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Topic # 201946 11-Sep-2016 10:47
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I'm needing advice on what to buy to impove the 'sound experience' with the new TV. Done some reading and there is so much conflict I'm hoping someone(s) here will help summarise please.

 

1 - I was considering a soundbar plus the speakers that go with it but it seems this isn't the best sound experience choice. Right?

 

2  - So, I'm considering a surround sound unit, as this is might be the way to go. Right?

 

3 - Here's a few constraints:

 

  • spend <$1000
  • good sound expereince not 'the best' sound experience
  • wireless
  • don't necessarily want 7.1 or a whole bunch of speakers around the room.

4  - Is it best to stick with Samsung hardware as I've seen some really nice Bose units.

 

Helpful advice greatly appreciated please.

 

Cheers all.


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  Reply # 1627376 11-Sep-2016 12:41
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We brought an LG soundbar to go with ours in our family room and absolutely love it, to the extent that we have dumped the stereo and just stream everything through the soundbar now. It is a different animal to a full 5.1 or 7.1 set up so it depends what you are trying to achieve. Can't remember the model we brought but it was one of the higher end models just under $1k. Works with the Samsung TV well using the optical out. Auto start and shut down etc.




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  Reply # 1627380 11-Sep-2016 12:57
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I bought a sony 5.1 bluray machine.  The Sound is great, but the speakers and cables running around the room bother me.  given the size of the speakers I see no reason why a good quality soundbar cant replicate 2.1 or 3.1ch sound.

 

 

 

Pretty sure when I next get a new TV I'll get a soundbar too, so interested in the responses here.  Also interested in Good but not 'best' sound quality.


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  Reply # 1627384 11-Sep-2016 13:05
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I got Wharfdale Vardus 5.1 speakers (ie four corners, center, sub), which pairs with the Onkyo amp. Speakers $1050 and sound really good (audio snob may disagree), Onyko $600 or so. Lots and lots of wires though. It shakes the room when appropriate, nice clear dialog, and I like the surround effect.





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  Reply # 1627385 11-Sep-2016 13:09
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The answer surely depends on
A) how much you want to spend
B) what sort of hassle you want to go through -wires power cords etc
C) what you are expecting

TVs come with tinny little built in speakers that sound bad. The TV's are so thin they can't include much in the way of a sound chamber for the speakers. I have a Marantz 5.1 home theater and the cabling is a pain. It sounds pretty good though.

I heard a really nice Yamaha sound bar when I was looking all those years ago and there are more makes and models of soundboard around these days.

Do you watch a lot of wizz bang Movies that have lots of audio special effects? If so, then the full surround system is probably for you, otherwise, a decent 2.1/soundbar would probably be a decent solution.




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 1627387 11-Sep-2016 13:22
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A) how much you want to spend
B) what sort of hassle you want to go through -wires power cords etc
C) what you are expecting

 

=============================

 

A) about 1k, although I've just been looking at the Sonos Playbar and I like :-) so I would need to fork out another $400

 

B) none. I want to have zero wiring if possible. Just ask Jon Ives about wires !

 

C) No wires + Good sound (as anything is better than what the TV pushes out) and.....

 

As I've never seen a Playbar (before today), I now realise that the Sonos system can be modular, in that, I could start with the Playbar and add other devices as I save up.

 

Mmm, I might have answered my own question here but it is reassuring to see that ppl are in favour of soundbars. 


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  Reply # 1627394 11-Sep-2016 13:39
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If you don't like wires, then a soundbar is for you.

 

If you want performance, go wired.

 

 

 

I know a lot of people say 'It's 2016, shouldn't everything be wireless?'... well guess what, there are problems to discover on the way down the WiFi rabbithole.


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  Reply # 1627398 11-Sep-2016 13:54
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Love Sonos. We have two Samsung smart TVs each with a Playbar, 2 x Play:3 surrounds and a Sub. I'm not an audiophile but really like the sound and the way it works. Not cheap that's for sure - but you can add to it progressively as you say.

 

If we're not using the setup for TV, it's a great sound system. The Sonos app for iOS and Android is fantastic - you can control everything via the app from your devices. Sonos + Pandora have revolutionised our music life. All wireless - except each unit requires mains supply.

 

Where are you based?




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  Reply # 1627488 11-Sep-2016 16:49
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Ok Sonos it is. But next month - $am$ung have cleared me out for a while.

 

I'm in the Wairarapa.


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  Reply # 1627516 11-Sep-2016 18:17
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Like @scuwp I also got an LG soundbar for my Samsung Telly. Has a wireless Sub and makes a world of difference to the sound.

 

For under $1000, which you state as the budget, I would say just drop circa $5-700 on a good soundbar.

 

For a better experience, go 5.1 (or 7.2) wired. But that requires a good home theater receiver and good speakers. At a minimum you don't want to cheap out on the receiver, left and right front speakers, the center or the sub. The rears (and having a second sub and side speakers if you go 7.2) aren't so critical. If you aren't able to budget at least $3,000 for this, then I would say just get the soundbar and revisit a proper setup when the budget permits you to do it properly.

 

You can always move the soundbar to a bedroom set and not lose the benefit of it. But I suspect you would regret spending a significant sum on a corner-cutting sub-standard HT setup, cringing at the quality, and then having to replace/upgrade it later.


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  Reply # 1627526 11-Sep-2016 18:27
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With a budget of < $1,000, forget surround sound.

 

A (wired) soundbar is your best option.

 

A huge improvement on TV sound.

 

EDIT   Sonos are grossly overpriced.  undecided





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  Reply # 1627554 11-Sep-2016 19:20
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5.1 amp

 

2 x bookshelf speakers

 

Add a centre when budget allows, then a sub, then rears.

 

 

 

Sorted.com


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  Reply # 1628443 13-Sep-2016 11:07
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If starting from scratch, and you don't want wires, go the Sonos I say. See if you can't get a deal (pop over the Rimutakas to JB in Queensgate - they should be willing to deal).

 

You can then add a coupl eof Play:1 or Play:3 units later for surround if you think you may want it, and a Sonos Sub if you want to rattle your windows a bit.

 

Not cheap, but well supported and can be used for more than watching TV.

 

---

 

 

 

If you can handle a few wires, then as above, a Receiver and separate speakers will give you better bang for buck.


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  Reply # 1628711 13-Sep-2016 16:27
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What TV did you get?


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  Reply # 1629115 14-Sep-2016 10:01
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trig42:

 

If starting from scratch, and you don't want wires, go the Sonos I say. See if you can't get a deal (pop over the Rimutakas to JB in Queensgate - they should be willing to deal).

 

You can then add a coupl eof Play:1 or Play:3 units later for surround if you think you may want it, and a Sonos Sub if you want to rattle your windows a bit.

 

Not cheap, but well supported and can be used for more than watching TV.

 

---

 

 

 

If you can handle a few wires, then as above, a Receiver and separate speakers will give you better bang for buck.

 

 

 

 

If you want to use the Play 1 / 3 as surrounds, you'll want to ensure the optical port of your new TV can pass 5.1 Dolby / DTS (whatever format the Playbar can use) when you have an HMDI source.

 

Otherwise the soundbar will be simply sending the front stereo signal to the rear speakers... and dropping the surround volume by around 30% to give you 'pseudo surround' sound.

 

If you're 100% confident that your new TV can do this - you should get what you need.

 

If not, you'd need to incorporate an optical switch OR wait until Sonos brings HDMI technology to their products.


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  Reply # 1629127 14-Sep-2016 10:16
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+1 for sonos.  not cheap though, i just bought a playbar, sub, and 2 play:1s package for $3500 (another $99 for playbar wall bracket).  excellent sound, great software for playing music from phone/tablet.

 

playbars themselves are about $1350, so yeah, not a cheap option, but probably the best option (paying for quality, the sub is awesome, and the s/w is amazing)


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