What got you started in home theater?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Dustin Elmore, Jul 10, 2005.

  1. Dustin Elmore

    Dustin Elmore Stunt Coordinator

    Sep 17, 2004
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    I know this isn't the right forum for this, but there doesn't appear to be an appropriate forum. I put it here because it at least has "HT" in the forum title, and I frequent this and the movies section most often. Moderators are welcome to move it if they feel necessary.

    So, when did everyone first become interested in the A/V world. I know we all love film, but there are many people who love movies and don't feel the need for a 10 foot subwoofer. When and how did everyone become interested in the technical side of things. And how long have you been "building," so to speak?

    I'm only 22 now, and have been an active home theaterer for almost a decade. In my very early teens I remember reading about the upcoming DVD format. At this point the idea of resolutions never even entered my mind. I just thought that when I saw movies in a theater, or on tv, or pictures in a magazine they were accurate representations. After reading about these fancy new discs, I was watching Jurassic Park on VHS that night. The scene early in the film when one of the gas powered jeeps picks the group up from the helicopter after landing on the island came up. I watched the jeep drive across the screen and noticed the Jurassic park logo on the side of the door. It was all jagged because of the low res. I remember thinking "thats not a circle!" and I was disgusted. This was literally the birth of my home theater awareness.

    Soon after that I "created" my first surround sound system. My parents had an old boom box that happened to have an audio input to it. I wondered what to do with it and had an idea. I took some steel wire that my dad had in the garage and shoved one end into the input and the other into and output that my Sega CD had at the time. It worked surprisingly well and didn't cause a fire. I used it to watch "Coming Attractions" on the E! network. Awesome. About a month later I got a nice Dolby Pro logic setup for Christmas. Then my uncle gave me an old laser-disc player and a couple of movies. I had always starred at laser-discs in awe when I went to suncoast video as a child.

    I started reading DVDfile and the bits as soon as they were around. I managed to save up enough money to buy my fist DVD player in late '98 when I heard that Ghostbusters would be released on the format soon. I had to work hard to save up the money, but to entice me I went ahead and started purchasing DVDs so I would already have some when I got my first player.

    Since then, I've managed to put together a system with all the bells and whistles that I'm perfectly happy with, short of a dedicated room with stadium seating.
  2. Steve Tannehill

    Steve Tannehill Ambassador

    Jul 6, 1997
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    Real Name:
    Steve Tannehill
    When I was 15-16 years old, a buddy and I visited a store at the mall called Video Concepts, and they had a laserdisc player on display, where they were showing movies that you could own and watch in your own home. They were a fraction of the price of video tapes, and as long as you got the laserdisc format and not the CED format (which was read with a needle) it seemed to be a long-lasting format.

    I told my friend that one day I would have a room dedicated to watching movies. He laughed, and said it would be my living room.

    That was 1980.

    It took 20 years to get the dedicated room built (up until then, my friend was indeed right). It took the next couple of years to get all the right equipment in. I'm happy for the time being. And with the exception of one nice theater in town, I now have better picture and sound than most of the theaters in this area.

    So my entry into home theater was the dream of a teenage boy some 25 years ago.

    - Steve
  3. Andrew Radke

    Andrew Radke Screenwriter

    May 8, 2003
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    Guelph, Ontario - Canada
    Real Name:
    Andrew Radke
    As for me, I've always loved collecting movies. I'm 28 now, but in my mid-teens I was obsessed with collecting VHS movies, to the point where I had over 900 in my collection. My first time experimenting with surround sound involved a portable cd player and a Sony discman car adapter. To make a long story short, I loved the sound of my movies with that setup, and was definitely yearning for bigger and better.

    At first when DVDs came along, I swore I would never convert. After all, with 900 VHS tapes in tow, I wasn't about ready to switch formats. This was until someone bought me "Cast Away" on DVD as a gift. I had a Playstation 2 but had never used it for DVD viewings until I recieved that first one. Needless to say, I was spellbound by the image and sound quality of the film. Lo and behold, my new collection began.

    About 5 years ago (or so) I decided to do some research on widescreen movies. I'd heard various rumblings about how much better widescreen was better than full, and at the time I was not educated on the differences of each. After reading the information and viewing a number of screenshots, I was amazed by how much footage ended up being cut in pan & scan movies. I pledged from that day forward that I would never buy a movie that didn't contain the original aspect ratio.

    I also became familiar with sites such as DVDFILE.com and TVSHOWSONDVD.com. Both of which I visited frequently for latest news and reviews. It was actually DVDFILE where I first learned about the 'Back to the Future' mis-framing. Another site (can't remember which) led me to the extensive thread here on the Home Theater Forum, which was my very first visit. Of course, I signed up immediately.

    Over the past few years, I'd have to say it is this site that got me into Home Theater the most. Just last year, I purchased a 52" widescreen set and a top-notch sound system. None of these I would've purchased if it hadn't been for this site and the valuable information I learned by reading the threads here. If it hadn't been for this site, I'd still be watching my movies on a 27" set with a boom box for my audio.
  4. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Executive Producer

    May 9, 2002
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    Since 2006
    Real Name:
    Cameron Yee
    The home theater thing pretty much started when I bought my first DVD player. It snowballed from there as I looked at its features and wanted to get the most out of it. However my interest in movies didn't really start until college. I was just a regular movie goer before that.
  5. Paul D G

    Paul D G Screenwriter

    Dec 25, 2001
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    In high school in the early 80s I had one hell of a stereo system. I had everything from two turntables, open reel, 8 track, two dubbing cassette decks, VCR, etc. I was into music back then so I had a few keyboards on a rack and some cheap mixing boards. I had it wired so everything could record from any other source by flipping a few switches. I had speakers all over the room. That was the birth of my gadget period.

    Several years later when watching Die Hard on VHS I was first made really aware of the loss from widescreen to P&S. After that I had to really want a movie to not buy it in widescreen.

    I bought my first Dolby Pro Logic receiver in '93 but only until a few years ago actually had a room laid out properly to hook up the rear speakers without tripping over cables. But by that time I had invested in a proper 5.1 system.

    Now we've moved house and I finally bought my first 16:9 TV and we plan on devoting part of the basement to a proper home theatre set up. Not as extravgant as some people's but a big screen, projector, comfy chairs and total darkness is all I need.

  6. doug zdanivsky

    doug zdanivsky Supporting Actor

    Aug 19, 1998
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    Mackenzie, BC, Canada
    Real Name:
    doug zdanivsky
    When I was in Ukraine in '94, getting home-sick for the creature comforts, I saw an ad for a home-theater set-up in one of the magazines my dad would send over..

    "I want THAT", I said.. And I got it as soon as I got back..

    Little did I know that system was a peice of crap.. About the only thing I did right was to avoid the dying laserdisk..

    But I did my homework after that, and when those components were pretty much wore out I was ready, and made some better choices, learned about the importance of the receiver, etc..

    And it's just been going from there.. [​IMG]
  7. Shad R

    Shad R Supporting Actor

    Oct 8, 2001
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    1993: My parents replaced their old VCR with a stereo VCR. So, as an experiment, I dug out my dads old Quadrophonic four speaker stereo. I'm not sure how it decoded the "surround" speakers, but stuff did pan from front to back, right to left.
    1995: My freind rents "True Lies" and takes me over to his house, where his dad had bought a new Pro Logic reciever and a front/rear combo, using his existing stereo speakers for fronts. I was blown away..it sounded way cooler than the quad.
    1996: Saw Indepndance Day in a THX certified theater with Dolby Digital(I remember the logo ouside the theater!) "I need that in my house!"
    1997: in exchange for mowing the lawn (or acre I should say) and babysitting my younger brother whenever needed during the summer, my parents bought a Zenith all in one home theater. Pretty cool.
    1997: bought a JBL subwoofer. Rocked the house.
    1999: Saved for a year and a half, and dropped a grand on a dvd player, Dolby Digital ONKYO reciever(which still sounds better than some of the "higher watt" recievers), and some speakers.
    2003: Def Tech sub
    2004: High def tv, dish hd, Denon dd/dts
    December 2005: Will buy Klipsch reference speakers.
    future: Projector and 80 inch screen!

    STARKILLER1138 Second Unit

    Oct 24, 2004
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    Why'd I get into HT? Easy! Star Wars. A friend of a friend of mine had just bought the "faces" LD's and we went over to his home and watched them in a full "THX" theater. Man, I had no idea something like that could be in a home; I was blown away. I've always been a fan of the movies, but after seeing them in that theater, I knew there was a better way for them to be seen and heard, and I wasn't going to accept anything less. Several years later, along with several different system's and thousands of dollars, the Force is strong in my theater room. [​IMG]

    Guo: Like the set-up man! [​IMG] [​IMG]
  9. JonZ

    JonZ Lead Actor

    Dec 28, 1998
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    Back in 1983 or so my stepfather did some plumbing work for some people who owned a video store. They paid with equiptment. A LD player, stereo, speakers and such. Even as far back as the mid/late 80s,I plugged my TV into my stereo.Those old Laser discs werent very inpressive for films though.It wasnt until I saw the remastered LDs of the early 90s, I started collecting LDs.

    Ive always moved movies though. I had 100s of VHS tapes before DVD.
  10. Brett_M

    Brett_M Screenwriter

    Nov 19, 2004
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    Mos Eisley Spaceport
    Real Name:
    Brett Meyer
    My folks were always big movie lovers. I remember a time when going to the movies was a big deal. In my home, movies were something you experienced. My fondest memory is going to see "The Terminator" and "2010: The Year We Make Contact" with my dad in the same day.

    My home theater vaccination first occured when my dad won some money betting on a football game in 1981. He used the money to buy a VCR and a video camera. I can't remember the exact price but it was at least $2000. The VCR had a remote connected by a 20 foot wire to the player.

    A video store had just opened up in our neighborhood (Schaumberg IL, on Wise Rd. above Little Bucky's) and we started renting flicks. The first movie we rented was "Prom Night."

    My dad started dubbing old super 8 porn movies onto VHS and he used my brother's rock LPs for the sound. For some reason, he never hooked up the stereo to the TV and VCR, though.

    My eyes really opened one night in 1984 when the local public TV station (WGBH, Boston) broadcast "2001: A Space Odyssey" and simalcast the film's soundtrack over their FM affiliate. A movie on TV at home never sounded so good. It was mind blowing. My dad had quite a stereo sytem and his speakers sounded fantastic. I really didn't understand the film as an eleven year old but it sure sounded awesome.

    Jump cut to 1995. My future wife bought me an RCA Pro Logic home theater surround sound system. The speakers weren't that great but stereo VHS films sounded pretty good. I used to buy a lot of VHS movies.

    Jump cut to 1999. For Christmas that year, my brother, two sisters, and I bought the folks a GE DVD player (which came with 10 free DVDs). I was so impressed in the picture that I took the plunge soon after and bought an Oritron DVD player for $165. I hooked it up to the RCA home theater. A year later, I upgraded the Pro Logic I receiever to an Aiwa DD/DTS receiver. Whoa. Could it get better? Yes. The RCA speakers gave me a whopping 165 watts.

    First DVD purchase: Gladiator.

    Today, I have almost 400 DVDs (I only purchase my faves), a dedicated movie room in the basement fitted with an Onkyo 5.1 system (650 watts -- the sub has more power than my entire previous speaker set!), 51" Sony 16X9 HDTV, Toshiba DVD player and leather recliners. My wife prefers to wait for movies to come to DVD because our picture and sound is so good. I still love the feeling when the lights go down in a theater and my anticipation rises.

    Great thread.
  11. MarcoBiscotti

    MarcoBiscotti Producer

    Sep 2, 2003
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    Aaprox. 6 years ago. First year Cegep. I was unsure of the direction I was heading in my life as far as school and my future. I wasn't happy with the program I was taking and was worried because I had friends who were well ahead of me in terms of realizing and working to achieve goals and security. I had no idea what I wanted to do or where I was going and reality seemed to be flying by so fast and I started to feel old. It was really the first time I ever looked back to the earlier years of my life with a sense of nostalgia. One night, I lay awake in bed for hoiurs dreaming of simpler more innocent times when my only worries were waking up early enough to watch Saturday morning cartoons. I started to think back on all these great memories I had of childhood and the fun and silly thing I did growing up. I remembered every Sunday night as a child, my father would call to order Chinese food and than take me to the video store and browse the aisles picking out movies to watch on Betamax. It was usually older compilations of Walt Disney shorts from the 40's and 50's and classic Warner Bros. cartoons or TV serials like Davy Crockett, etc. We would rent these cassettes, drive to the Chinese restaurant to pick up the food we'd ordered and than head home and lay down a huge bath towel on the carpet in front of the TV and watch classic cartoons and TV westerns till bedtime. I lay awake in bed all night with a huge smile on my face remembering these movies from my past. That brought me to search the internet and Ebay for older videos. I decided I had to start a collection of these classics from my childhood so that I'd have tghem on hand to revisit whenever I felt like it and could one day watch with my children. I sought out dozens upon dopzens of old out-of-print cassettes in the best condition I could fine and many were fetching insanely high prices. I invested hundreds and hundreds of dollars into this new obsession of collecting all these old treasures from my youth. Than, fast forward a year later and the most amazing thing happened... slowly but surely, many of these videos began to appear, albeit in different contexts, on this new format called DVD. I couldn't believe it. These were likle updated retrospectives of these films presented in the most beautifully restored picture quality I'd ever seen and with insightful extras and commentary to boot. I was sold. I quickly hit the auction sites asnd began cleaning out the videos I'd evidentlly wasted thousands of dollars on before the rest of the world caught on. It was probably 5 years ago and I would frequent sites like DVDToons on a daily basis hoping for new announcements. The DVD format was nothing like it is today with all sorts of obscure and forgotten titles being released every other week. At least half of my current fcollection consists of titles I'd never expected to see released in any other medium ever again. I was sold. I started devoting all my spare time and income to building a collection. Than when certain live action titles started surfacing, I decided... why not? I'm already spending so much towards this new hobby, I might as well get the most out of it. And that brought me to forums such as this one, where I'd lurk daily gathering as much info about upcoming releases and hopeful future titles as I possibly could. I started posting when studios began offering double dips or carious editions of movies on DVD. I wasn't really familiar with the context to how these films were being put out or the prospects of the studios and so I sought advice from messageboards and the internet. My fascination grew tenfold when I watched DVD's like Terminator 2 and stared in awe at the picture quality. I was soon on my way to becoming a tech junkie that was caught up in not just the movies but the quality of the DVD's being produced. Through the knowledge of forums such as this one, I was slowly put on to other titles and genres as well. I got excited by people's enthusiasm over upcoming releases of classic films, when the threads began lingering at the top of the forum with 10+ pages of commentary, I would follow closely and open up my Word file to add titles to my wishlist. Even titles I honestly didn't care much about but thought I "should" own because of the apparent significance they held. Well fast forward a few years and here I am, a full fledge movie buff. I love classic films, foreign and art films, Japanese cinema, film noir, pre-code Hollywood productions. I now recognize the artistry that went into these works. I didn;t know where I was going 6 years prior, but given that I was on a hiatus from college and waqs filling my long and drawn out days with movie watching while my friends attended classes or work, I became more and more knowledgable and self-taught. I am now a film student and hopeing to one day make my living off of filmmaking or something related to the industry as well. It went from an interest to a fascination to a passion. Ever since I first popped a DVD into my player and witnessed the excitement and intensity of what these tiny silver discs had to offer, I had promised myself that I'd one day have a home theater dedicated to screening these films and gsaining the most of the medium. Here I am, a little more than half a decade later and some $40,000 poorer and I have a library of thousands of filmns and a high end theater setup to rival my local multiplexes. I did a lot of research, mostly over the past year, in the a/v forums at HTF and with my extra knowledge from film school and understanding of the way the technology works, I have become a home theater enthusdiast myself and am hooked on yet another expensive hobby.

  12. MikeEckman

    MikeEckman Screenwriter

    Jan 11, 2001
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    My story isnt too different from the others here. Basically, my family had a plain jane VHS VCR in the early 80s and we began recording movies off cable. Then that turned into buying movies and building a family movie library.

    A local stereo/electronics store had a demo home theater setup with surround sound and laserdisc and I was enamorated by the sound and picture quality and vowed to have something similar when I got older.

    Bought my first DVD player in 2000 and starting building my collection and my home theater. Got my first Dolby Digital/DTS receiver that same year. Got my first HD capable Sony WEGA TV last year.

    My setup pales in comparison to most of the members here, but I am happy for now, and one day I will have my dream setup.
  13. Mark Murphy

    Mark Murphy Supporting Actor

    Nov 20, 2002
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    I got into HT because my wife and I were stuck in the house all the time because it was difficult for us to get a babysitter for our son. He is in great health now but he had a few problems as an infant and our relatives were afraid to sit with him. We spent so much time watching TV and movies in the evenings we decided to make it the best experience possible. That was over five years ago and its most popular room in the house.
  14. Jeff D Han

    Jeff D Han Supporting Actor

    Mar 2, 2003
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    I really got serious about movie collecting when I
    bought my first laserdisc player in 1989. The picture
    blew away VHS, and the longer life and direct access to
    scenes got me hooked on biulding a serious library. I
    immediately got rid of my VHS collection. I had a Sony
    32" set along with my laserdisc player for about 10 years.
    I knew I was eventually going to get into DVD when they
    were first introduced, but I couldn't afford to convert
    to DVD- the prices of players were pretty high. But in
    February 1999, a lucky accident happened. I came home
    late one night to find the fire department at my apartment
    building. The guy who lived right above me started a fire
    by smoking in bed, and the water used to put the fire out
    ruined my audio/video equipment, and about 25 percent of
    my laserdiscs. Fortunately I had renter's insurance, and
    also I have a good insurance company, so I got a fair
    settlement and used that money to buy a combination DVD-
    laserdisc player, better speakers, and my first Dolby
    Digital receiver. My first DVD purchase was Dolores Claiborne, in March 1999. I still had 200 laserdiscs then.
    Now I have about 80 laserdiscs, and 600 DVD titles- I've
    been upgrading from laser to DVD over the years. About
    6 months ago, I upgraded my Sony 32" 4x3 set to a Panasonic
    43" LCD 16x9 set[​IMG] . I had to upgrade my receiver to DTS
    because lightning hit my old Dolby Digital receiver a
    month ago. Now I think I have a pretty good living room
    theater system.
  15. Colton

    Colton Supporting Actor

    Jan 12, 2004
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    It was 1983. I was 16. My best friend just got his drivers license and we cruised the streets to find something fun to do during our summer vacation. We noticed a auido/video store called "Contemporary Sounds" and decided to check it out.

    Once inside, my eyes gazed upon the most amazing sight. A dedicated home theater room with full ticket booth, lightboxes and marquee. We walked through the red velvet ropes into the theater and my jaw dropped at the sight of a miniture theater - completely decorated with three rows of theater seats. Almost immediately, a sales rep. asks if we wanted a demo experience - we were in our seats before he could finish his sentence.

    He pushed a few buttons and the lights slowly dimmed. I remember the thrill of seeing the red velvet curtain slowly part to reveal a big movie screen. He put in a video cassette and a movie started playing. It was the greatest thing I've ever seen! The projector sat between the seats and it was tremendous in size - almost like a kitchen table. The audio system was a towering display of equipment - each unit handling different functions. It was breathtaking.

    Curiously, I asked, "How much? For the whole thing?" ... "$30,000." I snapped back into reality, but swore that one day I will have my own dedicated home theater with all the bells and whistles in my own home.

    Fast forward to today. My wife and I found the perfect house with a dedicated loft. Plans are underway to make my dream come true. Should take a year or two. I can't wait.

    - Colton
  16. Neil Joseph

    Neil Joseph Lead Actor

    Jan 16, 1998
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    Real Name:
    Neil Joseph
    Star Wars: A New Hope got me into movies.

    Jurassic park got me into home theatre. At that time though, all I had was a hi-fi vcr and a stereo receiver but the path was set.
  17. TheLongshot

    TheLongshot Producer

    May 12, 2000
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    Well, I've been into movies for year, but I saw home theater as a possibility when DVDs were created. At that time, I was in a 1 bedroom apartment, so there wasn't much I could do. I decided to experiment first with a hardware DVD decoder on my computer. I then hooked up my TV to it to watch on my TV. Later, I picked up my first HT receiver (Denon 3300, which I'm still using.), which I hooked up my old Sansuis to. Later, I upgraded my speakers (Vandersteen 1Cs) and moved the old speakers as surrounds. Worked pretty good for the apartment, tho I dreamed of an upgrade to my 25" TV.

    Then in 2000, the Dell deal came around for the NEC LT150, and front projection became a reality for me. While I was in the apartment, I put up a temporary sheet to use the projector. Soon after that, I moved in with my future wife in a townhouse, where I could have a dedicated room in the basement for my home theater. I bought Paradigm Titans to use for the rears, since I could mount those on the wall. I still use my computer as my DVD player, but I've gone to software players and have an HD card for watching OTA HT.

  18. Shaun

    Shaun Second Unit

    Feb 9, 2000
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    For me, my addiction to home theater began with one movie: Titanic. I know these days, it's not considered cool to mention the movie, but I still rank it as one of my favorite movies of all time. Now I had noticed sound in theaters much earlier with Twister, Independence Day, Jurassic Park, Stargate, etc. I guess I was kinda naieve, but I thought that kind of presentation could only be experienced in a theater, so I never thought twice about looking into a home theater, nor did I really even know they existed. However, in 1997, when Titanic came out, I was not only impressed by the visuals and of course the sound, but the movie had such an emotional impact on me that I immediately thought to myself how great of a movie I had just seen, and that as soon as the movie was going to come to home video, I had to have it. But I knew the experience wouldn't be the same. That same year, my grandparents passed away and left some money to my parents. With the money, they had replaced their very old 25 inch Zenith with a new 32 inch Toshiba. When they went to purchase the set, I had made a suggestion that they purchase a home theater sound system as well. So we started looking into a Dolby Digital sound system, where they demo'd Jurassic Park on laserdisc in the showroom. Of course the sound was incredible, but we quickly realized though, that at the time, they were quite pricey and more than we had budget for. So we looked at smaller home theater systems and walked away with a Sony Pro-Logic home theater in a box system. The rest is history. I was completely blown away with the sound quality and could not go back to watching movies the same way again. Through the years my system has evolved, using, at one point, a cambridge soundworks dolby digital computer desktop sound system, then upgrading to an Aiwa Dolby Digital home theater in a box system. I first considered my home theater "complete" when my system consisted of an Onkyo DD/DTS receiver, Infinity Interlude speakers and an Infinity subwoofer. Low and behold, it was far from complete as we all know, we are constantly looking for upgrades and a bigger bang. So I then purchased an SVS subwoofer (20-39PC). My latest upgrades make my system as complete as I can afford at this point. Having replaced mostly everything last year, my system now consists of a Mitsubishi 55 inch HDTV, Denon Receiver and DVD players (single disc and changer), and Klipsch Reference speakers, with my SVS sub.
  19. Paul Anthony

    Paul Anthony Stunt Coordinator

    Jun 30, 1997
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    I was 15 years old when my parents bought me a Panasonic portable stereo cassette recorder for Christmas (after begging my parents for months). After my first job when I was a teen, this lead to buying a Panasonic receiver with a stereo 8-track recorder, then a Technics record player with Mach 1 Radio Shack speakers, and finally a Panasonic VHS recorder, which lead to my very first Sony Laserdisc player (can you imagine watching all this on a 15-inch Toshiba set?). And the rest is history, except I don't own any Panasonic components at this moment, I graduated to a Sony 36" XBR Wega (preparing to purchase a large plasma soon), a Sony ES 5-disc/SACD player, a Denon THX Surround EX receiver, and Infinity Interlude surround speakers.

    First VHS I owned was "Lady Sings The Blues" and "Looking For Mr. Goodbar", first Laserdisc was "Reality Bites", and my very first DVD was "Goodfellas". I owned 250 laserdiscs, but now I own over 2000 DVDs, and still counting! [​IMG]
  20. ChristopherDAC

    ChristopherDAC Producer

    Feb 18, 2004
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    I dropped a nickel.

    Seriously, I was working as a cashier in the summer of 2000 and I dropped a nickel into a bag one of the other cashiers had left behind the counter. When I went looking for my nickel, I discovered that the bag contained Pioneer's subtitled VHS release of the Japanese animated series "Tenchi Muyo". I had some prior exposure to anime -- enough that I know "Pokemon" for what it was when it first showed up -- and I was mildly interested, but I didn't give it much thought.
    A few days later I was in a used book store, and underneath the LPs I noticed the first episode of "Tenchi Muyo" staring out at me! Of course one would have to have been living in a cave not to have heard of DVD, and I knew that the little discs were rapidly driving from the market an older disc which had the misfortune to be analog in an age enamoured of digital technology, and rather large to boot, but was still very high quality. Upon further examination I found that the store had the full series, and that the discs had both Japanese and English audio in stereo and subtitles through Closed Captioning.
    Never one to believe in coincidence, I 'phoned around to area pawn shops and found a player for $15, bought it and the first Tenchi LD, and I was in business. The player was no better than a $15 machine ought to be, a dying LD-660, but it carried me until I had seen enough and bought enough discs to convince me I wanted a better machine; amusingly, due to a decision by somebody at Pioneer, all I could hear through that first unit was the Japanese soundtrack on the analog tracks, and after I had finally heard the dub version I found that I would not have been nearly as captivated if I had started off the other way.
    I decided that I wanted to watch more anime, and it wasn't broadly available for rental at least in Japanese-language versions, so I would have to buy it. We had used a VCR, mostly for time-shifting but also for the occasional rented movie, for years and had it hooked up to the stereo, but the quality and durability of VHS weren't such that I wanted buy tapes. Anime DVDs were fairly rare and expensive at the time, and many early releases had serious technical problems, so I happily bought blowout LDs instead at $5-$15 each. I had no problem with the size or anything, since I was already used to dealing with my father's multiple hundred vinyl records, and since I've always been technically-minded I set about researching the details of LaserDisc and its relatives. On the way I decided that I might as well get set up to enjoy the Surround Sound and other capabilities available to me, and so here I am, four-corner speaker setup, Pro-Logic/DD/dts reciever, AC-3 deocder, and all in tow.

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