Hello all - I am in the process of builing a new home and would like to take advantage of being able to run all HT cables during the construction process. So I need some help from the experts in this forum. The room that I am setting up is approx. 18' x 16' with two-story ceiling. What would be best 5.1, 6.1 or 7.1 system. I have been told to run cable for a 7.1 to allow for future upgrades? For the speaker wire I have read some posts in this forum that say Home Depot 14 ga would be just fine? I would also like the same system to control a pair of outdoor speakers, do I need to have a speaker controller to accomplish this? I have a somewhat limited budget for this "little" project. I have told my wife that is would be around $2500, now that's excluding the wiring, inter-connects, etc. Here is what I have in mind so far; TV: Sony KP-43HT20 ~ $1800 HTB: Kenwood HTB-504 ~ 400 OR Kenwood HT-509 ~ $300 & Cerwin Vega-AVS632 ~ $300 (This is the area that I am most unsure about. I would like get the most for my money here, but it looks as though the HTB is about the only way to go? Would like some recommendations on separates that would be ~ $600 or so) Outdoor: ????? ~ $200 / pair I would appreciate any suggestions for this overwhelmed newbie of HT. Thanks. This site is by far the most comprehensive HT site on the NET.