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post #1 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 03:26 PM - Thread Starter
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about a year ago i bought a 1312BA from best buy. at first it was adequate especially coming from tv speakers, but the receiver has been giving me trouble lately, and lacks some features i would like. the bundle came with a 1312 denon avr, and a boston acoustics 5.1 setup. i believe they are MCS 160 speakers and a sub. the speakers sound ok, but there is no mid-low punch from my setup. the ultra low is nice with the new rw12d. but the satellites seem to have no balls.
im replacing everything. i have already ordered a pioneer SC1222-K off of newegg for 550$. i already have my Klipsch RW12D as a sub.
i need help on the fronts, center, and surrounds. i have a somewhat flexible budget, but dont want to spend a crazy amount. id like to hit a nice performance vs price point. the amount of good speakers commented on in forums is mind boggling and i would like some insight as to what i need as a have specific requirements.
my room is carpeted and is 22 feet long by 15 feet wide.i have attached pictures so you guys can get a idea of what im working with. i want 7.1 vs 5.1 because i play alot of games and like to pinpoint sounds, although most games only support 5.1 at the moment, new consoles are coming soon. i play alot of music, and watch alot of blu rays. i am set on the way my living room is configured, it cannot change. the one thing that really concerns me is my 4 surrounds, i am going to have to wall mount all of them, and im aware that alot of speakers dont work well in this configuration. whatever the best wall mounted speakers that dont look ridiculous is what im after. if you look at the picture with the bikes, thats where my back surrounds would have to go, mounted on the wall. and my left surround would be next to the door, like the one already there, or on the right side of the door, doesnt matter, and right surround around the same spot as the one currently located near the weight bar and curtains. i would like to get nice left and right floor standing speakers as a play alot of stereo music, and they need to hit decently low, without a sub and need nice midrange and low punch to them. center channel isnt a issue as i can put it right in my tv stand. my budget could include the center, left and right, and 2 surrounds to make 5.1 for now and i could add the other back surrounds later if need be. im looking at spending about 1000-1400 on the 5-7 speakers i need to complete my setup. what should i get? i have been looking at klipcsh kf-26, polk tsi300, and a guy off of craigslist is selling 2 tsi500s, a polk cs2 series 2 center, and 2 polk monitor 40s, all for about 1000, but i can get him down to 800.
im really leaning to what another post has recommended to someone else., all infinity primus speakers, the p363 towers, pc351 center, and p163bk surrounds.

what do you guys think i should get???











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post #2 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 04:01 PM
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My advice would be to place the bulk of your budget into the front three L/C/R and maybe even consider increasing the budget more, so you have some good, solid options. Use the surrounds that you have... for now. Then save up to replace them with the surrounds from the same speaker line for proper timbre matching.

Speakers are, and I'm not fooling when I say this, THE...MOST...IMPORTANT...PURCHASE...PERIOD. So, do not skimp here.

You have a fairly large, open living space, and so you'll need some speakers that can play at slightly higher volumes without strain. Choose a speaker line that includes a fairly large, robust center speaker since it is still the most utilized speaker in most soundtracks... and you want to be able to hear voices clearly and cleanly above the din of the score and other sound effects.

I wouldn't consider Polk Audio speakers even if you gave them to me... they just don't make 'em like they used to. Klipsch speakers can be quite brittle and fatiguing unless you spend a bundle. Try Ascend Acoustics (internet only), Aperion Audio (internet only), Paradigm, PSB, KEF Q Series, Definitive Technology, Totem, Focal, and the like.

Since your receiver has a full set of pre-amp outputs (even for height or wide speakers for super-charged post-processing modes like DTS Neo:X), you should strongly consider an outboard power amplifier from possibly Emotiva or Outlaw Audio. Pretty good bang vs. buck in power amps on a budget, but not cheaply made. Good speakers will sound significantly better with more amp power and cleaner power driving them; more driver control too and less chance of hard clipping (that's a speaker killer). Receiver amps are often puny in comparison with higher distortion levels.

A subwoofer or two would be most advantageous, even with larger front speakers. HSU, SVS, Rythmik, etc. These are internet direct subs.

I'm sure you'll get many other suggestions as well. Good luck!! biggrin.gif

P.S. Your front speakers, currently, are placed waaaay too far apart compared to your seating distance.

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post #3 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 04:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Ya i figured my speakers are a bit far apart, i had the tv set up where the big couch is now, so instead of re wiring all my speakers i just switched the speaker channels by plugging them into different ports on my receiver when i rearranged my living room. I will correct the placement when i get good speakers to replace the ones i have now.

What do you think about the infinty primus set?? I can get them from frys in 30 minutes.....very tempting. Thanks for the input but im a newbie to home theater equiptment, and your post confuses me lol. Could anyone be more specific on what speakers i should get??
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post #4 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 04:44 PM
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The following system from Ascend Acoustics would, in my opinion, be a big step or two above the ones that you are currently considering in sound quality:

2 x CMT-340 SE
1 x CMT-340 SE center
2 x HTM-200 SE
2 x TP-24 pedestal stands
Total = $1336 (includes shipping, package discount, and stands for the left & right fronts)
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post #5 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 05:04 PM
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+1 Probably a healthy step up.
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post #6 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 05:13 PM
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Check the Pioneer FS52.
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post #7 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 05:26 PM - Thread Starter
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Looks like a really nice set, im reallly leaning on getting these. I like the floor standing idea for the left and right as well. My question is, what is the difference between the center and left and right speakers?? The only difference i see is price? I know the other set is for 2 speakers lol
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post #8 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 05:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

i want 7.1 vs 5.1 because i play alot of games and like to pinpoint sounds, although most games only support 5.1 at the moment, new consoles are coming soon.

Add $224 to the system that I recommended above for a matching pair of back surrounds.
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the one thing that really concerns me is my 4 surrounds, i am going to have to wall mount all of them, and im aware that alot of speakers dont work well in this configuration. whatever the best wall mounted speakers that dont look ridiculous is what im after.

The surrounds that I recommended are designed to work well near or even against walls, and they have relatively wide dispersion along the vertical axis, which in lay terms means that they sound good across all of the seats. They're not very large, but are still "ballsy" enough to be crossed over to the subwoofer at 80 Hz (that's a good thing) while playing loudly.
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if you look at the picture with the bikes, thats where my back surrounds would have to go, mounted on the wall.

The current location of the right back surround seems pretty tight for any speaker larger than a tiny satellite. Unless you decide to stick with your current back surrounds, you may need to move it to the other side of the doorway.
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i would like to get nice left and right floor standing speakers as a play alot of stereo music, and they need to hit decently low, without a sub and need nice midrange and low punch to them.

Would 48 Hz be low enough? Full-fledged floor-standing speakers generally cost a lot more than bookshelf speakers, and in your case would seem to force you to compromise substantially on sound quality. The speakers that I recommended come pretty close to being towers, and offer better sound quality for the price.
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center channel isnt a issue as i can put it right in my tv stand.

How tall is that space in your TV stand?
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Since your receiver has a full set of pre-amp outputs (even for height or wide speakers for super-charged post-processing modes like DTS Neo:X), you should strongly consider an outboard power amplifier from possibly Emotiva or Outlaw Audio. Pretty good bang vs. buck in power amps on a budget, but not cheaply made. Good speakers will sound significantly better with more amp power and cleaner power driving them; more driver control too and less chance of hard clipping (that's a speaker killer). Receiver amps are often puny in comparison with higher distortion levels.

I still think that the best bang for the buck would be achieved in this case by focusing solely on the speakers at this point.
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Looks like a really nice set, im reallly leaning on getting these. I like the floor standing idea for the left and right as well. My question is, what is the difference between the center and left and right speakers?? The only difference i see is price? I know the other set is for 2 speakers lol

If you're talking about the Ascends, then the only difference with the center is that it has slightly different circuitry that compensates for the difference in sound that being placed so close to the TV makes. The slight difference in price only reflects a package discount on the pair of mains, but the good news is that you get a package discount when you order all of the speakers together anyway.
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post #9 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Robert cook, thanks alot. Ya i agree with everything you posted. Ya i was planning on moving the speaker from the tiny corner to the right of the door. I am curious though, i already planned on adding another set of surrounds to make it 7.1, but the htm-200 se set is 298, how does it come out to an additional 224?? And the space in the tv stand is 8.5 inches tall, the center you reccomend is 7 something so im good.
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post #10 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 06:55 PM
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Ya i was planning on moving the speaker from the tiny corner to the right of the door.

This would actually be closer to the ideal placement anyway, as the two back surrounds are intended to act sort of like a spread-out center surround as opposed to corner surrounds. In fact, some people have a 6.1 system configuration with a single center back surround speaker.
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I am curious though, i already planned on adding another set of surrounds to make it 7.1, but the htm-200 se set is 298, how does it come out to an additional 224??

By the time you get to a second pair of surrounds for the back, the additional package discount, on top of what you already get with 5.0 speakers, is a steep $98, bringing the price of the HTM-200 SE down to $200 for the pair. Then I added the standard $24 shipping cost for a total of only $224. I'm not sure whether there is a package discount on the shipping costs, so I just added up the regular shipping costs for all of the speakers to cover the worst-case scenario with regard to price. Clearly $98 off is an incentive to buy the additional pair now (or within 45 days) rather than later.

By the way, if you happen to live in Southern California, you could pick up the speakers yourself and save up to $114 in shipping costs.
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post #11 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 06:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok i added all the speakers (7) and it came out 200 dollars cheaper for bundling, plus another 40 for the stands. After shipping im at a grand total of 1560. My trigger finger is itchy as can be right now, my next question is this. I can get the infinty primus set up with 7 speakers for 950 or so. Is this really 500 dollars better in quality? Im leaning towards yes unless someone corrects me, or has some insight to a superior offering.
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post #12 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 07:06 PM - Thread Starter
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and here is how my revised speaker placement will be. any concerns? all 4 satellites wall mounted. right and left about 1.5 foot away from wall. center about 2 foot from wall in tv stand, sub between both couches, doubling as a corner stand cool.gif

http://s8.postimg.org/vnjpxwc2d/fp_1b_1b_764_ansleighnhh.jpg
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post #13 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

I can get the infinty primus set up with 7 speakers for 950 or so. Is this really 500 dollars better in quality?

My opinion here would be redundant, but yes I do think that the extra cost is worthwhile. The problem is that we all have different standards and a different manner of determining the relative values of things, including the differences between two products that perform the same basic function. The way that I tend to look at speakers, though, is ideally as a long-term investment, and since people's standards change over time (usually becoming higher with regard to sound quality), my aim is often to recommend something that I believe individuals will be happy with for a longer period of time.

I'm fairly familiar with the Infinity Primus series, having heard all of the speakers on a number of occasions and having helped install a couple of systems based on this series for others, so if you'd like for me to go over the differences between these and the Ascends, then I will, but in a nutshell, in plain English, the Ascends are noticeably more realistic-sounding to me, especially when played loudly, and have greater resolution and detail. That said, the Infinity speakers are also a great value at this price point, especially since you get full towers with a bit deeper bass when running without a subwoofer; on the other hand, the Ascend center is just as capable as the other fronts (being essentially the same speaker), while the Infinity center, though a good one, is not quite as capable.
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and here is how my revised speaker placement will be. any concerns? all 4 satellites wall mounted. right and left about 1.5 foot away from wall. center about 2 foot from wall in tv stand, sub between both couches, doubling as a corner stand cool.gif

http://s8.postimg.org/vnjpxwc2d/fp_1b_1b_764_ansleighnhh.jpg

This looks alright, but like everybody else, you may have to experiment with the placement of the sub and the left & right fronts to get the best results (especially with regard to bass response).
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post #14 of 314 Old 03-25-2013, 08:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Well i had the subwoofer against the very north east corner of the room, and i could tell that alot of bass could be heard from the right wall, and i did not like that the left side speakers sounded less full. How should i go about testing my sub placement? Where should i put it? My left and right will probably be set further out the the dots suggest in the pic. Also how compatible is the pioneer sc1222 with these new speakers? I dont think ill have much room to move around the right and left but some atleast. Is there a specific song or some technique to testing placement? Thanks alot mr cook

Also do i need to purchase the 40$ each wall mouting accessory for the surrounds? Or is thier a way to do it out of the box?
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post #15 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 12:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

Well i had the subwoofer against the very north east corner of the room, and i could tell that alot of bass could be heard from the right wall, and i did not like that the left side speakers sounded less full.

Hopefully your new ability to use a lower subwoofer crossover frequency (80 Hz or lower) will make your sub's output practically non-localizable. I don't have the issue that you describe at all, despite my subwoofer being located off to one side, so I think that you'll be alright in this regard.
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How should i go about testing my sub placement? Where should i put it?

This can be a pretty involved process, depending on how far you'd be willing to take it. At the most basic level, you'll want to place your subwoofer where it makes the bass sound the most even, with no frequencies that are missing (nulls) at the viewing positions. You can start by placing the sub 2 feet or closer to a wall so that you will avoid the largest null, and then move the sub to various positions along the wall until you find a spot where it works the best. You could do this by listening or preferably by measuring. Check your receiver's manual and its on-screen display to see whether it can show you graphs of what it measured during calibration--the more even or straight across the sub's frequency response curve is, with no spots where it dramatically dips down (aside from its low-frequency limit), the better. Also look up "sub crawl" for a technique that you may find useful. For more details, visit the subwoofer forum:
http://www.avsforum.com/f/113/subwoofers-bass-and-transducers
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Also how compatible is the pioneer sc1222 with these new speakers?

They should work fine together. In my experience, I've never found any Ascend speakers to be difficult for a receiver to drive. The Infinity P363 is actually more difficult to drive, although most receivers seem to work fine with it, too (they may run somewhat hotter, in theory).
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Is there a specific song or some technique to testing placement?

Use whatever songs you're familiar with from listening on other equipment and headphones, and just try a bunch of things--wider or narrower spacing, toeing in or not (shouldn't be necessary with the CMT-340 SE, but try it anyway). In your place, I'd at least try to keep it close to the front wall (around 1 foot if possible, or close to it) and at least 4.5 feet away from the side walls--the former should help keep the mid-bass frequencies free from nulls, while the latter should help keep any other nulls low enough in frequency for the subwoofer to fill in.
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Also do i need to purchase the 40$ each wall mouting accessory for the surrounds? Or is thier a way to do it out of the box?

I just checked, and it seems that we have a bit of a situation with this mount. For some silly reason OmniMount has stopped making their 20.0 wall-mount model, which is perfect for the HTM-200 SE. We used to be able to buy these for much less at other retailers, but Ascend is one of the few places--and the only one that I know of--that has any left, and for some reason they've always charged quite a premium for them (undoubtedly the reason that they still have some). Maybe this is only a temporary situation, but I have no idea at this point. Smaller mounts from OmniMount and other manufacturers are most likely inadequate to hold the weight of the HTM, which is near the practical limit of the 20.0 (speaker mount weight specs are often highly exaggerated). There are larger mounts that will hold it, such as the popular VideoSecu MS56B, but it is large and a bit of an overkill for this speaker.

Unfortunately the HTM-200 SE does not come with a keyhole mount, even though I think it would work great when mounted flat against the wall in this manner. Its only built-in mounting hardware is its pair of standard rear 1/4" x 20 inserts. I suppose that you could install a keyhole adapter yourself (drilling into the speaker) and mount the speaker on the wall on a single screw, or you could run a wire between the bolts and hang it that way. Or you could place it on a small wall-mounted shelf, such as the following:
http://www.amazon.com/Umbra-Conceal-Floating-Shelf-Large/dp/B0053GBC4E
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_0_10?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=floating+shelves&sprefix=floating+s%2Caps%2C321

That's if you don't want to pay $45.50 per mount (including shipping) for the OmniMount 20.0. I'll try to help look for more alternatives, but I think that one way or another (from the examples above), you'll have an economical method of wall-mounting your new surrounds.
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post #16 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 07:48 AM - Thread Starter
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I notice the two screws by themselves on the bottom of the htm 200 speakers. I could cut coat hanger wire and run a pass of that between the bolts, then tighten the bolts and hang the speaker upside down. Is the speaker able to run properly upside down? I dont see why not.

Also on the center and L/R speakers, their are 4 jacks instead of the normal 2 im used to, they are labeled teeeter input and woofer input, and seem to have some sort of common connection via that gold bridge. All i have is 16 gauge bare wire, which my current speakers use. how will i hook up my speakers? Will the tweeters worrk if i hook up just the woofer? Also with my new pioneer 1222 is there some sort of better connection i should be using?
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post #17 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 01:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

I notice the two screws by themselves on the bottom of the htm 200 speakers. I could cut coat hanger wire and run a pass of that between the bolts, then tighten the bolts and hang the speaker upside down.

That was one of my suggestions, and although I haven't actually tried this, I don't see why it wouldn't work. As an additional option, you may want to adhere a couple of little rubber "feet" at the bottom-rear to help ensure that there is no vibration against the wall.
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Is the speaker able to run properly upside down? I dont see why not.

Yes, that's not even an issue. Let's talk more about the placement and orientation of the surrounds, though, because I don't have a completely clear mental image of your home theater's layout (your diagrams and photos are helpful, but I need to know precisely where the viewers will be in relation to the speakers, for one thing). Ideally, the surrounds (side surrounds) should be placed either directly to the sides of the viewers or slightly behind them (I prefer the latter, but do whatever you prefer), and directed at one another or toed toward the central viewer (I prefer the latter). I also like to place them 2-3 feet above the viewers, as well as tilted down toward the central viewer or the viewer on the far side (the latter may help balance the surrounds for off-center viewers a little bit).

The back surrounds are intended to be like dual center+depth surrounds (although they can have different content), so that's intuitively how they should be placed--at some distance behind the viewers and maybe one-third of the way inward from the left and right surrounds, respectively. They should be placed at the same height as the other surrounds for consistency, and be directed straight forward with downward tilt toward ear level if desired. Some folks compromise with a single center surround either to save money, or because they had bought all of their speakers in pairs and are using a bookshelf speaker for the center front, leaving a single speaker for a center back surround (a 6.x system configuration). Obviously the center back surround should be placed right in the center, and otherwise follow the same rules above.

As for the HTM-200 SE specifically, as a surround speaker it has some interesting characteristics. One is that it spreads sound out very well along its long axis (unusual for a speaker), so if you mount it vertically, as most people would, there is less of a need to tilt it, and it performs exceptionally well in this orientation. However, there is an asymmetry along its short axis, and it has better sound quality and spreads the sound out better on the tweeter side. This is why it comes in mirror-imaged pairs, with the main differences being where the logos and mounting inserts are placed relative to the tweeter. When used as a vertically-oriented surround, the tweeters should be on the forward side of the speaker (i.e. toward the front wall). And when used as a pair of back surrounds in a 7.x system, their tweeters should both be on the inside, toward the center of the room and away from the sides. Interestingly, when used as a single center back surround this speaker should be oriented horizontally and with the tweeter below the midwoofers.
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Also on the center and L/R speakers, their are 4 jacks instead of the normal 2 im used to, they are labeled teeeter input and woofer input, and seem to have some sort of common connection via that gold bridge. All i have is 16 gauge bare wire, which my current speakers use. how will i hook up my speakers? Will the tweeters worrk if i hook up just the woofer?

Yes, just pick one set (tweeter or woofer) and use that for all of your speakers (not that it would matter if you mixed and matched). As long as the bridges or jumpers are installed, they will act as a single pair (per speaker) of binding posts because they're electrically connected. This is a useless feature that allows for pointless bi-amping (not true bi-amping) or bi-wiring. Dave Fabrikant, the owner of Ascend Acoustics and the designer of all of the company's speakers, realizes this of course and has said as much in forums before, but I guess he had thought at the time that some people expected such a feature to be present on speakers that cost a certain amount or were of a certain level of quality. He has since abandoned this "feature" on his higher-end Sierra series speakers (that should tell you something), but he hasn't bothered to revise the CMT-340 SE to remove it, so it's still there as a vestige. By the way, he offers to install this feature on his higher-end speakers for a small fee, but that's just because he's so focused on pleasing his customers (which I know from personal experience), not because there is any real point to it.
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Also with my new pioneer 1222 is there some sort of better connection i should be using?

Uh...as in what? confused.gif 16 AWG seems good enough to me, and you don't need to use any connectors like banana plugs, as binding posts work just fine with bare wire. Be sure to strip them only just enough, remove any loose strands, and twist the ends tightly because you do not want any wires touching other wires that they shouldn't be touching.
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post #18 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 01:24 PM
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Axxion,

What were you confused about in my post that I could explain better? Happy to help.

As much as it would be cool to get all your speakers at once, I find that this leads to an early onset of upgrade-itis. It's a very common home theater or home audio rookie mistake ("I want it all, and I want it now"). Buy a bit at a time, and you'll end up with a much nicer set of speakers all around that you'll be happier with for years to come. This purchase is an investment.

That's why I recommend investing in a BETTER front left/center/right "package" since you already have speakers you can use for surround duties to start. Maybe even get a pair of the front left/right first if the budget is easily blown, and then get the center next.

The outboard amplifier suggestion is not something you must move on right away... it's an improvement to get a little down the road. Another good, long term investment. Quality speakers and amps are the foundation of a solid home theater system.

Ascend's Sierra Towers with dome tweeters, for example, are sonically superior to their CMT-340 monitors, especially for music. You might be happier with a pair of those to start. Yes, a little more than you first intended, but again... start out strong.

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post #19 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 01:24 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for more info. I have all 7 speakers on order, should be here next week. I dont know why all my pics came up so small, but later tonight ill post better pics and show you where i plan on them going in accordance with your last post.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan Hitchman View Post

Axxion,

As much as it would be cool to get all your speakers at once, I find that this leads to an early onset of upgrade-itis. It's a very common home theater or home audio rookie mistake ("I want it all, and I want it now"). Buy a bit at a time, and you'll end up with a much nicer set of speakers all around that you'll be happier with for years to come. This purchase is an investment.

That's why I recommend investing in a BETTER front left/center/right "package" since you already have speakers you can use for surround duties to start. Maybe even get a pair of the front left/right first if the budget is easily blown, and then get the center next.

The amplifier idea is not something you must get right away... it's an improvement to get a little down the road. Another good, long term investment. Quality speakers and amps are the foundation of a solid home theater system.

Ascend's Sierra Towers with dome tweeters, for example, are sonically superior to their CMT-340 monitors. You might be happier with a pair of those to start. Yes, a little more than you first intended, but again... start out strong.

Thats all good and true but i think 2400 is quite enough for me for a home theater system, espeacially since i live in a apt and volume is a concern, and i dont feel comfortable having a dime more invested in what i have already purchased. Those sierra towers are 1800 just for two speakers! With the 1550 on speakers, 300 for the sub, and reciever being 550, im at 2400 already. And being as im almost content with my current set up which is crap compared to this new one ill be ok. Ya id like a hsu 1100 dollar sub and beastly towers like the sierras but i think the quality vs performance will be met with what im doing now. Thanks
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post #21 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 01:46 PM
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Thats all good and true but i think 2400 is quite enough for me for a home theater system, espeacially since i live in a apt and volume is a concern, and i dont feel comfortable having a dime more invested in what i have already purchased. Those sierra towers are 1800 just for two speakers! With the 1550 on speakers, 300 for the sub, and reciever being 550, im at 2400 already. And being as im almost content with my current set up which is crap compared to this new one ill be ok. Ya id like a hsu 1100 dollar sub and beastly towers like the sierras but i think the quality vs performance will be met with what im doing now. Thanks

It's all good. Let us know how things turn out. It's a fun hobby no matter what. Just like Christmas any time of the year. biggrin.gif

Please do keep in mind the addition of a good amplifier at some point. You'll hear the difference. The Emotiva XPA-5 and XPA-3 multi-channel amps are pretty good bang vs. buck purchases. They'd definitely work with the Ascend's you purchased and be ready for more later on.

If you feel the need to scratch that upgrade itch for an additional fun add-on at some point, get another set of CMT-340's for front wide left/right speakers... these will be helpful with Dolby ProLogic IIz post processing and the upcoming new advancement in surround sound: object-oriented audio (look up Dolby Atmos and DTS/SRS Multi-Dimensional Audio). Pretty darn cool! The HTM-200's would work great as additional overhead height and wall mount surrounds as well when the time comes. All the speakers must be sonically matched and direct radiating for the best results. Object-oriented audio, unlike channel-based formats, is completely scalable. Each speaker in the system is fully addressable by the decoder and becomes a kind of individual channel.

I do recommend going with 12 gauge speaker wire. 16 gauge is just too thin. Try Monoprice.com or Bluejeanscable.com for quality wire at a great price.

Bare wire is fine, but if you want easier connections at the amplifier binding post locations, try locking banana plugs. They work great!

http://www.speakerrepair.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Category_Code=locking

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post #22 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 02:12 PM - Thread Starter
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Ill just get 12 gauge wire, as i needed new wire anyway because my current stretch has a few lenghts that are spliced. Not even soldered. Im selling my old 1312ba ill just throw in the old 16 gauge for free.
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I think you've gotten some great advice (yes, I own Ascend as well smile.gif ) and that you'll be quite pleased with this setup. In an apartment I think you could easily run out of neighbor's patience before you have a need to put more power to the speakers, although having an avr that can accommodate an outboard amp is always a nice thing.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

I see several different kinds of bananna plugs, closed screw, open screw, pin cramp, pin screw, which one do i need? I assume i need 14 of them for all 7 speakers yes? Or 28 so they go into the receiver. Does the 1222k use bananna plugs? If not what does that end use?

The receiver has banana plug type binding posts. I'd go with locking bananas, as I mentioned above (gives a good, positive connection that won't easily pull out and are easy to unscrew and remove when necessary). I bought the kind at the link I provided. Good quality metal and plated gold connectors for the money.

I'd get enough plug pairs for the amp binding posts on the back of the receiver and the front left, center, and right speaker locations. Just go bare wire at the surround speaker locations as plugs or spades can get pretty awkward if the speaker is snug up close to the wall.

Use a mini screw driver (like the kind for eye glass frame screws) to tighten the connectors to the speaker wire. Easy to find a cheap set of gem screw drivers at the hardware store.

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post #25 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 03:32 PM - Thread Starter
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photo_1_2.jpg

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ok alot of pics here. the red thing against the wall or on the ground represents where each speaker will go. please disregard any current speakers on the wall, they are all coming down.

1st one shows the placement of the back left surround raised high enough so the sound clears the couch well
2nd shows left surround, perfectly left of the main listeners ears, and 3 feet raised from ear level
3rd shows what the room is like.
4th shows front left speaker.
5th shows surround right perfectly right of listener, and raised 3 feet from ear level
6th shows what room is like
7th shows front right
8th shows subwoofer placement, that i would like but have not yet tested
9th shows what room is like
10th shows center channel, and xbox and ps3 will be placed somewhere else
11th shows right back surround raised high enough so the couch does not interfere with sound
12th shows what room is like

what do you guys think?
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post #26 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 03:54 PM
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Are all sets of surrounds located at the same height, as they ideally should be? Usually this is based on tweeter height from the listener's ears.

Here is a typical, recommended 7.1 speaker layout. Sides at 90 degrees to the main listener's ears. Backs at 150 degrees.



For direct radiating side surrounds, they should be tilted so the axis of the speaker is aimed at the farthest listener's ear height seated at the opposite side of the room to the speaker (once that's established, mirror the other side speaker).

For direct radiating back surrounds, they should be tilted so the axis of the speaker is aimed at the center listener's ear height while seated. If there were multiple rows, they would be aimed at the listener in the furthest front row. Some will toe these back speakers in a little toward the listening space, but do not exceed a 45 degree rotation.

You can see where a pivoting ball joint speaker wall mount would be ideal.

A laser target pen is always handy in positioning the speakers. You can get these at most major hardware stores.

The subwoofer's ideal location can be a bit tricky. This takes a bit of practice at finding where the peaks and nulls in the room are for best sub response.

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post #27 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 04:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

Thanks for more info. I have all 7 speakers on order, should be here next week.

Congrats! biggrin.gifcool.gif Be sure to keep us updated.
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Originally Posted by Dan Hitchman View Post

I do recommend going with 12 gauge speaker wire. 16 gauge is just too thin. Try Monoprice.com or Bluejeanscable.com for quality wire at a great price.

In my opinion, 16 AWG is enough (up to about 50 feet or so for most speakers, more or less). But if using 12 AWG would give you some peace of mind, as admittedly it does for me, then it sure wouldn't hurt (except a little for the cost). I had been using 18 AWG, and I couldn't tell any difference when I changed to 12 AWG, and if I may say so I've gotten pretty good at detecting subtle differences after all of these years. Whoever claims that they can hear an improvement for typical lengths used for front speakers will need to prove it in a formal double-blind test for me to believe them (not saying that they're lying, just that they think they can hear a difference).
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Bare wire is fine, but if you want easier connections at the amplifier binding post locations, try locking banana plugs. They work great!

But banana plugs are usually unnecessary and are an additional point of potential failure--most people will only have to go through the pain of connecting to those infamously tight AVR binding posts once every several years, maybe. On the other hand, if you need to disconnect and reconnect the speaker cables every so often, then by all means use quality banana plugs--they're easy to install and very easy to use.
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post #28 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 04:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Think ill just go bare wire, as it should be a better connection and the speakers wont be getting unplugged at all, unless i move but ill leave a about an extra foot of length on each cable for any future installation i can just restrip. plus bananas would run me atleast an additional 50-80 bucks. Im already hurting from everything else lol.

As for speaker placement, i will lower the back surrounds to match the surrounds height when i get them. I did not know i had to match the height on those back 4, it was my understanding you wanted the surrounds a bit higher then left and right, which i was doing, but i was accounting for 5.1 not 7.1. I just thought they would look better higher up and i wanted to make sure the sound cleared the top of the couch well. I should angle the front left and right and back surrounds to point towards the listener yes? The surrounds will be pointing directly at the listener, but should i attempt to angle these downward slightly? Or are they good just flat, as they will be 3 foot higher then ear level?
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post #29 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axxion View Post

Think ill just go bare wire, as it should be a better connection and the speakers wont be getting unplugged at all, unless i move but ill leave a about an extra foot of length on each cable for any future installation i can just restrip. plus bananas would run me atleast an additional 50-80 bucks. Im already hurting from everything else lol.

As for speaker placement, i will lower the back surrounds to match the surrounds height when i get them. I did not know i had to match the height on those back 4, it was my understanding you wanted the surrounds a bit higher then left and right, which i was doing, but i was accounting for 5.1 not 7.1. I just thought they would look better higher up and i wanted to make sure the sound cleared the top of the couch well. I should angle the front left and right and back surrounds to point towards the listener yes? The surrounds will be pointing directly at the listener, but should i attempt to angle these downward slightly? Or are they good just flat, as they will be 3 foot higher then ear level?

You should toe your front left/right speakers towards the main listener, but some manufacturers recommend either pointing them directly at the primary listener's ears or have the tweeters aiming a bit wider and past the listener's ears and not directly at them. You might ask Ascend what they recommend.

The surrounds (for movie soundtracks, that is) are normally placed about 3 feet above the listener's ear level while seated upright (based on tweeter height). Since you don't have tiered seating, you do want the side and back surrounds at the same height (again, tweeter height). The sides are aimed not toward the listener in the center position, but to the listener in the farthest seated position on the couch away from the opposite side speaker (then mirror that position for the other side speaker).

The back surrounds are aimed to fire at the center (main) listener's ear height and can be toed in, slightly too (again, not to exceed 45 degrees).

The center should be aimed up towards the main listener since it's located below the TV.

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post #30 of 314 Old 03-26-2013, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Eh thats really confusing. What do you mean toe in?

And your saying angle the surrounds to point not at my ears but towards the north corners?
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