Hi, it appears that my first question on the forum was a dud (very uncharacteristic for this forum based on all the useful information I have read!)
Anyway, I am moving along in my research and have speaker related questions this time. I should just state here that my usage involves 60% TV, 30% movies and 10% music. My first post has layout of my room and what I have tried so far.
AVR choice for this discussion… I wanted a decent and affordable 7.2 channel receiver and decided on Yamaha’s RX-V677 (specs released but not shipping yet), based on its features, reviews of previous models in this line (676 and 576) and highest reliability ratings of the brand.
For consistency, I will refer to side surrounds as 4th/5th channels and rear L/R as 6th/7th channels. As you know, most 7.2 receivers support two speaker configurations: (1) The 6th/7th channels supporting Back L/R speakers for true 7 channels (I suspect this content will increase in the coming years); and (2) bi-amp the Front L/R channels when used in 5.1 mode (for most of current content). My speaker questions are around both these options.
Which of the following is the better choice for front speakers? I consider bi-amp capability important to fully utilize the available power of the 7 channel AVR. For this reason, I am not considering some others such as HTD, HSU, CA Aero, etc. Also, I will initially use these speakers on stands. Once I find the placement that works best, I will mount them on the wall. Hence, no floorstanding choices.
1. Ascend CMT-340SE pair with matching center.
2. Polk RTi 3 pair with matching center.
3. Axiom M22 pair with matching center.
I have written to HSU, HTD, Ascend, Axiom, etc., with basic questions and received prompt responses from all.
Here comes the twist in the plot! I am considering a pair of CA Aero 3 for surrounds!!
Aero 3 surrounds are the only speakers I found in my research (at least, in this price range) that can be bi-wired. What that means is, when I find DVDs with true 7 channel content, these bi-wired speakers can act as both side surrounds (4th/5th channels) and back surrounds (6th/7th channels). When used with 5.1 content, they can be used as bipolar side surrounds. I am planning my wiring in such a way that by plugging the wires from receiver into one of two wall plates, I will switch between a bi-amped 5.1 and true 7.1 configurations.
I will also need a way to easily switch the speakers themselves between normal and bi-amp/bi-wire modes without having to put in or remove the bridge plates. I have a couple of ideas but have not decided on one yet.
All the above configurations are possible within my budget of 2K, including a decent sub. Again, I am fine with spending a couple of hundreds more the best combination. I think that I narrowed down my sub choices based on discussions on this forum but that may be a topic for my next post!
I am looking for your thoughts/suggestions on the L/C/R speaker choices, their match with the Aero 3 surrounds and the type of configuration I am attempting.
Bi-wiring really has no benefit. You're putting a lot of energy into a direction that won't make any real difference. True (active) bi-amping requires removing the passive crossover inside the speaker, and using separate amps. What you're talking about is passive bi-amping, and your speakers wont 'see' any more power that way. Hate to be a downbringer, but more research will bear that out to be true.
We never grow until we're pushed outside the boundaries we are comfortable within...
I am not sure I understand. If the receiver claims to have discrete amps for each channel, and I connect two of them to a speaker, isn't that active bi-amping by directing the power of two amps into one speaker?
Unless, you're saying that the receiver is dividing the same power into 5 or 7 channels.
Any thoughts on how effective the Aero 3's dual-monopole configuration is, producing both side surrounds and rear channels?
While many people think that having 200 watts is better than 100 watts by using extra channles to give the speakers more power, this is not true. To gain benefit from adding more power you have to have greater voltage swing available from the receiver, using more channels does not give greater voltage swing. In essences to bi-amp with the receiver is not going to give you any greater benefit.
BTW, if you are going to mount the speakers on the wall you should be looking for on wall speakers. When you place a speaker on the wall or very near the wall your are going to get a bass/ midrange boost and your speaker will no longer be accurate or maintain its sound characteristics. Speakers that are designed for on wall have a different crossover to account the this boost. Get speakers that are designed for your application.
Thank you for the clarification and useful input. I will probably narrow it down to models that are designed for wall mounting (such as the M22) or go with dedicated stands (such as the CMT340).