Research2010 - System Notes - Home Theater Forum and Systems -

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post #1 of 4 Old 08-14-11, 06:48 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 18
My System
Research2010 - System Notes

Current component list:
AVR – Onkyo TX-NR609
Blu-ray Player - Panasonic DMP-BDT210
Cable Box – Motorola DCX3400
Game Console – Nintendo Wii
Game Console - PlayStation 2
Television – Samsung Plasma 42 inch - PN42A400C2D
System Automation:
Remote Control – Logitech Harmony 880
System Conductivity:
AVR to TV = HDMI for video
Blu-ray Player to AVR = HDMI for audio and video (BlueRigger Category 2 Certified – 3 feet)
Cable Box to AVR = HDMI for audio and video (BlueRigger Category 2 Certified – 3 feet)
Game Console to AVR = Composite for audio and component for video
Nintendo Wii = HD Pro Component Cable – 6 feet
Sony PlayStation 2 = SCPH-10490 – 10 feet
Center Speaker – RCA Center Speaker RT 2600 (Part of old HTIB setup.)
Left & Right Front Speakers – RCA Left & Right Speaker RT 2600 (Part of old HTIB setup.)
Data Network:
Belkin Pivot-Plug Surge Protector BP112230-08
Modem - Motorola SURFboard SB5100
VoIP Obi100 VoIP Telephone Adapter and Voice Service Bridge
Wireless Router - D-Link Xtreme N Gigabit Router DIR-655
Handheld Entertainment:
Creative Zen Vision M
Kindle Fire
Kindle Keyboard
Nintendo 3DS

Retired or Deceased Components:
VCR – Sony SLV-740HF (Died in Spring 2011. When it died it also ate a copy of Snow White. It had a long useful life of 10+ years. Thank you Sony.)
Right & Left Front Speakers – Kenwood Floor Standing (Model number unknown.) (Lost in moving to current location. No loss really considering they were pre built paper cone speakers. I can do better.)
VCR – Sony SLV-N700 (Yes I still have one and yes it still works.) This component was retired and donated to Goodwill. It served us well and we wish it luck in finding a new home.
OTA Antenna – Antennas Direct Terrestrial Digital DB4 (Replaced with Comcast cable on 08/15/2011.) Retired and put in storage for potential reuse in the future. Excellent product with great reception.
AV Receiver – RCA RT2600 (Don’t laugh. Part of old HTIB setup.) Retired by the addition of Onkyo TX-NR609 on 10/09/2011.
Subwoofer – RCA Subwoofer RT2600 (Stop laughing! At least the sticker says it is a subwoofer.) Retired by the addition of Onkyo TX-NR609 on 10/09/2011. The OnkyoTX-NR609 does not have a Speaker Level output for the subwoofer.
DVD Player – Panasonic DMR-ES10 Retired with the purchase of the Panasonic DMP-BDT210 (01/14/2012). Donated to Goodwill after 7+ years of trouble free service.

Notes on current component list:
Over the years my system has been pieced together. I am now taking the plunge and creating a “home theater” for my family. Right now you will see that my system consists of several HTIB components and few stand alone components. My focus over the next year will be on building a complete “package” to finally have great sound and a surround sound environment. This post will give me a history of how my system has evolved.

I will be updating this post as components are changed/upgraded. I’ll be posting questions and speaker builds under separate threads in the Speaker & Sub DIY forum section. I will try and link everything here but I don’t promise that.

Thank you for posting pictures and component lists. It really got me motivated to post my setup. Also thank you to everyone for sharing their building experience and component research. This information is extremely helpful when researching ideas for projects and possible component upgrades.

Last edited by Research2010; 01-15-12 at 08:11 PM. Reason: Making changes to layout and current system information.
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post #2 of 4 Old 10-08-11, 01:47 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 18
My System
Re: Research2010 - System Notes


Since my last post there have been minor changes to my system which are directly related to the installation of cable service from Comcast. With almost two months of service I am satisfied with the decision to switch from OTA to cable service. While I do notice a slight resolution downgrade in HD programing compared to OTA, I believe right now this is a function of my limited connection types noted below. In the coming year I hope to have HDMI connections in place and this minor visual downgrade will be restored with better video and audio connections.

I noted in my last post that my first true upgrade would be a new AVR. After considerable thought and research I have elected to make my first true upgrade the installation of clean power and surge protection for the entire system. I have not decided what power protection product I will use but I am leaning towards Tripp Lite products right now. I have decided that I will install PS Audio Power Port Classic AC Receptacle that feeds power to the entire system.

Notes on system changes since last post:
On 08/15/2011 I retired my OTA antenna (Antennas Direct Terrestrial Digital DB4) with cable service from Comcast. The tech installed a brand new Motorola DCX3400. Due to AVR limitations I have video output directly to the TV and audio output to the AVR. When I replace the AVR I will upgrade to an HDMI connection.

This setup caused a change in System Conductivity. The optical cable between the TV and Receiver is no longer required. Audio and video are delivered through coax (RG-6) to the Motorola DCX3400. The optical connection on the DCX3400 feeds audio to the AVR and the component connection on the DCX3400 feeds video to the TV. As noted previously all cables are generic.

On 09/15/2011 an executive decision was made to retire the VCR. The Sony SLV-N700 lived a long and useful life. The VCR and all VHS movies were donated to Goodwill so that a new owner will continue to get use out of them.

The rechargeable battery in the Logitech Harmony 880 reached the end of its useful life. Currently the replacement battery has been found but not ordered. For now the Comcast Custom DVR 3 Device remote is filling the remote control functionality of my system.

Last edited by Research2010; 10-31-11 at 11:59 PM. Reason: Updated with dates for historical purposes.
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post #3 of 4 Old 10-31-11, 11:57 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 18
My System
Re: Research2010 - System Notes


On Sunday October 9th, 2011 I went to Fry's and found the Onkyo TX-NR609 listed for $299.99. Brand new in the box! Not refurbished or a returned item discount. It was $299.99. I could not believe my eyes so I had to jump on it. I was able to walk away with a brand new OnkyoTX-NR609 with a 4 year service contract for $382.16. The cheapest I had found this receiver online was $380.00 and that was through Amazon. There were cheaper vendors but most of those were refurbished models.

I was so excited that all Sunday afternoon was spent setting up and connecting the new receiver. On Wednesday October 19th, 2011 I received a replacement battery for the Logitech harmony 880 remote. The addition of the OnkyoTX-NR609 required a reprogramming of the activities with the remote which was easy with the Harmony software. I will be fine tuning the remote over the coming weeks and will be looking/reading on custom uses of the Harmony 880 in system automation.

Notes on system changes since last post:
The OnkyoTX-NR609 upgrade caused a change in System Conductivity. The current setup is:
Cable Box to AVR = HDMI for audio and video
DVD Player to AVR = Optical for audio and component for video
Game Console to AVR = Composite for audio and component for video
AVR to TV = HDMI for video

In my post from 10/08/2011 I noted that my next purchase was to be upgrading to clean power and surge protection. The purchase of the OnkyoTX-NR609 has shifted that decision yet again. I swapped out the old power strip for one with surge protection and will keep this for the time being. Now that the OnkyoTX-NR609 is in place that next minor system change will be to purchase a white HDMI cable (approximately 20 feet) and white speaker cable for the front left, center and front right speakers. This will help the cabling “blend" better on the wall. (I live in an apartment so in wall cables are out.)

My anticipated upgrade sequence is now:
1. Component rack or cabinet
2. Speaker stands for rear channel speakers
3. Clean power with surge protection (Tripp Lite HT10DBS & PS Audio Power Port Classic)
4. Subwoofer (Dayton Audio T003K 10” Titanic Mk III Subwoofer Kit)
5. Blu-Ray player (Panasonic DMP-BDT210 unless something comes along better in this price range.)
6. New front left, center, front right and rear surround speakers. (Pioneer SP-BS41-LR.)

Minor system changes that will happen before next upgrade sequence:
1. Replacement battery for Logitech Harmony 880 (Purchased 10/16/2011 $12.42 Amazon)
2. Right angle male to female coax adapter (Purchased 10/16/2011 $2.89 Amazon)
3. Component video / composite audio cable for Wii (Purchased 10/22/2011 $3.89 Amazon)
4. White HDMI cable (20 feet)
5. White speaker cable (100 feet)
6. Onkyo UWF-1 Wireless LAN Adapter
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post #4 of 4 Old 01-15-12, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 18
My System
Re: Research2010 - System Notes


In the two and half months since my last post I have continued to make minor system tweaks. My attention as been focused on what replacement speakers I am going to purchase. I noted previously that I was going to go with the NHT SuperZero's but after carefully consideration of budget and my overall system needs I am going to go with either the Klipsch HD 500 or the Energy 5.1 Take Classic. Making a speaker upgrade decision is so complex.

I finally felt like it was time to buy a Blu-ray player. On 01/14/2011 I purchased the Panasonic DMP-BDT210 from Amazon for $127.99. Not the best deal that I have seen but I was ready to make the purchase. This will retire the Panasonic DMR-ES10. This DVD Recorder has been solid with no problems at all. I have had it 7+ years so it has lived a long life and did everything we ever asked it to.

I will be connecting the DMP-BDT210 via HDMI to the OnkyoTX-NR609. I will be replacing the version 1.3 HDMI cable from the Cable Box to the AVR as well. The HDMI cables from the Cable Box and Blu-ray Player will be version 1.4 from BlueRigger. These are stated to be Category 2 Certified and provide 48-Bit Deep Color, 3D, Audio Return Channel, Ethernet, 4K, True HD Dolby 7.1 and DTS-HD Master Audio.

Other things I have added or reintroduced include:
The purchase of the Onkyo UWF-1 (11/01/2011) for streaming to the OnkyoTX-NR609 and the purchase of the D-Link DIR 655 router (11/19/2011) for increased bandwidth. After tweaking and positioning changes I was able to raise the connection quality from an average of 30% to an average of 50%. No audio drop outs or buffering with internet radio.

Also purchased was a component cable for the Nintendo Wii (10/22/2011). After reading several reviews and comments about the use of a component cable for the Nintendo Wii I had mixed feelings about the outcome. It really changed the image quality and clarity of the games. Highly recommend this upgrade to anyone who has a Nintendo Wii and a display or AVR capable of component connections.

I reintroduced a Sony PlayStation 2 to the system setup (01/14/2012). The PS2 was just hanging out in the closet and since we had several games for it the executive decision was made to see what the graphics looked like on an HDTV. I purchased a component cable (SCPH-10490) to get the best possible video quality. However at the time I was using both component connections on the OnkyoTX-NR609. Hence the tipping point on purchasing the Panasonic DMP-BDT210.

Another system tweak was the purchase of the Belkin Pivot-Plug Surge Protector (BP112230-08) (01/01/2012). This is used with the data network components and was necessary due to the purchase of a Sleep Number p7 bed. The bed requires as UL1449 surge protector and this protector should meet all my needs as necessary. I will be building a holding rack and cable management system for the data network components once the bed is delivered and installed.

My anticipated upgrade sequence is now:
1. Component rack or cabinet
2. Speaker stands for rear channel speakers
3. Home theater speaker package. (Klipsch HD 500)
4. Clean power (PS Audio Power Port Classic)
5. Surge protection (Tripp Lite HT10DBS)

Last edited by Research2010; 01-15-12 at 08:05 PM.
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