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Anniversary Gifting

Paul R

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Hi Folks -


This is in the general forum because I am just working on an idea so far. Our 30th anniversary is Feb 21, and I think I want to do something a bit crazy for Karen and myself.


We have relatively good (albeit, low-end by comparison with some of you guys!) kits around the house, and stream audio everywhere with Airport Expresses. Usually these terminate into something like a DacMagic, feeding into a NAD 326BEE.


In two locations we have video as well. Our main video location has a NAD T474 (I said low end compared to you guys, but we love the NADs. :) fed by a Blu-ray player and AppleTV. DVD's, BDs, iTunes, Apple, and Netflix are the primary viewing sources, and all the music and not a few videos are held on the iTunes server. The setup is currently 2.1 for this area, but we plan to expand to 5.1 or 7.1. The room has a sloping ceiling, from 12ft where the TV and speakers are sitting in front of the unused fireplace, to 21 feet with an open loft. The linear distance is about 28 feet, and seating is arranged in a 'V' formation to provide excellent viewing and sound from the current system.

The 2.1 is currently PSB Image 4's (low end, but they sound great for TV, very similar to the PSB IMagine B's we use in the bedroom) with an old Boston Acoustics sub, which is on the replacement list.


Our other location is in the loft, and is fed by a PC (was a Mac Mini until yesterday, but had to bring up the standby machine), a Blu-ray player, and a cable box that is going away. The Blu-ray has Netflix on it, which is the main program source. The setup here is a pair of PSB T45's, which produce quite enough bass to rattle the floor, and have perfect imaging to our sitting areas.


Obviously, we do not use the two areas at the same time. :)


Given that picture, and the additional information that my wife really loves to watch videos together while I often prefer to turn the television off, if I were to take say, $10K out of savings and spend it to upgrade the main viewing location, how would you guys spend it?


I'm open to out of the box ideas, but being a cheap old fart, I would prefer not to spend it on a single piece of gear that is so above and beyond the rest of the system(s) that it gets lost in the ground noise, as it were.


One of the things we have thought of is wireless connections to the rear/surround speakers, although it is not a very big task to channel cables if I have to.


Upgrading the front R/L speakers comes to mind right away of course, but the master decorator has laid down the law that the speakers will remain "small and unobtrusive, and in a cherry finish thank you... " Now you know why the tiny Image 4's are there.


Sound is very important, but convenience is pretty high up there too.


So, with $10K in your hand, what would you do?










Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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I have a really truly wonderful wife.


She has never really complained about the vet bills for my dog either, which have gone north of $13K now. For an $8 to adopt pound hound. :)


In fact, the only thing she really complains about is going to the movies, which for us, is a $40 expense, and "you cannot pause the dratted movie when you have to go and use the restroom!"


She loves to watch them at home though! :)



Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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The blue footed boobies are cute, and the Marine Reserve was amazing, but all in all, it isn't a very comfortable place to visit or live. I woudl way rather spend a week or two in Ottowa, especially this time of year.


Perhaps the Galapagos are one of those travel destinations best visited by Blu-ray documentary! :) :) :) :)


Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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Hahaha....I was thinking the same thing!


It sounds like she enjoys the video more than the audio aspects of your entertainment system. Surround-sound vs. high-end computer audio sounds like a priority for her too. Perhaps allocate $5-6k to her for video/surround-sound upgrades while you take what's left for two-channel/computer audio updates?


How about Totem Acoustic for the 6.1 loudspeakers? A pair of Emotiva UPA-1 monoblocks with short cables to the front loudspeakers and a UPA-5 to drive the surrounds and center/back(s). You could use a USP-1/UMC-1 combo (motorized analog volume control, HT bypass, and analog bass management) as the nerve center. Hopefully this leaves you with money left for a Rega DAC plus M2Tech hiFace Evo for USB to S/PDIF. Oh, and some cables. I don't have MSRP's handy for this stuff, but it's probably pretty close to $10k. Other thoughts?





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