Advice on my proposed setup.

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by chris_everett, Jul 21, 2003.

  1. chris_everett

    chris_everett Second Unit

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    I've decided it's time to do a serious attempt at HT, and replace my hacked together setup. I'm not rolling in cash, but I've got enough to do something decent (I think). My application is mostly wide-screen dvd, and standard def TV (including tv on dvd). Maybe some gaming as well. The room is the living room, about 22' long, with the primary viewing position about 16' from the screen. I have a Rat-shack SPL meter, and access to an RTA to help tune the system. My total budget for gear and cabling is about $5000
    Without further ado...

    Speakers: All JBL Studio series. These are the items I am most "married" to, due to my extensive experience with JBL products, all the way from car speakers to huge concert systems.
    JBL S-CenterII
    S-38II (pair) front
    S-120PII (sub) (2 of them, if I can afford it)
    S-36II (pair) rear (with eventual expansion to a second set for 6.1)

    Projector InFocus X-1 Ceiling mounted. This is the component that jumped out at me and said "yes, you too can afford front-projection". I don't seem to be notice the "rainbow effect", but I'd like some feedback on this choice.

    60x80” motorized screen. I would like a vertical masking type screen, so I can use the full capabilities of the X-1 for 4:3 viewing and then resize the screen for other aspect ratios, and always having an 80" horizontal size, however the only one I've seen prices on is the Da-Lite Horizon Electrol, and it's about $3,500, which is rather outside my price range. Is there another option, or other ideas? Also, I'm very confused about screen material. Ambient light is controlled, but not zero.

    Panasonic DVD S-55S I've been to the DVD reviews site, but most of the good, cheaper players are no longer available. Obviously, the projector is a progressive scan device, so I'm not sure how much a real high-end player will benefit me. If the answer to this is "a lot" I'm thinking of buying the DVDO iscan ultra, but I kind of wonder if this is putting a ferrari engine in a Yugo.

    Receiver Pioneer VSX-D810S --- This is the only piece of my current set up that I'm thinking of reusing, but after reading a lot of this forum, I'm reconsidering. Are the limitations of this receiver primarily in the amplifier section? Or are there more systematic problems? If only the former, it seems that it might be worth it to buy some external amplification.... any thoughts one way or the other

    Generally speaking, are there any components that seem under or over kill here? Any words of wisdom? Am I nuts?? (yeah yeah, I know....)

    All comments are very encouraged
    Thanks in advance to all who respond.
     
  2. Scott McVicker

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    Sounds pretty nice. I didn't price out all your equipent, but they usually say that your cables you should be around 10% of your budget. Don't forget the remote. I am partial to the philips pronto.
     
  3. chris_everett

    chris_everett Second Unit

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    Thanks Scott. My cable plan is 'home depot' speaker cable, reusing my radio shack audio interconnects, and purchase a good quality video cable, maybe from bettercables. I'm still looking at remotes, but the Proto is on the short list.

    I was a little hesitant to put retail pricing here. I'm not sure what forum etiquette is for that. Mods?

    Anyone else?
     
  4. Mathew Shelby

    Mathew Shelby Second Unit

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    Chris,
    We are in the same boat except for the speakers. I use an Infocus X1, Home Depot speaker wire, rat shack interconnects and a Bettercables component cable. I must say I am extremely pleased with everything. When I first bought the X1, I saw some rainbows but I hardly ever see them anymore. When I bought the projector it was $1400 and worth every penny. Even though the projector will do fine with a normal DVD player, I use a progressive scan one and the picture is much better (for me anyways). If you go this route, you will need a VGA to component adaptor as the Infocus X1 has no component inputs. I am projecting onto a white wall and I am very pleased with the image. As for speakers I have always used Polk, but the JBL speakers are excellent nonetheless. I kind of splurged when I upgraded and bought a Harman Kardon AVR525 receiver. This is my most noticeable improvement from my previous setup (Prologic) other than the projector. Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.
     
  5. chris_everett

    chris_everett Second Unit

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    Thanks Mathew. How big of image are you projecting?
     

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