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Something I thought i'd never say....

Discussion in 'AV Receivers & Amplifiers' started by Knightshade, Sep 14, 2004.

  1. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    Well, My faithfull old televisions just died a rather smoky death and I've got to replace it. So rather than just replace the telly, now's a good time to maybe look at an AV system.
    Firstly,
    What do I need? I'm not interested in anything other than DVD playback and TV. (CD playback will be totally seperate) I've seen some Plasma screens and haven't been overly impressed by what i've seen. Is a projector, DVD player, some sort of TV reciever card (+something to put it in) an AV receiver and a 5.1 speaker setup an option? Or is there something else out there that I should look at?
    Might be interested in 5.1 or is this sort of thing better in 2 channel? Like I said i'm pretty ignorant when it comes to DVD/AV gear so any advice, thoughts, etc would be greatly appreciated.
    Basically I want good picture quality, well built gear, nothing to fancy (I dislike unnecessary electronics) and I guess it has to look pretty....
    Thanks in advance
     
  2. MS-Yam

    MS-Yam
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    Ok, firstly I would say plasma screens are generally far better than what you see in shops. The simple reason being that the muppets don't set them up properly or use tacky cabling. You can pick up a decent plasma (try a Panasonic) for around £1600 if you look around on the net.

    AV Amp - Choose a decent 5.1 or 6.1 amp. My Yamaha has 6.1 but I dont use it (yet). Most modern amps are at least 6.1 nowadays. Examples of good makes are Yamaha, Marantz (good in stereo), Denon, and Pioneer. My advice is (if youre not bothered about it being a brand new model) go for an amp that's about to be discontinued. You should get a hell of a bargain/

    Speakers - If you can accomodate the space, I would say definately go for a full size speaker set up rather than a satellite system. There are good satellite systems available but you cant beat a proper full size setup consisting of either floor-standing speakers or stand-mounts. Make sure you put stand-mounts on decent weighty stands. You can pick up loads of decent speaker packages i.e. Acoustic Energy, Mordaunt-Short, Monitor Audio etc. They are all excellent.

    DVD - If you get a large screen or projector with Progressive Scan, make sure you get a progressive scan DVD player.

    Cables - dont be tempted to skimp on cables, for all this equipment you should be looking at around £200+ for everything, speaker cable, component leads, digital lead etc....

    Good luck
     
  3. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    Thanks for the reply ms-yam,
    It hasn't really answered my question though. :) What I was trying to find out is: Can I use a projector instead of a plasma? (I have seen plasma's demoed in High end shops and am aware of the major differences between cables - I'm just not over impressed by what i've seen :) ) Wondering If a projector/tv capture combination would be better? (This is probably the wrong place to ask I know...)
    And also how much will I have to spend to get a good setup?
     
  4. Ed Selley

    Ed Selley
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    I'm not sure I have all the answers but a projector can be used to good effect instead of a normal screen but it can prove a trifle wearing watching everything in "massive." Often a wall mounted LCD over which a pull down screen can be used is a successful compromise. Even "entry level" amps at the £300 point carry sufficient video switching options to allow for this kind of setup and by the time you are in the £800-1200 catagory you can have a product that should be good for a couple of years and that offers great sound with plenty of video options. For example I am intending to obtain (purchase is the wrong word ;) ) a Marantz SR8500 which has its press release above which would be superb for sounding good and running two video sources.
    I hope this helps a little.
     
  5. John7

    John7
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    And dont forget that most projector bulbs have a lifespan of between 2-3000 hours and cost from between £250 and £500 to replace. This is fine for occaisional viewing but no good if typical TV viewing hours are envisaged - you could be replacing a £400 bulb every year!!

    Also, dont forget that most projection viewing rooms will need to be darkened, you will probably have to lower the screen, fire up surround amp etc. Alright for us techno types but wifey (if there is one) aint gonna be overjoyed at having to do all this just to watch an episode of Corrie!

    Why not go for a Plasma or LCD AND a cheap projector for "event" viewing?

    This is a great solution for "Saturday Night" home cinema evenings with friends or family watching a good film on a big screen
     
  6. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    OK,
    Thanks for the imput. :thumbsup:
    John7,
    Darkening is no problem, amps will be on all the time and I assume a projector screen can be left down if need be? Sorry to sound ungrateful but my question was which is better? I hear what your saying about bulb cost but the reason I'm looking at a projector is because I've seen some expensive plasma screens and haven't been impressed.
    So, forgetting the running costs, which will give the better picture?

    Tons of Fun,
    I may look to go down the route of a wall mount LCD, seems like a sensible option.
    Also, are you still looking for exposure amps?

    With regards to amps etc. From personal 2 Channel experience and what i've read on various forums it will either be a TAG or LINN based system. Unless anyone can suggest a good alternative?
    I don't know a huge amount about them so many hours of happy listening and watching will be in order....

    Am I right in thinking I need an AV Receiver/Controller, a power amp, DVD player and 5.1 speaker setup?
    Have I missed anything?
    Thanks
     
  7. BrianC

    BrianC
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    If you have plenty of cash to spend (and it sounds like you do) I would look at purchasing a decent projector and a seperate scaler like the iScan - basicly you want to aim for a 1:1 pixal mapping as this gives the best picture. In a dark room a quality projector/screen combo is going to beat a plasma hands down.

    Have you checked out the Arcam range of DVD/amps? They give very good stereo, dvd and dvd-a performance?

    If you have the room I would be aiming at a 7.1 setup, the extra pair of rear speakers does add to the experience.
     
  8. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    Thanks Brian,
    I haven't checked out the Arcam range yet but I will do. There's an Arcam dealer just down the road so i'll take a look. I know he stocks TAG as well so should be able to get some good comparisons.
    Again Thanks for the advice.
     

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