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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,
I was fortunate enough to pick up a couple new toys recently. First, the Vandersteen VCC-5 has replaced the VCC-1 Signature as my center channel. I'd been waiting for a good deal on Audiogon for a while, and I finally got hold of this one, with a Sound Anchor stand. The combo of the two is well over 100 lbs, and the performance is remarkable. Although the VCC-1 Signature (for sale) is a very capable center channel, the VCC-5 is a big step up. The VCC is bolted to the stand from beneath using factory-installed threads in the VCC-5. The stand is height adjustable from the back, and also has large, adjustable spikes on the bottom. All in all, this is a great setup for me. The only drawback to the whole thing is that it's rather large for a living room. Fortunately, I can spare the floor space.

The second thing that's somewhat new is the Panasonic 58PE75U plasma TV. I wasn't really planning on getting a new TV, but this was just a great deal at Costco on "Black Friday" that I couldn't pass it up. The 58" screen size seems just about right for our room; it has replaced a Mitsubishi 52" DLP. The DLP was a great TV, but was just too bulky, especially when combined with the cabinet we were using to elevate it. Although the Panasonic is "only" 720p (as was the Mitsubishi), the picture looks excellent with HD content from Dish Network. Movies played from our HTPC (using the XFXForce/nVidia 7600GS card that Sonnie mentioned here) look great as well (much better than what's coming from the Denon 1910 DVD player). The screen size and the 14 foot viewing distance go well together, and I hope to be able to squeeze performance out of this TV for some time to come. I've been more of an audiophile than a videophile, but I'm definitely starting to notice more details in the picture (both good and bad). I believe that the content sent to the TV is going to make the most difference, and that a capable 720p TV will be able to do a fine job if presented with a good signal. The cost of a 58" Panasonic 1080p was more than 2x the cost of this TV, and I just couldn't justify the price differential (NO WAY!).

The TV signal is run from the rack via a single HDMI cable. I was able to get both HDMI and 120 VAC in the wall behind the plasma, so there are no cables running up the wall. I've also buried all speaker cables in the crawl space, so things are looking much neater. The only cables running across the room at this point are those for the lamps. I also picked up the Lutron IR-controlled dimmer that Sonnie mentioned here, and that's another neat little trick. I don't need light control everywhere in the house, but it sure it nice to have it in this room!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Here are a few pics:

Before:

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After:

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100_4126.JPG
 

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Congratulations ... enjoy the toys :T:T

:rubeyes: ... That is a really big center speaker compared to mine ... but I can imagine how it sounds :yes::yes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks everyone! I'd like to think that I'm close to done, but it never seems to get quite there. I'd like to try to make it through 2008 without buying any new AV stuff*. You know -- try to "be happy with what I have..."



* I reserve the right to purchase the VSM-1 surrounds, as those will complete the Vandersteen speaker set (for now). I reserve the right to buy anything that's equal or lesser value to whatever piece it replaces (and for which I can sell the place being replaced). I reserve the right to purchase anything under $100 without asking (OK, maybe $200 if it's a good deal).
 

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Nice setup! I like the sound diffusers in the ceiling ;)

Vandersteens always have had a sweet spot in my heart.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, warpdrive! Unfortunately, my sound diffusers don't do much! :bigsmile: One of the next things on my plate is the creation of room treatments. Soon!
 
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