Cambridge SoundWorks HT setups - Page 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #61 of 396 Old 12-04-2006, 09:31 AM
 
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CSW was founded by Henry Kloss, whose innovations and contributions to audio are legendary. Just as Advent went downhill after he left, so apparently did CSW. The acquisition by Creative now seems like the final blow, as this company has always been more concerned with computer peripherals and MP3 players than with quality speakers. Too bad really, as they really did produce some good stuff.
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post #62 of 396 Old 12-04-2006, 10:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tnilsson View Post

I am sorry, but not surprised, to hear that CSW is having problems and closing stores. In my opinion, they make some of the best products on the market in their price range but then gut their product line through horrible marketing. How, for instance, can a company that actually makes really good speakers refuse to post specs on those same speakers? That just makes them look like a company that makes bad speakers and knows it, which is definitely not the case.

Not sure that the reason for closing their stores is that they are having problems, but it could be. Their stores were strictly a NE and Northern California phenomenon and perhaps they want to focus all their energy on the direct side of things.

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post #63 of 396 Old 12-04-2006, 09:31 PM
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So what do you guys think I have about $600 budget, I could settle for a nice set of bookshelfs or bookstands, should I go with cambridge soundworks or buy another brand?
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post #64 of 396 Old 12-04-2006, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ellover009 View Post

So what do you guys think I have about $600 budget, I could settle for a nice set of bookshelfs or bookstands, should I go with cambridge soundworks or buy another brand?

i have two pairs of M80s and their highs and midrange are not that amazing at all, its a very boring speaker and i would probably get something that doesnt seem to be using such cheap drivers
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post #65 of 396 Old 12-04-2006, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gotchaforce View Post

i have two pairs of M80s and their highs and midrange are not that amazing at all, its a very boring speaker and i would probably get something that doesnt seem to be using such cheap drivers

Such as?
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post #66 of 396 Old 12-05-2006, 04:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ellover009 View Post

Such as?

CSW offers a 14 day (B stock) or 45 day (A stock) money back guarantee. The only way to know if you like a speaker is to listen to it. (One man's boring is another man's neutral, one man's exciting is another man's grating.)

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post #67 of 396 Old 12-05-2006, 08:03 AM
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I find the MC500's too big and too bassy for my room. I also prefer the sound of the M60's to the M80's for the same reason.

I use 2 M60's for fronts, MC400 for center, and S300 surrounds (usually in Dipole) and a bassCube 8 sub, which I would upgrade, but I'm in a small apartment and I think my downstairs neighbor would kill me.

that said, combined with my Marantz receiver and panasonic 9uk plasma, Its a pretty badass hometheater for a small room. Sound big enough for me. And the speaker system compares very favorably with some very expensive studio monitor setups I've heard (I am recording engineer in my spare time).
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post #68 of 396 Old 12-05-2006, 08:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonygeno View Post

CSW offers a 14 day (B stock) or 45 day (A stock) money back guarantee. The only way to know if you like a speaker is to listen to it. (One man's boring is another man's neutral, one man's exciting is another man's grating.)


Very true. I want a boring, flat speaker, myself. I want CLEAN AND CLEAR with no hype anywhere. Let the producer do the work. My CSW speakers do just that at a very reasonable price. Combined with a good amplifier, they are an incredible value.
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post #69 of 396 Old 01-01-2007, 10:43 PM
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Anybody try the new P300HD. Costs as much as the P1000, but cnet gave it a favorable review: http://reviews.cnet.com/Cambridge_So...-32117750.html
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post #70 of 396 Old 01-09-2007, 12:59 PM
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I am very sorry to hear that CSW will be closing its stores. My current setup is CSW Towers as mains, CenterStage center channel, and M80s for the rear surrounds.

I bought the M80s as an open box for $250 for the pair back in ~2003 or so. When one of them fell off of a shelf and broke, I brought it into the store and they simply replaced it with a brand new one right on the spot. After that I vowed to only buy from CSW in the future due to their amazing customer service. I am now worried that we will no longer be able to depend on that type of response when calling 1.800.FOR.HIFI with problems.

Oh, and besides the wonderful service, the speakers are amazing!

-B
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post #71 of 396 Old 01-23-2007, 07:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonygeno View Post

Evidently, CSW will be closing their retail stores after Christmas. I'm not sure what this means for the T500, as it's not available online (too big to ship cost effectively, I think). The T500 is a very high value speaker, for sure.

The T500 is definitely available online from the Cambridge Soundworks website.
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post #72 of 396 Old 01-23-2007, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadster View Post

The T500 is definitely available online from the Cambridge Soundworks website.

Well that's new. For a long time it most definitely was not available other than in the retail stores.

Tony

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post #73 of 396 Old 01-23-2007, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonygeno View Post

Well that's new. For a long time it most definitely was not available other than in the retail stores.

They probably changed tactics when they decided to close most of the retail stores. No sense in giving up on a proven product if the web is going to be their primary distribution channel.
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post #74 of 396 Old 01-27-2007, 10:38 PM
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Well I'm glad to see a Cambridge SoundWorks thread on here.
I am currently using MC300s across the front, S300s for surrounds, and a P500 and P200 combo for the bass. This is a setup that I have found really enjoyable, especially for movie watching. But it's great for music too. One thing that I have been impressed with is the imaging that the fronts produce. I have several 3 channel SACDs that give you a distinct "you are there" feeling. My amplification is provided by a Marantz SR5500 that is not overly powerful at 90W per channel, but I don't have any trouble filling the room with sound with these speakers. Dialog is very crisp as well.
I originally bought the system along with the P500 sub. This is a great sub for music I think, especially electronica where the demands on the bass are very high. It sounds tight and accurate. However, I felt that I was wanting in a couple of areas. First, I didn't feel that I had the low end extension and volume that I wanted when watching movies. Second, I have a fairly large listening area, and I wanted more even bass coverage. From some online reviews, and the fact that the P200 has a 10" driver vs the P500's 8 inchers, I thought that it could help out with the low end so I gave it a try (I didn't want to spring for a P1000 though). My initial reaction to the P200 was a bit underwhelmed, at least for music listening. The sub is deceptively powerful though. Once it was broke in, it packed a punch, and it was really impressive in movie watching. I have the P200 running with a low crossover now, and the P500 focused on the higher bass frequencies, and the improvement has been tremendous. It feels like I have more than double the bass. It also sounds a lot more even throughout the room. This setup can really rattle stuff and actually knocked a fairly large mirror off the wall. Oops!
I'm planning on using this setup for awhile, but down the road I could see myself doing some upgrades to improve music listening. I think that a pair of the passive towers (either the T100s or T200s) and an MC400 center channel would improve musical performance through the mid-range. The T200 would probably require an amplifier upgrade though! But, I'm quite happy with my current setup, and there's nothing compelling me to run out and upgrade right now.
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post #75 of 396 Old 06-24-2007, 03:24 PM
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Ditto on commentary about the CSW line, esp the subs.

I own 2 of the p1000 subs, and bought for a combination of reasons:

- WAF / excellent looking box
- interesting design with the telephone cord between the sub and the control box
- able to daisy chain them off a single box
- remote

I ended up buying a second one to fix some problems in my room, and in general the second sub (could probably have been ANY sub) helped me smooth it out.

I know these aren't the best you can get, but they sound musical and have decent punch until you get to the bottom. Then they're definitely lacking The second one added a lot here, but still not the performance like I read about the HSU's and SVS's in the Subwoofer forum.

To be honest, I'd consider an upgrade, but still trying to figure out the acoustics in my room. Then I'd like to try some of the subs that people rave about here.

BTW - have any of you seen a real test or review of the p1000? I cannot find information anywhere apart from what is published on the CSW site.

Thanks.
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post #76 of 396 Old 06-10-2008, 09:20 PM
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Just to add several thoughts about these speakers. Since 2004 we have been listening to one Cambridge SoundWorks P1000 along with CSW Newton MC300 in-walls for the fronts and four S300 surrounds. We bought the P1000 and the surrounds in CSW’s outlet at a significant discount. While one could always pay much more, certainly far more, for 12 Hz Richter scale bass, we have found that the P1000 and its companion speakers do quite well for both music and home theater.

Copland's Symphony No. 1 for organ impressively commands attention. The bass singer of the a capella Persuasions in Steal Away does likewise. Surprisingly even an old 1949 Columbia monaural LP, Richard Tucker singing Cantorial Jewels, is satisfyingly rich in bass. Anna Lelke's (Der Zauber der Harfe/The Magic of the Harp) and Andreas Wollenweider's White Winds reproduce exceptionally clear bass harp strings (and the Wollenweider recording from an LP to CD transfer!). The natural intensity of clean-sounding lows can be heard in Joy Denalane's Geh jetzt. I watched the 1939 version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame; the old sonics with its seventy-year old bass came across quite well. Alfred Newman's score (portions of which have been heard in at least three other films!) along with the very beautiful Ave Maria by Tomás Luis de la Victoria, though not up to date sonics, sounded well supported by the P1000.

Modern surround sound films certainly test the mettle of any sub. The P1000 is no exception. It is loud when called for and quite accurate, but its overload indicator has yet to show the merest edge of being overdriven. Also its absolute lack of hum makes it special, perhaps unique, among subs. When using the P1000 with front speakers that have four-inch low frequency drivers, the P1000’s low-pass control should be set to 150 Hz. Also on our Pioneer VSX 84TXSi receiver we set the bass peak level at -26dB. Doing so fills our 13 x 26 x 8 room with accurate, clean, and loud bass. Before we had gone through these setup procedures, we thought the bass was anemic. Could some of the complaints about insufficient bass in the P1000 have been the result of improper setup?

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post #77 of 396 Old 07-08-2008, 04:23 AM
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Well, as a former owner of a pair of the p1000's for several years, I can tell you that having made the a/b test at home with a more significant sub from Velodyne, i learned a whole lot about the p1000. I was happy with them until I did this test. Now I have a pair of Velodynes and haven't looked back. The HGS 12's have much more definition, punch and deeper response than the p1000's.

They're still as sensitive to room placement (physics being physics), but with the help of the REW forum and an equalizer (BFD) I was able to better tune them to the room than with the CSW control box.

So bottom line, if you're happy with p1000's, enjoy! If you dare to compare, be prepared to deal with upgrade-itis!
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post #78 of 396 Old 09-24-2008, 09:02 PM
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Even though I posted my stuff in the post what speakers you have thread, I thought I'd try to get this thread going again as it seems like the closest thing to a CSW owners thread. At one point there seemed to be a huge following of CSW, to the point where a couple of their engineers were posting on forums, but I have not seen any of that lately.

I've been using M80s as fronts, an MC400 center, S200 surrounds, and a P205 sub for the past few months, all acquired very cheap though the clearance sales (though the M80s were picked up used on Craigslist). Very happy with this setup, although I'm still on the fence with the sub and the "what if" factor of had I gone with my original plan for an HSU VTF1.

So are there any CSW people left on here (or any forums), or has everyone moved on to other speakers? Has anyone heard the new Newton IIs yet, and if so how do they compare to the original Newtons?
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post #79 of 396 Old 09-24-2008, 09:33 PM
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I had the original Megaworks 510D and Megaworks THX 550. It's still amazes me to this date. I recently upgraded to the M60 bookshelf using for 2.0 stereo music in my room. It's excellent for music. I'm glad you liked your M80.
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post #80 of 396 Old 11-23-2008, 05:10 PM
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I absolutely love my CSW M80s for both music and also as L/R mains in my HT setup in a very small room (driven by a Marantz SR4400). I have a CSW Center Stage for a center channel, and although it sounds decent by itself, the timbre matching and panning with the M80s is quite poor. As previous posters have noted, CSW didn't make a timbre-matched center channel for the M series.

From reading this and other threads I gather that my best options for a center channel upgrade are an MC500 or another M80, both of which can currently be had as single-unit B-stock from CSW's online clearance area.

The M80 would obviously be the best timbre match, but would be a MAJOR logistical challenge because it's over 10" tall turned on its side (nice that you can rotate the tweeter, though). I can't afford to properly wall mount my Panny 46" plasma and frankly I'm not sure the mounting-style TV stands will create enough room for a 10 1/2" tall center channel anyway even if I get my TV attached successfully. I have seen NO traditional shelf-style stands that have space for a center that tall.

The MC500 will produce nice big sound comparable to the M80s; some people say they match nicely w/ the M80s but others say the timbre is off. They are big, too -- 9" tall, although there is a nice Bell'o stand (PVS-4215) that has enough middle shelf clearance.

Any thoughts on these or options I'm not considering? Should I abandon my fantasy of keeping the M80s and just spring for a new matched L/C/R set? I would like to keep them both to keep my costs down but also because I love how they look and sound.

Auugh...what to do...
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post #81 of 396 Old 12-02-2008, 01:04 PM
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The MC400 is what I was told was the next best match for the M80 if you couldn't use a third M80. That speaker is significantly smaller than the MC500 and the M80 at only 7" high.

While I can definetely tell it isn't a perfect match (the MC400 is a little bit brighter, closer to the M60's sound), it does sound good to my ears and pans decently (though I think some of the problem is the way I have mine arranged, which will be changing soon). I guess it really wouldn't hurt to try one, as it only weighs around 20lbs so shouldn't be much to ship back to them should you dislike it.

Keep in mind that while the MC500's mid/tweeter arrangement looks similar to the M80's, it's really a 4" mid/1" tweeter instead of the M80's 3 1/2" / 3/4", so that isn't really going to be optimal either. I'd really just keep an eye out for something big enough for the third M80, but if you can't find anything, try out the MC400.
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post #82 of 396 Old 01-22-2009, 05:56 PM
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I was thinking about buying this package. But I have heard vague reports of people not liking the P205 sub. Anyone own this and care to comment? I only listen to movies at moderate volume.

http://www.clubhifi.com/store/catego...&item=k1ht305s

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post #83 of 396 Old 01-23-2009, 09:42 AM
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Anyone here own CSW?

Justin
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post #84 of 396 Old 01-23-2009, 11:03 AM
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Not many owners in this forum. I recently purchased the set that preceded the one you are looking at. I have two T205s, an MC400 for the center, two S305 surrounds, and a P205. All of this is running off an Onkyo tx-sr606. I was torn between this set or a definitive tech pro cinema series. I brought both home for an audition and ended up keeping the CSW. The def tech's were too bright for my tastes. I definitely do not regret the purchase. It really does come down to personal taste--most would likely recommend the definitives in my case.

My primary concern when buying was a fine balance between quality and budget. I did not want to spend more than 1500 on the whole set up. I listened to several within that budget and selected the two above for a thorough audition. But to be completely honest, the CSWs were third on my list until they started running a fantastic deal on them for $999.

You can always listen to them for a month and send them back if they aren't what you are looking for. As for the P205, I find it is more than adequate. Are there better on the market? Absolutely. However, remember you are looking at a package that costs less than $1000. Pay more, get more. CSW is a great value. You likely won't be disappointed.
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post #85 of 396 Old 01-23-2009, 05:56 PM
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Thank you so much Shawred. I will call them up this weekend. I see that the HT305-SE used to come with S305s. Hopefully they can offer me a deal with the S305s instead of the S205s currently listed. Anyone else with any of these speakers? Your input is greatly appreciated!

Justin
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post #86 of 396 Old 01-24-2009, 08:01 AM
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I have the CSW speakers you are thinking about with MC305s across the front, S305s for surrounds, and a P200 (the older version of the P205- I already had the sub). I would definitely suggest you give them a try. I love them. I don't think the S205 substitution for the S305 will make a big difference unless you listen to 5 channel music. I usually just listen to my music in 2.1 and save the 5.1 for movies, as a result I have never used the direct setting on the surrounds. This is the only feature the S205 loses when comapred to the S305. If you do listen to music in 5.1, I would suggest getting 5 MC305s. If your buget is an issue replace the P205 with a Velodyne VX-10 for about $150 and you would still be at rougly the same price. I have owned both subs and they are both great and very similar in performance. The package you are looking at is a great value. I also have a larger CSW system in my home theater room with T205s, MC405, and M55s with the P300HD sub. The 305 package has 90% of the performance of this larger and more expensive purchase, which is likely one reason why the recently dropped it from their lineup.
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post #87 of 396 Old 01-24-2009, 10:49 AM
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Thank you for your info RoyalsFan. I have not listened to dipole/bipole speakers before, so I was not aware they are good for movies. In my brief search on google, I have read conflicting opinions on whether direct or bipole setups are ideal for 5.1 movie watching. I would be listening to music, but would primarily use them for movies. I am interested in the S305s because they give me the option to change them to direct mode if need be. It is interesting that CSW used to offer the S305s with the SE package for the same price as the current setup. I was debating what to purchase because they charge $200 between the HT305 and HT305-SE, even though the only difference between the two is the upgraded sub. Incidentally, on their site, the cost difference between the subs is $150 if you buy them separately.

Justin
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post #88 of 396 Old 02-04-2009, 01:00 AM
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I have 2 pairs of S305s to work with now. So in a 7.1 setup, is it better to have the two sides bipolar and the two rears monopolar?

Justin
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post #89 of 396 Old 02-04-2009, 03:43 PM
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justinluck what package did you end up going with?
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post #90 of 396 Old 02-04-2009, 04:05 PM
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Experiment with them. You might find that you like them all in bipole, or maybe the sides in dipole (the sound is spread along the wall), or all in monopole (most accurate). The best thing about their surrounds is that they give you the option where as most surround speakers are fixed to one configuration.

By the way, did you end up getting my reply to your PM?
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