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Help ! Drowning in the variety !

by Prolifix / January 21, 2010 1:13 PM PST

Hey Guys

I am planning to set up a home theater system for myself. Am totally new to this and the array of brands/models/features are driving me nuts ! Would greatly appreciate some advice about the components to buy. Heres a set of features/requirements that I am looking at:
1)My room size is about 12X12 though this can change as I dont have a dedicated room.
2) Use is for movies as well as music.
3) Reciever should have HDMI switching, cross conversion and upconversion.
4) High res, multichannel PCM over HDMI support
5) Onboard DolbyTru HD and DTS HD decoders

I was thinking of a Pioneer VSX 819H K or Onkyo SRX507 reciever with Polk RM705 or Polk RM 6750 speakers. Which combination would you recommend? Being my first setup, dont really want to burn a hole in my pocket Happy

Also I am using an external sound card on my laptop to connect to a set of Logitech speakers. I would like to connect my laptop to the reciever. (Like a media server, I guess). Is a USB to HDMI audio converter the best option for this? Is there any other better/cheaper way? Recievers with bluetooth will take only stereo streaming, right? And I guess, they will be in the higher price bracket.

Thanks in advance for your help !


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cross conversion?
by Pepe7 / January 21, 2010 11:03 PM PST

That's a new one to me ;).

It would also help to know your relative budget for everything, and what actual components you want. Do you plan on purchasing a blu ray player as well (etc.)?

FWIW, you might be better served by having a laptop with an actual HDMI port instead of the USB-HDMI workarounds I've seen.

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cross conversion?
by Prolifix / January 22, 2010 4:02 AM PST
In reply to: cross conversion?

As of now I want to buy a AVR and a set of speakers (atleast 5.1). No BD player.

I want to restrict myself to 500-600 range.

Buying a laptop now for the HDMi doesnt sound very appealing Wink But I just realised that my sound card has an optical output. So that is takesn care of.

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Cross conversion probably isn't cheap..if it's available.
by ahtoi / January 22, 2010 4:46 AM PST
In reply to: cross conversion?

Of course that function can be substituted with a media player for less than a $100.

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That price range is HTIB
by Pepe7 / January 22, 2010 5:10 AM PST
In reply to: cross conversion?

For A/V receiver, surrounds & sub you are essentially limited to a HTIB solution. Or are you dead set on obtaining separates(?)

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That price range is HTIB
by Prolifix / January 22, 2010 6:37 AM PST

I am open to HTIBs.. But most of the HTIBs whos specs I liked had big speakers.. Small speaker HTIBs are pricier.

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In that case...
by Pepe7 / January 22, 2010 7:53 AM PST

...why don't you give some examples of equipment you've already looked at. What about the Onkyo HTIBs?

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In that case..
by Prolifix / January 28, 2010 9:52 AM PST
In reply to: In that case...

I did have a look at the Onkyo HTiBs.. The 5200 and 6200 seem to be decent. Power wise they look pretty similar.. However, the 6200 has video upconversion, onboard decoders for Dolby Tru HD and can accept video as well as audio over HDMI.

It so turns out that most of my movie input is going to come from the laptop. It will be connected to the TV through a VGA connection and some software will take care of the upscaling. Am a lil lost about the audio..
1) It seems an optical cable does not support 7.1 or Tru HD. I am thinking of using a USB to HDMI converter to resolve this. Has anyone used such kind of device? Is it really helpful? (my laptop does not have a HDMI port)

2) If an AVR does not have onboard Tru HD decoders, can I send a decoded Tru HD signal to an AVR (through laptop hdmi)and still make it work? Or does an AVR have to have onboard decoders?

If I can get the above things done then I can get the 5200 and save a lot of dough ! ! :-D

Thanks a lot in advance !

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Where are you getting this TruHD content online from?
by Pepe7 / January 29, 2010 1:25 AM PST
In reply to: In that case..

I am not aware of significant amounts available legitimately, or otherwise. Most downloads are DD5.1/AC3.

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I don't HTIB that have a built in DVD plarer.
by jcrobso / January 29, 2010 6:28 AM PST
In reply to: In that case..

If the DVD player goes bad, then guess what? The unit becomes some what useless. Get a HTIB that has separate DVD player.

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I agree. or at the very least make sure
by minimalist / January 29, 2010 9:13 AM PST

the HTIB has sufficient HDMI inputs for future expansion. Most all in ones don;t though so tread carefully.

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Thanks !
by Prolifix / February 12, 2010 1:07 AM PST

Thanks a lot for all the suggestions, guys !

I finally got me a Onkyo 6200. Have connected my Comcast HD DVR and Laptop to it with the OP going to a Sony HDTV. Have not done a lot of tweaking around but as of now am pretty happy with the Audessy settings. Happy

The receiver seems to be playing with my DVRs output resolution. Need to figure out whats wrong.. That, however, is the topic for one more thread ! Wink


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