Cheap speaker recommendations needed!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Taka, Sep 26, 2001.

  1. Taka

    Taka Agent

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    Hi- first post!
    I've finally gotten around to building up a home theater system and could use some help with the speakers.
    Right now, I'm running old Boston bookshelf speakers off of a Denon AVR-3300, nothing else, strictly two-channel. I would like to get at least new mains and a center and use the Bostons as surrounds at the minimum, or get 5 speakers new. I also need a sub.
    I need to keep this cheap- like $700-800 tops, incl. the sub.
    I have B&W Matrix 803s for my music system, so the musicality of this cheap home theater is not really an issue- as long as it doesn't sound horrible, I'm fine, but it must sound acceptable for home theater- able to reproduce sound effects, explosions, etc.
    I've been doing some research and found a few possibilities:
    Energy Take 5.2 system, incl. sub for about $700, but using eXL (I think that's what they're called) for the mains.
    Velodyne CHTS- $250 for the 5 speakers, just need a sub.
    JBL NSP-1- $500 for the 5 speakers, need a sub.
    Polk RT10s- $70/pr. at Circuit City, get 6 at $210 and buy a sub (don't sell them individually).
    What do you all think?
    I haven't researched too many other brands- the KEF stuff I saw at one dealer is too expensive, haven't looked at the low end B&W stuff (probably still too expensive).
    The SVS sub piqued my interest- $369 and I can use my Adcom amp to power it, esp. if I can get it to run bridged (not sure if I can do this, gotta check).
     
  2. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    hi and welcome to the forum.
    just an fyi...during non-peak hours, use the search function or browse the threads. you'll be amazed at how many existing threads there are on this topic.
    unfortunately, i haven't been pricing speakers lately, so i can't give too much info.
    of the brands you listed, i know the energy and jbl are pretty well regarded.
    good luck...and welcome to our world.
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    But the water has moved on.
    This page is not here.
     
  3. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    I'd go all new, you'll get better results than trying to match what you've got.
    I'm also more critical with my music system, but I've found the JBL NSP-1 to be a very good ht combo, with good bass allowing it to mate well with a sub at the typical crossover frequencies. I don't know where you are, but $500 sounds very high, jandr.com has it for $299, and you might find it cheaper. I'd go that route ,and put the rest into great sub like that SVS, especially since you've got the amp. That would be a very impressive system.
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    [Edited last by Jack Gilvey on September 26, 2001 at 10:43 AM]
     
  4. Thomas_Berg

    Thomas_Berg Screenwriter

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    i second Jack's idea- get the JBL Northridge speakers (don't pay more than $299) and couple with an SVS. since you have an amp, maybe you could go for a 20-39CS. that would be an amazing system for ~$750!! i don't think that could be beat for the $$.
    just my $.02 [​IMG]
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  5. Taka

    Taka Agent

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    About those JBLs..... how do they sound? Can anyone describe their tonal characteristics or compare them to other lines of speakers?
    I can't stand really bright speakers- Klipsch (at least the older ones) are horrible in that regard, as are a lot of the Celestion line. IMHO, the Denon I have is awfully bright as is, so I don't need anything to make that characteristic any worse, as I'm not springing for a set of Bryston monoblocks any time soon.
    So has anyone here listened to the Velodyne CHTS?
    BTW, I did search and could not find anything on the Velodyne describing their sound, nor could I on the JBL. The only speakers I've listened to in a somewhat decent environment are the Energy. The JBLs are only available at Circuit City and Best Buy and they're both horrible places to try to listen to speakers.
     
  6. Phil Iturralde

    Phil Iturralde Screenwriter

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    I also recommend the JBL NSP1's and any sub (like Jack & Thomas SVS recommendation). The JBL's lower bass extension is 89 Hz, which matches my Yamaha RX-V995 90 Hz x-over very nicely providing close to excellent Subwoofer / satellite blending.
    For more JBL NSP1 INFO / Reviews (including mine) w/links, see my webpage http://www.geocities.com/p_iturra/JBL_Labs.html
     
  7. Jin E

    Jin E Second Unit

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    This has nothing to do with speakers but...
    We call my Brother Taka... never seen another one before. (His real name is takashi though).
    I found the NSP1 JBL set to have wonderful mids and quite a bit of detail for the price (though it is a little on the bright side and I would imagine them being harsh over a long period of time with the right music). I also thought they were lacking when it comes to good imaging... of course that might be helped with better placement. All in all though... for $300 you WILL NOT beat them. Instead of a SVS I would suggest the Adire Audio Rava instead... for $399 you get the sub AND it's self amplified and performs on par with the 25-31. Shipping is higher though and they do not have as flexible a return policy. Maybe $400 on some level two Home Theater Direct speakers and $400 on a Rava would be a good choice. I will admit I have never listened to the HTD's... but they offer a full refund (including shipping) if you are not satisfied.
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  8. Tor Arne

    Tor Arne Stunt Coordinator

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  9. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    I would characterize the sound of the N24 satellites as a little forgiving, certainly not bright, but not dull sounding (at least with my Onkyo 575x). Just what I want with a typical soundtrack, really, and I haven't had to use the Onkyo's "RE-Eq" feature at all. The N-Center has a bit of that common "presence peak" to help with dialog intelligibility, and it does seem to help in that regard.
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  10. Jeremy Anderson

    Jeremy Anderson Screenwriter

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    The JBL NSP-1 set is great if your receiver's crossover is at 100hz. If your receiver is crossed at 80hz, you'll have a gap in bass response from about 70-100hz (and should probably look at something else).
    With an 80hz crossover, your speakers need to be able to do about 55-60hz at -3db for a smooth transition in bass management (with all speakers set to small).
    The reason for this is simple: crossovers are not brick walls. It isn't like the speakers handle everything from 80hz and above and the sub handles 80hz and below. With an 80hz crossover, 80hz is the point where the speakers and subwoofer are producing roughly equal amounts of sound. Most receivers have a crossover slope of about 12db/octave, which means that the sound changes by 12db for every octave. So with an 80hz crossover, your speakers and sub are both producing equal amounts of sound. At one octave lower, your sub produces 12db more than the speakers. At two, 24db and so on.
    The Polk RT10's are -3db at about 63hz, and are not bright-sounding, but do exhibit some harshness in the high frequencies at volume. You also really don't want to use one as a center channel.
    Of the ones you listed, I'd say the Energy Take 5.2 would be the best bet. Note that you can get them without the sub and then get the SVS (which will serve you better).
    In your price range, I highly recommend Home Theater Direct's Level II speakers (with an SVS sub). Check them out at http://www.hometheaterdirect.com/
     
  11. Scott Miller

    Scott Miller Agent

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    How about the JBL N28's? Sams has them for $139 a pair! Get 4 and add an N-center from hifi.com for $95 and I'd say you'd have quite a set and some $ left over for that SVS.
     
  12. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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  13. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    Gotta love it when you can't tell if you posted.
    [Edited last by Jack Gilvey on September 28, 2001 at 08:21 AM]
     
  14. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    !
    [Edited last by Jack Gilvey on September 28, 2001 at 08:20 AM]
     
  15. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

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    !
    [Edited last by Jack Gilvey on September 28, 2001 at 08:20 AM]
     
  16. Ron Katcher

    Ron Katcher Agent

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    I think this is a sweet deal:
    NHT SuperOnes and SuperCenter from www.yawaonline (a registered internet dealer): $239 + $189 = $428
    [SuperZeros, a slightly smaller speaker, are even less at $189, for a total of $378]
    Adire Audio (www.adireaudio.com) Rava Subwoofer: $399
    This is an extremely well-received sub at a bargain price.
    Total: $827 + shipping
    For the fronts and center, you could alternatively do Monitor Audio Bronze 1's and matching center for $216+$202=$418 (from www.ayselectronics.com)
    I recommend getting 3 better quality speakers and eventually upgrading your surrounds. Both Monitor Audio and NHT have other speakers in these lines that are timbre-matched so that you can eventually move these to the back and get new fronts. Note, though, that NHT has replaced its SuperZeros, SuperOnes and related speakers with updated models (hence the great pricing now) which could create a matching problem in the future. Still, SuperOnes are a very well regarded speaker.
    Good Luck!
    [Edited last by Ron Katcher on September 28, 2001 at 01:05 PM]
    [Edited last by Ron Katcher on September 28, 2001 at 01:08 PM]
     

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