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A prospective home theater...comments appreciated (1 Viewer)

Shaun Graham

Agent
Joined
Apr 28, 2003
Messages
30
I'm a poor college student working on a limited budget, so I'm trying to put together a system that will suffice what I like to think are audiophile ears but leave some room to grow as well. Here's what I have lined up, I'd appreciate if people could help me decide on a reciever or give suggestions for interchangable components I haven't thought of:

Reciever: Panasonic SA-HE100 OR Pioneer VSX-811S - aprox. $250

Speakers: Onkyo SKSHT-500 (refurb from Onkyo's website) - $184.95

DVD player: Panasonic DVD-S35S - aprox. $100


Total: $534.95
 

ChrisMatson

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2000
Messages
2,184
Location
Iowa, USA
Real Name
Chris
Are you thinking more about music or home theater?

I think any of the items in your proposed package will work well for home theater, but may leave something to be desired for listening to music in stereo.

I am partial to Yamaha receivers in the ~$300 price range.

What minimum criteria are you looking for--inputs/ouputs, 5.1, 6.1, 7.1, etc...?
 

KevinST

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Oct 15, 2000
Messages
55
I am partial to Onkyo, I have owned two, the first I had for nearly 5 years and it never failed, I just upgraded because I got a good deal on a new one. They tend to throw alot of bass if you want heavy bass.

For recievers in general, they are expensive and worth buying only once in a while unless you are totally loaded which I am not...

make sure it has 5.1, dts, dolby digital, THX is a bit tougher on a limited budget same with SDDS.

if you can find one that has as onkyo calls it "all channel" that is great for music, pumps the stereo sound through all channels, so your music comes out of all 5 (or 7 speakers) in my case.

make sure it has all the hookups you are going to need and a few extras, sucks to have to swap plugs, if you are going to run video game systems through the thing, then really make sure you have multiple inputs....
try to get at least a dig coax input or a tos link (those are two types of fiber)many recievers come with at least one of each....

speaker wise, if you can find klipsch, i perfer those to the onkyo speakers
check this site for the used stuff, and check audiogone, ebay, audioshopper and a few other sites. you may find cheap new and used stuff there, crutchfield.com is good for comparing models, but tend to be a bit high on price if you are willing to take a few hours and search the net.

Good luck
 

Mark Hedges

Second Unit
Joined
Mar 21, 2003
Messages
442
I recommend making sure the reciever has Dolby Pro Logic II as well. DPLII works very well for stereo sources such as regular TV, many DVD's, and video games.

Mark
 

Stephen Hopkins

HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2002
Messages
2,604
KevinST,

SDDS is definitely harder on to do on a limited budget since there is no home version of SDDS. It's a theater-only format.

As for your proposed setup, it'll be tough to beat in the price range you're talking about. I would go w/ the 811S over the HE100 because of build quality and ease of use. The new 812K and 912K are also out now, and the 812K can be had for less than the 811S, so you may want to give those a look also.

You may also want to look at the Panasonic RP-62 DVD player. It's the predecessor to the S35S and is an overall better player, mainly because it uses the DCDi chipset from Faroujda instead of Panasonic's all-in-one chip. It's on clearance at Best Buy for $100 right now.

Hope this helps :)
 

Stephen Hopkins

HW Reviewer
Senior HTF Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2002
Messages
2,604
brentl,

A system consisting of 4 paradigm atoms, the cc170, and a decent (wm40 for instance) would put his total system price at around $925 + tax... that's nearly $400 over his stated budget. Might want to take things stated in the original post in to consideration before making recommendations.
 

brentl

Senior HTF Member
Joined
May 7, 1999
Messages
2,921
Without stating where he's from it's hard to say I didn't take it into consideration. A little drive north of the border will save him %50.
Also consider that the option of buying a couple pieces at a time.
Also consider his Audiophile ears, the Atoms are spoken VERY well in publications(I use a set for rears).

This also leaves him "room to grow" like he requested. Listen to the Atoms for a couple months, move them to the rear and move up!!

Brent
Thanks DAD!
 

Shaun Graham

Agent
Joined
Apr 28, 2003
Messages
30
Thanks everyone for your comments, as for some of your questions:

Without stating where he's from it's hard to say I didn't take it into consideration. A little drive north of the border will save him %50.
I got to school at UCLA in Los Angeles, CA. Quite a drive from "north of the border."

All your recommendations have been taken into consideration, as for the Paradigms, my ears would love me if I spent the extra on those but my wallet would rather hate me, so I think I'll have to stick with the Onkyos until I make my first million...;)

And in case anyone cares to make any more suggestions, my preferred price ranges I conveniently left out are as follows:

Speakers: as inexpensive as possible while still getting something worth listening to, haven't found a set of highly regarded ones cheaper that the Onkyos yet. $300 is probably the max here.

Reciever: around $300.

DVD player: I can't find a compelling reason to spend much more than $120 here, seeing as how I can get a progressive scan one for that and won't even own an HDTV for years... so that's about right for this component.


Any suggestions on TVs that are cost effective would also be appreciated. Thanks again. Go Bruins.

Shaun
 

SteveKNJ

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Jan 10, 2003
Messages
72
The Onkyo refurbs are well worth the money. I have a set myself and for the price, they sound awesome. Be aware that they are rather large, not your typical inexpensive HTiB type speakers.
 

AndyRD

Auditioning
Joined
May 3, 2003
Messages
8
I am currently running the Pioneer VSX-D811s with Paradigm Esprits as fronts, Atoms for surrounds, CC-170 for my center, and the PDR-12 for my sub. I understand that this setup is beyond your set price range, however I would suggest buying it in pieces. Build a nice system from the bottom up. You can get one of these receivers for around $200 on ebay. I love my receiver and have had absolutely no problems with it. For my entire speaker setup I went to a local high end electronics store, Best Buy didn't cut it for me. I paid $1060 for all 5 speakers and the sub, which was a pretty good deal. I suggest saving your money and splurging a bit. It is well worth it, and I don't regret spending the extra money at all. By the way I am a poor college student and $1060 is alot of money to me.


andy
 

chun howe

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Apr 18, 2003
Messages
119
you might want to shop around Walmart for cheap DVD players that don't have progressive scan.
i know one on top of my head: pioneer DV250 for less than $80.00

or try Fry's Electronics.

as for speakers, i would recommend computer speakers. like klipsch, altec lansing, cambridge works. they are for sure cheaper than good HT speakers (paradigm, PSB, Energy, etc)
and it's perfect when you step up and shift your PC speakers to your computer / sell it to college kid that needs one badly for their PC gaming.

receivers: i think vsx-d811 is good for HT. for a cheaper ones you might want to consider vsx-d711. (ebay has them at starting bid of $139) or might be buy it now for $139.
 

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