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Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

  1. #1
    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Home Theater Setups and Recommendations


    Home Theater Setups and Recommendations

    So do we have any audiophiles here?

    Ditched my old setup prior to moving (Denon / Klipsch). It was dated but also looking to step it up a notch this time around.

    Basic 5.1 setup for a 12x12’ listening space

    Who’s got what? And please don’t tell me how awesome your Sonos / sound bars / Bose setups are ;p

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    Last edited by MFChop; 01-20-19 at 06:33 PM.

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    Lifer Kurlon's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    I've got a Klipsch 12" sub in my small cave, quite impressed with how musical it is. I haven't built the rest of the system yet, just using the TV's speakers plus the sub right now. It oddly works as long as I'm not looking for loud.

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    Lifer Falko's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    My set up is a little bit older, so maybe similar to what you got rid of but Marantz 7.1 system (only running at a 5.1+2) with Reference series Klipsch. Sounds pretty good.

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    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Right now I’m looking at the Reference Permire line with a Denon again however I’m willing to entertain b&w, kef or any other suggestions. Pretty much what you’ll find in most Best Buy magnolias

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    Soul Rider Paul_E_D's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    I love my B&W sub. The most natural sound I could find at the time. That's all I got. Don't have a home theater amp.

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    Lifer SteveM's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations


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  7. #7

    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    My only recommendation is to go somewhere and listen to everything, regardless of recommendations or what you think you want.

    I ended up at Magnolia 3 or 4 years ago and got Martin Logan bookshelves. I think Motion 15 fronts, Motion 4 rears, a Motion something center channel, a Definitive sub and some Pioneer Elite receiver.

    My room shape/arrangement isn't ideal, but I love these speakers.

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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    My Yamaha rx-a3000 receiver is still going strong after 8+ years and I keep seeing the rx-a2080 and rx-a3080 go on sale for around $1100/$1400. If you care I've got some Klipsch Forte II's which are about 25yrs old, I bought them banged up and replaced the blown horns, refreshed the crossovers with new caps, and vinyl covered them because that wood vibe wasn't passing the wife test. Some of the best money I've ever spent.

    If you're not wanting to go with seperate amps (if so check out emotiva) then I'd be looking for efficient speakers that sound good to you and a sub from someone like svs. You won't get the mids out of good speakers with a receiver powering them if they are power hungry. Keep in mind that installation is generally one of the most important factors for performance and aesthetics.

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  9. #9
    Lifer loudbeard's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Pioneer Elite VSX-42 receiver, Definitive Technology Pro Cinema 600 5.1 speaker setup, AudioQuest Cinnamon cables. I went into the Magnolia Theater in Best Buy and basically said "shut up and take my money." It's a solid system albeit about 6-7 years old now. I actually tried selling it here a while back because my living room now really doesn't accommodate a traditional surround sound layout so I was going to go for a soundbar/woofer setup. Didn't even get a nibble on it, so I ended up setting up my system as a 3.1 system. Honestly pretty pleased with that for the time being.

    Spend the money on quality cables, they make a difference if you're spending the money for good speakers.

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  10. #10
    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by loudbeard View Post
    Spend the money on quality cables, they make a difference if you're spending the money for good speakers.
    Oh Ive got that covered! I’ve got older but extremely high end monster cable thx certified time match ect speaker cables. They’re amazing and over built to say the least I wanna say they retailed for like $800 a 10ft pair. Scored a full 5ch set from when Bernie’s went bankrupt for $100 lol

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    Last edited by MFChop; 01-09-19 at 11:35 AM.

  11. #11
    Lifer Kurlon's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Oh gawd, monster cables, thx certified?! Don't mind me, I'll be over in the corner laughing hysterically in glorious 7.2.4 ATMOS.

    (And now I'm remembering the guy convinced that optical TOS sounded better than coax TOS...)

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  12. #12
    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Oh they’re old but butt still a million times better than spoioled lol

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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Totally opposed to sound bars? I picked up an LG atmos one, and added the wireless rear speakers for the full 7.999.2089749782. Its pretty impressive IMO and for what I feel like would only be an incremental change for exponential amounts more of money, plus running wires and having speakers hanging everywhere...

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  14. #14

    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    If you're really serious about it, the most important step in getting the most out of a home theater system isn't the brands you choose, its the layout. Pick your seating first, then the display, then a speaker compliment that can be installed in the best positions considering those 2 choices, then a subwoofer (ideally 2) that is appropriate for the room size, and last a receiver/amp sized for the speakers and sources you've selected. Personally, I'm partial to JBL Pro Cinema for large stand alone cinema installs, Wisdom for hidden cinema installs, Dynaudio and Triad for the projects that fall someplace in the middle, but there are lots of good choices.

    Dolby's site is one of the best resources for consumers to get detailed information about speaker layout and placement. Dolby Atmos Speaker Setup Guide

    my .02, People that say that a soundbar or HTIB sounds the same as a surround system just haven't heard one that was properly done.

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    Last edited by audiojeff; 01-19-19 at 10:26 PM.

  15. #15
    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Yeah I’m uber ocd about distance, angles, symmetry, etc as far as placement. Last setup I had I used the internal Denon auduessy calibration system at 9 points.

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  16. #16

    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by MFChop View Post
    Yeah Iím uber ocd about distance, angles, symmetry, etc as far as placement. Last setup I had I used the internal Denon auduessy calibration system at 9 points.
    Great, here is the second place everyone gets their home theater setup wrong, SPL.

    In order to play a movie soundtrack back the way it sounds in a commercial theater, you need a big range of volume from the quietest part to the loudest part. In theory, a good system should be able to reproduce about 100dB of range from the quietest to the loudest part. In practice, there is typically 25dB-30db of range from the dialog level to the loudest sound in a film. Speech itself uses a 30 dB peak-to-valley ratio, and an ideal speaking playback level is typically 60-65dB. Last, a quiet theater has a noise floor around 30-35dB. [This is fairly abbreviated because all of these measurements are typically average weighted and curve weighted by frequency, but that math is a bit more complex). Anyway, if we add that up, 35dB floor+30db of range we can just get our dialog level to 65dB, add 30dB of dynamic range and we need 95dB of playback level capability, with no headroom.

    You can see why lots of systems fail to meet this demand, and why how quiet the room is really becomes important. An average bedroom or apartment often has a noise floor of 40-45dB, sometimes higher when the HVAC system runs, which would mean that you need another 10dB to clearly hear the dialog. Raising that volume means that the peak volume scenes may hit 105dB. That's pretty loud (rock concert levels).

    There are a couple of ways to combat this, a really quiet room helps. Sitting closer to the loudspeakers means that they need less power to deliver higher sound pressure. Dolby has introduced a compression system for home theater called Dolby volume, that reduces the range from high to low sounds. And there are others. I suggest you calculate what it might take to reach the peak SPL you desire, and work backwards from there. In my designs the standard target is 115dB+, YMMV. I've linked a decent SPL calculator below.

    THX reference level explained - Acoustic Frontiers

    Peak SPL Calculator

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  17. #17
    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Good info, based on the Klipsch setup I’m eyeballing if I’m doing this right I’ll be at ~118db

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  18. #18

    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by MFChop View Post
    Good info, based on the Klipsch setup Iím eyeballing if Iím doing this right Iíll be at ~118db
    That's great, though somewhat surprising, as the most capable subwoofer Klipsch makes (KW-120-THX) is only capable of about 107dB at the listening position for an average room.

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  19. #19
    Senior Member MFChop's Avatar
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Im guessing its due to the small viewing area 12X12 total 8 feet from center channel. Also most likely going with two subs (or maybe Im just imputing the calc wrong lol)

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    Last edited by MFChop; 01-20-19 at 06:35 PM.

  20. #20
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    Re: Home Theater Setups and Recomendations

    Quote Originally Posted by audiojeff View Post
    my .02, People that say that a soundbar or HTIB sounds the same as a surround system just haven't heard one that was properly done.
    totally agree, but for the investment in time and $$, my setup gets me 60-70% of the way there, and i'm the only one who cares or even knows the difference in my house lol plus the room is not condusive really for being properly setup anyways. awesome links though, def gonna spend some lunch time checking those out.

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