Q. I recently purchased the Emotiva Airmotiv T1 + speakers. I was able to take advantage of the Emobucks promotion and have a $ 240 Emotional credit, which will expire soon.
I was looking to use credit for something that will improve my system, which has a Pioneer VSX-1024 receiver, Emotiva T1 + towers for the front left and right speakers, and Bose center and surround speakers.
I read in your column that the Emotiva A-300 amplifier would further improve the sound. I use my system for music and surround sound on my TV and care about clarity, not loud sound. Should I purchase this amplifier to use in my system? If not, what should I buy?
– MB, Elizabeth Township, Pa.
A. Your receiver isn’t compatible with an external amplifier, and even if it were, it wouldn’t be the best use of your $ 240 credit.
Speakers are the most important part of your system, and Emotiva Airmotiv speakers are considerably better than any other Bose brand.
In addition to the difference in quality, even with the best brands the best practice is to match the speakers so that they all have the same tonal quality. Called “tonal matching,” having similar speakers for left, right, center and surround creates a more coherent, balanced and pleasing sound field.
In some of the listening tests that were conducted, a paired system with modest speakers was preferred by listeners over a mixed system using expensive speakers. The subwoofer is excluded from this, so if you want to use a different brand of sub in your system, that’s fine.
So, dear readers, no matter which speaker manufacturer you choose, pair them with your whole system.
Use your credit towards an Emotiva center channel and surround speakers to match your T1 + speakers. The Emotional C1 + the center channel is $ 249 and $ 229 Emotional B1 + bookshelf speakers will create nice surrounds. Together they come in at $ 478. If you don’t want to spend an extra $ 238 on top of your $ 240 credit, upgrade the central channel first. In addition to the importance of the center channel in general, this way you have three matching speakers in front of you. emotional.com
Q. I’m looking for affordable noise canceling Bluetooth headphones (over-ear type, not earphones). I’ve seen some of the lesser-selling brands on Amazon, but I’d rather buy something from a well-known brand. I would like to stay under $ 100, as much as possible under $ 100! I need three pairs.
A. This is a bit of a daunting task. Usually the ZVOX and Audio-Technica noise canceling headphones have some sort of promotion going on, but both brands are up around their regular $ 99 and $ 149 retail prices right now.
I’m glad you asked, though, because in doing the research for your answer, I found something that should work even better for you and many other readers as well.
I was very happy with the latest Soundcore products and remembered the Soundcore Life Q20 noise canceling headphones, which have a nice combination of effective noise cancellation and quality sound for $ 59.95. As of this writing, they are on sale for $ 49.99. This will give you three pairs of headphones for under $ 150. soundcore.com