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AV Rant #541: Surprise Guest

Our Listeners of the Week are Mark, Vincent, Nathan, and David for their donations. Mark and Nathan also let SVS and Cross-Spectrum Labs know their recent purchases were thanks to our recommendations.

In celebration of AVRant’s 10th Anniversary, we welcome former co-host Liz back to the show! We get to catch up on what she’s been up to, and chat about her current home theater situation. Wonderful to talk with her again.

In the news, LeEco laid of 70% of its USA workers as they retreat from the American market. Early reviews of the inexpensive TCL P-Series with Dolby Vision and Roku are encouraging. Oppo UDP-203 & 205 Ultra HD Blu-ray players are the first to support Dolby Vision with their latest firmware update. And Optoma UHD60 and UHD65 4K HDR10 DLP projectors are priced at $2,000 and $2,500, respectively.

Earle B. felt we gave Justin some bad advice regarding vinyl record playback, so he shares his setup and experiences for our discussion. David B. compared for himself, and settled on a new Vizio E-Series display. It doesn’t have a TV tuner, so we recommend a Mohu Antenna and HDHomeRun network tuner, with the TiVo Roamio OTA, Tablo, Hauppauge TV Tuner for Xbox One, and Channel Master as alternatives. He also wants to make one of his subwoofers wireless, so we suggest the Outlaw Audio OAW4 Wireless Audio Kit. And John W. has a Denon DBT-1713UD Universal Disc Player that no longer supports YouTube, and he wants to know who’s to blame.

Nick B. is agonizing over the layout of his basement home theater, so we discuss dealing with a support pole, seating arrangements, door placement, soundproofing, and HVAC. Vince H. has dual SVS PB-2000 subwoofers, but a large enough room that he’s not getting full pressurization. We talk about walls and doors in terms of air pressure vs. soundproofing, as well as simply getting higher output subwoofers. And Dan N. asks for our opinions on Proficient Audio speakers.

Robert G. wants further clarification about any potential dangers with plugging an amplifier into a voltage regulator. Devon G. wants two pairs of better headphones and would prefer wireless, so we suggest the Sennheiser RS 175, or Sony MDR7506 with a Samson QH4 Headphone Amp and the Outlaw Audio OAW4. And Dave has an indoor pool with a 5.0 moisture resistant surround sound system. He’d like stronger bass, so we suggest marine subwoofer drivers.

Michael M. would like the ability to use Bluetooth headphones as well as HEOS with his Denon AV Receiver, so we go over why he’ll need to send a stereo audio signal from any sources he’d like to use. We also comment on how many speakers to use for an Auro-3D “Voice of God” channel. Kevin A. wants an extremely high output Center speaker, and we think the Power Sound Audio MTM-210C would be an excellent choice. And Damon P. wants a good projector with a quiet fan for gaming, and for his $2,000 budget, we think the Sony VPL-HW45ES is the top choice.

Troy T. upgraded his Living Room speakers to Ascend Acoustics Sierra-2, and now he wants better speakers for his theater, though not quite as expensive. He’s already considering RBH Impression and ELAC Debut, so we add suggestions for Ascend SE Series, Aperion Intimus, NHT Super Series, and KEF Q Series. We also reveal why we’re using Tower or very large stand-mount speakers ourselves. John B. is concerned about future discs or streaming services exclusively using Dolby Vision for HDR and abandoning HDR10. And Jim B. wants greater convenience using some vintage Technics gear with old school bouncing lights. We think a cheap headphone amp and a power strip with master and slave outlets are just what he needs.

Lance H. had an Xbox One audio problem that mysteriously solved itself, but he still has a question about his Marantz SR6010 front display, as well as wanting to know some of our favorite demo discs. Mike wants to add subwoofers to his sound system for the first time, but he wants to use external EQ, so we go over a couple of different connection paths. And Nathan D. has been disappointed by the experience of visiting several high end audio shops. We speculate about why they don’t want to move equipment around, why A-B comparisons are made difficult, and some potential tactics he could use to hopefully improve his next visit.

Thanks for listening. Check out our Facebook Page. Click here for our YouTube channel where you can see the recordings of our show videos. Download Tom’s FREE superhero-themed ebook Bob Moore: No Hero wherever ebooks are sold (or given away in this case). Visit Tom's website for download links as well as links for the two full-length followups -  Bob Moore: Desperate Times and Bob Moore: Hostile Territory. Friend Tom on Google+ to join in on one of our hangouts. You can listen to our producer Austen and his friends dissect movies at his podcast We Watch Movies.
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