Sub $150 Dolby Digital 5.1 Reciever?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by G5Unit, Dec 4, 2005.

  1. G5Unit macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #1
    Yeh I want one to hook up to an Xbox 360 through one of them toslink connectors. I am not SUPER sensitive about sound quality, I just want a good experience with the xbox and all of it's 5.1 glory. Speakers are not an issue as of now, unless I can find some good ones for cheap. I already have 5.1 speakers(from an $1000 denon bought in like 1990, Dolby Pro Logic) that connect to the receiver(Denon AVR-800) with little twisty tie type things. Would those work? Also these speakers from the mini shelf system in my room the does dolby pro logic but only outputs to the center and stereo speakers. I just want to be as cost efficient as possible. Refurbs are fine.

    I did a search on this but most of the threads were dated.
     
  2. adk macrumors 68000

    adk

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  3. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #3
    Each speaker has 2 little wires at the end that you CLIP into the receiver.
     
  4. ddrueckhammer macrumors 65816

    ddrueckhammer

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    #4
    If you are just looking for a 5.1 receiver then I would recommend an Onkyo TX-SR502. It is showing a low price of $199 on pricegrabber but I think it can be had in your price range if you look around or possibly buy on Ebay. Onkyo consistently gets good comments at AVSforum.com and this model comes in black or silver.

    I own a Harman Kardon AVR 330 that I paid about $300 for last year. There are some lower models than this with less bells and whistles but I haven't seen any under $200. That being said HK makes IMHO a great receiver in this price range and when you see how sexy it looks it might sway you to purchase it.

    Denon, and Yamaha also make good receivers in this price range but I would stay away from Sony as they don't have a very good reputation from what I have read.

    I would look at sites like J&R Music World, www.harmanaudio.com (HK's refurb store), Ebay, and any other stores that are endorsed over at the AVSforum. Finally, I would also look at brick and mortar stores as there are probably some good before or after Christmas bargains to be had!
     
  5. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #5

    Wow! Thanks. Would all of those work with a toslink adapter and the Xbox 360? My room is about 10 by 12 feet. I just looked at the Onkyo TX-SR502 and it's pretty cool. Is there anything similar? And what's the best brand for good yet not over priced 5.1 speakers that would be compatible with these receivers?
     
  6. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #6
    http://www.pricegrabber.com/search_techspecs_full.php/masterid=3584810
    http://www.pricegrabber.com/search_techspecs_full.php/masterid=7731095
    These 2 look pretty nice, yet I am no pro. Both of them have optical in so I'm guessing they support the toslink cable and 5.1 surround.

    Edit:
    These are some home theater systems. Are they any good?
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16882103122
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16882117009

    Here is a whole page of them:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.asp?submit=PROPERTY&SubCategory=501&propertycodevalue=2375:14946&bop=and&Order=rating

    Also(Lot's of questions) what Toslink cable do I need? I have seen a few different types. I want to hook up my PM G5 that has an optical out and an Xbox 360. I'd buy 2 but do they have to be different types?
     
  7. xparaparafreakx macrumors 65816

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    #7
    Different kinds of toslink cable?
    I though there was only one with an adaptor on the end so you can connect it to different things.
     
  8. TheMonarch macrumors 65816

    TheMonarch

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    #8

    Not sure about that post, but I see you mentioned Onkyo. I have an Onkyo 7.1 [1000 watt] system, and I love it.

    I'm pretty sure that Onkyo system you mentioned takes the same inputs, but has less watts...

    Feel free to ask me any questions.

    Hope it helps :)
     
  9. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #9
    About the home theater systems I posted up there. Should I just get one of those if I want good audio. I mean I'm only 13(14 in 16 days, yay!) so my ears arn't even mature enough to apprieciate audio like u audiophiles out there.

    If there are anymore home theater systems out there or recievers, here I guess is what I need:

    2 or more toslink inputs, because I want to connect my PM and Xbox.
    Compenent video, yet i don't REALLY need it
    5.1 Dolby Digital or better
    Speakers would be cool...
     
  10. TheMonarch macrumors 65816

    TheMonarch

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    #10
    I'm a tad confused. In your OP, you say sub-$150, but you list 250+ systems...



    What exactly is your budget limit? Is 150 your desired price point or are you willing/can you go higher?
     
  11. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #11
    I should have made that more clear I wasn't sure what the price range was for a good reciever(by saying good i don;t mean the super duer ones)
     
  12. TheMonarch macrumors 65816

    TheMonarch

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    #12

    Well, here you go: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16882115047

    Why?:

    1) 650 watts @ 300 bucks, pretty good deal
    2) Powered sub. (VERY important!)
    3) Dual optical inputs
    4) I guess you could consider Yamaha a 'good' brand.
    5) Includes speakers, not just receiver.
    6) No integrated DVD player (Which is actually a good thing, since HD formats are coming out) So it won't become obsolete.
    7) Cheapest I could find from newegg (Though you may or may not find it cheaper somewhere else)

    EDIT: 8) Oh, and I forgot... Its a 6.1 system, not 5.1... Which is better


    ;)
     
  13. khisayruou macrumors 6502a

    khisayruou

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    #13
    My personal preference for entry/mid level is Onkyo.
    Their entry level receivers can easily be had for the $150 range your looking for if you shop around. Since you already have speakers, I really don't see the need to go out and get a home theater in a box. But, if you do want to go the box route...then Onkyo also has a really good entry level setup for around $300. I have an Onkyo 5.1 setup and I have been very happy with it. In my opinion, Onkyo is the best bang for the buck if you under a strict budget.

    http://www.shoponkyo.com/homepage.cfm

    EDIT: Onkyo's entry level receivers only have one optical and one coxial for digital input.
     
  14. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #14
    These are the speakers I already have:
    [​IMG]

    I got this system 6 years back and I just wanted to know if they would work with newer systems. They have a red and black split cable at the end. I think that's what's needed.
     
  15. khisayruou macrumors 6502a

    khisayruou

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    #15
    Wow...that for a $1000 huh. :D Wait, that must be the shelf system. Where's the denon?
    Should be no problem hooking that into a new receiver, check the woofer too (if there is one)...it needs a rca end.
     
  16. Greenjeens macrumors regular

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    #16
    Basically your right on, all you need is a toslink in on the amp. I've been thinking about doing the same thing, except my Mac doesn't have a toslink out:( So I'm using an old receiver with bipolar front speakers stolen from my big home theater system and a big subwoofer. Just using the RCA audio outs which work fine, since I only listen to iTunes and don't have games or any 5.1 surround sources that i want to watch on a 19' monitor. I've got a major home theater in the front room with 4 KEF 104.2's and Definitive centers and a 15" powered Velodyne sub+ a bunch of amps with a Yamaha 5.1 receiver.

    A good set of bookshelf stereo speakers and subwoofer is 80% there, the surrounds just add that little bit of envelopment in the sound field, which is nice if you have a 5.1/6.1 media source.

    Paying more money for a receiver will get you bigger amps and or connections to add additional amps and input sources later which is nice, sounds like you don't need anything else.
    Instead use the speakers you have and set then to small and direct the base to a hopefully powered sub. Most of the power required to reproduce music is needed in the low bass range. So get a decent mid/bass range subwoofer (later) to make up for the lack of power you will get from an economy amp and smaller center front speakers. Matching speakers, sonicaly speaking, will still get a good surround effect, but to get the lower midrange bass is going to require an amp of decent size, if you want some thunder in the lower range. Larger speakers are generally more efficient than smaller ones and ported speaker (having a hole or tube between the interior and exterior) are more efficient, putting out more sound, than totally enclosed designs. This is more important with speakers containing larger, say around +4" sized drivers, or where mid bass frequencies are capable of being reproduced.

    A couple of tips. Try to set the tweeters at ear level. Use the test tone to get an equal output from all the speakers. Use a piece of colored tape to designate one wire positive. This can be the smooth wire, the gold colored conducter, the one with writing...etc. Just stay consistent throughout the, wire to device, to speaker hookups. Nothing will get hurt if it's out of order, but you might lose some bass frequencies due to cancelations, if one speaker is pulling and one pushing. I also code right and left wires with some colored tape.
    Be VERY careful not to let wire strands from one wire touch the other, especially at connection points. it pays to solder the ends or use special connecters to avoid electrical shorts and blown fuses or worse!

    Set the speakers in as symmetrical pattern as reasonable, the rear speakers can be mounted a bit higher, it's easier on a back wall, rather than out in the middle of a room.

    Don't turn the rear speakers up too much, they shouldn't be noticed unless some specific sound effect, from an aggressive soundtrack stears the sound there. Usually the purpose is to get a sense of envelopment, not to have the surrounds up so high, that you would get distracted from the action going on in the front speakers.
    -
    dave
     
  17. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #17
    [​IMG]

    This is the Denon. The speakers are good I have some surround ones. A sub that is about 2 feet high, R and L speakers, and a center. Since it is very old everything is HUGE, I mean the speakers. But it looks like they could fit into there.
     
  18. themacmaestro macrumors member

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    #18

    Onkyo is the real deal!
     
  19. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #19
    OK. I figured out what I think I need:
    2 digital optical(1 for PM one for Xbox 360)
    Dolby Digital 5.1 capable
    Component is not an issue
    No dvd player unless is already has one

    And does speaker size really make a diff? On the Denon we have all the speakers are just under 1 foot tall. Now I see speakers that are only a couple inches. This could be a make or break for me in terms of buying. And is there and converter from digital coaxial to optical? Because if the reciever were to only have 1 optical and 1 coaxial then I would need a converter.
     
  20. prostuff1 macrumors 65816

    prostuff1

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    #20
    Here is a whole setup in a box. This one looks like it has 2 digital optical inputs like you need.

    My dad recently bought this system but it does not have the two optical inputs that you want.

    If you jsut want a reciever here is one that has what you need and it looks like it leaves you room to upgrade.

    The system we got while not great serves its purpose very well. The HD satellite reciever connects to the digital optical audio and the DVD connects using the coaxial so everything gets used on our system. I have not turned it up all the way yet (the parents would holler and screem :rolleyes: ) but while they are at work tomorrow i can test it out. :D
     
  21. Greenjeens macrumors regular

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    #21
    The YAMAHA HTR5830 sounds like a winner with 2 optical inputs for $199. I paid around $500 for mine a few years ago, but it was the upper end model. HT is Yamaha's consumer line.

    I always check the back of the receiver for conections before buying. Yamaha has made some terrible remotes in the past, so it's worth checking out first IMO.

    I would urge caution when turning anything all he way up, I've blown up a number of tweeters that way. Either the amp will clip and send nasty stuff to the speakers, or the weakest link in the speaker (often the tweeter) will blow due to being sent more voltage than it can handle and the voicecoil burns up.

    I usually turn stuff up until I start hearing it sound "rough", which means the speakers start sounding congested, and are not capable of reproducing the music cleanly because they reach their limits, and then no higher. There is not much to gain and much to lose.

    Money can probably be saved with a cheaper 5.1 cable. I've bought expensive 5.1 cables and used good monster cable interconnects and didn't notice any difference. I'm not even sure just using the cheapo cables for 5.1 transfer is going to make any real world difference in lower resolution systems.
     
  22. Sunrunner macrumors 6502a

    Sunrunner

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    #22

    The xbox 360 is of the devil (and a POS, but most importantly of the devil). :p
     
  23. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #23
    The YAMAHA HTR5830 looks like a winner too. I just need to know this:
    Will I get TRUE 5.1 surround(like from games and movies) with my PM IF I have this reciever? With a toslink cable from the PM G5 to the back of the reciever?
     
  24. G5Unit thread starter macrumors 68020

    G5Unit

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    #24

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