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Help please: can I expand my speaker system? Or go for complete new?

snowgo

Standard Member
Appreciate some advice please about adding additional speakers, and hope this is not a stupid question:

I have a Denon AVR-1910 receiver which is attached to two home build cabinet speakers (1.0 x 0.3 x 0.4 metres). The speakers were built by my ex-partner more than 10 years ago, and given to me when he moved abroad. He took a lot of care in building them, and they look and sound really good so reluctant to ditch them. But I know nothing else about them. Am now thinking that I would like to expand to surround sound and unsure how to proceed.

I've got a panasonic tx-p50g10b tv, sony dvd recorder rdr-hxd970, v+ box, cd player, & turntable connected to the denon. Intend buying blu-ray player & perhaps media streamer in future.

Questions: can I attach some additional speakers to get surround sound for both movies and music? As indicated I would prefer to keep the cabinet speakers, but is this asking for problems? Would I be better ditching them and going for complete new system? Suggested speakers?

My budget for speakers is up to about £600 (but could spend more than this if convinced it's worth it). Room is an attic sitting room, size 5.25 x 4.5 metres approx.

Thanks in advance for advice offered.
 

BlueWizard

Distinguished Member
The most difficult part is going to be finding a matching center. If possible, open the cabinets or remove the largest speaker, and see what is inside of it. If you can determine the brand of driver, that is a step in the right direction. If the woofers and/or tweeters are Seas, Dayton, Vifa, or similar familiar brands, you can very likely find existing DIY designs based around these speakers. Meaning, you can easily build or have built a center to match.

Also, keep in mind that many speaker manufacturers do not actually manufacture their own drivers. They use Seas, Dayton, Vifa, and other off-the-shelf speakers and concentrate on a cabinet design that will get the best out of those speakers. So, if you can determine what drivers you have, you may be able to find very similar speakers on the market.

If it is not possible to accurately determine precisely what speaker drivers you have, then look at the composition of the drivers, are they paper cone, poly/plastic cone, kevlar, metal, etc.... You many be able to find a center that has very similar cone material, and while not a guarantee, it would create a likely tonal match.

Also, different people tolerate tonal variations in speakers to a different degree. For some, a tonal disparity between the front and the center may be very off putting. For others, it may not matter that much.

As to rears and the Sub, the are not as critical as matching the front three speakers. Now, naturally, it is to your advantage to have all the speaker as closely tonally matched as possible. But rears are less critical, and a Sub, tonally, doesn't matter at all; assuming, of course, that it is a generally good sounding Sub.

So, there are a lot of factors to consider.

Steve/bluewizard
 

subterracineman

Standard Member
My knowledge if fair but luckily there's some real experts on here. No doubt you'll get replies from others correcting what I'm about to say. But lets get the ball rolling eh?

I've had a look at the spec on the denon and in the absence of hdmi connections I think you may struggle to get true HD audio.

The receiver outputs 90W rms a channel according to the spec I looked at, so the speakers wanna be beefy, I'd go a minimum of 120W rms each on the speakers, pref' 150W rms.

In the business of speakers as far as I've learned the most important thing is to have the front three speakers matched. Could you use the old ones as the rears? I do like steves idea of keeping those big ones at the front tho.

Then you gotta consider whether to get a separate subwoofer. but you may find the low frequencies adequate with the 5 speakers, particularly with the fat ones at the front.

Hope this helps

Kevin
 
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PSM1

Distinguished Member
My knowledge if fair but luckily there's some real experts on here. No doubt you'll get replies from others correcting what I'm about to say. But lets get the ball rolling eh?

I've had a look at the spec on the denon and in the absence of hdmi connections I think you may struggle to get true HD audio.

The receiver outputs 90W rms a channel according to the spec I looked at, so the speakers wanna be beefy, I'd go a minimum of 120W rms each on the speakers, pref' 150W rms.

In the business of speakers as far as I've learned the most important thing is to have the front three speakers matched. Could you use the old ones as the rears? I do like steves idea of keeping those big ones at the front tho.

Then you gotta consider whether to get a separate subwoofer. but you may find the low frequencies adequate with the 5 speakers, particularly with the fat ones at the front.

Hope this helps

Kevin

Not sure what spec you have looked at but the Denon 1910 has 4 HDMIs and is a full HD audio amp decoding all the formats.
I would not worry too much about the Wattage ratings (100W will be more than adequate unless intending to put on full volume for long periods).
As far as matching speakers go the best idea would be to try and demo a couple of different manufacturers with your current speakers. You may be able to convince a local specialist to either bring around or lend you a couple of centre speakers to see which ones match the best. Once found a good matching centre you could then get the same make for rears. This will get you the best sounding system and all the fun of demoing.
You could try some fairly neutral makes to start with. Makes to look at include PMC, Focal and Wharfdale.
 

subterracineman

Standard Member
Not sure what spec you have looked at but the Denon 1910 has 4 HDMIs and is a full HD audio amp decoding all the formats.
I would not worry too much about the Wattage ratings (100W will be more than adequate unless intending to put on full volume for long periods).
As far as matching speakers go the best idea would be to try and demo a couple of different manufacturers with your current speakers. You may be able to convince a local specialist to either bring around or lend you a couple of centre speakers to see which ones match the best. Once found a good matching centre you could then get the same make for rears. This will get you the best sounding system and all the fun of demoing.
You could try some fairly neutral makes to start with. Makes to look at include PMC, Focal and Wharfdale.
oh, sorry
 

snowgo

Standard Member
Thanks Steve/Kevin for your suggestions.

Behind the front panel are 4 speakers (or perhaps 5 as there is a rectangular gauze panel that might have another speaker behind). Unscrewed the bottom largest one and it says manufacturer is Kef and also says 8 ohms. Can't make out what the speakers are made of. But bottom two don't seem to be metal or paper. Does this help?

Only problem with using the cabinets as rears is that the cable length is only 3 metre, and not really big enough to get to back of room. They also do look quite good either side of TV. But if I could extend the cable length wouldn't be adverse to using them as rears. Looks like the speaker mounting frames are held by 50+ screws and would need to remove them to get at cables.

Wonder if best thing might be to try and use them as fronts, and get a centre & rears that might go with them, but then if they don't seem right I could replace the cabinets with a couple of front speakers to match the others, and put the cabinets somewhere else in house.
 

961

Prominent Member
Appreciate some advice please about adding additional speakers, and hope this is not a stupid question:

I have a Denon AVR-1910 receiver which is attached to two home build cabinet speakers (1.0 x 0.3 x 0.4 metres). The speakers were built by my ex-partner more than 10 years ago, and given to me when he moved abroad. He took a lot of care in building them, and they look and sound really good so reluctant to ditch them. But I know nothing else about them. Am now thinking that I would like to expand to surround sound and unsure how to proceed.

I've got a panasonic tx-p50g10b tv, sony dvd recorder rdr-hxd970, v+ box, cd player, & turntable connected to the denon. Intend buying blu-ray player & perhaps media streamer in future.

Questions: can I attach some additional speakers to get surround sound for both movies and music? As indicated I would prefer to keep the cabinet speakers, but is this asking for problems? Would I be better ditching them and going for complete new system? Suggested speakers?

My budget for speakers is up to about £600 (but could spend more than this if convinced it's worth it). Room is an attic sitting room, size 5.25 x 4.5 metres approx.

Thanks in advance for advice offered.

Don't ditch them. Totally unnecessary

If you like the noise they make use them as front left and right speakers especially if your major listening is stereo music

Otherwise, use them as rear speakers and buy a matched set of front and centre speakers

Quite acceptable to extend cables

Rear speakers in a surround sound system provide the ambience and you will not actually listen to them. It's the front centre speaker that pumps out the dialogue while the front left and right join in. It's important that these match. Others will advise what goes with your amplifier. Important to listen before buying

I don't think you need go beyond your budget
 
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snowgo

Standard Member
PSM1 - I was typing whilst you posted. Yes your right the denon does have full hdmi connections.

Like your idea of getting some speakers demo'd. Hadn't thought of this as an option.
 

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