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Old March 21, 2011, 11:44 PM
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biff biff is offline
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What are you going to need in a receiver exactly? What connections are you using? If you don't need to use HDMI for audio and can use optical/coax then I'd suggest looking into a used reciever. Lots of good deals on quality units since a lot of people are off loading to get HDMI capable units. My HK was like $700-$800 when new, got it used for <$300 and it has really nice sound. Second, no way you're getting hi end sound (as your description suggests you have an ear for clarity and balance) within that budget. TBH I've heard good things about the z-5500's, I've heard the sub is reasonable and the satelites use 2.5" tangbands AFAIK. Nothing high end really but passable. Did you try putting the sub in a different loacation in the room when trying to tune your system? Location within a room (especially when only using a single sub) can have a greater effect on it's sound then the quality of the sub itself within reason. Another thing - I don't know anything about the quality or construction of the z-5500 sub so this is just speculation - but cheaper speaker manufacturers port their boxes and tune them so you get a big peak in the response so it makes it sound like you're getting a crap load of bass out of a small box. If the z-5500 sub is built like that and it happens to line up with a room node then that one bass note is about the only thing you're going to hear, bloated and boomy. Try stuffing the port with a rolled up sock or a squishy stress ball to seal it up and see if it tames the bass response.
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