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Old 03-10-2014, 02:58 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello, all.  I spent this weekend working on getting my Benq W1070 installed in my drop ceiling and having my 120" screen assembled and installed on the wall.  Now comes another fun part.... choosing NEW speakers!

 

My media room is a 12ft wide x 21ft long space with 8ft ceilings (see room layout below).  I just purchased a new Yamaha RX-V375 receiver to replace my 10+ year old Sony receiver that lacked HDMI inputs.  I have the new Yamaha receiver hooked up to my 10+ old Sony speakers (pictured below).  The sub still sounds pretty good, but the satellites and center speakers are really small and don't sound all that powerful.  With a brand new projector and screen, I need speakers that are worthy to be paired up with the new setup!

 

 

I want to start by getting some tower speakers for my front left and right surrounds, along with a new center speaker (this will be a 5.1 setup).  Not sure what type of speakers I will use for the rear surrounds yet.  I'm unable to mount them to the sides of my sitting area because I have an opening for a bar area where I would normally place them (see picture below).  Therefore, they'll need to either go in the ceiling or on the rear wall.

 

As I mentioned, I'm looking for two (2) tower speakers and a center speaker.  Trying to stay around $400-450 for the 3 speakers total -- $300-350 for the set of towers, plus $100-125 for center.  Below are some options and I would appreciate opinions, feedback or additional suggestions for this setup. 

 

Please take a look and let me know your thoughts.  Thank you!!

 

TOWER & CENTER SPEAKER OPTIONS:

 

1) Pioneer - Andrew Jones Collection

$300 -- Pioneer SP-FS52-LR Andrew Jones Designed Floor standing Loudspeaker

$100 -- Pioneer SP-C22 Andrew Jones Designed Center Channel Speaker

----------------------

$400 total

 

 

2) BIC America  

$310 - BIC America Venturi DV64 2-Way Tower Speaker, Black

$110 - BIC America DV-62CLRS 6-Inch 2-Way Center Channel Speaker

--------------

$420 total

 

3) Yamaha

$300 - Yamaha NS-F210BL 2-Way Bass-Reflex Floorstanding Speaker

$120 - Yamaha NS-C444 2-Way Center Channel Speaker

--------

$420 total

 

Yamaha NS-C444 2-Way Center Channel Speaker 

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Old 03-10-2014, 05:16 PM
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The Pioneer speakers are the best-sounding by far. They are incredibly good for their price.

The others are not comparable; very mediocre.

Get the BS-22 speakers when you need rear speakers.

Diplole/bipole speakers do not work well in most rooms; very tricky.
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Old 03-10-2014, 07:43 PM
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I am not a fan of the Pioneer speakers, but of the speakers you list, they are probable the best. If you can still get the Cambridge audio s70 towers for 300/pr, those should be in the equation. Also, the infinity primus p363 is an incredible deal for 107/speaker.
Also, I don't see that Sony subwoofer as anywhere near the quality that you will require for that room!

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Old 03-10-2014, 07:57 PM - Thread Starter
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Found the S70's NEW for $260 plus $25 shipping. So, yes they're definitely in my wheel house price-wise. What do you like best about them versus, say, the Pioneers? Not seeing the Infinity's for less than $330 each unfortunately.
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Old 03-10-2014, 07:58 PM
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+1

The Cambridge S70s are available from accessories4less.com for $260/pair. Can't go wrong with the Primus 363 for $214/pair. Also, you might consider the HTD Level 2 Tower for $399/pair.

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Old 03-10-2014, 08:02 PM
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You might also consider the AJ Accuracy Monitors from Philharmonic Audio (modified AJ Pioneers). They're much improved from what I've read.

http://www.philharmonicaudio.com/index.html

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Old 03-10-2014, 08:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by misterchicken View Post

Found the S70's NEW for $260 plus $25 shipping. So, yes they're definitely in my wheel house price-wise. What do you like best about them versus, say, the Pioneers? Not seeing the Infinity's for less than $330 each unfortunately.

More refined mid-range and treble compared to the Pioneers. They're rather light on bass but that's what a subwoofer is for...wink.gif

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Old 03-11-2014, 08:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elihawk View Post

I am not a fan of the Pioneer speakers, but of the speakers you list, they are probable the best. If you can still get the Cambridge audio s70 towers for 300/pr, those should be in the equation. Also, the infinity primus p363 is an incredible deal for 107/speaker.
Also, I don't see that Sony subwoofer as anywhere near the quality that you will require for that room!
Quote:
Originally Posted by postrokfan View Post


More refined mid-range and treble compared to the Pioneers. They're rather light on bass but that's what a subwoofer is for...wink.gif

Perhaps a silly question, but why is it that I can only purchase the Cambridge's on a discount website (like A4L) and not shop for them, or listen to them in person, at a local dealer (I'm located in Georgia)?  I'm concerned about customer support if anything were to happen to them.  I would really like a quality set of speakers from a company that is a little more "available" with the piece of mind that there will be someone to deal with if anything were to happen.  Plus, I need them in black and the $129 ones are in cherry :)

 

What about Polk's?  I see a few options from them, which appear to have pretty good reviews overall -- ALL are currently going for $300/pair, but not sure which are the best (I'm an audiophile beginner, so go easy on me! :)

 

1) Polk Audio New Monitor 55T Two-Way Ported Floorstanding Loudspeaker (Black)

$300/pair

747192123185.jpg

2) Polk Audio New Monitor 65T Three-Way Ported Floorstanding Loudspeaker (Black) Single

$300/pair

3) Polk Audio R50 Two-Way Floorstanding Speaker (Single, Black)

$300/pair

http://www.polkaudio.com/images/products/medium/747192108052.jpg

4) Polk Audio TSi300 Black High Performance Floorstanding Loudspeaker Single

$300/pair

747192118105.jpg

 

 

 

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Old 03-11-2014, 08:34 AM
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The Cambridge speakers are on close-out since that speaker line has been refreshed. The majority of customers share positive experiences regarding a4L. I haven't heard many positive things about the new Polk Monitor speakers but you'll have to take that with a grain of salt since that's second-hand. I would take the Primus 363s or Cambridge speakers over the Polks but that's just personal preference. You really need to audition if possible.

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Old 03-11-2014, 08:41 AM
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I would look at the Boston A250
http://www.accessories4less.com/make-a-store/item/bosa250gba/boston-acoustics-a250-2-way-dual-5.25-floor-standing-speaker-ea-black/1.html

Cambridge S70

HTD Level Two

I do not prefer Infinity when it comes to music

Your call

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Old 03-11-2014, 11:00 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by postrokfan View Post

The Cambridge speakers are on close-out since that speaker line has been refreshed. The majority of customers share positive experiences regarding a4L. I haven't heard many positive things about the new Polk Monitor speakers but you'll have to take that with a grain of salt since that's second-hand. I would take the Primus 363s or Cambridge speakers over the Polks but that's just personal preference. You really need to audition if possible.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by zieglj01 View Post

I would look at the Boston A250
http://www.accessories4less.com/make-a-store/item/bosa250gba/boston-acoustics-a250-2-way-dual-5.25-floor-standing-speaker-ea-black/1.html

Cambridge S70

HTD Level Two

I do not prefer Infinity when it comes to music

Your call


Not sure how much of this matters, but these towers will be my left and right front speakers for my 5.1 setup and I'll want a matching center speaker.  I primarily watch TV and movies on this system.

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by misterchicken View Post

Not sure how much of this matters, but these towers will be my left and right front speakers for my 5.1 setup and I'll want a matching center speaker.  I primarily watch TV and movies on this system.

Yes, you would want the matching center, for timbre (voice tone) mating

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:10 PM
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For the Cambridge it would be the S50. For the infinity set, the matching center is the PC351. If you go with HTD, match with the Level Two center.

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:15 PM - Thread Starter
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For the Cambridge it would be the S50. For the infinity set, the matching center is the PC351. If you go with HTD, match with the Level Two center.


Would you say the Infinity P363's and Cambridge S70's are about equal? 

 

Tried purchasing the P363's on sale for $214/pair, but there was no inventory in the warehouse.  Looking for another place that would price match (?) or may go with the black S70's for about $370/pair.  I would really like a deal ;)

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by misterchicken View Post



Not sure how much of this matters, but these towers will be my left and right front speakers for my 5.1 setup and I'll want a matching center speaker.  I primarily watch TV and movies on this system.

I also noticed you put "Bipole?" on your rear speakers. Based on the amount of space you have behind your seating area, I'm not sure it is necessary. Sure, they may create a more diffuse sound field, but that you are center of the room, and far enough away from the speakers, here is an area where you can save a few coins.

A very good deal right now is the Infinity P-363 - Amazon is taking orders for them at $107 ea, though they are on backorder. Fry's also has the JBL ES80s on for $144 ea.....they too won't ship for a few weeks. Cost vs. performance, I'm not sure you can get better than either one. The Infinity is reportedly more neutral (think good jazz/classical/acoustic speaker) while the JBLs ROCK AND ROLL BABY!

On the Infinity's, you can get the two towers for $107/ea, and the PC-251 center for $150ish. You'd be pretty hard pressed to get a better 3-piece setup anywhere for $364. You could even order 4 towers, and have a 5 piece setup for $578. That is ungodly cheap. Throw in a Polk PSW-505 as a sub for $225ish, and you'd be set with something really good for $800.

If you went JBL, the towers are $288 for the pair, and an ES-25 centre will set you back $180 from JBL direct. You can the have your choice of surrounds (ES10s may suit your room), though the ES20 at $130/pr are a steal. Total price, $598, or $20 more than the Infinity package. Heck, add a JBL 12" ES250P sub for $250, and you're all JBL 5.1 for an unbelievable $848. Great value.


On the Polks, I've listened to most of the speakers you've listed, and would pass on them. The guys on the Polk thread seem to recommend starting at the RTi-A line, and I can't disagree with them. However, then your prices go up, and up quickly.

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Old 03-11-2014, 12:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by misterchicken View Post

Perhaps a silly question, but why is it that I can only purchase the Cambridge's on a discount website (like A4L) and not shop for them, or listen to them in person, at a local dealer (I'm located in Georgia)?  I'm concerned about customer support if anything were to happen to them.  I would really like a quality set of speakers from a company that is a little more "available" with the piece of mind that there will be someone to deal with if anything were to happen.  Plus, I need them in black and the $129 ones are in cherry smile.gif

What about Polk's?  I see a few options from them, which appear to have pretty good reviews overall -- ALL are currently going for $300/pair, but not sure which are the best (I'm an audiophile beginner, so go easy on me! smile.gif

1) Polk Audio New Monitor 55T Two-Way Ported Floorstanding Loudspeaker (Black)
$300/pair
2) Polk Audio New Monitor 65T Three-Way Ported Floorstanding Loudspeaker (Black) Single

$300/pair

3) Polk Audio R50 Two-Way Floorstanding Speaker (Single, Black)

$300/pair


4) Polk Audio TSi300 Black High Performance Floorstanding Loudspeaker Single

$300/pair
I am a fan of Polks and all of them are a bit over priced at $300/pair. Cambridge S70's are great speakers and the company is just selling them at a discounted price so Cambridge can work on selling their most recent line of speakers. Infinity P363's are great at their current price but keep in mind the cost of getting its matching center channel they are kind of pricey right now.

One of the best deals you can get through Polk is their previous RTi-series speakers sold by Polk through their ebay store.
-RTi8 BLACK Towers from Polk Audio [NEW/PAIR], $400 Shipped

The have older Monitor Series speakers at a discount
-Polk Audio Monitor 70 Series II BLACK Towers Polk Audio [NEW/PAIR], $380 shipped
-
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Old 03-11-2014, 01:17 PM - Thread Starter
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On the Infinity's, you can get the two towers for $107/ea, and the PC-251 center for $150ish. You'd be pretty hard pressed to get a better 3-piece setup anywhere for $364. You could even order 4 towers, and have a 5 piece setup for $578. That is ungodly cheap. Throw in a Polk PSW-505 as a sub for $225ish, and you'd be set with something really good for $800.

I found the P363's, and yes they're on backorder and will ship once available.  For that deal, I'm willing to wait!  Now to find the rest of the speakers (center and rears)!

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Old 03-11-2014, 03:13 PM
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Would you say the Infinity P363's and Cambridge S70's are about equal? 

Tried purchasing the P363's on sale for $214/pair, but there was no inventory in the warehouse.  Looking for another place that would price match (?) or may go with the black S70's for about $370/pair.  I would really like a deal wink.gif
I would agree with Zieg that the S70s are superior with music. However, since this will be mostly for movies the Infinities would be fine.

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Old 03-11-2014, 03:22 PM - Thread Starter
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I would agree with Zieg that the S70s are superior with music. However, since this will be mostly for movies the Infinities would be fine.

Thanks. Hopefully the Infinities ship soon and I don't have to wait around for them. Now to find a center...
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Old 03-11-2014, 03:40 PM
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Quote:
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Thanks. Hopefully the Infinities ship soon and I don't have to wait around for them. Now to find a center...
The best center for the Infinity P363 is the Primus PC351 (http://www.amazon.com/Infinity-Primus-PC351-Three-way-Center-Channel/dp/B0044D1788)
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Old 03-11-2014, 06:15 PM - Thread Starter
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That center looks sweet. Now I just need to find a deal on it! smile.gif
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Old 03-11-2014, 07:07 PM
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The PC351 is a great center. I used to have a pair of Primus 360s (2004) and the PC351.

HT: CM9 S2 FR/FL, CMC2 S1, CM5 S1 surrounds, ASW610; Yamaha rx-a2030; Parasound Halo P5; Parasound Halo A23; Oppo BDP-93; ATV
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Old 03-11-2014, 07:10 PM - Thread Starter
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The PC351 is a great center. I used to have a pair of Primus 360s (2004) and the PC351.
What happened to your PC351?
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Old 03-11-2014, 07:16 PM
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What happened to your PC351?

I sold the 360s and the PC351 a while back. I wasn't unsatisfied, just interested in listening to other speakers.

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Old 03-12-2014, 08:16 AM - Thread Starter
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The PC351 is a great center. I used to have a pair of Primus 360s (2004) and the PC351.


What about the PC251?  I was checking out this comparison between the PC251 and PC351.  The PC251 is going for around $100, while the PC351 is around $275.  Is the $175 difference justified?  I'm assuming the PC251 would work well with the P363's I purchased.

 

Thoughts?

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Old 03-12-2014, 08:44 AM
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The PC251 would match up fine. However, you have a large listening area so I think the PC351 would be a better fit output wise. I have seen it priced as low as $200 at times.

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Old 03-12-2014, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by misterchicken View Post


What about the PC251?  I was checking out this comparison between the PC251 and PC351.  The PC251 is going for around $100, while the PC351 is around $275.  Is the $175 difference justified?  I'm assuming the PC251 would work well with the P363's I purchased.

Thoughts?

When I mentioned the PC-251 in a package setup above, I did so because It's a matched centre, so it should work fine and be timbre matched. This being said......

You may find that the 3-way P363s sound more "balanced" with the matched 3-way PC351, as compared to the sound coming from the 2-way PC251.

YMMV of course, but I've never been fussy, and usually have price concerns (such as yourself) so have worked with a 2-way centre in a satisfactory manner. Also, the driver sizes on the P351 are smaller than the drivers on the P-363, and the crossover points are different (P-351: 650Hz and 2,800Hz; P-363: 350Hz and 3,300Hz) so they're not a perfect match anyways.

If it's a price decision, you'll want to go with the PC251. If you can afford it, you'll probably like the PC351 better long term. Or, get the 251 for now, with the plan to upgrade it later if you don't get long term satisfaction from it.

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Old 03-12-2014, 10:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ScooterMcTavish View Post

I
When I mentioned the PC-251 in a package setup above, I did so because It's a matched centre, so it should work fine and be timbre matched. This being said......

You may find that the 3-way P363s sound more "balanced" with the matched 3-way PC351, as compared to the sound coming from the 2-way PC251.

YMMV of course, but I've never been fussy, and usually have price concerns (such as yourself) so have worked with a 2-way centre in a satisfactory manner. Also, the driver sizes on the P351 are smaller than the drivers on the P-363, and the crossover points are different (P-351: 650Hz and 2,800Hz; P-363: 350Hz and 3,300Hz) so they're not a perfect match anyways.

If it's a price decision, you'll want to go with the PC251. If you can afford it, you'll probably like the PC351 better long term. Or, get the 251 for now, with the plan to upgrade it later if you don't get long term satisfaction from it.

Thanks, Scooter. Good advice all around. Might do as you suggested and get the PC251 now and keep my eyes peeled for a deal on the 351. Anything should be better than the weak and tiny 10-yr old Sony center I am currently using. Just need my P363 towers to ship and I will be good.

Any thoughts on rear Infinities? I see 3 versions online -- P143, 153 and 163, ranging from $60-130 each.
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Old 03-12-2014, 11:05 AM
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I would go for the p153 or p163 for rears. The P163 can drop to $85 pretty often, and the p153 can drop to $75. Don't pay $130 for the p163s. The mount you will want to use is the Videosecu side-clamping mount, which is by far the best mount at its price. No other mounts near that price can hold these heavier bookshelf speakers, they are all meant for satellite speakers.
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Old 03-12-2014, 01:33 PM
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If you can afford the PC351 that is the center I would go with. It has a better design and better performance. You could get away using the PC251 but the PC351 is the recommended match
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