Gotta love Black Friday
The other day I got some FREE acoustic-brand studio monitors. Not the greatest quality, probably from the mid 90's, but they are three-way with a ported cabinet and 10" sub. They sound OK, but hey they were free. I was going to snag a cheap stereo receiver just to get some tunes, but on Black Friday, Circuit City had a 100x5 nicely loaded Panasonic DTS/5.1/ProLogic 2 unit with digital and s-video inputs for $129. I was going to just live with having two speakers for now, but they had an open-box deal on a single 5.25" Infinity sheilded bookshelf speaker that I snagged for $30, and some cheap 5.25" bookshelfs for $5 EACH! I snagged all three that they had in case I wanted to throw a speaker in the bedroom or something. I think they're made by Jensen, but they sound fine as surrounds. Anyway, I took it all home for the budget price of $200 including the receiver, four speakers, speaker wire, two s-video cables, and all the trimmings.
Long story short, I have some pretty sweet sounds for a $200 investment. Things are a little mismatched, but fortunately the receiver has wide adjustments on the surround channels. I can hear its shortcomings, but it sounds alot better than the pricetag suggests!
Audiophile by ear, but I don't know crap about the math