Home Theater Forum and Systems banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

Ive built my own sub woofer with integrated O-audio bash plate amp. I currently have a 2.1 setup with 2x Gallo Orb speakers but im looking to expand this system to a 5.1 or 7.1 setup. Most of the time the sound will be coming out my computer. Ive been told that I need an amplifer and not a receiver, and also that a separate amplifier will usually out perform a receiver in the same price range. Is this true?

My budget is around $100-$350. I would like something that can do the job, sound great, and in an ideal world look pretty cool too, since it will be on display. Can anyone recommend me one?

James

P.s Im also in the UK so it needs to run on 240V
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
Hi James, If you are looking at running the 5.1 setup from your PC then you will need a preamp/amplifier for the outputs coming from your soundcard but tbh I would look at going for a cheaper receiver as it will give you more flexibility for the future and a digital input SPDIF optical or coaxial...you can look at the lower Onkyo AV amps or something from Yamaha/Sony as they would be a better solution for you...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Hi, thank you for the reply. Ive been looking into this a little more since my first post:

1. Is the only difference between an amp and a receiver the fact that a receiver can tune into radio stations? This really is no use to me since I listen to online radio anyway. I dont think I will be expanding it, since I use my computer for everything, DVD's, Music, TV etc.

2. I want the latest and creates dolby digital, THX and all that shizzle if I can afford it

3. I want to use an optical connection since im told that this will sound a lot better and my PS3 is already to be hooked up with this.

Some of the yamaha amplifers get good reviews, are you able to suggest one?

EDIT: Bah! Ive been told HD audio is better than Optical, is this true? Would this mean an HDMI connection?
EDIT2: I now know it is HDMI. It sounds like HDMI is better if your going above a 5.1 setup, which I wont be doing. Also 5.1 with HDMI is uncompressed, but im wondering how much difference that will make.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
Hi James,

If you want an up to date system then a newer AV amp would be the solution but to get HD Audio like DTS HD or Dolby True HD you will need either a Blu Ray player and AV amp/Receiver that supports these via HDMI or via Analogue outputs and inputs, but with Analogue the BD player decodes the HD formats.

Something like this will suit your needs Onkyo TXSR507 or Denon AVR1610
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thank you for your suggestion, ill look into these. I guess I should decide what connections im going to need as well. Im using this only for my computer output and PS3 output and it will always be used to run up to a 5.1 system. Is it still worth using HDMI over Optical?

What specification should I be looking for to get good HD surround sound 5.1 audio out of my computer and PS3? THX? Dolby TrueHD?
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
Thank you for your suggestion, ill look into these. I guess I should decide what connections im going to need as well. Im using this only for my computer output and PS3 output and it will always be used to run up to a 5.1 system. Is it still worth using HDMI over Optical?

What specification should I be looking for to get good HD surround sound 5.1 audio out of my computer and PS3? THX? Dolby TrueHD?
For the computer SPDIF is fine if your sound card does not have HDMI but your PS3 does so you will be able to enjoy the HD formats via the PS3 but just the plain vanilla type DTS & DD from your PC.

THX spec amps only really become available when you are looking at higher spec AV amps, the 2 main for AV amps specs are THX Select and THX Ultra2, you do not really need them if you are looking at a basic set-up.

Have a read about THX HERE which will explain more..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Ive been looking to upgrade my graphics card soon. If I brought a graphics card with HDMI output, can I put the HDMI into my amplifier for the sound, and have it come back out again to go into the back of my TV for visual? This would work well for the PS3 as well.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
I run a HTPC with an ATI Radeon 4870 which has HDMI going into my AV888, this gives me DD & DTS but also LPCM via PowerDVD which is the HD audio tracks decoded via software in my PC, so yes you can do this, with the newer cards they can actually bitstream the HD audio and I am even considering one for myself, there is so many options but you are on the right track with the way you are thinking...

have a look at these cards which will do all you need ATI Radeon 5700

The 5700 are quite reasonable but there is also the 5800 but you are looking at up to £300 for them...

Edit: I would concentrate on getting the AV amp/Receiver sorted first and then look at what source equipment you can feed into this to give you all the suggestions above...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Super, I think this is the route I will go down. In the case of the Denon, it has three input HDMI and 1 Ouput. Even though the Amplifer is only dealing with sound, will the output still carry the video through from the Input?

Im also thinking I could keep my 8800 (its old, but it still plays most games at full) and just get a new sound card with HDMI output instead.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Another thing as well...sorry :p.

Im going to be using a seperate plate amp on my sub, does this allow the plate amp to be connected to the denon? Is it the "preout" sections here:

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
These are also the specs of the speakers, just in case it flags up any problems with the denon.

Frequency Response:
On Wall: 76Hz to 22Khz
On Stand: 88Hz to 22Khz
Sensitivity: 88dB;
Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohms
Power Handling: 60 watts
(Small Enclosure) > 120 watts
Height on Stand: 37"
Drivers: 3" Pure Titanium full range
Crossover: None
Dimensions: 5" Sphere
Weight: 907g
Finishes: Matt Black, Snow White and Stainless Steel
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
The amp should be fine HDMI carries both audio & video and depending on what the connection is on the Sub amp plate, the denon can be connected via the sub pre outs located at the rear of the denon...it looks like a nice little AV amp which should be a great starting point...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,625 Posts
Get a receiver. The DACs on computers can be noisy. Let the receiver handle the pre-processing instead. It's not like Gallo's need an amplifier anyway.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
The gallos are about 60 watts max. Say there are 5 of these then that's 300W. Surely that does need an amplifier?

I dont understand about the receiver, if I will never use AM/FM radio, what is the point in using a receiver?

EDIT: Also - do I need a crossover for the gallos?
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
The gallos are about 60 watts max. Say there are 5 of these then that's 300W. Surely that does need an amplifier?

I dont understand about the receiver, if I will never use AM/FM radio, what is the point in using a receiver?

EDIT: Also - do I need a crossover for the gallos?
The Denon will be fine for the gallos, also most AV amps are also called receivers because they have a built in tuner, I never used them tbh when I had them so do not get too hung up on the radio side...also the Denon will handle the xovers required to send the right frequency to the sat Gallos and then to the sub.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Before I go ahead and commit to buying the denon, can you confirm these (if not dont worry, ill try to find an official Denon support forum).

1. I want to set it up this way - will this be possible? PC and PS3 plugged into Amp with HDMI. Amp plugged into TV screen with HDMI. Audio comes out of speakers, Video goes to TV. I can swtich both audio and video using the amplifier without having to switch wires around.

2. I can set the Gallos to +80Hz only (with the crossover you mentioned)

3. I can get full high definition surround sound 5.1 Audio
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
201 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I recently spoke to a Denon Support agent and he said this:

It is possible to use the "Video Select" option however this does not work with HDMI sources and only analogue ( such as component ) on the *10 range.
Thats not right is it? Seems to go against the reviews online.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,015 Posts
I recently spoke to a Denon Support agent and he said this:



Thats not right is it? Seems to go against the reviews online.
I think somewhere a long the line there is some confusion here, the AV/Receiver amp will switch what ever you would like to use, and will send video to the TV and amplify the speakers 5.1/7.1 or whatever your configuration is :confused:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
384 Posts
I think there may be some confusion about terminology.

A hifi amplifier has essentially no controls. It always amplifies its analog input signal by the same amount and sends it to a speaker.

A preamp includes input selection and a sound-level gain control. It selects the line-level analog input from one of several players (like a PS3 or computer or even a TV), adjusts its level appropriately, and sends it to an amplifier.

A box containing a preamp and an amp is usually called an "integrated amp". Such devices contain no digital processing and typically are stereo only, used most often by audio purists.

A processor modifies an input signal, from a CD player or computer, for example, and sends the results to multi-channel outputs. It might use Dolby Prologic processing to generate multi-channel surround-sound from a stereo CD, or decode a multi-channel Dolby Digital signal and send it to several analog outputs. A box containing a preamp and a processor is usually called a pre/pro.

A receiver puts all of these together: preamp, processor and amplifier in a single box. For historic reasons its called a receiver because it also includes an AM/FM radio tuner. Some modern receivers include HD radio and digital satellite radio reception, too. High end receivers also include networked media server connectivity. I don't think there are any integrated pre/pro/amps made any more which don't include a tuner of some kind -- so they're all receivers.

I hope this clarifies things a little.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top