Non-Axiom center with Axiom mains

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Eric_Singer, Jun 10, 2002.

  1. Eric_Singer

    Eric_Singer Agent

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    I currently use Axiom M22's as my main speakers, and I am looking to buy a center. I understand that it is highly reccommended to use centers and mains from the same manufacturer to create a matching soundstage, but the Axiom centers don't seem to be as good as their other speakers from what I've read, and I was wondering whether it would be possible to use a center from a similar manufacturer (PSB or Paradigm, perhaps) that offers better performance for the $300 price of the VP150. Any thoughts?

    Thanks,

    Eric
     
  2. John Dunlap

    John Dunlap Stunt Coordinator

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    As I'm sure you know, there ar 2 different schools of thought on this issue. One says that you NEED to have all 3 front speakers timbre matched or your system will sound like crud. The other says that this whole timbre matching thing is overrated.

    With any system that I've owned I've always had all 3 of my mains at least made by the same manufacturer and it would certainly be my preference to have the same tweeter design in all 3 fronts.

    With that being said I can relate to what you're saying. IMO-If you feel that the Axiom center is an inferior product you should probably be looking at other centers and doing some in home evaluation to see what works for you. I would strongly recommend doing some sound level calibration before evaluating.

    By the way why are you hesitant about the Axiom center?? From what I've read on Audio Review, it's a highly regarded product.
     
  3. Heath_R

    Heath_R Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the VP100 and I am very happy with it. The forward sound of axioms gives very detailed voices.
     
  4. Robertto

    Robertto Stunt Coordinator

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    Wonder if you could run a m22 as a center for a quick audition of how the vp100 would sound? Should give you a good idea of how the ctr would sound.

    I tried it and was pretty damn thrilled:)
     
  5. Jeff Kohn

    Jeff Kohn Supporting Actor

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    The Axiom VP150 is regarded as being a very good center, I'm not sure what you've heard to make you think it isn't up to the level of the rest of the line. The only negative issue with the VP150 is its size, if you have a smaller TV there's a chance you won't be able to put it on top the TV since it's 27" wide. But the sound quality is excellent, very transparent and slightly forward just like the rest of their speakers. And the tweeter/woofer arrangement with the two tweeters on the outside of the woofers gives excellent dispersion for off-center performance. If you're happy with your M22's, I can't imagine you would be disappointed with the VP150.
     
  6. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    If you don't mind the look of a bookshelf (you'll want to keep it up right, don't put it on its' side) for the center channel you could use a M3 or M22 as the center. Axiom sells them individually.

    I really don't like the layout of the VP150 and the VP100 will have the same off axis problems every other two way horizontal MTM center has. And there is no better timbre match than the same speaker.
     
  7. Jeff Kohn

    Jeff Kohn Supporting Actor

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  8. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Here is a thread I started in the DIY Advanced section because I was curious what I was missing about the VP150.
    http://www.hometheaterforum.com/htfo...ighlight=Axiom
    Doesn't come to any hard conclusions, but Thomas and Greg are the guys to listen to in that thread.
    What else is there? 2.5way MTM or a 3way WTMW (with the TM in a vertical arrangement). B&W has several 2.5way MTM and the top Nautilus center is a 3way. JBL Studio series has a 3way center. Boston Acoustics has a 3way. NHT has a several 3way centers. There are several DIY 3way center designs out there. There are others with 3way and 2.5way horizontal centers that don't come immediately to mind right now.
    Another option is what Vandersteen does. Coaxial drivers in the center.
     
  9. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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    The VP150 is considered to be an excellent center speaker. It's arrayed as it is to alleviate the very same off-axis problems that plague most center channels which you speak of (those with M-T-M arrays). It would be a perfect match for your M22s, and I simply cannot understand why you think it wouldn't cut it.

    What other center channels are you considering? Do you want one with vertically aligned T-M's like the Diva? Are there specific models you're considering?
     
  10. Robertto

    Robertto Stunt Coordinator

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    Hey Rich,

    I have the M22s as well and am planning on getting the 100 or 150 ctr to compliment them. I am running a Denon 1801 (70wx5)receiver. I know the sensitivity is high on the 150 but will the 70W per channel be enough to power it?

    Thanks
     
  11. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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  12. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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    Not on me, I'm afraid - must be in the other pants. [​IMG]
    What center channel design do you prefer in this regard, Dustin? Specifically, how are the woofs arrayed/crossed-over in the ones you like?
    My advice would be to identify all models with the array you prefer, and then narrow it down by tweeter. Matching the timbre of Axiom's titanium tweeter will be your primary concern.
    And unless lobing issues are very greatly improved by the design you prefer, I think your overall sound quality will suffer more due to mismatched timbres in your front soundstage than due to any inherent lobing problems in the Axiom center.
     
  13. Brian Bunge

    Brian Bunge Producer

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    Rich,

    What Dustin is referring to is a 3-way center in which the mid and tweet are vertically aligned, and then flanked by a pair of larger woofers. This is how most of the high end centers are designed. This is also the design I prefer when you cannot use an identical speaker as your L/R mains that is also vertically aligned. If I were buying Axiom bookshelf speakers for my mains, I'd buy a third and use it as the center channel.

    I realize that not everyone can place a 12+" tall speaker vertically on top of their TV. But it will result in the best sound. The MTM (or any other driver layout where the drivers are not vertically arrayed) on it's side is purely an aesthetics/space saving compromise.

    Brian
     
  14. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Rich, I have JBL Studio series speakers. My center is a three way design with a vertically alligned 1" tweeter and 4" mid with a pair of 5.25" woofs flanking both. It sounds noticably better off axis than my old Klipsch SC1 did.

    If I was in Eric's position I'd be buying another M22 for my center. Would look a little funny on top of my TV. Wouldn't look funny after I eventually get a FPTV.

    I got the JBLs because circumstances made it beneficial to more than just me. Anyways they are just an incremental upgrade to tide me over until circumstances allow me to build a bunch of speakers. At which point I'll either build 5 Adire Kit281 vented towers and their new 3way LCC center (vertically alligned 1" tweeter and 5.25" mid flanked by a pair of 8" drivers). Or I'll build 6 GR Research AV1+ bookshelves, and use one vertically as the center.
     
  15. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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  16. Eric_Singer

    Eric_Singer Agent

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    Everyone,

    Thanks for all of your help - you really got me thinking here... The MTM/TMMMT is what was making me hesitant to go with the Axiom center. I use my system primarily for music, so I don't want to pick a great center and find matching mains, but rather keep the mains I like (the M22's) and find a center that blends reasonably well. Well, Axiom is coming out with a new version of the M2, the M2i. This will have the same tweeter as the M22 and one instead of two 5.25" mid/woofers. It is only 11" high versus 20" for the M22, so it could easily fit on my television and keep the tweeter roughly at ear level. Even though it only has one woofer instead of two, this would likely be a good center candidate, correct?

    Eric
     
  17. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Turning a M22 on it's side is a bad idea. Turning an M22 upside down to get the tweeter lower, wouldn't be.

    And yes Rich the Diva C3 is a 3way center with the same layout as the JBL, NHT, B&W Nautilus and Boston Acoustics 3way centers.
     
  18. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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  19. Eric_Singer

    Eric_Singer Agent

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    Rich,
    It was in the Axiom email newsletter that came out this morning. You can sign up on the front page of the Axiom website, www.axiomaudio.com. I, too, thought of the possibility of using these new speakers as rears; with the improved tweeter, I'm sure they'd perform quite well in that role. Regardless, I'm simply looking for a center now, and I don't want to get carried away into making another purchase!
    Eric
     

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