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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey,

I am looking to complete my budget 5.1 surround sound system meant to be used in both a medium sized bedroom and a small dorm room (I am a student). This, and the fact that I need to be able to transport these to and from school (~300 miles) means that floor standing speakers are most likely out of the question because of the limited space in a car. This is what I currently have:

2x Cambridge Soundworks M55 Bookshelf speakers as Front Left/Right
1x Bose Acoustimass center channel.
1x Epiphany 130W 10" powered subwoofer

Receiver: Sony STR-DG510

What I am looking to do is to complete the surround aspect, and replace the center channel. The only reason that I have that particular center channel is that I found it for $20, and since I am building on a budget, it caught my eye; I have decided that it is time to get something a bit better.

I have about $300 to spend as a maximum, but I would not be opposed to spending less. What I have been looking at so far is something along the lines of the JBL ES20 bookshelves to either serve as Front Left/right or surround left/right and the corresponding ES25C Center Channel. The total of those speakers would be $320 shipped.

Please help me to find some good sound for the money that I am looking to spend. Any and all help is greatly appreciated
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The yambekas look like a great deal, but I don't think that it will fit my needs of being portable to and from school. As for the SVSounds I will take those under consideration, but unfortunately they are ~$180 over what I am looking to spend and being a student, I can't really justify spending that much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So I managed to pick up a pair of Polk Audio T20e's off craigslist for my front 2 speakers. Since I got those for only $60, I was considering using the remaining money to build a DIY center channel. I was browsing several designs and landed on the Cynosure center channel. Would this be a good build for the money and not extremely difficult so that as my first DIY project, it would be manageable?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Is there another speaker design that you could recommend that would have a similar sound? I would like to do some sort of DIY speaker work, and since I have the money and the time during the summer it would be a good time.

Also, I may be able to get a Polk CSi30 center channel speaker for $60, would you recommend this to match with the other speakers I got?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
The CSi30 is from a different series, but from what I can tell uses almost identical drivers to the T20e's so that it should match pretty closely.

I would like to find another T20e, but as I got the other pair off craigslist, the odds of me finding another low priced one is unlikely.

I will look into doing a DIY subwoofer. Would it be reasonable to use the plate amp that I have in my current sub for a DIY version? or would this cause difficulties of matching specs/etc. The most difficult thing for me is my budget. I am a college student so, naturally, money is a bit tight. I may have to put off doing DIY speakers for a few years when I get more of an income and more space. I may just stick with building some of my own speaker stands as that shouldn't be too expensive and would at least be some DIY work.

I have arranged a meeting for me to check out/demo the Polk CSi30 later today (6:30), and if everything goes well I will pick that up for $60. Thank you for all your help, I really appreciate you taking the time to give me your opinion. I have only a little experience with sound equipment, and the opinion of people who have lots more experience is greatly appreciated.


EDIT: also, can anybody recommend a proven subwoofer plan that the total cost is under $200?
 
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