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Old 23rd November 2012, 09:50 AM   #1
Blood is offline Blood  United States
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Default Advice on buying first system.

I'm looking to start setting up a small home audio system. I'm a complete novice so I really don't know where to begin. I'm not interested in a full blown 7.1 sound system, I only want it for music. I only intend on having a Sub, and 2 Floors speakers, or maybe some shelf speakers. I would like an impactful but clean system, that could also rattle stuff off tables if I crank it up. I was looking at Pyle and Technical Pro amplifiers, but the power they were advertising (2000/1500 watts) seemed a little too good to be true for the price. I want sound quality, but I'm not in a position to spend a fortune. I'm starting with the amp, so what I need to know is; what Amplifier/Receiver would you guys recommend that is both powerful and modestly priced?
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Old 23rd November 2012, 10:10 AM   #2
freax is offline freax  Australia
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Make a descision and choose between either a tube amplifier or a transistorised system.

Then click on the little /!\ button to the far left of any post and ask a moderator this:
If you want a solid state amp:
"Hi could you move this thread to the solid state amplifier section for me, thanks!"
If you want a tube amp:
"Hi could you move this thread to the tube amplifier section for me, thanks!"

It will get you many more responses than in Everything Else.

I'm personally going for a 15 watt OTL Tube amplifier kit from Transcendent Sound and a pair of floor standing full range 8" loudspeakers, aka, The Frugel-Horn.

Last edited by freax; 23rd November 2012 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 10:47 AM   #3
DF96 is offline DF96  England
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Note that this is DIYaudio. Although there are people on here who know about buying commercial systems, most build their own and some design their own.

There are basically three ways to buy audio:
1. decide that specs are the important thing, so read the specs and choose the right balance (for you) between specs and price
2. decide that specs don't matter that much, so ignore them and just listen to lots of systems
3. buy what someone else tells you to buy, then convince yourself that everything else is inferior

The first option is 'objective', the second 'subjective' and the third 'fashion'. It is surprising how many people adopt the third option, yet convince themselves that they are following one of the first two.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 12:17 PM   #4
marce is offline marce  United Kingdom
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What about a combination of 1 & 2!
Sorry forgot this is DIY audio, the twain shall never meet
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Old 23rd November 2012, 12:31 PM   #5
freax is offline freax  Australia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DF96 View Post
Note that this is DIYaudio. Although there are people on here who know about buying commercial systems, most build their own and some design their own.
Or people who buy a kit and build it, then modify it to their liking, adding colouration here and there.

Quote:
There are basically three ways to buy audio:
1. decide that specs are the important thing, so read the specs and choose the right balance (for you) between specs and price
2. decide that specs don't matter that much, so ignore them and just listen to lots of systems
3. buy what someone else tells you to buy, then convince yourself that everything else is inferior
No need to consider everything else to be inferior, just buy an amp and listen to it, don't put down other amps just because your amp sounds great, this isn't a chicken waving contest.

As for specs, peh, this is why I like tube over transistor amps, you can hardly go wrong with a tube that was manufactured by a third party who doesn't build amps, that has to meet stringent electrical capacitance specifications on paper.

Then the rest is purely a vacuum, and wires, and resistors, and capacitors.

As for a good dac, now well, that IS truly religious, at least it is now a days.

Hopefully sometime in the future we will all come to an agreement as to what is the best set of dac's.

Quote:
The first option is 'objective', the second 'subjective' and the third 'fashion'. It is surprising how many people adopt the third option, yet convince themselves that they are following one of the first two.
Bingo.

But we will never all agree on one thing as being the best, the only way to deal with this huge headache that a new person has to deal with is to simply /BUY/ an amp and live with it until as such time as they can find the money to buy another amp and sell the other one, then rinse and repeat.

Its the number of hours behind/infront of a set of speakers that counts, raise the number of hours that you listen to material, on any system, it could be the worst sounding system in existence, but as long as you listen to music a /lot/ you will gain experience upon what/where and how a change matters/makes a difference in the sound of your setup.

Its worked for me so far anyway.
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Last edited by freax; 23rd November 2012 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 01:23 PM   #6
DF96 is offline DF96  England
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marce
What about a combination of 1 & 2!
Yes, of course. Actually, very few people are purely 1 or 2; most have a mixture but lean heavily to one side or the other. I was trying to keep things simple.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 03:26 PM   #7
marce is offline marce  United Kingdom
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I know, I just couldn't resist after so many debates based on 1 and 2.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 03:41 PM   #8
DF96 is offline DF96  England
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Actually, some of the people in the debates are following option 3. You see this when people with a little knowledge (on either side) are more agressive than those who know more and can actually defend their view with real facts. Overstating a case just rolls up ammunition for the other side but it is surprisingly common.
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Old 23rd November 2012, 04:24 PM   #9
6speed is offline 6speed  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blood View Post
I'm looking to start setting up a small home audio system. I'm a complete novice so I really don't know where to begin. I'm not interested in a full blown 7.1 sound system, I only want it for music. I only intend on having a Sub, and 2 Floors speakers, or maybe some shelf speakers. I would like an impactful but clean system, that could also rattle stuff off tables if I crank it up. I was looking at Pyle and Technical Pro amplifiers, but the power they were advertising (2000/1500 watts) seemed a little too good to be true for the price. I want sound quality, but I'm not in a position to spend a fortune. I'm starting with the amp, so what I need to know is; what Amplifier/Receiver would you guys recommend that is both powerful and modestly priced?
Those Pyle and Technical pro amplifiers sound like what are usually referred to as "professional amplifiers". They are intended for club, outdoor, concert, PA systems, etc. They almost always contain fans to keep them cool and as a result are not well suited to a typical listening room setup. As with all engineering endeavors there are trade offs, those types of amplifiers are skewed towards high power rather than high sound quality. As others said though you need to decide what's important to you. By all means set a budget!
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Old 23rd November 2012, 04:45 PM   #10
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One of these
Yung SD500-6 500W Class D Subwoofer Amp Module w/6dB@25Hz 301-514
One of these - Then build a box for it
Dayton Audio PA380-8 15" Pro Woofer 295-034
Pair of these
io650 - Parts Express Ships Fast and Ships Free - email112312,IO650 Speakers,Email_Newsletter,Retail
One of these
Dayton Audio APA150 150W Power Amplifier 300-812
You still need a source. Are you planning use your computer or iPod?
You'll also need cables.
This will meet your needs and allow at least a small part of it to be DIY.
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