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Rear surround speakers, need help choosing

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Well I need to get some bipole/dipole type surround speakers to replace my directional surrounds I was using before. Unfortunately I cannot afford the B&W DS3s I want ($850/pair) so I was looking at some other options.

What I want is a speaker that works well with an 80Hz crossover setting in the processor. It seems you cannot completely determine that from the freq range.

I have noticed two main styles: One with a woofer and tweeter on either side and another with with a single forward facing woofer and a tweeter on either side.

I am looking at these Energy C-R100s as an option.

Also Emotiva ERD-1s but they are out of stock and no one knows when they will be back in.

Any others people would suggest in the $500/pair price range? They will be mounted on my back wall and the couch it pushed back up against it.
post #2 of 27
TommyV - are you currently set up in a 5.1 layout ? If so, try your directional surrounds on the "sides", as suggested by Dolby Labs. You may not really need bi/dipole speakers. Just a thouht

Of course if you are talking about a 7.1 setup, I will just shut up and fade away......
post #3 of 27
Thread Starter 
If I could place them at the sides, I would not be buying new speakers. I run 5.1
post #4 of 27
I have looked for surround speakers for hours and I am saving up for a couple axiom qs8's,they seem to get great reviews
post #5 of 27
I have the ERD-1s, they really are a great deal. If they will be back in stock shortly then that would be the way to go, terrific performance at a bargain price.
post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by plusk View Post

I have looked for surround speakers for hours and I am saving up for a couple axiom qs8's,they seem to get great reviews

Yea I was definitely looking at those. They have a unique design.
post #7 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by floridapoolboy View Post

I have the ERD-1s, they really are a great deal. If they will be back in stock shortly then that would be the way to go, terrific performance at a bargain price.

I had my card out ready to order them but when I found them out of stock and called and got the run around and I have no idea type answers it reminded me of the LMC-2->UMC-1 that has been in the works for years. And what about that CD player that was coming out last year? It was on the boat I thought. They should call it the Emo black hole.

I don't want to be waiting around months from now on speakers.
post #8 of 27
Thread Starter 


I was looking at these KEFs as well. Strange design with the tweeter in the center.
post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 
Another I was looking at was the Def Tech BP2X

post #10 of 27
Thread Starter 
I ended up ordering the Axiom QS8s. Hopefully I will be happy with the sound when they get here.

post #11 of 27
Give a report on how you like them,please
post #12 of 27
how much were they ?
post #13 of 27
QS8s are said to be great surrounds, but they are twice the price of the ERD-1s. I'm sure you'll like them, however, as most everyone has given them great reviews.
post #14 of 27
Thread Starter 
Yea they are $540. I really didn't want to drop that much cash but I was ready to pull the trigger on speakers now to complete my setup and I just was not getting any warm and fuzzies about the alternatives. I like the way they are designed and there are plenty of glowing reports on them.

I felt these were probably the best fit for my room from the beginning but the price had me looking toward Emotiva after getting a new processor and amp. Maybe it was fate that the QS8s and I would meet.

I will report on my impressions when I get them here and finish the install. I need to completely re setup my new gear and run the wires but I usually get that stuff done quickly. I am hoping to be fully up and running by next weekend if all goes well.
post #15 of 27
Thread Starter 
Well I have spent nearly two weeks with the QS8s and here are my impressions so far:

At first I was pretty disappointed. I leveled my speakers using Avia test tones/SPL meter and it just seemed like the surrounds were barley even there. The sound is so disperse you hardly even notice them while watching my reference movies.

After a week I raised the level 1dB on each and watched some other movies and that seemed to help a bit. I also tweaked my PLII Music settings which helped alot because I like to use that mode for some music.

My previous surrounds were B&W M1s mounted @ exactly 110 deg and 5 ft above the listening position. I really thought the sound was awesome but this new room required a different mounting setup. I am starting to like the QS8s a little more but overall I am a bit disappointed. I could just be getting used to the sound or maybe I just like directional surrounds?

I do have some time to change my mind but to what?? Do I really want to start all over again? Sheesh I dunno. Suggestions are welcome.
post #16 of 27
5.1 has been common misleading in home cinema/theatre community. Who said it has to be two speakers for the surrounds. I mean really. Sigh

If you what to spend less money then monopole is the simple affordable answer. The key to successfully surrounding the room is groups of the same speaker spaced along the sidewalls wired in series.

I use at least x10 surrounds JBL control 1 and it truly surrounds at cost of around £249, 00 now you take the average dipolar/bipolar types. You'd be paying for something twice the price over what I paid or about the same just for two speakers.

Three-sidewall surrounds for regular monaural matrix/discrete surround.

Four surrounds for centre back!

Reason for four on the back in small room is to reduce the hole in the bucket effect. It's a nice solid sound image for Terminator 3 when the hunter-killer, files from front to back within a few db timbre matching is smooth.
post #17 of 27
Thread Starter 
If you read the thread, you would see I do not have side walls to mount and array of surround speakers on. Thanks for the input though.
post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

If you read the thread, you would see I do not have side walls to mount and array of surround speakers on. Thanks for the input though.

Are you saying its impossible? LOL I’d look again it is possible and possible to save a lot of money. But its your hard earned dollar money at the end of the day, not mine. Fair enough just hope you don’t have to shell out, more money on different surrounds in the future when they stop producing the other model, as this common case in this type of hobby.
post #19 of 27
Thread Starter 
Trust me sidewalls are not an option in this room. If I had a dedicated theater room, I might be doing something like you suggested but it just does not work in my current room. Thanks.
post #20 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

Well I have spent nearly two weeks with the QS8s and here are my impressions so far:

At first I was pretty disappointed. I leveled my speakers using Avia test tones/SPL meter and it just seemed like the surrounds were barley even there. The sound is so disperse you hardly even notice them while watching my reference movies.

That's kind of strange, actually, because aren't all of the drivers in this speaker in-phase? The sound should be disperse, alright, but it seems almost like you're getting a lot of cancellation as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

After a week I raised the level 1dB on each and watched some other movies and that seemed to help a bit. I also tweaked my PLII Music settings which helped alot because I like to use that mode for some music.

Try putting aside the SPL meter and level-matching them by ear instead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

My previous surrounds were B&W M1s mounted @ exactly 110 deg and 5 ft above the listening position. I really thought the sound was awesome but this new room required a different mounting setup.

That's similar to my current setup, and I like it a lot. Why does the new room require a different setup? Are you stuck in a corner or something like that? Perhaps a workaround can be found to get monopole surrounds pointing in the right directions in your current setup. What about tall stands, for example? Or couldn't you mount monopole speakers on your rear wall that face one another?
post #21 of 27
Thread Starter 
Robert I could do a AutoCAD drawing of my room for you to see the layout but it may take a little bit. I have like 4 projects stacked up here on my desk
post #22 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

Robert I could do a AutoCAD drawing of my room for you to see the layout but it may take a little bit. I have like 4 projects stacked up here on my desk

If you think there is a chance that any of us could help, then it certainly would come in handy (whenever you can get around to making it--I'm in no hurry). I was just thinking that even in the worst-case scenario, you could somehow place monopole speakers on the sides--on tall stands (I know of one that goes up to 58") or even a metal rod bolted to the floor on either side of the seating area. It can't be impossible! Or can it? Well, only WAF could make anything truly impossible.
post #23 of 27
Thread Starter 
Well the one solution I have contemplated is a small shelf for some directional speakers like my M1s or others rotated completely 90 degrees so it would be like sidewall placement. I just thought the whole multi-pole wall mount speaker solution would be better and cleaner looking. Aesthetics are definitely a factor.

I have the couches pushed up against the back wall of the room, right side is an opening to a staircase, and the left is a wall very far away.

The shelf solution is my only idea unless there is a wall mounted speaker like the Polk FXi that could provide the kind of directional sound I want and still be wall mountable on the back wall.
post #24 of 27
I have the qs 8's with aerials in the front, I like them better the the aerial sr 3's, I only use them for ht, for music I only use 2 channel, I strongly recommend using the axiom custom stands, they make a big difference, good luck
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

Well the one solution I have contemplated is a small shelf for some directional speakers like my M1s or others rotated completely 90 degrees so it would be like sidewall placement.

I believe that this should work quite well (it's what I had in mind when I said "couldn't you mount monopole speakers on your rear wall that face one another?"). For speakers of that size, any small compatible mount should work, but shelves are a good idea, too (I use shelves myself because my surrounds are relatively large).

Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

I just thought the whole multi-pole wall mount speaker solution would be better and cleaner looking. Aesthetics are definitely a factor.

It was worth a try, I guess, but if it still sounds weird after a couple of weeks, then I think that you'll be much better off with the solution that you just suggested.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

I have the couches pushed up against the back wall of the room, right side is an opening to a staircase, and the left is a wall very far away.

How much space is there between the staircase and the rightmost seat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyV View Post

The shelf solution is my only idea unless there is a wall mounted speaker like the Polk FXi that could provide the kind of directional sound I want and still be wall mountable on the back wall.

By the way, where did you place the QS8s? The M1s would have to be placed on both sides of the seats, as far outside as possible on the right and symmetrically on the left.
post #26 of 27
Energy's, for 79 each I don't think you can beat them.
post #27 of 27
Well,you have me wondering if I want to spend the cash on the Axioms now,I am considering them because I cannot place the speakers directly to my sides and from what I under stand that is where you have to place a conventional bipole/dipole speaker.
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