Home Cinema/Separate (noob)


New member
Aug 10, 2019

I just bought a new 50 inch Pioneer plasma (not 1080p model) and that took up a lot of my AV budget. I am now left with around 400 pounds - that may be stretched to 500 if I really must....to spend on audio.

My system has a PS3, SkyHD and soon, a Wii.

I was wondering what the best way to set up my audio is if I will be using it a lot for HD films (through PS3) and some music too (through MP3).

From what I understand, I have options of Combined Speaker/DVD, Combined Speaker/Amp, Home Cinema Speakers and Individual combinations of Speaker/Amp.

From my reading I have understood that Speaker/Amp combinations are the best (usually not packaged together). I was wondering if it was within my budget to do something like that.

Obviously, sound quality is very important, I like my loud Pirates of the Carribean music but dad needs to have his Mozart playing too.

Connectivity always confuses me. If I connect speakers only to my TV and connect PS3 and SkyHD to TV via HDMI. Will I hear audio through speakers?

I've heard talk of PS3 playing audio through HDMI. Does that mean I could connect PS3 to home cinema via HDMI only, and then do SkyHD via HDMI and optical?

Systems I've considered are;

Jamo A102HCS5 - which I will ahve enough money to buy an amp as well (onkyo 506?) but the speakers look a bit small and timid

Q Acoustics 1010 - A bit expensive and it seems to use the same components as 1050 which had some bad points on the review...

LG HT902TB - Apparently the DVD isn't the best quality that you can get from even standalone sub 100 players. Always been wary of LG too?!

Pio LX60D - A bit pricey but even has an HDD recorder so...?

Panasonic 860 - Attracted by floor standing speakers and price. Only 1 optical in?
Sony 660/860 - Attracted by floor standing speakers and price. Only 1 optical in?

Sony HTSF 2000 - Good reviews. More connectivity than previous 2 systems

Onkyo HT-S5105 - Good price for inclusion of Onkyo amp. Speaker quality?

Pioneer VSX-1017AV-K - Pioneer Discontinued Amp, under 300. Worth it?

Please help! I'm so confused!

Andy Clough

New member
Apr 27, 2004
A separate multichannel amp and speakers will give you the best performance. You might want to hang on for the new Sony STR-DG820 (£299) which will include high-definition audio decoding and is £100 less than Onkyo's excellent TX-SR606.

That would leave you (at a stretch) £200 for speakers which is tight, but you could start with the Jamo A102HCS5 package you suggest or the KEF KHT1005 at £300 (someone might sell you an ex-demo pair for slightly less). Then maybe upgrade your speakers at a later date. That's the beauty of separates - you can improve the system as funds allow.


Thanks. The thing I worry about is spending so little on speakers in a separate system.

Will the 200 pound Jamo A102 be better than 450 pound Pioneer LX60D or the 350 pound Sony HTSF2000?

I can understand that music sounds better on a separates system, but does that follow on with movie audio? or is some of that sacrificed?

Also, where on the Onkyo scale is the sony you suggested? between 506 and 606?

If I can get my hands on the Jamo A402 for under 300....will that be an improvement?

Thanks again, and sorry for all these questions - it's a very tough decision


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