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Old 01-15-2007, 07:46 PM   #16
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Glad I could help.

Denon is nice as far as shelf systems go. I think some Denon shelf systems use Mission speakers, which are actually pretty nice. Problem is, they start around $500, and go beyond $800, and by that point you might as well get separates for the increase in power and flexibility. The Denon (and most shelf systems) do have the small footprints going for them, though.

I still recommend going to a hi-fi shop near you. Listening to some of your favorite music on various good speakers is an easy way to tell if the difference between mass consumer stuff and the world of hi-fi is worth it to you. Maybe you could be just as happy with another good shelf system instead (I know my wallet would appreciate it if I could be... ).
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Old 01-16-2007, 10:49 PM   #17
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I was reading an electronics review site and read lots of good things about those Axiom M3s. The local shop I had in mind doesn't carry them, however. Based on the reviews and what you said (detailed sound, with warmth) I'm tempted to stick with those and order them online if I can't find a local shop that carries them.

Diemen, did you get the stands in your picture from Axiom as well?

To be honest, I'm not that much of an audiophile, and don't know that I'd really be able to hear the difference between sets of speakers. I just want something that sounds good, better than the little shelf system I have now (which shouldn't be too much of a stretch).

I've read good reviews about the Onkyo receiver, and another Onkyo CD player. I do believe I have a goal in mind and will start saving.

One more question - do you typically have to buy cables separately, or do cables come with the speakers and other components?

I hope I can find some patience and not just throw the whole shebang on my credit card!
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:32 AM   #18
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Axiom only sells direct (should've mentioned that earlier!) so you won't see them in shops. They do have excellent customer service, though (my brother is one of the biggest posters on their forums, and this christmas they sent him a free sub worth over $1000!). And I originally ordered my speakers from their factory outlet (b-stock items), and they sent me brand new speakers at no extra cost (thanks, bro!). They also have a 30-day money back guarantee, and if you call them up they're extremely helpful. I did get my stands from Axiom as well, but you could probably get cheaper stands elsewhere that work just as well.

As far as cables, you typically have to buy them separately. Most cd/dvd players will include interconnects so you can hook them up to your receiver, but you'll definitely have to get speaker cable. I'd just go to Radioshack or Best Buy and just get some generic speaker cable. You can get them in small 25' spools of cable for around $15. All you do is cut it off at the right length, strip the ends so the wire is exposed, then plug it in on the receiver and the back of the speakers. Or you can find speaker cables in precut lengths (with more handy connectors already attached) for slightly more.

I definitely wouldn't worry too much about whether you're an "audiophile" or not. You'll almost certainly hear an obvious improvement comparing a set of good speakers to a mini shelf system. You might not be moved to wax poetic about how holographic and articulate the imaging has become, how much more accurate the timbre of instruments are and how it feels as though you could reach out and touch each musician in your room (heh), but chances are you'll appreciate the improvement, and it should help you get into your music more. And that's what it's all about anyway, right?
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:47 AM   #19
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It's exactly what it's about. I just want my favorite tunes to sound GOOD.

And maybe occasionally annoy my neighbors when they start doing whatever it is they do when my walls shake and it sounds like they're throwing furniture around down there.

Between you and another online friend who basically said, "Why are you even asking? Think of how good U2 will sound! DO IT!" I've made my decision to go for the full stereo. Huzzah!

Thanks again for your help!
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Old 02-14-2007, 03:02 PM   #20
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Yes, I am resurrecting this thread to announce that thanks to the IRS, I will be purchasing all the pieces in a few weeks.

WHOOT!

Another question (of course): does it matter what kind of cables I buy to connect the stuff? Or are they all the same?
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Old 02-14-2007, 04:35 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally posted by corianderstem
Yes, I am resurrecting this thread to announce that thanks to the IRS, I will be purchasing all the pieces in a few weeks.

WHOOT!

Another question (of course): does it matter what kind of cables I buy to connect the stuff? Or are they all the same?
http://www.monstercable.com/

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Old 02-14-2007, 11:15 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by corianderstem

Another question (of course): does it matter what kind of cables I buy to connect the stuff? Or are they all the same?
For the CD player to Receiver/Amp, I would recommend using the digital output (optical, coax, firewire, etc.) as opposed to analog (RCA cables). For analog interconnects, I use Monster mostly.
For digital interconnects, the brand is not as important. For speaker cable, there are a lot of brands better than Monster. I personally use a brand called Straight Wire. Try to get a thick gauge also (with good insulation).
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Old 02-14-2007, 11:35 PM   #23
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Duly noted. Thank you!
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Old 02-16-2007, 10:37 AM   #24
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Also, Monster can be a bit pricey (at Best Buy). Acoustic Research interconnect cable is a good alternative, and costs less.
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Old 02-16-2007, 01:41 PM   #25
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Yeah, I don't want to spend a ton for Monster cables, considering I've heard from multiple sources that they're really not worth the extra money.
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Old 02-16-2007, 04:54 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by corianderstem
Yeah, I don't want to spend a ton for Monster cables, considering I've heard from multiple sources that they're really not worth the extra money.
This is a cable site that was recommended to me. I got a couple of HDMI cables from them. They have a nice selection (both type and quality) and the prices are quite good.

http://www.monoprice.com/home/index.asp

Enjoy your stereo set-up.
I still need to upgrade my speakers, but I do have a Mac Powerbook and 2 external HDs integrated into my system for Full Audio iTunes pleasure. Ahhhhh.

Mark
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Old 02-16-2007, 05:03 PM   #27
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I'll check that site out. Thanks, Mark!
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Old 02-16-2007, 08:53 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally posted by corianderstem
Yeah, I don't want to spend a ton for Monster cables, considering I've heard from multiple sources that they're really not worth the extra money.
That's probably true. I wouldn't get the cheapest thing either though. Radio Shack has a "Gold Series" of cables which I would consider, but I would definitely avoid the standard Radio Shack cables.
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Old 02-17-2007, 11:30 AM   #29
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I would recommend Monster Cable for video connections....for audio, don't waste your money on the higher quality Monster line. Specially if you are not buying higher end audio product, i.e. Macintosh, Krell, etc.
eBay has very good deals on these cables, btw.
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Old 02-17-2007, 11:36 AM   #30
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That's a good tip - thanks!

Yeah, I have a TV that DEFINITELY does not fall within the "high quality" category. Ditto for my VCR or DVD player.

I'm just working on an audio setup right now ... although I'll be hooking up my DVD player to my speakers as well from time to time when I watch something with music.

(Although I suppose the DVD player would hook into the receiver, not the speakers, is that right?)
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