View Full Version : getting into home audio

12-31-2010, 03:17 AM
Thus far, I've been building systems using car audio amps wired to computer power supplies that either go to a massive car audio sub/box or a bunch of tower/bookshelf speakers. This is how my living room is set up but im looking to build a new system for my room, mainly for music and occasional movie watching. I was planning on doing 2 bookshelves on the desk and a sub on the floor but instead of doing my regular PSU to amp set-up, id rather do a Home Audio plate amp that has a sub channel and speaker channels and a control center of some sort. I bought a Logitech Z-5500 at frys yesterday, took it home, played it, then took it back today due to a defective sub. I didn't exchange it because i wasn't super impressed with the sound or bass from the demo set that they had. I did like the way that the sub amp connected to the speakers and how it had a controller. I would like to now build my own system using a more powerful plate amp mounted to a box that i will build for one of the subs i already have. I will also pick up a pair of JBL bookshelves soon so that takes care of my speaker situation. As far as plate amps, i saw a Bash 300w amp on PE for 100 bucks that looked okay but i dont think it has output for the bookshelves.

Can somebody steer me in the right direction as far as which amps can do this (same setup as the logitech system) or maybe a better way of doing it? I will be using the headphone jack on my laptop with an auxilary cord to the plate amp (whether it has the headphone jack input or RCA) and ill run a set from my TV as well so i would like the controller so that the TV isnt blasting sound when its on. Thanks

12-31-2010, 03:41 AM

12-31-2010, 04:00 AM
AVS Forum (http://www.avsforum.com/) Amazing forum with more info you could ever hope for, especially the DIY section.

12-31-2010, 02:04 PM
so since i really only want 2 speakers and a sub, should i go with a 2.1 channel amp?

12-31-2010, 02:15 PM
get a surround sound receiver, doesn't matter if your not using all channels. Some have nice features like eq, crossovers, time-delay and you'll be able to control the level of your channels. Look for a nice one and expect to pay about $300 or so.

12-31-2010, 02:24 PM
so a 5.1 would be what im looking for I guess. I can always add more speakers to the setup. Im thinking about building a downfiring box tuned to about 27hz with a treo SSI 10 in it but it would need about 500 watts from the sub channel on the amp to get going pretty well.

12-31-2010, 02:26 PM
get a surround sound receiver, doesn't matter if your not using all channels. Some have nice features like eq, crossovers, time-delay and you'll be able to control the level of your channels. Look for a nice one and expect to pay about $300 or so.

this. Don't cheap out either, I got a nice 5.1 Onkyo for around $300 and I love it. You will still need a plate amp if you intend to run a dedicated subwoofer but if you build yourself a decent set of speaker towers (like mine with 10" woofers in the bottom) you'll have some decent bass without a dedicated sub.

01-01-2011, 02:38 PM
I dont particularly want to build a set of towers because i would like to keep the bookshelf speakers on my desk in front of me and the sub down low. I have a set of kicker KS series 6.5 components and a set of KS 4" speakers and i was thinkin about building a set of bookshelves out of those. Will the reciever power the speakers and a plate amp power the sub? or are there recievers with sub channels? or is the reciever just like a control center and the plate amp powers all the speakers? thanks.

01-01-2011, 02:57 PM
the receiver will power all speakers and will have a sub-output for your plate amp. I honestly think 300watts would be enough for any sub, build a big box to get a bit more efficiency out of it. you dont have to mount plate amps in boxes unless you are absolutely going to keep it, thats just me though.

01-01-2011, 03:00 PM
The reciever powers your main speakers and provides a subwoofer out for your sub amp/sub. Most home theater recievers (5.1 or 7.1 channel) only put out 60-120watts per channel but you'll find this is plenty for most listeners. If you go to a big box store like Fry's and check out all the home theater demos, you'll see what I mean.

Most good home theaters start out around $200. Sometimes you can pick up a really nice unit on clearance for half of what it retails for.

Then all you need is a plate amp for your sub. You'll find that going this route will be cheaper than using car audio gear. To use car audio in the home, you need a good dedicated 12V -13.8V supply that can put out at least 80-amps and they are not cheap. Its also a good idea to run a AGM battery, so the cost far exceeds the proper equipment.

01-03-2011, 02:25 AM
thats why im not running car audio amps this time. I will run the speakers with a reciever and i can wire each bookshelf speaker to 8ohms so it shouldnt be a problem. using the kicker KS speakers that I already have will be the most cost effective thing to do and then i just need a decent plate amp for the sub. this shouldnt be a very hard build now that i know what to get. ive seen recievers for 100 bucks on sale/clearance that are rated to do enough power for sure. the plate amps on Parts Express dont seem to bad (300-500 RMS) and i can easily build a large downfiring box tuned very low so i should be good to go now.

Also, I was thinking about making my bookshelf speakers dual chambered with the 4" speakers in a sealed chamber and the 6.5s in a ported chamber tuned to about 35. it should provide for some decent sound if my thinking is clear.

01-05-2011, 05:30 AM
Why bother with the time, expense and headache of building the sub (aside from the pleasure you might get from building it yourself) and look for a deal on something like a small Velodyne sub for around $100 - $150 when they go on sale. In my son's dorm he uses my old Yamaha 5.1 with a pair of Boston bookshelf speakers and a Velodyne 10" sub and its MORE than enough and sounds pretty **** good. I bet he doesn't have more than $350 invested in the whole rig given the fact that the Yamaha is valued at about $100.


01-06-2011, 02:49 AM
i was thinkin about stuff like that but id rather build my own and use a way more powerful sub. I used a pair of type R 12s in a 3.5 cube box tuned to 30hz on a soundstream EGA1700D in my dorm with a set of pioneer bookshelves on an MTX 2ch. I would have it slamming all day and id like to build a comparable system for my room in my new house.

i did manage to snag a logitech Z-560 from a dude for 50 because a tinsel on the sub came unsoldered from the terminal so i re-soldered it and its running like a champ. it gets loud enough i guess but the box is tuned in the mid 40s i believe so i want to build another box with a longer external port tuned to about 28. this will hold me over until i get all of my parts and stuff together for my new build. :)