Help with speaker choice!
I wish to upgrade my speaker set, in particular my front stage. Right now I have a setup that goes like this:
Front right and left: Polk R150s (on speaker stands)
Center and surrounds: Polk RM8
Presence (front height): Polk OWM3 (top of the wall)
Sub: Yamaha YST-SW012
AVR: Yamaha RX-V675 (7.1)
TV: LG OLED B7 55 in
Room is 13 x 14 feet, see attached diagram for layout. If you are confused by the two positions for the TV and fronts, it's normal: given the fact that this is our main living room, the TV stand normally sits in the room corner, but I've installed wheels on it so that I simply roll it to face the couch when I watch a movie. Very handy.
Walls are 9 ft high.
Long-term goal: I eventually want to have a 5.1.4 Atmos setup, but that will wait until I get a new receiver and figure a way to install front ceiling speakers (upfiring is not a viable option due to popcorn ceilings)
Short-term goal: I want to start upgrade my front stage (the Polk R150s and the center RM8)
Budget for left and right front speakers: $300-$500 for the pair, plus $300 max for center (could wait a little for that one).
I am no audiophile and have limited experience with speakers. I have done quite a bit of research but given the ridiculous number of options in that price range, I am lost. Let me list a few comments that may be useful:
- Usage is 95% movies
- I do not care much about bass (I have a sub for that anyway), but I tend to really like detail in speakers, particularly when it comes to watching movies
- I probably will eventually upgrade the surround speakers, but that can wait
- I want bookshelf speakers that are not to heavy or large, as I need to move them every time I change the position of the TV and front speakers (see diagram)
- I am very limited in what I can do for the center speaker: given the TV stand I have and I need (corner shaped), I do not see how I can fit a large speaker in the cabinet in addition to the AVR, Blu-Ray player and PS4. Right now the center speaker (very small) sits on top of the Blu-Ray. Also, unless I find a way to lift the TV, I cannot fit it on top of the stand.
Looking around these forums and others, I came up with a few options. The only one I have actually tested is the first option (hard to find places to test speakers around here), but that was in a noisy environment, so honestly we can probably discount it.
KEF Q150: can get them right now for 400 CAD (about 300 USD), but I'm really worried about my center option: the Q250C is really expensive and big. Other option of finding a single Q150 would also imply having a large center.
ELAC DEBUT B6.2
Ascend CMB-170 SE
Q Acoustics 3020i
MTX TP160 (on clearance these days)
Other options that I should be seriously considering?
Basically if KEF had a more compact (less than 5" high) and more affordable center, I would probably just go for the Q150s. But because of that limitation, I'm considering other options, since I don't want to get a center from another brand due to timbre matching.
Another option would be not to have a center speaker at least for now, and instead to run a phantom center. Are the Q150s decent off axis? Is this an option you would recommend?
Any help would be very highly appreciated, the more I search the more I feel lost!
Last edited by Turpentine22; Today at 07:43 PM.