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Hello,

I recently purchased a 52" Samsung 950 LCD tv and would like to get a really nice home theatre system. My room is pretty big, about 18' X 22' with a vaulted ceiling going from about 25' were the tv is to 10' at the other end. I want to get a great system that I won't have to upgrade for quite some time. I was looking at the Onkyo HT-S9100THX but afraid it will not be able to fill the room with quality sound. My budget is as high as $3,500 w/cables and all (already have HDMI cables). I love great sounding audio but is there a big difference between a $1.5k and $3.5k system? What would you recomend in either price range? What is the minimum watt output I should be looking at? Should I seriously be considering two subs? Any recomendations on high end installation in Northern NM?

I really prefer 7.1 and can fit any size speakers. I have a blueray, wii, and direct tv hddvr and top quality HDMI cables.

Thanks in advance for your help!
Ryan
 

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Hello Ryan and welcome the Shack! :T

With a budget up to $3500, you definitely DO NOT want to be looking at a HTIB system.

I would start out by considering what speakers you want. These will make the biggest impact on your system. This will most likely be your most important decision. The problem is... there are sooooo many to choose from and everyone seems to like a little something different or hear something different from different speakers. Check out Jacen's Speaker Buying Advice thread to start with.

For subs... you can go manufactured or DIY. If you are not DIY inclined, then I would look at SVSound subs. While their are many subs out there and we are somewhat bias with SVS being a sponsor, they are truly a very reliable bang for the buck sub that is hard to beat. With that big of a room, I would consider the PB13 or PC13 Ultra's and not look back. This will enable you to also consider smaller main speakers... and SVS also sells those too.

I would look at either the Onkyo 876 Receiver or Emotiva separates for your processing and power. The Onkyo 876 is a really nice receiver that has been reviewed and received very well. It is an all around good bargain. At the same time, Emotiva is about to unleash their newest processor, which when paired with one of their amps, can be one of the affordable separate combo solutions out there.

Maybe this will help you get started looking anyway.
 

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I own a 876 for a 9w by 11L by 7H room, and it has alot of power. I would highly recommend it, not only cuz it looks a lot cooler than my other AVRs, but it has alot of features and power to use for years to come.

Speakers? Thats a really difficult area to approach, Go out and start checking out speakers. Get a jist of how brands sound. Remember, if a speaker sounds low on treble or bass, most likely the Tone Control on the AVR is set to 0 treb, 0 bass. I find that I have to increase it always, the treble always, and bass a little.

But overall, just go and check out some speakers. Find what ya like. It will change when ya throw them in ur place compared to the demo room. But most places come with a decent return policy, and go to one that does have a decent return policy.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Thanks for the advice. This will help me get started as I go out and start listening to different stuff. What is a DIY sub? Also, does anybody know of a high end store in the Santa Fe or Albuquerque area? I have had a hard time finding places to listen to products that are not main stream best buy or ultimate electronic products.
 

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Personaly I would stay away from the big box stores, they have little to no decent products and their staff know very little about any of their products.
As said above stay away from any HTIB system with your budget you can get some really nice speakers and a receiver.
Have a look at SVSound, the MTS-01 speaker system is a fantastic deal. And for a sub look at the PB13 Iltra You simply cant get better for the money.
 

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If I was going to start all over again, I would seriously consider the Emotiva gear. When they do roll out thier new seperates, it will be the most affordable seperates in the market that support the new formats.

I would also go with SVS. I have not heard thier speaker line, but have enjoyed thier subs for several years. They have been stellar in every respect, from price to customer support. If their speakers sound half as good as thier subs, they are incredible.

Let us know what you narrow things down to when you get that far in your process.

Jeff Aguilar
 
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