Jump to content



Sign up for a free account to remove the pop-up ads

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and remove the pop-up ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.


Photo
- - - - -

Piecing together a decent HT setup as I can afford it, need help with a plan!


  • You cannot start a new topic
  • Please log in to reply
30 replies to this topic

#1 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 10 2011 - 11:07 PM

Hi all, first post so I hope I don't come off too terribly ignorent. Like the title says I want to put together a nice HT setup, however I can't just drop the kinda cash to put it all together at once :P.  The good news is I have alot of components already so hopfully I can use what I have and start buying the rest piece by piece. So onto what I have; PS50C6500 Samsung 50" Plasma  (New pride and joy, she is so beautiful :P) DVD1920S Denon DVD Player AVR1906S Denon Reciever RTI4C Polk Audio B/Shelf speakers x2 PSW505 Polk Audio 12" Sub Xbox 360 (dunno how relevant this is but figured I'd throw it in) Now I pride myself in doing alot of research on products before I buy (hence my post here), but most the audio equipment above i bought about 5 and a half years ago when I was younger and stupider and just wanted to buy a awesome stereo.  That said I'm still fairly certain it's decent stuff and I'm hoping I can fit it into a HT setup nicely (my main concerns are that it will be dated or not the best suited equipment for HT). What I'm looking for is a plan as to what pieces I should be looking to get and maybe some suggestions on what those pieces should be so that I don't end up wasting money and make sure I get a setup I can be proud of (my girlfriend and I watch ALOT of movies). So first thing I was thinking I would need was a Blu-ray player so that I can make the most of the TV (and the rest of the setup as it develops).  I have heard good things about the Panasonic BD-65 and the Oppo 93.  I realise there is quite a price gap and I'm still tossing up whether to get the BD-65 this weekend or save for a few weeks and get the Oppo.  I guess selling the DVD player would also be a option to grab a little extra money (is there any point in owning a DVD player when you have a Blu-ray player?). Next thing would be to go for some surround sound.  Was thinking I could move the 2 bookshelf speakers I currently have around the back and but 2x front and 1x centre speakers to make a nice 5.1 setup.  I really like the idea of 7.1 sound, however I'm worried that it may take up too much space (as we don't have a theter room, just the lounge) and with 5.1 it should be fairly easy to move the rear speakers out of the way when they are not in use, that said, I could be...convinced...that 7.1 is the way to go :). So that's where I'm at right now, I still have alot to learn (don't know what half the buttons on the reciever do :P) but I want to get this setup underway and I can learn as I go.  Please don't hesitate to say things like "that reciever is rubbish, you're gonna need something better if you wanna be serious", if that's the truth of the matter then I'd rather save for a while longer and do it right. Thanks for reading all, I know it turned into a bit of a essay but wanted to make sure I got everything in, also pretty excited about moving forward with this!

#2 of 31 OFFLINE   Todd Erwin

Todd Erwin

    Screenwriter



  • 2,506 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 16 2008
  • Real Name:Todd Erwin
  • LocationOrange County, CA

Posted May 11 2011 - 04:49 AM

First and foremost, you should add a Blu-ray player, preferably one that has, at the very least, a Netflix app. From there, perhaps look to upgrade your receiver to one that can either accept multi-channel (7.1 or 5.1) PCM over HDMI or can decode the newer hi-res, lossless audio codecs, such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio, and upgrade your speaker system to 5.1 or 7.1, depending on your room size and dimensions. Amazon is currently selling a nice Denon HTIB (DHT-391XP) for under $320 that may be worth looking into. As for Blu-ray players, my brand preferences are Panasonic, Sony, and Samsung. If price were no object, I'd spring for the Oppo.

#3 of 31 OFFLINE   JohnRice

JohnRice

    Lead Actor



  • 8,641 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 20 2000
  • Real Name:John

Posted May 11 2011 - 07:24 AM

The receiver and speakers you have now are far better than anything you will get in a $300 HTiB, so even though the receiver doesn't do the HD audio formats, I would keep it for now.  HTiBs are just a waste of money when you plan to upgrade beyond them.  You can get some larger Polk RTi speakers, like you were saying.  The Panasonic 65 does NOT have a regular digital audio output, only hdmi, so it basically will not work with the receiver you have now. So, what I would do is add a BR player and the needed RTi speakers, then get a better sub.  Polk makes good speakers at a nice value, but their subs are not very good.  I would probably not upgrade the receiver until after those others are done, and get a decent one, not just the cheapest thing available.

The Hybrid System

The Music Part: Emotiva XSP-1, Thiel CS 3.6, Emotiva XPA-2, Marantz SA8004, Emotiva ERC-3, SVS PB-12 Plus 2

The Surround Part: Sherbourn PT-7030, Thiel SCS3, Emotiva XPA-5, Polk & Emotiva Surrounds.


#4 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 11 2011 - 12:11 PM

Thanks guys this is already really helpful.  I'm starting to lean towards saving for the Oppo.  If it means I can use my current reciever right off the bat and then have something that I imagine will last ages. I should also mention that I live in New Zealand, so while I really wish I could use Netflix and such it's just not gonna be happening anytime in the near future I don't think.

#5 of 31 OFFLINE   DaveF

DaveF

    Moderator



  • 15,774 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 04 2001
  • Real Name:David Fischer
  • LocationOne Loudoun, Ashburn, VA

Posted May 14 2011 - 03:49 AM

I suggest considering a new receiver. It's not necessary; you've got a nice one. But you're in a place to switch to 100% HDMI connections. It simplifies your cabling, reduces the rats-nest behind the receiver, and may allow more choice on the Blu-ray player selection. I was in a similar situation two years ago, and because my non-HDMI receiver was out of connectors, I could either buy a $200 Blu-ray player with the right TOSlink output, or get a new HDMI receiver and buy a $100 Blu-ray player. I found the receiver I wanted on sale, and did the upgrade. I changed everything to HDMI and sold the DVD player for $20.

#6 of 31 OFFLINE   JohnRice

JohnRice

    Lead Actor



  • 8,641 posts
  • Join Date: Jun 20 2000
  • Real Name:John

Posted May 14 2011 - 04:25 AM

I may need to be corrected on the Panasonic 65.  My folks had gotten a Panasonic player recently, and when I went over to hook it up, found it didn't have any digital audio outputs, even though Best Buy's site said it did.  Since they don't have a receiver with hdmi, they had to return it.  I thought it was a 65, but maybe it was a different one.  It is a brand new model and their regular price is about $100. As Dave said, if you are running out of digital inputs, maybe you should look into a new receiver now.  If not, I still recommend waiting until toward most other stuff has been upgraded.  With the other items you currently have, upgrading the receiver now simply makes no sense, unless place cable simplicity over sound quality.  FWIW, I'm usually at odds with a lot of people here in this area.  I usually don't agree with the general attitude of updating codecs and processing first when the other equipment is in need of improvement.  I also generally think people spend too much on video equipment and too little on audio. I'll say again.  Looking at the rest of the system, I just don't see a reason to update your electronics until you have a more complete speaker setup.

The Hybrid System

The Music Part: Emotiva XSP-1, Thiel CS 3.6, Emotiva XPA-2, Marantz SA8004, Emotiva ERC-3, SVS PB-12 Plus 2

The Surround Part: Sherbourn PT-7030, Thiel SCS3, Emotiva XPA-5, Polk & Emotiva Surrounds.


#7 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 14 2011 - 05:34 PM

Hey guys cheers for all the replies, really appreciate it. I have been browsing around the forums and have noticed a few people building their own subs and saving quite a bit.  I have been thinking this could work double well for me in that I am going to have to buy stuff from the US anyway (NZ prices are insane, it's literally 40-50% cheaper for me to get from the states AFTER shipping), but by building I save on shipping space by only having to sent the driver and amp.  It also opens me up to alot more brands and options that unfortunately just aren't available here. This got me thinking, I've seen a few posts about building subs, but nothing really about building other loudspeakers.  Is that something that is practical to do?  I am trying to think of ways I can stretch my money to go further and nice floorstanding speakers cost a lot as it, the shipping on them is horrendous (although still cheaper than buying here rofl). Finally, does anyone know if decent receivers have auto switching AC voltages?  We run 240V here in New Zealand and I would hate to import a really nice receiver just to have it fry when I plug it into the mains.  Also, does anyone know if any of the decent brands have international warranties?  I know I might be pushing my luck there but it would be a pretty big bonus if one of them did. Cheers guys, these forums have been great in helping me to build a good system in a environment that doesn't seem to want me to have it :P

#8 of 31 OFFLINE   winniw

winniw

    Second Unit



  • 287 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 19 2010

Posted May 15 2011 - 04:33 AM

Building your own speakers can save you some money.  How much you can save really depends on the size and type of speaker.

If you have some skills, some tools and the interest in doing the project, it is definitely worth consideration.  Speaker building is fun and very rewarding.  If it sounds like your cup of tea, I say -- go for it.  The standard speaker building cabinet material is 3/4" MDF.  Is that available at a reasonable cost in NZ?

You will need some wood glue for the panels and polyfil for stuffing the cabinets (so they don't sound hollow) and of course, whatever drivers and crossover parts are required by the design.  I use half-lap joints in my constrution so I don't even need screws.  The cabinets are so strong that you can jump up and down on them.  You can use a proven design, as on the Parts Express website (or found all over the net) or you can start studying theory and design your own from the ground up.


http://www.parts-exp...rojectindex.cfm 


You would need some cutting tools, preferably a table saw and some way to cut accurate driver holes.  You need some basic soldering tools and skills and some way to finish the boxes when they are done.  That's about it.



#9 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 15 2011 - 07:55 AM

I do have a interest in building them myself as a bit of a hobby, just wanted to make sure I wasn't going to bite off more than I can chew and make a mess of things.  I have used 18mm MDF before and it's fairly cheap.  That's ever so slightly thinner than 3/4" but I imagine it will work the same.  Already have the glue and I imagine the fill will be available somewhere, I've been wanting to buy a router for a while for some other projects so I could just get around to buying that and then I can easily cut accurate driver holes. Just got a little more learning to do :P, when I started considering this I didn't even know what a crossover was, I'm still a bit sketchy on a bit of the terminology and parts of a speaker but I'm getting there pretty quick I think.  The crossover doesn't look like it takes much more than that basic electronics skills I learn't in high school anyway once you have some plans. Cheers for the help mate.

#10 of 31 OFFLINE   Robert_J

Robert_J

    Lead Actor



  • 8,247 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 22 2000
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMississippi

Posted May 15 2011 - 08:15 AM

I run the DIII's from the PE link above.  As long as you get a 4 ohm stable receiver, they are a great value.  There are also hundreds and hundreds of other proven designs on the web and many different price points. To save on shipping, you can use a car audio sub and a pro amp.  Can you find a dealer for Infinity or Resonant Engineering?  Depending on the model, you can use a Behringer or Nady amp for an awesome sub.

#11 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 15 2011 - 10:44 AM

Wow, just had a better look at that link and there are some awesome designs there, I have actually been looking for more projects to take on to keep myself busy and it looks like speaker building might become a little addiction of mine :P I'm already planning builds. @Robert_J: I can find Infinity speakers here, haven't had tome to do a proper price comparison because I'm at work atm but I think it might be cheaper for me to shop them from the states anyway. Just for my own learning, can you explain how car subs are different? When I hear that my brain goes "you're not putting it in a car, this is not right!" While I'm sure there is a good reason you suggested it, I just want to be able to understand how it all works.

#12 of 31 OFFLINE   Robert_J

Robert_J

    Lead Actor



  • 8,247 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 22 2000
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMississippi

Posted May 15 2011 - 11:45 AM

The Kappa Perfect is a proven sub that works in both car and home environments.



can you explain how car subs are different?

Marketing.  You have to look at the Theile/Small parameters to determine if a sub (car or home) will work for your needs.  There are a lot of guys that run Fi Car Audio and Resonant Engineering subs in their home.  Both are really marketed to the car audio guys.  The old Shiva and Tempest from Adire Audio started as home subs but the car audio guys found out how good they were.  The Dayton RS subs (from Parts Express) aren't marketed to either group.  They state their parameters and features and let the user determine if they fit.  Turns out that people are running them in their home and car.


Now that we know the driver doesn't matter, the enclosure does.  Car boxes are small.  Home boxes are large.  Hoffman's Iron Law (Google it) is at work.  You want extension (playing the low notes) so you either go big or through huge amounts of EQ and power at a small sub.  That costs money for parts and experimentation.



#13 of 31 OFFLINE   winniw

winniw

    Second Unit



  • 287 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 19 2010

Posted May 15 2011 - 03:47 PM

Sam,


It sounds like you found a new hobby!  Speaker building is a fantastic excuse to buy yourself a new router too!  If you know what a router is, you won't have any problem getting good results with this hobby.


I get my polyfil, which is usually "Dacron" at the local Wal-Mart in their sewing department.  It looks like a big ball of cotton in a plastic bag.  You could probably get it at any sewing supply store.  It is used to stuff pillows.


Here are a couple of links that you might find very useful at some point.


http://www.diyspeakers.net/ 


http://www.diyaudio....s/loudspeakers/ 

 


Have fun.



#14 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 16 2011 - 07:27 AM

Thanks! I'm actually really excited about starting to put together some speakers.  I'm looking at designs all over the place, some of those ones on parts-express look awesome! Also just took my first step towards proper home entertainment, ordered a Oppo BDP-93, couldn't resist it.  Bought it from the online store shipping from the US because it was HALF the price of buying it here even after taking into account international shipping.  My only concern is the Blu-ray zoning.  Does anyone know if the BDP-93 is like my old DVD player in that you got a certain number of region shifts before it locked you in?  Even if I can't there are other ways around the problem but I would rather just have it work off the bat :P...still, when you are getting 50% off you cant complain too much :D @Robert_J: Thanks for clearing all that up for me, and cheers for pointing me towards Hoffman's Iron Law, this stuff is really interesting to learn.  With regard to the Kappa Perfect, I can get a bunch of different kinds here (http://pricespy.co.n...ams=l=s69902716).  Is one of those what you recommend I should go for for a new sub?  My current one has been kinda lackluster, but I don't really wanna spend a lot of money on something that will provide a small improvement, I would actually rather spend a bit more and have something that gives me a substantially better sound.  Will the Kappa be able to provide that do you think?

#15 of 31 OFFLINE   Robert_J

Robert_J

    Lead Actor



  • 8,247 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 22 2000
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMississippi

Posted May 16 2011 - 07:52 AM

Do you have any dealers for Resonant Engineering or Ascendant Audio?  You may have to look on some can audio forums dedicated to NZ to determine this.  You won't find these companies in large, retail stores.  What about the larger car audio companies like JBL or Alpine?  They have some subs that work well in the home.  Finally, if you are going to order from PE, why not one of their Dayton Audio or TC Sounds drivers?

#16 of 31 OFFLINE   Robert_J

Robert_J

    Lead Actor



  • 8,247 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 22 2000
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMississippi

Posted May 16 2011 - 08:10 AM

http://www.haoleb.com/kappaperfect.htm

#17 of 31 OFFLINE   winniw

winniw

    Second Unit



  • 287 posts
  • Join Date: Dec 19 2010

Posted May 16 2011 - 04:13 PM

Ohhh, yeah, TC Sounds... something like this, Epic 12" (if it fits your specs)... http://www.parts-exp...tnumber=293-650


Put a couple of those back-to-back in an opposed, side-firing box.  Mmm-hmmm, that's the ticket!


That will keep your system kinda high-end, like your Oppo 93... nice choice there.



#18 of 31 OFFLINE   Technica

Technica

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: May 10 2011

Posted May 16 2011 - 04:43 PM

Whoa the sub in that pic looks amazing :D. I've been able to find JBL and alpine here, but given it's not that much more expensive for me to get the TC here including shipping might just consider that...especially given I'm probably gonna have to ship a amp here anyway. Rofl, 2 of those TC monsters would be getting costly...but you are tempting me damn you :P. Trying to decide what to build first.  The sub seems like it would be a little simpler and therefore maybe a better starting project....but I have no surround sound atm and I do have a sub...although it's so lackluster and all this talk has me excited as hell, aghh desisions! Also Oppo rang and told me the bluray zone would be wrong for New Zealand...bought it anyway...too much of a saving and something like 80% of movie production companies decided not to zone their movies anyway...might have to give it a zoneless mod at some point I guess...but still tooooo much saving lol. Thanks for all this guys.

#19 of 31 OFFLINE   Robert_J

Robert_J

    Lead Actor



  • 8,247 posts
  • Join Date: Aug 22 2000
  • Real Name:Robert
  • LocationMississippi

Posted May 17 2011 - 12:41 AM

TC Sounds.  I know a little about their subs.  I have or had the following: 3 - 12" Epics - Sold under the Stryke Audio brand a few years ago. 1 - 12" TC9 - http://www.soundspli...nformation.html (built by TC Sounds) 1 - 12" custom TC9 - http://s3.photobucke...mview=slideshow (built it myself from TC Sounds parts) 2 - TC12 OEM - http://audiojunkies....95-shipped.html 3 - 15" TC-3000 - I have 2 of the quad 2 ohm coil subs like the one in the video.  The odd one is a dual 2 ohm with a black cone that looks like the Axis subs from PE. 2 - db12's - These were part of the old SVS cylinder subs.  I picked them up when someone upgraded to a better SVS driver.  I cloned the cylinder subs and traded the guy in the video for the black TC-3000 above. 1 - 12" TC7 - - The motor (magnet) can be seen in my slideshow as the original frame/magnet I bought.  I only wanted the frame for that build.  I had a 15" TC-2000 top assembly where the original owner had buckled the aluminum cone.  I ripped the cone off and gently removed the coil/spider assembly.  Add a custom 12" basket and a surplus 12" cone and I built another sub.  Awesome little thing.  I traded it to the guy in the video for a classic Rockford Fosgate car amp. 1 - Elemental Designs E12A.22 - TC9 with a flat, honeycomb cone.  Never got to hear this one.  Damaged during shipping. 1 - Elemental Designs E10K.44 - TC2+ (same motor as an Epic) with a flat, honeycomb cone.  My cousin-in-law ran this in his truck. 4 - custom TC9 18's - TC9 motor from an E12A.22 coupled with 18" recone kits from Fi Car Audio. 1 - SVS 12" Ultra driver - The only TC Sounds underhund design.  An Audiomobile MASS motor (still had they label under the magnet boot) on a basket like my custom sub and an aluminum cone like the Epic.  Sold it to a guy in Ohio and it was lost in transit by FedEx. 4 - custom TC-3000 neo 15's - Build is in progress.  I have 4 very rare 3HP neodymium motors and 15" Axis style baskets.  Surplus cones from Sundown Audio with other spare parts.  These will be some monsters with close to 40mm of excursion. 4 - custom 12" LMS subs - Build is in progress.  Two motors are from the E12A.22 subs (TC9) and two motors from ssackett subs (like a TC9 but instead of dual 1" magnet slugs, these have triple .75" magnet slugs.  All else is machined the same)  Read up on the LMS at PE.  These have variable winding voice coils that lower distortion by flattening the BL (measure of magnet force) across the excursion of the cone. 1 - TC2+ 12" - Build is in progress.  Spare parts to build something similar to an Epic.

#20 of 31 OFFLINE   Nick Wilfahrt

Nick Wilfahrt

    Auditioning



  • 12 posts
  • Join Date: Mar 31 2011

Posted May 17 2011 - 10:56 AM

The other thing you could do Sam is look around to see if you could find any floor standers that are blown. Once in a while you can get lucky finding nice speakers that people abandoned because they are blown. Then you don't have to deal with tuning the box to get it just right, however you seem pretty excited so best of luck and definitely post back and let us know how they turn out!




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users