Advice on this 5.1 Speaker setup?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by BrianFan, Jan 6, 2005.

  1. BrianFan

    BrianFan Auditioning

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    Hi Folks.

    Well, I'm taking the plunge and setting up a surround system. I wanted to know your feelings/doubts/recommendations about the speakers I plan to get. I will be using a Denon 3805 AVR and the speakers I plan on getting are as follows:

    Front: Paradigm Atoms

    Center: Paradigm CC-170

    Surrounds: Paradigm Cinema 90's

    Sub: SVS PB10-ISD or PB12-ISD

    The room is 24x13 and has some substantial openings to other areas of the house. The system will be used for music, movies/tv viewing and games(xbox and PS2).

    Any advice or, if you have them, alternative suggestions in the same general price range would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks in advance,

    Brian
     
  2. james_pierce

    james_pierce Extra

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    That is a nice receiver with plenty of power that will probably be one of the last things you will want to upgrade. The speakers you are considering perform better in smaller rooms. I have had the Titans in a rather large and open room. They didn't sound terrible but didn't do justice for my larger room either. Your room I would consider to be on the larger side. Consider stepping up to the monitor series or to the Studio series. IT didn't take me long to upgrade from the Titans which I lost money on when selling. You can always start with the mains and sub and save for the rest if your budget allows. I have had a smaller sub in my room which I bought and returned due to the room size. The PB12-ISD should do well in your room. I plan on getting a 25-31 PC Plus sometime soon.

    Just my two cents hope this helps!
     
  3. BrianFan

    BrianFan Auditioning

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    Thanks James!
    One factor I forgot to mention in my initial post(and really the most determining factor) is WAF. While I would certainly like to move up to larger speakers, aesthetics is a major concern. Aesthetics - at least to my wife - means unobtrusive. I can probably get away with hiding the sub somewhat out of the way. I have real doubts though about moving up to the larger floor standing speakers. I might be able to at least move up to the Titans.
    I'll just have to see how persuasive I can be. Thanks again for your comments.


    Brian
     
  4. james_pierce

    james_pierce Extra

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    Brian,

    The Paradigm mini monitors and Studio 20's are bookshelf speakers and not floorstanders. Granted they are bigger than atoms but not huge in any regard. I am in the same boat with the WAF. I actually went to Dynaudio Audience 42's which are about the same size as the atoms but are a in a different league altogether from the atoms. I actually prefer the sound of the Dyn 42's over the Studio 20's, which I have owned as well. Don't tell the wife because she thought I bought the Dyn's because they were smaller lol. She thought the Studio 20's were too big. What she really wanted me to get were BOSE !

    You can get Dynaudio 42's for $700/pair on listenup.com. The are small but big sounding speakers and they love power the more the better. They get plenty loud in my room with my NAD T752. They can really crank without compressing. Also, they are never fatiguing. Only bad thing is that you would have to pay $700- $800 for surrounds as well since Dynaudio does not make anything cheaper. I am still using the Cinema 90's for surrounds due to the wife liking their size so much. You can get away with using a different brand for surrounds. The Cinema 90's are definitely voiced differently but are still a laid back speaker so they compliment the Dyn's ok. They don't match well for multichannel music listening but I don't care too much for multi channel anyways.

    The 42C which I have and is a great center goes for about $400.
     
  5. james_pierce

    james_pierce Extra

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    Oh one more thing. Have you thought about going used? I have seen some great deals on used Dynaudio. At the time I was going to buy them I was constantly checking Ebay and Audiogon for 42's but could not find any. After buying them new a couple of weeks later a bunch of used ones popped up. Go figure. Buying used speakers is not a bad route at all. I bought my Studio 20's used for a killer price and would have bought the Dyn's used had any been up for sale. Dynaudio's are not as popular as Paradigm and the resale value is not as good for that reason. It is not due to to their quality which is definitely first rate.
     
  6. john michiels

    john michiels Auditioning

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    Brian,
    I don't know if your cost concious but another option might be Axiom Audio M3Ti's. It's a bookshelf speaker with a very nice sound for the money (300 pair shipping included). Match this with their vp150 center for $240 and for $840 total, your set.
    If you want to return them (but I think you won't)you pay the freight back to Axiom. Check out the reviews online.
    I have Axiom M40's (small towers) up front with the M3's as rears but could have bought 4 M3's and been just as happy maybe even more so. The mids and highs are somewhat cleaner/clearer than with the m40's. SACD and DVD Audio sound great. Obviously a good sub is a must!
     
  7. BrianFan

    BrianFan Auditioning

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    James and John,

    Thanks for the information. I will definitely look into the Mini Monitors and Studio 20's. I was thinking about the Axiom's as well but the thought of having them shipped, setting them up and then possibly having to go through the hassle of returning them was not pleasant. If I can find someone in my area who owns them I would love to give them a listen. I've read very little about the Dyns and my interest is certainly peaked, but the price may put them out of my range.

    I'll let you know how it all shakes out.


    Thanks again![​IMG]
     
  8. james_pierce

    james_pierce Extra

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    Found a pair of used dynaudio 42's on audiogon for $499/pr 4 months old just and still under warrant if it is transferable. Where were they when I was looking!
     
  9. BrianFan

    BrianFan Auditioning

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    James,

    I went to Audiogon but couldn't find them. If you are allowed to post a link here I would appreciate it. otherwise, you could e-mail me.


    Thanks,

    Brian
     
  10. james_pierce

    james_pierce Extra

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    cls.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?spkrmoni&1108749683

    They actually have went down to $475 . Best price I have seen. They MSRP for $800/pair
     
  11. Alex Prosak

    Alex Prosak Supporting Actor

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    Have you already purchased the receiver? That is a lot of receiver for the speakers you propose. Definitely check out the Dyn's, very nice stuff. The Mini Monitors and Studio 20's are both much nicer speakers than the Atoms. You might also want to check out the ELT 5.1 system from AV123. Although they are ID like Axiom, you can try to arrange an audition through audioenvy. Another nice small system is the Totem Dreamcatcher.

    I don't know your budget constraints but if it's tight, reallocate funds from your receiver budget to upgrade the speakers.
     
  12. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    IMO, that's a LOT of receiver for something like Titans or Atoms. As Alex notes, I'd shift the funds around because the speakers make a bigger difference in your sound than anything. The receiver is a good choice, but unless you are planning on upgrading the speakers in the next 6 months or so, I'd reconsider the fund allocation.
     
  13. james_pierce

    james_pierce Extra

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    When I had the Titans it didn't take much to drive them to compress. My receiver puts out 100 watts per channel 2 channels driven. They will get loud but sound terrible when they are overdriven. In other words only semi loud volumes in a large room if even that.
     
  14. BrianFan

    BrianFan Auditioning

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    Hi Folks,

    The receiver is already bought(it was a Christmas gift [​IMG]). Based on everyone's input I will start looking at the more powerful speakers. I have an appointment with a local dealer next week to listen to the Dynaudio 42's and I can go back to the dealer I went to originally to listen to the more powerful Paradigms.

    James,

    Thanks for the link. At the risk of passing up an excellent price, I think I would rather listen to the Dyns before buying, just to be sure. My ears are pretty particular. I listened to some B&W's at the same time as the Paradigms and found them to be quite fatigueing, yet they are very highly regarded speakers. I'll probably kick myself after I hear the Dyns and love them and then discover that the pair on Audiogon is no longer available. Oh well. I'll just have to see what happens.

    Thanks all for your advice. I'll keep you informed.
     
  15. Alex Prosak

    Alex Prosak Supporting Actor

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    Brian,

    There are many highly regarded speakers out there that many people don't care for. Choosing the right speakers for you is a very personal choice. The best thing you can do is go out and listen to as many speakers as you possibly can. Since you're looking up the speaker line, I also suggest checking out the Onix Rocket 250 Mk II, they sound great and are stunningly finished (ie. high WAF [​IMG]). Check audioenvy.com to arrange an audition. If you find B&W to tire your ears speakers along these lines may be what you're looking for. Maybe check out some Polk LSi 9's too.

    Good luck!
     
  16. Yung

    Yung Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian,
    I have almost the same exact speaker setup with a Pioneer 1014TX except I use the ADP-170's instead of the Cinemas you listed. My room is 17 x 15. The Atoms sound great in my room but as others suggested, you might want to look into the Mini-Monitors. They are not small bookshelf speakers by any means but its a noticeable step-up from the Atoms.
     

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