$2k to spend on speakers, sub and receiver - Page 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #61 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 09:41 AM
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well, I have always heard good things about Dyns being "warm," but have never had the chance to hear them in person...so this might be one of the exceptions.
haha. And I agree that BMR monitors are quite good. And they are $2500 a pair as well. That RAAL stuff ain't cheap.
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post #62 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 10:24 AM - Thread Starter
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$700 for a sub that has a 3db roll off of 24Hz is not very good. You'd do better with the Rythmik LV12-F for $560, the Hsu VTF-2 for $600, or the SVS PB2000 for the same $700.

Emotiva used to sell a "Bas-X" line of subs that had far far better bang for the buck than this S series.

The E2 should be good if you want dipole surrounds; if doing monopoles you can get Dayton B452-AIR or B652-AIR with a similar AMT tweeter for a whole lot less.
Regarding the surrounds, after further consultation with the wife, we'll need to place these on stands literally "right" next to the couch (on each side). Given the proximity to listening position, what should I be looking at? know nothing about dipoles, bipoles or monopoles.
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post #63 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
Regarding the surrounds, after further consultation with the wife, we'll need to place these on stands literally "right" next to the couch (on each side). Given the proximity to listening position, what should I be looking at? know nothing about dipoles, bipoles or monopoles.

I would get some nice looking, small satellites/bookshelf speakers and not give a second thought about di/bi pole speakers. They are going to be so close to your listening position, and always completely in sight, so any speaker you get is going to look even bigger once you set them up. The NHT SuperZero 2.1s would be great for this application, that is if you like piano gloss black lacquer.

Since this is a living room system, and you share that space with someone else, you have to think outside of the box a bit and try to hit sound vs aesthetics. You can see what I had to do in our new home here:

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/195-s...ar-review.html
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post #64 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 10:50 AM
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Please keep this in mind when buying.....if this is being used as a dedicated to home theater use 90% of the time your money needs to be spent on the Center channel and Sub or Subs first and foremost. All the other speakers mean very little(relative). Simply no reason to drop $250 on center channel and then pay like $500 each for towers next to it, it should be the other way around. The towers or side speakers will really shine for music but beyond that they are playing off camera stuff most of the time with some surround music for added effect for most movies. Not going to be a ton of difference between sound quality of a $700 left or right speaker and $250 speaker for home theater use in a complete setup. Also, please don't go get sucked into some crazy $500 surround sound speakers either. A pair of speakers for $99 will do just fine for that use compared to the $500 set.

This is a solid set up that Zorba recommended.
For instance:
Denon X2500 receiver, $380 (google for source since we're not allowed to post direct links here)
Emotiva T-Zero towers, $400/pr
Emotiva C1 center, $250
NHT SuperZero surrounds, $140/pr
NHT SuperZero Atmos height speakers, $140/pr (I also think Atmos is grossly overrated, but your call)
2 x Monolith 10" THX subs, $1K (Amazon)

Honestly, I'd probably even spend less on surrounds something like https://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-T1...6627212&sr=8-1 , if the budget is tight forget Atmos for now or just buy some cheap like $60 a pair speakers for it and I'd swap out the 2 Monolith 10" subs for 2 12" HSU http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-2mk5.html Maybe with a little left over money go with the Emotiva C2+ Center instead. Spending more on your Center or subs will always be an upgrade in the overall experience.
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post #65 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by skylolow View Post
Please keep this in mind when buying.....if this is being used as a dedicated to home theater use 90% of the time your money needs to be spent on the Center channel and Sub or Subs first and foremost. All the other speakers mean very little(relative). Simply no reason to drop $250 on center channel and then pay like $500 each for towers next to it, it should be the other way around. The towers or side speakers will really shine for music but beyond that they are playing off camera stuff most of the time with some surround music for added effect for most movies. Not going to be a ton of difference between sound quality of a $700 left or right speaker and $250 speaker for home theater use in a complete setup. Also, please don't go get sucked into some crazy $500 surround sound speakers either. A pair of speakers for $99 will do just fine for that use compared to the $500 set.

This is a solid set up that Zorba recommended.
For instance:
Denon X2500 receiver, $380 (google for source since we're not allowed to post direct links here)
Emotiva T-Zero towers, $400/pr
Emotiva C1 center, $250
NHT SuperZero surrounds, $140/pr
NHT SuperZero Atmos height speakers, $140/pr (I also think Atmos is grossly overrated, but your call)
2 x Monolith 10" THX subs, $1K (Amazon)

Honestly, I'd probably even spend less on surrounds something like https://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-T1...6627212&sr=8-1 , if the budget is tight forget Atmos for now or just buy some cheap like $60 a pair speakers for it and I'd swap out the 2 Monolith 10" subs for 2 12" HSU http://www.hsuresearch.com/products/vtf-2mk5.html Maybe with a little left over money go with the Emotiva C2+ Center instead. Spending more on your Center or subs will always be an upgrade in the overall experience.
Thanks, good advice. I was all set on the Emotivas (T-Zero and C2), but just measured and the C2 is too tall for my entertainment center! Ugh! It's 8-5/8" and I only have about 7.5" clearance.
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post #66 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
Regarding the surrounds, after further consultation with the wife, we'll need to place these on stands literally "right" next to the couch (on each side). Given the proximity to listening position, what should I be looking at? know nothing about dipoles, bipoles or monopoles.
Good idea to read through this:
https://www.crutchfield.com/learn/le...placement.html
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~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #67 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
Thanks, good advice. I was all set on the Emotivas (T-Zero and C2), but just measured and the C2 is too tall for my entertainment center! Ugh! It's 8-5/8" and I only have about 7.5" clearance.
Yep. Subs and Center for HT. Who said dat? :-)

What is interesting to me about HT is that you can do pretty well with surround/atmos channels by having basically anything speaker wise just to transmit the signal. Expensive need not apply. But you can't get by skimping on the sub and the center dialog channel without losing a good chunk of the experience of a movie soundtrack.

Some really good advice here...and a bit of a consensus too.
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post #68 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:34 AM - Thread Starter
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My focus now is definitely on a good center channel coupled with matching tower speakers. Center channel has to be less than 7.5" high. Three options I'm now considering are (all based on recommendations from this thread):

Chane A5.5 + A2.4 = $1,137

PSB Alpha T20 + C10 = $1,000

Polk S55 + S35 = $715

Thoughts?

A little disappointed because I was planning on using a 30% off promo at Emotiva, but that giant center channel just won't fit.

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post #69 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:44 AM
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So far I've purchased a Rythmik LVF12 sub and Denon X2500 AVR.

Still processing the rest, but these two felt solid.
Those are two very solid purchases.

Congrats.
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post #70 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:45 AM
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Regarding the surrounds, after further consultation with the wife, we'll need to place these on stands literally "right" next to the couch (on each side). Given the proximity to listening position, what should I be looking at? know nothing about dipoles, bipoles or monopoles.
Is your couch up against the wall by any chance like mine is?

If so I have a solution that works.

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post #71 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:46 AM - Thread Starter
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Is your couch up against the wall by any chance like mine is?

If so I have a solution that works.
No its actually a love seat smack dab in the center of the room.
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post #72 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
My focus now is definitely on a good center channel coupled with matching tower speakers. Center channel has to be less than 7.5" high. Three options I'm now considering are (all based on recommendations from this thread):

Chane A5.5 + A2.4 = $1,137

PSB Alpha T20 + C10 = $1,000

Polk S50 + S35 = $927

Thoughts?

A little disappointed because I was planning on using a 30% off promo at Emotiva, but that giant center channel just won't fit.

I’d take the Chane system of the three, but none are a bad choice.

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post #73 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
My focus now is definitely on a good center channel coupled with matching tower speakers. Center channel has to be less than 7.5" high. Three options I'm now considering are (all based on recommendations from this thread):

Chane A5.5 + A2.4 = $1,137

PSB Alpha T20 + C10 = $1,000

Polk S50 + S35 = $927

Thoughts?

A little disappointed because I was planning on using a 30% off promo at Emotiva, but that giant center channel just won't fit.
The Polks often go on sale for half that.

I'd start with the easy to return C10 center and if it nice and clear as a center for you keep it and order the towers.

If the center is not nice and clear return it for $10 and order the Chane A2.4 and do the same thing.
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post #74 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:50 AM
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No its actually a love seat smack dab in the center of the room.
Any chance of putting in ceiling speakers for the rears?

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post #75 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Any chance of putting in ceiling speakers for the rears?
Not in the current room. Trying to limit pretty much any wall or ceiling tampering.
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post #76 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 11:53 AM - Thread Starter
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The Polks often go on sale for half that.

I'd start with the easy to return C10 center and if it nice and clear as a center for you keep it and order the towers.

If the center is not nice and clear return it for $10 and order the Chane A2.4 and do the same thing.
Just saw on Amazon the S35 is under $200 and S55 is cheaper than the S50. Revised pricing above.

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post #77 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
My focus now is definitely on a good center channel coupled with matching tower speakers. Center channel has to be less than 7.5" high. Three options I'm now considering are (all based on recommendations from this thread):

Chane A5.5 + A2.4 = $1,137

PSB Alpha T20 + C10 = $1,000

Polk S50 + S35 = $927

Thoughts?

A little disappointed because I was planning on using a 30% off promo at Emotiva, but that giant center channel just won't fit.

Just get both the PSB set up as above as well as the Chanes at the same time and keep the ones you like. Be sure to download that NIOSH app I mentioned so you can listen at the same sound level, otherwise the Chanes will be at an unfair and misleading disadvantage as they need a little more juice to get to the same volume level.

Listen to clarity of dialog from the center channel in a movie very closely. It matters. Lastly, hate to throw another contender into the mix, but for a nice looking clear dialog center channel at a reasonable price, the Klipsch RP-250c is one that Crutchfield would be happy to send along. It is designed as a center channel for dialog and is a good looking speaker too. I am not a Klipsch guy but that particular center channel speaker does pretty darn good for dialog in my opinion. Free returns are free returns. Might as well demo them all together and pick your winner.
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post #78 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:02 PM
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Just saw on Amazon the S35 is under $200 and S55 is cheaper than the S50. Revised pricing above.
If you go with Polk, I'd get the S30 not the S35. The latter often gets complaints that the tiny woofers make male voices sound like chipmunks.

@Vikram Iyengar has had some direct experience with the Polks, maybe he'd like to chime in here...

~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #79 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:05 PM
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A little disappointed because I was planning on using a 30% off promo at Emotiva, but that giant center channel just won't fit.
I'd do my damndest to raise your TV an extra inch or two for the C2, it'd be totally worth it.

Or, check the C1.

Or, you can use the Chane A2.4 center but with the T-Zeros as L/R ... the Chane is super neutral and can blend with anything, really. Nothing wrong with the Chane A5.5 of course, it's just not $400/pr like the T Zeros.
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~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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post #80 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:17 PM
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hey--you could just get shipped 4 center channels from different brands at the same time. They are all easy to handle and don't weigh too much. Then just pick your winner. One from PSB, One from Chane, One from Klipsch, and one from Polk. Heck, make it five and include the Emotiva and then you can write up your own center channel speaker shootout thread! :-)

It also keeps you from messing with towers until you make your choice.

BTW -- Although for me PSB is an easy pick for 2 channel music out of this group, I have no clue how a PSB C-10 sounds as a center. Different job. Would give it a listen though.
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You could also go three LCR across the front and save some money since you have a good sub. Three A2.4 is a very good sound stage and a good bit cheaper.

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post #82 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:27 PM
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No its actually a love seat smack dab in the center of the room.
Ah, then very small satellite speakers on stands would suffice especially if you got tall stands that would place them at least a foot higher than ear height while seated.

https://www.amazon.com/Mounting-Drea...niture&sr=1-16

The S35 Polk center is a limiting factor for the Polk system compared to the Chane or PSB option.

The idea of ordering one Chane A2.4 and the PSB center sounds like the right move, returning the loser.

Geoff A. J., California
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post #83 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff Sweeney View Post
My focus now is definitely on a good center channel coupled with matching tower speakers. Center channel has to be less than 7.5" high. Three options I'm now considering are (all based on recommendations from this thread):

Chane A5.5 + A2.4 = $1,137

PSB Alpha T20 + C10 = $1,000

Polk S55 + S35 = $715

Thoughts?

A little disappointed because I was planning on using a 30% off promo at Emotiva, but that giant center channel just won't fit.

I don't have the S35 but I love my S55 towers. I hope you get a chance to hear those before deciding.
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post #84 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 12:41 PM
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hey dumb question -- i saw that Crutchfield sells another PSB center channel speaker. The PSB Imagine. A little more money but extends to 50 hz instead of 55. If it fits by size and budget - seems like a better demo choice than the PSB c-10.
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Also, look at HTD Level 2 towers and center. I had both in my previous home and was super happy with the sound and appearance. The finish is painted rather than the typical wrapped fake wood look of other speakers in this price class. The finish is a beautiful satin black that is super easy to dust compared to gloss piano black and also shows absolutely no scratches from dusting.

The towers are a skinnier design than most, and the center meets your height requirements as well.

https://www.htd.com/Level-TWO-Tower-Speakers

https://www.htd.com/Level-TWO-Center-Channel-Speaker
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post #86 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 01:19 PM
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hey dumb question -- i saw that Crutchfield sells another PSB center channel speaker. The PSB Imagine. A little more money but extends to 50 hz instead of 55. If it fits by size and budget - seems like a better demo choice than the PSB c-10.
Larger tweeter is a good thing in the Imagine vs the Alpha center.

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post #87 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 01:30 PM
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Good point. I did mention opinions vary and listening plus being able to return is critical. But I'd like to move into the ribbon tweeter thing a bit more. For sure, the Raal amorphous steel core ribbon tweeters are faster and more dynamic than their counterparts and do VERY well compared to a majority of dome tweeters. When carefully paired and designed with the right crossovers and drivers -- you can get real magic. Verity, Lohergin, Saratos -- just a sampling of some great speakers that use ribbon tweeters -- but all of them are hugely expensive.

When you are in the price point range we are talking about in this thread, ribbon tweeters in a speaker as a whole are truly challenged. The problem is that the Ribbons are highly directional, fragile, and aren't well integrated with cones as far as a truly desirable integrated signature sound. Its almost like listening to two speakers at once. The dome tweeters are FAR better at flexibility for off axis listening and imaging. Ribbons lauded for detail and speed are really just interpretations of an increase in distortion. They have restricted vertical dispersion as well. Its just physics.

My last concern about ribbons is their relative fragility. Beyond aluminum tears, ribbon tweeters can be damaged from a littany of electronics gear issues. Voltage, " pops, current leakage. And then you have to replace the tweeter. ( Capacitor be damned!) Some speaker companies ( and I am not referring to any speaker line mentioned in this thread) won't replace damaged ribbon tweeters despite their warranty claims. Too frequent and too expensive to do.

Two last points - If someone has high end hearing loss - a speaker with a ribbon tweeter makes a lot of sense. For me, I have what is called " hyperacusis" in one ear -- so I tend to not find ribbon tweeters very enjoyable to listen to. Just too " bright" and un-naturally so compared to live sound.

Lastly, this is just a discussion about tweeters; magnaplanar speakers as a whole is a totally different topic.
Dave Fabrikant, Jon Lane, Dennis Murphy, Jim Salk, whoever designs HTD Level 3, and Nathan Funk might have something to say about this verbal diarrhea...
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post #88 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 03:29 PM
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Dave Fabrikant, Jon Lane, Dennis Murphy, Jim Salk, whoever designs HTD Level 3, and Nathan Funk might have something to say about this verbal diarrhea...
I know a lot of these folks , although not on a first name basis. Just have met them and shook hands in the old days when we could shake hands. I used to go to CES every year for the sole purpose of having the pleasure of listening to all of the high end audio gear in one place at the same time, and listening to some of the high fidelity maestros speak. Some of these guys post here at avs. I certainly enjoy my custom paint job Ascend Acoustics pair, and I enjoyed my simple email exchanges with Dave long ago.

Rather than try and address your poop jab, do have anything experiential , opinion of your own, or even the various sound graphs that often accompany these types of discussions to contribute? As always, I am open to a healthy exchange and am willing to learn. Name dropping? Kinda meaningless on its own without anything to accompany it.
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post #89 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 03:43 PM
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Dave Fabrikant, Jon Lane, Dennis Murphy, Jim Salk, whoever designs HTD Level 3, and Nathan Funk might have something to say about this verbal diarrhea...
BTW, anyone who wants to tinker can play DIY and order a ribbon tweeter and put it in a speaker. Now there is a bit more to a speaker than just swapping out for a Ribbon...but folks do it among the DIY crowd. You can pick up a RAAL steel amorphous core ribbon tweeter online. Starts at about $400 each ( just for the tweeter) retail, and that will get you a lesser expensive one in the RAAL line. RAAL ribbon tweeters do tend to be the oft-compared go to standard in general for Ribbon tweeters.
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post #90 of 264 Old 04-11-2020, 03:50 PM
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hey--you could just get shipped 4 center channels from different brands at the same time. They are all easy to handle and don't weigh too much. Then just pick your winner. One from PSB, One from Chane, One from Klipsch, and one from Polk. Heck, make it five and include the Emotiva and then you can write up your own center channel speaker shootout thread! :-)
Nice to see someone else around here besides me also recommend comparing centers as the basis for picking an HT setup, rather than comparing just the FL/FR!

Given that the center does most of the HT output, that is the most logical choice for HT-focused systems.
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~ Are you a "geek hobbyist" obsessed with squeezing out that last 5-10% improvement? The economy will thank you...especially the Chinese one. Or are you more of a get-set-and-forget "casual user" who simply wants to increase your enjoyment of movies, TV and gaming? Relax, HT isn't rocket science, nor does it have to cost an arm and a leg---especially if you ignore the aforementioned vocal minority. And remember to smile...it's just a silly hobby, after all. :)
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