I have a Marantz SR8500 A/V receiver with B&W speakers across the front, and I would like to upgrade to take advantage of the new high-rez audio formats. I'm considering the Marantz AV7005 and Cary Audio Cinema 11a preamp/processor. For amplification, I plan to use my Lexicon 512 amp or the amp section of the SR8500. Considering the equipment I have, would the extra cost for the Cinema 11a give me that much improvement in sound over the AV7005? Should I use the Lexicon amp or the 8500's amp, or would the Marantz MM7055 5-channel amp be the way to go? I'm willing to spend the money for whatever is going to sound best.
I'm in the market for a high-quality plasma TV, and I have narrowed the choices to two: Samsung PN64D8000 and Panasonic TC-P65VT30. I have gone to three high-end A/V stores in New York City and was told that the Samsung ranks better than the Panasonic. But I was in a Best Buy store today and was told that nobody comes close to the Panasonic, especially since it is THX-certified. How do you rate these two models?
I read HT's review of the Oppo BDP-93 Blu-ray player, which was very helpful. I have an older AVR (Pioneer Elite VSX-43TX, 96/24 capable, but no HDMI or DTS/Dolby HD decoders), so if I get the BDP-93, the review suggests that I connect HDMI from the Oppo to my new Panasonic TC-P65VT30 plasma and use analog outputs to the AVR. But what about using either coax or optical out from the BDP-93 to the AVR? At least that would cut down on the cabling and clutter. Also, will I hear the benefits of Dolby or DTS HD audio via analog or digital audio from the Oppo, since the Elite is 96/24 capable?
I recently bought a Sony KDL-60NX810 TV, and I used the Spears and Munsil High-Definition Benchmark Blu-ray setup disc to optimize the picture controls. A friend has Digital Video Essentials: HD Basics from Joe Kane. Should I try it too, or have I gotten it as good as it will be?
Will my new Marantz SR5005 receiver pair well with the PSB Image series speakers? When I bought the receiver, I thought I would be getting lower-end speakers, but I ended up wanting more, and I'm fairly determined to get the PSBs. (My dream speakers are the Revel Ultima2 Salon2s; maybe someday I can find a used set.) I am thinking of T6s for the front and B6s for the surrounds.
Also, I recall you saying that center channels with dual side-by-side woofers aren't ideal due to combing issues as you move off-axis. Should I still get one of the side-by-side PSB Image center channels, or can I use a third B6 bookshelf speaker as the center channel?
I am in the market for an A/V receiver in the $500 price range. With such a variety of brands, it is hard to pinpoint one. I have a medium-size room, and I am planning to use two Definitive Technology BP-8020ST floorstanding speakers. I don't want to clutter my room with speakers in every corner. I will use my receiver to watch TV and my DVD player and VCR, no iPod or iPad. I have looked at user reviews on Amazon, and every receiver has some 1-star ratings, which tells me the technology is not that advanced yet since they break so often. Could you recommend any reliable receiver or amplifier for my setup?
I have priceless VHS tapes of my kids growing up over the last 25 years. I was going to take them to a company that converts VHS to DVD, but I read that the quality of these conversion services isn't that good. I also read that the USB conversion programs like Roxio don't do the job either. I cannot find a PCI card solution with software. Is there a solution that you recommend? Can you shed some light on this?
I'm a Home Theater subscriber, and I always read your blogs. I can't believe there are no plasmas with deep blacks similar to the Pioneer Kuros. I'm a happy owner of the PRO-110FD (family room) and PRO-111FD (master bedroom). What new model is closest to the Pioneer Kuros that you would recommend to a friend who is looking for a plasma or LCD?
Second question: Do the new JVC 3D projectors support anamorphic lenses? Are you aware of any 3D projector (other than Runco's, which is too expensive) that supports anamorphic lenses?
I have an old (1997) Bose Acoustimass Lifestyle 12, and the AM/FM/CD player has stopped working. I want to know if I can still use the five cube speakers with a new A/V receiver and a new subwoofer. I hate to throw it all away, and I like the look of the cubes. Can I expect the speakers to work, and will I get a good sound out of them?
I just bought an audio dongle recommended by Dick DiBartolo and Leo Laporte on the GizWiz podcast. It's called the iWow 3D by SRS, and it makes the sound seem three-dimensional. I can't explain it, but I'm addicted to it. It's available as a hardware dongle for headphones and earbuds and as software for computer speakers. Have you heard about this technology and how it works? I'm interested in what you think.
I just got the new Onkyo TX-NR809 receiver, and I'm wondering how inadequate my speaker setup is. I have a pair of DCM KX-12 Series Twos for the front left and right, DCM KX Center, DCM SW10 sub, and a pair of DCM KX-6 Series Two for the surround channels. I know these speakers were primarily built for loud "party" music, and they are about 12 years old. Am I going to miss out on the quality and features of the Onkyo with this setup? If I were to upgrade the speakers, what do you recommend in the $2000-ish range?
I'm an avid listener of TWiT and have heard you on the Tech Guy and your podcast. Because of TWiT and the fact that I don't watch a lot of TV, I have decided to "cut the cord"that is, dump cable and satellite. However, I would like to take advantage of digital over-the-air broadcasting. I remember hearing that you have a rooftop antenna with a motorized rotor for orientation adjustments. What options are available for different qualities and prices?