Multimedia. Audio/Video. Home Theatre. Whatever
you want to call it, this is another of my personal interests. I truly enjoy fine
music and a high-quality picture. In fact, I probably pay more attention to these
aspects than to the storyline in most material I watch. Same applies to songs on the
radio... I listen to the beat and nuances of the music, but usually could not recite
the lyrics for you.
I'm a sucker for the "Oooh... Aaaah..." factor.
I'd love to have the latest, bestest home theatre setup I could get, but
things have been pretty quiet in this area lately.
Our current setup:
- Yamaha RX-795A A/V Receiver
- It was a toss-up between this one and the 995, and I went for the
lower price. It seems to have plenty of power for the size of
room, but it lacks a little in the "inputs" section.
- I had to add an optical-to-coax digital audio converter so that
I could hook up the digital audio output of our digital cable box.
But then TWC came out with new boxes that have both optical and coax
- 85W x 5 -- same as the R8 it replaced.
- Toshiba 65H84 65" HD-Ready Rear-Projection TV
- CRT projection (no, not even LCD or DLP projection)
- Not as "sexy" as the flat-screen technologies, but it
is at the end of a large room and it fit well into the existing A/V
furniture, but the price was much better!!
- Toshiba SD-6980 DVD Player
- Does upconversion of video to 1080i, but I have not played with that
- Plays DVD-Audio and SACD
- KEF Reference Series 104/2 speakers
- Big, heavy towers -- 36" high, 70 pounds each
- After a series of good upgrade deals from Stereo West (thanks,
Charlie!), I finally settled on this pair in 1990. I don't know if Stereo West had
anything better at the time, anyway
- Paradigm Atom satellite speakers
- Another place where I compromised in order to get something
- They sound pretty good for as small as they are,
but are a less-than-perfect match for the KEF's in front
- Paradigm CC170 center channel speaker
- Another compromise; this is the area that could
best use an upgrade
- Paradigm PDR10 powered subwoofer
- The final compromise...
- It definitely adds low-end, even though the big
KEF's do a decent job themselves, but it isn't as "tight" as
All of these Paradigms were purchased at the end of
February, 2000, so I will check on using Stereo West's upgrade path.
My first choice for speakers: B&W CDM-CSE
and CDM-1SE for the center and rears, then Velodyne subwoofer.
Unfortunately they were just a bit over budget. (okay, more than a
bit!) But the B&W's match the KEF's very well!
- Sony SLV-960HF VHS 4-head Hi-Fi VCR
- Bought it about a year ago after my 11-year-old Mitsubishi--an early
hi-fi model--finally failed. It really pained me to throw it away, but fixing it was
- Has some multimedia control features, but otherwise a good solid
- Yamaha 5-disc carousel CD player
- Technics QL-D35 turntable
- Quartz, direct-drive
- 13+ years old
- I still play some vinyl occasionally
- Scientific Atlanta 8300HD DVR cable box
In the bedroom we have:
- Toshiba CX36H60 36" TV
- Has S-Video and component inputs, 800-line resolution and twin-tuner
PIP, and even though I am not utilizing those now, it sets me up well for the future
- Thought about getting a 50" rear-projection unit... It
came down to price (got a good deal on the Toshiba from Ernie's in Ceresco) and the fact
that our family room just isn't that big. Since we would be watching lower-res
material (VHS, plain cable) for the foreseeable future, I did not want to the
"defects" blown up that big. Also, I am . . .
- Waiting in earnest for HDTV. I know it's coming, but it is far
enough off (especially in Nebraska!) that the Toshiba was a good interim solution. I
will again look at a bigger screen when the source material is higher-res.
- Toshiba SD-3109 DVD Player
- The 3109 has component outputs, so is a good match
for the TV
- This was one of my "online auction"
success stories = Egghead/Onsale
- Yamaha R-8 Receiver
- 85 W/ch and good features, but it is about 16 years old
- Tuner has intermittent problems
- used to be in the "A/V room" until I got
- Pioneer 2-way full-range speakers
- Paid about $39 each for them 15 years ago
- They've been idling some also, but still add more punch when watching
- I also cannot stand listening to the "tinny" sound from
clock radios for very long, so if I am going to listen to music in the bedroom, even this
is an improvement!
- Scientific Atlanta 8300HD DVR cable box
"On the shelf" . . .
- NEC 26" stereo TV/monitor
- Really good set of inputs/outputs, but . . .
- Replaced by the Toshiba
- (Ben is using it in his basement at the moment)
- Technics RS-B78R auto-reverse cassette deck
- Bought at the same time as the turntable above, whenever that was
- Intermittent problem with output section (again! with the
"intermittent"... that's why I can't bear to get rid of some of these
things--as soon as I make up my mind they start working again!)
- Old MCS (JC Penney!) receiver
- Bought it used in college (26 years ago?) for $40
- Still cranking along; it was idle for a number of years
July 27, 2008