Newbie Budget Home Theater :)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by SageC, Dec 27, 2001.

  1. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Hey all! This is my first post at the forums here, and so far these forums rock [​IMG] Anyways, I hope to someday become a HT addict like all of you are.
    I've got a bit of a question here for you though - building a cheap home theater.
    Right now, we've got a crappy TV with the built in speakers..I'm getting sick of it.
    I've sort of set my eyes on the Toshiba 42H81 or the Toshiba 50H81, depending on the measurements for my room. I've gone to best buy, and these TVs seem to be the best by far. So my first question is, what do you think of my selection?
    My next question, will involve a little more thought process. I need some reccomendations for receiver, dvd, and the speakers..But it's got to be around 1-2k. I'd like to get it to be as good as possible, and rather spend a couple hundred dollars and get a good system, then not spend the extra two hundred and get a crappy system.
    I know I should have researched this myself, but to be honest, I haven't really found much. Maybe I just haven't looked hard enough..if you could point me to some resources, that would be great, or just flat out give me some good components to look into, and I will.
    Thanks for all your help in advance! [​IMG]
    -Sage
     
  2. BryanZ

    BryanZ Screenwriter

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    Sage,
    Good to have you here!
    Can't really help you out with the tv, so I'll let someone else take that.
    I'd go with:
    Denon AVR-1802 receiver - $400
    Panasonic RV-31 dvd player - $180
    nOrh ceramic 4.0 package - $850
    Adire Audio Rava - $450
    Interconnects, wires, etc. - $120
    Total - $2,000
     
  3. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Thanks!

    That DVD player, is it a progessive one? I've heard those are the best right now..
     
  4. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    According to Panasonic.com, it's not progressive. How about the RP56? Is this a good progressive player ?

    Anyone else have any comments on the system that Bryan kindly suggested? Any comments on the Toshiba TV?

    Thanks all!
     
  5. Ches Campbell

    Ches Campbell Stunt Coordinator

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    Either the Denon 1802 or an Onkyo TX-DS595 will be good
    For Speakers I would suggest the that you go listen to those from Definitive Tech, Paradigm, Klipsch, Polk, Infinity, JBL, nOrh, and Energy.
    For the sub check in to SVS, Adire, and HSU.
    Try to find the best prices online. You can get some good deals at ebay and ubid.
    Later
     
  6. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Thanks for the help [​IMG]
    Anyone got any comments on the TV?
     
  7. David Head

    David Head Second Unit

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    Sage,
    The Toshiba's are excellent choices for RPTVs. You'll find a lot of help here and at HomeTheaterSpot for these TVs. Get the largest size you can afford that will fit in your room.
    Since you're planning to get an HDTV ready set, you should get a progressive scan player. The RV-31 is NOT progressive scan, although it is a good player. The RP-56 is a good progressive player. Some people prefer the JVC XV-S60BK or XV-S65GD for the same price range (same model, but one is black and one is gold). You could also spend $50 more and get the JVC XV-S70BK or XV-S75GD which adds DVD-Audio if that interested you.
    The Denon 1802 is a good receiver, but I don't care for the remote. I prefer the remote on the Onkyo 595, but you could always buy one of the Radio Shack remotes to use with the 1802.
    If you have a old receiver available, you can get one of the SVS CS Subwoofers (maybe the 20-39CS). If not, I suggest the Adire Rava for $399 or Adire Dharman for $599.
    There have already been some good suggestions for speakers, but I'll add a couple more:
    Home Theater Direct Level III
    PSB Image Speakers
    You can read reviews of some of the equipment suggested in this thread at Cheap Home Theater.
    David
     
  8. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Thanks a lot for all your help, exactly what I needed!

    What exactly is DVD-Audio? I've never heard of it before. Do these DVD players play CDs as well, or will I need to purchase that?

    thanks!

    sage
     
  9. David Head

    David Head Second Unit

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    All DVD players will play redbook CDs (normal audio CDs sold at stores). Some will also play CD-R and CD-RW audio CDs or even discs burned with MP3 files. The Panasonic and JVC units will play back all of these formats.
    DVD-Audio (DVD-A) and Super Audio CD (SACD) are two new audio formats that are trying to become the succesors to the CD. Here are a couple of articles to read that will give you an overview of DVD-A and SACD:
    CNet
    Techtronics
    There are many audiophiles that never liked the sound of CDs compare to a good analog setup with records. A lot of these people now feel these formats sound as good as records with the advantages of CDs. The disadvantage is that there isn't much released on either format and each format has exclusive releases not available on the other.
    I personally don't think either format will replace the CD any time soon. My reasons are:
    - more expensive discs (about $18-$25 each)
    - large CD catalog that the average person finds works well enough
    - competing formats (DVD-A vs SACD) will divide the market
    If you weren't in the market for a DVD-A player, I wouldn't worry about it.
    David
     
  10. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Thanks for the info!

    Anyone else that has setups with some of these components, especially the TV, please post your thoughts!
     
  11. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Another question -
    Because financially I may not be able to buy all of this in one shot(tv, speakers, console/cabinet, etc) would the built in speakers of the Toshiba TV be sufficient enough until I can come up with the money to buy the speakers? I know I'm going to be dieing, having a beautiful screen, but not great speakers, so I'll try to come up with all the money in one shot. But if I can't, would they be OK?
    Right now I've got some old 30" panasonic with built in speakers as my primary TV, so I should still notice a big difference! [​IMG]
    I can't wait. Tomorrow I'm gonna try spending the day researching and maybe purchasing [​IMG]
    -Sage
     
  12. David Head

    David Head Second Unit

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    Sage,

    Deciding whether to upgrade the video or audio of a home theater first is tough. If you like to listen to music too, I'd suggest getting the audio portion. If not, you could get the TV and DVD player now; then get the receiver, speakers and sub later.

    There is one other option. Toshiba and Mitsubishi (another good manufacturer of RPTVs) offer a one year, no interest, no payment plan...

    David
     
  13. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Wow, thanks for the head up on Toshiba's plan!
    It seems I'll be able to go that route, but if it doesn't work out, I may just buy the TV soon and speakers later. Besides, this allows me more time to research the sound system. To eliminate most immediate costs, I may just use my X-Box as a DVD player for the time being, and get a good dvd player when I order the sound system. We shall see! [​IMG]
    Sage
     
  14. Thomas_Berg

    Thomas_Berg Screenwriter

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    dont buy your speakers at Best Buy. you have enough $$ to where you can be at the low end of a hifi store, and you can get great stuff at a great price online. the brands that Ches Campbell posted should be your guidelines for research. i like your taste Ches [​IMG].
     
  15. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Yeah, I didn't plan on buying the speakers at Best Buy. I'm a computer-junkie and I know that most likely a chain store like BB won't carry the best components, and certainly not for the best price. Online is the way to go, in my book.
     
  16. Jeffrey Forner

    Jeffrey Forner Screenwriter

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    Sage;
    First of all, let me address the most pressing matter to you. I own the Toshiba 42H81. I got it back in September, and I am madly in love with it. Believe me when I say that if you are willing to spend a little time and perhaps a little money to properly adjust the TV and tweak it to perfection, and you hook it up to a good progressive scan DVD player, the results will blow you away.
    Are we excited yet? [​IMG]
    Concerning the rest of the system, I agree with what everyone else says. Look into Home Theater Direct (which is what I have) nOrh, Adire, and SVS for speakers and subwoofers. For receivers, I'd look into Onkyo, Denon, Onkyo. Finally, if you can swing it, get a Panasonic RP91 DVD player. I have one and love it. Go search for it at Deal Time to find a good price on it. You should be able to get it for less than $500.
    Good luck on your search!
     
  17. EricHaas

    EricHaas Supporting Actor

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    Well, you said 1-2K is your budget. My addition to this thread is that if you can swing 2K, you want a receiver in a higher class than the Denon 1802 or Onkyo 595. IMO, the receiver determines 50% of your overall sound quality. Look into the Denon 2802 online at shopping.yahoo.com. Low price is $502 right now, though you are probably limited to the retailer's warranty of 30-90 days. The 2802 has a slew of features the 1802 does not, including especially 6 amped channels for when you want to go to a 6.1 solution. It also has better build quality and better sound. And if you can push it up to $2,200 I'd recommend the 3802 rather than putting the extra into speakers. Assuming a 2K budget, with $500 for the receiver, you still have $1500 for the speakers. You can do well with that if you shop around.

    For example, if you find a Paradigm dealer near you, you could put together the following:

    cc-379 center ($330)

    Monitor 7 mains ($630)

    Atom rears ($180)

    That leaves you with $360 for the sub. The Adire Rava is $399 and it will shake your foundations. Anyway, you get the idea - don't skimp on the receiver if you can help it.

    Oh, and now is the time to check out the hi-fi stores. Many are having post Christmas clearance sales.
     
  18. SageC

    SageC Auditioning

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    Thanks to everyone for your help. Unfortuneatly I won't be able to do some research today(girlfriend has to be #1 priority!) But either tomorrow or the next day I've got to spend the day deciding on some components and visiting some HiFi stores.
    Thanks to everyone for your help [​IMG]
     

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