help plse: THIB v. component, £1000 price point - tricky location

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Buying & Building' started by arjay, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. arjay

    arjay
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    lounge800.jpg Been Googling for 2 days and now rather confused. Expert on computers but poor knowledge re audio/video. Need to completely replace ageing Bose Lifestyle 20 5.1 system and have around £1000 to spend. Please help me spend it (wisely) :). Looked at THIB - Monitor Audio MASS, Onkyo HT-S9400THX, LG BH9430PW, various Samsungs etc. General view seems to be less and less THIB systems available now and future. Looked at soundbars but prefer to keep rear speakers if possible (see layout issues below).

    Current setup
    1. Bose 20 5.1 surround sound system as above - 5 pairs of "jewel" speakers plus huge sub-w
    2. Sony 40 inch KDL-40W3000 (3 years old) - i.e not real smart but has 2 HDMI inputs, 2 SCARTS etc
    3. Ageing, cheap DVD player (not Blu-Ray)
    4. One of three networked home PCs co-located - which I have used as Myth TV in past
    5. Sky HD Plus Box plus terrestrial Spanish TV co-axial feed and FM aerial (neither in use currently)
    6. Have Ethernet and Wifi available next to receiver/TV

    Would like:
    1. AV receiver with integrated blu-ray, internet and wifi capability, plenty of HDMI, Scart/Composite options (good for media card in PC)
    2. 5.1 0r 7.1 capability
    3. Wireless rear speakers if possible and if you think they would beOK re quality of sound

    Room
    1. Difficult location. Spanish-style marble floors and concrete walls make laying cables a challenge (Bose cables were laid 10 years ago cemented into actual walls (not ducted)

    2. (See photo) Almost completely open-plan. L-shaped sofas, one against a rear wall and the other part against a full height stub wall at right angles. The TV stands opposite sofas on a 3 foot high stone bookshelf running full width of room (just see it in photo on right). Viewing distance 10-14 feet. Ceiling height 10 foot plus. From seating position, to right, is 15x15 dining room and left is 10x20 hall - both completely open to lounge. Behind TV is also completely open to large second lounge below level of main lounge (20 ft high ceiling with nearest wall behind TV about 20 feet away).

    3. Given almost all open-plan, don't think a soundbar would work as well as sound might be lost around it as no walls behind it or to either side. Rear speakers do give some definition as they are mounted on the only real wall behind sofas.

    We are not great audiophiles - mainly listen to popular and classical music streamed off my network or from internet radio. Watch a lot of films from Sky HD and play a few videos (none Blu-ray at the moment as no Blu-ray player)

    Can anyone with an actual THIB system help re their experience? Any other info gratefully received.



    TIA
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
  2. arjay

    arjay
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    Risking a bump here. Not sure why I have had no responses. Maybe just advice-fatigue from the experts out there. Maybe too much info, though most complaints here appear to be because of insufficient info. Maybe not too many using the forum have THIBs or are interested in them - who knows. Anyway, I am heading now to possibly buy a Sony BDV-N8100W. Mainly because of good reviews. The rear speakers are not actually full wireless but at least don't require cables across the room.

    Advice re all-in-ones generally would be helpful or guidance re specific models - for or against. TIA
     
  3. Andrew K

    Andrew K
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    I'd have a look at the Kef E305 speaker system paired with something like the Yamaha RX-V675 or Denon AVRX2000. The wireless rears are going to be the issue though and will take away performance over what you could normally get with your budget
     
  4. arjay

    arjay
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    Thanks so much for coming back to me. I'll look at your suggestions tomorrow and reply
     
  5. arjay

    arjay
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    Well spent much of the day researching and following up on your suggestions. First - you've convinced me to go for separate receiver and speaker set rather than a HTIB affair.

    Second, I appreciate the quality of the Kef speakers, but not sure about the design and my other half says "no way". Guess we both prefer a more traditional "boxy" design. Also, the costs of Kef's plus a receiver and also having to buy a blu ray player makes it a bit too much for us at the moment.

    For speakers, I am probably leaning towards the Q Acoustic 2000i cinema pack unless anyone's got a better idea.

    I liked both your suggestions for receivers and also found the Sony str-dn1040 which gets good reviews for my price range - not too much to pick between them. The scary thing, though, is reading the range of reviews on Amazon for all three models. So many apparent issues with quality, poor performance, sending stuff back and who knows what else.

    I have also been looking for a receiver with integrated blu ray player. Not so many around - presumably with changing tastes re streaming. Have you any advice about a decent receiver with blu ray built in at around £5-600?

    Thanks again for your time
     
  6. Andrew K

    Andrew K
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    Q Acoustics are fine at their price point. A little bit more cost but would still fall within budget would be the Monitor Audio BX2 AV package (special sale pricing!) or the Dali Zensor 1 5.1 package. pair either of these with the Denon AVRX2000.

    I wouldn't compromise the AV Receiver by buying an all in one bluray player. You can get a decent blu-ray player for under £200.
     
  7. arjay

    arjay
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    OK - point taken about the blu ray. But I did a quick search for the speakers you mentioned and can't make out what the prices are. When it says they are around £180-200 - is this for one or two? if they are £200 each and I need 4 plus a sub, they are way beyond my price of around £5-600 for the lot! You mention a special sales price for the BX2's but I can't find that either. Can you help with a bit more detail?

    Cheers
     
  8. Andrew K

    Andrew K
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  9. arjay

    arjay
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    Thanks for your patience and help. However, this package, whilst a great deal, is just too expensive for me. I don't want to pay much more than £1000 for speakers, receiver and blu ray player. This lot is nearer £1500. Sadly well over budget. Annoying because it all looks really good stuff. I might buy the Denon (AVR X2000), a blu ray player and then some cheaper speakers - around £5-600 (eg the Q Acoustics pack) until we can afford better....

    Thanks anyway

    Richard

    PS Also priced up the two rear speaker brackets, 30 metres of speaker cable and all the other bits and pieces (HDMI, sub cable etc etc) and that has added a heap more - so definitely can't go for anything more expensive at the moment!!
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  10. Andrew K

    Andrew K
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    I'd agree with you on the X2000.

    The BX2AV package with the X2000 is £999. Add a blu-ray for around £150 and £50 for cables.

    As you said the Q Acoustics package will all come in under £1000 though.
     
  11. arjay

    arjay
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    I wasn't able to price it as keenly as you have and the the amount of cable I need is nearer one hundred plus brackets etc. Also road transport to where I am in Spain is another £200.

    Anyway, I really appreciate the time you have given to my questions especially as you guys are experts in your areas. People like me probably qualify as casual users rather than true audiophiles. I help out on several computer forums and know what a challenge it is to keep up enthusiasm when question after question comes up of a similar kind.

    I'll keep visiting your forum to see what else gives - and thanks again.

    Richard
     
  12. Joe Fernand

    Joe Fernand
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    A decent Stereo or 2.1 setup with something a bit 'different' looking would seem a good option for your room.

    One drawback with a combined BD Player/Amp being the player is likely to fail before the Amp.

    Achieving 'surround' sound in such an open plan area is tricky enough when you have an open budget.

    Joe
     

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