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I need some good budget speakers...

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14 replies to this topic

#1 of 15 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted April 18 2003 - 10:03 AM

Right now I have a frankenstein home theater. It's made up of a bunch of mis-matched speakers that I found here and there around the house. It kinda started with me buying a receiver to get a digital radio at home, and I thought "hey, why not play with it?". The sound really sucks, and one speaker is even damaged. Posted Image

That being said, I need advice on some good budget speakers. I have a Nuance center speaker that seems decent (only bought speaker in the group), but I definatly need new front left/right speakers, and maybe surrounds. I have an awesome DIY Tempest sub, so I won't be needing a new one of those.

But I'm really not sure what to buy without breaking the bank. I'd say I need these for under 1,000 Canadian (about 650 US). Can you recommend anything? I don't need killer speakers right now, just something acceptable.

(I'd love to go all out, but my Dad is calling the show on this one)


Jonny K. Posted Image

#2 of 15 OFFLINE   ernie.bin


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Posted April 18 2003 - 10:07 AM

for $1000CAD, I think a paradigm setup of titans/atoms/cc-170 and a pdr-10 would be very close. I paid around $1k for that setup without stands or cables or tax though.

#3 of 15 OFFLINE   FrantzM


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Posted April 18 2003 - 10:18 AM

PSB from the same country. Competitive with Paradigm a lot of bang for the bucks. Alphas are very good you can get the Alphas LR and use an Alpha LCR for center for less than the budget and be quite satisfied if you room is small. Frantz Port-au-Prince, Haiti

#4 of 15 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted April 18 2003 - 11:18 AM


Never mind this post. Turns out we had another set of speakers from another stereo that seems to work decently to replace the broken set. Posted Image

Dad flipped when I told him I asked you guys about speakers for under 1,000. He declared that tomorrow we're going to buy some speakers to replace the ones we just put into the HT, and he expects to pay about 200 for them. Posted Image

It sucks being the only person with STANDARDS in this household, but what can I do...

Thanks anyway,

Jonny K.

#5 of 15 OFFLINE   MikeShea



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Posted April 19 2003 - 02:35 AM

If you want a small system, the Boston Acoustics System 8000 is 500 and the System 9000 is $1000.

If you want larger speakers, you might look at the Home Theater Direct Level 2 or 3 setup.

At $1000 you may also look at the highly rated Ascend Acoustics setups:


They look a little recording-studio, but they are very well regarded on audioreview.
Mike Shea

#6 of 15 OFFLINE   Andrew Pratt

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Posted April 19 2003 - 02:43 AM

For that price range ($200 cdn) go and get a pair of Paradigm Atom's. They come in a variety of finishes and sound pretty decent for the cost. Do NOT buy nuance however as they are VERY low quality (sorry to say)

#7 of 15 OFFLINE   JimmyK


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Posted April 19 2003 - 04:36 AM

I second the recommendation for PSB or Paradigm. The make excellent budget speakers. JimmyK

#8 of 15 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted April 19 2003 - 11:38 AM

Ok, dad has made his choice. He bought a pair of Panasonic floor standing speakers at Costco for $115 Canadian. Posted Image

Only a couple more years till I move out...

Jonny K. Posted Image

#9 of 15 OFFLINE   Geoff L

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Posted April 21 2003 - 03:26 AM

If he is happy with the purchase, well that may be unfortuanant for you and your higher standards.Posted Image
I feel your pain though. Posted Image

But something is better than nothing and in time as they say, grasshopper, you will be making the call...Posted Image

Try to make the best of it for now, Posted Imageand save your pennies for that day...!

~{ Speak of what you know, listen to what you don't.! }~  

#10 of 15 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted April 21 2003 - 04:41 AM

*saving pennies*

Jonny K. Posted Image

#11 of 15 OFFLINE   James Zos

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Posted April 22 2003 - 04:10 AM

Jonny - when you are the person deciding which speakers to buy, you might want to consider this advice: home theater can be a pretty addicting hobby, and I myself have found it is better to buy really decent speakers (within financial reason, of course) rather than trying to save money by buying something more affordable, like, say, Optimus speakers from Radio Shack, which is in fact how I started out. By buying the better speakers to start out with you may end up saving money in the long run by avoiding more upgrades...And believe me, if you're like many of us, you will eventually be upgrading. I think I would have saved a lot of money if I had avoided the cheaper speakers I bought before I finally went for Klipsch (which were still pretty cheap, but decent enough for me to keep until I strike it rich.) You may also want to buy better speakers one at a time, even if this results in a mis-matched setup, because that way you may be able to afford higher-end stuff, and eventually build up to a complete set - rather than starting out with a matched but generally inferior set, if that makes any sense. This is also what I eventually did, initially using the Optimus for my surrounds as I added better speakers to the front of my setup. Good luck whatever you end up doing!

#12 of 15 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted April 22 2003 - 04:19 AM

Yeah, I know the value of buying something good from the start. Problem is, my parents have no interest in home theater and they just don't understand it. My dad is a pan&scan, brightness and sharpness cranked, low sound quality kinda guy. He has no interest in picture quality or sound, and there's really nothing I can do about it (I've tried).

I've come to the conclusion that I'll just have to forget HT while living at home, and instead buy the good stuff once I move out. Only a couple more years...

Jonny K. Posted Image

#13 of 15 OFFLINE   Andrew Pratt

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Posted April 22 2003 - 06:11 AM

Jonny you could start building your future HT with a small bedroom system. Just get those Atom's and a used receiver of some sort...you'd at least then have some nice sound in the bedroom.

#14 of 15 OFFLINE   Jonny K

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Posted April 22 2003 - 06:49 AM

Yeah, well I have a decent receiver. At least, it WAS a decent receiver when I bought it (Kenwood 1080VR). Doesn't do DTS though, which is annoying.

By the time I'm ready to build my HT, I may want to just buy a new one. But I'll probably still keep it for a while anyway.

An interesting thing I noticed. All the old speakers we have around the house are wide and short, with a standard rectangular shape. But all the new ones I saw are either tall and skinny or small and on a stand. You can't seem to get the fat ones anymore. (dad was rather annoyed).

Jonny K. Posted Image

#15 of 15 OFFLINE   Danny Tse

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Posted April 22 2003 - 07:03 AM

Well, Jonny, that's the "in" style for floor standing speakers. It's possible that the current floor standing speakers actually takes up more floor space because they're deeper in size. The only speaker range currently produced that is still in that wide retangular shape that your dad likes is the JBL Studio (or S) range, which is highly regarded not only on this forum, but pretty much everywhere else. (If Phil reads this post, he can provide you with much more info about them Posted Image ). If you are considering building a quality HT in a couple of years, definitely consider starting with a pair of the JBL S-26....excellent bookshelf speakers, not only for HT but for music as well, and possibly the best kept secret in audio/HT. In my opinion, this is a true audiophile speaker. And you can probably get them for about $200.00/pair new. Then add the S-series center. Before you know it, a full-blown high quality HT system, that will do full justice to music reproduction as well, for not a lot of $$$.
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