matching speakers [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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06-03-2004, 08:11 PM
Is it ok to match speakers with different brands? I know matching the front and center is important, that's why I purchased the B&W 602S3 and the LCR60. But does it have to match with the subwoofer and the rears? Is it really important? Right now I have the PSB Subsonic 5 and the Alpha B. It sounds good, would it sound way better if it was an all B&W system? I also have to take into consideration the cost. I'm a beginner, hope you don't mind

06-03-2004, 08:50 PM
For HT, you're system is fine just the way it is. Surround effects in movies are minimal at best. If you plan on moving into mult-channel hi-rez (i.e. sacd, dvd-a), you would be better served with an all B&W rig (although your PSB sub is fine) thereby affording consistent timbre and voicing throughout.

06-04-2004, 04:08 AM
Yes, I agree for movie playback, "timbre matching" is a bit over-rated. Certainly the centre and mains should be as close as possible, but the surrounds aren't as important.
Get an HT setup DVD and perform your own experiment. Or even use a test-tone on different speakers of the same family (ie: same drivers). They don't sound the same, in fact, some are quite different.
Combining that with the impact on timbre that different acoustic properties in your room will generate, and timbre matching starts to be an up-hill battle.
For subs, well, bass frequencies are more forgiving, and chances are your speakers won't produce frequencies as low anyway, so your matching the sub to itself.

But as topspeed said, for multi-channel music, it is preferable to have the speakers sounding as similar as possible. Otherwise instruments and even voices can start to change their tonal properties as the sound moves around the room. In a mix-n'-match setup I use to have, I found this extremely annoying.