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  1. #1

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    Default Center channel - Size matters but so does quality

    I have an Onkyo TX-NR515 receiver and paired it with the a pair of TSi300s for my front L/R speakers. I have an existing Polk CS2 center channel that I'm using with these and it sounds great... unfortunately, I used the measurements of the CS1 to when I looked for a new entertainment center and no that I have it setup, of course, the CS2 does not even come close to fitting.

    The shelf for the center channel is 8.25"H x 19"W x 16.5"D.

    The newer CS10 and CS20 speakers are also too big, so I'm wondering what my next best bet is. I use this setup for TV/Movies almost exclusively, so the quality of the center channel is important to me. Here are the three options as I see them:
    • Get the TL3 - It would definitely fit.... but I want to make sure what I get is properly matched for the TSi300s and that I'm not taking a big step down in quality.
    • Get the older CS1. It fits, but how does it compare to the CS2 and/or TL3?
    • Get the CSR or CSM. They would be a tight fit and I'm concerned about the quality of these as compared to the CS2.

    Thoughts?

    Please assume any other approach to solving this (such as mounting the speaker somewhere else) is off the table. :) I'm really looking for some speaker experts to give me the low-down on these other speaker options.

    Thanks!

  2. #2

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    My thoughts are that perceived quality isn't as important as timbre-matching the center channel to the L&R main channels. This would give you the best "quality" of sound & imaging. With that in mind, I can't really make a recommendation since the CS series is out of the question. I've had centers in the past that weren't timbre-matched with L&R and, after having a good timbre-matched set, I would do whatever it takes to achieve that goal. If that meant selling an entertainment center or modifying it, so be it.

    Sorry, I know you didn't really want to hear that...
    Last edited by Tbone289; 02-25-2013 at 06:13 PM.
    2.1: Peachtree DAC●iT>Yaqin MC-10L w/6CA7-EH, Voskhod 6N1P-EV>polkaudio RT25i, PSW202

    5.1: ATI HD5850 HDMI Bitstreaming>Denon AVR-1910>polkaudio RT7, CS350-LS, RT3, PSW505, Sony Bravia KDL-52W3000

  3. #3

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    There's two schools of thought:

    1. Get the biggest, baddest center you can afford.
    2. Get the biggest, baddest center you can afford that is voiced the same as your L/R speakers.

    Some people don't mind the difference in timber. I believe that most in that camp simply never experienced a matched front. If the CS1 fits and the CS2 doesn't, get the CS1. Stay in the family.
    Usher CP-6311, Shuguang S200MK, Shuguang S845MK, Pioneer BDP-51fd, Essence Audio HDACC, Douglas IC's, Douglas Alpha bi-wire SC's, Pangea/Douglas PC's, Epson 8100

  4. #4

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    I appreciate the help. So am I correct in assuming that the CS2 is the correct timbre for the TSi300s?

    I have to say, the TSi300s and CS2 sound great compared to what the CS2 sounded like when paired with RCi series that I used to have. Are the RCi series not timber-matched to the CS2 perhaps?

    Thanks!

  5. #5

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    One other issue you may consider is room size???? Timber match is the first priority, but with speakers from the same Co gives you a leg up in that area as many of there product line will not stray to far in SQ. The biggest is not always the best route, if the center is to dominate you lose that sense of space of sound that can travel from left to right. On the other end with room size a center too small can cause dialog to become unclear and faint. IMHO the normal or standard 4-5" mids with .5 tweeter will work fine from a listening distance of 5-15 feet, any more than that you will need bigger center and L/R to fill the space.
    Family Room HT 7.1:
    Pioneer Elite VSX 32 Pioneer Elite BDP 95FD Pioneer Elite DV 47Ai Pioneer Elite MD53 SlimDevice Transporter Panamax M5300-EX
    Living room 2ch:
    Integra ADM 2.1 Teac EQ MKII Squeezebox Touch Fluance SX Speakers
    Upstaris media room:
    Pioneer VSX D510 Sony PS3 Squeezebox Classic 3 Polkaudio Monitor 40 II fronts CSR Center
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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by DSkip View Post
    There's two schools of thought:

    1. Get the biggest, baddest center you can afford.
    2. Get the biggest, baddest center you can afford that is voiced the same as your L/R speakers.

    Ditto on this option.

    Some people don't mind the difference in timber. I believe that most in that camp simply never experienced a matched front. If the CS1 fits and the CS2 doesn't, get the CS1. Stay in the family.
    I have never used a Center that was not in the same family as my L/R so I can't comment on it Sorry.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by recoveryone View Post
    Timber match is the first priority, but with speakers from the same Co gives you a leg up in that area as many of there product line will not stray to far in SQ.
    Just to clarify, simply staying within a company's product does not guarantee a timbre-matched system. You want to stay in the same series. In this case, the old Monitors are essentially the same speakers as the TSi, so moving back a generation is not a bad move.
    Usher CP-6311, Shuguang S200MK, Shuguang S845MK, Pioneer BDP-51fd, Essence Audio HDACC, Douglas IC's, Douglas Alpha bi-wire SC's, Pangea/Douglas PC's, Epson 8100

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    Quote Originally Posted by DSkip View Post
    In this case, the old Monitors are essentially the same speakers as the TSi, so moving back a generation is not a bad move.
    In that case, the Monitor 15C will fit and might be a good choice. I'm not sure the tweeter is exactly the same, however.
    Last edited by Tbone289; 02-25-2013 at 07:26 PM.
    2.1: Peachtree DAC●iT>Yaqin MC-10L w/6CA7-EH, Voskhod 6N1P-EV>polkaudio RT25i, PSW202

    5.1: ATI HD5850 HDMI Bitstreaming>Denon AVR-1910>polkaudio RT7, CS350-LS, RT3, PSW505, Sony Bravia KDL-52W3000

  9. #9

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    i was surprised to see how much smaller the lsic was than my cs400

  10. #10

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    I found someone local who is selling a set of Monitor 70 speakers along with the CS1. I'm considering getting the set and using the Monitor 70s in front with the CS1 center and then TSi300s as surround. Thoughts?

    Am I now mixing families with the TSi300s and Monitor 70s? Seems like they are the same family, but what do I know.

    Here's a rough picture of the layout.
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  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by motionblurrr View Post
    Am I now mixing families with the TSi300s and Monitor 70s? Seems like they are the same family, but what do I know.
    They're close enough to not matter. It's not as important that the surround channels are of the same family as the fronts.

    One thing to keep in mind is that Monitor 70's will require considerably more power than your TSi300s to perform well.
    2.1: Peachtree DAC●iT>Yaqin MC-10L w/6CA7-EH, Voskhod 6N1P-EV>polkaudio RT25i, PSW202

    5.1: ATI HD5850 HDMI Bitstreaming>Denon AVR-1910>polkaudio RT7, CS350-LS, RT3, PSW505, Sony Bravia KDL-52W3000

  12. #12

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    it's considered as same family...so no worries in timbre matching if you are into that....

    but your system will be from same (TSI & Monitor) family so if Monitor 70 and CS1 can be had for a good price, yeah sure...
    Video: LG 55LN5100/Samsung LNT4065F
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  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tbone289 View Post
    One thing to keep in mind is that Monitor 70's will require considerably more power than your TSi300s to perform well.
    Will the Onkyo TX-NR515 not have the power to do it? Or are we talking more about how much power I'm drawing from the circuits in my condo?

    Pardon my ignorance...

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by motionblurrr View Post
    Will the Onkyo TX-NR515 not have the power to do it? Or are we talking more about how much power I'm drawing from the circuits in my condo?

    Pardon my ignorance...
    I'm talking about power provided by your AVR. Your AVR will drive the 70s, but not to full potential. It would drive the 60s better.
    2.1: Peachtree DAC●iT>Yaqin MC-10L w/6CA7-EH, Voskhod 6N1P-EV>polkaudio RT25i, PSW202

    5.1: ATI HD5850 HDMI Bitstreaming>Denon AVR-1910>polkaudio RT7, CS350-LS, RT3, PSW505, Sony Bravia KDL-52W3000

  15. #15

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    I build and sell speaker cabinets , on a rebuild of a damaged cabinet I follow the exact interior volume and if needed change some dimensions and add to others ( to maintain interior volume )
    this may be the best solution !
    Or if you got cash to spare just buy a center that fits your cabinet , but make sure its the correct timbre match for you mains

  16. #16

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    Thank you all for your input. I decided to go ahead and get the Monitor 70s and CS1 from a local craigslist ad. Got them all hooked up last night and they sound great! So not only did I solve the issue of getting a good speaker into the cabinet, I also upgraded my entire system from a 3.1 to a full 5.1! Neighbors might not be happy, but then again these new Monitor 70s have enough bass that I can turn off the subwoofer at night and still have great sound. :D

  17. #17

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    Awesome. Glad it all worked out so well! Surprises like that are what make this hobby really interesting sometimes.
    2.1: Peachtree DAC●iT>Yaqin MC-10L w/6CA7-EH, Voskhod 6N1P-EV>polkaudio RT25i, PSW202

    5.1: ATI HD5850 HDMI Bitstreaming>Denon AVR-1910>polkaudio RT7, CS350-LS, RT3, PSW505, Sony Bravia KDL-52W3000

  18. #18

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    Welcome to the club motionblurr. HT is complicated. You might stop now with what you have and just kick back and enjoy the present and let things soak in a bit before changing things. I think eventually you will be changing everything from your AVR to most of your speakers so enjoy what you have and just do some pipe dreaming on your next system. Again, welcome, show us some pictures and ask questions.
    Main Family Room: Sony 46 LCD, Sony Blue Ray, Sony DVD/VCR combo,Onkyo TXNR 708, Parasound 5250,
    Polk SDS-SRS with mods, CSI 5 center + Klipsch SC2, Polk RT2000P rears, Klipsch KG 1.5's sides, Polk Micro Pro 1000, Polk Micro Pro 2000, Polk SW505, Belkin PF60, Signal Cable Classics,Monster IC's, 2 15 amp circuits & 1 20 amp circuit.

    Living Room: Belkin PF60, Parasound HCA2200, MIT ProlineEXP balanced IC's,Emotiva XDA-1 DAC/Pre,Emotiva ERC2 transport,MIT AVT2, Polk LSI 9's.

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