1. Sign-up to become a member, and most of the ads you see will disappear. It only takes 30 seconds to sign up, so join the discussion today!
    Dismiss Notice

"I think I am done buying my HT system...what do you think?"

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Marc Go, Aug 20, 2001.

  1. Marc Go

    Marc Go Agent

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2001
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks to everyone who helps make this site awesome for a HT newbie like me. After much research and mulling over, I just bought the following to go with my 35" Mitsubishi TV:
    Onkyo DS595 receiver: J and R, $359.99 (talked them down from $399.99 regular price...mentioned hometheaterforum.com & audioreview.com) + $29.99 extra 2 year warranty...at the price I got the unit I couldn't resist + $23.00 shipping = $413.33 total.
    Polk Audio RM6600 5 speaker surround system: Crutchfield, $649.99 and upgraded the free Polk 250 subwoofer to the 350, a 10" subwoofer, for an extra $100. The total was $749.99 + $13.99 shipping = $763.99.
    Pioneer CV-503 5 disc DCD player: local Costco, $219.99 + tax = $233.19.
    I would have gone entirely through Crutchfield (great service) but they wouldn't budge on the prices of the receiver ($499) and the DVD ($249). The nice thing is J and R is an authorized Onkyo dealer so the warranty will be honored. They did not carry Polk speakers however.
    I spent a lot of time researching and for my needs I feel I got a great system for the money: $1410.51 total. Thank God for the internet (and this site and Epinions)!! I can't wait for my speakers and receiver.
    Now I have to figure out a way to install everything when they come next week. I may hire a professional for that. I also need to buy a pair of outdoor speakers...looking at the Polk's and the Boston Accoustics. My wife is going to kill me!!
     
  2. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 1998
    Messages:
    12,891
    Likes Received:
    1,404
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Location:
    Michigan
    Marc,
    Welcome to HTF. You have a nice setup there. However, if you hang around here, you will soon learn that you will never be done buying your HT system. It's the dreaded disease known as upgraditis, and it is extremely contagious. [​IMG]
    ------------------
    My DVD Collection
    AFI 100 Films to watch: 40 -> 5
     
  3. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Marc: you've got some good equipment there. You are going to have several months of fun playing around with everything, and posting your experiences here.
    My advice: Do not hire an installer (unless you really want built-in cabinents or custom storage). Half the fun of this hobby is playing around with your system. This includes trying different speaker positions, different wires, adjusting levels, using a laser-pointer to adjust angles, etc.
    This fourm is a great place to post questions and get advice (and not always the same advice [​IMG] ).
    Just dont be impatient for the system to be perfect the first day. You have a week or so of break-in for those speakers, and your ears to get used to the new sounds. Get them roughed-in and plunge into the wonderful world of DVD. When you finally come up for air, we can suggest lots of simple, cheap things to do that will improve the experience.
    Above all, enjoy. [​IMG]
     
  4. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2001
    Messages:
    8,390
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    congratulations on your new gear! i'm green with envy!
    i second bob's advice. i would definitely learn to install the gear yourself. it's pretty fun and it'll teach you a lot about how the sound "gets" from one place to another.
    don't worry about "breaking" anything...for the most part, i don't think you can do any real damage by plugging something in the wrong way. just make sure to use common sense - keep everything powered down when plugging in componentns and when testing, don't crank it up.
    crutchfield has some sort of booklet you can get for free when you order stuff:
    Crutchfield audio/video reference
    monstercable also has a pretty decent online guide:
    Monster Cable Hookup Guides
    and finally, the diagrams in the owners manual should make things pretty clear.
    hope this helps...good luck and most importantly, have fun with this stuff!
    ------------------
    You step in the stream,
    But the water has moved on.
    This page is not here.
     
  5. KonradM

    KonradM Auditioning

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2001
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Welcome, but I don't think you are done yet, obviously the upgrade bug is still waiting to bite you (eventually you will want to change/upgrade something in your system).
    I do agree with the previous two posts, hook it up yourself, you will learn a little in the process and will do it just as good, if not better than someone you hire. My brother in law put on a house addition and a new system from scratch and looking at his hookups I felt I could do it better than the people he paid. Besides you can put aside the money you save for a future upgrade or to buy DVD's and CD's.
    It isn't that hard to hook up if your manuals are not clear enough, head to the web for more information.
    Good luck and enjoy.
     
  6. Matt Heebner

    Matt Heebner Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2000
    Messages:
    241
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    IT NEVER ENDS!!!!!! No, seriously, it never does! If I had a dollar for everytime I said that I was "done", I'd have enough for my next upgrade.
    About a month ago, I said I was done, and just came home today with a progressive scan DVD player.
    Now I think I am done....for now anyway. Time to let the charge card cool down, and start saving for a HD STB!
    See...I told you it never ends!
    Matt
    ------------------
    ....Eat, Drink, and Be Merry, For Tomorrow We Die....--DMB
    NO OAR-NO SALE WARNER!
     
  7. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Marc, welcome to the Forum! It seems like you have a very nice system there. I have no firsthand experience with your Onkyo receiver or Polk speakers, but both brands have a good reputation. My girlfriend has the Pioneer DV-C503 DVD changer, and it is an excellent component for the price.
    I agree that you should learn to install your gear yourself. As was said here, you aren't buying theater seats or other theater-type equipment, so you ought to play around with connecting your gear, positioning speakers, and the like.
    As for the dealers you bought from, Crutchfield never matches price with other dealers. Their customer service is very good, but you will almost always do better on price with OneCall and J&R Music World, both of which are authorized dealers. I've ordered from all three dealers and never had a problem. I generally only buy from Crutchfield when I can't get something elsewhere.
    Also, don't fool yourself into thinking your home theater is complete. You are bound to decide that you need a bigger TV, a better receiver, etc., etc. Back in November 1999, I had a 27" GE TV with no S-video or RCA inputs and a Kenwood rack system from 1989. Look at my equipment list now. There is a lot of stuff there, and it took a lot of upgrading to get there. I realize that I am at an extreme. In all seriousness, enjoy your gear and don't worry too much about what any of us think. [​IMG]
    ------------------
    My:
    HT Pics ; Equipment List ; DVD Collection ; LD Collection
    KeithH: Saving the Home Theater World Before Bedtime
     
  8. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 1999
    Messages:
    565
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Marc, you sure got a lot for your money, congratulations!
    Check out this link for speaker placement,etc. http://www.dolby.com/ht/
     
  9. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Marc: let me give you some of the "stock" advice to questions you might have when your equipment arrives.
    Speaker Wire: go buy a spool of 12 ga speaker wire from Home Depot and use it for all your speakers. Cut the wires with a foot or two of slack to reach each speaker. (You dont need each speaker wire to be the same length.)
    I strongly recommend the dual-banana plugs from the MegaCable line at Radio Shack. They make it simple to do a neat & safe wireing job.
    Buy a ordinary VIDEO cable and use this for the coaxial-digital connection between the DVD player and the receiver.
    If your TV takes SVideo (funny looking connector that looks like a PC keyboard outlet), use it. Buy a SVideo cable and go directly from the DVD player to the TV.
    Also plan to run the single video cable, called Composite, from the DVD player to the DVD input on the receiver. Do the same for your VCR, CATV box, etc.
    This will make the new system easy to use by leaving the TV set to look at the signal from the receiver. The receiver now controls both the audio and video switching.
    But when you fire up a DVD, grab the TV remote and take the extra step of flipping to the SVideo input. The difference may be quite noticible.
    Speaker Placement: Sit at your listening position and measure to the top of your TV. This is where your center speaker will sit. Draw a circle to the left and right. At an angle of about 45 degrees from the center is where you want to position your L/R speakers. (My speakers are at about 30 degrees so this is a rough adjustment).
    Try and get the tweeters on all 3 front speakers to be the same height. Ideally, the same height as your ears while sitting in the central listening position. (This is also rough. Dont worry if you cannot do this. Just get them close.)
    Dont put the center speaker just on top of the TV. Make some "feet" with rubber errasers, rubber door stops, or even paper-back books. Also, pull the center speaker forward so it over-hangs the TV by about 1/4 inch. Pushing it back is a bad idea because some sound will simply bounce off of the bit of "shelf" in front.
    I like the rear speakers on the same level as the fronts, but others like the 2-3 feet above your head placement (which Dolby recommends). Plan to try both and pick the one that sounds best to you with a favorite movie.
    Equipment: I like putting the receiver at the bottom of my rack. This allows the speaker wires to flow out onto the floor without straining the connectors. And you will be mainly using the remote to control it so you wont have to bend over a lot to touch it.
    I put the DVD and VCR at the top because I have to get up and interact with it to put in disks/tapes.
    Cables: Look at the back of your equipment and pick a side where most of the power cords come out. Mount/place a power-strip on this side of your rack. Run your power cords along each shelf and up/down to this strip. You can buy some nylon cable-wraps at a hardware store, or velcro ones at Radio Shack and bundle these up. Make a long, lazy run of the excess up/down the side of the rack. (Dont wrap the power cords tightly around your hand and then tie-strap it.) Dont worry about being too neat, just get them all pushed to one side.
    Interconnects: (these are the wires that connect everything together): Let these fall down the middle of your rack, or pull them to the side opposite the power cords.
    Leave everything dangling/messy until the entire system is hooked up. Many of us leave the interconnects this way all the time. A tight-bundle of cables is not always a good idea. If you do try to make them neat, use velcro straps every 6" or so to bundle them. And bundle them loosly. A tight bunching will tend to pull them out of the equipment if you move anything.
    When you go to wire things up: TAKE YOUR TIME. Plan to spend an hour or so. (I've been doing this for years and if I'm in a rush, I mess things up.) Put a portable lamp/trouble-light behind your rack so you can see things. Make sure you have no-one bugging you or watching you for at least an hour.
    Dont do this late at night. Do it during the day if possible so you can run out for that cable you forgot to buy, or those batteries for the remote you THOUGHT you had. [​IMG]
    When you hook thing up, do this:
    - Wire the speakers. Test with AM radio static. Use the "test-tone" feature to listen to the sounds move around the speakers and make sure they fire in sequence. (It's real easy to flip left and right speaker wires).
    - Hook up 1 device and test. Start with the VCR. Make sure it works. Then the CATV box/DSS box.
    Test each device before going onto the next. This way, any problems will be a result of the last thing you changed and not any of the eariler things.
    Hook up the DVD player last (Hey, Anticipation is a big part of this hobby).
    Good Luck.
     
  10. Marc Go

    Marc Go Agent

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2001
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Thanks all for your input and advice. After reading these posts I defintely want to try to install everything myself. I'll let you know how it goes!
     
  11. James Nguyen

    James Nguyen Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2001
    Messages:
    295
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Done?
    what is....is this word done?
    I have never heard before. Please explain.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  12. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

    Joined:
    May 8, 2001
    Messages:
    8,390
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    "Hi. My name is Ted and I'm a home-theater addict..."
    [​IMG]
    ------------------
    You step in the stream,
    But the water has moved on.
    This page is not here.
     
  13. James Nguyen

    James Nguyen Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2001
    Messages:
    295
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes, I think HTF really could use a "Home Theater Anonymous" support group here. Though we all use our real names as our usernames here, so I guess it wouldn't be so anonymous.
    How about "Home Theater Anonymous and the Poor Significant Others Who Love Them" forum? [​IMG]
    It just never ends. Replaced the interlaced dvd player with a nice progressive RP91. Doh...now I NEED a new progressive scan TV. But we got to have quality to match the DVD player, it can't be any old TV. Ooooh......50 inch new Toshiba projection tvs... *Homer Simpson MMMMMMMMmmmmmmmmm*
    And I can just picture it now if I do purchase the TV. Welp, the TV cart / av rack needs to go now.... ooooh...nice Billy Bags or Schroers and Schroers stuff. Mmmm.....glass and steel....German stuff pretty.....
    Soon after with such a nice new display, we're going to just HAVE to create some bigger sound now aren't we? But we can't get that bigger sound until we pick up a new receiver to do discrete DTS-ES and DD-EX. I mean, we NEED it now!!!
    and on and on and on....
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    I feel sooooooo sorry for my fiancee.
    "I swear...new tv, receiver, new main speakers, new av rack....and I'll be done! I swear honey!!"
     
  14. Robin Wingo

    Robin Wingo Extra

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2001
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have purchased my system a few days ago denon 1601 2pr-b&w dm-303, lcr3 center channel and a hsuresearch sub and it took me several hours to set up and already want to up-grade the receiver it well never end because of all the new technology so good-look and enjoy. Thank-you
    ------------------
     
  15. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2000
    Messages:
    1,165
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    "Hi. My name is Ted and I'm a home-theater addict..."
    Hi Ted... (lol..)
    Marc,
    i didn't know jack about jack when i got into HT 2.5 years ago.. I can pull all the plugs outta the back of my whole system now, move everything, and hook it all up again... almost blindfolded. (pretty quickly too) Just read the directions for your new equiptment and, by all means ask questions here. Good luck pal!
    - Chip
    ------------------
     
  16. Bob McElfresh

    Bob McElfresh Producer

    Joined:
    May 22, 1999
    Messages:
    5,182
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If you take your favorite food/ice-cream/wine/etc., and sample it 3 times per day, it will become bland/common place/stale, and you will no longer enjoy it.
    I think we have the same problem with our HT gear. So we start to obsess about the next upgrade.
    (Although someone pointed out that ANTICIPATION is a oft-overlooked part of this hobby [​IMG])
    This is why things like Mattes, back-lighting, speaker-alignment, racks, room-arrangements, favorite movie snacks, (new WIRES [​IMG]), etc., generate so much interest. We are looking for ways to keep things fresh.
    Marc: This is why we recommend you hook things up yourself. This gives you a Hobby rather than just something to watch movies on. Welcome to our obsession.
     

Share This Page