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Suggestions for easy set up speakers for TV

by oza101 / June 19, 2009 7:38 AM PDT

We have a new Toshiba LCD tv and neither my husband nor I can understand the voices from the built in speakers. Is there a simple solution to this problem?

We are an older couple and are not into very sophisticated sounds, so need something only for the TV. I know that Bose is not a favorite here, but, due to their ads, I am aware of the Bose 3-2-1. I think I am looking for something similar.

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated!


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Many Options
by JeepMysteryProb / June 19, 2009 8:06 AM PDT

Hello, I am glad to give you my opinion on this matter. Now strictly coming of your comment that you are not sound sophisticated is no excuse to deprive you of good sound being introduced into your home. I am an open minded individual, thus giving you an honest non biased opinion, here goes. The Bose 321 system is a solid system for many reasons, but as with all solutions there are drawbacks. Let?s start with the pros. This is an extremely system to setup and operate, there are only 6 cables total that need connecting. The sound is good, this system incorporates a tech called Truspace surround. This enhances surround sound from your movies and TV. Now to be warned this is not on par with the traditional 5.1 surround sound setup, but it comes close. This system also comes with a HDMI out to go to your TV. The media center has a build in DVD player that due to the HDMI connection can upscale regular DVD resolution picture to 1080P if your TV is capable. The cons are that the connectivity options are not that plentiful to justify the price. Also to a discerning listeners ear's, they may not be on par with component based systems (separately bought home entertainment items). Lastly the price can be an obstacle for some people. But overall it is a good solid system. Now there are a ton of different solutions that enter the categories of simplicity and decent sound, such as soundbars. The major down sides of soundbars are that they are not as powerful as the Bose or other solutions, but offer a simple and sleek design (some models). These are produced by Yamaha, Sony, and even the acclaimed Bowers & Wilkins audio makers. I encourage that you research this matter throughouly as so that when you finally buy a product, you are making an informed decision. So overall, do research online and audio stores near you. Hope I was of assistance.

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Either I am confused or there's something wrong with your TV
by ahtoi / June 19, 2009 8:10 AM PDT

Can you describe a little bit about the sound you hear?

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Simple options Perhaps
by WildClay / June 20, 2009 12:13 PM PDT

Before you add speakers to your TV you might look through your TV Menu's for some simple options that may "fix" the voice issue you are having, even with external speaker you may need to do this.

These suggestions does not mean you still can't add a home theater environment or speakers, but until you do you before you decide, these idea's might help you enjoy your TV more, not matter what you decide in the long run.

One thing to try is to see if your model has a voice enhancement option, this worked great for my parents in combination with a couple other adjustments.

If you have voice enhancment or something worded to that effect, turn it on, the out of the box setting is usually off. This tends to make voice (mid-range) more pronounced and can help a lot.

The next option to look for is often called "Dynamic Range", now while most want the greatest range possible, it can make voices harder to stand out if you have some hearing loss at te high and low end.

Dynamic Range can have all kinds of language to describe the setting but what you are going for is less, so it might be called Off / Low / Med / High, or Comproessed, etc.

There there is also often a setting called "Night Viewing" this also messes with dynamic range, it compresses all of the sound in to more even levels (this is not a techie answer, but best describes the effect) and in the process of doing this it also tends to make voices stand out more.

The last thing to try is messing with the tone, chances are you just have Bass and Treble to adjust, as a start, they are likely each set to the mid point of their respective ranges, try lowering the bass to 25% of its setting and the trebble to 75% of its range. If things get a lot worse, then reverse it, then from there you can mess around until it is makes the voices sound the best. If you have a mid-range control, try pumping that to 80-90% of its setting, voice tends to be in the mid-range.

While external speakers can help a lot, not matter what kind you get, it will not help if you don't get the settings right, if your TV will drive a left / center / right channels (speakers) which few do from the TV then you want to raise the volume of the center speaker that is where most voice comes from.

The same is true if you add a Home Theater receiver and 3 speakers, just make sure to buy a real "center" speaker, not a general purpose speaker, you want something to punch up the center channel where the voice is and a center speaker if made right will.

As for the Bose, well speakers in general are like religions, there is no perfect one for everyone, some swear by Bose, some hate Bose, and some could not care less about them.

Personally I like JBL and a few other brands, I have in my current rig a good center speaker made from the ground up to be a center speaker, and the rest of the speakers are pretty much the same. A good center speaker and something that intentionally drives a center speaker is going to give you the best result.

Short of that you might try some of my no-cost setting suggestions.

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Thank you!
by oza101 / June 20, 2009 10:30 PM PDT
In reply to: Simple options Perhaps

Thanks for the replies. I appreciate the information from people who know a lot more than I do about this I have tried the different audio settings on the tv, but maybe I did not go far enough. Will check that out.

As for something being wrong with the tv, I think the speakers are poor quality. The volume is ok, but the sounds are garbled or not clear. Very hard to understand.

Thanks again.

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Increasing TV sound
by Jewelgate / December 2, 2009 5:09 AM PST

My old audio box will not plug into my new Toshiba 22-inch TV.
Is there an external system that viewers would recommend?

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