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What next - speakers or sub

Discussion in 'Subwoofers' started by ncmike, Feb 16, 2003.

  1. ncmike

    ncmike
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    After reading this forum for a while I have decided on my first cinema purchase, a Yamaha DSP630. Now here is the dilema - I have little cash left. I have some average speakers from my previous stereo systems. Should I use these and spend my remaining cash on a sub or should I purchase decent speakers first. What will give me the best result bearing in mind that I will use this system mainly for movies. What do you guys suggest as the minimum standard that I should purchase when I eventually can afford it. Thanks in advance for your advice.
     
  2. sounddog

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    It all depends what you mean by ... "little cash left". A decent sub woofer started around £350 for Velodyne / REL Quake / MJ Accoustic Pro 50 or slightly lower for the Paradigm PS1000 @ £230. If thats the level you're looking at for the sub, then you're going to get next to nothing in terms of speakers to suit the level of the Yamaha 630.

    Suitable speakers for the 630 would be at the level of B&W 600 series - 602 (or 601) front @ £300 (£250), LCR60 centre @ £200, 600 (or 601) rears @ £200. Other similar level speakers would be suitable from Mission, KEF, etc.

    Hope this helps.
    Victoria
     
  3. MarkE19

    MarkE19
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    I have to agree with sounddog.
    A cheap sub is a waiste of money. You will be better spending your money on a decent pair of fronts and a centre, use your old sterio speakers as rears for now. When you then have around £300 get a decent sub and finally upgrade your rears to match the other speakers.

    Mark.
     
  4. Andywilliams

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    Hi Ncmike
    If you have around £270 you could get the mission m72 speaker package from quality electrics[QED] you would get decent bass until you had saved enough to buy a sub of good quality [cht10-mj pro50].
    Gonzo.
     
  5. russraff

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    I would also agree with Victoria on this one; far better get decent speakers than a cheap sub. For the Yammy, the B&W's that Mark recommends would be good, but you should also look for KEF Q, JBL Xti and Eltax Chroma(astonishingly good value at 250 from here read the review on the HCCO website) all of which sound excellent.
    I would also add the Paradigm PW2200 (£350) to the list of prospective subwoofer buys, when funds allow.

    Russell
     
  6. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    I wholly disagree with the above statements (as you have all no doubt come to expect by now!!!!!)

    If a couple of hundred quid is all you have then there is NO COMPARISON to be made WHATSOEVER (imho).
    Adding a sub (even a cheapo Paradigm or Yamaha) will have the biggest overall effect in the 5/6.1 performance stakes.
    You simply cannot spend £2-300 on ANYTHING else that will have such a radical and dramatic effect to your movie watching, sure you could buy a pair of Kef Q1's (and god know's i love a Kef - see below) but the fact remains that a 630 is not best suited to music replay and in 5.1 playback they just will not have the impact a sub will.

    If you are concerned with movies only, buy a GREAT center, a decent sub and concentrate on the others as and when funds will allow!

    Steve
     
  7. uncle eric

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    Spot on Steve. Very well put.
    I'm very weary of answering stuff like this as it may be seen as a commercial answer when in reality it's a point of fact.

    One of the things to consider here is that the most active speaker in a multi channel system is your subwoofer and not the centre speaker as is commonly thought. If you consider only that fact as a good reason (and there are many more good reasons) then the answer is quite obvious as to what will make the most difference.
     
  8. Ian J

    Ian J
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    Adding a sub to what. To have 5.1 or 6.1 you also need the other 5 or 6 speakers as well as a sub and there is no indication that he has these.

    In my opinion it is necessary to have a decent front three speakers before worrying about a subwoofer. Not every film is a hollywood blockbuster actionfest and there are many films where the lack of LFE wouldn't even be noticed.
     
  9. sounddog

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    Far be it for me to disagree with the Almighty Uncle Eric :eek: I'm going to disagree with the implication of what Uncle Eric has said here.

    Yes ... the sub is the most active speaker in a multi-channel system ... however I would say that this doesn't automatically make it the most IMPORTANT speaker. Disconnect the sub, and (after changing settings on your amp) most of the bass level sound will still be produced by the main left and right speakers. This will still give you 80%+ of the audio effect of the movie. From my experience, if you remove the centre speaker, or replace it with a very inferior speaker, then you loose 50%+ of the audio effect of the movie.

    So yes ... IF you already have adequate centre, left and right speakers (in that order of importance but all of similar sound / quality / etc) then adding a sub WILL give you the greatest improvement, however if you have no centre or a crap centre ... replacing that will do much more than just adding a sub woofer ever could.

    I know Uncle Eric has great experience ... I just sometimes think that his experience leaves him missing out the effect that different changes can make to people on a real budget.

    Victoria
     
  10. sounddog

    sounddog
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    Just re-reading my original comment ... I don't think I really said anything.

    To make any recomendations on what is worthwhile to buy, we need to know what you already have.

    If you have a set of speakers from a Pro Logic mini system, then replacing the front 3 will give the greatest improvement. If you have no speakers then obviously you need to be looking at spreading what cash you have left round all 5 speakers. If you have a pair of good speakers you used with a stereo system in the past, then you need to look at a matching centre plus 2 rears.

    So ... the question is ... how much money ... and what do you already have??

    Victoria
     
  11. uncle eric

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    Victoria,
    I think my implications and general view was well intentioned but I missed out on the fact that the gent in question may not have an adequate multi speaker system (or multiples of) at all.
    I promise to read the thread properly next time :suicide:
     
  12. bob007

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    To me this would only be acceptable if the speakers had a decent frequency rating. What if the said speakers are only rated at 100Hz?

    I think the addition of a sub and amp setting set to "No Centre" could be a better option. I'll have Dom H ringing me now. :eek:

    I only say this as IMO the sub is the guts to any 5.1/6.1 systems.
     
  13. uncle eric

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    Well said Bob.
    I'm hiding from Victoria for the rest of the evening :rolleyes: :D
     
  14. Steve.EX

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    The chap did say he HAD (or was getting) a 630, he HAD some "spare" speakers to connect to it and he HAd a little bit of extra cash to spend on something, - i stand by my post (in more ways than one!)


    Steve
     
  15. sounddog

    sounddog
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    I guess what it comes down to is what's most important to us in the film. For me, I'd rather have clear dialogue, and be missing the bass, than have a thundering bass line but be missing some of the dialogue because my centre wasn't adequate.

    I don't disagree that a sub is important to multi-channel sound, just IMO if your missing the sub or have an inferior sub, you will loose less than if you are missing the centre or have an inferior centre.

    Victoria.

    Oh and steve ... I'm gonna SIT by my post ... lot more comfortable way to use the PC :)

    Added later ... I'm just wondering if part of the reason that I feel the centre is so important is that I generally listen at low levels, but that if I listened at higher levels and in a larger room the bass might become even more important. I'd also be the first to admit that the sub I have (a 10" Wharfedale something or other) really isn't adequate for the job, but I don't feel that I'm missing much ... maybe if I actually experienced a good sub then I would feel differently.
     
  16. Andywilliams

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    Hi folks
    If you read back on the subwoofer threads you will see that the general feeling of a lot of people is that its best to have no sub than a crap sub,As ianJ stated when he listened to the rel quake at manchester the system sounded better with the Quake turned off .Imo bad subs can really muddy up the whole sound of a system.As far as sattelite systems go it is even more important to have a quality sub as the sub handles most stuff below 100hz it does'nt mean sticking on a crappy sub will fix things you will just end up with a differant crappy sound to what you had before you started.Anyways now uncle erics getting the velo vx10 sub for £199 nobody should have to suffer a crap sub.
    Gonzo.:)
     
  17. petrolhead

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    How much cash do you have? That will help.

    Define cheap?

    When seems to happen with theses questions is that we forget that the origional poster may be on a very tight budget and to start suggesting £300+ Subs abd B+W Speakers is although the way to go, not so If your on a budget.

    WE all started at some point and many of us probable started with budget equipment. I for one was very happy with my Gale Speakers and Paradigm PDR10 sub which only cost £300 for the lot.

    The PDR10 IS a cheap sub (if you call £175 cheap) but is NOT a waste of money.

    Thats my ten peneth worth
     
  18. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    Victoria.

    In my original post i mentioned buy a "GREAT center and a DECENT" sub, which, i think is what you are saying?
    I flatter myself on owning each of the above and to conclude it will indeed be the center (or lack of quality there-in) channel that will attract my most critical ear swiftly followed by the subwoofer (or lack of!!!).
    I understand that we all hear/respond to different traits of a soundtrack, but personally i still feel that ALMOST any sub (given the context of a Yamaha 630) be it a Paradigm PDR8 even will have a much broader (and generally better) effect to a surround soundstage if used judiciously than say adding pair of Q1's (again in the context of a 630 or similar as amplification/processing.
    I should probably say that i think, having spent time with a 630, it is a super performer in movie mode, before "someone" misconstrues my post to mean a 630 "is not very good/mine is better than yours" or whatever etc etc etc etc etc.

    Steve.EX
     
  19. sounddog

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    Might not sound crap ... but it looks like a cross between a 1920's Art Deco radio and the front of a beetle ... not to my taste certainly ... why couldn't they have just put a plain black speaker cloth front on it!!

    I know we're meant to buy on sound quality ... but even I draw the line at some things ... the VX10 has joined the pile along with anything from Harmon Kardon unfortunately.

    Victoria
     
  20. petrolhead

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    Could not agree more
     
  21. sounddog

    sounddog
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    Ah ha ... then I think we agree Steve.

    Once you've got a decent set of speakers ... adding a sub will do more than upgrading the main speakers. But without the decent speakers in the first place (especially the centre) you'll get more out of having a decentre centre (then left/right pair)

    Victoria
     
  22. Ravi 123

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    Is Mr NCmike going to reply so we can distinguish if has any speakers !!!!
     
  23. sounddog

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    Not everyone's logged into the forum 24/7 you know ... give the poor guy a chance ... not that he'll know WHAT to even begin considering doing after reading all these posts!!

    Victoria
     
  24. uncle eric

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    Soundog,
    I'm happy to say that if I was a newbie I'd most definately ignore most of yours.
    Your Almighty Uncle Eric
     
  25. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    Oh boy, i enjoyed that, (in good humour)
    I look forward to seeing if you now receive an equivalent quota of peurile, tittle-tattle that i have come to expect when choosing not to follow the Reader's Digest top 10 tip's on how to become an A.V expert without ever hearing a single piece of kit that sometimes would seem to be more popular reading here than say even "What Hi-Fi"!!!!!!!!!!
    (still in good humour)

    Steve.

    Sorry have no real leads on your "leads" but will give it forthright attention this evening, by the way those types of "blood rushing to the head" are what makes it fun!!!
    Loverly kit - Real high end members club only now then.
     
  26. bob007

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    This is excactly what happened to me, I was more than happy with the REL Q50 untill I was tempted by the velo, the difference it made to the whole system was amazing, it sounded like I had upgraded all the speakers not just the sub. I promise you when you finally decide to upgrade your sub you will find out just how much you have been missing. ;)
    I too started with budget equipment, but I wouldn't be very happy with it today. So when I recommend speakers and subs to members that have a tight budget I will point them in the direction of the second hand market, this is far better value and some good bargins can be found if you are patient.

    Budget subs: Been there, done it and got the tee shirt, they are a waste of money and do more harm than good, even the £175 ones IMO. :lesson: ;)
     
  27. Steve.EX

    Steve.EX
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    Bob,
    Perhaps (and i suppose it could possibly be conceivable) it is me that is missing the point, but...........
    Budget subs (even £175 ones) - waste of time???
    In what context??
    When placed against a £200 (for ex.) budget 5 speaker package connected to an entry level sit up and beg A.V amp.
    I really don't think so you know, you wouldn't put a £2000 sub on the end of a Sherwood amp anymore than you would put a budget (£175) sub on a high end amp/pro.
    In this instance (i presume) we are dealing with a chap with £XXX to spend and what could he buy as a first step.

    Steve
     
  28. petrolhead

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    Not wanting to go on Bob007 and you are entitled to your opinion :p BUT

    Have you owned or heard a PDR10? Its just that in my lounge which measured 14' x 16' it did an excellent job and for the money represented excellent value.

    I agree with you when you say check the second hand market as yes one would be better off buying a second hand REL for £200 than a new PDR10 but some people want to buy new and not take the risk that can be involved with second hand gear.

    I actually upgraded from the Paradigm to a second hand Strata III and appreciate the difference.

    :)
     
  29. Steve.EX

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    Indeed so, it has been my experience that all novice/first time entry level buyers love a Paradigm8/10 type of sub, it is only after some time with an increase in spending power that you MAY consider buying better, you might say don't buy a car until you can afford a new sporty type but most of us have done the Escort/Sierra thing.

    Steve

    Quite how i made it to cars (of which there are south American tribesmen with more knowledge about the subject than me) is a mystery to even me!
     
  30. uncle eric

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    Many thanks Steve. Appreciate it.
    Though my head is quite happy, my battered wallet doesn't seem to like those rushes of blood we spoke of :rolleyes:
     

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