Happy New Year from Hi-fi newb (and system question!)


Standard Member
Hi all, Happy New Year, I've been browsing this forum for a few weeks and just trying to sort out a budget separates system for my new humble abode (flat). :thumbsup:
The system will be used in my relatively small living room and I may connect my tv to it at some point if connections allow.

I've looked round a few websites for deals and been in to hi-fi shop near where I work to have a listen to various systems playing. I like the Denon system they have in there and looking on the internet I've found the amp and cd player they were using so put together the below to cost it all up.

DENON DCD700AE CD PLAYER Black £199.95
QED QUNEX 2 INTERCONNECT 0.5 metre (x2) £49.90
Q ACOUSTICS 1030 SPEAKERS (PAIR) Black £149.00
QED QUDOS ORIGINAL SPEAKER CABLE Bi-wire (4 core): (6m) £31.50
Total £670.22

Can anyone please give me any advice as to whether the above would represent a reasonable first investment in a separates system? The above would be available with the Denon 500 series amp / cd player for approx £115 less than the abpve total. Is there much difference between sound quality of the 500 and 700 or is the price difference due to connectivity?

Would I be better going for something completely different? :rolleyes:

Any advice would be appreciated,

Many thanks,


Standard Member
I don't know much about the equipment you list but I would not spend £120 on cabling.

I would budget £30 for interconnects and speaker wire and spend the rest on better equipment or music, even.



Standard Member
Lol! I can see what you mean about the cabling but I was just going with what the particular web company indicated as the 'preferred solution' for the product. I am aware that the cables could be either much cheaper, or more expensive depending on what is deemed necessary.

Can anyone give an opinion as to whether £120 on cabling is overkill for the 'budget' main components of the system? I guess the system is only as good as the weakest link though.



Distinguished Member
:hiya: Hi and welcome to the forums,

I think this thread probably belongs in the Hi-fi and separates section but ok, here goes, I'll attempt to answer some your questions. Having taken into account that you liked what you heard, in my opinion, you should really be spending more on your speakers and amplifier rather than cabling and accessories (jisis, no need to duck, lol). Budget your kit in order of importance i.e. the kit that will have the most significance to sound quality as I'm quite sure for the budget you could do better:

1: Speakers (£250 on standmounts at a minimum)
2: Amplifier (£250)
3: CD player (£150)

You could perhaps breakup your questions in relevant forums for suggestions then later find out more about the type of speakers, amplification, etc to buy. People do say that you should demo the kit first but not many traders will have all the kit you want and I've not had any problems in the past buying blind so long as you maintain a bit of system synergy and consider the type of room it'll be used in. For all or some of the above e.g. amplification you might want to go second hand as you could get a lot more for your money. I know what it's like when you've got some cash burning a hole in your pocket but take your time, do not rush into buying something that could possibly regret later.

Cabling and accessories should be the last of your worries. Bananas are a convenience and not necessary, look here for those cabling needs, I could particularly recommend the Mark Grant Canare analogue cables. The above is not gospel but I hope it is of some help to you.


Standard Member
Mi55ion, many thanks for your reply. :thumbsup:

I am completely new to this stuff so will take my time doing research etc - I wish I did have the money 'burning a hole' as it were! I've not got quite enough saved yet! :(

I will go and have a listen in some other shops if I can, I take it that brands are generally compatible with each other? Or is it best to get the amp and cd from one manufacturer?

One more question before I post in other categories, would I be better going for bookshelf or floorstanding speakers at a given price point, say £150-200? Or would that be personal preference?

Thanks again,


Distinguished Member
You're welcome mate, glad to hear that you'll be taking your time. :thumbsup:

Nothing wrong with mixing and matching, main reason to stay with the same manufacturer would be for aesthetics. As a very general rule for system synergy avoid components that are too similar in characteristics, as an extreme example, if the speakers are known to be 'bright' do not get an amplifier that is also known to be 'bright' especially if it'll go into a room with very little soft furnishing as the sound could become too harsh and quickly fatiguing. Also consider that demo rooms are purpose built and you may not get the same result at home as what you hear in the shop.

As for the speakers, bookshelfs/standmounts definitely at this price and in case I haven't mentioned this already, try to get the speakers right first. ;)


Active Member
Personally the changes I would make are :-

1) Change the amp for an AV amp such as the Denon AVR1907 £200

2) Change the CD player for a DVD player such as the Denon DVD1940 £170

3) Use an optical cable to connect the DVD player and amp together. £20

By using the DVD player for playing CDs you are getting better functionality as it can play DVDs very well. You are also letting the amp perform the digital to analogue conversion.

If you want to spend a little more then getting a better amp might be best. The Denon is good but a better amp will give you support for the new HD audio standards and lots of other features. I like the Oknyo 605 (http://www.richersounds.com/showproduct.php?cda=showproduct&pid=ONKY-TXSR605) and there is an owners thread here you can read if you are interested. It is £400 from richer sounds but I have seen it mentioned elsewhere here for £350.

Basically if the amp is going to be by the TV then personally I see no point in getting anything other than an AV amp. Once you do that the AMP is doing all the audio conversion and any CD player you have is only being used to extract the data off the CD and for navigation. A DVD player will handle that just as well. The Denon 1940 has a mode where it shuts down all the video out circuitry so it is designed as a proper CD player aswell.

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