Originally Posted by JohnyBGood
...Also, how do good sound bars like these compare to full 2.0 systems? Does the benefit of a centre channel from a sound bar outweight the loss of power/quality you get from full blown speakers? Pretty much the only Canadian source I have for this model is selling the SB 16 for the price of the SB 30, so when the SB 30 comes in stock I won't really be interested in the price. I need a living room system and could make a 2.0 work (albeit a VERY tight squeeze). Cost-wise I'd prefer a sound bar, but sound bar reviews all say "not as impressive as my real stereo...but it's OK for what it is". If I'm going to spend $1000 on "OK" I might as well spend more and get a real 2.0 system. Sorry for the drama, but what do you guys think about 2.0 vs good sound bars?
If you have an AVR, and space is one of your most important considerations, you might want to look at the Cambridge Audio Minx systems. The speakers are the size of soda cans, and can come in a system with a subwoofer. You can get the simplest system version, which is 5.1, for under $1000. For about $1400 you can get a more powerful version, wherein the satellites have two unique drivers, rather than one.
The size of the speakers is so small that they can fit in any environment, yet systems based on them produce a huge soundstage. Part of the reason they produce big sound is from the unique BMR driver. Rather than getting a 5.1 system, you can just get the satellite speakers and a subwoofer for a 2.0 system, but at the price I'd get a 5.1, and use it any way you like.
I've been reading reviews on the Minx, and following the thread on the Speakers forum, for some time. I like the idea of a soundbar, but it seems that none of them can produce a full surround effect.