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Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by mevetts, Nov 27, 2003.

  1. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Hi,

    Not sure if this is the right area, please feel free to move me!

    I am looking to set-up a home cinema system over the next 6 months. I have an idea of what I want and was wondering if you could give me some advice and prices.

    The kit I am running at the moment is pitiful, an old school 21 inch Ferguson television and my VCR is a Sony SLV750 (I think!).

    I am looking to get -

    1. TV = Panasonic TX-28PS1
    2. DVD = Toshiba SD-330E
    3. RECEIVER = Pinoeer VSX-D812
    4. SPEAKERS = Elac Cinema One + 1 sat for 6.1

    Naturally, I will endeavour to use the best cables I can afford.

    My questions are:

    1. Will this set-up work well together?
    2. Will it be easy enough to upgrade in the future?
    3. I am looking as well to get a CD player, would I need a dedicated pair of stereo speakers?
    4. Rather than having set ideas of what i want am I best to just go into some AV shops and listen?

    Any advice would be more than appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Mark - very much a novice on the path to enlightenment.
     
  2. SanPedro

    SanPedro
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    Sounds a good choice. Only question: have you compared it to anything else?

    It's an ideal starter system which you can easily upgrade. Only slight downside is I guess you'd have to upgrade the speakers in one go as people are unlikely (for example) to want a pair of Elac satellites. Unlike if you'd bought a system of full size speakers from someone like Mission or KEF where you could easily sell the front pair, centre, or surrounds at any point in the upgrade process.

    If you're looking at something else to compare try the MS premier range od speakers which are equally compact and either the marantz 4400 or Yam RX-V440 which have both had excellent reviews.

    Chris
     
  3. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Thanks for the info Chris.

    I have not compared anything yet, really just going on reviews from mags and the net.

    What order would you suggest making the purchases. I really want to get watching DVDs asap, so I guess that is first. If I did buy a sub/sat package, do I have to have an amp to run them?

    Many thanks,

    Mark.
     
  4. SanPedro

    SanPedro
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    Mark

    Unless you buy an all-in-one amp/speaker package (which are not usually as good) you'll need a receiver to power a set of speakers. What you could do, if you buy the speakers individually rather than a set, is start with your fronts and work your way through a centre speaker and then a set of surrounds. (but you may not be able to do this with a set like the Elacs). i know you can with the KEF egg range.

    You can run the fronts in stereo initially and get the full range of sounds through them. You may also find that you spend more on the fronts than you initially thought and then save up a bit extra for the centre and rears. make sure you don's skimp on the centre as this, in some ways, is your most important speaker for movies. Most of the dialogue goes through here and a cheap weedy centre will have you frustrated.

    A good set of fronts will also be good for music as well. Just make sure you buy your front 3 speakers from the same manufacturer so that they match tonally. this is so that music and dialogue doesn't sound different as it pans across the soundstage.

    Chris
     
  5. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Thanks for the quick response. I hadn't considered this route, I guess I just want to get them all in one go because I'm not patient!

    I want an amp eventually because I can then get rid of the mini system being used presently and get a CD player. Also, if I was going to build the system up, would I need the amp to drive the speakers?

    Cheers,

    Mark.
     
  6. SanPedro

    SanPedro
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    Yup

    You'll need the amp and speakers right after you've bought the DVD player. Otherwise you ain't gonna get any sound out of it, except by plugging it into your TV :D

    The DVD has what is known as a coaxial connection on the back. This takes the 5.1 sound to the corresponding socket on the receiver.

    The speakers are then plugged into their respective posts on the back of the receiver. The sub is most likely an active sub, which means it has a built in amp. This is then connected to the sub out socket on the receiver.

    hope this helps

    Chris
     
  7. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Hi Chris,

    Thanks, you have really got me thinking about amps now. I think it would be a wise investment for my longterm AV pleasure. Have narrowed it down to around 3:

    Yamaha HTR-5640RDS
    Pioneer VSX-D812-S
    Onkyo TX-SR501E

    Any suggestions, the Pioneer is around £100 more than the Yamaha? Would like to save where I can if it means no significant losses. I primarily want it for DVD viewing, but the Mrs is like her CDs, so really want it to cope with both. Would it be best to invest in a dedicated pair of stereo

    Also, do you think I could begin with the Elac Cinema 1s and then replace the speakers as I go along and then eventually sell the Elac's as a set?!

    Cheers,

    Mark.
     
  8. SanPedro

    SanPedro
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    I'd build up slowly. You'll lose less money this way. Start off with some cracking floorstanders or other full range speakers. Add a centre and then the rears.

    If you buy the Elacs now you may get 50% back in 2 years time but that £150 could have gone to some better speakers in the 1st place.

    I think the yammie you mentioned would be spot on. Good budget receiver stuff.

    Though listen for yourself. Book a spot at yr local dealer and don't be rushed into anything (like I was 1st time around). Also check out 2nd hand or ex demo gear as there can be som real bargains, esp on speakers as these don't date like amps and DVD players do.

    Try here http://www.salisburyhifi.co.uk/website/specialoffers.html as an example.

    Cheers

    Chris
     
  9. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Thanks Chris.

    The Yam does look as though it would do the business. I thinks you're right in that I probably should build my system up. However, space is a premium, so all of my speakers have to take up minimal space, yet give maximum sound. Any suggestions?

    I would really like to demo some kit, but I do not want to pay more from a retailer when I could save quids getting the goods online. Will they price match online stores?

    One last thing, my current tv has only one pitiful scart, should I purchase a scart switcher so that I can run both my DVD and VCR without having to flip the scarts around (very annoying!). If yes, any resonably priced, but good switchers out there?

    Cheers,

    Mark.
     
  10. SanPedro

    SanPedro
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    If space reallyis tight you may have no option but to go the sub/sat route. The KEG 2005 (Eggs) are liked by many and the MS premier system has had good reviews.

    In terms of price matching, look for some stores that do a high street as well as internet site. Wouldn't know of any in your area (I'm in West Yorkshire).

    In terms of the scart, yeah you'll need a switcher. Try somewhere like Keene electronics, or do a search on scart switchers. There are plenty about. Your scart may not be RGB anyway so your new TV should show an improvemnt. You may need to keep your switcher as not many TVs have 2 RGB scarts - say for SKY and a DVD. A VCR is not a problem as the quality isn't that great anyway.

    Chris
     
  11. Dimmy

    Dimmy
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    There was a thread in the 'Special Offers' forum giving a link to the KHT-2005.2 speakers for £649 if I remember correctly.

    Alternatively you can probably pick up the original 'Mark I' eggs in the AV Forums Classifieds for £300-£350, for all five speakers, including subwoofer.

    These would make a nice match for the Yamaha Receiver you mention.
     
  12. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Are the Eggs go quality/sounding speakers? Forgive my ignorance?
     
  13. nobbydog

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    The eggs are 'the dogs' in 6.1 surround. Work really well with my Yamaha, although mine are taking a little while to run in for stereo music. I demo'd them run-in before I purchased and was very impressed.

    Regarding the rest of your shopping list, 1st thing I'd ask is what's your total budget, and take it from there.
     
  14. mevetts

    mevetts
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    Well I'm planning to get the kit over the next 6 months. Overall, prob around the £1200 mark.
     

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