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post #1171 of 1290 Old 02-16-2015, 08:48 AM
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post #1172 of 1290 Old 02-16-2015, 05:08 PM
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I could use some help from those more experienced than I, which is pretty much everyone on this forum


I am starting to upgrade my system for atmos. I currently have a 5.1.2 setup which includes Theos fronts, an old Cinema center, purity rear surrounds, electromotion r in ceiling, SVS PB2-plus, and a Denon 5200. My room is about 48' long, 24' wide, but the theater takes up half that and is only 16' wide with an 8' ceiling.


I am kind of torn what the next best thing I should do and I am left wandering aimlessly with money to spend. Would going for 7.1.2 be better than 5.1.4? Or would I be better off replacing my center, which seems to be working just fine but may not compare to a motif x or stage x? Or would investing in quality amps be the next best thing I can do for my system. I do use the purity amps for the rear surrounds.


I wondering also if I should start by replacing my purity's with either 2 pairs of EFX, or scripts, (fx2?) as they are sitting in the middle of the room and drawing lots of wife aggro, but I am curious how important having surrounds of that quality really matter especially in an atmos setup. Could I get away with going to a motion 15 or 35? I know they tonal match, but it is hard to imagine anything sounding better than my purity's, or moving away from electrostatic speakers.


Anyway, any help would be appreciated.
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post #1173 of 1290 Old 02-16-2015, 05:56 PM
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Your room is pretty big. I don't normally suggest an amp,but you might need one. Get rid of the purity's and get the FX2's. Better dispersion than the EFX and are easier to install and are actually made for surround duty. You don't need a tonal match except for the front 3 unless your into listening to DVD music in 5.1. If your just listening to music in 2.1,you will be fine. I have EM ESL's for mains and the EM C2 center channel which uses the motion tweeter. I have Energy V-S surrounds that are bipole/dipole. I use them in dipole cause I like the sound. I personally only listen to music in 2.1 so it isn't an issue for me. But even when there is music playing during a movie,I don't notice anything weird,its sounds good. If you don't care about mounting surrounds on the wall,you could get the 15's/35's . Some guys will tell you to go that route because they will point out using discreet channels and they think dipole smears the sound. Dipoles make it sound more like a movie theater. Its all personal preference. In a room your size,I'd go 7.1.2. You could put the FX2's at the side and 15's/35's behind you and that would sound awesome!
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post #1174 of 1290 Old 02-16-2015, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by axteljo View Post
A couple years ago, I bought a pair of ElectroMotion ESL's for listening to music. I can't imagine a better speaker. I love the electrostatic sound. One thing I noticed was that they have a very narrow sweet spot. I feel like if I move my head as little as a foot either way, the sound becomes duller. So don't move my head, right?

Now I have set up a projector and screen with two rows of three recliners each, and I want to continue to use the ESL's. My problem is that the sound in the two outside chairs and the back row is not excellent like it is in the front center chair. Is this a problem inherent with the ESL's? Is it a problem with my set up? How have those of you using the ESL-type of speaker adapted to the narrow dispersion?

I appreciate any advice you can provide. Also, I would love for some recommendations for which ML center and surrounds to use.

Thank you,
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Hey Joe,

You don't have a "problem". You've got a fantastic new room you're still working on. Spending the time to get it right is half the fun, so enjoy the ride. And yes, you can make those stats you love work great in there.

Our HT rooms are similar -- we've got 4 recliners in the front row, and 3 in the back row, with ML stats (Theos) as fronts, and an ML Stage-X center. The center seat in the rear row is tuned as the primary LP. That's because, with our equipment and room geometry, that gave all seven seats the best possible sonic experience. YMMV

Forget everything about how you set up for your old music room, and start from scratch. Positioning the speakers in space and adjusting angle of orientation (from right to left, and up and down) is especially important for stats, as you already know. But you'll have to do it over and over again, over an extended period of time, to get it just right. Run your room correction software periodically too, and see what that does. Your room, carpet, furniture and treatments effect everything, obviously.

You can use the flashlight trick to help with the R-L adjustments, but mostly you'll have to spend time in each LP (not just the primary) and listen to content you're familiar with over and over again. Focus on content that's rich in the most directional of all sounds, high frequencies, to help you fine tune.

Our riser was small, just under 5 inches, so picking the right chairs to avoid rear row sonic obstructions was key. We recline the front row chairs a bit too, even when nobody's seated there, to give the 3 front speakers a clear shot at the rear row ears. Given our room and furniture, we adjusted the rear feet on the FR and FL stats higher, changing their vertical orientation. Just a bunch of little stuff. Play around. You'll hear it each time you make an improvement.

You got some good advice from Craig and sdolen, because a well-matched center speaker will be huge for you. They offer some good options. After listening to various options and obsessing for a while, I finally bought an ML Stage-X. Worked out great for our room. You still get that great, ethereal capacity the stats offer, no surprise there, but what knocked my socks off was the richness of the mid frequencies.

We'd played The Big Lebowski about a zillion times before getting the Stage-X. After we had it all calibrated, we watched it again. The opening moments, when you first here Sam Elliott's voice, never sounded like that before. Not even close.

Spend whatever you can on your center. It's the most used channel in HT, and will help provide the full soundstage you want.

You'll hear different opinions, but I think you can save a few bucks on the surrounds, and plow that money into places you'll hear it more -- your center and/or your subs. Just my 2 cents. Have fun!

PS: Ditto on getting a quote from AVS. Craig took really good care of us. Probably couldn't have afforded the Stage if it wasn't for him.


Lots of outstanding advice here. I will add another small, almost silly piece of advice. When adjusting toe-in and angling of both my Aerius i's, Stage and my Scripts, I used a protractor app on my phone along with a laser level. Most ML stat panels tend to have a 30 degree horizontal dispersion - which is far less than a typical dynamic speaker. Using the phone app I note the distances and beam out the laser into the room to see the approximate radiating area of each stat panel. Obviously the FXs I use do not require that, but it really helped to setup all my stats to properly fill the room and expand the "sweet spot".

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post #1175 of 1290 Old 02-16-2015, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by wadec22 View Post
Lots of outstanding advice here. I will add another small, almost silly piece of advice. When adjusting toe-in and angling of both my Aerius i's, Stage and my Scripts, I used a protractor app on my phone along with a laser level. Most ML stat panels tend to have a 30 degree horizontal dispersion - which is far less than a typical dynamic speaker. Using the phone app I note the distances and beam out the laser into the room to see the approximate radiating area of each stat panel. Obviously the FXs I use do not require that, but it really helped to setup all my stats to properly fill the room and expand the "sweet spot".
That is a great idea, and a great app to go with it.


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post #1176 of 1290 Old 02-18-2015, 12:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mithril View Post
I could use some help from those more experienced than I, which is pretty much everyone on this forum


I am starting to upgrade my system for atmos. I currently have a 5.1.2 setup which includes Theos fronts, an old Cinema center, purity rear surrounds, electromotion r in ceiling, SVS PB2-plus, and a Denon 5200. My room is about 48' long, 24' wide, but the theater takes up half that and is only 16' wide with an 8' ceiling.


I am kind of torn what the next best thing I should do and I am left wandering aimlessly with money to spend. Would going for 7.1.2 be better than 5.1.4? Or would I be better off replacing my center, which seems to be working just fine but may not compare to a motif x or stage x? Or would investing in quality amps be the next best thing I can do for my system. I do use the purity amps for the rear surrounds.


I wondering also if I should start by replacing my purity's with either 2 pairs of EFX, or scripts, (fx2?) as they are sitting in the middle of the room and drawing lots of wife aggro, but I am curious how important having surrounds of that quality really matter especially in an atmos setup. Could I get away with going to a motion 15 or 35? I know they tonal match, but it is hard to imagine anything sounding better than my purity's, or moving away from electrostatic speakers.


Anyway, any help would be appreciated.
I went with 7.1.4 (although the rears had to go in the ceiling which is not ideal). I would probably go 5.1.4 over 7.1.2. I use a Denon 5200 with a pair of Theos, Stage, pair of Motion 15's, six EM-R's and a Seaton Submersive. Couldn't be happier with the way it sounds. Here's a few pics:










Samsung 85" 4K, Dolby Atmos 7.1.4 with MartinLogan Theos, Stage, Motion 15, EM-R, Seaton Submersive F2, Denon AVR-X5200W
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post #1177 of 1290 Old 02-18-2015, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SubSolar View Post
I went with 7.1.4 (although the rears had to go in the ceiling which is not ideal). I would probably go 5.1.4 over 7.1.2. I use a Denon 5200 with a pair of Theos, Stage, pair of Motion 15's, six EM-R's and a Seaton Submersive. Couldn't be happier with the way it sounds. Here's a few pics ...
Tasty looking! And I'm sure, even tastier sounding!
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post #1178 of 1290 Old 02-19-2015, 11:27 AM
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Nice setup. Anyone thinking about getting Martin Logan speakers, there is a special promotion good through the end of tomorrow - best to not wait. Give us a call at AV Science.

Home theater builder and enthusiast since 2002. PM me for advice or help anytime !
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post #1179 of 1290 Old 02-19-2015, 11:30 AM
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Nice setup. Anyone thinking about getting Martin Logan speakers, there is a special promotion good through the end of tomorrow - best to not wait. Give us a call at AV Science.
What kind of deal? Flat percentage?

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post #1180 of 1290 Old 02-20-2015, 08:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SubSolar View Post
I went with 7.1.4 (although the rears had to go in the ceiling which is not ideal). I would probably go 5.1.4 over 7.1.2. I use a Denon 5200 with a pair of Theos, Stage, pair of Motion 15's, six EM-R's and a Seaton Submersive. Couldn't be happier with the way it sounds.
Looks great. A couple of questions.

1. Have you tried to bring your Theos out a little further from the back wall?

2. Are your Theos toe'd in at all? It is tough to tell from the pictures. If not, try the flashlight trick.


We have a similar setup, though I have held off on Atmos because my surrounds (Vanquish) are in the ceiling as well. I am concerned about how the effect would sound with everything being in the ceiling. I actually already have the wires run, they are just sitting up in the attic waiting for speakers.

I would go with the EM's for the Atmos speakers also.

Anyway, here is a pic of my set up. Equipment is listed in my signature.





Btw; you are making me want a bigger screen more than I already did!
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Speakers: Martin Logan Montis, Stage X, Dual Depth I Subs, Vanquish in ceiling (surrounds) | Processor: Marantz AV8802(A) | Amp: Three Moon Simaudio 400m monoblocks,One Moon Simaudio 330a | Sources: DirecTV HR34, HTPC, Mac Mini, Oppo BDP-103, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Wii U | Television: LG 65EG9600 | Remote: Logitech Harmony Ultimate
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post #1181 of 1290 Old 02-20-2015, 09:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by liltalkm View Post
Looks great. A couple of questions.

1. Have you tried to bring your Theos out a little further from the back wall?

2. Are your Theos toe'd in at all? It is tough to tell from the pictures. If not, try the flashlight trick.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vsBUFCsyP4s

We have a similar setup, though I have held off on Atmos because my surrounds (Vanquish) are in the ceiling as well. I am concerned about how the effect would sound with everything being in the ceiling. I actually already have the wires run, they are just sitting up in the attic waiting for speakers.

I would go with the EM's for the Atmos speakers also.

Anyway, here is a pic of my set up. Equipment is listed in my signature.





Btw; you are making me want a bigger screen more than I already did!
Very nice setup! Yeah, can't really pull them out from the wall more, wish I could. Would block the pathway and the couch is in the way. I do use the one thirds trick when setting it up. Everything sounds great with Audyssey. I was also worried about the non electrostat speakers since before I moved to this house I just had the Theos and Stage. I think they work well together though. I wouldn't worry about the overhead Atmos speakers not being electrostat since they're not used as often as you think. Mostly for ambient noises with the occasional helicopter or jet overhead.

Samsung 85" 4K, Dolby Atmos 7.1.4 with MartinLogan Theos, Stage, Motion 15, EM-R, Seaton Submersive F2, Denon AVR-X5200W
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post #1182 of 1290 Old 02-24-2015, 05:39 PM
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Would like some help.

I have Esl for fronts with a Theater center channel. I just not happy for some reason with the dialogue. I been reading about phantom centers.

Anyone have any experience with this?
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post #1183 of 1290 Old 02-24-2015, 06:46 PM
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Would like some help.

I have Esl for fronts with a Theater center channel. I just not happy for some reason with the dialogue. I been reading about phantom centers.

Anyone have any experience with this?
Not happy in what way? Not loud enough? Quality not good enough? Sounds different when moving from the center to the L/R?

Phantom centers can be really nice and there is obviously no possibility of a mis-matched front stage. Two issues that people tend to have are: 1) dialog levels are too low/hard to hear 2) dialog does not sound centered unless you are sitting directly in the sweet spot
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post #1184 of 1290 Old 02-24-2015, 06:51 PM
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Also, I'm running a phantom center right now and am very happy with it.
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post #1185 of 1290 Old 02-24-2015, 06:57 PM
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post #1186 of 1290 Old 02-24-2015, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Holiday121 View Post
Would like some help.

I have Esl for fronts with a Theater center channel. I just not happy for some reason with the dialogue. I been reading about phantom centers.

Anyone have any experience with this?
What kind of receiver are you using? Bump the db's up on the center. Or do what I did. Put height speakers up and set them to audyssey dsx, then smile. If your receiver has dolby volume, use it.
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post #1187 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 02:46 AM
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I have a onkyo 818 avr with a emotiva xpa-5.

To me it just does not match my esl.

I have had a motion c center a Cinama center and now the theater. While the theater is better then all of then in my opinion it just not sound right to me.

I bumped up a few dbs as well.
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post #1188 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 05:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Holiday121 View Post
I have a onkyo 818 avr with a emotiva xpa-5.

To me it just does not match my esl.

I have had a motion c center a Cinama center and now the theater. While the theater is better then all of then in my opinion it just not sound right to me.

I bumped up a few dbs as well.
Unfortunately, the electromotions can be hard to match. Not because they have any kind of defect in their design, but because they use their electrostatic panel for mids and highs. The Motion C is said to match the timbre of the electromotions, but with a completely different driver design and being direct-radiating, it just won't be seamless. The theater is probably the best sounding of the 3 because it uses an electrostat panel for the midrange and has a unique 3 tweeter design.

There are 3 options that I see for trying to improve your front soundstage:

1. go into your receiver settings, turn off the center and run a phantom center for a few weeks and see what you think. in small to medium size rooms, an argument can definitely be made for not having a center channel at all. with tall ML speakers, it will also raise the height of your voices so there won't be an up-down-up as sounds travel side to side.
2. get a subwoofer and let it handle everything 80hz and lower. None of ML's center channels can really come close to being full range and that may be a contributing factor. Though you can set the fronts as "Large" and audyssey will send bass information for the center channel to the L/R, I've never really had good results doing so.
3. buy a ML Stage X, it's the closest thing they have to an electrostatic center channel

FWIW, when I was an ML owner I ran a pair of Montis for a few months while I was waiting on my center to arrive (bought the motif x right when it came out so it was backordered) and it sounded great. I was never really convinced that the center was worth the extra money. I also didn't have a subwoofer with my system so take that into consideration. With my new speakers I don't have a center channel at all and don't really plan on getting one.
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post #1189 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 05:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Holiday121 View Post
I have a onkyo 818 avr with a emotiva xpa-5.

To me it just does not match my esl.

I have had a motion c center a Cinama center and now the theater. While the theater is better then all of then in my opinion it just not sound right to me.

I bumped up a few dbs as well.
I had the Cinema i and for me, I found it needed LOTS of power/current to sound good. I ended up using a mono amp with over 400W of power and lots of current. That being said, it took a few tries with getting Audyssey to get it right. There is a thread over at the MartinLogan owners forum with instructions on using Audyssey with MLs that might help. I would think your XPA-5 should drive your Theater well enough though.

Make sure that the ESL panel is actually functioning. I had the power board go out in a Cinema i which only stopped the panel and not the woofers and tweeter. Leave it unplugged overnight to drain the charge from the panel. Disconnect your other speakers, start playing something and while it's playing, plug back in the power for the center. You should hear the panel kick back in, if not call ML and get a new power board.
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post #1190 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 06:15 AM
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The panel is working for sure.

Lots of good info here. I have a medium size room with 4 seats. I want to say it's 17x21.

I have motion 10 for rears and a power sound and audio xv15 for subwoofer.

Tonight I am going to try that phantom center. If I like it I will get rid of the theater and maybe add another sub
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post #1191 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 06:32 AM
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Phantom center is a cool effect. And a must-do if you're running without a CC. But a really good CC match is better. That's just based on what I hear, having done both. One issue is the phantom gets exposed from various seating positions. But even leaving that aside, a really good CC is an overall AQ, soundstage and movie dialogue plus. Just my two cents. YMMV.


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Last edited by mogrub; 02-25-2015 at 06:33 AM. Reason: typo
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post #1192 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 06:35 AM
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I guess I will have to see how it sounds. I was able to play some
Music with just my fronts and was able to obtain the singers voice coming from the middle without the center channel on.

The real test will be movies
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post #1193 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 06:37 AM
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If I raised my center to let's say 100hz or 120. Where does the sounds that are below that go to
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post #1194 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 07:36 AM
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Quote:
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I guess I will have to see how it sounds. I was able to play some music with just my fronts and was able to obtain the singers voice coming from the middle without the center channel on. The real test will be movies
Playing around with it is half the fun. And don't get me wrong, I love two channel front listening, especially for music.

And the phantom effect is real, for sure. It might even be a good solution for you, in your room, depending on what's going on with your current CC. It just doesn't work very well once you move off center, as Maze mentioned. And in our room, several of the good seats are sufficiently off-axis that the phantom really doesn't work at all for anyone sitting there. It becomes the Phantom Phantom.

Plus, regardless of where TBH sits, she routinely missed some dialogue without a CC running. I could usually hear it okay from the primary LP ... until each time she blurted out, "What did he just say???" Then I'd miss something too.

And that was that for our phantom.


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Last edited by mogrub; 02-25-2015 at 07:37 AM. Reason: typo as usual
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post #1195 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Holiday121 View Post
If I raised my center to let's say 100hz or 120. Where does the sounds that are below that go to
I wouldn't go that high. You'd be splitting parts of the sound from single sources (like a male voice on the lower side of the ordinary range), and handling part of it from your center, and part of it elsewhere. Splitting things that way almost has to be less effective than either (a) letting your CC do the work, or (b) yanking the CC and going phantom.

The where-does-it-go question depends on how your have your AVR configured, but ordinarily your FL and FR would get the bulk of the re-route.


Every once in a while, quite inexplicably, things actually go according to plan.

Last edited by mogrub; 02-25-2015 at 03:43 PM. Reason: the usual
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post #1196 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 07:58 AM
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I will try out all 4 seats with the phantom and give my feedback that's for sure.

Thanks everyone for the honest input
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post #1197 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 08:42 AM
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I have the Stage and it blends well. I recommend it but it is pricey. I had tried the Logos and it was awful.

If I were buying today I'd be tempted to get the 50xt. The horizontal dispersion is much better so all your seats will sound the same.

Denon 4520CI
Emotiva LPA-1
Epson 5020ub::::100" ES Cinewhite
PS4::::Toshiba HD-A35:::::::::Denon DBT 3313UDCI::::Darbee 5000
Martin Logan Stage(c)::::ML Aerius I(l/r)::::ML Motion FX(fw/s)::::ML Scripts(sb)
PSA XV15:::::PSA XV15se
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post #1198 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 08:50 AM
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My theater sounds nothing like my Esls
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post #1199 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 08:56 AM
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Honestly my system probably sounds fine.

I just have to get use to 80 percent of the
Movie being played through the center channel.

My center is under my screen pointed up towards me and it's like I can tell where
The voices are coming from and which speaker. Of course my
Center.

I'll take some pics for everyone later tonight
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post #1200 of 1290 Old 02-25-2015, 11:34 AM
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If you have good room correction and an AVR that sets levels accurately, you should not be able to pinpoint the sound source as the center. If you have both and still can, your speakers are poorly timbre matched or you are sitting off axis.

Denon 4520CI
Emotiva LPA-1
Epson 5020ub::::100" ES Cinewhite
PS4::::Toshiba HD-A35:::::::::Denon DBT 3313UDCI::::Darbee 5000
Martin Logan Stage(c)::::ML Aerius I(l/r)::::ML Motion FX(fw/s)::::ML Scripts(sb)
PSA XV15:::::PSA XV15se
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