Tower Speakers or Surround / Bookshelf for Rear Channel Home Theater - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 10:46 AM - Thread Starter
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First, let me start off saying I am a newb!

I honestly don't know what sound range rear speakers in a home theater are supposed to support. Rear towers may be way way over kill. I am looking at doing about 95% movies...5% music.

What should I be looking for in rear speakers? Are towers over kill for a mid-level system? Is my money better else where? To be honest the cost differance is not that much about $200 dollars.

Any advice would be MUCH appreciated.

I do realize that there are some logistical considerations like wall mounting etc...but from a pure sound perspective... What do I do...then I will see how much I need / want to compromise on based on me wall mounting etc.
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post #2 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 10:54 AM
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Towers are definitely overkill. The amount of content through the rears is mostly ambiance, with the occasional large pan (like a helicopter). So really you just need a speaker that's tonally similar (same tweeter, type of woofer), and can handle the occasional peak (monitor sized speaker).


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post #3 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 10:57 AM
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Conventional wisdom is that you can really only justify full towers for your surrounds if you listen to a lot of multi-channel music, which tends to use your speakers more evenly. That being said, I'd just love to have a full eleven channels of B&W 808s. Not quite sure how to mount the front highs, though. biggrin.gif

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post #4 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 11:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newbie01 View Post

First, let me start off saying I am a newb!

I honestly don't know what sound range rear speakers in a home theater are supposed to support. Rear towers may be way way over kill. I am looking at doing about 95% movies...5% music.

The word "tower" denotes a floor-standing speaker. Its actual bass extension and dynamic range can vary over a wide range. Consider a tower with a single 5 inch woofer and one with 4 pieces of 8 inch woofer.

Since your system presumably has a subwoofer, the bass extension and dynamic range of the remaining speakers below 60-80 Hz will not make much difference.
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What should I be looking for in rear speakers?

Something that you can timbre match with the rest of the system so that the helicopters don't change from Hueys to Apaches as they circle around you. ;-)
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Are towers over kill for a mid-level system?

Possibly in any system.
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Is my money better else where?

Subwoofers? Room acoustic treatments?
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To be honest the cost difference is not that much about $200 dollars.

That's because in some cases the difference between a tower and a bookshelf is mostly just an empty wood box.
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post #5 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 12:41 PM
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I currently have a 7.1 system, and the front two and surround side are towers. biggrin.gif Overkill, but I ended up doing this due to replacing my fronts from Jamo S426 towers to Monitor 70's.

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post #6 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 12:56 PM
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I use towers on my bedroom surrounds to avoid stands. Since I don't do multi-channel music with critical listening there; a set of P360's did just fine.
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post #7 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 01:14 PM
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Theres no such thing as overkill. Because everyone has their own definition of overkill. To some anything more than TV speakers is overkill, while others have Danley tapped horns in their living room. Now I wouldn't blow my entire budget just to be able to add towers as surrounds or skip on quality fronts just to be able to have towers all around but if you have an EMP system for example picking up a pair of E55Tis when they are on sale at crazy low levels isn't bad.

Owning a stereo pair of the new Pioneer FS52 towers as fronts but then later down the road spending another $200 for another set as surrounds isn't a big deal, consider the small matching bookshelf and a decent stand could cost more.

Theres no standard, its whatever your happy with go for it.

I had a co-work several years ago who just loved his system and talked about it all the time. He uses Bose 161 bookshelfs, Bose center, and Boston VR3 towers as surrounds, the most oddball backwards system i've ever seen but he likes it so thats all that matters.
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post #8 of 8 Old 01-04-2013, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpsuper24 View Post

Theres no such thing as overkill. Because everyone has their own definition of overkill. To some anything more than TV speakers is overkill, while others have Danley tapped horns in their living room. Now I wouldn't blow my entire budget just to be able to add towers as surrounds or skip on quality fronts just to be able to have towers all around but if you have an EMP system for example picking up a pair of E55Tis when they are on sale at crazy low levels isn't bad.
Owning a stereo pair of the new Pioneer FS52 towers as fronts but then later down the road spending another $200 for another set as surrounds isn't a big deal, consider the small matching bookshelf and a decent stand could cost more.
Theres no standard, its whatever your happy with go for it.
I had a co-work several years ago who just loved his system and talked about it all the time. He uses Bose 161 bookshelfs, Bose center, and Boston VR3 towers as surrounds, the most oddball backwards system i've ever seen but he likes it so thats all that matters.

+1 I am using Vienna Acoustic Mozart Grand SE for the front channels and am using my older Vienna Acoustic Bach (towers) in the rear. The result is great for me and I enjoy it for surround music (sacd and dvd-a) as well as movies.
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