Building a HT, could use some advice

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Rex Quinn, Oct 26, 2002.

  1. Rex Quinn

    Rex Quinn Agent

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    Hey everyone, first time posting here and I'm kind of a HT newb, so I could use some help. Here's the situation: I already have a half decent setup and I'm looking to complete it for now by adding in a 5.1 surround system. I have a very small room and a very tight budget, which makes this rather difficult. My first thought was to go with an HTIB, more specifically the Panasonic SC-HT400. It retails for $699.99 here (Canadian). It has pretty much everything I need in it, although I'm going to see if I can pull something better together buying seperate components. There's a few things to consider. First, I'm in Canada, so pretty much everything I have access to is limited to www.futureshop.ca, and keeping in mind it's Canadian currency. Second, the budget. I'd be willing to spend a bit more because the purchases will be spaced out rather than dumping a load of money all at once, but I'd like to keep it under $900, and at extreme most, $1000. I'm looking for a 5 speaker, subwoofer, and reciever combo, DTS, Dolby Digital, and Pro Logic 2 decoding.
    I may be asking for too much here so I'm willing to settle for the HTIB, I'm just taking a shot at seeing if there's anything better. I know I'm pretty much saying "HEY YOU, DO ALL THE WORK SO I DON'T HAVE TO!", but I'm just stepping my foot into the HT world here and don't know much at all, so I figured I'd ask the experts. Just some random info; I listen to really heavy music, so I like powerful speakers and lots of bass, although I like clarity for the DVD's. Component in/out is a plus, but not absolutley necessary.
    Anyway, thanks for you time [​IMG]
     
  2. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    Well Rex I tried to go on a shopping spree and found it very limiting especially going the sep rout. I will say if I were going to go the HTiB choice, I would go with the Kenwood 505 hands down.
     
  3. Rex Quinn

    Rex Quinn Agent

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    Thanks for the input. I figured I woulden't have much luck with seperating everything. About the HTB-505 though, are there any advantages over the Panasonic SC-HT400 that would warrant the extra $100? It's probably going to boil down to the two of them, and while I'm leaning toward the Kenwood, I can't see any noticable advantages it has.
     
  4. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    Well Rex the Pan sub weighs 15.2 pounds, a big giveaway as to the quality. Plastic fart boxes we call them. The 505 sub will come in at like 37 pounds. I do have one as a spare if the occasion should arise? The Pan sub is non powered along with not having a sub out on the receiver. The Pan will not be a very good upgradeabl unit, which the Ken is. The Ken 504 was rated no. 1 on the Forum a year ago to be surpassed by the 505. Now the introduction of the Onkyo 650 overtook the 505. So the 505 imo is a fairly close second now. The Ken will fill a mid-size HT very well on a budget and you will be pleasantly amazed at what it can do. By just upgrading the sub down the road you would really be cooking in the HT you describe. The biggest advantage the Ken will have over the Pan is that it will do twice as good a job for you imo.[​IMG] When I started out I auditioned to many HTiB to remember and the 504 came out on top hands down. Let us know how whatever you decide to go with works out?
     
  5. Rex Quinn

    Rex Quinn Agent

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    Ok well I'm looking into buying seperate components again over a much longer time period, as to raise the budget level. If I do go this path, I'd get a reciever and 2 front speakers to start out with. What would you recommend for that? I'm thinking the Panasonic SA-HE100 A/V reciever and the Athena ASB1 Bookshelf Speakers. I figure that'd be good grounds to start out on a budget. One newbie question though, the reciever has Banana Plug speaker terminals. I assume they're a better solution to the old spring loaded terminals. Are Banana plugs an attatchment to regular speaker wire?
    As for adding on later, I'd probably get another set of the Athena speakers for rear surrounds and the Athena ASC-1 Centre Channel to match the whole set, and maybe even a second, rear center channel to make use of the DTS-6.1 decoding of the reciever. How does that sound, and any reccomendations on a sub?
     
  6. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    Hay that sounds great Rex. I think you definitely are on the right track. If you can wait and be a little patient "$" putting together your system you will save in the long-run and have a much nicer system. Seems like I herd the Athena's at Video Only here in Oregon. They were pretty nice if I remember right. Yes banana plugs are attached to reg speaker wire. As for a sub down the road?--You have a great choice up there, Paradigm.
     
  7. Rex Quinn

    Rex Quinn Agent

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    Cool, thanks alot. There's a Paradigm dealer right up my ally, I'm going to stop in soon and see what they have [​IMG]
     
  8. Steve Adams

    Steve Adams Second Unit

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    Rex,

    are you located in newfoundland?
     
  9. Steve Adams

    Steve Adams Second Unit

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    If so, there is a kenwood receiver at sears, it's thx dpl2 and everything. and they are selling it for like half price. good deal.
     
  10. Rex Quinn

    Rex Quinn Agent

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    I'm in Ottawa (Ontario), but I'll check out the local sears to see if they have it. Thanks for the heads up [​IMG]
     
  11. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    Would that be the 6070 Kenwood? I would like to find that myself for 1/2 price.
     
  12. Peter_Al

    Peter_Al Auditioning

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    For speakers you might want to give Axiom a try
    http://www.axiomaudio.com
    Canadian company. I'm picking up some towers but they have some great sounding (and looking, great workmanship) bookshelves too. Bang for the buck I just love them but with speakers it's all personal preference [​IMG]. See if you can get blems and save even more.
    Pete.
     
  13. Steve Adams

    Steve Adams Second Unit

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    no it's the vr 509 or something like that. older style kenwood. I almost bought it, but got the pioneer instead because of the 6 ch.
     
  14. steve nn

    steve nn Cinematographer

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    I was thinking the 6070 because that is where the THX starts in the Kenwood line. I find myself looking at this receiver. Give it another few months and it will be considered obsolete to and it will be 1/2 price.
     

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