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  1. #1
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    speaker size selection

    I am still in the process of selecting speakers for my living room HT. The room is roughly 18x16 (20' ceiling). The rear of the room is open to the kitchen and breakfast area. I was leaning towards micro sized speakers (Paradigm Cinema, Energy Take 5.2, etc). Now I have talked my wife into possibly allowing a nice pair of bookshelfs or even floorstanding mains.

    My question (finally, I know) what should I look for in a surround speaker to match with a larger main (Paradigm Monitor 9 for instance). Becuase my mains are larger, do I need larger surrounds? Is a floorstanding speaker overkill for a HT system used for movies 90% of the time?

    Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    All you really need is something that voice matches the mains pretty well. You don't need surrounds with a lot of bass extension because 1) the surround channels typically doesn't carry a lot of low frequencies, 2) with the bass management on your receiver, you'll likely redirect the lows towards either the mains or a subwoofer anyway, and 3) a surround speaker that's too bulky will be very difficult to place properly.

    If you're set on the Monitor series, the surround speakers pairings are pretty simple -- I would just go with the ones that use the same drivers as the mains. This means that if you opt for the floorstanding Monitor 9s, you should pair them with the standmounted Monitor 3s as the surrounds. If you go with either the Monitor 5 or 7 as your mains, then you should use the Mini Monitors as the surrounds.

    A floorstanding speaker might be overkill if you also plan to use a subwoofer. If not, then the extra bass extension will come in handy since the deep bass from LFE tracks will get piped in through the mains if you don't use a sub.

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    I hope Sir Terrence doesn't tear a strip into me but you could go for the monitor 7's instead of the monitor 9's and match them with the dipole adp 370's. They all have the matching drivers and they are great for home theater. Okay Sir Terrence, let me have it, I deserve it.

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    Excellent points...thank you.

    My next question is if I choose small mains and surrounds (Paradigm cinema for example) could I use a larger center (cc-170 for example) to pick up the range too low for the mains but too high for the sub...ie: male vocals...much like what the Ventriloquist series claims to accomplish.

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    My last system had the cc 170 and I match it with 4 atoms. It sounded fairly good, all had matching drivers. I personally would not consider the cinemas when the atoms will match the cc170 and they don't cost all that much more. Don't forget you will definitly need a sub for home theater.

  6. #6
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HaldoL
    Excellent points...thank you.

    My next question is if I choose small mains and surrounds (Paradigm cinema for example) could I use a larger center (cc-170 for example) to pick up the range too low for the mains but too high for the sub...ie: male vocals...much like what the Ventriloquist series claims to accomplish.
    You're typically much better served by using a closely matched center speaker. I believe that the Cinema series has its own matched center speaker, and you probably shouldn't mess with that. Even if a center speaker subjectively sounds better, it won't necessarily sound right because of potentially severe tonal mismatches with the mains.

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    If you can go with towers I would. Full frequency effects is sent to all channels with dolby digital. But you will be more than happy with satellites if that is the way you have to go. The towers I have only take up a little more room than satellites + stands. I especially like them for when I listen to multi-channel music and scenes with lots of special effects. If you physically have the room/budget to go with tower speakers I would go out and listen to both and then decide which is better for you.
    Definitive Technology Fan, Owner and Advocate!!!!! never paying retail IS half the fun of buying audio products!!!! Good shopping!

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    Couple of things. First of all, floorstanding is not ever overkill. Secondly, if you get a decent brand of speakers you won't be asking that question. Paradigm is not a terrible brand, but it sure is an overly expensive and relatively weak quality brand. You can get a much better value than any of their lines. And stay away from the their Reference Series which is a joke. Polk Audio, JBLs, and Sony all make a superior product (no, I won't mention Kenwood because I am biased).

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    More good advice! My biggest problem is getting the opportunity to listen to all the speakers. I finally did find a store in Atlanta that carries several major brands, so I can listen to them under the same conditions.

    Aldo...you really think Sony makes a better speaker for the money than Paradigm?

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    Dollar for dollar, no doubt. Not even close.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aldo WIngate
    Couple of things. First of all, floorstanding is not ever overkill. Secondly, if you get a decent brand of speakers you won't be asking that question. Paradigm is not a terrible brand, but it sure is an overly expensive and relatively weak quality brand. You can get a much better value than any of their lines. And stay away from the their Reference Series which is a joke. Polk Audio, JBLs, and Sony all make a superior product (no, I won't mention Kenwood because I am biased).
    You're digging yourself a pretty deep hole with broad unsubstantiated proclamations like these. First off, because of how variable room acoustics get, a floorstanding speaker can be overkill if the positioning and low end extension conspire to create standing waves at the listening position. If you ever hear a +20 db room-induced peak around 35 Hz, that would most definitely be overkill. And if you plan to use a subwoofer and let your receiver crossover the bass frequencies at 80 Hz, then with a tower speaker, you got a lot of unused capacity that you're paying for. Plus, lower priced tower speakers are generally very susceptible to cabinet resonance, and compared to equivalent bookshelf models, they generally have diminished imaging capability.

    I don't know where you get the impression that Paradigm is "an overly expensive and relatively weak quality brand." Judging by your choices of "superior products," accuracy, tonal balance, and off-axis response aren't priorities with you (Polk can be pretty good, depending on which model you choose, but Sony? Dollar for dollar, no doubt? Yah, right).

    Oh, and since I own a set of Paradigm Studio reference speakers, which of course after reading your post I now realize was a joke, please tell me which "superior product" I should have bought. And rather than just listing brands, give me some specific models I should consider so I can do some direct comparisons. Better yet, cut the crap and just tell me which Kenwood speakers I should pick up this weekend.

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    You're entitled to your opinion. The problem with you is that if someone has a different opinion, you get all bent out of joint. Stop whining, state your opinion, and move on.

  13. #13
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aldo WIngate
    You're entitled to your opinion. The problem with you is that if someone has a different opinion, you get all bent out of joint. Stop whining, state your opinion, and move on.
    Boy, you know me and my intolerance so well! Why not suggest a solution for my anger management needs, like those great Kenwood speakers that are so therapeutic for your well-being? Still waiting for specifics -- prices and places to buy them would be nice too...

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    Thumbs down

    Man, you're making me yawn and boring the hell out of me.

  15. #15
    all around good guy Jim Clark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woochifer
    Boy, you know me and my intolerance so well! Why not suggest a solution for my anger management needs, like those great Kenwood speakers that are so therapeutic for your well-being? Still waiting for specifics -- prices and places to buy them would be nice too...
    Dood, you just got hammered by the troll! You're going to need to get deloused after that.

    N O W     P L A Y I N G
     Where's Aldo?

    jc
    "Ahh, cartoons! America's only native art form. I don't count jazz 'cuz it sucks"- Bartholomew J. Simpson

  16. #16
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aldo WIngate
    Man, you're making me yawn and boring the hell out of me.
    Truer words have never been spoken by someone trying to talk their way out of a bind of their own making. Specifics please ... still waiting ...

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    "trying to talk their way out of a bind of their own making."


    What? What the hell are you talking about? Stop whining like a little girl, as usual!!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aldo WIngate
    Couple of things. First of all, floorstanding is not ever overkill. Secondly, if you get a decent brand of speakers you won't be asking that question. Paradigm is not a terrible brand, but it sure is an overly expensive and relatively weak quality brand. You can get a much better value than any of their lines. And stay away from the their Reference Series which is a joke. Polk Audio, JBLs, and Sony all make a superior product (no, I won't mention Kenwood because I am biased).
    So Aldo... exactly what do you find weak about the quality of Paradigm speakers? We're all entitled to our opinions/likes & dislikes, and speakers are about as subjective as you get when it comes to audio, but I'm curious what you find objectionable about Paradigm and what makes the Reference Series in particular a joke? Please be as specific as possible and do feel free to expound: Cabinet build quality, crossover design, driver quality, phase coherence/alignment...? What can you tell us about these speakers - good or bad?

    Q

  19. #19
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    Remember, waldo is only good for one sentence at a time so it might take a while.

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    Umm...

    I think he is winding you all up.

  21. #21
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    Wooch, sell the Paradigms, they are crap

    try to find an old pair of Panasonic "Thrusters". Then again, Consumer Reports always liked the Pioneer speakers, and thought very highly of Technics. Then again, Aldo may be right since the new Sonys have those cool plastic "kevlar looking" cones and those 50kHz polycarb tweets. Your Paradigms don't have either of them.

    Hey, and don't even try to tell me that your box, drivers, or crossover are better in your Paradigms, since they aren't as big as what you can get with a Sony at a fraction of the price. Who does Paradigm think they are anyway. Sony sells more receivers than anybody and given that, would have to know more about speakers than anyone else, wouldn't you say. Don't have an answer to that....do you.

    And you told me you really knew something about audio. I feel so betrayed. I TRUSTED YOU, and you led me down the wrong path....you, you, booger eatin' moron.

    Hey Wooch, seriously, remember, somebody has to make the top 80% possible.
    Space

    The preceding comments have not been subjected to double blind testing, and so must just be taken as casual observations and not given the weight of actual scientific data to be used to prove a case in a court of law or scientific journal. The comments represent my humble opinion which will range in the readers perspective to vary from Gospel to heresy. So let it be.

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    The last 11 post in this thread have been about NOTHING! This forum is for discussion of audio equipement, etc...not about *****ing and whining! Everyone is offering very bold opinions/suggestions without any concrete evidence in support.

    spacedeckman: you wrote that "Sony sells more recievers than anybody"...but where did you get that info? Is it an opinion or fact? Then you state that becuase Sony sells lots of recievers they must make great speakers. That is the dumbest statement I have read on this website. Based on that comment, I should assume that companies like B&W, Paradigm, Vandersteen, and all the others that do not sell recievers sell poorly designed speakers?

    If you do not have anything of value to add to a thread, go post your bs somewhere else!

  23. #23
    all around good guy Jim Clark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HaldoL
    The last 11 post in this thread have been about NOTHING! This forum is for discussion of audio equipement, etc...not about *****ing and whining! Everyone is offering very bold opinions/suggestions without any concrete evidence in support.

    spacedeckman: you wrote that "Sony sells more recievers than anybody"...but where did you get that info? Is it an opinion or fact? Then you state that becuase Sony sells lots of recievers they must make great speakers. That is the dumbest statement I have read on this website. Based on that comment, I should assume that companies like B&W, Paradigm, Vandersteen, and all the others that do not sell recievers sell poorly designed speakers?

    If you do not have anything of value to add to a thread, go post your bs somewhere else!
    Dood, that was a joke. You're not gonna keep the folks here from having a little fun along the way are you?

    jc
    "Ahh, cartoons! America's only native art form. I don't count jazz 'cuz it sucks"- Bartholomew J. Simpson

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by HaldoL
    The last 11 post in this thread have been about NOTHING! This forum is for discussion of audio equipement, etc...not about *****ing and whining! Everyone is offering very bold opinions/suggestions without any concrete evidence in support.

    spacedeckman: you wrote that "Sony sells more recievers than anybody"...but where did you get that info? Is it an opinion or fact? Then you state that becuase Sony sells lots of recievers they must make great speakers. That is the dumbest statement I have read on this website. Based on that comment, I should assume that companies like B&W, Paradigm, Vandersteen, and all the others that do not sell recievers sell poorly designed speakers?

    If you do not have anything of value to add to a thread, go post your bs somewhere else!
    Yes, this forum is for discussion of audio equipment -- and sometimes that includes challenging bad advice and exposing trolls. However, even in attempting to do just that, none of us felt it necessary to be as rude and ungracious as you were in this last post. If this is all you have to add, feel free to take your own advice and post somewhere else... Haldo or Aldo or whoever you really are.

    Q

  25. #25
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spacedeckman
    try to find an old pair of Panasonic "Thrusters". Then again, Consumer Reports always liked the Pioneer speakers, and thought very highly of Technics. Then again, Aldo may be right since the new Sonys have those cool plastic "kevlar looking" cones and those 50kHz polycarb tweets. Your Paradigms don't have either of them.

    Hey, and don't even try to tell me that your box, drivers, or crossover are better in your Paradigms, since they aren't as big as what you can get with a Sony at a fraction of the price. Who does Paradigm think they are anyway. Sony sells more receivers than anybody and given that, would have to know more about speakers than anyone else, wouldn't you say. Don't have an answer to that....do you.

    And you told me you really knew something about audio. I feel so betrayed. I TRUSTED YOU, and you led me down the wrong path....you, you, booger eatin' moron.

    Hey Wooch, seriously, remember, somebody has to make the top 80% possible.
    Oh, I hate it when secrets get aired out in the open like this! You caught me in the lie, dude! Every bit of advice that I give on this board is another expression of my male insecurity. I might as well admit which car I drive and what blue pills I take with my vitamins.

    Yeah, I thought you were a compadre too, somebody who could at least keep a secret and keep this whole audio-industrial complex spinning on the board. Keep the cycle of upgrades going, deem less expensive equipment inadequate for audio nirvana, and forcibly dehumanize all dissenting perspectives. That was our modus operandi, remember? You might come to realize the error of your ways, but you've knocked our whole house of cards over in the meantime! Oh well, at least we still got our mini systems to keep us warm at night!

    P.S. Boogers are an underrated delicacy, so don't knock 'til you try it!

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