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Topic # 31878 2-Apr-2009 18:43
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Hey guys, I just got a PS3 and I'm now wanting to upgrade my 6 year old HT system. Basically, want I want is a system with speakers (7.1) that can do DTS-HD and TrueHD Dolby. Whats my chepest (and decent) option?






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  Reply # 204971 2-Apr-2009 18:55
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best/cheapest option build your own or get someone to build one for you.

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  Reply # 204991 2-Apr-2009 20:19
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boby55: best/cheapest option build your own or get someone to build one for you.


I think that is what he is trying to do??

James Bond what is your budget? What requirements do you have ie does it have to have small speakers (yuck) etc.

What size room is this going in? Is it your own house or rented? Do you want to play music though the HT system as well?

Answer those things and we can go from there.







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  Reply # 208212 20-Apr-2009 19:38
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your options are:

1) get a receiver that accepts 7.1 LPCM True-HD/DTS-HD decoded by PS3 but can't decode bitsream True-HD/DTS-HD
2) get a receiver that does both
3) buy speakers/make speakers

prices are going up soon (by 30-100%) but currently:

minimum receiver needed for 2: about $1300
onkyo tsxr606, yamaha rvx663, denon/pioneer/sony - no idea

minimum receiver needed for 1: about $800
onkyo tsxr576, yamaha rvx563, denon/pioneer/sony - no idea.

speakers - decent would cost about $1300.
for movies the most important piece is the center speaker. for music is the front L&R. ie the front 3 are the most important.
most decent for price - wharfedale diamond 9.6 fronts and 9.cM center and as i said the others are there to fill the sound.
most bang for buck: wharfedale diamond 9 pack but no one sells 8 speaker packs, you still need to buy the other 2 surrounds - i'd say whatever it is you buy is fine - they dont matter that much.
limitless option for cheapest - trademe? build yourself?




Swype on iOS is detrimental to accurate typing. Apologies in advance.




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  Reply # 214268 12-May-2009 06:09
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Nety:
boby55: best/cheapest option build your own or get someone to build one for you.


I think that is what he is trying to do??

James Bond what is your budget? What requirements do you have ie does it have to have small speakers (yuck) etc.

What size room is this going in? Is it your own house or rented? Do you want to play music though the HT system as well?

Answer those things and we can go from there.


Sorry about the late reply. I don't have a fixed budget i.e. I could spend 5k on a receiver alone but thats probably overkill for me. (OT:Saw a 12k receiver at HN yesterday... wow)

The room is about ~7x4m. I'm the owner of the house - Well I sometimes listen to music but mostly iTunes streamed via Airport on AUX. Not too fussy about the speaker size - I don't mid big speakers.





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  Reply # 214275 12-May-2009 08:36
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darn the stupid vista did not send thru my post! here goes again.

if you have that much money spend it on a yamaha rx-v1900. it has everything a pro ever needs, outputing 140w per channel of clean sound, and passing hdmi blacker than black and whiter than white. higher models has a lot more features that if you're asking in this forum, will never use or even begin to understand.

then speakers: recommended to spend 3x the price of your amp.

also dont forget cables and positioning and other setup/configuration.

ps if you're in chch i can help you setup!!!

the most important ones are the front left & right and the center. these 3 gives 99% of all the sound in a movie. the center being the dominant one, giving 99.9% of the speech and 70% of all sound in a movie.

If you have the money the high end B&W and Klipsch are good options, go and listen to them and pick your fav - as you're the one listening to them. They will cost you about 4-6 grand for a match pair (that's undiscounted though). The center should match the fronts to get similar sound timbre.
If you don't want to spend that much the Wharfedale Diamond 9.6 for fronts and 9.CM for center are almost as good but for a fraction of the price, at least for movies anyway. For music, they lack the sound image and stage of those expensive speakers.

SUB - need that to feel some low frequency effects. Get one that goes all the way down to 18-20Hz for a good rumble. Then power depends on your room size really. One sub is enough.

As for surrounds - get whatever you like. Don't spend much on them, but get something respectable though, but as a said dont spend much on them.




Swype on iOS is detrimental to accurate typing. Apologies in advance.


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  Reply # 214276 12-May-2009 08:37
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i note you say you listen to itunes. that could sound a bit exposed if the source material is lossy.




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  Reply # 214277 12-May-2009 08:47
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Your first post indicated you were after the cheapest (but decent) option, but you now say you could spend $5k on a receiver??!! Joker97 has pointed out some of the entry level receivers that do all the latest audio formats (for well under $5k!), but also that if you're using a PS3 for Bluray, you don't have to have one that does the decoding, so potentially you could get a cheaper model.

One thing to consider is music reproduction - not always a strong point of receivers. I've read many less than flattering comments about Onkyos in this regard (however, can't say it applies to all their current models). Of the five "big mainstream" brands, Denon and Yamaha would usually be regarded as superior in this regard (compared to Sony, Pioneer and Onkyo). But don't forget other brands like Marantz, NAD and Rotel.

If you're ok with spending up to $5k on a receiver, one option is to go for a decent receiver but also purchase seperate power amps (could even go second-hand for some of these).

You may also want to try another forum - www.audioenz.co.nz/forums - for ideas. The guys who frequent there are typically knowlegeable and helpful with these sorts of questions (and you'll find a number of relevant earlier posts).

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  Reply # 214278 12-May-2009 08:52
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I would agree with what joker97 says. My experience is that home theatre is quite forgiving. Music is not. You can get away with much lesser surround speakers as long as your fronts and centre are good quality you will finish up with a great sounding home theatre setup.
I cannot stress enough though that you MUST have a good centre. The number of setups I have heard that sound disconnected from the screen because the setup the person has brought has a under powered centre. As joker97 side the vast majority of the sound comes from the centre in a movie. It needs to be at least as powerful as the fronts and I would strongly suggest to make it 1.5 to 2 times as powerful.








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  Reply # 214280 12-May-2009 09:13
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don't get me wrong about the diamond 9.6's the sound clarity and detail is so crystal clear it's bordering on magnificent. but you need a decent amp - the onkyo 576 won't give it enough power. but the 9.6 compared with a $5000 b&w 704 or the 8 series or even a similar priced wharfedale, you can tell a difference. but for normal people like me, 9.6s are what i can afford and they're supergood for my budget.




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  Reply # 214281 12-May-2009 09:15
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also i'm a little concerned about the fact you have itunes/mp3s and you want a sound system for 2 channel audio. you might want to



1) buy cds from now

2) you wanna buy my diamond 9.5s - the 9.5s and the yamaha's compressed audio enhancer are an awesome combination for compressed audio as they make them sound 5-10 times better than they will in a high end overexposing system. and no deficits for movies either. (they're brand new and i can help you install your system!)




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  Reply # 214286 12-May-2009 09:30
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Nety: It needs to be at least as powerful as the fronts and I would strongly suggest to make it 1.5 to 2 times as powerful.


What do you mean by "powerful"? A speaker doesn't really have power in and of itself - rather, the two issues in this area to consider are:

1. the power rating - this just gives an idea as to the power range it will deal with appropriately from the amplifier. Most decent speakers will deal totally adequately with the level of power put out by today's receivers. (If anything, problems can be more likely caused by an underpowered amp, as it will more easily distort at higher volumes. )

2, the efficency of the speaker - basically how loud does the speaker go given a particular input of power (typically the dB level produced by 1w measured at 1 m, I think). This is a far more important consideration for how "loud" a speaker will go than its given rating in watts. The general rule of thumb is that a 3dB increase in efficency is the equivalent of doubling the power of the amp.

More power can of course be delivered through a higher powered amp - however it's unusual for a receiver to have more power delivered to the centre than the fronts (usually even oiwer all around). This can easily be got around, if one wants/needs to, but using external amplifcation (a good idea, as I mentioned in an earlier post). One could always externally amplify the front three channels, for example.

Some other thoughts on the centre channel:

* centre channels are typically not full-range (usually due to a size limitation!), so will usually rely on the fronts or a sub to produce LF sounds. In the former case (ie using fronts for LF), this certainly presents a case for ensuring adequate power for your front speakers.

* it's important not to think of the centre outside of the context of your other speakers - it's important that the timbre of particularly the front three speakers matches fairly well. Therefore one shouldn't be focused on the quality/power/efficency of the centre speaker at the cost of considering the wider picture.

That said, I agree that a good quality centre speaker is essential!

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  Reply # 214288 12-May-2009 09:45
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joker97: also i'm a little concerned about the fact you have itunes/mp3s


We don't know for sure yet that they're MP3s or some other lossy format. But, yes, if they are, it certainly isn't going to offer fantastic reproduction!

Lossless formats like FLAC or Apple lossless can certainly provide excellent  audio quality - it just needs to be partnered with a good-quality DAC. There's also the potential for sound superior to CD as lossless can be encoded at a quality higher than CD.

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  Reply # 214307 12-May-2009 10:47
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jonathan18:
What do you mean by "powerful"? A speaker doesn't really have power in and of itself - rather, the two issues in this area to consider are:


Sorry bad terminology. Yes I meant higher power rating. My centre is rated at 200w my mains 100w. The efficiency should be as similar as possible. Really comes down to how much work the centre has to do.

Obviously when you are setting up the system you set the volume to be the same from all speakers but when watching a movie the centre will still be doing most of the work so needs to be able to handle the workload.
It seems to be that a lot of the home theatre in a box systems have a tiny centre speaker that cannot hope to perform at the levels that it needs to. Even larger packages can have this problem.








Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

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  Reply # 214309 12-May-2009 11:07
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Nety: My centre is rated at 200w my mains 100w. The efficiency should be as similar as possible.


well what is the power capability of your amp? power lies in the amp not speakers. underpowered amps destroy speakers due to clipping. also it may not be powerful to drive your (speaker) drivers as well as intended! overpowered amps in general are the way to go - as long as you dont crank it to the max to blow the brains out of the speakers, you get way cleaner sound.




Swype on iOS is detrimental to accurate typing. Apologies in advance.


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  Reply # 214319 12-May-2009 11:26
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joker97:
well what is the power capability of your amp? power lies in the amp not speakers. underpowered amps destroy speakers due to clipping. also it may not be powerful to drive your (speaker) drivers as well as intended! overpowered amps in general are the way to go - as long as you dont crank it to the max to blow the brains out of the speakers, you get way cleaner sound.


Ah but isn't that the million dollar question.. depends who you ask. Pioneers product brocher or the real specs of the unit Wink

Specs are rated at 110w per channel @ 8ohms but I can assure you it never gets close to its max output even when my wife is out Tongue out

You are right a underpowered/cheap amp will clip and can take out your speakers. In fact the the manufaturer of my main speakers (Rega) Rates them at 100w but does say that with a good amp they can handle up to 300w not that you would ever dream of driving them that hardSurprised







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

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