Speaker Considerations ? Def Tech, Polk, HTD?Other?

Mike C. H.

Jan 13, 2003
OK, I am putting together a home theater system, and focusing on getting my sound in order. I will be purchasing an Onkyo TX-SR600 receiver to power my system. I have been looking at what speakers I am going to hang on this system and have come up with a few choices. I would be pleased if one of these systems was well received or if there is another direction I should go, I would be happy to take that input.

The room this system will be placed in is 17.5?x13? for a square footage of 227.5 sq ft. The primary listening position is about 12 feet from the video source. I am looking to stay under $1000 for the speakers. While the systems below utilize bookshelf speakers, I am not opposed to using floor standing if they meet my requirements.

The systems that I have heard in stores to this point that interest me are as follows in order of current preference based on sound comparison.
1. Definitive Technology PC80.5: This uses 4 PM80 bookshelf speakers with a PC100 center channel, and I would add a PS80 subwoofer. Total package cost about $1000.
2. Polk RM6700: This uses 4 bookshelf speakers with a voice matched center channel. I would likely add the Polk PSW303 sub to the package. Total package cost, $960.

Now I have also been steered to the Home Theater Direct site and there I can pick up a level 3 package for the general prices listed above, but have no way to compare them to the systems I have heard in stores, so I cannot really compare them. Any recommendations here?

Thank you for all the help.

Jason Reich

Stunt Coordinator
Feb 19, 2001
Well I can recomend the Def Techs- I have pc80's as my rears and pc100's up front with a pc100 center- I have no complaints at all. The pc80's really sing and the pc100 center works great, If you budget would allow I would opt for 100's for the fronts, but the 80's would do just fine! I did not go with the Def tech sub- They do sound good but I had had my sights set on a SVS and made the purchase. When I demoed the Def-tech set up it had the Def-tech sub and it sounded good, it blends well with the other channels. My room is just a tad smaller than yours and the def-techs fill it with no problem, and do not sound strained at all. Hope this helps!

Jack Keck

Second Unit
Nov 23, 2001
If you like the sound of the Polk package, you might want to check out their larger bookshelf speakers. Their website lists the MSRPs for all of their speakers and subs. However, I'd recommend the DLS 10 sub from Parts Express over any other small subs simply because of its low cost, $100 plus shipping. You could get some speakers with bigger woofers tht wuld integrate better with a sub and still come out for under a grand.

Just some thoughts.

Joe Vidanes

Dec 26, 2002
Hi Mike, I'm one of those guys that has a wife who doesn't like big speakers so I did a bit of research on satellites and heres my story.

To answer your other question, yes I am thoroughly impressed with both the Polk speakers and the Harman receiver. Before buying this setup, I also tested the Onkyo 800 and Yamaha RXV2300 which are both in the $1000 neighborhood. For speakers, I was interested in satellites and tested the Bose AM10, the Infinity HTS-20, Boston Acoustics System 9000 II, Klipsch Synergy System 6 and the Polk RM 7200. My overall impressions/opinions are that: the Harman Kardon sounded "warmer" than both the Onkyo and the Yamaha. Also, I really liked the HK's remote control; Yamaha's remote isnt backlit; Onkyo's remote comes close but the determining factor for me was that HK had usable 4 macros (I use them all) vs 1 for Onkyo. My speaker search was somewhat harder to be honest. It's hard to judge speakers when its set up with different receivers. Anyway, what I found is for the price range, the Polk RM 6700s in my opinion sounded better than all the other speaker sets I tested! Other than perhaps the Boston Acoustics which were a bit more, for the value the RM 6700's beat the rest hands down.

When I'm in my basement watching movies, I just can't tell ya how pleased I am when I hear how realistic it is to hear birds chirping or mosquitoes buzzing or rain dripping. For music, I use Stereo 5 and it's about as loud as I can handle. Anyway, sorry for the long response. This is the first time I've shard my experience with anyone (other than my wife, who's been really patient since she went with me to all the stores!).


Stunt Coordinator
Sep 10, 2002

I just put together what I feel is a great system on a budget. I am using Polk R20s for the front and rear. A polk csi20 for the center and a Sony Sawm40 for the sub. Having heard the polk 6700 system I chose the larger r20s because they just sounded better and were a lot cheaper. The cabinet is deep and large however but the sound they produced was so much warmer and flat. You will appreciate the flat response during extended listening. The speakers combined cost me a little less than $500 and sound unbelievable for the price. I love Polk so yes I am a little biased but I am extemely happy with them. Just my opinion but good luck.


Stunt Coordinator
Jan 29, 2002
You have several options. You can by a complete 5.1 kit, or piecemeal a system together. I started out with a decent receiver and bought nice mains, Def Tech SM350s. I run them in phantom center mode and they image great. Clear detailed 3-way sound. I bought cheap HTD level ones for my surrounds for now and run a cheap Aiwa sub. I will add components later, so I can buy what I want, not what I can afford at the time. I you want to try before you buy; HTD has a money back deal.

"We're so sure you're going to love your new HTD speakers, that if, after trying them out in your own home, you are not completely satisfied that HTD offers the absolute best value in home audio, simply return the speakers within 30 days of receipt, undamaged and in their original packaging, and we will refund your credit card (or provide store credit for money orders) for the full amount of your purchase, including shipping (please note: 2nd day air shipments will be refunded at the UPS ground rate). No restocking fee will be applied."

It's good through Jan 31st. There site says 2002, but you can tell by the rest of the reading they mean 2003. From what I have heard on the cheap level ones, I would give the level two or threes a try if I had it to do all over again. I would also look at CC for the $299 Onkyo package that's the same speakers as the HTS 650.

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