How important is a centre speaker?

Discussion in 'Home Cinema Buying & Building' started by Broko, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. Broko

    Broko
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    Have a new set up of a denon AVR that has replaced an old (but good) stereo set up. All connected to networked pc.
    I use it almost exclusively for music. I have 4 speakers, two quad 11l for the front and two old mission m3 for the rear. I intend to get a small sub that can be hidden but a centre speaker will not be easy to fit in. I will have to build a shelf for the TV to sit on so the speaker can go underneath.
    Question is will I notice a massive difference?
    If yes should I spend more on a centre or just get something cheap as the quads and sub will do most of the work. Ideally I would like a matching quad centre in birds eye maple but have a strict budget of £75. I can get a centre for £50 from amazon delivered, (magnat!).
    What's the opinion.?
     
  2. dante01

    dante01
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    The centre handles up to 70% of all the audio so is relatively important. You can do without one, but dialogue may not always eminate from the centre of your screen if you've either a large screen area or you've not set up the left and right speakers properly in terms of their position and angles? You're also effectively using power otherwise allocated to just the left and right channels to also handle the centre channel and this can theoretically effect the dynamic headroom of your left and right speakers while using them to handle three channels as opposed to just two channels of audio.

    If you can only afford something cheap and something that isn't a match for your intended left and right speakers then I'd suggest you are better off not bothering with a centre speaker. I'd rather the centre be timbre matched than have one just for the ake of having one present. If you do get ne, it need to be from the same manufacturer and from the same range as your left and right speaker, either this or the same speaker as either your left or right speakers.
     
  3. Broko

    Broko
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    Thanks. I'll look out for a Quad centre. I think its the way to go. As I say I mainly use for music and have a few 5.1s but not enough to warrant spending £200 on a new Quad. I'll post in the wanted as soon as I am able.
     
  4. KelvinS1965

    KelvinS1965
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    Totally agree with Dante: I'd rather have no centre than a mismatched one (I'm also a stickler for the less popular matching surrounds as well, but that's a more subtle effect). However, your mention of putting the centre 'in the cabinet' may not be the best solution either. I've found that putting a centre in a cabinet makes it boom and can sound a bit 'chesty' even, such that once I'd moved it out into the open it sounded like a different (better) speaker.
     
  5. Broko

    Broko
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    When I say a cabinet I mean a basic support that the telly sits on and the speaker slides under. The speaker will be fully open. It will be so the telly int on the speaker. I am looking for a Mission 75c or a Quad 11l Centre so when I get whatever I get I will make a box for the telly out of matching drawers that have been removed for the AVR and Bluray.
     
  6. KelvinS1965

    KelvinS1965
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    The more 'open' you can make it the better...don't look for a Mission centre as it'll be a total non match for your Quads IMHO. Just wait for a Quad centre to turn up and use phantom centre until then; I'm running a phantom centre while I save up for another MK MP150 rather than use any spare speaker instead.
     
  7. Broko

    Broko
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    If I get a mission it will be to match my old mission 73s. The quads will then go in the lounge. The wife hates them all but the quads look a bit more furniture like, esp with the maple piano finish
     

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