Living room with Paradigms - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 2 Old 07-03-2014, 01:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Living room with Paradigms

Well, this is a little intimidating being that I'm an audio neophyte but here it goes...
I am in the process of designing built in cabinets and a fireplace mantel for our living room. These are on either side of our budget Vizio 60" HDTV. I've been living with TV speakers for 5 years and would really like to incorporate the Paradigm's that are collecting dust in storage. I have a set of Monitor 3's, a set of Mini Monitors, and a set of Atoms (I believe they are all the original versions - old school). I also have a set of Pioneer CS-77a's but they're way too big for the room I have. I'm also due to upgrade my old receiver - Technics SA-GX490.

Primary uses will be movie watching and low to medium volume background music (I haven't found time to sit down and listen to an album since the kids were born 6 years ago...) Ideally, the plan would be to use the Monitor 3's as fronts, Atoms as rear surround and then wire the adjoining kitchen for the Mini Monitors. In my design I'm finding that I may not have room for the Monitors up front and may have to settle with the Mini Monitors there.

My questions are the following: What center channel should I be considering without breaking my 2nd hand Craigslist budget? Will I NEED a subwoofer with the Monitor 3's up front? (I'm sure the opinions are quite varied on this one but perhaps someone has a similar set up and find that they're fine without one) What receiver should I consider for under $500 when the time comes?
- Have at it on my first post
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post #2 of 2 Old 07-03-2014, 02:49 PM
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I am a BIG fan of the vertical tweeter / mid array on center channel speakers. I think the CC-350 or CC-450 are the vintage of the original monitor series but these are Mid-Tweeter-Mid D'Appolito array which don't work very well when placed on their side and used as a center channel - too much "lobing" which seriously affects intelligibility - difficult to understand movie dialog unless you are in the exact sweet spot location.

Much better to look for a center channel speaker with a vertically stacked Tweeter-Mid flanked by two woofers. One of the older Paradigm center channel speakers using this layout is the CC-290 - one of the newer / smaller ones is the CC-490 (which is a great center channel speaker) - either one of these used would be great but the newer CC-490 might be a lot more sensitive / effiecient than your older Paradigms - which isn't a bad thing for dialog. That is what I noticed with my new CC-590 paired with my Paradigm Reference LCR-450a v.1 mains - so I upgraded them too! Probably around $250 to $300 used - I paid only $400 for my mint CC-590 v.4 on eBay with broken grille - ordered new grille and it is amazing.

I would say you need a sub, but you can get a lower end Polk sub for around $250

Or spend some more and get a sub you will love - SVS PB-1000 for $499

The most common suggestions for new AVRs right now are last year's model Denon X series AVRs:

2-Ch (HT L/R): Oppo BDP-105 BD, Adcom GFP-750 pre, Bryston 10B Sub Xover, Bryston 4BSST2, Paradigm Signature S4 v.2, (2) SVS SB12-NSD subs, AQ & Cardas XLR
Home Theater: Bryston 4BSST2 amp / Paradigm CC-590 (C), Outlaw 7700 amp / (4) Def Tech UIW-RSSII (LS/RS/LB/RB), Samsung 46” 3D LCD
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