Home Theater Question

Well, since we have this fancy new forum, why not use it. I'm going to be setting up a home theater system in my house soon; I have my big screen and my room's pre-wired with two outputs in the front of the room, 2 in the back. So, it's basically pre-wired for a 5.1 setup. (I don't want anything more than 5.1 in my home theater room, extra channels are overkill and a marketing ploy to get you to upgrade unnecessarily.)

Also in this prewiring output panel are two speaker wires that run out to my deck. So, what I want to do is hook up a home theater unit that will do two things: Support my 5.1 setup in the main room, and control the two speakers out on my deck. I'm not even sure if this is possible, but I sure would like it to be. Ieally, I'd be able to switch between sources and outputs, so that I could either watch TV, send music out from my TV (Music Choice on cable), or even play a CD out on the deck while watching TV in the home theater room. Is there a device that even makes this possible? Would a 7.1 system be able to accomplish this? I'm trying to keep my cost below $400 for the receiver, and I'll worry about the speakers later. So, suggestions?

I use this one for the same exact setup. http://www.us.onkyo.com/model.cfm?m=...

But really any of these should be fine. As most people will tell you, Onkyo is damn good for quality. http://www.us.onkyo.com/prod_class.c...

Most good amps support multiple "zones" which is exactly for what you need.. or at the least an A/B switch.

OK, so I should be good with any decent amp. I guess I don't see *how* my setup will work with those, based upon the picture of the ins/outs on the back. Maybe I need to go into a home theater store (like tweeter) and get educated and then buy it for a reasonable price online. any suggestions for stores besides the usual suspects?

I'm sure that your average "Home Theater in a Box" won't cover my needs. But, if I spend a couple hundred bucks on an amp, I should be covered? Any features to make sure I include/watch out for? I guess I probably want HDMI but with all that broadcast flag stupidity I'm not really sure what to do. Thanks for the help, much appreciated.

I have the onkyo envision system. its a higher end 'home theater in a box' it has the a/b speaker switch which would suit your needs. I havnt done it yet but plan to do exactly what you describe, just toggle the switch... a is just inside, b is just outside, ab is both.

baggachipz wrote:

OK, so I should be good with any decent amp. I guess I don't see *how* my setup will work with those, based upon the picture of the ins/outs on the back. Maybe I need to go into a home theater store (like tweeter) and get educated and then buy it for a reasonable price online. any suggestions for stores besides the usual suspects?

I'm sure that your average "Home Theater in a Box" won't cover my needs. But, if I spend a couple hundred bucks on an amp, I should be covered? Any features to make sure I include/watch out for? I guess I probably want HDMI but with all that broadcast flag stupidity I'm not really sure what to do. Thanks for the help, much appreciated.

You don't need an amp, you need a reciever. Like Guru said, look for a reciever that supports multiple zones. I know that Yamaha makes a reciever that supports 2 zones, and I would be surpirsed if other major manufactureres didn't also.

scoli wrote:

You don't need an amp, you need a reciever.

Sorry, I was using the two terms (incorrectly) interchangably. I'll find a RECEIVER with two zones and go with that. Thanks for the help, all. Any stores (online or brick/mortar) that you all would suggest for good prices and reputation?

Also, why do good receivers have to be so clunky, square, and ugly?

I've found a lot of good information about everything Home Theater over at AVS Forum. It gets kind of overwhelming, but thats why we have search engines right? Makes me cringe when anyone says "get educated at a retail store"