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Discussion Starter #1
Hello ,

last year i bought a new A/V receiver : DENON AVR-X2400H
https://www.denon.co.uk/uk/product/homecinema/avreceiver/avrx2400h

now it is time to get a new set speakers for my audio system.
I use my system 50% for music and 50% for movies
I would like a good speaker setup for both listening to music and watching a movie.
No need for 5.1 or 7.1 surround speaker system

The room : my living room is 6 by 4 meters and is open towards my dining area (also 6 by 4 meters)
ceiling height is 2.5 meter.

First question :
I was thinking of buying a couple of good floor standing speakers.
Is that all i need to have good audio for both music and movies ?
Or do i need to buy a subwoofer ?
Or do i need to buy a center speaker ?
Is it worth the extra $$ ?

Second question :
What is best : a two way or a three way or a four way speaker system ?
audio quality vs price $$ ?

Third question : ohms ?
in the specs of my AV receiver i find :
Power Output (8 ohm, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 0.08% 2ch Drive) => 95 W
Power Output (6 ohm, 1 kHz, 0.7% 2ch Drive) => 125 W
Power Output (6 ohm, 1 kHz, 1% 1ch Drive) => 150 W

what type of speakers is the best choice for me ?
6 ohm of 8 ohm ?

I bought my AV receiver online , and was thinking of buying my speakers on the same website :
check link below for available hifi speakers :

https://www.coolblue.be/en/hifi-speakers/type-hifi-speaker:zuil-vloerstaand
any tips on what speakers best suit my needs ?

thanks .
 

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Your room is not very large so that means you could choose either bookshelf or tower speakers. Some of that decision comes down to how much space you have available for the speakers, and budget of course. Since you didn't give any indication on what you are looking to spend you could get suggestions that include very inexpensive speakers or very expensive ones. Some idea of budget would be necessary to ensure the suggestions people give will be affordable for you.

Since the system will be used for 50% movies you really should have at least the front 3 speakers (center, left and right) along with a subwoofer. That is the minimum configuration for any type of home theater. 5.1 would be better, but at least with 3.1 you will get enough of the soundtrack to make for a good experience. Unless the speakers you choose are very inefficient, have a low impedance and you like to play really loud your receiver will be fine so that shouldn't be a big concern. You will be able use almost any speaker.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for reply.

Today i went to my local electro shop for a bit more information.
Not much on display as they are busy doing a change in the audio area.
The vendor told me the best package for my goals was 2 tower speakers and a subwoofer.
The center should not really be necessary.
What is the use of the center ? I find on the internet it is mostly used for speech in movies.
anyway , not sure wheather yet i need one or not.

I prefer floor standing tower speakers to bookshelf speakers.
Visually i would go for a black speaker set as they best match my interior.

As to budget , not quite sure yet.
For the whole package of speakers i was thinking around 500 to 1100 euro ?

I just did an online check what was available for my budget.
I am a bit overwhelmed ...
Also not sure what to look for , what is important ?
Number of speakers in the tower ?
Number of drivers ?
What brands make good speakers ?

What is the best option ?
Go for the best tower speakers and budget center en subwoofer ?
Or divide the budget evenly between all speakers ?

Let's start with the tower speakers as they are the most important ones in a set. (I found that somewhere on the internet)
I found really cheap ones , and very expensive ones.
What makes up the difference ?

cheap :
https://www.bol.com/nl/p/pioneer-s-es21-lr-k-stereo-luidsprekers-2-stuks-zwart/9200000042755246/?suggestionType=browse&bltgh=rBFayui4o7i7du1zL1lPKw.1.7.ProductTitle#product_specifications

mid-range budget :
https://www.bol.com/nl/p/jamo-s-807-vloerstaande-set-luidsprekers-zwart/9200000086805402/?suggestionType=browse&bltgh=rBFayui4o7i7du1zL1lPKw.qU--a1tDkOXCxxgEn-9FlQ_0.3.ProductTitle

expensive :
https://www.bol.com/nl/p/monitor-audio-monitor-300-zwart-vloerstaande-luidspreker/9200000090538794/?suggestionType=browse&bltgh=kF2bHanPryXr3Np7qIdDTg.jekERkI-n5RUPN9k-ZFH8g_0.4.ProductTitle


Here is a site i often buy stuff from and has much choice in speakers :
https://www.bol.com/nl/l/hifi-luidsprekers/N/10722/?view=list&origin=8

Also i found this speaker set , they come with a built in subwoofer on the side .
Does this replace a separate subwoofer ?
https://www.bol.com/nl/p/jamo-s628-vloerstaande-luidsprekers-2-stuks-zwart/9200000022113485/?suggestionType=browse&bltgh=jd4gb7FKnrbV3Uo1c-VLEA.upAFGjt3yx85Pv0-EgVNsw_0.2.ProductImage


Any help and advice is more than welcome .
 

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Today i went to my local electro shop for a bit more information.
Not much on display as they are busy doing a change in the audio area.
The vendor told me the best package for my goals was 2 tower speakers and a subwoofer.
The center should not really be necessary.
What is the use of the center ? I find on the internet it is mostly used for speech in movies.
Did he know you wanted your system for TV and movies too? If so I would be careful taking any advice from him. The center is the most important speaker in a home theater so saying it is not necessary makes me think he doesn't know a lot. For music 2 speakers and a subwoofer is fine, but not for a home theater. Some receivers have an option for a 'phantom' center, which takes the portion of the soundtrack that should be going to a real center channel and makes it play from the left and right speakers instead. It does this by splitting the output and blending it back together. Not many people use it though because it doesn't sound very real.


I just did an online check what was available for my budget.
I am a bit overwhelmed ...
Also not sure what to look for , what is important ?
Number of speakers in the tower ?
Number of drivers ?
What brands make good speakers ?
The number of drivers, the type, configuration all of that can matter, but if you focus on too many things you will be overwhelmed. This is part of the reason I asked about budget; the amount of money you have to spend will narrow down your options, making it easier to decide.

Each speaker company creates their own sound; some are rich, others detailed. You can have very good high notes, excellent midrange or deep bass. Some will sound good when played loud, others work better when played soft. The more money you spend the more of these you will get from the speakers, but the best thing to do is decide what qualities are the most important to you and focus on speakers that have those.


What is the best option ?
Go for the best tower speakers and budget center en subwoofer ?
Or divide the budget evenly between all speakers ?
Everything needs to be pretty much equal, otherwise you create an imbalance. For example, suppose you buy great speakers and an inexpensive subwoofer. The speakers will have a nice sound but what you hear from the subwoofer won't be as good, which makes everything sound worse.


Let's start with the tower speakers as they are the most important ones in a set. (I found that somewhere on the internet)
I found really cheap ones , and very expensive ones.
What makes up the difference ?
Your link to 'expensive' speakers are made by Monitor Audio, a company many people think make very good products. If you want a nice sound those will probably work really well. Would that still leave you enough money to get the matching center and a good subwoofer? Speaking of that...

If you do get a center it should match the left and right speakers. By "match" I mean be from the same company and use similar drivers. This matching is important because a lot of the TV and movie soundtracks transfer sounds between the front 3 speakers. If the center is very different from the left and right speakers sometimes that can be audible and distracting
 

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Did he know you wanted your system for TV and movies too? If so I would be careful taking any advice from him. The center is the most important speaker in a home theater so saying it is not necessary makes me think he doesn't know a lot. For music 2 speakers and a subwoofer is fine, but not for a home theater. Some receivers have an option for a 'phantom' center, which takes the portion of the soundtrack that should be going to a real center channel and makes it play from the left and right speakers instead. It does this by splitting the output and blending it back together. Not many people use it though because it doesn't sound very real.




The number of drivers, the type, configuration all of that can matter, but if you focus on too many things you will be overwhelmed. This is part of the reason I asked about budget; the amount of money you have to spend will narrow down your options, making it easier to decide.

Each speaker company creates their own sound; some are rich, others detailed. You can have very good high notes, excellent midrange or deep bass. Some will sound good when played loud, others work better when played soft. The more money you spend the more of these you will get from the speakers, but the best thing to do is decide what qualities are the most important to you and focus on speakers that have those.




Everything needs to be pretty much equal, otherwise you create an imbalance. For example, suppose you buy great speakers and an inexpensive subwoofer. The speakers will have a nice sound but what you hear from the subwoofer won't be as good, which makes everything sound worse.




Your link to 'expensive' speakers are made by Monitor Audio, a company many people think make very good products. If you want a nice sound those will probably work really well. Would that still leave you enough money to get the matching center and a good subwoofer? Speaking of that...

If you do get a center it should match the left and right speakers. By "match" I mean be from the same company and use similar drivers. This matching is important because a lot of the TV and movie soundtracks transfer sounds between the front 3 speakers. If the center is very different from the left and right speakers sometimes that can be audible and distracting
I hate the effect of centre speakers and think they are over-rated.

I have been using a 2.1 system since my second year of getting a 5.1 system. I enable phantom surround sound mode sometimes, but usually the improvement in 'rear' sound is inferior to just getting a great sound from the front and sub-woofers (I connected 3 sub-woofers to my system's single sub woofer output and placed them in non-mirrored locations around my listening area).

With the Denon I would suggest you go with the Pioneer 5.1 solution if you want to play it safe. With Denon's Audyssey the trick is to turn OFF their Dynamic EQ and Dynamic Loudness as they are calibrated for (always SMPTE calibrated) store bought original DVDs and Blue-Ray. Perhaps Netflix digital streams might be properly calibrated, I haven't tested it lately. The "mis-calibration"? Music CDs are manufactured too loud (thanks to the Loudness Wars) and so end up sounding bassy. Older CDs from the 80s might have a better dynamic range and so more SMPTE calibrated and sound better, recent CD releases seldom not.

With Audyssey you don't have to worry too much about your loudspeakers, personally I use 2 x Wharfdale Diamond 10s for my front main speakers, and 3 x PBS 8" powered subs (at 33% loudness on their dial), crossover set at 80Hz. The combination is excellent sounding, smooth not harsh re the treble, unobtrusive re size, have a high WAF and are low in cost! A value combination that is hard to beat.

Enjoy!
 

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Jim makes some excellent points / comments above.
The best advice that I can give anyone when it comes to picking speakers is to go and audition them for yourself. Everyone's taste is different so you really do have to go and listen to them to get an idea on what you like and (eventually) want. Some like bright speakers, some like a more mellow sound, some like a lot of bass, some prefer a smooth midrange that concentrates on voices, etc...….
When I'm in the market for new speakers, I take a few CD's to the Audio store(s) with me and sit down for some long listening sessions. The CD's I take with me are CD's that I know like the back of my hand (have listened to countless times) and that contain a good mix of voices (male and female) as well as different instruments - especially piano, acoustic guitar, and something that produces a lot of solid bass.
Good luck!
 

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Jim makes some excellent points / comments above.
The best advice that I can give anyone when it comes to picking speakers is to go and audition them for yourself. Everyone's taste is different so you really do have to go and listen to them to get an idea on what you like and (eventually) want. Some like bright speakers, some like a more mellow sound, some like a lot of bass, some prefer a smooth midrange that concentrates on voices, etc...….
When I'm in the market for new speakers, I take a few CD's to the Audio store(s) with me and sit down for some long listening sessions. The CD's I take with me are CD's that I know like the back of my hand (have listened to countless times) and that contain a good mix of voices (male and female) as well as different instruments - especially piano, acoustic guitar, and something that produces a lot of solid bass.
Good luck!
Sadly different CDs can differ wildly re their recording quality. If the CD is bass shy, you would tend to buy bassy loudspeakers. If shrill, you would end up with dull loudspeakers!

I prefer to let the science do the work for me. Audyssey calibration. Audyssey would even out shrill or dull loudspeakers. So when you play a bassy CD it would sound bassy, a shrill CD and it would sound shrill. Get a perfect recording (the majority) and you will go Wow! Until you live with Audyssey (and with 3 non-mirrored powered sub-woofers) it might be hard to fathom - but I would never buy a system without that combination ever again.

Multiple distributed sub-woofers (set to run at 80Hz and below) reduce the issue of room modes resulting in flat and tight bass.

One neat trick that Audyssey does is remove the delay of slow woofers trying to interact with fast mid-range and treble drivers of your main loudspeakers. Audyssey simply delays the mains to allow the woofers to catch up. The difference, to true music lovers, is stark. The alternative is smeared up bass where transient timing is all wrong.
 

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I hate the effect of centre speakers and think they are over-rated.
Not sure I've ever heard anyone say that before. Considering how critical it is to the overall soundtrack a central is more underrated than overrated

I have been using a 2.1 system since my second year of getting a 5.1 system. I enable phantom surround sound mode sometimes, but usually the improvement in 'rear' sound is inferior to just getting a great sound from the front and sub-woofers (I connected 3 sub-woofers to my system's single sub woofer output and placed them in non-mirrored locations around my listening area).
2.1 for HT is merely amplified TV speakers. In that configuration there's no real soundtrack so a lot is missing.

When I'm in the market for new speakers, I take a few CD's to the Audio store(s) with me and sit down for some long listening sessions. The CD's I take with me are CD's that I know like the back of my hand (have listened to countless times) and that contain a good mix of voices (male and female) as well as different instruments - especially piano, acoustic guitar, and something that produces a lot of solid bass.
Sadly different CDs can differ wildly re their recording quality. If the CD is bass shy, you would tend to buy bassy loudspeakers. If shrill, you would end up with dull loudspeakers!
Based upon the highlighted section above I believe cobraguy accounted for CD quality, preferences and a large portion of the frequency spectrum.
 

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I can appreciate the "science", but I prefer to let my ears do the work for me.
As I stated, the CD's I take with me I know like the back of my hand. I've listened to them for years and I know every note. Their recording quality is excellent, so I don't have any issues dealing with different / poorly recorded CD's.
Audyssey calibration is excellent, from everything that I've read. But no matter what the "science" is, you aren't going to make poor speakers sound good and you aren't going to get 600.00 speakers to sound like 6000.00 speakers.
I still prefer to listen before I buy.
 

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I can appreciate the "science", but I prefer to let my ears do the work for me.
As I stated, the CD's I take with me I know like the back of my hand. I've listened to them for years and I know every note. Their recording quality is excellent, so I don't have any issues dealing with different / poorly recorded CD's.
Audyssey calibration is excellent, from everything that I've read. But no matter what the "science" is, you aren't going to make poor speakers sound good and you aren't going to get 600.00 speakers to sound like 6000.00 speakers.
I still prefer to listen before I buy.
Hehe, yes I agree. Audyssey can't make a silk purse from a pig's ear! But, have you tried it? Looks like you have only read about it. Audyssey actually CAN make a $30 Dayton B652 loudspeaker sound like a $300 loudspeaker! There were beaming issues still (Audyssey cannot correct for that), but it was scarily good - and the test listeners were experienced 'audiophiles'.
 

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Hehe, yes I agree. Audyssey can't make a silk purse from a pig's ear! But, have you tried it? Looks like you have only read about it. Audyssey actually CAN make a $30 Dayton B652 loudspeaker sound like a $300 loudspeaker! There were beaming issues still (Audyssey cannot correct for that), but it was scarily good - and the test listeners were experienced 'audiophiles'.
....and we still MUST listen before we buy! there are some faults only our magnificent ear-brain can pick out, which computers and DSP correction will never be able to.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hello ,

thanks for replying everyone.

I will surely go and listen to some different speakers.

Here's a list of brands i find , but other brands are welcome.
What brands are known to be good speaker makers ?
Any favorites ?

Camry
Canton
Dali
Dayton Audio
Fenton
Focal
Jamo
JBL
Klipsch
Krüger&Matz
Monitor Audio
Pioneer
Power Dynamics
Q Acoustics
Quadral
Skytec
Thonet & Vander Turm
Wharfedale
Yamaha

Thanks
 

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Hehe, yes I agree. Audyssey can't make a silk purse from a pig's ear! But, have you tried it? Looks like you have only read about it. Audyssey actually CAN make a $30 Dayton B652 loudspeaker sound like a $300 loudspeaker! There were beaming issues still (Audyssey cannot correct for that), but it was scarily good - and the test listeners were experienced 'audiophiles'.
Dynamic curve shaping does not get rid of non-linearities it only masks them. Speakers are inherently non linear. They are electro-mechanical devices. Listening to speakers is the best way to select them. Start at the top and listen to the most expensive that you can find, then listen to some in your price range. You will find something that will work for you. Although they may sound different when you get them home. It's your room interfering with the acoustic environment. Good luck, and have fun listening.
 

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B&W
Canton
Dayton Audio
Focal
JBL
Klipsch
Monitor Audio
Wharfedale


Your list did not include B&W but i noticed they were listed on your first store link. My short list (mostly from your list), B&W, Canton, Focal and others not on your list. Also I don't know if you have a "BestBuy" near you but they do "Price Match" B&W etc and they have "price marked down's" for various reasons...


As has been written, 3.1 is minimal for movies especially since Dolby, DTS, Dolby Atmos. With decent speakers watching any movie the listener faces a full sound stage taking up the space between him and the movie screen extending out in all directions. not specific speakers LRC/sub etc - Without a center channel speaker however the sound stage is reduced and believe-ability is reduced.
However if you've ever listened/watched a movie with a 3.1 system you would never give up a center speaker but when buying good speakers a 2.1 system might be a great place to buy a speaker system that can be added to later.
Let us know what you think and the result? Please...
 

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I support using a center speaker when listening to multi-channel audio because the audio is mixed for it. If audio is meant to come out of a center speaker, I want it coming out of a center speaker, not out of the left/right speakers. Yes, with a proper audio signal, and proper speakers, and proper speaker placement, and a proper listening position, a phantom center can be as good as using a real center speaker, but how often do you have all of those properties in place. A real center speaker comes closest to guaranteeing a proper center image when called for.

There aren't many bad speaker manufacturers. It's very similar to vehicle manufacturers, there are cheaper entry level products and there are more expensive better products. So if you listen to one model of a JBL speaker and don't like it, you may like a different model of JBL speaker. Such as the difference between the JBL Northridge series and the JBL Studio series. As mentioned earlier, you should have similar sounding speakers when implementing surround sound. Typically speakers in the same model line sound similar. And technically using the exact same speaker for all speakers is best. This is including the center speaker. Most manufacturers make a horizontal "center" speaker, this horizontal orientation is only for aesthetics and for situations where a vertical speaker won't fit under the TV. These horizontal "center" speakers typically do not sound as good as their vertical counterparts.

My suggestion is to use the exact same vertically orientated bookshelf speakers for all speakers (whether doing 3.1 or 7.1). These speakers should play confidently down to at least 60hz so they can have a crossover setting of 80hz to the subwoofer(s). When implemented properly multiple subwoofers can offer great benefits. To get better equipment you can always start off small and add speakers as funds allow. Find some great speakers that you can afford to buy two of for a 2.0 system. Then later add one more speaker for 3.0. Then later add one more speaker for 3.1. If you buy a cheaper 3.1 system right off the bat, you are going to get upgrade-itis very soon.
 

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What to listen for when auditioning speakers?

Obviously the quality of the sound coming out of the speakers. Does the bass sound bloated and indistinguishable (bad), or does it have low distortion and actually sound like the instrument (string bass, bass drum, etc.) (good)? Does the midrange sound chesty and hollow (bad), or does it have fullness (good) (James Earl Jones voice is a good test for blending between bass and midrange)? Does the treble sound dull and cut-off (bad), or does it have tinkle and sizzle without ringing and hurting your ears (good)?

Another matter to listen for that distinguishes the good from the better is what's know as 'imaging' and 'sound stage.' Does all of the sound blend together and sound as if it is coming directly out of each speaker (bad), or are the audio objects separate and sound like they are coming from a sound stage in front of you (meaning that the audio doesn't come directly out of each speaker but from several feet to the left, right, in front of, and behind the speakers) (good).

As an example of sets of speakers with these differences:
(good attributes) JBL Northridge series.
(great attributes) JBL Studio series.
 

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Sorry that some of my posts are lacking in descriptors, nouns, adjectives. I haven't been proof reading. I am trying to write my thoughts clearly the first time without grammar-check etc etc...


One point worth going into, in some detail is the idea of buying speakers of similar build/model. Since i first started listening to music and accumulating system components, beginning with stereo speaker pairs in the 1960's and moving up to Sub/Sat systems, then on to 5.1 and 7.2 systems etc etc There has always been one consideration common to speakers and speaker arrays of any variety. In the 1960's and to this day matched stereo pairs of speaker drivers was and is of primary importance. Stereo imaging is best achieved when speaker transducers are not only of the same make and model but of equal electrical and mechanical parameters and sound very much like the other speakers in the speaker array. Buying quality speakers may assure the availability of matched drivers all around even in today's systems this might be important to some and with digital steering of soundtracks in movies etc to subs and surround speakers, and to specific speaker positions and to individual speaker box configs..., I'm feeling a need to mix and or match surrounds to their specific requirements may be interesting as well

Hope i am clear as mud
 

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You can make yourself crazy unless you have some "process".
Find a sound store that actually listens to you.
Tell them your price range, attributes, ie, floorstanding or bookshelf.
Bring CD's as was mentioned before, and audition speakers. You'll know the right ones when you hear them.
Some of my favorites are JBL, M&K, B&W, and Magnaplanar.
I had some bookshelf B&W that would knock your socks off.
Here is a really good read: http://www.mkloudspeakers.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/MK-Speaker-System-Manual.pdf
 
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