Need new A/V equipment to support HDTV (1 Viewer)

N817

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Nov 16, 2011
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Arroyo Grande, CA
We finally upgraded to a flat-panel HD TV (Sony XBR55HF929) and plan to get a Dish Network 722 satellite receiver. Now we need some A/V equipment with HDMI capability to support it. We plan to hook up several components including Satellite, Blue Ray, Apple TV, Slingbox, VHS/DVD recorder, CD, Phonograph, and even cassette.

We currently have Belle Klipsch front speakers which we plan to keep along with a Klipsch subwoofer, and a Klipsch center channel speaker which we would like to replace with a wall-mounted center channel below the TV.

We went to the local A/V store and met the owner. He's been in business 26 years and has multiple reference from happy customers.

Here is the local is list of recommended equipment and prices from the local dealer.

Integra DTR 9.9 (Last year's demo) $1,100 Is this a good choice? Are we sacrificing newer technology?
Sony BDPS-480 Blue Ray player $129 Seems pretty inexpensive. Are there better options?
Sanus VLT15B TV mount $199 We don't think we need to swivel the TV.
Speakercraft AIM5.3 In-ceiling speakers $189
Sanus ELM805 Power Bridge $119
Def Tech Mythos XTR-50 Center Channel $699
URC MX-450 System Controller $249 Universal remote for my wife. I just get up and go turn knobs and push buttons.
URC MRF-260 RF Base Station $149
Sonos ZP-90 Sonos Base $349 (We already have the Sonos Bridge)

Installation $575
Program remote and tutorial $150

Finish materials $10
Tax on Parts $262

Please let me know your thoughts on the components recommended by the local A/V dealer. My wife is the TV watcher. As you can probably tell, I prefer music and other high-tech toys.

Thank you.
 
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navychop

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I have read good things about it. It came out in late 2008, I believe. I read that it has HSMI 1.3a support, not HDMI 1.4. For 3D, some claim 1.4 is needed. Even though I have no plans for 3D, if I were shopping today, I'd make sure I got an A/V receiver with HDMI 1.4 support, just in case.
 

teachsac

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Navychop is correct. You will need an HDMI 1.4 receiver to take advantage of 3D and your new HX929. Having had the Integra 9.8, I was not impressed. A better deal would be last year's Marantz SR 6005. BB has it on closeout for 599. With your front speakers (L/C/R), you want to make sure they match. I would not replace the center without replacing the left and right. Not as important with the surrounds.

S~
 

jayn_j

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Navychop is correct. You will need an HDMI 1.4 receiver to take advantage of 3D and your new HX929. Having had the Integra 9.8, I was not impressed. A better deal would be last year's Marantz SR 6005. BB has it on closeout for 599. With your front speakers (L/C/R), you want to make sure they match. I would not replace the center without replacing the left and right. Not as important with the surrounds.

S~

I agree. The different brand center was what immediately caught my attention, and I would be very careful to stay with the same brand, and even series on LCR. Any way to mount the center on a shelf or stand below the TV?

I also agree with you on the TV mount. You mount it, set it, and generally forget it. An articulated mount is for specialized use where you n3eed the set to turn a corner or something similar.

The prices you are being quoted are pretty much retail. You can do better, but you need to know what you are doing and be willing to do your own integration. For example, that Sony BluRay player is the bottom of the line. $129 is full retail, and is on Amazon for $20 less. WalMart has a Black Friday deal on a similar LG player next week for under $50.

The setup charges are kind of steep. Everything is HDMI these days, so it is a matter of connecting a single data and a power cable. You do need to do the mount, but that can be done by a local handyman for a lot less.

URC remote is nice, but that remote setup charge is also high. Look at a Logitek Harmony instead. They use a web based setup that is painless and it allows you to change it if you don't like something.

The power bridge is double the price you can get it for from monoprice.com. Get the same handyman to install it, as it isn't rocket science.

Overall, you are paying for one stop shopping here. The install is not complex (although I ignored the in-ceiling surrounds)
 

diogen

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We finally upgraded to a flat-panel HD TV (Sony XBR55HF929)...
That must be an X929...

As mentioned, make sure the whole chain supports HDMI 1.4a and (ARC) Audio Return Channel.
With so many different components you have to make sure the sound is always routed to the external speakers.
Better without additional cabling. Your TV supports it. Make sure the receiver does, too.

Since you plan even VHS/DVD playback, make sure your receiver has upconverting capabilities.
Otherwise VHS tapes will be simply impossible to watch on this screen due to picture quality.
If you have a choice in upconverting chips, pick Marvel over Ancor Bay and Farodja.

I think you can get away with a receiver for much less $$$. Start with Onkyo 609 or so.

As mentioned, get Harmony and do the programming yourself. No rocket science.

Klipsch has been pretty consistent with the tweeters in their speakers.
I think you can replace the center with another Klipsch if not too much difference in age.

Diogen.

EDIT: Looked up Belle Klipsch: that's some impressive kit. Not sure about finding a matching center.
But if the existing center is more mainstream, try to find a similar one.
 
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jayn_j

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That must be an X929...
Klipsch has been pretty consistent with the tweeters in their speakers.
I think you can replace the center with another Klipsch if not too much difference in age.

Diogen.

EDIT: Looked up Belle Klipsch: that's some impressive kit. Not sure about finding a matching center.
But if the existing center is more mainstream, try to find a similar one.

The proper center for the heritage line is the Academy. It has compatible horns for highs and midrange. Just missing the folded horns of the LaScalla )and Belle). It is also discontinued, but seems to be readily available used.
 

gadgtfreek

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Navychop is correct. You will need an HDMI 1.4 receiver to take advantage of 3D and your new HX929. Having had the Integra 9.8, I was not impressed. A better deal would be last year's Marantz SR 6005. BB has it on closeout for 599. With your front speakers (L/C/R), you want to make sure they match. I would not replace the center without replacing the left and right. Not as important with the surrounds.

S~

I agree on the Marantz, I just bought it and it's nice. It's the previous model, but you are getting a $1000 at launch AVR with an Anchor Bay chip, for $600. I got mine from Amazon. I would also consider the Panasonic BDT-210 blu-ray player.
 

navychop

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When I moved up to a 7.1 Klipsch system, I'd have to say the thing I noticed most was the greatly improved center. Probably THE most important speaker, even over the sub.
 

gadgtfreek

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I agree with that. I had a smaller Def Tech center, and when I upgraded to the larger, very nice improvement. Any my move from 3.1 to 5.1 was WOW. Im now thinking 5.2 :)
 

jayn_j

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As the OP is very aware, there is Klipsch, and there is KLIPSCH. I have always felt a bit sad that when Klipsch brought back the heritage series, they didn't include the Academy. I have yet to find a newer center that is worthy of the classic Klipsch mains.
 

gadgtfreek

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A friend of mine just bough some icons, as well as my Sub-12 and my Denon 1912. Helping him setup a 3.1 system tonight, will be curious to see how it sounds.
 

N817

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Nov 16, 2011
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Arroyo Grande, CA
It seems I touched a raw nerve when I suggested to this dealer that there might be better choices. So now I'm looking for a new dealer.

Best Buy had the Panasonic BDT-210 Blue Ray player on sale for $120 and the Geek Squad is coming out Monday to give me their recommendations. I will plan to have them hang the TV on the wall. I will keep the Klipsch center channel and put it on top of the media stand.

I will buy the Harmony remote and program it myself.

I'm now looking at the Pioneer SC-57 and the Marantz 7005 from the Magnolia Center. Both offer Airplay for wireless streaming from our iPads. I haven't yet learned the difference between the Marantz AV7005 and the SR7005.

Can you give me your thoughts on these units?

Thank you.
 

teachsac

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It seems I touched a raw nerve when I suggested to this dealer that there might be better choices. So now I'm looking for a new dealer.

Best Buy had the Panasonic BDT-210 Blue Ray player on sale for $120 and the Geek Squad is coming out Monday to give me their recommendations. I will plan to have them hang the TV on the wall. I will keep the Klipsch center channel and put it on top of the media stand.

I will buy the Harmony remote and program it myself.

I'm now looking at the Pioneer SC-57 and the Marantz 7005 from the Magnolia Center. Both offer Airplay for wireless streaming from our iPads. I haven't yet learned the difference between the Marantz AV7005 and the SR7005.

Can you give me your thoughts on these units?

Thank you.

I'm pretty sure it's the 110 on sale for 120. $1,000 wasn't the best deal for a long closed-out Integra. I just moved out of the Pioneer, also. It had a lot of problems when it came to 3D. I didn't really care for the sound either. I would look at Denon, Yamaha, or Marantz over it. Denon also offers airplay.

The AV7005 is a processor and requires an external amplifier. I love mine. I have it hooked up to Parasound 5250 and 2250 Amps. The SR7005 is an integrated receiver, the amps are built in. It's not hard to program the remote.

S~
 

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