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I need help choosing the right home stereo....

by gregoryfcarr / August 14, 2010 8:35 AM PDT

I just moved into a new home that has 14' high ceilings. It is wired for a home sound system but I want my TV, dvd player, blue ray located in the living room to really crank. I want base and also the ability to connect an Mp3 player and my ITunes. I prefer ceiling mounted flush speakers but none will put out enough wattage. The living room is 20x 40'. Any ideas out there besides big old floor speakers??

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Budget
by givemeaname / August 14, 2010 9:33 AM PDT

& good sound = tower speakers... There no way to get around the physics of sound.

Oh and Bose suck.

Also does the budget include a receiver or just speakers only + how many speakers 5.1, 7.1, 7.2 ... so on.

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I agree with givemeaname
by Pepe7 / August 14, 2010 9:48 AM PDT

Flush mounted ceiling/wall speakers generally produce poorer quality results. It's the one time to ignore room aesthetics.

Knowing your approximate budget (esp. for each individual component you can't do without) is paramount here. Getting a system to 'crank' isn't the hard part. Any old system can do that generally. Making it sound *really* good in that very open, tall spaces means opening up the wallet a little bit more ;).

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Thanks for helping
by gregoryfcarr / August 16, 2010 11:58 PM PDT

Yes I do want quality. My budget is around 2,000.
I need help choosing specific brands and components to check out. I like JVC and heard of a sound bar they make.

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?
by givemeaname / August 17, 2010 5:49 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks for helping

Forget a sound bar, those are for very small rooms!!!

Is this for music or for movies?

For music you want 4 3-4 way speakers, one speaker for each corner & then a $500 or so receiver.

If you want this for movies & you need a reciever + to make the room "rock" your going to need more money. Say $800-1200 for a 7.2 receiver (Denon or a Yamaha), $1k for 2 subs, one sub for the 2 front corners, then 7 speaker for surround sound, min $100 each (really $250-400 each).

You have a big room to fill with sound.

Receivers..
Yamaha
Denon
Oknyo
Pioneer Elite
Marantz
Harman Kardon ( aka HK )


Speakers to look at..
JBL (that is what I have in my house)
Boston
B&W
Sound Aqusions
Paradiqm
Energy
EMP
Klipch
KEF
Infinity

Subs..
JBL
KEF
Infinity
OutLaw
Klipch

Speakers to keep away from..
Sony
JVC
Yamaha
Bose

There more but need to know if this is for music ONLY or if this is for movies & if so what is the viewing distance is.

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Thanks for quick response
by gregoryfcarr / August 17, 2010 7:00 AM PDT
In reply to: ?

You nailed it!
Yes I will watch tv and want music in this room. I have a 55" led and the viewing distance is 35'. I like jbl and I'm old school so I need to know what's up to date. I'm trying to avoid large bulky floorspeakers and subs.

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For JBL speakers
by givemeaname / August 17, 2010 3:49 PM PDT
http://www.harmanaudio.com/search_browse/default.asp?status=C&cat=BFS&market=HOM

The closest to what i have of there current models, I have had my speakers for over 7 years so somethings have changed...
Backs speakers S36AWII (same as what I have but mine are sliver), Sub e5250P ( mine is 60 pounds & 550wts peak), center speaker LC1 (but mine is duel 6" not 5.25" & the mid range driver is a 4" cone on mine), Fronts L820 ( but mine are 8" not 6" & mine are a bit bigger 18Wx12"Hx 13"D + more watts at 175wts continus peak 325wts each). Receiver is about 5 years old Yamaha RX-V1500, 7.1 125wts per channel & run multi channel analog from my bluray player to the receiver for HD audio, toslink for my HDDVR, all video is run direct to my tv via HDMI.
Cost, receiver $850 on sale from $1.2k & speakers (5.1 system) $1900 all on sale saving about $500, speakers were bought individually or as pairs and not all at one time. The walls will rattle when there is an explosion even at just 15% power
Room size 12.8'x11.5' with a 54g10 plasma (9.5ft viewing distance) with light control, CyberPower 1500AVR battery backup, MonsterPower AVS2000 voltage regular, MonsterPower reference power center HTS 5000mkII, Monster m1000 2.2 bi-wire speaker/sub wires, monoprice.com HDMI's, multi channel analogs & toslink cables, Belkin iPod cable, Panasonic BD80, Xbox 360-S, HD-DVR VIP722 (rental so free), TV stand $500, 3 speaker stands $300 & an A/C. Total room cost with speakers receiver & all above, about $9050, it can be costly "hobby". That still does not include the 300+ BluRays movies & 200 or so DVD's & the $300 in CD/DVD/BD racks in just that one room, I also have another 200-300 movies in the living room & master bedroom Silly


It is better to buy a little here & there over time & buy the best when you can that will last 15-20+ years (but for the TV, I get a new tv every 2-3 years); then too skimp on the money & get something you will regret because it is under powered for the room size or damage the speakers &/or receiver from over powering the system in just a few years or even months & you end-up having to then re-buy.
It took me about 6 years to buy all the setup above, that does not count the TV, I replaced 2 tv's in that time frame for that room, from a 30" HD wide screen CRT Sony to a 50" Sony SXRD to the Panny 54G10 & put the other 2 TV's in other rooms, also 1 receiver upgrade ( it was a Yamaha RX-V550, now in the living room).
You have a good size room that will require tower speakers to fill, most of the good manufactures make their speakers in different colors, from cherry, oak, bamboo, black, gray, white, you can even get clear tower speakers but those are super costly like $50k each.... anyway find a color that will match the walls or the flooring of the room & in a few weeks you will not even notice they are there.

PS... For speakers always keep with the same brand, for Subwoofers you can go with a different brand then the speakers.
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For speakers I'd also add Aperion Audio
by minimalist / August 17, 2010 8:26 AM PDT
In reply to: ?

They have high quality internet direct speakers with free shipping both ways and 30 day trial period. I love mine.

Also, don't forget to take a look at Hsu subs if you are going to piece together your own 5.1 system. Stay away from Bose and companies that got their name with computer speakers.

I'd allocate about 500 on the receiver and 1500 on the speakers if I were you. You definitely don't want to cheap out on the receiver but you'll get more bang for your buck by moving by investing in your speakers.

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thanks
by gregoryfcarr / August 18, 2010 1:17 AM PDT
In reply to: ?

Thanks for the helpful list. I wonder where to find some of these brands. Best Buy doesn't carry the best stuff. Should I consider online buying??

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Yes, but...
by Pepe7 / August 18, 2010 4:54 AM PDT
In reply to: thanks

...I'd definitely get out of the big box stores and instead visit some of the better/high-end audio shops who carry the better quality products. This way you can get a rough sense of what you will be buying and how it might sound, within reason. Of course some brands are only available online and not within ten states of your location ;(.

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Thanks
by gregoryfcarr / August 18, 2010 6:31 AM PDT
In reply to: Yes, but...

Yes, thanks. I'm in Houston and I will shop a few audio stores.

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Although the best buys with magnolia mini stores in them
by minimalist / August 18, 2010 12:43 PM PDT
In reply to: Yes, but...

have much better selections and listening environments. My best buy is not one of them unfortunately. It carries nothing but cheap htibs and overpriced Bose stuff sold by bored kids who know very little about sound.

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