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Looking to build my first Home Theater.


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3 replies to this topic

#1 of 4 OFFLINE   RSKearnel

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Posted February 14 2011 - 04:45 PM

Hey Everyone, I am excited to join this forum and hopefully get some good insight! So I am looking to build my first really home theater and I am really looking for a good system, but do have some restriction set by my girlfriend I am looking for a compact size system. I have done some research and am stuck between the Mirage Nanosat System and Sub or the Boston Acoustic Soundware XS. I also have no idea what receivers would be recommended for either of these, from what I had read the Boston Acoustic pair great with Denon so I was checking out the Denon 1611. I also had my eyes on the Yamaha A700. The room this is going in is 16ft by 10ft. The seating for the TV is about 15ft and its just a regular couch and its a regular shaped room. The reason I am looking at the two speaker sets I mentioned above is because I was looking to mount them in the wall in the corners of the room except the center channel. I am open to suggestions beyound what I mentioned but trying to stay around the my $1500 budget. Thanks!

#2 of 4 OFFLINE   Jason Charlton

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Posted February 15 2011 - 02:48 AM

Hi Bob welcome to the forum! First, check out this handy guide to speaker placement from Dolby (we post this link a lot around here, ). You'll see that placing all the speakers in the corner is probably not the best option. Also note that for 5.1 systems, the surround speakers are generally placed to the sides of the listener, not behind them.


How large is your TV?  A 15 foot viewing distance seems a long way away.  Is there any chance of moving the sofa a bit closer?  For reference, I sit about 11 feet away from my 96" front projection screen.


As for your speaker options, I don't have any firsthand experience with either, but I have seen both recommended.  The most important thing is how they sound to you.  Speaker selection is very individual - only you can decide which sounds best to you.


On the reciever front, the important thing to look at is speaker impedance.  Make sure the receiver is rated at or below your speaker's impedance.  Most speakers are 8 ohm, and most receivers are 8 ohm.  If you have low-impedance speakers (4 ohm) you'll need a beefier receiver to power them.


Personally, I don't buy into the thought that certain receivers "pair" with certain speakers that much.  Receiver's should be bought based on their connectivity options first and foremost.  Secondly, should be ancillary features like streaming Internet radio, iPod docks, and things like that.  The last thing you should be concerned with is wattage.  Those numbers are mostly useless.


The standard advice I like to give for folks shopping for a receiver is to determine if you need "analog-to-digital upconversion".  This feature allows any analog video device (the Wii is the typical culprit) that's connected to the receiver to be output via HDMI.  This feature is found only in mid-level models.  If you don't have a Wii (or old LD player, VHS), then you likely won't need this feature and don't need to go overboard on the receiver.


Denon receivers are commonly recommended, as are some Yamaha models, and my personal preference, Onkyo.  The Onkyo 508 is a great option, and the next model up, the 608 includes the analog-to-digital upconversion feature.


Save as much money as possible for the speakers.  They're the most important piece of the puzzle.


Also, with the speakers, if you have the option of getting a 5.0 system and shopping for a separate subwoofer, I would recommend going that way.  Good speaker manufacturers often don't make good subwoofers.  There are excellent subwoofers out there (Dayton, Lava, etc.) that can offer better performance for only a bit more $$.


I'm sure others will chime in with options.  Have fun!


Are you new to the Home Theater Forum? Stop by the New Member Introductions area and introduce yourself! See you there!


#3 of 4 OFFLINE   Robert_J

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Posted February 15 2011 - 02:48 AM

Welcome Bob.  This section of the forum is geared more towards complete room renovations and more advanced projects.  But that's OK, we can still work this here. Speakers - Which speakers sound good to YOU? Receiver - Which one has the appropriate inputs for your current and future needs?  Will the receiver drive the impedance load of the speakers?  That's the only requirement.  I do suggest that you get one with an automatic calibration system. Speaker placement - Here is the best set of guidelines - http://www.dolby.com...uide/index.html . Budget - That's a good budget.  I suggest spending the majority of it on the speakers.  About $400 for a Pioneer receiver (or other brand) and $1,100 for the speakers.  With that budget you can do well if you go internet direct. Room - 16 feet long and your viewing distance is 15 feet?  Is the screen 10 feet wide?  I use a 103" screen with my projector and my viewing distance is about 12 feet (front row).

#4 of 4 OFFLINE   RSKearnel

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Posted February 15 2011 - 06:14 AM

Thanks for the guide to speaker placement that is a great tool, wish I would have found that before.


I could move the furiture forward the TV is only a 55" LCD-LED so that is a definite option.

Sorry about the post here, it makes sense though that my project is a lot more simple that most of the other, now that I am exploring this page more.

From what I have learned so far from you guys is that I am probably leaning towards my first choice of speakers and a seperate sub.  I am going to a Best Buy near where I live soon to get a chance to listen to those speakers and hopefully get a chance to see what receivers are a good option.  Thanks for pointing out Onkyo as well for me, hopefully I will get the chance to compare some of my options.


I have learned a lot so far I will hopefully get closer to decision when get to listen to these speakers.


Thanks again, I love getting informed feedback from folks who have had more experience at this than I have.






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