Budget speakers and stereo amp

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harpoonk31

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I've been looking into Marantz products, and when I search them, there is a site called homeappspace that shows up and apparently sells them for a lot cheaper than their actual price (like PM6007 is like $188 instead of the usual price). It's showing up a lot and I'm very skeptical. Seems too good to be true. Does anyone know about the legitimacy of this site/company?
 
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DougK1

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Never heard of them but I'm UK based and they appear to be US based. If a product price looks too good to be true then it generally is, caveat emptor. Before parting with any cash do a thorough check would be my advice, or steer well clear.
 
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Fandango Andy

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I've been looking into Marantz products, and when I search them, there is a site called homeappspace that shows up and apparently sells them for a lot cheaper than their actual price (like PM6007 is like $188 instead of the usual price). It's showing up a lot and I'm very skeptical. Seems too good to be true. Does anyone know about the legitimacy of this site/company?
Always buy with a credit card not debit card when shopping online, even a reputable site. At least you will get some protection.

If it looks too good to be true, it probably is!
 
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harpoonk31

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Never heard of a RCA splitter. How many inputs does a amp need? Depends on how many sources you have. It's as simple as that.
The most basic of RCA splitters has 2 inputs and one output, and a button/switch to toggle between (Like a turntable and a CD player to an amp). Most have the option of the opposite as well, which is one input to two different outputs (A turntable to either an amplifier or something like a smaller desktop amp). They also exist in 2 - 3 and higher.
 

Gray

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Didn't know that distinction, thanks.
You're welcome (y)
Splitter keeps all ins / outs permanently connected:
Your switched selector example keeps (unselected) things isolated which is preferable.
 
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Witterings

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The most basic of RCA splitters has 2 inputs and one output, and a button/switch to toggle between (Like a turntable and a CD player to an amp). Most have the option of the opposite as well, which is one input to two different outputs (A turntable to either an amplifier or something like a smaller desktop amp). They also exist in 2 - 3 and higher.

Personally I'd rather put the money spent on a decent input seletor that doesn't hum (cost between $50/100) towards a better amp with the correct number of inputs.
The more components there are in the chain the greater the chance of something affecting the sound negatively.
 

harpoonk31

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I recently got the opportunity to obtain a pair of Kenwood KS-401HTs, should I keep them, or continue my current plan to get the ELACs? I haven't tried them out yet, do any of you guys know if Kenwood makes good speakers or anything about the sound quality of these specific ones?
Thanks.
 
I recently got the opportunity to obtain a pair of Kenwood KS-401HTs, should I keep them, or continue my current plan to get the ELACs? I haven't tried them out yet, do any of you guys know if Kenwood makes good speakers or anything about the sound quality of these specific ones?
Thanks.
A quick bit of googling suggests they are actually home theatre centre speakers, that some people use for stereo. The comments I’ve read aren’t flattering, and hopefully they were cheap and you can resell them. I should stick with your plan!
 

harpoonk31

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A quick bit of googling suggests they are actually home theatre centre speakers, that some people use for stereo. The comments I’ve read aren’t flattering, and hopefully they were cheap and you can resell them. I should stick with your plan!
Thanks! Out of curiosity, I wasn't really able to find any reviews, where did you find them?
 

Witterings

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Thanks. Without you, I never would have thought to check.

I put it into google when you 1st asked and because it was so obviously there I didn't reply initially .. it was only when nopiano replied and you questioned it I thought I'd comment.

A lot of people have made some very useful contribution to your query including where I googled and found a great open box amp for you and sent you a DM so no one else could nab it .... serious piece of kit at a price you'll never see again and was so far above anything else you're looking at ... once in a lifetaime opportunity to get something I could never otherwise afford.

You seem to be sitting on the fence a bit and maybe not doing much research yourself ... sorry if that seems unreasonable but how many people on here are going to have owned the Kenwood speakers you asked about ... probably none ... all they can do is google to see what comes up, the same as you can.

Anyway good luck with your search, I seriously think you missed bargain of the year with open box SA10 .... you'll never see anything that comes anywhere near that close for not much more than your stated budget.
 

Fandango Andy

Well-known member
I put it into google when you 1st asked and because it was so obviously there I didn't reply initially .. it was only when nopiano replied and you questioned it I thought I'd comment.

A lot of people have made some very useful contribution to your query including where I googled and found a great open box amp for you and sent you a DM so no one else could nab it .... serious piece of kit at a price you'll never see again and was so far above anything else you're looking at ... once in a lifetaime opportunity to get something I could never otherwise afford.

You seem to be sitting on the fence a bit and maybe not doing much research yourself ... sorry if that seems unreasonable but how many people on here are going to have owned the Kenwood speakers you asked about ... probably none ... all they can do is google to see what comes up, the same as you can.

Anyway good luck with your search, I seriously think you missed bargain of the year with open box SA10 .... you'll never see anything that comes anywhere near that close for not much more than your stated budget.
I had never heard of those speakers, the first thing I did was Google them and found the same as you🤣
 

harpoonk31

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Feb 14, 2024
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I put it into google when you 1st asked and because it was so obviously there I didn't reply initially .. it was only when nopiano replied and you questioned it I thought I'd comment.

A lot of people have made some very useful contribution to your query including where I googled and found a great open box amp for you and sent you a DM so no one else could nab it .... serious piece of kit at a price you'll never see again and was so far above anything else you're looking at ... once in a lifetaime opportunity to get something I could never otherwise afford.

You seem to be sitting on the fence a bit and maybe not doing much research yourself ... sorry if that seems unreasonable but how many people on here are going to have owned the Kenwood speakers you asked about ... probably none ... all they can do is google to see what comes up, the same as you can.

Anyway good luck with your search, I seriously think you missed bargain of the year with open box SA10 .... you'll never see anything that comes anywhere near that close for not much more than your stated budget.
Thanks! I just didn't really see any useful reviews - might have been a difference between countries or something, idk.
 

Quadrophonic.4Ever

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Feb 22, 2024
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Do any of you have any recommendations for a budget stereo amp ($100-300) that sounds good and likewise ($200-400) for a pair of bookshelf speakers? Currently I have more of a movie setup that has some small surround sound speakers that don't sound great for music. I want to upgrade, but not jump into something super high end or expensive yet.
Thanks!
I'd love to tell you "how" to alter a simple absolute rock bottom "elcheapo" (internally bridged) mini-stereo-amp, to drive a three channel surround sound system as a basic starter, but to do it that way, requires the purchase of very expensive audio toroids of the 1:1 variety, to cross two (non bridgeable) speaker outputs, without turning a "modern" amplifier into just so much white smoke and destroyed internals, as to make the explanation unworthy.

Or I could tell you how to create a nine channel system without too many additional things (apart from extra speakers and a couple of audio 1:1 transformers) - but the later is a trade secret that I've kept well hidden since 1965, and again is way too expensive.

So what I will tell you is this.

Buy two of the cheapest Miniature amps, such as Lepai-LP-168HA-40-Watt-Amplifier with a dedicated set of subwoofer outputs

Then:
Grab a couple of miniature audio transformers, of the 3k/3kCT (center tap) variety, and send the HEADPHONE output signals (from your source) into two of them, via the basic two leg input of each transformer (one for each output channel), then wire the OTHER 3 leg CT side of them in an unusual way, that of taking the CT as a common ground for both transformers which becomes the return for the front MONO center output signal, which itself comes from joining the two outer legs (of the closest terminals), as the positive output MONO "front center" feed, (placing an RCA type socket between the combined outers and the common ground) and taking the extreme outer legs of both transformer outputs to each side of a 2nd RCA socket.

Feed these two (different from normal) RCA signal outputs into one of the VERY CHEAP mini-amps, and use either the left or right as the front channel (& the other as the rear channel), thus taking these two new "signal feed" channels, along with the original signal feeds - that you now send into another (also as dirt cheap) mini amp, to have TWO mini amps, each with it's own volume controls, and you will now have a (Left, Front, Right & Back) 4 channel "quadrophonic" setup.

Speakers ?
Use CAR style audio speakers - as most are well suited for music.
It's a hybrid. Tubes for pre-amp stages and solid state power amplification. Best of both worlds sort of thing.

As you are in the USA try the Quimper Electronic System amps, as you could wel be amazed by their tube amp "amps".
Where, well look at this KIWI's ingenuity.
My NZ Company initials (of WSTLNZ as a dot com address).
Takes you right into the "Quimper" WA, USA website.
ie: www.WSTLNZ.com
 

Satanh636

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Feb 22, 2024
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I recently got the opportunity to obtain a pair of Kenwood KS-401HTs, should I keep them, or continue my current plan to get the ELACs? I haven't tried them out yet, do any of you guys know if Kenwood makes good speakers or anything about the sound quality of these specific ones?
Thanks.
Thats good a find I had a set of those , Kenwood make really good speakers I have been looking for a set of Kenwood towers for a vintage Kenwood receiver I have . Personally I would keep them they are best a great speaker despite what you will hear on google , google isn't the end all and be all of information if they sound good to you that's all that matters . A lot of audiophiles seem to love ditching Kenwood for some reason yet in their collection they have one or 2 they secretly highly admire . If you don't want those Kenwoods I can give them a good home .
 
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Fandango Andy

Well-known member
I'd love to tell you "how" to alter a simple absolute rock bottom "elcheapo" (internally bridged) mini-stereo-amp, to drive a three channel surround sound system as a basic starter, but to do it that way, requires the purchase of very expensive audio toroids of the 1:1 variety, to cross two (non bridgeable) speaker outputs, without turning a "modern" amplifier into just so much white smoke and destroyed internals, as to make the explanation unworthy.

Or I could tell you how to create a nine channel system without too many additional things (apart from extra speakers and a couple of audio 1:1 transformers) - but the later is a trade secret that I've kept well hidden since 1965, and again is way too expensive.

So what I will tell you is this.

Buy two of the cheapest Miniature amps, such as Lepai-LP-168HA-40-Watt-Amplifier with a dedicated set of subwoofer outputs

Then:
Grab a couple of miniature audio transformers, of the 3k/3kCT (center tap) variety, and send the HEADPHONE output signals (from your source) into two of them, via the basic two leg input of each transformer (one for each output channel), then wire the OTHER 3 leg CT side of them in an unusual way, that of taking the CT as a common ground for both transformers which becomes the return for the front MONO center output signal, which itself comes from joining the two outer legs (of the closest terminals), as the positive output MONO "front center" feed, (placing an RCA type socket between the combined outers and the common ground) and taking the extreme outer legs of both transformer outputs to each side of a 2nd RCA socket.

Feed these two (different from normal) RCA signal outputs into one of the VERY CHEAP mini-amps, and use either the left or right as the front channel (& the other as the rear channel), thus taking these two new "signal feed" channels, along with the original signal feeds - that you now send into another (also as dirt cheap) mini amp, to have TWO mini amps, each with it's own volume controls, and you will now have a (Left, Front, Right & Back) 4 channel "quadrophonic" setup.

Speakers ?
Use CAR style audio speakers - as most are well suited for music.


As you are in the USA try the Quimper Electronic System amps, as you could wel be amazed by their tube amp "amps".
Where, well look at this KIWI's ingenuity.
My NZ Company initials (of WSTLNZ as a dot com address).
Takes you right into the "Quimper" WA, USA website.
ie: www.WSTLNZ.com
You have explained how. Now can you explain why?
 

Quadrophonic.4Ever

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Feb 22, 2024
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You have explained how. Now can you explain why?
Yes, because with THREE speakers, you get a fuller, immersive sound, than the limited node that is made by two frontal speaker placements.

Think of a small "fuel tank stand", and it's supporting legs.

1/-
One leg (MONO) has to be very thick, dense and thus has to be strong enough to support an above ground "tank", from side winds from every direction.
2/-
Two legs, provide a wider support against cross winds, (meaning the tank won't shift sideways if blown at from either side)
But results in a lessor strength against Frontal & Rearward winds, as those same two legs have double the wind resistance of just one leg.
& ?
3/-
A three legged tank stand is the absolute minimum "number" of legs, that will support any high mounted tank, blown at by severe winds coming from any direction. and because of the triangular shape of the ground "footprint" the wind resistance is minimized by the splitting of the wind around the structure, while wind through the middle gets disturbed enough to help resist the outer wind.
And in any format, 3 is better than 2, as "three legs, channels or moments" (if talking of characteristics), is the minimum number to provide the strongest structure, without having 4 or more components that won't offer much more in the strength of the 3 legged structure presents, against sideways movements, that a 3 legged structure does - above that of either 2 or 1 legged structures.

Have you never heard the age old expression of: 3 in 1
Or. that:
Everything is better when three are used.
Which is also why, the age old Latin quote of:
“Omne trium perfectum”
Which means “everything that comes in threes is perfect.”
Today this concept is referred to as the Rule of Three.
Great orators, poets, and storytellers recognize the rule of three and use it to enhance the power of their words.
Because 3 is better than either 2 OR 1.
Three stands for strength, unity and POWER.
A sound system is stronger & MORE powerful, when three speakers in a triangular pattern are used, (for the ONE singular input source signal) because they produce VOLUME (true volume) at any SPL level.

I hate the term VOLUME for the "loudness controls of audio systems", especially when either a two channel stereo, or one channel MONO - is used, as ONE (anything) cannot contain volume, outside of itself, neither can TWO.
Three (3) on the other hand is the "map co-ordinates" of an AREA
An area contains a volume of something, be that an Acreage or a Hectare
You can "buy" a parcel of land with THREE (map location) points, but you cannot BUY a line between two points, and a pin-point is just one position, on a map, thus it (like two) contains nothing.

It's exactly the same with your Digital Smartphone Screens and Tablets, PC Monitors and "any quality" TV set.
THREE denotes the 3 perfect (individual and different) screen pixel colours, which when combined, recreate WHITE along with every other shade and nuance of colour, that the human eye can distinguish (as different).

Surround Audio is nothing more (or less) than White Light
(apart from light being delivered to our eyes, at a higher frequency than sound is, to our ears)

&
As electricity is used, both for amplification equipment and the individual voice coil "current/s" that power your speaker diaphragms to full excursion, electricity (in all of it's forms) is included in an audio system's components.

Electricity (POWER) in an industrial use of that energy form, also arises from THREE "phases" such as they operate like the multi-threaded strands of a hemp rope, having 3 main components (in a twisted triangular pattern comprising many other "twisted strands" - of minor hemp threads), all tightly reverse twisted into a singular (very strong) MAIN rope.

THREE means that everything works & runs better, than a mere TWO or a minimalistic ONE.
Modern Industrial motors, would be HUGE, cumbersome machines and also very inept at doing almost all, of what is required, to get the most energy out of Electricity, whereas a three phase motor is the smallest of it's output range, whilst being stronger and better lasting, than either of the other two, thus more suited than a single phase (or even a 2 phased) motor.

The reason a 3phase motor is smaller than a single (or two) phased motor is this.
The three phased (3ph) windings are the only electrical component inside a motor's stator/rotor, as well as the only copper that act against and partner perfectly, with the magnets that are normally housed in very close proximity to the windings, to create as much "turning power" as possible from the effects of magnetism, within & around a wire conducting electricity, hence why windings are wound, (and not just created by a single piece of copper wrapped once around something) thereby increasing the pulling power acting on the individual current paths, of many windings per phase.
Whereas a single phased (or 2ph) motor has TWO different "out of phase" windings, with a start/run winding that runs AHEAD OF, the main winding, (and a lessor rated minor run winding that doesn't need as much current to keep the motor spinning, vs it's dead stopped start inrush current) thus producing more heat, along with less power, as there is also a LOT more mechanical components, being driven around as dead weight, inside the motor such as the the start/run RPM controls, which switch out (or back in) the low speed start-up capacitor (or capacitor banks) that give an "out-of-single-phase (or two-phased)" - rotational direction without which a single phase motor would simply act like a half-transformer, producing heat, buzzing sounds and not much else.
It's the same with sound reproduction, wherein YOU the listener, cannot move away from the 3ch (triangulated) sound, until you are "well outside" it's area of influence.

Hence why many in this world, attempted to go into surround sound system manufacturing, with BLINKERS "ON", even the great Ray (Dolby) came up against the conviction, that TWO into FOUR (only) analogue anything's, were the maximum in "that" format, choosing instead to digitize every sound, and "place" parts of, in singular channels, to replicate a "VIRTUAL" (meaning NOT a real but simulated) surround system, instead of either quadrophonic types (that of a true quadrophonic with four individual channels of a front/rear & with one each side - to other side version of quadrophonic) vs the more recent digitized time delayed pairings, of at least two fronts and two (or more) rear pairings, (time delayed) thereby replicating TWO (master/front) channels all the way across a room, from Front to Back, in the ALLUSION of a surround type of system, reinforced at specific points, across the length of a room, by the re-creating of the same original 2 channels "at each backing position" down the length of a room, until they PASS a listener's SWEET SPOT (that place mid-room, where everything arrives at EXACTLY the same time, to replicate a louder crispier sound).
After "passing" the sweet spot, any surround speaker position is "increased" in played split-timing, until the rear wall is reached, whereupon THAT precise location (being X-milliseconds back from the sweet spot) sends it's replicated TWO front channels, forwards to the listener's SWEET spot.
Thereby reinforcing the original TWO main channels, whilst a "center" is produced from the summation (at the front) of the two incoming stereo signals, whereupon the top (tweeter & main) components are stripped from that summated center / mono channel, and ONLY the below main (Bass & Sub Base Frequency) tones, go into a special extra powerful sub woofer "speaker enclosed in a BIG box", to replicate ALL main channels as if from ONE singular position, (dumbly attempting to state that BASS & SUB BASS come from just ONE placement, whilst trying to "play loudly" bass and sub bass frequencies.

However.
Not everyone "sits" in the exact middle of the room.
Hence the LATENT problem of sweet spots, that of UNSWEET spots (and there are way more of those, than ONE sweet spot.)

Having just THREE speaker placements, playing out THREE different phase qualities of the original source, provides a "most stable" and correctly, fully immersive listening environment, as even if one stands "beside" a single speaker, the resultant "combination" of the other two distant speakers, provides the exact same SPL (loudness) as the single speaker you stand beside, resulting in a "follow-me" sweet-spot sound - that travels with you, as & whenever you move around.
.
Hence
An ANALOGUE three channel stereo system (as stereo means more than one, and in this case = 3), provides a VERY stable sweet spot, which is EVERYWHERE in the one room (as well as for a considerable distance outside it too, as if the walls didn't exist).

THREE also provides a far better sound generation position, than 2 frontal speakers can ever do, as there is NO air-delayed latency, to any speaker's output, (only the distance "you create" when moving away from, or towards, any of the three master positions).
This allows your brain to reposition a sweet spot, anywhere you move, as if it never moved.

Although, in saying this, three is merely the absolute minimum, for any surround sound system, as between any two mains, there exists their own mini 2ch. stereo system, which can create a minor conundrum, that of a gap, when a distant speaker - is all that is played inside a recorded piece.

This minimalistic approach is "in-filled" by having another three channels summated between the main three channels, whilst another three subservient channels are providing "height" above ground level (the nine I found in 1965) whilst more and more subservient summated channels ae "found" between any two closely tied neighbouring channels whilst ANY TWO diametrically opposed, will produce the innermost centrally located WHITE center channel.

My original nine "differently obtained" surround channels, when all combined - creates the biggest, strongest master center channel.
With all channels capable of being "phase split" into frequency bands, of:
Tweeter, Upper, Midrange, Bass AND SUBWOOFER
In other words, instead of a 2way crossover, or even a 3way.
One can run a FIVE (5) way full noise crossover system with the uppers and subs getting individual amplification, to suit either of them, thereby wrapping a listener n FIVE speakers per position, that the singles hat were there at the start.
Thus a 3way becomes an automatic 15 "speaker" ways, and a NINE becomes a massive 45 speaker system.

Take a look at my simplified 25.7 channel, 64 speaker-cabinet, 88 speaker "everywhere", surround sound ANALOGUE system using just TWO stereo amplifiers, along with several phase splitting passive crossovers.
I shoved it all into my 3.5M x 7.5M workshop and made a Nokia Cellphone's MONO audio/visual display (for YouTuber's to watch), just because I could, as I also hard-wired small Xmas Fairy Lights DIRECTLY across as many speaker terminal on the channels - as I could, to replicate the "colour palette", of my systems design pattern, which I use at near full volume, to BYPASS any amp clipping (the DC component that destroys all speakers) - as the many colours also serves me with a unique multiple way VU metering system, telling me to "turn it down a notch" - when they appear.

I know which system I prefer, and it isn't the masterful one single mono system, nor the two, frontal stereo cannels, (or the "virtual" (fictiscious) two digital repeated channel systems either.

It's a full positional analogue surround sound system which provides the "all frequency content". to arrive AT the listener, from multiple directions, just as it does out in the open air.

Watching a horror movie, or wild (fierce) animals out in the open exposed wilderness, doesn't faze me in the least, as I can PINPOINT, the exact position, from which one hears a leopard creep through the undergrowth and "collect itself" before it launches, to hear it "moving overhead" to suddenly appear on the big screen in front of you, to attack the person there, who never saw (or heard) the animal coming.

The same goes with military sounds, that of tanks moving up from behind, or that of a spy "moving it the tree tops to one side of a trail, or that of a native "stalking" a prey, to suddenly see the actor ON SCREEN look up in fear as they see, the arrow in flight, as we see it imbed itself deep into the chest of it's victim, after hearing the string drawn taught and then the twang as the string throws the arrow forwards and then loosely comes to rest, as we also HEAR the air parting with the coming arrow, before it passes safely above our heads, just as the victim looks up, before they die.
It's unearthly, but also very real.
So too is the sound of rushing water before someone turns around to see a flash flood.

It's why the age old well known events, that occur (always) in threes, that humans gravitate towards. As we have a natural, ingrained tendency to respond positively to things that come in threes.
Audio is no different, in it's triplex creation, as there are THREE master/main channels, plus another almost as main intermediates, then there are 3 that are 90 out of phase, in a vertical plane, vs the first 6 in a horizontal plane, plus there are way too many "other channels" of different aspects of ONE singular playable stereo musical piece, that drag people towards liking my surround sound systems.

Sound, when "played-WITH-correctly", draws people towards it's central location, just like "moths to a flame".

ie: 25.7 analogue surround sound channels, with a swapped-out YouTube National Anthem sound, (that "almost" fits the original beat).
Why?
Because some nutter at YouTube complained about the reuse (in multiple channels) an old stereo song, that was only ever COMMERCIALLY produced and sold, world wide, in a 2 channel basic stereo format.

Go figure eh, someone reusing (for fair use / review and for public comment and educational reasons) being copyright claimed, as if it (25+7 channels) was a PERFECT COPY or the original compact 2ch version?

Wow, I mean wow, but hey I was forced by YouTube to take it down, or swap out the music for one of their FREEBIES, so I didn't.
I decoded their song's 2channel content & played all six channels therein - into the swapped out video, to ensure the sound was FULLER and thus had more discernible content, than their national album.

Cheers YouTube, as it killed two birds - with the one stone.

I inserted the wrong song, which displays almost perfectly, (as my original is seen to still play as), whilst showcasing my systems ability to surround decode a simplex YouTube approved song, into as many different surround channels.
ps:
I live in New Zealand, (at the bottom of the food-chain) where YouTube doesn't bother partnering anyone, so no clickbait here for me, as it doesn't generate any income for me.

re:
View: https://youtu.be/Ub0S8eTijrA
 
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