Home Theater A/V Receiver Suggestions

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Apocrathia, Apr 25, 2010.

  1. Apocrathia macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    Location:
    University of South Alabama
    #1
    So, I'm moving into a new apartment in the next few weeks. Won't have roommates anymore, so I'm about to do a small home theater setup. (My TV always stayed in my bedroom since I didn't really trust my roommates)
    I have a Mac mini which I keep hooked up over VGA + 1/8" Stereo (For Plex/Hulu/Netflix), PS3 (HDMI), 360 (HDMI), and I don't have cable (I rarely watch TV), but i'd like to have room for it in the future if I actually decide to get it, so probably another HDMI or component input.
    I'm probably going to have to run the VGA directly to the TV and past the receiver, unless I can figure out a better way. So a receiver without VGA would be alright.
    Those are my requirements, a couple of HDMI ins and 1 HDMI out. Not that much of a problem. I want to find a receiver/amplifier that doesn't suck now. I'm pretty clueless here. I've been heavily debating a Sony HTCT100 since I'm moving into an apartment and don't really need anything major, but if I could find something with wireless rear speakers, then I'd go for it.
    I don't need a Blu-Ray Player (Have a PS3), and I don't need one that upscales DVDs (Mac mini). I just want to find something that takes a couple of inputs, and gives me an output that sounds awesome. Honestly, I'd be willing just to get an optical receiver and run everything through my TV, optical out into an amplifier.
    Give me some suggestions, post your home theater setup, whatever. I need some input.
     
  2. hornshwangler macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
    #2
    Check out Denon. They make great stuff and I'm sure you'll find an AVR that will meet your needs. You may also want to check craigslist as units will appear there from time to time.

    good luck
    Dan
     
  3. MicBook macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    Location:
    Mooresville, NC
    #3
    Denon has the best audio quality but their reliability sucks in the 2 years that we have owned one we have gone through 5 and on top of that they generally dont have many HDMI ins
     
  4. waloshin macrumors 68040

    waloshin

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2008
    #4
    The new Onkyo's are really good for a decent price.
     
  5. Decrepit macrumors 65816

    Decrepit

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2007
    Location:
    Foothills to the Rocky Mountains
    #5
    My last Denon was really great. It's still running, I've just given it to my brother.

    I'm researching the new home theater setup that I'd like to build next year. So right now, I'm running with a 32" LCD, Mac Mini, BluRay player and the cable box. No speakers, no receiver, etc. Ugh. I'm thinking of picking up an inexpensive Sony receiver for the office, and a HDMI+Optical converter to send from the Mini.

    Was waiting for 3D so that I could see how close 4X is before spending a ton of cash. Now that I have a real job again, I'm saving for a down payment, and will then build the home theater of doom.

    Keep in mind you are in an apartment, not a house. Which means the neighbors will hear it all. How long do you plan to be in the apt? If you're looking to move in the not too distant future, I'd go cheap.
     
  6. fehhkk macrumors 6502a

    fehhkk

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
  7. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2008
    Location:
    Sunny, Southern California
  8. Apocrathia thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2009
    Location:
    University of South Alabama
    #9
    I want to stay under $300, because I really don't need a ton of features. I just need something to process audio.
    My only problem with running all my video directly to my TV is that I want to run the wires through the wall (Yes, I mentioned I'd be in an apartment, and yes, I've already gotten in approved, before anyone asks). So running multiple wires through the wall for the first installation seems fine, but what do I do if I want to add another device, and run another wire? I'm guessing I'd have to take off the wall plate and fish it out?
    I mentioned the Sony soundbar because I really like the design of just having a 3.1 system. I really don't need surround sound, but then again, I've never had it before. It just seems like most of what I watch is just in stereo and not 5.1 or anything, so it seems pointless if I start watching Hulu and only the front speakers work anyways. Plus my living room design is really open. I'll include a floorplan just as a reference. The TV will be on the left wall of the living room on the floor plan.
    The only type of home theater setups I've done are where everything runs through an AV receiver, not just an audio receiver.
    If I were to do some sort of an optical receiver, what about my 360? It doesn't have optical out, I just use HDMI from it. Or my Mac mini, I use the 1/8" port which doubles as an optical. I'm not sure what to think about having to leave the receiver on all the time as well.
    Like I said, I have never done a receiver setup before, so I'm just looking for as many suggestions as possible.
     

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  9. wvuwhat macrumors 65816

    wvuwhat

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    #10
    AVSforum.com. It is your best friend.

    I picked up a refurbed (full-warranty) Harmon Kardon receiver last year from "HarmonAudio" or something of that sort on eBay. They are the actual company just getting rid of refurbed units. I think mine was something like 800 new and I was able to get mine shipped to me for under 250. I love it.

    Speakers. Good cheap brands: Mirage, Energy, Jamo

    Sub. I have a def tech, picked up for a little over 250, probably too much punch for an apartment. I'd suggest going towers in the front to get the low end, yeah it won't be as great as a separate sub, but you also won't have the neighbors complaining.

    For all your cable needs: monoprice.com
     
  10. Dmac77 macrumors 68020

    Dmac77

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2008
    Location:
    Michigan
    #11
    If you're willing to blow a few grand on a receiver, then go for an NAD receiver. I have one that runs my 7.1 setup. Haven't had any problems with it, and it's great.

    If you're not willing to shell out a few grand, go for a pioneer. I had one before the NAD, and while they aren't as great as an NAD receiver they're a great value for the money.

    Don
     
  11. barr08 macrumors 65816

    barr08

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2006
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #12
    I have an Onkyo receiver which I like very much. I am currently using this model, which is a few years old. Works great, and you can find it for < $300 pretty easily.
     
  12. bamaworks macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2007
    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    #13
  13. pilotError macrumors 68020

    pilotError

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2006
    Location:
    Long Island
    #14
    I like the Onkyo too.

    Just stay away from the sub-woofer in the apartment. It will drive your neighbors absolutely crazy!
     

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