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Help: Sub £300 amp and floorstanders

jnwilde

Standard Member
Hi guys,

This is my first post so sorry if its in the wrong place. I am looking into buying my first decent speakers and from what i can gather with any decent speakers i need an amp as well.

My plan is to use the speakers for my Music xbox and TV. Can anyone give me any hints of what sort of thing im looking for I have a few ideas from richer sounds but am getting a little lost.

Thanks for helping!:)
 

ratticon

Established Member
If you're looking to purchase an amp AND some floorstanders for less than £300 then I think you'll be sorely disappointed. Most decent entry-level cinema amps with HDMI (I assume you'd want it for the Xbox) begin at £200-300 and the same again for floorstanders.

Sorry I don't want to **** on your fireworks but I recommend saving up a little more so that your first set of speakers are nice ones and you can buy surrounds etc later without wanting to upgrade the fronts again.
 
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jnwilde

Standard Member
Hi,

Thanks for the reply. my thoughts were I could out the xbox etc into the tv and then just hook the tv up to the amp and speakers could i do that? also i dont need 5.1 or 7.1 im only really bothered about music and not cinema.

sorry if im sounding really naive. Rciher sounds seems to have some decent floorsatnders for about £150 TDL SATURN-10 at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.
or are they not really any good?

Thanks for the help!
 

ratticon

Established Member
Avoid TDL like the plague. My girlfriend bought a pair a couple of years back and one of the speakers blew after 3 months. She returned the pair for a replacement and the same happened again.

I checked to see what amp she was running them with and she was using a modern Cambridge Audio stereo amp that wasn't over-powering the speakers or vice-versa.

Check the TDL website Home
It's been like that for years now.

Richer sounds are always selling TDL speakers at next to nothing and listing them as reduced from an outrageous RRP.

Sure you could hook up a decent stereo amp to you TV if your TV has an optical pass-thru or some phono outs. Do be wary that the DAC in the TV might not be that great though, and could mess up the whole chain.

Ben

Edited by Bald Monkey to remove potentially libelous statements, please keep to the facts.
 
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jnwilde

Standard Member
ok cheers, thats good to know as i was thinking of those ones.

So based on what you said assuming my TV has phono outs etc (not bought that yet either) what sort of suggestions would you make (might be able to push budget up to £400.

Thanks again
 

PSM1

Distinguished Member
Sounds like you want a simple stereo amp and set of speakers which should be easily achievable for you £300 budget. It will not be the best system in the world but will sound much better than your current TV speakers.
For example you could go for a Cambridge Audio Amp:
CAMBRIDGE AUDIO A1V3-BLK at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.

Morduat Short floorstanders:
MORDAUNT SHORT 914I-CAL at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.

which leaves around £20 for speaker cables etc.

You should also consider going for bookshelf speakers as you may get a better speaker for the money:
DALI LEKTOR1-LGT-WAL at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.

The best advice would be to try a few different speaker/amp combinations out to see what you prefer as you could spend a little more on the amp and a bit less on the speakers. That may sound better to you.
Some Richer Sound stores have demo rooms so should be able to set up a few example systems within your budget.
 

jnwilde

Standard Member
Thanks very much,


I will be visting richersounds tommorrow so will let you know how i get,

Thats really useful though one question, Will shelf speakers be able to deliver good enough bass for bass heavy music i.e dnb dubstep etc or will that mainly come from the amp?

again sorry for the lack of knowledge.
 

rhino2k

Distinguished Member
Avoid TDL like the plague. My girlfriend bought a pair a couple of years back and one of the speakers blew after 3 months. She returned the pair for a replacement and the same happened again.

I checked to see what amp she was running them with and she was using a modern Cambridge Audio stereo amp that wasn't over-powering the speakers or vice-versa.

Check the TDL website Home
It's been like that for years now.

Richer sounds are always selling TDL speakers at next to nothing and listing them as reduced from an outrageous RRP.

Sure you could hook up a decent stereo amp to you TV if your TV has an optical pass-thru or some phono outs. Do be wary that the DAC in the TV might not be that great though, and could mess up the whole chain.

Ben

Edited by Bald Monkey to remove potentially libelous statements, please keep to the facts.

I had a set of TDL studio 10's and in all honesty they were very very good!

the worst thing about them was the fact they were very bassy, but for games i found them excellent, and again with alot of modern music they performed very well for the money :thumbsup:
 

russyj

Established Member
I can seriously recommend the TDL Saturn 10's, brilliant speakers for the money, I think you'll be very happy with them for your first foray into hi-fi audio. If you're going for a Richer Sounds setup, which I think you should, pair them with the Cambridge A5 (the A1 is a little underpowered). Ask them to throw in some symphony 200 cabling, you'll probably be all in for 250 quid. Have a listen, but my TDL's havent had any non-human-idiocy (i.e. me being stupid) problems.

Regards, Russ
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
How desperate are you to pull this off for under £300?

There are some new Wharfedale Speakers, the Vardus line that can be had for dirt cheap (approx. £150) -

WHARFEDALE VARDUS VR300 SPEAKERS (PAIR) (CHERRY) - available from Superfi UK Visit http://www.superfi.co.uk/index.cfm/page/moreinfo.cfm/product_id/4206 for details

WHARFEDALE VARDUS 300 SPEAKERS at hifix.co.uk

There are a very few people here who have these, and while they don't equal speakers costing substantially more, most are more than satisfied for what they paid.

Whatever you do RESIST the temptation to buy a pair of 'too good to be true' speakers out of the back of a White Van. They are pure trash.

TDL are OK, they are cheap speakers that do what they do. Those who have them are generally satisfied for the price - for the price.

That leaves you about £150 for a basic stereo amp. You can't quite do it for that, but for a tiny bit more, you can get an amp of acceptable quality and power.

Richer Sound - Cambridge A5, 60w/ch, no remote @ £119

CAMBRIDGE AUDIO A5BLK at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.

Few amps will touch this one for power, price, and quality.


Also consider, Richer Sounds - Cambridge 340A, 40w/ch, with remote, £169 -

CAMBRIDGE AUDIO AZUR-340A-SIL at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.

Neither of the above have a phono input.


Also, Richer Sounds - Marantz PM5003, 40w/ch, remote, phono, £169 -
MARANTZ PM5003-BLK at Richer Sounds - HI-FI Separates, Home Cinema, Speakers, MP3 DVD Portables, Plasma LCD, etc.

That is about it in that price range.

Steve/bluewizard
 

jnwilde

Standard Member
hi blue Wizard,

That combo you have suggested Warfdale speakers + Marantz Amp seems like a good combo. And I'm happy to a little over £300 so that works

Would richer sounds have all this (so i can ask for a demo) and has anyone else used warfdale and if so what do they think. Had a look at a few reviews and they seem quite good. not epic but i cant afford epic!

Thanks again everyone!
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
hi blue Wizard,

That combo you have suggested Warfdale speakers + Marantz Amp seems like a good combo. And I'm happy to a little over £300 so that works

Would richer sounds have all this (so i can ask for a demo) and has anyone else used warfdale and if so what do they think. Had a look at a few reviews and they seem quite good. not epic but i cant afford epic!

Thanks again everyone!

No, sorry, Richer has the amps, and SuperFi and HiFix have the speakers.

Keep in mind, you should be paying £300 for just the speakers. Still, we all know what it is like to be on a budget, so we definitely understand.

Check out both general HiFi speakers and amps at all three websites. It pays to shop around.

I also recommend that you stick with amps of 40watts or more per channel to 8 ohms.

Other amps to consider are NAD C315BEE, Pioneer A-307R, Denon PMA700AE, Yamaha AX397, and anything else that catches your eye. Though be wary of amps that seem to offer too much for too little.

Also, be sure to look for bargains and close-outs.

Richer especially has had some fantastic price on Cambridge amps that they were closing out.

Go to this link, and scroll way down near the bottom of the page to see Richer's close-outs.

AMPLIFIERS/RECEIVERS from Richer Sounds

Notice there is a Cambridge Audio A5 on clearance for only £79, and there seem to be several of them left, but only at specific stores -

Richer Sounds - The UK's Hi-Fi, Home Cinema & Flat Panel TV Specialists!

Steve/bluewizard
 

ratticon

Established Member
Edited by Bald Monkey to remove potentially libelous statements, please keep to the facts.

I would have preferred the insertion of something like "It is my opinion", than removing what I believe to be a valid statement. :nono:

In my opinion the TDL bookshelf speakers that my ladyfriend had sounded boxy and from our experience of having returned two broken speakers after listening to them at a reasonable level and pairing them with a quality amplifier I have come to believe that they are not reliable. :thumbsup:
 

ratticon

Established Member
hi blue Wizard,

That combo you have suggested Warfdale speakers + Marantz Amp seems like a good combo. And I'm happy to a little over £300 so that works

I second the Wharfdale Vardus that BlueWizard recommended, they're excellent value floorstanders for the price!
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
Regarding the TDL KV1 bookshelf. They can be had for £29/pr, and probably commonly sold for about £39 or £49/pr. What did you expect them to sound like? They are what they are, a lot of cheap speaker for people on a starvation budget.

Now, from previous discussions, the TDL floorstanders are nothing to rave about, but they are a functional bass heavy speaker for people on an extreme budget. Those who have them are generally satisfied.

However, I suspect the Wharfedales are better. I've never heard them, but we have had discussions on them, and a few people posted who had them. They didn't rave about them, but they were all very satisfied with the quality of the speaker and the sound for the extremely low price. And, as has been pointed out, they do look good.

Everything we do in audio is a compromise. We just need to work the compromises to our best advantage.

In this price range, in new speakers, there aren't a lot of choices. If you want to go down to Bookshelf speakers, the field opens up a bit.

Steve/bluewizard
 

phil2009

Established Member
I bought a yamaha dsp-A595a amp of ebay for £60, a pair of denon sc-m50 speakers for £50 of ebay as I already had 2 pairs of these already, so I could have 5.1 surround sound. Cables cost about £25, and Ive just got a BK XLS200 sub for £300, so in total Ive spent £435 so far. Its not amazing sound but its getting there, but I think I will always buy 2nd hand amps, cos you get a hell of a lot more for your money then buying new. Heres a pic

dscf09212.jpg
http://img5.imageshack.us/img5/4308/dscf09212.jpg
 
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BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
I did find a place that has the Vardus 400 for £169 -

Hard to Find - DJ Megastore -
WHARFEDALE VARDUS 400 - 300 WATT SPEAKERS- A PAIR OF

Keep in mind that the Vardus 300 are front ported, and the Vardus 400 are rear ported.

This site also has the Vardus 400 combined in a package with assorted Harmon Kardon Amps/Receivers, usually very high powered.

Check this page -

Buy Speakers (home) by Minipod bass station,Micropod speakers, and more

Here is an example of the 160w HK amp with Vardus 400 speakers for £329 -
WHARFEDALE VARDUS 400 / HK 3380 - 160 WATT SPEAKER & AMPLIFIER PACKAGE- COMPLETE PACKAGE

Keep in mind that the power rating is a little inflated, it is actually two 80w channels to 4 ohms, which is about 60w per channel to 8 ohms.

For £349, you can get a bigger HK Reciever and that same speakers -

http://www.htfr.com/more-info/MR289145

This amp is actually about 80w to 90w per channel to 8 ohms.

Harmond Kardon is a reasonably respected name in amps. Though one would reasonably assume a slight down turn on quality at this low price. Still, it is a pretty good bargain.

Steve/bluewizard
 
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Richer Sounds

Prominent Member
AVForums Sponsor
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ratticon

Established Member
I'm well aware of that, it's not you guys that claim the high RRPs in the first place. You sell them at a loss or a profit as you see fit, like any working business would. :)
 

knucky

Standard Member
Second hand, Sony or Harmon Kardon amp with Mission floor standing speakers. I`m sure you could get this within your budget on ebay.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
I would say that the Neo 3's are better quality than the Vardus. The Neo's typically sell for closer to £300.

Steve/bluewizard
 

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