Home Theater Feedback

So I’ve been thinking about forking out the coin for a home theater system, but I was hoping to hear back from SRK before I even get serious about purchasing one.

I have been reading up on the Sony DAV-LF1 home theater system, the Bose Lifestyle 28 Series II home theater system, and also an upgraded Bose system which costs more.

So how much is too much to pay?

I am not really concerned with the size of the speakers- I really just want great sound. I know one of Bose’s perks is that the speakers are very small but still emit great sound. I’d love that, but it’s also very, very pricey.

Any feedback would be appreciated.

I think Bose speakers and systems are completely overrated. Purchasing components are the way to go. What’s your budget?

I’m willing to fork out about 1500 dollars, more or less depending on what’s necessary.

If i were you, start w/ a good receiver…Pioneer, Harmon Kardon, & Onkyos are decent which you can get for $400-1000…Then gradually invest getting quality speakers…I really haven’t been keeping up w/ HT world but as i remember Bose were overpriced…Here’s my HTsetup i’ve had for about 5 years now…

120" DIY Screen
X1 Infocus projector
Onkyo Receiver
7.1 Athena surround sound speakers
Sony Bluray player
Zenith DVB 318 Upconvert Dvd player
Pioneer Laserdisc :rofl:

Going upgrade to a 1080p projector eventually…Love my Athena speakers…Probably buy Electric screen too…Everything else i’ve been pretty happy with…

Yeah, Bose is a rip.

Bose FTL

i’d recommend Denon receivers along with the above suggested ones too… i’ve had my eye on the 2809… one of few models that are still made in Japan. then you can buy a whole set of so-so speakers, or start off with just a good 2.1 then buy better fronts later and move your old ones to the rear

I bought this not too long ago, and it is well within your price range:


It has got everything you need for a sick blu ray set up. Check it out at Fry’s, or Amazon.

BOSE actually stands for buy other sound equipment :looney:

I agree about Bose, but while it is a solid system, it is way overpriced. Also consider that the midranges are, for all intents and purposes, simulated (read: faked). I am kind of a brand loyalist, and I’ve stuck with Polk speakers, Yamaha receivers and Mitsu TVs.

Unless you find a monster bargain (but remember you get what you pay for), I’d stick to picking up components separately. Definitely do your research and AVSforum is the perfect place to start.


Avoid the Bose. You can get equal or better speakers for around the same price. I had Bose and switched them out for some SVS speakers and never looked back.

There are several articles on the internet about how bad Bose systems are. Go to Audioholics.com and search around. I won’t get into the details here, but they are absolute garbage. Start with a good receiver that has HDMI switching/up-conversion. Good brands are Yamaha, Onkyo, Denon, Pioneer, etc. Pair that with some nice speakers from Klipsch, Polk, JBL, Yamaha, etc. I guarantee better sound for less money. No bullshit.

There are a TON of variables to consider, depending on the room and your budget. A general rule of thumb is you should budget half of the total for audio, and the other half for video. PM me and maybe I can help with some of the basics.

Well also consider at this point with the proliferation of bluray that many receivers will support TrueHD and DTSHD uncompressed audio. If you can get one that supports these newer formats. I switched to a new receiver with trueHD and it does make a difference as compared to DTS and dolby digital. Voices are crisper etc. It is a worthwhile upgrade. Especially if you have a ps3 and hdtv already. I do also think that bose is overpriced or rather you can get comparable stuff for far less if you do your research. Check avsforums.

The best home theater in a box systems have a standalone receiver paired with a set of 5 speakers and a powered sub. Look at Onkyo and Yamaha for decent offerings. You will spend a minimum of $400 for something that won’t be in the trash in a year.

Onkyo or Yamaha as far entry-level receivers are concerned; Yamaha in terms of musical performance.

A nice little speaker system to start with is the
Energy Take Classic 5.1 system - http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/speakers/satellite/energy-take-classic-review
About $360-$400.

There are countless others - do research on Audioholics or AVSForums.

like the others here suggest, i definitely recommend going with separates to get the most out of your system. HTIB solutions are good for the “need my fix quick” types, but there is a lot of great choices that makes an audio journey worthwhile.

budget-wise, at the very least invest in a good surround receiver and two speakers for a quality stereo setup. you can then add a sub, center, and surrounds to complete the package.

re: receivers – Denons are great receivers for the money. don’t be afraid of refurbed Denons from an authorized dealer – i’ve had mine for 3 years, no problems. yamahas are good as well, and a lot of folks like the onkyos. H/K if you could afford it.

re: speakers – internet direct dealers have many products at great prices. i have two Ascend Acoustics 340SE speakers for a L/R config, and they are friggin awesome (check ascendacoustics.com). i run them without a sub at the moment, and i still get plenty of great sounding bass. this would only get better once i put a sub into the mix, obviously.

other well-regarded internet-direct brands are svs, elemental designs, and av123.com.

and lastly don’t buy into the monster cable hype. monoprice is your friend.

good luck!

This needed to be repeated.

I second Elemental Designs for the sub, if not all the speakers.

Bose speakers are great. Just ask anyone trying to sell them to you. Don’t forget the extended warranty. :rofl:

I guess you are only wanting to buy the sound portion of your home theater. $1500 is a good budget, you can do very well. I recommend putting almost all of it into speakers. Receiver technology moves pretty fast and speaker technology moves extremely slowly. So don’t purchase speakers that you plan on replacing, that is just wasting money.

How big is your room that you are doing this in? How far do you sit from the speakers?

I highly recommend the RS850 front speakers from AV123 (as mentioned above by rpb). These speakers are made in China but are of high quality. They are shipped directly to AV123 and then you, so there are very little middlemen, no fancy store to pay for, etc.

The RS850s are absolutely fantastic! Besides being beautiful (rosewood), they sound GREAT. I have an older model, the RS750, and I love it, but the RS850 smashes mine. I’m very jealous of a friend that has them.

Now this is the part where you get scared away. :wink: The MSRP is $2000. However, they are on sale right now for the lowest they have ever been, $900. They are massive though, and shipping is $150. This is a lot of money, but also a really good deal. Here they are:

So this gives you L&R front speakers and leaves $450 for a receiver, which is completely doable. I have a Denon and it is very nice, but they are expensive. Also mine is the 3803 and is now considered an antique. Get at least a 5.1 receiver so you don’t have to upgrade it as you buy the rest of the speakers you need. If you tell us everything you plan on hooking up to the receiver video-wise, including what kind of cables you will use, we can help pick one.

Now you will have AMAZING speakers and a decent receiver. To complete your system you will need two, three, or four surround speakers, a center channel, and a sub.

The surround speakers I don’t think you really need to spend too much on. AV123 makes the RSS300, which I have. They are good for diffused surround sound, but for movies honestly they are not active so much that you would really notice if they were cheaper speakers. Unless you plan to listen to a lot of multi-channel music, I think the surround speakers are the only place in your HT that you can be cheap on.

The RS850s go pretty low and should hold you over until you get a sub. Don’t get me wrong, a sub is super important, its just that you want to get a good one so don’t waste your money until you have $500+ for one. Trust me, you’ll be so impressed with the RS850s you won’t worry about a sub for a while.

The center channel is very important for movies. I have the AV123 RSC200 and it is a highly regarded center. It also matches the RS850s nicely.

So there is my opinion. To recap:

  • Get the RS850s and decent receiver.
  • Add surround speakers next since this the cheapest upgrade.
  • Add the RSC200 center channel next if you watch a lot of movies.
  • Buy a very nice sub to finish off your audio system.

Also, buy your cables from Monoprice.com. Don’t even think about doing otherwise.

This guy knows what he`s talking about. On your budget, best best is yamaha or denon receiver along with Energy or Paradigms speakers.

Do NOT fall into the BOSE trap.