or coax) for audio. If that's the case, and your Vizio supports external sources over its digital output, you might find it easier to take that option.

    Other receivers do both audio and video over HDMI, and this is probably your optimal solution. But, like I said, getting that might push you towards spending more on the receiver vis a vis speakers than you really should. Your speakers will last longer than your receiver, not because the receiver will wear out, but because the technology will push you to replace it. Basic speaker technology hasn't changed in over half a century. I've upgraded receivers to add AC3 (which was the original name for Dolby Digital), DTS and component video. Eventually I'll replace my current Onkyo with a receiver that has HDMI, and probably one that supports 3D, even though my current TV doesn't. The TV, by the way, is the third I've owned since buying my current 5.1 speaker system. Electronics come and go. A good set of speakers will outlast you. Buy the best you can afford within your budget.

    Hope this all helps,


    Joe
     
  14. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    im kinda confused as to what you said about the tv so i figured id just list you all the connectors and stuff it has on the back. also i am gonna listen to the klipsch at the store before i drop the cash on them.


    anyways all the ports on the tv are as follows HDMI x4 has a pc monitor and audio connection to use it as a PC monitor, 2 HD component RCA jacks red, green, blue etc, 2-3 regular rca white red yellow usb port and a optical input



    EDIT: also will the onkyo do sound and video through both the HDMI and HD Component Jacks?
     
  15. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    The component jacks are only for video. They don't do audio. Whether any receiver does audio over HDMI depends on the model. Some Onkyos (and Denons and Sonys) do and others don't.


    BTW, ports of all kind are uni-directional. They either send a signal out or receive a signal. You need to know WHICH WAY THE SIGNAL is going before you know what kind of port you have and what it is good for. Saying that a device has "4 HDMI ports" is meaningless. It makes all the difference in the world if 3 of those are inputs and only one is an output (or vice versa.)

    The key is understanding the signal path. An audio or video signal flows like water in a pipe, from point "a" to point "b". (For instance, the digital audio has to go from your cable box to the receiver, while the video signal has to go from the cable box to your TV - either directly or through the receiver.)

    Regards,


    Joe
     
  16. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Well correct me if im wrong then. HDMI cable coming from the Cable box would go into the input on the reciever and then the hdmi cable going from the output would go into the tv. and same thing goes for the PS3, but since there is only one output for HDMI thats the reason why the reciever has different modes right? lke game, dvd, blu ray etc.


    also when having the compnet hooked up you put the component into the input on the reciever then the red and white into the input on the reciever then the output from the reciever would head out to the tv correct?


    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ImageGallery.aspx?CurImage=82-120-164-V03&ISList=82-120-164-V01%2c82-120-164-V03%2c82-120-164-V04&S7ImageFlag=1&Item=N82E16882120164&Depa=0&WaterMark=0&Description=ONKYO%205.1-Channel%20Home%20Theater%20Receiver%20TX-SR308



    in that picture you can see the component hookups would it matter using the red blue green ones and then using that output under it for the other red and white. then for the output you could do the same thing right?


    also using the HD Component cables will it be true surround sound or would i have 2 find another cable?
     
  17. Phil Taylor

    Phil Taylor Supporting Actor

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    It would be best to use HDMI whenever possible. It is a digital signal whereas component is analog (and so is the "red and white" audio cable). The only surround you would get from analog audio is simulated surround like Dolby ProLogic - but it's better than nothing. True digital surround like Dolby Digital is only available via digital audio - whether thru coax|optical or HDMI.

    If you're going HDMI all the way - you need to make sure the receiver you buy will utilize the audio signal from HDMI. Some low-end receivers only pass/switch the HDMI signal for video purposes and need a separate digital audio cable connection. A good, new and relatively inexpensive budget (no extra features) receiver is the Yamaha 367. It's a cheap receiver that uses HDMI audio - it's 5.1 but the speaker packages you listed are 5.1 packages and of the two the Klipsch is the better quality and would probably work well for you.
     
  18. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Would the Onkyo reciever i was looking at work for my needs then? http://www.us.onkyo.com/model.cfm?m=TX-SR308&class=Receiver&p=i


    there is the link to the reciever
     
  19. Phil Taylor

    Phil Taylor Supporting Actor

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    Yes - it has more features than the Yamaha basic model above. It also decodes HD audio formats ...
     
  20. Awp666

    Awp666 Extra

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    Awesome thanks for the input from the both of you, its been greatly apreciated, ill most likely be back during setup though as my room is pretty small and its gonna be a pain to find good places for my speaks :P
     

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