Newbie...wants help with a speaker decision

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Kevin Cagle, Feb 8, 2002.

  1. Kevin Cagle

    Kevin Cagle Agent

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    Here is my deal.
    I want to build a complete HT system for $1000 or under.
    I think that I have settled on purchasing the Paradigm PDR12 for $440 that leaves my with ~$600 left to spend on the BookShelf speakers and the center.
    Here are the brands I'm interested in(or looked at):
    - Energy
    - JBL
    - Mission
    - Acoustic Research
    - Paradigm
    Am I looking at the right stuff? I have no idea what to get...and this will have to last me awhile. Right now I'm interested in the JBL studio series and the mission stuff.
    But It's really all guesswork based on reviews.
    Someone please help.
    Thanks again,
    Kevin

    I didn't state this initially.
    I am only looking at Left/Center/Right and a sub
    I will not be buying any rears right now.
    Ok, so I see from the advice that y'all don't really like the Paradigm sub.
    I am enjoying the comments please keep em coming b/c reviews can only go so far.

    Ok, more detail...this will be 85/15% usage (HT to music)
    Another aside...I have been reading peoples recommendations. Does no one like the JBL S-series?
     
  2. Paul_Fisher

    Paul_Fisher Screenwriter

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    Do you mean ~600 for bookshelfs, center, and surrounds?
     
  3. Louis D

    Louis D Agent

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    Unfortunately 600, is not a lot. My center was 400+, and the fronts were 600+ each. Paradigm will absolutely, in my opinion give you the best sound for your money. Forget AR, Mission, or Energy. NHT makes a good set of fronts and center for about 700. My advice, put the six hundred into your fronts and center, than save a little for the rears and a different sub. Check out the SVS web page for a smoother sounding sub than the PRD12.
     
  4. EricHaas

    EricHaas Supporting Actor

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    In the Paradigm line, with your budget, the cc-370 center and one pair of Monitor Minis is the best you will do. But that is an excellent front sound stage. MSRP on that is $700, but you can usually get the dealer down at least 10%, sometimes 20%. The next down the line is a pair of Titans and cc-170 main at $400. But I highly recommend the first option. Oh yeah, and I agree, save for surrounds. $600 is where you want your budget for the mains and center - no less.
     
  5. jeff lam

    jeff lam Screenwriter

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    Forget the PDR12, for $440 you can do better. Either the Adire Audio Rava($399), or the HSU VTF2($499) will be best for a sub
     
  6. Jon_R

    Jon_R Stunt Coordinator

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    What would be a ratio of music/HT for you?
    I prefer a larger speaker up front for both music and HT. That is a personal preference. $1000 can get you quite a bit, if you are thrifty and search for deals.
    Someone will suggest the JBL NSP-1 system.
    www.yawaonline.com has some PSB Alpha A/V packages that are very nice. The Alpha A/V is a discontinued speaker but you might be able to demo them somewhere, make it clear you aren't buying from them, and then purchase online if you like. You could go with 4 paradigm titans and a cc170. There are lots of options. You'll want a subwoofer and I suggest the Sony SA-WM40. Its a little boomy here or there but if you bargain you can get it for $130, and its worth that.
    My advice is to demo lots of stuff. Make sure you use the same material to demo all your options and give them ample listening time. I usually listen to a variety of music for 15 or so minutes. But I also ususally have a very good idea of what the speaker is going to sound like and if I am going to like it.
    In any case, welcome to the forum!
    Jon
     
  7. EricHaas

    EricHaas Supporting Actor

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    He said he was going to get the PDR12, but since you mention it, I recommend as well that he consider the Sony SAWM40 for $130 and put the rest of the cash into the remaining speakers. I own the Sony, and have heard the PDR12. The two are absolutely equal for HT purposes. If anything, the Sony sems to go a bit deeper. The PDR12 I would give a slight nod to for music. But for the difference in price... Also, the Hsu vtf-2 is a better option if you want to spend $425 on a sub.

    And yes, demo before you buy!
     
  8. Kevin Cagle

    Kevin Cagle Agent

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    I added to the initial post up top...
     
  9. Ed_A

    Ed_A Stunt Coordinator

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    Kevin,
    You might also want to check out this site for some quality budget speakers:
    http://www.cheaphometheater.com/
    They recently did a speaker shootout...very informative reading. The Paradigm line wasn't included but they tested several other lines that are within your budget.
    You might want to look into the PSB Image line (2B's w/9C) and Def Tech Pro Mon 100 series...
    FWIW, I have the Mini's w/370 & SVS 25-31PC and am very happy...[​IMG]
    HTH,
    Ed
     
  10. Allen W

    Allen W Stunt Coordinator

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    I have Paradigm minimonitors with an LCR 350 Center channel (predecessor to the 370) and I am very happy with my setup. I think you are on target as I consider rears the lowest priority. I unfortunately had to work with a budget, so I am currently using 15 year old bose 301s for my rears and I think my system sounds pretty good for the $$ I spent.

    The good thing is when I want to upgrade my fronts to the monitor fives or sevens I will just slide my minimonitors to the rear and have a matched soundfield. I already have some Target wall mount brackets for them.

    If you buy all 4 speakers at the same time from a retail store definitely try to negotiate at least 10% off of retail. I would start by offering/asking at least 15% off.
     
  11. David X

    David X Stunt Coordinator

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    Check out the Aperion Audio 3.1-12 system for $1049.
    The r/l/c package is $567. With their highly rated and beautiful 12" sub, the package is $1049. You can add the perfectly matched rears later for $189 each.
    Check out the reviews on their web site and cheaphometheater.com
    The speakers are fairly low on the impedence scale .. you need a decent powered receiver/amp to drive them.
    www.edgeaudio.com
    -David
     
  12. DonnyD

    DonnyD Screenwriter

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    Looks like you're not getting much info on the actual speakers you mentioned in your first post so maybe I can help on a couple of them.

    I set up systems for others from time to time and use the JBL S Series often as they are a great bang for the buck. The S38 look very good and fit well in most bookshelf type entertainment systems as well as sound very good. I personally have some S series in my own sytem although I use some old L100's as mains. I'd say the S38 compare very well with those old monsters especially when used with a sub.

    Last year, we set up a system for my oldest son and after many in home auditions, the Energy RVS L&R and center became his fronts with JBL as his rears. They are very dynamic but sounded best when you up the volume.... which he really liked.

    Sure, you can spend more money and get something that may be better but The JBL Studios would be a great choice and I wouldn't hesitate a minute to use them. As I mentioned above, I use them often and they've never failed to wow the listeners. Even the N series sound good for lots less.

    Recently I set up a system for a good friend and due to his room, I chose the Paradigm ADP 370 rears and matching center but he is using some old mains he already had. Those things really rocked..... wouldn't hesitate to use them again......

    On subs, after having several, I've ended up with a 20-39PC and love it. Tom and Ron gladly make recommendations on which one would fit your listening needs....

    Good luck.......
     

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