Most guys I know are audiophiles. They love their audio so much that they have no qualms in buying a good-grade earpiece or headphone (think Beats by Dre), and may even have purchased Spotify premium just to listen to high-quality music.
I’m quite the opposite of most guys. I like to jog without any musical distraction and most of the time I will only listen to music from the radio when I’m in a car.
When we moved into our new home, Pioneer offered us the chance to try out their home entertainment system. Juliet and I thought of it for a long time trying to weigh out several factors. Because we seriously do not want to have a white elephant that collects dust.
- Will we really spend so much time in front of the TV?
- Space constraint in the house!
- Is it a need or a luxury?
I’ll talk a little more about these 3 points later on.
About the Pioneer VSX-924-K AV Receiver
We had 5 speakers which were sufficient to create the surround sound effect you always experience in the cinemas.
1 sound bar speaker is placed right in front of the sofa with 2 others erected at the “North-west” and “North-east” direction. The other 2 were installed almost parallel on both sides of the sofa.
We paid $600 to get the professionals in to help us install and set up the home entertainment system. We could have simply installed it ourselves but we reckoned the experts will help us configure it to the best way for the best possible experience.
One of the things I’m impressed with is the way the sound sync-ing process is being done. The system comes with a device which helps configure how fast the sound wave will travel and “hit” your ears. Due to the varied distance between all 5 speakers to the position of where we will be sitting at the sofa, some of the speakers may deliberately lag the release of the sound just so it will reach your ears at the right time for you to have a better experience.
Lost your remote control? Or maybe you just want to control it from your handphone?
There’s an app for it! You can control the volume and many other things!
Works fantastic with Blu-ray DVD
To experience true surround sound system like the cinemas, you will need to watch your movies in Blu-ray DVDs as they contain all the sound data required to give you a similar experience.
Switch on the woofer and you will hear the sound of explosions and feel the vibration like how you would in the cinemas!
Imagine a scene in which people are literally speaking behind the actor’s back. Instead of hearing the sound from the front speaker, you will hear it from the back as if you were the actor.
Works great even without playing from a Blu-ray DVD
We watch many drama and documentary shows on cable and thankfully for the various sound modes the Pioneer home entertainment system have pre-set, we are able to toggle through them depending on what kind of show it is. The modes will try to replicate the same experience even though the TV does not have the sound data required. So modes like Sports, Classical, Drama, etc will try to artificially create a similar experience you would otherwise have experienced on a Blu-ray DVD.
So back to the 3 points we were weighing out…
#1 Will we really spend so much time in front of the TV?
While we were buying furniture and electronics for our house, we thought we will spend very little time on watching TV thus we didn’t invest in a very good TV. We got a respectable 47 inch Smart LED TV which cost us a low $1,000.
After we both moved in, we realised we have been watching a lot more TV shows than expected! We loved channels like Discovery, History, Criminal Investigation, Comedy Central, etc.
So because of this unexpected consumption behaviour, a better viewing experience would have been great!
#2 Space constraint in the house!
It’s a real issue in Singapore these days. New houses seem so small as compared to the older ones even though the metric space is almost the same (probably due to the layout).
We could have chosen the 5 speakers to be the big standee kind but thankfully Pioneer has got those small satellite pieces which still pack a punch.
Space constraint wasn’t an issue anymore.
#3 Is it a need or a luxury?
It’s definitely a luxury. But we soon realised our TV viewing experience wasn’t the same without it. It feels like something is missing when we don’t switch it on.