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Home theater setup help

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by chris4001asat, Apr 28, 2009.


  1. chris4001asat

    chris4001asat

    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Any ideas on the best setup for my new system? I just bought a Blu Ray player to go into my Onkyo surround sound receiver. My receiver doesn't have HDMI ins. It does have optical in, coax digital in, and analog 7.1 inputs. The Blu Ray has outs to match all of those. If the analog ins and outs are the way to go, does it matter what type of cable to connect? Copmposite cables, component cables? Does it matter since they're just carrying audio?
     
  2. 75 ohm coax,or optical for audio.......component video.......analog from a digitial medium seems redundant and uses up a lot of cable
     
  3. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    For the best quality sound without using the HDMI...I would recommend the 7.1 analog setup. This way, the dac in your blueray player is doing the converting which has a better dac than your receiver.... if you were to use an optical or coaxial cable the receiver would be doing the work of converting...and it wouldn't be up to the same standard as the blueray.

    You do not use composite or compnent cables for hooking up audio. You need good interconnects. I suggest going to Bluejean cables (online) if you need good quality cabling for this task without breaking the bank.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  4. chris4001asat

    chris4001asat

    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Brick Tops response was what I read online, Jim's response was what the guy told me in the audio store last night. Anybody else want to chime in?
    I have some good quality component cables from my old DVD to tv hookup. I was hoping to just use those if the analog route was the way to go.
     
  5. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Since your older reciever does not have an HDMI in, the only way that you'll get any of the newer high resolution sound codecs is by using the 7.1 analog cables. If I was in your shoes that's what I would use. If you have an HDTV source (the TV or a cable box or something else) be sure to hook that up through either optical or coaxial digital. You should use HDMI from the Blu-Ray to the TV for video if the TV has HDMI input. Check www.monoprice.com and www.cablesforless.com for reasonably priced cables.
     
  6. chris4001asat

    chris4001asat

    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    So using the 7.1 analog is the way to go. I was originally going to go this route, but looking around at the local stores, I couldn't find any cables labeled for this. That's why I was wondering if a couple pairs of component cables would work.
     
  7. I work at one of the UK's biggest Home Cinema retailers, so I do this all day every day. 7.1 analogue is definitely the way to go if your receiver lacks the HDMI audio decoding. The cables to use are just regular audio interconnects with phono (RCA) ends. I'll not get into the old quality of cable debate, but a few pairs of those should get you up and running. Bear in mind that unless you have decent speakers you may be hard pressed to notice the difference between the newer HD audio codecs and the older ones!

    edit

    HDMI cables can be very expensive. The official line is that category II ones are needed for optimum picture and sound reproduction. I'd recommend buying a cheap one and seeing if you're happy with it first, the benefits espoused by some of the pricier cables are, um, "questionable" at best.
     
  8. chris4001asat

    chris4001asat

    Dec 16, 2002
    Toledo, Ohio
    Warehouse Manager : Reverend Guitars
    Thanks for all your help! I'll give the components a whirl and see how it goes. I definitely don't want to start the cable wars again....That would be "monstrously" bad! :D
     
  9. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    You can use the component cables if you like. But they are made for video...not audio. It will probably work fine...but not as well as a good quality interconnect.

    If you are trying to get the best possible sound from your system...which I believe is what you asked: " Any ideas on the best setup for my new system? "...then why skimp on the cabling? Your system is only as good as the weakest link.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  10. I used to work for a company that specialised in Bang & Olufsen, everything from selling, to installing to fixing the electronics. (I did the selling and installing part, not the electronics :p )

    I'd say go with 7.1 audio cables. Not ideal, but lacking the HDMI cable, it is the best way to go.

    Usually I would have said to go optical, but, as has already been said, you would be using your older DAC's, and the blu-ray ones should be better.


    I have to agree with this. My brother had his PS3 setup using component cables, and when switching over to HDMI was looking at spending £30-£40 on a cable (thats hardly breaking the bank when it comes to HDMI). I bought him one online for £3 (new & including delivery). We later compared it to a more expensive belkin cable (not one of the lower end belkins), no difference other than the more expensive cable looked prettier, but thats hardly worthwhile :p
     
  11. It's not just the receiver's inability to decode the new hd audio codecs, optical/digital coaxial cables don't have the bandwidth to handle the new hd audio formats, hence the need for hdmi.
     
  12. if he was using the hi grade dac's of the blu ray into a sota system i would heartily agree,but its going into an older style receiver and i would not assume that spending the money on the analog set up would show enough audible difference to justify the expense.....i would consider using whats available,coax or optical for now and concentrate on upgrading the receiver to an hdmi unit
     
  13. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    That would be very presumptuous on your part. My pre/pro doesn't have hdmi inputs....but I would still use the analog inputs from the blueray. Onkyo is not a piece of junk....and I think it is more than capable of handling the quality analog sound the blueray can provide...which I also believe will be of better quality than an optical cable...and most likely the coaxial as well.

    Age of the receiver, preamp, integrated amp...whatever....does not dictate the quality of sound. Quality is quality...regardless of the age.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  14. not junk,but what i do see in ht stuff is gear that has so many features that a good deal of the cost is diverted from the part that reproduces the sound......i would think that presuming that most ht gear is of the circuit city variety and that the onkyo stuff is more in tune with the hi fi shop crowd could be forgiven...

    ...my 5.1 analog would require 6 cables,which i assumed were not present as opposed to the optical or coax that i guessed were already there.....i also assumed that hdmi seems to be the way these days so why buy a bunch of analog stuff that may be redundant soon.....
     
  15. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    The analog will not become redundant or obsolete. Use SACD for an example. Analog may become obsolete for the big box ABC warehouse crowd....but not for those that enjoy Hi-Fi.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  16. my point exactly.......i got much better sound quality using my stereo only hi fi as each component is single function........ht tends to water the whisky and a pre pro at a given price point will have to do many more things than a stereo rec at the same cost.......what i tried to say initially is that using the analog inputs would allow for the higher quality dac in the bluray but factoring in the cost of cables et all the difference might be negligible unless the receiver is one of the pricier ones.........if the ultimate goal is to go hdmi,my suggestion would be to live with the optical/coax that i presumed that he already owned until then
     
  17. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    Good point....but one thing I don't do...is care about a few extra dollars for the best possible sound my system can produce. Call me anal....but I come from the old school when people actually listened to music...which isn't the case much anymore.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  18. Jim, I'm not sure you understand the new audio formats available with BluRay. He can't use the optical or coax because irrespective of the relative quality of the DACs in the receiver and BluRay, the HD audio codecs BluRay supports can only be digitally transmitted over a HDMI cable as the other digital connections do not have the bandwidth, hence to take advantage of them you must connect your BluRay to your receiver via 7.1 analogue cables if you do not have HDMI on your receiver.

    Personally, I'm sticking with my stereo setup and my Pink Floyd CDs...
     
  19. i did not know that.........still it seems like a big expense as that many decent interconnects probably cost more than a lot of receivers..

    .... im kind of in the process now of assembling an ht/bluray projector set up and now it appears that much more gear than i had thought will be obsolete......

    since most of what come out of hollywood these days isnt worth watching except for special effects and such im wondering if its worth the expense
     
  20. trust me,ive been on that road a long time,but it depends on how far you want to go before the law of diminishing returns intercepts the budget.....

    ...my audio system is totally independent of my ht,but thinking back i think i got more bang for my ht buck,audio wise at least with vhs thru my stereo.....

    ...movies are worth the compromise,as its much more a visual medium but the stereo is where the music lives..5.1,7.1 etc seems reasonable for explosions and car chases but i still think that music fares best in hifi stereo
     

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