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Thread: first serious speaker purchase

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    Default first serious speaker purchase

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    Hi everyone, newbie here...

    I'm taking a new job in a more remote location, which comes with a significant raise, I thought this would be a good time to invest in some home theater equipment seeing as I will be at home a lot there

    It will be used for movies and music. I already have a TV, and a junky htib system that I inherited that I don't intend on moving with me.

    I was leaning towards the Marantz SR5008 AVR, as it has the modern features that I would like, plus seems to have fairly decent sound quality compared to other AVRs. I also liked that it has pre-amp out, so if I want to add an amp in the future I could.

    In terms of speakers, I was thinking of starting two floor standing fronts, and will probably upgrade to 5.1 shortly after. I'd like to buy speakers made in a first world country. I came accross this discussion below on the forum here so I thought it would be a good place to start...

    http://www.highdefjunkies.com/speake...e-china-3.html

    Ideally my budget will be $1000-$1500 for the pair, this can be stretched a bit if they are good value/money. I don't have specifics for the room as of yet, but would assume medium sized room for now.

    From what I have researched on this forum and elsewhere so far, I was looking into: Totem Acoustics, Axiom, Vandersteen, and maybe the chorus line from Focal or the reference line from Paradigm (apparently their Series 7 is now made in China)?

    Any other thoughts, or recommendations in this price range?

    I'm a little nervous going used for a first purchase, but would consider it

    thanks in advance!
    Last edited by tdiddy; 12-01-2013 at 06:57 PM.

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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase

    Paradigm and Axiom are certainly good choices, especially if you're going to go to 5.1 eventually. I would be more inclined to go with a pair of stand-mounted bookshelf speakers (Paradigm Studio 10, for example, or Mini Monitor if you need to economize) and a good subwoofer (probably SVS or Hsu Research). This will provide better performance if set up properly and will be more economical in the long run. PSB would be another brand to look at. Although Vandersteen makes good speakers, the company is very two-channel-oriented still, so you probably would have a harder time configuring a surround system when the time came. Totem and Focal I don't know enough about to comment.

    I would not worry about where the speakers are built. Most big loudspeaker companies moved most or all of their manufacturing to China years ago to maintain competitive pricing. As long as they oversee the factories carefully, this is not an issue in terms of quality.

    As for the receiver, choose on features, reliability, and ease of setup and operation. Blather notwithstanding, good, modern receivers don't sound any different from one another when they are set up identically. Not saying you shouldn't get the Marantz -- just that you should discount anything you've read or heard about the comparative sound quality of competing receivers.

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    Thumbs up Re: first serious speaker purchase

    Thanks for the reply. Regarding not made in China, it's more of a ethical choice for me than quality. If I can afford to pay extra for something made in a country with good labor regulations I try to. Not usually the case for electronics, but seems like it might be for speakers. That being said looks like I may increase my budget a bit. Leaning more towards paradigm based on what I read. Was looking at studio 60 with a sub rather than studio 100, seems a bit more economical like you said. Or I could start slow with studio 10s plus sub and then add s60 and move the s10 to surrounds later?

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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase

    These are highly touted, I personally auditioned then at a local hi-end Home theater store.
    I was very impressed as were several reviewers including : Darryl Wilkinson of Home theater magazine review panel

    http://www.soundandvision.com/catego...peaker-reviews
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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase

    Quote Originally Posted by tdiddy View Post
    Or I could start slow with studio 10s plus sub and then add s60 and move the s10 to surrounds later?
    I think it's a great idea. I really love my Studio 10's. Paired with a good sub they'll rock.

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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase

    Quote Originally Posted by tdiddy View Post
    Thanks for the reply. Regarding not made in China, it's more of a ethical choice for me than quality. If I can afford to pay extra for something made in a country with good labor regulations I try to. Not usually the case for electronics, but seems like it might be for speakers. That being said looks like I may increase my budget a bit. Leaning more towards paradigm based on what I read. Was looking at studio 60 with a sub rather than studio 100, seems a bit more economical like you said. Or I could start slow with studio 10s plus sub and then add s60 and move the s10 to surrounds later?
    Both reasonable.

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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase

    Quote Originally Posted by ImRizzo View Post
    These are highly touted, I personally auditioned then at a local hi-end Home theater store.
    I was very impressed as were several reviewers including : Darryl Wilkinson of Home theater magazine review panel

    http://www.soundandvision.com/catego...peaker-reviews
    Golden Ear (and Definitive Technology) are also good brands. My only comment would be that in a system with a good subwoofer, there's not much point to a tower speaker except insofar as it eliminates the need for stands, since you're best off sending all the low bass to the sub.

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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase

    Thanks for all the feedback guys

    So far it seems like I will go with a SVS sub and a paradigm studio speaker setup. I'm a little confused as to which way to proceed

    like I said above, I could go sub + studio 10's for now, then use them as surrounds later. Would I be losing out using them as surrounds vs one of the adp speakers which are specifically designed for this purpose? Should I just buy the speakers that I want to use as fronts now, the $ is not a huge factor

    As you said above, there is not much difference between the tower/bookshelf for fronts in a system with a sub, perhaps I should forget the studio 60's and just get studio 20s (which seem to have a bit more to them than the 10s and even a bigger driver then the 60s) , then add specific surrounds later?

    I was leaning along the latter line... then I came across this thread http://www.avsforum.com/t/1434155/pa...dio-20s-or-60s

    so I'm back to square one. haha

    obviously I will try them out in person, but would be curious to hear others thoughts on this as well

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    Default Re: first serious speaker purchase


    The Studio 20 or Studio 60 will play somewhat louder than than the Studio 10, so if you're a big action-movie buff, one of those might be better. The 60's multiple woofers give it actually somewhat more effective radiating area and power-handling capability than the single larger driver on the 20. Given Paradigm's design approach, I would be surprised if there were big differences in basic sound among the three in a system with a subwoofer handling everything below 80 or 100 Hz. The ADPs will diffuse the surround field better, which makes a bigger difference in a 5.1 system than in a 7.1 system, but how much this would matter to you personally is hard to say. I would say that if you're in doubt, buy the speakers you want now and worry about the rest later.

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