Home Theatre Recomendations

Posted by: patrique

Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 10:08 AM

Hi there,

First time posting, hoping to get some advise for my new setup.

We've just finished our basement, and I was able to set aside a new room as our dedicated Home Theatre. It's on the small side, about 11 1/2 feet by 20 feet by about 8 feet tall, so just under 2000 Cubic Feet. I've already purchesed the receiver I'm going to use, the Onkyo TX-NR717, which puts out 125W per channel (6 ohms).

I've always planned on getting an Axiom speaker setup, mostly due to the excellent reviews I've ready, but also to support a Canadian company (I'm from Canada of course), and also because I've actually had a chance to see their manufacturing facility (the company I work for has a business relationship with them). Up to now I've been planning on getting the Epic 60/350 7.1 setup, but after doing some more research, I'm beginging to think that the Epic 50/ 350 or 500 might be better. Can anyone give me some thoughts? I'm leaning towards the 50/500 to take advantage of the DSP. We mainly watch Sci-Fi and Action movies, and I'd really like to get some of that very low rumble, like the first TRex scene in the original Jurassic Park smile

So, firstly, for my size room, is the Epic 50 a better choice than the Epic 60, with the smaller surrounds and M50's instead of M60's?

And secondly, is the 500 sub okay for me, considering my movie watching preferences?

Thanks in advance for any input.

Patrique
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 10:12 AM

Welcome Patrique!

My thought would be to go with the 60s and a 500 for the sub...holding off on the two back channels. Many find that there's not a very big difference between 5.1 and 7.1 (though that's room dependent) and, in either case, you could choose to add two more speakers later if you feel something is lacking.
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 10:24 AM

I'd heard the same about 5.1 vs 7.1 but a short while ago had a chance to sit down and listen to a friend of mines 7.1 setup using the Onkyo TX-NR709 (which is why I chose to go with the 719). For some reason I noticed quite a bit of difference in some of my favorite movies going to 7.1
I think it's mostly the source material I was using, being the heavily special effects type movies we watch.
Posted by: michael_d

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 10:57 AM

My room is about the same size as yours Patrique - 12 x 18. I have rear surrounds, and would recommend the rear surrounds to anyone. I am also using M60's, a VP160, 2 EP500's and I also have height and width channels in this room. The width channels are hit and miss and totally dependent on the source material. I rarely use them. I do however like the height channels and use DD PLZ primarily. I use QS8's for the surrounds and height channels - so I have six of them in this little room.

Having experimented with different speakers and amps in my room quite a bit, if you have the means, I suggest you go 7.1 with a EP 500, M60's, a VP160 and QS-8's. It will not be too much.
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:03 AM

Michael's post reminds me: You may want to consider a VP160 if you have the space for it. A wonderfully-neutral-sounding center that matches the M60s very well.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:31 AM

Unless I am sitting in the 2nd row of seats (basically behind the side surrounds and in front of the rear surrounds), the two rear channels aren't to terribly noticeable unless I bump up their dB a little, and then it ends up too loud for the 2nd row people.

I am glad that I have them, but more for giving a larger surround field than noticably hearing those extra discrete channels.

Also, Mark is right on the ball with the VP160. I have the VP180 (purchased before the VP160 came out) and it is a huge improvement over the VP150 (which I had good success with too). The center channel being the most important in the home theater, it is not something to skimp on and the VP160 will fit the bill VERY nicely.

And yes, get the 60s not the 50s...
Posted by: MarkSJohnson

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:41 AM

See? Nick and I agree on some things! grin
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:48 AM

Damn it guys, you're going to blow my budget smile

Okay, I'm now leaning back towards the Epic60 but with the 500 sub instead of the 350. Think I'll probably stick with the 150 centre that comes with it though... Considering the narrow width of the room, I might downsize the sides/rears to the QS4's instead of the QS8's though.
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:54 AM

You're not going to save enough money to matter by downsizing from the QS8's to the QS4's.

Based on my experience, I'd strongly recommend M60's, VP160, 2 QS8's and the EP500. Get the rear speakers later.
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 12:00 PM

Originally Posted By: patrique
Damn it guys, you're going to blow my budget smile


LoL....... budget, you're funny wink ..


However, keep in mind. You don't need to buy everything all in one shot. You can buy pieces slowly, over time. I would start with the M60's and center either the 160 or 180. Then add a sub, then the surrounds last. Also, you can buy B stock. The B stock items and indistinguishable to the average person over A stock.
Posted by: J. B.

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 12:33 PM

+ 1 for what dakkon says. this way, you can have it all, just need a bit of patience.
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 02:54 PM

You know, if your heart is not set on floorstanding main speakers, you might find that the M22's plus the EP500 will be more than adequate. I'd be more inclined to take that step to save money than to skimp on the center channel. Also, you could save a bit by using M2's as the rear speakers, depending on your room configuration.
Posted by: nickbuol

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 03:21 PM

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
See? Nick and I agree on some things! grin

Just not beer or politcs... oh wait, it is Tom with the beer...

Just not politics then! grin
Posted by: fredk

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 09:38 PM

Drop the read surrounds and go for the better center. Having seamless transition between the fronts and the center will really enhance the movie experience.

I also agree that in your room you could go to the M22. In my direct listening experience in almost the same size room (12 x 20 x 8), the M22 + sub was pretty much the same as the M60 (minus the really low bits the sub provides).

On low frequency rumble and the EP500 being enough that's a tricky question. If you don't believe me, go to avsforum and read some of the DIY sub projects. grin If I had the money, I would upgrade my 350 to the EP800 or similar.

Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
See? Nick and I agree on some things! grin

How much did you pay him?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 09:42 PM

Patrique, welcome. If you go with tower speakers, go with the M60s. I'd also suggest that the M22s, when supported in the lowest bass by a good sub, would do an excellent job.

As to the center speaker, for really not that much more, the VP160 should be seriously considered. Or, at a lower cost, if you can place it, a vertical M22 makes a fine center.

Now, what I really want to bring to your attention is the receiver. The Onkyo 709 which your friend has is probably the unit that I've suggested the most over the past year or so, but the 717, which is supposedly its successor, has been significantly downgraded in a key area. The Audyssey MultEQ XT in the 709 has been downgraded two steps to the 2EQ, which doesn't equalize the subwoofer channel, for the low bass where correction is most needed. I'd suggest that the 717 be returned.

If a 709 can be found at a good price this would be a fine choice. If not, a Denon 2312, which is quite similar overall, should be considered.
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:10 PM

Originally Posted By: JohnK

Now, what I really want to bring to your attention is the receiver.



For some reason, i picture you reading AVR instruction manuals as some "light reading" before bed John....
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:12 PM

Unfortunately I was too late to pick up a 709 frown Luckily a friend of mine from work, her boyfriend is an audio engineer for a concert venue, and in exchange for helping setup some PC stuff for him has volunteered to come over with some of his equipment and setup the room to my liking. Other features in the Onkyo made it the must have brand for me.
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:22 PM

Patrique, your not too late.
http://www.accessories4less.com/make-a-s...Receiver/1.html
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:32 PM

I really wanted to stay with new units, not refurb's. Also wanted to stay with local retailers, since I've had issues with international shipping (I'm in Canada) and electronics being tossed around in shipping.....

I think the 717 will suit me fine for what I need, though I agree, losing the MultiEQ XT was a big loss. It'll take a lot of tweaking by a person a lot smarter with this stuff than me to make up for it smile

Amazing overall what features become necessary (or at least highly wanted) over time. My last HT Receiver purchase required no where near this much research smile
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/13/12 11:49 PM

Patrique, Alex(dakkon)apparently wasn't aware that you're in Canada. Accessories4less, which offers excellent deals in the U.S., doesn't ship to Canada.

Room EQ isn't something that can be "tweaked"; it requires the electronic processing.

I took a quick Google look at Canadian deals and see that Crutchfield Canada has this . This wouldn't be considered a great deal in the U.S., but it seems that things are tougher in Canada.
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/14/12 12:34 AM

Originally Posted By: JohnK
Patrique, Alex(dakkon)apparently wasn't aware that you're in Canada.



2 new Canadan's in one day!!... What are the chances of that.....guess i fail at effectively helping new peoples.... Today at least....
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/14/12 12:37 AM

Yeah, Alex; a Denon manual is especially engrossing. It's like that anti-gravity book I was reading; just can't put it down!
Posted by: dakkon

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/14/12 12:53 AM

John, better than Tax law?
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 08/14/12 01:08 AM

Memorized the Tax Code. I probably rank it even ahead of the 2000 page Audyssey thread.
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 09/04/12 12:28 PM

Just wanted to give you guys a quick update. Picked up my set from Axiom about 10 days ago. Following some more research, reviews, forums, etc... and I ended up going with the M22's, QL8's (4 of them), EP500 and the VP150. Spent the last while hooking them all up and doing the sub crawl, and I think I've got it to just about where I want the sound to be now smile Was great dealing with Brent at Axiom, and talking a little bit to Steve in the warehouse when I did the pickup. Great drive up from the Toronto area too, we were lucky to have great weather, not too hot smile Thanks for all the advise you guys gave, even if I didn't follow all of it smile
Posted by: Murph

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 09/04/12 02:51 PM

Excellent!

We will wait for your reviews and pictures soon, I hope.
Posted by: JohnK

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 09/04/12 09:25 PM

Very good, Patrique. You followed the most important suggestions: to go with the M22s plus EP500. I'm sure that you'll enjoy great music(besides those movies)with that combination, as I have for years.
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 09/25/12 01:53 PM

Just a quick update. Room is pretty much finished now, after a lot of fine tuning, along with purchasing some final components, I have to say I'm extremely happy.

Ended up getting the Epson 5010 projector, and have it going on a 100" electric screen that comes down right in front of my 67" TV. I use the 67" for watching most TV and movies, but go with the projector whenever I want something quite large and have a good resolution source (this was one of the reasons I needed a receiver with 2 HDMI outs). Sources are a PS3 which I mainly use for BluRays, Xbox360 (gaming), HD Satellite receiver and an HTPC. Receiver is the Onkyo 717, and speakers are the Epic Grand Master/500. All components are on the back wall, with only speakers and TV at the front. Finally got around to arranging all my DVD's also.

Will post pics shortly, thanks again for all the help guys. BTW, I've only had the Epson 5010 for a few days, but I'm really impressed.... nice unit, and got a good deal with the 5020 being right around the corner.
Posted by: tomtuttle

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 09/25/12 05:28 PM

Excellent!

Are you using some kind of RF/IR blaster to control the components?

Looking forward to the pictures. It sounds like a wonderful and elegant setup!
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 09/25/12 10:10 PM

I can just aim my Harmony remote sideways or backwards in the room and it gets everything fine, the components are open to the room, not hidden.
Posted by: patrique

Re: Home Theatre Recomendations - 02/11/13 10:43 PM

Finally got some pics posted in the Gallery section smile