Home Video Asylum

TVs, VCRs, DVD players, Home Theater systems and more.

There's arguments for each...

Soundbars versus "real" speakers, are kind of fish versus fowl, I guess. I have recently set up my daughter, wife, and her best friend with older, used soundbars. (Energy Soundbar Elite, JBL Cinema SB-400, Yamaha YSP-1000- all with nice subwoofers) largely because I got these older units on "Craigslist," under $50 each certainly and they have good loud clear sound. The Yamaha even sounds decent on music, the JBL is 1/2 decent (fills a very large room), and the Energy... well she doesn't listen to music much. It is possible to make these work, but I wouldn't throw down the Mastercard for a $300 new unit.

I have tried may surround setups in my home and stick with 2.1 Unless you have a big room and lots of big speakers, more than 2.1 is unconvincing- a waste of money in this Bear's opinion. But I am prejudiced toward musical performance.

For years I used a 2.1 setup living aboard my boat, with a sweet Proceed AVP preamp, AudioEngine powered monitors flanking the TeeVeee, and a decent sounding small sub. The results were excellent and music sounded quite good. The salon was pretty small and it was a "nearfield" situation. In a bigger room those tiny speakers tend to sound somehow, too tiny.

In any case, buy this stuff used until you get a feel for what you want. Last year's AV gear (let's say the Best Buy family persuasion) sells for pennies in the dollar because it doesn't have the right plug on the back... Looking over my local Craigslist for a 2.1 system, I see a very nice Onkyo A-V receiver and a pair of B&W DM-330 speakers (nice- need new grill cloth maybe) for $300, all in, with a sorta cheezy Sonance powered sub thrown in for free! That would sound nice, but remember: you roll the dice with used stuff- it's not for everybody. Good luck.


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  • There's arguments for each... - mr.bear 12:14:47 02/25/18 (0)

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