Using a pair as a center

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Paul Mor, Apr 3, 2005.

  1. Paul Mor

    Paul Mor Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm thinking of using a pair of bookshelf speakers as my center channel. What's the best way to wire them? Thanks in advance for any help.
     
  2. LuckyB

    LuckyB Agent

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    Why don't you just use one up front and one in rear?
     
  3. Paul Mor

    Paul Mor Stunt Coordinator

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    I've got a 7.1 hook-up...though my room, etc. don't allow it to be set up perfectly.
     
  4. John S

    John S Producer

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    Parallel. One speaker to the next. + to +, - to -....

    I use dual Bookshelfs for my center. Works very well for me.
     
  5. RyanJE

    RyanJE Second Unit

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    John on always thought a series was one speaker to the next and parallel was dual wires from (center out in this case)amp to 2 speakers. Is this wrong.
     
  6. PeterK

    PeterK Supporting Actor

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    no thats not wrong ryan. it's just that you can parallel hook up without having 2 different wires from the amp. Just as john said. positive to positive, negative to negative on both speakers. [​IMG] It is still a parallel setup. just condensed so to use less wire.
     
  7. PeterK

    PeterK Supporting Actor

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    Is hooking up 2 centers via parallel a wise idea? the ohm rating would be 4 assuming 8 for both speakers. this would drive the amp really hard and since it is the center channel it is going to be playing a LOT, during movies atleast. I have my rears hook up parallel but it isn't a big deal cause the rear doesn't play much anyway. If it does work though, what is the advantage of having two instead on one speaker for center channel? I assume this is just two bookshelves right beside eachother, not one on top and bottom. It isn't indicated in the OP
     
  8. John S

    John S Producer

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    Limited advantage on having two for sure. In my case it was simple placement issues.

    And yes, it does represent half the resistance to the amp.

    One or two channels at 4 ohm still isn't like having all speakers ont he amp at 4 ohms. If you avr starts sutting down, discontinue the dual centers.

    I actually like having the exta power on my dialog channel though in all honesty though, but I set the dialog volume per source/content anyways.
     
  9. PeterK

    PeterK Supporting Actor

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    So is an advantage having less distortion at high volumes because the drivers have to move half of what one would? Is that why many center channels have 2 5 or 6 inch drivers so each one has to work less hard on those dialouge frequencies?
     
  10. RyanJE

    RyanJE Second Unit

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    OH ok I can picture that now. You just twist both parts of one strand together for the receiver but leave them separate for the speaker. I get it, sorry.
     
  11. John S

    John S Producer

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    Maybe PeterK, I won't really say that, but never hurts having a little extra power for the dialog channel.

    Now the purists, really get rather horrified at the prospect, and you do the run the risk of actually hurting performance somewhat with two speakers producing a any mono signal due to cancellation issues, but in the end, you need to let your ears decide I suppose.

    Works well for me though, I use what would be considered near field monitors with my setup.
     
  12. Phil Iturralde

    Phil Iturralde Screenwriter

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    Or just wire them In-Series, which will be an easier load for your Center AMP since it doubles the ohm rating. (8 ohm + 8 ohm = 16 ohm)

    Once you REFERENCE Calibrate your AUDIO, it's all fine!!!

    FYI: I have my two Rear Center Channel Speakers wired In-Series since APR 2003 - works gloriously up to REF LEVEL!!!

    Phil
     
  13. John S

    John S Producer

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    You could do series as well. I'd sure try parallel first though.
     
  14. Eric Hargrove

    Eric Hargrove Stunt Coordinator

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    John and Phil both have valid points. A 4 ohm load will indeed give you more power output provided the receiver is 4 ohm stable (most are). The only downside would be the additional heat created and the reduction in damping factor. The 16 ohm load Phil proposes would be very easy to drive but at only half the power of an 8 ohm load shared by 2 speakers.
     
  15. drobbins

    drobbins Screenwriter

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    When I completed my theater, I found myself looking at my center speaker when someone was talking, not the screen. I added another center above the screen to bring the dialog back in to the screen. They are 8 ohm speakers and are wired in parallel. So far after 2 months, no problems[​IMG]
     
  16. darrylCHER

    darrylCHER Stunt Coordinator

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    Perhaps a better center channel speaker would be a more appropriate "fix"?? [​IMG]

    Darryl
     
  17. Paul Mor

    Paul Mor Stunt Coordinator

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    thanks for the help guys.

    Darryl: I like your idea best, but my HT budget is limited and my wife doesn't see a need for anything new, so I'm waiting a while to get a good center. I have Polk LSi 7's, anybody have an opinion on whether I should hold out for an LSiC or just get a Csi5. About a $200 difference and it seems a better chance of finding a Csi5 either on sale or used.
     
  18. Eric Hargrove

    Eric Hargrove Stunt Coordinator

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    I have used two Lsi7 speakers is series as a center channel while my LsiC was being repaired(due to my own stupidity) and it actually was pretty impressive. I think it was better for dialog than the LsiC due to the two Vifa XT tweeters. You would have to wire them in series as they are 4 ohm speakers. A Csi uses a totally differnt tweeter, drivers, crossover etc and would not be timbre matched to your Lsi's. I used a CS400 center briefly with my Lsi setup. Although the CS series is very good, it sounds different than the LsiC.
     
  19. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Each one doesn't work less, both work the same, and the result is a +6dB gain in SPL for the frequencies covered by those drivers by adding the second driver, making the speaker more efficient, though the x-over network will compensate for some of that to match the level of the tweeter and to get good response on and off axis.

    I setup my g/f's system using 3 LSi7s up front and I just used one for the center. The other was just a spare until my brother picked up a set, and now the "extra" is being used as his center. I would not recommend running two 7s parallel unless you have a pretty stout amp.
     

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