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#91662 - 11/12/12 10:52 PM Center Channel Experiment
mdrconsult Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 05/27/07
Posts: 126
Loc: Austin, Texas
I'm not sure if this has been done before (my guess is it has)but has anyone ever tried running their center channel through a pair of speakers rather than a single speaker.

Here is my rational for this question. When I properly setup a pair of speaker for stereo listening I can clearly hear the voices coming from the center of the sound stage. Not only that but if done right I have a fairly large, as compared to a single center channel speaker, sweet spot for listening both in the left right and up down directions. Although the pair of monitors might be slightly more expensive than a speaker designed to be a center channel, the monitors would certainly have much better SQ.

So assuming I'm willing to try this approach, how would I best configure this? The monitors I'm thinking about trying are 8 ohm monitors. Could I just run the two in parallel? My amp, an Outlaw 7500, is rated for 4 ohm loads so in theory it could drive it, correct? Of course I'd have to run the room correction again and that should balance out the sound level which I suspect will be higher than a single speaker.

Any thoughts or experiences you'd like to share would be appreciated.

Thank You,
Mark
_________________________
Emotiva XMC-1, Outlaw 7500, Sonus Faber Olympica III Fronts, SF Liuto Center, SF Surrounds, LFM-1 EX, Oppo BDP-103D, Apple TV (Gen. 4), Mitsubishi 65" Diamond DLP, Outlaw Cables, PS Audio Power Quintet, Duet and power cords.

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#91664 - 11/13/12 09:16 AM Re: Center Channel Experiment [Re: mdrconsult]
EEman Offline
Desperado

Registered: 11/11/09
Posts: 514
Loc: Canton, MI
Yes, I've run with no center speaker before. The 970 has a mode that allows you to mix the center channel to the left and right mains in varying degrees from all center to all through the left and right. It worked great and the center channel sound came from dead center of the TV while you were in the sweet spot. However if you're not in the sweet spot the sound definetly panned either left or right which I found more annoying than having the center channel above the TV (in my case). I switched back to the center channel config.

Another drawback of the 970 approach is that it could only perform this function when using the internal digital processing. When I switch to 7.1 analog mode for my bluray I lost this capability. Your approach of running the monitors in parallel sounds like it might work. I'm not certain where the best location would be to place them though. You'd have to experiment.
_________________________
975/7075/SMS-1
Aperion Verus Grand Towers & Bookshelves, Verus Forte Center, Infinity Surrounds, Ultra-X12
Oppo BDP-203, XBOX360, Xbox One
LG 65" OLED
RR2150 w/Klipsch SCR-2

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#91667 - 11/13/12 11:54 AM Re: Center Channel Experiment [Re: EEman]
XenonMan Offline
Desperado

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 2676
Loc: Columbus,North Carolina
Yes I have done the two speakers as the center in the past as a temporary solution and it worked well until I got a real center channel. I had my two speakers set right next to one another so I didn't get a spatial advantage. I would think that if you moved the speakers apart somewhat the sweet spot would be bigger up to a point. It could actually widen the soundfield without losing dialog clarity when you sit off to the side.
_________________________
Music system
Model 990/7500/Magnepan 1.6 QRs/Technics SL1200 MK2/Aperion S-12 Subwoofer/OWA3/Sony NS75H DVD
APC H15 Power Conditioner

TV System
Large Advent Loudspeakers/ Polk center/Monoprice surrounds/Panasonic Viera 42 inch/Onkyo HT-RC260/Sony BDP S590/Directv


Home Theater System
Onkyo PR-SC886/Outlaw 7125 Klipsch RF-82 L/R,RC-62 center, RB-35 SR/SL, BENQ HT1075, Outlaw LFM1-EX/OPPO BDP-83/Directv
Harmony ONE
Blue Jeans and Monoprice interconnects
APC H15 Power Conditioner

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#91669 - 11/13/12 04:07 PM Re: Center Channel Experiment [Re: XenonMan]
mdrconsult Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 05/27/07
Posts: 126
Loc: Austin, Texas
The wider sound stage (for the center channel) is what I was hoping to achieve. I've noticed that when watching a movie or even TV that if I switch to stereo the acceptable listening zone for the dialog increases noticeably. Another issue I was hoping to solve was that my current center speaker is located about 2' below the center of the screen. This at times can be distracting because the voices appear to be coming from below the screen instead of the character's mouth.

To elaborate a bit on my plan, I would use a pair of bookshelf monitors (not traditional center channel speakers) and place them on either side (right on the edge) of my TV and about centered vertically to the screen. If I take the time to initially set them up using stereo signals I can get the sweet spot centered pretty easily by adjusting the toe in to minimize any frequency cancellation effects. Once that is done I could wire it to my center channel and rerun the room correction to get the sound level and delay reestablished.

I am hoping my approach will come closer to the ideal situation. My understanding of what is considered the perfect solution is to have all 3 of your front speakers be identical. And then place the center speaker directly behind and in the center of the screen. Of course this would require you to have an acoustically transparent screen. Since I can not get to anything even close to that setup I'm looking for the next best thing.

I've read a bit about people trying 2 center channel speakers (traditional horizontal designs)and placing one above and below the screen. This approach has not been well received nor would I have expected it to work well. There are numerous issues with using a horizontal M-T-M speaker design. Although they can be designed with reasonable horizontal spread they have a very narrow vertical pattern. If you now try to align two of these I would think you'd wind up with a very narrow vertical sweet spot. I have found only a couple of references to using 2 center channels placed on the horizontal plane, but those were done using conventional center channel speakers and they were placed very close to each other. Again the results where not acceptable.

Thanks to both of you for your feedback. I'm hoping to hear more from some others. I was really hoping someone might have tried what I'm about to try.

Thank You,
Mark
_________________________
Emotiva XMC-1, Outlaw 7500, Sonus Faber Olympica III Fronts, SF Liuto Center, SF Surrounds, LFM-1 EX, Oppo BDP-103D, Apple TV (Gen. 4), Mitsubishi 65" Diamond DLP, Outlaw Cables, PS Audio Power Quintet, Duet and power cords.

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#91670 - 11/13/12 06:32 PM Re: Center Channel Experiment [Re: mdrconsult]
XenonMan Offline
Desperado

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 2676
Loc: Columbus,North Carolina
Something else you could try would be to enable your TV speakers. They could help enhance the soundfield some without too much trouble and they are already powered and right at the edge of the screen. If you have to use the lipsync function it could be an issue but it might be worth a try.
_________________________
Music system
Model 990/7500/Magnepan 1.6 QRs/Technics SL1200 MK2/Aperion S-12 Subwoofer/OWA3/Sony NS75H DVD
APC H15 Power Conditioner

TV System
Large Advent Loudspeakers/ Polk center/Monoprice surrounds/Panasonic Viera 42 inch/Onkyo HT-RC260/Sony BDP S590/Directv


Home Theater System
Onkyo PR-SC886/Outlaw 7125 Klipsch RF-82 L/R,RC-62 center, RB-35 SR/SL, BENQ HT1075, Outlaw LFM1-EX/OPPO BDP-83/Directv
Harmony ONE
Blue Jeans and Monoprice interconnects
APC H15 Power Conditioner

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#95571 - 12/24/15 02:08 AM Re: Center Channel Experiment [Re: mdrconsult]
975 destroyer Offline
Gunslinger

Registered: 09/07/15
Posts: 129
Loc: Georgia, US of A!
2 tweeters would be 2 HF sound sources smearing or defusing detail.

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#95574 - 12/24/15 01:50 PM Re: Center Channel Experiment [Re: mdrconsult]
XenonMan Offline
Desperado

Registered: 04/08/08
Posts: 2676
Loc: Columbus,North Carolina
I wonder how he solved it three years ago.
_________________________
Music system
Model 990/7500/Magnepan 1.6 QRs/Technics SL1200 MK2/Aperion S-12 Subwoofer/OWA3/Sony NS75H DVD
APC H15 Power Conditioner

TV System
Large Advent Loudspeakers/ Polk center/Monoprice surrounds/Panasonic Viera 42 inch/Onkyo HT-RC260/Sony BDP S590/Directv


Home Theater System
Onkyo PR-SC886/Outlaw 7125 Klipsch RF-82 L/R,RC-62 center, RB-35 SR/SL, BENQ HT1075, Outlaw LFM1-EX/OPPO BDP-83/Directv
Harmony ONE
Blue Jeans and Monoprice interconnects
APC H15 Power Conditioner

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