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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Right I'm considering upgrading at least my front and center speakers from the little satellite jobs that come with my amp. What do I need to know/consider. I know very little technically about this stuff so would appreciate any input. For instance can I even put better speakers with my reciever or are these basic systems not really designed with upgrading in mind? If it helps my receiver is a PhilipsFR984.
 

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Your Philips FR984 looks not bad at all.

Good front speakers are always an good investment. The center speaker is importent for conversations in movies or documentary.

Maby in the future you will upgrade your Philips receiver. Now you can use your new good speakers also.
Choose speakers by the same brand. Every speaker has the same sound charistics.

Make budget, what will I spend.
Listen in the store to different brands. Take your time, it's no hurry.
Important to know, can I bring back the speakers if I dont like them?

With brand you should choose is difficult to say. It will depend on your musical/moviecal taste.
 

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Good points above and I will add that you want to get speakers that have a frequency response of at least 80-18,000Hz. Any good subwoofer will handel the lower frequencies so you want your main channel speakers to be able to go down to 80Hz or you will have a hole of missing frequencies.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So for a start then there's no reason why I have to stick with the satellite speakers the reciever came with? What do I need to look at in terms of compatability? Ohms? Or wattage? Or...??
 

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A lot depends on your expectations. If you listen at reasonable levels you could go with just about any speaker out there. If you want to listen at or near reference levels, from the little bit of info I can find on the receiver, I would guess you should go with some fairly efficient 8 Ohm speakers. Of course there are many other variables that come into play. Do you have a budget in mind? Size considerations?
 

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Great advice so far. Speakers are the single biggest factor in how your system sounds and a great first upgrade.

Pick some music you like, include all different types. Make a CD to bring with you when you listen to different speakers. Remember this is FUN take your time you will end up living with what you buy so be sure it’s what you like. Do not let any salespeople rush you into a decision. You can ALWASE wait until tomorrow to make a decision. Remember this is FUN

It’s hard to recommend anything to you until you decide your budget, but there are literally thousands of speaker to choose from at almost every price point. Keep in mind speakers will sound different in your listening room than in any store; try to deal with people with a good return policy. Some places will let you bring speakers home to audition, ask the worst thing they can do is say no.

If you are purchasing locally go to as many different places as possible, find someone who will listen TO YOU about what you are looking for and what your expectations are. All salespeople are pushy but if they try to talk you into something your not sure of or give you the “I do this for a living so I know what you want” speech walk away. There is always tomorrow.
 

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For that receiver the Klipsch speaker line are great as they are very efficient easy to drive.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for this guys. I'll be honest life means my budget isn't great at the moment. But then I'm not looking for perfection necessarily. I'll get some pics up now, but my cinema room and that's all these speakers will be used for, movies and gaming (PS3) is basically a small and I mean small loft conversion. Around 3 metres by 3 metres. And a low ceiling. Around 1.7 metres high (no you can't stand up fully) with a 50inch plasma tv. Suppose the budget is around the £200 mark. (between $300-$350) What I'm after isn't sheer loudness or power. More detail and depth at more sociable volumes. An immersive soundfield without resorting to whacking the volume up.
 

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In that case I think you can pretty well go with the speakers that you think sound best that fit within your budget. Perhaps something like the Monitor Audio Bronze BX series.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
How about wattage? Sorry but i don't really understand how it works making sure they're compatible with my reciever technically.
Probably worth mentioning that as far as I'm aware the total output of my amp is 350w. 5×60w and 1×50w RMS.
 

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Too many people get caught up in the numbers. For your application I would not worry too much about watts, I would suggest speakers that have a Nominal Impedance of 8 Ohm and a sensitivity rating of about 90 or higher. For example the aforementioned Monitor Audio Bronze BX2 bookshelf speakers have a sensitivity rating of 90db ([email protected]). That basically means that this speaker will produce a Sound Pressure Level of 90 decibels 1 meter away from the speaker while using 1 watt. Your receiver would need a solid 10 watts to produce 100 dB in an average listening room. That is a pretty general explanation but should help point you in the right direction. The most important thing is to find speakers that you like at a price you're willing to pay.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I've dug out a pair of bookshelf speakers from an old hi-fi we had in the bedroom. They're the type with the cables soldered permanently into the unit so you can't use different stuff. Anyone know if these would make suitable temporary upgrades from my front satellite speakers?
 
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