If sound is not a concern then their current configuration is sufficient. No?
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Would they mind ripping their CDs/DVD/Blu rays to hard drive? If not I can't think of anything better than the Himedia 900b. You can find them on Ebay through a seller in Hong Kong. There's also one in the UK.
I plan to use one of these with my JVC RS45 when it arrives. It does everything under the sun and then some for $200!
My single-disk Sony Blu-Ray BDP-S580 does it all for less than $150. (I think you're going to be hard-pressed to find a multi-disk.) We audiophiles sometimes forget that "normal" people don't need to spend much for a decent piece of equipment. It is only 1 1/4" high and has a button on the remote to instantly access Netflix. Picture quality and sound are more than decent.
10-31-11: MceljoIf that's the case and they're not worried about sound quality, I tend to agree with Tom6897's statement. If they just want something new, take them to Best Buy and get a new HTIB. Makes sense to me.
just had an almost identical situation with my sister. ended up getting a 1 box solution at Target for about $275 (no multi disc and 100% plastic). forgot the name but it's one i've never heard of. according to her...it sounds fantastic! lol!. but then who am i to judge....she's very happy with it and that's all that really matters. lots of systems like this out there. they just aren't in the places people like us usually look (like target).
funny thing was, she never wanted to hear/listen to anything we looked at in the stores. she made her decision based on appearance/style alone. was looking for something small and sleek... "with as few buttons and knobs as possible".
at least i've confirmed that "audio/hi fi disease" is not hereditary. =)
Levy03 I have to agree. A lot of people are not concerned about the audio, just the way it looks.
Honestly take them to BB and have them get an HTIB. Normally people don't want to even spend the money to get a good AVR and speaker set which would at least let them change out AVR's down the road but for a lot that is even too complicated or beyond what they are looking for.
Samsung makes HTIB and Sony come to mind. Can even do the wireless back surrounds or side surrounds so they don't have to even run as many wires anymore. Blu-ray system too. Should be able to find those for 300-400 bucks.
Its sad but thats what people want, small and consumable, not something that will last 20 years...
Is being happy with a home theater in a box from a big box store any more "sad" than someone that chooses to drive a junk car so that they can afford high end audio gear?
Just because people doesn't appreciate quality audio equipment doesn't mean that they don't have areas where spending money makes sense to them. In this case, the lady is a fantastic cook and enjoys having people to their home. Her kitchen was recenlty remodeled and I dare say that no expense was spared. Do I care if there's hot water available on tap above the stove? No, but it's a huge improvement for her.
I don't understand why we (me included) look down on anyone that has different values and tastes compared to us.
Maybe people are just waiting to spend their money until someone can tell them what the best product is? Now that audiophiles are claiming Bose is junk they are confused as to what they should buy!
When I said sad I meant more in the terms of the product will not last as long and can be considered more of a consumable than a good core product.
HTIB tend to fail and be outdated quicker than even an AVR and people will be back every few years to get another one. My father's AVR from the 70's still works fine to this day and nothing is wrong with it.
Things were built to a different standard then compared to now. We focus more on ease of use and size vs the quality of the sound or the integrity of the unit because it changes so fast whats the point in spending 1000 on an AVR that will be out dated in a year?
I totally understand that we are in a hobby and that our hobby may look strange to others that don't understand.
I just wish people would focus more on the aspect that you get what you paid for. Cheap doesn't always equal good or high quality and a lot of people want the biggest and best for nothing. Not saying you have to spend tons and tons of money to get something decent but a 200 HTIB is just that and something has to be compromised on.
i always find it odd how two people can look at the same thing but see it completely differently. my sister laughs at my hi-fi set-up and thinks it's completely insane. one might think she's cheap but that's not the case at all.
she's ok paying $100 to get her hair done. she has several pairs of $500+ shoes and has a $1400 purse for gods sake! LOL!
i won't pay more then $15 for a haircut and one pair of shoes that cost over $200 (all my other shoes average about $100). my wallet cost $18.
if we have passion for something, it's much easier to spend alot. without passion....it seems ridiculous to spend that much. different strokes...different folks.
thoughs: definative tech procinema 60.1 sold by waverunner on ebay $325 factory refurn good for small room only 12x12 max
avr denon 1912 all the bells and wistles $400 on line new
or skip the interent radio and streming with a lower model $300. the internet model means that you can get a blueray without all the apps eg last year basic cambridge for better sound $200
$925 + $50 at monoprice for quality generic cabling
you have the simplicity of out of the box and close to everything you might need for the next few years. streams all the video sourse you might want. pandora, rapsody internet music services, and a full range of internet radio.
you can have very good blue ray video and cd sound and lots of switching capacity of differnet ditital in puts. the denon has an analog direct with no processing.
i will likely buy this but upgrade nthe speakers to the more dynamic pro cinema 600 or 800. this is for my bedroom --16 x 14. i already have a panny 50" from 2 years ago which is wonderful, but has losey sound
I haven't gotten the impression, from the posts in this thread, that anyone is "looking down" on anyone else (bighead thinks it's sad but look at his name!!!!) :). If that's the impression you got from my post, you are totally wrong.
If sound doesn't matter to you, then going UBER CHEAP is pretty easy...
For starters, if all you require is surround and Netflix, you should skip the HTIB entirely.
Just get powered computer speakers and attach them to either the "headphone out" or to the "line out" on your TV. Then attach the absolute cheapest BluRay player that will stream Netflix to your TV. Total System: 4 Satellites; 1 Center; 1 Sub; 1 BluRay player; DONE. Target Cost: $150-$175 for everything.
Note that you might need to get an adapter to connect the mini-cable from the sub to your TV, but those are cheap.
Sample System: The Logitech Z506 Surround Sound 5.1 Speaker set lists for $100.00; it gives you a powered sub that will power your speakers. Combine that with an LG BP220 that will stream Netflix and books for $75.00 or so new.
So in summary, you can likely skip the system entirely and just connect a 5.1 powered computer speaker system directly to you TV, along with a cheap player that streams Netflix.
I have a NAD viso five. Yes, I used existing speakers. Excellent sound for a small living room. It has its limitations. When my neighbors were on vacation, I cranked it up loud and the sound hardened. The Viso 5 sounds great at medium volumes, which makes it perfect for a condo or apartment.
It has a built-in disc player of excellent quality. The tuner is the best I've had. The remote is a little clutzy--you need the manual here. It is the best receiver I've ever owned. and it plays DVDA discs with uncanny richness. A keeper for those of us with smaller homes.