mainstream sleeper audio products....

I have friend who lives in a rural area...with his only options being driving to a best buy magnolia show room...or ordering something offline unheard...any easily obtainable monitors and sub that would suffice? Thinking Pioneer bookshelves that were the rage a few years back or similiar...he just wants good/above average sound with limited hassle...hence the suggestion...maybe a small mirage/Martin Logan sub? Are the Yamaha servo subs in this range a thought?
0af4f876 eb83 4323 a292 3564f9bafea1phasecorrect
Hi Phasecorrect,

Minimal hassle and intergrating monitors and subs...can be two contrasting goals! ;) fortunately, with certain subs, it is far easier than others. The 2 options i would suggest are: pre-made monitor/sub systems so the setup should have been designed in from the start.

Or get nice bookshelves (like Totems, Celestions, Epos, etc)...and get a Velodyne DD-10+. the Velodyne comes with a hook it 'calibrate' and it sends out sweep tones which are then picked up by the microphone, fed back into the sub and the sub automatically self-adjusts 8 frequencies to equalize to the bass-response/handling of the room.

Good luck. hope that is somewhat helpful.

It'd be hard to go wrong with a pair of PSB Image B6's or B5's depending on the budget.
For speakers, I'd go with the Usher BE 718's.
I've had great success with my REL sub. Hook it up to the speaker outputs on the amp and dial it in until it just "disappears". There are many monitors depending on taste and budget. Include solid stands if they are monitors. If integrating a surround system go with a receiver that has Audyssey. It's impossible for me to recommend speakers without knowing his budget and taste in music, but the REL is easy to recommend for all kinds of music.
One more call for Audyssey (or similarly auto x-over/Digital Room Correction enabled) electronics if good results from a sub/sat system are desired without real time/effort of set-up. The Harman Kardon HK 990 amp is a good alternative to an AVR in that you're buying 2 channels of high quality power amplification, rather than the 7 channels you'd get in an AVR. You're also not paying for the video capabilities, yet you get full subwoofer management and DRC.

New HK-990s are generally available <$1500 on e-bay.

Good Luck.

Stereophile went nuts over some real inexpensive Sony or possibly Pioneer bookshelves within the last year or so. I wish I could tell you which but a search might find them for you. Otherwise there are an awful lot of decent speakers on the market you'll find many fans of the different brands in these forums. There was just a post asking for the "best" monitor, search the archives.
It was the Pioneer speaker that S'phile raved over. IIRC, under $200/ea.
Not sure if all Magnolias are the same, but the ones near me have some excellent products, including speakers from Martin-Logan, B&W, REL and Sonus Faber, and electronics from McIntosh, Marantz, Arcam and Primare.

For sure there are better deals and more selection on line and in big cities, but you can certainly pick up high quality kit at Magnolia.
A nice combo is the NHT Classic 3 with their 10" or 12" subwoofer or even a pair of subs. Can be bought for less than $1000. Also any PSB satellite/sub combo.