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Recommendations for basic small apartment setup

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by EricSchulz, Feb 2, 2017.

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  1. EricSchulz

    EricSchulz Producer

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    I just picked up a 50 inch Vizio TV and am looking for a very small and basic sound system to go with it. The majority of my viewing is Netflix/Amazon Prime streaming and occasional DVD/BD viewing. I'm not looking for anything too big or loud as I have five other tenants in the building. But the TV's speakers aren't going to cut it! Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Rocco415

    Rocco415 Extra

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    I used energy take 5's in my small apartments from college up until a few years ago. Depending on how well sound proofed your apartment is you can use with or w/o a subwoofer. I prefer them with a subwoofer.
     
  3. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    Hey Eric!

    The Onkyo HTiBs are really good.

    My son picked up THIS UNIT (the S-5400) in 2012 and It is still going strong and sounds great (at both loud and soft levels). This is now discontinued and goes for higher prices. The newer version (with more current features) are actually cheaper.

    The 5xxx series have more features incuding a powered subwoofer than the 3xxx series units.

    The nice thing about the Onkyo systems is that they are not proprietary in any sense. LOTS of HDMI inputs to handle different sources and regular speakers...which means that everything is upgradeable when the time is right.

    And if you already have your own source pieces: cable box, Blu player, etc....you are good to go.

    You didn't mention a budget in your post...so how are we supposed to help you spend your money and get the best bang for your buck?!? :D

    I think THIS is the CURRENT Onkyo model. Lots of features. Bluetooth, streaming... But there are other configurations too.
     
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  4. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Kef E305s
    Take 5s
    SVS Prime Bookshelfs
    Pioneer Andrew Jones Atmos editions.

    All highly recommended by me personally and generally positive reviews here at HTF.
     
  5. ArmSC

    ArmSC Supporting Actor

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    Are you still looking for advice or did you come up with a solution?
     
  6. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    Yeah. Enquiring minds want to know! :D
     
  7. Alf S

    Alf S Banned
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    In a case like this (small apt) I'd almost just opt for a nice soundbar with sub.
     
  8. ArmSC

    ArmSC Supporting Actor

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    Honestly that or a nice 2.0/2.1 system would be a good option as well. Of course this all depends on OP's budget.
     
  9. EricSchulz

    EricSchulz Producer

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    Still looking...I'm liking the soundbar option. Two of the walls are exposed brick so mounting speakers is not an option. Price range is under $1000. I have a few days off to check out some options instore.
     
  10. Mike Frezon

    Mike Frezon Moderator
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    If you are looking at putting together separates, Eric (as opposed to my Onkyo suggestion above) you might consider the Polk eBay store for some good prices on your five speakers. And maybe a BIC sub (from a place like Parts Express)?

    Do you have any of your parts already (besides the TV)? Like a disc player? Also, are you using a cable box?
     
  11. EricSchulz

    EricSchulz Producer

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    I have a Blu Ray player. Currently using just my Apple TV/AirPlay along with the pre-installed Smart TV apps. We had cable for about two months and dropped it since we hardly watch "live" TV. I'm looking at getting an antenna since Chicago will have a decent selection of over the air channels. Most of my watching is binging on TV shows and movies from my collection or Redbox.
     
  12. theJman

    theJman Stunt Coordinator

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    Given that a soundbar might work, how about something like the Q Acoustics Media 4 or the Zvox SB.500?
     
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  13. ArmSC

    ArmSC Supporting Actor

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    I've heard good things about the Media 4 from Q Acoustics. that Jman mentioned. I had mixed results with the ZVOX units I recommended to my parents. YMMV but I ended up sending both of them back. Here are some other thoughts/options.

    1. Soundbar - Yamaha YAS-106 ($200) and you can add in a sub if you want to. Something like this SVS SB12-NSD ($400) would be killer. You could also go with something cheaper but this would more than get the job done. Honestly this soundbar does pretty good on it's own with the built-in "subwoofers" but most folks will want something more. Nothing says you can't try it and go from there.
    2. Soundbar - Q Acoustics M4 with subwoofer $700 You'll be getting the M4 with their compact subwoofer in one package.
    3. 2.1 setup - Yamaha RX-V381 AVR new $280/refurb $220 or the RX-V481 refurb $310 (networking/phone app is very nice), KEF Q100 $300 (on sale) and the SVS from above $400 gets you a fantastic 2.1 for around $1000. You could also step down the sub to something like this KEF C4 refurb $250 if you wanted too. It's still small but really does do a nice job.
    4. 2.0 - Same AVR with either KEF Q300 $400 (on sale), RBH R55ti towers $350ea or some KEF Q500 towers $350ea (on sale) and forgo the sub for now.
    There are a lot of options out there I've just put together some that you can consider. I'm open to discuss options just reply back.
     
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  14. morasp

    morasp Second Unit

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    I've been looking at the Yamaha YHT-4920UBL 5.1-Channel Home Theater system on Amazon for $399.
     
  15. ArmSC

    ArmSC Supporting Actor

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    I would avoid this set as there are better options out there. One of the reasons is the AVR included with it. It's the model like or is the RX-V379. This is last years model and only comes with one HDCP 2.2 port. So you're only going to be able to use one 4k source with this AVR. Another let down is the speaker set. You're getting 5 full range speakers and a very small "sub" that has a 6.5 driver. I wouldn't be surprised if this only made it into the 40's for a frequency response.

    You would be better off getting the newer RX-V381 $280 and the NS-SP1800 $150 speaker set for only slightly more money. WIth this you're getting more HDCP 2.2 ports, newer technology AVR, 2 way speakers, and a larger subwoofer. If you wanted to go refurb you could save even more money.
     
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  16. morasp

    morasp Second Unit

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    Thanks, that's a good suggestion.
     
  17. WilliamHg

    WilliamHg Stunt Coordinator

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    Eric I was in the same situation...living in an apartment with neighbors. No matter what you get...soundbar or whatever...there'll be an option for Night listening which helps a lot as far as neighbors go. My soundbar has it and my Samsung Bluray player has a Night mode also.

    Personally I don't think you'll need an expensive sound system and wouldn't recommend one since you have neighbors and wouldn't be able to use it like you'd want to...would be a waste. I have an inexpensive 2.1 wireless Philips with a subwoofer and I don't crank it up very much...don't need to but it sounds great. Just wanted to mention that Night Mode....really works....good luck to you!
     
  18. Sam Posten

    Sam Posten Moderator
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    Any of the affordable 5.1 systems I listed above will let you rock out during the day and tone it down at night, just sayin!
     

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