only bose lifestyle system can do 4 zones ?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by AvinashM, Sep 18, 2002.

  1. AvinashM

    AvinashM Auditioning

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    Hello
    i am not a big bose fan, but i dont detest them either
    like some other people on this forum.
    my neighbor recently bought the bose lifestyle (-15, i
    think) for ~$3800 incl tax. while he was showing it to me
    he mentioned that it was the only system which let him
    control source, volume etc in 4 zones independantly.
    most other systems have only A/B switch which has to be changed manually.
    i agree that the system is expensive, but you get a
    nice integrated package for that.
    5.1 setup in living room (with bose speakers)
    a cd/dvd player with 6 cassete changer in lv rm
    power supply strips that drive speakers in all zones - he
    has it configured for garage, bedroom and backyard.
    (speakers in other zones are non-bose purchased separately)
    best of all, an rf touchscreen remote that will let you
    control all this from one device that even my wife can
    understand (v. important!).

    i dont recall if lv room is also considered a zone. if not,
    then counting lv room that would make it 5 zones !

    according to him this in the only system that he found that
    does this while still being simple enough that wife
    can use it too and i am inclined to agree.
    any ideas on how can this be accomplished cheaper while
    not requiring a graduate degree to setup and operate the
    system ?

    thanks.

    regards,
    avinash.
     
  2. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    What does 4 zones mean? Can it play 4 different sources, with amplification, at the same time, in 4 different rooms?

    I believe him that the Bose system is the only complete boxed system that can do that, but it's sure not the cheapest or best sounding way.

    The reason folks around here don't like Bose is because it's so terribly expensive for the quality you get. It does look sleak, and it's easy to use out of the box, but that's not what I look for in A/V equipment, at all.

    With a little effort (yours, or someone elses) almost any system can be made easy to control. A Philips Pronto should be able to wonders for even the most clueless user.
     
  3. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    There are literally hundreds of whole house audio solutions for supplying difefrent audio and control for multiple zones. I think only BOSE has wasted their time offering this much zone control in a consumer package-- as most people seeking this ability opt for a professional solution. I associate trying to cram this much zone control into a Home receiver product as a gimmick for companies like Aiwa... for lack of a better term I'd brand it a little "low rent" to try to do all this off a receiver.

    The best way to implement this type of system is to purchase a controller specific for this function- and control pads for the actual rooms. This type of a configuration would give you the ability to control source, volume, and in many cases CD control and Tuning from the room location using small touchpads (most have built in IR repeaters- giving you complete control of the units at the central location). Each control unit allows you to switch inputs and control volume for that zone-- and the control is tied back into the central controller in one of several ways (depending on the system).

    Most of these controllers start at the 4 zone level, and there are some which can offer control for a dozen locations or more. I think Kustom has a 6 zone / 6 input unit with onboard amps (20 watts per zone x 2) for under $2k. Each controller will run less than $100- so you could have 6 rooms with full control (simple push button selection and volume) for Less than $2600 out the door. I wouldn't say this is top shelf audiophile stuff- but it should keep pace with a Bose solution.

    The odd part is your friend probably could have ended up buying 3 seperate budget systems (receiver, speakers & CD) for each location, ended up spending less than the Bose setup and still had better sound!

    But my advice would be to check into professional quality multichannel distributors for this type of solution. Maybe start at Parts Express and see what you find.

    -Vince
     
  4. AvinashM

    AvinashM Auditioning

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    Hello Vince,
    Thanks for the reply. i checked out parts express for whole house systems. they have the KUSTOM KHS-6640 6-SOURCE 6-ZONE AMPLIFIER for $1348.50 (list price $2295.99) plus
    wall controllers sold separately ($76.50). looks like you have to get your own IR remote and program it.
    using this setup to get equal to bose system will cost:
    1348 + 4x 76.5
    + receiver/amp + 5.1 speakers + CD changer ($1500 for budget system roughly equivalent/slightly better than bose sound)
    + learning remote ($200 ??)

    = $3354

    that is getting pretty close to the bose system. plus
    you get tremendous ease of use and "coolness" factor with
    wife :)

    so for this purpose the bose system is a pretty good buy
    after all...

    -Avinash.
     
  5. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    I'd rather have one zone sound great than have BOSE do 4 zones poorly...oh it does one zone poorly also...[​IMG]
     
  6. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Avinish,

    Zones have nothing to do with 5.1 sound unless you get a mucho expensive ADA multi-zone system. Four zones means stereo music to four independent areas with individual control of sources and volume. As Vince stated, there is a multitude of available systems that will outperform the Bose Lifestyle system in a zoned application.

    BTW, according to what you posted about the Kustom product you a) don't need an additional amp because it has one built-in and b) don't need a receiver because it controls the multi-zone system. Add quality speakers and it isn't close to being "roughly equivalent/slightly better" than the Bose system. Move up to Zantech or Niles or a host of others and you're comparing apples to grapes (Bose).
     
  7. AvinashM

    AvinashM Auditioning

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    >BTW, according to what you posted about the Kustom product you a) don't need an additional amp because it has one built-in and b) don't need a receiver because it controls the multi-zone system. Add quality speakers and it isn't close to being "roughly equivalent/slightly better" than the Bose system. Move up to Zantech or Niles or a host of others and you're comparing apples to grapes (Bose).
    --

    ok, i agree that kustom has in built amp so i dont need an
    amp for the zones. but i still need one for my main 5.1
    system in living room. i will just use the stereo line
    out from that to feed the multi-zone system.
    also, what are the other "multitude of options" available
    here ?
    i still remain unconvinced that one can do better than
    lifestyle for ease of use and setup for the same money. keep in mind folks, that i am not an audiophile. i just
    need the best sound/system for my money and have ease of
    use.
     
  8. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    Avinash,

    You are correct- in my original response, I misunderstood that your only goal was "doing it", and not necessarily doing it at a particular level.

    Just like when buying audio components: You can find a system which includes the receiver, tape deck, CD and even a record player in one unit-- however for an extensive number of reasons, most people here have determined this is not the correct solution.

    I might have to look into the BOSE solution since you describe it as smoother than a true whole house solution: IMHO all the switching at the panel and complete IR repeating is resonably smooth.

    -Vince
     
  9. Bill Lucas

    Bill Lucas Supporting Actor

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    Avinash,
    I'm a custom installer. Believe me, there are many, many other ways to go. BTW, calling what Bose sends out through cube speakers and a questionable bass module 5.1 surround sound is pretty liberal. [​IMG]
    I don't have the need to convince you of anything. You're the one who started the thread by saying you weren't a big fan of Bose. Now you're doing a 180 and saying it's the right solution. Which is it? The Bose may very well suit your needs but there is better out there. Regards.
     
  10. AvinashM

    AvinashM Auditioning

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    >>Avinash,

    I'm a custom installer. Believe me, there are many, many other ways to go. BTW, calling what Bose sends out through cube speakers and a questionable bass module 5.1 surround sound is pretty liberal.

    I don't have the need to convince you of anything. You're the one who started the thread by saying you weren't a big fan of Bose. Now you're doing a 180 and saying it's the right solution. Which is it? The Bose may very well suit your needs but there is better out there. Regards.
     

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