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Old     (ashly)      Join Date: Jul 2004       11-01-2010, 1:03 PM Reply   
So Christmas is coming up and I know my man wants a new sound system for his man cave. I would prefer wireless, but I've heard some bad things about them. I know NOTHING about sound systems so I was hoping you guys could help me out, what you have in your homes, if you like it or not and so on and so forth. Thanks!
Old     (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       11-01-2010, 3:31 PM Reply   
K, all depends on budget for the most part I would say.

I don't have experience with wireless either but as you said I've heard they aren't the best.

Be careful of some all in one kits as if you blow a speaker or one gets damaged you can't always just replace that have to buy a whole new kit.

I personally have always had stand alone type speakers with a true 5.1/7.1 receiver.

From there your speaker choices are almost endless. The Bose set up with the little speakers is actually really nice. Again I would decide what your budget may be and go from there. You could spend $ 1,000 for a whole kit or spend $ 1,000 and only have one pair of speakers.
Old     (hatepain)      Join Date: Aug 2006       11-01-2010, 3:34 PM Reply   
I've had a few different Bose systems and have liked them all. They're fairly simple and don't clutter up the space with large speakers. I consider Bose to be middle of the road, there are better and worse but for the price Bose is good quality with excellent customer service.
Old     (baitkiller)      Join Date: Jan 2010       11-01-2010, 3:46 PM Reply   
Do you have access to the sub floor or attic? This would make built-ins a choice. and a good one.
I run a Sony 900 wt 7.1 receiver with a 12" CV down firing sub, CV dual unit center speaker and six Monster Audio 7" directional in-wall speakers. The in-walls are front LR, mid room even with listener and the rears are all the way back. All speakers are at ear level.
Badd ass on a budget. Black friday receiver for < 300$ and Ebay speakers. I had the Cerwin Vega stuff from the last system.

This thing is super clear, moves furniture and will make you turn your head and look behind you or off to the side. A year old now and it still makes me look.

Football in HD is amazing. You get the announcer on center and the crowd is surround. Very cool.

If you have to use stand alone stuff you are more limited by the wifes decorating pallet and taste than performance. The in-walls are painted to match. People don't ever even see them.
Old     (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       11-01-2010, 4:27 PM Reply   
I agree to baitkiller. I did all mine in wall as well. A lot cleaner looking but not as reversable if you move. When I reno'd my living room a bit I rebuilt the whole fire place and built in my centre so it was flush and at ear level....fireplace is electric, just for looks no heat.
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Old     (sinkoumn)      Join Date: Jan 2007       11-01-2010, 4:42 PM Reply   
^Nice Rippey!
Old     (kko13)      Join Date: Jul 2006       11-01-2010, 5:30 PM Reply   
It really is all about budget. I would consider my set up a budget minded system but it sounds great. Onkyo 604. Had it for 6yrs. never a single issue. run Infinity speakers front/rear/center and a Infinty 10inch sub with a built in amp. The speakers are 10yrs. old and still soumd great. the sub is 6yrs. old and no issues there either. The one "con" to the 604 is you have to change the adio input manually when you change the video input. Not a big deal to me just one more button to push but again you can step up to a higher end one that will change the audio output to match the video output auotmaticlly.It just was not worth the exta couple of hundred dollars at the time I bought. I really like the Onkyo's. A bunch of my friends run them they always sound great. Crisp and clean at all levels. Good luck.
Old     (nauty)      Join Date: Feb 2004       11-01-2010, 7:08 PM Reply   
I am no expert, but a buddy of mine in the home electronics manufacturing industry gave me some advice that has worked out pretty well for me. First off, stay away from the home theater in a box systems. The receivers are typically under powered and the speakers just won't deliver the thundering movie theater sound that you're after. Instead, buy a receiver and speakers separate. The front speakers and center channel speakers should all be the same size/model speaker. Honestly I can't remember why he told me this, but I went with it and my system rocks! In addition, these speakers should all be FULL size speakers, not the tiny bookshelf speakers that come with most kits. For my system I went ahead and used the same size speaker for all 5 speakers. This along with a 15" powered sub and watching a movie in my living room is pretty much the same as watching one in the theater (sound wise).

As far as the receiver, find out what kind of components he has (DVD player, cable box, etc.) You want to find out what kind of outputs the components have. Chances are if they were purchased in the last few years they will have HDMI input/outputs. The bottom line is that you want to make sure the receiver you buy will accommodate all of the components he has.

Budget is definitely key. If you walk into an electronics store without a clue of what you're looking for the salesmen can definitely take advantage of you and sell you more than you need or want to spend. My advice would be to find a family friend who has a clue about home theater and take them with you. When it comes to home theater the options are endless.
Old     (rowdy)      Join Date: Mar 2006       11-01-2010, 9:20 PM Reply   
As mentioned before, it all depends on your budget. If you let us know what you're willing to spend, we can really point you in the right direction.

As a general rule, the home theater in a box are not the best way to go. However, there are a few packages that are pretty decent. Avoid the wireless. Any wireless worth a darn is pretty good money.
Old     (ointment)      Join Date: Jun 2008       11-02-2010, 7:50 AM Reply   
I just re-configured my man cave with Sonace Visual Performance ceiling speakers and this setup blew away my old klipshe set up.
Old     (ashly)      Join Date: Jul 2004       11-02-2010, 5:17 PM Reply   
Budget isn't a huge deal, we go all out on Christmas so somewhere between 1000$ to 4000$ would be my price point I think. I don't want to do built in for the simple reason that we are hoping to sell the house in the next couple years and already have a ton of projects planned.
Old     (ashly)      Join Date: Jul 2004       11-02-2010, 5:26 PM Reply   
Bcrider, After looking at that picture I love the way the speakers are practically hidden, how hard were they to install? What kind of system/ speakers did you get?
Old     (rowdy)      Join Date: Mar 2006       11-02-2010, 7:46 PM Reply   
That's a really good budget to work with. The in-wall speakers can be easy to install if you have good sub floor or attic access, or if you have carpet as you can run flat wire. How big is the room and could you possibly provide us with pictures of the room? If you do built in, you can easily remove them and patch in the drywall later if you move. Also consider a remote if your budget is that much.
Old     (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       11-03-2010, 9:41 AM Reply   
Ashly, I installed 6.5" Pro Linear Speakers for front & back L&R with a small Polk Audio center channel and a 10" Pro linear sub. I personally don't believe you have to have ecessive front L&R as if you have a good sub it will provide all the bass you need. A lot of companies make in walls. Polk Audio, Audio Trak, Proficient, Russound, and many many more. I have a low pitch roof so I don't have attic access or access to the sub floor. If you look in the picture what I did was recessed lighting around the perimiter of the room and put in rope lighting with a few 12 volt mini pots over the snowboard and the picture on the left. I have also installed some others not visible in the pic. The top is boxed out. 4" down, 6" out and up 2" to create the could also just install crown molding in the your room to run the wires around. From there you just have to make a small hole below the stud and fish the wires down to your locations. If you don't want to do inwalls you could still do the same type of thing to get your wires around the room and then just have face plates down at plug height for your speaker connections. I went with inwalls as it was less clutter and my rears are on the wall behind the couch which is also the main walkway to the front door so free standing speakers weren't an option. A budget like that would be able to get you a really good setup for home. I was able to buy directly from suppliers so I got everything cheaper then retail. Even with the smaller speakers I still get great sound out of them.
Old     (bcrider)      Join Date: Apr 2006       11-03-2010, 9:48 AM Reply   
Oh, and yes you could pull everything out and patch the walls when you move but I also think it would add some value to your/my home when selling. I have to leave the center channel behind anyways and I don't have that big of a cost into the fronts and rears to really care. I would still be taking my sub and receiver anyway.
Old     (ointment)      Join Date: Jun 2008       11-03-2010, 10:11 AM Reply   

Here is my setup (the dark circle above tv), crapy iphone pic but it goes in the cieling and the cool thing is you can move and angle the speakers how ever you want them. Just like the other in wall speakers you can paint the grills. Easy to install, do to my rooms size I have 5 in the cieling and one 10inch klipshe sub.
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Old     (ointment)      Join Date: Jun 2008       11-03-2010, 10:13 AM Reply   
sorry about pic size


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