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New Cinema System - Advice Required
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Long time reader, First time poster.

In the New Year I will be purchasing a new home cinema system (TV, Blu Ray, Amplifier, Speakers and all the cabling). My budget is a maximum of £5K and my shortlist is based solely on reviews within the pages of this site. I have not yet arranged an in-store audition.

My question to you all is this - if you had the same budget would you go for my shortlist ? Would you change anything - if so, what and most importantly, why ?

TV - Panasonic TX-P50VT50

Blu Ray - Panasonic DMP-BDT500EB

Amplifier - Onkyo TX-NR818

Speakers - B&W MT-50

The system will also incorporate my Sky+ HD Box.

Many thanks for all assistance received

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Most of that list is fine. The main item where there is plenty of options would be the speakers, especially for £2k. Are there limitations to the speakers you need or can house? Can you use small/slimline floorstanders (4-5 square inches footprint)? Or dot hey have to be wall mounted?

DavidF @FrankHarveyHiFi, Coventry.

"Long is the way, and hard, that out of hell leads up to light"

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Thanks for the prompt reply David. In answer to your question - there is no room for floor standing speakers in the front room and I'm trying to avoid wall mounting them. The front of the home cinema system will see the TV and three front speakers sat on top of a row of sideboards (which will also double as storage for my Cds, DVDs and Blu Rays and the Amp, Blu Ray player etc). The rear speakers will sit at the rear of the room on their own stands above the height of the couch

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

I've been trying to think of something better than the MT50 package by choosing a cheaper sub, in order to fit in something like Monitor Audio Apex, but it doesn't leave enough money for a decent sub as the speakers themselves come to £1700. So I'm going to stick with the MT50 package.

The only alternative really is the outgoing Yamaha RXA3010 at half of it's original rrp at the moment.

DavidF @FrankHarveyHiFi, Coventry.

"Long is the way, and hard, that out of hell leads up to light"

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Food for thought, thanks

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Hello there TheCaptain,

How big is the room into which the new system will go?  Surely that will influence both the TV size and the speaker package that you choose. If your room is large, the What Hi-Fi review of the MT50 speaker package said "Struggles to fill huge rooms".

If this system to be used just for films, or will you be watching ordinary TV on it as well? I know that the Panasonic VT50 series reigns supreme for movies, but I for one watch as much TV as I do watching Blu-Rays and so for me, the usefully cheaper ST50 series would be good enough. Even the 65ST50 is about £2,400 now. Consider also the outgoing nine-channel Yamaha RX-A2010 (very good, but not quite as good as its big 3010 brother) which you can now get for £750, £100 less than I paid in July, and I thought I was doing well! You would then still have £1,850 for your speaker package and £270 Panasonic Blu-ray player, unless I have miscalculated.

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Hi Son_of_SJ,

You've brought up some good points.

My front room is a little under 5m x 4m and is currently serviced by a Panasonic TH-42PX600B plasma (placed in a corner) hooked up to a JVC DVD with 5:1 surround sound system.  I read the What HiFi review about the B&W MT-50 and noted the comment "Struggles to fill huge rooms" but unfortunately the review doesnt stipulate what size the "huge room" is, or what size room the system can fill adequately.

I too probably split my viewing 50/50 between TV and DVD and your recommendation of the slightly cheaper Panasonic series is noted - a bit of further research required on my part I think (as with the ampliers that you mention).

Many thanks for your suggestions

 

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

If you go for a Panasonic 50GT50 (which isn't much different from the VT50) & maybe grab a deal with a free blu ray player thrown in, & the Yamaha 2010 currently available at a bargain price, you should have enough funds to go for Monitor Audio Apex with the awesome AW12 subwoofer.

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Hi bigboss,

The Monitor Apex is definitely on the Wish List, but unfortunately the money pot isn't bottomless.

However, if I can save a few pounds here and there on the other hardware and still get a great system with the Apex included, then I'm all in favour.

Many thanks for your suggestions

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

OK Guys,

I've just sat through Star Wars IV while doing some serious thinking, how does this revised set up sound -

TV - Panasonic TX-P50GT50B (as suggested by bigboss and also What HiFi best 50"-52" TV 2012)

Blu Ray - Panasonic DMP-BDT500

Amplifier - Onkyo TX-NR818

Speakers - Monitor Audio Apex 5:1 (Room for another in The Apex Club forum ?)

Current pricing from Sevenoaks website comes to £4,597 which gives me £400 for cables and set up, right ?  I've not selected a retailer as yet but just using them as a reference point at this stage

What are your thoughts ??   

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Hello again TheCaptain,

Your 5m x 4m room I'm pretty certain would count as medium-sized rather than large, so if you do go for the B&W MT-50 package after all I imagine it would be fine in your room!

Let us know what you decide in the end.

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Sorry, when I wrote immediately above I hadn't seen your latest post quoting £4,597 from the Sevenoaks website.

Your choice of TV, Blu-Ray and speaker package are all fine. The only thing that I would - very gently - quibble with is the Onkyo TX-NR818 receiver. The outgoing Yamaha RX-A2010 is £100 cheaper at retailers that sell both receivers, for instance Creative Audio / Audio Express. The Onkyo does offer video upscaling to 4K and a computer VGA input, but the Yamaha counters by being a nine-channel machine. Perhaps someone who has heard both models will be able to compare their sound. I have the Yamaha RX-A2010 in my kitchen (I need to update my signature) and I'm quite happy with it, but I don't doubt that the Onkyo is good also. This link mentions both receivers http://www.audio-express.co.uk/hotdeal.php?&HOTDEAL=ONK_818 Decisions, decisions .....

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

When I bought my stuff from Sevenoaks, they offered me a 15% discount on the speakers & subwoofer as I bought the AV receiver from them as well. Worth visiting your local Sevenoaks store & see what package deal they offer. They also price matched the best online prices. You have to be tactical when dealing.

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Son_of_SJ wrote:

Decisions, decisions .....

Son_of_SJ,

Your responses have been thought provoking (which is what I wanted when starting the thread) and the link provided is very useful.  You clearly either work for Yamaha, have shares in Yamaha, or, are well made up with your chosen set up using Yamaha ROFL

Thanks for your suggestions, I'll keep doing the research

TheCaptain

 

Anonymous
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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

bigboss wrote:
When I bought my stuff from Sevenoaks, they offered me a 15% discount on the speakers & subwoofer as I bought the AV receiver from them as well..

On Sevenoaks website at present, they quote £999 for the Onkyo and £2,699 for the Apex, or, £3,149 if bought as a package - a saving of £549 (or just under 15% if my maths is correct).

bigboss wrote:
Worth visiting your local Sevenoaks store & see what package deal they offer. They also price matched the best online prices. You have to be tactical when dealing.

Now that is both very helpful and interesting.  It would be interesting to see if they would offer a similar distant if the entire home cinema package were to be purchased from them (or any other chosen retailer).

Thanks for your input

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RE: New Cinema System - Advice Required

Rather than replacing the TV, I would go for a projector/screen setup for movies as your old TV is fine for general TV watching.  (Once you have seen what big screen viewing does for films, you will feel like a 50” (Even the Panasonic) is only suitable for a bathroom)

 Another option to think about

 BTW. There is no way I would ever go back to watching a film on a TV even if it was a 65” or more

 Bill

 

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