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Looking for Budget Surround Sound System to go with my 46HM84 DLP.

Conquistador92
10-24-2006, 05:59 PM
I need a surround sound system to go with my 46HM84 46" DLP Toshiba HDTV, my (Preordered) Playstation 3, my XBOX 360, and my Comcast HDMI Cable Box.

I currently have an 810 watt JVC THC3 Surround Sound System, which i will sell on ebay to buy my new system. Im looking to spend $250~ + the $200 or so Ill get by selling my current one. I need to know if with that budget, will i get a much better system? I need small/medium speakers, but no tower giants.

Also, I need a reciever with 3 toslink ports, or i could just use a 3 toslink splitter found here - http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=104&cp_id=10423&cs_id=1042302&p_id=2946&seq=1&format=2

Would that be a good choice? Im also getting my HDMI splitter between the Cable TV and the PS3 from monoprice found here - http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=101&cp_id=10110&cs_id=1011001&p_id=2786&style=&seq=1&format=1#largeimage

Im buying this sound system Used or from Ebay, so i can save some money. Thanks for all your help in advance,

Conquistador

DelsFan
10-24-2006, 10:42 PM
Good: You are trying to improve upon the sound offered by a HTIB.
Bad: You need a little more budget to do so.
Good: IF you find GOOD used equipment, yes, that is one way to buy "real" speakers (and other equipment) instead of awful sounding stuff - on a budget.
Bad: If the speaker system is for your bedroom, then you will get sticker shock reading my post.
Good: If the speaker system is for your bedroom, then you can do something really good for about $1000 used...

Two good sites for good used audio (http://www.audiogon.com) and video (http://www.videogon.com)equipment (you have to look through a lot of $x,xxx equipment to find the $xxx stuff, but these sellers usually are very particular and they are normally selling only because they upgraded to even more expensive stuff).

You can look at post #4 in this thread (http://www.highdefforum.com/showthread.php?t=29466)to read some of my thoughts on lower end speakers that sizzle.

Later in that thread I agreed with another poster about decent speaker manufacturers (we pooled our thoughts, for the record he came up with more mfrs. than I did). I'd suggest getting used, lower end speakers from one of the speaker manufacturer listed in the following excerpt:

As far as an individual's perception, I'd pretty much guarantee that almost anyone who listened to any lower end speaker pair made by a "real" speaker manufacturer (yep: KEF, M&K, Totem, PSB, RBH, Sonus Faber, SVS, HSU, Vienna Acoustics, Von Schweikert, Paradigm, Definitive Audio, Mirage ,Energy, Gallo, PSB, etc) would never again consider listenable a speaker made by Bose or JBL (or, perhaps, even Polk or Boston Acoustics).

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
This is what I did for a friend of mine. He has an amazing set-up, for the dollar spent. I think it would be hard to start from scratch and do it for too much less. [Assuming a living room set-up.] However, lots of people selling their used speakers will just about give you their high (enough) quality speaker wire and interconnects if you ask - so, you could save some money there.

Denon Processor (1804 I think, only 65 or 75 wpc, but quality watts, every one) $225 used $450 approx. new
Monitor Audio B2 Fronts and B Center for the... Center. $500 new, a deal from a friend but you can get them new for around that price now.
Definative Audio BP-1 rear surrounds $100 used (really, like new)
M&K V-125 Subwoofer (the real deal) $400 used ($950 approx. new)
Speaker Wire - 5' lengths for front, center $60.00
Speaker Wire - rear (100') $45.00
Interconnect, 2m length, DVD to processor $40.00
Interconnect to subwoofer (10') $40.00
Y-Splitter at subwoofer $15.00
Cable from processor to TV (free, I forget where we got this)

$225 for the used processor
$1000 for speakers & sub
$200 for interconnects
---------
$1425 Total
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

In another thread I gave this advice: don't get the smallest speakers a (good) mfr. makes. [That is, if you are doing this set-up in your living room. In you bedroom or college apt., then the small stuff will work just fine. Just get small/tiny speaker made by a "real" speaker manufacturer!) In a living room setting, Mirage makes the Nano and the OmniSat, go for the OmniSat. Gallo makes the Nucleus Micro and the D'Avia Ti, go for the D'Avia Ti. Monitor Audio makes a B1 and a B2 speaker, go for the B2. [Gallo's really good set of five speakers and a good 10" subwoofer runs $1975 new but here is not quite as good a set (http://cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?homesubw&1165199489) (Three D'Avia's - not the D'Avia Ti's - Two Micro's, and one smallish sub) for $1100 used.]

That's enough advice for one night; good luck in your conquest! If you're brave enough, ask if you have any more questions.

PS Don't use splitters unless you absolutely have to. You almost always loose information "inside" before your signal is output.

mred612
10-25-2006, 01:54 AM
Man, I got a killer deal. I bought a Philips 2.1 Surround, I think it actually sounds better than a Bose 321!!! I paid $360 for it. It has an upconverting dvd player, a usb slot, and it's pushing about 500 watts! It really does sound great!!! The model # is HTS6500. You can add I believe 3 more speakers to make it a 5.1! It's by far the biggest bang for your buck!

mred612
10-25-2006, 01:54 AM
oops, double post.

Conquistador92
10-25-2006, 10:22 AM
Im sorry, i cant spend more than $300 on this :(.

Ill probably look to spend that on an upgrade to my video, because I think my JVC TH-C3 5.1 810w system sounds good enough for my ears.

Thanks for all your help though, ill document it and see if i can save up a little bit more after I sell my 46HM84 and upgrade the HDTV.

Thanks! Conquistador.

DelsFan
10-28-2006, 09:52 AM
"because I think my JVC TH-C3 5.1 810w system sounds good enough for my ears."

Conquest, when you have some $$ (no point becoming dissatisfied when there is nothing you can do about it!), listen to one or two of your favorite CD's and/or DVD's (perhaps a concert DVD that is recorded well, The Brian Setzer Orchestra Live in Japan is one of my personal favorites, they play a wide variety of music, it's still rock and roll (kind of!), and it is very well recorded), then take them down to your local (?) high end store and have a listen to what you are missing. Maybe take something that somewhere highlights vocals, acoustic guitar, and orchestra (or complexity), and a good action movie for the DVD. Don't mess with the $10,000 systems, just listen to a small $2K to $3K system (with sub, the $3K system for reference only, not that you would necessarily be looking to purchase a system like that for your next surround iteration) from any of the manufacturers daleb and I mentioned in some other thread:
KEF, M&K, Totem, PSB, RBH, Sonus Faber, SVS, HSU, Vienna Acoustics, Von Schweikert, Paradigm, Definitive Audio, Mirage , Energy, Gallo, PSB,

Let me add Magnipan and Epos, as they would eventually be in your price range, and Thiel and Vandersteen as they are lower priced (in the high-end scheme of things) examples of a speaker that would show you what you are missing.

This is just my opinion, but on a scale of zero to five, your television set must be at least a four (zero being a 1990 rear projection out of adjustment so much you virtually cannot read the scroll, one being the non-flat screen 1993 Panny, which is one of the sets I own (it's properly adjusted and renders all the information - by today's standards it's junk), and five being the Sony Qualia sets that start at many $K. Looking at it another way, any well adjusted good-quality (OK, 1080i or p) HD set would be a four, at minimum, the best SD set could be no higher than a 2...

Conversely, using the same criteria, your surround system is probably a minus one. It does not reproduce all the sound that is on the CD or DVD (you don't believe me, that is why you should go listen to the lower end of a high-end system at some dealer), so on the zero to five scale that could make it a minus 1. Now, I was young once, I understand budget constraints. All I'm saying is you might consider upgrading your surround system before upgrading your really pretty darn good television set.

Seriously, for not much money your present sound system is certainly infinately better than nothing, which is what I'm sure you had before. But someday you will have the funds to upgrade; when you get around to it, try to do two things (and I'll take my leave!):
- Find speakers that reproduce all the information on the CD or DVD, speakers which allow you to hear all the details and nuances.
- Find speakers that reproduce instruments accurately (and voices). A good entry-level speaker should make instruments and voices sound almost like they are being played in the room with you. (Someone with the very enjoyable and cost-effective Mirage OmniSats give me a little support here?) This is not as hard as it sounds, you just have to be judicious with your purchasing - unless you are just going to drop $5K on something, then you could save time and just buy what your dealer tells you to buy!

Best of luck, tomorrow you can look forward to me explaining how a "500 wpc" HTIB receiver outputs fewer watts per channel than my friend's 65 wpc Denon :rolleyes: .

Cheers!
.

bmwcyle
10-28-2006, 12:12 PM
I need a surround sound system to go with my 46HM84 46" DLP Toshiba HDTV, my (Preordered) Playstation 3, my XBOX 360, and my Comcast HDMI Cable Box.

I currently have an 810 watt JVC THC3 Surround Sound System, which i will sell on ebay to buy my new system. Im looking to spend $250~ + the $200 or so Ill get by selling my current one. I need to know if with that budget, will i get a much better system? I need small/medium speakers, but no tower giants.

Also, I need a reciever with 3 toslink ports, or i could just use a 3 toslink splitter found here - http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=104&cp_id=10423&cs_id=1042302&p_id=2946&seq=1&format=2

Would that be a good choice? Im also getting my HDMI splitter between the Cable TV and the PS3 from monoprice found here - http://www.monoprice.com/products/product.asp?c_id=101&cp_id=10110&cs_id=1011001&p_id=2786&style=&seq=1&format=1#largeimage

Im buying this sound system Used or from Ebay, so i can save some money. Thanks for all your help in advance,

Conquistador

:cool:
http://www.ubid.com cheap