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Newbie enthusiast seeks help

Rega

amte24

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Hi Friends,

First of all, Kudos to all mods and contributors on this forum, excellent information and advice.
I reached here through google search results, my quest started when I heard a denon and B&W combo at a friends place. The sound was amazing ( though my friend insisted that the rig was not particularly high end). But for me it was a revealation. So I decided to move from my sony and kenwood days to better sound :)
As suggested for newbies, I did a search in the forums for a similar query, I did not get the answers, although the reason for this could be because of wrong search terms used, so please bear with me. I would be grateful if I could be redirected to relevant posts if they already exist,

So here goes: I live in Mumbai, the system is required for the living room about 250 square feet. I listen to all kind of music, right from Ghazals to rock and roll, my wife listens to bollywood music and FM. I need to necessarily go for bookshelf speakers due to paucity of space.

The aforementioned friend has suggested to go for a micro component system from Onkyo, Arcam or MArantz. I have the following queries.

Will a system like this come in a budget of 25 k
Are these systems compatible with iPOds and other USB inputs
Can you play flac files on these.
Is it better to pair main unit and speakers from different manufacturers rather than the system in a box.
where in mumbai can i find these
Also is it better to go for a home theatre solution, which will also sort the audio side, I have a 42 inch panasonic g10 plasma.

I went to the JBL store at palladum lower parel, they had a system which had two main units one on top of another, one was called a preamp - what is this? They quoted 50k for it.

Thank you in advance for your help.
 

NetFreak

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You can go with:

1. AVR (Heart of your HT system). This handles both audio and video and also amplifies the signal to drive the speakers. Cost would be approx 17k onwards. System that you heard, had a Denon AVR.
2. Speakers, this is something you will have to audition and decide for yourself. Decent speakers start from 12k for bookshelf.
3. Media player / DVD Player / Blue Ray player. It must have HDMI.

Total cost would be 35k approx.
 

amte24

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Thank you Net Freak

I already have a sony DVD player with HDMi. Will this suffice, currently it is connected to my TV.


There is a lot of talk on the forum on a dedicated stereo amp versus an av receiver, what do you suggest, Original idea was to look for a micro component system for audio needs....

Can you suggest some brands and models for AVR and Bookshelves to audition in the price range.

Can the TV play through the AVR on the bookshelves in addition to the TV speakers??

Thanks in advance
 

avidyarthy

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Hi,

First decide, music or movies!

If, only music, and with a budget of 25 k ..... then go through the Topping thread in the 'amplifier' section of the Forum. Thread starter ... psychotropic.

Give us your queries, after going through the entire thread.
 

amte24

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@avidyarthy
MUSIC

Read the topping thread....phew....
If I may say ( no offence intended)... I did not understand half the things...
But I am willing to try these out as the initial investment for my foray into " near audiophile sound " ( just being cheeky Mr. Madbullram :)) is manageble.

Will order on ebay tomorrow, couple of queries:

1. Can I use my current sony DVD player, its connected to my panny( hey I am picking the lingo) plasma through HDMI.
2. In the future can the bookshelves form part of a HT set up.
3. Is the sound enough for my Mumbai Living room ( approx 20 by 15 L shaped)
4. How do I play digital files, I was looking to buy a media player to connect to my TV, can that be connected to this rig.
5. What about FM for wifey
Thanks
 

unleash_me

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....the system is required for the living room about 250 square feet. I listen to all kind of music, right from Ghazals to rock and roll, my wife listens to bollywood music and FM. I need to necessarily go for bookshelf speakers due to paucity of space.

Will a system like this come in a budget of 25 k
Are these systems compatible with iPOds and other USB inputs
Can you play flac files on these.
Is it better to pair main unit and speakers from different manufacturers rather than the system in a box.
Denon RCD-N7

 

NetFreak

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I already have a sony DVD player with HDMi. Will this suffice, currently it is connected to my TV.
Yes that would be sufficient. This would serve purpose of music (Audio CD) + DVDs.

There is a lot of talk on the forum on a dedicated stereo amp versus an av receiver, what do you suggest, Original idea was to look for a micro component system for audio needs....
Its correct that for a given price range, dedicated stereo would be better for music.

AVR needs to power need 5 (or 7) channels. To give high power to so many channels (E.g. 130 Watts per channel), AVR would become too costly.

However, even a budget AVR would sound better than a micro system. Specially if speakers are decent.

If you have any specific system on mind, we can look at specs.

Can you suggest some brands and models for AVR and Bookshelves to audition in the price range.
I would suggest you audition Yamaha + Mission package that is available via a dealer on this forum. I think he is based in Mumbai. Not sure if the speakers are bookshelf, but that should give you an idea about what quality can be achieved in this price range.

BTW, are you planning to visit US or Far East in near future, or know someone that can bring AVR from there for you? That will reduce the cost a LOT.

Can the TV play through the AVR on the bookshelves in addition to the TV speakers??
Yes thats basic functionality of AVR. TV would have audio out that would go to AVR. You can turn on AVR when you want to play sound on Bookshelves.
 

GeorgeO

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To start with, it might be a good idea if you audition a few systems to understand what is available at different price points. If you have music or video in formats that are different you will need a processor(player) to decode them into a format that can be played or viewed.
 

rbalagopalan

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Hi, Since you are concerned about rigging up home theater in future I suggest that go for an extra mile with regard to investment in the Amp ie go for a receiver which has got speaker A and speaker B option. So that you can Have some good pair of Book shelf for present requirement of Audio listening and in future you can add speakers to build a home theater and slowly you can add a sub also. That point of time you can connect these book shelf to Speaker B terminal so that when ever you are watching movies operated with your speaker A and when ever you want to listen to music operate with speaker B.

If you go in for dock or combo systems you will never be able to upgrade in future and every time you have to replace where in you will incur huge loss. I hope Marantz gives you good receivers at economical price with A B option.

connecting the Ipod or any other gadget is no big deal to these amplifiers. even DTS hd or Master audio is no big deal you can always have a blue ray player with processor inside so that 7.1 audio can be directly given to the receiver's 7.1 Input.

I have a Asus Media player with a 1TB hard disk connected and connected the media player with my receiver with a optical cable. The whole system is great.

Hope I am not confusing you Good luck.
 

amte24

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@Netfreak: Thanks for your reply
I would suggest you audition Yamaha + Mission package that is available via a dealer on this forum. I think he is based in Mumbai. Not sure if the speakers are bookshelf, but that should give you an idea about what quality can be achieved in this price range..
Can you give me the handle for this dealer, or direct me to the post.Thanks

BTW, are you planning to visit US or Far East in near future, or know someone that can bring AVR from there for you? That will reduce the cost a LOT.

..
As a matter of fact I am going to Vegas to attend the CES in January. So do you suggest that I pick up an AVR there and get it back. What are the duty implications? And we are back to the question of which AVR. I wouldnt have time for auditions there. My whole day will go in attending the exhibition and press cons.
 

avidyarthy

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Will order on ebay tomorrow, couple of queries:

1. Can I use my current sony DVD player, its connected to my panny( hey I am picking the lingo) plasma through HDMI.

YOU WOULD HAVE TO USE AN RCA SPLITTER. THE TP20 HAS ONLY ONE 'FEED', SO TO USE IT WITH MULTIPLE SOURCES SOURCES, YOU NEED TO CONNECT A SPLITTER TO THE TP20 INPUT TO ACCEPT MULTIPLE SOURCES.

2. In the future can the bookshelves form part of a HT set up.

NO

3. Is the sound enough for my Mumbai Living room ( approx 20 by 15 L shaped)

WITH THE 'RIGHT' SPEAKERS, YES.

4. How do I play digital files, I was looking to buy a media player to connect to my TV, can that be connected to this rig.

YOU MIGHT HAVE TO CONSIDER TP30 THEN. LET MADBULLRAM GUIDE YOU ON THIS.

5. What about FM for wifey

JUST HAVE TO ATTACH AN FM TUNER TO THE SPLITTER I WAS MENTIONING.
 

NetFreak

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If you are visiting US, then there is no need of looking elsewhere. Just have any of your colleagues order it and keep it for you.

I auditioned 4 - 5 entry to Mid level AVRs in Mangolia HT Store in Best By in NY. Based on that, I would recommend these models:

1. Amazon.com: Denon AVR-391 5.1 Channel AV Home Theater Receiver with HDMI 1.4a (Black): Electronics
2. Amazon.com: Yamaha RX-V667 7.2-Channel Home Theater Receiver (Black): Electronics

Denon is for 8.7k. Absolutely amazing deal. Though it lacks features like automatic room calibration, it sounds decent and is quite a deal.

Yamaha is for 23k and is feature complete and sounds amazing.

I would pick up one of these depending on budget.

Both would not attract ANY duty if brought in as part of baggage. Imports up to 25k (sum of all items) have 0% duty. Duty is 37.5% beyond that.

Add 3k to final cost for 220 to 120v transformer that you would buy in India. This is a must or you risk damaging the AVR specially if you buy cheaper converters that do not have "isolation transformer".
 

amte24

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Hey this seems to be a good option. I can then pair this with speakers here in India. I can also use my existing DVD player, also Tata sky HD can go through this.
Does this support FM??
 

asliarun

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If space is an issue, why don't you go for the Audioengine A5? They're powered speakers so you won't need an extra amplifier, and will only need to connect the speakers directly to the source (iPod or DVD player or CD player or media player). Audioengine also has a decent reputation on this forum.. I don't have one myself but I have only read good things from others.

I think it retails for about 20k, which will also be within your budget.

Audioengine also sells a wireless kit for their speakers which will further reduce your wiring clutter.

For small space constrained apartments, I would consider this an ideal option.
 

NetFreak

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Hey this seems to be a good option. I can then pair this with speakers here in India. I can also use my existing DVD player, also Tata sky HD can go through this.
Does this support FM??
Both of these support FM and can route HDMI from DVD Player and Tata sky HD.

Keep in mind that Denon's 391 will not route Analog video to HDMI. That means if you want to connect non-HDMI set top box to TV, you will need to buy one more cable for 2 - 300 Rs.
 

amte24

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@asliarun: Powered speakers do not sort my tranport issue, not sure what kind of quality will I get driving those speakers through existin DVD player. Thanks for your input

@ Netfreak
Thanks , I am now fully leaning towards this solution, I can attach my existing Tata Sky DVD and DVD player to the Denon AVR as well as look to add a media player to play digital audio and video files , any suggestions !!! on a suitable media player. I had played around with the seagate go Flex TV , forgot to check whether flc files will play on it, the performance for other HD video formats was quite ok.
Now , to start auditioning speakers to pair with the AVR , any suggestions !! I checked the ProFX site , they do not seem to carry 591, they only have high end AVR's.
At a risk of sounding stupid, can I just start with two speakers, My issues are with the rear speakers, drawing wires will be an issue as one side of my living room is a full length french window. I beleive there are solutions with wireless rear speakers, are they good in terms of audio quality and what are the price points. Also again risking sounding stupid, when playing audio, does the sound gets delivered to all 6 spekers or you can restrict to stereo and only drive 2
 

NetFreak

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You can start definitely with just 2 speakers. This would run AVR in stereo mode.This would work just fine for Music and FM. I would suggest buying third (center) speaker as well for movie dialogues. Since this AVR does not have auto calibration, you will have to select this manually in setup menu. Other AVRs detect speakers and automatically configure to stereo mode if only two speakers are present.

I am not sure if this particular AVR can simulate (approximately) 5.1 output with two or three speakers. This is required for clear surround effects in movies. Best bet would be to call Denon USA's tech support to clarify that.

And do search reviews of this receiver on various sites. Good starting point is:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1252688

Regarding Media players, I am using Xtreamer, but newer / better players might have come in market since then. This player plays pretty much every format.
 

amte24

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Hi Netfreak,
Have ordered the AVR, should get delivered inUS by 28th, will get back with me in Jan.
Thank you very much for your help, your really answered some unformed questions and crystallized my thoughts.

Since I don't think this Receiver is available here, I would need to audition speakers alone. Can you help with a likely list of BS front speakers and as suggested a centre one.
Ay help from other members is appreciated too. Ideally I would like to freeze on the speakers before going to US, as then I can start listening to the set up on return.
Thanks again for your help.
 

NetFreak

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You can audition speakers with Denon 1311. It i practically the same system as 391 in terms of audio quality.

One crucial component of your system is going to be a Step Down Transformer. Do buy a good quality "Isolation transformer". Should cost around 3k.

BTW, what was the final cost of AVR (Inclusive of Tax/S&H).
 

amte24

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Thanks Will do, any brand names for these stabilizers.
The total cost including everything was $ 194, my credit card got charged Rs. 8818.74.

Can you suggest some speaker models to audition, also do you think a 3.1 setup makes sense ( does it exist :))
 
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