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Getting my first Home Theater setup going and I am trying to understand the basics of the sound side as I need an AV receiver and a speaker system.

I am looking into 5.1 as my dip into this all but the number of brands, brand numbers and jargon is mind boggling.

Could anyone help define brands by quality/price, unique characteristics or the like?

Jumping point brands:

Logitech, Bose, Sony, and Klipsch?
 

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Getting my first Home Theater setup going and I am trying to understand the basics of the sound side as I need an AV receiver and a speaker system.

I am looking into 5.1 as my dip into this all but the number of brands, brand numbers and jargon is mind boggling.

Could anyone help define brands by quality/price, unique characteristics or the like?

Jumping point brands:

Logitech, Bose, Sony, and Klipsch?
Interesting thoughts and questions. For the brands mentioned, IMO Logitech is entry level small room or office sized gear. Nothing outstanding, just ok stuff. Bose is horribly overpriced Junk. Some of their headphones are good but after that...meh. Sony is interesting. Imo, good midrange AVR’s, good solid source gear(blu ray players etc) great displays although a little expensive, and speakers that are pretty good entry to mid range. Klipsch is a little polarizing. Olde speakers have a tendency towards harsh and bright. Nobody can agree on that since speakers are so subjective. The newer RP line seems to have addressed that and sound really good and smooth up top. Usually great value, especially if on sale. There are definitely other options out there. LOTS of them. And none of those brands makes a high quality subwoofer. Of them all Klipsch has a 15” that is pretty good, but that’s about all. Much of this will depend on how much you’re comfortable in spending. One persons 1k budget is another’s 10k. There a lot of good budget options for you to get your feet wet, but this whole thing is a rabbit hole, and very easy to get upgraditis. Due to that, I usually recommend buying at least a little higher quality gear for better performance and longevity.
 

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Jumping point brands:

Logitech, Bose, Sony, and Klipsch?
What made you settle on those brands? As Willis mentioned the first two should be avoided, the third is questionable and the fourth worth considering.

Since no one really knows what your specific situation is there are some key questions you'll be asked in order to narrow down the suggestions. Here are a few of them...
  • What is your budget? You don't want someone talking about a system that costs $10,000 when you only have $1,000.
  • What are the room dimensions (HWD)? This is the entire contiguous space the system will be installed in, not just the dimensions of the section considered the listening area (typically what occurs in an open floor plan).
  • What is the usage? Home theater I assume is a large part of it, since you're looking at 5.1, but will there be any gaming or music as well?
  • Are there any size or appearance restrictions? For example, some people prefer white speakers while most want black or some type of wood. Can the subwoofer be large or does it have to be smaller?
 

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No reason to buy brand new stuff. There are SO MANY good deals on Craigslist for everything you'd need. Receivers Marantz & Denon the way to go. Onkyos generally less reliable and buggy. Sony, no. Loads of all kinds of speakers. Just look for speakers with rubber woofer surrounds, not foam. Foam disintegrates over the years. Can still get great older brand speakers for give-away prices like Boston Acoustics and Definitive Technology. Stay away from speakers with built in subwoofer-amps.
 

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Yes as theJman stated, please give us more of an outline as to your budget, room info & wants for the system.

I do not agree with looking at the surround material of the speaker driver to be a guide to purchasing. Rubber, foam, treated cloth etc....all have their behaviors & uses.

For instance consider TektonDesign speakers who are VERY respected & use many “pro” drivers with accordion treated cloth surrounds. Or for instance FunkAudio subwoofers, arguably the best subs on the market, who use foam surrounds.

So, OP, don’t go buying some random speaker based on looks or materials alone quite yet please. There is a lot more to consider. Once we see some of the info we requested we can steer you in an appropriate direction bud. Take advice with a grain of salt as well....hey even mine!
 

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As mentioned - the two to four very important questions: budget limits for today; room dimensions and preferred display screen placement with accompanying acceptable speaker placement? Also, as mentioned above, is the intended use a Home Theater (HT)? Does your HT include Digital Streaming (DS)?

Interconnects used for Live Streaming thru your TV, Receiver, projector or computer should include HDMI - look for 4k High Speed Video or better. Also, Optical Audio and Video (AV) are used, as are Coaxial Digital Video Interconnects BNC's or RCA's (rca's for short runs).

As for Audio interconnects some prefer analog RCA's (unbalanced) connections throughout the system, when available. While others prefer (Balanced) XLR Interconnects. While quality HDMI cables have assumed the popular role of Video and Audio connections to Receivers (AVR's) from TV, DVR's, Live Stream DAC's and/or computers of all size and configuration, still the variety of good or best choices are essentially subjective yet easily qualified.

Of course, the majority will use a combination of HDMI, USB, RCA, Digital Component Video, DVI, DisplayPort and optical interconnects etc etc etc. Below is a link to Wiki where you will find more info than you need on Home Theater connections but a decent reference for quick answers beyond any User Manuals. Of course, you are welcome to continue asking for clarity here at HTS.

 

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OP, we don’t want to confuse ya. We’ll start off with simple questions with simple recommendations & tips. So as soon as we hear back from ya we can get started.

Of course the conversation can go as deep as you like because the level of knowledge here as a whole is incredible.
 
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