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Adding new speakers (1 Viewer)


Oct 24, 2012
Real Name
Hi guys I have a question about how to setup speakers I just got.

First off I currently have:

Onkyo HT-RC360
Boston Acoustics SoundWare XS SE 5.1

I've had this system for about a year and a half and it's done fine, but when I go into BestBuy and hear some of the speakers in their Magnolia section I always wish mine sounded like that. I looked for a while at Martin Logan and other brands, but they were always out of my price range. Anyways yesterday I went to the Salvation Army to see what they had and I ran across a set of Phase Tech PC 8.5 towers along with the center channel that I was able to pick up for 39.99. The speakers are in pretty good shape and are actually signed by Bill Hecht. So here are my questions:

1. Can my receiver run these speakers or do I need a separate amplifer?
2. Should I just run this system in a 3.1 configuration keeping the BA sub-woofer or should I keep the rear BA speakers for the rear?
3. The speakers are bi-wire not bi-amp so should I bi-wire them?
4. I think I can set my receiver to 4-6 ohms or 6-16 ohms for all speakers..if I keep the BA speakers in the rear would it hurt them to set it to 4-6 ohms?

Thanks in advance

Jason Charlton

Senior HTF Member
May 16, 2002
Baltimore, MD
Real Name
Jason Charlton
1) According to the product information online at Onkyo, that receiver is not certified for 4-ohm use. You can't use a "separate amplifier" either, because you don't have preouts for the front channels. You probably could run those speakers with that receiver, but if you push the volume too much, you will run the risk of damaging the receiver. For me personally, I would have just stuck with 8 ohm speakers so there are no worries. And, no, I would not run those speakers with the receiver, but that's just me.

2) Again, for me personally, I don't like mixing speakers with different impedances. The cubes are less efficient but have a higher impedance. I don't know precisely how the math works out - either those two cancel each other out, or they will exacerbate the problem - hopefully someone else can chime in to answer that. Also, that sub isn't much to speak of. Only goes down to 40Hz (which may be a reason the current system performance is lacking to you). For $100 you can get a much better performing subwoofer, but then the cubes are the problem as they only go down to 150Hz and any "good" subwoofer shouldn't be wasted trying to produce frequencies that high.

3) Biwiring is pointless. Always. Biamping is also pointless with any typical A/V receiver. Only with separate amplification can the benefits of biamping even begin to be experienced (and even then, the results are often marginal).

4) See my comments in #2.

IMO, you should set a budget to get a new front 3 and subwoofer to start (leave out the subwoofer for now if your budget won't allow). Stick with 8 ohm speakers that will give you peace of mind when using them in conjunction with the surround cubes for the time being. After a while, you can replace the cubes with better speakers.


Supporting Actor
Mar 26, 2014
Coastal SC
Real Name
You could run them for just audio listening next to your HT setup if you wanted them for that purpose. Just get another 4ohm stable amp and put these beside your entertainment center. When you want to listen to music fire that system up and you're in business.

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