recs for $700 music system

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Ray Tseng, Sep 16, 2003.

  1. Ray Tseng

    Ray Tseng Auditioning

    May 10, 1999
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    Hey everyone,

    My friend recently asked me for recommendations to help him spend about $700. It's been a long time since I checked up on the latest or greatest Home Theater stuff, so I had no initial advice to him other than "Don't get Bose".

    So I am posting for recommendations to get him the best bang for his buck.

    He will be using this system for music only for large sized single bedroom-(think standard 2 queen hotel-room size).

    As it is music only, I think we can get away with just 2speakers + sub + receiver (but maybe make the receiver 5.1 just in case)

    Tastes are pretty broad: rock/alternative/metal/r&b.

    Suggestions? Please provide a price+vendor link if you've got it.

    Speakers: I think JBL's S38 is a pretty solid choice.
    Receiver and Sub-I have no idea what's new and some good matches in this price range would be.

    I appreciate all your help in advance.
  2. ChrisWiggles

    ChrisWiggles Producer

    Aug 19, 2002
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    Lots of good brands out there, Marantz makes some nice recievers that excel in 2-channel. HK maybe too. For 2-channel only, something like an NAD or Rotel integrated would be better, but then there is less room for just adding speakers for 5.1 down the road. Also no bass management in an integrated, which you might want to utilize with a reciever, although it degrades SQ, so maybe that's a moot point.

    There are tons of speakers out there, if you're going strictly 2-channel, I think you'd get the best bang for your buck if you(your friend) skipped the sub, unless bass-heavy music and bass in general is quite important.

    Again, lots of great speaker brands out there, take the time to listen to EVERYTHING you can, taking your own familiar cds along to listen in 2-channel, and spend plenty of time listening. I always like to recommend paradigm, GREAT bargain high-performance speakers, and they have solid dealers, not sold in the cheesier stores usually. Then branch out and listen to as much more as possible, i'm sure others here will recommend some other oft-mentioned brands, that you should take a listen to as well.
  3. DarrenAlan

    DarrenAlan Stunt Coordinator

    Jul 23, 2002
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    I'm a mid-fi guy who likes budget gear myself, but that's going to be a tough one.

    How about:

    -Go to and buy whatever Yamaha or Denon 5.1 receiver you can find in the $200-250 price range
    -Pick up whatever DVD player the guys in the "Audio/Video Sources" forum say has the best 2-channel music playback for $200 -- I think Pioneer is respected and some models can be upgraded by Dan Wright in Portland (Modwright is the name, I believe)
    -Paradigm Atoms, $150 or so, local retailer (they don't sell online) or $100-125 from
    -DLS 10" subwoofer (Tiny Mity II) from Partsexpress. About $150 with shipping.

    Total: right around $700-750. This combo would provide decent 2-channel music reproduction and would also be upgradeable with a center channel and 2 rears for home theater. Then, piece by piece, he could mod the DVD player for better sound (and probably picture, too), upgrade the sub, and really have a nice system.

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