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  1. #1

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    Default New to forums, and a few speaker questions

    Hello all. New to the forums, I have polk audio in my car, and am now starting to build my HT system. HT is rather confusing, and I was hoping a few folks would have some pointers.

    First, some info about the space and the system I would eventually like to have:

    Living room, decorated, but sparsley, approximately 12x15. Hardwood floors with throw rugs, soft couch, soft loveseat, coffee table, and a long, low Ikea stand for the gear. Right now we are with the Sony Trinitron CRT, with plans to mov eto Plasma somewhere down the road, but not soon. My curent 2.1 system consists of an old Technics SADX-350, which is a 5.1 capable system from the early 90s, but is only hooked up to a Cambridge Soundworks Ensemble III powered sub 2.1 system. The receiver will be replaced later, but speakers must come first!

    Now, the big issue. Where should I start with speakers? Should I get floor standers and later expand into the full 5.1, or should I get the center channel et al. going and later upgrade my two fronts to something a bit more full range? I am totally removing the Ensemble III for numerous reasons, so it isn't getting mixed into the system (It doesn't seem possible to do this anyway, as CSW systems have BIZZARE wiring).


    A short aside:
    Actually, I seem to be clueless when it comes to wiring up a full 5.1.

    The back of my receiver has speaker binding posts for front left/right, rear left/right, and center, but I can't tell how a sub would be hooked up with the system. Looking at newer rigs, the inputs appear to be the same, with no separate subwoofer hookup. How does one hook a sub up to the system? My CSW 2.1 has me splitting the speaker wires between the ports on my two sats and the sub, and then all three just plug into the front L/r channel. Is this normal? Seems very odd.

    Anyway. Tweeter is selling some T90EB floors for 179 each, which, if they are really identical to the Monitor 60s, seems like a great deal. They also have the Rm10GY on sale for aa surround package. I can't afford both, currently, and just getting the floors wouldn't put me into 5.1, which I really want to get going on. But, if it's a steal to get these floors, it seems like I should jump.

    I guess to narrow this all down...

    - I have decided to go polk, as they have a great rep and well, they look damn cool.

    - I just don't seem to know where to start building the speaker system.

    - I am confused on how to wire 5.1

    Any help will be appreciated. :)

    Thanks

    Mike

  2. #2

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    Welcome,

    First off I would say get the mains you wish now then you can forget about upgrading later.

    As for hooking up you sub. if there is no actual sub out on your receiver, you will need to run the left and right speaker cables from the receiver to the sub, then out from the sub to speakers using quality speaker cable.
    Start with that and if you have more questions don't be shy

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Willow
    Welcome,

    First off I would say get the mains you wish now then you can forget about upgrading later.

    As for hooking up you sub. if there is no actual sub out on your receiver, you will need to run the left and right speaker cables from the receiver to the sub, then out from the sub to speakers using quality speaker cable.
    Start with that and if you have more questions don't be shy
    Thanks for the quick reply.

    SO I should go for the floors firstand then piece-meal the rest of the system in with separate surrounds etc? Sound like what I was thinking.

    About the sub.

    So the CSW system I have uses sort of standard wiring for subs? If so, is there a way to integrate the CSW stuff in with some new Polk speakers for now, until I get the full line?

    For instance. could I use my two CSW sats as rears, buy the T90EBs, and wire the T90s in to my current sub? I would also grab a Polk Center now to complete the system if that is the case....

  4. #4

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    Now in an ideal world where $$ was no object, I would say not to use the sats for rears, in any case if you want 5.1 and have unmatched rears then yes you can. Your system will not be timbre matched in the rears but the rears are not the main parts of the system. I would say if you can swing it, get your mains and a matching centre and by all means for the time being use your sats as rears. You will eventually want something of the same level as the rest of your system(for rears)

  5. #5

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    Right, it would be very temporary. Money is most certainly an object here as well. As for the voice matching, I read up on that and am aware that, in the finished system, I need voice matched speakers all around. That is the plan, but in the meantime, I am just wondering what options I have open with what I have and what I can purchase in the near future. I guess my only concern is that for some reason if I attempted to wire the sub through the new polks, I wanted to avoid any possible damage to my gear. I guess the CSW sub would work with anything if this kooky wiring is standard for all 5.1 systems, which it seems to be. I guess my next step would be to grab some Polk mains and a nice center channel and give it a go!

    An Aside.

    Are the T90EBs a good speaker?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Sedai
    Are the T90EBs a good speaker?
    they're more than good enough for $350/pr. Get a monitor cs1 on ebay for cheap. If you're lucky, you'll only spend about $450 total.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Sedai

    The back of my receiver has speaker binding posts for front left/right, rear left/right, and center, but I can't tell how a sub would be hooked up with the system. Looking at newer rigs, the inputs appear to be the same, with no separate subwoofer hookup.

    Mike
    HT receivers usually have a pre amp output(rca jack) that you would hook a powered sub woofer up to
    Speakers:SDA2a, sub:Atlantic Technologies 172 PBM
    Pre:B&K PRO-10MC(2ch)
    Amps:Parasound HCA 1000a
    SourcesOppo DV-970HD, Xbox360, Kenwood KT-5300
    Cables:Philips/RCA/Monster

    Life's short, Listen to SDA's
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  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by dudeinaroom
    HT receivers usually have a pre amp output(rca jack) that you would hook a powered sub woofer up to
    Hmmm. Most of the articles and primers I have read here and on other sites state that this method really isn;t the best way to wire a sub, and claim the parallel wiring method will get the best results. I'd like to stay away from any extra LPFs if possible.

    I will be feeding the sub through the Front L/R channels, I think.

    There is a pretty comprehensive article on wiring this stuff here on this excellent site, and it has been a huge help in bringing me up to speed on wiring home audio.

    I do have a ton of sound reinforcement background, but with live gear, and the HT stuff was a bit confusing at first. After a couple of hours of reading last night, I feel confident I can wire a system up pretty quickly and accuarately.


    Now, tuning the system....that's another story... Can't wait to get tinkering on that once I have all my speakers...

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    Mike,

    Welcome!

    First, I would recommend going with a good pair of mains first. I'm partial to floorstanders but your mileage may vary. I'd say buy the best ones you can afford. Then add the center, sub and rears (I would say in that order)

    According to Polk and my experience, the best way to set up the sub is to NOT use the sub out jack. Run you L/R speaker wires to the sub speaker level inputs and from the sub outs to your mains. Set your crossover to 60hz to start and experiment from there. This is a little more tricky but will yield better integration of your sub/mains in the long run.

    Good luck and keep us posted, eh?

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by TroyD
    Mike,

    Welcome!

    First, I would recommend going with a good pair of mains first. I'm partial to floorstanders but your mileage may vary. I'd say buy the best ones you can afford. Then add the center, sub and rears (I would say in that order)

    According to Polk and my experience, the best way to set up the sub is to NOT use the sub out jack. Run you L/R speaker wires to the sub speaker level inputs and from the sub outs to your mains. Set your crossover to 60hz to start and experiment from there. This is a little more tricky but will yield better integration of your sub/mains in the long run.

    Good luck and keep us posted, eh?

    BDT

    Right, I had decided to go this route when I found out about the shabby LPF in place in some of the sub-out rigs.

    Loving the Polk site, has been a great help.

    Here is what I have put together for the system we will get this weekend:

    Mains: T90EB Floors (Monitor 60s)
    Csi3 Center Channel
    T20Eb Rears (Monitor 30s)

    And the gem... Technics SA-GX350 (To scope this puppy out, you will have to head on over to vintagetechnics.com, and then commence pointing and laughing). No really, For an older surround box, it has a good rep (minus the quirky fan, which has never affected me). I WILL be replaing it down the road, but can;t afford it now.

    I was going to use my current sub until I can lock down a better one, but from what I can tell in my reading, it might do more harm than good, so I will propably just go sub-less (ACK!!) for a bit until I can grab a good sub.

    So, yeah, we are doing the tweeter route, as there is one right across the NH border (where there is 0 sales tax) and the T90EBs seems like a great deal. We also want to have the system hooked up for the season opener of 24 this Sunday night!

  11. #11

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    Yeah, I wouldn't bother hooking up that CSW sub in your new system. I don't think it would hurt anything, but it's designed only for a CSW Sub/Sat system and would severely limit the range of sound going to your nice new mains.
    If you will it, dude, it is no dream.

  12. #12

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    If you want really clean midrange from your Monitor 60's, use the sub out method instead of the "Polk way". Most of us here don't use the Polk way (according to the last poll we took: http://www.polkaudio.com/forums/show...light=polk+way) .

    But hey, you don't have to take my word for it, use your own ears and pay particular attention to the midrange when you are experimenting.

    Cheers

  13. #13

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    Personally I don't use a sub. My sda 2b's provide plenty of bass for my room, and go deeper than my 15 did anyways. I've got the fronts set to large, and the other 3 are set to small with a 100 hz crossover point(receiver only has 100, 150, and 200 hz settings). Every now and the I'll set the rears to large( infinity studio monitor 100's 2-way with 10's and soft dome tweets.) but it's much cleaner running all the bass through the polks
    Speakers:SDA2a, sub:Atlantic Technologies 172 PBM
    Pre:B&K PRO-10MC(2ch)
    Amps:Parasound HCA 1000a
    SourcesOppo DV-970HD, Xbox360, Kenwood KT-5300
    Cables:Philips/RCA/Monster

    Life's short, Listen to SDA's
    Life is short live Sui Juris
    Where did SOPA go?

  14. #14

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    It has begun :)

    Picked up my mains (T90EB) and my center (Csi3) yesterday, and just popped the mains in to my current rig, just to see how they sound.

    WOW

    Loving the speakers, and realizing just how bad off I was for sound. So rich and full. We watched 24 and missed half the episode lost in the soundscape.

    The slight hitch I have run into is the natives getting restless about how...prominant the stuff is in our living room. A new TV stand should do the trick and get everthing tight enough to appease said natives.

    Having fun so far!!

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