Which speakers for front & center upgrade?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Seth G, Mar 27, 2005.

  1. Seth G

    Seth G Stunt Coordinator

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    I apologize for yet another "which speakers to get" post. But everyone here knows more about speakers than I do, and you know you guys enjoy this stuff. [​IMG] It was easier when I was ignorant and just went to Circuit City and packed my movie watching room with a Polk Audio setup. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Polk, there's just so much more out there. But then I got a SVS sub and it's all downhill from there. [​IMG]

    So here's my plan. I would like to move my fronts (Polk Audio RT35i) and center speaker (Polk Audio CS245i) into a 2nd movie watching room. Which means I get to do an upgrade for my main movie watching room. [​IMG] This is my setup right now:

    [​IMG]

    Certainly, my SVS (25-31 PCi) isn't going anywhere. And ideally, I would like to keep my rears (Polk Audio f/x300i) as well. I'm not planning on moving those. But if I can't do a quality upgrade without upgrading the rears as well, then I'll jump off that bridge when I come to it.

    Basically, I am looking for some full size front towers that will play well with my SVS, and then a good center to join them.

    My budget is in the neighborhood of $1k for all 3 speakers. I might think about going up to $1.5k depending upon what I hear.

    Also, I fully understand that I need to go listen to these and make my own decisions. I'm just looking for a little direction. I am also not against getting an internet only brand that I can't go to the store and audition.

    All right then, what's a good recommendation? [​IMG]
     
  2. Daniel.Han

    Daniel.Han Stunt Coordinator

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    Well, you have given us quite a range to work with. If you are absolutely set on full size, floor standing speakers for your mains that will restrict the list a bit but, with that said you should start listening to some different options.

    Companies for consideration: PSB, B&W, Rockets, Paradigm, Klipsch, JM Labs, M&K, Energy, and the list goes on.

    Several of these companies have very distinctive sounds, so we might be able to give you better direction if you could listen to a couple and let us know which way your preferences seem to lie.

    Hope this helps even just a little.

    dh
     
  3. Seth G

    Seth G Stunt Coordinator

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    Ahhh, bummer. So no magical speakers that will slide in perfectly with my SVS and f/x 300i's huh? [​IMG] I thought this question might be too vague, but was hoping for some good responses nonetheless.

    Ah right, I need to get out there and start doing some listening I think. And after some initial research, maybe add some more $$ to the budget. [​IMG]
     
  4. mackie

    mackie Supporting Actor

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    You've got a very capable sub, so don't get hung up on floor standers. You'll have more options if you go with bookshelves and probably get a better speaker, and you can get good stands for less than $100. OF the ones listed above in your price range, I like PSB, B&W, Paradigm or Klipsch.
     
  5. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    I'd give some consideration to Swans 5.2 BCs ($729) and a C3 BC ($349) if you're mainly HT or 6.1 BCs ($899) and a C3 BC ($349) if you listen to 25% or more music along with HT. You could even get either 5.2s or 6.1s, a C3, and R3 surrounds for under or around your $1500 limit if you talk to the guys at www.theaudioinsider.com and work out a package deal. They'll usually knock off atleast enough to cover shipping on a full speaker package.

    If you decide you want to go w/ bookshelf speakers the Swans 2.1 BCs are AMAZING bang for the buck at $300 a pair (especially when paired with a great sub like yours). You could probably even get them to do you 2.1 BCs, a C3 BC, and R3 BCs for $1000 shipped! If you're set on keeping your current surrounds then you can save even more.
     
  6. Seth G

    Seth G Stunt Coordinator

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    mackie:
    Heh, interesting idea, but I'll tell you why I can't go that route. Believe it or not, the WAF will be -easier- with tower speakers. If I get bookshelves, it'll be a tough fight explaining the upgrade since I already have bookshelves. In her eyes, upgrade = bigger. Not that I'm complaining mind you. [​IMG] Just saying why I'm not looking to go with another pair of bookshelves.
     
  7. Seth G

    Seth G Stunt Coordinator

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    Stephen Hopkins:
    Yep, I'm 99.9% HT/Gaming. Any music listening I do is usually while watching a concert DVD. I'll have to check out those Swans, there are certainly many happy Swan owners out there.
     
  8. Eric:F

    Eric:F Stunt Coordinator

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    the brands mentioned so far are all good. however, they represent a more or less lateral move.
    if you are upgrading, i say spend a little more and buy quality.
    we recently upgraded our 3 fronts with these:
    http://www.salksound.com/htshome.html
    for the $, they would be hard to beat.
    best,
    eric
     
  9. MikeLi

    MikeLi Supporting Actor

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    I would go right now over to av123.com and check out their current package sale pricing on the 750 package and the 550. Unheard of pricing right now. I have the 750 package and just love it. After being though 4 sets of speakers and subs in the last 10 years these are going to be my keepers. Congrats on the sub too.. Cant go wrong with an SVS especially for movies. There are other on line folks like Axiom ans Ascend as well to check out but just lettin you know about the sale and also how well I love my onix rocket speakers... Good luck and let us know what you wind up with....
     
  10. Seth G

    Seth G Stunt Coordinator

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    Eric:F:
    If you think those previously mentioned would be a lateral move, you have a lot more respect for Polk Audio than they normally receive. [​IMG] Anyway, thanks for the salk sound link, I'll check them out as well. Huh, surprising that those speakers aren't shielded. Is it possible that they target such a small segment of customers to not have shielded speakers?
     
  11. Seth G

    Seth G Stunt Coordinator

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    MikeLi:
    Yeah, I keep going back and looking at the Rockets. They get a lot of praise. Last time I checked (av123.com is down right now), the 750s were on sale for $1200. Does anyone know the regular price on those? Nevermind, they are normally $1500. Thanks archive.org. [​IMG]

    Also, I recently discovered audioenvy.com. What a fantastic idea for these internet only brands. Anyone used audioenvy.com before?
     
  12. mackie

    mackie Supporting Actor

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    Understood [​IMG]

    Just my experience with Internet direct speaker companies is that they do offer good value, but they aren't always the massive bang for the buck bargain they're made out to be. I recommend highly auditioning at a local store, and many B&M store can come down on the price. It depends on the model and manufacturer.
     
  13. Eric:F

    Eric:F Stunt Coordinator

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    hi seth,
    you probably have it right on the lack of shielding for the Salks. most people that would go for custom speakers probably have a different display than a crt.
    email Jim Salk and ask him about shielding. i'm sure he can set you up one way or another. his customer service reminds me of the SVS guys.
    best,
    eric
     

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