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  #21  
Old 10-22-2013, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Ski-me View Post
Because we are on the subject of home theater, I'll ask about in-ceiling speakers. I have a pair of B&W bookshelf along with a B&W center. My wife does not want them exposed in the room so I'm resulting in some ceiling type speaker that has some angle to it. How good will these perform and are there some decent ones that can be recommended?

Also, the TV will be in the corner of the room so symetry is not in the cards. TV will be enclosed into a TV pit and blanket chest, and when needed, will lift up out of pit and pivot to viewing area. Obviously, a multi-purpose room. Very hard room indeed with windows everywhere too.

http://www.tvlift.com/high-rise-swivel-tv-lift.html

HDMI - Need some quality converter to send/receive signal over CAT 6a wire at a distance of maybe 80' from TV to component area. Recommendations?
The in-ceiling speakers won't sound as good as the B&W. Even their ceiling speakers can't sound as good, but some are pretty good. When cosmetic considerations or WAF trump sound quality, it ends up being a series of compromises.

Look into HDBaseT- it uses coax, not Category cable. The fact that a long cable run is needed is exactly why I always recommend installing the Smurf Tube- I don't know of any HDMI extender that's fault-proof, although some manufacturers are installing a restorer in their HDMI cables. It uses the voltage at the source end for the restorer's power supply, but the tolerance for voltage drop is so small, it's still likely that occasional dropouts will occur. Did I mention that I hate HDMI?

I used an HDMI extender from a company called Spectrum and it worked for shyte. Oddly, the owner of that company writes a monthly article for one of the main trade mags that deals with Home Theater, etc and not only were the instructions useless, it didn't work. I got one from another company and it worked out of the box, without changing any of the settings. I had installed conduit, so additional cabling for that installation isn't a problem, but since it has been fault-free since 2011, I'm hoping it will keep working. Your choice- Tributaries and other cable companies have HDMI cables that are supposed to work over long distances, but they're really expensive. This is one of my complaints about HDMI- not only is the plug a bad structural design, it doesn't always work and the cables are expensive. Don't pay any attention to the comments that say HDMI cables are all teh same and the cheap ones will work just as well as the expensive ones- this is flat wrong. Also, Monoprice, as popular as they are, was nailed not long ago for cables that don't meet the National Electric Code for in-wall use, which is a problem if a fire occurs and the insurance company finds out what kind of cables were used. In addition, with 4K resolution on its way, the regular, cheap HDMI cables will definitely not work.
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  #22  
Old 10-22-2013, 07:40 PM
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Originally Posted by David Analog View Post
Ceiling speakers will always be a compromise as compared to free-standing speakers. But in some cases you have no choice, although it is not near the issue on the side and rear speakers.
Angled ceiling speakers can help somewhat on the front L & R and center. Plus, you can improve the angled ceiling speakers by keeping their radiation pattern (a little less than a 90 degree total cone) away from the side walls (so close to 45 degress radius away from the sides). Triad makes some expensive, yet spectacular, angled and fully enclosed in-ceiling speakers using the finest euro speaker components. These would be worth it on the front three speakers. Then you can fill in the rest with a less expensive series from the same brand with the same aesthetics.

Years ago, baluns (converts HDMI to Cat and back to HDMI) were not the best. Today they are very good and very dependable. Like anything else, get the better option. Also, run an extra Cat cable beyond what the balun dictates. Cat cable is cheap and you never know what the future holds.
I'm going to get picky here and say that HDMI boxes aren't 'baluns', they're extenders. They sometimes correct errors, they usually have some way to maintain the "handshake" voltage and some even have a way to fool the equipment into thinking there's no receiver between the source (DVD/BD player) and TV. Anyone who knows someone with/has had a BD player that worked fine when connected directly to the TV but not when the receiver was in the way (often older Panasonic Samsung BD and Onkyo/Sony/Denon receiver with Panasonic/Sony/Samsung TV) knows exactly what I'm referring to. Atlona was one of the first to come out with a piece that spoofs the EDID into working, but they're more common now. Then, there's CIC, which is part of the HDMI Control protocol, which makes ARC (Audio Return Channel) a royal PITA when the TV is used as the source for terrestrial TV reception. The TV turns on, powers the receiver on and sets it to the correct input, but if you try to use a different TV/receiver input, it will repeatedly switch the receiver to TV Audio. The easy way around this is to use a digital optical cable, unless the TV is a great distance from the receiver/preamp and in that case, it's probably best to use a separate TV tuner and just use the TV as a monitor.

Did I mention that I REALLY HATE HDMI?
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  #23  
Old 10-22-2013, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by JohnnyB View Post
Out of town....will post a floor plan on the weekend.

Definitely going with flat screen v. projector as it is a multi-use room.

All finishes will be drywall w carpet floor.
Ceiling will be insulated so I finally have a place to watch movies at my volume



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I went to a distributor's open house last week and the Sharp LED looked great. I still prefer plasma, but that ship has sailed- Panasonic announced that they're closing their plasma plant which pizzes me off, no end. Once again, more trumped better. Higher refresh rate (600Hz for plasma vs 120 or 240 Hz for LCD/LED) apparently doesn't make it through the filter in most peoples' mind, even though it's one of the most important specs.

If you can, build a small soffitt around the room at the corner where the ceiling meets the walls. Also, make sure the room's dimensions aren't whole multiples of each other and there's no two that are the same. Standing waves will annoy you and this is easy to hear- if you walk around the room and hear great variations in bass response, you have problems. They can be dealt with, but it's frustrating. Doesn't have to be terribly expensive, though. If you can, use WhisperWall, by Armstrong. It's a lot like the old Homosote ceiling tiles, but they have a variety of coverings for it. It's like the material behind the fabric used in office cubicle partitions and it's a very good sound absorber.

If you can, and the floor joists are high enough, build a "box within a box"- this means the walls and ceiling of the theater room aren't connected to the floor joists or any other framing for the other spaces. The amount of sound attenuation that results will make anyone who's not in the theater a lot happier. Isolate the HVAC ducting, too. Soft ducting makes a big difference. I made some acoustical panels to demo for a theater client and even though we ended up not using them, I placed them in my living room to minimize the bad low end response and I haven't used my subwoofer since (over 1-1/2 years).
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  #24  
Old 10-22-2013, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by David Analog View Post
In my downstairs family room I run a pair of Dali Euphonia MS5s on a two-channel system.
I had a pair of Boston Acoustics A360 small towers in the excercise room primarily for listening to morning FM while on the treadmill. I was very happy with the way they are voiced (smooth)so I moved them downstairs and listened with a variety of CDs. Based on that, I moved them to the media room as the front speakers and added the B.A. A26s for the rear fill, B.A. A225C center, and two B.A. ASW650 subs. They really sound much like the earlier Boston Acoustics CR series and the original a/d/s bookshelf speakers. In this moderate price range, I would highly recommend them as a great value. If someone spends more, the choices really open up.
I'd like to hear the Dali speakers. Heard a lot of good things about them.

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  #25  
Old 10-23-2013, 08:50 AM
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Thanks Jim for the help! I know my situation is not ideal..... The house corner is surrounded by wall studs so impossible/no room for any type of wall speaker either.

I'll be using our Pioneer Elite 60" plasma as our main TV and could consider the side speakers and bottom for my 3 surrounds, but I think I could probably get nicer quality sounding speakers by going up in the ceiling. I could use the lower speaker for the center channel and then ceiling for the primary fronts and surrounds.......Velodyne Subwoofer.

Sitting on my shelf collecting dust: Mark Levinson Pre-Amp, Carver Amp, Carver Tube CD player, Dahlquist DQ30i speakers. Awesome sound!

Oh, and what's with HDMI?!? I really share your frustrating! Those connectors never seem to be solid, can loosen up, fall off....just plain bad design! Need some type of latch to keep them securely in place.
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  #26  
Old 10-23-2013, 11:06 AM
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One thing should be noted that component can still give you an identical picture at 1080p, it will require equipment that is equipped to output a component signal at 1080p but it is possible.
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  #27  
Old 10-23-2013, 11:10 AM
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i thought the federales were trying to ban component connections because they aren't copy protected.
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  #28  
Old 10-23-2013, 11:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jafo9 View Post
i thought the federales were trying to ban component connections because they aren't copy protected.
Its the license which the player is under and the movie. Some of the higher end players which may be a few years old will still output without a problem due to older software. Its possible just harder to do. You cannot get the benefits of the one cable will do it all philosophy. Cables are expensive but in reality you should only need 3 foot cables from components to the receiver and one long cable from the receiver to the projector/tv.
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  #29  
Old 10-23-2013, 11:32 AM
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dang you guys take this stuff seriously...

reading this thread makes me happy that I don't like movies so I can spend my money elsewhere, mostly on things that burn gas and go fast
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  #30  
Old 10-23-2013, 11:45 AM
Tommy1005 Tommy1005 is offline
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My dad has had B&W in wall speakers for almost 15 years now with no complaints. In his room with a big TV, he had to go in wall because there was not enough space to put free standing speakers next to his TV.

All of the brands mentioned for speakers are good, I'd also through Mirage and Definitive Technologies in there as well as a really good sounding speaker at a little more affordable price. I would stay far away from anything that says Bose on it.

I think the receiver is just as important as the speakers you choose. For me that is where I spent my money. I have a Pioneer Elite with discrete amplifiers.....not sure what the new model number for that would be, but it is a really nice piece of equipment. For my speakers at the moment I have the Mirage Nanosat speakers and a Mirage Omni S8 subwoofer. I chose them because they had really good sound, but were fairly inexpensive. I've had that setup for a couple of years, and like it, but plan on moving the speakers and sub into my bedroom with a Marantz slimline. When I move them to the bedroom, I'll be placing B&W 6.5" floor standing fronts with the matching 6.5" center channel and bookshelf speakers for the surround on the Pioneer receiver. I'm not sure on the sub I'll use, but probably something with dual 8's if I had to guess.
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