which would be the better rear speaker?

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Ted Lee, Apr 14, 2004.

  1. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    hey all -

    just wondering what you all think. which do you think would make a better rear speaker?

    [​IMG]
    klipsch sb-2

    or

    [​IMG]
    klipsch ss-3

    chances are these speakers will be mounted on the wall *behind* me. so i'm wondering if the sb-2's would be a better choice. however, the ss-3's seem like a more "dedicated" surround speaker?

    i need to stick with these two choices (or something similar from best buy) since i'm using my employee discount.

    any and all thoughts appreicated.

    thx,

    ted
     
  2. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    The dipole surrounds will offer a more diffuse and ambient sound. The bookshelfs will offer more localized surround. Which ever you preffer is the way I'd go. If you listen to DVD-A or SACD then you're going to want to go with the bookshelfs.

    I personaly prefer bookshelf surrounds since there's alot of soundtracks with effects that are meant to be localized and not overly difuse.

    Hope this helps [​IMG]
     
  3. ScottCHI

    ScottCHI Screenwriter

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    i'm not a fan of "surround-specific" speakers myself, but i use my system more for music than anything else, too.

    bookshelves are much more versatile. they can be used as mains in a second system, later, etc.. surround speakers can only do that one thing; be surround speakers.
     
  4. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    I have a dipole speaker that I was forced to put behind me. I am going to change it out for a direct firing. Here is my reason. When I put them behind me, I was not in the null. When I turned around and looked up at the dipole speaker from my seated position, I was looking straight into the driver and tweeter. There is nothing diffuse about that. I figured if I was going to hear direct sound, I might as well do it from a speaker that was designed to do that.

    Greg
     
  5. JohnSmith

    JohnSmith Supporting Actor

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    Is this for in a 6.1 (single rear centre) or a 7.1 system? (pair of surround speakers)

    Greg, try using a bipole instead of your single dipole.. using a dipole along the back wall would cause a strange effect, depending where you sit on the sofa- one side would be correct phase, other side out of phase. Dipoles are supposed to go along the side wall, with you in the null. Since you're not in the null you might as well get monopole(s) or bipole speaker(s)

    Ted- again if you're placing it along the back wall I would try bipoles, or if you could buy them Klipsch (dipoles?) open up the out-of-phase side on both speakers, and invert the phasae (make it a bipole), or buy bipole Klipsch's

    I prefer non direct speakers for surrounds.
     
  6. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    hmm...good points guys. this is going to actually be for only a 5.1 system (can't really do 6.1 cuz of my living room layout...the door archway is where the center rear would go) even though the receiver will do up to 7.1. kinda sucks...

    i always forget, but is that klipsch rear a true dipole? i think it's just a regular direct radiator. i don't see in the literature anywhere about it sending out stuf out of phase, etc...

    i just bought the pioneer hi-res combo unit (sacd/dvda)... so it's a possibility that the direct radiators would be better, but i'd say probably 80+% of it will be for movies. plus, it has a keyhole mount...so it'll be easier to mount.

    hmm...decisions...
     
  7. ScottCHI

    ScottCHI Screenwriter

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    for what it's worth, i'd check what klipsch says about surround speakers, HERE.

    "Klipsch produces a unique surround speaker that utilizes a technology called Wide Dispersion Surround Technology (WDST™). Each WDST™ enabled speaker contains two Tractrix® Horn drivers and a woofer. Each horn covers a 90-degree arc and the combination of the two covers a full 180 degrees. This coverage gives excellent ambiance without having to use the walls to reflect sound. The controlled pattern of each horn (what we call "controlled directivity") leads to excellent localization of sounds because there is sound directed at the listening position, regardless of where in the room you are seated. And because the WDST™ surround speaker does not rely on wall reflections, it can be mounted in many different places in a room, leading to greater flexibility with placement. It is rare to have perfect side-wall positions available due to the placement of doors, drapes, furniture and such. WDST™ design delivers enveloping ambience WITH localization for the ideal surround sound result AND gives you the flexibility of placement to solve room design problems."

    i'd still get the bookshelves, but that's just my personal preference.
     
  8. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    yeah scott, i read that too. that does sound like a bunch of hooey doesn't it??? [​IMG] the only saving grace i can give is that i've listened to them somewhat extensively (working at bb), so i can say they definitely 'do the job'.

    i just don't know if i really want a *dedicated* rear speaker or the future flexibility of a bookshelf. but i better make up my mind soon ... before my fiancee changes her mind. [​IMG]
     
  9. Joey_V

    Joey_V Second Unit

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    i am in the same boat... i cant decide between the axiom m2i (bookshelfs) or axiom qs4 (surround dedicated speaker)... dvd-a and sacd leads me to lean towards the m2i, but i like the ambience created by a true surround speaker (i.e. the qs4).

    gah! i cant make up my mind!! [​IMG]
     
  10. ScottCHI

    ScottCHI Screenwriter

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    i say get the bookshelves and if you just gotta have freakin' "diffuse", point 'em toward the back wall or corners.

    the bookshelves are cheaper, anyway, probably.
     
  11. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    If you go with bookshelfs now and decide you want the dedicated surrounds down the road just wait til you can upgrade to 7.1 and use the bookshelfs as back surrounds and buy new dedicated surrounds.

    If you get dedicated surrounds now and decide you don't like them you're stuck with them outside of selling them to recoup your loses.
     
  12. JohnSmith

    JohnSmith Supporting Actor

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    But he might prefer non-direct speakers sound now, if he upgrades to 7.1 he can buy monopole speakers for rears, then move the ss-3 to the sides.

    If he buys sb-2 and doesn't like that type he would loose money selling them off.
     
  13. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    If he buys monoples and likes them... GREAT. If he buys monopoles and decides he wants non-direct he still has a later use for the monopoles... OK.
    Best-case: GREAT
    Worst-case: OK

    If he buys dipoles and likes them... GREAT. If he buys dipoles and doesn't like them he's stuck with them or stuck losing money selling them... BAD

    Best-case: GREAT
    Worst-case: BAD

    GREAT and OK to me is better than GREAT and BAD... If you're completely undecided and not leaning either way then looking at it from a risk-management analysis angle can often help.
     
  14. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    [​IMG] stephen - you're not in the insurance biz are ya? [​IMG]
     
  15. Stephen Hopkins

    Stephen Hopkins HW Reviewer
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    Thankfully no, but I'm not sure i get the joke. Care to fill me in? [​IMG]

    I don't mind being the butt of a good-spirited joke as long as i understand it! [​IMG]
     
  16. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    you mentioned risk-analysis...which is pretty much the foundation of the insurance biz. [​IMG]
     
  17. GregBe

    GregBe Second Unit

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    Hi Ted,

    From my previous reply, you can see that I am wrestling with the same problem you are having. My question for those who have had experience with direct radiators. If you were to place bookshelves high up on a wall and not point them directly at the listeners, how diffuse would this sound be compared to dipole/bipole? I guess the reason I am asking is that I like the flexiblility of a bookshelf if DVD-A and SACD really take off.

    Greg
     
  18. ScottCHI

    ScottCHI Screenwriter

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    my answer? diffuse enough. if diffuse is what you want, then get diffuse. otherwise, don't.

    to me this decision is easy. the bookshelf can play both an ambient-type or a direct-type soundtrack. a surround-specific speaker will not play the direct-type soundtrack properly. if a movie's soundtrack is supposed to be more ambient, the sound engineers will have recorded it as such. they don't really rely on everyone's speakers, alone, to provide the correct ambience. to me, that sort of soundtrack already sounds diffuse enough.
     
  19. JohnSmith

    JohnSmith Supporting Actor

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    Scott- have you actually owned bi/di/tri speakers in the past?

    If people wish to have a more direct speaker, with the advantages of dipoles- try Tri-Poles. These have a in-phase direct facing driver arrangement to give a more direct sound.

    Monopoles cannot reproduce a wide diffused expanse where you wish to spread the sound along the back/side areas- you have the limitation of the speaker design/placement. These dedicated surround speakers are designed for wall mounting. Most bookshelfs do not sound that great when mounted on a wall bracket; they are designed to be given some space between the speaker & wall. This is not ideal unless you have a larger room, and also a problem when you also need space between audience & speaker. A typical setup is like the M&K system, with the rear/side speakers in a spot where they can be knocked over. Since front three would be situate along the front wall with the kit these aren't likely to be knocked over.

    Just so you know, a non-direct speaker still reproduces stereo imaging effects, but it fills the side/back areas with sound- so for the audience along the seating arragement nearest to the rear speakers won't get that "blaringly loud" effect of a monopole speaker right next them, however it'll still be outputting the surround sound track, but instead won't have that distracting "turning head" effect for those nearer the surround speakers, and they do not sound mushy.

    As you can tell, I prefer non-direct speakers.. :) I see alot of dedicated surround speaker bashing, most is from those with no experience of these speakers, or those who swallow Dolby's statements which recommend monopoles all-round (as they use them in a mixing studio),which have no relevance in the home theatre, because your home is not a mixing studio.


    Bit late for that- both formats have been out for a while, and hardly a wide range of titles.
     
  20. ScottCHI

    ScottCHI Screenwriter

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    there's really not much to swallow. if it's mixed with monopoles, it should be played back that way.


    kind of a moot point anyway, as we don't even know what those klipsch surrounds are, really. they seem to try and address the very thing we're discussing, now, but it seems pretty gimmicky, if you ask me.

    btw, i was trying to avoid getting into speakers that can "do both", as he's asking specifically about the choice between those two he linked. several manufacturers do have "switchable" speakers, even.
     

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