1. Guest,
    If you need help getting to know Xenforo, please see our guide here. If you have feedback or questions, please post those here.
    Dismiss Notice

Will it sound ok to use 3 Superzero main fronts instead of a separate center ?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Ken.L, Jan 21, 2004.

  1. Ken.L

    Ken.L Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2004
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    0
    What would be the difference between using a center channel speaker and two Superzeros versus three Superzeros? I may be able to get a set of three Superzeros at a reasonable price but if it's going to sound much inferior to using a center channel speaker, I'll have to reconsider.
    Seems like the specs of the centers and mains in matching sets have the same frequency response numbers. So, I don't really understand why they don't use three mains. I'm very new at this and this forum have been tremendously enlightening.
    Thanks in advance.
    Ken
     
  2. Dan Halchak

    Dan Halchak Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    0
    Technically the best sounding way to set up the ol HT is to have all five (or six or seven) speakers identical.

    I think if they are decent speakers and you can get 3 of them for the front sound stage, that's the way to go!!!!

    It's more important to match up the L/C/R then it is to match Front to Rears. [​IMG]
     
  3. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    Messages:
    12,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    You ask an obvious question Ken and Dan has already provided the short answer. In fact, Dolby recommends that you use the same speakers at every position.

    There are a few reasons that many people choose to use a speaker designed for center channel use. To begin, many people mount their center speaker directly on top of their TV or immediately underneath their TV. TVs with CRT displays (all of the tube-type TVs and some RPTVs, are sensitive to magnetic fields, so placing a speaker with unshielded drivers (magnets are used to move the speaker cones in and out) close to the tube, can (and probably will) cause discoloration on these TVs pictures. As it happens most speaker manufactures don’t shield any drivers other than the ones in a center speaker. If you are going to put your center speaker on top of a CRT TV, make sure its drivers are shielded.

    Center speakers are normally horizontal, which means that they tend to look better in front of a display than a design that is vertical in nature. A vertical floor stander in front of a TV looks kind of silly, even if gthe TV is high enough that the picture is not blocked, for example.I know nothing about ‘Superzeros’, so this may not be an issue.

    Some of the better center speakers are designed so that speech is reproduced very accurately and clearly—this is important in HT, as the center channel contains almost all of the dialogue.

    Hope that this helps.
     
  4. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,572
    Likes Received:
    23
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    I believe the Zeros are sheilded or are at least avaliable sheilded (I'd check to se if the ones you are buying are). The benefit of the center is a small gain in sensitivity, though when calibrated, it should basically sound the same. My front three speakers are identical, and I am very happy with the way it sounds, but they are also an MTM design like a center, so the one I am using for a center is laying on it's side.
     
  5. Mike_Skeway

    Mike_Skeway Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know the speakers that you are getting, but it is fine to use the same as your mains for a center, unless you have placement issues, for example a tower may not stand on your TV very well. [​IMG] Or the are unshielded and you have a Direct View or RPTV.
     
  6. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 1999
    Messages:
    4,952
    Likes Received:
    0

    Absolutely...it's the preferred way to go. I had the same three fronts years ago and they were great. No off-axis anomalies, etc. Small enough that the fact that it's not a low/wide speaker wasn't an issue. And don't lay it on its side, that defeats the whole purpose by screwing up the dispersion.
     
  7. Dan DRC

    Dan DRC Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2001
    Messages:
    109
    Likes Received:
    0
    NHT superzeros would be great for running a matched five speaker set up. I have listened to several setups that used five superzeros and it was really good.
    I wished NHT would keep on making these they were an true entry level audiophile classic. You will have to pay attention to the sub that you mate them with since the superzeros are very bass shy. It can be difficult to get the right mix depending on the room.
     
  8. cabreau

    cabreau Second Unit

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2003
    Messages:
    322
    Likes Received:
    0
    LOL, check this out:

    NHT SuperZero Bookshelf Speaker (Single)
    Manufactured by NHT
    Price: $125.00
    Buy it used for: $800.00
    Availability: This item is not stocked or has been discontinued.
     
  9. Mike_Skeway

    Mike_Skeway Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0


    That sounds like a great deal! [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  10. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,572
    Likes Received:
    23
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John

    IMO, the replacements, the SB line, are even better than the Super series. The SB1 is essentially an updated Super Zero.
     
  11. dan-0

    dan-0 Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2003
    Messages:
    156
    Likes Received:
    0
    NHT does make a center that is matched for the super zeroes. I believe it is the super center one (SC-1).

    As John G said, they are a very nice speaker for the price.

    I bought (all used at different times) 6 nht super zeroes, matching nht center (I believe SC-1) and nht sw2p sub for $807 all together.

    NHT does still make the super zero, now the super zero XU, basically the same speaker but in a different cabinet.
     
  12. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 1999
    Messages:
    4,952
    Likes Received:
    0

    I picked that one up years ago (still have it in the attic, in fact) and found the off-axis lobing to be too severe to be useful, the timbre completely changed even slightly to the sides...all 'Zeros worked much better across the front. The Center was also quite "crisp", a little too much so for my taste.
     
  13. Doug Brewster

    Doug Brewster Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Messages:
    325
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dan Halchak

    I am currently using a superzero for a center-channel and find that it is excellent for music, but dialogue in movies is a little recessed.
    You have opened up an old can of worms with this question, but this forum is supposed to be a place for exchanging ideas and opinions.
    I personally believe center channels are meant to be different than the rest of the speakers because they play a different role when employed for home theater. I would be in the minority here, but still hold to this opinion through personal experience and information from other audio experts. Still others would violently disagree..."That's what makes horse races."
    By the way, in answer to why I would use the Superzero as a center channel if I don't believe it is the best fit for movies, here is my 2 part answer:
    1) I am at least as much interested in hearing good music as in hearing dialogue.
    2) The configuration of my system doesn't allow for the correct alignment of a center channel (I actually have had to stand it on end). This causes the sound to bounce off of the floor and there is an annoying echo-like quality. Using a regular speaker greatly improves the sound. I can live with the other problem much more easily than with that echo.
     
  14. Jack Gilvey

    Jack Gilvey Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 1999
    Messages:
    4,952
    Likes Received:
    0

    Yeah, the Zeroes definitely lack that "presence peak" intended to bring out dialogue that so many centers have and which I found annoying with the SuperCenter. I'd rather turn up the center a bit than have that eq curve hard-wired into the speaker.
     
  15. Ken.L

    Ken.L Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2004
    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    0
    Wow, you guys here super. I'm getting a first rate education on home audio here. I now have firm understanding of the relationship between the center and the two mains.
    Wish I had found you guys before I bought an entry level HT system just a month ago, I wouldn't be upgrading already.
    Thanks to all.
    Ken
     
  16. JakubH

    JakubH Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2002
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have used superzeros all around, it works great as long as you cross to your sub nice and high. The fact is that most conventional centres (ie an MTM on its side) will have lobing problems off axis horizontally. There ony way that such a centre is superior to a normal MT (ie the superzero) is in terms of maximum volume and aesthetics. To me the tradeoff in horizontal dispersion is not at all worth the SPL gain or the 'nice look' of a conventional centre. But that is a matter of personal preference I suppose.

    Bottom line, use the superzero, don't sweat it. Just my $.02.
     
  17. Doug Brewster

    Doug Brewster Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    Messages:
    325
    Likes Received:
    0
    "Wish I had found you guys before I bought an entry level HT system just a month ago, I wouldn't be upgrading already."

    You're only kidding yourself. [​IMG]

    Upgrading...It's in the blood, kid...but...Significant others (translated as wives or girlfriends) don't accept this scientifically proven theory. [​IMG]
    Lies and deception are only partially effective. You might as well establish an (almost constantly exceeded) upgrade budget.
     
  18. Mike_Skeway

    Mike_Skeway Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Messages:
    265
    Likes Received:
    0
    LOL.. That is the truth, we will always be upgrading... [​IMG]
     
  19. LanceJ

    LanceJ Producer

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2002
    Messages:
    3,168
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ken.L: If you're worried about lobing (aren't we all? [​IMG]) this probably isn't an inexpensive solution, but does NHT sell a center channel with two midwoofers and a vertically aligned midrange/tweeter array? Lots of companies are now using this design to alleviate those irritating lobing problems.

    Here's some (these are in my favorites section, since I'm looking for a non-lobing center for my dvd-audio surround music system. But I know there are others available out there):

    JBL's Northridge Series "EC35CH" (cherry)

    Infinity Alpha 37C (this is a BIG one; several people have commented that large centers like this have really improved their movie's sound quality)

    Cambridge SoundWorks Newton MC500 (another large center; and has a rotatable mid/tweeter assembly for mains use)

    LJ
     
  20. Ryan Tsang

    Ryan Tsang Second Unit

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2000
    Messages:
    372
    Likes Received:
    0


    Doug, have you tried a small area rug? Also, I'd like to hear your thoughts on why a center speaker should be different. It interests me.

    Just a comment, not criticism to your opinion: It pisses me off to learn that MTM centers sound "clearer" because of their possible "presence peak." It's like a built-in treble control. Furthermore, it also acts a bit like a dynamic range compressor because people are listening at a lower overall volume to get the same vocal presence.
    Another thought, are mixers compensating for this by deliberately mixing dialogue lower than they would if everybody owned identical LCRs?

    I don't have a MTM center and this gives me another round of ammo against them. I have a bookshelf turned upside down (so the tweeter is closer to the screen) because I prefer the hori dispersion.
     

Share This Page