Replacement 5.1 surround system by a complete novice

Ccfcforever1987

Novice Member
Hello everyone, I am hoping you can help me with buying a new home cinema system.

I currently have a Sony BDV-E880 5.1 surround system which I bought over 10 years ago. It is hooked up to a Samsung Q90T via a HDMI cable and the ARC port. I also have an Xbox Series X connected to the games port on the TV to make use of 4K and a separate DVD player (seldom used) connected to one of the other HDMI ports.

The TV is on a corner unit, picture below, with a little room either side for the current L & R speakers with the sub next to one of the side speakers. The centre speaker (very tiny) sits under the TV.

The Sony system still works OK but I am just not sure the sound quality is holding up. Sound clarity in dialogue on both streaming and terrestrial programmes can sound a little muddy and we resort to turning the volume up to hear it clearly. I have checked the connections and everything seems OK.

So, my question is what do I buy to replace it?

My budget is anything up to £2,000 and I am leaning towards having wireless rear speakers so I don’t have to run cable around the room but understand that wireless doesn’t mean no wires in that I would still need a power point for each one. Currently the cables for the rears are under the carpet. Is it possible to reuse these for a newer system or is that just a daft idea? I’m a complete novice with audio, so I apologise if that’s just a nonsense suggestion.

I am already thinking a soundbar along the front of the TV will be my only real option because any centre speaker will have to sit beneath the TV. I have seen posts/replies stating that putting the centre speaker inside a unit pretty much defeats the object. The clearance between the bottom of the TV and the unit it sits on is about 9cm. Anything taller would put it in the way of the screen and I haven't been able to find a centre speaker that is small enough to fit under the TV. The soundbar combos I have been looking at (in no particular order) have been:

HK Citation Multibeam + Sub + surrounds
HK Citation + Sub + surrounds
Bose 700 + 700 Sub + 700 surrounds
B&O Beosound stage
Sonos Arc or Beam + Sub + 2*Play One
Denon Home 550 + Sub + 2*Home 150 (this one is purposefully at the bottom of the list due to the fact the firmware required to make it work is still not available)

I haven't really looked into AVRs + speakers because I don't know what I am looking at, plus the centre speaker issue and can I actually use wireless rears with an AVR.

I should also point out that the TV unit is 1100mm wide, so a soundbar shouldn't be much bigger than that. This really precludes the likes of the Samsung bars because of their length.

Pictures below of how the TV unit currently looks and a (very) rough room plan. The circles in the plan show the current position of the rears and L & R speakers.

There are power sockets all around the room (when we moved in there were 2 in total, so we had more put in when we updated the fuse box) which can be utilised for wireless speakers power requirements so we can put speakers pretty much anywhere in the room.

Thanks in advance

Paul
 

Attachments

  • PXL_20210812_101243399.jpg
    PXL_20210812_101243399.jpg
    270.9 KB · Views: 51
  • PXL_20210811_204219633.jpg
    PXL_20210811_204219633.jpg
    275.6 KB · Views: 53

dion 6

Well-known Member
Hello everyone, I am hoping you can help me with buying a new home cinema system.

I currently have a Sony BDV-E880 5.1 surround system which I bought over 10 years ago. It is hooked up to a Samsung Q90T via a HDMI cable and the ARC port. I also have an Xbox Series X connected to the games port on the TV to make use of 4K and a separate DVD player (seldom used) connected to one of the other HDMI ports.

The TV is on a corner unit, picture below, with a little room either side for the current L & R speakers with the sub next to one of the side speakers. The centre speaker (very tiny) sits under the TV.

The Sony system still works OK but I am just not sure the sound quality is holding up. Sound clarity in dialogue on both streaming and terrestrial programmes can sound a little muddy and we resort to turning the volume up to hear it clearly. I have checked the connections and everything seems OK.

So, my question is what do I buy to replace it?

My budget is anything up to £2,000 and I am leaning towards having wireless rear speakers so I don’t have to run cable around the room but understand that wireless doesn’t mean no wires in that I would still need a power point for each one. Currently the cables for the rears are under the carpet. Is it possible to reuse these for a newer system or is that just a daft idea? I’m a complete novice with audio, so I apologise if that’s just a nonsense suggestion.

I am already thinking a soundbar along the front of the TV will be my only real option because any centre speaker will have to sit beneath the TV. I have seen posts/replies stating that putting the centre speaker inside a unit pretty much defeats the object. The clearance between the bottom of the TV and the unit it sits on is about 9cm. Anything taller would put it in the way of the screen and I haven't been able to find a centre speaker that is small enough to fit under the TV. The soundbar combos I have been looking at (in no particular order) have been:

HK Citation Multibeam + Sub + surrounds
HK Citation + Sub + surrounds
Bose 700 + 700 Sub + 700 surrounds
B&O Beosound stage
Sonos Arc or Beam + Sub + 2*Play One
Denon Home 550 + Sub + 2*Home 150 (this one is purposefully at the bottom of the list due to the fact the firmware required to make it work is still not available)

I haven't really looked into AVRs + speakers because I don't know what I am looking at, plus the centre speaker issue and can I actually use wireless rears with an AVR.

I should also point out that the TV unit is 1100mm wide, so a soundbar shouldn't be much bigger than that. This really precludes the likes of the Samsung bars because of their length.

Pictures below of how the TV unit currently looks and a (very) rough room plan. The circles in the plan show the current position of the rears and L & R speakers.

There are power sockets all around the room (when we moved in there were 2 in total, so we had more put in when we updated the fuse box) which can be utilised for wireless speakers power requirements so we can put speakers pretty much anywhere in the room.

Thanks in advance

Paul
I would go for a 5.1 system if you can for your budget it will be a lot better than a soundbar and as for the centre speaker you could buy a Vesa tv stand and raise your tv up so the centre speaker goes underneath the tv there are loads on amazon here's one for example. Yamaha avr's do MusicCast with you can connect Yamaha wireless speakers

Amazon product
 

password1

Distinguished Member
You can use the existing cables for rear speakers if they are still in good condition and not the cheap bell wire.

If the ends are corroded then you should trim it and strip fresh bare wire.

TV in the corner is far from ideal.

Is there wall opposite the fireplace long enough to put the TV cabinet there? Then rearrange the sofa.
 

The latest video from AVForums

Podcast: Anthem AVM 70 Review, EQing Your Home Cinema Sound System and More...
Subscribe to our YouTube channel
Support AVForums with Patreon

Top Bottom