out with the old in with the new? need speakers

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by allan espinoza, Jul 20, 2002.

  1. allan espinoza

    allan espinoza Stunt Coordinator

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    i was wandering if sony speakers are any good? an idea of what im interested in im starting my home theater obsession off to a fresh start after owning bose 301 mains with a polk audio center and bose 161 rears ([​IMG] ashamed of owning bose speakers)so i want to rebuild my ht as new. i own a yamaha htr 5540, now im only 19yrs old and in college so im kinda of on a budget but not too tight. im working making 9.00 an hour so i cant afford those high end speakers that everyone owns [​IMG] ( but i will one day) [​IMG] so im looking for ideas and brands to look into within my budget so any help will be great thanks.
    p.s. what are things to consider when purchasing speakers?
    considering- [http://www.bestbuy.com/detail.asp?e=...cat=15&scat=17[/url]
     
  2. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    I have all sony speakers and am very pleased.

    I have SS-MB300H mains, SS-CN490 center, SS-MB100H surrounds, and SS-MB100H backs (quasi 7.1 setup).

    I'm extremely happy w/ the SS-MB300H mains, as i chose them over the SS-MF400H floor standing model because the 300s have an 8" driver instead of just a 6.5". The 400s are probably a better speaker for music because the bass is tighter due to the larger box and the bass reflex (ported) enclosure. They also look more impressive, but i'm more interested in what works best for the best price. The price difference was about $65 dollars ($85 for the 300's, $150 for the 400's). I also plan to make nice stands which in my opinion will look better than a floor standing model. The 300's still have clear bass from the 8" HOP driver and are phenomenal for home theater, since anything below 80 or 100 Hz will be sent to your sub.

    The SSS-MB100H do a solid, yet not phenomenal, job as surround and back surround speakers. I say that because on the TBX THX demo, i hear a slight bit of distortion as the Robot first flies into the left rear speaker. This is the only time i have ever heard an unclear surround signal from these. They really can't be beat for $50 (or less) a pair.

    The SS-CN490 center (replaced by the SS-CN495, but the only difference is the grill, and i believe the 495 reverts back to a paper tweeter as opposed to the 490's liquid cooled tweeter) is a wonderful center speaker. It has a surprisingly full range for a 2 way center speaker. Timber match is probably 95% accurate from mains to center, which isn't quite like a matched Polk or jbl system, but is far better than mismatched components.

    The only thing i would stay away from is a Sony subwoofer. I've demo'd Sony subs, and they just don't sound that great and are not built solid (the lower and mid range come in plastic enclosures). Depending on what price point you want to hit, i would recommend a velodyne or jbl w/ at least a 10" driver and at least 120 watts.

    I know there are tons of people more knowledgeable than me on the subject and w/ the budgets to buy the high end equipment, but i have some experience w/ Sony products and am very happy w/ their mid range average consumer targeted equipment.
     
  3. allan espinoza

    allan espinoza Stunt Coordinator

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    thanks a lot stephen i may just consider sony speakers after i get a few looking into them. did you happen to look at the speakers i was interested in from best buy?from your opinoion are they any good. i want speakers that sound best with movies, dont care much for music
     
  4. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    I did try out the 600s when i was comparing the 400s and 300s. The sound great and have really good bass response due to dual drivers and a tuned port bass reflex enclosure. Only thing is, this may be overkill if you're not listening to alot of music. Music is why people buy tower speakers, because music will always sound better when driven by powerful full range speakers as opposed to a speaker sub combination.
    If you are watching mainly movies and like the look of a big (21" tall, 9.5" wide) speaker on a nice stand, go with the SS-MB300Hs and a nice set of 16" stands. ($99 + stands)
    If you're set on a tower speaker, go w/ the 400s. ($159)
    If you think you'll ever be using amplification exceeding 150 watts, or just have the money to spend, go ahead and get the 600s.
    Just my opinion, but when you're getting close to the $300 price point, other brands, such as JBL, Polk, and Infinity start to stick out in my mind.
    If you have the money and want to spend it on speakers, i would look at these:
    JBL N38 II (http://www.bestbuy.com/detail.asp?e=...cat=15&scat=17)
    Cerwin Vega V-10F (http://www.bestbuy.com/detail.asp?e=...cat=15&scat=17)
    Yamaha NS-A200XT (http://www.bestbuy.com/detail.asp?e=...cat=15&scat=17)
    I've listened to all of these, and they sound amazing... it's just hard for me to justify paying 2 to 3 times as much to get speakers that sound 10% better than what i have.
     
  5. allan espinoza

    allan espinoza Stunt Coordinator

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    thanks for your for your time looking into these stephen, what kinda of receiver are you running your speakers on? how do the speakers sound on the high volume above -25db? i may just consider your opinion? what would you recomend for rears?
     
  6. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    I'm running a Pioneer VSX-D811S receiver (100x6, DPL2, DD EX, DTS ES, in my opinion the best sub $500 receiver on the market). I'm using the Sony SS-MB100H 2-way bookshelfs for all four or my surrounds (Right and Left surround, Right and left back surround). They do a very solid job, but if i liked spending money, i prolly would have put SS-MB300Hs all around, or maybe just SS-MB200Hs, depending on how much cash i had.

    How much are you looking to spend? What do you have and what do you want to keep and replace? Are you setting up 5.1, 6.1, or 7.1?

    If you want, you can talk to me on AOL Instant Messenger using the screen name nehpets4627
     
  7. allan espinoza

    allan espinoza Stunt Coordinator

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    i have a yamaha htr-5540 (dd,dts,dplI 6.1 matrix etc)i want to replace my existing bose speakers only from which ive heard and convinced that they are overpriced and cheap quality speakers. i wanna get everything step by step not all at once. i also dont want to jump into the first thing i see. i spent about $ 325 for the bose 301 mains about $200 for the 161 rears and $150 for my polk audio center and debating whether or not to replace my sub $350 from cambridge sound works, which i too hear that they are no good as well so i kinda wanna keep everything within that price range. so i appreciate the help.
     
  8. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    The only reason i would replace your center channel is if you find that the timber matching is way off, because i've always liked polk stuff, just out of my price range.

    Since you were initially interested in a tower speaker, you might not be happy otherwise, so I would reccomend the SS-MF400H for mains ($159/pair at bestbuy, alot cheaper online)

    For rears, i would recomend the SS-MB300H ($99/pair at bestbuy, not much cheaper online) if space/size is not an issue. They are pretty big for a bookshelf at 21" tall and 9.5" wide. If it is, i would reccomend the SS-MB100H ($59/pair at best buy) or preferably the SS-MB200H (Best buy doesn't carry them, but it would be worth hunting down a set online for around $70 a pair cuz they would probably sound a little cleaner than the 100's).

    As for a subwoofer, i really like JBL PB10 150watt ($300 at bestbuy), but the most bang for the buck, and still top notch sound quality would be VAI CHT8 ($299 at circuit city). It's only an 8" driver, but it has a 350 watt amplifier and hits amazingly hard.
     
  9. Adam Bluhm

    Adam Bluhm Supporting Actor

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    I was looking at that very line of speakers when I began researching for my first HT, Allan. They come at a bargain. However, I also had the opportunity to pay wholesale for JBL Studio speakers. Also, you could probably find the Northridge Series online for a reasonable buck. Give them a listen on your next trip to Best Buy.
    If you're not totally sold on the Sony and have mucho patience to exercise, a few people on the forum have been nabbing JBL S26's on ebay for dirt cheap. I just bought two pair of S26II's wholesale and they are wonderful. [​IMG]
     
  10. allan espinoza

    allan espinoza Stunt Coordinator

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    thanks adam ill look into those.
     
  11. Adam Bluhm

    Adam Bluhm Supporting Actor

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    Okay. I just checked ebay and JBL no longer has any factory direct S26's up for bid. Everything there at the moment (all 3) look like used speakers.
    .. just an FYI. [​IMG]
     
  12. allan espinoza

    allan espinoza Stunt Coordinator

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    thanks adam i appreciate that
     
  13. Phil Mays

    Phil Mays Second Unit

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    Adam,
    Stephen may claim others have more experience on this site, however he makes a very strong and well thought out argument for those speakers. [​IMG]
    I too had Bose 301 in my main set-up last year. I since have completely overhauled the main system and placed those in the bedroom. IMHO I think the 301's are the best of the Bose line when considering value/performance. Why not keep those for now and place them at the rear or back position(s).
    You are in college and I would guess room is the main factor and they have a pretty small foot print.
    Good Luck!!!
     
  14. Adam Bluhm

    Adam Bluhm Supporting Actor

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    I'm confused by your first sentence, there, Phil. The wink puts me at ease, though. [​IMG]
    Allan, here's another thread you may want to have a look at. I haven't heard of these speakers until yesterday when I read this thread. They appear to be wonderful budget speakers. As I stated earlier, if it hadn't been for the opportunity I had to order JBL S speakers, these may be next in line.
    Have a read up on them. I'm not trying to persuade you to stay away from Sony's. I just want to make sure you exercise all your options. At least that's how I like to do it.. know my options before making the purchase.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  15. EricE

    EricE Agent

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    I'd recommend checking out PSB Image series. This is the set I'm going to buy after extensive auditons. I don't know if they're out of your budget but you can get some great deals on B stock "blems". They come with full warranty and I've actually been in this retailer's store so they're legit and stuff.
    PSB Speakers
    YAWA
     
  16. Aaron Smithski

    Aaron Smithski Stunt Coordinator

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    Allan,

    "i spent about $ 325 for the bose 301 mains about $200 for the 161 rears and $150 for my polk audio center and debating whether or not to replace my sub $350 from cambridge sound works, which i too hear that they are no good as well so i kinda wanna keep everything within that price range. so i appreciate the help."

    There are some amazing deals on the Infinity Interlude lineup right now on Ebay. This may seem like blatant self-promotion as I do have an IL40, IL10, and IL25 home theater package currently listed there with a starting bid of $699 (please no flames), but, quite honestly at these prices you will have a tough time finding a better speaker! This package would absolutely KILL the Bose setup and would be 100% tonally balanced to boot. I am reselling new Interlude speakers on there but the prices have dropped so low to the point where I am just breaking even and wished I had not bought in. It is hard to believe they have fallen this much!

    Aaron
     

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