Originally Posted by frizille
Hi all, I'm looking for some recommendations for new speakers. If there are any details I missed let me know - thanks!
Budget... $1,000ish now, but can flex a few hundred above if needed. Anything past $1,500 is probably a no-go, but can certainly grow into something a speaker or two at a time over the next few months. I haven't searched for AV stuff in a long time and the last time I looked I was a starving college student so my options were severely limited.
Listening interests... mostly movies, Xbox, and streaming. I've got a Sonos system setup throughout the house so very rarely use the system for music.
Existing setup... is a Polk CS245 center, Polk TSX440T L/R fronts, a Velodyne CT-150 15" sub, and what I think are Polk R50s in the rear (the labels have long since fallen off, they have a 6" driver and 1" tweeter near as I can tell). I cobbled the system together during college and have had most of these speakers 15+ years. It's all either budget line or open box stuff. Receiver is a Onkyo TX-NR626 that I replaced an old dead Pioneer with a couple years ago. As you can imagine, the sound is less than ideal. Dialogue is hard to hear on certain movies and there's a ton of muddy noise that it can toss out, but that's all it is, noise. TV is a 65" LG B6.
Room setup... is less than ideal. The house is a 1952 Eichler midcentury-modern, picture attached of the room. Lots of windows, stone, open doorways - typical Eichler. The picture was taken from the dining room and the entire wall is open. The tongue and groove ceiling does not have an attic above it so ceiling mount speakers are a no-go. Aesthetically speaking, my fiance' would probably cut me in my sleep if I put them up there anyway.
Preferences... I want a good clean sound. It doesn't need to shake the house down but something with some 'umph' wouldn't be bad. A friend suggested going with bookshelves all the way around which is an option, I can figure out where to put them on the back wall with stands or some new furniture, bookshelves, or something. It's really a blank slate assuming I can keep the speakers against the walls or on some kind of furniture.
General comments... My first thought was to replace the existing AV setup with a modern sound bar and get rid of the freestanding rears, AVR, and mains, but after trying a few different options and listening to a few different options at friends' houses (N850, LG SK10Y, Sonos PlayBar 5.1 setup, and Vizio 36512) I'm convinced I need to just invest in some quality speakers. I wasn't overly impressed with trying to do 5.1 in front of me all off a bar. I missed the immersion effect of having rears. I'd like to be able to expand into an Atmos setup at some point, but realize it's likely out of my budget initially. I think end game would be somewhere around a 5.1.4 or 5.2.4 upfiring Atmos setup. There's no room for a full 7.x setup with the doors, windows, etc. in the room and ceiling limits the direct Atmost setup. Dimensions are about 15' wide, 20' long, about 13' tall at the pinnacle. I've done a little reading on the Klipsch Reference Premier line and found some great deals this week at Fry's for the Klipsch Reference line.
Open for ideas and suggestions! Thanks all!
Gorgeous, gorgeous room that is a challenge for sound though a larger rug that would reach to the first floor reflection point of the speakers would help.
I think the new Klipsch RPs are great but I think you need a speaker with a warmer sound signature.
Here is a list of affordable easy to return for free or for $10/box and your room rules out Atmos IMHO unless you are willing to hang pendant speakers from the ceiling at some point.
The speakers that have a "warmer" sound signature for your room would be Wharfedale, Monitor Audio and Elac.
Maybe someone else will look at the list and make other comments.
BOOKSHELF SPEAKER PAIRS WITH >4.9" MAIN DRIVER, UNDER $500 MSRP & FREE OR CHEAP RETURN SHIPPING
**equals free returns ^^equals $10/ box returns
NOTES: >note that most speakers do not actually reach within 10hz of their stated bass extension; check pro reviews
>CRUTCHFIELD carries many speakers that Best Buy does not listed below. Their return policy is very inexpensive and longer in time.
>check center speaker prices before choosing a pair for a surround system as some companies have VERY high prices for centers
PORT? H/W/D ROUNDED TO NEAREST INCH
$149 REAR 11X7X9 3 way 5" [53hz] SONY CORE SSCS5, often 50% off Best Buy**
$150 SEALED 14X7X5 2 way 5.5" [100hz] JBL ARENA 120/ARENA B15 (B15 often on sale)**
$219 FRONT 12X7X10 2 way 5.25" [60hz] HTD LEVEL TWO**
$225 REAR 15X9X11 2 way 7" [55hz] JBL ARENA 130**
$250 REAR 13x7x9 2 way 5.25" [55hz] JBL STAGE A130**
$230 REAR 12x8x10 2 way 5.25" [50hz] POLK SIGNATURE 15 ^^
$250 REAR 11x7x9 2 way 5" [60hz] WHARFEDALE CRYSTAL 4.2 ^^
$250 FRONT 13X7X9 2 way 5.25" [46hz] ELAC DEBUT B5.2**
$300 FRONT 15X8X11 2 way 6.5" [44hz] ELAC DEBUT B6.2**
$300 REAR 15X9X14 2 way 6.5" [39hz] POLK SIGNATURE 20 ^^
$300 REAR 12X7X10 2 way 5.25" [65hz] PSB ALPHA B1^^
$319 FRONT 16X9X12 2 way 6.5" [47hz] HTD LEVEL THREE**
$349 REAR 12X7X8 2 way 5.25" [75hz] APERION INTIMUS 5B**
$350 DOWN 13X7X10 2 way 5.125" [56hz] WHARFEDALE DIAMOND 220, often 10% off Best Buy**
$400 FRONT 16X6X6 2 way 2 X 4" [85hz] RSL CG 23**
$400 REAR 10X7X8 2 way 5.5" [55hz] MONITOR AUDIO BRONZE 1^^
$400 REAR 15X9X11 2 way 6.5" [52hz] JBL STUDIO 230**
$420 REAR 14x7x101 2 way 5.25" [48hz] KLIPSCH RP 500M**
$450 DOWN 14X7X12 2 way 6.5" [45hz] WHARFEDALE DIAMOND 225, often 10% off Best Buy**
$479 SEALED 13X6X10 2 way 5.25" [35hz] KLH ALBANY^^
$500 FRONT 14X8X10 2 way 6.5" [42hz] MONITOR AUDIO BRONZE 2^^
$500 REAR 12X7X11 2 way 5.25" [55hz] PSB IMAGE XB^^
$500 REAR 13X8X10 2 way 6.5" [48hz] SVS PRIME BOOKSHELF**
$500 REAR 13X8X11 3 way 5.25" [46hz] ELAC UNIFI UB5, often 10% off Best Buy**