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Thread: 5.1 Surround Sound

  1. #1
    Bah Humbug. Dooms's Avatar
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    5.1 Surround Sound

    Argh this is driving me mad! just trying to find a decent sound system that isnt that expensive and has the amount of inputs i want!

    right... Im after a 5.1 surround system to go with a Samsung LE32R41BD, i know nothing about these systems so no idea where to start really. I know that I would like it to have enough inputs for everything i would like to plug into it (obivously)

    TV
    360
    PC
    DVD Player
    Cable Box

    Now i have no idea what would be the best way to set this up, are things daisy chained? do I want them all plugged into the system? if so how? I know the 360 has optical out and so does the PC but unsure about the dvd / tv / cable box but cant find out.

    Im also unsure on budget, lets say something in the region of £300 but that can double if there is a good wireless setup.

    Can you guys help me out of the confusion?

    Thanks
    dooms / Leon

  2. #2
    Treasure Hunter extraordinaire herulach's Avatar
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    300 quid to include the speakers? Or just the amp/decoder? Your best bet is to find your local hifi shop and go down and ask them.

  3. #3
    Bah Humbug. Dooms's Avatar
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    I would have to say 300 inc speakers

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    www.5lab.co.uk
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    hmm you might just get a bottom rung seperate amp and speakers.. i think you mgiht get a 2nd hand marantz av amp for £100 or so, then for speakers somewhere like richersounds might have a nice matched package..
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  5. #5
    Bah Humbug. Dooms's Avatar
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    Hmmmm whats wrong wtih something like this?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dooms
    Hmmmm whats wrong wtih something like this?
    There's nothing wrong with it, if it suits the budget. What you need to be asking is what inputs do i need. You've listed the following need to be connected

    TV
    360
    PC
    DVD Player
    Cable Box

    The usual sort of thing. But how are these going to be connected to the amp.

    TV-Stereo (red-white audio leads)
    360-Optical
    PC-Optical or digital output
    DVD Player-Optical or digital
    Cable box-Stereo. If its like a Sky+ box then Optical

    Now start searching for an amp that can provide all your input needs. The problem with budget amps is they lack enough Optical/digital inputs, normally only having 1 or 2 of each.

  7. #7
    Bah Humbug. Dooms's Avatar
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    I see the problem

    I can get away wtih 2x optical methinks (360 & DVD player) but one for the Pc would be nice aswell.

    Cable box is just a telewest box but will be getting the Telewest HD HDD box in March (if its released on time that is) - Shame the Xbox is noisey enough to be annoying when it comes to being used as a DVD player.

  8. #8
    Treasure Hunter extraordinaire herulach's Avatar
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    Another point is how much you care about the quality of your audio, my parents have that (or a very similar looking) 5.1 setup and it annoys me no end, the sub is crap

  9. #9
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    If you are looking at something with a decent amount of inputs at a low price there is always the Creative DDTS-100. I got one bundled with some creative 7.1 Inspire T7700 speakers a while back. The decoder has 3 optical inputs, 1 co-axial and 3 standard stereo inputs. It also comes with a switchbox that will allow you to connect your pc up to the system without losing any of the other inputs (not sure if this is dependant on having a creative soundcard though as I havent used the feature). I think the whole lot cost me about £185. Obviously the old "you get what you pay for" applies but for the price I paid the system suits me fine as I have quite a small, cluttered room in which a major amp/speakers setup would not be practical.
    Good luck finding your sound system, sounds like it's going to be a pretty cool setup once you have everything together.

  10. #10
    www.5lab.co.uk
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    i'd second the creative option - their kit gets VERY good reviews in the hifi press..
    hughlunnon@yahoo.com | I have sigs turned off..

  11. #11
    Bah Humbug. Dooms's Avatar
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    Never thought of the 'PC' option. Does look mightly tempting! My creative 2.1's have served me well on my pc.

    Is there a 5.1 set that comes with this decoder? cant complain about the price with the 7.1 but really dont have the living room for that many speakers... suppose could just not plug in the extra ones.

  12. #12
    chown -R me ./base BlackDwarf's Avatar
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    The creative kit I bought came as a bundle with the amp and speakers, both of which are available seperately as far as I am aware. The amp can be set to run with a set of 5.1 speakers connected to it if a 7.1 set is going to take up too much space. Check out the creative website for some ideas on the speakers, they have quite a few 5.1 sets on there which should work fine with the amp.

  14. #14
    HEXUS.timelord. Zak33's Avatar
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    TV is normally a Phono Left and Right output (red and white). It supports Stereo, DOlby 3 and Pro Logic 1 and 2. (which makes a good way of watching telly, football, Game Cube etc) Sometimes you need to take these phono inouts fdrom the Scart, (which has stereo outputs through it) and other times it has real phono put puts anyway.

    Dolby Digital and DTS are avaiable through both Optical and Digital Cable (which looks JUST like a single phono output, but normally black)

    Last but not least to consider is that most PC's actually output through multiple phono outputs (though they start life at the PC end as mini jacks, like a small headphone plug) and you get cables that are mini jack to phono plug) This is becasue not many games or sound cards out put as a Digital signal.

    So..in essence you need an Amp and Decoder that supports all of those, that Decodes the digital signals from DVD players and set top boxes, via a digital signal with optical or cable, and that also accepts a load of phono inputs (from TV, Video, Stereo, Game Cube etc etc)

    Right..its not that hard actually

    ohh summit else to consider. Video signal often comes through a single yellow ccable again, looking just like the phono leads.

    SOme amps allow you to feed even the picture signal through the amp too, SO that once you change the input selector (maybe you swap from watching a DVD to Video) it changes all the inputs over too. SO the picture and sound all route through at the same time.

    Then the telly actually only gets a single input for video signal, and EVERYTHING goes to the amp. You turn the TV sound down to Zero and always use the amp for sound.

    The problam with this is that a good quality DVD picture is often better going through a Red Green Blue scart lead or an S-Video lead, which is higher quality. SO inevitably you end up (as I do) having multiple inputs to your telly, and using only one Sound System.

    ie setting up the TV to watch a film on DVD involves a remote for the telly, and remote for the sound, a rtemote for the DVD and a bit of paper reminding me WHICH AV input to the tlel y does the DVD< and WHICH input on the stereo is relevent!

    Fun huh ?

    Right....try this:
    http://ws1.richersounds.co.uk/showpr...d=DENO-AVR1706 its &#163;250.

    Then buy TWO speakers this time, and it will sound AWESOME anyway. Then in a few months buy some more speakers for the rear, and finally the centre.

    Or buy a speaker package for someone like Yamaha .They do a full set up, with Active Bass Box/Woofer (ie its got its own amp in it) for &#163;100.
    http://ws1.richersounds.co.uk/showpr...id=YAMA-NSP110
    Spend ABOUT &#163;10 on speaker cable for a small room and about &#163;25 on a large room.

    DO NOT USE CACK CABLE...none of that horrible front door bell wire!

    try summit like this: 99p per metre, and you'lll prolly need 10 meters in a little room
    http://ws1.richersounds.co.uk/showpr...GALE-XL189CABL

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