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Thread: RTi70 vs. RT55i

  1. #1

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    Default RTi70 vs. RT55i

    Just want a few opinions here. I currently have RTi70's as mains and TRi28's for surrounds, PSW350 for the sub.. I have never been totally happy with the sound of the RTi70's when playing music. I guess I wanted them to sound like Monitor 10's. A friend of mine bought a set of what I believe are R30's (that was about 4 or 5 years ago, they are floor standing but pretty small. One 5-1/4" and the tweeter). I swear I think his sound better than my RTi70's. We have the same receiver driving them so I know that is not the difference.
    I wonder if his have the tri-lam tweeter and that is the difference because I know mine are the silks. Anyway I was wondering about maybe finding a old pair of RT55i's and trying those instead. I kind of like the look of speakers on stands anyway. I have read on here that a lot of folks really like the RT55i's, some better than towers. My main concern in doing this is that the tweeter in my center channel (CSi40) won't match. Any comments on this from anyone. I have a sub so I am not really worried about losing low end by going to a bookshelf speaker.
    Oh, and another thing. I really like my center and would like to not have to also find a CS400i to replace it with to match the TR55i's. I swear I think the CSi40 sounds better than the RTi70's. I thought that the day I hooked everything up and I still beleive it. I guess that is why I am thinking I might like RT55i's better.
    I really wish Polk had made an RTi bookshelf with 2 6-1/2's like the CSi40. I guess I could buy two more CSi40's and put them on stands and use them for mains. Wonder if anyone has tried that before.
    Anyway, look forward to hearing opinions.
    Thanks
    jim
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

  2. #2

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    I'm not so keen on HT, so I can't comment on the tweeter matching issue; however, I think the RT55i will go along way to getting you back to a Monitor 10 "sound." I say go for it, in that respect.

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    I'm not sure what you're using for a source but... Try a better source or add an external amp to your receiver if it has preouts. I think the RT55i wouldn't be much of a step up if any.

    Do you have the 10's?
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    I am using an Onkyo Tx-DS600 receiver to power everything (85 watts per channel x 6). I don't really have the cash to start upgrading to components right now and I can't remember if my receiver has pre-outs or not. All of the talk on here about the Outlaw and Parasound amps has me thinking about saving up though.

    A good friend of mine has the 10's. I have been temped to buy some off of ebay. It amazes me that anyone would want to sell those babies.

    Thanks for the replies guys. Keep em comin'...
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

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    While I am at it, does anyone know the difference between the RT55 and the RT55i besides the speaker cones being blue?
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

  6. #6

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    wouldnt Monitor 10s be cheaper to get than RT55s?

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    Originally posted by jimed1
    While I am at it, does anyone know the difference between the RT55 and the RT55i besides the speaker cones being blue?
    Very minor changes in the tweeter and crossover and a change in the driver material. Subtle SQ changes at most.

    IMO the RT55i would be an improvement over the RTi70. Probably a little tighter bass and better midrange. Some don't like the tri-lam tweeters in the RTxxi line as well as the silk/polymer tweeters in the RTixx line. It depends on the rest of your gear, but I like the tri-lams...especially for HT. But of course I'm biased.
    Last edited by shack; 02-16-2005 at 08:04 PM.
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  8. #8

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    THe Monitor 10's are selling on ebay for nearly $300 at times if they are in good shape and that is about what the RT55's are going for too.

    If I get some they will have to be mint, because all of my stuff looks like it did the day I bought it.

    I sat down last night and did some serious listening to the RTi70's and decided they actually do a really nice job with jazz. I guess it is the rock and roll that I don't think they do as well with. I also know that some cds don't sound very well. I still think they are lack when it come to cranking up the heavy stuff.
    Maybe its time to upgrade my receiver or start looking into amps.

    I did discover last night that they did a better job if I used the small speaker setting in my receiver and set the crossover to 80Hz. They did a lot better job when they didn't have to reproduce the low end and I let my sub do it.
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

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    if i were you .. i'd look at replacing the interconnects and maybe your speaker wire out first.. then check into the RT55i's. it might be just the tweak your system needs. also "toe in" your RTi70's to find the sweet spot. that helps with sound as well. I like my RT800i's.. the height of the tweetr is just right when i've got my fat ass plunked down on the couch.

    the RTi70's are not that much different the the 800i's. 800i's show up on Ebay now and then. so do the 55i's. but that's harder to find.
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    the better sound that you're describing when setting the speakers to small isn't a result of the speaker, but of the amps in the receiver.

    When you set the speakers to small, you effectively free up the amp to do a better job of driving the highs. Remember that lower frequencies demand more of amps becuase the resistance is also lower, so the amp is putting out that much more wattage, so when you set the speakers to small, you're freeing up that much more of the amp.

    I have the RTi70s and love them for both music and HT. Some people here don't like the 70s (waiting for Sid to jump in with his usual rant), but alot of people like them also...
    Main HT
    Magnepan 1.6QR fronts, POlk R15 surrounds, Pioneer SC-25, Parasound Halo A23, Oppo BDP-105, Panasonic TC-P60ZT60, Sony PS3, Apple TV

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    I can understand wanting Monitor 10s but I really don't see the point of replacing the 70's for 55i's.

    Source, amp, cables, placement, room, etc. all have an effect on how well your system sounds.
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    Polkmaniac,

    I see what you are saying about freeing up the amps in the receiver. That's kind of what I was thinking also.

    I love my RTi70's for HT too.

    and Dangerboy,
    There is a pair of RT55i's on ebay right now in cherry and man are they looking good to me. It looks like they are going to go for over $300 though. There are also a couple of pairs of the older (I assumer they are older) RT55's in black on ebay. My 70's are black but I would really like to have some in cherry. I wish I had gotten cherry when I bought mine.

    I bought Monster interconnects when I set up my system so I am hoping that is not my problem. I have been thinking about bi-wiring if I can figure out exactly what I need to do. All of my wire is 14 ga. I can't remember what brand it is.

    Setting up a HT is expensive. It is going to take me forever to get it to where I want it to be. Plus, technology keeps changing with connections like DVI and HDMI so I don't what to get another receiver until that starts being supported more. I would love to have the new Denon 5805 but I am afraid something about it would be obsolete in a year or two with the new HD-DVD players set to start coming out by the end of the year maybe.
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

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    Originally posted by dcarlson
    I can understand wanting Monitor 10s but I really don't see the point of replacing the 70's for 55i's.

    Source, amp, cables, placement, room, etc. all have an effect on how well your system sounds.
    I just thought they might sound a little smoother/refined/more detailed because the cabinet is smaller.
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

  14. #14

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    They will sound different, but probably not to the extent you're looking for. You already have a great set of speakers all around. :)

    See if you can try out some speaker wire from a local audio boutique or even stick around and sign up for the cable swap.

    BTW, welcome to the club. ;)
    SDA-2a, Anthem Pre-2L, Anthem Amp 1, MF A324 DAC, Rotel RCD1070

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    Oh, what are you using as a cd or dvd player?
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    Thanks for the welcome to the forum.
    I have had polk speakers for about 15 years, just not very good ones until I got the 70's. My first were a satellite set, RM3000 I think, with the non-powered sub.

    I have a Sony DVD player. I gave about $100 for it a little over 2 years ago. It was a lower end model that doesn't have progressive scan because I don't have an HDTV and I knew I wanted to get a really good one when I upgraded my tv.
    My sony has been good to me so far. It plays everything I put in it. Never freezes up unless the disc is in really bad shape. I would love to get one that upconverts someday but I still don't think that there is a really good one out there. I know someone that has a samsung that does pretty good though.
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

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    IMO, using that Sony DVD player for music playback is one potential weak spot in your system.

    Pick up a real CD player and see if that helps you any.

    Also, Monster cable isn't all that great. It's okay, but you won't find many in support of it here on CP.

    I think that the source is something you'll change at some point anyway, so I'd start there before you go looking to change speakers...

    The RT55i are nice, but I just don't think that'll make that much difference...
    Main HT
    Magnepan 1.6QR fronts, POlk R15 surrounds, Pioneer SC-25, Parasound Halo A23, Oppo BDP-105, Panasonic TC-P60ZT60, Sony PS3, Apple TV

    Bedroom System
    Polk Blackstone TL3, Polk PSWi225 Wireless Sub, HK 3490 Integrated, Oppo BDP-103, Sharp Aquos 32" TV, Apple TV

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    try a pair of inexpensive interconnects from Signal Cable and i can almost promise you.. you'll be hearing more out of your CD player and RTi70's than ever before.

    And since you are a Club Polk member.. you'll get a discount on the interconnect. you really can't lose. Plus if you don't like the interconnect. you can return it for a refund within 30 days. It's one of those inexpensive tweaks for your system that can have a big affect on the sound.

    I use some in my HT as well as in both my 2 ch only systems.
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  19. #19

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    Originally posted by Polkmaniac
    IMO, using that Sony DVD player for music playback is one potential weak spot in your system.

    Pick up a real CD player and see if that helps you any.

    Also, Monster cable isn't all that great. It's okay, but you won't find many in support of it here on CP.

    Do you mean a dedicated cd player? One that will only play CD's or just a better DVD player? What brands do you consider to be good? I know the Denon's get a lot of hype.

    I noticed Monster cable is not very popular here for some reason. What brands are better and why? Are they more, or less expensive as monster?
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

  20. #20

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    True Monster cables aren't very well liked here. for many reasons which I won't go into. but there are several other better sounding cables.

    more or less expensive... both. Monster has several levels of cables. 100, 200, 300, 400 series. Similar to other brands.

    but what you get with other brands is better sound. and that's ultimately what you're looking for. Like I mentioned earlier. you can't go wrong with Signal Cable interconnects. Price wise. cheaper than the same level or Monster. and sound much better too.
    Last edited by danger boy; 02-17-2005 at 01:02 PM.
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    I will chime in again and say that IMO the RT55is are an improvement over the the RTi70. Others obviously disagree.

    I would certainly look at a CD only player. Again, there are varying opinions on this as can be found on several threads over the past few days. Some will argue that a relatively cheap DVD player will sound "almost" as good as a dedicated (and more expensive) CD Player.

    http://clubpolk.polkaudio.com/forum/...threadid=26060

    I would suggest that for $130 ± you can pick up a very nice Sony CD only changer that also has SACD capability. Several here have it and like it and it has received some decent reviews. Check out this thread:

    SONY SCD-CE595 CD/SACD Changer

    I agree that signal cables would be a good alternative to M.
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    For a cheap player, a modded toshiba 3960 would be both a great DVD player and good CD player. A definite no brainer.
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  23. #23

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    Originally posted by dcarlson
    For a cheap player, a modded toshiba 3960 would be both a great DVD player and good CD player. A definite no brainer.
    Modded how?

    Y'all have me thinking about it. I hate to go with just SACD though. I would like one that would also play DVD-Audio.

    That Sony referenced above does look nice.
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

  24. #24

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    Madmax and Anonymouse offer modded ones on the forum here.

    http://clubpolk.polkaudio.com/forum/...highlight=3960
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    Senn HD650 Cardas, Mapletree Audio Ear+ HD2, Kimber KS1030, Bel Canto DAC2, M-Audio Transit, Laptop.

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    In my opinion, the RTi70 is a step down from the RT55i even without a sub filling out the bottom. If that is an option, go for it. With a good sub, not much of a contest.

    Shacks Sony is great if you want the SACD capability. Otherwise and unmodded 3960 will work very well as a stand alone CD player for about $50. Just make sure to use the analog outs on this one.
    Last edited by jdhdiggs; 02-17-2005 at 02:26 PM.
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    Well at least I know I am not completely crazy thinking about getting RT55i's instead of my 70's. The mismatched tweeter I would have with my center channel still bothers me a little though. And, I do love my CSi40 center.

    Is that toshiba 3960 that good for $50? I mean can it be that much better than my sony. I think it is a DVP-NS315B
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

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    It is a "lucky" hit. Do a search on this and other forums on the 3960. Modified it competes with players 10X the price.
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

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    Originally posted by jdhdiggs


    Shacks Sony is great if you want the SACD capability. Otherwise and unmodded 3960 will work very well as a stand alone CD player for about $50. Just make sure to use the analog outs on this one.
    Lost me on the make sure you use the analog outs. Please splain.......
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

  29. #29

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    Apperantly the magic from the 3960 is ONLY from using the analog outs (Red/white) and not the digital outs (Fiber or dig coax)
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

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    No kidding? I wouldn't think anyone here would have even tried the analogs in the first place. I never considered it with mine and went with the coax.

    I saw the 3960 on sale at HH Gregg for $59.99 I amy pick one up.
    Last edited by jimed1; 02-17-2005 at 04:19 PM.
    Front: RTi70
    Center: CSi40
    Rear: RTi28
    Sub: PSW505
    AVR: Onkyo TX-SR600

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