Please help! How is this for a starter setup??? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 57 Old 11-08-2011, 08:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Hey everyone. First off, let me tell everyone I am an absolute newbie when it comes to home audio and the whole HT thing. I have spent hours, if not days on here and as soon as I feel like I have a grasp, I read another few threads and it feels like I am starting over. I dont know about frequencies, hertz, tweeters, etc. All these brands of speakers that I have never heard of and cant find much online to research. If anyone could point me in the direction of a "HT for dummies" I would appreciate it. Initially I was planning on a Energy Take Classic system, but dont want another HTIB.

Quick background on what I am looking for. This will be a system used for mainly HT, HD/ Sports watching, Music (maybe 10%), and a considerable amount of gaming. Display is a 60" Panny ST30. Room den and its about 15' x 18' with laminate floor. I want mainly bookshelf as I dont have room for floor standing right now. I currently have an about 10 year old $200 Sony HTIB. It sucks. I have convinced the fiance we need an upgrade and she is on board. So I am trying to stay around/ under 1k to start. Looking for a 5.1 to start.

As far as what I have come up with as a "starter" system. Here it is:

Receiver: Onkyo HT-RC370 (due to current price and future-proof)
Fronts: Energy CB-5
Center: Energy CC-5
Rear: Energy CB-5
Sub: BIC F12

This puts me right around my 1k budget.

So here is my issue. After literally hours and days of reading all I can, I have come up with this system. I dont even know if I am close to a decent system or if I am up $hit creek. I am thinking it would be a great starting point, but my ears are smoking and I am more confused than ever.

Do I need Energy CB-10 in front? Or maybe an Arx A1 in front? Should I keep all same brand?? Do fronts need to be bigger/ stronger than rears? Is the Sub okay? Is the AVR overkill? Should I opt for the RC360?? Ugh, so confused. Any and all help is greatly appreciated and I hope this thread can help anyone is in or around my position. An early thanks to all that reply!
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post #2 of 57 Old 11-08-2011, 08:33 PM
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Looks good to me, remember that A LOT of ht soundtrack is played through your center, do maybe you could consider upgrading that if you wish.

The sub is a well received lower cost option. you could buy it, then if you need to, by another to even the room response..

Or if you feel like it you could beat the heck out of that sub, and get a little (i did this) satisfaction by going the DIY route.

A Dayton DVC 15, with a 300 watt plate amp would be a little over 250.. 30 bucks for some wood, and you would have much more BOOM, than that Bic12.

As far as the avr goes, it seems like it might be a little more than you need now, but the price Is right... so I say go for it..

My first DIY project. A dual, dual opposed setup

www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1345494
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post #3 of 57 Old 11-08-2011, 08:57 PM
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I would recommend putting a little less into the receiver (around 1/3 your budget max) and more into the speakers, at least for your front 3. The drivers in the CB-5s are rather small. The CB-10 and CC-10 would be better for your front sound stage.

Also, given that your room is not too large, the 10" Energy S10.3 is $249 at Newegg, and has been fluctuating to lower prices on various specials over the last month or so. It is a more detailed, musical sub than the F12 that has excellent low frequency extension.

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post #4 of 57 Old 11-08-2011, 09:18 PM
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As far as that sub goes, many would argue that you cannot get more musical than a sealed sub.

And when you are talking sealed subs, there is no replacement for displacement..

aprx surface area of a ten inch woofer

78.6 inches sq

aprx surface area of a 15

176.7 sq inches

I think your Diy sub would eat the other suggestion. Not only in output, but in clarity, and sonic purity..

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www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1345494
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post #5 of 57 Old 11-08-2011, 09:38 PM - Thread Starter
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So would the Ht-RC360 vs. the 370 be a good option to free up some funds for better speakers/ sub?? Or the 609? I am not stuck on Onkyo, but it seems like their video processing on on the 360/370 is better than other brands (thats another forum though haha). I was looking at the CB-10's. You think I could get by with CB-10x2 in front, CC-10, and CB-5x2 in rear to save some cash till I can get 2 more CB-10?? Any other brand of speaker that sounds as good, but is a little cheaper to fit the budget???

As far as subs go, is that one of the most important parts of a HT system? It seems like so much emphasis is put on them that it looks like I need to reconsider. Didn't even know you could do a DIY sub. Pardon my ignorance haha.
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post #6 of 57 Old 11-08-2011, 09:58 PM
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CB-5s would be fine for the rear which do more to fill in; most of your sound in HT is coming from the front 3 (and the sub).

Your questions are answered: Speaker FAQ
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post #7 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 12:45 AM
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As someone else said, free up some money in the AVR and stack the CB-10's up front with the CC-10 and add two CB-5's for the surrounds. Check out newegg for a receiver. They always have good prices on Yamaha's. Whatever you do, stay away from that other brand that always blows up.
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post #8 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 07:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ObsceneJesster View Post

As someone else said, free up some money in the AVR and stack the CB-10's up front with the CC-10 and add two CB-5's for the surrounds. Check out newegg for a receiver. They always have good prices on Yamaha's. Whatever you do, stay away from that other brand that always blows up.

Haha, what brand would that be?? I havn't read much about the 'ol exploding recievers.

I think I will probably go CB-10's in the front. Sounds like a better deal. Are Energy speakers still a good brand to go with or should I look at other brands??
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post #9 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 09:37 AM - Thread Starter
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How do the Energy speakers compare to the same type setup of Polk? If I did monitor 40's in front with a CS1 center, kept the F12 sub, and some monitor 30's in rear? Are the Energy speakers all that much better to where I would notice a big change? Keep in mind I am not a pro by any means and just trying to get a great sounding system, without it being overly bright sounding or tinny sounding. I think the major difference would be the tweeters on Energy are metal, where as Polk are cloth. Correct me if I am wrong.
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post #10 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 10:02 AM
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They are on the same level of performance IMO. The Polk monitor series ii when newegg.com has them on sale they are amazing deal for their money. The 40's with cs2 center and the monitor 30's for surrounds are great deal and amazing starter system. Wait for newegg sales and you will be rewarded with the money spent versus sound you get. People hate on Polk monitor line but ignore the glowing professional reviews they have gotten
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post #11 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 10:08 AM
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Personally, I dont like Polk. They sound like Best Buy speakers in my opinion. I think Energy's build quality is better too. Energy's are made in Canada and were tested in the government facility where some of the best speakers in the world came from.

If I were you, I would go to Best Buy and listen to the Looks. You might like them. Way to harsh sounding for me though.
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post #12 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 10:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ObsceneJesster View Post

Personally, I dont like Polk. They sound like Best Buy speakers in my opinion. I think Energy's build quality is better too. Energy's are made in Canada and were tested in the government facility where some of the best speakers in the world came from.

If I were you, I would go to Best Buy and listen to the Looks. You might like them. Way to harsh sounding for me though.

Been awhile since Energy's made in Canada. The lower lines like the cb-5/10 were moved to china along with the Takes....

Polks monitors are from harsh unless driving them at reference volume levels in a large room with gobs of power which no one really will ever do
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post #13 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 02:31 PM
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The Energy C series can be rather crisp sounding. It all depends on your personal taste in sound reproduction.

HSU HB-1 mk2's are well liked for their budget price and are fairly smooth for horn-loaded dome tweeter speakers. $129 each on sale.

Are there better ones out there? I'm sure there are but you do need to up your budget a little bit... not a huge amount, mind you. PSB, Paradigm, Aperion, SVS, etc.

I too am not a fan of the Polk Monitor's, but again, it comes down to preference.

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post #14 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 04:15 PM
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Originally Posted by crazyrob425 View Post

Been awhile since Energy's made in Canada. The lower lines like the cb-5/10 were moved to china along with the Takes....

Polks monitors are from harsh unless driving them at reference volume levels in a large room with gobs of power which no one really will ever do

You got it wrong. The research and development still takes place in Canada. They just have them assembled in China to cut down on cost which is good for YOU and ME. They save money on assembly and in return, the end user gets a better product for the price.
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post #15 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 04:17 PM
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You got it wrong. The Energy C-Series is only assembled in China. The research and design took place in Canada.

Still made in china as far as I am concerned. With china materials and labor.
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post #16 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 04:44 PM
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I would go to AC4L and look at the Denon refurb receivers
http://www.accessories4less.com/inde...ch_query=denon

The Primus
http://www.amazon.com/Infinity-Primu...0886239&sr=8-4
http://www.amazon.com/Infinity-Primu...0886526&sr=1-6

For those who can do floor standers
http://www.amazon.com/Denon-AVR-1712...886402&sr=8-20

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post #17 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by crazyrob425 View Post

Still made in china as far as I am concerned. With china materials and labor.

You do realize that most all speakers made today are assembled with some sort of part that was manufactured over seas. Quite frankly, I don't even know why it matters. If you think just because something has the label "Made in the USA" means it's of the best possible quality then you are either ignorant, naive or ill informed.

Do you think it's just a coincidence that Energy has the largest fallowing on these forums? I can tell you it's because you get good build quality and great sound for a nice price.

The Verita line has been said by many that it's the best sounding speaker you will ever hear without spending over $5000 for a pair of speakers. Their RC line continues to clime in value long after it stopped being manufactured. It is one of the most highly sought after speaker lines out of every manufacture. People still continue to pay $200 more than what the speakers originally cost and until you've heard them, you just wouldn't understand.

Whether or not a speaker was put together in the USA, China, Japan or Iraq, it has NOTHING to do in terms of sound quality. I can list an entire line up of speakers built in the USA that sound like ****. By the way, if you think Polks are built in the USA then think again.
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post #18 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ObsceneJesster View Post

You do realize that most all speakers made today are assembled with some sort of part that was manufactured over seas. Quite frankly, I don't even know why it matters. If you think just because something has the label "Made in the USA" means it's of the best possible quality then you are either ignorant, naive or ill informed.

Do you think it's just a coincidence that Energy has the largest fallowing on these forums? I can tell you it's because you get good build quality and great sound for a nice price.

The Verita line has been said by many that it's the best sounding speaker you will ever hear without spending over $5000 for a pair of speakers. Their RC line continues to clime in value long after it stopped being manufactured. It is one of the most highly sought after speaker lines out of every manufacture. People still continue to pay $200 more than what the speakers originally cost and until you've heard them, you just wouldn't understand.

Whether or not a speaker was put together in the USA, China, Japan or Iraq, it has NOTHING to do in terms of sound quality. I can list an entire line up of speakers built in the USA that sound like ****. By the way, if you think Polks are built in the USA then think again.

Holy Moly, Mr.Jesster, I would think that somebody struck a chord.... I agree with you on most of your statement. I have Athena's first Auditon series. Assembled in China or not, the built quality for the price still holds its own even today in my opinion.

But I don't think that Polks are bad like you described them. Just like the Athenas, the bulk of their line are design for the mass market but that doesn't make them terrible. I had a couple of Polks M20 for a bit and found them to be quite good for the price, especially for music. But, that's just me. I think that the Polk set up proposed by the OP would be a descent starter setup, although I would bump the center to the CS20.

Cheers
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post #19 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 06:13 PM
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Holy Moly, Mr.Jesster, I would think that somebody struck a chord.... I agree with you on most of your statement. I have Athena's first Auditon series. Assembled in China or not, the built quality for the price still holds its own even today in my opinion.

But I don't think that Polks are bad like you described them. Just like the Athenas, the bulk of their line are design for the mass market but that doesn't make them terrible. I had a couple of Polks M20 for a bit and found them to be quite good for the price, especially for music. But, that's just me. I think that the Polk set up proposed by the OP would be a descent starter setup, although I would bump the center to the CS20.

Cheers

Just because I don't like the "Polk Sound" doesn't mean I think they are a terrible speaker. Your right, they are a great starter set up at a great price. I didn't like the sound I heard coming from the B&W 6 series either but we all know they are far from being terrible.

For the record, a cord was struck. I am a proud American but people need to stop thinking just because something was built in Asia, doesn't mean it's ****. You can hardly find anything manufactured in the U.S. anymore. We as Americans need to get over ourselves and stop thinking we build the best stuff. Not some of the best, but THE BEST electronics are manufactured in Asia. U.S. and Canada based companies are just maximizing their profits by outsourcing the manufacturing process over seas. I can't say I blame them for if I were CEO of a corporation, I would want to fatten my pockets as well.
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post #20 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by ObsceneJesster View Post


You do realize that most all speakers made today are assembled with some sort of part that was manufactured over seas. Quite frankly, I don't even know why it matters. If you think just because something has the label "Made in the USA" means it's of the best possible quality then you are either ignorant, naive or ill informed.

Do you think it's just a coincidence that Energy has the largest fallowing on these forums? I can tell you it's because you get good build quality and great sound for a nice price.

The Verita line has been said by many that it's the best sounding speaker you will ever hear without spending over $5000 for a pair of speakers. Their RC line continues to clime in value long after it stopped being manufactured. It is one of the most highly sought after speaker lines out of every manufacture. People still continue to pay $200 more than what the speakers originally cost and until you've heard them, you just wouldn't understand.

Whether or not a speaker was put together in the USA, China, Japan or Iraq, it has NOTHING to do in terms of sound quality. I can list an entire line up of speakers built in the USA that sound like ****. By the way, if you think Polks are built in the USA then think again.

never said the Polks were made in the USA nor implied that they were better quality I am just getting tired of all the Polk hate I am seeing and you are a huge Polk hater. And it's not really deserved. Here are some surprising reviews that people ignore... The OP isn't looking at the RC-line or Veritable-line he is talking about their budget line. I recommend the RC-10's all the time they are great speakers for their money at $300 for pair.

There are a huge following of Polk Audio fan here with rave reviews, many that hate on the Polk aren't Polk owners and never heard them for in home set-ups only in a store floor and that's not how you properly demo speakers

Here are some surprising reviews that people ignore...
HSU HB-1 vs Polk Monitor 30's http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/s...arch-hb-1.html
Polk Monitor 30's vs AV123 x-ls http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/s...v123-x-ls.html
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post #21 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 06:33 PM
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never said the Polks were made in the USA nor implied that they were better quality I am just getting tired of all the Polk hate I am seeing and you are a huge Polk hater. And it's not really deserved. Here are some surprising reviews that people ignore... The OP isn't looking at the RC-line or Veritable-line he is talking about their budget line. I recommend the RC-10's all the time they are great speakers for their money at $300 for pair.

There are a huge following of Polk Audio fan here with rave reviews, many that hate on the Polk aren't Polk owners and never heard them for in home set-ups only in a store floor and that's not how you properly demo speakers

Here are some surprising reviews that people ignore...
HSU HB-1 vs Polk Monitor 30's http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/s...arch-hb-1.html
Polk Monitor 30's vs AV123 x-ls http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/s...v123-x-ls.html

I am not a Polk hater. In fact, if you went back and looked through my previous posts, you would be hard pressed to find one where I ever even talked about Polk speakers. I have heard many Polk speakers. In fact, I have heard them all. I live about 15 minutes from there facility in Baltimore, MD and I have been there twice. They do a pretty cool free tour through their facility. I went there once in 2003 and once in 2009. They have 7 listening rooms with every single speaker they produce set up. I'm assuming Polk knows how to set up their own speakers

I just don't like the way they sound. I think there are better speakers at the same price point in terms of sound quality and build quality.

I understand the OP isn't looking into the Verita or RC line. However, the C-Series is no slouch either. In fact, many people including myself prefer the C-Series over the RC line when it comes to Home Theater. Their brighter sound provides clearer dialog at lower volume levels along with bringing action scenes to life.

Sorry man. I didn't mean to upset you. I'm sure there are people out their that think the Energy RC's are to neutral/warm. Does that mean they are haters? No, of course not. They just prefer a brighter sounding speaker. Personally, I think the high end Polk stuff sounds fine but I think there are a lot of other choices that provide better sound for the price you would pay for a pair of premium Polk's. When it comes to their low end stuff, I think it's just too bright. I like a bright crisp speaker but (in my opinion), they were just a tad to bright. Others including yourself might like the sound.

In the end, just because I don't care for the type of sound Polk speakers provide, doesn't mean I am a Polk hater.
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post #22 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 07:00 PM
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For the record, a cord was struck. I am a proud American but people need to stop thinking just because something was built in Asia, doesn't mean it's ****. You can hardly find anything manufactured in the U.S. anymore. We as Americans need to get over ourselves and stop thinking we build the best stuff. Not some of the best, but THE BEST electronics are manufactured in Asia. U.S. and Canada based companies are just maximizing their profits by outsourcing the manufacturing process over seas. I can't say I blame them for if I were CEO of a corporation, I would want to fatten my pockets as well.

True that !!...oh, my American IPhone, that was NOT build in China is ringing...
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post #23 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 07:24 PM
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They are on the same level of performance IMO. The Polk monitor series ii when newegg.com has them on sale they are amazing deal for their money. The 40's with cs2 center and the monitor 30's for surrounds are great deal and amazing starter system. Wait for newegg sales and you will be rewarded with the money spent versus sound you get. People hate on Polk monitor line but ignore the glowing professional reviews they have gotten


+1

If you can get a chance to listen to some Polks at a local BestBuy and like them, there is no reason not to get them instead of the Energy. Then put your money into a better sub than the BIC F12. There are good benefits for HT in increasing sub spending.

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post #24 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 08:17 PM
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True that !!...oh, my American IPhone, that was NOT build in China is ringing...

I hope your being sarcastic!!

iPhone build cycle:

.Designed in California

.Manufactured in Korea and Taiwan

.Assembled in China
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post #25 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 09:00 PM
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+1

If you can get a chance to listen to some Polks at a local BestBuy and like them, there is no reason not to get them instead of the Energy. Then put your money into a better sub than the BIC F12. There are good benefits for HT in increasing sub spending.

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post #26 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 09:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

+1

If you can get a chance to listen to some Polks at a local BestBuy and like them, there is no reason not to get them instead of the Energy. Then put your money into a better sub than the BIC F12. There are good benefits for HT in increasing sub spending.

Aside from the normal AVS off shoot of bickering I really appreciate all the help you guys have provided. I plan on going to BB or Frys to try and see what I can listen to and go from there. I guess at this point either Polks or Energy will work and I can break the "tie" by actually using what they are meant for - my ears.

As for another sub other than the BIC F12, what are my options without spending over $250-$300??? (F12 is sub $200 at this point)

Again, thanks to everyone for all your help and I cant wait to finally get the system up and going.
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post #27 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 10:28 PM
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The Energy S10.3 would work very well. It will have better SQ than the BIC, and will likely reach as low (may even do better at the lowest frequencies), although the BIC might have more total output. In your size room, the S10.3 should have plenty of volume.

Your questions are answered: Speaker FAQ
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post #28 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 10:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cel4145 View Post

The Energy S10.3 would work very well. It will have better SQ than the BIC, and will likely reach as low (may even do better at the lowest frequencies), although the BIC might have more total output. In your size room, the S10.3 should have plenty of volume.

I agree.

And as for Polk vs. Energy, go to Best Buy and listen to Energy speakers and go to a Fry's Electronics and listen to the Polks. Both speaker lines (the new C series Energy and the lower end Polks) are pretty bright so they're similar in that respect. The higher end Polks have a really nice tweeter though, and they're softer sounding, but again that's once you get up there in price.

For those looking into getting Energy speakers, or upgrading their current Energy setup, here are some reviews I've written that may help:http://www.tempestaudio.blogspot.com  (haven't updated in a while, but include Energy Take Classic 5.1, RC-10, CF-70, and CC-10)

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post #29 of 57 Old 11-09-2011, 11:01 PM
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I think you have to find a Best Buy with a Magnolia section to hear the Energy's. A Best Buy without Magnolia will not carry them. I have seen the Polks at Best Buys without Magnolia. Whatever you do, do not purchase the speakers at Best Buy. I don't know how much the Polks are marked up but the Energy's can usually be had at a 30%-50% cheaper than what Best Buy sells them for.
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post #30 of 57 Old 11-10-2011, 03:01 AM
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I hope your being sarcastic!!

iPhone build cycle:

.Designed in California

.Manufactured in Korea and Taiwan

.Assembled in China

Yes sir I was.
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