Good A/V Receiver and speakers to start


I may have been asking too much in my earlier bites yet. Can someone help steer me towards an appropriate receiver/speakers given my room size and budget? Have about 3K to spend and have been turned off salesmans recommendations based in part on what I've read in these threads. They were pushing the Denon 3803 and the Onkyo SR800. I fear neither will have the power I need for my 20X20 room open to 25' ceiling and 30X30 2nd floor. Will be used with HDTV and about 60/40 tv/music. Would like 6.1 or 7.1 setup and will likely start with 5.1.
Any thoughts on buying used to get a better quality system like Rotel, Marantz...or maybe go with new NAD 762? Not sure if I should start with receiver or speakers first. I have a very old Marantz and a not so old HK, but I don't think either is powerful enouph for my needs so I thought I'd use them in other areas. Any recommendations will be greatly appreciated.

I am sure others might disagree with me, but I am in the process of getting the system outlined below, and it sounds wonderful (have the receiver, speakers arrive tomorrow!). I have heard that NAD uses this system in its labs as a reference to test its equipment. It will also fit within your budget. All can be had at substantial discounts off retail price from Saturday Audio Exchange (

Receiver: NAD T762-the most power hands down in its price range (retail $1300...on special for $899 at Saturday Audio)

Fronts: PSB Image 2B's or 5T, based on whether you want bookshelf or floor standing ($399 or $799 per pair retail)

Center: Image 8c or 9c ($299 or $399 retail)

Surrounds: Image 2b or 10s (depending on whether you want directional or dipolar-$399 or $650 per pair retail)

Sub: Image Subsonic 6 ($649 retail)

Total Amount: $2750 - $3400 retail depending on which types of speakers you choose. Once again, you can usually get 15-20% off of retail from Saturday Audio...and they are an authorized dealer.

Johnny, thanks for all your recommendations. I found a store within a reasonable distance that is a dealer for NAD and PSB. I'm a bit nervous about purchacing on line without a dealer auth. I'm particularly concerned about the NAD model with all the problems I've been reading about. I'm not at al familiar with PSB and wonder what they might compare to. The sub I was looking at seems like it was a lot larger, 1000 watts. I'll check them all out as soon as I can get into Boston. Bumber nothing closer with the Big Dig and all. Also, There is a local selling what sounds like a fantastic set up, but I'm not knowledgable enouph to know what from what to know it's condition and suitability. What do you think of this:
MCINTOSH MC202 200W 2-CHANNEL PWR AMP. McIntosh MX 130 A/V tuner control center pre-amp. 5-channel w/THX certification. Denon DVD 2800 II. DVD/HD CD w/DTS. Vandersteen 2c 2.5 way flr standing spkr. B&W 601 S2 monitor bkshelf spkrs. Paradigm monitor 5 bkshelf spkr. Pr of Target 24" stands. All exc to mint cond. Must see & hear. 4K

Just read all I could find, which was very little, on the above used system. Guess thats not what I am looking for. Would be interested if someone knows a bit about the mcintosh and could explain to me if the 202 and 130 could be compatable with any of their upgrades. Since my knowledge is limited, maybe focusing on an A/V receiver would be advantagous?

Hi NM,
I can't comment on the specific Mcintosh models you listed, but if you're not aware you should know that the brand is widely regarded as one of the finest and best respected in high-end audio.


I too cannot comment on the specific separates you listed, but I am sure they sound wonderful. I have heard that Mcintosh is very well respected also, but the system you list would be a lot more costly than the one I listed above. You expressed some concern about buying online. I understand your reservations, but Saturday Audio Exchange is not a true online dealer in the traditional sense. They only take phone orders...not through the internet. Also, they are a factory authoirzed dealer for both NAD and you won't have to worry about any warranty issues. I bought an NAD and PSB speakers from them, and could not be happier. They are always willing to talk with you on the phone about any problems you may have.

I just purchased a similar system to the one you outlined above (did you get it yet?)
Budgetary constraints prevented me from going for the NAD T762, so I went with the T742. I also went with PSB: Image 5T for fronts, 8C for the center and went with the SubSonic 5i for the sub (I have some old PSB bookshelfs that I am using for the surrounds)
The systems sounds absolutely fantastic! The PSBs seem an excellent match for the NAD. I was going to order from Saturday Audio or DMC-Electronics, but really wanted to hear the gear. I found a place about 3 hours away in New Jersey who had all the gear in stock. Loved the sound in the showroom (sounds better at home!) I ended up buying everything there as they matched the online prices($1500 US for the 742, pair of 5Ts, Image 8c and SubSonic 5i) I just love the sound! Music is incredible and movies blow me away!


No, I get the speakers UPS this afternoon...I CAN'T WAIT!!! I ordered the Image 2B's for the front (I dont have room for tower speakers) and the larger 9c for the center. I am going to get the rest (sub and surrounds) when I get more money. I got them all on "bad box" deals from Saturday Audio. That means that the boxes were damaged in shipping, but the speakers are fine, full warranty. I got the 2b's for $275 a pair (retail $399) and the 9c for $279 (retail $399). In the future, thinking of getting either more 2b's for surrounds, or the 10s dipoles...haven't decided yet.

Sounds like a great deal! Good luck! To save some money, I am using some old PSB Alpha bookshelfs I bought for the bedroom about 9 years ago. The sound fine for now, but down the line I also am looking at the 10s dipoles.
The only down side I have found for now, is the limited amount of Digital inputs on the 742, (probably not an issue with the 762) My CD player, DVD and HD cable box all have optical digital outs for audio, and the 742 only has two optical digital inputs. Is there any such thing as an optical splitter (A/B box)?
Let me know if you have any thoughts on this and best of luck!


Yes, they do actually have a splitter for optical connections...actually it is 3 way. Check it out below. I have ordered from Parts Express before...very happy with the results. Hope this helps.

Joong-In Rhee
NM : Grab the McIntosh gears! It is a cut or two above NAD set up. Vandersteen speakers are good too! Your ears will thank you.


It is a 2 channel McIntosh amp, hardly what she is looking for!

Thanks for the link to PartsExpress. That piece is exactly what I need! For 20 bucks, it's as good as another Optical/digital in on the NAD. I'll order it today!
How are you enjoying the new rig?
I can't get enough of mine! Funny how, in listening to CDs, I am seeing how the recording details, mix and production are incredible on some, and others that I previously thought were really good, pale in comparision. Still can't get over Steely Dan- 2 Against Nature!


No problem with the converter. I hope it works for you. I just got my PSB speakers hooked up last night. I posted a review on another thread. I will post the link below. Let us know how the converter works. Even on the 762 there are only 2 optical inputs. I only have two pieces of equipment that have optical ouputs, so for now, I am fine...but in the future, it is nice to know I have options.
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