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  1. #1

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    Default Building my first system...

    Hello everyone,

    I am currently a college student and I am building my first system as I get a good deal through my employer. I am currently in a room that is about 12x12 or 14x14. I am probably only going to be doing 3 channel plus a 8' or 12' dsw subwoofer.

    Right now I am looking at either getting the Rti a9s or the Rti a3s, a yamaha rx-a1020bl receiver, and the a6 center channel.

    I realize that the a9s will probably be overkill for this room but i felt like eventually I would have them in a living room when I move out in a few years. I have read on some forums that bookshelf speakers are better when paired with a subwoofer. I am mainly going to be watching movies and sports. Maybe occasional music.

    Thank you very much!

  2. #2

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    Right now I am looking at either getting the Rti a9s or the Rti a3s, a yamaha rx-a1020bl receiver, and the a6 center channel.
    You'll never drive the RTi A9's properly with an AVR. In fact, don't bother.

    I have read on some forums that bookshelf speakers are better when paired with a subwoofer.
    Well yeah, that is if you want to fill out the bottom end.
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1nut View Post
    You'll never drive the RTi A9's properly with an AVR. In fact, don't bother.



    Well yeah, that is if you want to fill out the bottom end.
    I meant better than tower speakers without a sub. I could get a pair of a9s for about $600 new..or a7s for about $150 less. What would you recommend I do? Would the JBL L830s be better than the Rti a3s? Should I get towers? I'm really at a loss with all the options.

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    I dont know it would get him started. The RX-A1020 shows haveing 7.2 preouts so he could always add an external amplifer later on down the road. The RX-A820 also shows having 7.2 pre outs so if you needed to save a little cash that could be an option. Just dont go any lower than that other wise you wont have pre outs and wont be able to add an external amp later on down the road.

    I just dont know how the Yamaha would sound being paired with RTi's.
    Last edited by jbooker82; 10-02-2012 at 03:43 AM.
    AVR: Onkyo Tx-NR808
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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by jbooker82 View Post
    I dont know it would get him started. The RX-A1020 shows haveing 7.2 preouts so he could always add an external amplifer later on down the road.

    I just dont know how the Yamaha would sound being paired with RTi's.
    I won't be listening really loud since I'm in a kinda small room. I don't know that I really want to have a sub right away as I really don't have the room for it. I just want to make a good decision before I spend a lot of money. For the price I was getting the a9s I felt like it was a good deal. How much is a good amp to drive them? Every amp I see is near $1000.

  6. #6

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    Love to know where your buying your speakers at that price. As far as amps go. Look for a decent used amp, usually between 4 to 6 hundred will get a nice amp. ( Parasound, Adcom, Carver, etc )

  7. #7

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    In that small of a room you wont really need a sub. I dont use my sub much with my RTi A7's. If your thinking about the A9's now then you settle for less your eventually going to kick your self and end up buying them later on down the road. The what if's will get to you.

    You could go with the 3's or 1's then when you get a bigger place you can always use them for the side or rear surrounds to complete a 5 channel system. If you would go with the towers now then later on when it came time you could get the FXI A4's or A6's wich would be a better option than using the A1's or A3's as surrounds

    If I was in your shoes I would probably go with the towers and an AVR for now, and a center channel if you have room. Then later on get the side surrounds, and sub. See how you like that when you get in to your larger place.

    Just keep an eye out for a good used amp. It wont be totaly nessessary, but you will wonder how you ever lived with out it once you get your hands on one.
    Last edited by jbooker82; 10-02-2012 at 04:11 AM.
    AVR: Onkyo Tx-NR808
    Amplifier: Carver A-753x 250 watts x 3
    Fronts: Polk RTI A7 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Center: CSI A4 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Rear: FXI A4
    Sub: Polk DSW Pro 660wi
    TV: LG Infinia 50PX950 3D
    Speaker Cable: AudioQuest Type 8
    IC: AudioQuest Black Mamba II

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by jbooker82 View Post
    In that small of a room you wont really need a sub. I dont use my sub much with my RTi A7's. If your thinking about the A9's now then you settle for less your eventually going to kick your self and end up buying them later on down the road. The what if's will get to you.

    You could go with the 3's or 1's then when you get a bigger place you can always use them for the side or rear surrounds to complete a 5 channel system. If you would go with the towers now then later on when it came time you could get the FXI A4's or A6's wich would be a better option than using the A1's or A3's as surrounds

    If I was in your shoes I would probably go with the towers and an AVR for now, and a center channel if you have room. Then later on get the side surrounds, and sub. See how you like that when you get in to your larger place.

    Just keep an eye out for a good used amp. It wont be totaly nessessary, but you will wonder how you ever lived with out it once you get your hands on one.
    Would the Rx-a2020bl with its 140wpc open up the a9s better without an amp?

  9. #9

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    Welcome to Club Polk!

    While that Yamaha is a good choice and has most of what you need, the A9s will soak up the Yamahas power and ask for even more. But since it has pre-outs you could probably run them for a while with that till you can get a more powerful amp.

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    Welcome to the forum bro!
    I would go along with most and recommend you go ahead and get the A9s. I was pushing my 12s with a bottom rung yamaha receiver and it worked well enough to my ears. You'll enjoy them even more later on as you begin to upgrade with either a better AVR or amps. With 135w (because they are the only 2 speakers hookedup) now they sound even better and I can only imagine what they'll do with 'real' power.

    Congrats on building up your first system!! Its very exciting stuff as you start building up! Always save and get good stuff to begin with.
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  11. #11

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    I can get the a1020 for like 565 or the a2020 for I think about 750. What would you guys do?

    I appreciate all the nice responses and helpful people on here!

  12. #12

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    Started my rig with a low end yammie, and bought the a5's. Haven't even finished building the first one, and already see upgrades in my future, LOL

  13. #13

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    Best advise is to leave now !!! Or open your wallet. Every flaw will be pointed out and corrected. ( for a nominal fee ). Best advise. Get the A9's with a nice AVR to act as a preamp with the CSi A6 and a set of FXi's. Now get a used amp to power the A9's

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by EffeX12 View Post
    I can get the a1020 for like 565 or the a2020 for I think about 750. What would you guys do?

    I appreciate all the nice responses and helpful people on here!
    Well what is with in your budget. If the A2020, RTi A9's and a center channel can be bought with in your budget then that is what I would go for. Like I said you will be impressed with them, and if the curiosity gets to you later on you at least have the option to add an amplifer.
    AVR: Onkyo Tx-NR808
    Amplifier: Carver A-753x 250 watts x 3
    Fronts: Polk RTI A7 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Center: CSI A4 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Rear: FXI A4
    Sub: Polk DSW Pro 660wi
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  15. #15

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    In a room that is small like you mention you should go with some bookshelf's and make sure you put some treatments up because those dimensions you mention are a recipe for bad sound

  16. #16

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    Not sure why some of you keep telling him to buy the RTi A9's!?! Maybe you missed that he's in a 12x12 room and is going to use an AVR. He'd be much better off with some monitors and a sub.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

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  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by F1nut View Post
    Not sure why some of you keep telling him to buy the RTi A9's!?! Maybe you missed that he's in a 12x12 room and is going to use an AVR. He'd be much better off with some monitors and a sub.
    Yea over kill for the current room but it isnt a perminate living situation. If he is in school then he might not even live in this same place the whole time.

    Quote Originally Posted by EffeX12 View Post
    I realize that the a9s will probably be overkill for this room but i felt like eventually I would have them in a living room when I move out in a few years!
    Last edited by jbooker82; 10-03-2012 at 02:13 AM.
    AVR: Onkyo Tx-NR808
    Amplifier: Carver A-753x 250 watts x 3
    Fronts: Polk RTI A7 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Center: CSI A4 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Rear: FXI A4
    Sub: Polk DSW Pro 660wi
    TV: LG Infinia 50PX950 3D
    Speaker Cable: AudioQuest Type 8
    IC: AudioQuest Black Mamba II

  18. #18

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    Yeah, I saw that. The problem is that for a next few years he's going to have a rig that basically sucks.
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  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by effex12 View Post
    i can get ....the a2020 for i think about 750. What would you guys do?
    wow!!!
    Last edited by dkr919; 10-03-2012 at 05:14 AM.

  20. #20

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    What kind of systems have you owned/heard previously, and do you have a chance to audition anything?

    If this is your very first system, and you've only heard "boombox" systems, then you'll probably be impressed with any of the options discussed.

    IMO, it's tough to plan a system 3-4 years down the line since you have no idea what type of space/budget or taste (inn equipment) you'll have. Personally, I'd go cheap. I'd consider the a1020 because it has all the preouts. Then take the A3's due to the size of the room.

    "In a few years" you can purchase a new/high end amp, move the A3's to rears and get the latest and greatest front stage (center + towers).

    just my two cents though...
    Polk Fronts: RTi A7's
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    Sub: HSU VTF-3 (MK1)
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  21. #21

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    A good sub makes A7 and A9 reduced to A1 and A3.
    I have A7s with two custom made subs crossed at 120 hz. Well it just so happens that that is the internal crossover in the A7 for the mid/sub. So the two lower woofers just sit there and do nothing, and it's probably worse than do nothing. All this big tower.. and I only use the tweeter on top and the small mid driver. If I could go back I would have the A3s instead of A7s, at least they have a better mid driver and reduced complexity (one less XO).
    The same story with my klipsch Icon W towers and bookies.. once you add a sub and cut them at 120.. the towers become just a bookie.
    I recommend the A3s or even better bookshelf you you can get it through your discount program, and then find a SEALED sub. Both of those AVRs are pretty good.
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  22. #22

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    I wouldn't worry about a sub in a room that size, at least for now. You will likely get plenty of bass reflection (not all of it good, but unless your room is treated, it is never all good anyway) from your corners, which should be fine until you are ready to jump another level or two.
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  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by ravaneli View Post
    All this big tower.. and I only use the tweeter on top and the small mid driver.
    Perhaps a dumb question: Couldn't you change the crossover to re-engage the drivers on the A7's?
    Polk Fronts: RTi A7's
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    Polk Surrounds: FXi A6's
    Polk Rear Surround: RTi4
    Sub: HSU VTF-3 (MK1)
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  24. #24

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    Yeah swap the XO to 80 or 60???

    Just as an afterthought, an option may be to skip a sub for now and buy a good 2 amp and let the 9s handle the bass for you for a while? Especially in a smaller room they should be able to handle that duty just fine.
    Last edited by snake1; 10-03-2012 at 03:32 PM. Reason: thought of something
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    The A7s are in a big room and i need both my subs at 120 to have good sub effects in movies and music. I tried crossing them even higher, but then human voices go in the subs and it sounds weird.

    What I would rather do is change the internal crossover of the A7 to something like 500 hrz so i use woofers of the A7 for lower midrange.
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    But as in all things your perception is your reality.

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    Change the crossover lower Rav, that will let the 7's play more lower mids. Or if your receiver allows it, set them to large and let both the sub and speakers do their thing. You may like it, or not....but it doesn't hurt to experiment alittle.

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  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by ravaneli View Post
    The A7s are in a big room and i need both my subs at 120 to have good sub effects in movies and music. I tried crossing them even higher, but then human voices go in the subs and it sounds weird.
    Run them at Full range with your amps, Set your AVR to Sub yes, with double bass or extra bass setting to no. This will allow your towers to play bass when it is in the L&R channel. When watching move's an explosion will be in the LFE sound track and will be played through the sub even though you have your towers set to full range.
    AVR: Onkyo Tx-NR808
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    Fronts: Polk RTI A7 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Center: CSI A4 (modded by Trey VR3)
    Rear: FXI A4
    Sub: Polk DSW Pro 660wi
    TV: LG Infinia 50PX950 3D
    Speaker Cable: AudioQuest Type 8
    IC: AudioQuest Black Mamba II

  29. #29

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    I don't want to make this about my A7s but how I set them matters very little. The crossover for the subs makes all the difference. If subs are crossed at 70-80, there is not enough impact not only on explosions, but the beat in music can't be felt either. My subs are seales and make very nice clean POP on every beat, although now that I put them in nice but big boxes they sound worse than with the cheap thin non isolated car subwoofer boxes (but that's another story).

    The thing is that is I run LFE from both towers and subs, it sounds worse that subs alone. I think some cancelation is happening. My subs alone sound noticeably better in the low end.

    if anyone in Chicago lives close to Schaumburg pm me if you want to come check out my two systems - the ALL POLK and ALL KLIPSCH.
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    But as in all things your perception is your reality.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cnh View Post
    Welcome to Club Polk!

    While that Yamaha is a good choice and has most of what you need, the A9s will soak up the Yamahas power and ask for even more. But since it has pre-outs you could probably run them for a while with that till you can get a more powerful amp.

    cnh
    Agreed! Get the goods now, experiment with set up for your limited space to maximize sound, once you move into a larger area, you'll have a great system to set up.
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