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Upgrading, just a few questions


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#1 of 8 OFFLINE   Chemikalburn

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Posted January 22 2008 - 10:35 AM

I'm upgrading from my Onkyo H.T.I.A.B. that I bought almost a decade ago and I was just wondering if anyone can give me some tips/input about the equipment I'm looking at. My friend can get me a deal on the Sony STR-DG910 for about $300. I know people here are way above those standards, but I've heard it's a good AVR and the specs seem pretty good too.
The problem I'm having is finding speakers. I don't know much about speakers, but I know I don't want to spend $150 per speaker. This is a 7.1 AVR so $1,000 is a little much for speakers in my apartment. Atleast for now. I am looking at a few Sony speakers. Center: SS-CN5000 or SS-CR3000 (which would take care of the surround left/right. and Left/Right: SS-BB1000

If anyone can give me any insight into anything listed, or just make other recommendations. I'm looking for something that is reliable, because my Onkyo right now, the sub has gone out. And the surround rears seems to be acting up.

Also, I've configured each channel, and there are a lot of times I need to turn up/down the volume depending on what's going on in the movie. Is there any kind of suggestions anyone can make so I don't have to do that so much?

Thanks a lot,
Jarrod

#2 of 8 OFFLINE   Mike_J_D

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Posted January 23 2008 - 01:44 AM

My replies are in bold. Also the underline sections are links to sites.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chemikalburn
I'm upgrading from my Onkyo H.T.I.A.B. that I bought almost a decade ago and I was just wondering if anyone can give me some tips/input about the equipment I'm looking at. My friend can get me a deal on the Sony STR-DG910 for about $300. I know people here are way above those standards, but I've heard it's a good AVR and the specs seem pretty good too.

OK, I'm not a Sony receiver fan. Their amps are notoriously weak, and underpowered. They also have more freaking surround modes then necessary - at least this was the case a few years ago, maybe that's changed. If you want a good receiver look no further than right here Denon USA | AVR-1508 Denon makes much higher quality components than Sony. Or for a $150 more you can get the 1708. There will be many different views here, but I believe high quality components are just as important as the speakers they are attached to. And you get what you pay for.

The problem I'm having is finding speakers. I don't know much about speakers, but I know I don't want to spend $150 per speaker. This is a 7.1 AVR so $1,000 is a little much for speakers in my apartment. Atleast for now. I am looking at a few Sony speakers. Center: SS-CN5000 or SS-CR3000 (which would take care of the surround left/right. and Left/Right: SS-BB1000

Ok, speakers....please don't buy Sony. I few years ago they actually made alright sounding speakers, this is NOT the case any longer. Just because it's a 7.1 receiver doesn't mean you need 7 speakers, spend a little more and get 5 good speakers. Check out the sponsers for this site: Axiom Audio loudspeakers,home theater speakers,stereo speakers - AxiomAudio you can either build your own with bookshelfs all around and a matching center channel, or look at their premade HT systems. Axiom gets great writeups.

SVS is another company to consider. I don't know how their speakers are, however, if they incorporate the same philosophy with their speakers as they do with their subs you're good to go. SVSound - Home

Also look at Klipsch, Boston, PSB, AV123 AV123.


If anyone can give me any insight into anything listed, or just make other recommendations. I'm looking for something that is reliable, because my Onkyo right now, the sub has gone out. And the surround rears seems to be acting up.

Also, I've configured each channel, and there are a lot of times I need to turn up/down the volume depending on what's going on in the movie. Is there any kind of suggestions anyone can make so I don't have to do that so much?

Can you explain this in more detail. Do you adjust the levels of the channels or the master volume? Once you've properly configured each channel you shouldn't have to adjust the levels of the individual channels, but turning volume up depending upon the source isn't uncommon.

Thanks a lot,
Jarrod

HT - Denon 3808ci | Elite Pro-111FD | PS3 60gb | Panamax 5300PM | NHT ST4 | NHT SB2 | NHT SC1 | SVS 20-39 | NHT SA3

#3 of 8 OFFLINE   Chemikalburn

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Posted January 23 2008 - 04:29 AM

Thanks for the quick reply Mike. I like Denon, and I'll look into getting that receiver, or the step up. Thanks for the recommendation.

As far as the speakers go I was planning on only having 5 currently and then when I move, upgrading to 7. i looked at the axiom site. It's a little more pricey than what I would like to spend. Also, it didn't seem like they had much variety, although I'm sure the quality is out of this world. They are seriously great looking speakers, and when I do have more money to throw around, I'll be looking into that.

The problem with the volume is probably just my own. I know I should configure via calibration dvd, but I'm just now learning more about this kinda stuff. Mind you, my friends and the people I hang out with know nothing about A/V, so it's hard to know what i have to do. I usually have to turn the master volume up/down when watching a movie if it's too quiet/loud. It gets annoying. I'll get a calibration dvd when i get my new receiver.

Thanks for your help

#4 of 8 OFFLINE   Mike_J_D

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Posted January 23 2008 - 06:28 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chemikalburn
Thanks for the quick reply Mike. I like Denon, and I'll look into getting that receiver, or the step up. Thanks for the recommendation.

As far as the speakers go I was planning on only having 5 currently and then when I move, upgrading to 7. i looked at the axiom site. It's a little more pricey than what I would like to spend. Also, it didn't seem like they had much variety, although I'm sure the quality is out of this world. They are seriously great looking speakers, and when I do have more money to throw around, I'll be looking into that.

The problem with the volume is probably just my own. I know I should configure via calibration dvd, but I'm just now learning more about this kinda stuff. Mind you, my friends and the people I hang out with know nothing about A/V, so it's hard to know what i have to do. I usually have to turn the master volume up/down when watching a movie if it's too quiet/loud. It gets annoying. I'll get a calibration dvd when i get my new receiver.

Thanks for your help

Jarrod,

You're welcome, and welcome to HTF. I would definately go with the Denon over the Sony. As for speakers, the SVS package looks pretty nice..maybe you could search here for some reviews, or contact SVS and talk to them - they have excellent customer service. Also AV123 makes some great speakers as well. I would recommend taking your time, this isn't something you should rush into and have to rebuy speakers or equipment a few years down the line. For example, I've had my NHT speakers for 6 or 7 years; but I knew that I would hold onto them for a long time when I bought them originally.

Also, don't feel like you have to buy everything all at the same time. Buy the fronts, then the center, then the rears. It isn't a race, pace yourself.

As for calibration, what you need can be bought at Radio Shack RadioShack.com - Home Entertainment: Digital-Display Sound-Level Meter. They use to have an analog version, but maybe that went away. This will allow you to properly calibrate your speakers to your listening position. Then you won't have to worry too much about adjusting levels or master volume.

Feel free to PM me with any questions. I can't say it enough, this isn't a race, don't feel like you have to rush to the finish line.

Mike

Here is a review of the SVS SBS-01 done by Sound and Vision. This is a complete set for under $1000 or $1,149 with a kick ass sub (which is really important). Check it out ---> http://svsound.com/R....BS-01-PB12.pdf
HT - Denon 3808ci | Elite Pro-111FD | PS3 60gb | Panamax 5300PM | NHT ST4 | NHT SB2 | NHT SC1 | SVS 20-39 | NHT SA3

#5 of 8 OFFLINE   Chemikalburn

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Posted January 23 2008 - 07:08 AM

I'l definately pick up the calibration meter. My friend works at a place where he gets sweet deals on NHT speakers. I'm talking 60-70 % off. could you recommend any NHT's?

#6 of 8 OFFLINE   Mike_J_D

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Posted January 23 2008 - 07:46 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chemikalburn
I'l definately pick up the calibration meter. My friend works at a place where he gets sweet deals on NHT speakers. I'm talking 60-70 % off. could you recommend any NHT's?

I run all NHT speakers.....I have the older verions of the new Classic series - basically they just made them look different. My setup is as follows - Classic 4 (fronts), Absolute Center, Classic 2 (rears). I love them, they are accurate and plenty loud for me. If you could get the Classic 3 (front and rear) and a Three C (center) at 60-70 percent off I wouldn't even consider anything else - but that's just my opinion.

I have a Denon 3808ci running mine and it's a mighty nice combination. But, if I were you I would go listen to them first, everybodies ears are different.
HT - Denon 3808ci | Elite Pro-111FD | PS3 60gb | Panamax 5300PM | NHT ST4 | NHT SB2 | NHT SC1 | SVS 20-39 | NHT SA3

#7 of 8 OFFLINE   Bluzman

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Posted January 27 2008 - 08:23 AM

If you want at least some of the same features as the Sony DG910 provides and you like Denon, get the AVR-1908. It won't have 3 HDMI inputs but at least it handles audio received via HDMI unlike the rest of the AVR 1x08 series.

#8 of 8 OFFLINE   jlefevre

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Posted January 28 2008 - 08:37 AM

My experience so far on speakers with the auto calibration receivers has been that any good full range speaker will calibrate just fine so don't kill yourself thinking you have to buy a matched set . My front left and right speakers ar LARGE folded hors with a rear loaded 12 in bass driver and a horn midrange and horn HF. They are ones I custom built over 30 years ago whne I was just using plain old stereo. My center channel is a 3 way system that has a 10 in bass driver hidden behind the RPT and two cone midrange and 2 cone tweeters in a small enclosure above the RPT. The rears and 2 way in wall JBL with 8 inch bass drivers and a HF cone . The sub is a dual 4 ohm voice coil 12 in car subwoofer in an enclosure that is about 9 cu. ft. volume and bass port tuned to 21 HZ. I have had two auto calibrate recievers, a pioneer and now a Yamaha and the both calibrate without error using both there internal amps and also with the all tube power amps I am using on all speakers at present.





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