Answered Different brand centre channel + Dirac

DougAP

Well-known Member
Is anyone doing this?

I know it's sacrilegious to contemplate having different brands across the front sound-stage, but I'm contemplating it. The brand that makes my L/R speakers (ATC) don't have in-wall speakers and I'd like an in-wall centre.

I'm wondering whether using an in-wall centre from another make (M&K most likely) would work. Both manufacturers voice their speakers to be neutral and my hunch is Dirac would integrate them seamlessly.

Thoughts? Experiences?
 

gibbsy

Moderator
@Rambles uses a different centre and is running Dirac.

I, on the other hand have the same centre and don't run Dirac.:)
 

Russ 66

Well-known Member
I take it you have discounted the ATC HTS on wall speakers. At least the tweeter would be the same across the front three.
 

DougAP

Well-known Member
I take it you have discounted the ATC HTS on wall speakers. At least the tweeter would be the same across the front three.
Nope, haven't discounted that, but you've hit the nail on the head! Essentially, I'm deciding whether to go with the HTS11 on-wall as a centre or going with an in-wall from M&K.

The advantage of the HTS is it would, ostensibly, be more seamless being as it's from the same manufacturer and the same line of speakers (the HTS11 is the on-wall version of the SCM11, and my L/R are SCM40s). The disadvantage of the HTS is it wouldn't look quite as discreet as a proper in-wall.

The advantage of going M&K in-wall (probs the IW150) for the centre is it would look better and is probably the more competent speaker over the HTS11. My surrounds are M&K (CS35s) and if/when I go Atmos I might go for M&K in-ceiling, so it would match all the speakers other than the L/R. The disadvantage is that there's a theoretical chance the M&K won't blend with the mains.

The SCM40s are pretty much flat (+/- 2dB) and so are the M&Ks. There's also the fact that the HTS11 while the same manufacturer and same tweeter, is a completely different form factor to the mains and lacks the midrange driver or the SCM40s (which is one of the main reasons I bought the SCM40 - that driver is incredible), so is a fundamentally different speaker anyway.

I suspect that Dirac would be able to bring the front sound-stage into line even if I did mix speakers, but I'm not 100% sure as I've never mixed manufacturers across the front before...
 

DougAP

Well-known Member
That all said, I think I'm probably leaning towards the HTS11 as a centre. The risk of going M&K IW150 is that I only find out once it's in the wall that it doesn't work with the SCM40s, which would mean either pulling it out the wall, which I don't want to do, or replacing the SCM40s, which I have no intention at all of doing.
 

Rambles

Distinguished Member
Hi, I have got through about 8 different centre speakers in the last year or so! To be honest, they all sounded very similar, and I ran Dirac on all of them up to about 200hz or so to iron out a nasty 120hz peak I have there, probably due to room and position.

My mains are Kef R300's and I have had a few centres from Kef, Monitor Audio and Klipsch. I finally settled on a Kef Reference 202C, because it looks cool, sounds good, and plays quite low, due to other boring / complicated set up issues, I now run my centre as large so decided to get one as big and powerful as possible for the bass response.
 

Russ 66

Well-known Member
SCM40’s, very nice. I have heard some smaller ATC stand mount speakers and they were excellent.
There is the HTS40 which also has the mid driver but it’s pretty big and costly.
 

DougAP

Well-known Member
Hi, I have got through about 8 different centre speakers in the last year or so! To be honest, they all sounded very similar, and I ran Dirac on all of them up to about 200hz or so to iron out a nasty 120hz peak I have there, probably due to room and position.

My mains are Kef R300's and I have had a few centres from Kef, Monitor Audio and Klipsch. I finally settled on a Kef Reference 202C, because it looks cool, sounds good, and plays quite low, due to other boring / complicated set up issues, I now run my centre as large so decided to get one as big and powerful as possible for the bass response.
That's very useful, thanks. So, did you find all those different speakers integrated seamlessly with your mains?
 

DougAP

Well-known Member
SCM40’s, very nice. I have heard some smaller ATC stand mount speakers and they were excellent.
There is the HTS40 which also has the mid driver but it’s pretty big and costly.
I reckon the HTS40 would be waaaayyy too big. I'm sure it would be ace though.

Yea, the SCM40s are lovely. They're arriving tomorrow which I'm just a little bit excited about. Can't wait to have a listen. When I demoed them they were a country mile better than the other speakers I tried, and certainly better than any I've owned. Their one drawback is they require a lot of power, which gave me an excuse to buy a new toy today...
 

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Rambles

Distinguished Member
That's very useful, thanks. So, did you find all those different speakers integrated seamlessly with your mains?
Yes. I didn't notice any 'timbre mis-matching'. They did maybe all sound a little different, some sounded a bit congested (Kef Q). The Klipsch were lovely and crisp and clear for dialogue. And I tried a few different things with Dirac to get them to sound as best as I thought they could in the room.
 

DougAP

Well-known Member
That's really useful - thanks.

I think I'm going to go with the HTS, mainly out of being risk averse.

It's bad timing really, as I've just sold my M&K MP950s. Had I held on to them until after the SCM40s arrived I could have simply tried the SCM40s with an MP950 centre to see if that worked, before committing to in-walls.
 

Topmetom 2

Well-known Member
I had atc speakers years ago, by god they was fine sounding, i had a centre from them so it sounded seamless. I would try for the atc center. Id also try rick at musicraft.
 

Topmetom 2

Well-known Member
I remember selling them and the guy listened to them said oh yeah ill have them, lifted one up hit it on my cabinet and dented the top! I was gutted, and they wasnt mine any more
 

DougAP

Well-known Member
Why did you go for atc over m&k, music?
Yes, partly.

Also, the mains have to be in-room rather than wall-mounted/in-wall, given my room's constraints. The only higher end M&K options there are S150s and S300s, both of which are pug ugly and not fit for the living room.

The other fact is the SCM40s are flat out brilliant. I've heard them a few times and always been impressed. Once I sat down with them for a while, comparing them against other speakers, I was completely sold (blown away, jaw-dropping, mind-blowing <insert cliche AV review adjective>).

Aside from the fact they sound incredible, I think they're fundamentally a very appealing prospect for a dual-use AV/music speaker. They're built to be dynamic and neutrally transparent - that's ATC's hallmark - which is something one wants for cinema sound. The bass driver operates between about 48 and 380Hz, meaning that it's an ideal partner for a sub (not much unused pass band below an 80Hz xo, and lots above). And the midrange driver is lovely, operating between 380-3.5kHz, meaning most of the information in movies (dialogue etc.) is rendered by a single, exceptionally capable driver.

They'll also look badass in my living room:D
 
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Topmetom 2

Well-known Member
Yes, partly.

Also, the mains have to be in-room rather than wall-mounted/in-wall, given my room's constraints. The only higher end M&K options there are S150s and S300s, both of which are pug ugly and not fit for the living room.

The other fact is the SCM40s are flat out brilliant. I've heard them a few times and always been impressed. Once I sat down with them for a while, comparing them against other speakers, I was completely sold (blown away, jaw-dropping, mind-blowing <insert cliche AV review adjective>).

Aside from the fact they sound incredible, I think they're fundamentally a very appealing prospect for a dual-use AV/music speaker. They're built to be dynamic and neutrally transparent - that's ATC's hallmark - which is something one wants for cinema sound. The bass driver operates between about 48 and 380Hz, meaning that it's an ideal partner for a sub (not much unused pass band below an 80Hz xo, and lots above). And the midrange driver is lovely, operating between 380-3.5kHz, meaning most of the information in movies (dialogue etc.) is rendered by a single, exceptionally capable driver.

They'll also look badass in my living room:D
Yep all of the above! I had 35’s
 

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