or Connect
AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Subwoofers, Bass, and Transducers › Would you rather have the best subwoofer or best fronts and center?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Would you rather have the best subwoofer or best fronts and center?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Hello, I was hoping for an opinion. This is strictly for home theater. If you could only get one really nice sub like the svs or hsu OR ok fronts like say the Polk Tsi300 and cs10, which would you get?

I think it would be the sub because I can always find cheaper speakers like older Polk R or M series fronts, cheaper centers.

But it is hard to find, for me anyway, a really nice sub. That seems to be the most expensive speaker there is (for a good one).

My goal is to feel the War of the Worlds famous low tripod scene, the horn, the T-Rex steps in JP. Other stuff.

What do you think? The movie just isn't as good without a good sub to me.
post #2 of 28
A good sub will better complement a lesser speaker than a lesser sub will complement better speakers (reminiscent of Furry Freak Brothers for a reason wink.gif ). These days I usually recommend at least two competent subs, really helps even out response in room as well as make it just that much more effortless to achieve good bassage. Which specific Hsu or SVS sub are you considering? Do you have L/C/R speakers at all now?
post #3 of 28
Forgive me, but that's not a rational question as one builds a speaker system so as to do their level headed best to have a system without limits. They don't plan a system around limitations.

I would plan and build a system where one expects to make future purchases.

Buy your mains. Live with the short comings.

Buy the center channel. Live with the short comings.

Buy surrounds. Live with the short comings.

Buy one subwoofer. Live with the short comings.

Buy a second subwoofer. Crank that mother and enjoy because you earned the right to raise the roof.

That's how I bought and put my system together. I started out with a killer set of mains and as I had the money, added more speaker cabinets to the system. Currently, eighteen years later, I've been upgrading the system in the same fashion I put the original system together with the upgrades being centered around the mains as the mains are that good.

Hope the above non-answer helps answers your question.
post #4 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lovinthehd View Post

A good sub will better complement a lesser speaker than a lesser sub will complement better speakers (reminiscent of Furry Freak Brothers for a reason wink.gif ). These days I usually recommend at least two competent subs, really helps even out response in room as well as make it just that much more effortless to achieve good bassage. Which specific Hsu or SVS sub are you considering? Do you have L/C/R speakers at all now?


I don't know which subs. I just keep seeing those over and over in the forums. I have the polk cs20 and tsi300. I got them on Cl for a good price so I could sell them and make a profit. I could also get other stuff. Pretty good at buying and selling stuff.
post #5 of 28
So keep the speakers (or upgrade someday if the deal comes along).....how much can you afford for subs? SVS and Hsu are worthy considerations, but there's more out there. There's also DIY.
post #6 of 28
I believe in buying the best front stage you can get and save for a good sub. You'll be better off in the long run. Going subless for awhile is painful but it won't kill you.
post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by XStanleyX View Post

I believe in buying the best front stage you can get and save for a good sub. You'll be better off in the long run. Going subless for awhile is painful but it won't kill you.

No, but it is *painful.* I am suffering smile.gif. I must stop reading this part of the forums.

Incidentally, in my desparation, I bought a $13 sub from Goodwill a "Precision S8." Believe it or not, it's not as terrible as you might think. Certainly better than my Yamaha htib sub. It only goes to 45Hz, but still punches okay...smile.gif

What I'm really amazed at is how much an 8" sub is capable of (not the S8, it's ok). But listening to them in other places. They were much stronger than I thought they'd be.
post #8 of 28
Where are you at in putting your speaker system together?
post #9 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by likemovies View Post

Hello, I was hoping for an opinion. This is strictly for home theater. If you could only get one really nice sub like the svs or hsu OR ok fronts like say the Polk Tsi300 and cs10, which would you get?

I think it would be the sub because I can always find cheaper speakers like older Polk R or M series fronts, cheaper centers.

But it is hard to find, for me anyway, a really nice sub. That seems to be the most expensive speaker there is (for a good one).

My goal is to feel the War of the Worlds famous low tripod scene, the horn, the T-Rex steps in JP. Other stuff.

What do you think? The movie just isn't as good without a good sub to me.


I would choose the absolute best sub I could afford- no question. Almost everyone has experienced a nice full range sound, but a very few lucky people have truly been to the Depths!!


Keep cranking,


Robert
post #10 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by XStanleyX View Post

I believe in buying the best front stage you can get and save for a good sub. You'll be better off in the long run. Going subless for awhile is painful but it won't kill you.
That's what I did. I knew what speakers and sub I wanted, but I did not want to wait until I could pay for everything at once. I bought the front three first and later added the sub and lastly the surrounds.
post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by likemovies View Post

No, but it is *painful.* I am suffering smile.gif. I must stop reading this part of the forums.

Incidentally, in my desparation, I bought a $13 sub from Goodwill a "Precision S8." Believe it or not, it's not as terrible as you might think. Certainly better than my Yamaha htib sub. It only goes to 45Hz, but still punches okay...smile.gif

What I'm really amazed at is how much an 8" sub is capable of (not the S8, it's ok). But listening to them in other places. They were much stronger than I thought they'd be.

When I got my Energy Take 5.1 set I was impressed with that 8" sub....that was eons ago in sub time smile.gif
post #12 of 28
I guess as long as you get to where you want to go in the end it won't matter a whole lot. Just a matter of how you want to do it. It's the buyers choice. We all have our own way of doing things.

Some guys prefer to start at the top and gently work their way down. Other guys prefer to start at the bottom, pound away and then work their way up.
Edited by XStanleyX - 1/14/13 at 8:52pm
post #13 of 28
For hometheater, a sub or subs and a center speaker are the most important components, to me anyway. Without knowing your budget, it is hard to suggest but i would buy the best sub you can afford or willing to spend and decide if a second one is necessary.
post #14 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeeMan458 View Post

Where are you at in putting your speaker system together?

In my mind, at this point, I lack only the sub and surrounds. Sub mostly.
post #15 of 28
Quote:
If you could only get one really nice sub like the svs or hsu OR ok fronts like say the Polk Tsi300 and cs10, which would you get?
I would spend money on a really nice, brand-new sub and buy speakers gently-used, starting with a good pair of mains, then a center, then surrounds.
post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by likemovies View Post

In my mind, at this point, I lack only the sub and surrounds. Sub mostly.

My current subwoofer goal is to get a better understanding about subwoofers and how they interact with and what does one have to do to successfully integrate them into the overall sound system in a particular room. In the case of subwoofers, if one cares about sound quality, there is no such thing as plug-n-play.

As a form of encouragement, one can successfully do the front three speakers (L-C-R) and subwoofers, to be followed up last with surrounds.

If I recall correctly, in another thread, you mentioned being a concertmaster and if my memory is correct, my assumption is, you have crazy good musical listening skills. Far superior to what I've trained myself to. With this point in mind, I ask, what is your subwoofer budget? What are your ultimate speaker goals? Are you trying to replicate you sonic position on stage or a listening position twenty rows back, center?
post #17 of 28
Mains first, you're going to using them a lot more than a sub imho. Everything from music to tv and films. Then get a solid sub to round it out. A decent pair of mains will give you some of that mid bass while you save for a sub or two.
It's a puzzle as you try and put the pieces together. Main speakers are what drives your setup, subs and surrounds are what ties it together.
post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sputter1 View Post

Mains first, you're going to using them a lot more than a sub imho. Everything from music to tv and films. Then get a solid sub to round it out. A decent pair of mains will give you some of that mid bass while you save for a sub or two.
It's a puzzle as you try and put the pieces together. Main speakers are what drives your setup, subs and surrounds are what ties it together.

Forgive me as I'm going quibble a bit over your above. My understanding, ninety percent of dialogue goes through the center channel so I'm a firm believer that in the face of common convention, the center channel is more important then mains but in the grand scheme of things, they're all equally important as part of a sonic chain.
post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeeMan458 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by sputter1 View Post

Mains first, you're going to using them a lot more than a sub imho. Everything from music to tv and films. Then get a solid sub to round it out. A decent pair of mains will give you some of that mid bass while you save for a sub or two.
It's a puzzle as you try and put the pieces together. Main speakers are what drives your setup, subs and surrounds are what ties it together.

Forgive me as I'm going quibble a bit over your above. My understanding, ninety percent of dialogue goes through the center channel so I'm a firm believer that in the face of common convention, the center channel is more important then mains but in the grand scheme of things, they're all equally important as part of a sonic chain.

Quibble away but your mains still carry the lions share of the sound track.
post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sputter1 View Post

Quibble away but your mains still carry the lions share of the sound track.

Yes they do. We upgraded our center channel last year and it's been quite the upgrade for clarity of dialogue. In my mind, the front three are now seamless, hence the center channel bias.

-
Edited by BeeMan458 - 1/15/13 at 10:41am
post #21 of 28
I started with the front 3 and a mediocre sub which will become my second sub once I have saved enough for the Rythmik FV15HP
post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by BeeMan458 View Post

Forgive me as I'm going quibble a bit over your above. My understanding, ninety percent of dialogue goes through the center channel so I'm a firm believer that in the face of common convention, the center channel is more important then mains but in the grand scheme of things, they're all equally important as part of a sonic chain.

It doesn't matter how much sound goes through the center, if you don't have it that sound just comes out of your left and right speakers. I actually prefer it this way because I have my TV mounted so the tweeters and midrange drivers of my left and right towers are at the same height as the screen and running a phantom center tricks your brain into thinking voices are actually coming from the faces on screen. I used to have a center channel but it always has to be above or below the TV and that sounds worse to me.

To answer the original question, if I was starting from scratch I would get front left and right speakers and then a subwoofer before I worried about surrounds or a center. I would spend more money on the sub because cheap speakers don't sound as awful as a cheap sub in my experience. Even the Bose 201s my parents bought years ago are still ok when paired with a nice sub, but none of the nice speakers I have sound decent with a cheap subwoofer. I think this is because cheap subs tend to be boomy and this draws attention, you really notice how much your sub sucks whereas most speakers on the market these days sound pretty decent.
post #23 of 28
Thread Starter 
Well, One thing I thought about was to get some low end fronts and sell my decent ones. Then I could get something like the BIC F-12. I only paid $100 for my Tsi300 speakers. I can sell them for $240 - $250. Sell my CS20, have $350, buy a cheap center and fronts from Goodwill or Craigslist (think klh floorstanders, even not so bad small bookshelfs on sale polk). I bet my ears couldn't tell the difference, but ah, that sub, that glorious sub.....biggrin.gif
post #24 of 28
Quote:
... get some low end fronts and sell my decent ones. Then I could get something like the BIC F-12. ... buy a cheap center and fronts from Goodwill or Craigslist ... I bet my ears couldn't tell the difference, but ah, that sub, that glorious sub..... biggrin.gif
No, don't think that way. Don't get cheap mains and a cheap center and a BIC F12. Buy good (new or gently-used) mains + a good (new) sub. (Or, if you can't do that, buy good mains, then save up for a good sub.) Then add a center, then add surrounds. You'll end up with a much better overall package. You will be much more satisfied.

IMO, and YMMV. smile.gif

-- Edit --
On the Atlanta Craigslist site, there's a guy selling Monitor 3 v2s for $225 OBO ($200 or less would be a great price) and another guy selling a CC-370v3 for $160 (great price). If nothing else, try to demo those speakers. No cost, and at least you'll gain some appreciation for whether or not Paradigms are "your thing".

If you like the M3s, buy them, then add a good sub and you'll have a really solid 2.1 set-up. If you can swing the front three plus a sub you'll really be rockin'! biggrin.gif
Edited by eljaycanuck - 1/15/13 at 4:43pm
post #25 of 28
I agree with this.[

quote name="Kamikaze13" url="/t/1451939/would-you-rather-have-the-best-subwoofer-or-best-fronts-and-center#post_22832818"]I started with the front 3 and a mediocre sub which will become my second sub once I have saved enough for the Rythmik FV15HP[/quote]
post #26 of 28
Good Suggestion. Paradigms are good
Quote:
Originally Posted by eljaycanuck View Post

No, don't think that way. Don't get cheap mains and a cheap center and a BIC F12. Buy good (new or gently-used) mains + a good (new) sub. (Or, if you can't do that, buy good mains, then save up for a good sub.) Then add a center, then add surrounds. You'll end up with a much better overall package. You will be much more satisfied.

IMO, and YMMV. smile.gif

-- Edit --
On the Atlanta Craigslist site, there's a guy selling Monitor 3 v2s for $225 OBO ($200 or less would be a great price) and another guy selling a CC-370v3 for $160 (great price). If nothing else, try to demo those speakers. No cost, and at least you'll gain some appreciation for whether or not Paradigms are "your thing".

If you like the M3s, buy them, then add a good sub and you'll have a really solid 2.1 set-up. If you can swing the front three plus a sub you'll really be rockin'! biggrin.gif
post #27 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by eljaycanuck View Post

No, don't think that way. Don't get cheap mains and a cheap center and a BIC F12. Buy good (new or gently-used) mains + a good (new) sub. (Or, if you can't do that, buy good mains, then save up for a good sub.) Then add a center, then add surrounds. You'll end up with a much better overall package. You will be much more satisfied.

IMO, and YMMV. smile.gif

-- Edit --
On the Atlanta Craigslist site, there's a guy selling Monitor 3 v2s for $225 OBO ($200 or less would be a great price) and another guy selling a CC-370v3 for $160 (great price). If nothing else, try to demo those speakers. No cost, and at least you'll gain some appreciation for whether or not Paradigms are "your thing".

If you like the M3s, buy them, then add a good sub and you'll have a really solid 2.1 set-up. If you can swing the front three plus a sub you'll really be rockin'! biggrin.gif

You think these would sound better than the Polk Tsi300 or is that all subjective? If not where would it compare in the Polk line?
post #28 of 28
Quote:
You think these would sound better than the Polk Tsi300 ...
I don't know whether the Paradigm Monitor 3s would sound better than the Polks, but your signature says you own the TSi300s, and you're talking about replacing them with "cheap fronts". If you dislike the Polks enough to replace them:
i) Don't replace them with "cheap fronts" - you gain nothing by doing that.
ii) At least audition the Paradigm Monitor 3s. You don't have to take my opinion on them - use your own ears - and if you don't like what you hear, you don't have to buy them. No cost to listen, and you learn something more about your audio preferences.
Edited by eljaycanuck - 1/15/13 at 5:48pm
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
AVS › AVS Forum › Audio › Subwoofers, Bass, and Transducers › Would you rather have the best subwoofer or best fronts and center?