The final piece of my home theater arrangement's puzzle concerned a desire to replace my RC-3 II center with an RC-64 II... and the main conundrum (aside from wondering "How much better could it possibly sound?"
) was how to do so without also replacing my beautiful glass-topped VTI equipment stand.
Of course, the "obvious" fix would have been to put the 64 on top of the VTI, and just plop my 100-lb plasma down on top of it. But I was against doing that -- as was Klipsch Tech Support -- so the solution at which I arrived was to order a custom-made solid-oak riser that would house the 64 within it, and safely hold the plasma on top.
I also wanted to be able to angle the 64 upward a bit, so I had the riser built with a 9.5" internal vertical clearance. But rather than using the RC-64 II's supplied "angulation screw" on my stand's glass top, I used these:
All four of the feet are evenly placed on the bottom forward edge of the 64, raising its front exactly 1.4"... while also softly and evenly distributing the speaker's weight among them. I really like that the feet are black; they blend perfectly with the speaker, and look completely professional.
OK then. So much for the "preliminaries".
I've been running my RF-7 IIs with the RC-3 II for ten months now, so of course the big
question was... how much of a difference
would I hear between the RC-3 II and the RC-64 II? So before I put the 64 into the riser, I put the RC-3 there first, and listened to it like that for a few hours.
Well... the difference between where it was before, and then putting it on top
of the equipment stand, was HUGE
. Previously, it had basically been firing straight into a large coffee table, three feet away from the table's front edge. Now it was firing straight at me, with no obstructions at all. Naturally, I had expected the difference to be "significant". Most interestingly, though, I was finally able to clearly hear the tonal
difference between it and the RF-7 IIs... and the difference was surprisingly
obvious. So for the past ten months, my feeling that "What's the big deal?... this RC-3 II sounds fine with the RF-7 IIs"
, was primarily due to the RC-3's severely
muffled output. Turns out that the RC-3 II and the RF-7 IIs are a complete
After coming to that conclusion, I swapped the centers, and finally
plugged in the 64.
Holy freakin' HERTZ
I am here to tell you that the difference in center-channel dialogue-clarity and overall tonal fullness and "richness" between the 3 II and the 64 II is... well... enormous
. As everyone who has this combination of fronts and center is quick to point out, the RC-64 II is a perfect
tonal match with the RF-7 IIs. And not just for multi-channel films....
I'm a 20%-movies/80%-music guy, and I predominantly listen to jazz and classical (WAV files only: no
streaming)... with a little popular music thrown in every now-and-then, for fun. I've never liked any of the "Pro-Logic" types of multi-channel sound processing, so prior to implementing the RC-64 II into my system, I have always preferred listening to my Yamaha AVR's unprocessed "Straight" 2.1-channel output mode for music, even though it also has the ability to distribute an unprocessed two-channel stereo signal to all of my speakers (on my A-2010, it's called "Nine Channel Stereo"). Until now, the sound coming from the 7 IIs and the sub in "Straight" mode has always been far
clearer and more "authentic"-sounding to me, than in "Nine Channel".
Well... having replaced the 3 II with the 64 II, and having spent a good fourteen days listening in Nine Channel to every genre of music that I own, I can easily say that I now vastly
prefer 5.1 Nine Channel over 2.1 Straight. Again, the 7 II / 64 II "blend" is seamless... and sublime.
I'll confess; I got the 64 II for an amazingly
good price from Sound Distributors in Las Vegas... but that doesn't matter. This thing -- especially in combination with a pair of RF-7 IIs -- is worth twice
its MSRP. Honestly, if you gotta sell your grandma
to get one... well... as Mr. Nike says... "Just do it!"
So... like I said at the start of this interminable ramble... that's it; I'm done. I have reached my Audio Nirvana.
And you should see the smile on the face of my ears!