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Matching Speakers?

Old 09-27-06, 02:31 PM
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Matching Speakers?

I am in the process of learning about home theater and I'm doing the best I can to piece together a decent system on a budget. So far I've got excellent deals via some sales. However, I am a little concerned now about the concept of "matching" speakers to speakers and to the receiver. Here is what I am currently working with:

Pioneer VSX-1015TX Receiver
Polk Audio CSi25 Center
(2) Polk Audio R-15
(2) Klipsch S-1
Definitive Technology ProSub 100TL

I also have a Sharp HTIB, so I've been using its speakers while accumulating the others. The Pioneer receiver is capable of 7.1 surround, but I've been told that there is no media for this. I'm wondering if trying to connect sub-standard speakers just to take advantage of the 7.1 may hurt rather then help.

From what I have read so far, it seems like the Klipsch speakers may be a bad combination b/c of the horns. I was considering using them as my fronts. Will this mess things up? Is matching speakers as simple as sticking to the same manufacturer or product line? Any advice is appreciated.

Last edited by JackBurton; 09-27-06 at 02:39 PM.
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Old 09-27-06, 02:50 PM
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but I've been told that there is no media for this. I'm wondering if trying to connect sub-standard speakers just to take advantage of the 7.1 may hurt rather then help
I am not aware of any 7.1 media. It wont hurt but why bother? it may even sound strange if your processor tries to send some part of the audio to the added speakers.

As to your other question you are confused on terminology.

Matching speakers is a function of getting similar sound from the speakers you are using. Mixing brands with different drivers could make a certain speaker sound louder, brighter or more muffled than the others. There is no harm in experimenting, hook them up and see.

The other part of matching is to match the speakers to the receiver. I see no problem here as most consumer type equipment will work together just fine. A bad example would be for you to connect your Klipsch speakers to the HTIB receiver and play it really loudly. You will either damage your speakers due to clipping or burn out the amp.
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Old 09-27-06, 04:37 PM
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You should never mix different speakers in a set-up. MAYBE you can put different surrounds than you have fronts.

Your mains and center channel must be matched. If you have to have different surrounds, fine.

This goes for different brands as well as lines within a brand. Same brand wont be as big a deal but different brands are bad.

Every speaker has a different type of sound coming from it. IN a HT set-up let's say you are watching Top Gun and a fly-by happens. Your sound starts at your left speaker, then middle, then right. You want the sound to remain similar and not notice a difference.
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Old 09-27-06, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by SoSpacey
Every speaker has a different type of sound coming from it. IN a HT set-up let's say you are watching Top Gun and a fly-by happens. Your sound starts at your left speaker, then middle, then right. You want the sound to remain similar and not notice a difference.
This is the example that finally helped me understand timbre matching back when I was getting into HT. As that plane flies by, you don't want it to sound like a plane in the left speaker, a lawn mower in the center, then a plane again in the right. By having mismatched speakers, the sound stage will not be "seemless" across the front.

While you definitely want the same brand for your front 3 speakers, that still might not guarantee a "match". You want the center channel to have the same drivers as the front speakers do.
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Old 09-28-06, 12:05 PM
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Thanks for the input everyone. I guess I will experiment and do some more shopping around. If I want a uniform sound in the front, I suppose I'll have to find some front speakers with drivers to match my CSi25 center channel. For now, perhaps I am better off using the R-15 as fronts and the Klipsch as surrounds. The R-15's are also Polk, but it seems like they would be too small to complement the center. How do you determine what type of drivers a speaker has and if they make a good match (short of trying them out)?

R-15
Driver Complement
Mid/Woofer 1 - 5-1/4" Diameter (13.34cm)
Dynamic Balance mineral filled polymer composite cone driver, shielded
Tweeter 1 - 3/4" Diameter (1.91cm)
Dynamic Balance silk/polymer composite dome, shielded

Electrical
Overall Frequency Response 60Hz - 24kHz
Lower -3dB Limit 65Hz
Upper -3dB Limit 20kHz
Nominal Impedance 8 ohms
Recommended Amplifier Power 20 - 100 w/channel
Efficiency 89 dB
Inputs 5-way binding posts


CSi25
Electrical
Overall Frequency Response 55Hz - 22kHz
Lower -3dB Limit 60Hz
Upper -3dB Limit 22kHz
Nominal Impedance 4 ohms
Recommended Amplifier Power 10-100W w/channel
Crossover 2.3kHz

S-1
frequency response 95Hz - 23kHz +/-3dB
power handling 50 w (200 w peak)
sensitivity 88.5dB @ 2.83 volts/1 meter
nominal impedance 8 ohms
crossover frequency 2800Hz
tweeter Two 0.75 (1.9cm) aluminum dome tweeters
high frequency horn 2 x 4 (10.2cm) 90 x 60 Tractrix Horns
woofer 4 (10.2cm) woofer
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