I wanted to share my recent experience building our home theater around GoldenEar speakers in the hope that it will provide some useful insight for others who may be on a similar journey. Last year I built our dedicated home theater / media room system and have been utterly thrilled with it. Our original 5-channel system consisted of:
Front L/R: Triton Two
Center: SuperSat 60C
Rear Surrounds: SuperSat 50
Receiver: Denon AVR-X4000
I had auditioned the Triton Two versus the Triton Three extensively, and really liked the oomph the Twos produced. The Triton Threes sounded really great, but the Twos sounded exceptional
. Given the large size of our home theater (19x15 with 11 foot ceilings), I went for the fuller sounding Triton Twos. For the same reason, even though the specs only give the SuperSat 50s another 20Hz lower end compared to the SuperSat 3s, I figured "I'm only going to buy these once
, so I'm going for the 50s to ensure my surrounds would sound as full as possible."
However, lately I've been noticing a lot of our BluRay Discs are 7.1, which I didn't realize when I purchased our system. Plus, the Audyssey MultEQ XT32 on our receiver recommended a crossover setting of 120Hz for them -- which is a full 40Hz higher than the low end of the SuperSat 3s! I started feeling the 50s were being wasted as Surrounds, and was also really wanting to experience 7.1 movies as they were fully intended, rather than via a 5.1 downmix.
So, given the fact that we needed new mains speakers for our Family Room, here's what we did:
. Get SuperStand 50s for the SuperSat 50s and use them in the Family Room as our main speakers. For music, it sounds great -- yes they only go down to 60Hz, but they still sound great. The main thing we experience now is MUCH clearer TV voices compared to the built-in speakers in our circa 2005 Sony LCD projection TV. Night and day difference, as one would expect, even though it's just Stereo sound still (no center channel). I'll eventually get a SuperSat 3C for the Center Channel, and maybe some Invisa in-ceiling speakers for the rears (room layout dictated in-ceiling speakers) just for a little extra color for football games and such we might have on in the family room for extended family dinners and such where we aren't planted in the home theater. The 50s sound pretty good for music for a family dinner and such, but I expect I will eventually add a ForceField subwoofer -- but that will likely be way down the road, as things sound great as-is.
We're really happy with the SuperStand 50s -- they look great and are very stable. They didn't come with any instructions, just a parts list, but I got all the parts on the first one on the very second
. Get 4 SuperSat 3s to bring the home theater up to 7-channel goodness. Interestingly enough, Audyssey recommended a crossover setting of 120Hz for the Side Surrounds, and 150Hz for the Surround Back speakers (where the SuperSat 50s used to be). Apparently some facet of the room's acoustics and/or the distance between the speaker and Audyssey mic confused it a bit. I set them all to 120Hz. I used to have the SuperSat 50s at 100Hz.
How do the SuperSat 3s sound in comparison? Fantastic! Couldn't be happier with the results! I don't miss the 50s as surrounds one bit, they really were being wasted in that role, as they are capable of so much more. In the 7.1 movies I've listened to thus far, I haven't noticed anything "missing" at all with the SuperSat 3s as surrounds, likely because few movie tracks have surround effects going down to 100Hz I'd bet.
On our receiver, the Denon AVR-X4000 -- I'm pining for more power for music. NOT for Movies -- we listen to most movies at -20dB or up to -10dB, and it sounds fantastic. Even with the Triton Twos subwoofer dial at 12 o'clock, the low end is phenomenal. Highs are crisp and clean, no tinniness or shrill. The SuperSat 60C is a great center, making for exceptional dialog clarity. But for 2-channel music, and knowing what the Triton Twos are capable of from the audition of them we did, I'd love a NAD 777 or 787, and transport the Denon to the Family Room.
With the new GoldenEar SuperCenter series that just came out, I am thinking about whether our SuperCenter 60C might make an excellent center for the Family Room ;-) No, really, the 60C is exceptional. I'd have to hear a SuperCenter vs. 60C in the same listening room to be convinced to upgrade ...
Finally, I live in the Dallas area and purchased all our GoldenEar speakers from Stereo East Home Theater in Frisco. They were great. No high pressure sales, and Ken was very accommodating with all our listening requests (I brought a dozen Bluray discs with a cut sheet of scenes to audition). And last weekend when I wanted to make the switch to SuperSat 3s and get the SuperStand 50s? They had them all in stock (though I got the last 4 SuperSat 3 pairs they had). Great group of people, head there for GoldenEar if you live in the Dallas area.
In fact, now that I recall, I had an issue with our SuperSat 60C initially -- it was buzzing. I took it in, the owner took a look at it, found it was a manufacturing defect (one of the internal wires had too much play and was resting against a driver, causing the buzzing I was hearing), and handed me a new one in an unopened box. No fuss. That's what I call Customer Service.
Anyway, hope this is helpful.