bottom-of-the-line 5.1 receiver

dragnandy

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Jul 28, 2008
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I hope this is the right subforum. Not really about HTPC but falls under Home Theater Equipment.

I have this old Sony SS TS20 5.1 speaker system laying around and I'd like to put it to good use. Im basically looking for a cheap receiver that will let me hook this up to my HDTV. I would like it work with my TV sound, xbox 360, and a blu ray player.

Now I was first under the impression that all the equipment would connect to the receiver and then have one HDMI from the receiver go up to the TV. But would it also work if I just have everything connect to the TV, then have an optical audio cable (?) from the TV to receiver?

Here are some pictures of the system and the wires it uses to connect to a receiver. I have no idea whats a good receiver and whats not, so anything would be helpful!





 

Schro

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I haven't done my research onthe low end, but there should be some Onkyo and Denon models in the cheap range that do what you want.

The main thing I wantd to add is that you'll want to connect HDMI cables to the receiver, then feed on up to the TV. When you output from the TV's optical to another source, it is usually downmixed to stereo before it is sent out, which defeats the purpose of 5.1 (by about 3.1).
 

timta2

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The drawback to using audio via optical from the TV to the receiver is that it will not allow you to use the lossless audio (DTS-HD, Dolby TrueHD, etc) formats found on Blu-Ray discs. David Schroth is also right about some TVs downmixing to Stereo, and there goes your Dolby Digital. It might not matter though depending on what receiver you use and those Sony speakers are pretty low-end anyway.

I'm a Denon and Onkyo fan too, but some of the low end Sony and Pioneer receivers might better fit your budget/scenario. It doesn't makes sense to buy a nice receiver to use with low-end speakers anyway. Your speakers are the most critical component when it comes to how your system sounds.
 

dragnandy

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hey guys,thanks for the responses. I agree with you guys about getting a low end receiver since these speakers arent the greatest in the first place. Also, i didn't know about that loss in quality when you use that optical audio option.

Can you guys point me in the direction to a few receivers that would work with my speakers?

Also, i have a question about the receivers i hope you guys can educate me about. So im looking at a picture of a receiver below. How would I plug in the cables I showed above in the first picture into those speaker inputs? I'm more familiar with the little clamps where you lift and stick the wires in and clamp it back down. Also in my second picture, where would I plug these in?

 

rudy

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You unscrew the red and black knobs and there is a hole on the side you can slide the speaker wire into then screw them back down.

You will want to look around locally for someone selling an old reciever might give you a better deal. Otherwise there are onkyo, pioneer, and denon recievers all for under $200 that will likely work. However I think there are some cases where those custom speaker jobs might now work with a normal receiver.
 

Methadras

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go to accessories4less.com and see if you can a fairly newer model refurb a/v unit for a low price.
 

dragnandy

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Jul 28, 2008
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@rudy, what do you mean by custom speaker jobs?

@methadras, thanks I'll definitely check that out.

Thanks for all your help, really appreciate it!
 

rudy

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I mean like that system is all part of some sony all in one (perhaps proprietary would be the better word) and maybe they had an impedance that would not work with typical recievers it is probably too low, check the back and see if it says the impedance in ohms.. Also most subwoofers for real HT setups are self powered and I didnt even think to ask the first time but does that subwoofer have its own power cable or does it draw power from the amp that came with it? If it does not have its own power cable that could be another problem since most recievers are only going to have pre outs for bass.
 

Logan321

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I mean like that system is all part of some sony all in one (perhaps proprietary would be the better word) and maybe they had an impedance that would not work with typical recievers it is probably too low, check the back and see if it says the impedance in ohms.. Also most subwoofers for real HT setups are self powered and I didnt even think to ask the first time but does that subwoofer have its own power cable or does it draw power from the amp that came with it? If it does not have its own power cable that could be another problem since most recievers are only going to have pre outs for bass.
^this. My suggestion, either buy another low-end Home Theater in a Box (HTIB) set that includes speakers, or move up to a better one that includes a higher impedance speaker set. I think Onkyo sells a decent one for a less that heartbreaking price.

$400 at best buy for the Onkyo HT-S3500, that includes a 5.1 speaker set. Shop around, you might find a better deal.
 
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