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Wireless Home Theater System

by dratner / June 29, 2008 12:25 AM PDT

Can anyone recommend a wireless home theater system in the $1500 - $2000 range? I like column front and rear speakers and an AV receiver that upconverts to 1080p. I already have a Bluray player.

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Nope, wireless is an idea of great convenience, but real
by NM_Bill / June 29, 2008 8:53 AM PDT

world performance is so disappointing to the degree of not being able to recommend it.

It may seem like a stick in the mud, but my standard recommendation is to try to use 65%-70% of the budget for speakers as that is where most all the practical sound difference comes from. Speaker seem expensive up front but basically don't wear out over normal time spans - very good value in the long run.

Electronics will get replaced much sooner because of technological obsolescence. Many get it backwards & over buy the receiver. Basic ones are fine values. Their sound processing is designed to & largely does operate with neutrality.

On the other hand, no speaker is perfect but each brand has it own particular sound character.

More availibility will come in time for more 1080p precessing receivers. The HDMI 1.3 connectivity has only been available for a bit over one year.

Well selected speakers best suited to your ears & yours alone will serve for many years.

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Re: Can anyone recommend a wireless home theater system
by HarmonyHT / June 29, 2008 5:23 PM PDT

The problem with home theater in a box systems is typically they don?t have Full HDMI capabilities?what I mean by that is the HDMI is only capable of carrying the video portion of the signal and not the audio so you tend to miss out on a lot of the sound quality?that being said I would recommend two options the first and my favorite is get yourself separate components and a wireless module?Onkyo has an excellent A/V receiver TX-SR605 under $450 and then get yourself the Polk Audio Monitor 50 about $300/pair match those with the Polk CS1 center channel under $100 and the Polk PSW10 Subwoofer about $150?as far as the DVD player any Sony DVD that upscales is fine I like the DVP-NS90V it?s a bit pricy at $200 but worth the money in picture and outstanding sound?so if you like to listen to music cd?s you will love this unit. Lastly you will want the Rocketfish Universal Wireless rear speaker kit about $125. So for about $1625 you will have a great sounding system that is wireless?Option # 2 is try to stretch your budget to about $2400 and get a Bose Lifestyle V20 about $2000 this system does not have a dvd player but you can get any Sony for under $100. Then get the Bose SL2 Wireless Surround Link for about $250. Great option as well.

Good Luck

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We traditionalists of sound always urge building your own
by NM_Bill / June 30, 2008 8:55 AM PDT

pieces. And us old sound fans want you to maximize overall performance, which in turn means maximizing speaker budget as that's where the overwhelming amount of sound difference comes from. The electronics are meant to & largely, for practical purposes, do sound neutral. On the other hand all speaker brands have their own individual shound character.

HTiBs try to do too much at popular price points. Yes, many uy them as convenient shortcuts for sound without getting overconcerned with the extra price. To me, all HTiBs have some critical quality compromise it them. A bit more work to build piece by piece yields better sound satisfaction for more lasting pleasure.

Then our poster jumps from HTiBs to Onkyo 605 receivers. That is a huge jump in capabilities & performance. And a 605 is overkill for all the more basic users. Entry level receivers, around $250, perform all the basics.

As to speaker brand, I spent years having Polks, but they are but one of at least a half dozen most basic speaker makers let alone buying up a bit for lasting quality. Yes, pleasing speakers can be had for $150-$200. But, an upgrade there is for best long term performance & value.

Unlike the last poster, I do NOT sell anything concerning home theatre. Ifg you consider wireless speakers, for heavens sake get out & hear them critically. Wireless performance just is never as good as wired. Yes, speaker makers atmany price points do wireless as they don't want to miss sales percieved by the public a new & fashionable. Our Dallas Rusty, I believe even heard the expensive B&W wirell at the Consumer Electronics Show & their salesmen quietly confirmed their embarrassment.

Wireless speakers may do well enough for computer sound, but this is music you are addressing along with home theater. Wireless incorporates high level of dropouts, making full sound only a dream.

Option #2, as for Bose, would be heavily voted down here as not recommending Bose relative to value & performance. No, I don't bash Bose, relatives have it & enjoy, I just won't embarrass them about the money factor.

There are many ways to go with legitimacy. I must say be aware Peter sells home theater furniture & maybe more. Yes, like any salesman, he has to quickly size up a potential customer & then they usually nearly as quickly choose their own one solution to sell to the customer as support & affirmation.

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Beware of the salesman?
by HarmonyHT / June 30, 2008 4:26 PM PDT

I am not usually soft skinned but I must say I kind of take offense to the reference that I was a salesman and as a result I was giving poor advice or had a hidden agenda?I would say it would be a pretty slim chance that as a result of my recommendation Bill would come to FL to purchase from me as I don?t do internet sales.
It seems to me that Bill asked for a recommendation for a HT system that had wireless capabilities with a budget of $1500 to $2000?without excluding ?salesman?s? opinions. I think you gave him good advice in advising to spend his money on speakers but at the same time I think I suggested products that were suitable for his needs and I could be wrong but I think Bill was looking for specifics and not generalizations?the Onkyo that you poke fun of was given the CNET editors choice ?delivering an amazing number of next-generation audio and video features at an unbeatably low price.? The Polk Monitor series has consistently gotten great reviews across the board as well see sound and vision as well as customer reviews on any electronics retail site, they generally get a rating of 8 out 10 or better. I like you am not a proponent of wireless technology when it comes to speakers however I do understand people not wanting to see the wires. That being said the Bose system while pricy for what it is offers an excellent wireless kit that works off Radio Frequency and not inferred so it experiences almost no drop off as you suggest. I have one in my bedroom and have been very happy with it.
I think the most important thing we can both convey to Bill is go listen to the speakers and buy what sounds best to him in his budget?speakers are very subjective.

Just one man?s opinion.
Harmony Home Theater

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It's not about Bill, it's about dratner.
by NM_Bill / July 1, 2008 4:07 AM PDT

Yes, Bill may be an old fashioned stick in the mud not very receptive to virtual surround sound, etc. When HTiB is the way one will go, Onkyo is pretty much concerned as best value by C/NET. But, still an HTiB, therefore, a temporary solution with some major faw or compromise.

Hopefully, there may be increasingly good wireless sound. A point was made tat even the wireless by B&W (several thousand dollars) was a bit of an embaressment to their salesmen at the CES.

If someone can lead the way to easy centrally connected home media integration, please tempt me by hinting they may be able to show the way.

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let go of ego
by HarmonyHT / July 1, 2008 4:30 AM PDT

It is about Bill as he was the one asking general I agree with you and am not fond of either HTIB, wireless tech well it is improving but does have a way to go...that being said I am fond of the Onkyo as well as Polk Audio Speaker for the most part. The RTi 10 for example are excellent speakers (dicontinued)for both Music and DVD Again thats just my ears/eyes...I know that u reccomended a less expensive unit then the Onkyo but in the $250 range you loose out on video quality and based on Bill having a BluRay player I would think that is important to him. My dad told me a good Salesman listens to the customes needs.

Harmony Home Theater

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A good saleman listening isn't always the norm.
by NM_Bill / July 1, 2008 4:33 AM PDT
In reply to: let go of ego

Hooray for all those who keep striving to actually hear what the customer thinks he wants & needs.

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your a pip
by HarmonyHT / July 1, 2008 4:48 AM PDT

I try to listen to what they want and educated them at same time...ultimately it their decision. I am just the tour all seriousness I am not a salesman...I make custom furniture to accommodate new TV's and electronics and I build custom media rooms...yes sure if the customer wants to one stop shop and buy electronics from me I will sell them, but that?s not my mainstay.

Enough from me good luck to dratner Bill and I have you to to point that your probably sorry you asked.

Harmony Home Theater

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(NT) Salesmen are what a service industry is all about.
by NM_Bill / July 1, 2008 5:28 AM PDT
In reply to: your a pip
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my appologis your right it is about Ratner and not bill
by HarmonyHT / July 1, 2008 4:40 AM PDT
In reply to: let go of ego

Please forgive my insult


Harmony Home Theater

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I would love to see dratner get a crash course about todays
by NM_Bill / July 1, 2008 5:26 AM PDT

speakers. Besides the well known traditional brands, often found in big box stores, there are some brands that are even more technologically "hot."

From this Februarys free online Playback, incorprarting The Perfect Vision, is an article with a concise list of very well reviewed for both performance & value. No one list could ever be perfect, but thiks one is packed with value products:

Anyone who has not purtsued speakers in a while can get good information. Seek out what mentioned brands are available to hear where you live. Yes, boonies dwellers get the raw end of the stick. Like other major decisions, this one is worthy to commit to making your best infromed decision. We gather what objective info we can, then reach a point of jumping off to first lend credence to some trusted pro, & then to yourself for wading through a subjective thicket. Starting with systematic info in an organized manner is very helpful rather than feeling one is confused by information overload.

It would be great to actually be able to listen from least expensive then progressively more cost. When more bucks don't bring appreciable improvement, you've found your best bet. You must take a couple CDs you are intimately familiar with & that contain substantial vocal, hopefully female as well as male. Voice is middle range frequency, but is surprisingly difficult to reproduce well. If you think you heard distortion, you just did. Don't even progress past the voice test if less than satisfactory, as the highs & lows then are irrelevant.

Take simple notes as confusion of memory comes oh so easy. It has to be your well considered best selection. If a neighbor, sure I could take your budget & bring back a set of speakers, but they would only reflect my personal choice.

No matter what level of subtlity or finesse, it requires a commitment to get what best suits you. Those sound differences are much more in the speakers than electronics. It is a worthwhile quest.

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what is important?
by bevillan / July 1, 2008 4:06 AM PDT

Is a wireless surround sound setup really important? If it isn't then you will be able to get better quality speakers than what you can in the wireless category.

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thank you
by dratner / July 1, 2008 6:14 AM PDT
In reply to: what is important?

I do appreciate all the responses. I am starting to think of re-considering wired surround speakers.

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good thinking
by bevillan / July 1, 2008 7:06 AM PDT
In reply to: thank you

Are there any speaker brands that you prefer or are you pretty open? If you want to keep things under a good budget but still want good quality, check out

They are a pretty new company that is known for their subwoofers, but have made some really well respected speakers too. If you use their package builder they take 15% off the total package's price. You can get a very capable and quality 5.1 package for under $1500

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Now you talking...
by HarmonyHT / July 1, 2008 7:23 AM PDT
In reply to: thank you

Wired is the way to go an gives yo a lot of options...go luck whatever you decide to buy...if it's possible to run the wires in ceiling/walls and you just not comfortable doing yourself then try and look in services for you area you will find somone who can do it for you under $150 I'm sure.


Harmony Home Theater

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SVS is another one.
by grc24 / July 1, 2008 12:51 PM PDT
In reply to: Now you talking...

I have the the SBS-01 5.1 package. It is considered their "Entry level." speaker package. This set was my first purchase of a home theater audio package and I was absolutely blown away when I first got them hooked up and watched The Matrix. WOW! can get the 5.1 set with a 10" sub for $999. or upgrade to the 12" sub for $150. more. (This is what I chose.) The sub also doubles as an end table for your sofa. (It's massive.) Be sure to check out their B-stock section for an occassional deal., give them a look.


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