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$500 bedroom setup suggestions - Page 2

post #16 of 51
Thread Starter 

Have any of you heard the Harmon Kardon 3490? It's discontinued now but I've heard it can provide quite a lot of power and especially since I'm considering 89-90DB sensitive speakers, they should be rather easy to drive.

 

@ralph - I've always heard that soundbars can't compete with similarly priced speakers. 

post #17 of 51
I have the HK 3390, and it has more than enough power for a small room. You might have trouble finding the 3490 unless you see if Harman has any refurbs on Ebay (sometimes they do).
post #18 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by hikaru12

 

@ralph - I've always heard that soundbars can't compete with similarly priced speakers. 

Let's be clear - I would not use a soundbar for anything other than audio for TV setup. And a soundbar is NOT a replacement for a real surround sound system with individual speakers for each channel. But a soundbar is a straightforward and very simple solution for a TV setup where space is a concern and one cannot possibly have all the speakers required for surround sound system.

 

Now most of you are probably thinking "who said anything about surround sound?" but we are talking about a system that will be used both for music and TV/video, in which case a soundbar might actually work better than stereo speakers especially when watching TV and video since the soundbar is located exactly where a center channel speaker would be and the center channel is by far the most important speaker in a TV/video surround system. The other thing that soundbars have going for them is that there are plenty of them to chose from and lots and lots of them are available at closeout prices. Just have a look on Amazon to see what I mean.

 

Remember that I was only making a suggestion and the final decision will be up to you. Good luck!

post #19 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

I have the HK 3390, and it has more than enough power for a small room. You might have trouble finding the 3490 unless you see if Harman has any refurbs on Ebay (sometimes they do).

 

If I can find the 3390 then I'll probably go with that and the Def Tech monitors or the Focal Chorus and call it a day.

post #20 of 51
Newegg has the 3390 for $350, but that's about $100 over what it used to go for. At that kind of price, might as well go for the HK AVR 1700 which goes for $300, and as I linked to measurements earlier, can hit ~ 100 watts per channel in stereo. I compared the 3390 with an entry level HK AVR in my house, and I couldn't tell any difference in the sound when the AVR is in direct mode (no DSP).
post #21 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Newegg has the 3390 for $350, but that's about $100 over what it used to go for. At that kind of price, might as well go for the HK AVR 1700 which goes for $300, and as I linked to measurements earlier, can hit ~ 100 watts per channel in stereo. I compared the 3390 with an entry level HK AVR in my house, and I couldn't tell any difference in the sound when the AVR is in direct mode (no DSP).

 

Alright, the 1700 it is. I'll revive this thread with my impressions in a few weeks.

post #22 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Newegg has the 3390 for $350, but that's about $100 over what it used to go for. At that kind of price, might as well go for the HK AVR 1700 which goes for $300, and as I linked to measurements earlier, can hit ~ 100 watts per channel in stereo. I compared the 3390 with an entry level HK AVR in my house, and I couldn't tell any difference in the sound when the AVR is in direct mode (no DSP).

 

 

What do you think of this article stating that the 1700 is less than it's true power rating? They made a convincing argument. I'm thinking about looking into the Emotiva UPA-200 (125W x 2). What do you think?


Edited by hikaru12 - 2/20/14 at 9:27am
post #23 of 51
You wanted a receiver for 2 channel use, and the article I provided has measurements of that. So unless you are now thinking you want 5 channel output, why do you care?
post #24 of 51
Here. Read this again: http://www.soundandvision.com/content/harman-kardon-avr-1700-av-receiver-ht-labs-measures.

Moreover, now that I read that article more carefully, it's about the differences between the AVR 700 and AVR 1700 and how the specs have changed, not that HK is claiming that the receiver does more than it does. HK is rating that receiver based on 2 channel output instead of 5 channel output, and their specs match up with those measurements in the actual output tests at sound and vision.
post #25 of 51
Thread Starter 

That's exactly what I needed. If you think that receiver will be a good fit for my budget then I'll do it. It'll be good too because I haven't been able to find a integrated stereo amp that has sub outs for cheap either.

post #26 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by hikaru12 View Post

That's exactly what I needed. If you think that receiver will be a good fit for my budget then I'll do it. It'll be good too because I haven't been able to find a integrated stereo amp that has sub outs for cheap either.

Right. Typically, you will not find single channel LFE style sub outs on most integrated amps. You have to look for left/right RCA pre-amp outs. But most integrated amps start above your budget. In this budget range, you have to look at AVRs or stereo receivers. You could look into the Onkyo TX-8050, for example.
post #27 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post


Right. Typically, you will not find single channel LFE style sub outs on most integrated amps. You have to look for left/right RCA pre-amp outs. But most integrated amps start above your budget. In this budget range, you have to look at AVRs or stereo receivers. You could look into the Onkyo TX-8050, for example.

 

I'm reconsidering my setup. Since this is for my bedroom and I can't really fit in surround speakers does it make sense to even bother getting a center channel if I'm watching movies? Dolby encoding uses surrounds extensively so I don't know if I'd have anything to gain by just getting a center. If that's the case I might just leave this as a 2.1 system and forgo the HTPC and get a Sonos Connect with a DAC.


Edited by hikaru12 - 2/24/14 at 1:17pm
post #28 of 51
Quote:
Originally Posted by hikaru12 View Post
 

 

I'm reconsidering my setup. Since this is for my bedroom and I can't really fit in surround speakers does it make sense to even bother getting a center channel if I'm watching movies? Dolby encoding uses surrounds extensively so I don't know if I'd have anything to gain by just getting a center. If that's the case I might just leave this as a 2.1 system and forgo the HTPC and get a Sonos Connect with a DAC.


The center channel is the single most important speaker in a surround sound setup when used to watch movies and TV. Just about all of the dialog goes directly to the center channel. I learned this first hand when the center channel of home theater receiver blew out about 2 years ago and just about everything I tried to watch had no dialog. Now if this bedroom setup will not be your main home theater setup and mainly used for music listening with only the occasional TV viewing, then by all means go with a 2.1 channel setup. And remember if find the dialog hard to make oout then you can always add a center channel speaker.

post #29 of 51
Many people get along fine with only 2 speakers as opposed to 3 (with a center). Could be 2.1 would work fine for you. The benefit of the center channel is generally better dialogue clarity and an improved, smoother front soundstage when things move from left to right.

The Sonos Connect seems pretty pricey, and it only supports audio streaming, if I'm not mistaken. Check out AVS's networking streaming forum for other streaming options.
post #30 of 51
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ralphp@optonline View Post
 


The center channel is the single most important speaker in a surround sound setup when used to watch movies and TV. Just about all of the dialog goes directly to the center channel. I learned this first hand when the center channel of home theater receiver blew out about 2 years ago and just about everything I tried to watch had no dialog. Now if this bedroom setup will not be your main home theater setup and mainly used for music listening with only the occasional TV viewing, then by all means go with a 2.1 channel setup. And remember if find the dialog hard to make oout then you can always add a center channel speaker.

 

Yea, I figured that - it made a huge difference to dialogue in my movies - they came out a lot clearer and louder.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

Many people get along fine with only 2 speakers as opposed to 3 (with a center). Could be 2.1 would work fine for you. The benefit of the center channel is generally better dialogue clarity and an improved, smoother front soundstage when things move from left to right.

The Sonos Connect seems pretty pricey, and it only supports audio streaming, if I'm not mistaken. Check out AVS's networking streaming forum for other streaming options.

 

Well I was planning on building a  HTPC that would stream both my FLAC music alongside my BluRay and DVD rips. If you're saying I can get by with a 3 speaker system and no surrounds then I'd be OK with going this route. If the surrounds are essential for a good movie experience then it's probably better that I get a network music streamer and stick to a 2.1 system.

 

Keep in mind that I will eventually be upgrading my living room home theater for a more proper movie watching experience (projectors, good floor standers, etc.) so I don't need the up most sound quality for my movies for a small bedroom.


Edited by hikaru12 - 2/24/14 at 2:07pm
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