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Need some speaker advice

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
My current set up is a 7.1 - here are my speakers

Onkyo tx sr705

Front left and right --- JBL ND310
Center - JBL Northridge N Center
Rear left and right --- JBL VENUE SERIES MONITOR 5 -INCH 2-WAY SPEAKER
Side left and right --- JBL 500 bookshelf speakers
Sub - JBL Northridge E150P 10-Inch Powered Subwoofer with 150-Watt Digital Amplifier

I have had all of the speakers expect the rears (venue) for about 10 years. The receiver I bought about 3 years ago. Everything has sounded great (as far as I can tell!) We just moved into our first home and one of the tower speakers tweeters got damaged, which lead me to think about upgrading our speakers.

When I bought the speakers I didn't have as good of a receiver as I have now, and just bought what I could afford at the time. I wanted to see if you guys could suggest an upgrade path for me (that won't break the bank.)

Is it worth fixing the tower speaker that I have? Or should I buy some replacement front speakers?

I went to Fry's yesterday and they said since I had a powered sub I didn't really "need" floor speakers, and suggested I purchase the Polk Audio A2's or A3's (book shelf speakers.) At first they showed me the TSI 300, but once they found out I had a powered sub, said I would have "much better" sound by buying the A2's then the TSI 300's. I guess it's an old school way of thinking, but I had just always assumed you needed a good set of tower speakers for your front "main" speakers.

Also...long ago when I bought my JBL's I was told I should always stay with the same brand of speakers to keep things "toned" right. I really don't want to replace all of my speakers (especially since the rear speakers don't' do a whole lot, and the ones I have are probably good for the rears.)

I'd also like to not have to replace my center channel if it can be avoided. (the guy at Fry's said I don't have to have ALL of my speakers the same brand, but the front 3 speakers "had" to be the same.) Is that true? If I bought the polk's would I also have to replace my JBl center channel (which is working fine) with the Polk center channel?

I know I threw a lot out there, but hopefully you guys can give me some feedback. We just moved into new house, so I'm hoping I can make some nice changes without having to replace every speaker I have.

I also don't have to go with Polk. I'm open to any ideas you have.

I am getting everything installed this weekend. I'm going to have someone come out and mount the rare speakers to the wall (this is going in our living room, so not enough room for speaker stands.)

Thanks!
post #2 of 10
Well, is it possible to find a replacement tweeter for your current speakers, and if so, at what cost?

What is your budget if you decide to upgrade?

What is the size of your room?

For movies, it is best to have sonically matching speakers all around. You will be able to hear a difference if you have mis-matched speakers.

With that said, if I had to sacrifice, I would sacrifice the surrounds. But, I would definitely have the three across the front to be the same tonally.

I cannot recommend speakers to you until I know about your budget.

If I were you, I would replace the tweeter, if possible, and save so when you upgrade, you can do it right. If you have money burning a hole in your pocket, look into acoustic treatments (research prior to spending $$) and upgrade your subwoofer.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
I need to find out what the replacement cost would be on the twitter. I'm not sure what the cost is. I need to call JBL and ask them. Budget wise, I would like to keep it under 500 for the front speakers.

What about what I was told about not needing to get tower speakers if I have a sub? Is that true? Is it ok to use bookshelf speakers for the main speakers if you have a sub?

And when you say I should upgrade my sub, why is that? My wife and I don't watch a ton of movies. We watch some, but not a lot. We do watch a lot of DirectTV, and enjoy watching tv shows in surround sound. So this isn't a a die hard media room or anything. Just a normal living room set up. (I almost thought about buying a nice sound bar, or a bose system....just haven't heard great things about those.)

Anyways...let me know what you think, or if you have any more questions.

Thanks.
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Correction. My tower speakers are N38


Quote:
Originally Posted by rick4him View Post

I need to find out what the replacement cost would be on the twitter. I'm not sure what the cost is. I need to call JBL and ask them. Budget wise, I would like to keep it under 500 for the front speakers.

What about what I was told about not needing to get tower speakers if I have a sub? Is that true? Is it ok to use bookshelf speakers for the main speakers if you have a sub?

And when you say I should upgrade my sub, why is that? My wife and I don't watch a ton of movies. We watch some, but not a lot. We do watch a lot of DirectTV, and enjoy watching tv shows in surround sound. So this isn't a a die hard media room or anything. Just a normal living room set up. (I almost thought about buying a nice sound bar, or a bose system....just haven't heard great things about those.)

Anyways...let me know what you think, or if you have any more questions.

Thanks.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rick4him View Post

Correction. My tower speakers are N38

Wow. I don't know what I was thinking before. My sub is psw d110
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by rick4him View Post

I need to find out what the replacement cost would be on the twitter. I'm not sure what the cost is. I need to call JBL and ask them. Budget wise, I would like to keep it under 500 for the front speakers.

What about what I was told about not needing to get tower speakers if I have a sub? Is that true? Is it ok to use bookshelf speakers for the main speakers if you have a sub?

And when you say I should upgrade my sub, why is that? My wife and I don't watch a ton of movies. We watch some, but not a lot. We do watch a lot of DirectTV, and enjoy watching tv shows in surround sound. So this isn't a a die hard media room or anything. Just a normal living room set up. (I almost thought about buying a nice sound bar, or a bose system....just haven't heard great things about those.)

Anyways...let me know what you think, or if you have any more questions.

Thanks.

At the risk of sounding arrogant (not my intention), but 500 dollars is not going to get you a big improvement in sound quality for your front speakers. So, if you spend 500 dollars, you will not get a big improvement, AND you will have mis-matched speakers. You will be able to hear the difference...things won't sound "right".

You can get standmount (bookshelf) speakers, and at lower price points, you almost always will get a better bang/buck. However, the key here is that you would need a quality subwoofer to "make up" for some lack of bass in the 60-90hz range.

A good subwoofer does not sound like those subs in cars. A good subwoofer doesn't call attention to itself at all. You don't hear a thump. What you hear is your main speakers sounding like they are producing the bass at the same volume as the rest of the tones. Then, when a movies offers LFE at high levels, the sub will make its presence known. It will actually help improve the sound of the system as a whole.

But, keep in mind I only suggested a new sub if you had extra money that you WANTED to spend. Not need to. If you had more money and a desire to upgrade the speakers, then that would be the route to go. Nothing wrong with what you have...and if you enjoy, then fix the tweeter and let it roll.

And in my opinion, stay away from soundbars and Bose.
post #7 of 10
I'd try to fix what you have now.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info. I'm with you on the bass. I also like it to be VERY suddle. Not like the bass in some cars.

It looks like you have to replace the entire driver on that jbl speaker, which could end up being the price of a new speaker. Should I buy some replacement jbls?

Also since this is going to be in the living room we want things to look VERY clean and nice and we are worries the 4 rear bookshelf speakers are going to draw to much attention and look a bit unsightly. I'm considering buying some flush mount speakers from pinnacle for my 4 rears to start with. What do you guys think about this brand?
post #9 of 10
Sorry Rick,
I cannot help you with those speakers (I'm a function over form guy). Hopefully, someone will be able to help.

Good luck with the tweeter repair.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamhead View Post

Sorry Rick,
I cannot help you with those speakers (I'm a function over form guy). Hopefully, someone will be able to help.

Good luck with the tweeter repair.



Hey thanks! It turns out I'm going to go with the rear speakers I have now, and I can repair my broken speaker for 40 dollars, so I'm going to do that. I do have one issue though; I need to buy a smaller (thiner) center channel. The one I have is pretty wide, and I need it to be about half as wide for where it will be mounted. I'm assuming I have to stay with JBL for my center speaker since my left and right speakers are JBL. Can you suggest a center channel that work well with what I have?

Thanks
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