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Discussion Starter #1
Greetings everyone. I am looking to upgrade my home theater system. I have a Sony based 5.1.2 system:

  • 4 x SSCS5 bookshelf speakers
  • SSCS8 center channel
  • SSCSE Atmos speakers (that I'm not sure make much of a difference)
-STR-DH790 receiver
- Dayton Audio 12 inch subwoofer

I am overall happy with the sound (though I feel it could be better), but I would say the center channel leaves me disappointed at times. This is especially the case with dialogue which is sometimes difficult to discern. Any suggestions you have would be appreciated.

I saw the klipsch rp-440c for sale for $279. I also saw klipsch rp-280fa's for sale used for $240.

I also have Elac B6 bookshelves that I could swap for my front two sonys and maybe get an elac center.

Thanks for your time!

Sam
 

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Greetings everyone. I am looking to upgrade my home theater system. I have a Sony based 5.1.2 system:

  • 4 x SSCS5 bookshelf speakers
  • SSCS8 center channel
  • SSCSE Atmos speakers (that I'm not sure make much of a difference)
-STR-DH790 receiver
- Dayton Audio 12 inch subwoofer

I am overall happy with the sound (though I feel it could be better), but I would say the center channel leaves me disappointed at times. This is especially the case with dialogue which is sometimes difficult to discern. Any suggestions you have would be appreciated.
Yes, Sony calculated that most consumers would automatically buy its center speaker based on the "timbre matching" sales gimmick so they put zero effort into it compared to the excellent bookshelf speakers. A lot of big brand retail speaker companies do this, sadly enough---they know very well how pervasive that sales propaganda is, and how gullible most consumers are, both newbies and oldies.

Anyway, my rec would be the Emotiva C1+ at $250. I'd get that first and you might just be so happy with the results that you'll decide to keep everything else as is, or maybe buy a second Dayton sub, or splurge on a better Hsu or Rythmik one.

Another similarly priced option would be the HTD Level 3 center, and it does come with free return shipping if that makes you feel better...however it's a 2 way design whereas the Emotiva is 3-way.
 

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The cheapest option is to use a B6 as the centre.
 

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The cheapest option is to use a B6 as the centre.
The Elac B6 speaker is a 2-way design. A 3-way center speaker is preferable, like the Emotiva C1+.
 

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Greetings everyone. I am looking to upgrade my home theater system. I have a Sony based 5.1.2 system:

  • 4 x SSCS5 bookshelf speakers
  • SSCS8 center channel
  • SSCSE Atmos speakers (that I'm not sure make much of a difference)
-STR-DH790 receiver
- Dayton Audio 12 inch subwoofer

I am overall happy with the sound (though I feel it could be better), but I would say the center channel leaves me disappointed at times. This is especially the case with dialogue which is sometimes difficult to discern. Any suggestions you have would be appreciated.

I saw the klipsch rp-440c for sale for $279. I also saw klipsch rp-280fa's for sale used for $240.

I also have Elac B6 bookshelves that I could swap for my front two sonys and maybe get an elac center.

Thanks for your time!

Sam
That Sony center isn't likely to win any awards. Often times people don't realize that placement can have a huge impact on sound quality so the center gets pushed up against the wall, put in a cubby hole or thrown on the bottom shelf to make the wife happy. Before throwing money at the issue, let's rule out a possible placement issue. How is the center placed in your setup?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
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Thank you everyone for the input. I think the placement is good. I've attached the above photo of the front half of the setup. The elacs are actually being used with another TV, so I couldn't just use one as a a center. The other problem is, as you can see in the photo, there isn't much clearance for the center speaker before it would obstruct part of the TV. I would say the center speaker can be 7 inches high, max, and the emotiva is over 8 in. Thanks again for your suggestions.
 

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The other problem is, as you can see in the photo, there isn't much clearance for the center speaker before it would obstruct part of the TV. I would say the center speaker can be 7 inches high, max, and the emotiva is over 8 in.
That problem is easily solved by one of these:

That would actually enable you to splurge on a really great center like the Emotiva C2+ if you wanted to.

Since the center does 70-80% of the HT output, investing more money in it actually makes the most sense. Upgrading your front L/R will make diddly difference for HT/TV usage.
 
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Discussion Starter #9
That problem is easily solved by one of these:
The stand my TV is on is actually one of those. It's just a whole somewhat scary ordeal to change the positioning of that on a $2k OLED.

This 3 way Canton Chrono center would be a good pick and price is very good.
I've never heard of Canton before. Would that be a better choice than the Klipsch I first referenced? Also I just saw that the Elac UniFi UC5 is on sale for $250. Would that be a better choice? Too many options without much to base the choice on besides others opinions...
 

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The stand my TV is on is actually one of those. It's just a whole somewhat scary ordeal to change the positioning of that on a $2k OLED.
I don't own one of those stands so I can't speak from experience, but I can't imagine how it would be hard to raise by a few inches. Just have someone hold the other end of the TV while you're doing it, and make sure you tighten the bolts properly in the new position.
 

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The Canton would be better sound quality wise as it is a 3 way and the Klipsh is a 2 way design. I would think dialog would sound better with a 3 way. They are high quality German engineered and built in the EU. There is a Canton Owners Club thread here on AVS that you could ask questions.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I actually just realized my receiver doesn't support 4 ohm speakers. That rules out the Elac and the Emotiva. The Canton is listed as "4...8 ohms." I'm not sure how to interpret that...
 

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All speakers have dips and hills in their impedance curves depending on the drivers, crossover and frequency. The Canton's will go down to 4 ohm's at a certain point but never long enough or wide enough frequency range to cause any issues on the receiver. Most receivers will drive 4 ohm but you have to watch the heat output. A fan specifically for receivers would help if you are worried. What model do you have as many here run Emotiva with receivers not specifically rated for 4 ohms.
 

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I actually just realized my receiver doesn't support 4 ohm speakers. That rules out the Elac and the Emotiva. The Canton is listed as "4...8 ohms." I'm not sure how to interpret that...
I’m running the emotiva c2+ with an entry level 75w denon receiver rated for 6-16 ohms. No issues at all. It doesn’t really even get warm.
 

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I actually just realized my receiver doesn't support 4 ohm speakers. That rules out the Elac and the Emotiva. The Canton is listed as "4...8 ohms." I'm not sure how to interpret that...
I ran a C1 with a 10 year old $230 receiver rated for 6-8 ohms only. It never even got warm. Receiver power specs are usually irrelevant.

It should only be a concern to you if you are a volume freak, i.e. trying to hit commercial theater volume levels. In which case you're looking at all the wrong speakers to begin with.
 
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Discussion Starter #18
I mean my wife and I are known to have the odd isolated pandemic dance party that can get pretty loud, and the receiver definitely gets warm then. But I'm sure it'll be fine. Ha! Thanks for everyone's help!
 

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I’m running the emotiva c2+ with an entry level 75w denon receiver rated for 6-16 ohms. No issues at all. It doesn’t really even get warm.
I still think that 4ohm rating is a marketing strategy to nudge people into buying one of their great amps.
 
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I mean my wife and I are known to have the odd isolated pandemic dance party that can get pretty loud, and the receiver definitely gets warm then. But I'm sure it'll be fine. Ha! Thanks for everyone's help!
For music, you should stick to 2.1 ... upmixing an original stereo source into fake surround is an abomination, imho. If you can't enjoy music in stereo mode that means you need to get better mains and/or position them better.
 
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