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Help, Need Recommendations on a 5.1 system

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Old 04-06-2009, 03:20 PM   #46  
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Kampsy, Stew4HD et al,

A collegue today suggested I look at the NHT speakers. While the center is a little larger than I like, I think I can make it work. I called NHT and spoke with an engineer who assured me, while the center and in-walls are not an exact match, they will do very well together. Here is what I am looking at getting:

center NHT Two C
fronts NHT iW3 (in-wall)
rear NHT iW3 or iW2 (in-wall)

A little more than I intially planned on spending but think this will be a nice set-up. Now is your time to tell me I am nuts!

ltd

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Old 04-07-2009, 03:53 AM   #47  
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Originally Posted by lowtechdude View Post
Kampsy, Stew4HD et al,

A collegue today suggested I look at the NHT speakers. While the center is a little larger than I like, I think I can make it work. I called NHT and spoke with an engineer who assured me, while the center and in-walls are not an exact match, they will do very well together. Here is what I am looking at getting:

center NHT Two C
fronts NHT iW3 (in-wall)
rear NHT iW3 or iW2 (in-wall)

A little more than I intially planned on spending but think this will be a nice set-up. Now is your time to tell me I am nuts!

ltd
Welllll... that is a lot more than the $600 in your budget! The 2 fronts alone will hit that number.

I haven't heard NHT, so I cannot comment on them.

I still like the Polk's but they are what I know, personally.
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Old 04-07-2009, 05:59 AM   #48  
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Stew4HD,

NHT is clearing out their entire speaker line through its authorized dealers for a new line coming out soon.

Anyway, I made a cut-out of the NHT Two center and my wife quickly NIXED that. It was way too boxy, too deep and just huge, so I am back to square one. I still want to use the NHT in-walls as the current pricing is excellent. Here are my options :

  • Go with all in-walls up front (iW3s)
  • Go with iW4 as the center and iW3s as left/right
  • Look for a center that would match the tonal qualities of the iW3s up front. A local dealer who would do the install tells me the Definitive Technology Mythos 7 would be a good match and is sleek for an over the TV mount.
Yes this all will bust my budget but I have not found any better options at the +/- $600 mark. The Polk centers are even larger than the NHT centers.

I will also give a call to NHT technical support but I welcome comments from forum members. I sure cant wait until this is over.

ltd
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Old 04-07-2009, 06:28 AM   #49  
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Originally Posted by lowtechdude View Post
Stew4HD,

NHT is clearing out their entire speaker line through its authorized dealers for a new line coming out soon.

Anyway, I made a cut-out of the NHT Two center and my wife quickly NIXED that. It was way too boxy, too deep and just huge, so I am back to square one. I still want to use the NHT in-walls as the current pricing is excellent. Here are my options :

  • Go with all in-walls up front (iW3s)
  • Go with iW4 as the center and iW3s as left/right
  • Look for a center that would match the tonal qualities of the iW3s up front. A local dealer who would do the install tells me the Definitive Technology Mythos 7 would be a good match and is sleek for an over the TV mount.
Yes this all will bust my budget but I have not found any better options at the +/- $600 mark. The Polk centers are even larger than the NHT centers.

I will also give a call to NHT technical support but I welcome comments from forum members. I sure cant wait until this is over.

ltd
I understand your frustration. Go with your gut. Get those NHT's and whatever center you feel will suit your needs.

We, here, can only giive recommendations based on factors you give but, it is still only advice. The thing with home theater setup is that there are thousands of combinations to choose from.

It's tough to work with budget and "the wife factor" at the same time. My ex hated my big speakers I had before we met. She liked the surround sound though.. we ended up with those Bose cubes but I was never happy with them.

Have you told your wife about how the center channel is the, in essence, the workhorse of any home theater system? Again, it is difficult to match sound and decor!
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Old 04-07-2009, 06:45 AM   #50  
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Originally Posted by Stew4HD View Post
I understand your frustration. Go with your gut. Get those NHT's and whatever center you feel will suit your needs.

We, here, can only giive recommendations based on factors you give but, it is still only advice. The thing with home theater setup is that there are thousands of combinations to choose from.

It's tough to work with budget and "the wife factor" at the same time. My ex hated my big speakers I had before we met. She liked the surround sound though.. we ended up with those Bose cubes but I was never happy with them.

Have you told your wife about how the center channel is the, in essence, the workhorse of any home theater system? Again, it is difficult to match sound and decor!
LOL, unfortunately my wife could care less about the 5.1 system. She is more into decorating than Audio Video.
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Old 04-07-2009, 07:34 AM   #51  
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LOL, unfortunately my wife could care less about the 5.1 system. She is more into decorating than Audio Video.
Where have I heard that before? Oh yeah.. ex wife
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Old 04-07-2009, 03:14 PM   #52  
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Audiophile Gurus,

Anyone out there have any opinion of using 4.1 speaker set-up and running the system in "phantom mode." Based on my TV height and mounted above fireplace a local AV person said my best bet is to go with real nice L/R fronts in phantom mode and forget the center mounted high above the TV. I think this may be a resolution to my contraints.

Thoughts?
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Old 04-08-2009, 10:54 PM   #53  
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lowtech
The phantom center is a poor compromise. The two most important speakers in HT are the center and sub. How about one of those long, low L/C/R sound bars? I think that would produce better results than a phantom center. Just a thought based on your constraints (wife & budget).
dave

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Old 04-09-2009, 03:42 AM   #54  
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lowtech
The phantom center is a poor compromise. The two most important speakers in HT are the center and sub. How about one of those long, low L/C/R sound bars? I think that would produce better results than a phantom center. Just a thought based on your constraints (wife & budget).
dave
I fully agree with your assessment!

I get the impression that his wife would prefer no sound system. His best bet might be an in-wall center. I am guessing she wants to keep the mantle clear of "stereo" stuff so that she can put decorative objects there.

Depending on the HDTV he has, he might be able to use the TV's speakers as the center. My Kuro has a detachable "speaker bar" that could easily be wired as a center channel... just tossing out ideas here.
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Old 04-09-2009, 05:40 AM   #55  
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I have visited two higher-end audio stores in town and both were very consistent in their sound solution after they looked at pics and dimensions of my room and related contraints . . . use a 4.1 system. They do not agree with the notion that a center is required. I am being told the key is proper placement of the L/R and of course capable speakers. That said, I have also been looking at much higher-end fronts (Revel C10, KEF HTS5001/6001, Monitor R225HD/250HD, Infinity TSS-SAT4000) and my initial budget has gone to shreds. Hey, its only money, lol.
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Old 04-09-2009, 06:31 AM   #56  
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Check out Mirage Speakers

Link The people I know that have them, love them. They sound great!

Tis worth a look.
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Old 04-09-2009, 07:04 AM   #57  
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I also agree with the posters above that a phantom center is not going to produce optimal results. Unless there is just no way to do it, I would look at a way to fit 1 in somehow. I also very much kike KEF as great speaker option. Here is a place where you can get some new and factory reconditioned KEF speakers for a fraction of the price. Most come with a FULL 5 year warranty from KEF.
And like 5 pages of KEF stuff to choose from.. Mirage is a great speaker option as well...

http://www.accessories4less.com/make...results/1.html
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Old 04-09-2009, 02:33 PM   #58  
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I'm tapping out on this one fellas.

Good luck.
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Old 04-09-2009, 02:43 PM   #59  
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I am gonna hang in there with him. I want to know what lowtech comes up with for a solution.... could be valuable info fo rme in the future if I run into a client with such constraints.
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Old 04-11-2009, 08:24 AM   #60  
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Kamspy hang in there with me. This thread has evolved due to learning about my room install limitations, new speaker knowledge corresponding into an expanded budget. Oh and let's not forget my wife's preferences.

I had another AV installer look at the room. This company is a Definitive Technology dealer. He said rear surrounds was going to be a huge install job whether I wanted in wall or onwall (hidden wires) due to walls, studs, headers, etc. Since this room is not a cinema room and designed to provide sound to adjacent rooms for entertaining, I am being steered away from the expense of rear surrounds This would also include numerous drywall cuts in walls and/or ceilings. So if you think this is a bad move, now is the time to tell me I am crazy and should spend an enormous amount of money to get rears.

He is suggesting two options:
3.1 System - DT Mythos Six L/R and Seven Ctr (or Mythos Solo LCR in one) with a DT Pro or Super Cube sub
1.1 System - DT SSA-40 surround bar with a DT Pro or Super Cube sub

The other AV dealer is recommending:
3.1 System - KEF HTS5001.2 and KEF Cube 1 sub
2.1 System - KEF HTS5001.2 (phantom mode) and KEF Cube 1 sub

Since both the DT (4 1/16")and KEF (3.46") are very low profile speakers I can make it work using a center. Raisng TV 2.5" more inches isnt going to make a big difference.

I see that accessories4less.com had 1 remaining KEF HTS5001.2 for $199. It is unclear to me if this is brand new? It doesn't clearly say but that is $150 less than retail price. If I could get 3 of these for $600 and they have the KEF Cube 1 sub $299, I think I would pull the trigger now.

Anyone have any input on the comparison of the KEF vs. DT models I am looking at?
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