What setup for TV and Music - Mini hifi vs full size amp / avr

fearce

Active Member
Hi all.

Have read through many posts with interest and hoping to get views on my questions and recommendations on a sound system for my needs.

My use cases are watching TV (60%) Movies and TV shows through Netflix, Prime and Disney + and then Music (40%) % splits are estimates!

To date, we’ve used TV speakers (Sams KS7000) or a Samsung HWK650 sound bar that I had got bundled with a TV bought a few years back. Did not often use the sounder for TV as found sound was muffled and clarity of speech in particular was not there and lost in droning.

I’ve now sold the sound bar and last week made two purchases with the intent to get a feel for what I like. Though to make clear - both candidates can be returned and i’m not wedded to keeping any.

Here are the items under testing and my findings on each.

1 - Edifier S350DB - 2.1 Active Speaker set.

This was the first item I had received. I connected it to the TV via optical. General impressed with sound, in particular, the clarity I heard throughout the range of high / lows; bass was deep, punchy but not distracting from other things i.e. speech and other detail say in movies e.g. glass shattering. Note: these comments are all with my very low baseline of TV / Soundbar sound.

2. Denon CEOL N10 - packaged with Denon Speakers.

Clearly this is a different beast to the above by way of features, so i’ll try to focus on the sound, which is core purpose of this thread, for now.

For movies, I noticed the Denon clarity was greater, e.g. the different sounds / items happening on screen were heard a lot clearer. This was expected. Lack of deep rumbling bass was immediately noticeable - also expected. The denon was also definitely louder, which made me push the edifier to the limit - this made me realise that it didn’t have enough guts at the top end - something I don’t think i can live with.


As such, I think what this has confirmed for me so far is as follows:


  • I want / like a subwoofer in my set up or at least the type of bass i got from the Edifier
  • The clarity between the denon and the edifier was noticeable to the extent that I DO CARE and prefer it.


Now looking forward, you will see that my choices have been on stereo 2.1 sound and that’s because i’ve read on here that AVRs (those within budget are no good with music - though I’ve seen mixed opinions on this). Budget at the moment, including at the very least, speakers to support a stereo setup is around £500 give or take some. I’d like the possibility to add rears and centre later, but this is where it starts to become a circular debate in my mind, due to the AVR comment I just made and also reading that a good stereo (potentially 2.1) at same price point will sound better than say 5.1 - is that right?

Questions

1. If I keep the DENON CEOL incl packaged speakers and add a sub - would this match the quality I get from the Edifier? By this i mean, retain the quality I saw in the denon and get the bass I got from the Edifier without bass overpowering everything else.
2. I’ve looked on PeterTyson / Richer Sounds and with these sorts of systems, speakers like Dali Spektors are often bundled and get good comments on this forum - would a change in speakers make a big difference to the packaged ones and also would it alter the bass experience i had?
3. Scrapping all the above, would I get better sound with any of the below full size amps and speakers at around the same cost and if so - what are recommendations that would beat the N10 set up?

On point 3, i’m open to variations of this e.g.

  • Yamaha Network Receivers e.g. YAMAHA 303, 402 or 602 or the DENON DRA-800h
  • Marantz Stereo Amps
  • Any AVRs recommended good for music and TV, but taking into account my initial budget cost e.g. I would be happy to buy an AVR and a set of speakers to get me stereo at the budget, but then add rear and centre later at an extra cost?

Note: I realise i’ve not really talked about features to much, but key things that are must haves are Bluetooth connectivity, Optical, probably being able to add a sub. Internet Radio and or DAB would be good, but can consider on merits of other things. You’ll see CD is not core on the list but I know it’s in the CEOL n10.


It’s turned out to be quite a long post so happy to add extra detail qualify further. I also recognise this post is talking about HIFI / AVR together, so not sure where it best sits. I may post in HIFI too as other threads i've read similar to this are on there.
 

password1

Distinguished Member
If you're happy with the denon but find it lacks bass, id spend the money on a sub.

a stereo amp will outperform an avr at the same price.
 
D

Deleted member 39241

Guest
I agree, that if you like the Denon, and it is providing the volume that you need in your room, and ticks all the boxes for features, then keep it and add a subwoofer.

To get a better amp and speakers, with the similar functionality that you have with the Denon would take all of the £500 at entry level, but ideally you would want to double that budget, and still add a subwoofer!

Have a look at BK Electronics for a sub, you can buy direct from their store in Southend through their website. They also have an eBay store with some discounted B grade subs, which come with the full warranty.
 

fearce

Active Member
If you're happy with the denon but find it lacks bass, id spend the money on a sub.

a stereo amp will outperform an avr at the same price.

I agree, that if you like the Denon, and it is providing the volume that you need in your room, and ticks all the boxes for features, then keep it and add a subwoofer.

To get a better amp and speakers, with the similar functionality that you have with the Denon would take all of the £500 at entry level, but ideally you would want to double that budget, and still add a subwoofer!

Have a look at BK Electronics for a sub, you can buy direct from their store in Southend through their website. They also have an eBay store with some discounted B grade subs, which come with the full warranty.
Thank you both.

So I've had to send the edifier back (30 days done) and am still running the denon n10. I think the streaming service from spotify has grown on me.

Back to sound quality so the bass is definitely missing on the out of box speaker package with the denon vs edifier. I have a subwoofer coming today for testing. Though one thing I've noticed is that for music the denon is loud enough at say half way volume but for tv via optical I have to push to around 60% before becoming immersive.

I know I was asking a variety of questions but having experienced more, I maybe ok with 2.1 and not surround.

So question now becomes is there a noticeable quality different to be found in spending around £600 and getting something like the Yamaha rn602 and a set of say spektor dali 2 / monitor audio bronze / q acoustics in a similar range.

I.e. will it be better sound, have a bit more power and perhaps bass?

Ps- I've said RN602 as it has the subout which lower models dont have and of course streaming.
 
D

Deleted member 39241

Guest
With the TV sound being lower, can you adjust the volume that is output from the TV? Some TV's have output as fixed or variable, so it might be set a bit lower and you can adjust it up.

The Denon CEOL N10 that you have now and quite like is specified at 65 watts into 4 ohms, if you were to go for the Yamaha RN602 that is specified at 105 watts into 4 ohms, so quite a bit more power, and generally it should be a better quality amp all round.

If you want more bass response from the speakers without adding a sub, then floorstanding speakers will provide a better bass response than bookshelves.
 

password1

Distinguished Member
I would expect the yamaha to be better quality but as with all hifi it's personal preferences.

There's no need to buy an amp with sub out. A sub with high level input will also work.

Perhaps consider upgrading the speakers to easier to drive more sensitive ones.
 

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