Geekzone: technology news, blogs, forums
Guest
Welcome Guest.
You haven't logged in yet. If you don't have an account you can register now.



129 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 5


Topic # 113822 29-Jan-2013 11:42 Send private message

Hey guys. I'm after some advice - I've got an LG 47" LED 3D TV but I'm very unhappy with the quality of the inbuilt speakers. The TV does not have a headphone jack or RCA out, the only output is Digital Optical.

The lounge is not well placed for a surround sound system, nor do I want a subwoofer on the floor (young kids about), so I am looking for a 2.0 solution.

My budget is up to about $300. As well as the TV I have a Pace Sky set top box, and an HTPC on the way which will be connected to the TV via HDMI. All movies and music will be played via the HTPC. Note that I do not want to run all sound via the HTPC - for simplicity for my wife's sake I want audio to run via the TV. I also use a Harmony remote.

Speakers would either need to be wall mounted or on a shelf. I have ordered a cheap DAC off ebay in case I need to use it.

The options as I see it are:
1. Buy a cheap out of the box home theatre system with optical input, ditch all but the front 2 speakers. Problem with this is I'm paying for gear I won't be using.
2. Use a DAC and connect to amplified PC speakers. The PC speakers would need a remote control to allow the Harmony to control the volume. I was thinking something along the lines of Microlab SOLOxx speakers.
3. Use a DAC and connect to the Aux on a mini/micro sound system. Same problem with (1) above in that I'd be paying for radio tuner/cd/ipod controls that I wouldn't be using.

Option 2 appeals to me in that I'm not paying for anything I won't be using, my money will all be going on speakers.

I'd be keen to hear any thoughts or suggestions. Thanks

View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic
 1 | 2
1851 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 244


  Reply # 752530 29-Jan-2013 11:51 Send private message

Have you looked at soundbar options? I haven't actually got one, but have looked at them as an option in the past and they might be worth considering - you can get them with built in subwoofer I think.



129 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 752536 29-Jan-2013 11:56 Send private message

Yeah I did mean to include them in my list of options. There is a Philips one at DSE for $250, although it seems quite small at 70cm long (TV is over a 1m long, and might dwarf that soundbar). That one also has a wired external sub which wouldn't suit.

I did see a nice Panasonic one on clearance online at Magness Benrow for $300 (down from $700) with a wireless sub (which could suit me as it can go across the room behind the couch). I gave them a call yesterday but they only had 3 and they were all sold. D'oh. Replacement model is about $650.

7024 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 498

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 752546 29-Jan-2013 12:09 Send private message

Given you have the harmony remote your wife doesn't have to worry about how things work, just that they do work. Do you need great sound from the TV, or just for stuff from the HTPC?

A couple of wall mounted computer speakers might be the best option, but you'll need some kind of an adapter to convert optical to analog.




Asus eee pad transformer
iPod 2G
Windows 7 PC
Lots and lots of Nikon camera gear

1851 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 244


  Reply # 752586 29-Jan-2013 12:40 Send private message

Archer77: I did see a nice Panasonic one on clearance online at Magness Benrow for $300 (down from $700) with a wireless sub (which could suit me as it can go across the room behind the couch). I gave them a call yesterday but they only had 3 and they were all sold. D'oh. Replacement model is about $650.


Well damn, that sounds like a good deal! Wish I'd seen it too. The panasonic soundbars are the ones I was looking at previously (they can convert to speakers or a soundbar)

In the end I decided I'd just save for an A/V reciever and some speakers at some point in the future instead.  In the meantime I've got some old logitech z-2300 2.1 speakers running from the headphone out of my TV. They sound far better to me than the TV speakers, but the WAF on them is not great! The headphone volume is accessed through the TV menu and I haven't found a good way to control it with my harmony remote. I can't imagine movie watching without some form of sub though.

I'll be watching this thread with interest :)

2228 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 29


  Reply # 752591 29-Jan-2013 12:45 Send private message

http://www.computerlounge.co.nz/components/componentview.asp?r=p&partid=12468

http://www.computerlounge.co.nz/components/componentview.asp?r=p&partid=12466

I'm pretty sure that TV would have a yellow plug called "monitor out" that can be used to output RCA 2 channel audio.

These speakers will sound better than anything in the $300 or less range from a PC/Appliance/Home Theatre store.




HTPC - Intel i3-2100 / 12GB DDR3 / GA-Z77X-UD5H / HD4670 1GB / HVR2200 / 750GB + 4 x 3TB / Win 7 x64 / MediaPortal 1.5
PC - Intel e8500 / 8GB DDR2 / HD5830 1GB / Win7 x64

7024 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 498

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 752598 29-Jan-2013 12:50 Send private message

According to the specs of what I think you have it has HDMI ARC on the side HDMI connection, which I suspect (though I'm not sure) means the audio can be output over HDMI. That could significantly expand your options, if i'm right and it works.




Asus eee pad transformer
iPod 2G
Windows 7 PC
Lots and lots of Nikon camera gear



129 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 752634 29-Jan-2013 13:32 Send private message

Yes it does have hdmi arc. I do not believe there are any other outputs.

2228 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 29


  Reply # 752640 29-Jan-2013 13:44 Send private message

That's annoying as there aren't many computer speakers that have optical inputs. Surprised there isn't a headphone jack or composite monitor out jack, but in your case it seems there isn't.




HTPC - Intel i3-2100 / 12GB DDR3 / GA-Z77X-UD5H / HD4670 1GB / HVR2200 / 750GB + 4 x 3TB / Win 7 x64 / MediaPortal 1.5
PC - Intel e8500 / 8GB DDR2 / HD5830 1GB / Win7 x64



129 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 752642 29-Jan-2013 13:49 Send private message

Yeah I got the TV in the Boxing Day sale @ JB Hifi. It was $998 which seemed good for a 47" full hd, led, smart, 3d tv. But then vibrating built-in speakers and skimping on audio outputs might go some way to explaining that.

I do have the $20 DAC on the way which will give me RCA stereo output, but I am cautious about what sort of quality that will give me, and would prefer to utilise the digital audio output or HDMI arc, but those then place limits on the quality of the speakers on my budget. Has anyone had experience with cheap DACs?

Unfortunately due to the TV being only a month old, and the HTPC I paid for on the weekend (PB tech were out of some parts so they get couriered to me tomorrow), the wife is not keen on much cash being spent on improving the sound. I want to get a Vu Duo at some point too so I need to play my cards right :)

2228 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 29


  Reply # 752647 29-Jan-2013 13:56 Send private message

Did the DAC you ordered have a Philips TDA1543 or TDA1541A chip in it. The really cheap DACs that have this chip work well, the others don't (apparently)

PS. If the speakers are rattling you could return it.  Might be worth seeing if the speakers in the shop display mode vibrate as well.




HTPC - Intel i3-2100 / 12GB DDR3 / GA-Z77X-UD5H / HD4670 1GB / HVR2200 / 750GB + 4 x 3TB / Win 7 x64 / MediaPortal 1.5
PC - Intel e8500 / 8GB DDR2 / HD5830 1GB / Win7 x64



129 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 752651 29-Jan-2013 14:08 Send private message

The speaker problem is a very common issue with LG, judging by Google. Since we will be using it for music I would rather have the audio running through some decent speakers anyway.

The DAC I've ordered is just a cheapie one for 15usd shipped and the chip isn't described. There are TD1543 ones there from $43 usd shipped. If I know the TD1543 is reliable I can always go the PC speaker route with some Microlabs or something and pick up a TD1543 DAC if my one turns out to be poor.

1459 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 93

Trusted
Subscriber

  Reply # 752669 29-Jan-2013 14:21 Send private message

My parents faced a similar conundrum, underwhelming LCD TV speakers (Sony TV), in the end I used a Topping TP-10 amplifier fed by the headphone output of the TV, power to the amplifier switched on and off by the TV via USB power output, and driving a pair of bookshelf speakers. This worked okay but the main limit is the cheap/nasty DAC inside the TV that feeds the headphone output.
What Im trying to say is that even if you did have an analog output, it would probably be rubbish!
Currently I'm sourcing a second hand home theatre receiver to drive the speakers from the TV's digital output. Adds an awful lot of complication for 'just watching TV' but I know it will do the job and sound fantastic doing it.

Re: Cheap DACs: I have used a Fiio D3 in a similar setup which is around $40 from the NZ supplier, it has rave reviews and does a great job. Might be the best/quickest option if the one youve ordered turns out to be rubbish.

Its such a common problem with crap flatscreen speakers, I'm surprised someone hasnt come to market with a solution that is just a notch up from soundbars



129 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 5


  Reply # 752675 29-Jan-2013 14:32 Send private message

I was just looking at the $400 Panasonic SC-HTB20GN soundbar with sub. Looking at the manual and I see the IR receiver is on the sub. No thanks.

I might have to wait for the DAC to arrive, then hook up my current pc speakers ($30 Logitech LS21) and see how it goes.

Anyone had any experience with Maxell? http://www.pbtech.co.nz/index.php?z=p&p=SPKMAX0252&name=MAXELL-TT252-SOUNDBAR-70W--TV-SYSTEM--SRS-WOW-HD--

84 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 1


  Reply # 752730 29-Jan-2013 15:43 Send private message

I got some Microlab 6Cs plugged into Panny Plasma, they are ok, plenty loud and clear and an improvement of course, but they arent as good as pricier M-Audio AV40s which are really superb fidelity for mids and highs and just enough bass.
Microlabs are ok for money tho but if going that route Id get the 7Cs instead of my 6Cs as the extra driver may well provide more balance for mids, I woulda but was cramped for space under tv

2230 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 81

Subscriber

  Reply # 752843 29-Jan-2013 18:34 Send private message

The only mainstream TV company that still offers analogue audio output (non-headphone) is Panasonic.
It's one of the reasons people struggle to plug in older audio systems / wireless headphones.
There are options like NuForce on the market (24 watts + 2 x optical inputs) but they're a little pricier than you're looking at. Simple though.
Not all soundbars come with a subwoofer, but again, $300 is a small budget... and if you're looking to use the TV for music, well, it's time to save some pennies and look into something a little more 'substantial'.

 1 | 2
View this topic in a long page with up to 500 replies per page Create new topic




Twitter »
Follow us to receive Twitter updates when new discussions are posted in our forums:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when news items and blogs are posted in our frontpage:



Follow us to receive Twitter updates when tech item prices are listed in our price comparison site:





Trending now »

Hot discussions in our forums right now:

Speed limit when overtaking? Teach me please.
Created by nakedmolerat, last reply by Hobchild on 26-Oct-2014 00:11 (92 replies)
Pages... 5 6 7


House Auctions
Created by t0ny, last reply by mentalinc on 26-Oct-2014 08:58 (48 replies)
Pages... 2 3 4


VDSL, which router/modem sub $200?
Created by TeaLeaf, last reply by NonprayingMantis on 25-Oct-2014 19:48 (28 replies)
Pages... 2


Neon - Sky's new streaming service
Created by JarrodM, last reply by JimmyH on 25-Oct-2014 17:37 (29 replies)
Pages... 2


iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3. Gonna get one?
Created by Dingbatt, last reply by tungsten on 25-Oct-2014 20:22 (115 replies)
Pages... 6 7 8


5Ghz AP recommendations?
Created by ubergeeknz, last reply by sbiddle on 24-Oct-2014 12:42 (12 replies)

Snap have failed our company!
Created by dafman, last reply by kornflake on 23-Oct-2014 17:41 (37 replies)
Pages... 2 3


Thief taunts 12 year old via stolen laptop
Created by macuser, last reply by charsleysa on 22-Oct-2014 23:49 (12 replies)


Geekzone Live »

Try automatic live updates from Geekzone directly in your browser, without refreshing the page, with Geekzone Live now.

Are you subscribed to our RSS feed? You can download the latest headlines and summaries from our stories directly to your computer or smartphone by using a feed reader.

Alternatively, you can receive a daily email with Geekzone updates.