Polk Rti38 as Center?

Discussion in 'Speakers & Subwoofers' started by JohnMcCallum, Jan 10, 2004.

  1. JohnMcCallum

    JohnMcCallum Extra

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2003
    Messages:
    21
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I am planning on buying a new 6.1 receiver, and buying Polks from Crutchfield. I will be buying Left and Right Rti38's and Surround Fxi30's. Now, I can either buy another pair of Rti38's, use one for the center and one for the center rear, or buy 1 Csi30 for center and forget the rear center. Which would be better? My room is small, so the rear center isn't a big deal.
     
  2. Justin_D

    Justin_D Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2003
    Messages:
    217
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I'd honestly go with the CSI30 for a couple of reasons.

    1) 2 Drivers: and you get all of the speach from your center channel
    2) More ergonomic: Centers are meant to go on top of a TV, so it will A) look better B) fit better C) MAY, emphasise MAY improve sound
    2) Lighten the load on your receiver (more power would be used for 6.1)
     
  3. Brent_S

    Brent_S Second Unit

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2000
    Messages:
    472
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    John,

    if you've aesthetically and physically got the room for the rear center, I'd go with the pair of RTi38s. But, I'm biased...that's what I did. With the Crutchfield closeout pricing, I ordered 3 pairs of 38s to have indentical sound all the way around, including the rear center when I eventually upgrade my prepro to something with 6.1.

    With a 38 as the center, you'll have the exact same drivers across the front sound stage. Ultimately, a speaker sitting on top of a TV can't sound the same as a speaker sitting in open space on a speaker stand, but intuition tells me it's got to have a better chance if it at least uses the same drivers.

    The most significant difference between a "center channel" speaker and a bookshelf speaker is if the center was truly designed as a center, which we can probably safely assume the CSi30 is. A center speaker should have it's sound dispersion optimized for the horizontal arrangement of the drivers as much as is possible for the chosen pricepoint. From personal experience, a horizontal RTi38 as center, when listened to from straight on seating appears to sound identical to the vertical 38s in the L/R mains. I didn't experiment with off axis seating, but there would undoubtedly be some colorations...but, if you look at reviews of "dedicated" centers, they still exhibit changes as you move off axis as well.

    Aesthetically, the 38 will sit about 2 inches higher on your TV...8.25" (38) vs. 6.5" (30). It's a judgement call..the 38 will look a little boxier with the increased height and shorter width when horizontal 8.25 x 15.25 vs. 6.5 x 20.

    If the money's essentially the same to you, I'd get the pair of 38s, even if you don't do 6.1 right away. You may one day have a bigger room where it's easier to put put up that rear center. Otherwise, if you want a dedicated center, I'd try to find a CSi40 to get the exact drivers that are used in the L/R 38s.

    Brent
     
  4. Harold Wazzu

    Harold Wazzu Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2003
    Messages:
    885
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If it was me I would get the Csi30 for the front center and get the smaller Csi20 for the rear center. It's only about $30 more but you'd have true center speakers for your rear and front.
     

Share This Page