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Customer Review

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent HTIB, July 23, 2012
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This review is from: Onkyo HT-S9400THX 7.1-Channel Network A/V Receiver/Speaker Package (Electronics)
I fretted for months trying to decide what sound system I was going to put in the home theater room in my new house. I read many reviews and went back and forth on whether to get a HITB or put together individual components. I finally decided on the Onkyo 9400THX and, so far, I am not disappointed. I installed an Epson 3010(see my review), a 120" VA wall-mount screen, a Sony Blu-Ray player & DirecTV HD DVR reciever in the 12' X 18' room. I connected all the components to the HDMI ports and ran an HDMI from the reciever to the projecter mounted in the 9' ceiling.

Installation was lenghty, as I hung the 7 speakers on the wall, running cables through the wall and back to my component cabinet. As per most of the reviews, I tossed the small speaker wires included in the package and went with 12AWG/2C in-wall speaker wire by Cmple purchased on Amazon. I installed banana clips on the ends connecting to the reciever, but was unable to use the banana clips on the speaker due to limited space behind the speakers. I, instead, used the screw connectors on the speaker backs. I also replaced the flimsy sub cable with a 24' in-wall cable purchased at Best Buy. The speakers are heavy so I had to firmly anchor the screws in my sheet rock walls where a stud wasn't available. The hangers on the back of the speakers weren't too difficult to use because I used wall anchors. The center speaker has two hangers but if you measure the hangers center-to-center and space your screws accordingly, hanging is a breeze. I chose to hang the speakers about 8' up the wall despite instructions having ear-level the optimum position. I used the Audyssey microphone to set the speakers to the room and it worked splendidly. I did up the sub setting as I like a little more boom.

The Epson 3010 is 2D/3D and I have had no issues with either mode. I have a very clear picture from all my components. The sound is great in my medium-sized room, although I have to crank the volume over 65 to get my desired listening level. I have theater-like sound and it is very clear with no distortion. I have listened to music on Pandora, connecting with my DirecTV wireless reciever, and the sound is awesome. I played Heart's "Magic Man", a song I have used for years to test sound quality of my many different systems, and it is the best I heard so far. I changed to different modes to test sound quality and settled on the THX Music mode for music. There are many different listening modes for movies and music to choose from. I am no audiophile, but I sing and DJ, so I have a pretty good ear for sound.

As stated in other reviews, the reciever generates a lot of heat. I have all my components in a closed cabinent and over-heating would be an issue. I installed a pair of Cabcool 1202 dual 120mm fans with thermal controller, purchased from Amazon, into the back of my cabinet which exhaust the warm air and pulls cool air fom the room. I do have to keep the cabinent doors open, but the cabinet is in the back corner of the room and can't be seen.

I am very satisfied with the Onkyo 9400THX and have no regrets. The only cons I have are the flimsy wires and the lack of space on the back of the speakers for banana clips. I have had no issues with HDMI connections or feed-through. No regrets yet for purchasing and I highly recommend this system for people wanting a good sounding HITB.

As for Amazon shipping, I used the Super Saver shipping, ordering on a Thursday, and recieved the package on the following Tuesday. The huge, heavy box was in pristine condition with no damage whatsoever. It was difficult for my wife and I to get the giant box upstairs. It is very well packaged with styrofoam surrounding everything and the box is thick cardboard. I have to give UPS praise for their handling of the bulky package.
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Tracked by 4 customers

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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 1, 2012 11:08:44 AM PDT
Victor says:
Thanks for your excellent and detailed review. I do have one question about wall mounting the Onkyo 9400 surround speakers. As I'm currently constructing my media room, the walls aren't up yet. I did run 12 gauge speaker wire for my future surrounds. I haven't yet bought any equipment except for some sturdy metal speaker mounts, but I'm building as if if I'm going to buy the 9400 system (the reviews are excellent). My question is how to connect the speaker wire through the drywall. Do the surround speakers have screw terminals right on the back of the speaker? Or are they inside as some suggest? Can I run a banana clip right to the back of the speaker? You had a problem because the speaker back was flush with the wall? I'm not sure I ran enough speaker wire through the walls as I had initially intended to use a banana clip wall plate. Now I think it might look better if I just poke a small hole in the drywall and run the wire directly to the speaker (especially if you can't use a banana clip on the speaker). I'm not sure there's enough wire length to do so though in my case. About how much wire would I need from the wall to the speaker screw terminals or banana clip? Thanks in advance.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 1, 2012 7:48:37 PM PDT
The back of the speakers are flat with a slight cut-out for the screw terminals. The reason I didn't use the banana clips on the backs is because the plugs stuck out past the speaker back which wouldn't allow the speakers to be flat on the wall. I just poked a hole through the wall, behind the speaker, and ran the wire directly to the screw terminals. the terminals are at an angle upward and are slightly recessed into the back. The terminals have holes in the bottom of the posts where the wires are placed. Be sure you screw the post caps all the way out to fully expose the hole as the 12 ga wire is tight in the hole. The hangers on the back of the speaker are similar to a picture hanger which limits the hanging. You could possibly fashion a different type of hanger that would allow banana plugs, I was just ready to get the system installed and didn't attempt it. You only need a small amount of wire for the terminals as only about 1/2" is needed for contact. I did use banana plugs on the reciever end which greatly simplified what would have been a very difficult task to use the screw terminals there. It also removed doubt about connections & eliminated the possibility of shorts. Whichever system you decide to use, I wish you luck with your media room. Are you going with a projector or flatscreen?

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 2, 2012 9:05:01 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 2, 2012 9:07:16 AM PDT
Victor says:
Again, thanks for the great info! I will go with a flat screen as they've improved so much. Since the 9400 surround speakers are so heavy I've been building wood backing behind the walls to support my metal speaker mounts. My speakers won't be flush against the wall, but angled with the metal mount. It's tough to build to/for a speaker when you don't even own it yet! I think it might look cleaner to pop a hole in the base of the speaker mount and run the wire directly to the back of the speaker (connected with a banana clip) rather than putting in a wall plate to run the wire. I feel foolish but building/learning/worrying about this has been a bigger deal than I would've thought, so I definitely appreciate the info. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2012 10:42:49 PM PDT
M.K. Grieger says:
Onkyo HT-S9400THX 7.1-Channel Network A/V Receiver/Speaker Package
Hi, if you have not finished your setup yet check out this link for wall speaker wire teminals. I have used these type of terminals and they give the most and best options and look professional too!

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 7, 2012 10:25:39 AM PDT
Victor says:
Thanks for the link. I ended up running my white speaker wire directly through a small hole in my drywall. The speaker mounts I bought have hole in them for wire I gather. This allows me to not need a dedicated wall plate. I think it's just a cleaner look for my (small) room.

Posted on Jan 7, 2013 8:11:33 AM PST

I just got the Onkyo HT-S9400THX 7.1 Channel Home Theater-in-a-Box System as they had a good deal on Amazon during the year-end sale. This is my first home theater system so I am still a newbie in this field. I finished setting it up this weekend and I am using the 5.1 setup for now ( had 100 feet of 16 gauge wire and it wasn't enough for the back surround speakers so need to get more wire). I have it setup in a great room which is a decent sized room and the kitchen is behind the living area. It would be around 15 feet to 25 feet. The tv is against the 15 feet wall and the couch is setup exactly opposite the TV at about 12 feet or so. I did the Auddysey 2 EQ calibration and calculated the room acoustics using the microphone.

After doing that I see that the sound from the PS3 and my DirectTV HD DVR is not as loud as I would have liked. At volume level 50 it sounds about average. I can turn it as high as 75 and it doesn't sound too loud. I am not sure if I have the setup the speakers right. You said you also go to level 65 to get the desired sound. Have you found a way to fix that? I connected my USB player and it sounded a lot louder ( I think) . So I am not sure if it is a HDMI connection setup issue that I need to do.

My current setup is - PS3 going in to GAME HDMI, DirectTV going in to the CBL/SAT HDMI and the HDMI OUT going to the TV. I also have an optical audio cable going from the TV to the TV/CD audio input ( I am not sure if I need this - I can probably take this out and try). I have an old Philps DVD player connected to the VCR/DVR component input. Should I try connecting the PS3 and DirectTV box to HDMI1 and HDMI2 instead of HDMI3 and HDMI4? ...Will that change anything?

I have all the speakers (5.1) connected with a RCA 16 gauge wire using Sewell deadlock banana plugs. For the subwoofer, I am using the supplied cable for now. Do I need to upgrade the subwoofer cable too?

I also noticed that my IPOD classic ( click wheel) color screen 80 GB did not get recognized when I plug it in the USB port. Does anyone use this older IPOD with the Onkyo 9400? I could not find it stated anywhere that it is not supported. I tried a USB harddrive and I can play the music from that just fine.

Thanks for the help!
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