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New to home audio - Need some advice picking speakers/subs!


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#1 of 12 OFFLINE   krazyeyezkilla

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Posted February 11 2011 - 03:40 AM

Hi All, looks like an awesome forum you have here I'm glad to be a part of it. As per the title, I'm new to all this home audio stuff. I recently grabbed a Denon AVR791 for $400 CAD to use with a cheap 32" 720p TV and PS3. I'm a big TV guy (HBO mainly, soccer and baseball too) and an even bigger music lover, with some time for gaming and less for movies.My budget, ideally, for the entire setup is $1000CAD but having spent almost half of that on just the reciever, I'm pretty sure there's no way I could get a 7.1 setup for under a grand all said and done. My room is a small bedroom right now so a 2.1 is fine for the time being, eventually a 5.1 and a 7.1 is the goal when I have a larger space. Last night I finally bought some speaker wire from my place of work, I don't know the technical terms for it but it's got a thick blue jacket, it's 14awg, and both the positive and negative wires inside are jacketted as well. There's also a very fine white string/hair like material inside, not sure what that's for?? Anyway, I hooked up two small two-way Celestion speakers my dad had lying around the basement from the 80's and they actually sound solid, despite the lack of any real low end. I think a sub woofer should be my next purchase. Can anyone recommend a go-to sub choice on a budget? I recognize that pricing and options are much better in the U.S. than Canada but I'm all ears anyway. Are there brands/retailers I should steer clear of or gravitate towards? Is the sub something to spend more on compared to satellites for example? Any/all advice, tutorials, links are appreciated. TIA

#2 of 12 OFFLINE   Robert_J

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Posted February 11 2011 - 07:10 AM

I suggest you keep the Celestion speakers until you can get a matching set of 3 (left, center, right).  Get a sub now.  Being in Canada, you will be limited but look here first: http://www.funkywaves.net/ - Nathan Funk is a great speaker and sub designer.  His standard subs are very, very good. http://www.creativesound.ca/ Elemental Designs may ship up north.  SVS has a retailer up there.  The other companies are usually too small to deal with customs and other headaches of shipping across the border.

#3 of 12 OFFLINE   CB750

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Posted February 11 2011 - 12:29 PM

Welcome AV About the only Speakers we would not recommend is any of the variations of Bose cube based speakers or HTib systems, as the are over priced and  provide marginal performance compared to other brands. You first step is to establish your total speaker budget.  Even if you decide to do it piece by piece you need to have to have a total system in mind so that your system will have some level of coordination.   Since you are totally new to HT to help you establish a  budget you might listen to a number of 5.1 systems to give you an idea of what you might expect to hear at various price levels.   When it comes to speakers the decision should be the system that sounds best to your ears among those you have listened to that fits your budget. We have found that recommending HT equipment to Canadians if difficult because in many instances you cannot order items found on our websites their are significant differences in prices.  Since you are looking for a Budget Sub first many of use would recommend those made by Dayton but I am not sure if you can buy them in Canada either retail or on the Internet.   On the other had one of the Budget 5.1 systems that is recommended is the Energy take 5.1 classic which sells on line for $400.   Energy is a Canadian company so you should be able to find them in Canada.

#4 of 12 OFFLINE   krazyeyezkilla

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Posted February 13 2011 - 06:38 AM

Thanks for both of those posts guys, I will get to reseraching ASAP. I ran Audyssey setup today just with my 2.0 setup in my small room and I'm really not sure what affect it may have had on the sound coming out of my speakers now as opposed to before Audyssey. I'm guessing that my results weren't great because of the size of the room and the number of obstacles and walls in the way. To be honest I've gotten used to the two small speakers and from the right listening position, I find I get a very reasonable sound even with some nice low end blended in. Still, a sub needs to be my next addition so I'll take your advice and get to it. Thx again, I'll post my progress.

#5 of 12 OFFLINE   krazyeyezkilla

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Posted February 14 2011 - 01:24 AM

Looking at this sub for $129.99 it's a Polk PSW111 (last year's model I think), would cost me $150 w/tax and shipping - http://www.futuresho...870feb581e6en02. I like that it's small, like my room is and some people I've read describe it as a very nice sounding tight sub, not extremely loud or boomy, which would seem to fit my application.Keeping in mind I'm limited to Canadian retailers, while I'm less than 2 hours from Buffalo, I don't go stateside very often. Should I give this unit a try?



#6 of 12 OFFLINE   Robert_J

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Posted February 14 2011 - 05:44 AM

The Polk "sub" only plays down to 38hz http://www.lavasubs....fer_Comparisons .  I have speakers that play lower than that.  Give Lava a call and see if they ship to Canada.

#7 of 12 OFFLINE   krazyeyezkilla

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Posted February 14 2011 - 06:35 AM

Thanks for that info Robert. Price is still an issue, haven't talked to Lava yet but if I'm looking at one of their subs then I'll be in a different (higher) price range and I'm assuming I'd have more options at more money as opposed to the $150 'at my door' price for the Polk.

#8 of 12 OFFLINE   Robert_J

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Posted February 14 2011 - 10:57 AM

If you can handle the price, SVS has a retailer in Canada - http://www.sonicboomaudio.com/

#9 of 12 OFFLINE   krazyeyezkilla

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Posted February 19 2011 - 03:45 AM

I've turned my attention to a Velodyne VDR 12, it's on sale for $279 CAD right now. I know it's still an entry level/beginner level unit but it should be enough of a step up from that 8" Polk while still being affordable enough compared to REAL subs like SVS lowest models that retail for $650 here in Canada. Anyone have any comments on the VDR12? It's still just for a small bedroom, eventually a larger space, and still I'm on a budget for this entry level system.

#10 of 12 OFFLINE   Robert_J

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Posted February 19 2011 - 04:02 AM

Based on comments from another site, the VDR 12 is a great sub if you can get it at the $300 to $350 range.  Since it is on sale for even lower, get it.  Sometimes they go as high as $800+

#11 of 12 OFFLINE   krazyeyezkilla

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Posted February 19 2011 - 09:00 AM

Thx for the assurance, I did indeed pick one up and I just got it hooked up this second. The only cable I had lying around is an old rca cable but it looks to be of reasonably high quality, just a bit old. From my dad's quasi-audiophile setup circa 1989 most likely. Anyway, should I look to upgrade to a Y-cable asap, and if so what major advantage am I gaining? In the meantime I'm going to re-run audyssey and try learn about low pass/hi pass crossovers...any tips appreciated. TIA

#12 of 12 OFFLINE   Al.Anderson

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Posted February 19 2011 - 04:45 PM

If you have it connected to the receiver's LFE/sub port you don't use a Y connector.  (The RCA cable is fine.)




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