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Thread: External speakers for TV? Hardwood floors and high ceilings = poor audio...

  1. Default External speakers for TV? Hardwood floors and high ceilings = poor audio...

    Hello,

    I have a HDTV that has built-in speakers. My floors are hardwood and I have high ceilings. Obviously, these two factors = sound quality that isn't the best.

    Watching TV has become less enjoyable. I realize there are ALDs that assist with that, but I was curious whether there might be a solution involving external speakers; not necessarily surround sound, but a speaker on the left and on the right of the TV.

    I have a typical LCD HDTV. It's a Panasonic Viera TV.

    The built-in speakers of modern TVs probably are not as good as those with older TVs as manufacturers attempt to miniturize everything. (Besides the HDTV screen of course). But flattening the TV, etc. would in my mind encourage cheaper and thinner speakers.

    As an example, I was visiting family and they have a regular TV that's standard definition and the type with the large back (CRT, I believe they are called), and this TV has a built-in stand with speakers that are huge; they have a windscreen filter on them.

    I searched Google Images and found a similar setup to what I'm describing in terms of the old style TV and built-in stand with built-in speakers with that stand: http://pcnmac.com/images/tv/farendloveseattotv.JPG


    Basically, any simple external speaker solution people would recommend. Is this the right route to go for general audio improvement? Again, I have been investigating ALD technology, but I'm not focused on ALD for this post. I'm trying to increase the quality of the audio given the less than optimal acoustic conditions.

    Thank you for any suggestions you can provide!
    Last edited by adrien24; 07-12-2010 at 12:07 PM.

  2. #2
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    Have a look at this thread; linky

    It covers what you are asking towards the end.

  3. Default

    Thanks for the link "um bongo." I appreciate the information.

    I posted about this issue in another forum that deals with acoustics and sound setups in general (not hearing-loss based) and one poster mentioned a setup that's ideally better than TV speakers. He referred to it as a sound bar. It's called the "ZVOX 325 High-Performance Single-Cabinet Surround Sound System"

    The link to it on Amazon.com is here: http://www.amazon.com/ZVOX-325-High-...pr_product_top


    If people have used this system or a similar system, please let me know!

    When reading the reviews, basically, if you already have good speakers, this system may output the sound quality just as well as your TV. Also, since it's a single box and doesn't have multiple speakers placed around the room, the sound output can't be adjusted like a true surround sound system.

    However, it is mentioned that the overall audio quality including speech is improved with this system by many people.

    So, I have no idea whether this box would output sound better than my current TV speakers. Also, I don't have control over the "center" speaker which as the post "um bongo" referred me to, touted as a benefit of 5.1 surround sound systems - the posting mentions that often the center speaker is the one focused on dialogue, thus gain could be reduced in other speakers.

    However, I don't want a surround sound system in my apartment and not all programs are in surround sound anyway.

    So, I'd be very curious as to whether people have tried the ZBOX product mentioned above and what their experiences are.

    There are tons of positive reviews for the one-box sound system.

    I want to improve the quality of sound in general. That is my main goal.

    So, even though this ZBOX product isn't nearly as adjustable as true 5.1 surround sound, if it's improved audio quality for people or hasn't made an improvement, I'd love to know.

    Thank you!

    Even if you haven't used said product, please let me know any suggestions you may have or if you read the reviews, any impressions would greatly be appreciated.

    I don't want to end up with a box that outputs sound with the same quality as my TV set.

    The above product was mentioned on the acoustics forum I posted at, because it's compatible with my TV.

    My TV is the Panasonic Viera TC-L37G1. Here's a link to tech specs for it: http://www2.panasonic.com/consumer-e...del.TC-L37G1.T

    Here's the forum I posted at where the ZBOX was mentioned: http://forum.ecoustics.com/cgi-bin/bbs/show.pl?3/641443

  4. #4

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    I use external speakers they make the whole experience more enjoyable.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrienqa66 View Post
    Thanks for the link "um bongo." I appreciate the information.

    I posted about this issue in another forum that deals with acoustics and sound setups in general (not hearing-loss based) and one poster mentioned a setup that's ideally better than TV speakers. He referred to it as a sound bar. It's called the "ZVOX 325 High-Performance Single-Cabinet Surround Sound System"

    The link to it on Amazon.com is here: http://www.amazon.com/ZVOX-325-High-...pr_product_top


    If people have used this system or a similar system, please let me know!

    When reading the reviews, basically, if you already have good speakers, this system may output the sound quality just as well as your TV. Also, since it's a single box and doesn't have multiple speakers placed around the room, the sound output can't be adjusted like a true surround sound system.

    However, it is mentioned that the overall audio quality including speech is improved with this system by many people.

    So, I have no idea whether this box would output sound better than my current TV speakers. Also, I don't have control over the "center" speaker which as the post "um bongo" referred me to, touted as a benefit of 5.1 surround sound systems - the posting mentions that often the center speaker is the one focused on dialogue, thus gain could be reduced in other speakers.

    However, I don't want a surround sound system in my apartment and not all programs are in surround sound anyway.

    So, I'd be very curious as to whether people have tried the ZBOX product mentioned above and what their experiences are.

    There are tons of positive reviews for the one-box sound system.

    I want to improve the quality of sound in general. That is my main goal.

    So, even though this ZBOX product isn't nearly as adjustable as true 5.1 surround sound, if it's improved audio quality for people or hasn't made an improvement, I'd love to know.

    Thank you!

    Even if you haven't used said product, please let me know any suggestions you may have or if you read the reviews, any impressions would greatly be appreciated.

    I don't want to end up with a box that outputs sound with the same quality as my TV set.

    The above product was mentioned on the acoustics forum I posted at, because it's compatible with my TV.

    My TV is the Panasonic Viera TC-L37G1. Here's a link to tech specs for it: http://www2.panasonic.com/consumer-e...del.TC-L37G1.T

    Here's the forum I posted at where the ZBOX was mentioned: http://forum.ecoustics.com/cgi-bin/bbs/show.pl?3/641443

    The reference was made in relation to 2.1 systems NOT 5.1. Rear speakers can be quite destructive to the signal, especially when they are pruducing music 'ambience' or noise relative to the front speech.

    The reason for recommending the 2.1 set-up is that all of the sound comes from front and centre and you don't get the extra channels on the Dolby DTS/5.1/7.1 played. I watched the first Iron Man movie the other day on DVD and the amount of sound from the rear speakers is incredible: the main speech source is the centre and the front L/R though.

    Sound bar/cabinet systems look good, but you'll find that they will aim for a spacial/3D effect by messing around with the signal time delays and the effects of the stereo spectrum - this doesn't necessarily help the average hearing aid wearer: depending on the level of loss. Add to that the systems are often expensive and less configurable than a decent 2.1 output, and you draw your own conclusions.

    However, if it works for you and you have no affiliation to the company concerned, enjoy.
    Link to my entry in the Hidden Content section.
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  6. #6

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    Is it an option to look at acoustic treatment in the room? Throwrugs, hanging tapestries, soft chairs etc. In a discussion with an audiophile friend of mine, he even said dimentions in increments of 8' should be avoided. If your listening room is 24x16 with 8' cielings you are cursed in his mind.

    xxx..250..500..1K...2K...3K...4K...8K
    Lft..65...70...70...75...95...115..NR <----Pre Op
    Lft..25...25...25...25...55....80..95 <----Post Op Hidden Content
    Rt...45...55...50...55...80...100..90

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    Quote Originally Posted by zafdor View Post
    Is it an option to look at acoustic treatment in the room? Throwrugs, hanging tapestries, soft chairs etc. In a discussion with an audiophile friend of mine, he even said dimentions in increments of 8' should be avoided. If your listening room is 24x16 with 8' cielings you are cursed in his mind.
    Indeed, this is a biggie; if soft furnishing isn't an option even putting a set of fabric/canvas covered frames equidistant from a corner with their midpoint at a quarter the length of the longest wall will help.

    One very talented sound engineer I used to work with had a set of motorised curtains that were recessed behind dummy panels. When you fired up the TV they would cover the two shorter walls in his house. He was a bit of a sound nut though - speakers mounted on bricks, pins and rubber matting etc.
    Link to my entry in the Hidden Content section.
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  8. Default

    Dunno if it's been mentioned already, but HOH should consider turning 5.1 surround sound OFF ... apparently they use a processor to generate the separation artificially... and further sound processing may be the last thing a hearing impaired person wants!
    My professional details can be found in the 'Hidden Content ' section of the forum

  9. #9
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    Default Thanks

    This is helpful information, thanks.

    I have to agree with the above comments. I tried changing the surround sound choices while watching Avatar and it did make a difference as far as speech comprehension. My Sony Bravia system also has it's own choices that can be adjusted for better hearing. It can be overwhelming.

    Take care.
    Rick

    Hz...250.500..1K..2K..3K...4K..8K
    Right.25...30..40..60..85.110..NR
    Left...25...35..50..60..80.110..NR

  10. Default

    Thanks for your responses. Yes. The product I mentioned I would imagine would have the drawback of digital compression, etc. because it's not configurable and thus perhaps not my best option.

    I just had no idea because I've never had to think about audio systems that much in the past, so I'm a total newbie in regards to surround sound systems. All I know is that they take up so much space ;-)

    Hmmm... unfortunately I do have really high ceilings and the way my place is set up, there isn't a way to avoid that. I can't believe I said unfortunately in the same sentence as really high ceilings LOL.

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