Best place to start when upgrading?

Right now my tastes are watching DVD's and occasionally listening to about all types of music. Now I have a 3year old Technics Home Theater receiver, Sony DVPS-530 DVD player, Technics EQ, and a Sony 27" Trinitron. My front speakers Kenwood are about 15 years old 8" woofer and a 1.5 to 2 inch tweeter, a JBL passive sub, and a Technics set of rear surrounds and center channel. I want to upgrade, but I don't know where to start exactly. I need some pointers, general ideas, brands to stay away from, brands to favor. Any help will be welcomed. Thanks
Hey boat how much do you have to spend.
I suggest you do it over 1to 2 years so you can put as much cash as possible into it.
Boat, the first step is to determine where you want to go with your system. Are you looking perform a modest upgrade, or do you want to completely transform your current setup? Once you make this determination you can then realistically come up with a budget.

Regarding home theater, I am of the opinion that the picture completely overshadows the sound. If I were putting together an HT system I first would focus on the video. For my taste a 27" monitor is too small and an upgrade to a 35/36" would reap big benefits. Also depending upon your viewing habits a center channel may not be required. A center channel is used to fix the sound at the monitor for off center-line viewers. If that's not a factor in your house, then skip the center channel and spend the money on better main (front) speakers.
Hey Boat, what's happening??

I have to concur with both of the above. But in addition to how much you want to spend, I must also ask you how big your room is as well (as well as the acoustics of it). The reason I ask you what size your room is "is" because that's going to play a major part in what size TV you should get, if you should desire to upgrade the TV as well. To a point, I may have to slightly disagree with Onhwy61 in reference to a 27-inch TV being too small for the video portion of the home theater system. As I have a very small bedroom, I am currently using a 27-inch TV in my home theater system as well, and I find the set in my system in the room that it is located in humungous. So, that goes to say then, if you have a very small room and all, then a 27-inch set is all you're going to be able to put inside of it. But now, if your bedroom is bigger than mine (and mine is 12 x 12 x 14), or if you are going to be using a moderate sized room, then it would benefit you go ahead and upgrade to a bigger TV then (in which only then and only then, I'll be looking at a 35-inch or 36-inch model). That's just something else for you to consider if you are thinking about making the TV one of your areas for upgrading your system.

But other than that, you have to determine as to how far you want to go in upgrading your system and come up with a budget before we can throw out some recommendations and suggestions to you. But what ever you do, unless you have a whole wad of money to blow on the whole shebang at one time, I would think seriously about upgrading a piece or two at a time and space the whole thing out over a period of time. Depending on what you want your system to do, the whole thing may take you two-to-three years to complete (it took me a year-and-a-half to get to the point in which I am at now, and now, I am looking at speaker systems right now. So that means I'm still not finished yet). But whatever you decide to do, put as much money as possible into the components and get the best components your budget can buy. If you do that right from the start, then that would cut down, or speed up consequent upgrades later on down the line. That would be my suggestion right now.

I hope that this is some sort of help to you.

With the little info you gave. I would start with the speakers. The thing to rember with speakers you get what you pay for. Great speakers are not cheap. Next do away with the chzzey reciever.
Start anywhere you can. Shop for deals on components or speakers. Once you commit to a brand of speaker stay with it for your whole system. Add a sub that compliments your speakers. This will take some time and effort. But when it's done every movie you watch will blow you away. Gotta go, The amps have warmed up and I just rented Pearl Harbor:~)
I am not really fimilar with what equipment is available, so it is hard for me to set a budget and say what it is. As soon as I know what is out on the market, I can make a better assessment of how much I will be able to spend. I have an idea of what I want to do, but the cost I am unsure of. I want to build a PC that will store/play DVD's, CD's, and maybe MP3's and be the center hub of the Home Theater. Also have a PC that will record/store DVD's, CD's, and MP3's, these 2 PC's will be networked together. Some how integrate the AMP(s), Home Theater Processor, speakers, sub, and the Video, wether it be a monitor or a projector into the PC used in the Home Theater. In building these PC's, they will have to have a fast processor, I am thinking a minimum of a gig each. The memory at least 1 gig, hard drives (biggest available at the time of buildup for storage). High end video, sound, and networking cards. DVD+RW and DVD-ROM on the PC which records the media(For home personal use ONLY), and at least a 17"-19" monitor. The PC that is used in the home theater will have a DVD-ROM and either a very large monitor or a projector. I have been informed to use SCSI when interconnecting the innards of the PC's for the purpose of non-intruptable Videostream through a PC. Has anyone ever done anything like this?? Anyone know of web sites/pages where someone has done this or something like it? I guess the tips I need for now are websites to do my research from, PC sites and Home Theater Sites. If anyone has any tips, ideas, or help it is welcomed with an open mind. Thanks
The mag Stereophile for HT has had an ongoing series of articles about how to construct a PC based DVD playback system. As a practical matter there's no reason to store DVDs onto computer hard disk. Due to the storage requirements it's not very efficient. If all you want to do is setup a computer based music jukebox, then do a forum search for "i-tunes". There a thread where I describe the system I put together. It's not difficult to do, but there are a number of different approaches.
With the PC being the heart of your system dont sweat the gear.
Most mif fi gear will get you the resoulotion you crave.
No point spending big bucks if your source is not going to be that good.