Originally Posted by bepperb
My opinion is that those smaller 3" driver injection molded speakers are a great compromise in rooms where you need to be discrete perhaps because it's the main living area. In the case of a third floor media room I'd really consider something larger. There are plenty of wall mountable bookshelf speakers with 5" or larger drivers, or consider larger bookshelfs on a stand or "gasp" floorstanding speakers. If price is an object (and based on "new stair" in your plans it sounds like you're pretty deep into renovation money pit, hey I'm here too!) you can buy some bookshelves and a center and use your in-ceilings and upgrade to 7.1 later. That would be an upgrade from the speakers you're considering with no additional cost.
Having had a polk 5.1 system with 3" drivers I'd at least consider that MartinLogan with the 4" mains which "should" do better in the low midbass. I agree with this "The polks or the energy takes will not provide full range sound or much volume." Our last living room was 11 x 18 and after having the Polk 5.1 system for perhaps 3 months I went out and upgraded.
Your room isn't that big especially if the ceiling is slanting down towards knee walls. I'd probably stop at the PSW125, but sub output is kinda a personal preference more than anything. Still a 500 dollar sub paired with 5 speakers that cost the same is a bit backwards to me.
Looks like a cool space, don't be shy about pics when it's done.
I found an open box deal on the Polk TL350 set for $529 (buy it now on eBay). If I went that route, I wouldn't get the $300 credit from Crutchfield (applied to Polk sub purchase when you spend $499 or more on Polk speakers), but the TL350 set new from Crutchfield is $750 anyway. So, if I went the TL350 route, my options would be:
(1) Crutchfield: New TL350s for plus PSW125 sub for $808.
(2) eBay: Open box (but new) TL350s ($525) plus ??? sub for ???
IF I go option (2), what would you suggest for the sub that would get me most bang for the buck? I'd be looking for the cheapest possible quality sub that would work well with the Polk TL350 set up.
Here's a pic of the space right now.
Still under construction, but it's taking shape!
As far as speaker placement, this photo gives a better view of what I'm thinking of doing. The main L/C/R would go on the shelf just under where the TV will be mounted. The height L/R would go up above where the columns of the built-in are (if you look carefully, you can see the speaker wires that have already been run up there). You can't see the in-ceiling rears in this shot, but their just out of the frame of the picture. As for the sub, think I could get away with putting it inside one of the cabinets to the left or right of the built-in? Would that work, or is it better to have it located in the space itself. If not, could I go so far as to put the sub beind the knee-wall to the left?
Thanks for all the help with this. This forum is such a huge resource.
Edit to add one final thought:
My old system was an Onkyo Envision LSV-950
. As I may have mentioned, the sound there was decent but nothing to write home about. But the sub always seemed to pack a decent punch. Here are its specs:
•built-in 60-watt RMS amplifier
•9-1/8"W x 19-7/16"H x 18-1/2"D
I'm skeptical this is worth considering, but should I consider just keeping that sub for the time being and upgrading down the road? Between this sub and the Polk PSW111, the PSW125 or the DSWPro440wi, should I expect much of an upgrade? If it's nominal, maybe I should just save a bit of cash.