Which Speakers?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jon Bye, Jun 4, 2002.

  1. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    I am in the process of setting up my first home theater. I purchased the Kenwood VR 509 receiver and now must decide on speakers.

    Can/Should I use my old Sony speakers for the fronts. They are about 12 years old. The only info that I have on them is that they are 3-way 220 watt input and 8 ohm. Model SS-U401AV

    If these are ok, then I need advice on center, rear and sub that are in expensive.

    all help appreciated
     
  2. felix_suwarno

    felix_suwarno Screenwriter

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    try paradigm cinema cc, and paradigm cinema cc70 all around. should be about 400 to 500 bucks. then add pdr10. i am using them right now and perfectly happy with them.
     
  3. matthew_rm

    matthew_rm Second Unit

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    Good idea, but the only Paradigm sub worth buying is the PW2200 and Servo15.

    Look at Klipsch R speakers as well. (unless your reciever has no pre-outs. Klipsch hates Kenwood)

    Many here like JBL for their low cost and good sound.

    Sony is not well known for their speakers!
     
  4. Vasanth B

    Vasanth B Stunt Coordinator

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    I agree with Matthew. You will be better off getting higher quality speakers that are new. It's not that speaker technology has changed that much, but if you are going to lay down the bucks for a good receiver, might as well get serious about the speakers as well.
    Based on your choice of receiver I think you will be very happy with entry-level speakers from PSB, Home Theater Direct, Paradigm, JBL, etc.
    Some quick recommendations:
    I am partial to the PSB Image 1B bookshelves for all 4 speakers. This pairs well with the Image 8C center. I love the PSBs as they have a laid back sound that works well with entry-level receivers that tend to be on the bright side (bright means it emphasizes treble). You can get the b-stock Image 1Bs at http://www.yawaonline.com for $179/pair plus shipping. The 8C center is $225 I believe.
    Another frequently recommended speaker are the JBL S38s which you can find at BestBuy and Circuit City. They are around $250 a pair, I believe.
     
  5. Mike Strassburg

    Mike Strassburg Second Unit

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    I'll second the Klipsch & JBL recommendations. I've got both in my home and they perform quite well. Give them a listen to see what YOU like...
     
  6. BryanZ

    BryanZ Screenwriter

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    PSB, Energy, and NHT are excellent options as well. For now you should have no problems using your Sony speakers until you can upgrade them.
     
  7. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the input. On my limited budget I would prefer to keep the Sony's for now so that I can get decent center. How important is it to use the same brand of speakers?
    What is the preferred set up (all the same brand? same front/center with different rear? or different front center and rear?) best/worst?


    If my Sony's will suffice as the fronts for now, I am guessing that I should spend the majority of my current budget on the center. Is the sub more important than the rears or viceversa.

    I just found the surround speakers that went with my original Sony's they are model ss-U11 rated for 40watt max input, 8 ohms.

    Someone would really make my day if they would tell me that these would be ok to use as the rears for now.(BryanZ where are you?) Then I could spend all of my money on a center and a sub.

    Thanks
     
  8. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    The only problem with going with a good center is that you won't be able to stand the Sony's much longer for 2 channel audio. I'd say buy new fronts and center and move the Sonys to the back for surrounds if possible. At least until you can upgrade them.

    As far as subs go, you might as well go with a Rava or one of the cheaper SVS units. Otherwise you'll just end up upgrading that again soon. I can't think of a retail sub under $500 that I would touch.

    Brian
     
  9. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    My Sony's are quite large(3.5 ft tall and about 11 inches square) and I don't think that I can move them to the rear, but I am going to look in to it
     
  10. EricHaas

    EricHaas Supporting Actor

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    Buying a center now and mains later to match is the tail wagging the dog. I know that the dialogue and therefore the majority of the sound is routed to the center, but the quality of the mains matters more in the overall sonic experience. It is OK to get the center now and mains later, but get the center with the mains in mind. Upgrading from the Sony's to whatever mains match your center will add a lot more than adding a center vs. having no center. You can actually get by quite well without a center if you listen in the sweet spot.

    I will recommend what I have recommended in a couple other threads. J&R Music World is selling the JBL S26 bookshelf speakers for $159 with free shipping. That is a good a deal as you will find for a pair in the sub-$300 price range perhaps anywhere right now. The matching S-center can be found elsewhere online for about $159 I believe.

    Other brands for the short list are Paradigm, Divas by Swans, and Axiom. All reasonably priced with great sound for the money.
     
  11. Phil Mays

    Phil Mays Second Unit

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    Jon,
    If I am reading correctly you REALLY want to save money in this. If you like the Sony's then use them for your mains and surround for now.
    Next go to a local merchandiser to audition center channels (JBL & Polk). If money is critical then you may want to call a few speciality audio shops to see who sales Klipsch product. See if they have any KSW-10's or KSW-12's which have been discontinued and can be had in the $300-$400 range. While not top-of-line subs they will certainly do what you want them to do with your set-up. (I have a KSW-15 that I think is pretty good.)
    Be sure you use good speaker wire such as 12 guage. This will improve the sound of your Sony's if you were supplied with "zip cord" wire to begin with.
    I hate to say it though....you will be upgrading sooner than you think[​IMG]
    Good luck
    Phil
     
  12. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    Since I have a small budget right now, I don't want to end up with a complete set of speakers that I won't be happy with. I was hoping to be able to use what I have with the addition of a quality center and possibly a sub.

    It sounds like that might work from what most of you are saying.

    I don't think that all of your recommended speaker brands are available at my local shops.

    What do you think of Energy speakers? or Yamaha?

    Thanks to all
     
  13. Daniel T

    Daniel T Stunt Coordinator

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    What is your actual budget? Would you be willing to purchase off the internet? I would recommend looking at Axiom line of speakers at www.axiomaudio.com. I personally have their M3ti(fronts), VP100(center), and QS4(surrounds). Since you are on a limited budget you could get the M3ti for the fronts with VP100 for center. Then later on move the M3ti to the rears and get larger speakers from the fronts. I have read some post of people doing this. The M3ti can be had for $247.00 and the VP100 for $198.00 for the factory outlet speakers.
    Danie T
     
  14. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    Right now Ihave about $250-300. As I said I could get a set of JBLs or HTD1's, but I will probably want to upgrade later so if I can get by with my current Sony's(never used for movies as this is my 1st HT) then I could spend everything on a decent center speaker to start.

    Thanks
     
  15. BryanZ

    BryanZ Screenwriter

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    Ideally your front three speakers should be the same. I doubt you will find anything close that will match the Sony's. They could be used in surround duty until you could afford matching surrounds. At a bare minimum purchase the mains and matching center at the same time.
     
  16. Daniel T

    Daniel T Stunt Coordinator

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    Jon,

    Since your budget is $250-$300 and you would like to get a higher end center for now, look at the VP150 factory outlet by Axiom Audio. It goes for $297.50 on their web site. Then later you can add speakers they make that will match well with your center. Just my 2 cents.
     
  17. Phil Mays

    Phil Mays Second Unit

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    Jon,
    It sounds like you really want to use your local store. If you would like to see ratings for the speakers you spoke of then go towww.audioreview.com. They are rated from 0-5 by people who own them.
    Phil
     
  18. Jon Bye

    Jon Bye Stunt Coordinator

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    I wouldn't mind buying online but being in Canada, the additional shipping and duty makes it prohibitive. As well it is much easier to deal with a local store if I need to return the speakers for any reason.

    Thanks Phil I will check out the site
     

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