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New HT setup: Fronts & Center or Fronts & Subwoofer (1 Viewer)


Apr 19, 2003
I'm in the beginning stages of assembling a home theater setup. My plan is to replace my old NAD stereo receiver with a Marantz 4300/5300 A/V receiver, then get the L/R fronts and ceenter, the rears, and finally the subwoofer. My short list of speakers is as follows:

Paradigm Titans/Focus fronts and CC170 center (haven't made up my mind yet which one)
Ascend CBM-170 fronts and the new center (whenever it comes out)
Axiom Millennia M3ti fronts and VP100 center.

I was in my local audio shop today auditioning the Paradigms and the salesman said he would recommend that I get the fronts/subwoofer first, the rears, then the center last. Never considered that, but cost is an issue. Any opinions regarding this arrangement. My listening will be about 75/25 movies/music.

Also, any other suggestions on speakers would be welcome too. My price range is 300-400 for the fronts and 200-300 on the center.

Butch WEber

Nick Cerretti

Stunt Coordinator
Oct 7, 2002
Since you listen to movies significantly, I would go with the fronts/sub, surrounds, then center route. If you plan on a lot of people watching movies at one time, then I would switch the surrounds with the center. Your mains are arguably your most important speaker (except for sub) for HT, and the sub is obviously required IMO. Surrounds are nice, but they can wait.

All three choices are good, and you really can't go wrong with them. the Titan on a lower level than the m3ti and cbm-170, although its still a great speaker for 200 bucks.

I would grab the mini-monitor instead for your Paradigm setup. it fits into your budget. In that case, all three speakers are at equal levels, and there's not much I can say but listen to them (i think axiom and ascend offer free trials). IMO, I'd go with the Paradigms, but that's me.


Apr 3, 2003
Been going thru the same dilemma.....and I decided on mains, sub, surround, and lastly cc.

I just got the sub (#2 in the line-up), and I think it should be the next purchase after the mains...especially if you have bookshelves....you'll at the very least have a good 2 channel setup and the full spectrum of required frequencies (for LFE's). Making a big difference for me (for music as well).

Funny....I was back and forth with the Marantz 5300 and NAD T761.I decided on the NAD b/c I am 75/25 music/HT..but flip it around and it is hard to beat the Marantz for value and features.

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