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TVs & Home Theaters forum

General discussion

What do I do about a home theater system without the system?

by mulchie / July 26, 2009 5:30 AM PDT

I'm buying a house in which the home theater system is set up and wired but all speakers etc. have been removed. That leaves Bose Lifestyle wiring sticking out of the walls etc. I'm REALLY stumped by this. Normally I would never consider a home theatre system, but this basement is set up for it so just sticking a tv in there seems kind of a waste. And then there are those wires.....

Any general advice would be hugely appreciated. And specifics will be appreciated even more. First, a couple questions:

1) Easiest route seems to be to buy a new Lifestyle 18 or v10 (ouch!)

2) Is there a cheaper system than Bose that I could adapt? The seller told me BOSE has proprietary plugs, so that would be problem # 1

3) Can I use my old TV? It isn't HD, but it is pretty new and good quality. Maybe I'd delay purchase of a new flatscreen to get through this first financial bath.


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Old TV vs. Home Theater
by Dan Filice / July 26, 2009 6:14 AM PDT

Were the Bose speakers previously mounted in the ceiling or walls, leaving you with holes from the previous speakers? If not, and all you have are those proprietary Bose wires coming out of discreet wall plugs, then I say forget the Bose and go separates and do your own wiring. You can get a stunning Denon or Yamaha receiver for $450 (maybe less), a DVD player and separate speakers for less than Bose. By the way, your TV doesn't need to be HD and a surround system will make even the crummiest TV seem great, but what connections do you have on your TV? The answer my help decide what kind of DVD player to buy...whether a standard-def upconverting or a Blu-Ray that may still be adaptable to an old TV. Here is a big issue: Your current TV is not HD, therefore it may trap you in a corner to buy old style home theater components that were around BHD (Before High Def) Happy The current wave of home theater components are geared for the new HD TVs that utilize HDMI connections and can display 1080 lines of resolution. It would be unfortunate to compromise an entire home theater setup based on an older TV.

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home theater
by mulchie / July 26, 2009 6:42 AM PDT

Re your question -- wires are coming out of the walls above eye level so that limits me, though I'd really like to rig this for the cheaper option.
As to HDTV, I think I should shoot for a system that could accommodate a newer TV once time and finances allow.
Given that set of particulars, what would you advise? I really don't want to get stuck with an overpriced ($1600 just for sound!) Bose if something else will do as well or better with a little jockeying.

I don't know about the connections. The kids use play station, etc. and the TV is pretty new.

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one more thing
by mulchie / July 26, 2009 6:48 AM PDT
In reply to: home theater

Best Buy is having a deal on a Samsung TV and home theater package that ends up @ $999.
I'm really in the dark as to quality. I want something good, but not something "crazy good" with a price that will break me to match. We are talking about teenagers here and adults who don't watch too much. And budget around $1,000 - $1,500 would be doable.
Best buy is here:

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HT options
by Dan Filice / July 26, 2009 7:23 AM PDT
In reply to: one more thing

The $999 price is good, but you will be using a Playstation (as I do), so do yourself a favor and buy a 1080p TV. The one you are considering is a 720p, which would be OK in a smaller size, but once you hit 50" and above, you will notice a difference with a 1080p set. By the way, if you have a Playstation, this is one great Blu-Ray DVD player. Do yourself a favor if you plan on using the Playstaion for movies: Buy the Playstation remote. I became frustrated trying to control DVDs with the game remote and the new remote was a life changer. So once you get a Playstation, you don't need another DVD player, so your cost for a HT system just got easier...a TV, a receiver and speakers.

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Speaker Wires...
by WildClay / July 27, 2009 9:54 AM PDT
In reply to: home theater

Usually speaker wire is just wire, some better than other but it is not like coax where you have critical impedance differences or anything. I don't know if Bose does anything funky with their wire, you could maybe check the Bose web site, but likely it is just good speaker wire and if they do anything funky it would most likely be done in the end connectors if it has them, just cut them off if they do.

Otherwise you should be able to wire any speakers to those wires.

On your TV side, even if you have external speaker connections you will not want to wire more than one speaker to one set of connections, hooking 2 speakers to one speaker output can easily fry your TV's audio amp as the speaker impedance will be cut in 1/2 by adding 2 speakers to one output.

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thanks, hadn't thought of that
by mulchie / July 27, 2009 7:53 PM PDT
In reply to: Speaker Wires...

That's helpful. Distressing. But helpful.
In other words, if the TV isn't set up for surround, don't go there?

I'll have to check. If I do go the new tv route, I'm thinking about 1080 but stuck on lcd or plasma. More work to do there.

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