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Old November 20, 2011, 10:44 AM
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Hey,
I am looking to get a new home theater system in a box and I haven't got the slightest idea of where to start looking for good information on them.
My price range is around $500 so I am not looking at a high end system, just something that will sound good...for the odd time I actually watch my TV. My 300w system from RCA that I bought back in 2004 just isn't cutting it anymore.

I am looking at the Onkyo HT-S3400 right now, which is $499 at best buy. Does anyone have any experience with this system? From what I read (not sure on the credibility of the review) it is running Klipsch speakers with the Onkyo branding. I know Onkyo used to run Polk's back in like 2000, which will bode well for sound quality. Unfortunately testing systems in the store isn't a good judge of audio quality.

If anyone has another recommendation I am all ears.
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Old November 20, 2011, 11:45 AM
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I would say the Onkyo option is one of the better ones out there. However, you get what you pay for so don't expect a large number of connectivity options and speaker / connectivity expansion will be limited at best.
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Old November 20, 2011, 01:33 PM
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Looks like you missed this one onsale cheaper at NCIX NCIX.com - Buy Onkyo HT-S3400 660W 5.1 Channel Stereo Receiver & Speaker Package TrueHD DD+ DTS-HD 4XHDMI Black - ONKYO - HT-S3400(B) - in Canada . You could look at Memory Express' new PM policy, i think you can PM something 7 days past the sales price, but I'm not sure.

Here's a picture of the rear of the receiver: http://img.ncix.com/images/60417_1.jpg looks like you'd be limited to 5.1 surround rather then 7.1 (if that's fine with you). Like Sky said, you get what you pay for and the rebuilt home theatres in a box typically have lower end speakers (and receivers) bundled together at a "reasonable" price.

You may want to decide what's the most you're willing to pay for a home theatre system and how long you plan on having it. Mine I plan on having for as long as it'll last (10+ years), whenever I eventually build a HT room, I'll buy a newer/more powerful one and leave my current one as as my computer "speakers" (which as the TV is in the same spot as my computer they do double duty)
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Old November 20, 2011, 04:39 PM
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The one Arinoth posted looks like a pretty good deal. For 500 you aren't going to get anything amazing. I was thinking just go 2.1 and build on it but it would still be 1000+ for a decent 2.1 system. I am really picky about my HT sound and I got what I consider mid range it and was well over 3000.

With the previously suggested system you could get it and upgrade the L/R channel in the future.
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Old November 20, 2011, 06:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tianfeng View Post
The one Arinoth posted looks like a pretty good deal. For 500 you aren't going to get anything amazing. I was thinking just go 2.1 and build on it but it would still be 1000+ for a decent 2.1 system. I am really picky about my HT sound and I got what I consider mid range it and was well over 3000.

With the previously suggested system you could get it and upgrade the L/R channel in the future.
The idea of going HTiB is for surround sound.

Arinoth, shame that isn't going to be on sale in a few weeks when I actually go to purchase the system. Also, the $500 is the most I am willing to spend. I don't use the TV very often, just movies once in a while, and the odd cable show. I am sure if I spent more time in front of it I would be looking into something at a higher price point.
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Old November 20, 2011, 07:01 PM
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Home Theatre is SOOOOOOOOoo subjectional.

Everyone has a different taste and hearing and no two people will agree on the same thing.

5.1 is still the best setup as 6.1 or 7.1 is really a waste unless you have the room for it to be setup properly.

HTIB is also a waste of money as you can't upgrade them and most of those systems.

Buy a good receiver and a couple good tower speakers and build on from there.. even look at used stuff.

I picked up a great setup of tower speakers made by Nuance for $80 that are about 10 yrs old and blow most sub $500 speakers of the same size away.

The sub I got is a 10" Soundstage which I bought on clearance for $250 and has plenty of power and punch.
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Old November 20, 2011, 08:00 PM
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I wouldn't be surprised if you could snag something have decent on black friday/cyber monday deals coming up this next weekend now. I started off at HTiB however switched to a full power receiver when the one I had died (audio chip issues) and Best Buy couldn't fix. There are no best buy in atlantic provinces, the fact it was an open box (with extended warranty) meant samsung warranty was toast. Seeing as only samsung will work on samsung audio best buy refunded me the price of the item (excluding tax) and I went ahead and bought an onkyo receiver and have been using the speakers and sub that came with it.
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Old November 21, 2011, 08:47 AM
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if you really are only looking at spending $500 you would be better to invest in a higher quality more upgradeable stereo system. As in get a 5.1/7.1 reciever and 2 good speakers for the fronts. Then as you get more money continue to add speakers until you've got the whole shooting match. That's kind of what i did. Took me a couple of years but i eventually got up to my 7.1 system.
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